Wednesday, April 28, 2010

In her first week on earth...

In her first week on Earth...

Naomi met Nana and Papa Severson and Uncle Weston.

Daddy and Dawna had too much fun with the camera.

Naomi had her first bath.

Naomi's bassinet was commandeered by her big brother. "I did it!" he proudly exclaimed...notice my kitchen step-stool next to the bassinet.

Dawna and Naomi spent quality sister bonding time.
Lawrence and Naomi spent quality brother/sister bonding time.

Larry expressed that he was tired of getting up in the middle of the night with the baby :)

Naomi opened her pretty little eyes more every day! Welcome to the world, baby!

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Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Naomi Xochitl Koberstein
April 19 at 3:07am
Weighing in at 8lb. 7oz and 22 inches

"Naomi" is pleasant in Hebrew. "Xochitl" is flower in Aztec. (For help pronouncing that, in the Americanized form or the Original Aztec/Nahuatl, click away)

That's the essential information... I'll now go into a more detailed account of her arrival... feel free to be excused at this point if you are one of those squeemish men out there... really, though, it's not at all a bad birth story.

So, I started tracking labor pains about 9pm on Sunday. Jon and I and the kids had gone for a lovely walk around the block followed by a drive down by the bay and some rock-throwing. We had just put Larry and Dawna down for the night and poor Larry had a low fever. I found it getting increasingly hard to ignore the contractions that were coming about every 10 minutes or so. We started timing them and by 11:15, they were about 5 minutes apart and 30+ seconds long. I couldn't really stand while they were happening because they hurt so bad... and that's when we decided we better go to the hospital. We got to the hospital around 11:45... and the first little while in the hospital was the worst! It felt like they took FOREVER to check me in and get me on the initial monitors to see IF I was in labor. I had little doubt in my mind that I was, but that didn't get admissions or the nurses to move any faster... I was getting a little frustrated with each passing contraction... each growing stronger... I was dilated to a 5 at this point.

For some reason, these contractions felt so much more powerful and painful than what I remembered in previous labors. I don't know if it was just because is was the middle of the night and I was already tired or if I actually had back labor this time, but something was definitely different and much more acutely painful. So, as soon as they actually got me to a labor and delivery room, I asked to talk to the anesthesiologist. I was still terrified of an epidural, but I was really at the end of my endurance. The anesthesiologist was amazing! She talked me through every step of what she was doing and I felt mostly comforted the whole time. It was all done around 2:15am, and they checked dilation again: 8.

Let me tell you, an epidural is a really weird sensation. It felt like labor was going backwards, but the monitor insisted the contractions were getting stronger. Even the super intense transition contractions felt just like Braxton Hicks. I knew my legs could still move, but it was like I couldn't remember how to coordinate the muscles. It kind of made me laugh.

So this went on for a few minutes and my water broke at 2:35am. So they checked me again, and the L&D nurse just said, "Ok, when you feel like you want to push, let me know and I'll get the midwife." Around 3:00 I felt like I wanted to push, so they adjusted the bed, brought in the midwife, I pushed three times, and Naomi was born. 3:07am. I could still feel every bit of it, but I almost couldn't believe it! It was the easiest pushing ever! I've heard that about subsequent births, but didn't experience it with Larry. Naomi made up for Larry's hard labor :)
So here we are, around 3:30 in the morning and we're all smiling and happy. She is such a beauty! And the best part... she has black hair! (at least for now... I'm well aware it may all fall out and come in blond, but let it be known that I finally produced a dark-haired child!)

Such an interesting experience it is to compare "natural" childbirth to the epidural experience. I've come up with the following observations:

Advantages of the epidural:
  • Once it's in and placed, there's very little pain.
  • MUCH easier to stay relaxed, cheerful, and smiling through the whole experience--even at 3am.
  • In my case, I think it helped my muscles relax and dilate faster, but that's just a MAYBE.
  • Did I mention it made the actual birth almost pain-free??? SO WEIRD!
Disadvantages of the epidural:
  • It is a little disconcerting and freaky to know you're just letting someone stick something in your spine. It does hurt a bit going in. It looks like a guitar string.
  • After labor and delivery, there was a spot in my back that felt pretty bruised. The back pain still isn't quite all the way gone, and I feel it with the postpartum contractions that happen while nursing. It's nothing unmanageable, but uncomfortable.
  • The thing I missed most with the epidural was the unmistakable emotional/hormonal high you get with a "natural" delivery. I almost felt cheated of the excitement of seeing her for the first time--just because it almost didn't feel real to me.
Was it worth it? Will I get an epidural next time? I don't know...

Anyway, that was kind of just a side-bar... Naomi is so beautiful and already (just like Dawna) is very good-natured. Even the nurses at the hospital commented on her good temperament. since we both were doing so well, we decided to go home from the hospital on Monday night, almost exactly 18 hours after arriving at the hospital. My mom brought Dawna over to visit, but Larry couldn't come because he still had a fever.
Jon's girls!

Then Becca and Aiden came by to visit also... we joke about these two being betrothed :)
My sweet baby girl--so peaceful in the little bassinet! She's perfect She's a beauty...and she's mine!


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Welcome home!

Finally... FINALLY!!! She came home! I have my car back! I've been missing her for almost exactly a month now... but she's back and purring like a kitten!

If you remember, we ran over a moving dolly on the way home from Oregon on March 12 and my Quest baby has been stuck in Redding, undergoing massive surgeries... In the words of the repair order:

"Vehicle towed in, found large hole in oil pan. After inspection found engine damaged beyond repair. Removed and replaced engine with used engine. After we installed the used engine, we found it would not pass our cooling system test and it had early signs of head gasket failing. We removed the engine again, had cylinder heads checked, replaced all top end gaskets and reinstalled engine. All systems passed inspection after our work was completed. No charge to customer-engine supplier paid all warranty repairs."

Pretty much every sentence of that paragraph took a week of waiting for parts, insurance, warranties, installing, and testing... But... it's all done now!

On a more personal note, I feel so grateful for my sweet dad and husband who left this morning at 6am to drive and pick up my car. They met the mechanic at a gas station in Corning, signed all the paperwork, and then turned around and drove home again. THAT is definitely love. I don't know that I've ever done such a lengthy favor for either of them, but they did this for me without any hesitation or complaining. I love these men! Thank you sooooooo much!

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Oh, it's been so long since I got together with my sis! I saw her almost two years ago at her baby shower, and before that, I hadn't seen her since my wedding (I think...). But, here our paths crossed again!

Tina came down to Fremont to see her mom sealed and help out with the reception/open house at the church. She is an exquisite decorator and reception planner, by the way... in case some of you may be in the market, I can highly recommend her services.

Anyway, Tina and I have a long history dating back to junior primary and Mrs. Gentry's dance class. Our story continued through high school, including early morning seminary complete with hot chocolate and breakfast and boys... lots and lots of boys...

And through it all, Tina has been there--more than just a friend... my sis. :) it makes me so happy to see her perfect little family, complete with house and baby... It was beyond fun to be pregnant with her at the same time and both have boys just a couple months apart. So, of course, when we got together for dinner last Friday night, we had to take a couple pictures!

Here's Lawrence and Wesley doing their thing experimenting with pool cue chalk:

And the boys with their mommies... not the greatest pictures of all time, but I had to include both because Larry really was happy to play with Wesley, he just didn't smile for the first picture...
And even that isn't a REAL Larry smile, but it's pretty close...

Anyway... here's hoping it's not another two years before I see her again... Yeah, I know... get my lazy booty in the car and drive to see her... Yes, I will!


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Easter Fun

Our Easter holiday lasted all week long. It started on the Sunday before Easter. The Wightmans came to Fremont for dinner and piano lessons. Marisa is particularly great with my kids. They had a great time hiding empty Easter eggs in the back yard and then looking for them... over and over and over again. Balaine had a new lens he was experimenting with on his camera. I think he called it a "fish-eye"? I know there's a lot of photography people out there that would really know... It produced some pretty awesome pictures of all the backyard pre-Easter fun:
On Monday, Nana and Papa prepared an Easter FHE with a new "Easter Walk" book and the 12 Easter eggs that follow the story of the Last Supper, the Crucifixion, and the Resurrection. After the lesson, they prepared an Easter egg hunt with actual candy in the eggs this time! This is really the first year that Lawrence could enjoy finding the eggs and he was such a crack-up to watch! Great expressions of elation upon finding each egg. To make it fair, Dawna and Larry had separate colors to look for--so Larry found all the yellow eggs while Dawna found all the pink eggs. But... our Easter fun didn't end there...

For Conference/Easter weekend, we went to visit our Antioch family. Grandma and Grandpa were only around for Friday night and Saturday morning, but uncles provided ample entertainment even after the grandparents had flown away to Philadelphia. Larry was particularly taken with Grandma's chickens on this visit. He chased the big black hen all around the back yard:

On Sunday, Daddy and uncles worked together to boil and dye some eggs! There was shrink wrap designs in the egg-coloring kit! I'd never seen that before and thought it was so cool! Unfortunately, Weston and Jon had bought extra large jumbo huge eggs... so the shrink wrap decor didn't fit around the girth of the eggs... Fortunately, Grandma's hens had laid a couple eggs that WERE small enough for it... so we got to see the coolness in action... shrink wrap wrapped around the egg, then dipped in boiling water, and SHALOOP! it skinnied all up to the shape of the egg! So cool! There was also the standard food coloring and stickers... I also just love watching Jon play with the kids! It's so cute!

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