Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Mini Me

It sure has been fun having a little mini me in the house. Love this girl so much!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

It's 4:27 in the morning. Sophie has been awake since 2:45 and Ruby just woke up crying so Albert is in laying with her. I am so exhausted I can hardly keep my eyes open. But despite all that, I can't help but be incredibly grateful for these babies that are mine forever, and love these quiet, still moments I have to snuggle up to this beautiful girl who really thinks I am the bee's knees. I love her. Like crazy.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Disneyland Vacation

The week in between Christmas and New Years we went with my family to California to go to Disneyland for three days. It was a trip that had been planned since last February and even though it had been planned for so long, my sisters and I really had no idea how we were going to pay for the whole trip. We're each in different seasons of life but one thing we all have in common is right now we're all...well, poor. It is what it is.

Well to our surprise, our main gift from our parents this year was they had planned to pay for the whole trip. Tickets, hotel, gas, food, pretty much everything. Needless to say many of us cried when we read the poem they wrote letting us know, including ahemAlbertahem.

The week we went was insanely busy, it was even in the papers here in AZ how busy it was. They even had to turn people away who came to buy new tickets. We were like sardines crammed into Disneyland but it was still a blast. Exhausting, but a blast. It was Ruby's second time but now she was old enough to actually understand and enjoy rides and stuff!




She surprisingly loved being in this carrier. We got it for Sophie but Ruby wanted to try and ended up loving it!

We only saw a few characters...but this was her face for every one


We were so exhausted at the end of each day!



Love.this.picture.




Having the girls there with us definitely made it more magical. The times I was having the most fun were when we were in Fantasyland, Toon Town, or A Bugs Life Land doing things that Ruby could do and watching her have so much fun. Kids really do make things more fun :)

It was such a fun trip, thanks Mom and Dad!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Christmas

Christmas this year was really fun. I really liked going to church on Christmas, it reminded me what it is all about. Our ward choir put on a beautiful musical program...that I enjoyed from the Mother's Lounge. The joys of a newborn :)

Before the actual day of Christmas though....

We went to McCormick train park in Scottsdale a few days before to let Ruby ride the train. She loves cars and trains right now so we thought she'd love it! The line was over two hours long though, so we went and rode the smaller volunteer train. She was stone faced the whole time but I think she really liked it.



On Christmas Eve we had our traditional party with my mom's side of the family. This year felt different though because it is the first Christmas without Papa. He's always been such a big part of our Christmas Eve traditions and loved to watch all his grandkids open presents. So this year, before going over Grammy's house for dinner and presents, we went and visited Papa. It was really special and I'm sure will become a tradition.

Ruby loved participating in the Secret Santa gift exchange between all the cousins. Technically they're all my first cousins, but ever since we older girls got married we got kicked out of the cousin exchange and now do the White Elephant exchange with the adults. So now our kids take our places!

Christmas Day was great. Since we had church at 2 we did all our present opening with the girls before we had to get ready for church. Christmas this year was simple, and small, but perfect.



Ruby loved opening her presents, even the clothes which I thought she would find boring. It's a good thing too because that's mostly what she got!



Bowling with daddy down the hallway



Then Sophie woke up and we opened presents with her.

Can you tell what our favorite gift was this year?




After church we went over to my parents house, where we got a big surprise and the girls opened their gifts from grandma and grandpa.

In hindsight, I don't know why I fretted so much about Christmas. I was so worried about what to get the girls and the fact that we couldn't get them much this year, or much for each other, but it ended up being a perfect day spent with family, laughs, tears, and a whole lot of love.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I opened up my pictures this morning and discovered these:






I have no idea what camera they were taken with or why they're so fuzzy, but I'm kinda in love with them...these two melt my heart

Updated: they were taken with the webcam and right after I posted those pictures I discovered this gem: (when i uploaded it the sound got way off, but still cute nonetheless)

video

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Yuletide Activities

The past several years haven't really felt Holidayish to me.I'm not sure what it is, maybe just getting older, or busier, but it feels like probably as far back as high school the holidays are suddenly over and I never really feel like I got into them. Now that Ruby is getting older it's getting easier because she gets excited for things. So besides watching "choo choo" (The Polar Express) oh, like 30 times in the last week alone, here are some things we've been doing.

Helping decorate my parent's tree. Even though Amber and I are married and living out of the house, they still do it on a night we can all be there to help. I love this tree

Then going to get our own tree! All bundled up in their cute new hats and Sophie loving it as you can see


 Ruby loved helping to put on all the ornaments





Ruby still loves when I plug it in and it gets all lit up. I love that this tree is full of ornaments from growing up, ornaments Albert and I have gotten together, and now the new tradition we're starting of getting a new box of ornaments every year. My family did that every year growing up, we'd go pick out a box every year and as we get married and move out we each get one from each year to put on our own trees. So all our trees still have a little bit of home :) Albert and I started that this year! Christmas will be small this year, but that's ok. We have our girls, each other, and plenty of other blessings. Oh, and leaving for a week long California/Disneyland trip the day after Christmas helps!

Friday, December 16, 2011

A Name and a Blessing

On Sunday, December 4th, we had the opportunity to bless our sweet baby girl in church. Albert's parents and two of his brothers came in from California for it and it was so great to catch up with them, seeing as we only get to see them a couple times a year. Last time we saw them they didn't even know I was pregnant! Albert gave Sophie a beautiful blessing and blessed her with some really special things that I'll always remember. I jotted them down also so I could put it in her baby book and hopefully she'll cherish that when she gets older.

After the blessing we had a luncheon/dinner at my parents with our family and some friends. Thanks to those who were able to make it on this special day!


Sophie's dress is so special to me. Ruby's was too, because she was blessed in my blessing dress, but Sophie's is from my Grammy and Papa. My sweet Papa Millican passed away on July 20th, when I was 28 weeks pregnant. The next day I went with my mom and Grammy to get new clothes for him to be buried in, and this dress was hanging there. I commented on how pretty it was, and my Grammy asked if her and Papa could please get it for Sophie. We knew Papa was with Sophie now, preparing her to come to earth. Grammy even put that in his obituary after she listed all the other grandkids, which meant a lot to me. So Sophie will know that her great Grammy and Papa got her blessing dress for her. Grammy still says everything is from her and Papa, which I think is so sweet. She looked so beautiful in it.

Sophie and Grammy


Monday, December 5, 2011

Ok...I promised details to come, not details to come soon. But seeing as Miss Sophie Bug is 7 (seven!) weeks old already, I better get to blogging. I have been wanting to tell her birth story, but again, seeing as she's seven (how did that happen?!) weeks old already and I have so much more to document, I'll make it brief.

-October 12, my due date, came and went. Much to my dismay.
-I had been at a 3 and 75% for 3 weeks but nothing was happening yet, so on Ocotober 15 I went grocery shopping with my mom and goofy golfing with my extended family that night. I was hoping the walking would put me into labor, but went to bed feeling nothing.
-I woke up at around 4:30 on the 16th, Sunday morning, to use the bathroom and couldn't fall back to sleep. I just laid there thinking and had a feeling I wouldn't be going to church that day and thought how badly I just wanted to hold my baby
-A little before 6 I started to say a prayer. I had a long talk with Heavenly Father about how I just couldn't do this anymore, emotionally, physically, I was just done. I prayed and said that if there was some great reason for her to not be here yet then I would wait, but if it was ok could he please let her come that day (I honestly said that day. I was desperate)
-I finished praying...and five minutes later had my first contraction
-From the very beginning they were consistent, and after a while I got up to see if changing positions would make them go away-really hoping this wasn't false labor!
-ate some cereal, started to shake and get really nauseous and they were coming every 5 minutes apart
-woke Albert up and told him I thought I was in labor and to please come out and be with me
-we watched a movie for a while and I thought I  better go shower and get ready if this was really it. This was just before 8 and I remember thinking "it's already been two hours, this is going fast! I can do this!:
-since we had planned and prepared to go natural I wanted to labor at home as long as possible
-I got in the shower and being upright made them start coming really close together. I immediately started to get sick in the shower and had to lean against the wall to get through the contractions. I told Albert it was going fast and had him call my parents to come get Ruby
-got out of the shower and made it to the bed, my parents got there and entertained Ruby
-I stayed sitting on the edge of the bed in my  towel for 45 minutes or so because every time I'd stand up it would get much more intense. Albert sat behind me and held me and we swayed through the contractions. Pushing the side of my face up to his seemed to help and just having him close to me got me through the contractions
-I finally put some clothes on and moved to the couch. Ruby was getting scared seeing I was in pain and started to cry so my dad took her and went to his house and my mom stayed there to be with me and Albert
-I don't know how long  I sat on the couch breathing through the contractions but I would guess 20 minutes or so.
-suddenly everything changed and I knew I was transitioning because I was getting no relief between contractions and the pressure was so intense. I really didn't want to go to the hospital too early though so I kept saying no to Albert and my mom telling me we should go (in hindsight, had we left earlier, she could have been here sooner. I was like holding her in)
-finally when the pressure was so intense I felt like I could push, I realized we needed to go, and fast!
-we quickly got out to the car and my mom followed us to the hospital. It's a 25 minute drive and Albert was going like 70 down Lindsay to get there!
-about halfway there things changed again and I realized that she was coming and coming now so I really had to try to relax my body and ignore the urge to push
-got to the hospital, pulled up to the ER and he runs in to get a wheelchair and gets me inside, leaving the car running but my mom parked it for us thankfully
-there were like 4 people waiting in line ahead of us and Albert is waiting all politely, not saying anything to anyone, so I say "Albert tell them she's coming now!" Thankfully a nurse heard me and says, "oh is she having a baby?" My response, "NOW!"
-A nurse wheels me upstairs, completely bypassing triage, and I realize we hadn't called our midwife back! Albert starts to call her but we round the corner and there she is waiting for us. Thank goodness!
-get into a room, get up onto the bed, Diane checks and says, "you're complete! Next contraction go ahead and push!" (music to my ears!)
-a contraction hits me, I push, my water breaks
-with each contraction I pushed with everything I had, and even some in between contractions. Basically the pressure was so intense I couldn't not push, except for when her head was halfway out I suddenly lost the urge and they told me to and I said I can't!
-I definitely felt the ring of fire people talk about. It's such an intense feeling it was almost like having an out of body experience, like I could feel it but I was also witnessing it happening at the same time
-I pushed for ten minutes, and when the pressure/pain got so intense I didn't know if I could take anymore, I pushed with every bit of energy I had and there she was!

The relief I felt in that moment was indescribable. Physical relief obviously, but also an extreme sense of emotional relief. She was here, I did it, and I didn't have to wait anymore! They immediately placed her on my chest and the first thing I said was, "I did it!" This was such a huge thing for me because I was so scared to go natural. I wanted it so bad, and had prepared so much for it, but was so afraid I would back out at the last minute. But here she was, I had done it! I remember looking at my mom at the foot of the bed, and looking up at Albert with tears in his eyes, and down at Sophie, and being so, so, so proud of us. We had created this perfect little baby, out of the pure love in our hearts, and we had just worked together to bring her here. He was with me every step of the way. Going through that with him made me love him so much more, and seeing him look at her still makes my heart swell.


What I loved about this whole natural process was all the bonding we got to do. I didn't get that with Ruby, they whisked her right off to the warmer and I didn't get to hold her until she was about 20 minutes old. Sophie was placed right on my chest, the nurses quickly finished up and left us alone, and I nursed her right away. It was pure bliss.

After I nursed her and they did her measurements, my parents and sisters came in and brought Ruby in. Except Ruby didn't walk in, this big girl who looked like Ruby walked in instead. Where did my baby go?! Introducing her to her new baby sister was such a special moment, and we were now a family of four!

So that wasn't as brief as I intended, but there is just so much to share. This was such an intimate experience for me, I can't imagine having babies any other way now. Feeling what my body was made for, what Heavenly Father created it for, to bring children to this earth, was such an incredible experience. As intense as it may have been, it was worth every ounce of pain.

Since having Sophie our lives have changed tremendously, but all for the better. Ruby just adores her, and Sophie is definitely her baby.

And Albert and I kinda like her too...