Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Ah Ha!

I am psychic. I swear. I told everyone I would get the dreaded flu everyone else was getting on Sunday night, just in time for Nate to go back to work. What do you know! About 7pm I started throwing up for an 18hr round-the-clock session of puking my guts up. I was starting to get concerned with my heart rate around 130 andmy blood pressure sinking lower and lower due to dehydration. Thankfully I was able to keep liquids and food down 18hrs after this ordeal happened. I have the best husband - upon my first urgent trip to the bathroom, he started calling around for a place for Maysen to stay so I could rest (ALONE) the next day. And boy did I need it!! I'm just so thankful to Aunt Bonnie for being so generous with her time in letting us drop Maysen over there when we needed it the most.

I had my OB appointment today. Griffin is still doing well, however pre-eclampsia is rearing it's ugly little head in me. I didn't really have any problems until 39wks with Maysen, but I'm starting early with this one! My BP was elevated (again) but did come down after a 10min rest and re-check. The bad part is that I'm spilling protein from my kidneys into my urine already. I am now seeing the doctor TWICE weekly for regular checks and fetal non-stress tests. She made a comment about how she would take me off of work, had I been working, for modified bed rest and how I'm sort of doing that now that I'm home. Ha!! I said "Do you have a 3yr old?" Modified Bed Rest being a stay-at-home mommy with a 3yr old. I don't think so! So, I have to make a conscious effort to let the laundry go, let Maysen color more, and get used to watching the same cartoons over and over and over. I definitely need to start taking it easy ...

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Long Road - Trip

I am happy for one thing: My Grandma is in heaven now with Grandpa after being seperated from him for 5 years now. I thought this trip might be harder for me. Don't get me wrong, it was difficult leaving the only home I'd known as "grandma and grandpa Harbaughs'" for the last time; it was hard seeing grandma lay in her casket; it was hard seeing her pictures, clothes, puzzle, and magazines just as she had left them days prior not knowing she wouldn't come back. All this was hard - but I knew deep down she was OK and that somehow made it all easier. I found this great picture of my grandma when she was about 5yrs old, posing beside HER grandmother back in the 1930s. Doesn't she look like Shirley Temple?

I have been home now for 24hrs and man has it been a long, trying, exhausting, taxing, but alltogether great trip. I got the hesitant "OK" from the on-call OB doctor that I could travel to Iowa to attend my grandmother's funeral. Just 12hrs after I got the call that my grandmother had died we picked up our nephew, Jonas, on our way to Portland to ride the Polar Express train for Mases' 3rd birthday just as we had promised to do months earlier. On Sunday we traveled home only to be greeted by my dad and Jo, do laundry, and travel back up to Portland. We stayed in a hotel and at 3:30am were up and getting ready to catch the shuttle to the airport.

The flight to Chicago was great - but we were met with dense fog and a 6hr delay on our flight. We finally made it to Iowa, climbed in our rental van, and headed for Waterloo, IA. We had to find a hotel that night due to a miscommunication and by 9pm we were all snug in our beds in Iowa.

Tuesday was grandma's funeral. They laid her to rest first, then had her memorial. I had never experienced one like this - but it was refreshing; no "body" at the front to stare at during great stories of her life. We all had a day of visiting with family, which was great. Tuesday night we were back at Grandma's house spending the night with a houseful of people. Luckily Maysen went right to sleep. That is, until 2am when he woke up throwing up everywhere. Maysen has only had ONE episode of throwing up, so this was confusing to him stating "I coughed" repeatedly. We cleaned him up and put him back down only to have him throw up every 30min until 7am. He then (along with me) slept until 11am. The rest of Wednesday was great!

Wednesday night the family got back together at Grandma's for dinner. Nate and I decided that we'd just get a hotel room for the remainder of our trip as to keep Maysen rested and non-distracted by other company ... nor to spread any more germs! We were eating dinner when all of a sudden Maysen had another throw up episode so we hiked him back to the hotel. After a 13hr sleep, he was ready to rock and roll for Turkey Day!

Thanksgiving was a great day - filled with relaxing and memories. It was fun watching the little cousins who had just met for the first time play pool in the basement just as we had done many years previous with our cousins. Maysen loved seeing and playing with his cousins Colin, Milo, and Bailey for the first time. We hope to see them again soon!

We got up bright and early on Friday (yesterday) for the long jaunt home. I was rather dreading this trip home as I knew what the trip up was like. However I was surprised that both flights from Cedar Rapids ---> Chicago and Chicago ---> Portland went off without a hitch. Maysen even slept for half of the 4hr flight to Portland which was great. The only downside was that Nate started getting sick on the flights home - even throwing up most of the 4hr flight home to Portland. He slept on the drive from Portland to home, so that was OK. Dad and Jo spent the night and left early this morning. It's great to be home.

The only hard part about getting home was getting the mail last night and realizing we had received Grandma's birthday present to Maysen which she had just mailed a few days prior to her death. We opened it today and Maysen looked up and said, "Fank You, Nana!!".

I was thankful overall for an abundance of things on that special day, but more importantly that we were able to spend Thanksgiving together - something Grandma would have wanted.

Please feel free to visit my pictures from Maysen's Polar Express party as well as our trip to Iowa on my Flickr page (click on the Flickr shortcut on right).

Saturday, November 17, 2007


The voice over the phone was my dad. He sounded quiet, concerned, worried. Not my dad. Then he softly says, "Grandma died tonight."

I broke down hard. I did, because deep down in places I didn't know existed, I already knew but I just didn't know that I knew until right then. I knew because out of the blue at 10:00pm my pregnancy hormones flew out of control for no reason. I started crying with this impending-doom feeling coming over me. I focused it inward toward my immediate family and felt as though something bad was going to happen to Maysen - or Nate. But the truth was, was that Grandma was struggling and was passing.

Feeling that I needed some alone time from confused Nate, I walked into the bathroom and prayed. I asked the Lord to please give my sons a guardian angel to watch over them the rest of their days - to protect them from any harm or wrong doing. I said, "I don't know if that is you, Grandpa, or who, but Lord please give them someone." My Grandpa died 5 years ago in July.

30 minutes later I walked outside in the pouring rain to our dark backyard - feeling sorry for Maysen's yard toys getting so wet. I went out, picked up a set, walked to the deck and set them down. When I turned around to enter the wet grass again I noticed a small white mist/haze that wasn't there before and tried to recreate it with blowing my breath into the air. That did nothing. And I honestly didn't think much of it. The haze was lingering right outside Maysen's bedroom.

I now know what all this meant: I felt it when she was passing ... I can feel her here ... she's his guardian angel ...

It's 2am. I'm exhausted. I am hoping to gain medical clearance to join my family in Iowa next week to be with her body as she's laid to rest. I will write more about this later. I'm too tired to think more.

I love you Grandma Harbaugh (Nana to Maysen). I feel ever-so-grateful to have known you the years I have. I look back with nothing but the fondest of memories of you. What I am thankful for the most is that Maysen got to meet his Nana last year for the first time. I would say "last time" but I now know and understand you will be with him all of his days .... his Guardian Angel Nana.

Monday, November 12, 2007

All Aboard ... Alllllllll Aboard!

He rounded the corner to the sound of The Polar Express soundtrack being played as family onlookers waited for him. Blue balloons waved in the stagnant air tied to chair-backs. He saw his cake table, complete with Polar Express cake, filled with presents and the window right behind it held the movie poster to The Polar Express. Yes, he is one lucky little boy.

We celebrated Maysen's 3rd birthday on Saturday with family. More importantly, his cousins were there to play non-stop with him. Luckily the room we had reserved had an all access pass to the playroom, where the kids spent most of their time. We were in a high traffic zone of kids, but it was a lot of fun!

Maysen has been drooling over watching the kids outside play on their scooters. He has tried, with no avail, riding one of these scooters. We were lucky enough to find a wide-base one made by Radio Flyer at ToysRUs that was just perfect for him. We waited until the last to unveil it, and he gasped and rode it like a pro first thing. It truly is amazing re-living such vivid memories as a child through your baby's eyes.

Jenn was here, of course, for the weekend celebrating Bean's birthday. On Sunday we got some great family photos to put in Holiday cards this season. View my Flickr account (on the sidebar) for full album from Bean's party and of our family photo shoot on Sunday. (I won't tell you which one we're using for holiday cards, but if you have a suggestion or favorite, let me know!)

Maysen's having a party at school on Wednesday. Then Saturday is our big extravaganza to Hood River to ride The Polar Express train! I am very excited for this as he'll love it with his cousins, but deep down I'm looking forward to having it over with. It's our last "big outing" planned.

The boys are at swimming lessons, so I am taking advantage and getting in the warm, QUIET, bathtub. This will be a challenge - or more getting out is - but worth every grunt. Night.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Photo Safari

Here are some pictures from my first "photo safari" with my new camera last week. Of course it was all about Maysen, because he's the best thing to photograph. I was "pretty" happy with how they turned out, but I can't wait to get to learn more about my camera in the future. For the rest of the set, please visit my new Flickr account (which is great!!).

Next project is to do family pictures for our Holiday Cards for this year. Jenn will be here this weekend for Maysen's family birthday party on Saturday at the pizza parlour. Hopefully while she's here she'll be able to get some great shots!

I'm doing a Polar Express theme this year because next weekend we're taking him and 2 other cousins to the Hood River Polar Express Train ride. We're spending the night, swimming, and then doing the train ride. Read HERE about it. It sounds really fun; the kids get to wear their PJs on the train, have hot chocolate, listen to the story of The Polar Express, and even get to the North Pole to see Santa and get their own Christmas Bells. Am I crazy? Yes. But I planned this awhile ago, so I don't have an excuse now!

I also had my OB appointment yesterday and another ultrasound. I was disappointed because I was under the assumption that if I brought a DVD/CD in they'd record my ultrasound on it. However when I got there, she said they only download the pictures to it. With Maysen, they recorded every one that I had, so I have a good 30min+ of Maysen's ultrasounds recorded. The important thing is that Griffin is doing well. So well, in fact, that he's measuring 3 weeks over what he should. He should weigh around 3lbs, and he's almost 5lbs so far. My blood pressure is still a tad high, so starting now I start my 2 week checks and have to have fetal stress tests done, although she assures me it's just precautionary and everything looks great!! I've *knock on wood* only gained about 16lbs so far, but I'm sure once the water retention hits, that will sky-rocket! At least it did with Maysen. She says that they'll "probably deliver early", but I want to go at least 37 weeks, because if I deliver 36wks or sooner, than I don't get to go to the hospital of my choice, which is why I see a different doctor than I had with Maysen. My old doctor stopped delivering at my hospital of choice because balancing 2 different ones was hard on her with her own babies at home. I understand, but if I go early as in 36wks or less, that means that my new doctor will deliver at the hospital my old one would have.

Those of you ladies with kids: Did you experiece HHRWJ?? I've made that up, and it stands for Husband Hormone Release Without Justification. I swear my husband thinks he's pregnant. Only because he's flying off the handle at little things, having outbursts, and emotional breakdowns almost as if he's pregnant. No, it's not fair. Because this is MY time to act irrational with an excuse!!! I asked him if he was on his period the other day, and got "the look" that I always give him. Scary ....

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Oregon vs Arizona

If you would have asked me 5 years ago if I was a football fan, I would have said, "No way!" I went to school at Kansas State University and although I enjoyed a few good games, I was no where near the "football fan" status. If you were to have asked me 5 years from now if I was a coffee drinker, I would have said, "No way!"

Upon moving to Oregon when my husband returned home from Iraq and discharged from the US Army, I discovered that not only to be a true Oregonian but also a true *insert last name*, I had to succumb to being one. I am still no longer a coffee drinker (due to lack of interest in taste, not desire. I love the smell of coffee, just can't muster the taste). Out of process of elimination, one must assume I am now an Oregon Ducks football fan. This is true - although treading lightly on the word "fan".

I supported them the last three years, but this year has been different. Mildly paying attention when the season opened, my interest was perked. I decided I'd surprise my husband early on with a pair of home football game tickets. The only two games not sold out were Houston vs Oregon and Arizona State vs Oregon. I picked one. The "one" happened to be the biggest game in PAC 10 history (or one of them). This was proven by ESPN's College GameDay to not only appear at Autzen Stadium once this season, but to return BACK for a 2nd time in one season said alot!
Totally stoked about my great blind pick of a game, we boarded the bus on Saturday to head to Autzen Stadium. Finding clothes that don't make me look freakishly "obese" vs pregnant is a challenge these days, but I decided "what the heck" and settled with an over-sized t-shirt and called it good. When we got to the overwhelmingly-packed stadium (59,345 people to be exact), we asked for help to our seats. We were met with "Oh man!! You guys got GREAT seats!". He was right. One leap and we would have been on the field!! The energy in the stands was electric and I could feel myself get pumped up, almost emotional! There were ASU fans there, too, and watching them be heckled was painful, but I still felt proud to be "A Duck". Below was a tense moment near our seats.

The game was amazing ... Autzen Stadium is noted for being one of the LOUDEST stadiums around and man was it! I covered my ears on more than one occasion! Griffin wasn't too impressed, and nearly made me sick by the end of the game with all the flip-flopping. We overtook the undefeated ASU Sun Devils and are now #1 in the PAC 10.

In other news ... I now have my new camera!!! I haven't had much opportunity to get out and around with it yet, but plan to soon! The above were taken via BlackBerry (which I'm still impressed with!).

Thursday, November 1, 2007


In Chicken language that translates to "Trick or Treat". Last night was really the first time Maysen "got" Halloween. By the 3rd house, he literally would say "bock bock trick or treat". It didn't come out that smooth, but you got the general idea. He was quite the life of the neighborhood. About a million neighborhood kids swarm our street and as we walked down the street you could hear the people "Look at that chicken!", in which Maysen would flap his wings. He had a great time, but after an hour said, "Ok. Go home now." We got home and he lined out all his loot on the couch. He wore his chicken costume for the next hour.

On another note ... after much frustration I'm getting my Nikon tomorrow!!! I'm sure it'll take me the next 20yrs to figure out all there is to this camera, but I'm going to have a blast figuring it all out. My sister's birthday is Nov 21 (day before Turkey Day), so she's coming down and we're spending that day together doing a photo shoot. She has a Nikon D70, so it's going to be a lot of fun! Hope Halloween was fruitful (if it was only fruit!) for you all!