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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Ready for Baby Brother

We did it! I have officially made it "to term" with Baby Brother! I am now 37 weeks pregnant and although my due date is July 11 (due dates are set at 40 weeks), 37 weeks is considered full term. 37-42 weeks is generally considered to be the window for a safe home birth. There is always the possibility of a hospital transfer, but so far (Thank God) I have been blessed to have a healthy, uncomplicated, low-risk pregnancy and all signs point to us actually getting to have a home birth this time around. (Calvin was born in the hospital because he was "late pre-term" at 36 weeks and there can be a big difference between 36 and 37 weeks when it comes to tiny babies.)

For me, the choice to have a home birth is about how I'd like to experience bringing this baby into the world. I want it to be safe for both of us, of course, so if there is any indication that a home birth is no longer a safe option I will not hesitate to go to the hospital just as we did the last time. But I also want the experience to be  private, intimate, and comfortable. I want to be surrounded by just a few people who know and love me and have personal interest in my well-being and the baby's well-being.

I am so fortunate to live in a place where home birth is a viable, safe, and legal option for me because there are awesome trained and experienced midwives who are legally allowed to practice in California (at least for now... but that is another story). And I am extra lucky to have Michelle Welborn as my midwife again! She is amazing.

Michelle and Calvin... just 14 months ago!
I am hoping that this baby will have an early July birthday (I'd like to get another month between him and Calvin if possible!) but the truth is he could come any day now! So here are some things we've done around our home to get ready for his arrival...

Supplies for a home birth
When I was learning about home birthing and midwifery I was surprised at how much medical stuff midwives are actually able to do in homes! To prepare for the birth it was our job as the parents to order/gather some of the supplies and have them organized and accessible. The supplies include things like sterile gloves, "Chux" pads (waterproof pads and sheets, just like in the hospital), sterile gauze, a blood-typing kit, towels, sheets, receiving blankets, a heating pad, garbage bags, and a bunch of other stuff. In addition, Michelle will bring her usual med supplies like her fetoscope, fetal doppler, thermometer, and blood pressure monitor; plus more medical supplies for the birth including IV kits, IV bags with fluids and antibiotics, medications to help stop bleeding after the birth (the same ones used in hospitals), newborn medications (again, same as in the hospital), a suture kit, a kit to do the newborn blood screen, a scale to weigh the baby, and so on and so on.

I also stocked up on coconut water to keep myself hydrated during labor!

Speaking of stocking up... the freezer in the garage is now stocked with food for the week or two following the birth. I figure we'll all be busy and I'll probably be in bed with the baby most of the time so it will be helpful to have meals (and take-out menus!) on hand. A couple of weeks ago I started doubling my recipes and saving half so now we've got some soups and casseroles ready and waiting.

We've got the bassinet set up again in the bedroom, and the changing table is now stocked with newborn diapers in addition to Calvin's supply.

This bassinet has been in my family for over 50 years. My mom likes to recall all the babies (including myself and herself) who have slept in this bassinet!

Look how teeny the newborn diapers are! Of course, they will both be able to use our adjustable Bumgenius diapers, but we like to keep disposable diapers on hand too. 
The newborn and 0-3 month clothes are unpacked and washed, and I made space for them in the changing table cabinet. Calvin has his new big boy convertible car seat so our infant seat is free for the new baby.

I realize that Calvin is tiny for a big brother, but still! He's come a long way from those little newborn onesies... and he even started out in preemie onesies!
Aaaah! I can't believe we'll have another tiny, mushy baby boy here soon! I'm so excited for him to arrive, but I am still hoping for July! I wish I could fast forward a couple of weeks! 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Fresh Air for Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to all the awesome dads and grandpas we know!

Last year, Father's Day was a double celebration for James. Not only was he the proud new daddy of our sweet Calvin, but it was also the day of his graduation ceremony at Stanford!

James receiving his PhD hood from his advisor. June 2012

James with his proud mom and dad.

James and teeny tiny Calvin who was just two months old at the time!

This year we celebrated James as a soon-to-be father of two! On Father's Day I was 36 weeks and 3 days pregnant... fun fact: the last time I was 36 weeks and 3 days pregnant was the day Calvin was born! So we are fast approaching baby brother's arrival! My mom is in town and staying with us as we get ready for the new baby.

We had brunch at home and James got his Father's Day gifts. 

Our brunch food all came from Whole Foods. I didn't cook, unless you count the fruit salad. 

James drinks coffee every morning and beer with dinner every evening so I bought him a new travel coffee mug with coffee to go with it, and a new Duvel tulip-shaped beer glass with some Duvel to go with it, of course!
I couldn't resist getting him a bottle of "Double Daddy" IPA! 

That afternoon, we drove down to Edgewood Park for a picnic and a hike. I didn't go hiking, but James and Calvin went on a father-son hike and my mom and I rested at the picnic site. I wish I could  have gone hiking with  them, but I am taking it easy these days so that hopefully I will make it to term with this baby :)

Calvin is ready to chow down. 
We did a Whole Foods version of our usual TJ's picnic... fancier and more expensive! Sourdough baguettes, salami (nitrite free and organic, of course!), mozzarella and smoked gouda, fancy olives, fancy hummus, sliced veggies, fruit salad and chocolate chip cookies. Wine (in a carton!) for mom and James, coconut water for me, and plain water for everybody. 

Calvin practiced standing :) What a big boy! 

After our picnic, James put Calvin in the Ergo and headed off on the trail. Mom and I stayed behind and lounged on the lawn.

Look at these two handsome guys!!

Calvin napped during the hike and when they got back, we packed up the car and drove through the mountains toward the beach just as we had done on Mother's Day. And just like on Mother's Day we went to dinner at the Half Moon Bay Brewing Company restaurant. We had a yummy meal and all the dads at the restaurant got beer glasses with the brewery logo as Father's Day gifts.