Saturday, May 30, 2009

A few quick pics

Natalie Meadow
Born: May 26, 2009 at 6:54pm
6lbs 2 oz, 20 inches

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Baby Girl! Natalie Meadow Castillo is here!

I just wanted to write a quick post that my beautiful baby girl Natalie was born on Tuesday, May 26th at 6:54pm. It was a really nice birth and she is healthy and wonderful.

We haven't had the opportunity yet to download pictures or any of that, so I'll be posting more as soon as I have the chance. But for now it is only day 2 postpartum, and we're busy with all that that entails. (Afterbirth pains...UGH.)

I want to thank you for checking in on us!! And I've appreciated all of your kind comments and support!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Waiting Has Gotten Really Hard

I'm a bit of an emotional wreck. Sort of a roller coaster I'd say.

I'm having a really hard time with this waiting thing right now. Both of the kids were born by this time in pregnancy so in my head (even though I'm not to my "due date" yet) I'm overdue and should be done. But I'm not and I have no signs of labor. Nothing.

I carry everyone's birth inside of my mind. Every baby that has been born I remember the mom's birth story so I know all of the good and all of the bad that can happen. I occasionally wish for ignorance so I could shut off my brain and focus only on myself and my baby since that is the only one that really matters in my case.

Even though it isn't what I want, I find myself feeling jealous of those who have scheduled births because they know when their time is up. They know when it ends. They know when the baby will be part of the family and when life can move on. And here I sit with this waiting and it could go on and on and on. It could be tomorrow or it could be three weeks from now. Each day that passes and I wake up in the morning still with this baby tucked firmly inside me with nary a Braxton-Hicks contraction at night, it makes me want to cry. And I've been doing a lot of that lately.

I've become somewhat irrational. The neighbors across the street got a puppy and I want it. I feel like I need a dog. It is this super adorable 7 week old Spaniel puppy with the little curly haired ears and big black nose and the darling gumdrop eyes. I've been going over to their house every day for "baby time" with this dog and actually they aren't supposed to have the dog anyways because they are Muslim and it is against the religion to have a dog in the house. They can have the dog if they keep it outside, but my friend can't help herself with bringing it inside and sleeping with it because it is so widdle and adorable. I can't blame her. Anyways, so her sister mentioned to me that she is probably going to get rid of the dog and she really shouldn't have said that to me because now the fire is lit and I NEED this dog and I want to go get it and bring it home. All of my previous arguments over why we shouldn't have a dog right now seem pointless and meaningless. I know about the piddle on the carpet and "surprises" in corners and how puppies nip and chew and wake up too much and whimper at night. About how we already have two cats and how a puppy doesn't stay a puppy forever. None of it matters to me because when this puppy is on my lap I have a baby and it makes me happy. Ugh. I swear if I go on another week like this I'm making a trip to the Humane Society and checking out my options.

Anyways as far as the health of me and baby we're both good. I've gained my standard 40 lbs. Baby kicks a lot. I've got swollen feet and ankles and some heartburn, but other than that I feel ok. I keep trying to feel the position of the baby but it is hard for me sometimes to figure out what's what. I know baby is head down and is anterior so that's good. I'm good with my exercises and blah blah blah. I eat too much sugar though. Too much sugar.

Whatever. Anyways, I'm still here and if I'm writing another post like this next week then just know that I'm about to lose my mind. My due date is May 30. That's on Saturday.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Preschool Thursdays

Every Thursday I take the kids to a preschool class through Tri-Community Adult Education. It is considered a Parent Ed course so this isn't the drop-off variety of preschool. It is for ages 0-5 so I can take both kids and it is only $35 for the entire year. My tax dollars are at work! It is a great little class for the kids and we've enjoyed doing this for the past year.

The class is structured as follows:
9-9:15 Free Play
9:15-9:45 Music Time/ Concept Time (Days of the week, months of the year, patterns)
9:45-10:00 Table Activity or Play
10-10:15 First Parent discussion group (Half of the parents go into a room and discuss some topic for the day like sibling rivalry, imaginative play, or whatever, and the other half are watching the kids play)
10:15-10:45 Snack time
10:45-11 Second Parent discussion group (Kids now do outside play)
11-11:30 Craft
11:30-12 Story time and Sharing

The kids' teacher is named Ms. Rhoades. Frannie's best friend in class is a little girl named Sarah (the one she's sitting next to in the boat thing) and she also likes to play with the other girls Amy and Leah. I'm a little disappointed that she will quickly lose touch with Sarah because she lives and will go to school in Glendora. It's a bummer because they love each other so much and look forward to playing together every time. It does make me happy though to watch her with the other kids and I can see that she does well at making friends and getting along. One nice benefit of me being there is I've been able to watch her, and nip a few negative behaviors in the bud. (She used to do this thing where she'd buddy buddy up with one girl and the two of them would exclude another child from their play on purpose. When she started doing this I told her that she had to sit next to me until she was ready to play with everyone.)

I began this class mostly for Frannie. I felt that our week was majorly lacking in any craft time. The nice thing about preschool is that they have a prepared craft for you all ready to color and glue. For most of the year Adam has been just a tag along participant. He plays with all of the toys (which is nice because then the house doesn't get messed up during the three hours that we're there) but I don't have him doing the craft or really much else. Now that he is turning two, he is starting to get a little more out of the class for himself. He likes to bring a toy to show and I'll let him glue and color a little (if I have the patience for it). He doesn't really have a friend per se, but I can see that he enjoys his time there.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009


I had a wonderful time at my Blessingway this afternoon. For those who don't know, a Blessingway is a celebration for a mom about to have a baby. It is sort of like a baby shower but is more focused on prayers and blessings for the mother-to-be for her labor and the health and safety of her and the baby. It is also for prayers for the siblings and life adjustment for all. (Each bead on the bracelet represents a prayer that will be said for me during the labor.)

Thank you Jenny, Lauren, Sonja, Yara, Courtney, Lorell and Frederike for my special day!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Best Day Ever!

Yesterday was the most awesomest day!! So I want to write about it before the "glow" completely wears off.

My Dad offered to take both of the monkeys to Disneyland (our code word is "Orange County"). I was hesitant at first, "Are you SURE you want to take Adam? Sure? Positive? You know, he throws a lot of tantrums? He looks cute but, I don't know..." Anyways, my Dad is a brave man and held up to my many warnings of possible meltdowns, and general two-year old stubbornness/crankiness. He said with complete conviction that it would be fine and that they would have a lot of fun. Before I could think about it too much more, I decided to just let go a little and let him take him, which would mean MY FIRST DAY WITHOUT CHILDREN IN FOUR YEARS.

And I started to get excited. Giddy. A whole day by myself. WOW! So Monday came and went, then Tuesday, and finally it was Wednesday. Orange County day.

The morning started off just like any other, dressing the kids, serving up some oatmeal. But now Frannie knew she was going to go see Mickey Mouse and even Adam knew (well as much as he could know about it.) It was a great motivator to get them to hurry along with things "Hey, do you want to go see Mickey Mouse or not?!" At 9 am my dad came and whisked them off.

And I was free.

La la la la la la la la!!!

You know, I have never realized how much daily stress is really involved in caring for the constant needs of kids. Because my children are always with me, I guess there is just a certain level I'm used to at all times. So when they were gone and I didn't have to worry about anyone or was like a level of relaxation I haven't felt in a long time. Now mind you, I do get some breaks. I go out with my girlfriends in the evening once a month. I have my Bradley classes on Sundays where I'm doing my own thing. But this was different because it was a whole day by myself with no real responsibility.

Anyways, I started my perfect day by making myself two over-medium eggs with sourdough toast, coffee, and OJ. I then headed over to Jennifer E.'s house to lovingly hand over all of my MOMS Club Secretary stuff since she will be taking over the position this next year. I had the chance to sit and talk with her and explain all of the things she has to do with no interruptions. So now I've cleared my hands of my MOMS club duties (all I have left to do is a Friday meeting, and make one last agenda). Wipe, wipe, all done! Ah!

At that point it was about 15 til noon, so I got in the van and began to make my way towards my ONE HOUR MASSAGE APPOINTMENT! Hi Ya! I was smart enough to make the appointment on Monday when I first realized my freedom-status for Wednesday. My beautiful friends got me a gift certificate for my birthday, so this was the perfect opportunity to go enjoy it.

The appointment was for 12:30, and I was there a bit early, so I decided to stop at Stater Bros. first to pick up a few items for dinner. So I'm doing my shopping and such and don't you know that two men at totally different times made the sweetest comments to me about how I looked beautiful and when was the baby due? Now when in the world was the last time that happened?? How's that for just completely making my day? What a way to just make my heart soar.

So on my perfect day, even a simple trip to Stater Bros. turns out to be great. Then I'm off to my massage appointment. One hour of kneading and pulling and all the good stuff. Head to toes. Aaaaaah... Her name was Araceli at the Urban Retreat in Claremont. She did a good job. Good pressure.

After my massage I made my way back home, but first stopped at Wendy's for a frosty and a hamburger.

By the time I got home it was about 2:00. I spent the rest of my day watching a movie, taking a nap on the couch, and just enjoying the peace.

At 5:30 the doorbell "Ding! Donged!" and my magical day came to an end. I peeked through the window, and there was my dad holding a sweaty Adam with only a t-shirt, diaper, and tennis shoes on. (Adam that is. Not Dad. He was fully clothed!)

But you know, what? The magic didn't end. Because I was SO GLAD to see my babies again after a long day without them! And I felt happy and refreshed and I was happy to have them home. I opened the door and Adam took one look at me and his whole face lit up and he started to laugh and squirm like a puppy. My baby boy was home. Next Dad got Frannie from the car. She wasn't quite so happy though. It was a long day for her and she was quite tired and whiney. But it was ok because sometimes a day at Disneyland can be hard work for a little girl with so much to see and do.

So my day ended. Soon after that Jason came home. We had a simple dinner of stuffed baked potatoes and it was back to the normal stuff of cleaning up kitchen dishes and bathing the babes and putting them to bed.

Dad, I am very grateful to you for giving me this special day! The day is over, but I still have a little spring in my step :)

A moment at Target...

It's really weird trying on swimsuits, attempting to guess what your figure will look like in one month.

If I wait, all the sizes will be gone.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Pregnancy Update 37 weeks

Well, here I am in all my glory. :)

I'm not feeling particularly eloquent right now. But still, I want to update, so here are my thoughts.

I have my home visit with Lori on Monday. I always look forward to that. Jason will be here and, for us, it makes the whole "we are going to have a baby!" seem very official. There's something about getting that tub in the house...

I remember the first time Lori brought the tub and I couldn't stop staring at it sitting in our bedroom. It is a large Rubbermaid tub made for equestrian use. (I believe it is for equestrian baths or something. Not sure exactly how they use it.) Either which way, seeing this horse tub in my room made me feel like Mary in the stable. Or maybe it just made me feel like a horse. I definitely felt less of a refined-human and got the realization that I really am just an animal afterall. For some weird reason that stupid tub gave me confidence, like "Well, if a horse can do it, so can I!" Anyways, the last time I didn't use the tub of course, and I'm not sure that I will this time, but we are having it delivered anyways. Here's a pic of the tub since I've mentioned it.

It looks better when it is all filled up with water and has the plastic sheeting and everything. Underneath it is just gray fiberglass.

So, we've got that going on on Monday.

Overall I'm feeling really good. I've gained about 35lbs so far. Some people think I look ginormous ("You look like you are practically tripping over that thing!" ~remark courtesy of a nice lady at church) and others, like Jason and a few more who remember me the last time, think I look smaller. Who the heck knows? Whatever.

We are getting really excited to have a new baby in the house. I am really looking forward to knowing if I have a son or daughter. Occasionally I have moments of panic when I'm having a hard day with Adam. "How am I going to handle you and a new baby!! AGGGGH!" And I just know that I have my share of hard days ahead. But I really miss nursing a baby and just enjoying all of their precious ways. I am looking forward to sharing this with Frannie since she is now old enough that she will remember all of it.

That's it for now.

Sunday, May 3, 2009