Thursday, August 4

alert: blog migration happening NOW.

So I decided to make a new blog that incorporates the familial lifestyle I have adopted. This blog will heretofore be discontinued. So, dear ones, please point your readers and blog reels to the following new site:

Thanks Trisha for the nickname. It stuck. :)

Wednesday, August 3

new words

Friends, this is a video made of a song I saw Brian Stokes Mitchell perform at the MoTab Christmas Concert the year before last. It is sweet and I love it. Do enjoy.

Sunday, July 3

I may be the worst blogger ever, but here is a video

My sister requested updates... I made this video days ago but haven't been able to get a sweet song to play in the background. Melissa suggested this one, but I will let you select one for yourself. :)

I like how Melissa posts updates about her son, so I'm going to copy and tell you about some of Boston's new tricks. For all the uninterested/time-crunched, please proceed downward to the video. Promise I'm not offended. Heh.

Boston at 5 months:

  • Rolls from his belly to the left and to the right
  • Eats his right foot big toe
  • Plays with toys while on his belly
  • Raking grasp (I call it the grasp of death--beware getting your hair in his hands!)
  • Follows objects that I am trying to put out of his view, usually so that he will continue eating instead of looking at said objects. This is an unfortunate development.
  • Relatedly, while eating, B is very distracted by anyone/anything in the room, or sounds. Haha, there is a very funny story about how B started to SOB in the mothers room when a girl in our ward was singing a solo for her brother's farewell. I will not be sharing this info with their family.
  • Is all about touching and feeling everything with his hands or feet--books, walls, things with buttons or textures he can scratch, and especially trees, bushes, and grass.
  • Everything goes into his mouth. He has started eating some solid foods: applesauce, avocado, oatmeal baby cereal, strawberries, pineapple, and once for kicks we let him suck on a pickle but he did NOT enjoy it. The pickle face was priceless, however.
  • Sits up while resting on his hands
  • Weighs 16 lbs and is 25 inches long

  • Jason is convinced he said "Hey Dad" twice the other day. I'm pretty sure this is wishful thinking, but he is pretty chatty! He loves to chat with the ceiling and people. He chatted with Gavin, a kid in my Sunday School class, all through the class on Sunday. Also he chewed on Gavin's tie the whole time.
  • Knows how to turn the pages of a book, though mostly he wants to put all books in his mouth.
  • Apparently he can say "ma-ma," but I haven't heard it; Jason said he cried and said it while I was gone one time.
  • He knows how to suck liquids out of my camelbak bite valve water bottle and also sippy cups
  • Likes to grab things and put them in his mouth--he is learning that noses and lips do not come off

  • This kid is a major flirt. He can locate the ladies in any room or plane and hams it up for them. One time I was at a store and noticed he was smiling at the ceiling over my shoulder; curious, I turned to see what he was smiling at. Wouldn't you know it was a poster of a smiling woman hanging from the ceiling. Watch out, ladies. We've got a major heartbreaker on our hands.
  • ...But if you're a dude, he'll only smile at you if you (a) look something like Jason, or (b) have a gentle way with babies.
  • He's a socialite: he won't go to sleep in large crowds because he always wants to know what's going on and see what's happening.
  • He definitely knows who mom is and calms down most for me. Jason used to be able to put him to bed until we went to California and got sick... now he only wants mom when he's tired.
  • He has a super catchy laugh. He loves to chat and laugh with people, and he's extra ticklish around his ribs, on his thunder thighs, on his little feet, and below his chin.
  • Boston gets more and more fun every single day. He loves to play and explore and laugh and just be the stinking adorable ball of baby that he is.

  • He's gotten more insistent about eating NOW when he is hungry
  • Gets upset when toys are removed from his grasp (sometimes) ... mostly just the water bottle though.
  • Still a pretty calm, observant child. He loves to people watch and to look at the wind blowing through the leaves.
  • Lately he has been exploring different sounds he can make: spitting, p and b sounds, and sometimes he whines as if he's upset, but then you look at his face and he is fine--just trying new sounds.
  • Nobody can get him more cheerful and giggly than his dad. He loooooves his papa.

Now feel free to enjoy the video, with imaginary music in the background! :)

Friday, April 22

Boston laughs!

B started laughing today and I got it on video! I was pulling boogers out of his nose so he could breathe and when I got one out, I said, "Yuck yuck yuck yuck yuck," and he thought it was the most hilarious thing. So I took video! Enjoy. Baby laughter is the best sound on the planet, even if it is in its initial stages.

Tuesday, April 12

finally, baby B's arrival story!

So, I was reading a friend's blog today about how she has time to get all these projects done while her new baby sleeps. I don't know if I'm super ineffective at utilizing B's down time or what, but it seems like my project list just keeps getting longer! Or maybe it is because I am greedy and I like to have B sleep on my chest for naps, so that prevents me from accomplishing as much as I might. Ah well. I cherish these snuggle moments. While he sleeps, let me tell you the story of his birth...

Boston was due on February 7. Sunday Jan 30 I spent the night chatting online with my parents and sisters. We joked about how he would come sometime that week and I'd call them on the way to the hospital. I was already dilated to a 3 and about 80% effaced, and my doctor had told me on Friday she wouldn't be surprised to see me sometime that weekend... but I guess I just figured I was still a few days away. About 1am on Monday morning the 31st, I woke with some cramping. This had happened before, so I figured it was just more of the same. Then I kept waking up every half hour or so, going to the bathroom and feeling the cramping. At about 3:30am I woke Jason up with yet another trip to the loo, and some moaning on my part due to the intensity of the cramping. It was getting stronger, I just knew it. He tried to find something he could do for me, being the sweet man he is, warming up a heating pad, getting me water, etc. The only place I was comfortable was on the toilet. Sometime in the next half hour I lost the mucous plug. I wondered what that meant. Then I was bleeding all kinds of bright red blood. This had me worried, as I hadn't read anything about that, so about 4:30 in the morning Jason called the hospital to see what that could be. The doctor called us back a while later and when I told her how I was feeling (crouched in child's pose on the floor of the hallway), she said, "Oh, you're probably just in labor." Oh. Right.

So we timed the contractions since they were now coming in more frequent waves and I figured that meant they WERE contractions. They were getting super strong and I kept calling out for Jason to come stand by me and pet my head or whatever he was doing that was comforting, and he reminded me to relax and breathe. The contractions were anywhere from 2 to 4 minutes apart, so we figured we'd better finish packing our bags and get going. I had a list on my phone from some website of all the stuff we should pack, so Jason was rushing around putting things in various bags, as I just hung out on the toilet in his bathroom and occasionally yelled out, "Jaaaaaaaaaaaaay!" and he would rush in and remind me to breath and to try to relax. I tensed up quite a bit still, despite all my HypnoBirthing training... just the fear of the unknown I think.

Finally we got all packed up with way too much stuff (4 bags? yes.) and headed to the hospital. It was freezing cold with snow on the ground and this aided in my tensing up... I had my iPod playing in my ear with the relaxation track, trying to go to another place mentally. That helped actually. Though I had started shivering a while ago and it worsened in the cold car. Jason was white knuckled, driving as sensibly and as quickly as he could the 15 minute journey to LDS Hospital. He didn't speed but did have to run one really long red light after he stopped at it and there was neither traffic nor any indication that it would be changing anytime soon.

We got to the hospital and I stood up out of the car and realized I was all wet! Water broke. Luckily I was wearing black pajama pants and my black Ragnar hoodie... so you could totally see my wet butt as I walked in. Classy. I kept locking up as I walked in because of the contractions and the cold. Jason just led me slowly, carrying the millions of bags and not entirely sure what to do here. We found a bathroom on the main floor since I felt the need to go again. I failed to mention that when I got into the car, I felt like I had sat on something, and I had already started to feel the need to bear down when I was at home. I didn't tell this to Jason as I knew it would freak him out. So I just held on.

When we checked in at the front desk, I had already pre-registered, but they still have paperwork for you to do, for some reason. The nurse people found out I was a first-time mom, so I think they figured I had a long labor ahead, as is usual for first-timers. I was pacing up and down the hallway and did as much as I could before I had to go into my mental place again and left Jason to finish up whatever. All I remember is looking at the pictures of babies on the wall and lots of pacing and leaning over the front desk and moaning when they wanted me to sign something. I think we got to the hospital around 6:45am.

They got me into a nice room and I checked it out, changed, and got ready for whatever was next. It had a jacuzzi tub and we asked for a birthing ball. They did some checking of stuff and found that I was dilated to a NINE already so, "Uh, we'll call the doctor." Yeah. I was ready. I told the slightly disinterested-seeming nurse that I was feeling the need to bear down and she said to go ahead, they'd handle it. Hmm, nope, I'll wait for the doctor, methinks. Dr. Servoss arrived finally and they said to just go ahead and push whenever I was ready.

Here I am in the hospital room

Trying to relax and "breathe the baby down"

There was no time for an epidural, but I didn't plan on one anyway, so that was fine. They told me I wouldn't be needing that birthing ball. :) I felt the need to just sortof chant/sing this one low note over and over, sortof an "Auhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh" sound. I'd get louder as the contraction intensified. Finally when they told me to go ahead and bear down, I was scared to do it. But I knew the end part felt like you had to go #2, and I had felt that way for a while now and had been holding off, so I figured I might as well try. I let out a great yell like you do when you're doing some intense weight lifting, and push push pushed, still trying to breathe well and such. Ouch! It hurt but still felt the need to keep going.... kept this up for a few minutes and I was exhausted. I hadn't eaten since the night before and I was a little dehydrated and had thrown up the milk I drank around 4am... luckily Jason kept the Propel electrolyte drink comin. Yum. I had done about 4 of these yelling pushes when I just felt spent. It was so intense and I felt like I didn't have it in me to finish. The doctor was just shifting her weight back and forth, waiting for me to keep going. They could see the baby's head; Jason told me he had dark hair. He was real! He was coming out! But still, the sheer exhaustion... I looked at Jason and I told him I didn't think I could do it. He looked me in the eyes, right into my soul like only Jason can do, with those kind, wonderful eyes, and he told me, "You can do this. I know you can do this. Your body knows what to do." That was all I needed. His confidence, his assurance, and his expressed belief in my ability and in my body's ability to do it. So I said to myself, 'The only way to it is through it,' and I focused on the image of my baby coming out and them handing him to me, and I gritted my teeth and bore down with all I had. There was yelling, and about two or three pushes and some intense burning, like the fire of eternity, and suddenly he was out, and they were checking him and placing him on my chest, and Jason was cutting the cord, and he was there, and he looked like a Korean baby, why is he Korean? And oh my goodness, he is so beautiful and let me hold him, and he looked right at me and had this look like he wasn't so sure about this bright cold room but he'd be ok if I held him on my chest, and there he was, and did he really just come out of my body? and Jason is there at my side and we did it and OH, he is fine, and beautiful, and perfect, and the pain was 100% gone and forgotten. Jason said to me, "Joy as exceeding as was my pain, eh?" And I responded, "Oh, the joy far exceeds the pain. FAR exceeds it." It was like the pain never even existed. It was the most beautiful moment of my entire life up until that point. It was heaven and earth all in one place, and time stopped, like when Jason and I kissed for the first time. And everything else was blurry and it was me and Jason and our little baby boy, and it was perfect.

Boston David Graham, born at 7:58am

I ripped a little, just minor ripping, so they sewed me up and I guess I delivered the placenta at some point but I was so caught up in looking at our baby. Jason took some video and we just stared at him. They let me keep him on my chest for 20 min as requested for bonding and resting and such before they performed any tests. They checked him out and weighed him. 6 lbs 15.8 ounces, so they rounded up to 7 lbs, and 19.5 inches long. One week "early" and absolutely perfect. They put that eye goop on him eventually, dumb, so he couldn't see us for a while but then we could again. I tried to feed him which of course was completely foreign and awkward but that's to be expected, I figured. They got me cleaned up a bit and eventually got me out of the bed and wheeled me with baby in arms and Jason at my side to a maternity ward room where I'd spend the next almost 48 hours. They played a special lullaby over the PA to welcome the baby. Very cute.

Wise eyes for such a little one. A few hours old.

I spent the next while trying to learn to care for a little one, trying not to bleed all over everything (too graphic?) and crying all the time because my heart was bursting full of happiness. I had a few very special and spiritual moments with Boston and with Jason that I won't share here because of their sacred nature. Suffice it to say, the veil was thin, and the universe seemed, to me, to center on what was happening in that small hospital room. It was divine.

I spent two days in the hospital, which was super nice for my first and which we had to do to claim all the benefits from our supplemental insurance. The nurses were fabulous at helping me learn to breastfeed, staying on top of my pain and stool softener meds, and making sure I remembered to eat and sleep. Jason was plain exhausted but wonderful. He seemed to grow into the role of father so naturally, and I was obsessed with taking photos of him with baby.

I was super happy to have gone natural, as I could walk right away, use the bathroom (with some help for the first trip), and both baby and I were nice and alert. It was a deeply beautiful experience, and I loved it. I have said that I'd do that again 40 times and not mind it at all. If I weren't so nauseous during pregnancy, I might even think about having another kid. Haha. Hopefully that part doesn't repeat for the next time....

We spent the rest of the morning dealing with the shock of suddenly becoming parents, and calling everyone. We got a hold of Jason's folks soon after delivery and also my dad. It was so fun to share the news. So funny that we had told them we'd call on the way to the hospital, but there ended up not being time for it! We had arranged to have a friend come and take video for us but that went out the window as well in the rush of things. 4.5 hours of labor for baby #1... wow. Fast. My mom was at the gym when he was born, so when she came home, my dad had left her a note on the counter that read, "Boston David Graham, 7 lbs 19.5 inches." She freaked out of course and we had a nice fun chat soon after. She changed her flight so that she could come to our place on Thursday. We checked out Wednesday afternoon after two days of resting in the hospital, the trauma of taking B to get his heel pricked (the agony! oh my heart!) and Jason taking him for his first bath and for his circumcision, and I got to take a couple of showers and went to a breastfeeding class which was super helpful. We got into a rhythm of waking him every 3 hours to eat so that he'd remember to eat, gain weight nicely, and so my milk would come in nicely, and then we headed off to our house with this dumb look on our faces like new parents must all have, and with a bundled up baby to try and beat the freezing absolute coldness of February.

Mom came on Thursday and loved on our little man. She was a lifesaver in teaching us how to bathe him, helping me not to worry so much about every little thing, and she'd take him and burp him and put him back to sleep so I could sleep at night and sometimes during the day as well. I didn't realize how much labor takes out of you, and I was plain exhausted for a good couple of weeks. Luckily Boston seemed to have night and day figured out already, so he only had one wakeful period in the middle of the night while Mom was here and she got some good rest also! What a thoughtful, considerate little child.

with Grandma Karen after his bath

We now spend our days just staring at and adoring this little man. He has grown so much already--now at 10 weeks he hardly fits in the below outfit anymore. And I feel like my heart has grown by about 3 sizes... I have this enormous love for this precious little boy, and it occurs to me that Heavenly Father feels this way, and more so, about me and about everyone I will ever meet. Becoming a mom has also increased my love for and patience with everyone around me. They are all precious.

Some initial thoughts on his personality: Boston seems to be a patient, wise, and curious spirit. His body is strong and his mind is alert, and his heart is big. He is mellow and happy and full of life and the assurance of who he is. Already I feel I have much to learn from him.

My boys. Notice how he holds in his pacifier. So cute.

Boston at 9 days old

And finally, some photos from a weekend trip we took a couple of weeks ago. How we love this little man. He has filled our days with joy.

I am loving this. Motherhood is my favorite career. God be thanked for the gift of being mom to this precious, perfect little boy.

Sunday, March 27

a sweet video update

Thursday, March 17

a little st. patty's video from baby b

Stay tuned for the posting of his birth story... I have been meaning to do it for the past 6 weeks but when do you find time to do this stuff? I mostly just stare at this cute baby all day and try to sleep and shower and sing songs and read stories and sometimes make food and clean and now work out too... blogging has taken the back seat. Well, even more of a back seat than before. :) But I think I am getting the hang of typing while nursing, so maybe there is hope!

Happy St. Patrick's Day to all of you!

Tuesday, January 11

a Christmas photo spread with short captions

Jason and I got sweet cameras for each other for Christmas--his video, mine DSLR style--and I would like to show you rather than tell you some things about how it was. So fun. Photos begin Christmas day, post-camera reception.

Jason used his sweet video camera to record some of his parents' sweetness.
We haven't interviewed mine yet--they're warming up to the idea. :)

I still love technology... we used Skype so my sisters could be semi-
present while my missionary brother called home from Nicaragua.
So awesome.

I think Jason is the most good-looking man of all time.
Doesn't he just exude pure goodness, awesomeness, strength, and braveness?

Here we are chatting with my brother. It was a virtual family reunion!

The two brothermen a-chattin'. I sure like these guys.

Steve has sweet piano skills.

I come by my weird face-making honestly. Directly from my momma.

So happy to see this kid at Christmas! My nephew. So dang adorable.
So happy to see his parents, too. I just didn't post photographic evidence.

Momma is a doting grandmomma, too. I love how my parents
absolutely adore their grandchildren.

Great-grandmomma adores them, too.

Here is my cute other grandma, my papa's mama. We had
so much fun with all the folks at her place.

J loves his parents a whole bunch. They are good people, I tell you what.

And I seem to fit in with them just fine.

My papa gave me a fathers blessing as I have been feeling pretty
nervous about giving birth and becoming a mother and such.
One of the sweetest moments of my life.
I treasure it and I treasure my papa. Oh how I love him.

The day we left, it snowed! Here is adorable Grandma
waving at me through the frosty window.

It has snowed and snowed and snowed since we've been back...
we took advantage and went for a little light snowshoeing. Ahhh, clean air.

J constructing me some good meditative tracks to get me
through the labor and delivery process. This man gots skills.

Blairsy sent me this for Christmas this year. I love it. It is a physical
representation of that childlike hope that Christmas is all about--
the believing in good and in good things to come. Thank you, Blair.

Here are the curtains I put up over the closets in the baby's room.
Mostly this is for my sisters who helped me pick them out. I like!

When I go out in public these days, people look briefly
at my face, then immediately their eyes drift to the belly.
I am basically a walking belly. Nice.

Here I am at 36 weeks--took this one this morning.
26 days to D-day! Yipes!

Saturday, January 1

officially freaking out

I counted the days until our due date this morning. 37 days. Oh my goodness. Am I ready for this? Is anyone ever ready? Probably not, but I think I'd better get to buying that crib and installing a car seat. Baby B's a-comin.

Do you make new years resolutions? I made a couple: 1. Go to bed at 10pm. 2. Read the New Testament through again. I have some other ideas floating around my brain but not solidified.

Christmas is so fun, no? I had the best time at home with my familia and J's familia. It is the best to be among those who know you so well and love you anyway. I feel pretty lucky to have a family that does, and to have pretty much the best in-laws of all time. J and I got sweet cameras for Christmas--me a DSLR and he an HD videocam--and we have been busily documenting our lives with live and still shots since. So. Much. Fun. So. Much. Disk space. I need a new external hard drive. :)

I have been reading The Peacegiver whilst on vacation and since returning (thanks Mom for letting me borrow your book). I highly recommend this one. One of the reasons I so enjoyed Christmas this year was because of what this book is teaching me about Christ and His continual ability to heal hearts. Give it a first or second read sometime. I am hoping to acquire this one to add to my bookshelf.

Happy New Year, lovies. I am lucky to know you folks. Here's hoping I get to see all of you in 2011.


Monday, December 13

you asked for it

I have been negligent about posting belly photos. Reasons: (1) it is a little hard to get used to the idea of myself as such a large person. (2) I am also somewhat of a private person, so I forget to post stuff like this unless reminded. I have been reminded, so here is a photo--taken yesterday evening, of me at 32 weeks. I am getting progressively there! 56 more days, my weekly email tells me. Yay! And also, aggghh!! It is getting closer which = more real, which = more scary. But we are also excited.

We had some family up for to see the Christmas lights and enjoy a little holiday cheer and delicious food. This was good times. Enjoy photos:

Happy Christmas, everyone! May the season fill you with light as much as The Light of the world has filled our souls with His birth. Yay and double yay for that.