May 2007 Archives

Congestion / Cabin Fever

I'll have to take a picture of the page from Richard Scarry's Best First Book Ever so you can appreciate the significance of this picture. Anna saw the page and suddenly needed her triangle stick and I think we both thought to draw the "eye chart" on the chalkboard at the same time.

I was happy to eat my words on this one: Sarah randomly fell asleep on the Gymini this afternoon! It was only for about 10-15 minutes though.

Anna started getting a cold on Sunday, I got it Tuesday, and now Sarah is getting it. I guess it's partly because we never get out of the house because it is just too hot (at least that's my running excuse!). I am really looking forward to getting to Colorado this summer and I think Korea's four seasons will be a welcome change (although I know the winter is nice here, it's just been too hot for too long already and it's not even summer yet!).

Stayin' Alive

Anna keeps asking, "do you want to take your portrait?" but I don't always have the energy to get out the background paper or really chase her down—just because she asks doesn't mean she cooperates when the time comes!

Today I decided to introduce Sarah to the Baby Bjorn for the time of day when she doesn't seem to want to fall asleep, doesn't want to sit in the bouncy seat, doesn't want to play in the Gymini, and only wants to be held. This worked out pretty well so I imagine I will be employing this soothing technique most afternoons at least until Grandma gets here.


Today went so well with both girls on my own that Anna & I even had time to bake cookies!



I realize it has been a few days since I posted some pictures of the kids so I took a few of Sarah this afternoon before things got too crazy. I have a video of Anna from Saturday to post but that's going to wait for another night.

Six Sleepy Sheep and a Yellow Whale

If you ask Anna what she dreamed about last night she will either say "six sleepy sheep" or "a yellow whale in a purple sky." The six sleepy sheep are from Sandra Boynton's Snoozers and if you ask what they were doing in her dream, Anna will say that they were reading. The yellow whale is from a little book about some sea-friends (one being a yellow whale) but I have no idea where the purple sky came from. Maybe the nighttime sky at the Villagio (a mall here)?

Elmo Update

Organizing the Elmo pictures: "What nice Elmos!"

This is the one we go out and about with. We assume it is because he's in a carseat.

Friday night I went to Sesame Street's website and downloaded a bunch of Elmo coloring pages for Anna. Saturday morning I gave her the sheets and she was so excited about them that when she & I went to Toys R Us (to buy some more Legos and to get out of the house just the two of us), she brought the picture of Elmo in the carseat in to the store with her instead of Daddy Cat, Mama Mouse, or Pink Noisy Cat. Later that afternoon, Craig & Anna ran out to the grocery store and for a quick carousel ride. Guess who rode the horse next to Anna on the carousel? The picture of Elmo in the carseat.

Saturday night I ordered a plush Elmo from Sesame Street's website for my mom to bring with her next week. Anna is going to freak out, I am sure of it. Toys R Us had one Elmo item (and I was able to not let Anna see it): a bubble machine. They did, however have some Ernie dolls which Anna noticed but since she currently doesn't know that Ernie & Elmo are on the same show, I didn't give in to my impulse to buy it!

Little Things: Sarah 3 Weeks

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Sarah is a really grunty sleeper, I don't remember Anna being quite this noisy. She also is more alert than Anna at this age. Anna would still fall asleep randomly on the gymini or bouncy seat where Sarah will have none of that. She'll fall asleep in her bed, in your arms, and in the carseat and that's about it.

Sarah's cephalohematoma is completely gone. I noticed it getting smaller around Tuesday and now it's just not there.

I have noticed crusted-blood in her belly button for the past few days but today I saw actual blood in her belly button so I decided to bring her in today instead of waiting for our appointment on Thursday. The doctor prescribed an antibiotic cream to use for the next five days and said it's just a small infection and should clear up with the cream.

I noticed this week that Sarah's fingers are plumping up and after today's visit to the doctor, I can tell you why: she now weighs 10 pounds 1 ounce! She is gaining very well and I think she's going through a growth spurt right now because she seems to want to nurse constantly. If she's gaining so well without a growth spurt, I am a more than a little curious to see what she does during a growth spurt!

Her passport application says she is 1 foot 9 inches and has blonde hair although I only see red (and all of the ladies in playgroup say red). Craig maintains he sees mostly blonde with some red. We're thinking Anna had red/strawberry hair in the beginning and is now blonde so blonde seemed a safe choice for the passport, if it's wrong she'll get a new one in five years anyway!

People here pronounce Sarah's name "SAH-rah" (as opposed to the way we say it, "SAIR-ah") and there was another little girl named Sara(h) in the waiting room at the pediatrician today. This girl was maybe 7 years old but she and her parents seemed pretty amazed that there was a little baby named Sarah. I'm not sure what nationality this family was, but they also pronounced it "SAH-rah."

Elmo Has Entered the Building

We used to eat Earth's Best crackers with Elmo & Big Bird, Earth's Best bars with a picture of Elmo on the box, and, of course, we used Pampers with Elmo on them when we lived in Texas (Anna prefers it when we put an Elmo diaper on Sarah rather than an Ernie or Big Bird diaper). The point is that Anna has known who Elmo is for a while now, but she never knew he had his own show on TV.

A while ago, I downloaded some free special episodes of Sesame Street from iTunes and Craig decided to show Anna one of them last week: Music Works Wonders. Anna is absolutely obsessed with this show and plays along on her box & spoon to the music (I am to shake the rattle from the Gymini). The music on this show has been stuck in my head for days but it's worth it because Anna gets so worked up dancing and singing songs from the show. The other night in the bath, she told Nana that she wanted to get out because "Elmo is making you tired."

It's a lucky thing we're not in the US and seeing Elmo everywhere although I have a feeling I might give in in some way this summer if she's still super excited about him (she does have Elmo underwear when she's ready, I have to wonder if I show them to her if she'd decide now is the time to potty train?)

The S's

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Anna is starting to say words like "stairs" and "sky" properly now. Before she would have said "tairs" and "ky." But now she is saying them correctly most of the time. The funny thing is if you say it incorrectly she will correct you. (Craig discovered this, I always try to say things the correct way rather than mimicking her language. Sometimes though you get so used to hearing her say it one way you start saying it incorrectly yourself, like when she used to say "kig" for "pig," I found myself saying "kig" half of the time!)

Size 1

I moved Sarah up to size 1 diapers tonight. I was trying to use up all of my luxurious Newborn Pampers Swaddlers from the US but I'll have to give the rest to my friend Claire who is due in August. I only have 2 packages of size 1s so poor little Sarah is going to have to switch to the "New Baby" Pampers that just aren't as nice. She'll get to enjoy soft Swaddlers again in July though.

First Outing

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Today I took both girls out by myself for the first time. We went to playgroup and stayed one hour. Sarah slept the whole time and Anna seemed to enjoy playing with Yasmine's toys. I left a little earlier than usual because it took so long to get there and I wanted to be able to get back at a reasonable time for Anna's lunch. It worked out well and we'll probably venture out again next week!

Today was almost as good as yesterday but there were a few more glitches (although no major breakdowns). I am glad it's the weekend tomorrow so I'll have Craig around for two days!

Day 2 Status: Happy!


Anna tucked Pink Noisy Cat into the moses basket while I was nursing Sarah today. Mama Mouse also got wrapped in a blanket.

I told Anna that Sarah liked looking out the window so Anna wanted to look out, too. Turns out Sarah really liked looking at Anna more, this was the longest that Sarah remained content in the bouncy seat yet.

Today was a fantastic day, and not just relative to yesterday. Today went as I had planned yesterday to go in my mind. Sarah woke up at 6 today (I woke her at 7 yesterday) and I put her back down before Anna woke up at 8. Perfect. Then Sarah woke up at 9:45 and I had her back in bed by 11 AM with relatively little effort. I put Anna down for her rest at 1 and then woke Sarah to eat. Put Sarah back down at 2:10 and Anna finished resting at 2:30. I didn't get a nap today but the day overall was so much more relaxing.

What did I do differently? I ended up nursing Sarah to sleepiness each time. Something I totally don't want to get into the habit of doing but I think we're in survival mode until we get settled in Korea this fall so I'm going to try to not worry about "bad" habits until then. The other thing I did for the 11 AM nap was to hold Sarah downstairs for a while and put her in her moses basket until she was asleep then I carried her (in the basket) upstairs and put her in her room so Anna wouldn't wake her. This was much easier than asking Anna to whisper five hundred times in Sarah's room yesterday. Anna just played on her own while I was putting Sarah to sleep.

Hopefully Sarah's night-wakings will work out for a 6 AM start-time again tomorrow and we can get somewhat of a repeat.

So, we had a great day! Everyone is happy and Anna even let Sarah give her a goodnight kiss tonight (this is just moving Sarah's head toward Anna's until they touch, obviously!).

Oh, and to top it off, I made dinner (pancakes) and did two loads of laundry!

Day 1 Status: Alive


It was as bad as I anticipated. We're all alive though so that's what is most important. The specific problem, as I see it, is that Sarah is not your typical newborn and doesn't just fall asleep at the drop of a hat. There was a lot of running up and down the stairs, attempting to get Anna to whisper, etc. It wasn't pretty and I don't know what to change for tomorrow's game plan to make it better. At least Craig came home at the end of the day with pizza and ice cream to make things end well!

The highlight of the day was this afternoon I took a 1.5 hour nap while Sarah slept for 2 hours and Anna took a nap as well. The lowlight of the day was when Anna felt she needed to rearrange her dollhouse furniture and occupants just so when she was supposed to be in bed. I guess tomorrow I'll know to ask her to arrange those things before she gets in bed.

Thank You, Nana


We wish you weren't going home already! I wonder how often it is that you hear someone who says they aren't ready for their mother-in-law to leave after a month-long visit? Not often, I bet, but you're hearing it here. Anita has been amazing to have around and I know she is the reason these first few weeks with Sarah have been so relatively easy. I am also thankful that she and Anna had this past month to bond and I am certain that Anna will remember all of the fun stuff she did with Nana this month.

I am feeling pretty nervous about the next two weeks without Anita or my mom since Anita has been pretty much taking care of everything around here the past few weeks. I'll be sure to post how it is on my own when I find a minute!

Thanks for everything, Anita!

Do You Know the Muffin Man?

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Anna & Nana made these raspberry-topped lemon muffins today. Delicious!

The Embassy

Craig, Sarah, & I went to the US Embassy to apply for Sarah's passport today. Passport applications here are much quicker than at home, we should have it in two weeks!

Tea Party

Photos by Craig.

Anna & Nana had a fun tea party this afternoon.

Starting Her Early

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Sarah got her first lesson in Geekery today when she helped Craig fix the transformer in the kitchen.


Just a few little smiles from Sarah as she drifted off to sleep this afternoon. Usually there's a little almost-laugh in there, too. Sorry it's out of focus, it was awkward positioning!

Gertie: 1997-2007

I hope Gertie can finally find peace.

Portrait Friday

Photo by Anita

Anna settled in to read Pierre after the shoot.


Right now we are planning to move to South Korea in August instead of returning to Qatar after our trip to the States this summer. Hopefully we can work it out to fly directly from the US to Korea and not have to stop in Qatar and that we can get our air and sea shipments off and on their way smoothly before we leave for the US so we won't have to wait so long in Korea without our stuff.

This is going to make packing for our trip a bit difficult as I'll need to have stuff to tide us over in Korea before our stuff arrives, I won't know what size clothes Sarah will be wearing, etc. We'll do our best and at least this time I've got a list of things we wish we had sent air vs. sea so we won't have to do without those precious items for too long!

I'll post more about this move when I have more details.

Eleven Days


Sarah had a hearing re-test and her 11-day appointment today at the hospital. She had to have her hearing retested in her right ear as it didn't respond properly during the test two days after birth. She passed the hearing test today however.

The big questions I had for her appointment today were regarding her hematoma and her the toenails on her "big" toes. The hematoma is supposed to go away within 8-12 weeks and "is not a problem." Her toenails on her big toes look like they are growing into her toes rather than over, but Dr. Atiya said this was OK, too.

She is gaining well and otherwise looks good. Dr. Atiya thought she heard a heart murmer so asked the other doctor to take a look. He didn't hear anything but we are going back in two weeks for a follow-up exam anyway. We will delay her two-month vaccinations and do those in Colorado rather than doing them here and then traveling. We'd kind of like to have a doctor from the US look at her before we move on to our Korean adventure...

Here are her stats from today:

Weight: 3.97 kg (8.75 lbs or 8 lbs 12 ounces); 75th percentile
Length: 51.2 cm (20.1 inches); 50th percentile
Head Circumference: 36.7 cm (14.4 inches); 75th percentile


I asked Anna to show Sarah how to make the elephant on the Gymini go up and down. Tonight at bedtime, Anna said, "Goodnight, baby sister Sarah" which was super cute to hear (Anna also always comments when Sarah sneezes or coughs, etc).

Tummy Time

Sarah seems to enjoy tummy time on the Gymini. I will try to post some video of her in the next couple of days.

Felt & Peanut Butter Cookies

Anna is obsessed (to say the least) with the felt cookies (strawberry and chocolate) that Grandma Adele made and mailed to her.

Anna & Nana had fun making (and eating) peanut butter cookies today.

Busy Day

Checking out the Gymini and a black & white book.

Sarah got her first bath tonight and did not fuss at all—I guess she loves the water and Craig has not lost his touch at giving a newborn a bath.

It was a long day!

Happy Mother's Day!


Photo by Anita

The goal of this photograph was to see everyone's face on my first mother's day as a mother of two. I'm beginning to wonder just how long it is going to take Anna to warm up to Sarah.

Belly Button

I noticed that Sarah had a brand new belly button last night when I changed her diaper at 1:40 AM: let the baths begin!

Getting Closer

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I couldn't actually get up to walk across the room to get a camera (because Gertie would have moved!) so I took this with the camera on the MacBook...

Anna sat next to Sarah on the couch today. Sarah was in the moses basket taking a nap and Anna & I were watching some videos on the laptop (no photograph was taken because I was still in my pajamas, sorry). The wicker barrier of the moses basket must have made Anna feel safe in spite of Sarah's closeness. I hope over the course of the next week or so Anna will start to warm up to her, or at least by the time Anita leaves and I'm on my own for two weeks!

Sisters: Second Attempt

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Anna just isn't ready to get close to Sarah yet. It's just shyness as far as I can tell.

Anna kind of thought reading to Sarah was a good idea, we'll have to instigate this more often.

A quick shot of Sarah in her dress so the change of clothes wasn't a wasted effort.


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A portrait with Daddy Cat, Pink Noisy Cat, and Mama Mouse

We were reading If You Give a Pig a Pancake this afternoon and Anna wanted to have me take her portrait when we got to the page where the pig asks for her picture taken. I was trying to get away with just going to get the camera, but she insisted that we use background paper like last time. Her new hairstyle is courtesy Anita, just a pony tail that isn't pulled all they way through and her curly short hair around her face makes natural tendrils: I think she looks ready for the prom!

Newborn Comparison


Yes, I know you're not supposed to compare your kids, but whenever Sarah is lying around we all (Craig, Anita, & I) keep thinking she looks so much like Anna did as a newborn. I can't seem to capture this on film though; I think the extra five ounces Sarah had on Anna at birth all landed in her second chin.

(Just in case you can't tell, Sarah is on the left and Anna is on the right.)

Sarah: Day Five

Sarah checking out the blanket that Nana crocheted for her.


Nutella: It's What Nanas Are For

More Portraits

Sleeping by the Window

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We set Sarah in the bouncy seat by the window to help get rid of some of the yellow in her eyes and on her skin. She seemed to enjoy this nap but was pretty toasty by the end.

Little Things: Sarah Week 1

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Sarah does not like having her arms swaddled and this morning when I went in to get her she had wiggled one of her arms out her neck hole just to get it free of the swaddle.

Her skin was much more splotchy and red than Anna's at birth; it has cleared up a lot now that we're home but her head is still a bit swollen/mis-shapen on the right side. Her right ear looked a little smooshed the few days after birth, but now looks like it has evened itself out.

She smiles a lot in her sleep and sometimes looks like she is about to laugh.

She wakes up to eat at night where I had to wake Anna for every meal the first couple of weeks. She has slept from 12 AM - 4 AM three times now (once in the hospital, the first night; once on Craig in her room; and last night in her Pack n' Play). I'm not saying she's going to start sleeping through the night early or anything, just letting you know that so far I've gotten a few good stretches of sleep! Since we'll be doing two international trips this summer, I'm not actually hoping for a whole night's sleep until August or September at the very earliest.

Little Things: Anna, the Big Sister

Anna & Sarah "exchanged" gifts at the hospital. Anna gave Sarah a flowery elephant from H&M and Sarah gave Anna a stuffed mouse and a puzzle to work on while visiting the hospital. Anna instantly fell in love with the mouse (she likes the puzzle, too) and said the mouse's name is "Mama Mouse" and she has a "baby mouse in her tummy." Mama Mouse now pals around with Daddy Cat and Pink Noisy Cat and is on equal status with them.

Anna started calling the baby doll we bought for her in December "Baby Sister Sarah" and was wrapping her up "like a baby" and taking care of her. I think that is a step in the right direction toward accepting Sarah into her life anyway!

Bear Portrait

Sarah's first portrait with the bear. I think there's going to be a problem though when we move to Korea as the bear will be in transit over Sarah's 4 month birthday... we'll have to come up with a stand-in when the time comes, I guess!

Sarah's Name

I know I posted this information in multiple name polls earlier this year, but wanted to just post again how we decided on Sarah's name.

Sarah is a name we both like.

As for Elinor: I initially wanted to honor Eldora & Carolyn but when we discovered Carolyn's middle name was Elenore and that Eleanor is a form of Helen, it really sealed the deal! I was looking for "El-" names to honor Eldora so Elinor really is the ultimate great-grandma-honoring-name (at least for our family)!

El for Eldora
Elinor for Carolyn Elenore
Elinor is a form of Helen
E for Erma

Sarah's name is now even more meaningful that Carolyn passed away on Tuesday, I am so happy that we chose a name to honor her although I wish that she would have had the chance to get to know her three great-granddaughters.

First Photo Shoot


At Home

Anna doesn't mind Sarah at all when Sarah is sleeping in her moses basket (most of the time!) but she acts a little shy when Sarah is out getting her diaper changed or nursing.

Sarah getting some cuddles from Nana.

Welcome Home!

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Waiting in the bassinet to be discharged from the hospital.

Nana hung a welcome sign for Sarah on our door.

Sisters & Family


Photo by Anita.

First Photos

I just wanted to get a few photos up of Sarah while I have a minute. Will post more later!

Getting checked out in the nursery (photo by Craig).

The view from my hospital bed after we finally got settled.

Anita admiring Sarah... go ahead and pick her up, you know you want to!

Flowers & a bear from Craig's group here in Qatar.

Sarah Elinor Martin


5:00 AM the air conditioner in our room starts spraying water (a.k.a., our air conditioner's water broke)
6:45 we leave for the hospital, it's less than 5km from our villa but it's rush hour and Craig ends up taking the bumpiest possible route.
7:10 arrive Al Ahli Hospital
7:42-8:00 CTG fetal monitoring
~7:50 heplock (really should have taken a picture, this thing was huge!)
8:10 exam by doctor (2cm dilated) and prostaglandins gel injected (must lay down for 1 hour)
8:22 ampicillin allergy skin test (read in 15 minutes)
8:42 check ampicillin test: OK
8:45 ampicillin injection
9:25 begin another CTG; starting to get a few contractions
9:45 visit by doctor: instructed to walk and eat
9:57 walking the halls, Craig starts timing contractions
10:30 walk some more
10:50 back to room for snack, Craig drops one of the water cups from the fridge (a.k.a., the water from the fridge broke)
11:30 Craig hears a "snap" and I announce that I'm getting new shoes: my water has broken (third water breaking of the morning, I'm now calling my sandals "placandals" (placenta+sandals))
11:50 Doctor exam, 6cm dilated and meconium in fluid; will transfer to labor room.

We waited a while (maybe 20 minutes?) for the nurse to bring the wheelchair and then she took us in the elevator to go down one floor and come back up to the floor we were on (she must have had a long night the night before!).

The delivery room was not as relaxing as the recovery room we had spent some of the morning in. Basically the nurses and a doctor sat down and watched me have contractions.

The doctor who delivered Sarah was not Dr. Rizvi and I'm not sure why but I sure do wish it had been. This doctor decided that the middle of a contraction was a good time to argue with me about tearing versus an episiotomy so there I was trying to breathe through a contraction saying, "I've already discussed this with Dr. Rizvi and I'd much rather risk a tear than have an episiotomy." Then the doctor wanted to know why. I'm not implying I know more than a doctor about labor & delivery, but the current thinking at home is to tear rather than cut so that's what I wanted and it is what I did with Anna. So frustrating. This doctor also kept asking if I'd like my epidural now and we kept saying I didn't.

The fetal monitors were really irritating me when labor really got going as the pressure from them was just too much during a contraction and it seemed a nurse was always trying to adjust them. I complained about them a lot and by the end I had ripped them both off out of sheer irritation/frustration.

It seemed like whenever I was getting a break from a contraction, the nurses or doctor would touch my stomach and it seemed to start another contraction. Also the doctor was not gentle with internal exams and when I complained she said, "well most people have an epidural so they don't feel it." If I had been in my right mind I would have pointed out that because I didn't have an epidural, she needed to be more gentle but I just complained (and loudly) each time.

Generally speaking, I feel like labor this time (from 6-10 centimeters) was easier than with Anna because it moved along faster and there was less time in pain. The 2-6 cm was harder this time around since I was able to do that in the comfort of my own home last time but 2-6 cm was still not horrible in the hospital as I had feared. I know I also screamed a lot less this time around and that is maybe because there was less time between 7-10 centimeters but I also really focused on what I had read in the Bradley book my mom sent about relaxing through contractions. Of course the closer it came time push, I was unable to relax at all. This time I had quite a bit of lower back pain during contractions but counter-pressure wasn't doing the trick for that so finding a position that worked (I didn't really feel like I did) was difficult.

The doctor (yes, she really did spoil the whole experience, I'm afraid!) does not have a normal speaking voice and yelled everything. I asked her to stop yelling at me and she'd yell back, "I'm trying to help you" and I (think) I said something along the lines of "yes, I know, but please do it quieter" (I'm apparently terribly polite, saying "please, "thank you," and "I'm sorry" during the hardest parts of labor). The doctor never stopped yelling and I found it really discouraging because I felt like I was being yelled at.

At any rate, it was finally time to push (although I didn't feel the urge until several forced tries into it) and it was such a relief to know the end was near. We're not sure how long I pushed but it was less than with Anna. I haven't gotten details, but I think Sarah's shoulder was presenting awkwardly and that might have been why I had the lower back pain. It is amazing the instant relief you feel when that slippery body comes out! Craig said the cord was wrapped twice around Sarah's neck and that she was blue when she came out. They whisked her away (to the other side of the curtain) to clean her, etc. and Craig stood so he could see both of us. Then we heard Sarah cry and then I got to enjoy delivering the placenta and getting stitched up with not-quite-enough local anesthetic (which I also complained very loudly about and decided that I would be complaining about this doctor to my doctor (my doctor is the lead OB for the hospital... oh why was she not there?!) although I'm not sure what good that will do.

The nurses took Sarah to the nursery and Craig went with while I was getting stitched up (it seemed like 30-45 minutes, at least!). When that was complete, I asked to have Sarah come back to me since they told me I had to stay in the delivery room for recovery for 2 hours and I had not held Sarah yet and wanted to nurse her as soon as possible. After about five requests, the loud OB finally got my request through. Craig and Sarah came back and we stayed together the rest of the time.

Sarah Elinor Martin was born at 2:30 PM in Doha, Qatar, weighed 8 pounds 5 ounces and was 21 inches long. She is amazing and adorable and, so far, is nursing really well. Hair color looks a little reddish to me but Craig thinks blonde. We'll see how it grows in (Anna's was hard to tell for the first several months if it would be reddish or blonde). It is all a little surreal to me and I think it will be until we get settled in at home.

(Mat won the baby pool with Tanya coming in a close second.)

40 Weeks Pregnant


I have gained 34.5 pounds during this pregnancy.

I did have a few contractions today, but nothing regular or time-able so I'm just hoping that at least I'll show up tomorrow a little more dilated and a little more effaced so I don't have to do all the work at the hospital. It's really strange knowing that tomorrow is the day that we get to finally meet our daughter. I am trying to focus on the excitement of meeting her rather than my disappointment/fears of being induced.

We go in at 7 AM and they'll start the antibiotics for the Group B Strep and then they'll start the induction. I'll try to post as soon as I can after Baby Girl arrives but there isn't an Internet connection at the hospital so it will probably not be until after we get home on Tuesday.

39 Weeks & 6 Days Pregnant


Just reporting that nothing is going on. No contractions, nothing of interest. I'm resigning myself to the induction on Sunday (7 AM Sunday in Doha is 10 PM Saturday in Denver) and am trying to think positive thoughts about it.


The full moon didn't send me into labor but when I woke up in the night with my regularly scheduled (3-5 AM) insomnia, I had some pretty major pelvic/hip stiffness/pain. Anna & Anita played and I went for a walk on the treadmill and after about ten minutes things loosened back up and I felt better again. However, I slowed my pace from 5 km/hour to 4.3 km/hour because anything quicker was uncomfortable. I'm not sure if I'll make it back to the treadmill the next two days or not, I want to but might decide that rest is the best thing before labor at this point.

Distance: 1.39 miles
Time: 30:24
8:40 AM

This Week:
Miles Walked: 3.51

Totals Since 3/25:
Miles Walked: 19.44

The Earth & Sky

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Anna has become mildly obsessed with this book called The Earth & Sky that I bought for about 50 cents from the library (at the same time I bought Mickey Mouse Heads for the Sky and some other random titles). In one part of the book, it mentions that Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon and now Anna puts Daddy Cat's & Pink Noisy Cat's paws together and says that they are "holding hands on the moon."

Tea Bags

I got these cute little wooden tea bags (and some wooden sugar cubes) to go along with Anna's tea set. Anna & Nana had fun playing tea today while Craig & I were at my appointment. (See Anita's blog for her take on Qatar and her experiences with Anna.)

Did you ever walk with ten cats on your head?


Anna thinks the following lines in Dr. Seuss' One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish are hilarious:

"Did you ever fly a kite in bed? Did you ever walk with ten cats on your head?"

Tonight she filled up the basket with cats and walked around with them on (close enough!) her head.

Cool, Clear, Water

Two nights ago, Anna would not sit down in the bathtub, she stood, put her bum in briefly and and said, "too hot!" Craig turned off the water heater in that bathroom and the next night she took a bath. There is very little cold water left as the tanks sit outside in the sun all day. Even in the morning I have the shower turned almost all the way to cold and it comes out pretty warm. I realize this is supposed to get worse and that eventually we'll have to run the girls' bath water early in the day so it will have time to cool off before bath-time.

39 Weeks & 3 Days Pregnant

Since I tested positive for Group B Strep, I did not get my membranes stripped today. We did, however, decide to do an internal exam since last time around I had easy contractions that got me to 6 cm dilation. I am 2 cm dilated and not effaced but Baby Girl's head is "half-way" into my pelvis. Dr. Rizvi said this is different than talking about "stations" as after your first child, babies don't tend to "drop" before you are in active labor. Anyway, I had been feeling like Baby Girl was lower the past few days so at least that was confirmed! I don't feel like there is a risk of her turning around again at this point. I need to keep walking and squatting to keep her moving down though!

We talked a while about the Group B Strep and what it means for me and Baby Girl during and after delivery and I feel a lot better knowing that we are all on the same page. The hospital follows the ACOG and the British equivalent's guidelines so I really shouldn't be worried, but I think it's just being in a different country that makes me more nervous about procedures than I might be at home.

Dr. Rizvi said she was concerned about Baby Girl's size, thinking she might get "too big" if we let her go to 41 weeks so she ordered an ultrasound with the tech down the hall. (I remember last time around, Dr. Reed kept saying I was going to have a "big" baby and Anna was 7lbs 14 oz. I also realize thereWe did get some video of that and I'll post if if there's anything interesting to see.

Here are Baby Girl's stats based on the ultrasound:

  • Heart rate 131 bpm
  • Estimated fetal weight 3829 grams (+/-574 grams) [8.4 pounds +/- 1.3 pounds]
  • and the different measurements (head, limbs, etc.) put her due date at May 4

Based on all of this information, Dr. Rizvi recommended that we schedule induction for when I am 40 weeks: Sunday, May 6 (doctor's due date from the early ultrasound was May 6 and my original due date is May 5 since I am sure of when ovulation occured, etc.). Of course I could go into labor before that (and I hope I do—tomorrow is a full moon!) so I can avoid any complications that may arise from induction but I'm also comfortable with the induction date since I am sure of the dates and know that 40 weeks is accurate and Baby Girl has had enough time on the inside to be well prepared for her life on the outside.

An advantage to getting induced would be that I will for sure get the antibiotics in time (although as we discussed with Dr. Rizvi, it is not a huge deal if I do not get them within the 4 hours before birth, Baby Girl will just need to be observed for a full 48 hours before coming home). The other advantages are the super cool birthday of 05/06/07 and that Anita will be here to help with both kids for more time which will be fantastic.

By this time next week we will be home with Baby Girl: I hope we're ready!

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