Thursday, December 20, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Attempting to take a picture of a 2 year old and a 1 week old for a Christmas card was a little easier said than done. The best picture of Mason was the worst picture of Hannah Kate, and the best picture of Hannah Kate was the worst picture of Mason. But I think we still managed to get a cute picture none-the-less.
The day after we brought Hannah Kate home, we decorated our Christmas tree. It got off to a slow start though. I thought Mason would be excited to put his new Mickey Mouse ornament on the tree, but he was not excited at all. He wanted to play with it instead and had no intention of putting it on the tree. So we had to put it up for awhile and begin with some generic ornaments before he was ready to put his special ornaments on the tree.
Mason loves his baby sister so much! He often asks to hold her. They are both wearing their Christmas PJs in this picture. You can't see it, but Hannah Kate's pajamas say, "Baby's First Christmas," and they have a little bear holding a Christmas ornament on them.

I wanted to get a picture of Mason in his Christmas outfit, but he kept acting silly so this was the best we could do.Hannah Kate, on the other hand, was more than willing to pose for a picture in her Christmas gown. It has been a lot of fun dressing Hannah Kate in her cute girl outfits. This one is compliments of her Aunt Barbara.

Merry Christmas!

Seth, Julie, Mason and Hannah Kate

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


This is too cute not to share . . .

A couple of nights ago, Mason walked into the bathroom as I was getting out of the shower. He stopped and just looked at me for a minute. Then he said, "Mama, where's tummy at? I can't find it!" At first I didn't realize what he was talking about, but then I figured out he was basically asking why my stomach wasn't so big anymore. The same thing happened again last night. This time I told him that Mommy's tummy was sitting in Hannah Kate's swing. He gave me a really funny look in response.

Keep in mind that this episode came a few days after Seth asked me when I was going to stop looking pregnant!

I guess it's all just a matter of perspective!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Hannah Kate's Story

Hannah Katherine Bayham
December 4, 2007
8 lbs 5 oz
20 1/2 inches long

We arrived at the hospital on Tuesday, December 4, at 6:00am for the scheduled c-section. My doctor anticipated her arrival no later than 9:00. We expected things to progress quickly once I was admitted and checked into my room, but it just so happened that the four ladies in labor who arrived around the same time I did received all of the attention in those first few hours. We finally headed to the operating room around 10:00, and Hannah Kate arrived at 11:02.

The first thing my doctor said was, "She has a big head." Funny . . . that's the first thing the doctor said when Mason was born, too! Then he said, "She's a big girl." My response was, "I told you I was having a 20 pounder!" I got to see only a glimpse of her before the nurse took her to clean her up, weigh her, etc. And then the nurse said, "She has red hair." I looked at Seth and asked him if she really had red hair or if it was just blood. He said he wasn't sure. While we have red heads in our family, I never even considered having a red headed little girl. I was so anxious to see her. And I was still waiting on them to tell me how much she weighed. The first number I heard was 14. I almost paniced thinking, "I can not believe my child weighs 14 pounds!" But then they said that was her head measurement. She finally weighed in at 8 lbs 5 oz. And she was born a week early! Mason weighed 8 lbs 1 oz. She was 20 1/2 inches long.The nurse wrapped her up and brought her to Seth. I got to see a glimpse of her (still questioning that red hair) before he took her down the hall to meet Mason. I wasn't able to see Mason's first reaction to her . . . I was finally whisked away to recovery, and my nurse brought Seth and Hannah Kate in to spend some time with me. I asked about Mason, and Seth told me I "didn't want to know." He said he showed Hannah Kate to Mason and said, "This is your little sister, Hannah Kate." To that Mason screamed, "Nooooooo."

After Hannah Kate was fed, my nurse prayed for us! And then they took Hannah Kate to the nursery for a 4-hour "transition" period. I was in recovery a little over an hour before I got to go to my room. Once in there, Mason, Seth, MawMaw and PawPaw came in. It seemed like forever before Hannah Kate got to come in. So Seth tried again to introduce Mason to his little sister. Again, a resounding, "Noooooo." And then he proceeded to throw himself on the floor in somewhat of a tantrum. So I finally convinced him to sit beside me and touch Hannah Kate's cheek. At this point, he did stop crying, but I really wasn't sure how it was going to go. He was pretty disappointed because he truly thought Hannah Kate was going to arrive ready to play on the playground and ride his scooter (he had told me this the night before when I was tucking him into bed). During the next few days, Mason, MawMaw and PawPaw came to visit us everyday. Mason didn't have too much to do with Hannah Kate, but he did seem to be warming up to her a bit. He even kissed her every evening before he left. I really enjoyed our time in the hospital. My nurses were so wonderful. Everytime I looked at Hannah Kate, I just couldn't believe she was really ours! Yes, it certainly was worth it . . . all-day sickness, bladder infections, sleepless nights, endless trips to the bathroom and everything else in between! We celebrated Seth's 31st birthday on December 6. And we were able to go home the next day. When we got home, we were greeted by a big stork in our front yard, compliments of the Great Expectations ministry at our church.

In the days since we arrived home, I've experienced life's greatest joy. I've also experienced life's greatest point of exhaustion. I'm afraid Hannah Kate is a little spoiled. She has been held so much that she tends to cry - scream! - when she isn't being held. And she especially loves to cry at night time. The first night we were home, I think she cried pretty much the entire night. Seth and I took turns staying up with her, although I had to feed her every 2 hours. Because she had lost some weight and is a breastfed baby, we had to take her back to the hospital on Saturday for a weight check. So I finally got her settled down around 7:30 that morning, and I was rushing to take a shower before Mason woke up. I went to our bedroom and noticed Seth wasn't in our bed. I just assumed he had gone down the hall and was sleeping in the daybed in Hannah Kate's room. I went through the doors to our bathroom and then into our closet, but I couldn't open the closet door. I finally nudged it enough to get my head through and realized why I couldn't open it . . . Seth was in there with his pillow and blanket alseep on the floor! So that's how our first night at home went.

Hannah Kate did quite well at her weight check. Although she had not gained anything, she maintained her weight from the day before. They wanted us to go back on Monday for another weight check though.

My parents arrived on Sunday afternoon. Hence began the spoiling, not only of Hannah Kate but Mason, too. He had such a big time with his Pop and Mimi. And no one could keep their hands off of precious Hannah Kate. My mom and I went to the hospital on Monday morning for her weight check. Unfortunately, she had lost 4 oz. So the nurse and I talked through everything regarding Hannah Kate's feedings, and she gave me some advice on what to do for the next 24 hours. She wanted to see Hannah Kate back again the next morning. So we loaded up on Tuesday for yet another trip to the hospital. To my relief, Hannah Kate had gained 4 oz since the day before! I was so relieved. The nurse said she didn't need to see her back and released us.

We had some pretty rough nights this week. My mom was such a blessing. She would come and take Hannah Kate in the early morning hours so I could get some sleep. She also cleaned my house and made sure everything happened like it should. My dad helped us with several projects around the house, including hanging ceiling fans in Mason's and Hannah Kate's rooms. Our small group has also been such a blessing to us. They have been providing meals for us and will continue to do so through next week.

My parents left this morning to go back to Georgia. Seth was working so it was my first time at home by myself with both of the children. It wasn't that bad - just non-stop! I fell asleep at one point though, but thank goodness the phone rang and woke me up before too much damage could be done. Of course, I doubt Mason would've let me sleep long anyway!

Mason has been such a good big brother. He has been so patient during Hannah Kate's feedings when I can't get to him immediately. Her crying doesn't bother him. He has slept through everything, which is so amazing. Sometimes he even tries to help by giving her a bear or her pacifier. I hope the sleepless nights will soon come to an end, but I think we still have some work to do to get Miss Hannah Kate used to sleeping in her bed by herself without someone holding her. In the meantime, I am so thankful for these nights and trying to enjoy them as best I can because I know from experience that they pass all too quickly. I mean, I can't believe she's already a week and a half old! And I also can't imagine life without her!

And about that red hair . . . it depends on the light, on what she's wearing. Sometimes it really does look strawberry blonde, especially yesterday when she was wearing a red Christmas outfit. But only time will tell. Her eyes are dark blue. She looks like Mason around her mouth. Seth thinks she looks like my mom, but I see more Bayham than Connell in her at this point. But she'll grow and change everyday so I'm sure it's a little too early to tell at this point. All I know is that it doesn't really matter . . . she is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!