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Monday, February 13, 2012

Menu Monday-Gluten Free Edition

I love planning meals. I may not always be the best at it, but I enjoy sitting down, picking out the menu, then writing out the grocery list. I also love trying new recipes. I (with Corey's blessing) recently decided to slowly make our way to Gluten Free-dom. There have been articles on how it can help with kid's behavior, although it's not a cure-all. It has been shown to reduce autistic kids melt-downs, help adults lose weight, and give more energy. While we don't have any autistic kids, neither are we overweight, I thought it would be fun to try, just to see if we feel better overall.  We still have gluten in the house that needs using up, but I'm starting to look at recipes in ways to adjust them to our new diet. So if there's anyone out there who has trouble in this area, here. Let me help you.

Tuesday- Lettuce Wraps: Instead of sandwiches, we are just going to wrap lunchmeat and cheese up inside a leaf of lettuce!

Wednesday- Tacos- Just use all corn hard or soft shells, and make sure the seasoning packet isn't hiding any secret gluten.

Thursday-Wild Rice Chowder

Friday-Chicken Cordon Bleu  Just swap the flour for cornstarch.

Saturday-Tomato Broccoli Mozzarella and Pasta Casserole  I could choose to go out and buy GF pasta, but I decided to switch the noodles to zucchini and see how that works.

Sunday-Sauteed Shrimp with Feta Cheese and Lemon Butter Sauce

Monday-Slow Cooker Pot Roast

So there you have it. Usually I end up switching a few menu items around, depending on what we're in the mood for, but at least this gives me something to work with!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

I'm Back! And Mr. E's Birth Story

8 Months.

Has it really been that long?

I am such a slacker. For reasons unknown, even to myself, I just upped and stopped blogging one day. But it feels good to be back! So much has happened since I last posted. Let's speed things up, shall we? 33 weeks pregnant to...

5 months ago. 41 weeks along. 11:00am
Holy cow! (Literally, I feel like a cow.) My due date has come and gone, and we're back to Friday, where all the magic happens. My daughter was born on a Friday, so why not this baby? I go in for my 1 week overdue checkup, where my midwife does some extra monitoring to make sure everything is ok with the baby. Baby is sluggish, and Deanna gives me ice water, then juice to wake up the baby and get it moving. Everything seems fine, the baby quite cozy. Deanna asks if I want to be induced. Umm, no. She then offers to scrape my membranes to see if we can get things moving. Hahahahahahahaha, no. My sil had that done, and let me tell you, she is still furious at how much pain it caused her. I may be uncomfortably large, but I am content with the baby coming on its own time. We finish up the appointment, and I schedule one for the following Friday if, God forbid, the baby doesn't come by then. And I go home.
Miss C is in bed, and I'm feeling restless. I'm looking forward to a nice weekend with my hubby home, and decide to make coffee cake for tomorrow's breakfast. Corey is in Milwaukee, an hour and a half away, for class. He won't be home till late. The recipe calls for brown sugar, which is of course on the very top shelf of our cupboard, and I'm too lazy to get a stool to reach it. Rats. What the hey, might as well jump to get it, shake things up a bit! If the baby felt me jumping around like a maniac, it didn't let on. I feel great, the coffee cake tastes delicious (I didn't want to wait until morning to try it!) It's around 8:30 and I decide to go sit in bed with a movie. Wow, this nights is moving slow. Yay! A call from the hubby:) We are just chatting, and he asks how everything is going. I tell him everything is fine, looks like the baby won't be coming, and he could stay a little late to do some extra studying. Anyway, it's late enough that I'm too tired to even want the baby to come tonight. He says he won't rush home, and all of a sudden I get a seriously intense gas  pain! It actually takes my breath away, but then it passes. Corey and I say good night, and I resume my movie. About 20 minutes later, I get another pain, and this time there is no gas to accompany it. Red, flashing warnings are going off in my brain. No, I tell myself, it's fine, nothing is going to happen. Well, another pain is coming, and I'm too uncomfortable to sit in bed. Hmm, this is seeming oddly familiar. My stomach starts churning, and I'm beginning to feel sick. I literally run to the bathroom and make it just in time. I start vomiting, and here's the embarrassing part. I was puking so hard, I peed my pants. Guess everything needed to come out to make way for a baby being born! Since Corey was still in Milwaukee, I decided I should call his parents to see if they might be able to take me to the hospital, and also watch Miss C. Thank goodness she slept through all of this! After I called them, I called the hospital, who told me to come in as soon as possible. At this point, the contractions were running into each other, and I quit timing them. (When I got home, I noticed the pad of paper I had in the bathroom to keep track of contractions, and it only had about 3 sets of contractions written down!) I realized I should probably call Corey and clue him into the events of the night. When he answered, it was around 9:00, and he had left class early because his brain was fried, and he just wanted to be home. I told him to meet me at the hospital. After that, I changed into some comfy capris and a t-shirt, found my hospital bag, and finished packing the last minute items, like a camera and my toothbrush. I had to stop every few minutes to let a contraction pass. Finally my in-laws arrived! My 16 year old brother in-law stayed to watch Miss C, while Corey's parents drove me to the hospital. I remember gripping the hanging handle above the door every time I hit a contraction, or we went over a bump. I later found out that Corey got the the apartment a minute after we left, grabbed his overnight bag then arrived at the hospital the same time we did. Once we got there, Corey's mom went back to our apartment to stay with Miss C, and nurse came with a wheel chair for me. I vaguely remember seeing a lady from our church who works at the hospital. Of course we had to do all that dumb admittance information, which honestly, is quite annoying when contracting every two minutes. They tried to make me sit in the wheel chair, but I refused. I'm one of those people who needs to walk those contractions off! I'm sorry, sitting on my bottom just doesn't help.
I'm up in my room when they hook me up to a monitor. Everything looks great, and my midwife goes to fill the birthing tub in the water birthing room. My contractions are coming fast and hard, and I think I was at 8 cm dilated. They break my water, then move me into the tub. Ah, finally, a little reprieve from all the pain and tension. I instantly feel better, when another contraction slugs me, and reminds me what pain is again. From there, everything is a blur. I remember squatting in the tub, because it was to uncomfortable to recline back, like you have to when you're in a hospital bed. At one point Deanna asked me how I was feeling, and in my clouded, pained state, I told her I felt like I needed an epidural! "Great", she said, "it's almost time to push then." Pretty soon it was time to push, and I remained on my knees, legs spread, bearing down with every contraction. Corey was in front of me, holding my hands, while I squeezed his to pulp. My midwife reminded me that once the baby's head was out, it would be automatic for me to want  to stand, but to resist, because if that baby's head hits air before being completely born, things could become dangerous fast. After three or four pushes, the baby's head was out, and I got to feel the hair! It had tons. Then it was time to switch positions to sitting, legs in the air, so Deanna and Corey had easier access to deliver the rest of the baby.
One more push, and Corey caught the baby with Deanna's guidance, and then it was in my arms! That's when I noticed we have a son, and I tell everyone that it's a boy. I tell my son over and over that I love him, and that he needs to cry. He starts squalling, and I keep kissing him and kissing him, slime and all. I requested delayed cord clamping. Not only is that more beneficial for the baby, but it meant I could hang on to him longer, while the placenta finished pumping the rest of it's nutritious blood into my baby. This is really good at preventing infant anemia.  After a while, Corey cut the cord, and they took the baby to dry him off and measure him, while I climbed out of the tub to deliver the placenta and get all stitched up. That's the part I hate most. I myself am reduced into a whining baby, because Lord knows, I can handle pushing out a baby, but when it comes to my wounds being blotted and dried with scratchy gauze, and needles being used down there, I am a blubbering mess. I can birth a baby all natural, but afterwards, I request all the drugs I can get. At this time, I'm really trying to focus on my son who is laying under the lights on the weighing bed, so I can block out the pain, when the nurses realize they actually need to weigh him about now! I hear a nurse saying "nine pounds....No, ten pounds, two ounces! Wait, what?? Did I hear that right? I just pushed out a ten pound baby? To be honest, I am very proud of myself. Yes, I CAN birth a baby drug-free, even when he weighs over ten pounds:)

                                          Day we got Home- with my little family

                                          Like father, like son

                      Mr. E, Born September 9, 11:30 P.M. Weight- 10lbs, 2 oz Length- 23 in