Thursday, June 30, 2011

1 month old

Kella was 1 month old yesterday! We can tell she is getting bigger-you can see it in her cheeks, her arms, thighs and feet. She is eating just about every 2 hours with an extra 2 ounce bottle of formula occasionally. She likes to sleep being held, but will sometimes sleep in her bed or her bouncy chair. She seems to sleep better in the morning. Kella has her very awake time in the evenings. It's fun to see her more awake and looking around. It also seems like she's not too sure what to do when she's awake-should she eat more, cry, look around-not too sure. I'm having fun dressing her in her all her different outfits. I said that it's stupid fun to dress a girl than a boy. I'm pretty sure that she has more clothes than I do! The boys are doing well with her. Liam is probably having the hardest time, but he's also 2 and that's a hard age anyway. It's nice that Andy is home and is able to help give all the boys extra attention. Sometimes, it does feel like we are in survival mode, just doing the bare minimum. Andy thinks we're doing alright, though, so maybe it's all in my head. Thank goodness for takeout and frozen meals! So far, so good. Kella is a sweet, cuddley little girl. We love her so much!

Friday, June 24, 2011

first day of summer

I love summer and how late it stays light out. The bummer is that once June 21 comes around, the days gradually get shorter. We don't make a fuss over the first official day of summer, but it is fun to do special things. The first thing we did was play outside in our little pool and the neighbor's inflatable pool. Our boys and her girls ran around in the sun for 2 hours after lunch. They were definitely worn out-and sunburned-esp Marcus-oops! I didn't double check the quality of the sunscreen application. After karate that evening, we treated the boys with banana splits! They were immediate fans. Who doesn't love ice cream, whipped cream and toppings? Here they are enjoying the dessert....

Liam ate everything except the banana and immediately wanted more. And then got upset when we did not refil his plate with sugary goodness (it's hard being 2).

And, here's an extra pic of Ewan and Kella. He really wanted to hold her and she really wasn't too sure what was going on. He really loves his little sister!

Since Tuesday, it has been cool, cloudy and a little rainy. I have high hopes that soon, it will be worth our time to visit the splash park. I can't wait to see the sun again!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Happy Father's Day!/3 weeks old

Happy Father's Day to our wonderful Daddy! He loves his children and loves doing things with them and just being with them. Even today, he worked on building some slingshots for the boys (Marcus did help with his). He is a godly, kind, patient, giving, loving man-the list could go on and on. What a great example our children have to follow.

And, sweet baby Kella is 3 weeks old today (sunday). You can tell her face is filling out and she is getting bigger. We still call her "tiny", but mostly because she is smaller than the boys were as babies. (we've been used to "big boys") She does great with eating and okay with sleeping, but really likes to be held or to sleep on our chests. Ewan keeps saying "she is getting more and more hair"-how cute! She definitely has a ton of hair. She's doing well and we are thankful for that and just thankful to have her!

Again, she likes to be held! And, we like to hold her!

first bath time!

Here are pictures of Kella's first tub bath on Saturday. We had just been sponging her off before, but last night, I put a little water in the tub and gave her a quick rinse off. She did okay and didn't fuss too much-I bet she didn't know what was going on. Overall, I vote this first bath a success!

What she really wanted to do was eat!

first karate badges

We went to an awards banquet/picnic for karate on Saturday. I'm pretty sure all the students got some sort of award. Even our boys, who have been to maybe 5 classes so far, got badges to iron on to their uniforms. Marcus and Cale got the "excellent form" badges and Ewan got the "excellent fitness" badge (probably because all he does is move around during class). The boys had fun and we were at a pretty nice park that had some different things to play on-including a big hamster wheel like thing. And, a couple of the other boys in the karate studio also like playing pokemon-well, my guys were in heaven! Several well fought battle were had between the boys. Liam just played in the little kids area and Kella slept through the whole thing. Now to figure out how to get the badges on their uniforms. Thinking I'll use a combo of iron on and sewing.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Kella weighed 8 pounds 7.5 ounces at her weigh-in

Marcus and Cale went to a 4-H day camp today and loved it

Ewan and Liam got a couple new Cars toys and Ewan told us he has been waiting 1000 days for the movie to come out

Liam had a couple rough spots being 2 years old-he really wants to drive the neighbor's kiddie gator himself

The older 3 boys had karate and got the start of the list of skills they need to master in order to get their yellow belts

Neighbor kids played in our yard by themselves and with our kids

Anna Kitty caught another bird-and managed to get it into the house-again! Glad Andy was here to take care of this one.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

2 weeks old

At 2 weeks old, baby girl is still sleeping a lot. She does wake up and likes being awake for about 5 minutes before she decides that she's hungry. This week, we started putting her in her little crib. I didn't want her sleeping flat, so I propped up the head of the bed with some little boxes. Then, I made a nest by rolling a couple blankets and covered them with a nice soft fuzzy blanket. When we put her in the crib, we swaddle her and then tuck her in with another thin blanket. She sleeps great like that!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

June 10th

I took this picture of Kella yesterday-June 10th. That could have been her birthday, if little girl would have waited to arrive. But, she had her own plans and has been with us almost 2 weeks now. Things have a way of unfolding as they should.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

last day of school

Again, time goes too quickly. We are no longer the parents of a kindergartner and 2nd grader, but of a 1st and 3rd grader. Wednesday was their last day of the school year. I can't believe the school year is over. At times, it seemed as if it would go on forever. But now it's time for summer! The rest of this week has had a pretty relaxed schedule. The boys have played outside a fair amount and have had ample time to play the Wii. We also have gone to karate and Ewan started a new gymnastics class-beginner boys. Hopefully, next week we will have a list of activities for the boys to do every day. I know we would like them to read, maybe work on some math skills too. I would like to start teaching at least Marcus, maybe Cale, how to play to piano. There will still be karate and time to go to the pool a few days a week, too. Hopefully we can take full advantage of the time off!

1 week old/first doctor visit

Time passes too quickly. Kella was a week old on Sunday. She had a good first week at home. Mostly she slept, then she would wake up to eat and go back to sleep. I don't think her eyes were open very much. She got held- a lot. When she wasn't sleeping in our arms-which was most of the time, she occasionally took a break in her bouncy chair. Thank goodness the grammies were here to help spoil and hold her, and give attention to her brothers . Marcus and Cale were still in school, but Ewan and Liam were home and were glad for the presence of the grammies.

Kella had her first check-up with her doctor on Tuesday. (I just have to say we love our doctor. When she came to check on Kella in the hospital, our doctor started to cry-happy tears-she was so excited for us. I'm so glad we found her, and it was a totally chance suggestion by my OB when Marcus was born.) At this visit, Kella weighed 7 lbs 10 ounces, a 5 oz less than her birth weight. We go back next Tuesday for a weigh-in, but we don't have to do any special extra feedings like we did with Liam. Kella is a bit jaundiced also, but no one is worried and it will probably clear up soon.

I took her to church last night. I made it there only 5 minutes late with all the kids. Quite an accomplishment since we also had an orthodontist appointment that evening (Marcus now just has to wear his retainer at night. We go back in 3 months for a check-up). A new baby always attracks attention and Kella had a little entourage of elementary age girls. Many people said "she's so tiny!". I think they are used to our big boy babies. :-)

Time for lunch for the boys, I'm slowly getting caught up on everything!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

100 book club

With fairly little prodding on our part, Marcus participated in and completed the 100 book challenge that his school issued for the year! It was a new challenge this year set out for all kids in 1st-5th grades. We are so proud of him! He has alway been a great reader. I hope we can always make reading enjoyable for him.

going home

Our stay at the hospital was pretty boring. We caught up on some movie watching-Dinner for Schmucks, Salt, Grown Ups, Morning Glory and Karate Kid. I did fall asleep during a few of those movies and Andy had to fill me in on the plots. Andy was able to go back to our house and take the older boys to the splash park on Memorial Day-mostly so they could get out of the house and also because it was pretty hot out that day. Then, we just watched the clock and waited to hear when we could be discharged on Tuesday. We did get to go home around 2pm.

with Daddy in her going home outfit

and Mommy

photo #2 in the car seat-she hated being put in there at first. Her outfit is a little big. I got a 0-3 mos outfit in anticipation of another baby over 9 pounds :-)

When we got home, I found out that my two neighbor friends had put together a little shower for us! That was so nice. And, they totally spoiled us by getting Kella a lot of cute little outfits. (And, they are still bringing clothes over that they find at sales)

Got a picture with Cale

and a photo with Marcus

finally, a break in her bouncy chair

Monday, June 6, 2011

first days/first visitors

Some people were very excited taht Kella made her appearance!
Grandma Jean, Grandpa Jerry and Grammy Linda drove from Decatur just to see Kella and visit for a little while.

Grammy Pammy came to visit too, and brought Ewan. He was excited to see his new sister, but I think he might have been more excited to ride in Grammy Pammy's car by himself. I think he liked the one on one attention. An extra bonus was that his other grandparents were at the hospital when he got there. The offer to visit was extended to Marcus and Cale. They decided to stay home and play the Wii.

All these visitors wore Kella out!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Welcome Kella Elizabeth!

Kella Elizabeth Shaffer
born May 29, 2011 at 8:55pm
7 pounds 15 ounces and 20 inches long

May 29, 2011-a birth story

This is Kella's birth story. I'm writing it down here to help me remember it when I get a chance to write it in her baby book. It all happened so fast, hopefully I get all the facts right. Andy, if you're reading this, feel free to correct me.

I got home from work the morning of the 29th. It seems crazy that I worked the night before and I am glad I didn't go into labor there-we take care of sick kids-not women in labor. Anyway, I had thought I would go to church with everyone, but I was tired and decided to stay home and sleep. I did wake up to fix lunch for the boys and then took and afternoon nap.

I woke up to my alarm on my phone and then fell back to sleep until almost 5pm. I couldn't believe I slept that long since I had only worked the one night and it had been an easy shift. I got up, showered and came downstairs. I would like to say that I was feeling no contractions at this time. I had had intermittant little contractions before, but if I moved around or changed position, they went away. I sat down on the couch with Liam to watch a video and Andy started to make the kids dinner. When it was about time to eat, I got Liam off my lap and stood up, and gush my water broke. It was about 6pm. I said, "Andy, I think my water just broke." He said, "I think so." I went upstairs to get cleaned up and call the oncall doctor and Andy got the boys started on dinner and went down to our neighbor's house to see if they could watch the kids (of course they could-they are so kind). While I waited for the doctor to call me back, I packed for the hospital and folded some clothes. I wasn't really feeling strong contractions. Andy called his mom and then my mom to see who could come out and pick up the boys from the neighbors. My mom answered her phone and started the 4 hour drive to our house.

We dropped the boys off at the neighbor's. They were happy to go and play with the other kids. We chatted with them for a few minutes and then got in the van and left. I was able to talk to my sister and my mom on the way to the hospital. Once I sat down for the ride, I started to pay more attention to the contractions. Maybe because I wasn't moving around anymore, but they seemed to feel stronger and they felt like they were about every 5 minutes apart. I know Andy was trying to get to the hospital as fast as he could without breaking the law. He took a way that was pretty fast. By the time we got to the hospital, I bet the contractions were only 3-4 minutes apart and uncomfortable-I do not like pain.
When we get to the hospital they take me to a triage room. It was 730pm. This confused me and make me a little nervous since I knew that across from the triage rooms were delivery rooms attached to the NICU. I asked the nurse why I was back here instead of in a labor room. She said it was because everyone gets brought back to triage first to make sure they are in labor. But, once she saw that my water had clearly broken and that I was obviosly having close, strong contractions, she said forget it, you are going right to a labor room now. I am excited because I am looking forward to an epidural to take care of this labor pain.
I meet my nurse, get taken to an actual room and she pages anethesia. Another nurse comes in to start an IV and my doctor comes in to check me. I am 8-9 cm dilated and 0 station. There's at least 1 or 2 other nurses in there now getting an isolet ready for the baby and a delivery table ready too. I get my IV and anestheia comes in. My contractions hurt and I am very uncomfortable. The epidural goes in, no problem and I get a little relief when he gives me a little bolus of medication. Then he has me lay back down.
Ok, this is where it gets a little hazy. I remember my legs starting to shake and the nurse said it was because I was transitioning out of the second phase of labor. I remember thinking-this epidural is taking forever to work. Then I remember really feeling the urge to push. The nurse was telling me to blow the contractions away, and I tried, but they were so strong I know I pushed some. Well, the nurse yelled that she needed a doctor in there-now! and a doctor did come in and then right behind her, came my doctor. Then we started pushing. I remember doing 2 sets of the 3 pushes. I remember they put an oxygen mask on me-pretty standard. I remember getting at least another bolus of epidural medication. I can't remember if I did another set of pushes before I remember my doctor saying for the next set, really draw your knees back. I remember that was uncomfortable and hard for me to do. Then I remember my doctor saying, okay now push right down here. I thought she was trying to help me focus for the next series of pushes. That first push hurt! That was the first one that I actually said OW for. But, that was the head coming out. She had me take a breath and push again, and Kella was born. 855pm. That was a fast labor. They put her on my chest and I remember thinking how much hair she had! And, that hair was clearly red. And, then, my epidural starting to kick in. Nice. We hung out in the labor room for the next 2 hours for recovery before going to a post-partum room. They checked Kella's sugar a couple of times and she ended up getting a little formula for a glucose of 52-they wanted it above 50 and her's were drifting down. She also had temps in the 97s and didn't get herself a bath right away either, we just kept her warm and bundled.
And that's it. Like I said, it all happened so fast, I hope I got my facts straight. The rest of the time in the hospital went fine and we were ready to go home and have her meet her brothers.

karate kids

We started karate lessons last week and the boys are very excited! Getting their uniforms was pretty exciting for them too, even though it about wore me out. They been to 2 classes now, and Andy said that Marcus is doing very well, pays attention, etc. Cale and Ewan try hard too, they just aren't as focused as Marcus (must be an oldest child trait). Andy said that at the last class, Ewan kept falling down trying to do roundhouse kicks. He didn't seem to mind though. I wonder if Ewan just thought it was cool to be "kicking" in his karate outfit. I think they're going to enjoy this!

"give me your best karate pose"