Monday, April 28, 2008

Welcome, Baby Ellis!

He's here!!! We've been blessed with another darling baby! Our sweet baby boy arrived on Monday, April 21st at 12:26 in the afternoon. He weighs in at a healthy 8lbs. 6 oz. and measures 20 inches long. Ellis Frederic Brown is as handsome and sweet as can be, with plenty of dark brown hair. Jason and I are both fans of using family names, since they hold so much significance and are a fun tradition, which is why we chose Ellis Frederic for our baby boy. Frederic is in honor of my sweet dad who passed away unexpectedly last November, and Ellis is my Grandpa's name.

So far he has been a pure joy to the family. I love babies!!! Yes, they are a lot of work, but so, so worth it! He has proven so far (time will tell...) to be a very good baby. Much easier than Norah was at this stage, which is a pleasant surprise. Norah is so sweet with him and it is so great to see her so happy and excited about her brother. Jason was able to stay home with us last week which was wonderful. Unlike some guys, he really enjoys all stages that babies go through, including the little newborn stage. He especially likes snuggling and taking naps with the babe, but who can blame him!? He went back to work today so I'm here with both's now dinner time and I'm happy to report that the day has been quite pleasant. I'm sure it will have it's moments, but so far so good.

OK- many of you will probably stop reading here because this will be boring/too much info for some of you. But for those who want the full story of how little Ellis joined us on Monday, here you go:

I'd been having contractions on and off for about two weeks, so when my due date came and went on Saturday the 19th it was a little sad. I never got to the really really miserable stage that some pregnant ladies do, which I'm grateful for, however people at church on Sunday did mention in that I looked "ready," whatever that means. I'm guessing it meant that I looked tired and huge with child, which were both very true. One of the ladies at church actually told me I should go home and rest because I didn't have much time left. According to her intuition I only had a "couple hours" to go (and she wasn't that far off...). I took her advice to heart and went home and rested. I felt like the baby might be coming very soon, so I wanted to have a special last-day-of-being-the-only-kid night for Norah. We went for a long walk, then she "helped" me make cookies, and finished it off with her first ever viewing of Cinderella. The picture in the slide show is of her watching Cinderella with me and eating her cookie--boy, was she in heaven. I'm glad we had that special night with her since the baby did come the next will be a fun memory.

We went to bed early and then at 2:20am my water broke. The same thing happened with Norah, so we were a little better prepared this time. Jason's reaction was notably different. With Norah he paced back and forth around the apartment frantically talking about what we needed to get together but not actually doing anything while I giggled at him. This time I said, "Jason, guess whose water broke?" He sat up in bed and with a huge smile said, "Really?! Awesome!" Very much improved since last time. Since Ellis came later, and Norah was 2 weeks early, he gave us enough time to get ready and enough anticipation was built up in wanting to meet him that we were ready and excited to get him here.

We got to the hospital at around 4 am and almost immediately they wanted to induce me since my contractions weren't consistent or too strong yet. I opted to hold off for awhile to see if things would progress on their own, but eventually they ended up inducing me at about 10am. Although I never really seem to have consistent contractions, I do go really fast near the end which is nice (I went from a 6 to a 10 in less than an hour). The delivery was really smooth as well. He was born at 12:26pm after 3 contractions of pushing. Apparently my babies more so fall out than they are pushed out. After he was born I asked the nurses, "how long did I push for, 10 minutes?" They looked at me and laughed and said, "You didn't push. That can't be considered pushing." They kept laughing about how I should make one of those labor videos where the women make it look so simple and easy. Fine by me! (Not the video part, just the easiness part.)

Once he was born the nurses said he looked like a pretty big baby. Earlier that morning the doctor had said he'd be a "pretty small" baby--she guessed around 7 lbs. He surprised us all by weighing in at 8lbs. 6oz.! Much bigger than I had expected! Especially compared to Norah's petite 6lbs. 2 oz. he seems nice and beefy. Just the way boys should be! My favorite part, which I'm sure is every mothers' favorite part, is when they lay the baby on your chest. With Norah I remember her just staring up at me with her big pretty eyes. Ellis was adorable because he just kept blinking over and over and over again trying to keep his eyes open to look at me but he just couldn't manage it. Jason and I were laughing at him and couldn't believe how darling he was. I so wish I had a video of the blinking...hopefully it is one of those mothering memories that won't fade.

I ended up in a room with 2 other girls which wasn't too fun, but since we were only there for one night it wasn't too bad. We were just excited to get out of there and go meet the big sister! She has loved having him home as we all have. We couldn't ask for a sweeter more handsome little guy to join the Brown family! We were watching TV the other day and there was a commercial for a Disneyland package for a "family of four." Jason looked over at me and said, "Hey, that's us!" So weird! So fun!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Evolution of the Belly

Alright, so after numerous requests I am finally posting some belly pictures. Everyone keeps asking to see some, which I think really just means "we want to see how huge you've gotten," but either way, here they are for your viewing pleasure. So, I definitely feel like I'm carrying this baby different than Norah. I think it must be a boy/girl thing. With Norah my belly didn't stick out nearly as far, but I was rounder. This one seems to be straight out which has made daily tasks like picking up toys difficult to say the least. For example, a couple weeks ago I was washing the dishes and noticed an ant crawling across the counter. I reached over to grab a paper towel and when I looked back the ant was dead. Staring at it for a few seconds, I couldn't figure out what in the world had happened....and then I realized.....I killed the poor thing WITH MY BELLY while reaching for the paper towels. Ha!

Just the other day @ 9 months and about to pop:
Here are some @ 8 months:

Yes, we have matching coats. I didn't buy them together--my mom actually got the coat for Norah, and I got mine seperately without thinking about it. But when I realized it, I couldn't resist it. Don't judge us--you know you would do it too. :)
At about 6.5 months:

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Easter Fun

Easter at the Brown's house was really fun this year, especially because this was the first year that Norah was old enough to have a true Easter egg hunt. We started the day off by going to church, then had my mom, my brothers, and Chuck and his daughter Savannah and her finance John over for an Easter lunch. After that we headed to the Brown's for Easter dinner with the family. It was busy as usual, but so much fun. Having little ones around for the holidays really brings the magic back. It was so sweet to watch her get so excited at every point of the day and really reminded me how wonderful it is to be a mom. I love being a mommy and watching her excitement and enthusiasm. Celebrating the Savior and spending time with family and friends made it a perfect day.

My mom brought over her traditional bunny cake which she has made every year for the past 25 years or so. Norah loved it! I remember helping her make it as a little one. On one occasion when I was about 3 we were delivering bunny cakes to the neighbors and I insisted on carrying it myself. Let's just say that the cake was delivered with a little more than the fake coconut grass....

Look, Mommy, CAKE!

Yummmm.... Norah has become obsessed with these bunny ears. She wants to wear them all the time when we go out. This will probably last well beyond the Easter season as she really has no concept of things associated with holidays ending at any particular time. Prime example: every night she requests me to sing "Jingle Bells" to her. Yes, even in April, I am singing Jingle Bells on a nightly basis. Who am I to burst her bubble?

Showing off her Easter basket to Mommy. Great Gram- notice the cute stuffed bunny in the basket? :)

Mouth full of jelly beans.

She had a blast looking for eggs all over the yard. Although, she did get a little distracted when she figured out how to open the eggs herself.

Stealing jelly beans from Uncle Jim.

Good job, Eric! You found one too!

She possibly set the world record for number of jelly beans eaten by a 20 month old girl in one day. And she's not lady-like about it either. She grabs as many as she can in her little paws and shoves them all in at once.

Happy Easter!

Snow Day

My Aunt Sue was here for a visit in the beginning of March and we though it would be fun to take Norah up for her first snow day. After all of the planning and packing and driving, it didn't go over so well. It was hard to find a good spot for her to play, and after we did it was hard for her to run around because the snow was pretty hard, not to mention all of her snow gear getting in the way. It's one of those laugh about it later memories I guess. It was gorgeous as usual up there though, and she did enjoy seeing all of the snowmen people had built and pointing them out to us.

Norah, Mom, Aunt Sue, and Jason

Sad and cold.

Good thing Grandma brought cookies!

Her favorite part was when we stripped her down and let her bounce around in the car while we got packed. Go figure.

Mom and Aunt Sue. Cute sisters!

Bike Shop Premier

As some of you know Jason's joined a number of other guys in opening a new bike store in Elk Grove called Kinetic Cycles. Back in February they had a premier party prior to the opening of the store for all of the partners, workers, and bike enthusiasts in the area. We headed down for the night and it was great fun and very exciting. I actually hadn't even seen the store before and was amazed. It's gorgeous and over 500 people showed up that night to preview it! It's a Specialized concept store, which means very little to me seeing as though we are not in the biking least not for now. :) I'm sure that will be changing quickly. I think it basically means that they carry mostly Specialized products along with a number of other brands. Anyway, it was a fun night and if you're ever in the Elk Grove area go check it out. You'll see some cool bikes and I'm sure they'll be able to meet any spandex requirements you may have.

All the owners with the Specialized Angel. I guess she's a big biking celebrity. She attends all the bike races and "blesses" the competitors. She was a very sweet girl, but I must say her dress was mighty tight for an "angel."

Norah and the Specialized Angel.

Our little fam. Sorry you can't see the belly. :)

Dan, Jason, and Brian- partners and buddies. A happy little family.

Norah testing out the merchandise.

Here are a couple other pictures of the store. It was a great and exciting night!