Saturday, December 29, 2007

My New Cousin!

Here's a picture of me in the waiting room at the hospital. We were gonna go see my new cousin, but I had to stop at urgent care because I was a sick baby.
Here I am, looking all sad. I had been up for two nights! I can't breathe, my nose is all stuffy, and mom and dad are TERRIBLE at sucking the snot out of my nose. I sound terrible. Plus, because I'm all stuffy, I can't nurse well. So mom freaked out (again....I'm detecting a theme here) and took me into the walk in clinic. There were 6 other little babies there, so apparently we have the same bug.
She how fast mom turns on me? There she is holding Joseph Daniel while Ivy holds me. I'm not happy about mom going after the new baby! He was 8lbs 5oz and 18" long. I have decided to nickname him "Ball" because that's what he looks like. Uncle David said Meredith had a hard time, and that Joseph was 8 pounds and a big baby. Mom said "Try 9 pounds..."
Who's missing in this picture? That's right....Me...Thomas! Mom made me stay away from the baby because of my sniffles....but the other boys got to go by him. Oh well, that's ok....maybe his baldness is contagious :)
Here's a picture of daddy holding Joseph. Mom and dad kept saying how little he was. I can't wait to get better so I can hang out with him and teach him how to smile and fart loud.
Even though mom was hoping for Joseph to be born on December 28th, he ended up coming at 12:15 am on December 29th! So we are exactly 2 months apart!

In even better news, Mom has got a new job! YAYYYY! She is now going to be the director at the Nekoosa Library and will be working only 2 blocks away form home. No more long drive to work, no more 11 hour days on Saturdays, no more working on Sundays! She is so happy! And I'm happy too because that means I get to see mom during the day even. I don't have to go to daycare, and mom can come home to feed me!


This is me with three of my cousins: Ivy, Owen and Cedric. They pet my head alot. They are expecting a new brother any day now! My aunt Meredith was having contractions on Christmas. I got some toys and things were good. I got passed around a lot and cooed over. It was nice being the new baby at christmas!
Uncle Dave is holding me. I was so tired after being passed around like a flu virus. What no one knew at the time was that I was getting sick! Also, my cousins Andrew and Ben kept teasing me and saying I looked like Waldo from Where's Waldo. I told mom to tell them they were dating themselves....Waldo is so 90's...
Here's a picture of mom with my cousin Silas. He has a mouthful of soda. And he was really helpful in helping me open my presents. Grandpa said next christmas will be lots of fun with all the boys. Mom says she worries I might be torn limb from limb becasue the older boys get so excited, they're like a pack of wild coyotes.
Here's a picture of daddy, me and mom. I'm still really tired. plan to take over the universe....# 1. Look cute and vulnerable

Here's a picture of me with Grandma and Grandpa Engwall on christmas. Notice how well we color coordinate? We didn't even plan it!

Mi Vida Loca by Thomas A.

Yes, it is another post by yours truly, Thomas A. I have my mom/secretary take dictation and post my blogs for me.
As you can see. I like to dictate from my office chair/baby swing/neglect-o-matic.

Since my last post, I have been all over town with mom and grandma. The first month of my life, I went nowhere. Second month, there's not a store mom won't stop at! But, I never fact, even mom says I'm just about the perfect baby. Mostly I sleep when we shop. I am letting mom get all comfortable so she thinks she will be able to get away with this in the future, but she won't. Also, I have a deal with the big guy....I play the part of perfect baby now, thus luring mom and dad into thinking that another baby would be wonderful because I have been such a good baby. I already have my sibling picked out...s/he's just waiting in the wings... A real hellraiser and cries alot. But shhh! We don't want mom and dad to catch will ruin their surprise!

I got to go out for lunch at Country Kitchen....I've been getting pretty and I have run into grandma lots, which means lots of free lunches!

This is my in a contemplative moment. I am pondering the mysteries of the universe, and how amazing it is that I turned out so perfect, given the genetic material I had to work with. Mom calls it my "poop face". She is so crass....

I've been dealing with some nasty congestion (probably caused from mom dragging me all over town...) On the plus side, Auntie Jessica sent me some wonderfully cozy slippers, booties and a really warm hat. Too bad my mom has been too lazy to take any pictures so Jessica could see how cute things look on me. I really like the hat because it's so warm and soft. Everyone else at Grandma's house loved the little felted slippers. What can I say? I'm a well dressed baby.

Here I am wearing the boots Mike, Brett and Jonas Runge sent me from Deadwood, South Dakota. They're friends of mom's. Dad thought it would be funny to put the boots on me and pose me. Mom said I looked like some cartoon that used to be on Saturday mornings when she was a kid..."hanker for a hunk of cheese". I have no idea what she's talking about.
Later, I will write about Christmas and the new cousin who stole my birthday!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Babysitting with Aunt Diana

This is not my mom! (His baby acne is really bad...poor Tnut.)

Me and Aunt Diana.
Diana offered me Doritos and Captain's and Mountain Dew. I told he mom would get mad, so I drank my milk instead!

Mom's view on Mom A.

Well, he is growing lots! He is now 23 inches long, and about 9.5 pounds. He's growing so fast. I tell Eugene "I think it's time to work on another...he's not even a baby anymore!" Really! He's up for about 4 hours at a stretch now and he's looking all over. At night, his last feeding is at 1 am and then he will sleep until about 5:30am. So he's doing really good. The stomachaches and fussiness are gone now that I cut out the dairy products and all nuts. I really miss my morning peanut butter on toast. Eugene however, does not seem to miss me having it. He was disturbed by the fact that I would always lick the blade clean, a habit which also perturbed Adam and Jess.

He has also discovered his hands, but is still a bit of a spazz. He favors his left hand and arm and is constantly making the hand motion for party people everywhere to "get down". He has been working on his thumb sucking, but gets greedy and overly excited and tries to eat his hand.

On 12/8, Eugene and I went out to dinner for his birthday. My Aunt Diana came over to babysit for Thomas. I used to babysit for her boys, Andrew and Ben. She said he was a perfect baby, and it was a good thing we got home when we did because she was going to take him.

While we were out, Eugene made me call home to make sure everything was "ok". I told him Diana had raised two children, I was sure things were ok. I still had to call, because Daddy was worried.

It's been freezing out so T-Nut has not been out. He may be getting cabin fever. I took him to the laundry room yesterday and he was fascinated...."I've never seen this room before...what else don't I know?"

When he gets annoyed, he does his pteradactyl scream to let us know he is upset.

And finally, on 12/9 he gave me his first real smile!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Monster baby By Thomas A.

So mom was all freaked out because when i went to see Dr. Flinders at my 2 week checkup, I hadn't gained very much weight. I was still almost a pound below my birthweight. The Dr. said he wasn't too worried. Aunt Meredith said that Ivy and Owen were bigger babies, and they were slow gainers too. So mom figured it might be an "Engwall" thing.

Well, I went bac to the Dr. on Monday and they weighed me again. After lots o' nursing, I put on 8 ounces in one week. Usually babies gain about an ounce every two days, so I triples what i was supposed to gain! Oh! I grew another 1/2 inch too! I'm almost as big as grandpa!

{Mom's note: Seriously! All that kid did was eat! I nursed at least every two hours. I was not expecting 8 ounces in a week! Jeesh! It's a good thing, but it's really hard to get anything done! It's a bit difficult to pump and store because he eats all the time. I now try to pump whatever is left, but it takes a few times just to get a few ounces together. The more I pump, the more he eats.}

Monday, November 19, 2007

It's hard work being a baby! By Thomas A.

Sigh! No one told me it was going to be this hard! Mom LIED! She said it would be fun. It WAS fun when all I did was eat and sleep. As long as mom was feeling sore, she was moving slow and sleeping lots. But now she feels better and is taking me everywhere!

So far I've been to:
Don and Hazel's house. Hazel used to work with grandma.

Great Uncle Tom and Great Aunt Diana's house. It was Uncle Tom's 50th birthday. I got him a card and he got to hold me!

Shopping at Walmart with Grandma Engwall. I think she knows everyone in town! We couldn't go 5 feet without someone asking to see me. She put lots of stuff in my cart. I was scared she was going to try to run me through the checkout line.

I've been to Grandma and Grandpa Engwall's alot. They like being able to see me. I am working my way to being the number 1 grandkid. I will overthow my Engwall cousins yet!

I've been out to eat where Daddy works. All of the waitresses came out to hold me and tell me how cute I am. I didn't cry at all. I save that for mom when it's just the two of us. That way, no one believes her when she says I have a crabby time!

The first picture is me in my camo outfit. It's Wisconsin and the first day of deer season. Leah and Ryan gave the shirt to me when I was in the hospital. They also got me a flannel just like the ones Grandpa wears. I am not a happy boy when mom tries to pose me or makes me act like a show pony. I'm a baby boy, not a Barbie doll!
The second picture is me sleeping in my carseat. It was a long day! Mom, Dad and I had to go see Dr. Flinders for my two week checkup. I do not like the nurse. She makes me get all naked and I get cold and cry. Then they put me on the scale with only a little piece of paper on it and THAT'S really cold. I do my saddest baby in the world cry. I add the chin quiver for drama.
Dr. Flinders then looked to see how much weight I've gained. I am at 8 pounds 4 ounces, which is less than what I am supposed to weigh. I'm at 50%. But I added a whole 1 1/2 inches to my length and 1 inch to my head measurement, which is 95%. Right now, Dr. Flinders says mom needs to wake me up every two hours to eat and come back next week. If I gain a lot of weight, then I need to eat more and sleep less. If I don't then I am a "string bean" and will probably be a skinny baby like mom and dad. And since I was born like the great emperor Caeser, I might have had a lot of fluid in my lungs and the 9lbs wasn't my "true" birthweight.
After the trauma of being weighed, Dr. Flinders made mom get me all unbundled so he could check me. I was quiet but very alert and looking all over. The only time I cried is when the Dr. took off my diaper to check my hips and belly button. {Mom's note....Dr. Flinders is REALLY good at diapering. He was able to get the diaper back on better than I can, and he was standing at Thomas' head so he was doing it upside down. I said "Wow! You're a professional!" "Four kids!" he said.}
While I was crying the Dr. said that I look like mom, but that I really look like Grandpa. He was laughing because he only knows grandpa as an old man, but he says he now has a good idea of what he must have looked like as a baby. Mom commented that I was almost as tall as grandpa, and I cry just as much as Grandpa did after his gallbladder surgery.
Then I heard two things I didn't like. 3 shots at my next visit. He did tell mom to give me tylenol before we come in and to nurse me in the room as soon as they were done. And then mom asked for a refill on her vitamins.
The dr. asked her a bunch of questions and from what I was able to put together, he told her to keep taking them and if she was feeling sick to her stomach she would have to come in right away. He said "Well, it wouldn't surprise you want another baby already?" And mom said she wanted her kids to be close together. We'll see how well that works. As long as I am in my little baby bed...( see below)
After the doctor, we went home and daddy had to go back to work again (I never see him...his boss is gone, so daddy is working lots!) Mom and I went home and I ate and slept. Grandma and Grandpa then came up with Great Uncle Jim and we all went to dinner.
Last is a picture of me in my little bed. It's a special bed that fits in mom and dad's bed so I can sleep all safe and snug between them. I overheard mom and dad figuring out how much room they each get. Dad has 24 inces of bed, mom had 18 inches of bed, and I get the WHOLE middle to myself. Sometimes I have to share with Ike, but mostly, it's all mine! Mom and Dad are trying to figure out why such a little person need so much bed space. It's so I can make sure I am an only child. So ha ha to you Mom and Dad and Dr. Flinders! HA HA to YOU!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Week One

Nursing a baby week one. It was hell.

Fortunately someone gave me some GREAT gifts at the baby shower and also some really good advice. We went to see the lactation consultant and see resolved the rest of my fears and concerns. Thomas is gaining weight right on schedule, so things look good.

For about three days I felt like an Iraqi at Abu Grahib. I was subjected to extreme nip torture. It's as bad as it sounds. The thing that kept ne going? That adorable little face. I have yet tp put him down for more than an hour. I can't help it. We waited a long time for him. I hope it's true that you can't spoil a baby.

Saturday, November 3, 2007


My mom with her first grandchild to be born with hair. She says it was instant flashback to when I was born.

Grandpa Thomas "Dugan" with little Thomas. Grandpa says he is already good luck as grandpa got 34 muskrat and 3 mink that day!

T-Money sleeping on the bed 1 day old. Sleeps like an Engwall with hands by the face.

Papa holding Thomas in his Babe outfit. We put him in that because my Grandpa Engwall was nicknamed Babe.
Papa with Thomas at 4 days old. First day at home.

Me and Thomas right after the c-section.

Thomas with Grandma Engwall.

Thomas with all his Engwall cousins. They adore him. Owen calls him "his baby" and loves to brush his hair. Ivy, Me holding Silas and Thomas, Cedric, and Owen on the bed.
Grandpa with Aunt Meredith, all the Engwall grandkids, and waiting for number 6 (Joseph Oscar?) to arrive after Christmas. Cedris, Ivy, Owen, Meredith holding Thomas, Grandpa and Silas. Grandpa asked Owen, "Does Thomas look like me?" and Owen said "No Grandpa, he's not gray like you!"


Thomas Cash finally made his entrance on October 29, 2007 at 6:15pm by c-section. It wasn't that mom didn't put forth a noble effort (24 hours of labor, including about 5 hours on pitocin) but I only dilated to 8.5cm. For one check they said I was close to 9, but subsequent checks showed I went to 8.5 and stayed there for hours. At one point, I got really nauseaus and asked for a puke bucket, and started to shake really bad. I asked one nurse if this was the transistion phase and if I could push yet, and she said, no, I actually was past transition, but I wasn't to the pushing stage.

I had decided that I would only go with paracervical blocks for pain relief because those wouldn't have an effect on the baby. And they did work wonderfully, the first 7 times (I'm a record holder at both the hospital and for the doctor!) But once we figured out I wasn't going much past 8.5, we decided to see if pitocin would "put me over the edge". So I got hooked up to that and it was working. My contractions were definitely coming harder and faster. I was having piggybacks which lasted over 2 minutes with about 30 seconds in between. This went on for about 3 hours and finally, after being awake for 40 hours, and having no pain relief, I broke. I asked for the epidural. My rational was that maybe I was exhausted and not relaxing enough and the epidural would help. So I got my epidural (which was patchy) and they ramped up the pitocin, so I could still feel the contractions.

At 4 the doctor and OB came in and said they thought I might need a c-section. I asked for another hour to try, so they agreed as both the baby and I were doing well. My mom went home to get my dad, so I kind of knew it wasn't a question of if, but when I was getting the c-section. They got back to the hospital about 5pm and the doctors came back in. I said that I would agree to to c section if they truly thought I wasn't going to be able to have the baby the regular way. Both doctors looked at me and said, "it looks like he is too big. We tried pushing your cervix over his head, but we can't. We have to do the c section."

It was about 5:30pm at this time and they called down to get the room set up. At this point, the epidural wasn't helping and I was having the big contractions from the pitocin. So I did what any person would do...I started crying hard. Eugene and the nurse kept trying to make me do the breathing, but I wasn't really listening. Eugene was getting all scrubbed up so he could go in with me.

At 6:00pm they wheeled me an and gave me a spinal. Due to the curve in my spine, they decided a second one would be a good idea.

They got me on the table and brought Eugene in. After a few minutes, I said I felt something on my lap, but I didn't want to know what it was. I asked them if they had started yet and Dr. Flinders said "I can see the head and he has a ton of hair! Eugene! Stand up, you have to see this!" Eugene stood up and started to get teary. After a few minutes of pushing hard on my upper abdomen, they pulled the baby out! Eugene got to cut the cord, clean him up and go to the nursery with him.

I stayed behind so I could get sewn up and look less like a mackeral laid open at a fish market.
Dr. Flinders and Dauenhauer kept saying "That was a big baby" but no one knew any numbers. So Dr. Flinders called down and asked. The birth APGAR was an 8 and the next was a 9, so he was good and healthy. Then I heard him say "21 inches long and 9 POUNDS 1 oz".

While they were sewing me up both doctors commented on how red and inflammed my muscles and uterus were. I was told that essentially, my contractions were at the intensity needed to push the baby out, but because he has turned to be sunnyside up, and he was 9 pounds, and my pelvis was just a little too narrow, it was like trying to push a baby out through a brick wall. Dr. Flinders said he though I would have been fine if he was in the 8 pound range, but a no go on the 9.

Geez, this is getting long! Anyways, Thomas Cash Allen was born at a healthy 9 lbs, 1 oz, 21 inches long. He was born tongue tied just like mama and had to get his tongue clipped when he was 2 days old. It was essential to him being able to nurse. After seeing how much he cried after that, there was no way he was getting else snipped.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Indecision 07

So I went back to the Dr. today and he did the membrane sweep again. This time he was much more "thorough" so we are all hoping that this will get things going. Despite walking all afternoon, and the baby kicking me the whole way (it took me about 45 minutes to get a block away from teh house, becasue I kept having to turn back to use the bathroom), there have been no contractions. Zip. Zero. Nada.

I did tell the good doctor that if something didn't happen by Thursday, I was going to start showing up in the parking lot at 8am every morning until he made something happen. He assured me he was on call, and if nothing happens by the 30th, he will induce. I am penciled in for an induction on the 31 if something doesn't happen by then. We are hoping the threat will provoke him....

That is something I am not crazy about. I've heard horror stories. One friend was recently induced, then got an epidural, then had to have a c section anyways. The nightmare trifecta. I would like to avoid a c section, as would my doctor.

I realize it seems as though I am impatient, which I am a little bit. Mostly, I've been having nightmares about him being late and something terrible happening. So I would rather have him out now and safe, then waiting for something to go wrong.

Monday, October 22, 2007


So I went to the Dr. last Tuesday, and he did the membrane sweep. Everyone was very optimistic that labor would ensure within 48 hours. I had some cramping, there were other "good signs" which I will spare the male reader of this blog. I called in to work, and we were READY!!!

I walked, I did housework, and then I laid down for a little while. And everything stopped. So I was left to beg, plead and cajole the man to do his husbandly duty. He got a green look, and declined. I told him I would get him liquored up and take advantage....he just laughed.

So there was no baby. So much for my plan to take early maternity leave! I had to finish out my work week.

Today, we went to court and we are now officially the "Allens". The judge asked us why we wanted to change out names, and when we gave our reason.."his father" "prison" and "20 years", he then asked why. So we told him why. He looked a little surprised, and then he granted our name change. He did ask why we didn't consider changing our last name to Engwall, which Eugene had to answer. "We wanted to be somewhat traditional and have her take an aspect of my name." The real answer was as Eugene puts it "I wanted to make an attempt to retain possession of my manhood."

Tomorrow we go back to the doctor for another membrane sweep. I am hoping this is the one that gets him out. I have all sorts of mental images of the baby in there, with a 5 O'Clock shadow, a pack of smokes, alcohol, guns, and ammo. He's holed up (pun intended) in there like a Branch Davidian. For while I tried playing loud music a la Manuel Noriega, but it didn't work.

For the first time I did have a very vivid dream about the baby. He was about 10 months old and I was trying to get him to say "mama" but he kept calling me "Dardita" which only annoyed me in the dream and amused him.

I am at the point where I would like this baby out. I have tried to lure him out..."It's warm, I'll have a warm blanket for you." "Baths are fun!" "All your cousins are waiting" "You are only getting about 8 weeks to be the center of attention, so you should come out and enjoy it before the new baby overthrows you." "Your dad promises that we will not let you get it whacked at." "He thinks every extra centimeter counts." "And the last one I had up my sleeve..."Boys like boobies. I will let you have em".

He does not seem to care about any of the above. He may have my diabolical streak and tendency toawards evil genius, but he clearly has his father's stubborness and/or procrastination gene.

We are so in over our head!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

T minus...

So I was rereading my posts and I looked back to this summer when I had 105 days to go. And how I thought it was so cute when the baby would kick and roll around. It was adorable. Now, the novelty has worn off. It was different when it was little tiny arms and legs. Now they are full size baby legs, and for lack of better terminology, it's a little gross. I can see actual feet. It was cool, but now there is no comfortable way for me to sleep, and when I finally do get comfy, he apparently is not. Which means he shifts around until he is comfortable, and I am not. We are developing an adversarial relationship.

Here are some updates which might explain why I haven't posted in forever.

We have gotten the baby room ready and all furniture assembled.
A friend of mine jushad a miscarriage, so I was talking to her alot.
I had my baby shower.
Still working full time, and have had people call in sick for the last two weeks.
Have gotten all my work done.
Had a flood at work and I had to coordinate the cleanup.
Weekly doctor visits!
Been getting the upstairs cleaned and organized and trying to streamline everything in the house so I can enjoy the baby.
Made a pumkin pie for the Bean.
Got the hospital bag ready.
Took my 4 nieces and nephews to the Giant Pumpkin fest. They were given new names to suit their personality and impact on my pocketbook: War, Pestilence, Plague and Destituion. They even answer to them.

What I'm trying to say is I have been crazy busy and dead tired at the same time.

I am also ready for this baby to come out.

In hopes of that end result, and because there is concern about having the baby get too big, hopefully, my doctor will do a little intervention on Tuesday to get things going. I hope it works..I am so tired of walking and walking and walking.....I have been having really good cramps and backaches, and when I was there last week, I was effaced 25% and dilated 1 cm, and the baby was engaged. I have been trying to get things moving by remaining mobile and moving. Please let my bishop score be about a 5 or 6....that's all I ask for.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Birthday and being a Limey!

So this is a longer blog! My belly has gotten bigger and he is measuring at exactly 32 weeks. I am a little surprised to have made it this far. I guess I have been spending the whole time waiting for the "other shoe" to drop. Odds are that we will have a baby soon. Still kind of hard to get my head wrapped around that one.

So I went to the doctor and he was doing a follow-up on my blood sugar and diet, and we found out I LOST 2 pounds. The baby is fine, and everything else is fine. ME. I'VE lost two pounds. Also, my iron was really low (despite the fact I have iron in my prenatals) and also my vitamin C levels were low. He compared this to all my other blood work and told me that my iron levels were always really good. He was also concerned about the vitamin c. So, long story short, I can drink OJ again, I can have craisins (in moderation) again, and I can eat more red meat again. Geez, I follow the diet the dietician writes out, and I nearly develop scurvy....

Just for the record, I know the pepsi isn't the best choice for me, but I tend to eat what I crave, and things have always been in balance for me. I crave a steak, I order a big one. I am thirsty for water, I drink water. This week, I can't get enough milk. We go through a gallon every two days here. That's a lot of milk for two people. And we only drink it, it's not used for anything else. So my doctor has advised me to go back to eating what I crave. He asked if I wanted or craved candy, and I said no, just fruit. Mostly citrus. So I was given the go ahead!

Only 54 more days till we have a baby, give or take. I went over to Jeri's and she gave me all of Aric's baby clothes. I won't have to buy any till the baby is 2!

Also, we went on our final big trip to Superior for Addie's birthday and we had lots of fun. It was nice to see Adam, Jess and the girls, but it would have been nice to be able to stay longer. Unfortunately, Eugene had to work the next day. It would be nice if he worked somewhere with more employees so he could actually get time off,but he is not covered by any federal or state laws concerning FMLA. We will be lucky if the baby comes a bit early, and he might actually be able to take two or three days off.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

The only thing to change is the belly....

See? Here is the evidence.
Exhibit 1. Same knobby knees and elbows
Exhibit 2. Upper noticeable change in girth
Exhibit 3. Same deathly pale skin tone.

However, check out the basketball! So I went to see the nutritionist today and found out that fruit is in fact, a carb. Who knew? I lumped it all together into the fruit category. Apparently the blood sugar issue stems from the fact that I don't eat at a consistent time each day, and I consume about half of my carb requirement in the form of craisins. News to me.

That being said, she also told me that my levels weren't bad. In fact, it was clear I was enjoying a megasurge of sugar at two hours (and was I ever feeling good) but at three hours, I would crash and burn. Which meant I ate more craisins.

I did find out that I do a number of good things. I don't like fatty stuff. I like peanut butter and sunflower seeds. I don't eat buns with the hamburger (ha ha ha to all those who roll their eyes!)

However, I should lay off the Pepsi. Or switch to diet. ICK! I will cut down on the pepsi, and try not to replace it with OJ, which is also doing a number on my blood sugar levels.

On the plus side, I can eat lots of meat and on the down side, I can eat lots of vegetables. Unfortunately, I dislike most of them. Which is why I was eating lots of fruit :)

Also, potatoes in any form (including fries) are not a vegetable. I knew this, but I tried to convice her that in fact, it was. I tried :)

That being said, my levels were actually pretty good except for the two hour. The biggest concern is that my doctor wants to avoid a C-section at any cost, and also wants to make sure the baby doesn't get too big. So for two months, I can do it. On the plus side, they weighed me and I am at 144 so that means I have gained about 20 pounds so far, and that makes the doctor really happy.

Goodbye craisins, you've been a real friend. Good bye OJ, I know you didn't mean to do it. Pepsi, I just need a little time for's not you, it's me....(sob!)

Monday, July 30, 2007

Nothin' left to give....

So I had my one hour glucose test on Tuesday. I fasted all night and did everything the doctor told me to do. I go in at 8am and drink this nasty orange crap that had a definite cheap gin/ cheap tonic aftertaste. Bleeeech! Wait around an hour and have blood drawn. Go back for my checkup and the baby is all good and really active....

Get a callback and I failed the 1 hour by a few points, which meant I had to do the three hour glucose tolerance test. For some odd reason, this glucose tasted MUCH better...alot more sweet. But then I got really shaky and I had to lay down. I got blood pulled 5 times over the course of three hours.

For those of you that don't know. I hate needles. I used to cry lots. I'd flail and gnash my teeth. 2 year olds behaved better them I did. But them I got sepsis, and after a 10 days of icky blood draws almost constnatly, I got somewhat used to the idea. Then I had my miscarriage, and that was an epic disaster of blood draws and failure to get IVs going. I am conditioned to blood tests now. I don't like 'em, but I can tolerate them.

After the three hour test, I went to work. However, my left leg kept bothering me and started to hurt really bad. Due to the blood clot issue in June before the wedding, I got sent back to the hospital for another blood test. Sigh! I'm not even sure they got blood. I think there is nothing left. So I'm still waiting on the labs.... Update. It's positive....again

At this point, the bets are on if I make it to the Halloween delivery date. I'm putting cash money on early delivery.

Any takers?

Oh, and another update, the three hour glucose came back and I'm all good. HOWEVER, my doctor thinks the numbers are "a little on the high side" and he's worried about me having a big baby. Considering I was almost 9 pounds, and all my grandma's kids were 9-11 pounders, he asked me what I would like to do. Plus diabetes is rampant on both sides of the family, so I figured what the heck. As insurance will cover the nutritionist, why not take advantge of it?

Plus, then I have a medical reason to take frequent breaks.... Some would see this as a hassle, I see it as a golden opportunity! I know I haven't been eating as well as I should be (It's been crazy between the work and the wedding), but from what I can gather, I may be eating way too much fruit and juices. Not that the two can a day pepsi helps. (But it is caffiene free). It seems as though I am not getting enough carbs. I eat lots of meat and fruit, but anything in the starch family has been off putting. So it will be interesting to see what they say.

On the plus side, my doctor was very happy that I asked for the referral, and I even asked for a follow up 3 hour test, well, I'm sure you all know the reason why... :)

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Man that's an ugly baby

OK, so I'm stealing a Stephen Lynch lyric (one for two on the good looking baby). Steph was in town last night and we were looking up baby pictures of friends who have recently had babies. Fortunately, most of these children fell into the "yup, looks like a baby" or "wow! that's actually a cute baby."

Then there were the others.

You know of what I'm speaking.

Some babies are not cute.

In fact, they are downright ugly.

Everyone has been telling me that I will think that my baby is cute, no matter what he looks like. I beg to differ. I think I can be honest with myself. I'm going to notice if it is an ugly baby. As Steph said, one of her friends make the comment "The baby has such nice hands..." that's code for "But a really ugly face."

In fact, I don't expect cute. Most babies have a misshapen head, some bruising, and squall alot. I may think the toes and fingers are cute, and there will be "oh, we have a baby and it's healthy." But there will be no "this is the most beautiful baby ever." In my opinion, most babies aren't even cute until about 3 months of age. My comment will most likely be along the lines of "yup, he looks like a baby."

So, in the interest of science, we went on a bunch of hospital online nursery sites and looked at the babies.

Baby cuteness follows a bell curve.

There are about 10% of beautiful babies. The ones you coo over and inspires strangers to approach.

Then there is an additional 10% who are cute. Like a regular baby, but with better skin, or more alert eyes.

The next 60% are the average baby. Would be difficult to pick out of a lineup. Bald, squinty eyed, looks like they run an illegal gaming operation. Most babies fall into this category, and realistically speaking, so will our baby.

The next 10% are the "sorta ugly" baby. These would be the "nice hands" baby. Most parents aren't willing to admit to this. We've all seen them; usually they turn out to be nice looking kids and just takes time to grow into their features.

The bottom 10%. "Wow! that's one ugly baby!" Your brain screams this as soon as you see the baby. You are forced to hold it, but you immediately give it back in fear that ugly is contagious. Granted, it's not the baby's fault, there are just some really unfortunate instances. One baby we found was over 11 pounds. It had no was jsut a round ball of a mini Jabba the Hutt. Another baby had some issues (hydroencephalus?) and had a tremendously large noggin. It looked like what would happen if Frankenstein was a baby. It was actually scary. I did feel sorry for the poor little thing.

Stephanie and I discussed the ethics of starting a website "" and what would happen to us if we did. I mean, looking at the baby pictures killed about 2 hours. It was definitely fun. But it was also time consuming.

I guess I don't really have a point, except that i hope the baby will be on of the 60% like me...."yup, average looking" And if anyone says the baby has "nice hands" I am on to you!!!

The spookiness begins

So, he has been kicking away for some time now, but mostly I was the only one to feel it. As of Thursday, we have a new milestone. You can see him kick, and he does this weird camelback thing where if I lay on the bed, both sides of my belly sort of cave in, but you can see how he is moving. Usually he sits with his face towards my back. Like he's mooning the world.

So after a terrible day at work yesterday, I decided the best thing to do would be to take a bath. Apparently, he loved it. I don't know if the water offered him more of a weightless feeling, or if he liked the sound, or what, but he was ALL over the place. My entire belly was going, it looked like popcorn in there! I was laughing so hard that Eugene was compelled to investigate, and he was laughing too because I could put water in my belly button, and watch him kick it out. Plus, when I got out, he was still kicking up a storm. It's funny because Eugene can now SEE the baby move, which makes it a little more real for him, I think.

I will probably look back at this post in two months and remember how cute the kicks were. Only 105 days left to baby time! That doesn't seem like nearly enough time to do everything we need to do.... It's six paychecks people!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Good News

I got a call from the ultrasound reader guy (that's his OFFICIAL title) and everything looks perfect! 24 weeks, 2 days, almost 2 pounds, and about 14 inches long! No cleft palate! No Cleft Lip! MY BABY WILL BE BORN WITH A FACE!!!

Now, I am somewhat reassured.....

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Top Picture
Our version of "The Scream" . Actually, he was swallowing (we got to see it in realtime 3-D)
Second picture
The boy with his hand on his head. I think we is asking God "You gave me to THEM? Do you have ANY IDEA what you have just done? Oy!"
Third picture
Regular ultrasound. Now you can see he only has one nose. Thanks Jessica.... :)
Last Picture
He is covering his face with his arms...which is how my dad, my brother and I all sleep. Must be genetic. Oh, and you can't tell, but he has three pairs of shoes in there, becasue that's genetic too, right Jess?
So everything looks pretty good. just waiting for the final say so from the Dr. Oh! And he is definitely a boy, because he finally showed us his junk....

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Wedding Roller Coaster

Picture explanations
Top: Jessica and Adam getting frisky at the reception.
Second: Jessica and Addie with one of the pilfered cake grapes (ummmm sugary goodness)
Third: Eugene and I kissing (or hugging) Look at Owen on the left in the tux...he didn't want to see and "disgusting kissing..."
Fourth: One of the nice was nice and green there.
Last: I am lecturing Adam and Jessica about the impropriety of picture one...(tee hee )
We planned on going to Milwaukee for last minute wedding things on Wednesday. I found great roses at $7.49 a dozen and we picked up some jordan almonds. However, the "getting" to Milwaukee was a little problematic. All day Monday and Tuesday, my left leg was killing me. I thought I had a bad charlie horse, which is pretty common in pregnancy. No biggie.

Wednesday morning, before we planned to leave for Milwaukee, I realized my lower leg was red and swollen. Eugene insisted I call the dr., which I did and left a message. While in the car, en route, I get a call from the nurse. "Go to the nearest ER." "Huh? I'm on my way to Milwaukee, we have wedding stuff to do." "Well, we are pretty sure you have a blood clot in your leg, and if it moves, it could kill you, so go to the ER." It seemed to be a convincing argument to me, so we turned around and headed back to Rapids (we weren't FAR out of town).

While waiting in the lab, we run into my aunt and uncle (small town) and after the test was run, I thought it would all be okay, and we could be on our way. I get a call from my dr. "The test is positive, you have a blood clot. You are probably going to be going into the hospital for a few days..." "No I'm not. I'm getting married on Friday, and I think I need to be there." So I get sent to the ultrasound lab and they scan my leg. I did have a clot, but it must have dissolved (which would explain the feeling that my calf muscle was being ripped off my leg.)

All in all, we found out I can no longer fly (we had to go to Minneapolis for a honeymoon....) I am at an increased risk for developing another one while pregnant, and I get to wear support stockings. (Hellooo Retirement! Seriously, we might as well pack up and move to Boca....I actually was wearing support stockings with shorts. Yes, I was at home, in private, but once the slide has started....)

The wedding itself went off well. The two ring bearers (both 4) were allowed to carry the actual rings, which were then examined, removed from their boxes, looked at, and fortunately not lost. Everyone walked down the aisle too quick (I think we only made it to 1/2 way through "In My Life" and we were all up there. But the weather and location were fantastic. It was perfect. The food was great, the cake, divine. My niece and I did all the flowers (9 boutoneeres, my bouquet, and both bridesmaids' flowers) in under an hour. Some roses, baby's breath, and hostas to add flair. They looked pretty good actually. Steph's mom was teasing me for getting the flowers done 1 hour before the ceremony. But they were cheap and looked good. Also, although you can't really see it, Steph did an outstanding job getting me into the dress. It was a feat of both skill and engineering. She really was the "maid of honor extraordinaire" she claims to be. I highly recommend her services to any future brides.

Lots of family and friends were able to attend. My dad's brother and sisters live all over and it was the first time in 13 years they were all together (the last time being my grandpa's funeral.) Even though we kept it a small wedding (about 120 people max) it was hard to talk to everyone, which I really do feel bad about. I tried...

As Eugene is deciding whether to change his name or not, I am still officially an "Engwall". Overall, being married feels no different. The weird thing is when someone asks me about "my husband" I have to think a brain tries to process it..."husband? and that would be....?" Before it clicks..."Oh, Eugene. Yes. We're married." I keep thinking of the Seinfeld episode with the woman and her "fiance". Pretty soon, we are going to have to have people come over to "see the baby".

And Jessica, I do have more pictures that I got printed out and will be sending you along with the yarn I forgot to give you....

Monday, June 18, 2007

Objects in shirt are larger than they appear!

Wow! I guess Ididn't even realize....I think it must be the shirt! And I'm not talking about the belly. Wow!

So we are now getting down to the wire. The dress still fits, I think most everything is done. I still have place cards and little stuff like that, but I think it will all be okay. We are going to Milwaukee on Wednesday for treats and to get away for a while. A weather update for you as well, it's supposed to cool down....upper 70's low 80's! So I might be okay ! (I was worried about passing out if it were hotter than that. I don't know for sure, but I thin it might be a faux pas to have the bride guzzeling Kool-Aid during the ceremony. Although if it were plain water, I could joke that it was straight gin....

On a down side, Meredith's little cousin Benjamin Heil is missing. He's 7 and autistic, and wandered away from home on Thursday night. The family immediately started looking, and called police. By Friday, they had about 300-400 volunteers, rescue units from about 20 communities, and the Black Hawks were up with thermal imaging. No luck yet. It's been really hot here (high 80's -low 90's) and it's all swamp and mire. So all the searchers have to wear long sleeves and pants. It just doesn't look good. They live right on the river, and there are so many swamps and creeks around. So I think that will be on a lot of people's minds on Friday. We are getting married about 1mile or so from where he disappeared.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

The bowling ball

Well, there's no doubt about it. I had a little belly before. Now I have a big belly. I mean, it gets in the way of things, but it has become a handy little can hold snack size candy bars, small books, and is a very good arm rest.

On the "not sure I should be scared to death" side, I got a call from my doctor and they want to do another ultrasound in July. This would make 3. 1 for the spottting in March (7 weeks) the one I just had, and now one in July. As to be expected, I immediately overanalyzed why I would need a second ultrasound. I had settled on "baby has no face" but later revised it to "baby has cleft lip and palate". So I called my doctor and he said the pictures were not as clear as he would like, so he's sending me for another one.

Is it because I have kick ass insurance that covers everthing? Maybe.

Is it because he knows I am a paranoid basketcase? Quite possibly.

So on July 9, I get to have another ultrasound, and I'm worried. I don't know of anyone else that had two in the second trimester....and he wants to wait because the baby will be more developed by that time. What is he looking for??

At least if it were something like cleft lip or palate, it can be fixed. Although I would prefer for that not to be the case, it is treatable. Spinal bifida, Downs....can't be fixed. I told Eugene "How about an extra toe? I could live with an extra toe...."

Of course, hopefully, I am worrying over nothing....

As for the belly, I am having serious dress fitting now. I mean there has been noticeable rounding since last week. I will try to get a picture today. Regardless, I am wondering how comfortable I will even be in the dress. It was snug last week, I think I will get some Spanx nylons and hope for the best. If I had am empire dress with less structure, I wouldn't have a problem, but this dress has a lot of structure built it. It was meant to look nice, not feel nice.....ARRRGH!

Anyways, in terms of size, I am now 140. Yes, I know, I probably have loads of sympathy coming in from around the world, but these numbers are uncharted territory for me. I've been eating pretty well, but I wanted to try to stay around the 150 - 155 mark. I think I've been indulging in empty calories....time to eat more fruit and dairy...(at least then it would be good weight)

Eugene said it best, it looks like I am trying to smuggle a bowling ball in somewhere. And unlike my previous jiggly belly, this one is solid. I still find it odd to think there is a little person in there, even though I did feel him somersault on Thursday....he either likes Usher ALOT, or he really dislikes him...judging by the kicks...

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Put your hand in the air like ya just don't care!

Well, here he is! Hopefully you all will be able to make out a baby profile. I OUTLINED it for my mom and she still doesn't seen anything. I mean, there is a very definite head and two arms. I guess it's like a magic eye book....

All the pieces are there.....too bad they didn't print the picture where his legs were crossed and he was sitting there like Buddha.

Friday, June 1, 2007


Well, I had my ultrasound today. After an HOUR of trying to find out what "it" was, they had to make an educated guess. "It" was doing the fig leaf, then the mermaid pose (legs tight together) and finally, sat crosslegged, indian style with both heels obscuring everything! Finally, they caught a glimpse, and they are reasonably sure it is a boy! Good heart,spine and lungs, has all the fingers and toes, and everything looks good. He's just shy....So it looks like we will have a Halloween baby named Thomas Cash!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Spinal Wiffleball?

Blood test results. So I had the quad screen done. Not sure if insurance will cover it, but I wanted to know if everything was okay. So after pulling out a huge tube of blood (I opted for the quad screen which seems to be a little more accurate) I got the results back today and everything came back normal! No Downs, no spina bifida, and to the best of my knowledge, the baby will be born with a face (a secret fear holdover from that darn Disovery Channel show).
I am greatly relieved. Everything should be okay know....starting to breathe....

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Ladies and Gentleman...the "Eyebrow"

Here's Owen copying the "eyebrow look" I like to give! We took the kids to see Shrek 3 and Owen sat on my lap the entire time (mostly to get at the soda). Throughout the movie he kept rubbing and patting the belly and he would look at it and get a really weird smile. I wonder about that kid... At least he has relented with his authoritarian degree that I can have "1 Baby...that's it!". Now I guess I might be able to have two, provided I please the Glorious leader...

Here is the wedding dress that I am starting to doubt whether it will fit me or not.