Sunday, January 31, 2010

Significance of today...

Four years ago today, Craig and I found out we were expecting a girl.

I think that I will always remember January 31st. I went to the appointment alone. Craig was at the academy and I didn't feel that it was fair to bring someone else and they would find out what we were having before him. A friend of mine was going to Albany for work and although it wasn't planned on my part, I decided to join her so that I could tell Craig in person and show him the ultrasound pictures. I thought it would be so much more meaningful in person. When Craig was in the academy I had to wait for him to call, I had no way to get a hold of him. So Erika and I went to dinner and waited and waited for him to call. Finally he called and of course wanted information which I told him he would have to wait until I saw him and then I let him know that I was only 10 minutes away. He felt bad because he would have called sooner if he had known I was there. We drove to some parking lot of some grocery store and Erika (being a sweetheart) went inside so we could be alone. I showed him the ultrasound pictures and told him to guess (like anyone except experts can read that) and he guessed a boy which then I informed him that it was a girl. We then let everyone else know it was a girl.

After I left Craig that night I went and did some baby shopping. It was nice to know who I would be shopping for. I liked finding out what the sex of my child was, it was another piece to the puzzle of getting to meet her.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 435

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Lucky lotto number for all the players out there - 445

Friday, January 29, 2010


Gillian's hair grows really slow...I'm talking snails pace slow. For the longest time she didn't really have any hair, and I mean a long time. Her hair is curly and straight and sometimes unruly. In the morning she could totally join an '80s rock band.

The best was when my younger brother and his gf came over one Sunday morning and said, "What did you do to Gillian's hair?"
And my response,"That's how she wakes up."

His response, "Really?"

My response,"Yup, she isn't the get up and go type girl. Her hair needs help."

I get her hair trimmed but she has never had any significant amount cut off so here is a photo line up of her hair over the past almost 4 years.
Gillian had hair at birth.

6 months later - same amount of hair. (Gillian & Uncle Tom)

1 year later - same amount of hair.

1.5 years - starting to grow but more like a crew cut.

2 years - start seeing the unruliness coming out. Had 1 hair cut to trim her bangs by this time.

Picked this pic because I thought it was cute - looks like she is going to have straight hair (so misleading).

2.5 years - cute curly short hair do.

3 years - look at those curls.

Still her 3rd birthday - front view. (Gillian had a 103 degree tempt in this pic)

This is a prime pic of the unruly hair. ('80s?)

3.5 years - love this curly.

Almost 4 - I took this pic this morning. Last summer I asked Gillian if she wanted bangs and she said, "No, I want hair like you Mommie." So we have been growing them out for some time. They are finally long enough to tuck behind her ear.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 482

Thursday, January 28, 2010


Today I headed to Burlington for a pre-op visit for a surgery I'm having February 5th. I had never met the surgeon until today. I'm beginning to be able to tell if I'm going to like a doctor within minutes of meeting them. That obviously says I have seen too many. I didn't care for him right from the get go. He had a resident with him which I'm all for teaching hospitals but I felt so bad for her. She stood silent by the door and only spoke when spoken to...1st action that tipped me off that I would not be impressed. So we discussed my background and medical history and all that. He asked me if I ever planned on having more children....this is after we discuss the 26 weeker, the 1lb 12oz baby I gave birth to, the severe preclampsia, the ongoing high blood pressure obviously I answered, "No." I feel that should be enough. Some doctors feel the need to talk me out of it, like this one. Why does the general public feel that I have to bear two children? So then the doctor proceeds to tell me how it could have been a one time situation and that if I wanted more I could have more. Now this is why people sue doctors. What if I die? What if the baby dies? What if I become disabled or the baby is disabled? Yeah let's just going out and have another child without thinking twice. So rather than argue with a doctor, I smile answer all his questions and get out of there. It's bothered me all day. I'm the patient, I thought doctors were suppose to care about me or at least my best interest. Some of these doctors I think want to use me like an experiment. All I can say is I don't plan to be a guinea pig and I hope that doctors start caring a bit more.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 865

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ah ha moment!

It isn't a total secret that I have been seeing someone to discuss my struggles with my pregnancy and Gillian's birth. Way back when I originally made the appointment to see someone I was excited to go and move on from my feelings of anxiety and stress. But as the appointment grew closer I became very anxious about talking to a total stranger about myself and my feelings. I share my feelings with very few people so the thought of telling a stranger seemed very uncomfortable. But due to my Mom and husband encouraging me to go, I went to the first appointment. There were tears shed and a diagnosis given. (FYI - I came up with the same diagnosis online) The second visit I didn't even plan on going but again my encouraging family convinced me to continue. The third visit I was really starting to lose hope that talking to someone was going to help. Then it happened....during my fourth visit. The ah ha moment that made sense to me why people seek help from someone that could be considered a stranger and why it works. I'm not even sure how the conversation started but we were discussing my pregnancy and whether I wanted more children. I told her that I wanted another child but it was not realistic and explained how I had seen numerous doctors and all of them had advised against it. We discussed the reasons that I wanted another child....I couldn't really come up with any. I explained to her how Gillian was perfect, she makes it easy to want another. The stranger reminded me that having another baby didn't guarantee me the second child would be exactly like Gillian. She reminded me that although they may have similar characteristics that their personalities could be totally different. That the second child could have totally different struggles than the 1st, for example colic, allergies, etc. Did I really want the responsibility of another child? Now this will sound selfish but it isn't the baby I want, its the normal pregnancy. And I blurted this out at the doctor. The big belly, the pregnant pictures, the baby shower before the baby comes, being wheeled out of the hospital with my child, the list could go on and on. It was like a light bulb went off and so much stress melted away. And sharing it out loud made it so much more amazing for me. We talked about why I have the right to feel this way, how I was robbed of something so precious and how having another child wouldn't solve the problem.

So now I enjoy going to see my "friend". We talk about what I went through, struggles I have had then & now. She is amazed by how close and supportive our families have been to Craig, Gillian and I. She said we are lucky that most people do not have that. I know how lucky we are and I'm so thankful for all of you:)

We also talk about the positives that have come out of the situation. We talk about Team Gillian, I told her my donating blood story which she enjoyed, I explained reasons that I think Gillian was raised differently than if she had been born full term. When I found out I was pregnant I looked at it wrong. I was trying to figure out how she would fit into our lives not how we would fit into hers. The struggles that we went through made us appreciate everything so much more. I started to look at life so much different. My career no longer mattered, having the big house, the nice cars, the brand new clothes didn't matter anymore. All that mattered was Gillian's health and happiness. I guess it is telling someone else the stuff I'm proud of and the stuff that I'm not so proud of as a parent that can be so stress relieving. I leave her office feeling like I left some weight there.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 961

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

New Addition

Sunday we went to Craig's parents to celebrate Jody's (Craig's sister) birthday and meet the new addition to Craig's parents home. It was a nice couple hours of visiting with family.

Gillian and her Grammie

Jody got stuff she wanted for her bday and had some good requests for lunch - Chicken and dumplings and homemade carrot cake and oatmeal cookies for dessert....yum.

Jake (the new addition) is absolutely adorable. He is learning, he is a 12 week old beagle. Donald is convinced Jake will get a buck next hunting season which will be interesting since this is not a hunting Craig and I had thought Gillian would love the puppy however she didn't seem to make of the situation. The puppy kept jumping on Gillian (kind of like - hey, your my size pay attention to me) but Gillian took it as she was being attacked. I think with time a bond will be formed.

Jake playing with his toy.

Jake still playing.

Craig getting acquainted with the new addition.

Jake enjoys Craig's company like the rest of us:)

Yup - he is aware that he will run this house

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 967

Monday, January 25, 2010

Saturday fun

Saturday morning Craig and I took Gillian to dance class like always. It is a week to week struggle. We have a zillion ideas on why it could be that she wants to go to dance class all week but then we get her there and she no longer wants to go. Once she gets out there she is fine and has fun but it is the initial getting her out there that is a struggle. We keep hoping that it will get easier but there are tears shed each week. Craig and I want her to finish the year, we don't believe quitting is the answer. So needless to say the dance year is not going by fast enough for us. We did get another treat, that day. The dance instructor invited all the families in to watch them go through the routine for the recital to get the kids ready to have an audience. Gillian seemed very distracted by this but she did participate which is all we want from her. (Again, I didn't have my camera:( but did manage to get some pics with my camera phone).

My Mom is coaching indoor track again for the school that she works at. So every Saturday we tell Gillian that Grammie hasn't been at dance because she is coaching. I wanted to take Gillian to see her coach so she could get an idea of what that meant. Gillian did not care for the gun at the track meet or the fact that the kids run more than one lap. She did like the long jump and high jump. She especially liked that after the kids were done jumping she was able to go in the high jump pit.

Lucky lotto number for all the players out there - 772

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 037

Saturday, January 23, 2010

More congrats

So the blog that I follow that I mentioned on January 21, 2010 had their second daughter on January 22, 2010. See their beautiful baby here! Congrats to Heather and Mike!

Lucky lotto number for all the players out there - 986

Friday, January 22, 2010

Growing up

My little girl is becoming a little lady. This morning she informed Craig that he could delete Toot & Puddle and Oswald from the DVR because those were for little girls. That she needed more Scooby Doo and big girl shows. Because she is an only child she speaks like a little adult. It's rare that someone can't understand her (mainly during meltdowns) and having a conversation is like having one with anyone. It fascinates me how she has developed. It was like over night that she started talking and now I can't remember not being able to hear her talking.

Tonight I was getting her a yogurt drink, I asked her red or purple, she said purple. I warned her that it was the last purple and she pointed out to me that there was another box of yogurt drinks behind the open ones in the fridge. I explained that there was another box but it was red and green not purple. Her response, "I can deal with that." Serioulsy? She is almost 4 but still. I don't know any other children that talk like her.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 605

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Good Day

Today was very productive. I only had to work a half day because of traveling Monday and Tuesday. So at noon I met Craig at the grocery store to do our weekly shopping trip. We have been very unimpressed with our grocery store lately since numerous items are constantly out of stock. Once home I was able to spend an hour with Craig – most time I have seen him this week so I was very happy about that. After Craig went to work, I went to another grocery store to buy the items that I can’t get at our normal grocery store and did some other shopping. Once I got back home I vacuumed the first floor then it was time to pick up Gillian. Gillian was excited when she got home to find there was a donut waiting for her for dessert. Not quite sure why I buy her donuts because she eats the icing off and that is done with them. Lol She enjoys them and I think the mess she makes is cute.

I got two surprises today that deserve some congratulations. I got the mail and received an announcement that our friends Tim and Haley (their daughter Aynsley was in the NICU with Gillian) had a son Carson on December 29th. Then I got on Facebook and found out our friends Jenna and Jarrod (their son Cian was in the NICU with Gillian) found out today that they are expecting a girl due in June. Everyone is healthy which is fabulous!

Most people know that I read a blog about a family that lost their daughter last April to a common cold due to her lungs being damaged from her prematurity. She was 16 months old. The name of the blog is The Sphors are Multiplying and yesterday Heather wrote a post that has a picture that just makes me giggle. I’m not sure why. She takes some amazing pictures and I think this one is pretty incredible. It is hard to believe that she is not quite yet full term. Click here to see it. Enjoy

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 644

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Donating blood

I was suppose to get up early this morning and go for blood work. Craig got an unexpected phone call which threw off my morning so I decided to push the blood work off to another day...I had been told it wasn't a rush just routine blood work anyway. So my day proceeded like normal, dropped Gillian off at daycare and went to work. Around lunch time (I sit at my desk and eat lunch unless I have something better to do) I got the idea of going to do my blood work. It wasn't too cold out so I would just go get it done. On my way there I decided I would ask about donating blood....if they are taking a couple of tubes why not add a pint to it, right? So I asked and was informed that I would have to go to an actual office that all they do is blood donations which happened to be right next door. So I had my blood work done and I was going to use the excuse that I just had blood draw so I can't donate today because I was starting to chicken out but instead I walked over and figured I would just get information. I got a lot more than information.

First I looked through the one in site, I could have totally run away.

So I opened the door and walked in and was greeted by a very nice woman who asked, "Are you here to donate blood?"

I answer, "Well I just had blood work so I'm not sure I can but I would like information" (oh please let me leave unharmed!).

Her reply, "You have plenty of blood to still be able to donate!"

So me not wanting to seem greedy with my blood said, "Okay."

That is how it started. Next thing I knew I was filling out paperwork trying to figure out how I can get out of there and realizing that I had no good way out and that I really should donate blood. So as my husband would say, "Suck it up Barb!" So I finished the paperwork and sat in a large relaxing chair and watched TV. The nurses did my vitals and prepped my arm, I didn't feel the pick in my arm and it didn't seem bad at all. It also helped that the women there were hilarious. They kept talking to me the entire time and asking if I was okay. It was nice and relaxing (sounds strange I know this). It was all done before I knew it. So they sat me up offered me a cookie and a drink. Well this is where they made a fan....Diet Pepsi:) A free 20 oz of diet Pepsi for a pint of blood and a cookie....sign me up! They should advertise this! The excitement overwhelmed me and I became light headed so laying back was where I went, ice pack and a bottle of orange juice was given to me. They kept talking to me to make sure I was okay and kept asking if I was lying about how I felt so they would let me leave. Why would I lie...then back to work for! Within 10 minutes I was back to normal and fine....and they let me have the diet Pepsi too:)

So I survived and everyone else could too. I didn't realize how easy and painless it is. There is a reason that I have wanted to donate blood and yes, like most things it is related to my daughter. While she was in the hospital she received 7 blood transfusions. She was born so early that her body didn't produce it's own blood (she was still suppose to be using my body to survive) so whenever the doctors did tests, they had to replace the blood they took because her body couldn't. It was special blood (something to do with high red blood cell count) that can't be taken quickly so Craig and I couldn't donate our own. Someone gave that blood to help my daughter survive so I gave blood today to help someone else survive. It's a cycle that I hope to continue. I told the woman today I owned them more because I feel indebted for at least what we have received. So I plan to return for another visit in late March or early April...I have to heal from my surgeries on the 5th & 8th of February. So if you have time and can spare a pint, donate, it's not as bad as it seems.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 674

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 795

Monday, January 18, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 214

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 634

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 658

Friday, January 15, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 255

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 982

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 518

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Taking it in...

Today I was late leaving work and it has been cold out so I had put off getting gas until today when I had not choice but to stop and get out and pump:( So once I was done freezing outside, I headed home. Gillian is stuffed up and needing a tissue every time she sneezes...gross. Tonight was card night for Craig so we fit in about 45 minutes of visiting before he was out the door. I proceeded to watch Gillian roll herself in a blanket which I have mentioned before here and watch her bat a balloon around like a boxer. I could just watch her all the time. The excitement in her eye and how she takes everything in....I love just taking her all in...

The balloon (not getting pounded at the moment)

Having tons of fun with her balloon

Taking a moment to pose for a picture

Lucky lotto numbers for the players out there - 122

Monday, January 11, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 812

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 768

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Back in the routine

Today we were back to our normal Saturday routine. Gillian had dance class (first time in two weeks) and we weren't sure how she would do after the time off. She did great. They are already starting to learn their routine for the recital in June. She is going to do so awesome! So proud of our dancing queen:)

After the workout she was extremely hungry and at 4 slices of toast while watching her favorite shows. The rest of the day we relaxed...


The "Miner Focus" on the TV

New earrings from Grammie Miner

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 500

Friday, January 8, 2010

Exciting News!

I got some exciting news...and no I'm not pregnant. My Mom has announced her retirement which at this point is set for October 30, 2010. Woohoo!!!!! Yeah!!!!! After 22 years of working in a school she is ready for something new. She is extremely good at her job, she loves her job (most days but that is and she has been dedicated to her job (and numerous 2nd jobs in the past 22 years). My parents have very strong work ethics (which I proudly inherited). Hopefully my Dad will be able to follow soon after. This is such an exciting and scary time for her but we will be supportive and helpful in anyway we can:) Congratulations Mom! This is much deserved:) Your children couldn't be more proud or excited for you!

On another note (for some humor) - Gillian enjoys rolling herself into blankets, one blanket in particular. I told her she was snug as a bug in a Enjoy:)

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 758

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Pause button

Lately my mind is constantly going...I wish there was a pause button. Like when people are just staring off and you ask,"what are you thinking about?" And their response,"Nothing." I wish once, I could respond nothing. It's not even the same stuff I think's all over the place. Anything from the past, to what is going on at home or work to thinking about the future. It keeps going like the energizer bunny! How do people think about nothing?

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 281

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Half way there...

So happy today is Wednesday and the work week is half over. I can't wait for the is exhausting after a vacation.

Lucky lottery numbers for the players out there - 377

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Family Moments

I like when we are all home in the evening and do things as a family. Lately we have had many nights like this.

Tonight, I got home from work and got my usual entrance from Gillian. She yells to Craig, “Moms home!” Followed by Pooh looking for her attention. Craig is working hard, checking on the fire, cooking dinner and entertaining Gillian. Prior to sitting down to eat Craig and I discuss our days briefly then while we are eating dinner we discuss Gillian’s day with her. I love these moments.

After dinner, I clear the table (least I can do when I do nothing to get it ready) and then I get changed from my work clothes into something comfy. When I got back downstairs the volley balloon game was already in play…lol. We probably look ridiculous but we have so much fun. Once we got bored of this Craig and I played Wii while Gillian watched. She enjoys watching us because she still isn’t sure of it and gets extremely frustrated (I can relate so I know she is similar to me). Craig and I also tried tennis and boxing. My right arm is still sore and I’m not very good but it was very entertaining. Competitive husband and wife playing Wii against each other is extremely entertaining. After exhaustion from the Wii and Gillian was bored of watching we played train which consists of us running around our house following each other pretending we are a train….more exhaustion. By the end of the night we were all tired but we laughed the entire evening and truly enjoyed each other. These are the memories that I hope to always remember of Gillian at this age. The time we spent together laughing.

Lucky lottery number for the players out there - 185

Monday, January 4, 2010

Back to normal...

I went back to work today and Gillian went back to was a long day after 12 days away.

I expected a meltdown when I dropped her off this morning but no meltdown....that meant victory for me:) I hate when she has a meltdown when I drop her off. I know she has fun there and I know within minutes of me leaving she is playing and having a blast, just breaks my heart to leave her crying.

Tonight, Craig, Gillian and I played with the balloons. We volley them to each other. Doesn't sound fun but for this family of 3, it's a ton of fun. We laugh the entire time and you would think that the balloon hitting the floor was the end of the world with the way we dive all over trying to hit it. People on the outside looking in would think we are crazy but it is a fun evening for us. Who would have thought?

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 110

Last day....

Today was Gillian and my last day of our extended vacation together. I did some work from home but only part time so it didn't really seem like I worked at all. I didn't want to surprise Gillian so I started telling her yesterday that she was going back to Ms. Mary's which she was not thrilled with. Not that she doesn't like it there, she loves it there because there are tons of little people just like her so she has tons of friends and people that relate to her but staying home with Mommy and Daddy I think definitely tops going there. I told her if she didn't cry, Mommy wouldn't cry either. Gillian had quite a few meltdowns which was expected, anything to do with change can bring them on but overall it was a good day and although we didn't want it to end, we ended on a good note.

Lucky lotto number for the players out there - 442.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

No little girls here

Today was a good day. Gillian stayed last night with her Grammie and Grampie so I got a good nights sleep. Craig and I went grocery shopping before 8am so there were very few people in the store. We may need to do this more often, it is much easier. When we got home, I played the Wii. I have become quite a fan. I want to try the boxing, that is suppose to be quite a workout. Today I did the Jillian Michaels workout which was good but it takes a bit to get use to so once I do it a couple times it should be better. This afternoon I took a nap which was nice to catch up with sleep then it was off to my parents for a New Years dinner. Gillian was still especially social which is so nice. I like her not being scared of her family. My brothers enjoy it too since she had the biggest problems with them.

Tonight I got a surprise. I went in to say good night to Gillian to find that Craig had not put her gate at her bedroom door. At first I thought it was a mistake but I knew it would not be a mistake that Craig would make. Gillian didn't say anything about why it was down so I left it and figured if it was a mistake that I would put it up when I went to bed. It was no mistake. Apparently Gillian told Craig she was no longer a little girl and no longer needed the gate. The rule is that she is not to go downstairs without coming to get us. We'll have to wait and see if she follows the rules. I can't believe how fast it is going. She is going to be 4 this year! This is our last full year that we will pay for daycare. Time is flying!

Lucky Lotto number for the players out there - 542

Friday, January 1, 2010

Great start...

Today started the new year perfectly. Gillian slept in AGAIN which meant I slept in again:) We got up did our normal routine. At about 9:45AM Gillian noticed it was snowing so she asked if we could go outside. Anyone that knows me knows I'm not a fan of the outdoors. In the summer I can avoid it because bugs love me and I get eaten alive out there but in the winter other than it's cold outside I have no excuse. Since I'm trying to enjoy life more I figured what the heck so we got bundled up and out we went.

It wasn't too cold out and once we got moving I was warm enough that I felt I could have taken off some of my warm clothes although I did not do this. We had tons of fun.
We built a snowman.
We climbed mountains (or small hills).
We threw snowballs.
We shoveled the driveway.
We looked extra cute enjoying the outdoors:)
And we made snow angels.

Lucky Lotto number for the players out there - 782