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Eagle Mountain, Utah, United States
My name is Lauren, and I live in the bubble. I am wife to Marshall, the biggest BYU fan in the world; and mother to Carly, our big girl, and Wes, our wild man, and Calvin, our new addition. I graduated BYU with a degree in Social Work, and I went forth to serve at LDS Family Services. I like scrapbooking and going out to eat at nice restaurants. I am fascinated by new cleaning products at the grocery store, so I have to shop in wide circles around the perimeter to avoid the temptation to buy. I love chocolate.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Welcome Calvin!

Calvin Steve Andrews. 11/9/11 @ 3:31pm. 8lbs 6oz. 19 inches long.  Welcome to our #3!

If you want the full story, keep reading!

I am usually induced.  We had an induction scheduled for this pregnancy too.  Living so far from family, I like being able to plan when grandmas will be here to help with childcare, not have to worry about Marshall rushing home from work, etc.  So we scheduled this newest addition to join our family right at 39 weeks.

Occasionally when considering my birth plan, I feel regret that I don't have enough nerve to let labor start on its own.  That I would never have that moment of "Grab the bags; let's go!"  Such a romantic vision of the traditional experience that women have gone through for ages.  But I'm too much of a control freak to set aside convenience for experience.

7pm on Tuesday my contractions started about 10 minutes apart.  Not painful, just noticeable. I start timing.

9pm- Still consistently spaced after 2 hours, starting to feel a little crampy.  Maybe 8 mins apart.  I call Marshall at work, and tell him that he doesn't need to come home or anything- just that I might possibly maybe be starting labor.

11pm- I call Marshall and let him know that they are still consistent and now more painful.  He tells me to lay down and not do anything else for a while and see if they slow down or go away.

12pm- I call Marsh and let him know that after laying down, they are now 7 or so minutes apart, and still painful.  For a 3rd birth, doctors like you to come to the hospital when you are 4-5 mins apart.  But Marshall was up in Salt Lake, and had to get approval to leave.  And then drive an hour home.  And we weren't sure how far I'd be by then.  So started getting ready to leave, and I called Russ to see if he could come over and stay with the kids.

1am- Marshall and I meet at the hospital.  He went to the hospital straight from work, and I drove myself there to meet him.  The contractions weren't so painful yet that I couldn't drive or talk through them.  The nurses hook me up to the monitors for an hour.

2am- Sure enough, my contractions are 7 minutes apart, but after an hour I'm still at 3cm with no change.  The contractions have changed though.  They are painful!  The kinda painful where you have to stop walking and bend over and hold onto the wall for a minute and concentrate in order to get through them in dignity.  But the nurses send me home.  Come back when they are 4-5 minutes apart, they tell me.  We walk out to the parking lot, me stopping every few minutes to concentrate, and we decide that I'm in no condition to drive myself home.  So we leave one car and head home.  Russ decides to stay over on our couch because who knows if/when we'll need to go back in.

I sleep the whole night in 7 minute blocks.  In the morning, the contractions are sooo painful!  Painful enough that I squirm in agony and have to moan through them.  But they're still only 7 minutes apart.

10am- After a while they are painful enough that I have to get up and walk, move, crawl, anything during them to try to find relief.

11am- Once I'm up and on my feet, they shoot to 4 minutes apart.  I tell Marshall that we're going back to the hospital.

11:30am- Since we only had one car, we had to take Russ and the kids with us to the hospital so they could have a car with car seats to get around for the day.  I am thoroughly traumatizing my kids by moaning loudly through my contractions.  THIS conversation ensues.  Love my kids!

12pm- at the hospital again.  They check me, and I'm at a 5!  They'll keep me!  Woohoo!!  I immediately ask for my epidural, thankyouverymuch, but I'm informed that I have to get an IV first, and then wait for my midwife to get there and check me herself, and then a couple bags of fluid in through the IV before they can call the anesthesiologist.

12:30pm- my IV is in, but the fluid is not emptying very fast out of that bag.  My contractions are too much to manage at this point.  I am sobbing through each one.  The nurse is trying to get me to breath through them, but I never took breathing classes!  I just get induced and get my epidural first before I feel any of the contractions!  The midwife isn't there yet, but they call her and she can probably hear me in the background, and she gives them the go-ahead to just do the epidural already.

1pm- anesthesiologist is present.  1 bag of fluid is in.

1:30pm- He places the epidural 3 times before he gets it in right.  I don't even care though as soon as I feel that warm dulling in my legs.  So happy!  I'm such a better patient when I'm not in pain.  I apologize to everyone present for the sobbing display they all just witnessed.  Everyone else is worried though, because my blood pressure is something ridiculous like 50 something over 30 something.  Obviously not correct, because I'm still conscious.  But they keep taking the blood pressure over and over again, make me roll to different sides, and keep asking me very seriously "you don't feel light headed??"  It rises slowly and finally gets to 85/60, and they call it good.  Apparently that's why you need 2 bags of fluid first.  Who knew?

2pm- Jennifer, our midwife arrives.  She comes in and checks me and I'm at 6cm, and my contractions have spaced back out to 6 minutes.  She breaks my water, and offers to give me some pitocin if I just want to get the show on the road.  I love me some pitocin, so I jump at the offer.

2:30pm- Pitocin is started.  Jennifer and I sit and chat for a while.

2:50pm- Jennifer talks to us about our birth plan, and Marshall starts getting prepped to help deliver the baby.  I love that she is so cool with letting Marshall be hands on with the medical stuff.  Some of the nurses have already scolded him to stop looking through cabinets, stop giving suggestions, and stop reading monitors.  Jennifer actually asks Marsh if he's ever checked cervical dilation and teaches him how!  Marshall gets to check and determine that I am now 9cm!

3:10pm- I can tell from the pressure that I'm complete and ready to push.  They start getting the room ready for delivery.

3:20pm- I'm told to start pushing when I feel ready, and so I do.  Only the midwife and the delivery nurse are present.  The team for the baby hasn't arrived yet.  I take a practice push, and he crowns!  Jennifer has me do a couple very small pushes and keep telling me to slow down and not push so hard.  She delivers the head and then lets Marshall step in and deliver the rest of baby Calvin.  I hear the nurse on the phone telling the pediatric team "the head is out!  Come in now!"

3:31pm- Calvin is born!  Marshall puts the baby up on my chest, where we rub him off, say hi, and Marshall cuts the cord!

Calvin is so cute!  He reminds me a lot of how Carly looked.  I think they have the same nose.

Russell brings the kids by to visit.  Wes easily recognizes that this is the baby we've been talking about for so long.  He can identify him by name and gives kisses if we ask him too.  But he's not all that impressed.  Carly, on the other hand, is just smitten.  She crawls up next to me on the bed and just stares at him.  She is so quiet and so gentle, and wants nothing more than to hold him.  She pays attention to every move he makes, every noise, and wants to know everything about him.

Marshall goes home with Carly and Wes for the night, while I get to snuggle Calvin all night in the hospital.

Today Londa, Kiernan and Kalen arrived from California and came by to meet the newest Andrews.

Friday afternoon we get discharged and should be home!

Having now actually gone into labor on my own, I have to say that the romantic idea is overrated.  Seriously, contractions are no fun.  And I suck at pain.  Getting sent home is no fun when you are in so much pain.  I'm glad I have had the 2 experiences to compare.  But I have to say that the excitement of surprise labor is so not worth it!  I think I'll stick to my controlled, calm inductions in the future if I can help it!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Catching up: Pregnancy

Some fun stuff this pregnancy-

While in California in August, Kiernan threw me a beautiful baby shower at my parents' house.  Big thanks to Kier for the shower, and to my parents for all their hard work getting ready and setting up for the shower.  It was a lot of work!

Kiernan's amazing cake! 

Also while in California, Emily offered to do some maternity photos for me.  We went out into the preserve for like 40 minutes, and these were some of the amazing shots she got. (I was huge at 28 weeks!)

She is so talented!  Thank you so much Emily!!

So this pregnancy has been like my others in many ways, and has been different in many ways.

- First, like my others, it has been pretty easy on me.  I don't get a ton of morning sickness, and don't really throw up at all.  I have some cravings and aversions, but nothing terrible.  For the first half of the pregnancy, I could totally be one of those chicks on "I didn't know I was pregnant."

- But unlike my last pregnancies, I have been SOOOO exhausted this pregnancy.  From beginning to end, I have just become more and more tired.  2nd trimester 2nd wind- What's that?

- I have also been sick more this pregnancy.  Not morning sick, because generally it is comes along with my kids being sick too.  Unless that's a new style of contagious morning sickness where the whole house gets the sympathy pukes.  I think it may have to do with being so run down this pregnancy.  My immune system must have checked out.

- I haven't gained much weight this pregnancy.  Or really any.  Maybe like 5lbs on a bloated day, and then it goes away a day or two later.  But I'm HUGE!  All belly out front.  I feel like I look way bigger this time around than I did with either of my other two.
Never mind the costumes- just check out that belly!
- This kid is super strong.  I felt him even earlier than my last pregnancies, and he kicks a lot harder.  It's hard not to notice him.  Sometimes, if I'm typing on the computer and kinda hunched over on him, he'll kick me so hard that it takes my breath away or leaves bruises!

- So yes, New Baby is another BOY!!  Marshall and I were so sure this one was a girl.  So we were in for a big surprise when we went in for our gender ultrasound on July 1st and found out that he is definitely not a girl.  Not that we should have been surprised.  I mean, the pattern in our families is one girl with a bunch of brothers.  So, for now, that pattern continues on.

When we picked up the kids after the ultrasound, Carly raced to the door and asked excitedly what gender the baby was.  We told her she was going to have a new brother, and oh my gosh....the tears!  She was so sad.  Luckily she got over it in about a month.  lol.

On a side note, Carly has been really big into questions this pregnancy.  She understands that the baby is in my tummy and will come out soon.  She loves to feel him kick.  She loves to make up names for him.  She loves to put pillows under her shirt and be "pregnant too."  She loves to sort through baby clothes with me and do the token "awww cute!" squeal.

We have also been talking a lot about how when we're good, the Spirit can live in our hearts, and when we make bad choices, we can't have the Spirit stay with us until we repent.  Carly has somehow entwined this with the pregnancy.  The other day as we were getting into the car, Wes was throwing a fit.  She sternly looked at him and said "Wes! You need to be good or Jesus can't live in your belly anymore!"

- As for names- We have had a very hard time deciding on a name this pregnancy.  That's another way this pregnancy has just been so different.  Usually we just know the name, and it feels absolutely right.  This time around, though, we've wrestled and wrestled because even though we have a list a mile long of names we like, none felt right.

Finally, one day we were going through the baby name book AGAIN just throwing out anything we didn't hate.  And we both mentioned one name that had been on our minds lately.  A kind of variation on one of the original front runner that never felt quite right.  And this name felt right, but it was one we'd never considered.  And not everyone loves it.  So we'll just leave it at that, and you can all find out on Friday!

- Oh yeah, I'm being induced on Friday!!  3 more days!!

Monday, November 07, 2011

Catching up: Wes

Wes, my best little buddy.  Yep, he's a ham!  He's so full of life and energy.  He is definitely allllll boy.  I don't know if it is a difference between raising a boy and raising a girl, or if it's more due to being the 2nd born, or if it's just all his little unique self, but Wes is a very big personality in a small package.  He has to keep up with Carly and do all that she does, meaning he's way ahead on all his milestones.  But he has to add volume.  

Lots of volume.

Whereas Carly thrived on attention at this age, and was generally cute to catch our eyes, Wes could care less if anyone is paying attention to him.  He'll just make his own background noise all. day. long.  I have been assured that this is directly inherited from Marshall.  He just growls, hums, makes up words, or beeps and bops to his own movements all day.  And if you engage him?  Growling.  Lots and lots of shrieking growls. 

Part of him is so independent.  We hiked the Y mountain trail back in April (or March?  Can't remember).  All I remember is that I was 10 weeks pregnant, hadn't hiked it since I was a college freshman, and was very proud I made it the whole way!  

Anyway, he hiked the whole way by himself.  And he was less tired, slow, and out of breath than I was.  He just ran up the mountain!  

The other part of him is so cuddly.  He is much more of a cuddler than Carly was at this age.  He loves to come and give kisses, or rub my back.  He's always saying how much he loves members of his family.  I love his little "You're my favorite mommy in the whole world!"  Melts my heart!

Wes is also at this really fun stage where he is aware of the camera and seems to think that anytime we ask him to "smile," he has to pose.  Like this:

Love it!!
He is also super fearless.  Anyone been to kangaroo zoo?  It's a huge warehouse full of inflatable bounce houses and slides.  We went a couple times this summer.  These pictures are from our visit in February.  So he was 19 months.  He zeroed in on the tallest slide in the place and went down over and over again.  All on his own!

All of the other parents were appalled that we let this little baby throw himself down the 25 feet or whatever it was.  Then they were equally shocked when he emerged laughing, and ran to climb it again.  

For Wes' 2nd birthday, we went to Kangaroo Zoo again, and then had a low key party at the local pirate-themed pizza restaurant.  

Does anyone remember my post about Butt Pie?  Well, for Wes' party we had another Andrews' special: Asphalt Cake.  

We bought this Cars cake super last minute at a grocery store, and were running into the restaurant.  Marshall had the presents and cake, and I had the kids.  The next thing I know, the cake was upside down in the middle of the parking lot.  After how elaborate and memorable Carly's cake was just a couple weeks before, I felt so bad that we just flipped it over and ate it anyway (it did have the plastic cover on).  We just figured, "he's 2...he won't care."

We let him have creamy alfredo pasta- a big treat since he's allergic to milk.

Carly recently learned how to take pictures on her own, using our phones or a camera.  Her favorite subject? Our Wesley.  This was one morning when I went to work and left Marshall "in charge."  I think you can see how in charge he was. (note the pajama-ed and slipper-ed legs of unconscious Marshall in the bottom of each shot as Wes lords over him.

Marshall doesn't remember any of this, and found the photos on his phone a day or two later.

That's our little growler's personality!

Our most recent parenting triumph with Wes: the binky is gone!  Carly was never much of a binky kid.  But Wes loved his and saying goodbye has been a little trickier.  We started doing the "just at bedtime" earlier this year, but seemed to backtrack occasionally when around other kids with pacifiers, or when he found one around the house and I was too tired to fight him.  But for about a month now, he hasn't had one at all.  Not even at bedtime.  And it's been such a relief.  

Fingers crossed he doesn't relapse when New Baby gets here and has his own.

Wes is also working on potty training.  But I'm not bringing it up at all.  Occasionally he'll come tell me that he needs to poop, and we'll run to the toilet and he'll use it!  This happens on average once a week.

Wes had his 2 year check up in July, and he's pretty healthy.  He was in the 17th percentile for just about everything.  Marshall is convinced I somehow stunted his growth in utero.  I have to remind him that he was only in the bottom 10th percentile growing up himself.  Genetics.  

But Wes is advanced in everything else.  Especially in speech.  Just like Carly, he's off the charts when it comes to his ability to verbalize.  He's been talking in full sentences for a long time now, and just keeps adding new words every day.  I love that I can talk to him just like I do my 4-year-old, and know he completely understands me.  I also love that he can answer me back, even if most of the time the answer is "No! I don't want to."  

We're still working on that attitude.....

But how could you ever be mad for long at a little personality like this??

We love you Wessy!!

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Catching up: Carly

Well, I haven't blogged in forever.  And I'm tired of being nagged to get back on the blog-horse.  So here go the catch-up posts.  I'll start with Carly, since the next post I intended to do was her 4th birthday.

That's right, my little girl is 4 years old!  How does that happen?

Does anyone else remember her this size?

So for Carly's birthday, we were fortunate enough to have all of the extended family come visit.  Her birthday week started off with a dance recital!  We were super excited to have all the grandparents in town to see Carly up on the big stage.

We had been to a rehearsal, but I think that once it was the real deal with all those people in the audience, Carly really wanted to be sure that we saw her.  Well, you can see for yourself:

And that was the number she knew the best, so we were a little worried for the second number.
But it was a success! She at least stayed on the stage.

Next up was her big birthday party.  We had planned to go to the local water park, but it was a cold, cloudy day.  So instead we went to the indoor pool at the hotel where all the grandparents were staying.  Kiernan, my amazing sister-in-law, was here- which means Carly got one amazing party!!  Kiernan is an incredible party planner, and she really went all out with Carly's Tangle-theme party.

Breakfast was served poolside, and Kiernan made yummy braided pastries, and other coordinating pink and purple foods.

We all ate, and played in the pool.

Afterward, we continued the party back at our house with Kiernan's amazing Tangled cake.

And presents.  Lots of those.  Including her first bike!

Carly is an amazing kid.  She is so so smart.  She just blows me away with what she understands and remembers.

Her favorite game is the "riddle game," where she describes an item she is thinking about, and we have to guess using her 3 clues.  Such as "What is really big, gray, and has a long nose?"  Then we guess "Elephant?" and she celebrates and informs us its our turn.  We can play this hours on end, especially in the car.

She is also working on reading.  But don't tell her that.  For some reason, she sighs and gets all annoyed when I try to sit down with her and have her sound out words in a book.  But we often have her guess the spellings of random words throughout the day, since she knows all the letter sounds.  I find that she is easily frustrated and has little patience.  Apple doesn't fall from the tree, huh?

Carly is very artistic.  More than just about anything, she enjoys coloring.  She colors pages and pages every day.  Hours and hours.  We let her hang any pictures she wants on the walls, so our house is papered in her colorful artwork.
Just like her daddy, she is not a big fan of breakfast foods.  Every morning I ask her what she would like for breakfast, and every morning we go through the same list.  Hotdogs?  Nope.  Macaroni?  Nope.  Spaghetti?  No.  Burritos?  No.  Peanut butter sandwich?  ::::sigh:::: Okay...close enough.

Carly is also very confident, outgoing, and social.  She expects that every child she meets will be her friend.  She loves to engage in imaginary play, such as house (she's always the mommy), or puppies.  Sound familiar?

She is a bright, vivacious little girl, and I just can't wait to see what the next year brings!

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