The rest of Aug and Sept 2013

-Benson's First Day of Preschool-

Benson started the 3's program at the Eola Community Center on Sept 3. We went for his first day to meet the teachers. He has two teachers this year, Mrs. Renee and Mrs. Sharon. He was very nervous to talk to them and I barely got a picture with them. His best friend Cailyn is in his class this year. He is so excited to see her and his other friend Stella at school. I am interested to see how Benson does this year. He doesn't sit well for me and doesn't really have an interest in projects.  

-Allyson came to visit-

So happy to have Allyson come and visit and for her to meet Finn for the first time! We had a great time having her here. I got in a little shopping and craft time with her which is always my favorite. It was nice to have a little extra help while I was getting my kids off to school. We made our annual trip to the Last Fling, which my kids look forward to each year. They loved all the rides and the yummy food. This is one of my kids favorite traditions we do every year. We love downtown Naperville!

-Herrick Lake-

We took the kids to Herrick Lake and let them ride in the kayak for the first time. They both were very excited and couldn't wait to get out on the water. As soon as Christian got the kayak in the water we found out that they didn't allow personal ones in the lake. So we had to go and rent a canoe instead. 

Addy was not thrilled about the canoe at all. She was so scared and I could here her screaming and crying across the lake. Sitting in the back made her really nervous and every time the canoe would tip she would scream. I convinced her to try again and to sit in the middle. She loved it and went out a few more times! Benson had a great time in the canoe but loved throwing rocks in the water the very best. We packed a picnic lunch and the kids had just as much fun pretending to row the kayak on the grass. Addy begged to hold Finn in the kayak. Such a sweet sister!

-Finn 1 Month Old-

My sweet boy is 1 month old. He continues to be such an easy going sweet natured baby. He is sleeping so well for me at night, around 7-8 hours, and naps off and on most of the day. His stats at his Dr. check up: 10 lbs 14 oz 75%, 22 in long 70%, and his head is 15 in 75%. He is a healthy and growing baby. I am loving every minute I have with him. My transition as been so much easier than I ever thought thanks to this little cutie.

 -First time riding the bus-

Addy rode the bus for the first time. She was so excited and felt very grown up, which made it easier on me to let her go. I wasn't all about the bus at the beginning. After I drove every morning and waited at the school every day at pick up with the boys in tow, I knew there had to be an easier way. Having Abbi at our house every morning before school to help Addy on the bus and to her classroom made it all the easier. The bus stop is at the end of our driveway and I can stand on the porch to see her off.  All kindergartners have to sit at the from of the bus and can only be let off after school if their parents are at the stop.  It really has made my life easier while adjusting to 3 kids!

-Steck Fun Run-

Our family participated in Addy's school fundraiser this year. I didn't think I was going to be able to run it with her, but I surprised myself and did. We chose to run the mile and she did such a great job. She ran the entire time and only stopped when I gave her a drink of water. She was so proud of herself and I loved seeing her accomplish something that she had been really wanting to do. Benson did pretty good and took off running really fast in the beginning, rode with Finn in the stroller for a little bit in the middle, and then ran at the end to cross the finish line with his sister. 

-Andrea came to visit-

We had a great visit while Andrea was here. We got in some serious shopping and made a few trips to downtown Naperville. We ate lots of yummy food and spent the day at Blackberry Farm. Definitely one of my kids favorite places to go. They got to ride the paddle boats for the first time. Chris and Andrea really had to paddle hard and Benson and Addy had a blast on the back of the boat. Love seeing these two cuties so happy! The weather the entire trip was gorgeous. It really has been a beautiful start to Fall.


My Parents Visit and Addy's First Day of Kindergarten

My parents came to see us when Finn was 6 days old. I was so excited for them to meet my little guy. I was really starting to feel great and back to myself again. We got out walking everyday which really helped me heal quicker. On Saturday we decided to get the kids out of the house and headed to downtown Naperville. We walked the river-walk and my dad and Christian took the kids on a paddle boat ride. It was such a beautiful day! We stopped off at the Naper Sweets and Twisted Olive to pick up some treasures. 

My mom and I did a little shopping in the evenings once Chris was home so we could leave the baby with him. We were on the hunt to find Benson some more sports gear. His obsession that week was about getting a shirt or sports jersey that had a name and numbers on the back. He could not function until he had one. He seriously cracks me up! My mom surprised him with a baseball jersey that he absolutely loves and wore for 3 days straight.  

Here are some pictures of Finn at 1 week old. He is such a good baby! He gave me 2- 5 hour stretches in between feedings at 6 days old. It was the best feeling ever! I needed some catch up on sleep. Starting at 1 week old, he has been sleeping 8 hours at night. I put him to bed around 10 pm and he hasn't been waking up to eat until about 6 am. He goes right back to sleep until around 8 am. Such a good little sleeper. I hope it continues!

Finn is 10 days old in these pictures. Addy and Benson have been so sweet with Finn. I was prepared for some serious meltdowns once I brought him home. They have adjusted so great! Benson kisses him non stop. It's hard to keep his lips of the little guy. Such an amazing brother! He has done really well sharing all of his stuff and luckily isn't jealous of him. Addy has been so sweet and very helpful. She loves to hold and snuggle him. 

These pictures are of the day my parents left. It has been so nice having company to help me with my kids. I know they have loved all the attention!

My baby started kindergarten! This was such an exciting/sad day at our house. Addy has been waiting for this day for about a year. She couldn't wait to get to school and meet new friends. She got right up and ready without me even having to ask her. She had a hard time eating because she was so excited. It was really hard for me to let her go. I have really loved having her home with me and having her gone all day is going to be an adjustment for Benson and I. Having her in someone else's care for 6.5 hours a day is nerve wracking! The girl hardly is away from me at all. It was hard for me to send her also because of her nut allergy. I talked with the nurse and her teacher and I know she is in great hands, but it still doesn't ease my fears for her. Hopefully it will get easier for me as the school year goes by.

Her first day of school was more of a meet the teacher and orientation for the parents. I took her pictures right before we loaded in the van and it started pouring. It was the craziest storm! The wind was blowing the rain sideways so even though we had our umbrellas we both were drenched from head to toe. Addy didn't mind one bit!

Addy's teachers name is Mrs. Straughn. She is such a friendly smiley teacher. Addy was very shy and quiet while we were there but talked my ear off on the drive home. She loved Mrs. Straughn's pink shoes and her dress. 

Addy's first full day of school was a success! She loved it so much and gave me the thumbs up when I came to pick her up. She couldn't believe all the things they were able to do. Her favorite part of the day was art class and recess. It was spirit day so she wore navy and white and I thought she looked so cute! Addy wasn't able to eat her lunch because she said she had "nerves in her tummy".  She didn't even drink her juice or her water.  Luckily there was another little girl for her to sit by at the nut table. Addy said she didn't talk to her though. I am just grateful she didn't sit alone! I am sure Addy will warm up in no time. 

My friend Chelsea was so awesome and came over to help us take a family picture. Not bad considering we aren't photographers!  Finn turned two weeks old the day we did them. The kids were great and let me take a few of each of them. Of course I take way too many pictures, but I just can't resist! My kids are at such a fun stage and I love capturing how cute they are! 

Benson 3.5 years old

Addilyn 5 3/4 ( that is how old she tells everyone she is :)) 

Finn 2 weeks old

 Love my family!


Baby Finn

(Right before we went to the hospital Fri night)

( 40 weeks and 2 days)

Finn was born on Aug 10, 2013 at 1:25 pm weighing 8 lbs 1 oz and 21.25 in. long. I went into labor on the 9th after I went in for acupuncture to help induce labor. 2 hours after my appointment I was headed to pick up Addy's quilt and the contractions started. They were staying pretty consistent about 5 min apart. I called Christian and told him to come home and Jamie and I went to TJ Maxx to shop around for a bit. We were on the hunt for new towels and rugs for my bathroom and some sports shirts for the nieces and nephews.  

We picked Christian up from the train at 4:45 and went home to get my things and head for the hospital. I decided to take my time since the contractions were not hurting. I got in a quick bath, curled my hair, and painted my nails. We finally left to head up to the hospital around 7:30 pm. We got all checked in and of course I had not dilated yet. I was still barely a 1 and the nurse said I was dehydrated which was maybe causing my contractions. The nurse was going to start an IV to get me some fluids in hopes things would progress. She blew a vein on the first arm which made me pass out! I am not sure I should have watched her digging in my for the vein. Another nurse was able to find a better one in my other arm and we just had to sit there and wait until I had two bags of fluid. She checked me again and I still had not progressed any further. The fluid had spaced my contractions out 10-12 min apart. I was seriously heart broken! I thought for sure I was having a baby that night. They sent me home at 12:30 am with the instructions of coming back up when my contractions were back to 5 min apart for an hour straight and the pain was more intense.

This made me really nervous because the contractions at this point were starting to hurt. I couldn't imagine what the pain would be when they were back to 5 min apart. I labored all through the night having a contraction about every 10 min. It was the longest night ever! Right when I would fall asleep I would wake up in pain. Some time around 3:30 am I got in a hot bath in hopes it would stop my contractions. I just wanted to be able to sleep. The bath didn't last long because my contractions were getting more intense and I couldn't just sit there. I don't remember a ton between 7-9 am. I could hear my kids running around playing but I was delirious from being awake all night. I finally couldn't lay there anymore because the contractions were more consistent and were really hurting. By the time my contractions were back to 5 min apart and I had timed them for an hour, I was more than ready to go to the hospital. At this point I was crying through all the contractions from the pain and from being so scared. 

We finally left the house around 11:20 am. It takes around 20-25 min to get to the hospital. I tried to focus on my breathing while we were driving there. It definitely helped a ton. Plus I was trying to get some makeup on. (I know I am crazy!) We arrived at the hospital and my anxiety kicked in full gear. I was in so much pain, excited, and scared to death. I couldn't hold back the tears any longer! I hated walking into the hospital with everyone staring at me as I stopped to hold the wall to get through a contraction. When we got to labor and delivery they rushed me back without making us check in. They got a blood sample quickly and then the nurse checked me and I was almost an 8. I told her I was a VBAC and that I really needed my epidural. She told me I had waited too long to come in and there probably wasn't going to be any time for one. This scared me to death! I was not planning to go natural and I was worried to feel anything if I had any complications from my previous c-section.

They rushed us into a delivery room and the mood was pretty intense. I had the most amazing nurse in there! She was very quick and efficient and validated all the emotions I was going through. She told me she would put an order in for my epidural anyways. They were waiting for my labs to come back before the anesthesiologist could be paged. It felt like an eternity! She finally came in the room and I couldn't have been more happy to see her. She had me sit on the side of the bed and put the epidural in my back. I turned back around to lay on the bed and she went over to chart the meds. She started to ask me if I could feel anything right when Dr. Rogers walked in the door. I had never met her before and I was stressed because Dr. Morrison was not on call. She checked me and I was complete. I started to freak out because I was in so much pain and I wanted to wait until the epidural kicked in before I started pushing. I was scared of feeling everything especially if I ruptured. She told me if I would just push the baby would be here in minutes and it would be way before I felt any relief from the epidural. I agreed to have the epidural turned off and to start pushing. Unfortunately the epidural wasn't on long enough to get through my body to numb anywhere at all.

The pain I was experiencing is something I can not describe! At the time it was the worst pain I had ever felt. The contractions my nurse helped me breath through were more bearable. As soon as I lost focus the intense pain was right there. I wished I could have learned to breath and go to my happy place before hand. It would have really helped me! I did 4 rounds of 3 pushes and the baby was here. I could have had him out sooner if I wouldn't have held back and tried holding him in from the pain. It's amazing what our bodies can do. It all went by so fast now when I think of it. Once the baby was out I felt zero pain. It was unreal! My room was very calm once I started pushing. My Dr and nurse were absolutely amazing! They kept me calm and talked very soft and helped me the best they could. Christian hardly said a word through any of it. He was so scared for me and worried because of the pain I was having.

 It was amazing that I got to hold Finn immediately. I didn't get to do that with my other two babies. Such a sweet tender time seeing him and finally holding him for the first time. He was everything I hoped he would be. Exactly how I pictured he would look like. I love that he has features of both Addy and Benson.  Christian took almost all the pictures while we were in the hospital. He did a great job! 

I was so excited for the kids to come up and meet their baby brother. I knew Addy had a better understanding of what was going on because of all the questions she had asked throughout my pregnancy. I wanted them to also see that I was ok. When I left the house I was crying and I did not want them to be worried. Benson came running in the room and the first thing he said to me was "let me see your tummy." Of course they both loved Finn. Benson could not get in enough kisses. Addy was so sweet and gentle with him. She did not want to give him up. Benson has an obsession with smelling things just like his mom. While grandma was holding Finn, Benson asked if he could smell his diaper. Haha! Such a crazy boy! Before he left Benson asked "Do we get to keep him?"  

I had a really great hospital stay and my nurses took amazing care of me. I felt like I didn't have any time to rest while I was there. I had a nurses in and out of my room constantly. I had two that would just come in and hold the baby and want to chat. They loved the quilts I had made and wanted to talk crafting and pictures. It was really fun but I had zero alone time with just Chris and the baby.  Plus I was exhausted!

 Dave and Jamie brought the kids up Monday to get their pictures taken and see the baby before we were discharged. They both couldn't wait to get their hands on Finn. I was so happy when it was time to go home. I couldn't wait to be in my own bed again. 

(first day home)

I was so excited to get home and hold my baby in my new chair. I finally got a recliner to rock and feed the baby in. It is so comfy! I had wanted one with all my babies, but for some reason or another we never ended up getting one. 

3 days old

The first afternoon home I had to snap a few pictures. I did't really get to take the pictures that I wanted to in the hospital. I love his sweet little face!


Waiting for the baby

We were so lucky to have Christian's parents come to help out when the baby came. We hadn't seen them since January, so the kids were really excited! They got here on Aug 3 and if the baby didn't come on his own I was going to be induced on Aug 7. 

Christian had been wanting zucchini bread so the kids and grandma made him some. It was so delicious! Of course they loved the clean up just as much. Playing in the sink with lots of bubbles! Jamie and I did lots of shopping and walking around trying to get the baby to come.  Benson picked out a pair of Jordan's from the Nike outlet that he just had to have. I am such a push over for that kid and his sports addiction. He couldn't wait to get home and make a "big slam dump" with his new shoes! 

 Grandpa took the kids to the city on the train to meet Christian for a White Sox game. This was Benson's first time on the train. He was so excited! He thought when he got to the baseball game that he was going to get to play. He was ready with his mitt and was so disappointed that no one would hit the ball to him. They had a great time and loved riding the train. Both kids fell asleep on the ride home. It was definitely a great day!

Baby Finn finally decided to make an appearance on Aug 10. I was so glad that grandma and grandpa didn't miss his birth! They had to leave the day after I came home from the hospital but enjoyed all the snuggles they could get. It was so helpful having them here taking great care of us.


April 2013- Christian's B-day & Myrtle Beach

Christian turned 36 this year! We had a fun night with just our family. He picked a new mexican restaurant for dinner which turned out to be delicious. We came home right after to open gifts. Addy was very excited about this part. She made him a really sweet card and wanted to give him her money she had been saving. She wanted him to have all of it but I talked her in to just giving him the five dollar bill. Benson and Addy picked him out some new golf shirts and some beach clothes for our trip the following week. I was really excited to give him my gift this year too. Christian had been hinting to me and asking me for his own quilt. I have never taken the time to make us or him anything. I just kept telling him I didn't have time with my work schedule and young women's to sew a big project. I pulled it off and secretly got him a quilt made. He was so surprised and absolutely loved it!  His reaction made all the hard work worth it! After presents we went and got frozen yogurt for dessert. The kids loved it! Benson was pretty concerned though that daddy didn't get to blow out a candle. Happy Birthday babe!

The following week we spent four days in Myrtle Beach. Christian had been wanting to go somewhere for awhile and randomly found some good deals. It was the most relaxing vacation we have had in a long time. No schedule at all! We just got to venture around and check things out and play at the beach every day.

On the first day we went to the store and got the kids a bunch of beach toys and spent most of the day playing at the beach. The kids did not want to leave! They had so much fun running through the water, digging in the sand, and collecting seashells. 

On day two we spent the morning at Broadway at the beach. They had cute little shops, rides for the kids, and some yummy restaurants. The kids of course loved all the rides!

We spent the rest of the day playing at the beach. We found a more private entrance and were the only ones there for the day. Addy caught some really small fish and saved them in her bucket. Every afternoon when we left the beach we would take the kids for a long ride. They would fall asleep within minutes and Christian and I would look up places we wanted to check out. This afternoon we drove to North Carolina to a cute little fishing community. It was so fun to look at all the real estate. Chris definitely is sold on buying a house by the ocean.

That night we ate dinner at a restaurant on one of the piers in Myrtle Beach. We had the best table right against the window. The view was so beautiful. Christian ordered a seafood dish and I had steak and grilled shrimp. It was so delicious! After dinner we walked the pier and the kids played out there until after sunset. The wind was blowing like crazy but we still had a great evening.

On the third day we went miniature golfing. It was by far the hottest day of the whole trip. Benson and Addy loved playing golf with their dad. Benson randomly got a hole in one! He didn't like to play by the rules and would set his ball down anywhere and would hit it as hard as he could. He looked more like he was playing hockey! Addy tried so hard and did such a great job. She almost had a hole in one. She made a lot of the courses in 2 or 3 shots. Not bad for her first time!

After golf we went to a restaurant on the water that was a fresh fish market/restaurant combined. It had beautiful scenery of the ocean and we watched the boats coming in and out the whole meal. Christian had fish tacos that were by far his favorite of the trip. Afterwards we went to an outdoor mall and walked around the shops. We headed straight for the beach for the rest of the day. We played at a park that was on the beach before we went down to the water. The kids loved it! They never made it into their swim suits but didn't even care. We found some kind of jellyfish that washed up while we were playing. The kids thought it was awesome. Benson really wanted to keep it in his fishing net but I wouldn't let him. 

Our last night there we took the kids on a long drive for their nap. We ended up going to Georgetown Historic District. It's an old Jewish fishing community. We ate dinner at Portofinos on the Warf. It was a very fancy Italian restaurant. We were very hungry so we didn't care that we were under dressed. Dinner was by candlelight and the kids did really well. They loved the bread and oil and caesar salads. The kids and I had bruschetta linguine and Christian had clams and linguine. 

We were sad to leave Myrtle Beach the next morning. It was such an awesome vacation and we definitely want to go back.