Thursday, October 29, 2009

Look what I got in the mail yesterday ...

This awesome stroller is a gift from my parents. It made my day to pull into the driveway yesterday after a long day of work to find the box on my front steps. I immediately put it together and tested it around the house. J even gave it a spin. I have been staring at it dreaming of taking the babies for walks around the neighborhood in the summer. Thanks Mom & Dad, we absolutely love it! Oh and so do the cats, especially Elvis--he hopped in the basket as if he was asking me to take him for a ride--silly cat!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Hey, it's me "K"....

I hope this message finds everyone enjoying fall and the upcoming Halloween festivities!

Well we are coming up on 22 weeks and all is going so well! I'm big (pictures after Niki's first shower on Sunday at my mom's). My feet are starting to feel the difference, but not terrible, just enough to remind me to slow down! Best news is, I finally have heartburn under control, what a blessing!

I'm so thrilled for Niki, J and sweet baby Myles on finding out they are blessed with two baby boys. My four year old son's response was priceless "perfect, just like us" I too am the mom to two boys (he doesn't understand Niki's even luckier, she was blessed with three boys, one whom is watching over them from above) that's over his head yet.

I can't wait to meet these two little guys growing so big inside of me, and can't imagine seeing the smiles on Niki and J's face when they get to hold them...time is going so quickly!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Baby Carriers - Advice Needed

I didn't register for a baby carrier because I think they are so ridiculously overpriced and was hoping to get a couple of used ones for a great deal. I just bought a Baby Bjorn Active carrier for $26 on ebay, which I thought was a great deal given they retail for over $100. I figured that J would probably wear this one because it looks a little more manly than the sling-type carriers, which is the other type of carrier I'd like to get. I am looking at pouch-type slings like Hot.slings and wrap-type slings like Moby wraps, but don't know what to get. So many people say they love one and can't stand another. I really don't want to waste money to find out I can't stand them, but also don't want to be without one when it could come in quite handy. So, I'm asking you to tell share with me your experience with baby carriers.

I just had to post a photo of the absolutely adorable matching sweaters I bought yesterday for the boys to wear next fall/winter (9mo). J doesn't want me to dress them alike, but I think once in awhile it will be cute! Besides I could put one in jeans and the other in cargo pants. :)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Baby Gift & Consignment Sale

I came home yesterday to find the following cute little outfits from my Mom (thanks Mom!). I think they are adorable! I love how they are complementary and not identical. I think I'll have the boys wear these little monkey sleepers home from the hospital in February (don't you love my optimism?!).

Last night J and I went to presale of a huge baby consignment sale. We spent around $140 and got some great deals. The big items we purchased are shown below, but we also bought three sleepers, two fleece, long-sleeved sleep sacks, one fleece, sleeveles sleep sack, and two organic cotton halo sleep sacks with swaddlers. All of the items look barely used and were a great price. I could've bought so much more, but given that I'm having 5 baby showers I figured I'd hold off for now on buying too much.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

More from the big day

We are having ...

... TWO BOYS!!

Well both babies have all their parts and look very healthy. I was awake all morning worrying about them having some major problems, like missing the important left ventricle of the heart, so this was a huge relief to me! Both babies are measuring about a week ahead, which was also a huge relief to us given our extremely IUGR baby experience, so all is good there. The tech asked if we wanted a sneak peek before she began her measurements and I of course said yes give us a quick peek! She moved the wand to Baby A (the one K predicted to be a girl) and before she could say a word J shouted out “I see a penis!” It was so cute! The tech said that J was absolutely right … Baby A is a boy! K and I were laughing at J and I was giddy with excitement! Next the tech moved the wand to see Baby B’s goods, which he was displaying quite proudly, and again we saw the boy bits! Yep, we are expecting two healthy baby boys! (I'll post the u/s pics of the babies tonight when I get home from P-T conferences.)

We are over the moon and can’t wait to start buying some boy stuff! J kept telling K how thankful we are for what she’s doing for us and it’s so true! We can never thank her enough for giving us such an amazing gift x2! K really is an amazing woman who is giving so much of herself to make our dreams come true! K is an inspiration and makes me want to be a better person!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Only two more sleeps ...

... until the big day! I'm so excited I can hardly do anything productive! First and foremost we hope that both babies get a good health report and that all body parts are present and intact. Secondly we are uber excited to find out the genders! J who is normally the reserved, scared to death to even talk about the pregnancy mentioned his excitement this morning. I'm crossing all of my crossables that the little ones, particularly naughty Baby B, will cooperate and show us the goods!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Remembering Myles

Today and every day for the rest of my life I will remember. I remember Myles' sweet little face and big, sparkling eyes. I remember admiring his tiny twisted toes and round little nose. I remember Myles turning to the sound of my voice. I remember how warm he felt against my chest and how soft his skin felt against my fingers. I remember watching my husband hold his son for the first time and feeling so proud. I remember hearing J say "Myles is full of smiles" and thinking about how he was probably smiling on the inside. I remember begging the universe to spare Myles and wishing I could take his place. I remember loving so intensely and losing so much. I remember feeling like I was living in a bad dream and I remember waiting to wake up. I remember the unconditional love and the immense pain of losing my long-awaited child. I will always remember my son, Myles, and the joy he brought to my life.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

19 wk beautiful twin belly

K thinks she looks better in the 2nd photo, but I think she looks equally beautiful in both of them! I can't believe how big her belly is getting already! K's feeling extremely exhausted and is having some swelling already in addition to the heartburn and leg cramps that have been bugging her for weeks. I wish she didn't have to suffer any annoyances and if I could I take the bad stuff for her. K wanted me to post the following notes to my blogreaders about the photos ...

* "My hair was so big because I was going to see Rob Thomas in concert and trying desperatly to get on his tour bus ;-)"

* "Why did my husband cut off my jeans and shoes? (they rocked!)"

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Walk to Remember Myles

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, so many organizations and support groups around the country are hosting remembrance walks. We missed the local support group's walk last week due to prior obligations, but our dear friends, S, B, and T, braved the cold (upper 20's) and blustery winds yesterday to walk in memory of our sweet Myles. J and I are so very touched by their tribute and hope to join them next year! Although seeing Myles' name on the back of the t-shirt brought tears to my eyes, it also made me smile knowing that others continue to remember our little boy. Thank you so much S, B, and T for walking in memory of "Smyles"! We love you and feel fortunate to call you our friends! Check out the photo slideshow S put together for us. Oh and I could be wrong, but I'm guessing that Myles' namesake, Miles Davis, is playing the music on the photo slideshow (am I correct S?). :)

Please take a moment to remember all those babies who were lost early in pregnancy, those lost later in pregnancy, those who entered the world silently, and those who's lives were cut too short. Every parent who loses their child(ren) silently grieves daily and never, ever forgets no matter how long it's been. Please do not be afraid to speak the name of those children who've left their parents to live in this world without them. I can tell you from experience that the mere mention of my child's name warms my heart and makes me smile. I'm certain it would do the same for other babyloss parents.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Baby Shower Dates

My friends and family are having 5 baby showers for me--yep 5. Wild, hah?! It makes me smile to think about how lucky and loved I am! K is able to be at all but one of the baby showers, which makes me very happy. It seems fitting that K be a guest of honor at the celebrations. Plus, I think that babies should be there!

Here's the calendar of baby showers:

November 1: My Dad's Family hosted by K and her mom, L
November 28: In-laws hosted by MIL
December 4: STELLA Girls (scrapbooking group) hosted by my dear friend, D
December 6: "Big Shower" (Mom's family & friends) hosted by my good friends, J & L
January 24: Foxy MHS Girls with my girlfriends from school hosted by my friend, C

Wow, I am going to be busy with all of these showers and the holidays thrown into the mix. I can't wait for all the festivities to begin! Although I did a registry when I was pregnant with Myles, I didn't make it long enough in the pregnancy to have any of the baby showers that were planned. So, these really will be my first baby showers.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Only 12 more sleeps ...

... until the big ultrasound! The date of the u/s is 10/20. It's early in the morning, which means it will be here even sooner! We're all anxious for the day to get here and are hoping that the babes cooperate with us, so we can get a peak at the goods!

Thanks for being so wonderful and understanding. I'm feeling much, much better today. I think I was just having one of those days. Like I told K most of the time I don't spend much time thinking about what it would be like to have the babies inside of me. Most of the time I'm thinking about what a relief it is to have K carrying the babes because I don't have to worry about them (okay I still worry, but not about something going wrong wtih K's penthouse uterus). I know that K's uterus is a healthy, nurturing, and safe place for the babies to grow and develop. I guess it's just like anything you grieve sometimes it crops up and hits you unexpectedly.

I'm letting the cat out of the bag to my students on Monday. It's getting hard to whisper to my colleagues about the babies, so I decided it's time. I'm nervous, but excited at the same time. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Feeling blah

I'm feelng rather blah and I can't really pinpoint a reason. It could be all the rain we've been having. It could be the cold weather and the impending extremely cold weather to come in a couple of months. It could be the forecast for a few snowflakes tonight/tomorrow. It could be all the grading I have to do (150 lab reports were submitted yesterday and I have 60 more to grade). It could be that my best friend just had a new baby boy who I'm going to meet on Sunday (newborn baby boys are still quite tough for me). It could be that I'm just missing Myles a lot more than normal this week. It could be that my precious cat is slowly dying of a fatal disease (she's cuddling with me now) and I can't do anything about it. It could be that one of my co-workers told me that it would probably be best not to share my baby news with my students (ever). It could be that registering for the twins brought me back to registering for Myles and made me sad. It could be that the Domperi.done I'm taking to help induce lactation is making me emotional (it sure is doing a number on my breasts--ouch!) More than likely it's a combination of all of these things. Whatever it is it's making me feel down in the dumps.

The other thing that's been bothering me is the ever so slight bit of envy I'm feeling. I'm feeling it towards my IRL pregnant friends/family, my pregnant blog friends, and even to a small extent K. I guess after 5 years of infertility I have a hard time letting go of the pain that I feel from other's pregnancies (especially those fertile ones). I have been embarrassed to admit this because I feel like it makes me seem unhappy for others or ungrateful for my fortunate situation. I love K dearly and can not thank her enough for the amazing gift she's giving us. My feelings have nothing at all to do with anything K is or isn't doing. K is doing everything I could ever want her to do (and then some). I know just how lucky I am and I don't for a second take that for granted, so please don't begrudge me for this.

I spent countless hours before pursuing surrogacy worrying that I'd feel extreme jealousy towards the person carrying our baby(ies). I can't imagine anyone entering into surrogacy not wondering/worrying about this, especially those women with infertility problems who've tried for years to get pregnant and carry a baby on their own. I spoke to expectant IM's to see how they felt about this and none of them ever felt that way. I worried and asked about it because I didn't want to feel that way and fortunately I don't! However, I admittedly envy K. I wish that I could be the one feeling our babies move and kick inside me. I wish that I could watch my belly swell. I wish I could lie in bed at night rubbing my belly and talking to my babies. Most of all I wish I didn't long for these things, but I do. Now that doesn't mean that I'm not relieved to have our babies growing and thriving in K's healthy, protective uterus. It just means that I still have that innate desire to carry and nurture my babies. Despite me trying it just doesn't go away, but fortunately I can make myself feel better by reminding myself that K is going to bring into our lives two healthy, living (hopefully chubby) babies!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Baby Name Ideas

I wasn't sure if I was going to share any of our potential baby names, but I'm feeling in the sharing mood tonight. Although we don't know the genders yet, there are a few names that J and I both love and agree on.

Girl Names:
Isla (pronounced Eye-lah)
Adia (pronounced A-dee-ah)**

Boy Names:
Silas (or Sylas)

I really struggle with boy names, so if we end up having two boys we'll have to put our heads together. I do like the boy names Grady and Liam, but I'm not sure what Josh thinks of those. I also like the name Lily for a girl. Once we find out the genders we'll probably pick the babies' names, including middle names, but for now these are just some of our ideas. I'm guessing if we have a boy and a girl we'll name them Silas and Isla, respectively. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

**This was to be Myles' name when we thought he was a girl. At our 20wk u/s we were told we were having a girl and we named her Adia Rayne. I still LOVE this name. Adia means "gift". Josh likes the name too, but feels weird using it because he says it's too closely tied to Myles. I think it would be a fitting tribute to a future daughter's older brother.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Honest Scrap Award

Thanks to my dear friend, L, at Meinsideout for nominating me for this award. Sadly both L and I are recurrent miscarriers, but happily we are now both expecting twins! This award gives me a chance to share with the blogosphere ten things that you don't know about me. Although I find these things somewhat narcisstic, I also enjoy reading them about others. So, here goes with 10 things about me ...

1. I have a Master's degree in Wildlife Biology from UGA and did my research on small mammals (e.g., rats and mice)--this is what funded my graduate studies and paid my bills. Although I am a self-proclaimed girly girl, I can get my hands quite dirty. I'm not afraid of mice, rats, snakes, worms, spiders, bats, or anything else creepy crawly (well except fish I have an aversion to touching fish--it's weird I know).

2. I once woke up to a mouse in my bed. In my groggy state of being half-asleep I heard our cat, Elvis, growling, which he only does when he has a mouse and doesn't want Asha (the other cat) to take it from him. Despite not being afraid of mice (see #1) I didn't like the thought of a live mouse crawling under the covers on my legs, so I bolted out of bed, ran out of the room, slammed the door, and left J in the bed with the cats and mouse. Mind you J is scared to death of mice and wasn't pleased with me in the slightest bit!

3. I once got stopped by a police officer when I was picking up a dead coyote on the side of the road in Georgia. I was with three girlfriends and all three of us were done up in full makeup as we'd just come from a Mary Kay party. At the time I was a grad student in wildlife biology and was required to make study skins (think taxidermy) and was desperate for specimens that I didn't have to kill myself. I mainly "stuffed" mice because they were readily available (refer to #1) and easier to catch. I didn't end up using the coyote as it was a lot more work than the mice, but one of the other girls "stuffed" it. Seriously, can you imagine what this officer said to his colleagues when he went back to the station?! LMAO!

4. After graduate school I worked in wildlife epidemiology studying West Nile virus. My job was to travel around Southeastern US trapping/netting birds to collect blood samples to establish the spread of West Nile virus.

5. I'm a total science nerd! I LOVE to read research and I love to critique it! It's quite normal to hear me speak of replicated studies, small sample sizes, uncontrolled experiments, biased data, etc...

6. I am ridiculously attracted to bad boy, Collin Farrell--yum! I think he's a terrible actor, but I find him to be extremely sexy. It's funny because I would never, ever want to date someone with a bad boy personality like his, but I still like to fantasize about him. (And yes I did see his sex tape--J actually downloaded it for me one Valentine's day. I was simultaneously aroused and turned off by it. If you watch it, turn off the volume and you'll enjoy it more! The eye candy is nice (and big), but he says some ridiculous things!)

7. I'm obsessed with plucking my eyebrows. I like shapely eyebrows that aren't too thin and aren't too bushy, but just right. I can't stand to see the little black hairs poking out of the skin, which makes waxing impossible, so I have to pluck my eyebrows at least every other day.

8. I'm a detail-oriented perfectionist to a falt. I waste countless hours of time fixing seemingly insignificant things. For example, I'll spend hours on a Power.Point presentation just fixing the font, bullets, spacing, etc, so it's all the same/uniform. My good friend and colleague, E.L., calls this "Nikifying" things. I call it wasting time, yet I can't seem to let it go. J always tells me I "focus on the trees and miss the forest", but in my opinion what he doesn't realize is that without the individual trees there wouldn't be a forest!

9. I am super self-conscious about my body. I've struggled with body image issues my whole life and always see myself as "fat" no matter what size I am, including when I'm a size 1/2 (I'm now a size 5/6, but determined to get back to a size 3/4). It's something I've been working on improving my whole adult life. I do NOT want to my children to grow up disliking their bodies because they hear me saying negative things about myself, which is why I'm working hard to change this.

10. Although I'm embarrassed to admit this, I'm annoyed with people who speak poorly and have terrible grammar. I find myself judging them as ignorant, unintelligent, and uneducated. This is definitely one of my weaknesses. I dislike judgemental people and yet here I do it myself, so I'm working on this.

I would like to nominate K for this award and hope that next week she'll post 10 things about herself for us to read. I also nominate the following bloggers for this award:

Kris at Looking for Another Angel
Meg at No Oven for the Bun
B at No Regrets
Jaymee at Our Surrogacy Adventure
Infertile in the City
Kate at From Infertility to Baby
Becca at Into the Light Again