Saturday, February 28, 2009

Morgan Kate is a celebrity. Well, not really. But her sweet little face can be found on a certain website, other than mine. 

When looking for birth announcements I wanted an announcement where I could include her birth stats, as well as her homecoming stats. I happen to think both dates are extremely important. You would be surprised how few places are able/willing to do that. I searched and searched and then came across a website - - and fell in love. They have numerous designs and the best part is that you can help with the design. You get to choose the font, colors, etc. And another great part is that you can change your mind many, many times. I told them what I wanted and they emailed me a proof. I changed a few things, emailed them back and in return I got another proof. We went back and forth several times until I was completely happy. They were amazing to work with! This was our final product:

Needless to say I was very pleased. Not only did I get the announcements I ordered, but I also got a complimentary 8x10 and two wallet size prints. How awesome!

Anywho, about a week ago I received an email from the lovely people at and they wanted to know if they could post our announcement on their website. They said they really liked how it turned out and it was one of their favorites. Now, they may tell everyone this, I don't know. However, I was thrilled and of course gave them the okay to do so. So, click on this link and take a peek. My only beef with is that they titled the announcement "Morgan" and not "Morgan Kate". Double name everyone, double name. Oh, and I should also tell you that they don't just do birth announcements. They also do Christmas cards, birthday invites, etc. 

Friday, February 27, 2009

Today was the perfect rainy day. 

Morgan Kate and I didn't have any appointments so we stayed in our PJ's for a majority of the day. It was so nice and relaxing! She and I did a lot of snuggling, napping and playing. I just can't get enough of her! I could love on her and kiss on her all day.

While Morgan Kate and I were rocking earlier today Lola decided she wanted to join us. Shocker! I was so surprised that Lola wanted to get in the chair with us. But, it was so nice. All three of us sat there for over an hour just snoozing and rocking and enjoying the rainy afternoon. Lola even "allowed" Morgan Kate to "pet" her. How sweet! (I just happened to have the camera in the chair with us and tried my best to capture the moment.)

Morgan Kate "petting" Lola.

For those of you who don't know, Lola was our very first baby, fur baby that is. Travis and I got Lola right before we got married and we have had her ever since. She does everything with us and goes everywhere with us. We have only left her three times and each time she has stayed with my parents. We are bananas over her!

When we first found out we were pregnant we were really worried about how Lola would react. Anytime we brought home stuffed animals or toys for Morgan Kate Lola would chew on them or try to play with them. Even when Morgan Kate was in the NICU we would bring home blankets covered with her scent and Lola would just turn up her nose. Lola has even been known to leave a surprise or two in Morgan Kate's nursery. Until very recently Lola could have cared less about this little bundle of joy, but lately she seems to be much more interested. I am sure the bond will only strengthen and grow once Morgan Kate is old enough to drop food from her highchair. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Yesterday Morgan Kate had her second appointment with Dr. Patel, her gastro doc. The appointment went really well and the doctor was very pleased. Since our last visit, which was just a little over a month ago, she has gained 2.7 pounds. She is also eating now and keeping it down which is HUGE. There are certain times of the day that she eats better, but hey, you pick your battles. He couldn't believe she was a "26 weeker". She is still not on the growth chart for weight according to her birthdate, but she is on the chart according to her developmental age. She is actually almost in the 50th percentile. Big girl! We are supposed to continue with the Prevacid and Erythromycin and return in two months. We were so excited about how well the appointment went.

While we were in the room waiting Morgan Kate seemed to have found her voice. She decided that it would be fun to scream at the top of her lungs. She wasn't crying or anything, she was yelling and testing out those vocal chords. It was hilarious and I am sure others waiting probably thought we were beating our child. 

Some pictures of Morgan Kate on her 6 month birthday...

This happens to be one of my favorite outfits that she has and Trav says it looks like curtains from 1970. He's crazy! Even if she was wearing curtains she would still be oh, so sweet!

Once we got home from the doc we both needed a rest. She was worn out and so was I!

I made a cake for MK's six month  mark. Well, let me be honest, I was starving and there were absolutely no groceries in the house. However, I did have all the ingredients to make a cake. I had the necessary materials, I was hungry, it was her 6 month birthday...sounded like a good idea to me.

Sleeping peacefully after her 1pm feeding. So, so sweet!

"More tummy time? Mommy sure makes me do this a lot!"

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Dear Morgan Kate,

Six months ago today I saw your most precious face for the very first time. You were oh, so, so tiny, but oh, so, so perfect. The minute I saw you my world froze. I couldn't speak, I couldn't move, I couldn't breathe. All I could do was look at you and stare in wonder and amazement. You were the most beautiful thing I had ever laid my eyes on. You were the most perfect combination of your Daddy and myself. I wanted so badly to touch you and hold you and comfort you. I just wanted to scoop you up and tell you how much I loved you and how I was praying that things would be okay. I was terrified beyond belief, but I knew God was holding you and me and your Daddy in the palm of his hand. That night I sat in your room for hours just watching you. 

The day you were born my life forever changed. You have made me such a better person. And you have taught me so, so many things. In your short six months I have learned a great deal about my faith, I have learned the extreme power of prayer, I have learned patience, I have learned gratitude, I have learned just how blessed I am and I am continuing to learn this "mommy" thing. I am amazed each day by your bravery and courage. Each day I look at you and I realize just how lucky I am to be your mommy. 

Every night as I am trying to go to sleep my mind drifts back to August. I replay the days and events over and over. I just can't seem to get that particular month out of my head. Did I do this right? Did I do that right? Could I have done something differently? There are about a million scenarios I play out in my head. I wanted more than ever to carry you to term because I knew that was best. Sometimes I feel like I have let you down because I wasn't able to do that. But, I have to remember that God is in control and he was in control that Sunday afternoon in August. It's impossible to look into your big blue eyes and doubt that God was in control and continues to be today. 

You have come such a long, long way. You no longer require oxygen, you are taking all bottles and we don't have to use the tube, you are eating better, you are sleeping wonderfully, you are gaining weight and you are changing every single day. You smile all the time and it lights up my world. Your Daddy and I could watch you for hours. As cliche as it sounds, time does fly when you are having fun and I happen to be having the best time of my life. I know there were times in the beginning where I just wanted you to be older. I guess I was ready to rush things because I just wanted to know that everything would be okay and that you would be okay. These days I just want time to be still. Slow down. I just want to keep holding you and loving you just as you are. Tonight as I was getting you ready for bed it was so hard to put you down. I could have held you forever. 

I thank God for you each and every day, probably a million times. You truly are a miracle and the light of my life. 

Happy six month birthday, baby girl!

I love you,


August 2008
1 pound 12 ounces
13 3/4 inches 

February 2008
Six months
10 pounds 13 ounces
22 inches

Monday, February 23, 2009

Just wanted to give a BIG thanks to all those ladies out there who were honest. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I am sure it took some courage, but it sure did help this mommy feel better about things.


Yesterday Raven and I gave a baby shower for our dear, dear friend Melissa. She and her husband, Sam, are expecting their first baby - a girl - at the end of March. Her name will be Caroline Faye Leviner. We had such a great time and Melissa got so many nice things for Caroline. 

It was good to get out for a bit and see people that I hadn't seen in quite some time. On my way to the shower I stopped by the grocery store and ended up spending half an hour in there because I ran into my sweet, sweet friend Monica who I haven't seen in a very long time. I was thrilled to see her and catch up. 

I missed my little one tremendously and I was anxious to get back home and hold her in my arms. She was fast asleep in her swing when I got home, but awakened shortly thereafter. Travis said she was a little angel for him and even took two naps. Ok, what am I doing wrong? I am with her everyday and we can't seem to get naps under control. He tells me that I am too quick to pick her up and that I need to let her fuss just a little. He is so smart isn't he? Hee, hee! He's actually pretty incredible. 


Six months ago tonight I was lying in my hospital bed talking with my mom. I had had a really good day and several visitors. Travis and I felt really confident about things so he had decided to go home for the night while my mom stayed with me. I had eaten Lizard's Thicket for dinner and had the best sweet tea. Around 9pm I had what I thought was an excruciating stomache. In hindsight I actually think my placenta was rupturing at that very moment, if it's possible to feel that. The pain passed after about an hour and I was fine. My mom and I actually stayed up rather late just talking and discussing how long I would be in the hospital and just when would Morgan Kate be arriving. Little did we know that we would be meeting her in just a few short hours. 


Tomorrow we have our follow-up appointment with the GI doctor. I am curious to see how he thinks Morgan Kate is doing. She is eating better and is now taking about 80ccs every four hours. We are 10ccs short of three ounces. She is still spitting up a good bit, but nothing like before. I pray that she continues to do well with feedings. 

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Look at this face! Who could resist?

This is one of the oneies Mommy was able to quickly pull over MK's head.

Tummy time

"Tummy time isn't so bad."

"I am over this!"

Friday, February 20, 2009

As I was reading the comments from last night's post I had a big smile on my face. Why? One, because I really do appreciate everyone's comments and advice. This is such a learning process. But secondly, and more importantly in my opinion, is that I truly appreciate everyone's honesty. Almost everyone that commented honestly admitted that they don't have all the answers. That they don't know one set way that it all works out. They were open and honest and admitted that you just have to try and try and try again. Mommies - novice and veteran - were admitting that they didn't have all of the answers. Whewh! What a relief for this mommy. It makes me feel more "normal" that there are others that don't have all the answers and that they have to try and try and try again to find what works. I wish more mommies would be open and honest about being a mommy. I wish more mommies would admit that it's not all glitz and glamour and that it's really hard work. Women are so afraid to admit that they don't have all the answers, that they don't know how to fix a problem, or even admit that things are difficult. 

With that being said, I'm going to be honest.  I'll be honest about my mothering experiences and abilities from pregnancy days until now. 

This is me being honest.

I truly enjoyed being pregnant. I loved having my pregnant belly, even if for only six months. I loved wearing maternity clothes, especially form fitting ones because I wanted everyone to see my belly. I think mommies are the most beautiful creatures. C-sections are awful. My incision still bothers me to this day. I was in tremendous pain after my C-section and my ankles and legs were so swollen I could hardly walk. (Missed the swelling from pregnancy, but definitely made up for it afterward.) The day I was discharged I stood in the shower and cried and cried to my mom because I hurt so bad and said in my most pathetic voice, "Why don't other women tell you how awful this is?" I hated breastfeeding. (I am sure some of you are gasping.) I did. I admit it. Well, I guess I hated pumping. I tried breastfeeding for two days when Morgan Kate was about 11 weeks old and quit. I thought it would be a bonding experience, but it kind of creeped me out. I pumped for 13 weeks and then I was done. Each time I sat down to pump I cringed and felt nauseous. Had Morgan Kate been full term I don't know that I would have done it at all. Thankfully my husband, nor my mom, ever pressured me to do it and were completely supportive when I stopped. However, even when I made the decision to stop I felt bad. But only because I was afraid of what other mothers would think of me. I use disposable diapers and lots of them. I do shower everyday, but usually not until after lunch sometime. I let Morgan Kate take naps in her swing, in my arms or wherever she will fall asleep. I let Morgan Kate watch TV. She loves to look at it while she is playing on the floor. I think she loves the colors and sounds and I happen to love Rachel Ray. It works out for both of us. Often times I think back to my childhood and try to do things the way my mom did them because I think she did such an amazing job. During our first few weeks at home I struggled with the lack of sleep and told Travis numerous times, "I am so over this newborn thing. I am ready for MK to be four." I hold Morgan Kate a lot because one day she will be four and I won't be able to catch her. I have cried to MK's pediatrician and to many, many others. I love that MK looks just like Travis because he is an amazing Daddy and so deserving of our little family. During the middle of the night while I am feeding her I hold Morgan Kate just a little bit longer so that I can smell her and love on her. I have to write down all of MK's feedings and medications because otherwise I would forget. When I leave MK and Travis to go grocery shopping or run an errand I get really sad because I hate being away from them. I worry about being a good mom. There is so much I have to learn. As much as I loved being pregnant it terrifies me to even think of being pregnant again. Everyday I look at her and then stop and thank God for this amazing little girl. I love this little girl more than I could have ever imagined.  

So there. That was this mommy being honest. 

If you feel the urge to be honest and want to share, please feel free to post your honesty in the comments section. You don't have to be a mommy to do this. You can be honest about anything. Go ahead. You should do it. It's very therapeutic. 

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Day three of working on naptime. Today did not go so well. This nap thing is a lot harder than I once thought.

Morning Nap
Around 10:30 or so Morgan Kate gets kind of fussy, which typically means she is tired. She has already eaten and we have played so I assume it's naptime. I pick her up and rock her for just a second (I am testing the waters) and she falls asleep. Or so I think. I carry her back to her room, put her in the crib and walk out. Whewh! Now I am off to shower and eat a little breakfast. Or maybe not. Morgan Kate starts crying. She's not screaming or anything like that, so I let her cry. She groans and moans, but I just let her be. After about thirty minutes of this I walk back in her room to check on her and I am greeted with the biggest smile and laugh. What am I supposed to do now? She is clearly wide awake with no intentions of counting sheep and she is cracking the most beautiful smile at me.

Early Afternoon Nap
Again, she eats, we play, she gets fussy. I take her back in her room and place her in the crib. I am then off to wash bottles and think about dinner. Ten minutes later, moaning, groaning, crying. I do what needs to be done and then go check on her. Again, she is wide awake and flashing that smile. Are you kidding me? I can't even look at her with a straight face. And all I want to do is pick her up and love on this sweet little thing. So I do.

Late Afternoon Nap
I assume that since both prior naps were a bust that maybe, just maybe, she will nap for her Daddy while I go run a few errands. She eats, no play this time. She is visibly worn out. She falls asleep shortly after her bottle. We are still sitting in the chair and as I move to take her back to the crib she awakens. This girl is clearly not napping today.

So this mommy here has a few nap questions. I don't care if you are a mommy, not a mommy, a brand new mommy, a "long time" mommy - it doesn't matter. If you have any nap advice please feel free to share.

1. Is it necessary that we eat, play and then sleep? It seems that MK prefers - eat, sleep and then play. In a way it makes perfectly good sense to me. I mean who wants to play and bounce around right after they have finished eating? As an adult I prefer to curl up on the couch after any meal.

2. Do I let her tell me when she's ready to nap or do I just decide on naptime? This can get really complicated. I mean I think she needs to tell me. Otherwise I am putting her in the crib and she is playing. Right?

Tomorrow is another day and we will once again tackle naptime. I keep reminding myself that "Rome wasn't built in a day", nor will MK's schedule/routine. 


If you have a moment be sure to check out my mom's blog. There is a link in the sidebar to the left. She has quite a funny little story about me as a child. I personally don't think any of it is true, but it's pretty funny.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My baby girl is not quite six months old and we are already having "clothes issues".

First issue at hand, Morgan Kate does NOT like for me to put anything over her head. Therefore, anytime I try to slip a shirt over her head or pull a onesie on she screams at the top of her lungs. Now for quite some time, up until last week actually, we didn't really even attempt to pull things on over her head because of the cannula. Way too much work involved! I was so excited about being done with the cannula because there were numerous onesies I was dying for her to wear. I always thought she would be a diaper and onesie kind of girl. I think I was wrong. Maybe she's not happy about it because she's just not used to it. However, for the past three nights I have attempted to pull something over her head and she has screamed each time. The first two nights I ended up winning. I won because I was quick and I was singing at the top of my lungs , which she happens to like. (Trav doesn't really like it, but MK does.) Tonight I lost and just gave up. 

Second issue, finding clothes that fit. Morgan Kate will be six months next week, but she doesn't wear clothes according to her birthdate. She wears clothes according to her due date (December 3rd). Baby clothes are just like all the other clothes out there. Sometimes a size fits perfectly, sometimes the same size is a little too snug, and other times that same exact size is too big or too long. All newborn labels read 5-8 pounds. Well, my little love bug is ten and a half pounds and width wise the newborn clothes work. They just happen to be about three centimeters too short and her toes have no where to go. So, I attempt to try 0-3 month clothes. Some fit perfectly, others are too small and then others are way too large. Our "fit perfectly" pile is way smaller than the other piles. And 3 month clothes? Ha! Not even going there. My baby girl gets lost in those clothes.

Thankfully these are both very small issues. She will eventually (hopefully) allow me to put things over her head or else her selection is going to very limited. There may be a lot of button up shirts in her future. And she is going to continue to grow each day and those 3 month clothes will eventually fit. I am just glad we aren't having to deal with short shorts or revealing shirts. Yet. I should probably go ahead and start praying for that now.

Naptime. Our morning nap didn't work out too well because our home health nurse came by. Morgan Kate slept for a little while this morning, but then our nurse needed to check her temp and things like that. However, this afternoon MK napped for almost two and a half hours. I was actually able to get a little laundry done and cook dinner. Most of the time I was in her room just "checking in" and watching my angel sleep. So peaceful. 

So peaceful earlier today, but she is giving her Daddy a fit right now. He just finished feeding her and it's bedtime, but she's not cooperating. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

This week we are working on naptime. I like to take things one step at a time. We got the feeding thing down, the sleeping at night thing down and now we are going to work on napping. Morgan Kate is not a good napper. Not yet anyway. During the day she prefers to take "cat naps" in her swing or in my arms. If I try to put her down she immediately wakes up and begins screaming. The lack of napping makes for a very fussy baby as the day goes on. 

This morning I fed Morgan Kate and played with her for quite some time. After about an hour and a half she started to get fussy. I picked her up and rocked her for just a second and she fell asleep. I then placed her in her crib and proceeded to leave the room. The crying began. However, I let her cry for just a few minutes and she fell fast asleep and slept for almost two hours. She was much more content this afternoon. Happy baby and happy mommy. We didn't get to work on our afternoon nap because we had a doctor's appointment. But I am not worried about it. Like I said, I prefer to take things one step at a time.

Speaking of doctor's appointment. We went to see Dr. G and had a terrific appointment. Morgan Kate weighed in at ten and a half pounds. Wow! She has not quite hit the growth chart for her age, but she is ever so close to it. Matter of fact we have never been this close to actually getting on the chart. Great progress! Dr. G was very pleased with how she looked and sounded. We are going to start slowly weaning MK from several of her medications and she how she reacts. Less is always better in the medication department. We have some stretches and exercises to work on with Morgan Kate and we are to return in two weeks. 

Also, some good news on the feeding front. Morgan Kate is now taking almost three ounces every four hours. She is doing a great job! There are times when she seems a little hesitant to start, but once we get going she does great. 

Next Tuesday (Morgan Kate's 6 month birthday) we have a follow-up appointment with her gastro doctor.  

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I have had the most perfect Valentine's Day ever. 

Travis and I are not big on Valentine's Day. (Well, unless you count the days when he was trying to "woo" me. Hee, hee.) For goodness sakes, last year we had our taxes done on Valentine's. We typically just cook dinner at home and spend good quality time together, which I prefer.

This year we did exactly that. We stayed at home in our pj's and took numerous naps. The only thing different about this year was that we had our new little Valentine. And that my friends was the absolute best part. She completely melts our hearts.

This evening while Travis was feeding Morgan Kate I spent some time looking through pictures around the time of her birth and reading emails from friends and family. I found myself sitting at my computer, tears streaming down my face, overcome with emotion. I just can't get over how far she has come and how she truly is our little miracle. We are so blessed to have her in our lives!  

Friday, February 13, 2009

Today we experienced a first. Not a first for Morgan Kate. A first for Mommy and Daddy. 

Several weeks ago Kaky and GDaddy offered to come up and watch Morgan Kate while Travis and I went to dinner. They have actually offered several times and each time we have very politely said, "No thank you".  Tonight was different. Morgan Kate had had an awesome week, was oxygen free, and we decided to take them up on the offer. 

It was very strange "getting ready" this afternoon. I had no clue what to wear, as I haven't been shopping since before I was pregnant. (Remember that would be last year this time, so my clothes are a little out of date.) I put on several different outfits before deciding that my jeans and a nice shirt would work. 

Before leaving I made sure everything was out and accessible. You don't realize how much babies require until you have to think about telling someone else their routine/schedule. I got the oxygen tank and cannula ready, just in case. I showed Mom where MK's bottles were and how to record how much she ate. (Yes, we write down how much we feed her each time in order to keep track of how many calories she takes in a day. I created a very nice chart that holds all of this info. My 4th grade team at LMES would be very impressed.) I told Mom and Dad about all the little alarms and tricks that go along with the monitors. I also made sure that I had my cell and that Travis had his. 

I wasn't nervous about leaving Morgan Kate. My goodness, my parents have had and raised three children. And besides, they do happen to be the best parents. My mom has been with Morgan Kate plenty of times and she knows all the "ins and outs". While I wasn't nervous, I was a little emotional. I mean since December 9th, the day we brought her home, I have been with her 24/7. I was a little teary-eyed as we walked out and as we drove out of the neighborhood, but then I began to settle down. I mean we were only going for a few hours, not days. We were gone for about three hours, but by that time I was ready for some of MK's loving and kissin' on those cheeks. 

Travis and I had a super time. We ate great food, had awesome conversation and just enjoyed each other's company. I think the best part for me was just sitting in the front of the truck with my hubby. I have been riding in the back with MK and it's a very different view back there. We also stopped at Krispy Kreme on the way home and got a dozen doughnuts. Yummy! I only called home once and that was right after her feeding time. I just wanted to make sure everything went smoothly and it did.

I will admit, our "date" post-baby was very different than our dates pre-baby. One, of course we enjoyed each other's company, but we talked a lot about Morgan Kate and of course we called to check in on her. Two, we left for dinner around 5ish and were home by 8. In the old days we would still be at home around 8:00 making plans for our night out. Three, pre-baby we would have stayed out half the night. Tonight we were ready to come home. It was different, but in such a good way.

Before my parents left tonight I tried to book them for a few more Friday nights. I told Kaky that tonight was such a treat for us, but she claims that she's the one who had a treat. 


Tonight will be Morgan Kate's second night without oxygen and she has done great. It still makes me a little nervous, but she seems to like it just fine. 

Below you will find Valentine outfit #1:

Be sure to tune in tomorrow night, I plan to post a new slideshow. 

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Last night we experienced some technical difficulties. We were all so excited, Morgan Kate included, that we were going to be oxygen free for the night. Things were going great until the pulse ox (the monitor that reads her oxygen saturation) began to malfunction. Of course, just our luck. The first night our baby girl is able to go without oxygen and our monitor won't cooperate. I noticed earlier yesterday that it was having some minor difficulties reading, therefore, I went ahead and placed an order for a few new probes. However, at about 1:30am the probe stopped reading completely, meaning that we had no clue how her oxygen levels were. I have been watching her levels while on oxygen non-stop since we have been home so I knew what she would most likely be reading with the oxygen on. I didn't know what she would be reading or how she would do at night without the oxygen. So, at 1:30am we had to make a parental decision and we (well I did, Travis was fast asleep) decided it was better to be safe than sorry. I tiptoed to the crib and tried to sneak the cannula back on her face. She must have been dreaming some really good dreams because she didn't move at all. Around noon today our new probes arrived and they are working beautifully. Morgan Kate has been fast asleep since 9pm and the monitor says she is doing great. What a blessing!

I promise I am still hard at work trying to figure out this "video thing". It will come. I can't wait for you guys to see it. I mean it's total amateur video, but Morgan Kate is laughing and smiling and making all sorts of noises (and of course I am in the background making ridiculous noises). Watching it will be kind of like seeing her in person. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Everyone comments about how Morgan Kate looks like Travis. I keep waiting for someone, even if it's just one person, to tell me that Morgan Kate looks a little like me. Just yesterday one of my dear friends and neighbors, Mary, said that she could see some resemblance. Oh, how exciting! Don't know if you truly meant it, but THANK YOU! Anyway, thought I would share what I guess Travis would look like in a dress and leg warmers. Isn't he she the cutest?After five months, two weeks and three days Morgan Kate will be sleeping without oxygen for the first time. Yes, that's right. We have been given the green light to take Morgan Kate off of oxygen at all times. We are going to closely monitor her for the next few days (I will probably monitor for the next few weeks/months). If her numbers drop then we will just put the oxygen back on. Otherwise, she is off of the O2. Oh my goodness! It was so strange getting her ready for bed tonight and not putting the cannula on. I actually got it out and got it ready before remembering that she didn't need it. I still can't believe she is off of it completely. She has come such a long way and we couldn't be happier. 

Our appointment with Dr. Brown went well. There are two pulmonologists in the practice and they are both named Dr. Brown, but are not related. I happen to find that interesting. We saw the "other" Dr. Brown today. He was really great and gave us a lot of good information. Morgan Kate will get her last RSV shot for the season next month. After March we have the go ahead to have visitors and go visiting ourselves. Dr. B said that we need to limit the number of visitors at a time - meaning she still doesn't need to be in a large crowd. While she no longer requires oxygen she is still more susceptible to things. He said no trips to the mall, no daycare, no church and not to be around a lot of other kiddos. Way too many germs. He said to make sure that everyone we visit or have visiting is healthy, healthy, healthy. No runny noses, coughs, sneezes or sore throats. And that everyone must wash their hands thoroughly. I told him that all of you were good hand washers!

After a long day, a doctor visit and a shot Morgan Kate was pooped. This was her at about 8pm tonight. We were supposed to be getting her ready for bed, but she had other plans.

Monday, February 9, 2009

I consider myself to be somewhat knowledgeable of technology. However, tonight I am reconsidering that. I have been trying for two days to post a video of Morgan Kate and I just can't seem to do it. So very frustrating. I wanted to be able to share her laughs and smiles with all of you. Guess it will be a few more days. I am going to figure this out. I promise.

Yesterday and today were both really good days. We actually have been on a walk everyday since Friday. It is so very nice. Morgan Kate seems to love it and sleeps most of the time. I am dreading the colder weather that is expected for later this week. Spring, spring, where art thou?

Tomorrow we have our appointment with Dr. B, the pulmonologist and Morgan Kate will get her 3rd RSV shot. Please pray that things go smoothly. I dislike shots just as much, if not more, than Morgan Kate does. 

Saturday, February 7, 2009

We took another walk today. I am very proud to say that I did much better. You would all be really proud. I even pushed the stroller a little faster. Who knows what tomorrow will bring?

I have always wanted to be a "baby wearing kind of mama". You know carrying a baby in a sling or something similar. While pregnant I researched and looked around for the best way to "wear a baby" and what to use. For those interested there are like a zillion different sling type things to use and about a million different ways to "wear your baby". Total overload. I found two slings that I really, really liked. They weren't slings that I found on my own however. I actually found both slings by reading other mommy blogs. Anywho, I ordered one and Kaky gave me the other for Christmas - love them both!. I am still trying to learn how to use them and how to get a baby with wires and monitors to fit into it, but I think I am getting the hang of it. Being oxygen free has been a huge help. Today I attached one of the slings, inserted Morgan Kate who immediately fell asleep and we were able to take a walk around the backyard (not before taking a photo of myself). The sunshine sure was nice! 

In the last week or so Miss Morgan Kate has found her fingers. It is so darn cute to see and hear. Today I was able to catch a photo of her in action. Goodness, I could eat her up!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Today was an exciting day. Morgan Kate took her first ride in her stroller while we took a little walk around the neighborhood. (Thanks Ma-Ma and Aunt Jan for the awesome stroller and car seat!) I'm not sure if we were supposed to take her for a walk, but we did. It was perfectly safe though. No one stopped us and we had her very bundled up. Mommy and Daddy both needed some sunshine and fresh air, so we packed up the family (and all the monitors) and went. Travis took care of the fur babies and I pushed Morgan Kate in the stroller. It was so nice to get out of these walls. Morgan Kate slept the entire time and I tried to enjoy myself. When I say tried, this is what I mean.

Me: Trav, do you think MK is warm enough?

Trav: Yes, she is perfectly fine. It's warm out here and she has on gloves, a hat, socks, long sleeves, and a blanket. 

Two minutes later.

Me: Trav, do you think I am going too fast?

Trav: No, not hardly. I am having to slow down to keep up with you.

Two minutes later.

Me: Trav, do you think she will get a sunburn?

Trav: Heather, she's all wrapped up and it's almost 5:00. I doubt it.

Two minutes later.

Me: Trav, is this stroller secure? I mean, it's not going to fold up on her is it?

Trav: Can you  just enjoy the walk?

Two minutes later.

Me: Trav, do you think it's okay for her to smell all these smells and breathe this air?

Trav: Oh my goodness. Are you going to really be like this with everything?

I know, I know. I have really got to get a grip and settle down some. I stress myself out. It's just that in my mind she is so fragile and has come such a long way and I don't want to do anything to jeopardize that. 

I have to admit our walk was really, really nice. It was great to get out and be with my family. It was also nice to do some "normal" things with our baby girl. I am so excited about the weekend weather. Maybe, just maybe we can walk a few more times. Besides, I am in need of some walking. Just our little venture out today caused me to be short of breath and my calves are already sore. Whewh!

Totally off subject. However, there are two things I have really been pondering for the last few weeks. One, is there any sort of contraption out there that will hold a child's pacifier in their mouth until they are old enough to do it? Just curious. And secondly, I really wish all medications were flavorless, colorless, and odorless. This is what happens when you try to give a child red, cherry flavored Prevacid twice a day. Thank goodness for Shout!

Morgan Kate is doing really well. She is sleeping like a champ at night. Of course we are still getting up every three hours to feed her, but I could care less. She is so much happier and doing so much better. Most of the time she is fast asleep when her feeding times arrive. However, because she needs to eat and she needs the calories we are having to wake her up. I know, I know, you aren't supposed to wake a sleeping baby. She's great though. We change her diaper, feed her and she's back off to dream land. Feeding wise she is still taking two ounces every three hours. Yesterday and today she has been spitting up a little bit more and I can tell that her reflux is bothering her some. So we will have to keep our eye on that. 

Tuesday we have another appointment with the pulmonologist. She will get her 3rd RSV injection and maybe, just maybe we will be off of the oxygen day and night. We will see. 

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Sometimes I feel like our stay in the NICU was a 107 day course for new parents. Really. We learned so, so much during our stay.

Let's think about it..

Holding your baby
How did you feel the first time you held your brand new baby? You may have been anxious, nervous, scared. You probably wondered if you were doing it right or if your baby's head was in just the right position. I'll admit. I used to get very nervous when I would hold a newborn baby. We were super nervous the first time we held our little bundle of joy, but we had nurses standing right beside us each time to assist with anything we needed. They were there to tell us the best position, how to hold her head and anything else we needed help with.

Bath time 
What about the first time you bathed your new baby? You were most likely at home and hadn't a clue what to do. Sponge bath? Submerge in water? Get the hair wet or keep dry? Three times a week for fifteen weeks we got to practice this skill with a nurse standing right beside us. When you do something three times a week for fifteen weeks you get pretty good at it.

Changing a diaper
Now I knew how to change a diaper, but I didn't know the whole "slide-a-new-diaper-under-the-old-diaper-before-taking-it-off" trick. This has saved me so many, many times.

Bottle feeding
How do you hold the bottle? How often do you burp the baby? Again, we had the best nurses on hand to assist when needed. They showed us techniques, tricks, all sorts of things. And when Morgan Kate wouldn't take the bottle for us, her nurses would give it a try.

After our NICU stay there are also things we just can't seem to do any other way. 
For instance...

We think Morgan Kate can only wear Pampers because that's what they use in the NICU.

For a long time I never used a bib when feeding her because they didn't use one in the NICU.

I dress Morgan Kate in the next day's outfit each night. Meaning that she sleeps in her clothes for the next day. That's how they did it in the NICU and it works great at home, especially when we have early doctor appointments.

I think Morgan Kate should only get a bath on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays because that's what we did in the NICU.

I think that at all times Morgan Kate needs to be dressed in socks, an outfit with long sleeves and legs, and at times even swaddled just to stay warm. Again, that's how we dressed her in the NICU. Sometimes I forget that you could probably just put a baby in a onesie and be good.


We visited Dr. G today. Earlier in the week we didn't have an appointment on the calendar, but I knew we would probably go in for at least a weigh-in. Sure enough today was the day. And speaking of weight...our little gal is one ounce shy of the double digits. She weighed in at nine pounds and fifteen ounces. I was so very excited!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Nothing is impossible with God. 
Luke 1:37

I have been a little emotional lately. Not the sad kind of emotional. Just emotional. Especially when I look at my baby girl or my husband. I just get overwhelmed with how lucky I am and how much I love these two people. 

When Morgan Kate was first born I often asked the question, "Why us?".  I don't mean "Why us?" like I wanted it to happen to anyone else. (I hope that part makes sense.) I guess I just wondered "Why do some babies have to be born prematurely?", "Why do some babies have to go through so much?", "Why do parents have to see their babies in so much pain and not be able to do anything?", "Why do parents have to go to bed scared every night of what the next day might hold?", or "Why can't every baby be born full term and completely healthy?". Why? Why? Why? The list could go on forever. 

I hate to even admit it, but there were times I even felt like we were robbed of certain things or certain memories. Travis, nor I, were able to witness this miraculous birth. We weren't even able to be with one another. We weren't able to hold our baby the minute she was born. We couldn't feed her, we couldn't change her diaper. There were no pictures of the happy new family all together. It would be days before I could hold her. It would be weeks before I could feed her. It would be months before I could bring her home. I will never forget the day I was discharged. It was the loneliest day of my life. Here I was in so much pain with a stomach still swollen and I was being wheeled out of the hospital with empty arms. I know that I should have been so happy because she was right upstairs in the best care, but all I wanted was to have her in my arms and know that she was going to be okay. As I was wheeled out, another lady was right beside me in her wheelchair. We were very much alike, except for the fact that her arms were full. It broke my heart into so many pieces. 

Today I feel very different. I still ask "Why us?". I just mean it very differently. These days it means "Why do we get to be so lucky?", "Why did God choose us to be the parents to this precious, precious baby girl?. Each night as I rock this perfect little creature I am overwhelmed with emotion. I thank God each and every day for her life and for what she means to me. I honestly feel like the luckiest woman alive. And I am so thankful that God chose us. 

Monday, February 2, 2009

Oh my goodness. I have been having blog withdrawal. Our internet has been out for over a day now. Well, let me rephrase that. I "thought" our internet was out. When I called my hubbie this morning to complain about the internet still being out he reminded me that sometimes it just needs to be unplugged and plugged back in. Magic. I did exactly what he said and it started working. 

This past weekend Morgan Kate did great. And as you all know - when Morgan Kate is doing great, so are Mommy and Daddy. 

We have been really, really, really sticking to our schedule and it is working. Morgan Kate is sleeping so much better and we are too. When we first started it was taking us almost three hours to get her to go to sleep. We would put her down, ten minutes later she would cry, we would go back in and put her pacifier in, ten minutes later she would cry, we would go back in and reswaddle her, ten minutes later she would cry, so we would go back in and pat her back. So on and so on. However, for the last few nights she has been going to bed right after she takes her bottle. So, so very nice.

Feeding wise she is making progress too. We are still feeding her two ounces every three hours. We could probably space her feedings out longer if she would eat more, but two ounces seems to be the most she will take at one time. There are still times where she will only take an ounce and wants nothing to do with the rest of the bottle. I am now okay with this. I don't force it on her. I don't get upset. I don't stress out. I try to feed her as much as she will take and then I just stop. When she is done, she is done. 

She has been so, so smiley lately. One of my favorite times of the day is first thing in the morning when she wakes up. I go in her room each morning to find her cooing and smiling. It absolutely makes my day. I just want to eat her up. Goodness. This weekend my parents were here and so was Uncle Kyle (my youngest brother). Morgan Kate LOVES him. She smiled and smiled and smiled at him. She just couldn't get enough of her Uncle Kyle. It was precious! 

No appointments scheduled yet for this week. I am sure we will be making a stop by Dr. G's office for at least a "weigh-in". Next week we go back to the pulmonologist for Morgan Kate's 3rd RSV injection and I guess we will also make a decision about her oxygen. According to Dr. B, the pulmonologist, we are only on "house arrest" for a little while longer. The end of March to be exact. Now, that may seem like a long time to you guys, but to me it seems like it is right around the corner (or at least that is what I am having to tell myself). If all goes well, we could be out on parole in like 57 days. That's nothing. When you spend 107 days in a hospital, 57 days is nothing at all. And besides, it gives me time to plan exactly what we will be doing, where we will be going and who we will be seeing. Believe me, come April we will be on the MOVE!