Friday, March 25, 2011

Too Cute to Pass Up

So not everything is practical, but these are just too cute to pass up for Carson!

Look forward to Jess Creates getting a few cute images of Carson sporting these new threads!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Carson's Favorite Items

Ok - so tomorrow in newborn language can mean a week or even a month, but I am now getting around to that post :)

Top items I would recommend for a newborn are:

  • Ergo carrier with infant insert. We also have the Bjorn, but I think the Ergo carrier is a better fit for petite women because it disburses the weight making it easier on my back. My husband uses the Bjorn. Carson falls asleep within minutes of putting him in this thing and since he likes to be held all the time I use this to get things done around the house so you still have your hands free.\

  • Aden + Anais burp cloths. Love that these can double as a bib and a burp cloth that is contoured to your shoulder. They are also super soft and wash nicely.

  • Sleep Sacks - these are great in the middle of the night making changing diapers a lot easier without having to undo a bunch of snaps. Our favorite one is one that zips all the way down, but all of them make it easier to change diapers.

  • Halo swaddle sleep sacks - If your baby is anything like mine he will love being swaddled. We love the swaddles from Halo. They give you a piece of mind against sids and keep baby cozy.

  • Snap-and-go stroller - it's light weight and convenient for running errands so you don't have to take him in and out of his carrier. I also highly recommend our car seat - the Graco Snug and ride up to 22 lbs. It has a great safety rating and is light weight. It is also contoured to fit on top of a shopping cart - some aren't and you have to put the carrier in the shopping cart leaving less room for your groceries. We looked at the snug ride 35 lbs thinking we would get more use out of it, but knew with the weight of the carrier there was no way I would be able to carry a 35 lb baby in that thing. We really liked the Britax as well and it had the best safety rating, but it was a few pounds heavier and wouldn't sit on top of the grocery cart and they said the Graco had just as good safety ratings so we went for functionality.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Few of Our Favorite Things

I am putting together a list of my favorite things that may be helpful for my mommy " to-be" Tomorrow I will post my list of favorite baby things!

Must have Mommy items:
  • 3-4 pajama sets (you will be changing every day to every other day with night swets and boob leaks!) - if you plan on breast feeding than purchase nursing pj's. These will be quite handy in the middle of the night! I bought two pairs from Gap and splurged (Daddy splurged) on a pair from Pea In The Pod. They are cozy, but still nice enough to wear when the parade of visitors come through to meet the new baby.
  • Hanes boy shorts from Target. By bigger sizes because your body will still be recovering. These are really comfy to sleep in and wear around all day. You don't want to ruin your nice undies and these fit well with a pad. I had a c-section so they were comfy and sat low enough not to bother my stitches.
  • If you plan on breast feeding - Lansinoh HPA Lanolin, AKA liquid gold. This is a lifesaver. Just be cautious because it does stain your clothes so be sure to use a breast pad after you put it on unless you don't care.
  • A good breast pump with let-down feature. This will help save time when pumping. I actually purchased mine off of Craigslist and bought new tubing, breast shields, valves and membranes (all the parts that touch the milk). It saved us $180. I bought the medela pump in style advance. I am happy with it - what I would really like is if I didn't have to hold the pump the whole 10 minutes of pumping. I have heard there are hands-free ones, but am not sure how they work and how expensive they are. I am sure it is a cheaper option to do one that isn't hands-free. I have also heard of some type of attachment for the breast shields that allows you to be hands-free, but I haven't tried it. I figured it's only 10 minutes so I can suck it up!! I usually pump into bottles and then dump in the freezer bags to store it. You can pump directly in the baggie, but for me two bottles usually only fill one freezer bag it saves me a bag. Also, you can buy the Lansinoh freezer bags as well. They are cheaper than medela and they work just as well.
  • My Breast friend - I prefer this so much more than a boppy. I don't use it all the time, but I probably will once he gets heavier. It helps with your back support and works really well.
  • If you can splurge I love love love my rocking recliner in my room. It is so perfect for night time feeding. It reclines and has a pull out foot rest. When it isn't reclined it rocks. It allows me to lay back and feed him at night. At least once a night, we both end up snuggling - him on my chest and fall back to sleep together. It is so great! We also have a glider in his room, which I use just as much, but it is nice to have an option in our room as well.
  • Johnson & Johnson disposable breast pads. This brand works really well for me. I can usually get away with using two pads for the whole day. They are really absorbant and at the end of the day you can just toss them. They sell re-usuable ones, but trust me you will have enough laundry to keep up with!
  • Nursing bras and camis. I really like the ones I purchased at Target - Gilligan & O'Malley and Liz Lange. The tank tops are great to wear to bed or under swetshirts etc. when you are going out and may need to nurse. They aren't the prettiest things by far, but are too convenient to worry about pretty!!!
  • Button down shirts. I am not a big fan of most nursing tops out there - go figure they aren't from JCrew. I purchased a few Ralph Lauren oxford button downs and some from JCrew that provide easy access for breast feeding and still maintain style! Just make sure they are cotton and no silk as you will probably leak on them at some point!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Carson's Room

We could not wait to share Carson's room with him and now we want to share it with all of you! We worked so hard over the past few months bringing it to fruition. I designed and Daddy implemented. I wanted to incorporate dinosaurs and pulled the look together from Michael Miller's dino dudes fabric which was used to cover canvas for wall pictures.

Carson loves it and we hope you do too!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Labor & Delivery

In the delivery room - about to head to the OR

Pulling out Carson!

Talk about good timing with the camera daddy - being pulled out of mommy!

First family photo

I was a nervous wreck going Wednesday night and Tuesday morning. I really didn't want to be induced. I thought it would be a much longer process than going naturally. Jason was nervous too, but my scheduler was super excited to have a planned date and everything was under control!

We did our best to get some rest knowing the 10th was going to be a big big day! Although it is torture, we had to check-in to the hospital at 5:45 am meaning I had to be up by 4:15 to be on time - UGH! So much for a final night of sleep. I was told not to eat after midnight and it would be until after the delivery to have any real food. I would be on ice chips and hard candy (lollipops, popsicles and lifesavers during labor).

So, to add to the craziness it decided to snow that night! It wasn't even predicted. They cancelled school in our county, but it really wasn't that bad out. The side roads were a little icy, but the main raods were fine.

We checked-in and they said every delivery room was packed. Mine was room 9 and it was wide ready me as I was high risk. I got in to the room and had to undress into a hospital gown. I laid in bed for about an hour - felt like forever, waiting on the nurse to come and start all my paper work and get this process started!

At about 7:45 AM they broke my water. It was uncomfortable but not unbearable. Checking my cervix hurt the worst, but breaking my water was like nothing. Although, it did feel really weird leaking warm water all over.

They started the Pitocin drip at around 8 AM. It took about 30 minutes to start feeling contractions. They were really low on me. At first, they weren't that bad, but they increased quickly. They felt like really bad period cramps, but instead of staying they would come and go. Start slow, ramp up, peak and then come back down. They were in my back and lower abs.
I did this for about 3 hours before I said give me the epi! At first I was nervous about the epidurl. The fear of the unknown as well as getting it too early. It turns out during an induction - you really cant get it too early as the doctor controls the labor. The Dr. can up the pitocin or lower it to speed/slow labor along.

The epidurl did not hurt one single bit. The nerves were for nothing!!!! Jason said the needle wasn't all that big. It felt like a hard pinch and was over quickly. There was just a cool sensation as they work the medicine in, but it was the best decision ever!

It took about 30 minutes or so for it to kick in, but I was feeling no pain after that!

My contractions were all over the place. They measure them on a chart and average contractions measure 60-70. Mine were measuring 125 and were off the charts! It was so early for this!!!! I wasn't feeling it well at least not any more.
The baby's heart rate wasn't handling the contractions well. He wasn't recovering fast enough from the strong contractions, so they brought of up the c word. Ugh - there goes my blood pressure again.
They pulled me off ice chips and all the other good stuff I could have in case they had to do surgery. The doctors and nurses kept coming in about every 20 minutes and checking my monitors and discussing. They were trying to let me labor for as long as possible, but as soon as they saw a risk they were pulling me out for surgery.

They upped and l0wered the pitocin a few times to see how baby would react. He didn't show much progress. Jason and I could tell by the conversation/reaction from the doctors that we were headed to c-section.

They gave me one final hurdle and said they would check my labor progress. I was about 2 cm last time they checked me. Now, I was 3 cm - Not good enough for this babies heart rate!!! Dr. said we are going in for a c-section!

I got really nervous - blood pressure through the roof! I asked the doctor what the process would be and she starts running through all the risks. OMG - just tell me what start to finish is all about, not that a kidney may rupture or puncture my bladder. I was going into surgery and it would be in about 30 minutes!

All of a sudden there was alot of commotion. Dr.'s every where and Jason getting dressed in scrubs. They had to un-plug all my machines and do some more paper work. And then, we were off being wheeled into the OR.

Jason had to wait outside the OR for about 10 minutes as they prepped me for surgery. They had to move me to the OR table and wash me down. One of the first things they did was put a blue tarp up so I could not see then they wash me-up. I was completely nakie!

Jason entered the room and the Dr. started going to work. The process from start to the time Carson was born was about 5 minutes. They cut me open, pull out all my organs and put them on the table, then pull baby out. Jason said the midwife was literally up on the OR table tugging him out. They said I would feel pressure and I may have felt a little, but not much at all. Looks like my placenta was old and that was why he stopped getting proper nutrients to keep him growing. This necessarily doesn't mean we will have the same issue with future pregnancies.

The bad thing about a c-section is that I don't get to hold baby. He is whisked away to a warming table next to me. I got to see him from a far. They did his Apgar test (a test to score on how well he is responding to life outside the womb - crying, color, etc.) He socred 8 and 9 out of 10 on his first two tests. A sigh of relief - looks like a healthy baby.

Jason got to hold him and bring him close to me so I could see. He was so handsome. Next, Jason and the baby went to the recovery room and waited on me. I had to be sewn back together. This took about 15-20 minutes. Then I was wheeled to recovery where I got to hold my baby!!!! I had to wait here for a little over an hour. They were measuring my heart rate and monitoring my surgery recovery. I also had to be able to move my legs before I could leave this room.

After about an hour we were taken to our hospital room - #333. My parents were there and got to meet Carson. I still was not aloud to eat until the next day - UGH!

All and all I was really against induction and c-section. However, now that it is all said and done it was a great experience and I don't think I would have changed it if I could. I had minimal pain and even the recovery has been speedy (so far). I took pain meds for the first 3 days and that was it. On a scale of 1 (best) -10 (worst) my recovery pain has only been 2-3. The biggest annoyance is that my stitches burn sometimes. They are better when I am sitting down vs standing. The dr. said this is normal.

Unfortuantely, my blood pressure still has not come down so I am having to take blood pressure meds. Hopefully this is short term and will return to normal soon. Alot of people have this happen to them during pregnancy.

The best part of this is that we are all home and have a healthy beautiful baby!

Carson Patrick Papaj

Last baby bump picture and introducing Carson Patrick!


We welcomed Carson Patrick Papaj to the world at 4:15 PM EST on Thursday, February 10, 2011. He weighed in at 5 lbs 10 oz - exactly what the sonographer predicted... amazing how good they are!

It really does make time stand still - I had to giggle when I glanced back at my desk calendar today and it was still on Feb. 9, the day time stood still for us.
On Feb. 9, we went in for our Dr. appt and were aware that we could possibly get Dr.'s orders to be induced. We had a sonogram scheduled and they were going to measure Carson to see if he had any growth since his last sonogram 12 days earlier.

Baby Carson had no growth over the past weeks, so it was on to plan B. At 38 weeks, the Dr. ordered us to be induced. Much to my suprise it wasn't going to be scheduled on my time... We are going to have a baby and it was going to be tomorrow!

Many tears followed. While I was excited, I was really really nervous. We thought we had at least two more weeks and I wasn't keen on the idea of being induced, but as long as we got a healthy baby it was all that mattered.

Following the appointment I called my boss and said I was on maternity leave. We headed home and scurried around the house - cleaning, finishing his room and yes a massive bottle boil that we had been putting off!

I went and got a mani/pedi to relax and prepare myself for the big day. We were told to go out to a nice dinner just the two of us, but my nerves were too frazzeled to spend money on a nice dinner because I couldn't eat. We enjoyed our final couple dinner at Red Robin!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Natalie's About To Pop

My best friends, Ashley, Jess and Val through Baby P the shower of the century on Jan. 9, 2011! It was so nice - a perfect event for the event planner herself. The theme was Natalie's About to Pop. To follow suit, we popped champagne, played a pop-star game and pop-quiz, listened to pop-music, sipped soda pop, cake-pops were our centerpieces and guests took home lollipops for favors.

We received lots of wonderful gifts and Daddy was busy assembling them for about a week after. We are so blessed to have wonderful family and friends to celebrate Baby P's pending arrival.


I am sorry for being so quiet. The truth is I have a pretty boring pregnancy, which isn't a bad thing.

We are counting in days now - down to 17 & counting to the official due date!

They are estimating him to be 5 lbs 10 oz as of our last sonogram on Jan. 28. He is a small little peanut. His belly is only measuring in the 4th percentile. They think he is just a skinny baby and aren't alarmed. The most important thing is that his head size is right where it is supposed to be. We are having another sonogram on Feb. 9th to check his growth progress. It is possible they will decide to induce if he isn't making growth progress. Stay tuned - we may have a V-Day baby and maybe he will share a b-day with his future wifey, Josie, Feb. 13.

At my last appointment on Feb. 4, I was measuring almost 2 cm and was 50% effaced, so we are moving right along. I still feel great. My hands are swollen and are numb a lot of the time. It's annoying more than anything. I haven't been able to wear my wedding rings since December. I look forward to wearing them again!

You know Ralphie's little brother from the Christmas story who falls in the snow all bundled up and can't get up. That is how I feel most of the time I try to get out of bed or off the couch. I know I am still pretty tiny, but I do feel like a rolly-poly!