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Friday, September 23, 2016

Surprise! Chris is here!

       Almost 3 years ago, Sarah surprised us by making me go in to labor at 4:00 in the morning, 2 weeks before her due date. There was a lot of physical damage when she was born, which took 18 months to heal. Therefore, after lots of thought, prayer, and counsel with our doctor, we decided that baby number 2 would come via c-section. It was not an easy decision, and I was definitely not looking forward to recovering from major abdominal surgery, but it seemed like the safest option for my long-term well-being.
     Since Sarah came 2 weeks early, I fully expected this baby to make his appearance early as well. Last Thursday, a little less than 3 weeks before my due date, I was afraid that I might be leaking amniotic fluid, so we decided to go in to the hospital to get checked out. This was even earlier than I had expected, so I had to hurriedly throw together some hospital bags while we were arranging a sitter for Sarah. 
     We dropped Sarah off with a friend and headed to the hospital to be checked to see if my water had broken. The midwife said that it looked like labor might be coming before too long but that my water hadn't broken, so we turned around and went back home. False alarm. I still had a lot of things to do to prepare for him to join us, so I was happy to return home still pregnant that night. 
    My parents were in Spokane for the weekend, and Kelson had to spend all day Saturday and Sunday in Boise, and I was very nervous that I might go into labor while everyone was gone. I had lots of Braxton-Hicks contractions over the weekend which, while irregular, seemed to be getting stronger. Alas, Monday came, everyone got home, and baby was still happily inside. After Monday, I was fine with baby coming, so of course my contractions all but disappeared. I worked on various projects around the house and had some quality time with Sarah over the next couple of days and started thinking that maybe I was just going to skip labor altogether and walk in to the hospital all relaxed for my scheduled c-section on the 27th. I went to Baker City with Kelson on Tuesday, figuring that I would never be more than an hour from a hospital, so it wasn't a big deal. We brought our hospital bags and the baby's car seat with us just in case, but labor stayed safely away for the day.
     On Wednesday, I went in for my normal OB appointment, and I hadn't progressed at all since the Thursday before, so it didn't look like much was happening. My contractions were getting stronger, but they were still very irregular and non-painful, so I just resigned myself to dealing with them for another week. I spent that evening sewing baby clothes and an adorable crib sheet, then settled in for another uncomfortable night of very pregnant sleep.

    A little before 4:00 on Thursday, the 22nd, I woke up to use the restroom (which happens about 50 times a night when 9 months pregnant) and started feeling a little funny. I said a little prayer that, if this was labor, it would make itself apparent by morning so I would know if it was a good idea to drive over to Baker with Kelson that day. I tried to go back to sleep, but by 4:00 I was definitely feeling painful contractions and decided it was time to wake up Kelson. We timed them for a few minutes, and they were about 6 minutes apart, so we called my parents in Baker City and asked them to drive over to take care of Sarah. It would take them a little over an hour to arrive. I was in labor with Sarah for about 9 hours with contractions 2 minutes apart the whole time, so I figured we had plenty of time.
 After about half an hour of contractions several minutes apart, they suddenly started getting a lot more intense, and I told Kelson that he needed to call our neighbor to take Sarah so we could go to the hospital. I didn't think we were really in danger of the baby coming too soon, but the pain was getting bad and I wanted my epidural. 
     Suddenly, the contractions were incredibly painful and coming almost on top of each other. I started feeling a lot of pressure and realized that I could feel the baby's head. Not good. Kelson wanted me to jump in the car so we could get to the hospital, but I knew it was too late and told him we needed to call 911.
     The 911 dispatcher told Kelson to find some clean sheets. Luckily, there is a linen closet right in our bathroom, which is where I was laboring. She also had him find a shoe lace in case we needed to tie off the cord. This was all very surreal. Laying on my back seemed horribly uncomfortable, so I ended up on hands and knees on the floor in the bathroom. As I could feel his head coming down, the 911 operator told Kelson to tell me not to push. I'm pretty sure my answer was "yeah, right!" Chris was born a few seconds later. I caught him while Kelson was talking on the phone. He came out crying, which was music to my ears. There was no cord wrapped around his neck. The dispatcher told Kelson to clear out his nose and mouth, but there wasn't even anything to clear. He was perfect. We wrapped him in all of the clean pillowcases that Kelson had gathered. 

     There was a feeling of complete shock as I stared at the floor in front of me and saw my son there. After months of worrying about c-sections, I had just delivered the baby naturally in my bathroom after less than an hour of labor. No doctors, no nurses, just Kelson and I and the baby. Kelson had tears in his eyes, and I'm pretty sure I was crying too. And the feeling of complete physical relief immediately after he was out was amazing.As terrifying as this whole ordeal was, it was also a special, magical moment that I will never forget.

     We waited about 5 minutes after he was born for Officer Toll of the Fruitland Police to arrive. As instructed, Kelson kept checking the cord to make sure it was still pulsating. We didn't end up needing to tie it off with an old shoe lace, thankfully. I'm sure it was quite the scene to walk in to, me kneeling there on the floor with the baby wrapped in pillowcases. Officer Toll arrived and asked us a few questions while we waited for the paramedics, who came in a few minutes later. They clamped the cord and had Kelson cut it. Thankfully I had our hospital bag all packed, including a blanket and a hat for the baby, so Kelson grabbed those and we got him all wrapped up for our journey to the hospital. They helped me walk out to the hall, miraculously avoiding getting any blood on the carpet, and I laid down on the gurney.

     They handed me Chris, and I finally got to hold my baby. I snuggled him and let him nurse all the way to the hospital. I couldn't believe how good I was feeling, probably the result of a massive amount of adrenaline running through my veins. Now that the crisis was over, I had time to sit and think about all of the terrifying things that could have just happened. Chris's birth was truly miraculous.

Meanwhile, Kelson loaded the car and woke up Sarah, who had slept through all of the commotion.
We arrived at the hospital, and Kelson and Sarah caught up with us. I introduced Sarah to to the baby, and she said, "I have a baby brother!" It was adorable. They wheeled us in to the newly remodeled maternity wing. We were actually the first ones to use this room. Cool!

 Chris got a check-up from the nurse. He was doing beautifully except for being a little cold. A little while under the warmer fixed that.
 6 pounds, 9 ounces and 18 1/2" long. Just about exactly the same size as Sarah.
I was afraid that my parents would arrive at our house while the ambulance was there and freak out, so I had Kelson call them while they were loading us on the gurney. They were still 25 minutes out, so Kelson didn't tell them anything except that we were taking Sarah with us and they should meet at the hospital. When my parents walked into the room, they heard the baby crying and were very confused as to why there was a baby in our room. The expression on Mom's face when I introduced her to Chris and told her that he had been born at home was pretty amazing. 
 Not many people get to go through their whole delivery without changing into a hospital gown! I was glad to have him back in my arms after he got warmed up.
We sent Sarah out of the room to play with Grandma and Grandpa when the midwife arrived to deliver the placenta and stitch me up, and Sarah kept asking all of the nurses, "Are you the doctor?" I was very relieved to find out that I only had superficial damage this time. We said a lot of prayers trying to decide if I could have a normal birth or if I needed to have a c-section to avoid further damage. Heavenly Father answers prayers in strange ways. I am so grateful that this turned out well and that I am not recovering from a c-section right now. 
 After the doctor finished stitching me up, there was plenty of time for snuggles and introductions to big sister. Isn't he beautiful!
Sarah loves baby brother!
 Grandpa brought breakfast from McDonalds. Sarah claimed the hash browns. She's never eaten hash browns before.
 Some of Kelson's staff stopped by to congratulate us and bring gifts for Sarah and Chris. They were so sweet!

 Grandma got to go with Chris for his first bath.
 Apparently he wasn't very excited about it.
 All clean and warm.
 Family of 4!
 Family of 5 if you include elephant, who had to be wrapped up just like baby brother.

 Kisses for baby brother

 Daddy finally getting some cuddle time
 We spent the rest of the day snuggling, working on nursing, and trying to get a little rest.
 Getting his footprints taken. It was the first time she had ever recorded the mother as the delivering physician on the birth certificate.
     Celebratory steak dinner with root beer on ice.

That evening, the police officer and the 911 dispatcher who helped deliver Chris came to visit us. That was so neat! Living in a small town is awesome. 

We spent one mostly sleepless night in the hospital and then got to go home the next day. 

Welcome to the family, Christian Allan Mosier!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Our First House!

Now that we are out of the military and hopefully staying in one place for longer than a year or two, we have finally had the chance to purchase our first home. House shopping, putting in offers, and going through the purchase process was a little scary and stressful, but we are very excited to be embarking on this home-owning adventure.

 We had several weeks between when we our offer on our house was accepted and when it was finished. During that time, we were still living in Baker City with my parents, but Kelson had fun stopping by almost every day after work to see how the progress was coming. We finally moved in on June 20th. It would have been even more exciting if our furniture arrived at the same time we did, but the soonest they could schedule a delivery from our storage unit in Virginia was July 21. Our deliveries have always arrived early before, so we figured we would maybe have to camp in our house for 3 weeks or so. Between things borrowed from my parents and some yard sale finds, we had mattresses, basic kitchen stuff, some toys, and a couple of chairs to sit on. It was interesting living in a mostly empty house.
 We had plenty to do while we waited to move our belongings in. We started with a garden experiment. The night we moved in, we planted cucumbers, pumpkins, butternut squash, and a couple of other things in two different corners of our yard to see which place would be best for our garden. After a couple of months, we can see that the plants on one side of the yard are 4 times the size of the ones on the other side, so I think we have our answer.
 One of the last things that the contractor did before our closing was hydroseed the back yard and lay sod in the front, so we were babysitting our yard carefully to make sure it had enough water. Our second night in the house, we realized that the sprinklers weren't working. The irrigation water was turned off. We were out watering our whole yard with a hose at midnight to try to keep it from dying.
 We managed to save our yard, but the backyard seems to grow weeds much better than grass. The worst part is that is infested with goat heads. They are evil. We are still waging the war on weeds in the back yard.
 Before we moved in, there was a huge, landscaped island that took up most of the back yard, and we had them level it. As we were pulling weeds, we discovered a sad little rose bush that had somehow escaped the destruction. We moved it to a better location, and it is thriving in its new home.
 After we created a secret garden for my mom, we wanted to do something similar in our yard. We started with this fun arbor that we found on Craigslist. 
 Sarah was very helpful when Kelson was digging it into the ground. Mostly she was digging up my new grass. We haven't finished the secret garden yet, but we are excited to work on it. 
 Kelson and my dad built bookcases and a desk for the office, and we finally had our first pieces of permanent furniture. Sarah's instant reaction was that she needed to get her animals and blanket and sit on the shelf to read books. That is clearly what a book case is for.
 Our estimate of 3 weeks to wait for our belongings was rather optimistic. After 4 weeks, we learned that, due to an error in paperwork, our shipment had never left the storage facility in Virginia. After a zillion phone calls and 3 more weeks, the moving truck finally appeared in front of our house. It was a joyous day. 

We were entertained for the day by finding the number of ways that the movers found to spell our name-including Morier, Morise, Moister (gross!), Moiser, and Mosire. Is Mosier really that difficult? I actually got called Mrs. Monster at a doctor's office once. Apparently it is a very challenging name.

My parents were kind enough to watch Sarah for a couple of days while we started unpacking. She was asleep when we brought her home and was thrilled to wake up and see her favorite pooh chair and her bookcase filled with books. It took us almost an hour to get her to come out of her room and see the rest of the house.
 The night before, we had unpacked and staged all of her toys in the playroom, expecting an excited, better-than-Christmas reaction to all of her toys returning after 4 months in storage. No such luck. She walked up the stairs and said, "Oh look, princesses!". That was about the extent of it. She has definitely enjoyed having her things back, though.

 Unpacking our house and getting everything organized was a big job, but we have finally unpacked the last box and hung up almost all of the pictures. I will take pictures of the house all set up and post a full tour soon!

Oregon Coast Trip With the Hindmans

For our end of summer get-away, we spent a weekend in Lincoln City on the Oregon Coast at a beach house with my parents, Katy, and Jeremy's family.
 We left on Thursday morning and drove as far as Cascade Locks, where we had some delicious brunch and much-needed wiggle time at Charburger while overlooking the Columbia River.
 We met up with the rest of the family at the Tillamook Cheese Factory and had some ice cream while we watched them package cheese. I promise Sarah wears shoes sometimes.
 We arrived at the beach house in Lincoln City, and the kids couldn't wait to get down to the beach. It was really windy that day and the water was freezing, but the kids didn't care too much.
 Sarah loves making sand castles!
 Shortly after this, Sarah got smashed by a big wave and spent the next 20 minutes huddled on my lap under a towel. She has never been to a cold ocean before. After that, she mostly stayed away from the ocean and stuck to digging in the sand.
 Friday, we had some more beach time in the morning and then went to the tide pools in Lincoln City in the afternoon. We mostly found anemones and a few little fish.

 Searching for creatures with Grandma & Aunt Katy
 That afternoon, we did some shopping and whale watching in Depoe Bay. We saw several whales just off shore, which was really fun. Sarah was starving, so we bought her an ear of roasted corn-one of her favorite snacks lately.
 From Depoe Bay, we went back to Lincoln City for dinner at Mo's (yum!) and then back to the beach house. Kelson and I took the girls down to the chilly, foggy beach to fly the kite. The wind was perfect, and the girls loved it. 
 Sarah decided she needed to hold the kite on her own, and it got away from her. Kelson chased it down the beach and then dove to catch it just before it hit the water. It was pretty entertaining.
 Saturday, we spent the morning at the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport. Our little Nemo-obsessed girl was in fishy heaven.
 Checking out the catfish, which Sarah dubbed "kitty fish" with Aunt Katy
 Touching a starfish and an anemone (where Nemo lives!)
 Watching the seals and sea lions
 Up close with an otter
 On the way home, we stopped to look at some more tide pools at Quarry Cove at Yaquina Head. It was cold, so I just had Sarah up on the beach with me, thinking she would be happy looking at the pools up on the rocks. I turned around, and she was in the water with Daddy, jeans, tennis shoes, and all. She didn't care one bit about the cold water. She was too busy poking anemones.

 She also loved finding sea shells to hand to Mommy.
 By the end of this adventure, she was not only soaked but also had a poopy accident in her pants (don't even ask me about the nightmare that is potty training), so we finally just stripped her, washed her off in the ocean, and then wrapped her in a blanket for the trip back to the car.
 Enjoying an Arctic Circle ice cream cone. 
A little more beach time, even in the cold. 

We had such a fun time with our family. So many good memories!