Thursday, December 8, 2016

The Birth of Azalea Therese

Zellie is almost two months old now and I still haven't written her birth story. So before I forget it all, I'd better write it down! Be forewarned that it is long and full of gory details. Read on if desired.
   First off, all of the other kids were born at 10 or 11 days overdue, (aside from Maria, but she was my first so I wasn't really comparing hers because firsts can be so different). And only with William did labour start on its own. So I was definitely expecting to be induced again, and honestly it wasn't a big deal - my labours with Felicity, William and Gus all went pretty much the same, induced or not. All I needed was a little push and then my body did the rest. So this time, when my OB said she didn't like letting people go more than a week overdue, and then scheduled me for induction on Thursday, which was 6 days past my due date, I didn't think it was a big deal. If I was going to have to be induced anyway, the sooner the better, or so I thought. In hindsight, maybe my body just wasn't quite ready, and maybe those extra four days would have made a difference, since this time my body just didn't quite respond the way I was used to. Read on if you're interested.
   So on Thursday, October 13, we dropped off the kids at their grandparents bright and early, and showed up at the hospital where they immediately placed some gel on my cervix to get things started. My doctor left saying, "I'll be back at noon to check on you again, unless I get a call beforehand", which she fully expected to receive since with Gus it only took four hours from start to finish. As soon as I was allowed, I began to do my thing - walking and walking and walking. Four hours later my doctor came to check me and I was.....3 cm maybe? I was expecting to have given birth by that time, so it was super disappointing. Contractions were still irregular and not very strong. She attempted to break my water, but couldn't. With orders to start pitocin, she left again, expecting to be called back soon when things got intense. In all my inductions, I have always been able to avoid pitocin, which I'd always heard made the contractions super intense. So I was scared! I was tired and getting disheartened and wasn't sure if mentally I could make it through! I knew I could make it through unmedicated if things went roughly how I expected them to. So something like this freaked me out and for the first time in five labours I began to seriously consider an epidural. The thought of just resting while things happened sounded so appealing. Especially since they said once they started me on pitocin I wouldn't be able to walk around, which is what I do in labour. I came so close to saying just give me the drugs! But in the end I decided to just wait until the pitocin started and see what it felt like. So we started it at 2:30. And nothing really changed. Except my water did break, but even that didn't really speed things up. At 4 I got on the ball, once they would let me, and bounced around until contractions started happening a little more regularly and stronger, although they still were pretty pathetic. When my doctor came back, she told me to get off the ball and lie on my side because the baby's heartbeat was dropping a little after contractions. At 4:50 I texted my sisters: "Still 3 cm. This sucks." I had told my doctor that I go from 6 to 10 cm in about five minutes usually, so instead of leaving the hospital, she was hanging out in a room next door and coming back to check on me every half hour. And every time she came, I had nothing to tell her. The contractions still were not anything to get excited about. I was barely having to breathe through them. Still she would check my cervix, and there would be hardly any change. She was hesitant to increase the pitocin too much because the baby's heartbeat kept dropping. Eventually she upped it a bit and they began to get intense. I think that was around 7pm, but my memory of the timing of this part is so hazy! Around 8 they were super intense and my doctor decided to stay in the room, checking me after each contraction. I was 6, -contraction - now you're 7 -contraction - now you're 8 - contraction - now you're nearly 9 - contraction - now you're a good 9 - contraction - pretty much 10- contraction - ok you're 10! She let a few more contractions go by so I was good and ready. By this point I was obviously in the most intense pain ever but just taking it one contraction at a time. I kept expecting her to say "Ok, time to push!"  and so died a little when I had to make it through another contraction. Finally, at 9:10pm, push time came and with one good push out she came! THE MOST RELIEVING FEELING IN THE WORLD. The next best part was that within 10 minutes my placenta came out! All of it!
  And that is how little Zellie was born.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

7 Quick Takes Saturday

Linking up with Kelly a day late!

1. We've been enjoying very fine weather! We've lived here for three years but I can't remember if this is just what Fall is like here. Somehow I don't remember nice weather lasting for much more than a few weeks. And by nice I mean around 78 and breezy. It is heavenly.

2. Since its not so hot, for the first time since we've lived here the kids have been playing outside everyday! This is monumental and the absolute best. I guess it feels like summer in Canada. Usually we are all shut up in our small air conditioned house all day. The only way the kids want to go outside is to swim in the pool because usually its just too hot to do anything else. We are so lucky to have a pool but it means I have to be out there with them. Having them freely playing outside while I keep an eye on them from inside is really really amazing. Please beautiful weather stick around a few months!!!

3. We had a crazy week last week, full of sickness. Our house (and my sister's house next door) got hit with a terrible cold that went through everyone, including the newborn babies! Zellie had a fever at three weeks old, and ended up spending the night in the hospital. It was so terrible and sad and she is just now finally getting over her cough. I'm never taking her out of the house again until she is a teenager.

4. Maria has a swim meet this weekend! Which means three days of early mornings and spending hours at the pool. Super fun but super tiring.

5. I'm sure its like this for most big families everywhere (with 5 kids do we qualify as a big family??) but on this Island I feel like a freak show whenever people see me with all my children. The counting heads, asking if they are all mine, commenting on how busy I must be.... So far it hasn't been negative, just mostly incredulous, but I'm not really fond of sticking out and drawing so much attention. I guess I shouldn't have had five kids then, right?! Or else I should just hide away in my home. Haha.

6. On that note, those of you with 5+ kids, do you ever leave the house? Does it get easier or should I just resign myself to a life of seclusion?

7. Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Friday, October 28, 2016

7 Quick Takes: We had a baby!

1. Firstly and most importantly, our newest kiddo arrived!!!
Introducing Azalea Therese, born on October 13, weighing in at a petite 7lbs 7oz. Birth story to come soon:)

2. She is two weeks old now, and quite a good little baby, in that she sleeps, eats and poops lots!  

3. As expected, it has been so much fun watching the girls with her. They both rush to get her when they hear her wake up, and they just love changing her diaper and picking out her outfit for her.

4. The boys are also really cute with her! Of course they love to hold her, put her soother in and push her swing.

5. I'm feeling tired, due to feeding her at least every two hours in the night, but otherwise I'm feeling pretty good! I even took all FIVE kids out by myself and didn't die!

6. However, I took the four youngest to the grocery store (Maria was at swimming) today and it was pretty terrible. I had Zellie in my wrap so she was good, but Gus was running everywhere and Willy dropped a container of yogurt on the ground and I am looking very enviously at all you people who can order your groceries online and then just pick them up without leaving your vehicle?! That is looking amazing to me right now.

7.  Halloween and All Saints Day costumes this year are going to be very underwhelming. I remember when I used to sew the girls their costumes. Ha! Its a dig something out of your costume box which is probably the same thing you wore last year kind of a year. Luckily the kids are totally ok with it.

Have a good weekend and go see Kelly!

Friday, October 7, 2016

7 QT Pregnancy Edition

1. 40 weeks today!

Its my last week being pregnant! Induction should be scheduled for next week if this baby doesn't decide to come on her own before then!

2. My hospital bag is finally packed, the car seat is ready, and the baby clothes are washed. We just have to get the bassinet down from the attic and clean it up. But realistically we have a week left to do that!

3. What I'm most looking forward to: holding this baby, and showing her to the kids! It's been a long 40 weeks of waiting for all of us!

4. Although I'm eager to not be pregnant anymore, I really can't complain too much about this pregnancy, except that its been long. And hot! But I've been able to be pretty active, and have had no real problems, which I am super grateful for.

5. These last few weeks of waiting are kind of torturous though! I am so tired of visualizing labour over and over again...I just want to get it over and done with!!

6. I actually have to go through it??! The baby does have to come out somehow, right?!?!

7. Feeling super grateful that Hurricane Matthew turned northward and spared us. I was beginning to imagine being in labour and not being able to make it to the hospital.... Praying for all those who have been affected and who will be affected by it!

Linking up with Kelly!

Friday, September 16, 2016

7 QT

1. We are back at school and extra curricular activities and life is super busy! Maria does swimming (4 times a week) and soccer, Felicity does swimming, ballet and soccer, and the the boys play rugby. So it doesn't sound like a ton, but it ends up that we have something everyday except on Thursday. It gets exhausting.

2. School is going okay so far. There have been only a few melt downs and tantrums thrown so its not too bad! My biggest obstacle is that the girls have such a negative attitude towards it that it makes it disheartening when I'm putting so much effort in. Fun teacher I am not.

3. If only everyone had the attitude of William when it comes to learning! He is always the first one sitting next to me with his reading book each day. He is sounding words out and it is so cute to watch him!

4. William's very favourite thing to do right now is play Memory. And I'm not kidding when I say he kicks my butt nearly every time. I sit there in awe. I have no idea how he remembers where they all are.

5. Today was my last day at the gym. Not because I am too pregnant, because it still is making me feel good to workout (although vvvvvvverrrry scaled down and I am always so exhausted after). But my gym membership expired and I don't think I will renew it since I don't see myself getting out of the house very easily with a newborn, and 4 other kids and no gym daycare. Boo.

6. My next door neighbour sister had her baby a few weeks ago and it was absolutely the cutest thing when I took the kids to see their new cousin. They were in love and I can't wait for them to meet this baby! Gus just wanted to hold him the whole time and was so excited about everything he did. "He moved his hand!" He is going to be such a cute big brother! Felicity was over the moon and was lamenting that we'd have to wait 6 weeks to bring our own baby home!

7. 37 weeks today! I'm resigned to another four weeks of waiting, but the end is in sight! I really just cannot wait to hold this baby!

Have a superb weekend and go see Kelly for more fun!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


   It's 8pm and the house is finally quiet, for the first time since 6am this morning. Shane is not home and I don't even care that much because the whirring sound of the fan is pretty much all I want to hear right now. Life is busy. Does everybody say that? Did I say that when I just had two toddlers running around? I think so. And it was busy, but life with school aged kids and toddlers is a different kind of busy. Especially when you are homeschooling. My mind gets so overwhelmed from answering questions and giving directions all day long. My 36 week pregnant body gets exhausted from feeding children, doing laundry, washing dishes, changing diapers, picking up toys, and shuttling kids to different activities. And when the school day is over, there is my sweet four year old wanting to hang out and chat and play memory. Its the sweetest and I wish I could enjoy it but I really just want to be left alone. To have a few moments of quiet to drink my LaCroix. Without sharing. I miss the days when all the kids had naps/quiet times and I had a break in the middle of the day to recoup. Its just not doable anymore, and it leaves me drained by the end of the day.
    The fun part is that I'm about to add a newborn to the mix and life is going to get MORE CRAZY. Most days I wonder if I'll be able to do it. Are we crazy to be having another kid when I can't even handle the ones that we have?!
   I know life will probably just get more complicated and exhausting the older the kids get, and in a few years I'll probably look back on this post and laugh at my naive self. Little do I know how easy I have it now, right?

Friday, July 29, 2016

7 Quick Ones!

Linking up with Kelly two weeks in a row!

1. Two out of four kids have been sick pretty much all week so we've basically been watching shows and playing lots and lots of memory and cards. And reading stories. It seems that they are on the mend now so I'm hoping we can get out of the house this weekend!

2. William has a deep and burning desire to go to Russia. Because its big? I guess....he will just randomly sigh and say "I really want to go to Russia."

3. I attempted to grow some things in containers on my deck. I got a few cucumbers that really were the best tasting cucumbers ever. But then the plant got eaten by something. I don't know what. And I think we got two tomatoes and then none. And now there are two beautiful peppers out there. So totally worth it, right? I don't know what is wrong with my gardening skills.....

 4. 30 weeks! Hurray!

5. Sometimes so that we (I) don't have to go outside I let the boys bring their bikes inside the house. Mom of the year, right?

6. We are at a lovely stage in our family where the kids all get up on their own and make and eat breakfast on their own. So if we can ignore the noise and someone doesn't come in asking for a diaper to be changed, we can actually kind of sleep in till 7 or sometimes 8! I'm savouring it because I know things will change all too soon...

7. I really do hate to complain, but this time of year is really not so fun here. This is the first year that we aren't going up to Canada for a significant chunk of the summer and I am minding it even more than I thought. I miss those summer days of the kids playing outside all we try not to go outside if at all possible. Ok complaining over.

Have a lovely weekend!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Update on Life in 7QT

Has it really been over a year since I've written on here?! Linking up with Kelly for a little update on life around here:

1. We moved into our new house and it is wonderful! We love having a place of our own, next door to my sister and the pool is a nice perk:)

2. We're expecting baby #5! I'm 29 weeks today and looking forward to baby snuggles and not being pregnant in the nearish future. Just need to get through the rest of this sweltering summer.....
20 weeks!

3. Maria turned 9! How can it be???!! She's been swimming up a storm this past year and has improved SO much! I love watching her swim and cheering her on at meets. She hates school which makes me feel like a terrible failure as a homeschooling mom but such is life I guess. We are happy for the summer break:)

4. Felicity turned 7 and I feel like its the sweetest age (or else she is just the sweetest girl:) She is actually such a delight to me these days - so sweet, always ready to help, especially where Gus is concerned. I love her very dearly:)

5. William is 4! I feel like he is so old! But also still cute:) He took his first swimming lessons is now an awesome swimmer! He is such a good little brother and plays so nicely with the girls (read: does whatever they tell him). He is mostly patient with Gus too, Haha.

6. Gus is just the best. I love two year olds. He is active and really quite a terror to take in public (store or Church), and really dislikes having to be quiet or sit still. BUT! He is just so cute that I can overlook all of that. He loves to play superheroes or sports, but also loves to sit quietly and read a book (just not when you want him to, like in Church). He talks and expresses himself so well for his age and learns so much from his older siblings (for better or for worse).

7. Shane and I are celebrating 10 years in a few weeks! We went on a little babymoon/ anniversary trip to Houston and Dallas last week. We shopped til we literally dropped (had to stock up for the year!), ate way too much food, and even got to play tennis and go skating. It was nice to get off the Island (first time in a year for me!) and spend a little time not eat, sleep and breathing all things children! But it was also so nice to come back to the little loves who we really did miss so much.

Have a great weekend and hope to be back before the year is up ;)