Monday, April 19, 2010

Growing Up

On 4/14 Emma lost her first tooth! She now looks completely grown up to me. It had been wiggly for a couple of weeks, but she refused to let anyone pull it. Then last Wednesday morning she was playing games on the computer and out it fell. There was quite a bit of blood and she started screaming. I thought she was scared or hurt, but she was screaming in excitement! We rinsed the tooth off and she carried it around with her for the rest of the day.:)

That night we opened up her tooth fairy kit, read the story about how the tooth fairy came to be, put the tooth under her pillow, and drew a picture to leave for the tooth fairy as a thank you note (because acording to Emma, it is not fair that Santa is the only one who gets letters and pictures from children). The next morning she awoke to a whopping five dollars under her pillow! (The tooth fairy did not have any change, but it was made very clear that that price was just for first teeth since they are special. I am pretty sure she leaves quarters from here on out :). It was such a fun experience for Emma and she has the most precious gap toothed grin! Can someone please freeze time? Life is passing much too quickly.

P.S. Today Emma had a visit with Dr. Brown, our dentist, and it was her very first time to not have any cavities! Hooray! He said her smile looked great and that her 6 year old molers should be showing up very soon!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

One Month Update

This past week our boy reached the one month mark. Time has literally flown by, and yet, in many ways, it feels as if he has been a part of our family forever! His little presence definitely adds a feeling of completeness. This first month has been a busy one, but we are trying to soak up as much of his newborness as we can, as we know that these moments are fleeting!

The first week at home was probably the longest and most tiring. I had forgotten how much anxiety fills a new momma's heart when it comes to sleeping! For about the first ten days or so, I slept on the couch in the living room with Jack in his bouncy seat an arms length away. With every tiny noise or squirm, I would throw on my glasses and check to see that all was well. Exhausting! But somehow we managed through. What else happened that first week? Hmm...

We went to Jack's first Dr.appointment! He had dropped down to 6 lbs. 6 oz., but since then he has well surpassed his birthweight, and at one month old weighed in at 8 lbs even. Big boy! His cord fell off on day six, so he also got his first bath that week! He was not a fan of bathing at all, but has learned that bath time can be enjoyable as long as Mommy moves quickly.

Our biggest struggles have been with feedings. Little man is a projectile spitter. Yuck! In the beginning, within minutes of eating, he would spit EVERYTHING right back up in a very forceful manner. We tried everything... nursing, two types of formula, different bottle types, etc., but nothing seemed to make a difference. We ended up having to feed breastmilk in a bottle, while holding Jack in an upright position. He would get an ounce every two hours, and we would have to hold him upright for a good half hour to make sure everything went down before changing him or laying him down to sleep. The good news is that even with all of the spitting he continues to gain weight, so it is really just more of a messy situation. We are getting the hang of things and Mr. Jack now eats four ounces every three hours, pretty much like clockwork.

What else? Jack did have a nasty eye infection for about the last ten days. Poor guy. And I do believe he is a bit colicky. The morning times until about four in the afternoon are his worst hours. He just cries, and squirms, and fusses, and it is so sad. You can just tell that his little belly aches and that he is in pain. Sometimes it makes me feel inadequate when nothing I do eases his pain or calms him, but I just keep rocking him and rubbing his tiny back. While my house is suffering greatly because I can't seem to get anything done each day besides baby holding, I am thankful for all of the time I am getting to snuggle and hold my little boy. We are hoping this passes quickly! Because of his colic and reflux, Jack is sleeping in his carseat in our room. Sitting up just seems to ease his pain a little bit. Not sure that is the best habit to get him in, but he is currently doing three to four hour sleeping stretches at night, so we will take it!

Overall, it has been a good first month. We have all adjusted to having him home and are loving watching him grow and change each day. The girls adore him (especially Kate) and give him a million kisses each day. Emma loves to put his pacifier in his mouth. They can't wait until he can smile at them! Jack Ryan Huston Zickafoose, you are one loved little boy. We are so thankful you have joined our family. Happy one month birthday!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Easter Happies 2010 - Part 3

Easter Sunday is one of my most favorite days of the year! For the past three years, after morning worship, we have gone across the street to spend the day with our coworkers, turned neighbors, turned valued and cherished friends. After lunch we all venture over to the barn for a massive egg hunt. So fun! The search is always on to find the golden egg. After the hunt the kids play ..... and the adults play! For the rest of the day! And for some unknown reason we finish the day with Ms. Faye's yummy waffles for dinner. It is tradition. We look forward to this day each year!

Easter Happies 2010 - Part 2

This year our sweet Ms. Candy (aka the girl who can do anything, according to Emma) made the girls their Easter dresses. She made a date of it and took the girls to the fabric store so they could pick out their patterns and their fabric of choice. Such a great memory for them! Grammy bought them fancy purses, and the only job left for me to do was buy them new spring shoes. Kate selected the first pair she found that fit (in true Kate fashion! :), but Emma looked in several stores over several days. She wanted something elegant with a small heel (her words!) Aren't they sweet all dressed up?

So blessed.

Not happy about sitting in a bucket :).

So beautiful.

My handsome boys. Ben starched Jack's little button down shirt and everything :). I love them.

Easter Happies 2010 - Part 1

Wow! It has been a super busy April thus far, here in the Zickafoose Zoo! We had a blast doing all of our Easter traditions this year. I was not sure how we would pull it all off with a newborn in the house and one very tired Mommy, but with the help of family and good friends, we managed to have a wonderful holiday. We started off by making our traditional bunny cakes! So fun!

Next came coloring eggs. Grammy was a super help this year and had the girls do this at her house. They had so much fun coloring eggs and then going on a hunt for Easter goodies from Grammy and Da. Just look at my little artists!!

Look at the new Easter buckets that Mommy bought us this year! So fun being able to monogram things for three kiddos!!

Look at what the Easter bunny brought for us! We are definitely not spoiled in the least....

Monday, April 12, 2010

Spring Has Sprung

The weather has been absolutely beautiful here in Ohio! The trees are blooming , the grass is green, and we are enjoying some much needed time outside. The girls had a blast helping Grammy and Da plant flowers in their front beds and finding squirmy wormies (as Emma calls them :). Such beautiful little tomboys I have!!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Birth Story

Where do I begin? Everthing about Jack's birthday was absolutely and completely perfect. The night before Jack was born we were playing cards with some of our dearest friends and for the very first time (after months and months of playing) Boss actually won. We all joked that it was his lucky night and that we bet Jack would be born by the next day....and he was!

Boss and I went to bed around midnight and at 1:30 am I felt that magical gush. My water has broken on its own (at home) with all three of my babies, so I know how it feels when it happens, but I still spent the next two hours trying to decide if it had really broken or if I had simply peed my pants (though clearly that has never happened before. duh.). By 3:30 am I was fairly convinced that it was my water, so I called the on call resident and she told us to come on in. After making all of the necessary calls to get relief to watch the residents and my parents to come get the girls, Boss and I arrived at the hospital around 5:30 am.

When the doctor examined me to see if my waters had in fact been broken, she told me that she did not think that it had, but that she would test the fluid first to be positively sure before she sent me home. You can bet there were tears after she said that! I was desperately wanting to have my baby that day and I was mortified to have to go home and announce to everyone that I had called in the middle of the night, that I had in fact only peed my pants. However, the doctor came back in a few minutes later and said that the test strip said my waters had ruptured and I got to stay. Hooray! It was officially baby day!

By 6:00 am we were in a labor and delivery room and my two dearest friends had arrived to experience the day and birth with us. Because my water had broken but contractions had not yet started, they started pitocin by 7:00 am. Since I was already dilated to five centimeters and this was my third child, they warned me things would probably move quickly, and they were right! By 8:00 am contractions were picking up, but I was still not in any pain. The nurse suggested we call Mr. Epidural man before things got painful, so we did, and the amazing thing is that I did not experiance any labor pains at all throughout the entire delivery! After the epidural was administered it was time to relax and wait. Boss' parents arrived sometime after that and shortly before noon I felt like it was time to push.

We had the nurse check me (she was awesome, by the way) and she said it was indeed go time. She told me NOT to push because the baby's head was right there and she had to call the doctors. By 12:01 pm, with one push, Jack Ryan Huston Zickafoose entered this world and our lives became more joyful and meaningful because of it.

It was a completely and utterly amazing experience to deliver my son. The not having any pain thing was wonderful and it allowed me to fully experience all of the wonderfulness that is bringing a child into this world. I was surrounded by people that I love and I could feel just enough to make it beautiful.

I will never forget what it felt like to hold Jack's tiny little body in my arms for the very first time. To see his head full of dark hair and to watch his tiny fingers grasp mine. After waiting nearly four years for another child to enter our lives, on March 15, 2010 I was blessed beyond measure to be holding in my arms an absolute answer to prayer. I will always thank God for the gift of his life.

Some more answers to prayer... Besides a wonderful, complication free delivery and the gift of our son, God answered many other prayers that day. When I first became pregnant and started going to appointments at the clinic, I noticed a big sign that brought me to tears on more than one occasion. It stated that due to it being flu season and the threat of H1N1, no children under the age of 14 were allowed in the hospital (not even siblings) until flu season was over. That meant my girls would not be able to come see me and meet their baby brother when he was born. I was worried I would have to stay longer due to health reasons and I was worried about how we would handle the separation. Silly or not, it was something that I prayed about often! When we checked in that morning the sign was still in place. However, right before I started to push, Boss came into the room with a huge smile on his face and announced that just a few minutes prior the ban that had been in place for the last nine months had been lifted! Random? I think not! And another answer to prayer...  Not only did I not need magnesium after delivery (something I was really worried about), but I left the hospital on no blood pressure medications at all! Definitely an answer to prayer.

Jack Ryan, we are so in love with you and count our blessings each time we hold you. You have filled our lives with unspeakable joy and we cannot wait to see God unfold the plans He has for your life. We pray daily that you will grow to love the Lord and that we will always be close as a family. Never doubt how much you are loved! Happy Birthday baby boy!

Bringing Home Baby