Thursday, February 23, 2017

20

dear evie,

again, i'm writing this at the last minute- the day before 21 weeks. it's truly difficult to find time amidst the chaos to write the eloquent and sincere letters that i feel you deserve. but, your sisters are in bed and daddy is off cleaning the temple for 3 hours, so it looks like i have some time tonight!

something interesting about motherhood is how you feel so much pride in watching your children grow and develop, and yet a little yearning for them to stay small. as much as i love teaching your sisters and watching them mature, it's been difficult for me to let go of constant snuggles. (i'm excited to hold you in my arms and cuddle you all day long.) and i think one day, i'll missing changing diapers and innocent endless questions and little humans constantly need me. i try to remind myself not to get lost in the hustle bustle busyness and to slow down and enjoy simple things. like helping my child clean up spilled milk or mealtimes; to let these be "slow down" times instead of stressful times. because truly, i truly just love being a mom so much. these years are just flying by too fast for me.

we had your anatomy ultrasound at dr. thackeray's office today-- dad got off work and we arranged for uncle travis and aunt collette to watch your sisters so we could both enjoy your ultrasound. you are just adorable. i loved seeing your 4-chambered heart, liver, kidneys, brain, spine, arms by your face, skinny little legs, all of you! it's so special and mind-blowing to me that we have such advanced technology to see a baby growing in utero. you're measuring a bit small (about the size of a 20 weeker, so one week behind), but we're keeping your due date the same. dad and i are thinking we might pick your birthday to be july 8th, the day after you are due. you'll come to know that the 8th is sort of a special date in our family, but you're welcome to come anytime (safely) before that if you so desire. also, the ultrasound showed my left (hemorrhagic) ovarian cyst has decreased in size from 5.5 cm to 3 cm-- which is also amazing to me! we had another titer drawn for my antigen-c antibody, but are feeling at peace that the results will be comforting.

you've got a couple of friends coming at the same time as you. baby cousin robbins is due july 28th, but will likely come a little early; baby boy jones due in march; baby girl serr due in may; baby boy garcia due in june; baby girl antczak in june; baby henao due in july; baby bowman due in september; mommy also has a few friends at work and friends from high school due this summer... and i'm just so excited for you to have baby friends everywhere!

gosh, i truly can't wait for you to get here so you can sleep on my chest and i can feel you breathe. it's going to be so, so great.

love,
mom

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

18 + 19

dear evelyn,

we're almost 20 weeks (halfway!) as i type this, and i'm sorry that i've been hitting a writing block with my letters. i think about you frequently as i watch your sisters grow, play, learn, love. it's so interesting being a mom and feeling every emotion in the entire day. i can feel like pulling my hair out from your sisters fighting and/or being smart-alecks one minute and then have my heart melt/swell with pride watching them do something the next. it's incredible. hope you know how i love you so.

so many friends have been asking how i'm feeling lately, and i can honestly say: so great! this is probably the easiest pregnancy i've had so far. i think amelia's pregnancy was a little harder and scarlett's pregnancy was by far the worst. but i think it's only fair that i disclose that i was working full time nights and taking care of a 2 year old toddler during scarlett's pregnancy. and between nursing school and working part time, i was on my feet 40 hours a week during amelia's pregnancy (but no taking care of anyone else during my time off, so that was a bonus). but with you, i have no school and minimal hours of work, and i spend my days wrangling my babies. which is also hard, but a little easier on my baby-growing body. i feel nausea on and off and probably vomit about once a week (probably around the day(s) i work), but all in all, i still conclude i've been having the easiest time growing you.

amelia has been so into this pregnancy-- she has been telling everyone that she is also pregnant. her preschool teacher told me that she has crawled on the floor saying, "i'm so tired... i'm pregnant!" (i've never done this before for her to model). i started sleeping with a pillow supporting my belly and back this week, and amelia supposedly has too... though she says it hasn't helped her back feel better. i want to cry with laughter with every new detail she provides about "her pregnancy."

love you lots. love feeling you move every single day.
love you!
-mom

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

17



dear evie,

we had another appointment and ultrasound this week, and it was sweet seeing you again. you had your legs reclined like you were relaxing. dr. thackeray poked my abdomen to show us where your legs were, and as the indent showed up on the ultrasound machine, you automatically kicked back. love that you're a spitfire! your sisters love your name, and so do we. amelia is named after her dad; they share their middle name 'ray'. scarlett is named after her grandmothers; all three share the name ann/e. you, my little love, are named after me. daddy wanted 'liana', but i found that a little too cheesy and opted for a name more subtle and perhaps more special: 'eve'. i hope to live up to everything a mother should, and i hope you inherit the very best parts of me (and your father). hope you know how special you are to us.

everyone has been talking about my cute bump, so i guess it's truly apparent that we've popped out! i'm starting to feel you more and more often, but i'm so excited for you to grow a little bigger to feel all your rolls and stretches. i'm starting to feel like i've been pregnant forever, even though it's only been 17 weeks. i can't wait for july!

love, mom

Sunday, January 22, 2017

16


my dearest sweet babe,

we found out a few days ago that you are a GIRL! it's exciting and relieving news for me. i just love being a girl-mom, and i cannot wait for you to get here! i've been dreaming up matching dresses for you three girls for when we bring you home from the hospital. this is just going to be the best summer! dad and i went to the ultrasound on wednesday and closed our eyes while the technician took a peek at your anatomy and filled out and sealed an envelope. you are our first baby to have crossed legs during the ultrasound and needed some coaxing to reposition-- what a lady! on thursday, the girls and i went to zurchers with the envelope and a box and requested that it be filled with the "correct color." your grandparents and aunts and uncles and older cousins took a guess, and it was about 50-50. uncle ryan and uncle travis were sure you were a boy and complained that we waited an extra day to find out. grandma and remy and aunt collette came to the balloon reveal to share the excitement with us. grandma videoed and face-timed grandpa simultaneously, and grandpa yelled out "ornaments, jeremy!" when the pink balloons came out (yes, we got it all on video). aunt collette took these sweet pictures for us to keepsake forever. dad and i weren't entirely surprised, but i'm grateful we have pictures to remember the moment we found out you are a girl! something that touches my mama heart is how easygoing your dad was about your sex. it makes me smile that he had no preference of you being a boy or a girl, despite the fact that we already have two daughters. he was simply excited for another healthy baby, which in turn made me that much more excited to have another girl! three little girls, it's a mama's dream come true! the ultrasound technician told me that your placenta is located on the anterior part of my abdomen, which is why i've been unsure of your movement the last few weeks. however, i've been feeling quite a few undeniable nudges and twitches the last few days! i'm excited for you to get a little bigger so your dad and sisters can feel you too, but i'm also content to keep you just for myself a little longer.

we love you so,
mom








Sunday, January 15, 2017

15

hi babe!

we got another picture to see your baby bump better, but i thought this one was so sweet-- your sisters love you! also, we find out if you are a girl or boy THIS WEEK! we have been patiently excited. i was feeling a little bummed this morning from puking, and then had a wonderful experience at church. the hymns and talks in sacrament focused on Christ and His sacrifice for us; it's always so humbling for me. i know i won't do anything world-altering in my life, but i'm so happy to be "sacrificing" my body for my babies. maybe it's cliche to say, but it reminds me of Christ's selfless love. you are my world, and you'll alter so much of it; i'm grateful to be growing you, to be serving you, to be loving you.

love,
mom

Sunday, January 8, 2017

14

dear babe,

we've been feeling pretty good as we head on second trimester-- it's incredible! we had a doctor's appointment with dr. thackeray this week. he told us that my comprehensive ob labs from last month detected an antigen-c antibody. because this wasn't present in my labs from my previous pregnancies and because i haven't had a blood transfusion, we believe that big sis scarlett carries the antigen-c and i was likely sensitized to it when our blood mixed during her delivery. there's a chance you may have the antigen-c, which would cause my body to build up antigen-c antibodies, which could in turn cross over the placenta and attack your red blood cells leaving you anemic. the good news is that ultrasounds checking your blood flow and intrauterine fetal blood transfusions are available with modern medicine, and most mom-baby outcomes are terrific! for now, we are monitoring my antibody titer levels monthly, and so far, it's stayed under control. i'm so grateful and constantly impressed by our advanced healthcare! dr. thackeray also had a harder time trying to find your heartbeat-- he reassured me by telling me we'd go use the ultrasound if needed-- it turns out you are just camping out higher in my abdomen than he expected, at a beautiful 145 bpm! here i was, thinking i'd have a "boring" pregnancy (in the very best way). silly me!

i love you more than any of these letters could ever express.
you're at the very center of my heart and being your mom is my great calling.

love,
mom

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

scarlett on the bus yells, "i turned two!"


("no hands, ma!" as scarlett takes over)

















 (we finally got the kids parked in one place for a picture and to sing happy birthday to scarlett)

(scarlett wants nothing to do with pictures, but look at that ham REM)





(scarlett blew her candles softly, but they made her nervous and she felt much better when amelia helped her blow them out)



(the kids singing the "wheels on the bus," complete with actions lead by grandma bodtcher.
did anyone get a video???)

 (saying goodbye to her friends, lyla and ryan)





(trying to climb into her little people toy bus)


(scarlett figured out how to drive her truck! she was actually ditched and was yelling for her sister/cousins to come back drive her around, when she finally got tired of waiting and decided to press on the gas pedal herself)



(loved this little bus that jer and i made together)

a month before scarlett's birthday, jer and i talked about how easy and perfect it would be to reserve our stake center's cultural hall (he is the building scheduler) and have all the cousins bring over their wheels for a party. i had no theme in mind and was just fine about it. a few weeks before her birthday, i was sitting in the dark watching and listening to jeremy and scarlett play her favorite app "the wheels on the bus" like i did every single night. and it hit me like a ton of bricks, THE WHEELS ON THE BUS. duh! so on went with the now-themed party and i loved how perfectly the party turned out. the homemade buses were adorable, if i do say so myself... the kids  l o v e d  driving/riding/scooting their wheels around in a huge gym in the middle of winter... jer's mom and sister-in-law helped bring food and my parents brought their famous spring rolls; we had hoagie sandwiches that made for a perfect/easy dinner. scarlett just had so much fun, and it just made me so happy to see a party so perfect!

(but okay, i just have to say i forgot to buy a white tablecloth for a backdrop and had trouble blowing up all the balloons, which would have probably made for better pictures. jer's dad asked me how i wanted the food table to be set up, and i said whatever makes sense! and he was like "must be your second kid! you probably won't remember to bring food for the third!" and i thought, how true. but at least the kids had fun, despite my blurry, obviously-in-a-church pictures.)

love you forever, scarlett babe!
xo