Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Sanaa

Happy Birthday Sanaa!
Two years ago your dad and I were very excited to finally meet you.
It has been a wonderful two years watching grow and seeing what your personality is like.
I love how serious you get when I ask to take your picture.
Or how you even turn your head away so I can't get a good shot.
I love how gentle and loving you've been with your new sister.
I love watching you play and seeing your love for animals grow.
I love the hugs and kisses you give.
I love the way you say "bye" and "see ya" as daddy takes you upstairs for bed at night.
I love your curly hair.

You love the outdoors, especially playing in dirt.
You love watching Curious George.
You love to swing.
You love to color with crayons, markers, and colored pencils.
The tiger your great grandparents Pond gave you is your favorite stuffed animal.
You're learning how to jump and kick a ball.
You get very excited when you find a bug.
You enjoy playing in the rain.
You love stomping in puddles.
You are saying new words and phrases every day.

These past 2 years have flown by and while I wish you weren't growing up so fast, I'm looking forward to all the years yet to come and seeing just what God does in your life.

Happy Birthday Sweetheart!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Ahhh..... this is the life

If you slide down in the bassinet and don't fit comfortably, then just hang your leg out.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Sanaa's 2nd birthday party

This morning we had Sanaa's 2nd birthday party. Her actual birthday is this coming Wednesday. We invited a couple of her friends from Sunday school with their parents as well as Nate's parents. The girls spent part of the time swimming in our kiddie pool and then we came inside for lunch and cake. It was a fun morning!

Layla spent the party sleeping. She woke up just as everyone was leaving.
Sanaa and two of her friends, Jillian and Ainsley. For some odd reason Sanaa is refusing to get in her pool this summer. Last year she loved her pool, but this year we can't even get her to wear a swimsuit. At least Jillian and Ainsley enjoyed the water.
Making mud. While Ainsley and Jillian played in the pool, Sanaa played in the dirt. Eventually, Ainsley and Jillian joined Sanaa by bringing water over to the dirt and they all had fun playing in the mud.
The monkey birthday cake. Sanaa LOVES Curious George, so of course I made a monkey cake. I found the monkey cake pan at JoAnn Fabrics. How cool is that? I had a blast decorating it.
Lighting her candle. I can't believe Sanaa is about to turn 2. Before I know it she'll be all grown up with a family of her own!
Sanaa and her friends eating lunch and enjoying the birthday cake.



Friday, June 25, 2010

Scene from the middle of the night

Scene: It is approximately 1am. Layla cries out and wakes Rosa up. Rosa looks over at Layla, but she stops fussing and falls back asleep so Rosa lays back down. A minute or two later, Nate bolts up, climbs out of bed, walks to the end of the bed, and stares at the floor very intently where his clothes are laying. After a minute or two of looking around the floor Nate climbs back into bed.

Rosa: "What are you doing?"

Nate: "So um...... Down where that stuff is are some coffee beans. And..... um....... So, um....... Um...... So that's how they got there."

Rosa: "Oh."

Nate lays back down in bed and Rosa shakes her head and rolls over. However, before Rosa falls back asleep Layla wakes up and is hungry. Rosa begins feeding Layla and picks up her phone off the night stand so that she can jot down the conversation she just had with Nate.

THE END

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Our week (so far) in pictures

This week has been my first week on my own with the girls. My parents are back home in Oregon and Nate is back at work. My days have blurred into each other creating one long day that doesn't seem to end, but so far we've all survived. It is definitely taking some adjusting for both me and Sanaa. Sanaa has started throwing more tantrums and whining when she doesn't get what she wants. I've been trying to stay firm and not give into her tantrums, but that can very hard at times. Layla has also been a bit fussy this week and we're not sure what is going on. We're starting to wonder if Layla has acid reflux like Sanaa did, but I've also started to monitor my diet more closely to see what foods may or may not be affecting her.

Here are some pictures from the calmer moments this week.

Yes, Layla does have her awake periods. She's typically awake for an hour or two in the morning and then another hour or two in the late afternoon/evening.
Sanaa loves giving Layla kisses.
Imitating mommy by putting her tiger in Layla's car seat.
The blue dot on Sanaa's head is a sticker she got at a doctor's visit that she insisted on wearing on her head. I attempted to remove the sticker at one point but Sanaa got quite mad at me and put the sticker right back on her head.
Potting training her tiger. We haven't started potty training Sanaa yet, so this surprised me. Maybe she's nearing the point where she's ready to be potty trained.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sanaa's surgery update

I know Sanaa's surgery was nearly a week ago and we haven't updated on that. The short version is that it went well. Sanaa was in and out of the operating room in 30 minutes. The recovery after the surgery was down right miserable for all of us.

Around 9am the nurse came to get us and said Sanaa was out of surgery and in the recovery room. As we walked down the hallway we could hear Sanaa screaming. We walked into the recovery room and they immediately handed Sanaa to me. Nate and I tried to get her to calm down for about 15 minutes, but she was so worked up and freaked out that we couldn't get her to stop crying. The nurse ended up giving Sanaa a small amount of morphine in her IV to help her calm down. That did help a little, as long as Sanaa didn't see the nurse and the nurse didn't mess with her.

After we arrived home, Sanaa was still miserable. We let her watch as much tv as she wanted and tried to make her as comfortable as possible. We ended up putting Sanaa to bed at 5:30pm that night because she had only napped for an hour was exhausted from everything that had happened. Sanaa woke twice between 5:30pm and 9:00pm, but after that she slept until just after 7:00am the next morning.

The sleep did her good because she was happy and back to herself the next morning. Since the surgery, Sanaa has been doing great! Every day she's saying new words and phrases and has been in a pretty good mood (Unless she wants something and you tell her no. Then she gets upset). You wouldn't even know that a week ago she had tubes put in her ears and her adenoids removed.

Before the surgery:
Sanaa got to wear some fun yellow pjs. She also got to color and watch Clifford while we waited for her to be taken in for the surgery.

After the surgery:
Back home and miserable. Poor thing.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Sanaa's surgery, Layla's checkup

Sanaa's surgery to get tubes in her ears as well as remove her adenoids is scheduled for 8:15am tomorrow. The doctor wants us to arrive between 6:30-6:45am. Ugh. It's going to be an early morning, but that's good since we can't let Sanaa drink or eat anything after midnight. The surgery itself will take approximately 45 minutes and then Sanaa will be in recovery for about an hour. After that we can take her home. So it looks like we should be home by lunch time.

Yesterday Layla had her 2 week checkup. She is doing great! She now weighs 7 pounds 10 ounces and is 20 1/4 inches long. She gained back all the weight she lost at birth plus some! She has been a very hungry girl, so I guess it's not too surprising she gained all that weight. Her next checkup will be her 2 month checkup in August.

Sanaa decided to try out Layla's bed.
Good thing we have two swings/bouncers. Sanaa wants to be in whatever Layla is in and will actually ask me to take Layla out of the bouncer.
Me and my girls before church.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Fun with grandpa and grandma

This morning Nate and Sanaa took my mom to the airport. Last Saturday my dad left and this Saturday my mom left. I was sad to see them go since they were a huge help during these last two weeks. I honestly don't know what I would have done without my parents around to help. My mom is a nurse (actually the manager for the Medical Surgical unit at her hospital), so having her support this last week as we dealt with Layla's jaundice, my incision opening up, and then hearing the news that Sanaa needs tubes in her ears was wonderful.

Below are some pictures my parents took on their camera while they were here. Sanaa had a great time with them!

My mom with her two grand-daughters.
Playing with the water table.
Sanaa meeting Layla.
Sanaa "helping" grandpa fix our bathroom cabinet. She followed my dad every where while he was here!
Looking at pictures with grandpa.
Just being silly.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

1 week old

Layla is already one week old. It feels as though Layla was just born yesterday. Yet at the same time, it seems that Layla has been a part of our family much longer than just one week. Sanaa has adjusted amazingly well to Layla. She has been gentle, yet curious, but has shown no signs of being angry with Layla's arrival into our household. Sanaa will often tell me what Layla is doing by saying, "Layla sleep," "Layla eat," or "Layla's bottle."

So you might be wondering what Layla is like. She is a very laid back baby. She sleeps, she eats, and she has a few wakeful periods throughout the day where she just gazes at her surroundings. She only cries when she is hungry, which is easily pacified. Layla is the complete opposite of Sanaa. Sanaa was not a peaceful, laid back baby like many of you know. I know this will sound awful, but there are times during the evening that it's easy to forget there is even a newborn in our house!

Here are some pictures from our morning.
I turned my back for a few seconds and saw Sanaa place a balloon in Layla's bassinet. I went to remove the balloon and much to my surprise found more than just a balloon with Layla. Hmmm..... are we trying to hide the baby or give her toys to play with?
Layla just hanging out. She couldn't decide whether she wanted to sleep or stay awake.
While Layla rested, Sanaa and I had some mommy-daughter time playing with play-doh.
Sanaa decided that since Layla wasn't using the chair she would. I bet it makes for a very comfy place to read books!

Monday, June 7, 2010

A Series of Tubes...

Nate again.

And now for the rest of the news.

Getting Rosa stitched up was just the FIRST part of the day.

The SECOND part of the day was taking Sanaa to the ENT (Ear, Nose, & Throat Doctor).

To give a little background for those who don't remember, last year and the first half of this year was plagued with ear infections. 1 Month ago, we went to see the ENT. He put Sanaa on a really strong antibiotic and wanted to see her again today.

Good News: The infection is finally gone.

Bad News: The fluid that perennially existed behind her eardrums is still very much there. Always waiting... Lurking... Waiting for its chance to STRIKE!

Like Gollum.


Or a Kia Salesman.


Anyway. We could have tried Nasonex again for 6 weeks and seen how it worked for Sanaa.

That did not go at all well in the past. Sanaa doesn't like taking a nose spray. She fights back. Currently, Rosa can't even lift Sanaa. Therefore, if I'm not around Rosa isn't really going to be able to give Sanaa the meds if she resists, which she does.

Thus, we opted for Tubes. Next Wednesday morning, Sanaa will have tubes put in her ears, and have an Adenoidectomy.

Oy.

I'm ok. I just want this little saga to be finished with. I can handle sagas. Like them in fact. But this is more Star Wars Episode 1-3 rather than 4-6.

I mean seriously. Its been like the Phantom Menace for 4 months.


So I'm ready to be done with it. Rosa on the other hand, was a little blindsided. Rightly so too. Sanaa seemed 100% better. She started speaking more, didn't have any more symptoms, and seemed completely better.

That said, the fluid causes 30-40% hearing loss, which is eventually going to start messing with Sanaa's speech development, if it hasn't already. So for her sake, its better to just rip the bandaid off (figuratively speaking) and be done with it.

Rosa will be cool. It was just a nasty surprise that she wasn't prepped for.

Hmmm.... another interesting reality to consider.

Here is the Pond Family in June (and a little July).

Rosa - June 1st - Major Abdominal Surgery.
June 7th - Re-opened and re-closed.
Nate - July 1st - Oral Surgery.
Sanaa - June 16th - Ear surgery for tubes and Adenoidectomy.
Layla - June 1st - Born.

So in about 30 days we are all going to have been operated on in some fashion. Which makes July a month of Recovery.


In the meantime, I'll leave you all with a little ditty to remind you that just as our daughter will soon have series of tubes, so do many other things... like the Internet.

"Your innards look awesome!"

Nate here.

First, apologies to my legions of adoring fans. I know that all of you out there were waiting for me to have a liveblog of every blessed minute of Rosa and I's hospital stay.

In that respect, I've failed you.

Basically, I kicked in to hardcore Daddy-Mode and found my Awake Time devoted entirely to taking care of Rosa and Layla. This left me little time to blog. I'm not sure why the Lord, when he created a baby's first few days, didn't leave more time for blogging. It just seems like it would be something that every dad would want.

Now before I digress into the possible blogs of Noah, Abraham, and Isaac, let me get to the point.

Rosa went in to her OB-GYN today because part of her incision was opening up and "leaking." I'll just leave the word "leaking" as is without any elaboration.

Her OB looked at the incision and said that it was a result of a medication that they had given her prior to the surgery, and that eventually the whole incision would have opened up.

Ewwwwwww.

So, Dr. J, being the female incarnation of Jack Shephard, said to Rosa: "I think I'll just redo it from scratch."

So then she, in her office and without any assistance, injected Rosa with a local anesthesia, reopened the ENTIRE incision, and proceeded to suture it up by herself.



But at the same time...

...disconcerting. I tried to focus on Layla most of the time.

In the middle of the process, all the nurses in the Clinic must have been alerted by sonar that an impromptu office surgery was taking place, for they all started to file into the office (completely ignoring the newborn infant in their midst) to look at the gaping incision that was being sewed back up.

I would like to offer a sampling of comments that occurred within this 15-20 minute period:

"This is so cool!"

"I love this."

"Wow! Your innards look awesome!"

"Rosa, your insides are beautiful."

"I could look at this all day!"

"I know I'm being rude by not looking at your baby, but that incision is AMAZING!"

Nurses are interesting sometimes.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Layla's jaundice

Just a quick update on Layla's jaundice. We took her back into the hospital this morning so they could draw some blood and test her bilirubin levels. Those levels dropped from 15.5 to 14.6. Good news! I was told to just keep an eye on Layla and if I have any concerns before her 2 week check up to give the pediatrician a call. Yipee! I was very excited to get that news.

Tomorrow we take Sanaa back to the ENT to have her ears rechecked. So far she's been doing great, so I'm hoping she won't need tubes. I'll give you all an update on that tomorrow. Thanks for praying!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

A comparison

My mom and I were curious as to how different Sanaa and Layla look at approximately the same age. I found a picture of Sanaa when she was 4 days old and compared it to a picture of Layla at 3 days old. They look very different and I'm surprised at how much more hair Layla has than Sanaa had! The first picture below is Sanaa (4 days old) and the second picture is Layla (3 days old). I love Layla's spiky hair, but I think she's going to end up with straight hair. You can see some waves in Sanaa's hair when she was 4 days old and she now has very curly hair, but Layla's hair is quite straight, so I'm not so sure she'll be as lucky as Sanaa.

This morning my dad had to fly back home. My mom is still here for another week. Because my dad had to leave earlier we made sure he had lots of time with Layla. He also got the chance to feed Layla since I have to supplement some formula for Layla's feedings right now.
When Sanaa was born my dad laid Sanaa on his luggage to see if she would fit so he could take her home. We have continued that photo opportunity and got a shot of Layla on his suit case. Sanaa thought laying Layla on the suit case was great and climbed up next to her, but I wasn't quick enough to get that picture.
Now for an update on Layla's jaundice. This morning Nate and I took her back to the hospital to see if her levels had dropped. They hadn't. In fact they climbed just a little and she is now right at the border between high and intermediate. So, we are going back to the hospital again tomorrow morning to have her tested again. The poor thing has to be getting tired of having her heel pricked, but at least she won't remember it. I'm really hoping and praying that her levels drop before tomorrow's test. I have no idea what they will want us to do if her levels stay the same or increase slightly. I'm worried they might want to readmit her to the hospital so she can spend time under those special lights, which would not be much fun me or Layla. I guess we'll know more tomorrow.

Friday, June 4, 2010

We're home!

We are finally home from the hospital. This morning we weren't sure whether we would be discharged from the hospital or not. I knew I would be discharged because I was healing well and have been moving around quite well. But there was a question as to whether or not Layla would be discharged. She has jaundice and it's gotten a little worse with each day. When the pediatrician came to talk to us this morning, she said they were testing Layla again and we would have to wait and see whether or not Layla would be discharged. I wasn't happy about that. All I wanted was to get home.

We found out around 10:30am that they were going to go ahead and discharge Layla. Yay! However, tomorrow we have an appointment to go back to the hospital to see if Layla's jaundice is getting better. If Layla is worse tomorrow there is a slight chance she'll be readmitted to the hospital and spend some time under their special lights. That would really stink, but I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

All week I have been meaning to get some pictures posted, but as you can imagine we've been a little busy this week. While in the hospital I was up most of the night with Layla who had a really hard time going to sleep. Then during the day we'd both crash. It seems that Layla may have her nights and days mixed up. She's also been very hungry and since my milk hasn't fully come in, last night was a long night where she wanted to feed constantly. We've started to supplement with some formula until my milk comes in.

Layla resting. She has a lot of hair!
A family photo.
By day 3, Sanaa had warmed up to Layla. The first two days Sanaa pretty much ignored Layla and didn't want to be near her. Yesterday when Sanaa came to visit she was finally interested in Layla and gave her a little kiss!
Showing us that Layla has a nose.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Layla!

Nate here.

Before I begin, this would be a good time for you to open a tab in your browser and have Eric Clapton's "Layla" playing in the background.

Got that sorted?

Good.

That said, Layla Ruth Pond was born to us today.

7:56AM.

7lbs, 2 oz. 18.5 in. long.

Mommy and baby are doing well.

All three of us.... probably exhausted. Adrenaline has long since passed, and we are trying to grab sleep wherever we can. I'm tired enough that even the thought of posting pictures on the blog makes me tired. Those of us who are Facebook friends with us can see pictures on our accounts. In all honesty, I'm only posting now because Rosa looked over at me and said:

"Aren't you going to do a blog post?"

*sigh* I've created a monster.

Anyway. Once I'm rested enough that I can whip up a Wit Souffle on the blog, I'll elaborate more with my thoughts, pictures, etc.

Cheers,
Nate