Thursday, November 10, 2011

And he makes 4...

My sweet baby Asher Cole was born on November 5, 2011 at 6:25am.  We weighed 7lbs 8oz and was 20 inches long.  As with all my kids, he did it his way and in his time.  Nothing is ever text book with my pregnancies or births!  We wouldn't even know what to do with that! 

Many of you know that I experience gestational high blood pressures with my pregnancies.  This one was no different.  On November 1, Dave had me call the clinic to report that my pressures were staying up in the 160/100 range.  The doctors sent me to the hospital where we spent a good part of the day.  All my labs came back normal and baby was looking happy on the monitors so they sent me home on bed rest.  Yuck!  A mom of 3 doesn't do bed rest well!  I had another appointment on Friday.  My pressures continued to be pretty unpredictable.  They were spiking at any given time for no apparent reason.  My doctor sent me back over to labor and delivery to be monitored, run more labs, and do an amniocentesis to check lung maturity.  This was around 12:00.  They weren't going to be able to do the amnio until around 4:00.  As I was resting in bed, I started to feel contractions around 2:00.  They just kept coming and getting more and more regular.  I've had this happen before and they usually quit so I didn't think much of it at the time.  At about 4:15 they did the amnio.  I was still contracting quite a bit.  Not too painful, but definitely couldn't ignore them.  They let me walk around a bit because my back was getting so sore just lying in the bed.  This did not help the contractions.  Well, the amnio came back in about an hour and it surprised as all by showing that the babies lungs were not mature.  The doctor did not want me to have the baby quite yet, but the contractions were still coming.  Earlier that morning I was 2 centimeters dilated.  He checked me and I was now 3 1/2 centimeters dilated.  Because my previous birth was a c-section and my ultimate goal was to have a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) he was a little nervous about sending me home with regular contractions and dilating, even though it was slow.  He decided to watch me for another hour or so and check again.  The contractions continued and I was dilated at that point to 4 1/2 centimeters.  I was staying.  We were going to have a baby!! I walked more and a couple hours later they decided to break my water.  I had gone into this delivery thinking I wanted to have a "natural" child birth.  I made it to 6 centimeters and just couldn't do it any more.  It was going so slow and it was so painful so we opted for an epidural.  I've had troubles with epidurals in the past and had had back surgery a year ago so I was kind of freaking out about it, but this one went in like nothing and worked perfectly!  I love that epidural lady!! :)  I don't even know what time it was, maybe 10:00pm when it was all done.  We were expecting those last 4 centimeters to go quickly, but again, why do anything the way it's supposed to be done?  I am so thankful that my OB was eager and willing to do everything possible to help me have a successful VBAC.  With the complications with my other c-section he really didn't want to go that route either!  He very slowly started some pitocin (most doctors won't use this on a VBAC).  It helped, but it was still slow going.  My mom was there so she went home for a couple hours and my sister was there and she went and slept in the call room.  (My sister is a physician and she actually delivered my baby!)  Dave got a few hours or sleep as well.  Me and my nurse just kind of hung out and waited....and waited....and waited.  Finally at about 5 am I started to feel more pressure.  I was now 9 cm.  I called my mom back and woke up Dave (we let my sister keep sleeping for awhile).  At 6:15am it was time to start pushing.  I warned them that this part won't take me long!  My doctor had me do a "practice push" while my sister was getting ready.  I fake pushed.  I really wanted my sister to deliver not him (nothing against him, I really like him, but how cool is it to have your sister deliver your baby!?!)  She was ready to catch.  One push for the head and one more for the shoulders and I was holding my sweet baby Asher!  Being a month early he was having a little trouble breathing.  Any touch or stimulation sent his respiration rate to over 100 per minute.  We opted to just watch him closely for about an hour to see if he could transition on his own.  But, after about an hour or hour and a half our doctor made the call to NICU.  They came in and immediately took him to the NICU.  They could see he was starting to tucker out from working so hard.  He was hooked up to CPAP to help him breath and they ran some tests.  His white cells came back elevated indicating a probable infection.  They started him on some antibiotics and would watch carefully.  This was all very hard on momma!  I cried a lot and it broke my heart to not be able to hold him.  Our wonderful family doctor just hugged me as I cried when the took him away, Dave was such a rock for me, and the NICU staff would quietly just lay a reassuring hand on my back as I sat next to his incubator.  I had held him for 36 weeks and now could only rest my hands on him.  We are so thankful that Asher improved rapidly and was able to leave the hospital with me!  What an experience.  It all seems like a blur to me.  As we spent time in the NICU we were struck with how fortunate we have been to have such healthy babies.  Some of those babies had been there or would be there for months!  We truly have been blessed!  And, we were so grateful for such a wonderful NICU staff!  They were amazing!  We are all adjusting wonderfully and Asher has fit right into our crazy mix!  God is so good to us!!   

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

2 Corinthians 12:15

"So I will very gladly spend for you everything I have and expend myself as well.  If I love you more, will you love me less?" -2 Corinthians 12:15

I am clinging tooth and nail to this verse right now!  I am 31 weeks pregnant, I have a 4 year old, a 3 year old, a 20 month old.  I also do daycare for a 3 year old and a 22 month old.  It's kind of busy!  Many of you know that when I'm pregnant I tend to get quite sick.  With the pregnancy, the sickness ended right around 15-16 weeks!  Yay!!  What you probably don't know is that when I'm pregnant I tend to feel kind of down or sad.  Many women struggle with postpartum depression, but I get the sadness during my pregnancy.  By 3 days postpartum, I feel great and all is forgotten!  It's not all consuming or scary, just annoying.  To make matters worse, I finally agreed to let the doctor put me on something to attempt to control my blood pressures.  Unfortunately, one of the side effects for me is it increases the sadness a little.  Some mornings I wake up not sure if I'm ready to tackle the craziness of the 5 kids on top of feeling blue, but, I have something much greater and much more powerful then myself to get me through the day!  I will keep joyfully giving all I have! 

Monday, September 26, 2011

He amazes me...

Many of you probably are totally unaware, but Labor Day started a very rough few weeks for us.  Dave took off for some meetings in Bismarck on Labor Day afternoon and I started to feel sick.  I got sicker and sicker while he was away, but we survived.  I went to the doctor that Thursday or Friday and was treated for strep throat.  By Sunday I was feeling so much better!  Monday rolled around and Niko and Braelyn woke up with snot and lots of it.  It wasn't long before they spiked fevers and soon after Eden joined them.  Now I have three babies with fevers ranging between 101-103.  After seeing no improvement all week we decided to take all three of them (this was a first for us) to the clinic and all three were started on antibiotics.  By Saturday my course of antibiotics we finished and I woke up Sunday with another horrible sore throat, stuffy nose, cough, fever, etc.  By Monday, I was feeling really, really rough, but thankfully the kids were doing better, so we survived the day!  Tuesday, Dave left really early so I didn't get to even talk with him that day.  I was miserable!  And, Braelyn spiked yet another fever of 102.  He happened to call mid-morning and quickly realized how sick I was, finished up a few things at work, and came home.  He sent me off to bed and promptly stepped into caring for all 5 kids (our three and my 2 daycare kids),  no questions asked!  Wednesday, he took one look at me and called work saying he needed to stay home for the day.  I stayed in bed all day, but he worked so hard with such a terrific attitude.  He stayed home Thursday morning because I had an OB appointment and Braelyn had her 3 year well child visit, but she still wasn't well.  She was still running fevers of 102-103 and had developed a horrible cough.  Antibiotic we come!  Thankfully by Sunday she was much better and totally fever free!  I still was so sick and finally went on antibiotics #2 for me on Sunday.  I feel SOOOO much better!!  Whew, I think we finally kicked this and survived!  I vote, the Scotts have had enough sickness for the season already! 

We never would have been able to survive this all if it wasn't for my amazing husband.  He stepped up and picked up my slack and then some!  He cooked, he cleaned like a fool, he was totally engaged with the kids, and took great care of me!  I've never been so amazed by all he could do and with such a cheerful attitude!  He definitely deserves a great date night!! 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hi, my name is Stacy and I have picky eaters...

Am I the only one?  I hear people talk about what they eat for dinner and I secretly think to myself "my kids would NEVER eat that!!".  Where did I go wrong?  When they were babies I gave them everything.  I introduced a lot of new foods and textures whether it was a typical "kid friendly" meal or not.  As babies, they were great eaters, now, not so much!  I get so tired of cooking dinner sometimes because I know not everyone will eat it - or at least eat it without a battle.  I feel like we've tried everything.  Pairing it with food they LOVE (having them eat the least favorite first), correcting them for not eating as they were told, not giving them anything else to eat until they eat whatever it was they wouldn't eat, etc.  But alas, I still have three very picky eaters.  My oldest only wants to eat bread, pasta, and fruit.  The only meat she eats is in the form of a nugget, a hot dog, and ham.  My middle is my best eater, but is picking up on her older sister's protests.  My youngest really only wants to eat meat.  He throws veggies on the floor (or at me).  He will eat some fruits, but really he doesn't eat much of a variety or quantity.  I'm at my wits end with mealtimes... 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

This is a day the LORD has made...even though it wasn't a favorite!

It took only a moment to realize that 2 of my 3 kids who had gone to bed healthy woke up unhealthy...with snot and LOTS of it!  Yuck!  We tried to proceed as normal, but the more my morning went on the more I began to feel unwell.  I couldn't really put my finger on it, but the headache was finally clue enough that I should at least check my blood pressure.  157/97!!  Uh oh, that can't be good.  Called the doctor who of course wanted labs and to see me. 

Thanks to my sweet sister-in-law who sat with all five kids over her lunch break so I could go get the labs started before my 2:50 appointment.  In the meantime, the doctor said to just sit back and rest.  I always chuckle to myself when the doc says that.  I have a four year old, 2 three year olds, and 2 one and a half year olds all!?  But, I tried.  We watched a movie and only did about 30 minutes of school.  Thankfully, the labs all came back within the normal limits!  Yay!!  He wanted to send me to the hospital to be monitored for a bit - I declined.  He wanted to start me on BP meds - I talked him into waiting until my appointment next week.  I've taken them and they make me feel really sad.  I'm so thankful to have a doctor who is willing to meet me in the middle without hesitation!  But, upon leaving, he and the nurse practitioner both said "now you know this bed rest thing probably isn't an if but when, right?"  I just pretended I didn't hear that one! 

I can't go on bed rest!  I have 3 babies!  What would I even do??  Trying not to freak out and pray that this is just a speed bump and I will soon be back on track with a healthy pregnancy!  But really, I have no clue how we would make that work... 

My darling husband (with the help of our sweet son!) cooked us dinner so I could rest.  As we sit down for dinner, Eden starts screaming of horrible pain in her side. I realized she felt warm so I took her temp...101...she was my healthy one of the day!  Not any longer...

Here's praying tomorrow isn't nearly as eventful!   

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Blanket Time

In my previous post I talked about scheduling blanket time for all my kids. I wanted to try and explain this a bit for those of you who may be confused as to what this actually is. Blanket time is nothing fancy and exactly what it sounds like. The kids have small blankets (the girls actually use small foam squares because when I used to have all my daycare kids the blankets took up too much room!!) that we place on the floor and they are required to sit on this blanket for a set amount of time. I give them a quiet toy or two, maybe a couple books and/or some colors. The rules are that they are not allowed off the blanket (or square) without first asking, even if it is to get a toy that's out of reach or to go to the bathroom. If they do need to ask, it must be done in a very controlled, whisper voice. But, the whole point is for them to sit quietly and play independently. They girls do blanket time for 30-45 minutes. Blanket time was started in our home for a variety of reasons:

**we desired to teach our children to be self-controlled and know how to sit quietly for a length of time without a lot of external stimulation (i.e. In front of a movie). This way they could sit quietly if I needed to take an important phone call, had a visitor I needed to visit with, had work I needed to complete, etc.

**when Eden was first born was very convicted that I wanted her to see me cultivating daily my personal reladtionship with the Lord. I didn't want for my kids to grow up and say that I know my mom had quiet times with the Lord but she must have done it while we were sleeping because I never saw it! I want my kids to see me actively living out me faith and soaking in the Lords word! They get to watch me read my bible and listen to me practice memory verses and hear me pray. Our desire is that this will encourage and teach them how to develop their own personal walk one day. They will have had years of watching it!

**we also believe that little ones need physical boundaries. This is a big world for them and it can get very stimulating and out of control quickly and easily. We've found that setting this little boundary, a few very controlled and quiet moments, allows them to reset, take a few breaths and be able to continue on in a much more self controlled and obedient manner.

I start blanket training around 18 months or shortly before I expect the morning nap to be done. I start very small and use a lot of praise. I'm on the floor right next to my baby. The girls picked up blanket time in a matter of days and very quickly built up their time expectations. Nikolas has been a whole other experience!! When I first started with him he struggled to sit for even a minute. He is an on the go guy. We even struggle to get him to sit long enough for a meal! After several weeks he is now up to 15-20 minutes of sitting! We are still working on the being quiet part of it, but progress is evident!! He is Niko and he is uniquely made and such a blessing to our family. I have to remind myself daily that he is not one of his sisters and somethings will be more challenging with him while others will not. Our expectations remain the same, but some times it just takes longer!

Hope this makes sense. Blanket time has been such a blessing to me and in our home!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Schedule Written Down...

For awhile now I've been feeling like my days at home with the kids were getting more and more unstructured.  Rather then being the one in control it seemed like I was just following along with whatever they had planned for the day or putting video in for them for lack of a better plan. 

Proverbs 21:5 Good planning and hard work lead to prosperity, but hasty shortcuts lead to poverty.

I was neither planning well or working hard (in the important areas) and I could feel it in my spirit!  Dave and I talked through what I had been struggling with and he sat down with me one day and we together created a schedule of our day.  It gave me a plan to follow and I knew without a doubt that I was raising our kids and investing in them in ways that were pleasing to Dave.  It really helped to relieve some stress and anxiety I was dealing with! 

Daily Schedule
(**at this point in our lives most days follow the exact same schedule.  This will be adjusted as needed!)
7:30 Get kids up
7:45-8:30 Breakfast (this may seem like a long time, but most days our kids are really slow breakfast eaters!  This works great for us, because it allows them time to visit together and for my daycare kids to arrive.)
8:30-9:00 Get kids dressed, hair combed, pj's cleaned up
9:00-9:45 Girls: Blanket time, Mom's quiet time
                Babies: Nap until 10:15
9:45-10:15 Focused activity with the girls.  I.E. Play-doh, board games, craft project, biking up and down the front walk, baking, sidewalk chalk, etc.
10:15-10:30 Babies up; snack time
10:30-10:45 Girls: Quiet box time**
                    Babies: Blanket time training
10:45-11:00 Music/Story time
11:00-11:30 Free play
11:30-12:00 Clean Up/Cartoons
12:00-12:30 Lunch
12:30-2:30 Naps for Braelyn and younger, Eden: rest time and quiet play
2:30-3:30 Free play (outside if at all possible)
3:30-3:45 Afternoon snack and Daddy home!!

**A quiet box is something I created for the girls.  I needed an activity for them to do independently so I could have some focused time with the babies.  Their boxes include linking rings to make necklaces, coloring book, activity book, puzzle, notebook, markers, scissors, glue stick, stickers, etc.  They LOVE them and it has worked great!  I'll try and do another post soon explaining blanket time.  That's a whole post in and of itself!

Aside from planning my day with the kids, I planned specific chores for myself to complete each day.
Monday: Laundry (clothes)
Tuesday: Laundry (towels and linens)
Wednesday: Bathrooms
Thursday: Floors
Friday: Misc.

The biggest thing for me has been the laundry.  I now get all my laundry done in two days (washed, folded and put away!!)  I don't even have to think about laundry for 6 more days.  I used to always feel as if it was piling up and that I was always behind.  Now if the baskets are getting full I don't even give it a second thought because it will all get done on Monday!

We also created chores for our 18 year old.  I was tired of nagging her to get stuff done.  Now it is written down and if she doesn't complete it she gets a consequence because she can't claim she didn't know or forgot.  Totally removed a struggle or nagging!  Love it! 
Tuesday: All garbages in the house emptied
Wednesday: Deep clean her bathroom
Thursday: Vacuum basement
Saturday: Light clean of her bathroom

Now, things do come up and I need to deviate from the schedule.  I am OK with this!  I tend to get a bit rigid and feel like a failure if I don't do exactly what is expected or planned, but this has been an excellent lesson in letting things go and seeing the whole picture rather then a few minute slot!  It has also helped to keep the day from feeling like it is dragging on because we are changing activities every 15-30 minutes regardless of how much fun they are having.  I love it! 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Praying for my kids

The blog has been resurrected...let's try this again. I stuggled with knowing what I wanted to do with this blog, if anything. I've decided to just use it to jot down things I am thinking about, ways the Lord is challenging me, funny kid stories, and to document current projects I am working on. I'm doing it because I enjoy it and hope that someone else might enjoy it as well. If not, no worries, I still enjoy documenting what's been happening in the Scott family home!

I've been really meditating lately on the fact that I frequently pray for protection over my children. Asking the Lord to protect them from harm, from illnesses, from injuries but mostly from the evil in this world. I think these are wise things to be praying for, however, I've recently been convicted that I am praying way too much for protection and not nearly enough for their reactions to inevitable pain that will occur in our world. We live in a fallen, sinful world and we all face times of trouble and pain each day. It is how we respond to these times of troubles that sets us apart. Here are some verses I've been thinking about...

John 16:33 " I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."

Romans 8:17 " Now if we are children, then we are heirs - heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory."

1 Peter 4:12-13 "Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Chirst, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed."

So, I am going to start praying more that pain and trials won't disrupt my children's walk with the Lord. I'm going to pray that they will cling to what they know to be truth even when every bit of their flesh is screaming otherwise. I'm going to pray that my children don't blame or curse the Lord for hard times that will come. I am going to pray that the Lord is already preparing my little children for what is ahead and showing me how to teach them that confidence! Whew! Big things to be praying about!