Happy Easter!

Happy Easter from our sweet girls! 


Easter Fun with our Playgroup Friends!

One of the best parts about my mom staying with us the past couple of weeks is the fact that she's been able to stay home with Hadley {which she loves!}, and Derek & I have been able to get quality time with Shelby. When we worried about bringing home a new baby, we weren't really worried about the newborn...we were worried about how Shelby would handle it all & we were worried about her getting stir-crazy since we needed to keep Hadley at home for the first couple weeks of her life. So we've been so thankful that my mom being here has enabled us to really keep life as normal as possible for Shelby, and she has gotten the attention & love that she needs from us.

This past week, Derek & my mom stayed home with Hadley{and cleaned the entire house while I was gone! How lucky am I?!} while Shelby & I went to a little Easter Party with our playgroup friends. We decorated eggs, played, and had an egg hunt..it was so fun! I think Shelby & I were both just happy to be out of the house & spending time with our friends. :)  It did us both some good!

All of the kids getting ready to take off to hunt for eggs! If you'll notice, Shelby is standing
by herself in this picture. :(  I am still feeling guilty about this! The hospital called with Hadley's
updated bilirubin results just a minute or two before the egg hunt started, so I had to sneak
away to a quiet spot to hear what the nurse had to say leaving Shelby on her own. Even
though she got off to a slow start, she still managed to score a few good eggs! :)

All of the kiddos after the egg hunt :)


Hadley's Visitors :)

This past weekend, Aunt Maleah, Uncle Lucas, & Cousin Elly made the drive to Biloxi from Birmingham to come visit us and meet Miss Hadley. We loved seeing them & introducing them to our new bundle of joy. But I think my favorite part of the weekend was seeing Shelby & Elly play together. They are just 5 months apart, and this is the first time they were really playing together instead of just alongside one another. It was so cute to see!

The girls had a lot of fun doing art together :)

Big girls in Miss Hadley's bouncy seat & swing ;)

Love all the sweet little features on her face captured by this picture :)

Playing in the sand

Big girls smothering the baby with love & kisses :)

We had a wonderful weekend with Maleah, Lucas, & Elly! We were sad to see them go, but excited to welcome more visitors very soon! Derek's mom & step-dad and my sister will all be arriving this weekend. Lots of family fun ahead!


Our Little Glow Worm

When we were discharged from the hospital on Wednesday, March 20th (Hadley was just 1 day old), we were told that her bilirubin levels were borderline high. So we left with instructions to give her some indirect sunlight. I didn't think much of this news b/c we had to do the same thing for Shelby. But when we went back to the hospital on Friday, March 22nd for a 2 day post-discharge weight-check, her bilirubin levels had gotten even higher so we were prescribed with a Bili Blanket and we were told to keep it on Hadley at all times. We were also told to supplement with an ounce formula after each time I nurse her b/c the formula helps rid the body of the bilirubin.

The Bili Blanket was a bit stressful on us. There is already enough to worry about with a newborn & a toddler in the house, but this was just one more thing on our plates. It was a challenge at times to keep her on the blanket while trying to nurse or calm her down b/c the Bili Blanket had to be plugged in to the wall. After her high bilirubin levels on Friday, we had to go back to the hospital again on Saturday, Sunday, Monday, & Tuesday mornings for check-ups on her levels. To check her bilirubin levels, she had to get her blood drawn at each appointment which was just heart-breaking to watch. {Especially since she had already had countless blood draws during her stay in the hospital to ensure her blood sugar levels were okay. Hadley was considered "LGA" or "large for gestational age." In other words, she was a big ole baby!} Not only was it difficult to watch her get poked every day, it was a challenge in and of itself for sleep-deprived parents to get up, showered, dressed, and out the door every single morning. We were so thankful my mom was here to keep Shelby during all of the appointments for Hadley--it definitely made things much easier on us! For our memory's sake, the highest Hadley's bilirubin level got to was 18.5 on Friday & that is when we started the Bili Blanket. On Saturday her level dropped to 18.3 and stayed at 18.3 on Sunday. But on Monday, it dropped to 14.9! We were given instructions to stop using the Bili Blanket on Monday afternoon, and they would check Hadley's levels again on Tuesday to ensure her levels didn't spike back up once going off the Bili Blanket. We were also told we could stop supplementing with formula. Thankfully, at one week old on Tuesday, March 26th, Hadley's level had dropped again to 13.9! Hallelujah! We are thrilled that all is well with Hadley, and we are also thrilled that we don't have to go back to the hospital again until her 2 week check up! :)  Thank goodness!


Hadley's Birth Story

On Monday, March 18th we checked into Keesler Medical Center to induce my labor.

It was such a weird feeling driving to the hospital knowing we would be leaving there with another person in our arms. I was 40 weeks & 6 days pregnant. We decided to induce b/c we were nervous to let this pregnancy go past 41 weeks after what happened with Shelby. {We had an emergent C-section at 41 weeks & 2 days due to a "non-reassuring fetal heart rate." You can read her birth story HERE.} We got to the hospital around 3:30 on Monday afternoon, got admitted, & settled into our room. Here are a couple shots of our room for my memory's sake. It was so weird walking into the room for the first time b/e even though it had been 2.5 years since we were there for Shelby, it somehow felt like it was just yesterday.

I was totally naive about the whole process--I knew Tuesday would be a hard day, but I didn't think there would be a lot of pain on Monday night. Boy, was I wrong! Around 5-5:30ish, they put in the foley balloon to induce labor. The process of putting in the foley was definitely uncomfortable, but it wasn't terrible by any means. The part that hurt was when they put tension on the foley, and that was not fun at all! My parents brought Shelby up to the hospital for a bit on Monday evening to visit us.

Around 9:30pm the foley fell out, and then the contractions kicked in. They gave me Nubain for the pain, but it didn't really do much at all for me. I felt the contractions all night and wasn't able to sleep. But by far, the worst part for me was the fact that I couldn't eat. I was initially told that I would be able to eat dinner on Monday evening, so I had already planned out in my head what I wanted Derek to pick up for me from Newk's. But the contractions picked up so quickly they told me they'd rather me not eat dinner just in case. This was the worst news ever for me! We had eaten an early lunch that day (around 10:45ish), so by the time dinner rolled around I was STARVING! It was a long night of pain--from hunger & the contractions!

The next morning, they started the Pitocin on me around 5am. I was about 4-5cm dilated at that point. Once the Pitocin kicked in, the contractions REALLY picked up. I was so uncomfortable at that point, and the Nubain wasn't doing anything for it. I finally got my Epidural around 7am, and I was beyond thankful for it! All of these women who choose to have their baby naturally...I'll just never understand it! They came to check me a couple hours later, and I was dilated to 6-7cm by then so they went ahead and broke my water. Around 12:00, they had me start pushing. It wasn't until they told me it was time to start pushing that I realized our VBAC was actually happening. Up until then, I think Derek & I both thought deep-down that there was a very good chance we end up in another C-section. So it was very surreal to hear them tell me to start pushing. I pushed for about 30 minutes at which point they told me in the nicest way possible that I wasn't doing so hot of a job in the pushing department. It was so discouraging to hear that. They told me to rest until 1:00 and we'd let the contractions try to push things further along in the meantime. When we started pushing again at 1ish, we finally found the method/technique of pushing that worked best for me and things really started moving. The hardest part of the pushing process for me {aside from the physical exhaustion} was the hunger/nausea. I think I threw up 3 times in the midst of pushing {and then again once more right after Hadley was born}. Let me tell you, that was not fun. But I can still remember when the doctor walked in {the same doctor who delivered Shelby also delivered Hadley!} as I was pushing, and I knew we must be nearing the end. So that gave me the motivation and strength to keep going. And at 2:05pm, Hadley Mae made her grand entrance into the world!

While they were getting Hadley cleaned up, the doctor was sewing me up a bit b/c Hadley was a big ole baby--8 pounds & 9 ounces! I ended up having a post-partum hemorrhage and lost about a third of my blood supply. I was on the verge of needing a blood transfusion, but thankfully I was fine without it.

Shortly after Hadley was born, my parents & Shelby came up to meet her. It was so fun to see Shelby meet her little sister for the very first time!

This was where Derek slept in the hospital.

On Wednesday, March 20th we were discharged from the hospital and got to start our life at home as a family of 4! Hadley wore the same sweet little dress home from the hospital that Shelby did.


We are so in love with these two sweet girls!!!