Wednesday, February 17, 2010

miss personality

I love this age. Roan is really shaping into her own person. Here is a look at her world. She took all of these photos, believe it or not.

The stuff she says cracks us up all the time.

For example, the other day she said she wanted to play basketball with Daddy. But by her rules. Putting the ball into the hoop was simply not part of the equation. She wanted him to sit in a particular spot and roll the ball to another spot. When his aim was off, she got stern with him:
"If you can't play the game right, Daddy, Baby Sarah and I are going to go play in the other room."

Nice! That one is straight out of our playbook.

One night at dinner she was showing us a picture she had painted for us. She was really proud of it. She said, "I arted it."

At school they're working on phonic awareness. During circle time each kid gets assigned a letter and they have to think of words that start with it. Roan was assigned D. When her teachers asked, "What begins with D, Roan?" she replied with great enthusiasm "Ddddddollar stoooore!!!"

Last week on the way home from school Roan was frustrated with her beanie baby kitty cat named Carmen.
Her: "Mama, Carmen won't stand up!" she complained.
Me: [joking around] "Well, should we spank her?"
Her: "Nooo! She doesn't like spankers!"

Today I learned that all my efforts at teaching Roan manners have failed utterly. I have done nothing but confound her on the subject of whether to use "may" or "can". Case in point, our conversation this evening:
"Please may can I have some honey milk?"
Then later, after I'd forgotten to get it for her:
"Mama! You forgot my honey milk! Please may can!!!"

We've been working on sleeping through the night withoug a diaper. Sometimes she makes it all night dry, sometimes not. This morning we were discussing the previous night's accident.
Me: "You remember having an accident last night?"
Her: "Yeah. But it's ok because it was just water."
Me: "Water? No honey, I think that was pee pee."
Her: "No it wasn't pee pee! It was water!"
Me: "Well where did all that water come from?"
Her: "It came from out of my bottom."
Me: "Um, well I think then it was probably pee pee."
Her: [patiently explaining] "No Mama. Pee pee comes out my hoo hoo. Water comes out of my bottom.

Hmm, you learn something every day.

But my favorite things she says are the "I love you Mommy"s and the "You're my bestest ever"s that she delivers with more and more sincerity. The other night she had run me ragged all day, and then at dinner time there was one more thing she kept needing. I had gone back into the kitchen for something she'd asked for when she came in and said, "Mommy." Oh lord, I thought, what does she want now? And just then she threw her arms around my neck and said, "I love you soooo much Mommy. And I love Daddy so much too." Well then, I guess that makes it all worth it, I found myself thinking.

Here are a couple videos.

Here you can see she's really into letters and spelling. It's her favorite "game" to play these days.

And here's a typical Saturday morning around our house, with Roan making up her own game to play with her babies.

our funny valentine

Our little Valentine was so cute! Here she is with her buddy Audrey dressed up for their school party. I took an hour off work to attend and was so glad I did. The kids were adorable. Each had decorated a paper bag to collect valentines, and each child took turns handing their cards out. One of the parents had sent a giant fruit arrangement, and another sent a boxful of beautiful homemade cookies. I stole an extra one for the road. (Thanks Molly!)

Roan had a special Valentine's Day outfit on, and when we got to school we saw she and Audrey matched!

Here's hoping everyone had just as sweet a day.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

fancy dress up day

Fancy dress up day

Yes there is life outside of what's going on with Baby Cousin, Aunt Jen and Uncle Micah. Although I will admin our whole family has been laser focused on our newest family member. It's been challenging at times to "be there" as much as I would like for Jen, Micah and Logan while still maintaining a sense of consistency and stability for Roan. I will admit, her bedtime has slipped quite a bit this last week. I think we have that turned around now and back on track. Life as usual marches right on along for her.

This Friday will be her school class' Valentine's Day party. She has already picked out the Toy Story themed valentines she wants to give out. We just need to address them to all her little buddies. All week long at school they're having fun themed dress-up days. Today was "Fancy" dress up day. So Roan wore some pink sparkle leggings, some new shoes, lacy ruffle socks, a pink and purple sparkle tutu, purple fairy wings, and her hair done up all special. She informed us she was NOT a fairy, she was NOT a fairy princess, she was a PRINCESS. Here are a couple more.

Fancy dress up day

Fancy dress up day

I think most everyone that knows me knows I'm not a "girly girl." I have an allergic reaction to pink, as you likely well know. I've encouraged Roan not to feel constrained by gender barriers. But the simple fact of the matter is, homegirl feels FABULOUS in a tutu. And who can argue with that. When you see that glow on her face, her happiness is contageous. I think even if she were a boy and she felt that great in a tutu I wouldn't stand in her... uh his... way!

Logan update & slideshow

Just a quick update. Baby Logan and Mama are doing great! They have been home since Saturday evening. They had a couple rough, sleepless nights at first but now things seem to be on track. He had a checkup at the doctor's office on Monday that confirmed he's gaining weight! Yippee! Now that he's getting a full tummy he seems to be able to sleep for longer stretches. Jen and Micah are just amazing with him, which I'm sure comes as no surprise. It has been so wonderful to spend time with their sweet family.

Friday, February 05, 2010

more photos & an update

I'm glad to report both Mama and Baby are doing better. Looks like Logan will be released from NICU tonight, and the family may be able to go home as soon as tomorrow. He is a great eater, he's very alert and strong, and you can tell he just can't wait to show off his personality.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

he's here!

Our Little Long, Logan James, was born Wednesday February 3rd at 10:30 AM. He weighed 8 lbs 14 oz and was 21.5 inches long.

It was a bit of a rough journey getting him here. Jennifer started feeling contractions Tuesday around 11 AM. She labored at home like a real mama goddess for a while. I tell you, I was really in awe of her. She was the picture of tranquility, strength and determination. By about 3:30 or so her contractions were already 1 minute long and 2 minutes apart. The rule of thumb is to go to the hospital once they're been a minute long and 5 minutes apart for 1-2 hours. But since things were moving so quickly, her doula Regina made the call that we should go ahead and go in.

Just as we were leaving the house, Jennifer's water broke. When she got to the hospital we learned she had about a 101* fever, which was disconcerting. They started her on IV antibiotics right away. She was feeling pretty nauseous, occasionally throwing up. We weren't sure if that was because she was sick or just part of labor. Her contractions remained intense and frequent. She soldiered on naturally for quite a long while.

About midnight she made the call that it was time for the epidural. It was so amazing to see her go from the fog of labor back to her normal hilarious personality. She had the nurses and us in stitches. It was a relief to see her pain reduced - although not gone entirely. It allowed her to get a little intermittent rest from midnight to the wee hours. And the epidural also had a pretty immediate effect on getting her dilation to progress. She went two more centimeters almost right away, and continued steadily through the night to 10 cm by morning.

But the baby started to experience some heart decelerations, so they put her on oxygen and he evened back out. Then later he gave us a couple scares with some big decels. At one piont a whole cadre of nurses ran into the room to make sure all was well. Everyone kept a close eye on the little guy, but for the most part he really hung in there. As labor went on, he seemed to get stronger.

Things started heating up Wednesday morning around 6 or 7 I think. After being up all night it's a little fuzzy for me. Jen's normal doctor wasn't able to be there because her child was home sick throwing up, so we met a fellow OB from her practice named Dr. Z. He was a real wisecracker, and helped keep the mood light. I think by 8 or so she was ready to start pushing. It was such an incredible privilege to be a part of this amazing time with Jen and Micah. Jen pushed with such strength and determination it seemed for sure that baby would be here in no time.

After about an hour and a half, though, nurse Cindy noticed that the baby's head was having some swelling, and she was having difficulty getting him past the pelvic bone. That combined with Jen's fever and the presence of meconuim meant they had to keep a close eye on things. Dr. Z talked over the options with Jen and Micah and they agreed to try the vacuum extractor first. After a few pushes when it was clear that wasn't going to work they made the call that it was time for a c-section. Jen remained as she had been throughout - pragmatically focused on whatever was best for the baby's outcome.

Around 10 they wheeled her away for the c-section and we waited anxiously out in the hall. I have to say, I was really surprised throughout the process at how clueless and helpless I felt, even though it wasn't that long ago I went through labor with Roan. It is really hard to watch someone you care about be in pain and have so little you can do to help them. And once she was in the OR it was hard not knowing what was going on. I tried my best to stay focused on positive thoughts and not think about all the things that can go wrong.

Just before 11 nurse Cindy invited us into the recovery room, where we got our first look at the little guy. He was so mellow, he really seems to have his daddy's outlook on life. And his coloring as well. He got to spend some time with Dad and Mom in recovery. The c-section had gone pretty smootly, except that the little guy aspirated some meconium. They did their best to suction it all out, but knew they'd have to keep a close eye on him. Jen wasn't feeling well at all. Her fever was up and she was puking again. And the spinal was already wearing off, so her pain was increasing. Gradually she started coming back to herself though.

Around 4 hours after he was born, they did some tests and weren't happy with his numbers. They determined he'd have to go into the NICU for at least 48 hours for antibiotics and observation. Jen and Micah were pretty devastated to have Logan taken away just as they were finally getting to know him. But the great thing about the hospital they're at is the NICU there can provide top level care to Logan, and it's not far from their room. I think they can go in as much as they want. Although Roan will have to wait to meet Baby Cousin until he's out.

I just got an update from the hospital and it looks like Jen's fever is gone. She is taking her first walk. Logan has taken to breastfeeding and has already gotten in a few meals. He seems to be looking good. So hopefully the new family will be reunited soon!

Thanks everyone for your well wishes for Jen and the baby. All of the Longs greatly appreciate your love and support!