June 28, 2011

Our Sweet Emmy Lu


On Monday morning @ 5:14 am we finally met our sweet little baby GIRL!!!  Emmeline Lucille 7lbs 12 oz 20.5inches long.  I was so excited to even out the “teams” in our house and to have a little princess to dress up!!! 

Here is her birth story.  My water broke @ 10:30 pm Sunday night.  I was sure it was my water breaking because the same thing happened with Tanner.  UNLIKE Tanner’s birth though, contraction started almost immediately after.  I took a shower and we decided to head to the hospital.  We arrived @ St Mary’s in Duluth @ 1am.  After checking in (which involved asking me 1,000,000 questions) I was only dialated to 3.5cm and the contractions were coming stronger and regularly.  The resident was not convinced that my labor was going anywhere and let me just hang out for a while.  In the meantime, the contractions kept coming and I kept breathing through them but I could tell that it was starting to move faster, so could my nurse (she was AWESOME)  They were about to hook up my IV when they just decided to check me again to see where I was and surprise surprise I was dialated to almost 9.  Needless to say there was barely enough time to get the delivery stuff set up so an epidural or any type of pain management was out of the question.  (Which is what I was hoping for but didn’t know if I would have the strength/guts to pull off).  I told the nurse that I needed to push so I started.  (Paul said he could see the head before the resident doc or nurse was even there).  Three quick pushes later I had our sweet, wonderful, prefect little girl!!!

I am completely and utterly in love again.  She is sweet, calm and PERFECT!!  We are both doing really well and came home from the hospital this morning.  I have to say that delivery without the epidural was WAY WAY WAY better than my epidural/pitocin delivery with Tanner.  I am just so happy that I was able to bring another healthy, wonderful baby into this world!

We are waiting for Tanner to wake up so that we can introduce the siblings.  I am excited/nervous to see his reaction.  In the meantime, here are some pictures of our Sweet Emmy Lu.

Paul grabbed the camera in time to get a couple pictures!!  Good work Daddy!!

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Just a couple hours old!!!

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Daddy changes the first diaper!!

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Emmy Lu’s Birthday Rainbow


Savannah and Sadie come to visit!

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We are Ready to go home!!!

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First Car Ride



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June 26, 2011

Crawling??? Who needs Crawling??

It has been about a week since Tanner started getting more and more brave with his walking. Still he was doing a combo of walking and crawling. Each day he has been gaining more and more confidence. There is more walking and less crawling. The last 2 days, it has been nearly all walking...He's figured out how much faster/easier it is to be up on two instead of all fours. Probably WAY easier on his knees too (the kid would crawl through ANYTHING). I was not stressing about him walking and figured that he would do it in his own sweet time without much prodding from his pesky mom. That is EXACTLY what he did. One day he felt like walking so he did. What a kid. Here is some video of him walking.

Sorry it is a little dark, but you get the idea.

Also Note: When I point the camera down, I couldn't avoid the GIANT belly. It gets in the way sometimes :) 2 days overdue and counting!!

June 24, 2011

Due Date Pics and Update

Paul and I had a great day on our Due Date-Date today.  We ran some necessary errands, went to eat @ Fitger’s Brewhouse on Lake Superior then had ice cream along the lake walk on Lake Superior.  It was 80, sunny and still in Duluth today (a VERY RARE but WONDERFUL occurrence) .  Here are a couple pictures of us today.  I have to admit that I caught my profile a couple times today in shop windows etc and thought..holy cow that lady is UBER pregnant.

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Doctor/Baby Update:

*Warning*-Lady parts terms used

I still have not progressed very much as far as dialation and effacement.  (I have been sitting at the same point for weeks now).  The baby’s heartbeat is good and strong and I am still checking out healthy as a can be (Great BP, Weight, etc).  My doctor feels comfortable letting me see what happens over the next week BUT if I do not go into labor on my own, I go to the hospital next Thurs night for some “cervix ripening where they will insert a small balloon type thing in my cervix to help me dialate.  Then Friday morning the 1st of July, my doctor would like to schedule me to get induced (via pitocin).  She explained the risks of going much over 41 weeks and I agree.  The baby is measuring normal and is head down, he/she just isn’t ready to come out yet.

Although I will try everything in my power to avoid a medically induced labor (walking, spicy food, lovin’, more walking, etc) it is at least reassuring to know that there is a plan in place-just in case.  So all of you waiting to hear of Deuce’s arrival fear not…U will have just one more week at most to wait to hear some news.

In the mean time..if you need me, I will be keeping busy and trying to kick start this labor.

Happy Due Date

Having not made it to my “due date” with Tanner, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about this day getting here.  I use the word “due date” in quotes because I am really not a firm believer in the idea anyways.  In my opinion people place too much importance on the ONE DAY you are supposed to have you baby???  More realistically, it is a GUESS at range at when your baby might arrive.  So today I am celebrating this day, not by having a baby BUT by going on a date with my wonderful husband.  I have a doctor’s appointment @ 4 pm so, with the help of Nana to babysit Tanner, we are heading out on a Due Date Date this afternoon.  We are spending some quality adult time together in Duluth before our world is completely rocked again.  I am excited to have an afternoon to focus on Paul and just have some fun together.  I am also very excited to go out to eat.  This baby must be packing on the lbs…because I feel like this last week of pregnancy, my appetite has been the largest. 

Also as a side note to those of you who have been asking, wondering, etc….I will not be using any type of inducement unless it is medically necessary or if by some weird will of nature, I go 42 weeks with this pregnancy.  I contemplated the minimally invasive techniques like membrane stripping etc BUT can’t in good conscience make this cute little baby come out before he/she is ready-no matter how excited I am to meet him/her.  So, you all will have to try your hand at patience as well and wait to hear the good news whenever it happens.

I have read the cues from my body this entire pregnancy, made good choices, and again LOVED being pregnant which I don’t want to take for granted.  Having a healthy, easy pregnancy is nothing to scoff at.  Also, with all of the babies born who need breathing tubes, medical attention, stays in NIC-U, I am truly just VERY VERY thankful to have had another successful full term pregnancy.  I guess I come from “good German breeding stock” as my mom would say.  I am hoping that soon enough I will deliver this healthy, happy little person and will get to introduce them to this wonderfully weird and amazing world we live in.

So thank you for all your thoughts, concern, texts, calls, etc.  This baby is not here yet and doesn’t seem to be in a rush BUT I am sure he/she is coming right around the corner.  Also, with my addiction to texting, facebook and blogging, I am SURE you will here the good news shortly after it does finally happen.  Keep sending those good baby vibes my way :)

June 19, 2011

Up and running….

Ok so maybe he’s not RUNNING…BUT…He is walking by himself!!  The past two days,Tanner has been getting more and more brave.  He is walking from Mommy to Daddy, and Mommy to the couch, and from chair to chair, etc.  I told him he needed to get walking before the baby came so I guess he WAS listening to me.  He is such a big boy.  Also this week he is mastering eating with his spoon and fork.  Today he had a big bowl of Malt o Meal feeding himself AND his favorite Tator Tot Hotdish for supper..again spooned in by himself.  Videos to come soon.


PS…I’m still pregnant.  I’ve been having mild contractions for the past 2 days but nothing to get excited about.  Went for a power walk, cooked a big meal and did some cleaning…trying to stay on my feet and let this baby know he/she can come on out anytime now…I am ready for ‘em!!

June 14, 2011

Motherly Guilt- a necessary evil??

So far, I have done a pretty good job of avoiding the “motherly guilt” or “parenting guilt” that seems to plague moms and dads these days. 

Are we doing enough? Am I giving enough time/love/attention to our children? Are we doing things right? Should we have done things differently?  Should I stay home more?  Should I work more?  These are all things that I know many parents grapple with as we raise our children. 

Like I said I have been fairly good at having enough confidence in my mothering ability and job so far that I have avoided these feelings of guilt.  I give my all and can feel in the very fiber of my being that I am doing things right for Tanner, my husband and our family.  I feel lucky to have escaped this guilt.


Maybe it is the last few days of pregnancy that are messing with my head, maybe it is the coming of the full moon tomorrow night, maybe it is fear driven, but for some reason I feel guilty that Tanner will not be the center of my world and universe when this baby comes.  I feel guilty that he will no longer be a baby but a BIG brother @ 15 months old.  I feel like I am robbing him of babyhood.  I feel scared that what if, JUST WHAT IF, my heart can’t love two babies like everyone it tells me it can.

I know logically that ALL these things are silly, but my emotions or fear and guilt have consumed me today.  It got me looking into the reasoning behind motherly guilt and made me feel MUCH MUCH better.

I found this today online regarding the guilt a mother feels-

A mother’s guilt stems from an inability to give more of herself, but Jane Adams, speaker, author, and research psychologist, offers another perspective. "Guilt is an internal state that is self-defeating and also self-absorbing," she says. "Guilt is all about you, not the subject of your feelings."

That was all I need to read to SNAP out of it.

Get over myself.

Get a grip.

LET GO of the GUILT.

LET GO of the FEAR.

Tanner will be fine.  Of course my heart will grow enough to love 2 children unconditionally.  Even if I weren’t having another baby right now, Tanner would still not be a '’baby”-he is a developing, talking, exploring toddler.  Tanner and baby will not be competing rather ENRICHING each others lives.  They will be teammates, partners in crime, friends, SIBLINGS.  They will fight, and play and LOVE each other to no end like I love my siblings.  It is going to be great that they will experience life stages together.

So instead of feeling guilt, I now feel a sense of calm self reassurance.

I am doing the right thing.

I am enough.

I can do this.

Neurotic vacation is over…time for a flight back to my reality.


So my verdict is….Motherly guilt does NOT come with the territory.  It is unnecessary and only affects you if you let it.

Live, Love, Relax, Trust and ENJOY!!!

June 13, 2011

99 times out of 100

99 times out of 100 I will catch Tanner in the act of digging in something, playing, or just plain old exploring like a 15 month old should and ask,

“Whatcha doing??”

This is the look I get. 

It’s his- I’m so cute and couldn’t possibly be doing anything destructive- look.  This morning’s adventure included an open case of Diet Coke and a camera…Oh the possibilities in the world of a toddler.



June 12, 2011

McConnell Maternity Photos

I am not the only one of my friends having a baby this summer.  In fact, I feel like we are in the midst of a never-ending baby boom.  It seemed like a few year ago we were all knee-deep in wedding veils, dresses, reception details, etc… Now we are all preoccupied with diapers, cribs, which brand of bottles to use, etc...  I had the pleasure of taking some maternity pictures for my beautiful friend Ann and her husband, Shane.  They are expecting a little girl on or around July 16th.  This is their first baby and they are both over the moon.  They are such a great couple and I got some really great shots that I hope really capture the pregnancy for them.  Here’s some of my favorites…there were LOTS of good shots so picking which ones to edit was tough…

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Not to toot my own horn too much but what great pictures huh??  I had lots of fun shooting yesterday and it made me think more seriously about turning this hobby of photography into something more…We’ll see…

Thanks Ann and Shane (and Baby Girl McConnell) for being such great subjects!!!

June 10, 2011

Maternity Photos

I have been putting this off but today decided I’d better get a some maternity photos of myself.  I really loved the ones I took when I was pregnant with Tanner and although I will never have these out on display in my house, I think it is a really nice keepsake to have of each pregnancy to remember how I looked and felt at full term.  Here are some pictures of me @ 38 weeks and counting… Still feeling great and baby is checking out just fine.  Like I said before I am not one of those moms who wishes their pregnancy to be over because I know I will miss it when it is over.  I am perfectly happy patiently waiting for my little guy or gal to come out whenever they are ready.

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Maternity 8

Maternity 9 BW

June 6, 2011

MN Summer

We have been LOVING LOVING LOVING this glimpse of MN summer.  Today we even swam in the lake for the first time this year.  Tanner is a water baby and just couldn’t get enough.  It was hot hot hot, sunny and NO wind which is sort of amazing for a big lake like ours.  We spent the afternoon living it up, cleaning the beach and playing in the water.  No wonder Tanner has been taking 3 hour naps every afternoon and sleeping from 8pm-8am…he is one busy boy.  I like to stay busy too…time to start getting this baby thinking about moving out soon :)

Here are some pics I took today:

Out for an afternoon cruise.


Our swimmer guy.

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Yes…37 1/2 weeks pregnant and I am posting pics of myself in a swimsuit…BRAVE I know.

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Playing in the sand.

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Like I said…STILL and HOT!!  Perfect combo.

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I have a feeling that even if these “perfect” days are few and far between, I will still have a pretty excellent summer :)