Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Miles' Blessing Day

Miles was blessed this past Sunday, December 23rd.  I took the picture above before church.  LOVE IT!  James is such a good dad.  One of my favorite things in the whole world is watching him interact with Miles.  Nothing better!  It was a beautiful blessing.  Some of the things that stood out to me are that he will serve in the church and serve a mission, that Heavenly Father is aware of his physical difficulties and that they won't hold him back, and that he will be influenced for good by the testimony of his parents and grandparents. 

(from left)  Bishop Doxey, Cody Taylor, Jeff Kirk, Keith Neumann, James and James Miles, Reed Haight, Beau Finch and Tom Bateman

The Mathatas Family

(from left)  Ernie Schippman, Jennifer Bateman, Laura Kirk, Susan Bateman, Jeff Kirk, Mike Bateman, Jim Scott, Tom Bateman, Joan Scott
James' dad and stepmom were able to come for Christmas and were there for the blessing.  My parents came from Parker.  Laura and Jeff came from southeast Aurora and Jen and Ernie came from Chicago. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

1 Month Old?!

 I can't believe Miles is one month old already!  He had a check-up today and he's doing good.  It's a little hard to tell accurately how heavy and how tall he is.  He's still a small guy, but he's growing and reaching the milestones for his age.  So tonight I put him on his stomach, and I know his casts give him leverage, but he turned over onto his back on his own.  Ahh! 

The OT/Hand Specialist at Children's Hospital said kids that have distal arthrogryposis end up being really smart because they have to start using their problem-solving skills early to learn how to get around.  She said to watch out because he will get into trouble really fast because of that.  Way to use your problem-solving skills turning over, Miles!

I went ahead and indulged myself in a faux-hawk. 
At the doctor today I asked her if it was normal for his pupils to dilate a lot when he's eating and looking at me and she said that is an expression of affection.  Aww.  Love that little guy!  He is so cute, I love kissing his chubby cheeks!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Big Fat Baby Post

Introducing James Miles Mathatas, born November 13, 2012 at 2:34, weighing in at 6 lbs, 4 oz., 18.5 inches.

How can you not love that face?

It's only been a few weeks, he looks so tiny in this picture to me.

Glad we got a picture before we started casting.

Since then he has grown to 7.5 lbs.  Miles was born with club feet and bilateral adducted thumbs.  We hadn't been able to see it in the ultrasound so we were surprised.  The night he was born James and I talked and realized we both knew Heavenly Father sent Miles to us because He knew we would love him and take good care of him.  We are proud and privileged to be his parents. 
We started the casting process for his club feet on November 26th, the day before he turned 2 weeks old.  The chances of success are much better if you start before they turn 2 weeks old.  He did great with his first set of casts!  They didn't even seem to phase him.  He will get a new set each Monday and they will position his feet a little differently each time.  After 6-8 weeks of casting, they will cut his achilles and position the feet properly.  Then he will have a brace that he will wear morning and night and the achilles will reform.  By the time he's crawling and walking, he'll only have to wear the brace at night.  We feel so blessed to have such great doctors and to live only 10 minutes away from Children's Hospital, where we will be going every week.  The staff is awesome and just seems to know exactly what they're doing.  This method of treating club feet is much less invasive and painful than how they used to treat them, which was extensive surgery later on in life.  Our Dr's say he won't believe us when we tell him he was born with club feet, we'll have to show him pictures. 
Week 1 of casts-"Sugar water on my binky?  Don't mind if I do!"
Yesterday, December 3rd, was his second set of feet casts and we also went to see the hand specialists.  For whatever reason, Miles hyperflexes his hands.  I thought they were going to tell us there was nothing they could do about it, or that he'll grow out of it, but the treatment is also casts for this.  They asked us if we wanted to cast his hands, too.  We said, "Is it the sooner the better, like the feet?"  They said, "Yes, but he'll have both casted at the same time."  It was a little harder to say yes this time, but we know he will appreciate what we did for him later.  The hand casts are softer.  He didn't really like them as much as the feet casts, but he seems to be doing much better today.  The hardest thing for me was that he holds onto my thumb while I'm feeding him and I thought those days might be over for a while, but he still can!  Makes me so happy!  The hand casts are smaller than we were picturing.  He is an amazing little boy.  Again, I'm amazed by the staff at Children's Hospital, so awesome!  We'll go back each week for another set of hand casts.  And there are lots of color choices!  White for his blessing day, though. 

I feel so blessed to be his mother.  I'm going to write his birth story eventually, but not tonight. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

What 40 Weeks Looks Like

Natural Labor Inducing Techniques attempted:
Walking (religiously)
Walking with one foot on the curb, one on the street
Spicy Food
Mexican Food
Multiple Pressure Points
Pregnancy Ball Exercises
Starting a Novel
Finishing a Novel
Cleaning the bathroom (including scrubbing the tub)

8 weeks

20 weeks
40 weeks
Natural Labor Inducing Methods not yet tried
Spicier food
Driving over railroad tracks
Jumping Jacks
Evening Primrose Oil
Caster Oil
Raspberry Tea

Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Last Weeks of Pregnancy

We went out to Cherry Creek State Park with Patti Merrill a few weeks ago and she took some pretty amazing maternity photos for us.  She is a genius!  I am lucky to call her a friend and my Relief Society President.  I love the way these pictures turned out!  Fall is my favorite time of year and she managed to capture that and the bump and James and I in one beautiful session.
I thought these pictures where we look like we have it all together would be a good backdrop to discuss my last-minute thoughts, fears, and hopes about getting ready for this baby boy.   

My due date is November 12th, 8 days away!  I keep hoping this baby will come early (what expectant mother doesn't?), but not too early because my parents are in Seattle until November 10th. Then I have to remind myself that most first-time moms do not deliver early or on their due date, it's AFTER.  Then I remind myself that this boy will come when HE'S ready.  I read this thing on the other day (which is a really informative website, especially if you're considering a natural birth) that once the baby's lungs are fully mature, he releases a protein that tells the mother's body he's ready.  Isn't that cool? 

Some of the things I think about a lot as we get ready to have this baby are the fact that it's just been James and me for the past 4 years and we are really comfortable with that.  Sometimes I worry about what it will be like adjusting to having a baby.  It seems silly to worry about that after wanting a baby for so long, but nevertheless.  There will changes in sleep patterns, social patterns, how we spend our time and money.  I also think about the adjustment of being a stay-at-home mom instead of working and maybe feeling isolated a little bit. 

Then there are the silly worries and things I dream about like forgetting the baby's "going-home" outfit or forgetting to get help with breastfeeding at the hospital or not realizing I am in labor until it's too late to go to the hospital.  These I would categorize as unrealistic worries, and mostly things I think about in the delusional-middle-of-the-night hours.

We really are hoping for an induction/pitocin/epidural-free birth, and it has nothing to do with ego or thinking I am tough because I can do it without the drugs.  Ultimately, I don't want to end up with a
c-section, and I know not all women that are induced and/or get an epidural end up with a c-section, but the chances are greater.  I don't want pitocin because it replaces oxytocin and interferes with the release of oxytocin, which is the natural chemical that helps your body to give birth, and also helps the bonding process that happens with mom and baby immediately after birth.  Plus, pitocin can cause much stronger contractions which I don't think I could handle without pain relief.  And I don't want an epidural because I really want to be able to have the urge to push, and epidurals can slow down labor, so more pitocin is given, then more epidural, then more pitocin, etc. in a cycle until the baby is in distress from the more-intense pitocin contractions and an "emergency c-section" is performed.  I just want to avoid that potential cycle altogether.  I know this doesn't happen every time but the c-section rate in this country is nearly 30%, behind like 25 other countries. 
Okay, I'll get off my soapbox now. 

Mostly we are excited to start this next chapter of our lives.  I have complete confidence in James as a father.  He is excited and has always wanted to be a father.  I saw qualities in him when we were dating that I wanted in the father of my children.  He will be awesome.  He's also gonna be a great husband during labor.  We went to childbirth classes together and he was better at remembering our "homework" and practicing the things we were learning.  He will be a great supporter. 

I think the name we have decided on is James Miles.  James' father is James and a lot of the previous generations are James.  And I like the name James :).  He will go by Miles until he is old enough to decide if he wants to be called something else.  I have a great-great-grandpa who is James Miles and we both like the name Miles.  I was subbing the other day and there was a Miles in the class and it made me smile.

The things I am looking forward to about not being pregnant anymore are (hopefully) my feet going back to their normal size and being able to wear my shoes again.  I have increasingly swollen feet.  I am looking forward to increased mobility without a belly getting in my way.  I am SO looking forward to getting my hair cut.  I decided a while ago I would wait to cut my hair until the baby comes and people are holding me to that, dang it.  I can't wait for my short, a-line bob that is so much easier and faster to style.  I look forward to running again.  I hope to run another marathon next summer.  I look forward to putting the maternity clothes away and going back to more options.

I remember when the thought first occurred to me that I might be pregnant.  We were in Tri-Cities, Washington for my Grandpa Haines' funeral.  I woke up the morning of the funeral so sick!  I threw up twice that day.  It was hard for me to consider or hope that I might be pregnant because we had been trying for a long time with no success, and I wasn't late yet.  I remember feeling awful, but thinking, "If I'm pregnant, this will all be worth it."

I have tried to remind myself of that throughout this whole pregnancy, and have an attitude of gratitude, no matter how uncomfortable I have been at times.  We are acquainted with LOTS of people who have had trouble with fertility in one way or another, and our troubles have made me sensitive to the fact that what's happening inside of me is a MIRACLE, no doubt about it.  It is the answer to many, many prayers.  It is an unfulfilled hope for many people and we are grateful for this opportunity.  I wanted to find a name that meant "gratitude," because we are grateful and because it's right around Thanksgiving, but the options were "Adiv," "Shakir," and "Enlai."  Hmm.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Finished Loft





"Where am I supposed to sit?!"

Starting to put stuff in

I was going to make it look super decorated and finished, but this'll do.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


The loft is finally done!  I didn't believe this day would ever come.  Just to see how far we've come, here is the before picture. 

And some post-demo pictures.

I will post the after pictures tomorrow night!!!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Thoughts on Pregnancy and Motherhood-Weird Warning

So I have tried not to be a complainy pregnant woman (which is easier now than it was during the first trimester) because I've wanted to be pregnant for so long.  However, there are some things that are weird lately. 

You know how they say your hair grows faster when you're pregnant because the hair just doesn't fall out as frequently?  Well, that is true, arm hairs included.  I pulled one out today that was like 3/4 of an inch long.  I have pretty long arm hairs anyway, but this one was quite remarkable. 

I'm pretty sure I'm having hot flashes.  Uncomfortable and embarrassing.  At work, my classroom is super hot.  So I emailed the secretary and she called the powers that be and they said, "Nope, her room is 73, just like all the other ones."  (They check it on their stupid computer so they don't actually have to come feel the temperature in your room.)  Yet I come home feeling like I've run a marathon for all the sweating.  The guy from wherever it is actually ventured out of his building, to my building and into my room and looked at me like I was crazy.  And it IS actually hot in there, I've heard it from my coworkers, but still, I feel so sensitive to heat all the time and knowing I'm flushed just makes it worse.  People keep asking me if I got a sunburn.  I can't wait for Fall and cooler temperatures. 

The other day I came to the realization that I don't actually know how to care for a baby.  I was thinking about feeding and sleeping and diapering, and while I know what I've heard, I realized I have never done this before and freaked out a little.  I've fed babies, I've babysat, I've changed lots of diapers, but never cared for my own child.  And I thought, "I better get a book about this or something."     

But at the same time, I realized how excited I am to be a mother.  I can't wait to meet the little pumpkin who's been kicking me for the past 6 months.  (I've only been feeling it for a couple months, though.)  Every time I feel him move I fall in love a little bit more.  And I'm excited that Heavenly Father trusts us with one of His children.  I'm excited to care for him and be at home with him and SO grateful that we are in a position that I can stay home with our children.  And SO grateful that my children get James for a dad.   

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Happy Birthday, James!

Last Saturday was James birthday.  James was in a car accident a couple weeks ago, he was rear-ended and pushed into the car in front of him which bent the axle and totalled the car.  He was driving our black Hyundai Elantra.  A few days ago we got the settlement for the car and so Saturday we went car shopping and found a nice silver 2009 Hyundai Sonata for a (somewhat) comparable price, so James got a new car for his birthday, yea!

After that we headed down to Manitou Springs (who knew this tourist town was there, I didn't!), near Pikes Peak and rode the COG railroad up to Pikes Peak.  My sister and her girls are in town so it was a fun family outing. 

You can see the COG tracks in this picture. 

They kept saying on the way up how little oxygen there would be up there, they even sold oxygen tanks in the gift shop before you start going, so I was kind of worried.  It turns out we were all fine, it is at 14,000 feet and you can tell there's less oxygen, but it's not that bad.  I can't imagine running a marathon to the top and back down, though.  The fastest guy did it in something like 3 hours, 30 minutes, and ran the half (just to the top) in 2 hours, 15 minutes.  CRAZY! 

I thought James would probably like this picture.  Usually I would be right there with him, but I'm becoming a little top heavy and I don't really trust my balance like I used to.

We had friends over Friday night for cake, this is a watermelon "cake," since James is crazy about watermelon.

And this is a cake to satisfy the rest of us.  (James also loves peanut butter)

Happy Birthday, James!  I love you very much!  I'm lucky to have such a wonderful husband and soon-to-be baby-daddy.

Monday, July 2, 2012


Most of the time lately, I wake up thinking this:

Maybe I should be writing down all these crazy dreams, but frankly, most of them are too disturbing to even tell James. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

It's a Boy!!!

We are excited to be having a boy!  We both wanted a boy, and James kept insisting that it was a boy.  They took about a gazillion pictures at this ultrasound.  Most of the time I couldn't tell the head from the rump unless they pointed it out to me.  It's amazing how different this one was compared with 12 weeks.  Every time I see this little baby I fall in love even more.  He was moving around a lot and she kept asking me, "Are you feeling this?"  Nope.  I feel stuff a lot, but mostly I feel tightening, like maybe it's growing pains.  They said he's in the 50th percentile for size, so right on target. 

We think he has "the Bateman nose."  (Upturned nose)

James stepdad saw this picture and said, "I count 6."  LOL

He looks like a boy to me!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Anniversary and A Baby Bump Picture

James and I mostly celebrated our 4 year Anniversary on the cruise, but we also celebrated the day of, which was Thursday.  I went to James' work and tried to embarrass him.  It worked!  One of his friends sent him a picture of it before he left work. 

And here's a picture of Tara and I.  We are in the YW presidency together.  She is due 10 days before me and having a boy.  (We find out today if it's a boy or a girl, I will update tomorrow!)  I am (secretly but I guess not that secretly) jealous of her cute baby bump.  I look like maybe I ate two chipotle burritoes...every day...for lunch...for the past 2 weeks.  I think it's because I have a long torso and no legs.  I know sometime, probably pretty soon, that I'll be grateful for the extra room in the torso.