Emily’s Nursery


Paint Color: Benjamin Moore Pleasant Pink

Curtains: DIY’d, fabric is Waverly Spring Bling Spring

Curtain Hardware: Threshold Mercury Ball Curtain Rod from Target

Crib and Dresser: Baby’s Dream Legendary, purchased from Georgia Baby & Kids Furniture

Glider/Recliner: Benji by Best Chairs, purchased from KooKoo Bear Kids Furniture

Mirror: Urban Trends Collection from Overstock, painted gray

Side Table: International Concepts Hampton Accent Table, painted white

Table Lamp: Marshall’s

Floor Lamp: Kirkland’s

Bedding: sheet and crib skirt are both from Target

Wall Letters: Pottery Barn Kids

Picture Frame: Pottery Barn (no longer available)

Desk Clock: Pottery Barn Kids (no longer available)

Changing Pad Cover: Amazon


Emily’s Arrival (Continued)

After getting out of the hospital it was so nice to finally be home and start figuring out this parenting thing! David and I were both pretty stressed because of Emily (of course) but also just the sheer amount of stuff we brought home from the hospital. They really loaded us up with lots of supplies, diapers, and drugs. Emily and I were figuring out breastfeeding, and David and I would try and sneak in a few naps here and there.

The day after we got home from the hospital I started getting the chills and running a fever. My temperature spiked up to 101, but then I’d recover and feel OK. A few hours later it happened again, but with more violent chills/shaking and a fever of 104.5. We headed to the emergency room and my mom watched Emily.

I was quickly admitted to the ER (my temperature was still 103 at this point and my blood pressure was very low) and they began to take blood and urine to determine what was wrong with me. The 1st ER doctor came in to check me out and somehow came to the conclusion that I had endometriosis. Then an OB from my practice came in and she was convinced I had a kidney infection (I had some really minor pain on one side). The lab results confirmed the kidney infection and they sent me off to the main hospital for antibiotics and David went home.

At this point I was feeling decent, but pretty bummed about being back in the hospital (alone!) but it seemed like they could just fix me up with some antibiotics and I’d go home the next day. Unfortunately it didn’t work out like that. Some of the initial blood cultures were showing that the infection had spread to my bloodstream (sepsis). Additionally the cultures also showed that the particular strain of E. coli that caused my infection was resistant to antibiotics (and subsequently everyone who now entered my room had to wear a robe and mask). I also received a CT scan to check for infections in other organs. Luckily, the CT scan was negative (besides the kidney infection) and the blood culture results finally came back without the blood infection and a plan for antibiotics that would be effective and still allow me to breastfeed. I had been pumping around the clock to be able to keep up for when I got home to Emily, but unfortunately had to throw out a large portion of what I produced because of certain antibiotics and the contrast dye used during the CT scan.

The major caveat to my treatment plan was that the antibiotics to treat my infection could only be delivered intravenously. Oral antibiotics were available, but they weren’t safe for breastfeeding. On my 4th and final day in the hospital (and the final step before I could go home) I had a PICC line inserted into my arm. Basically it’s a temporary IV that would allow me to give myself the antibiotics 1x per day for the next 2 weeks. Essentially they shove a tube up through your arm that goes directly into a major vein in your heart.  It’s kind of freaky, but you gotta do what you gotta do. After the PICC line was inserted, they did a chest X-ray to confirm the correct placement, and then I was finally able to go home! I had spent almost 4 full days in the hospital.

Luckily I was not physically uncomfortable or ill-feeling for the majority of my stay, but the mental part of being away from Emily during most of her 1st week of life was really, really tough. I am pretty sure I had a crying meltdown on the phone with David every day when the doctors would make their rounds and tell me they needed to keep me another night. Luckily I had lots of people checking in on me via text, Facebook, Snapchat, etc. so that kept my spirits up. I also had a few great nurses (that made me really appreciate how hard nurses work!).

After 2 weeks of antibiotic treatment my PICC line is gone and things are mostly back to normal. Emily refuses to breastfeed after taking a bottle almost exclusively in her 1st week, so it seems like I’m destined to be a slave to the pump for the next several months. But we’re getting the hang of things, albeit rather slowly.

The OB from my practice had commented that the ultimate cause of the infection was likely from the catheter used when I delivered. I don’t think there is a day that goes by that David and I don’t joke about suing the hospital for pain, suffering, and lost wages due to constant bottle washing!

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Pre-CT scan contrast drink


My niece requesting my escape :)

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Giving myself antibiotics at home

Emily’s Arrival

Emily’s 1st month has been a whirlwind in so many different ways. It’s crazy how fast you adapt to being a parent and the accompanied sleep deprivation! This is a novel of a post, but I want to remember and document this, but you’ve been warned…

Stepping back to how it all started — going into labor! I got up in the middle of the night to pee (as usual) but when I laid back down in bed I started feeling some mild cramps. I knew that contractions could start and stop, and these were very minor pains, so I just would glance at the clock to see if there was any pattern or rhythm. The contractions would go anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes apart, but then suddenly I felt a “gush” of my water breaking! I went to go tell David (he was sleeping in another room because of my pregnancy-induced snoring!) and he *literally* jumped out of bed screaming (I guess I startled him when I woke him up!). We put together the last few things in our bags and called the OB office to let them know we were going to the hospital. I wasn’t having strong contractions or anything at this point, so it wasn’t a huge rush to get to the hospital, but at times I was shaking with nervousness/adrenaline.

We got to the hospital around 6am (yay for not having to deal with any traffic!) and got into the L&D room and checked at about 6:30am. I was still 3.5cm dilated (same as at my doctor appointment the previous day) and not having “efficient”/strong contractions so they gave me Pitocin to help things move along. Things *did* start moving along at that point, and they gave me a narcotic intravenously to take the edge off. That only gave me about 30 minutes of relief (and they can only give it to you once per hour) so I requested the epidural. The anesthesiologist was taking forever to show up, so they gave me a second dose of the narcotic (I can’t remember the name of it…), which only gave me about 10 minutes of relief. They finally inserted my epidural, at which the contractions were starting to get pretty intense…but then the epidural didn’t really do much. My left side was a little numb, but I still felt a lot of pain on my right side. The nurse called the anesthesiologist back and they had to re-place the epidural a 2nd time. Thankfully, the 2nd epidural worked! It was about an hour and a half from the time I asked for the epidural to finally being pain free, so I had a rough patch of time of really concentrating on breathing through some very intense contractions. It was not really something I expected to have to deal with when going into labor with a plan to get an epidural, but at that point I was just glad that the 2nd epidural actually worked!

Finally after all of that (~11:15am by now), the midwife checked my cervix and announced in a very surprised tone that I was complete/fully dilated. She had to go perform a C-section, so I was able to relax a bit and “enjoy” my epidural for the next hour or so. I was a little too nervous to actually fall asleep, but I was able to rest up pain free while we waited for the midwife to get back.

The midwife returned from the C-section and it was time to start pushing. The problem (?) was, I could not feel *anything*. They really gave me a GOOD 2nd epidural. I didn’t feel any pain or even any pressure at all. So it was a kind of out-of-body experience, but I ended up pushing for about 40 minutes. My contractions were not extremely close together so there were some long gaps in there. As she was getting closer, her heart rate started to drop a little so they gave me an oxygen mask. After maybe 10 contractions she was out and they put her on my chest. She cried right away! And so did we. :)

Because of the short time between when I received the IV narcotic and when she was born, the NICU team was called into the room to check her out (they warn you during the hospital tour of this white phone on the wall that connects to the NICU nurses). She had a little “hiccup” in her breathing for about the 1st 24 hours or so, but was otherwise deemed OK by the NICU. They cleaned her up (and me too..) and then we hung out for a bit. We stayed in L&D for quite a long time because I was still very numb from the epidural. Even when we went up to the recovery room David and the nurse had to essentially pick me up out of bed and put me into the wheelchair!

The following 48 hours in the hospital were pretty much a blur, with visitors, nurses and doctors constantly coming in and out of the room. I don’t think I slept more than 3 or 4 hours total. By Friday morning we were anxious to get out of the hospital and back home.

To be continued…

She’s here!

Emily Harper was born on Wednesday August 12th (39 weeks and 4 days gestation) at 12:56pm, weighing 6lbs 14oz and measuring 20 in long.

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Baby Progress: Week 39

(I never got around to publishing this post since I didn’t get all of the way through week 39!)

How far along? 39 weeks, officially full term!

Total weight gain/loss: In total I gained 17lbs during my pregnancy

Maternity clothes? Wearing the same things over and over

Stretch marks? Came out alive without any stretch marks. I hear they can still show up later, but so far so good…

Symptoms: I had some bad hip pain that was making me waddle around like an old lady

Sleep:  Sleeping was ok until my water broke!

Best moment this week: Having my baby!

Worst moment of the week: I was a little bummed that I didn’t progress much since my OB appointment last week, but I guess it’s true that it really doesn’t matter since I went into labor a little over 12 hours later.

Have you told family and friends: Yes

Miss Anything? Alcohol

Movement: She was definitely running out of room at the end there.

Food cravings: Nothing in particular

Anything making you queasy or sick: No

Have you started to show yet: Yes

Gender:  Girl

Labor Signs: My water breaking? Ha. I had infrequent contractions for about an hour before my water broke.

Belly Button in or out? Out

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy

Looking forward to: Meeting our little girl :)

Baby Progress: Week 38

How far along? 38 weeks (39 weeks tomorrow!)

Total weight gain/loss: Roughly 17 lbs. I don’t understand those guidelines about gaining 1lb per week in third trimester because there is NO ROOM FOR FOOD.

Maternity clothes? I haven’t really been leaving the house too much so I’m basically in shorts, a sports bra, and tanks most of the time.

Stretch marks? Nope

Symptoms: More frequent/occasionally intense Braxton Hicks contractions. Otherwise more of the same: back aches, round ligament pain, more heartburn.

Sleep:  David and I have been trying to get a decent amount of sleep, knowing that we won’t be getting nearly any in the not-so-distant future. I’ve run David out of our bedroom with my snoring and tossing and turning… :(

Best moment this week: Nothing in particular, just getting closer and closer to actually meeting this kiddo!

Worst moment of the week: We learned late last week that David’s aunt passed away. She was under hospice care for a while, but was one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. My in-laws traveled out of town this week to my uncle’s memorial service, and then will host a local memorial service in a few weeks. Along with my father-in-law getting his 3rd knee replacement surgery at the end of the month, I think they are a bit overwhelmed. Hopefully the baby is a happy distraction from their grief and stress.

Have you told family and friends: Yes

Miss Anything? Ultimate (the team I play with wrapped up the summer season with a pretty decent placement in finals). Laying on my stomach and back. WINE. BEER. Everything, basically.

Movement: Had a few times this week where she decided to move around basically nonstop for almost 2 hours. Omg girl, take a break!

Food cravings: Oreos

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope

Have you started to show yet: Yes

Gender:  Girl

Labor Signs: (Apologies if this is TMI, but I just want to record this!) I was very surprised to find out at my appointment on Tuesday that I am 3cm dilated, 60% effaced, and at -1 station. Of course this was just after I was telling my doctor that I had very low expectations and that she was NOT allowed to arrive this week because of the grandparents being out of town.

Belly Button in or out? Out

Wedding rings on or off? On, shockingly! I would have thought for sure with the August heat and being 9 months pregnant they wouldn’t fit, but they’re still on.

Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy. It seems like my emotions have leveled out a bit where I’m not extremely anxious or on the brink of tears every 10 minutes.

Looking forward to: Getting a pedicure tomorrow. Really I would just pay the salon to let me sit in their massage chair for an hour, but I guess the toenail polish is a nice touch too ;)


Baby Progress: Week 37

How far along? 37 weeks

Total weight gain/loss: 17 lbs. A little freaky to see a number on the scale that I’ve never seen before (and yikes did I really use to weigh this much at one point non-pregnant??).

Maternity clothes? I’m getting tired of wearing the same things over and over again, but the end is in sight. I might grab another pair of the pants I’m wearing in this week’s photo since they are super comfortable and shockingly non-maternity (although they are basically cut like maternity pants…and my non-existent booty is even more diminished when I wear them). I’m also running out of different outfits to wear every week for my weekly photo. I might have to get creative near the end here…

Stretch marks? Still none so far…

Symptoms: Just general uncomfortable-ness and heartburn.

Sleep:  Decent. I haven’t been quite as exhausted lately, but I think it’s because I’ve been consciously being a lot lazier.

Best moment this week: Just getting a lot closer to being “ready” both in terms of logistics (hospital bag packed, hospital tour and classes complete, putting the finishing touches on the nursery) and mentally.

Worst moment of the week: Just the usual uncomfortable/tired combo. I am also annoyed that the floor lamp I have been waiting to be restocked went out of stock AGAIN and is now unavailable until September. Oh well. The nursery will never really be done I guess.

Have you told family and friends: Yes

Miss Anything? Being able to pick things up off the floor.

Movement: Is it possible to develop internal bruising from baby kicks? Ow. I’ll be shocked if she isn’t born with razor blades attached to her elbows.

Food cravings: Pop tarts

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope

Have you started to show yet: Yes

Gender:  Girl

Labor Signs: Some painful twinges here and there, but nothing serious yet. I’m on strict orders not to give birth in the next week because both my mom and my mother-in-law will both be out of town! I declined the cervical check this week (and was even kind of surprised they even offered it), but I guess I’ll find out next week if there’s any progress.

Belly Button in or out? Out

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy

Looking forward to: I think everything is crossed off the “must do” list, so not really sure what to do with myself this weekend!

Baby Progress: Week 36

How far along? 36 weeks (I’ll be 37 weeks tomorrow which is “term”, but really, I’m OK if she hangs out in there until at least August 1st!)

Total weight gain/loss: about 16.5 lbs

Maternity clothes? In the words of Regina George, “Sweatpants are all that fit me right now.” I’m wearing the same 4-5 tops every week and some of those are starting to get too small. I picked up some patterned elastic waistband sleep pants off the clearance rack at Target that could be passable as trendy palazzo pants to wear in public/to doctor appointments/post-baby. (Even the top I wore in my photo this week looks admittedly ridiculous — I changed out of it pretty quickly after it was taken)

Stretch marks? Nope, but I feel like I am really being stretched lately. Not sure how much longer my skin can handle it.

Symptoms: The frequent pressure on my bladder is awful at times, especially when you’re taking multiple trips to the bathroom in a single hour. I’m also getting to the point where every twinge of pain starts to make me wonder “was that a contraction?”. She’s also up in my ribs occasionally which is uncomfortable. So generally — uncomfortable!

Sleep:  I’ve been sleeping decently (usually getting up around 3am to pee) but I still feel like I have zero energy some days. It’s almost worst than 1st trimester exhaustion because I have to carry this big belly around too.

Best moment this week: Nothing in particular, really…

Worst moment of the week: Same. Maybe a rough night of sleep here or there, but nothing awful.

Have you told family and friends: Yes

Miss Anything? Comfort. Not getting exhausted from taking a shower/standing for a brief period of time/life in general.

Movement: I think she is starting to run out of room, but her hiccups are definitely stronger. She is head down (yay!).

Food cravings: Nothing has really seemed all that appetizing lately.

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope

Have you started to show yet: Yes

Gender:  Girl

Labor Signs: Nope

Belly Button in or out? Out

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or Moody most of the time: Neither?

Looking forward to: Doing a last minute Target run for necessities, packing our hospital bag, and maybe seeing some friends if I have the energy!

Baby Progress: Week 35

How far along? 35 weeks

Total weight gain/loss: up 16 lbs

Maternity clothes? I’ve been working from home pretty frequently, so I’ve been in tanks and workout shorts mostly.

Stretch marks? Nope

Symptoms: Leg cramps at night. Not shooting pain or anything, but just waking up and my legs feel achy like I had a really hard workout.

Sleep:  I’m exhausted by 9pm and then I’m awake tossing and turning at 3am. Not cool. Tossing and turning is even exhausting!

Best moment this week: We got off the waiting list and into a daycare! Not our #1 choice, but still a good runner-up. She has a guaranteed spot for January, and I can get my boss off my back about my exact return date.

Worst moment of the week: Just a few rough nights of sleep and some anxiety about things still left to do/thinking about labor & delivery.

Have you told family and friends: Yes

Miss Anything? Not needing to pee every 30 minutes.

Movement: Still moving a ton.

Food cravings: I had some amazing peach tea at a friend’s house the other day and now I want everything peach!

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope

Have you started to show yet: Yes, but “not from behind” according to my hair girl. Are you supposed to look pregnant from behind? That’s the 2nd time I’ve heard that comment :P

Gender:  Girl

Labor Signs: Not really a true labor sign, but I had some consistent/frequent Braxton Hicks contractions the other night. Probably due to dehydration. I’ll admit that it set me into a little bit of panic/nesting mode.

Belly Button in or out? Out

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy

Looking forward to: Getting the last few items crossed off the to do list and then RELAXING. I’ve barely gone to the gym lately and am looking forward to a few weeks (hopefully) of rest before she arrives.

Baby Progress: Week 34

How far along? 34 weeks

Total weight gain/loss: about 15 lbs

Maternity clothes? I’ve been wearing mostly maxi dresses lately since I’ve been too lazy to shave my legs. Lovely, right?

Stretch marks? Nope

Symptoms: Some back pain and stiffness. I’ll spare you the details on other new symptoms.

Sleep:  Consistently getting up to pee 1-2x per night, so I guess that’s here for good. Other than that, some light tossing and turning, but not too bad.

Best moment this week: Hanging out with friends for the 4th was great! We even got a few games of polish horseshoes in before setting off fireworks. I definitely paid for all of that excitement when the next day I needed a few naps. We set up the pack and play in our bedroom and took an infant CPR and “baby essentials” care taking class. Also I hit my weight lifting goal for the year (1 million lbs!!!). I’ll definitely be taking it easy at the gym from here on out.

Worst moment of the week: I had a bleeding scare that warranted a trip to the OB for an ultrasound. Everything turned out to be fine, but I was kind of a nervous wreck for a few hours days. They couldn’t find any reason why the bleeding was happening and it stopped a few hours later, but it was still reassuring to check things out on the ultrasound. She is measuring right at 5 lbs, has long legs, and a lot of hair already. I’ve been taking it pretty easy since then, so hopefully it’s just a one time fluke. It has kind of made me a bit paranoid that I’m going to go into labor in like…the next week…so while I have a sudden urge to nest, I know I need to relax a bit.

Have you told family and friends: Yes

Miss Anything? Being able to move around comfortably. Just sitting on the couch can be uncomfortable. I was telling my ultimate friends that I saw over the weekend that I miss being competitive!

Movement: She’s still moving a bunch, and actually I was surprised to learn during the ultrasound that she is actually head down. The large bump I’m feeling near the top of my belly must be her bubble butt. She even got a hiccup episode during the ultrasound. See? All. the. time.

Food cravings: Nothing in particular.

Anything making you queasy or sick: No

Have you started to show yet: Yes

Gender:  Girl

Labor Signs: No, thankfully!

Belly Button in or out? Out

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or Moody most of the time: I’ve been pretty happy, but I can really tell that my pregnancy hormones are going into overdrive. One day I’ll feel huge, totally anxious about everything, annoyed, and other days I will have no problems telling myself that I have a cute belly and that I’ll survive labor and delivery. 

Looking forward to: My niece’s birthday party this weekend! I can’t believe she is already 1!