Thursday, November 27, 2014

Wren and Ollie's joint Circus party

I know I am a bit (ok... alot) late on posting this. However, I am posting now.

We spent the summer in Calgary and since we knew friends and family there, I wanted to celebrate both of Wren and Ollie's birthday before moving. The kids had a blast with the circus themed party. And I had lots of fun planning it too!

I didn't get as many pictures as I wanted to but it was fun to enjoy the party. We hired a lady to do face painting and balloon twisting and it was SO worth it. The kids had a blast! Happy 3rd birthday to Wren and happy 1st birthday to Ollie. 

Monday, March 3, 2014

Windy walk on the dykes

Our weather here has been so moody lately. One day it's snowing and the next it's 8 degrees and mom thinks it's warm enough to go for a walk.

 When we got to the exposed dykes, it was pretty chilly with the wind so we snapped a few pics, did a quick sprint (which the kids cheer me on with a giggle) and called it quits.
 These faces are just so cute!
 Ollie is only 6 months and looks like such a big boy!

It seems like I don't end up in pictures that often, so here is a little lip chapped, dry skin, wind blown hair self portrait.

Friday, January 31, 2014

Oliver Charles Birth story

I have written this over a few times trying to edit and adjust the sentences but then realized that words can not even begin to express the emotions through Ollie's home birth. So here it is, his birth story even though the words don't do it justice.

Our first family of 4 picture.
Oliver Charles Anderson
Born in water at 7:30AM on September 1, 2013
9 Lbs

Two days shy of being a whopping 39 weeks pregnant. I was big, stretched to the max and just a bit cranky from all the little ‘perks’ of pregnancy. Lane’s mom (Grandma Tea) had come into town the day before (a Friday of a long weekend) to stay with us whether the baby was born or not. Grandma Tea and Wren went to spend the night at Lane sister’s place.

Our evening was quiet and restful. We got the house tidied up and Lane and I snuggled in bed at an early hour. I awoke at my usual time of 3 AM. Being 38+ weeks pregnant had no mercy on letting me sleep. Between the back aches, Braxton hicks and hunger. I gave in and wandered to the kitchen for my middle of the night meal. A couple glasses of water later and I realised that I couldn’t even stomach a meal. I paced. Somehow, the Braxton hicks were ‘picking up’. At 4 AM, I turned on the light in our bedroom, waking Lane up. “I’m so achy and sore” I begged almost as if he could do something about it. I’m not 100% sure what came of him, but he actually got up out of bed, got dressed and started setting up the birth supplies in our living room. The night was calm and it felt peaceful to only have a few lights on. I paced up and down the hallway through the strong rushes. Closing my eyes and solely focusing on my body. I thought to myself “how silly would this be if he actually set up the whole pool, the midwives arrived and yet nothing was happening down there”. I felt almost guilty that I might have to impose on others for just another false alarm. It didn’t feel like it was actually ‘happening’.

So much love to go around. How blessed we are!

Lane continued setting up, making sure not to interrupt my pacing. He did suggest, however, that I call the midwife. I hesitantly called her around 5AM. She insisted that she listen to me through a contraction (this, by the way, is the most awkward thing to have someone listen to you breathe in and out). A contraction came and she listened. It finished and she told me that it was probably still early but she would come and check on me anyways. I then called my doula right after I hung up with her. I don’t remember if we even had much of a conversation other than me telling her what my midwife had said and that she was on the way over. She didn’t even wait for me explain what I was feeling through the contractions, she just said “I’m on my way”. She knew me (or a women in active labour) too well.

Lane had the pool all set up and filling with water. I intermittently helped myself to fresh cold glasses of water. I smiled between the contractions, pleased with how our house had transformed into the welcoming ground of our unborn baby son. I really hoped it was the real thing because now we have woken TWO people and they are on their way over at 5AM!

5:30AM and the midwife had arrived. She came in the house with a few midwife type tools and set them down. I had a few contractions and then she offered to check my cervix. This was a scary moment of truth for me. I had gone in and out of labor a couple times over the last few weeks and it was very discouraging. Your cervix doesn’t lie however. “You are 4-5 centimeters!” she smiled “There is no going back now.” My heart jumped a bit, this was actually going to happen today, yay!

The hallway was my pacing domain. I paced that thing until it was paced out. “Um, I’m not sure if I just peed a little or my water is leaking?” I questioned the midwife who was still leisurely setting up all her supplies. She came and checked the heartbeat of the baby and reassured me that it doesn’t smell like pee so it probably wasn’t.

Through each gentle contraction, I tried to relax completely. Letting my whole body be heavy and limp letting the ground would do the work of holding me up. The water kept dribbling down my leg. My doula had arrived in the middle of the excitement. She barely set her bag down before she got out her essential oils and started working her magic. My contractions were gently increasing in intensity. She told me to sway back and forth through them since my back was aching terribly. After a few contractions like that, she asked if I wanted to labour in the shower (this was my favourite when I was in labour with Wren). “Well, is the pool ready? I’d rather just go in there” I said almost feeling excited that I would get to try out the birth pool. Lane was just filling the last little bit of it up but we all agreed that I could get in anyways.

The warm water washed over my body. I felt every muscle in my body loosen and surrender to the  warmth of the water wrapping around me. My eyes were closed completely now. Opening them meant I lost the place of perfect harmony between my mind and my breath. The ice cold cloths Lane kept refreshing to put on my neck kept my head free and clear. And as each contraction would start, I’d pace my breath letting my body and our baby do their thing. I remember the powerful words of my doula telling me that I was doing a fantastic job (these words are gold to a labouring woman FYI). I began to hum now through the higher peaks of the contractions since the low rumble gave a soothing vibration all over my stomach and down through my bottom. I imagined my body as being part of the water and not in it. That way, I could imagine myself being completely open and calm. Not only open physically but mentally and emotionally. I prayed to God in thankfulness for what our bodies are capable of, the blessing of this beautiful baby, and for the strength and calmness through the next contraction.
Lots of visitors so Ollie thought he should pose it up.

It seemed like I was just starting the ‘hard work’ when the contractions fell on top of one another. The midwife checked me since she figured I was quite close. “You’re 10 cm. You’re all ready!” She told me. I leaned over the edge of the pool holding one of my doula’s hand and one of my husband’s hand and started to push. I could feel the head descending through my pelvis bone and feeling overwhelmed I said out loud, “it’s TOO BIG. It won’t fit”. My helpers, chuckled at my comment and told me that it was a big head but I could do it. I buckled down and kept pushing this time with a “raawwwwrrrrrr”. Before the next push, my midwife looked me in the eye and told me, “Jocelyn, you are wasting your strength and energy when you make noise while pushing. Use that energy and force it downwards.” The next contraction and push, his head was out. I pulled away from the ledge of the pool and kneeled. This part felt like forever! The part where the baby has to turn its’ head before the mother can birth the shoulders and rest of the body. I looked down. Our baby boys’ head had lots of hair! It seemed so exciting and I just wanted to hold him already. I rubbed his head, but I had to wait for him to do his part.

All of my helpers, stepped back and said “it’s all you”. I reached down while gently pushing and pulled our fresh baby into the pool of water that held us both. Sitting back with him on my chest I felt like I was in complete ecstasy. What greater possible feeling of high could there be? “Oh baby, oh baby, oh baby” I said. Never wanting another minute to pass since that meant I would be further away from the wonderful moment we just experienced together. Only a mother will know that feeling of the seconds proceeding birth. The feeling that your world is complete now. The feeling and warmth of God’s hands so close that you can smell them. This blessing is reserved specifically for mothers.

After I had a little nap, I came back out for some snuggles.

The sun was just rising as I looked out the window of our beautiful waterfront lot here in BC. What a beautiful day for a baby to be born I thought.
Twice over father holding his new son. I think this was before the midwives weighed him. Only minutes old here.

He was warm and squishy and surprisingly clean for a newborn. I held him tight and looked up at my husband. We hadn’t completely decided on a name for him yet so we both just looked into his eyes.

I was assisted out of the pool and rested on the couch. I was wrapped in towels with our newborn on my chest. We cuddled, stared and smiled. We were so excited, we started making our birth announcement calls to our family to share our joy before too long. Everyone was very happy to have a new little baby in the family and the joy continues as we watch him grow and watch him be a little brother to his big sister Wren, a son to my husband and I, a grandson to 2 Grandma’s and 2 Grandpas, a nephew to 3 aunts and 3 uncles and a friend to many (oh and almost cousin!). 

I called GrandmaTea to tell her Ollie had been born. This was Wren new sister look.
** The only thing I would do differently (if there happens to be a next time) is to hire a birth photographer to document all the little moments and display the emotions through the labour journey. I also don't even have a picture of all the wonderful helping hands I had there.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Snow Play

We don't always get snow here on the westcoast. However, when we do, it sure is something special. Hope it sticks around for Christmas!

Wren wasn't really sure what to do with it so I gave her her bucket and let her be.

The rest of the time she spent "stomping" around the yard (in her words).

Hehe, little snow footprints....ahhh how fun.

*Cute strawberry terry lined suit courtesy of Ayla-thank you! 

Monday, December 9, 2013

Protein balls

Experimented a little and came up with these protein balls. I try to keep them in my fridge at all times for snacks and when a craving hits but I don't want to ruin my meal plan with a cookie.
2 cups of pitted dates
1 cup of unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup of chopped or slivered almonds
1 tsp of coconut oil
1 cup of natural peanut butter 

1. Chop and mash the pitted dates- use hands if needed (I use a blender for this but a food processor would work better)
2. Chop almonds 
3. Put all ingredients in a bowl and mix together. Use hands to knead everything together thoroughly. 
4. Have a little taste. Add appropriate ingredient that is lacking.
5. Roll into 1" balls and refrigerate 


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Faces of Ollie

Thought I'd share just a few of the many faces of little baby Ollie.

                                                             The "wide eyed"

                                                                 The "check me out"

                                                        The "soothing fist suck"

The "HEY mom!"

and last but definitely not least, Lane's favourite. The "Waaasssuuuuuup"

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Maternity shoot

At 37 weeks pregnant, my sister-in-law took maternity pictures of myself and Sonya (also her sister-in-law and my friend). Sonya and I have only 1 day between our due dates! It's all very exciting. Enjoy.

 Oh little man, how I do wish to meet you already.....

 Best belly buds!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A little Baking and Crafting

I have the weirdest things on my nesting list. I totally understand that and am fully aware of it. One of the things was to have some baking done that I can freeze and have ready for after the birth (there will be many helping hands at our house I'm sure and I'd like to have a snack for them). Banana bread and chocolate chip cookies are done, still would like to do a few more and different things. Ideas would be great (meals, snacks that are freezer friendly).

Wren has really been into colouring lately. Which I love for so many reasons. This little birdhouse I bought at dollar store for $2. My original idea was for her to paint it but then I figured she could just colour it. Way less messy and the felts she has are washable so we can wipe it down and start over if she wants.

She was so serious as she was colouring it (I think that's from me- serious face while working on a project).

"MOOOMMM, allll done!" Wren said. I'm sure she will go back and fill in the blank spots but hey, it's her project so she can do it however she likes. I love how proud she is of herself.

Do you have any suggestions for toddler crafts that are minimal mess and cheap on the supplies? I'd love to hear!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Fun at the Park

A quick little trip to the park to enjoy the sunshine. Our adventure in pictures....

Taking after her grandma Tea and getting into the numbers.


Had to lay down to have a snack, so much play I guess.

                                       My "so big" little girl and me just chillin in the shade.