Monday, July 26, 2010


There are so many things to be grateful for in our lives. I have a loving husband and the best baby on the planet. I have a great career and love what I do. I have a house and a warm bed. My car runs just fine. I have great friends and family. We are all healthy.

But, sometimes I wonder what in the world is happening?

I wish and pray for so many things to be different right now.

This is RAW, fresh from my heart folks.....

With a bachelor's degree you would think that a job would come easily, but Scott has really had a rough time finding a great job related to his exercise science degree or anything related to anything for that matter. Let me tell you, it sure is difficult to have a new baby and a husband that is out of a job. Thankfully, he just got a part time job delivering pizza until something wonderful comes along. I won't tell you the tears that have been shed around here not knowing how we are going to make it. I have tried not to be "too good for" our Medicaid, Food Stamps, and WIC, but all I really want is for this awesome job to come along with benefits so we don't have to worry anymore. When I look at my son, all I want is for him to have everything he needs. We have been so blessed to have been provided for in unexpected ways and we continue to pray and plead with God every day for things to get better. It is truly exhausting and it saddens my heart to watch my husband go through this - to fill out application after application, to have interviews and get turned down, to feel like his college degree is absolutely worthless.

My contribution to saving money: wash hair every other day to save shampoo, use cloth diapers, use washcloths instead of disposable wipes, borrow baby clothes from friends, put up a clothes line to dry our laundry, quit buying organic for the time being, make gifts, no entertainment, no eating out, walk, don't leave the house unless it is necessary, get a $16 haircut instead of the usual $60, use coupons and don't go grocery shopping when hungry, make my own laundry soap for 1 cent a load, plan ahead for meals so we aren't tempted to eat out, use energy efficient light bulbs, set the a/c on 79 or 80, and the list goes on. I am up for suggestions.

Today I got really mad at the government and our ridiculous health care system. On one hand, I am thankful to have Medicaid. It was helpful during my pregnancy for a few lab tests and after the birth on my unexpected trip to the hospital for stitches. But, I can honestly say that in my opinion, the government does not truly have my best interests in mind. My son is five and a half weeks old and has not had a newborn visit with pediatrician. Because we have Medicaid, doctors will not see us because we have made some decisions about what kind of care our son will have or not have and Medicaid will not cover visits due to those decisions. Now, we have found out that there could be a chance that Eli could have a hernia in his tummy. So, that, coupled with the fact that we still have yet to have his heart checked out due to the two vessel cord issue, we are in a bind. We cannot see a doctor that takes our Medicaid because the state requires vacs for Medicaid patients. Lame. And, we cannot pay out of pocket for a visit a doctor that accepts Medicaid because that is illegal. What is a mommy to do? I am just trying to do the best that I can and be a good mommy to my baby. So, today, after slamming the phone down (after I hung up) on what was probably the 15th call to a doctor and crying my eyes out because I just want to get my son checked, I called a pediatrician that lives an hour and a half away. Tomorrow we will go.

This probably left you feeling unloaded on. Sorry. It is just the way I feel and the way things are in our lives right now. Tough. But, we'll make it. We just have to make it somehow.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Growing Eli

His shirt reads "I Call the Shots Around Here".

Um, yes, that pretty much sums it up.

We took our first stroller ride in the 90+ degree weather at 8:00 last night. As you can see, he thoroughly enjoyed it.

His facial expressions are very amusing. You would think he was about to burst into tears, but no, just showing me a frowny face.

And, for his usual comfy sleeping spot. Needless to say, I don't get a lot done when he won't sleep in the bed for a nap. But, he will only be my baby for a very short time, so I have been taking advantage of all the snuggle time I can get.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

how to celebrate a one month birthday

Today Eli turned one month old. My baby is growing up too fast already. He isn't a newborn anymore. He is starting to lose hair on his head and the peach fuzz on his face is gone. He has the cutest grin when we talk to him and he is starting to look at things very intently. Earlier today he was staring at the picture frame on the wall of Scott's 2006 basketball championship collage. Scott took him over and explained the pictures and told him he could play ball one day. Ah, does he really have to grow up?

So, here is how you celebrate a one month birthday...
  • Breakfast at IHOM (International House of Milk)
  • A trip to Spa de Reasoner for a bath, shampoo, and massage
  • A four hour nap
  • Lunch at Lil' Peeps Bistro
  • Hang out with Dad and Grandpa
  • Lounge on Daddy's lap
  • Nap #2 with Mommy
  • Snack from Cafe au la Momma
  • Visit with Daddy
  • Catnap
  • Dinner at Mom's Milk Grill
  • Sleep in the sling with Mom
  • Off to bed
What a day for a growing boy!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

baby update

What a crazy four weeks it has been! Four weeks ago tonight, I went into labor. Hard to believe time has flown by so fast.

A lot has gone on.

We made a last minute trip to Kansas for a few reasons. Scott had an interview for an assistant college coaching position. Unfortunately, he was not selected. We are continuing to pray for the right thing to come along. That has been the hardest and most stressful part of the past few weeks is trying to find a job. There have been many tears, but we are trusting the right thing is out there waiting just for him.

While we were in Kansas, we went to my cousin Emily's wedding. It was Eli's first big outing and he did great. We had gone to Wal-Mart the day before on a short outing as a family too, but that was short and just a practice run to see how he did out in the real world.

So far life has been incredible with a baby. He is so precious and a joy in our lives. We had a visit with the midwives yesterday and Eli weighs 9 lbs. and 8 oz. and is 23 inches long. He isn't starving by any means.

I have attached a few pictures from the past several weeks.

This was Wednesday morning at about 12:30am. My water had just broken, but not much was happening yet. The midwives were on their way because there was meconium in the water. I was happy at this point.

Skip 24 hours ahead to Thursday morning at 12am and I am in the living room in the birth tub. I wasn't very happy at this point....just ready to be done. Scott was in the tub with me. My friend (and chiropractor) Rachel was there to help and one of the midwives was helping as well. It took several hands to help me deal with the back labor. Not a fun thing to go through. During a contraction, they put counter pressure on my low back and I could pretty much not feel any pain. I guess I will know for next time to expect that back pain because of my fusion and have more help throughout the whole process. Not even fun to think about doing that all over again.

This was our first herbal the morning after he was born. Momma loved it, Eli did okay.

He used to nap on the Boppy, but he is already starting to grow out of it! He naps on the sofa now.

I love how alert he has been from birth. He looks all around and listens when we talk to him. It is so amazing and adorable.

Dad's on diaper duty. It really wasn't that stinky, he just thought it was going to be. He is really good about changing diapers.

Sunbathing to help with the jaundice. He loves to be outside in the sun. But, we have to go out in the evening when the temperature has dropped a few degrees. The Texas heat can get too hot for all of us and we don't want sunburns that is for sure!

I love to just stare at him all day long.

The "milk drunk" look.

One of the many faces he makes.

But, I said, "turn that frown upside down" he did.

Eli's first sponge bath after he was born. It was a group effort.

It rained a lot the first week he was born. We took him outside to see it one day. I think the look on his face explained what he thought about that.

Yep, I am a babywearing mommy! This is one of my three slings. I love it, he loves is all good.

I love this picture of my two boys.

My niece and nephew were loving on Eli when we were in Kansas.

Gotta love that grin!

Our little family at Emily's wedding. He slept on my chest during the ceremony. I fed and changed him and then he slept in the sling for 2 1/2 hours at the reception. Such a good baby.

My sister and her cute little family.

Momma and her baby girl dancing at the reception.

It was not an easy task, but I got them to take a picture with me.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

a mother just knows

I could never get away with anything in high school. My mother knew exactly where I had been and what I had been up to. Needless, to say, I spent most of my high school days grounded. At the time, I remember being so mad. She was a member of this secret moms club that had an eye out for each others kids. Ugh. But, now that I am a mother myself, I hope I can get into that secret moms club one day. Sorry, Mom (and Dad), for all I put you through.

But, I say all that because now that I am a mother, I know what it is like to have to trust your gut and God about things. I wish that moms could give each other a break. All we really want to do is take care of our kids the best way we know how. Any good mother is going to do whatever she can to give her child the best. Every mother has her own idea of what is "best" and that is okay. It makes us diverse and special individuals.

So, here is what I was faced with after Eli was born. As if facing possible miscarriage in the beginning and then getting PUPPPs wasn't enough, Eli was born with a two vessel cord. A normal cord has 3 vessels, two arteries and a vein. His had one artery and one vein. This occurs in about 1 in 100 pregnancies. We didn't know this prior to birth since our last sonogram was done at 12 weeks. Had we known, I would have most likely been labeled a "high risk" pregnancy. This is because babies with two vessel cords can have issues such as low birth weight and trouble gaining weight, renal issues, and heart conditions. As a high risk patient, I would have seen a specialist regurlarly, had frequent sonograms, and most likely would have had to have had him in the hospital. Thankfully his birth weight was not an issue, but the midwives suggested we see a pediatrician to check him out. In the day(s) following his birth, we knew that the renal problems were not going to be an issue. He was having frequent diaper changes. But, we were considering getting his heart checked even though he was looking and acting perfect. The day and day after he was born we started looking into doctors. Because we are on Medicaid, it was becoming a daunting task. I wanted to go to someone who was a referral, but every place I called didn't accept the kind of Medicaid we had. Finally, after about four days and ten phone calls, I decided to give up. One morning when he was just about a week old, I woke up and decided I would give it one more try. I called Medicaid directly and just got the name of the doctors in our area that would take our Medicaid. There just so happened to be a doctors office right down the block from us and they could see us later that morning. I wasn't completely sure about it, but, after all, we were just going in to get his heart listened to and get on outta there. Scott came with us to the appointment. When we walked in the door, I was immediately wanting to leave. The place was dirty and stark and their were screaming kids running around. I took up our paperwork and was signing in when this conversation occurred:

Me: "Hi, I am Hannah and I am here for my son's check-up.

Front Dest Lady: "Ok, I just need your insurance and shot record."

Me: "I have the insurance card, but no shot record."

FDL: "Will you be getting his shots today?"

Me: "No, we are not vaccinating."

FDL: "Oh, really? I am sorry, but our office does not accept patients that do not vaccinate."

Me: "Okay, good-bye."

That was the confirmation we needed. Scott and I left and agreed that if something was truly wrong with our baby that God would have provided a doctor for us by now. Eli is perfect. He has shown no outward physical signs of any defects or heart related problems, such as trouble breathing or turning gray. At his first visit with the midwives on day four after his birth he had lost 12 ounces. Four days after that he had gained 10 of those ounces back. I think he is just fine...eating like a champ. He is very active and alert and only fusses when he is hungry, but don't we all?

We are all doing well. I am recovering "down there" a lot more quickly than I expected thanks to Earth Mama Angel Baby Bottom Balm! He is a good eater, sleeper, and pooper. Poor little guy gets the hiccups frequently. He always had them inside and I figured it would continue. Mom learned some acupressure points and is going to be working on him so he can hopefully overcome that little issue.

Being a mom is kind of exhausting, but so wonderful all at the same time. I love to look at him and tell him how much I love him. He is such a good baby and I am so happy he is finally here.