Friday, August 31, 2012

I love my daddy!!

Nothing new to report around here these days so I figured I'd entertain you all with a few pictures of Abby and Ryan.  Nothing special, just life around here these days.


I love that's going in a frame soon!

*No...I can't explain why Ryan wanted to take these pictures without his shirt on :O)

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Abby's birth story

I've been trying to write this post for a few days now, but time seems to fly by and before I know it we are headed to bed and I haven't gotten nearly half of the things done that I wanted to.  But, that's ok...because I've got a teeny tiny baby to snuggle and love.  She's laying here on my chest sleeping while I type this and although I feel like life has been turned upside down for us in the past week, I can't imagine it any other way now.  Abby is beautiful and amazing and so sweet....I can't remember what life was like without her.
*Sorry about the picture quality...these were all taken on my Iphone and don't "blow up" well*

First Family Photo

So, without further ado; Abby's birth story.  Let's rewind to Friday, August 10th.  It was a crazy busy day for us.  First, I had a baby shower from the ladies at work (I'll blog on that later once I've got the pictures).  Then, on my way to the doctors I got a call from our realtor that the bank finally accepted the offer on our house (10 months later).  And, finally, the doctor confirmed that Abby was breech and we scheduled a c-section for Friday, August 24th (its CRAZY that she wasn't even supposed to be here yet!).  So, like I said, Friday was a big day.

The doctor also asked that I come back into the office on Monday morning to have an ultrasound done.  Abby was "measuring small" and my fluids looked a bit low to her so she wanted to make sure that everything was ok.  Of course I worried my way through the weekend and a second baby shower and Monday couldn't come soon enough.  I just wanted to know that everything was ok.

Ryan took off work on Monday to go to the doctor with me which was SO NICE!  We had the ultrasound and they sent us to get lunch and asked us to come back to do a stress test on the baby.  Basically they wanted to hook me up to a machine to monitor her heart rate and if I was having contractions.  They told us to be prepared to have her later that afternoon depending on what they found so we sort of treated lunch as our "last supper" of sorts.  We went back and had the stress test done.  The results were good so we weren't going to have a baby that day and they sent us on our merry way with an appointment to come back Wednesday, August 15th for another ultrasound to check how things were going.  At that point I sort of knew that we weren't going to make it all the way until the 24th but we didn't really know anything official.

We went home and got some things done around the house.  I finished writing the last of the thank you cards for the showers from the weekend and made us a yummy meal of spaghetti and meatballs.  We watched a little TV and headed to bed around 10pm.  I should note that Ryan had been up since 3 am that morning.  He worked for a few hours in the morning at a Coopers Hawk in Indiana before heading home to go to the doctor with me.

At 11pm on the dot I woke up thinking "hum...that must be a contraction".  I hadn't felt one until that point and it was exactly what people had described to me.  But, I knew that contractions didn't really mean anything, its just your body getting ready for labor so I went back to sleep.  Exactly 15 minutes later I woke up with another one.  I decided that as long as I was awake I'd head to the bathroom (because that's a place you frequent often when pregnant).  When I got up I noticed that my undies seemed a bit wet.  Nothing like how the movies make it big gush of water, but it seemed weird.  I mean...I don't pee the bed anymore :O)  So, I thought it over and decided to call the doctors office to see what they thought.  I didn't wake Ryan up yet and was leery of calling the doctor because I didn't want to be that lady that ended up in the hospital only to be sent home and told to keep waiting. 

I told the doctor what was happening and she couldn't really tell me much without seeing me so she sent me to the hospital.  I went upstairs to wake Ryan up and boy was he confused!!  First, we'd only been asleep for about an hour and second, we just weren't really ready for a baby just yet.  Ryan's response was "no, can't we just sleep a little bit longer" and tried to pull me back into bed.  I wanted nothing more than to snuggle in next to him and go back to sleep but I knew we needed to go to the hospital so I get him up and moving.  Luckily we'd come home at lunch time and I'd thrown together a hospital bag just in case so I was sort of prepared.

We left the house around 11:45.  It was really foggy out and Ry and I were both really tired.  I remember him making a comment about "Gorilla's in the mist" because of the fog.  HA!  Anyways, we got to the hospital at about midnight and they started by asking me what had happened and doing a quick test to see if my water really had broke.  The first test came back inconclusive, probably because it was such a small amount of fluid, so they decided to do three more tests before saying if I was in labor or not.  As soon as she went to do the first of the tests the rest of my water broke and she was 99.9% sure we were having a baby that night!!!  Now, remember, we already knew the baby was breech so I knew we'd be having a c-section. 

I'd had dinner around 8pm so they weren't sure if they would make me wait a few hours to digest dinner, or if we'd go straight to delivery.  I wasn't looking forward to sitting around for a few hours in labor (since I knew I'd be delivering with a c-section anyways) so I was relieved when they said the doctor was on her way and we'd have a baby in our arms in a few hours!!

Ryan's First Diaper Change (he said it was "gross!")

It was about 1am at this point and we knew that we were really having the baby so Ryan tried calling both sets of parents.  My dad didn't answer his phone, but his mom was awake enough to hear hers.  My parents didn't end up knowing what was going on until Ryan sent my mom a picture text of Abby.  She woke up and shook my dad awake shoving the phone in his face telling him we'd had the baby (I can just see this playing out and the surprise on both their faces).  Anyways, I'm getting ahead of myself. 

It took them until just before 2pm before they wheeled me into the OR and gave me the epidural.  The anesthesiologist was SO great and helped me keep my mind off of what was going on.  Oh, and my nurse.  She was the sweetest lady ever!!  In fact, her name just happened to be Abigail!!  When Ryan realized that he said to me "I think it's a sign, if we have a girl, lets name her Abigail", so that's the story behind the name (we'd had it picked out for months, but were choosing between that and Katherine). 

Impossibly teeny toes are SO hard to resist!

Ryan was in the recovery room getting into his scrubs (which he lovingly called the "bunny suit")while they prepped me for surgery and got me all medicated and ready.  I was cold...and really shaky.  Partly because of the meds, partly because it was freezing in the room, and mostly because I was nervous.  I remember the anesthesiologist telling me that they were about to let Ryan in and then saying, ok, they already made the incision.  It was crazy!!  I couldn't feel a thing, but I was awake for the whole time. 

I remember the doctor saying "I can see the butt...oh...the baby is peeing and pooping!  One last guess, boy or girl?"  I said "Boy?" because little girls don't start out their first day in the world with pee and poo! But the doctor responded "Nope, girl!!".  Of course I started to cry. 

They wheeled me into the room at 1:57 and Abby was born at 2:23.  My kinda labor!!  It didn't take them long to get her a little cleaned up and bring her around the curtain for Ryan and I to see.  She was perfect and I was so happy.  A few minutes later though I started to feel really nauseous.  The anesthesiologist had warned me that I might start to feel sick and that I should tell him if I did, but I was trying to fight through it.  Bad choice!!  I started to throw up, which is REALLY hard to do when you can't feel anything below your rib cage.  He quickly gave me some meds and within minutes I was feeling better.  Still shaking all over and crying but not sick anymore.

Staley went a little crazy with the diapers one day when I left her out...I'll be closing that door from now on :O)  I think she's not quite sure about her little sister.

They sewed me up and moved me into recovery before 3am.  That's when it got really good!!  Ryan was already with Abby in recovery.  In fact, they'd kicked him, and her out a few minutes after she was born.  When Ryan tells it, he says the walked him and Abby into the recovery room and then the nurses left to work on me.  He says he was so scared to be alone with her and remembers thinking "I don't know if you know this or not, but this is my first time having a baby...are you sure I should be here all alone?" but he figured it out and not long after they rolled me in to be with them.

We stayed in recovery for 2 hours and I got to snuggle and hold my sweet baby.  I'll never forget how much I was shaking though.  It was uncontrollable.  The doctor said it was totally normal and had alot to do with a huge swing in hormones and undergoing major surgery.  It took all of the two hours in recovery for me to stop shaking but I wouldn't give back those two hours for anything.

After recovery, the put us in the mother and baby wing and the rest was history!!  Our families were both anxiously awaiting visitor hours which started at 10 am.  In fact, they were all in the parking lot at 7:30 hoping to get in, but the hospital was firm about visiting hours so they went to breakfast and went shopping for clothes!  Since we didn't find out if Abby was a boy or a girl, we'd gotten very few clothes until she was born.  Don't worry though, her little closet and dresser are overflowing now.  Everyone as been so generous and helpful!!

So, it's a week after Abby was born and I can't even explain how much I am in love.  You really can't understand it until you become a parent.  Also, it gives me whole new appreciation for the amount of love that my parents have for me.  I've never loved something as much as I love her.  She's changed our whole lives, for the better!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Abby has her own BLOG!!

I decided to create a separate blog for Abby's weekly photo project, but no fear!  Each week I will post a link to the new blog here on our normal one, so you all will be able to keep up with how she's doing.  Eventually I will figure out how to add a link to the side of this blog, but for now, this will work!

Abby's new blog:

Check out the above link to see her week 1 photo!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Abigail Pearl....

Welcome to the world little one!!

Abigail Pearl was born on Tuesday, August 14th and 2:23 am.  I will do a whole birth story post in the coming days but for now I just wanted to share some pictures with you all.

I will say this though.  Two days ago I had a hard time picturing what it would be like to have a little baby.  But today as she lays here sleeping on my chest while I type up this post, I have a hard time remembering what life was like before her...and can't imagine going back.  We love her so much, and Ryan is already amazing with her!  She loves how he can't sit still for more than a minute.  His antsy-ness is PERFECT for a newborn.

The hospital has some weird Internet policy where I can only access my blog for 60 minutes during my stay so I'll keep it short and sweet until I'm home and can really do a Birth Story post up right.  In the mean time, here you go:

In the recovery room about 30 minutes after she was's hard to see her all snuggled in  there but it's a good picture of me :O) Because pictures of me are why you are really here right!  HA

She's so teeny.  I mean...all newborns are tiny, but at 5 lbs 12 oz, she seems extra tiny to me.  The grandmas actually went out yesterday to buy some Preemie clothes.  I think Abby is really right in between the Preemie clothes and the newborn.....she's a little squished in one and swimming in the next size.

Just so I don't forgot all those little details,

A much less attractive picture of me but our first family picture none the less. 

Open eyes!!  She's got dark blue eyes right now (who knows if that will last), and a full head of dark brown hair.  Just like me when I was born!  After much deliberation and debate amongst all the visitors yesterday we think she looks alot like me, with a little Ryan mixed in.  I think her nose is exactly a cross of Ry's and mine. 

I'm just one day old and there are already more pictures of me on this blog than there are of my doggie sisters.  I sure can't wait to meet them when we get home!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Baby Shower #4 - Murphy's

I'm going to go a little out of order here, sorry guys.  I actually had another shower on Friday with all of the lovely ladies from my work, but I don't have the pictures from that one yet, so I'm going to post about the shower we had on Sunday first, and be back tomorrow with pictures to share from Friday.

Check out the super cute decorations they had.  Ellyn made this little watermelon baby buggy the night before.  She found in on Pinterest which means it probably took WAY longer than anyone expected.  The fruit was so yummy too.  I loved the rainbow colored popcorn and jelly beans.  It made the whole area seems so cheery and bright!

A few of Ellyn's friends came to help us celebrate.  It was so good to see you all and catch up!

I'm sure I didn't get a picture of everyone, but these were some of my favorites.  There were so many lovely ladies that came out to celebrate the arrival of this little one.  I had such a great time and we got so many gifts!  I can't possibly imagine needing one more thing!!  There were so many boxes, we could hardly fit them all in the car. We got our stroller/car seat combo, baby monitors and swing just to name a few.  We also got some clothes, our pack and play, bottles, and lots of the little things that babies somehow need.  For such a little person, babies end up needing alot of stuff!!! 

Another group shot...hoping to get everyone into the post :O)

Ryan favorite gift was by far his long lost friend, Harvey.  Ellyn sent Dan all the way into the attic to pull Harvey out so the baby could have his daddy's favorite toy right from the get go.  Harvey was Ryan's buddy from when he was a little lad.  He's currently residing in the car seat in the back of my car.  Ryan wants to make sure he makes it safely to the hospital for when baby is born.  HA!  He's also had a long talk with both of the dogs about how Harvey is NOT a dog's a baby toy.  Staley is very confused by the squeaker in his little red heart...she's sure this toy is for her.  HA!  I guess we will see.

Baby news update:  I had another ultrasound this afternoon and the baby is looking good size wise, but it seems like my fluids are a bit low.  The doctor isn't too worried about it, but she's got me coming back on Wednesday morning for another ultrasound.  If they are still low, we will be having a baby BEFORE next Friday.  It's pretty day to day now and they are really just trying to get me to 39 weeks (next Thursday) because that will mean the lungs are fully developed but they aren't too concerned if we end up needing to get the baby out sooner.  So, for now I'm enjoying my last few evenings of quite and (mostly) full nights of sleep.  Who knows...we could go in Wednesday for a checkup and end up having a baby that day.  I'll keep you updated!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Gestation of a House...and a Baby!

Yesterday was a really big day for the McGrath family.  After months and months of waiting and living with lots of uncertainty we finally got some things figured out.

The Gestation of a Short Sale:
Did you know it takes longer to buy a house these days then to have a baby?  No??  Neither did we.  Back in November (before we were even pregnant) we put an offer in on a short sale in Hampshire, IL.  We knew it would take a long time to get the sale to go through, but we had no clue it would be quite this bad.  It sure has been one long crazy roller coaster of a ride with plenty of ups, downs, and breaks along the way, but we got word yesterday afternoon that our offer was FINALLY accepted and we will receive a closing date in the next few days.  We know that the contract states we MUST be closed by September 24th so we are expecting a mid-September moving date.

This is the current scene at our house right now.  Why the rush you might ask??

Well, I'm sure everyone knows by now (especially if you've been reading the blog) that I'm 37 weeks pregnant right now and we are expecting a baby any day now.  Actually, that dove tails nicely into my next topic.

The Gestation of a Baby:  This one was a little bit more set in stone than our house was (at least we hoped so).  Baby McGrath is due in just under 3 weeks, but we found out yesterday that he/she is still breech.  I was pretty sure this was going to be the case, and even pointed to where the head was before the doctor put the ultrasound on me.  I was is head up, butt down, with a nice little foot right where the head should be.  So, that left us with two options.  We could try an external version, which basically means the doctor would push around on my stomach and try to get the baby to flip.  Versions are about 30% effective in first time mothers and that rate increases as you have additional babies.  The doc said that success rates for 3rd or 4th time moms are in the 80% range, but its a bit tougher for first timers.  Their are risks associated with versions as well, including having the baby all tangled in the umbilical cord and possibly having the placenta detach.  My doctor recommended that we schedule a c-section.
A scheduled C-section has some benefits (like a SET due date!) and some negatives too of course, but the doctor, Ryan and I weighed the risks and currently have a C-section scheduled for Friday August 24th.  I guess the 24th is a lucky day for us in all things baby and house related :O)  So, as far as we know, in two short weeks from now we will be holding our new little baby close!!  I can't hardly wait.

Course, all that means that we've got a TON to get done in the next 13 days, including packing up our townhouse as much as possible and getting ready for a move (and a baby at the same time).  It's going to be a crazy whirlwind of a month but we are so excited to finally have things fall into place for us.  I can't wait until 2 months from now and I can look back on this crazy time in our lives and just be glad it's all worked out and done!

That being said, I've got some boxes to pack, so back to work for me!!  I'll be back later this weekend with pictures from the baby showers from this weekend!

Update:  My parents showed up a few minutes after I drafted this post to surprise me.  They helped me pack for a few hours and we got so much done!!  It was such a great suprise to have them here to help.  Thanks Mom and Dad!!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Naperville Tri 2012

This past weekend Ryan raced the Naperville Triatalon.  It's been a pretty light race year for us (and by us I totally mean him).  He's been so so busy working and building Fox River Millwork that there hasn't been much time to train....and racing without training isn't all that fun. 

Naperville is a super easy fun race for us since it's so close to home.  Ryan actually rode his bike to the race and Ellyn and I came along a little bit later, which was awesome for this tired momma!!  I've been exhausted matter how much sleep I get!

I guess this race has really exploded over the past few years.  Ry keeps all his bib numbers and writes his stats on them so last night he was looking back to see how he did over the years.  4 years ago when he raced there were just over 800 people in the race.  This year it topped 1,500!

Since Ry went ahead of us we didn't see him before the race.  Try sorting through all those people!  Everyone pretty much looks the same, but I was pretty sure Ry had a blue cap on and was wearing his yellow tri outfit.  Luckily I'd guessed right and was able to glimpse him as he ran into the water.  The good news is, once I can find him, I can usually follow him the rest of the race.  So, here he is coming out of the bike transition....

*Not such an exciting photo...sorry!

Now, here's the real story.  We have NEVER missed Ryan once we've found him in the race and made our way to the different view points.  We literally have always been able to catch a glimpse of him has he's passed, up until this race!  I mean...he's done Ironman races covering over 120 miles and we've found him.  But somehow during this silly, super fast race we missed him!!   Ellyn and I were hanging out at the bike in point and somehow we missed him.  We must have been chatting too much.  After seeing a ton of people that were WAY out of shape compared to Ryan we finally gave up on seeing him come through into transition and headed toward the finish to see if we could find him.

Low and behold, we found him coming out of the porta potty.  HA!  He wasn't even sweaty anymore, that's how far we missed him by.  Sorry babe!  No finish line pictures for this race!  My bad. 

We did get a few post race photos though. of the whole family (Sesame....I need you to hang out for one more week, we've got alot going on this week and then you are free to make your debut!)

And...for posterity's sake, here are Ry's race numbers:
Overall place: 105 (out of 1633)
Div place: 18 (out of 125)
Swim: 8:12
Bike: 38:00 (actually I blame Ry for missing him.  He told me it would take him an hour to do the bike so we DEFIANTLY weren't watching for him when he came through)
Run: 22:17
Total time: 1 hour 13 minutes (I love the short races!)

Friday, August 3, 2012

More photos from the shower

I promised you some more pictures from the shower last weekend so here they are.  Enjoy!!

First - my first babies deserve a little love these days! 

Lily hates to have her picture taken for some reason.  As soon as you call her name she turns her head away and hides her eyes.  I swear I can never get a good picture of her.  

S-dog on the other hand has no problem posing for a picture.

The only thing cuter than pictures of my two dogs is a picture of my new niece.  Kayden is the sweetest cutest baby ever (course ours isn't here yet to compare *smile).  I loved having the whole weekend to hang out with her and get to know her better.

I got TONS of gifts (thanks to everyone!!) but things like this homemade blanket always get special recognition from me. I know how much work goes into making things with your own hands.

Speaking of homemade things, my mom made me this AMAZING mobile for the nursery.  You all might remember that I had a origami mobile in the babies room from my baby room reveal photos but this one that mom made will go above the crib.  The origami one is hung above the diaper changing area.  Gotta have lots of pretty things to look at right??

Anyways, check this thing out.  I found one on Etsy and sent mom a link asking if she could make one for me.  Boy did she come through!  It's seriously amazing and I can only imagine how much work and time she put into it.  This little baby sure is loved before he/she even gets here.

I'll have to take another picture of the monkey and update this post for you.  I think he's my favorite (he's got a little red heart on his butt!).  I love the elephant too though....heck...I love them all!!

And, while everyone was together, we decided to grab a few family photos.  Ug, I should have photoshopped out my chubby arms, but that's alot of work, and I suppose wouldn't be true to life *smile. 

Three generations in one shot.  Can't wait til I've got one less baby in my belly and one more baby in my arms!! 

Finally, a little story that will make you all laugh.  I'm getting a little crazy over there these days.  Keep in mind, as I'm having the following conversation with Ryan I fully recognize how crazy I sound...literally while I was talking I knew it.  But I was freaking out and Ryan needed to know about it. 

Setting:  About 2 pm on day this week.  Ry's working on a tile job and I'm at work "working".
Me:  "Babe...I'm getting nervous.  We aren't ready for this baby."
Ryan:  "What do you mean, of course we are."
Me:  "No we aren't.  We don't even have a car seat yet, or wipes."
Ryan:  "It will be fine.  We can always get wipes after the baby is born."
Me:  "No we can't.  We will be stuck in the house forever!"
Ryan:  "We can always have someone stop at the store for us and get them."
Me:  "I don't even know how to make a list!!  I don't even know what I need."
Ryan:  "Babe, my grout is drying, I have to go back to work."

See, I know I sound crazy.  And, I know that we don't need wipes the moment we walk in the door.  And, I know that I won't be stuck in the house forever, but at the moment, I was in a panic and couldn't stop myself.  I feel bad for Ryan.  Just a few more weeks of crazy, and then the REAL craziness will happen.  I can't believe that in less than 4 weeks from now we will have a BABY!  Hanging out with Kayden really helped me to realize that I could do this and it would all be alright.

So, here's a quick shot of what I've been up to today.  Prepping for baby:

You know what those are??  If you guess cloth diapers you are right!  You'll be hard pressed to convince me that normal Pampers are cuter than these brightly colored butt covers.  We've got 12 of them (that I bought them new off Craigslist awhile back).  I still need at least 6 more but these 12 will get us started so I can see if I like it.  For anyone that cares, I decided to go with Bumgenius 4.0 AIO's.  That means all in ones, so its all you need in one piece.  Well, sort of, there are actually two pieces, the colorful covers you see here, and then the absorbent part that you slide into a pocket inside the cover.  I'll be sure to update you guys on how it's going once the baby gets here and we start using them but I'm excited to try them out. 

These diapers (plus the few extra I still need) should be all we need to get us through diapering years.  Yep, I wrote that right, 18ish diapers should be all we need!  The potential cost savings was 98% of my reason for deciding to try cloth.  The other 2% was fueled by the "cuteness" of cloth (I mean, how can you resist these bright colors??).  I won't beat myself up over my choice if this turns into an experiment that goes wrong and I hate washing them.  For the $200-$300 I'll invest on this project, I think it's totally worth it.