Monday, December 22, 2014

Zachary's Birth Story- as written by our Doula

Here is how Zach's birth unfolded.  Our doula took notes while I labored and then wrote this out for us.  She gave it to us at our 1 week postpartum visit.  It was fun to remember all those random details that I went through.  One of these days, I'll write my own birth story from my side of things, but for now if you're interested in what I did for 27 hours to bring Zachary into the world…here you go!

November 4th, 2014

10:00am - You nervously cried as you settled into your room and were hooked up to the pitocin with a monitor on to track contractions and the baby's heartbeat. Once your nerves subsided, you rested quietly for about an hour. 

12:30pm- I arrived at Mercy Hospital and met you in room 633 where you were on the birth ball. Half and hour later your nurse Sharon checked you and found you were 4cm dilated. 

1:45pm- You rested in bed on your right side for half an hour and then on your left side for half and hour. We turned soft music on and I massaged you with lavender essential oil

2:45pm-Sharon checked your progress again and found you were still 4cm dilated. You and Stephen enjoyed a game of cards in hopes of distraction from the short contractions that your Pitocin was encouraging.

3:30pm- Your contractions quickly began to come in a consistent pattern, about 4-5 minutes apart and you changed positions often as they began to demand your attention.

5:00pm- Dr. Wayman came in to check on you. She found that you were now 5cm dilated and you declined her offer to rupture your membranes. After she left, you battled fear and doubt as you cried quietly on Stephen’s shoulder. He encouraged and comforted you as you slow-danced through your contractions.

6:30pm- You got onto the bed in a hands & knees position and did pelvic tilts. “I can really feel the pressure now!” you said as the contractions intensified. You breathed and rocked your hips through the powerful waves and Stephen and I rubbed your lower back. 45 minutes later we met your new nurse Holli, she checked you and found that you were 5cm dilated, 90% effaced and your baby was at a -2 station. Your contractions were now coming every 2-3 minutes and you were breathing through them.

8:00pm- After discussing your options, you decided to have the Pitocin turned off for the night. You got up and enjoyed some soup for dinner. An hour later you got into bed in a side-lying position and rested with your eyes closed. Your contractions were still coming every 2-3 minutes and you moaned through them.

9:45pm- You moved into the bathroom and labored on the toilet for half an hour and came back into the room and swayed your hips as you walked around.

11:00pm- Your nurse found that you were now 7cm dilated and 90% effaced. You got back into bed and rested. Stephen hung both “homecoming” outfits in the room for motivation.

November 5th, 2014

12:00am- You labored on the toilet in the bathroom for 45 minutes and then your nurse checked you and found that you were 7cm dilated. You got into the warm shower and labored there for almost an hour. You sat upright in the bed and switched the peanut ball from leg to leg as you moaned through the contractions that were still 2-3 minutes apart. 

3:00am- You and Stephen went for a short walk and you did some more pelvic tilts in the hand and knees position on the bed.

4:00am- Your nurse checked you and found that you were 8cm and 100% effaced. You rested in bed for another hour. The room was dimly lit, your soft music was turned back on and I massaged you with more essential oils. Your mom arrived and sat quietly near your bed as you rested.

5:00am- You got up and began swaying and moving through your contractions. You decided to start the Pitocin again and did figure 8’s on the ball after that got going. You battled fatigue and doubt and Stephen continued covering you in encouraging words and touch. 

7:20am- Dr. Wayman came to check on you and found that you were dilated to 8cm and you agreed to letting her rupture your membranes. We met your new nurse Sarah and you rested in bed for the next hour.

8:20am- You got up and did more figure 8’s on the ball. Stephen turned on some upbeat music and then you moved to standing and swaying your hips to the music. After 45 minutes you moved into the bathroom and labored on the toilet for half and hour.

9:30am- Your nurse checked you and found that you were still 8cm dilated but that your baby had moved down further into your pelvis. You battled doubt and exhaustion as they began monitoring your baby internally.  You were offered an epidural, in hopes of getting some rest, but instead decided to just increase the Pitocin.  You then lunged on your left side through 5 contractions. “This baby is moving so much...this is so hard” you said as you held your belly and cried softly. You moved onto the bed and did more pelvic tilts on your hands and knees as the intensity of your contractions seemed to rapidly increase.

11:05am- You began feeling “pushy” while on your hands and knees. Your nurse checked you and found that you were almost completely dilated. You soon began actively pushing on your hands and knees with the nurse gently guiding you. An hour later, Dr. Wayman arrived and you rolled onto your back as you continued to follow your body’s instincts and worked hard to bring your baby earthside.

1:05pm- Zachary Vaughn Brister was brought into the world and placed on your chest. Stephen joyfully announced that you had birthed a baby boy. “Hi Zachary! Hi big boy!” you whispered. Zachary lay on your chest as the two of you silently took each other in.

1:15pm- Stephen accompanied Zachary over to the warmer where he was weighed and measured. The nurse found that he was 9 pounds, 6 ounces and 21 1/2 inches of perfect baby boy. An hour later, Zachary hungrily latched onto your left breast for his first meal.

What an amazing way to bring such a beautiful child into this world. 

The Bump

So I grew a baby and my belly grew!  Here are some of the belly shots we took.  

I gained only 20 lbs and it was all in the belly. I did have some swelling in my feet and legs, but compression socks made it feel a whole lot better.  I had heartburn basically everyday and had to watch what and how much I ate to avoid regret late at night.  Severe ligament pain plagued me for about the last four months.  Changing positions in bed and getting out of bed were incredibly painful.  Stephen had to help me get out of bed basically everyday towards the end. Feeling the baby kick was pretty awesome and seeing my whole belly move was both weird and awesome. Being pregnant was awesome and I miss the cute new clothes I got to wear!  People say I'd miss the belly and the kicks and everything about being pregnant…I brushed it off…but 1 day after giving birth I totally understood what they were saying!  I can't wait to do it all again…minus the ligament pain, that was actually really terrible.

16 weeks

20 weeks
24 weeks
26 weeks

28 weeks

30 weeks

34 weeks

36 weeks

38 weeks

40 weeks

1 week post birth

Friday, August 22, 2014

OKC Memorial Marathon

We volunteered to be course marshals again for the OKC marathon.  It's really quite fun, especially when the swarm of runners comes by...and it literally lasts for like 45 minutes.  By the way, our corner was TOTALLY rockin' it!  We had such a crowd of specators and runnings that danced and sang along with the playlist we made for the event.  We knew the runners would like it and it also greatly entertains us while we stand there for 4 hours.  We bought a karoke machine looking speaker that you can hook your ipad/iphone up to and stream your tunes.  This tiny speaker (okay it was like the size of a small amp) blasted music so loud and so clear, people could hear it a block away!

Here's my mom coming and going ... she always stops to chat when she sees us but this time we didn't really let her...don't want to mess up the PR!

Maybe one day I'll run this half marathon, but for now, I'm perfectly content being a volunteer and bringing musical entertain for the runners. 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Energy FC

2014 was the inagural season of the OKC Energy FC soccer team.  We purchsed season tickets as a Christmas gift to ourselves and I have to say, we've really enjoyed going to the games.  The season started on April 26th and will end with their last home game being August 24th.  Stephen and I are sort of home bodies so it was fun to have somewhere to go and something to do all summer long.

This is the supporters section.  They are really vocal...but luckily keep the chants PG for the most part.  This is a family event afterall. We cheer "I believe that we will win", " I believe in OKC", "OKC... ENERGY" and then for the other team who warms up in front of their stands they like to cheer "you're never going in, you're never going in!". Then if the referees screw up really bad we cheer "The yellow/blue/red team sucks!" (the color depends on what they are wearing that game)

Our colors are green and blue and I have to say whoever designed their jerseys and all the promotional shirts, stuff, and logo did a fantastic job!

They also do fun halftime activities.  This was from the first game and it was "Bubble Ball".  Hilarity ensued as people flipped and bounced all over the place.

The Energy FC are not ranked very high in their league or anything and frankly some of the games looks like you're watching a sixth grade team play, but the majority of the time they give it their all and it's enjoyable to watch.   I asked Stephen if he'd like to get season tickets again next year and he said yes.  I'm game for it, as long as the serious summer heat doesn't rear it's ugly head.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Kitchen Remodel

Last June we started on our kitchen remodel.  Without doing a complete overhaul, we definitely gave it nice facelift.

We started by moving all of the attic insulation out of the soffits so when the drop down ceiling was demolished, we wouldn't have a butt ton of insulation in our kitchen.

After we had two electricians at our house ALL DAY to move a whole bunch of hanging wires and route us some new lights, we were able to install the lights and do the drywalling ourselves.  The drywalling isn't perfect and it took FOREVER...but we saved some money and that's what matters most. 

After the ceiling was put in place, all those seams needed sanding. There were a lot of seams.  We also had to sand the dining room walls to remove the pokey texture that was there and replace it with smooth walls and eventually our own knock down texture.  As you can imagine, all of this created a immense amount of dust.

We both looked like this afterwards.  And as much as we tried to block off the rest of the house...every surface pretty much looked like this as well....for months as the dust just kept settling. It was a pain to clean becuase I hate dusting.

Once the dining room walls were 'smooth' we appled a thin layer of texture and smooth it out so we could start fresh.  The bottom layer would be sanded multiple times to create the look of a perfectly smooth wall, while the top layer got an even coating of knock down texture.  To save time and to ensure an even look, we opted to pay a lot of cans that spray the texture for you, then you just come back and 'knock' it down with a large putty knife with very light pressure.  Buying the cans cost us more but it saved so much time and I was all over that!

Next we bought some pre cut poplar wood that needed just a little bit of trimming on the vertical boards to create our board and batten look.  We were almost to the finish line!  But first we had to do a bunch of wood filler, sanding, priming, sanding, painting, clean up, and all those other darn details before you can actually see some real results. 

Sunday, August 10, 2014


Since my last post, a lot has happened.  We found out I'm pregnant, we've gone to a lot of Energy FC games, we've crossed off plenty of items on the to do list, and we sadly lost our sweet Mocha to dog heaven on June 3rd at almost 7 months old. She passed away so suddenly and in a tragic accident just in the backyard. I'll always remember what happened but we both try to focus on the good memories we had with her.  Even two months later, the pain is so fresh.

Mocha was an awesome dog with a lot of spunk, sweetness, and stubborness.  She was so pretty with short, glossy black and white hair and soft ears.  She was becoming the alpha female to her sister Pepper, and they were both just learning how to fetch independently without chasing after eachother. Mocha always wanted to play, chase her sister, or play hide and seek.   She knew all her commands but  would sometimes be stubborn with you and just sit for a second. She mastered roll over like a champ.


Mocha and Pepper were awesome buddies, always entertaining eachother, cuddling, or playing keep away with toys. If they were too tired to run around outside, they'd just lay down in the living room and  bark at each other.  Mocha was sneaky, too.  She'd always steal toys from Pepper when she wasn't looking even though she herself was just playing with the exact same toy!

Needless to say, she was awesome and we loved her dearly.   We still love her and know that she's getting some awesome play time in dog heaven and keeping watch over us.  My Aunt Rose sent us the book Dog Heaven after she passed away and I cry every time I read it.  It's a sweet book about angel dogs waiting for their owners.  It gives you peace at the same time knowing that they still get to play with all the other dogs and the children in heaven, sleep on clouds, have lots of dog treats, and go on walks, and have plenty of fields to run around in.

Pepper was confused for a few days, but she's coping well.  She's such a different dog now.  She's started to bark occasionally at strangers when we're not around.  I think she's becoming more confident in being the alpha and protecting her home.  It's awesome to see her growing up. She's knows all her commands like a champ now and will do some of them even without us saying anything.  She loves to cuddle and wants to be right by you and know what you're doing at all times. Pepper is most excited to see us right when we get home and can barely contain her excitement to have someone chase her in the backyard, throw her toy, or play tug-of-war. She's also discovered that our bed is the best place to sprawl out and take a nap.

Ironically, their mom birthed another littler of puppies the day after Mocha passed away. We went back and forth on the idea of bringing home another puppy, someone for Pepper to play with and possibly fill the void.  But while we all adjusted to the abrupt change in our life (losing Mocha, learning the new behaviors of Pepper, preparing for a child) we felt it wasn't the right time to bring a new puppy home so soon. We all need time to heal, Stephen and I especially.  We going to be getting a little stuffed animal that will look just like Mocha soon, and we're hoping it will help us to cope.  The first stuffed animal for our baby and something for us to hold onto when we are feeling sad and need to remember the good memories of sweet little Mocha. 

Now that I've cried my eyes out, I'm heading to bed.  

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Lets play catch up

Reading blogs is so much fun and entertaining for me.  I only wish that I could actually write clever and entertaining blogs at least twice a week for people to read. So lets go back all they way to December when the the Buschelman kids were in town and post some silly pictures.

Here's a picture of Will who I caught playing with the toilet paper.  He wanted to measure it and see how long it was across the room.

And here's miss Molly with some serious bedhead.  She was so proud.

The kids also stayed the night at our house, which is always lots of fun.  We might have stayed up really late on accident.   William remembered that we don't have stairs, but decided that was okay now because his house doesn't have stairs either. The boys are getting instructions from the master of Mario.

 Since Molly and I couldn't play Mario, we decided it'd be more fun anyway to take a bubble bath. She was in heaven!  She showed me how she can blow bubbles and attempted to show me her swimming skills, which were very good even in 8 inches of water.

One day, while Stephen and I were getting Chipolte for lunch, the kids and Liesel experienced their first Oklahoma earthquake while at home. I think it was a 4.1 and it actually made the pictures shift on the wall, a few things fell from a ledge and the bathroom cabinets.  The only damage done was this shadow box with glass that shattered as it fell from the top of the computer desk.   Needless to say, it's now nailed to the wall. 

Stephen also graduated with his Masters degree in Finance.  He made a 4.0 and had the HIGHEST score the masters test.  I am seriously impressed with this smartness.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Our new furry additions

Oh my gosh.  I don't even know where to start to pick up from when I last blogged.   We had family visit, graduation, christmas, casino night and brought home puppies.  Yes, puppies.

Let's start with the puppies becuase I know everyone just wants to see pictures of them.  Let me answer some of the frequently most asked questions.

Question: Why do you have two puppies? What made you decide to get puppies?
Answer: Well Stephen has wanted a dog for the longest time.  He brought it up often.  I always said no or said I'd have to think about it becuase I grew up with a cat.  I'm not really a dog person so I wasn't really jumping at the chance to actively go and pick out a dog to adopt. Plus dogs take a lot of work.  Basically, we've talked about it, thought about it, slept on it, etc.  Well, right before Christmas a friend at work told me that she's getting a puppy from my other coworker whose dog had a litter of eight.  She was just giving them away, first come, first serve.  I had her send me pictures of which ones were left and they were so cute.  I texted Stephen and he pretty much melted.  I told my coworker to "put them on hold" for us.  Stephen and I talked really seriously about it for one night and decided that we would take the last two.  That way when we were gone at work, they could have a buddy. These two speckled sisters are now bringing us much joy and at times, a bit of stress.
First night home, 6 weeks old.
Question: What kind of puppies are they? What is their breed?
Answer: They are an Austrailian Shepherd mix.  We do not know what the mix part is becuase the mommy dog literally got knocked up on the streets as I like to say.  It'd be interesting to get them DNA tested to find out, but I dont know how much that costs
Mocha, 6 weeks

Pepper, 6 weeks
Question: Are you crate training them?
Answer: We are now!  At first, before we had a crate for them, I was keeping them both gated in the entryway.  It's the most puppy proof area of the house. I felt they were too young to be separated from eachother all day long. Well one day I came home to utter destruction of their "room".  The taped down potty pads were torn up, there was pee everywhere, and they had even removed the wooden threshold. That night I ordered separate crates.  Once they arrived I decided to just put one crate in the entry way and  one in the hallway and gate them both off in seperate areas.   I thought "okay, you're more comfortable in your surroundings now so I'm going to separate you two, but still give you each a little home (crate), a potty area, and some play space".  Everything was going just fine (other than some puppy whining) until one of them jumped the baby gate and roamed my house all day.  So I switched them until a few days later, that one also jumped the baby gate.   Now they are crated separately during the day and that seems to be working out well now that they are older.  At night, I let them sleep together in the entryway.  Everyone is happy if we do that.
Utter destruction of their "room"
 Question: Do they like to cuddle?
Answer: Yes!  But mostly when they are winding down and getting tired.
Puppy cuddles!

More puppy cuddles.
 Question: How are they different from eachother?
Answer: Mocha is smaller, has shorter hair, a black tail and has brown spots along with black and white.  She gets nervous and shakes around new people and in the car. She's quieter and doesn't bark as much or as loud, but she's usually the one crying for whatever reason.  She is less dominant but can intstigate chasing or biting just as much as Pepper will.  She's sweet and takes her time eating, falls asleep first and relaxes better.
Mocha, 9 weeks
 Answer: Pepper is bigger, has fluffy hair, a brown tail and is mostly black and white.  She is the alpha female and will steal a toy from Mocha even if she is already playing with the same exact toy.  She learned to bark first and barks loudly.  She is always the first to finish eating and is easily distracted by her sister or the grass.
Pepper, 9 weeks
Question: Do they know any commands.
Answer: As in in the picture below, they can sit when you tell them to, but you need to be holding a treat!
They are only sitting becuase I'm holding a treat.