Tuesday, September 30, 2008

How Quickly Time Flies

Sunday marked two different events that made both Dave and I revel in the speed of time. First, it was Matty's third week of life. He's already been in our lives for three weeks and we just can't imagine life without him. He's grown a lot. He is heavy and he is actually quite a bit longer than he was. I went to put on one of his new sleepers and it was already too small. It was even labeled as 3 months... CRAZY!!! I still wish to post pictures but I still can't find my cord.

Sunday also marked mine and Dave's first wedding anniversary. Since it was on a Sunday we didn't really celebrate it. We saved it for Monday evening. We were also really brave and we left Matty with a pumped bottle with Grammie and Aunty Jo and Dave and I went out, just the two of us, for the evening. I have to admit, partway through dinner Dave and I were thinking of him and on the way to the movie I gave my mom a call just to make sure he was doing ok. He was an angel for them and Jo got lots of cuddles.

It's really neat to think that we had our baby just three weeks before our first year anniversary. He is such a beautiful gift to us. We adore him so much. Sometime we just want to eat him up. He has a new habbit in the mornings. I cant say I enjoy it too much and I know, for sure, that he doesn't like it either. He screams with pain and annoyance for a few hours in the morning. There is nothing I can do but pace with him around the house, singing whatever songs come to mind. Right now the music doesn't seem to matter. It's me holding him, rocking him, walking with him... pressing him close to my body. It seems to ease the pain in his belly and eventually sending him into sleep. He is a very content boy but really struggles with his mommy's tummy (very sensitive). He has also taken to tummy sleeping at these times. I cant ge thim to fall asleep in my arms and then put him down on his back and he will wake up as though he was never asleep and the screaming begins again. But, I rock him to sleep again and I put him awkwardly down on his tummy and he stays asleep (thats how I found time to write this post).

Monday was Matty's first time sleeping in his crib and he is now sleeping in it at night as well (Previously he was in a basinette on our bed with us). He doesn't seem to notice a difference except at around 4 in the morning. Only lying in our bed seems to settle him back to sleep. He's also really suffereing with a cold and he seems to spit up more often and he has trouble breathing at times... It's s hard to see and hear. I wish I could just get him to blow his nose.

Anywyas, Matty's tummy has woken him and I should go get him before he starts to really holler... too late.

Monday, September 22, 2008


Sorry it has been so long. Life with a newborn is certainly all consuming. I guess it gets easier with more kids in a sense... you manage to juggle time better. At the moment, I spend my extra time trying to get back on top of my house, as it has really fallen apart these past few weeks and I do a bit of reading. I admit, this post was started several days ago but took a while to get published.

Praise the Lord, we do not have a colicky baby. We have a gassy baby but with a good burping he is happy as can be. I must have eaten something that didn't agree well with Matty's tummy but since then, he has just had gas but not screaming fits like we experienced. We are truly thankful.

It's so amazing to think that Matthew is only 2 weeks and four days and life seems like it hasn't existed without him. Dave and I were both lying in bed and commenting on how normal it feels to have this sweet boy around to care for.

We have come up with a really nice routine.I usually feed Matty right before I go to bed and then Dave will watch him while I get some sleep. I usually get 3 hours of undisturbed sleep before Matty is hungry and Dave helps me wake up enough to feed. Then, Dave is gone for the night (sleeping) and Matty and I have our feeding time. Soon, this routine will have to change because Dave will be back to a regular work schedule but until then, I love the sleep time and Dave loves the special Matty time.

Some unique things about Matty are:
1) After a feeding he purses his lips together and pushes air through them so he makes a funny noise. This happens after every feeding at least once.
2) This is probably not unique but he has a real issue with going to the bathroom. His gas will grow and grow and will get fussy until he manages to push it all out and then he is content once more.
3) He really doesn't sleep as much as they say. He is very much a wakeful boy. It makes it hard for me to do things during the day because I am usually holding him since he is a bit fussy with gas. Sometimes he likes his swing and will stay in there for a period of time but it doesn't last long enough to post a blog entry.

Dave and I love being parents. Every day is so much fun and so wonderful. I know there will be days that aren't fun but it is all part of the blessing of being parents.

I was lying in bed this morning after feeding Matty and as he lay beside me I thought, "Is he really mine?" and it hit me again that the answer to that question is no. He isn't mine. The Lord blessed me and gave this boy to Dave and I to care for but he isn't ours. It's amazing to think of the responsibility that we have to God for this child. We ask for a child, God blesses us with one or more and we must work hard to do our very best in God's eyes with this child. They are only in our care. We cannot be selfish with them or unthinking... wow!

I'd put up some pictures but I can't find my USB cord right now. Pictures will have to follow later.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Please, No!

I did it to my parents and they survived but I really don't want to go through the same thing.


Dave and I came home from an evening out at Jo and Aidan's and we had a fussy boy. We didn't yet know what it was to become.

We took him out of his car seat and Dave proceeded to take him for a bit of a house walk while I tried to get a half hour of sleep. I didn't get it. Mr. Matthew was 'hungry'... or so we thought. I tried to feed him and he wouldn't have it. He just screamed and screamed. I tried burping him over the shoulder and on his side... nothing was working. I tried to nurse again but his back would arch away from my breast in agony and he would scream some more. "What did I eat?" "Does he want to eat and can't?" "Could it be because of his stuffy nose?" Matty really is normally very content. This screaming is not like him.

Eventually I just started crying. They weren't tears of frustration or even fatigue, although I'm sure that helped in the shedding of them, but it was that I could do nothing to help. I couldn't rock him enough, sing to him enough, feed him...

I can't even remember how the rest of the night played out. I know he eventually had a bit of a feed (3:00 am and I was in agony). He only took one side and not even fully. He fell asleep while feeding and I have to admit I was not interested in teaching him to stay awake. We got a little bit of sleep at that point but he was up again with pain at around 6 am. Thankfully he pooped. It was stinky but it was a bit of a relief for him. And he fed a little bit more. Again only half of what he normally eats.

I had some ladies over for a bible study this morning and Matty was calm. No proof, other than my tired face, that he had been bothered at all the night before. He stayed contentedly with Daddy the whole study, skipping a feeding once again. Eventually, I made him wake up, dealt with a bit of fussing and gas before he would take my breast and he fed enough for me to feel mild relief.

He is sleeping now after having a decent feed. "Is it over?" "Will we have another bad night tonight?" He seems to be ok during the day. "Colic isn't just a night time issue is it?"

I had a nap. Dave was wonderful. He took Matty out. I didn't even know they had gone. I slept for 2 hours. Lord willing I will get more tonight. I pray that this is not colic. I know God will help me and Dave through it if it is, but I would really rather not have to go through it.

Mom, Dad, you guys are amazing to have made it through the years of colic. Thank you for not giving up and for working as a team to get through. I have some idea now of what it's like. It doesn't even compare and I hope it never will :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bath Time, Feeding and Other Events

So much has happened in just one week of being at home. So much so that it is hard to decide where to start. I guess I'll go in chronological order.

We came home ( Matty and I) on September 9th at 3:30 pm. My mom planned dinner for us (veggie lasagnia, garlic bread and salad) and we had friends and family around. It was lovely.

The next day, Dave's mom and siblings came over and prepared dinner for us. It was a very delicious meal (Nesi and peanut sauce).

On the 11th it was Oma's (Dave's mom's) birthday. We decided (Dave and I) that she should have a celebration. So, we told her that she had to come back the next day for her birthday. She wasn't too keen on it because she was worried that I, having had a baby only four days before, wouldn't be able to handle it. I assured her that I would be doing absolutely nothing except having it in my house. So, they arrived and it was a wonderful evening. Dave made Pizza Soup and Vanessa and Oma brought yummy bread. Dave also had some sandwiches put together and that was the meal. Simple but delicious. We invited Great Oma and Great Opa to come as well and they enjoyed meeting Matty. I really did nothing too. One time in my life where I didn't feel guilty for no helping. Oma and Vanessa and Dave's siblings did the cleaning up and preparing of most of the food. It was so kind of them. Even on her birthday, Oma worked hard. I think she likes it that way though.

Oma holding her second Grandson on her birthday.

Great Oma, Emma, Katrina, Matthew and I sitting and chatting about different things.

Friday was Matty's first doctors appointment. I mentioned it a bit in another post. It wasn't very exciting, which is a good thing I guess, and we found out that he weighed 8lbs. and 6 oz. This was still lower than birth weight but the doctor seemed content with it.

Saturday, I gave Matthew his first bath at home. The nurse gave him one at the hospital but this was my official first bath. Vanessa was there to take pictures and help me out. Dave was out with the guys celebrating Matty. First, I took Matty's diaper off and wrapped him up in a blanket. It was also my first mistake. He was cold and upset and he peed all over me.
Most of the damage was on my stomach but you can see a few drips on my leg.

Next, I washed his face and this made him angry so I decided to just put him in the water.
Surprisingly, that calmed him down. He was warm. I went to his hair next and he really didn't appreciate that.
All the rest was good though. So far, Matty likes the bath.
Bath time is over and he is nice and warm in his hippo towel.

Sunday was Matty's first time going to church and his one week birthday. People came up and congratulated us and others brought us meals to eat during the week. It was so wonderful. Then, Aunty Karin and Uncle Josh came over in the evening and we had fellowship together.
Matty's first Sunday outfit.

Monday was uneventful until 9:00 pm when Dave decided to go for a walk to get coffee. So, I went along too. It was my first official outing using my legs since I gave birth. It was a long enough walk and I did regret it on the way home but my body is not angry at me today. It continues to mend. And, I was very happy to go for a walk with my husband and son.

Things change with the arrival of a baby. I am working hard to make sure Dave doesn't feel left out. It isn't always easy. You HAVE to spend so much time with the baby (feeding and changing) that it leaves little time elsewhere.

Finally, today. I had a nurse come to our house and she went through some information with me and then took a quick look at Matthew. She thought he looked very healthy and when we weighed him it was so wonderful. He is now 9lbs. He put on 8 oz since Friday. The nurse said they like to see 4oz a week and so he far surpassed that. She told me I could relax and if Matty slept for more than 3 or 4 hours at night, I didn't have to worry about waking him up. He is doing just fine. Amazing how much joy you can feel for weight being gained on a baby. Its just like when he initially poos and pees. They really want to know how many times he is going and you rejoice with each new dirty diaper (that novelty has already worn off).

Feeding is getting easier and easier. Initially it was painful and I dreaded it only because of the pain but Karin showed me a new technique to get a great latch and I am healing and not hurting nearly as much. Still a bit tender on the right side but that will fade quickly.
Breastfeeding is really quite beautiful. I don't know if I ever thought it was as beautiful as I do right now. Knowing that God created your breasts for the purpose of feeding and being able to watch your baby as they are nourished from you. I love it. It's not always easy, but it is rewarding.

As for the rest of my day, I'm not positive. I know Dave wants to go and visit Aidan so we might head to the Van Dyk's if they aren't busy.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Our Little Family

I've had this post in the works since the day after I came home but it has been very difficult getting the time to sit down and finish it. Sorry to keep everyone waiting.

Welcome Matthew Aidan van der Meer!

Matty in his coming home outfit from Grammie and Norma Fry.

As most of you know from reading my sisters blog, our little boy was born on September 7th at 1:21 in the afternoon. He isn't so little however. He was 8. 13. That's the heaviest baby on my side of the family so far. It was a very arduous labour but with rewarding results. It began on Friday night at 10 and stopped at 5 am. It then began again around 4pm Saturday and he was born on Sunday afternoon.

Me labouring in the delivery room.

Labour progressed slowly until they broke my water and later introduced drugs (oxitocine) to get the contractions going faster. By slowly I mean, I arrived at the hospital at 11:00pm and was 5 cm dialated and by 5 in the morning I was 6 cm dialated. This was mostly due to the fact that Matthew had his head turned up and this made it impossible for his head to fit into my pelvis properly. Thankfully, I had amazing nurses and one of them showed me how I needed to sit for an hour. It was a hands and knees position and I have to say it was not the most comfortable. But, results were successful and within an hour, his head was turned and I was 9 1/2 cm dialated. The nurse was happy because I had started to get a fever too. They were obviously a little worried because her coment was, "We need this baby to come very soon". Thankfully Matty listened.

Dave and I called my sister to see if she would be interested in helping with the pushing process and she was very excited to come. I thought it would be special for her to see a vaginal birth. She and Dave acted as support for me while I struggled and struggled to push Matty's head out. the nurses set up a mirror for me to see the progress. At first it was really encouraging to see the hair on the head. Then, however, I started to get discouraged because it didnt seem to make a difference. I continued pushing with my eyes shut so as not to be discouraged and went according to the nurses and my sisters comments on my progress. After an hour and 15 minutes, Matthew was born.

I didnt get to see my boy for a while because the doctors had a lot of work to do on me. They also thought he seemed a little pale so they took him out of the room to do some tests. Dave did say that while they took Matthew to the other end of the room, he continued to look in my direction. He knew his mommy's voice and he came back with the verdict of being perfect.

Unfortunately, my body didn't handle having Matty come out so easily. I had many stitches and the freezing wasn't complete so I felt the process of the needles going in and stitching me up and I was in tears. I just couldn't stop crying. The nurse kept telling me to breath and I had hands to squeeze as they told me to relax... I was hurting and I wasn't able to hold my baby. I thought the worst of the whole process was over when Matty came out but it turned out that last bit was the worst. I hemoraged and they had to introduce something to make my body clot. They also had to press really hard on my stomach to get the placenta to come out which was very uncomfortable. Finally, they gave me a medication that usually goes to women who have had c-sections to help manage the pain. I was cleaned up, my bed was sat up and I was able to hold my boy. He fed from my breasts like a pro. He was sticking out his tongue like a frog the whole time before that. A good sign he was ready to breast feed.

Time in the hospital was alright. I had some visitors the first night but not much action the next day. I was alone with Matthew a lot and it was quite lonely. However, my mom made sure she took the day off work to come and pick me up and bring me and Matthew home from the hospital on the 9th. She spent the morning at my house cleaning it and making it look so wonderful. Then she prepared a wonderful dinner for us. Jo, Aidan and the kids came over as well as Vanessa and Cory and we all enjoyed having Matthew home. Mom bought Matty a very cute cake. She had the people write "Welcome Home Matty" on it but I think they thought Matty was a girl so the writing was in pink. It was a very wonderful gift and very tasty. Thank you so much mom.

Daddy lying in the hospital bed with Matthew waiting for the doctors to dischage us from the hospital.

Blessings continue to pour in. Phone calls, meals, gifts, help and support. Thank you everyone.

Here are a few more pictures.
Before my milk came in, Matty was always hungry. He tried sucking anything while he was in my arms. My face seems to be his favourite thing other than the breast.

Cousin Caelah holding her little cousin for the first time. She can hold babies like a pro. A cute comment she made while holding him was: "Aunty Kate, I think he has a little mental problem because his tongue keeps sticking out." I had to giggle. She was very careful and polite while making her comment.

Tante Katrina holding her nephew.

Life as a little family is growing more and more normal. Dave is home for most of the day today which is a nice treat. It's nice not to be alone this early in the stage of motherhood. Pain is subsiding little by little every day. Feeding is getting easier and Matthew is happier with milk in his belly. He wakes every three hours to be fed which we can't complain about. And God has been giving me the strength to get through these feedings pretty allert. I hear it will get harder. I'll just take it one day at a time.

Our precious sleeping baby.

We had our first doctors appointment yesturday. He still isnt back up to birth weight but the doctor thought he was dong just fine. I don't think this doctor really cared too much. We were told we needed to bring a number of things for the doctor to look at and talk to us about and he realy didnt think anything of it. He didnt tell us what to be loking for and anything. It made for a quick appointment but it makes me wonder how well he is being cared for.

Tomorrow we go to church. Matty will be one week old and he will meet all sorts of people. I'm excited about going to church. I am a little nervous about feeding and everything in public for the first time but I am sure I'll be fine.

Thank you for your patience in waiting for a post. It's hard to find time right now. Im sure it will get easier.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Another Success

Yesterday I felt like a dead weight. I seriously spent the majority of my day lying on the couch trying to convince myself to get up and do something... anything. An hour before dinner had to be ready I was thinking I would call Dave and just ask him to bring something home but I didn't even want to get up to get the phone. Pretty sad.

Anyways, eventually I sucked it up and I got dinner started. This is a major accomplishment not only for the day but also for someone who is not the most keen in the kitchen. I am so glad that I did. It was so good and really quite simple. It took me about 20 minutes to prepare the whole dinner and when I bit into it, I was so glad that I had made it. Another successful recipe from my trusty red cookbook.
It was a chicken, ham and cheese recipe. You can't go wrong with that combination. I added mozzarella to the recipe (it only called for fresh Parmesan) but my Parmesan was not freshly grated and so it wouldn't melt. I also folded the ham and cheese into the chicken instead of leaving it flat. It made it look nice. On the side, we had steamed asparagus (done to perfection instead of overdone which usually happens) and rice. If you are interested in the recipe just let me know and I'll type it out for you. So easy yet quite tasty.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Talks of Induction Begin

One day past my due date and it's right down to business.

My OB really doesn't like intervention. He doesn't think it really plays much role in when a baby will come. He told me to make love. However, he is certain that after 10 days overdue, that baby needs to come out.

So, he explained to me the beginning process of an induction and I really hope I don't have to be induced. You go in one day, they insert something in you and watch you for 20 minutes. Then they send you home and if nothing happens you come back the next day and do it again. And if it still doesn't work... then it isn't going to work.

So, I have two appointments made. One to see the OB again next week (we are both hopeful that we will see each other sooner) and one the day after for an ultrasound to assess whether the induction would be safe. I also have to be at the allergist on the same day as the ultrasound because I get my monthly shots. Oh, I think life is crazy now but there will be numerous appointments once Matthew is born too.

Let's all pray that this baby comes tonight or tomorrow. I don't want to be induced.

A Nice Dinner

Last night I planned on making a new recipe. While I thought about it, I thought it would be nice to have others over to eat the meal too. Plus, having people over is alwas fun. So, I invited Cory and Ness to join us for dinner.

While I was preparing dinner, I really got into it and decided to make it a special dinner. I put on a table cloth, set the table and lit a candle. I figured it could be the last time I am interested or able to make a nice meal for a few week (if Matty chooses to come soon).

I made the Pepperoni Pasta which I thought tasted so good. The sauce is made of onion, red pepper, orange pepper, diced tomatoes, tomato paste, pepperoni, paprika, salt and pepper.

Here's the sauce while simmering.

Then, I tossed it with the pasta and served it with Ness's Ceasar salad and some fresh baguette. Yum!

The same night, Ness and Cory fed Henry his very first bowl of cereal. They chose a brown rice cereal since there are allergies in the family and it's best to be safe not sorry. He liked it at first but then seemed to change his mind. He much preferred when he got to nurse afterward.

As I mentioned yesterday, I was craving the idea of a banana split. So, while i was out grocery shopping they had banana split bowls on sale for VERY cheap and I bought all the makings. It was only Vanessa and I who enjoyed them because the quys were suppose to have it later. Dave ended up having to go work for several more hours I wasn't home again until just after 10pm. So, they didnt end up having one. Ness and I really enjoyed it though.

We actually had a laughing fit at one point because we couldnt help but make a complete mess. First Vanessa spilled some of her ice cream on the floor so we cleaned it us. Then I did the exact same thing. And then I did it again and again. I had melted ice cream all over my shirt and pants and we were just in hysterics. We soon realized it was because of the special bowls this was happening. You forget that there is a dip in the bowl because the two ends are so much higher.

Mess or no mess, I had a great evening and Ness and I talked until 9:45 when we realized we were both quit tired ( how lame is that, calling it a night before 10).

It took me hours to fall asleep last night. I was uncomfortable and restless but so tired. Once I was finally asleep I had my regular bathroom wake ups but managed to fall back to sleep VERY easily.

My plans for today are to work on Matty's baby book a little, do some knitting and reading and then I have a doctors appointment at 1:30. I was hoping I wouldn't need this appointment but if Matty's not out or on his way by that time, I have to make my way there. I can't wait to not have doctors appointments every week.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Today Is The Day


Matty is suppose to want to join the outside world today but I think he is still very happy in his safe, warm uterine home. He stretches and it feels like my entire stomach is going to burst open. I take a single drink of water and I feel as though I might explode because there is simply no room left. However, he won't be permitted to stay in there too much longer and Dave and I are so excited to meet him. I even let Isaiah sleep on top of him yesterday and Matty kicked at him for quite a while but it didn't get him to come out. :( Isaiah continued to sleep peacefully too so that was good.

I've decided to try not to even think about him (unless praying) until the joyful labour begins. I say joyful knowing full well that it will be painful and difficult but I really, truly desire to have the best attitude I can going into it. First time mom syndrome???

Today, to distract I have tidied (and have much more to do) and also formed my meal plan for the next week. It actually took no time at all because i still had many meals from my two week meal plan from last month. Dave and I go out or change our plans often enough that it makes my meal plans easy some weeks. While making this list, I was also thinking how that baby could come any day so not to have too many groceries that could go bad in the fridge. Hence the one week plan not the two week.

Tuesday September 2- Pepperoni Pasta with salad (from the cookbook in a previous post) Dessert: banana split ( I am really craving this right now).
Wednesday September 3- Chicken with Smoked Ham and Parmesan (cookbook)
Thursday September 4- Hawaiian Pizza and salad ( Thursday is pizza night)
Friday September 5- Sausage and rosemary risotto (cookbook)
Saturday September 6- Macaroni casserole
Sunday September 7- Cheese soup and fresh homemade bread (cookbook)
Monday September 8- Perogies and sausages with veggies

I made up my grocery list and it is quite small because I had already done the groceries for many of these dishes. And that makes me happy because I am challenging myself with a very small food budget and the past two months I have failed ( but not by much).

This afternoon, Ness and I along with Henry will be going to the grocery store (more distraction) and then there will be the putting away of groceries and preparing dinner and clearning dishes and then hopefully Dave will be home. Distractions may be easy today.

I guess right now I should finish up the tidying that is still to be done. Just yesturday I had a burst of energy and cleaned the back of the house but now the front of the house needs attention. May I have enough energy to finish it.