Monday, July 27, 2015

Just a few . . .

Allison helped me take some newborn photos when Benjamin was a week old.  I haven't gotten to all of them yet, but here are a couple of my favorites:

My friend made Benji the cutest little outfit for his pictures.  She is way talented, and I love this little hat!

After we were all done, I handed the camera to Allison, gave her a few quick instructions, and she got this picture of me.  Not half bad.  :)

Friday, July 24, 2015

Good news!

So, a week ago, this happened:

Born after an induction and just 2.5 hours of labor, Benjamin has stolen our hearts.  It really is amazing to me that I can fall in love with another baby just the way I did with my first.  Love is always multiplied, never divided.

Little Benji is super loved.  I worry a bit that he might grow up thinking the world revolves around him, because there are so many siblings ready and eager to cater to his every whim.

He's perfect -- 7 lbs 12 ounces at birth, took to nursing like a champ, and is up every two or three hours at night just like every other Bartholomew baby.  But he also came with the sweetest, calmest personality.  Ten babies and not a fussy one among them.  I think I'm super blessed.

We're calling him our little "Squish," even though my husband objects to the name.  I figure he's only going to be this little and squishy for a month, so the nickname won't stick anyway.

Cami keeps saying, "Oh, he's so cute!  Can I pet him?"  Then she strokes his hair.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

One a Day, Week Twenty-Seven

They put on each other's shoes for a walk to the mailbox.

Joey's fishing every day he can

39 weeks -- probably my last pregnancy photo!

Nine Birth Stories

With my baby due to be born very soon, I spent some time on a sleepless night remembering some of my other births.  With nine children, there have been a lot of similarities -- I have very quick labors, don't progress much until my water is broken for me (it's never broken on its own), don't push for long, often tear, and usually recover very quickly.  But there have also been a few small differences -- I've had five scheduled inductions, seven epidurals, one with no pain medication by choice, and two longer-for-me labors (Joey and Katie, though at 8 and 6 hours, neither was particularly long by most standards).

Just for fun, I thought I'd try to gather all my birth stories into one post.  First the stats:


4 days late, 4 hours of active labor, born at 11:53, 7 lbs 10 oz, 20"

6 days early, 8 hours of labor, born at 4:19 a.m., 7 lbs 4 oz, 19"

2.5 weeks early, ~ 5 hours, born at 6:59 p.m.  6 lbs 13 ounces, 19"

Induced 2 weeks early,  ~ about 5.5 hours of labor, born at 2:54 p.m., 5 lbs 10 oz 17.5"

& Sarah
Induced 2 weeks early,  ~ about 5.5 hours of labor, born at 3:01 p.m., 5 lbs 12 oz., 17.5"

Induced 3 days early, 2.5 hours of labor, born at 11:30 a.m., 7 lbs, 19"

Induced 5 days early, 3 hours of labor, born at 2:53 p.m., 7 lbs 4 oz., 19"

Induced 6 days early, 6 hours of labor, born at 8:28 p.m., 6 lbs 10 oz., 18.5"

Induced 3 days early, 3 hours of labor, born at 10:09 a.m., 7 lbs 13 oz., 19.5"

{Edited 10/2017 to add:
Induced 7 days early, 2.5 hours of labor, born at 10:35 a.m., 7 lbs 12 oz.

Induced 5 days early, 3.5 hours of labor, born at 11:03 a.m., 7 lbs 12 oz., 19.5" }


And now for the stories . . .  

Thursday, July 09, 2015

One a Day, Weeks Twenty-Five and Twenty-Six

Girl Party!

Swimming Lessons

36 weeks

"Daddy, you back?" (after a successful trip to CA to climb Mount Whitney)

Colonial Days Festival

Fireworks for the Fourth

Headed off to Grandpa's for the week

Cami when she's not sleeping enough

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Nine Days to Go

before my probably induction date!  I'm so beyond ready to have a baby at this point.  I'm uncomfortable, waking up with contractions at night and having more during the day.  I'm carrying so high, my uterus is pushing into my rib cage and my back pain continues on and off all day long.  There's just not a lot of room left, and I'm anxious for this pregnancy to be O.V.E.R.  Oh, and meet our baby, of course.
36 weeks
Overall, though, I'm trying to be extra patient and grateful that for the most part, this pregnancy has been pretty easy.  I'm still amazed that my morning sickness was almost non-existent thanks to Diclegis, and it gives me hope that my seven daughters might be able to avoid three months of misery when they have children.  And I've been able to be very active and healthy physically throughout, from running a 10K at 20 weeks to continuing to exercise 5-6 days a week.  I'm still walking 2-3 miles several times every week, so I have hopes that bouncing back into fitness and running won't be too difficult.

Two weeks ago, I had tons of energy and got caught up on lots of clean-out projects, from tackling the family office and various storage areas to re-caulking my shower (particularly proud I figured out how to do that one!).  Unfortunately, my energy levels have been super low since then even as I still have one or two more projects I really want to finish before baby comes.  Where's that nesting energy when you need it?

In other news, this summer has been wonderful.  My kids have had wonderful experiences and opportunities (more on some of those later), we've had a good schedule of activities and chores that has run smoothly, and my plan to never cook again  teach my children competence in the kitchen is really paying off.  Seriously, I've cooked maybe three meals all summer long.  The others have been willingly and happily cooked by kids who are quite competent.  Michael, especially, is quick to jump in and offer to cook when someone is not available to take their night.  I love having big kids!  

I've enjoyed having less of some chores on my plate, though I'm still plenty busy, much of it just managing all the running around and getting people where they need to be.  I've found that with older kids, I have more and more flexibility in the summer -- there's almost always someone at home who can be left in charge while I run errands or take kids somewhere -- I just have less free time, as I'm managing so many different schedules and pitching in to help with the work.  So this blog has fallen by the wayside for the most part.  I do hope to do a big "here's what's been awesome about this summer so far" post before the baby comes.  So stay tuned for summer news and baby news!


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