Hudson Gray: Zero to 7 Weeks

It’s a boy!

Introducing Hudson Gray Carper // born June 27, 2015 // 10:01 p.m. // 6 pounds, 9 ounces // 19 inches long

Hudson 4 days old

It took me a long time to get this simple post together. I’ve been suffering from extreme mommy brain complete with forgetfulness and an inability to organize my thoughts to express myself. Mix that up with lack of sleep, feelings of being unproductive and feeling overwhelmed at times and well…here I am. More than six weeks have gone by since my little guy was born. He surprised us by arriving 4 weeks early. He was due on July 24th (daddy’s birthday) but decided that he wanted his own birth month altogether and came on June 27th. I may share a story all about my labor later but the short version is that I woke up that Saturday morning and my water had broken so there was no question that the baby was going to be joining us soon!

He had some extra fluid in his lungs and only got to stay with me for a few minutes after he was born. The NICU team took him away because he had to be on CPAP to keep his airways open

Hudson 6-28-15

Luckily the nasty tubes didn’t have to stay long. He was in the NICU a total of 4 full days. We were at Sentara Princess Anne and the rooms were private (other NICU’s that I’ve visited with friends had the babies all in one big open area with only recliners in between the beds for parents and visitors. I slept in Hudson’s room on a pull out sofa after I was discharged and had a private space to pump and spend time with him. It was really an wonderful hospital and all of the nurses were amazing.

Hudson 2015-06-29

These monitors stayed on him until he was discharged. I know they were important but it was SO annoying trying to breastfeed him and getting him to latch with them on. They were constantly beeping and alarms were going off because they would come loose or a cord would get crimped.

His first few weeks:

Hudson 2015-07-03

Hudson 2015-07-09

 Frog legs 2015-07-14

Hudson 2015-07-27

Hudson first toy 2015-08-05

 Travis and Hud 2015-08-09

Hudson 2015-08-03

Hudson 2015-08-13

Tidbits about Hudson from zero to 7 weeks old:

  • I still wear newborn diapers.
  • I’m starting to grow out of my newborn clothes but the 0-3 month stuff is too big.
  • So far every time my parents have taken me out in the evenings to dinner I have fallen asleep and stayed asleep when I get home.
  • I like long walks on the beach and my mommy and daddy take turns holding me.
  • I do not like rides in the car. I’m either sleeping or crying…mostly crying.
  • So far I like the stroller WAY more than the car seat. My mommy has recently started taking me walks on the Cape Henry trail which connects in our neighborhood and I look all around and then fall asleep. These naps give my mom time to shower when we get home which makes her happy.
  • I hate being cold. Give me all the baby socks and Aden and Anais swaddle blankets. I love my cozy jammies for bed time.
  • I only tolerate bath time (see above about being cold).
  • I do like my hair to be brushed after bath time.
  • I like when mommy washes my face. I open my eyes really wide and sit still for her.
  • My mom breastfeeds me. I’ll take it from her or a bottle that she pumps for me…I don’t mind.
  • My daddy says that I like big titties.
  • My aunt Zan is the first person that I ever video chatted with.
  • I fall asleep while I’m eating and while I’m being held but wake up as soon as my mommy tries to lay me down. Every. Time.
  • I make growling sounds like a bear when I’m hungry and squeal-y sounds like a mouse when I’m fussing.
  • We won’t talk about how I sleep at night. Every time my mom has bragged about me I have a couple of sleepless nights and mess it up.
  • As of Friday, August 13 I weigh 8 lbs 2 oz
  • I’m not thrilled about tummy time. Sometimes I’m quiet for a minute but when I realize that I’m face down “WAAAHHHH” happens.
  • My 2 doggies Walter and Randolph kind of ignore me but maybe that’s because they think I fit right in.
  • I like toys that rattle and will stare at them for a few minutes before loosing interest.
  • I don’t like it in the kitchen. Whenever mommy tries to set me in my bouncy seat or swing in there I start to cry. She has a hard time making lunch or dinner because of this. She has perfected one hand free smoothie making though.
  • I had my first boat ride at 5 weeks old.
  • I’m really cute, cuddly, smell good-can’t-stand-it.

35 Weeks

strawberries, cucumber, blue cheese and walnuts salad

homemade chicken salad, cherries and nectarine

Elissa 35 weeks

Elissa 35 weeks

How far along? 35 weeks
Baby’s size: around 18 inches long and about 5 pounds.
Total weight gain: 29 pounds
Clothes: My dress the Basic Black Chiffon Maternity dress from Pink Blush Maternity. Very comfy, flowy and preggo friendly.
Workouts – Last week (June 16 – June 22)
  • 2 miles walk
  • 1 hour prenatal yoga
  • 1+ hour yardwork (pulling weeds, pruning plants, gathering sticks & debris)
  • 2 miles walk and 1 mile on the elliptical
Symptoms: Having Braxton Hicks consistently. Yesterday they were 2-3 per hour all day. Today is less but I was driving to Richmond for work and have been sitting down all day. Also starting to have some cramping and random shooting pains in my low stomach area, especially when I lay down at night. I’m also starting to have low back pain and hip pain/soreness in last week. My doula seems to think that I have tightened ligaments and I might find some relief by getting a chiropractic adjustment. These tightened ligaments could also be keeping the baby from getting in a better position. The place she referred me to specializes in prenatal care…I’ll be calling to inquire about an appointment as soon as the office gets back from lunch.
What I’m eating: I’m continuing with the smaller, more frequent meals. I find that I’m more comfortable in general and have less swings between feeling too full or being starving this way. I’m still loving salads with some kind of fruit in them and I prefer lemon vinaigrette. Love to snack on lemon hummus with rice crackers. I feel like I’ve been eating chicken all the time. I order grilled chicken in salads or I bake chicken at home and then make chicken salad. Nectarines. Smoothies or yogurt bowls for breakfast. I ate avocado almost everyday last week and had the worst heartburn. I read that foods with higher fat content can cause heartburn.
Drinking: Lots of water, kombucha, Zevia ginger ale and Nepresso decaf coffee in the morning with french vanilla coconut milk creamer.
Looking forward to: My next doctor’s appointment is when I start getting cervical checks. Not that I’m technically looking forward to that but…it’s necessary part of seeing how close the baby is to coming to meet us.
What is amazing: Floating around in our pool is my very favorite thing. Amazing weightlessness and it seems to ease aches and pains! It’s also the only place that I can lay on my belly and I love it. Some kind of weightless/water/pool/lake/ocean/river situation should go along with every pregnancy…especially in the final weeks.

34 Weeks

 Elissa 34 weeks
34 weeks vs 25 weeks
34 weeks and 5 days versus 25 weeks! What a difference 10 weeks makes!
How far along? 34 weeks
Baby’s size: around 17.75 inches long and about 4.75 pounds.
Total weight gain: 27 pounds
Clothes: My maternity tank is from Old Navy and my skirt is the maternity chevron stripe jersey maxi shirt from Old Navy.
Workouts – Last week (June 9 – June 15)
  • 3.1 miles on the elliptical
  • 2 hours of kayaking
  • 1 hour prenatal yoga
  • 3.5 miles on the elliptical
Symptoms: Hugeness. Is feeling huge a symptom? If so I have it!
Movement: Baby moves all the time and I love the movement. It’s kinda crazy that sometimes the movement surprises me after all these weeks. Like how could I forget it was there as large as I am!
What I’m eating: I’m officially on the smaller, more frequent meals plan. If I try to eat my normal amount for lunch or dinner I get so uncomfortable and almost feel sick. I’m still loving salads and fruit and fruit in my salad…especially strawberries and dried cranberries. Chicken salad or tuna salad on top is great! Lemon dressing is my top choice. Lemon hummus with rice crackers. Nectarines. Smoothies for breakfast (we ate 2 bunches of bananas last week!). Earth Balance peanut coconut spread on piece of toast with jam or apple butter. I like to eat chicken (grilled or baked) with sliced avocado and cheese. My favorite meal eaten out last week was seared scallops over risotto with peas.
Drinking: Lots of water, kombucha, orange pineapple juice, and Nepresso decaf coffee in the morning with french vanilla coconut milk creamer.
Looking forward to: The babies nursery is almost complete. I’m waiting to share the pics when I get my new rocking chair because I feel like it will finish off the room. Every week I go to the store or order some things online to keep checking things off the list of baby stuff still needed. Last week I used a couple gift cards to buy a baby bath, baby thermometer, some size 1 diapers and baby lotion. I also ordered a waterproof crib mattress cover, a Natursutten pacifier and diaper bag online. Some items still on my list are a breast pump, bottles, baby monitor, baby Tylenol, a reusable wet/dry bag, baby detergent and a nursing cover. Because the babies gender is a surprise I’ll need to do some clothes shopping after the birth. I only have 2 packs of onesies and 2-3 gender neutral outfits!

Barefoot and Pregnant – Our Wedding in Pictures

Travis and I got married on Saturday, May 30th. We threw a party in our backyard, made some food and ordered some food, stocked our bar, had a small local band play and invited 40 of our closest friends and family to help us celebrate. I was 32 weeks pregnant and he was barefoot when we walked down “the aisle” (which was a sidewalk leading to our backyard) and shared our vows. The day couldn’t have been more perfect!!

walking down the aisle

Travis, Elissa and Kuzma

cut the music2

ceremony Elissa and Travis

holding hands

ring exchange

Travis Elissa wedding2

Dance kiss

Coastal living scene

dont get bbq on the white dress

Elissa, Marna, Scott and Emily

Laura, Elissa, Marna and Emily

Teresa, Dana, Chris, Elissa and Zandria

cutting the cake2

feeding cake to Travis

sharing the cake

wedding kisses

Travis jammin

Dill Potato Salad

My sister Angela told me I should try this recipe. She made it for her family and she said that her husband, Troy, went on and on about how good it was. Since Travis loves potato salad in general AND because I have 4 pots of dill growing on my back patio, I knew I had to make it.

dill potato salad

We served it up with corn on the cob and seared Atlantic salmon.

dill potato salad and crabs

Travis also had a few steamed blue crabs with his dinner. He caught them with our crab pots right in the backyard. I was having a “pregnancy moment” and didn’t feel like getting my hands dirty and stinky with crab. I normally love them!

blue crabs caught in Lynnhaven Inlet

At first I was only going to link to the recipe for the potato salad but then I remembered that I not only cut the recipe in half but I also added eggs. Here’s what I put in mine:

Dill Potato Salad

  • 1 1/2 pounds small white/red/purple potatoes, cut in half or quarters depending on size
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup Vegenaise (or mayonnaise)
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 stalks chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion

Method

Place the potatoes, eggs and 2 tablespoons of salt in a large pot of water. Bring the water to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, until the potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork. Drain the potatoes in a colander, then place the potatoes back in the pot leaving the eggs in the colander. Rinse the eggs with cold water and allow to cool while you prep the rest of the salad.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the Vegenaise, Dijon mustard, dill, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Add the potatoes and diced, hard boiled eggs. Toss well, cover, and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Serve cold or at room temperature.

Recipe adapted from Ina Garten

33 Weeks

Elissa 33 weeks
How far along? 33 weeks
Baby’s size: around 17 inches long and about 4.25 pounds.
Total weight gain: 27 pounds
Clothes: My jeans are AG Adriano Goldschmied from A Pea in the Pod and my black tank is from Free People (non-maternity). I bought the wedges a couple of weeks ago when Nordstrom was having a sale. They make me feel dressed up, they make my legs feel longer and slimmer (versus wearing flip flops like I usually do) and they are very comfy!
Workouts – Last week (June 1 – June 8)
  • 3.6 miles on the elliptical
  • 1 hour prenatal yoga
  • 2 mile walk
  • 3 miles on the elliptical
Symptoms: The braxton hicks contractions are getting more frequent. Not just in the evening but anytime of day. I had to rinse off in the shower and lay down for a while a couple of days ago because it seemed like they wouldn’t stop. You are also supposed to drink extra fluids. I already drink a ton of water so this frustrates me. The doctor wasn’t concerned and said I was doing all the right stuff. I’ve had zero heartburn in the last 2 weeks! Sleep is getting strange. I toss and turn a lot and sometimes have trouble falling back to sleep after I have woken up to go to the bathroom.
Movement: Baby is all up in my ribs. I think pregnancy has helped my posture, I notice that I sit up straighter and stand taller to make room for my growing baby. As soon as I slouch, try to bend forward while sitting or reach to grab something on the floor while sitting I either get a karate kick in the ribs or a overall tightening feeling that alerts me to give the baby more room.
33 week Dr visit: Baby is still measuring on time and had a heart rate in the 150’s. It was a pretty uneventful visit. I have another appointment in 2 weeks and then I start going every week. Eeeeeekkkkkk!!!
What I’m eating: I’m not feeling “real food”. I’ve been wanting smoothies more and more. I made a new combo with almond milk, roasted almonds, prunes, honey, cinnamon and frozen banana that is delish and refreshing. I’ve been snacking on nectarines, cantaloupe and almonds. I had toasted O cereal with sliced banana and unsweetened coconut one night for dinner. I had an awesome salad when out for lunch one day of mixed greens, shredded carrots, pecans, dried cranberries, sliced strawberries, apples and a scoop of chicken salad with a lemon vinaigrette. It was right up my alley! I also made a taco salad for lunch another day. I guess overall fruit and cold food is what I want over more savory foods.
Drinking: Unsweetened iced tea with lemon. Orange Pineapple juice with lots of crushed ice. Cherry lime La Croix sparkling water. Ice water. Nepresso decaf coffee in the morning.

32 Weeks

 Emily and Elissa - Cape Henry Lighthouse
How far along? 32 weeks and my friend Emily (pictured above) is 28 weeks.
Baby’s size: around 16.7 inches long and about 3.75 pounds.
Total weight gain: Don’t know. Will wait to jump on the scale at my OB appointment next Monday.
Clothes: Maternity tank from Old Navy and maternity chevron stripe jersey maxi shirt from Old Navy.
Workouts – Last week (May 26 – June 1)
  • 1 mile walk around neighborhood
  • 13 mile bike ride through First Landing State Park
  • 2 mile walk on boardwalk
Now that it’s June we can officially say that we’re having a baby next month! What?! I’m not writing a full update this week. We had company from May 28th to June 2nd and we got married on Saturday, May 30th! It was a wonderful and beautiful long weekend but I’m tired today. Hoping to do a post of wedding pictures very soon!