Monday, January 30, 2006

Raisin Cords

On Saturday, Charlie had a momentous occasion! I was changing his diaper that evening right before bed, and as I unzipped his sleeper, his cord came off! (These are referred to as Raisin Cords in our house. At Evan and Charlie's daycare, Katie the director started calling them this, presumably for their remarkable resemblance to raisins. Evan has used this scientific terminology ever since). I was super excited of course, and I got Evan out of bed to come and look. He also understood the importance of the occassion, and we jumped up and down and congratulated little Charlie. Evan ran downstairs to get Jeff so he could share in the celebration, but he didn't want to come up and look. I think we were both sad he didn't see how important this was!

So, since he is now cordless, Charlie was able to have his first "real" bath today. You can tell by the expression on his face in the picture how much he enjoyed this event. I was a little sad he didn't like it more, since Evan always loved being in the bathtub. I think it is because Charlie has a pathological aversion to being naked. It is really the only time during the day that he out and out cries. He must get this from his father. Those of you who knew me in high school know what happens when I get in the ocean, jump on a trampoline, or play dumb games in our parents' basements.

I have to admit that I am a little sad about his cord coming off too. It was a little like the last sign of his physical attachment to me. But, I won't think about that too hard. I am still overly affected by those gosh darn baby blues, and am prone to crying at a moments notice.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

A Miracle

A miracle from God has happened in our house today, and it is called, I ZIPPED UP A PAIR OF JEANS!!!! Granted, it was only one pair of jeans, and I won't mention here that the other 4 pairs would not zip by at least an inch. The point is, I ZIPPED UP SOME PRE-CHARLIE PANTS!!! Things like this do not happen to women in my family, who in the 1800's would have been referred to as "Good Strong German Farm Women, Good For Having Babies." (Please insert a good strong German accent there). Today people politely refer to us a "big boned". For those of you who knew me when I had Evan, you might remember it took me over a year to get back to normal. So, of course, when I zipped my pants, it made tears come to my eyes. Hopefully this keeps up! I am cleared by my doctor to go back to the supplements that were helping to regulate my cycles and metabolism in about another week, so I am crossing my fingers that I am on the path to my regular self!

In Charlie news, he went in for a weight check on Tuesday and my little guy is up to 10 lbs. 5 oz. despite being a lazy eater. It would appear that God has given me a line backer for a child. I wonder if he will keep pace with my nephew Colin's incredible growth this year.

Monday, January 23, 2006

An Old Friend and Baby Obsessed

I hope no one minds that my next few entries are a bit baby obsessed. My world has shrunk down to the walls of our house and the lives of my kids. Which right now for me is heaven! Jeff keeps asking me if I am getting stir crazy and need to leave the house (which is so thoughtful of him) but I really have about zero inclination to do so. I am definitely in the middle of the baby blues (unfortunately for Jeff and Evan) and keep crying at the drop of a hat about stupid things, but both of my bigger boys have been trying to be exceptionally understanding about the whole thing. Evan has been doing his darndest to adjust to all of the changes in his life, and has been trying so hard to be a helper and a good listener. I know he is missing our time together, so I try and do at least one thing just us with him everyday. We try to compliment him as much as possible too, so he is motivated to keep trying.

Charlie is getting over his jaundice, and is getting to be a better eater a little bit every day. We go in for a weight check tomorrow to make sure he isn't losing too much. He is having a bit of a hard time sleeping at night, but I guess that is to be expected. We took our first trip to Grandma's house yesterday to have Charlie's birth announcement pictures taken by a family friend who is a photographer. They came out SOO well! It was nice to go over to my parent's too, if only for a bit.

Last night I got the chance to see an old friend I haven't seen in years, Jeff Lukens, and to meet his girlfriend Megan. It was so nice to see both of them! They came over with our friends the Kochs. Megan was so sweet and nice, and it was great to catch up with Jeff. It was also nice to have some of the outside world come in the door! Thanks for coming to see us and meet Charlie guys!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Charlie's Arrival

Just a quick post as my sweet little angel is sleeping...Charles Michael Kleffman made his entrance into the world on Tuesday January 17, 2006 after about 8 hours of labor. He was 10 pounds, 23 1/4 inches, a record for the hospital we delivered at (the previous record holder was Colin, my nephew). I cannot BELIEVE how big his is! I don't know where I was keeping him, but now I know why my pelvis and hips hurt so much those last two weeks. Present during delivery were my parents, my sister, and Christi Koch (an awesome friend), and of course my fantastic husband Jeff. I made it to 7 cm without an epidural, but after that they started to loose Charlie's heartbeat on the monitor because he was so low in my pelvis, so they had me lie down in the bed. At that point, I couldn't stand the pain because it really intensified when I laid down. Jeff kept me so focused and helped me stay in control, especially while they were putting the epidural in. I couldn't have done it without him. It was so amazing to have my family and Christi there too, because I felt so much love and support. My dad took pictures, and everyone else helped to rub my back, and keep me standing. Somehow I was able to push Charlie out in only around 12 pushes, which was great, since his cord was wrapped around his neck, and he was a bit blue when he came out. The nurse took him right away to get his circulation moving, and I had to wait a bit to hold him, which was hard. All is well now though, depsite a little jaundice. More later when it doesn't hurt to sit so much!! We are so blessed to have Charlie with us.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Magical Baby Shower

I have just had THE BEST baby shower! My friend Christi threw it for me yesterday, it was just amazing. The invitations were perfect and had little monkeys on them to match the nursery. The games she had were not your typical shower games and everyone told me how much fun they had. One of the things I loved best was that she had matted the shower invitation and these cute little bookmarks she made as favors, and then had all the guests sign the picture matting so I can frame it and put it up in Charlie's room. Christi is extremely creative and all of the little details were just amazing, and all coordinated. I told her it was the nicest shower I have ever been to, and I can't believe it was for me!

I had the best time putting all of the stuff away in Charlie's room, and showing it to Jeff and Evan. Evan was thrilled because we got several bibs that say "I love my big brother". He keeps saying how excited he is that everyone knows Charlie loves him already. It was the perfect thing to boost Evan's spirits a bit. He has been a little clingy this weekend, and I think reality is starting to hit for him. Jeff on the other hand, is amazed at how much stuff you need for babies. He keeps asking me what is this? What do you do with this? It's neat to look at things through his eyes.

Today we are off to Colin's 1st birthday party. Sarah didn't want anyone to bring gifts because his birthday is so close to Christmas, but I said the heck with that! Every kid needs something to tear into on their 1st birthday, especially since he just got the hang of presents over Christmas. So instead of a toy, I got him lots of board books (including one about using the potty that makes realistic flushing noises) and some clothes (including a VERY cute Levi's jeans jacket). So, I guess I kind of followed directions. Hopefully Sarah is not too mad at me, but isn't that what Aunts and Godmothers are for? SPOILING!!! I love this kid tons, and I can't resist him. Hopefully the six teeth he is working on getting in (some molars in there as well) won't prevent him from putting his whole face in the cake.

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Lots of people have been asking me for details on Tuesday, so I thought I would add them here.
We have to be at the hospital at 6:00 A.M. (Blech...) My doctor wants me to be on my Pitocin IV by 6:30. The doctor is going to be doing a c-section at 9:00, and she said she would stop by to break my water before that, and that should really start things humming (it did with Evan anyway). She told me that since I am already dilated to 4 cm, that labor should progress pretty quickly, which is always a plus. She was guestimating about 6 to 7 hours total. I hope she's right! I was in labor for 13 hours with Evan! We will be delivering at Lakeside Hospital, which Jeff views as the Tajma Hall. When we took our tour there, he was of the opinion that we should have gone there on our honeymoon, instead of goofy Jamaica. It IS a nice hospital, which I am excited about. Evan was born at UNMC, which looks like a hell hole in comparison. They even have room service there (which they didn't in Jamaica, and Jeff LOVES). We will be calling all to let you know how it goes-hopefully by mid afternoon. I suppose I should be practicing my breathing the next couple of days, but it makes me feel ridiculous, like a cow in heat. Hopefully Jeff was paying attention in our birthing classes, because I know I won't remember a thing once things get rolling. One reason I married Jeff was because I knew he could keep me entertained during labor. I won't be lacking for distractions! I also want to wish my awesome Godson Colin a very happy and blessed 1st Birthday! I can't believe it has been a year already since he came into the world. I feel very lucky to be a part of this little one's life, and I can't wait to see what he does during the next year.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Drum Roll Please...

I had my 38 week check today and......I find out when Charlie's birthday will be! But you will have to keep reading to find out. No fair skipping to the end. I had to wait and so should you! = ) I told her all about my weird cramps and how I had been feeling, and she was so sympathetic, I almost had tears in my eyes. It was nice to have her understand and listen so closely. She thinks that I actually was in labor both Saturday and Sunday night, but that there is something about the size or position of the baby that is preventing me from sustaining labor on my own. She feels like I need to have the help of some Pitocin to keep things going, and she doesn't want Charlie to get to much bigger. Usually she will not induce until women have reached 40 weeks to make sure of the gestational age of the baby, but because Jeff and I were charting my temperatures and are positive about my day of ovulation and conception she feels comfortable inducing Tuesday! So, unless I manage to go on my own before then, Charlie's birthday will be January 17, 2006. She actually wanted to schedule it for this Friday, but I am DETERMINED to make it to my baby shower!!!! And, believe it or not, I am going to hold parent/teacher conference on Monday, the day before I give birth! I can only hope someone in the raise department says, "Holy Cow! What a dedicated teacher! She needs to get paid more!!" Yeah, right. She did think there is a 50/50 chance of me achieving spontaneous labor before then, so I guess it could still change, but at least I know the end is in sight. Please keep us in your prayers on Tuesday!!!

Monday, January 09, 2006

At Home...

It's been an interesting weekend around here...I had two pretty rough nights. I felt fine all of the day Saturday, and even took Evan to the park to ride his new scooter and enjoy the weather. As I was making dinner around 5:30, I started having some light cramps. They weren't TOO bad, so Evan and I still went to church where I helped to distribute communion. Which was very funny, since it was about this time that the cramping increased, and I just wanted to dance around while I stood there to relieve the pressure. (In a side bar, Evan asked me after church if he could light a candle and say a prayer. I said sure, and I just cried while he was praying. He prayed for his new brother Charlie, and that he would come out without hurting his mom, and that he would be safe. Is that the SWEETEST thing or what? I love my kid!!) Anyway, by the time we got home from church, I could hardly stand it! I laid down, and really thought things might be starting. It hurt so much I was in tears, but I didn't call the doctor because they weren't actual contraction, just REALLY bad cramps. They lasted until about 5:30 in the morning. I felt better on Sunday during the day, but really tired and sore. Then about 8:30 that night, the cramping started again! It lasted most of the night. I am spending the day at home today to try and rest and get some sleep. I have no idea what is going on. I didn't ever feel like this with Evan (I was induced with him, and I don't think I was dilated at all with him before I went in). I can't wait to see what the doctor has to say at my appointment tomorrow. I guess I just want to know if this is normal.

Saturday, January 07, 2006


I went and had a day of Mommy to be pampering this morning! My sister and her husband gave me a gift certificate to Xenon Beauty School for Christmas, so this morning bright and early at 8:00 I went and got my hair colored, highlighted, and cut. Gotta look great for those labor and delivery pictures, right? The thing I love about this place is that because they are still beauty students, they go REALLY slowly. I cannot think of anything more relaxing than having my hair done, or combed, etc. I didn't leave until 12:15! I know this would drive some people nuts, but I just found it so relaxing to sit there and relax while someone did my hair. It was exactly what I needed right now. Jeff was really nice and watched Evan while I went. It is so nice to not feel alone during this pregnancy, and to have someone supporting me, even if it is just in little ways like watching Evan, or making sure I am resting enough.

Evan was not pleased with the results (it is amazing how strongly he does not want me to change my appearance-it really bothers him) but everyone else, including me, has said it looks nice. I feel better, which is the important thing. It is nice to have some part of me feel beautiful while the rest feels humongous and dopey. Of course, Jeff knows that I will probably burst into a bout of hormone induced tears if he said he didn't like it, so maybe I shouldn't trust his compliments right now!!

I've just finished watching the 3rd season of Dallas (yes, I know this is a silly show to watch, but Jeff has me hooked-it's all his fault). The last episode of the 3rd season is the famous one where JR gets shot by an unknown assailant. I can hardly stand to wait to find out who it is!!! The 4th season won't be released on DVD until January 24th, so I have to wait two weeks. Jeff also told me today that they don't reveal the killer until about 5 episodes into the next season!!! UGH. I hope Charlie is a Dallas fan.

Friday, January 06, 2006


I had this weird situation happen to me the other day, and I have been thinking about it ever since. My awesome friend Christi (I cannot mention enough times in this blog how awesome she is-I am so glad to know another Mom, especially one like Christi, while I go through my pregnancy) is having a baby shower for me next Saturday. I belong to a Quilt Group named the Grateful Thread (isn't that cute?) and I am really close with most of the members. We meet around 2 times a month, and quilt together, share life, etc. Last month we had a new member join us. She is incredibly nice, but I have only met her twice, and we don't really know each other yet. I did not include her on the guest list to the shower because of this, but I did invite the rest of the group. I have a huge family, and I was trying not to invite everyone and their great aunt once removed friend's neighbor, and I wanted to keep the list manageable and full of people who really mean a lot to me. Anyway, a member of the quilt group called the other day and left a message on my machine telling me to send this new member an invitation. Not even asking, TELLING. My question this rude? I felt like it was-I cannot imagine calling anyone and demanding an invitation anywhere! She did help to make a baby quilt that the group worked on collectively and is bringing as a gift to the shower. I can see where maybe because of this she felt that she needed to be invited. But just feels weird to me. Am I wrong?

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Doctor Appointment

I went in for my weekly appointment this morning, and I know that Adam thinks this is possible TMI (so just stop reading now Adam) but I am now dilated 3 cm, almost 3 1/2!!! I am really excited about this because it took me forever to get to this point with Evan, and that was during actual labor. I have also lost 3 pounds in the last week (I don't know how because I have eaten a LOT during the holidays) but for some reason this seems to be a major indicator of upcoming labor with the doctor. She made sure we went over some questions the hospital will want written down in my chart when we check in like what type of pain management I would like. She did make me a little nervous because she said that once things get going I need to be very aware to get to the hospital with no dwadling. The doctors who administer the epidurals at Lakeside like to do so at 5-6 cm dilation, but not after you reach 7 cm. She said that could go very quickly for me since I am already almost at a 4, so if I get to the hospital too late, NO EPIDURAL FOR ME! And yes, I most DEFINITELY WANT THE EPIDURAL. Call me a wimp if you want to, but gosh that is a nice invention. So, I guess now we just wait. All of us here have our bags packed, and we are ready to rumble.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

New Year's Resolutions

Wow! The first day of 2006. I can't believe how quickly last year passed for me. (Maybe because there were so many huge changes in our family and life?) I usually put part of this day aside to think about New Year's Resolutions, but I just feel like I don't know where to start this year. There is so much I could improve on like...loose the baby weight I've gained with Charlie (although I am doing much better this pregnancy, only 22 pounds!) on being a better Mom, and balancing two children's on being a better wife and balancing the two children's needs with my husbands needs (not to mention my own needs!) on some professional goals at school...YIKES! I feel overwhelmed just thinking about picking one over the other. They all seem equally important. I am a one goal person though. I need one thing to work on really well, or I end up doing nothing well.

Jeff came home from Colorado and visiting his mom, step father, and sister yesterday. He got in about 6:45. I was feeling like a big slug, so we just spent New Year's vegging at home, which was what I really needed after all the excitement of the holidays. Jeff must have been tired from his drive, because he disappeared off to bed way before midnight. So, Evan and I rang in the New Year together. Evan was bound and determined to make it to midnight with his eyes open, and he did it! He paid for it this morning by needing to sleep in until 11:15, but what they hey. It only comes once a year, right? I think this is the first year he is really aware of what a "new year" really means, so it was fun to share that with him. We watched The Incredibles to keep ourselves awake until the big moment. We were diappointed Jeff was too tired to join us, but maybe next year.

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