Brett, Heather, Kayla, and Tyson

Brett, Heather, Kayla, and Tyson
Brett, Heather, Kayla, and Tyson

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Ellie's Birth

We are now a family of five! Its wonderful and a little hard to believe! I haven't blogged a lot lately but I wanted to get this all recorded. So here is Ellie's birth story.

On June 1 (her due date) we had a doctor's appt scheduled. A week earlier I had been told I was dilated to a 4 and 50% effaced so I was sure I'd go earlier than my due date. I was also having regular Braxton Hicks contractions, but no such luck! So we decided that we'd just head to the doctor and ask if they would send me to the hospital to have my water broken. I was debating about whether we should or not, but then we got the call letting us know that Brett's grandma Renie had passed away early that morning. That sealed the deal for us. We didn't want to be waiting all weekend for the baby to come and not have Brett able to go to the funeral.


They checked me out at the midwife's office and they said to just head to the hospital. We text our friend Bonnie who is a L&D nurse at Mountain View Hospital to ask if she was working. She was on call so we lucked out to have her come in to be our nurse! We arrived at the hospital at 11:15 in the morning. They got me all checked in and started me on Pitocin at 1:15 and Susan, my midwife, broke my water at 1:30. At that point, I was still dilated to a 4 and 75% effaced. It didn't take too long for the contractions to get started and they were pretty powerful. It took awhile for the anesthesiologist to arrive at the hospital so I didn't get my epidural until 4:00. At that point, I was dilated to a 5.

I was able to sleep for about an hour and then was checked again at 5:30 when I was at a 7. Bonnie was off at 6:00, so she checked me again to see if she'd miss the birth and I was at an 8. I also was feeling contractions just a bit, so they gave me a bolus of my epidural. Bonnie introduced me to the nurse taking over and immediately, I felt a lot of pressure in my bum. They decided to have the midwife check me at 6:38 and I kind of felt like they were humoring me, but sure enough, I was at a 10 and baby was all the way down. The midwife had a student who was going to deliver me. Bonnie walked in to say goodbye and saw we were ready to go, so she stayed to help! She held one leg while Brett held the other leg. They told me to do a practice push during my next contraction. I started pushing and learned it wasn't going to be practice! I pushed twice more and she was out at 6:46, all on the same contraction! It was so fast and easy, I couldn't believe it! I feel like I was in shock a little bit! The cord was loosely wrapped around her neck twice, so they were getting that untangled while my midwife went on and on about how beautiful my umbilical cord was.

They immediately placed her up on my belly and I was so surprised that I'd just a baby that we didn't even think to check the gender until Brett exclaimed, "wait, what is it!?" I picked her up to see that she was in fact a girl! I was a little surprised because we'd kind of figured it was a boy based on my pregnancy symptoms being more similar to Tyson, but were so happy to have a healthy baby girl!! She was really bruised up from coming so fast and was really blue. It was a little alarming actually. Ellie weighed in at 8lbs 3.8 oz and 19.5 inches long. They got her all cleaned up and I was able to nurse her for the first time at 7:23. She latched on great right away and ate really well.


Grandma Betsy and Aunt Haley arrived with the kids shortly thereafter. Seeing your children meet your newborn child is one of the greatest moments life has to offer. They were both so cute and tender with Ellie. Kayla was sure through the whole pregnancy that it was a girl, and I was so happy to see her dream come true! They both kept saying she was 'So cute' 'so precous' and 'so little!' Tyson was very concerned about me and kept asking everyone, "What happened to my mommy!?"

Both Kayla and Tyson were both very gentle and soft with Ellie, thankfully. We hadn't decided on her name yet and were going back and forth between Ellie and Summer. Kayla kept asking what her name might be and I'd answer 'Ellie and Summer' and each time, she'd knowingly say, "Oh yeah, Ellie!" She wasn't having this whole possibility of Summer as a name.

Grandma took the kids home and we got moved to a post partum room. They had me take a bath immediately, which was very different from my first two deliveries, but really nice. I feel like the care at this hospital was wonderful and much better than I had in Texas. I was informed of everything going on and everyone was super helpful. They even let me eat during labor! I wasn't very hungry, but it was nice to have a little something in my stomach before I had to push.


That first night, Ellie cried quite a bit. They also had a sick baby in the nursery, so they couldn't take her, even if I'd wanted them to. She basically wanted to nurse all night long. I was nervous to fall asleep with her on me so I didn't sleep much. She did better the next day and passed all newborn screenings with flying colors, except that her bilirubin level was on the high end of normal. Grandpa Kelly came up from Pocatello to meet her and spend time with us. Grandma and Haley brought the kids back for a couple hours as well.  At the 24 hour mark, we asked them to let us go home, so we left the hospital around 8:00 PM on Friday. That night, Ellie again was pretty fussy and would latch on to nurse and then pull back and cry like she couldn't get anything. My milk hadn't quite come in yet so we had a long night. By the next day, my milk was starting to come in and she did much better. We rechecked her bilirubin level at the doctor and it was great.

Since then, she's been amazing! She nurses every couple hours during the day and sleeps 6-7 hours between feedings at night and then goes right back to sleep for a few more hours! I can't believe how lucky and blessed we've been with this baby girl! She only cries during the day if she's hungry or has a poopy diaper, which she does have a lot of.  She's a sweet baby and we all adore her!


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Baby Crandall #3

Well, we're starting on the parenthood journey again! We're excited and a little nervous to welcome baby number 3 this spring. I wanted to keep track of some of my thoughts and feelings through this pregnancy.

The baby was smiling!

This pregnancy was a bit of a surprise, honestly. We had been talking about when to have another baby and were having a hard time getting excited about it with our two active, emotional, and ye, sometimes crazy toddlers. I think we were dragging our feet a little too much because Heavenly Father kind of pushed this one along for us, haha! 

We're definitely excited and feeling very blessed to have this new little one joining our family. It took a little time for Brett to really get excited though. Its interesting how different men and women feel about these things. Brett was worried about finances and being able to provide for all three kids. I was worried about being able to emotionally meet the needs of three kids. We've been really blessed since finding out about this pregnancy in a lot of ways though, and I feel its Heavenly Father assuring us that we're ready and able to care for this baby.

My pregnancy started off a little harder this time around. I had more nausea than with the others, although its still nothing to complain about. I know I have it much easier than a lot of my friends, but it was remarkably worse this time. Maybe its age or maybe its chasing around two toddlers. Thankfully, it started to wear off right around 12 weeks. 

We have another thumbsucker! 

Because of my history with big babies (Kayla - 9lbs and Tyson 10lbs9oz) my midwife decided to test me early for gestational diabetes. So at 16 weeks, right before Christmas, I got diagnosed with gestational diabetes. I only failed the one hour test by four points so I thought I'd pass the three hour test, no problem. My fasting was great, my one hour was pretty high, and my two hour was only high by 3 points. If you fail two hours, you fail the test. I was really disappointed, concerned, overwhelmed, guilty, and stressed when I found out. 

Since it was right before Christmas, my midwife said not to worry until after the holidays when I could meet with a diabetic educator. Well, I took it my diagnosis, did some research and decided to take it to an extreme. I basically cut all refined sugar out of my diet. I had a few carbs, but mostly whole wheat, and didn't have any candy, cookies, or anything else over Christmas break. I also exercised 6 days a week for at least 30-45 minutes. I actually lost 5 pounds! I know I had weight to lose, and I was feeling good. 

Then I met with the diabetic educator and found out I should still be eating 45-60 grams of carbs per meal and a few 15 gram snacks between meals. I was definitely not getting that many carbs. I also started testing my blood sugar in the morning and two hours after each meal. It was always pretty low! Fasting blood sugar was usually around 60 and my 2 hr levels were usually around 80, even eating the recommended amounts of carbs. Once my two hour level was 57! I decided to do a few tests where I ate what I wanted and then checked. It was maybe around 95. Anything under 120 at the two hour mark was normal. I've been pretty perplexed by all of this. My midwife didn't have an answer for me and the doctors I work for said it sounded more reactive hypoglycemia rather than gestational diabetes. I haven't really been very careful at all with what I eat over the last week. I'm not going crazy, but I am eating what I want. My levels have been a little higher, but still not anywhere close to 120. I'm still exercising every day and feel great because of it. I'll keep testing my levels and eating healthy, because more than anything, I want this baby to be healthy. 

In some ways, our whole family has benefited from this diagnosis. We now only use brown rice, whole grain pasta, and I learned a lot about carbs from the diabetic educator and dietician. I think we would all be a lot healthier if we ate like diabetics the majority of the time. We always pair carbs with protein now and I have little to no desire to eat something that has crazy amounts of carbs. I just don't think its worth it. 

The second trimester has been great. I still take naps occasionally while the kids sleep, but I'm fine if I don't get a nap. My energy level is good. Over the last couple weeks, I've been really hungry and my stomach grew like crazy! I think this little one had a growth spurt! We had our ultrasound at 22 weeks and everything looked good. Ironically, this baby is actually measuring small. At my first ultrasound, I was 6 days behind (I ovulated super late), but they didn't change my due date. So its not surprising that the baby is a little small, but its averaging 20th percentile. One of the head measurements was 8% while the other was 11%. Because of this, my doctor wants a follow up ultrasound in a few weeks. I'm anxious to see how much the baby has grown. I'm not worried about the head size because smaller heads and petite people run in Brett's family. 

First bumpie at 23 weeks! My belly is definitely growing fast!
This baby is much more like Kayla movement wise. Thankfully, so far I haven't had any swelling or carpal tunnel problems like with Kayla's pregnancy. It will be interesting to see what gender this baby is because there are similarities to both my prior pregnancies. Every one is unique though!

I'm excited to see how the rest of the pregnancy goes. Tyson and Kayla are so sweet and excited about this baby! Kayla is sure that its a girl. Tyson currently says its a girl as well (we're not finding out the gender!) They both love to kiss and talk to my belly. It will definitely be a challenge having three kids to take care of, but these kiddos will both be awesome big siblings! If Tyson doesn't accidentally kill the baby by stepping on it or playing too rough, that is!

I can't wait to hold this little gift from heaven in my arms! 

Friday, January 20, 2017

Kayla 4 years old!

Our little Kayla is 4 years old! I couldn't help but remembering every moment from the day she was born. She has taken me on this journey of motherhood and taught me so much. I wanted to write down a few things about Kayla this age. 

Kayla has a very strong personality. She is loud, bossy, loves to be in charge, sweet, loving and loves being a mommy figure to others. She is very affectionate and cuddly. During dinner, she'll want to sit and hold my arm or be as close to me as she can be. When Brett leaves in the morning to go to the gym, Kayla comes right in our room, climbs in bed with me and cuddles until Brett gets back. She still sucks her thumb and twirls her hair. She also LOVES to twirl my hair. She also still doesn't have much hair, but its always adorable and she loves finding new styles for us to try in her hair. 


 Speaking of hair, Kayla cut her own hair a few months ago! I asked her to find some socks for Tyson so we could go run errands. She is so great at being helpful with things like that. She ran upstairs and took a little longer than normal. When she came down, I immediately saw the damage. She calmly declared, "Mom, I cut my hair to get my bangs out of my eyes. I know you've wanted to do that for awhile now." That sweet girl was just trying to be helpful! She found some scissors in a nail manicure kit in Tyson's drawer that I didn't even know existed. I was pretty sad because her hair grows so slowly. I tried to fix it myself, without any luck, so we headed over to my friend and hair girl's house. While there, Kayla stared solemnly into the mirror the whole time. I tried to talk up the whole thing and gush over how cute she looked and she wouldn't respond much. Brittany had to cut more bangs and they ended up pretty short. When we got into the car, Kayla started to cry hard. She wailed that her bangs didn't get fixed. She was so brave to hold it together in front of Brittany. Its safe to say that she learned her lesson. Her short bangs grew on me quickly and they're growing back pretty well too. 


Kayla loves adventures and having fun. Every day, she asks me what we're doing tomorrow. She likes to have plans and know about them well in advance. She has an excellent memory, so I can't make any promises that won't happen. 

Kayla loves preschool and her teachers all love her! She's been attending the preschool at BYU-Idaho so its on the semester schedule. I didn't think she got into this current semester because we signed her up late and she was on the waiting list. The program director loves Kayla and I ran into her. She told me she would do her best to get Kayla in. This last week, I got a call that a spot opened up. I was relieved because she's been begging to go back since before Christmas. She loves having her own thing to do and even two days a week gives her the social exposure she needs. When I went to parent orientation on her birthday, the director pulled me aside and told me she personally put Kayla in this class. She said they needed Kayla because she is such a good speaker and makes friends with every other child and has wonderful relationships with her teachers. I couldn't help but be proud of her when I learned that. I love my social butterfly!

Kayla and Tyson have a great relationship. They fight, of course, but they get along really well a lot of the time. I can now send them up to the playroom and trust they'll play together pretty well for awhile. Especially lately, Kayla loves to be the one that calms Tyson down if he's upset. She gets the sweetest voice and reassures him and finds a solution to his crying. If I'm getting stressed or busy making dinner, she'll bring Tyson to the couch and 'read' him books. She has an amazing memory with books! I can read a book once and then she'll read it back to Tyson and get almost every word right. Its a bit mind blowing.

Kayla loves being outside in nature. We've gone sledding a few times and she could always stay out longer. This summer and fall, she begged to be outside all day long. She loves playing with other kids and I'm excited to see what friends she makes in our new neighborhood when it warms up outside. 

Kayla loves singing and dancing. I don't know any other kid that can twirl as long as Kayla can without any side affects! She loves dressing up like a princess and wearing her princess shoes and crowns and jewelry. She loves playing with babies and being a mom to them. She loves making food in her toy kitchen. Her favorite show to watch lately is Tinker Bell. She also loves Care Bears, Doc McStuffins, and Sofia the first. She actually doesn't love watching many princess movies because there's always a villain and she doesn't like that. 

Kayla has become pretty opinionated in her clothes lately. Its hard for me to get her to wear something unless I can show her a picture of her cousin Carly wearing the same outfit. She has a mind of her own in a lot of things, and while its frustrating, its also rewarding because I love that she's an independent thinker. Kayla became a Sunbeam at church this January and has loved it! It means a whole new level of independence for her. If I try to help her out of the van, she'll say, 'No mom, I don't need help. I'm a primary kid now.' Her prayers have also become very detailed and sweet lately. She never uses the phrase 'please bless us' but rather says, "Thank you that we can have fun tomorrow, thank you that we can be sweet to each other tomorrow, thank you that we can make good choices tomorrow." She also makes sure to say thank you for the Holy Ghost, the Gospel, and Jesus Christ. She loves to set goals for herself too, like I'm four years old now, so I don't scream anymore, Every night, she asks to lay out her clothes for the next day. 

Kayla got to be a flower girl for my best friend's wedding this fall. She loved every second of it. Right before the ceremony, she ran out and said she was scared. I reminded her that she got a surprise at the end if she did it all by herself and I saw her resolves in her eyes that she could do it. She was perfect and I felt like she grew up a little more that night. She loves her dress from the wedding and would wear it every Sunday if I let her. 

Kayla loves to help me cook and clean. She pulls chairs up and wants to pour in all the ingredients for me. She's good at picking up her toys and knows where everything goes, according to my own OCD organization habits. Sometimes I worry I'm turning her into a little OCD person, but I love that she likes things to be nice like I do. 

Kayla loves her daddy and can't wait for him to come home everyday but she's still a momma's girl. I think I understand her emotional nature better than Brett does because I can relate to it. She does get easily worked up and still cries a lot. I'm working hard with her about thinking of solutions rather than getting upset and crying. Its rough for me, but I think its hard for her when she gets so upset too. She also has become a bit of a tattle tale and we're working on that as well. 

Kayla loves weddings. We drove past a dress shop today, and she asked if she could have one of those dresses for her wedding. She then talked all about who she would marry. For quite awhile, she wanted to marry Tyson because they loved each other so much. :) She's also so excited about the new baby! She talks to the baby in my stomach and is very confident the baby is a girl. She tells me I forgot that its a girl if I try to tell her we don't know for sure yet (we're not finding out the gender for this one). She also loves telling Tyson about their little sister that will be coming soon. 

Kayla is obsessed with how tall/ big she is. She wants to be like the big kids so badly that she talks about it constantly. She loves that she is now four and a big kid. Poor girl thinks that she is going to grow taller than all the older kids soon and be bigger than them. She also loves to tell Tyson what he can't do yet because he isn't tall enough. I think he'll catch up to her before we know it though and may already weigh more than her. :)

Every time someone has said, "Happy Birthday" to her, she says it right back to them. She is such a sweet girl. I woke up with a cold this morning, and she kept covering me with a blanket when I was laying down and bringing me things to cuddle with or play with while I rested. 

Every night before bed, I ask Kayla is she knows how much I love her. She answers, "to the moon and back" and then says, "tell me...." and I proceed to ask her some questions. I ask her if she knows she is sweet, smart, funny, a good helper, a good dancer, etc. She loves this little ritual of ours and won't let me forget to do it. I cherish these moments between us as well. 

We sure love this little girl of ours. I'm excited to see her reach her potential in life. I hope I can be the mom she needs to be her best self.