and then there were 4 – part three

after checking in at the front desk of labor & delivery, the concierge (ok, she was a nurse) escorted us to our room where we settled in. this part always feels so strange to me; having to settle into a l&d room and unpack your things, almost like it’s a hotel room. a hotel room that you’ll be in for a relatively short while, go through insane amounts of pain, and the place where one of the most important moments of your life will happen. exciting, surreal, and bizzarre when you think about it.

we had to wait for a little while – bummer since we had to check in so early, only to sit around – because our lovelywonderfulamazing doctor had not sent down her orders and was in the OR with another delivery.
after waiting about 2 hours, in which we picked out the all-important birth playlist (harper came into the world to “somewhere over the rainbow” by israel kamakawiwo’ole; dosie’s album was going to be mission bell by amos lee), they came in and started me on the pitocin about 10 am. about an hour later, our lovely obgyn came in and broke my water and that’s when business really got going. just like when i was in labor with harper, i sat on the birthing ball (on a puppy pad, as i like to call them) to get a little more comfortable (believe it or not). contractions started to happen and things escalated pretty quick, then i knew it was time. time for the good stuff.
i asked for my epiduralNOWPLEASE.

our sweet nurse giggled and told me to just wait until the anesthesiologist came in, that he was so cute & handsome.
sidenote: our sweet nurse is at least 55 years old. and yes, she did giggle.
so there i am, in pain, hating life, but kind of excited thinking clooney might be the one to walk in to my birthing room and stab me in the spine with a large needle.

after much anticipation, the doc came in to give me my glorious drugs, and alas, was not clooney i’m sorry to say. but he did have an uncanny resemblance to whatshisname from mad men:


definitely not clooney, but perfectly good looking and amiably scruffy. seriously, this is exactly what our anesthesiologist looked like. minus the pipe. i don’t think they allow pipes in labor & delivery rooms.
he was really friendly, like the fun-loving frat guy, and made the uncomfortable experience of the epidural somewhat bearable. and watching our nurse giggle at everything he said and blush a few times (i never saw it but my husband swears he did) while he was in our room, was seriously hilarious.

Posted in birth, dosie | Leave a comment

and then there were 4 – part two

the night before was a hard one.
not only because we had to be up & out the door by 6:30 the next morning or because we still had to finish packing and then capitalize on the last “full” night of sleep we would get in a long time.
it was a hard night because my at-the-time only child was feeling miserable with a fever.
yes a fever.
we put her down at the usual time, about 8, and she was up at least 4 times before 11:30 – crying and acting a little disoriented. my heart was breaking for her and i could not believe this was happening on this night. worst of all, if she had a fever, would they not let her into the hospital to see us and meet her new baby sister?!
that wasn’t even a decision i needed to think about.
even if harper had a fever, she was still coming to the hospital the next day. even if she had to stay across the room, away from baby sister. that was not something i wanted her to miss.

eventually, around 1 am, my mom took harper’s monitor so that geoff and i could sleep. (harper ended up in bed with my mom around 2 am and then slept like a baby all night. and was apparently a pretty decent bed mate, surprisingly enough, for a toddler.) geoff and i both prayed ourselves to sleep that night, praying that harper would wake up with no sickness and no fever and would feel good in the morning, rested and in good spirits.

the next morning, it was so hard to not go in and kiss harper before we left. but i knew if we did, we might wake her and i wanted her to get all the sleep she could. i knew she was in good hands and that we’d see her later in the afternoon.
the best part?
we talked with my mom a few hours later to give her a labor update and when we asked how harper was, she said harper woke up with NO FEVER and in a great mood.
what a marvelous answer to prayer.

geoff and i checked in about 7:30 that morning to the labor and delivery wing of the hospital and were taken to labor room 11 – the exact birthing room that we were in with harper (well, the 2nd one we were in with harper:)).


the baby daddy was ready to go. ready to be the coach, ready to be the consoler & the encourager. i was ready too… to not be pregnant anymore YIPPEEHOORAYYIPPEEEE and to finally get to meet this little girl.


Posted in birth, finley, harper, The Mahm | 1 Comment

and then there were 4 – part one

“it’s surreal” best describes it.
it was surreal when we found out we were pregnant with our second baby. (surprise!)
it was surreal when we found out it was a girl.
it was surreal when i started going in every single week for a checkup.
and it was still surreal when we checked in to the labor and delivery wing of the hospital for our induction on the morning of november 15th.

we had been a family of 3 since may of 2010 and had gotten comfortable in our life. then little lady numero dos (who we referred to as dosie for the duration of my pregnancy) decided to come into our lives. god’s timing truly amazes me every time. we aren’t sure if now is the right time, but his plan is perfect. i hate it love it when i get smacked in the face with that knowledge far too often.

on tuesday, nov. 13th, geoff and i went up to springfield for my 39 week doctor appointment. in the ultrasound, we learned that the little girl was (estimated at) 7 lbs 15 oz and was looking good. geoff even asked the tech if she wouldn’t mind making sure of the gender, you know, while she was “in there”. she regrettably said that the baby was in a position where she was not able to tell. guess we’ll go with “girl”! but what if…? ah, the anxieties of a new baby.

after meeting with our lovelywonderfulamazing doctor, we had a decision to make. she said that since baby was such a good size already and since we induced with our first & it went so well, that we had the option of inducing with this one. this would obviously guarantee that our doctor would be available to deliver for us (she was on call during the thanksgiving holidays, but gone the weekend before) which was a big plus for me. we told her we would talk it over and call back in an hour or two to let her know. but right after talking with her, i was pretty sure i knew what i wanted to do.
which was get doughnuts.

so the baby daddy and i went and got a dozen to chat over. (i had fully accepted the fact that the days of the fat kid were numbered and i might as well take advantage.) as hard as it was to make the call on when our second daughter would enter the world and we would no longer be a family of 3, we decided to go in for the induction. i was more than ready to be done being pregnant, and this was really good timing for us. we called it in and started planning for the next few days, beginning with that evening. we had to have one fun night, one last hurrah as a family of 3. so we began by letting harper choose where we went to dinner (for some reason, chili’s is her favorite place on earth).

we had a blast. we let harper order whatever she wanted (grilled cheese, milk, and fries) and we had dessert afterwards. it was the perfect night, just us 3. i loved every minute of it. especially the end…

i know these sweet moments won’t be going anywhere, but i felt it would be different somehow.

Posted in appointment, dosie, ultrasound | 2 Comments

i used to make fun of you.

really, i did.
and i would apologize, but now i’m getting payback.

you see, there were a lot of things i kind of scoffed at parents for doing, before i had kids of my own. i would see a parent do something and laugh (inside, of course), thinking “what a crazy person…” or “they can’t be serious…”. obviously, i knew way better how to do things than this seemingly clueless veteran parent did.

now it seems the tables have turned on me. i am now that crazy person. i am doing things that someone on the outside may think is crazy, or incredibly unreasonable. things i never thought i would do. before i had kids, that is.
and these days, i justify it. to make it through.
because i totally know exactly what i’m doing.
allow me to give you a few examples…

those people who listen to children’s music –
i always thought, why not introduce them to “real” music instead? they do not need to be listening to little kid voices sing cheesy kids songs all the time! they’ll be much cooler when they grow up, of course, and they’ll be able to appreciate different kinds of genres. i obviously did not foresee the bieber-concert-level applause and ecstatic JOY that my daughter experiences when she hears a certain corny rendition of “the itsy bitsy spider”.  the smile and chuckle i get from it is enough for me to allow for the corny. i can take it. but after 37 straight runs of #19 on her children’s sing-a-long songs cd, i’ve usually had enough. then we switch over to metallica.

those people who feed their children (GASP!) sugar-
i could not get over it when i would see parents give their children cookies, or ice cream, or a sip of their overly-sweetened starbucks frappuccino. i mean, these are little growing bodies that need healthy building blocks like flaxseed and spinach and whole grains, people! then i remembered one time my dad telling me the phrase “you need to learn to pick your battles.” this has never rang so true for me until i became a parent. there is balance needed, yes, but a little sugar ain’t never hurt no one.
another saying i am quite fond of is “when in rome…”.

those people who feed their children “kid food”-
another thing i thought was doing such an injustice to kids. if you don’t give them a wide variety of worldly and gourmet foods, how will they every really love and appreciate food?? by feeding them these wonderful, palate-exciting things, they will become foodies… a well-rounded & cultured person… maybe even a chef one day. THEN i got to the toddler phase. oh really? they don’t eat? they refuse to eat anything and everything? i look over at my now-2 year old and realize oh, yep. we’re there. “besides MAYBE a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and some i-see-that-chocolate-across-the-table for dessert, you can forget about getting anything in MY tummy.” it’s a cold staredown. defcon 3. you have to make a call. does my kid go hungry, basically every night of the week? or do i get something anything in her stomach? most dinners, i choose the second option.

parenting is about balance, y’all. i have learned a lot, and am still learning a ridiculous amount every day. i am not a pro. i have come to understand that everyone does it differently and that my way is not always the best way. i do not have all the answers. i have come around to the non-judging side of the playground (that is, unless a mom is rolling around in the sandbox screaming & having a hissy fit because her kid won’t obey – then i might have a hard time with the whole not judging thing), knowing that almost every mom & dad out there is doing the best they can with what they’ve got. and sometimes i see that i could take a lesson or two from those people that i used to make fun of.

Posted in mommy moment | 3 Comments

what bubbles do to my daughter

they evoke wonder & spawn massive adorableness:

they also magnify her innate joy & gift for dancing:

the tummy is not an effect of the bubbles, if you were wondering. she is just blessed.

Posted in harper, why i love youtube wednesday | 2 Comments

how to travel. with a toddler. and not get frustrated.

these days it’s pretty hard to travel anywhere without a lot of TO DO. there is so much more that goes into going places than when it was just me. or just me and the spouse.
the trips i have taken lately are just me and the wombat, since the baby daddy gotta work hard to keep us travelin’…
and i find there is quite a bit of frustration that accompanies this travel. although, honestly? most of this frustration is not at my toddler.

lately, this is my travel timeline:
1. get frustrated at the small town airport/all of the airlines that will only let me travel springfield to san antonio (my home base is branson – 1 hour south of springfield, and i have to go to san antonio – 1 hour south of austin, my destination = no sense.)
2. get frustrated that i have to pay money for my luggage, and of course with a toddler, you cannot fit it all into one bag.
3. get frustrated that i don’t have cash so i can’t check my bags curbside (reminder: i have a baby, and a stroller and 2 large  suitcases. and a massive diaper bag/purse. and a laptop. and my work ipad.)
4. get frustrated because NO ONE helps me out in the security line (reminder: i have a 30 pound kiddo, AND a stroller and 2 large  suitcases. AND a massive diaper bag/purse. AND a laptop.) i have to carry harper because she will wander otherwise and yet have to load all this stuff on the belt in the plastic bins and break down the stroller to put it through the thingy. whew!
i am always amazed at ALL of the people (both tsa and “civilian”) who just stand there, literally, watching and staring at me while i try to juggle everything! also, when we get off the plane and i am trying to find our stroller bag, open it, remove the stroller and pop it back out, all while trying to corral my toddler with one leg. it really is hilarious. i could be a skit character.
5. get frustrated because at DFW, they change my small-town flight to three different gates AND/OR terminals by the time i have boarded the plane.
6. get frustrated because my little girl will not nap on the plane. mama wants to nap too, yo.

sounds like i am a grumbling, super-negative momma, huh?
i was. once.

now i have decided i need to get a much better outlook on traveling, otherwise it’s a day of misery and irritability. and harper and i really do have fun. she’s a great traveler.
i mean, this is what i get to travel with:

so the following are my little rules that have helped me be a traveler with a better attitude and outlook:

#1: be grateful, while i am living in a small town, for the small town – after all, i did write a sort of ode to the small town. lord only knows how long we will live here and i want to notice all the little blessings of living here while i can. and i WILL be grateful for the tiny, adorable little airport we have here… even if it’s not directly taking me to my hometown until the middle of may.

#2: relax. my goal each trip will be to fit it all in one, very large suitcase. and if i can’t fit it all into one, it’s okay.

#3: have immense gratefulness to the curbside valet in san antonio, texas, who knew i had no cash and A LOT of stuff and still checked my bags for me at the curb. and helped bring them from the car too. again, with full knowledge he would not get paid. there are some good ones out there.

#4: have even more immense gratefulness when a TSA lady in the security line – the very first in all my travel-with-toddler history – who HELPED me out with all aforementioned stuff. i’ll remind you: a 30 pound mini-me, myself, a laptop, a large diaper bag, a stroller, my work ipad. i know i take the longest, so i pity the fool who gets behind me in line. each time it is so stressful. but this last time, when the lovely, nearly 6’5″ woman came to my rescue, i wanted to kiss her. i almost hugged her. and profusely thanked her. i think she thought i was a little weird.
#5: be grateful for the exercise in the dfw airport. seriously, that place is a large CITY and there is lots of walking up & down the terminals and going up & down the escalators to ride the tram that takes you around this airport city. another thing to be thankful for? getting to walk past at least 3 starbucks in the process. make it a venti, please. triple shot.
#6: snuggle up and enjoy elmo. the little girl loves her elmo. and since it is the only time she watches tv or a movie, she loves it. (and has become a little bit of an elmo stalker.) there is only one headphone jack, so i hold her tightly on my lap and watch elmo in silence with her. and enjoy the time i will have her in my lap on plane flights, for it won’t be much longer.
plus, she does eventually fall asleep a little on the plane.
Posted in family trips, mommy moment, vacation | 3 Comments

we’ve hired a new designer

lindsay todd design has been so busy recently that we have decided to hire a new staff member.
i’d like to take this opportunity to introduce her to you.
she goes by miss story, or harps, to those who know her best.
yes we do have the same last name. after all, it is a family business.

two of the main reasons i hired her are
her keen eye for color (she has a strong fashion sense, i noticed that right off),
and the enthusiasm she brings to her new job.

one thing i really liked about her in the hiring process is that she is quite coachable, always asking good questions.

the only negative i have seen so far is that when she is really busy with a project, sometimes i get a little attitude. but then again, what good is a designer without a little bit of attitude?

and i have noticed that she is prone to daydreaming…
although in reality her mind is probably just consumed by thoughts for a new floor plan
or schumacher’s amazing chiang mai fabric.

her customer service? OFF THE CHARTS.
she is  an intent listener, always repeating what they said back to them to make sure she got it right.
and, as is so important in this field, she has an amazing ability to multitask.

i’d like to say we are an equal opportunity employer, but in reality…
i hired her because she’s cute.

Posted in harper, lindsay todd design | 10 Comments