B’s Birth Story


2 am on Thursday May 14, 2015:

Left the house with water having broken earlier (about 7 pm) and having had only a contraction or two. Glad to not have traffic to drive to hospital. (Could take 2.5 hours in prime weekend afternoon traffic!) (6 days past due date)


Sometime between 2:30 am and 6:48 am: a happy(ish) lady with an epidural in the same room T was born in with one of the same nurses 19 months later. Contractions started being about 3-5 min apart in the car and I got to the hospital at 2:30 already at a 5 or 6 cm. Got an epidural around 3:00 since I had done bloodwork the week previously. It worked great except in one spot! So after an hour or two I could feel contractions there, which was unfortunate but probably helped me push. He was born at 6:48 am. Phew! So glad to be not pregnant (or in labor) anymore!


Shortly after 6:48 am: Us with baby B!


B getting cleaned up in the nursery.


The upside of a nighttime labor: no traffic

The downside of a nighttime labor: no sleeping that night for anyone!


Cutie pie face!


With a proud daddy!


First pic as a whole fam!


Someone is happy to have a baby to hold!

IMG_1007 IMG_7520Pappaw!




All their grandkids! We are so glad Nena and Pappaw were here!


Our silly three munchkins! E wanted to hold him the whole time they were at the hospital. T walked around eating snack sticks. Typical.


Resting in his bed with the blanket all three kids used and a burp cloth made by Aunt Kathy.


Coming h0me the next day!

Maternity/Family Pics

Before baby B was born, we took some family/maternity pictures. April is Tulip month here so we went to a park and took some pictures with the tulips.


These two are so sweet together! She is like his second mommy.


He is so precious!


The whole fam!


The boys in their matching shirts!


Daddy’s girl!


Me and my sweetie!


Me and little B baking inside at 38.5 weeks!

Apparently I am a monthly blogger now…

Apparently I am also a phone photo dumper blogger. Since my last post that was an update and lots of phone photos from about a month ago, I have had to pay for my website again for the next year, so I figure I better use it since I pay for it. Haha.



So E has finished a month at her school and is still doing well and liking it. It helps a lot to have a little friend there! Here is the picture we had taken for her for school. They basically ask for the equivalent of passport photos.  I thought she looked so pretty and grown up in it! She loves purple!



One day after we took her to school, we went over to the park and sidewalks by the water and went for a walk with little brother. It was a chilly day but nice to see the boats and the cats that hang out on the rocks by the water.



We went to the mall for lunch one Sunday after church and E and I had a little dessert. Frozen yogurt is a little lower in carbs than ice cream or custard so I shared one with her.(null)


We have gotten to see baby #3 a few times lately. He is doing well. Measuring at 6 lbs 10 oz as of 34 weeks, according to the ultrasound machine. Which isn’t huge but isn’t small either. Both my other kids were about 8 lbs 12 oz. Thankfully, my amniotic fluid level has gone down since controlling my gestational diabetes through diet (it was too high) and I have also lost about 7 lbs. so that is good.



Cutie tootie likes to eat yogurt with corn flakes in it. But he makes a huge mess! Sometimes mommy doesn’t have the patience for that and just feeds it to him herself. But sometimes he gets to play. And then he gets a bath.



We had planned to celebrate Easter with some foreigner friends in a big forest like last year, but some people thought the weather might be too chilly, so it got moved to the indoor location, which was our house! We didn’t mind hosting since everyone was bringing everything, they just needed our space. But it was a busy day, and at the end, after everyone had gone home, I started looking at Facebook and realized I didn’t get anyone to take  a picture of our whole family. C and I had already changed into comfy clothes. So I got a pic of the kids. T likes smiling for the camera these days. He likes eating pears too. He actually likes to get food and walk around the house eating it, but I really need to stop letting him do that because I find apple peelings that he didn’t eat laying around!


Some of the moms and I walked all the kids over to a nearby park for an egg hunt after lunch since we weren’t in the forest all day. E spied an egg up high.



E was excited about her school outfit this day and wanted a picture of her Elsa shirt and Elsa socks.



On Wednesday last week I had a doctors appointment. She has two offices, one near our old apartment, and one that is more on this side of town but still takes 40 minutes or so to get there. Well I drove to the one on this side of town, only to find out that she was not there that day, she was at the other office! Gah! Also, the store I tried to go to that was nearby closed down last week! Double Gah! So I had to reschedule my appt for Friday and this little guy came with me. He did well and sat in his stroller and ate apples during the appointment. I treated us by going out to lunch afterwards. #selfieinanelevator


He was excited to get a balloon all to himself. Usually sister gets the balloons.



Want the latest scoop around here? Well…I am in the middle of my second grad school class to be able to renew my teaching certificate. C has been working on his new business he started. E started going to a local pre-school three days a week last week. And I got diagnosed with gestational diabetes! Not much to see here, folks!

A few months ago, E visited preschool for a day with a 4 year old friend (who is British) at the school that he has attend for a couple of years and his brother went there before him. This friend knows English obviously and also knows the local language since he has been in school a while. So it was good that he was there to help translate for E who knows almost nothing. She had a fun visit that day. Then a couple of weeks ago, she announced that she wanted to go to his school with him. So we talked/thought/prayed about it and got the requisite health report and 6 passport pictures (??) and enrolled her for the month of March. She will probably also go in April and take May for the grandparent visit and maybe go some this summer, we will see. She loves it so far. She has learned the word for teacher and the word “yapma” which means “don’t!”. I am sure she hears the teacher say that a bunch during the day!

The other big thing, gestational diabetes…. I did my glucose test back in February and one number was over the limit so my doctor diagnosed me and sent me to a dietician. She gave me a sample diet that was more like what locals eat but not really like I eat so I scoured the web and made some alterations and it seems to be going well. Few carbs. Whole wheat bread. Not too much. More meat cheese nuts and veggies. The hardest part was that the most squeamish person in the universe was now required to mess with her own blood three times a day (before, 1 hour after, and 2 hours after one meal a day, different meals each day). At first I couldn’t get enough blood to come out to do the test but I finally figured out a better way after two or three days. But basically I stuck myself a lot the first three days. And cried about that some too. Even tried letting C stick me. Anyway, I had my one week follow up with the dietician and she said things looked good, so I guess I just get to keep doing this for the next 8 weeks. (I am 32 weeks on Friday! Crazy!)


C went to the grocery store yesterday and found me sugar-free “nutella” spread. Yum! I also found some sugar-free strawberry jam the other day. Most of the time you just find jelly here, which is clear red jelly with red small whole strawberries in it, which I do not like. I like a more even consistency. So I think I like this diabetic jam better than the regular stuff.


E and I have been painting our toenails some. The colors I had for myself (which weren’t very many to start with) aren’t really that great for her. I found a new nail polish for E and I. Its name is “girly”. It is light pink with pink and purple glitter in it. She was ecstatic about it. :) Of course she wanted me to glob it on so she got lots of glitter pieces.

(null)While E is at school, it is so fun to watch what T does with his play time by himself. We have a shoe cabinet in the hall that is empty because we have been trying to sell it. (Our apartment has built-ins so we don’t really need more shoe storage.) He took his lego duplos and set up camp in it. Super fun. He likes to get in their and open and close the sliding door and hide.

So there is what is up with us lately. Now I am going to bed! What is up with you?

Baby T’s Birth Story

(Long birth story ahead, I don’t think I tell anything in gory details, but now is your chance to not read if you aren’t interested.)

E  came right on her due date, so I had big hopes that T would too. But alas, it was not so. As time went on and I told neighbors who I saw (and who commented on how big I was) that I was overdue, some of them told me that here they say boys are often late because they are lazy. Ha!

I have a friend here who was due with a girl a week or two after me but was having a scheduled C-section on October 11. Well my due date was the 3rd, so I told her that I had better beat her! Well I just barely did.

My parents arrived on October 2 and we waited around for much of the first week they were here. I had a doctor appointment on October 4th (an appointment that I was hoping not to have to go to). She said he looked fine, but since she could still see breathing movements on the ultrasound, he probably wouldn’t be born in the next 48 hours. This is the second thing that has happened this pregnancy (the first being the prediction that he was a boy at 13 weeks) that is very different from anything that happened with my American birth and that I had never heard of before. Maybe its just because they don’t do ultrasounds every appointment in America. She scheduled me for an appointment the next Friday the 11th (right after my friend’s c-section), and said that if he wasn’t born by then, she would induce me because she was going out of town that day for the weeklong holiday that was the next week. I sure hoped that wouldn’t be necessary. I was hoping to try to go natural, but knew that pitocin had equalled very strong non-stop contractions last time for me.

After hanging around the house for most of the first week of my parents visit, on Wednesday October 9 I decided I wanted to go to a mall and walk around. That morning I had a little bit of something that made me wonder if the show might be finally getting on the road. I debated going to the mall after all but figured it would be okay.  So we went and walked around IKEA and another mall, let E play in the ball pit, had some burgers, and bought E some shoes.

That evening, as E was sitting on my lap and we played a game with my mom, I started feeling what I figured  must be contractions. I had never felt contractions other than those after I was given pitocin during E’s birth, so that is all I had to go on. I wasn’t sure what it would be like when it just started on its own. I got out my contraction timer on my phone and started timing them. They were about 5 min apart. After about 30 min I got up to do some stuff and they stopped so I figured it must be Braxton Hicks.

As I was going to bed at about 11:25, I was reading a verse on my phone and thought it was good so I took a screenshot of it:


Not long after that, I laid down and they started again. I started timing again and this time they were like less than 5 min apart. My doctor had said to call her when they had been 5 minutes apart for an hour. So I started walking around to see if they would stop. They didn’t and in fact, grew even a little closer together. This continued for about an hour when I started to think I should call her. But it was all happening faster than I had imagined, I guess I thought they would be farther apart to start and gradually move towards being five minutes apart. Then, in the midst of my classic indecision, I had a really strong one and announced to C that I was calling her!

She said go ahead and pack up and head to the hospital and they would call her and tell her when we got there and she would come. Ack! Craziness! So fast! So we woke up my parents and told them we were leaving and called a taxi. Here we are before leaving.


Contractions in the taxi were interesting, but at least we only live a five minute drive from the hospital. I timed them with the clock in the taxi. 1:01, 1:06…

We got there and walked into the emergency room. Contractions were pretty strong by then. I don’t really remember what we told them but there was almost no one there! Not the bustling hive of activity I would imagine an emergency room to be (I had never been in one!). They walked with me down to an elevator and down to what seemed like the basement. There was hardly anyone around, it was so wierd!

They took me into the labor and delivery room and a couple of nurses came in and started asking me questions. This hospital is supposedly known to cater to international patients. It is a private hospital so it isn’t just teeming with people like a government hospital would be. I incorrectly assumed that since so many internationals supposedly go there, they would have hired nurses etc who speak some English. I mean even the guys at Burger King know a little English. My nurses didn’t know any, much less medical terms. So getting my medical history questions answered in a foreign language was interesting, but I was pleased with how I could mostly do it. I did learn that it is completely impossible to understand a question in a foreign language while having a contraction!

They kept asking if I wanted an epidural and I said not right now. I wanted to be able to do it naturally if possible, but was open to an epidural if I reached a point and wanted it. They checked me and I was a 5! They didn’t require me to stay in bed and only monitored the baby for a few  minutes every now and then to check on him. Mostly I walked around and had some music playing on my phone.

They kept asking if my water broke, and at one point I thought it had, but I was wrong because a few minutes later, during a particularly strong contraction, it be came quite evident that it was breaking then! After that point, it got really painful.

I knew it was supposed to be painful, but about that point, I passed where I could really handle it and started getting anxious. They checked me again and that is when a language misunderstanding occurred. I thought they said I was still a 5-6. Well after an hour of pretty strong contractions, that was upsetting. I knew I couldn’t keep going for 4 more cm of that! So I wanted an epidural. But they kept telling me how it was going fast, second babies come fast, and it would take a while for them to draw my blood and do a blood test and then have the anesthesiologist come. (Turns out they said I was an 8!)

Finally about 30 minutes later, my doctor showed up.  Contractions were crazy painful by then. Breathing through them and walking around no longer helped. They were strong and had a small break between them. I couldn’t find a good position. I kept thinking that there was something I should be doing, or some way I should be sitting or standing, to help it. I kept asking C, “What should I do?!” Like he knew the answer to that! He just kept telling me to keep breathing. They gave me a little oxygen thing that I put up to my nose to make sure I was getting enough oxygen.

I literally wondered what they do if a women straight up passes out during childbirth!!!

All through this I kept praying and thinking of that verse. God gives strength to the weak, power to the faint! I needed strength to do this!

My doctor checked me and I don’t remember what she said but it was time. They started setting up the room but that meant I had to lay on the bed which was killer! My doctor is great. She is so calm. She speaks English well and has tons of American patients. She is used to the way Americans sometimes want to do things differently. Here a lot of ladies, a really high percentage in fact, want scheduled c-sections!

Finally it was time to push. I had pushed for two and a stinkin half hours with little miss E, so I was very worried it would be the same this time. I pushed two or three times and then was getting upset that he wasn’t out yet. I took a minute to rest and pray and then pushed really hard! And he was here in just 4 or 5 total pushes! They put him on the warming tray right beside me and cleaned him off.


{Notice on the wall beside him, they have wallpaper that is a bunch of baby names! In case you get to that point and still haven’t decided on a name, they offer suggestions. A friend I know might could benefit from this, (ahemjessray).}

A few minutes later they laid him on my chest in a towel for me to see!



Then they took him to the nursery to wash him off and then finished up with me and wheeled me upstairs to my room.


Here are my two nurses on the right and the cleaning/transport lady on the left. One of the nurses was named Meltem which is a name I had not heard before, but close to my dad’s middle name, so that was neat to me.

He was born at 3:54 am on Thursday October 10. (E and I were born on Thursdays too.) So if you count from when I had those contractions that evening, it was a total of 7 hours, but I really would start counting at 11:30 when I had them the second time, so that would mean his whole birth just took 4.5 hours! The nurse was right, this second baby did come quicker. (Although all through laboring, I refused to believe her because I know that all second babies are not fast!)

I am so grateful for the chance to experience natural childbirth. I knew that most women in history have birthed their children without epidurals, so I knew that I should be able to at least survive it! Ha! It would have been nice to take a natural childbirth class to know some strategies to work through it. Really I was just basing it on what I had read. Breathing, relaxation strategies, walking around and rocking side to side and sitting on a birthing ball. All of those things helped. It really only got unreasonably painful during what I now recognize was transition, which was the hour and a half or so before he was born, after I was 8 cm. I really haven’t experienced much pain in my life, no broken bones or surgeries or anything, so I didn’t have much of a pain threshold to compare it to. I was for sure the crazy lady on the birth videos who is yelling the whole time. C was quite surprised as he has never heard me sound like that! I also think my body felt better and recovered much faster after not having all that stuff in my system.


Here he is when he first came in our room.


We caught about 1 hour of sleep before it was time to wake up for the day!

The Lord really did give strength to the weak that day, as I could not have done that without his help. I am glad for the experience, and grateful for the blessing that it was quick and without any interventions, however, I do think that next time, I will choose that epidural. If there is a next time!!!!


Maternity/Family Pictures

To back up a bit…

I kept thinking baby T was coming early so the last week before I was due, on my last free afternoon before my due date, I had a friend take some maternity/family pictures of us. Of course it turned out that I had plenty of time! I was so glad she could do this and we got some really good ones. We went to a nearby forest-y area since I like outdoor pictures best. It was a little warm and I sure got tired walking around but I am glad we did. Here are some of my favs.

IMG_3910 IMG_3931 IMG_3950 IMG_3958 IMG_4021 IMG_4096 IMG_4184 IMG_4228 IMG_4266 IMG_4297 IMG_4453 IMG_4480

Our new baby is here!

Our new baby brother has arrived! T arrived on Thursday October 10 at 3:54 am. He weighed 8 lbs 12 oz and was 20.5 inches long.


Here is our first pic with him! He was just a couple of minutes old!IMG_3947

Here he is after they brought him to our room.

He is one bundled up little baby! He had on a onesie, socks, mittens, pjs over that, a hat, and a blanket! They like to keep their babies warm here!IMG_3960

Here is a very proud big sister meeting him. She just giggled and giggled when she saw him. Love!IMG_3965

Here is our first picture of all four of us! She was too busy looking her her precious little baby to smile for the camera!


Here is the proud Nena! (My mom)


Here is the proud pappaw! (My dad)
IMG_4016 Here is E opening her “big sister bag” gift that was “from” baby brother. Every thing she pulled out, she would gasp and exclaim, “Its just what I have always wanted!” So sweet!


And here is my doctor!

It has taken me two and a half weeks after his birth to write this post, so no promises on when I will write another one! But we do have lots of pictures and hopefully I will get some more up before he goes off to college! Ha!

Just call me “Amerika”

Today feels like it was a busy day!

I had a language lesson this morning. E went to school. Later on, I was going to go visit a Canadian friend who I met at language school in the hospital, she just had a baby, who was born early at 34 weeks. So we were due about the same time. They don’t know a lot of people here, so even though I don’t know her well, I thought she might like a visitor. She is currently pumping and syringe feeding her baby so it is scary to think that if our baby was born right now I would be doing that too! But really, they are doing well, and will probably go home tomorrow so she didn’t end up needing anyone to visit.

I was going to meet up at the mall with another friend today who happens to be moving out of the country back to America, so I just went a little early to run some errands. On the way there, I ran into my upstairs neighbor! We were both going to the mall, so we walked there together. Then after talking a while, we ended up getting something to drink and talking together for a couple of hours! It was so great! I was able to ask her some questions about people in our building and get sorted out who lives where, since she has lived there for 15 years. Funny story, we were going to exchange phone numbers, but it turned out we both already had each other’s numbers. She had my name in her phone as just “Amerika”. :) We laughed about that.

Then later, I met my American friend and we had a nice quick visit before she had to run on to meet someone else. I got my errands done and came home.

E sat with me in the recliner as she finished the Curious George movie and put her hand on my tummy to feel baby brother move. She likes it when he kicks her hand. She giggles and says, “Silly Baby Bruder!” The she gives hugs and kisses to my belly. I can’t wait to see them together! I wonder if he will look like she did as a baby. A girl I know here has a 7 month old baby, and I look at him and realize that I can’t remember what it was like to have a baby that age at all! Hopefully it will all come back to me. Like riding a bike, right?

34 weeks today!



Today is 34 weeks!

I can hardly believe it because that means only 6 weeks left!


This is from a couple of days ago.

I definitely feel bigger this time around. I am not sure how much weight I have gained since all the pounds and kilos are hard to keep up with, but I am just not going to worry about it. I have been feeling really tired this week again so I went for a walk this morning to try to see if a little exercise would give me energy like they say it will. Only like 10 minutes. I slept horribly last night. We are all getting a little bit of a stuffy nose this week and mine started last night. I drank a coke for dinner and that was apparently a mistake because between those two things, I was up til after 1!

I go to the doctor again next week. It has been about 3 weeks since I last went, so I don’t know if I will start going more often or not.

The baby room is coming together and I feel like I should start thinking about what to pack in my hospital bag. If we had him early, I feel like we would be okay. We have some little clothes and I bought some little diapers and we have the pack-n-play which we will put in our room probably for the first little while and when we have guests.

E likes to talk to “baby bruder”. She likes to poke my tummy and see if he is awake and moving. She has managed to feel him move a few times and thinks it is funny. She says his name should be “Pooh”, as in Winnie. I hope she is not too disappointed when that is not his name. I have been buying a few things to put in a “Big Sister” bag for her to have at the hospital. I was going to buy a bag, but I have some cute fabrics I bought a while back so I may just try to make her a simple little tote. She has said a few times that she wishes he could come out right now. She thinks babies are “so tiny and cute” and likes to rock her baby dolls the way they rock babies here, like this:


You kind of roll your legs side to side and rock them that way. I have also seen tutorials online where you make a baby doll sling for them to “wear” their babies in. It looks cute and if I get super ambitious, maybe I will make her one of those too. I only wore her a few times as a baby, but I have a feeling it will come in handy more with a second child.

I know some of my fellow bloggers are pregnant right now too, where are your updates and pictures?? :)



Sunday Snapshop and Weekend Links

E watching a show with little brother.
(She will turn three tomorrow. I can hardly believe it!)

When You Feel Like You Are Way Behind On Everything by Growing Home

Organizational hacks for the rest of us by Conversion Diary (Mom, you asked for organization tips, right? Here are some and you will laugh at them too!)

Don’t be a drama queen: Friendship lessons from Anne Shirley by Modern Mrs. Darcy (If you love the Anne of Green Gables books as much as I do, you will know all these quotes. She also wrote posts about several other characters that you can see at the end.)

How a photo can save a child’s life by Modern Mrs. Darcy

Why Teaching is so Doggone Hard by Enjoying the Journey