Friday, July 26, 2013

Welcome Home!

On July 19, we were able to bring Spencer home. He was released to us healthy, with no additional antibiotics, and already 1 oz past his birth weight!

Alex was so excited to go to the hospital with us, and thought it was hysterical that Spencer was riding in the back seat with him. Welcome home, Spencer!

Alex telling Baba and Papa about the baby.
Showing a sleepy Spencer his monkey.
Counting Spencer’s toes.
Tickling Spencer.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Waiting for Spencer

Talk about confusing! I’d love to know what was going on in Alex’s head when we came home from the hospital without Spencer. He was already confused when he visited the hospital and didn’t see “baby”. We showed him lots of pictures, and tried to explain that he’d be home in a few days. For the most part, we just played with him and made him feel extra special for a few more days before bringing home his brother.

One of the most exciting things was having my parents around for the week. Alex was in Heaven chasing and being chased, dancing, playing dinosaurs and cars and trains, and generally being crazy! Here’s a quick clip of some dancing:

We enjoyed a nice walk on the nearby river walk. Tim and Alex enjoyed climbing the rocks, and I was thrilled to be walking with a non-pregnant body.


We also took my parents and Alex to the Charlotte Motor Speedway Summer Shootout, a 10 week event during the summer with amateur races and fun events like lawn mower, power wheel, and school bus racing. We had been wanting to go all summer, but several weeks were rained out, then I was just too pregnant!

The first 1500 spectators were given free Twinkies in honor of the Twinkie’s comeback that week. Alex thought they were wonderful!

We had lots of fun, but were so ready for Spencer and Alex to be under one roof!

Friday, July 19, 2013


After Spencer’s first hospital guests left and we began settling in for our first night together in the hospital, I commented to Tim that I thought Spencer was breathing a bit rapidly. He was nursing fine and didn’t seem to have any other problems – and the night nurse didn’t seem worried – so I didn’t think too much of it. So when the lactation consultant the next morning commented on his breathing, I made a mental note to have our new day nurse get him checked out. She ended up taking him for his 24 hour tests (hearing, etc) right around that same time … then came back with the pediatrician to say they were ordering extra tests. So, after blood tests, an x-ray of the lungs, and an ultrasound of the heart, we were told they were admitting him to the Special Care Nursery overnight to begin antibiotics. At that point, they were just saying he had an infection. I think they were a little baffled because his oxygen level was fine, he was acting like he felt fine, but his breathing was twice the normal rate. After the next morning’s x-ray, they confirmed Spencer had contracted pneumonia before he was born and told us he would need to stay with them for 7 days to receive antibiotics. UGH! At least we were able to visit him as often as we wanted and I was still able to nurse. Talk about the longest week of our lives!

It was heartbreaking to see Spencer like this, but it was a little easier since this was the second child we’ve had admitted to a Special Care Nursery. At least we got the first night with Spencer … Alex was taken away within the first hour of birth.
We were relieved to see Spencer quickly moved out of the warmer and to his own crib within a few hours of being admitted.
Tim and I were exhausting ourselves trying to get to the hospital 3 times a day to visit/feed Spencer while still spending lots of time at home with Alex. Thankfully, Baba and Papa took the early evening shift around midweek, leaving us a little time to sleep at home.
The antibiotics did the trick, and once Spencer kicked the jaundice mid-week, you could tell he was ready to come home.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Meeting Spencer

By the afternoon of July 11th, Spencer had already met several new faces! My mom, dad, and sister brought in Alex, and Grandma Lisa and Bob arrived soon after. Spencer was passed around while Alex hid in Tim’s lap. I think he was really concerned when he came in and found me in bed with my hospital gown and IV. He ran to Tim and snuggled in his neck. That was really hard. Thankfully, even though he didn’t want to go near the baby, he did eventually come play with me. I think the gifts helped – Spencer arrived with a gift and both Grandmas brought in gifts for both boys.


Introducing: Spencer Owen

Spencer’s Story:

On Wednesday, July 10th at 3:45, I went for my 40 week appointment … and was surprised to find out I was already half way dilated! I had been feeling kind of queasy and exhausted all day, but I hadn’t been feeling many contractions. So, between my blood pressure being on the high side and the dilation, the docs decided to admit me to the hospital to be monitored. They always take extra precautions with moms with previous C-Sections, so they wouldn’t even let me drive home to meet Tim. Our wonderful friend Harper met Tim at the house to play with Alex while my parents hit the road from Spartanburg and Tim arrived at the hospital just as I had finished getting admitted.

Then the wait began! The OB broke my water around 9:00 pm and my contractions were strong enough to ask for an epidural around 2:00 am. By 5:00 am, the OB decided to give me a few drops of pitocin since my labor had stalled – and let me tell you, that did the trick! Between 8:00 and 9:00, I was able to feel the contractions through the epidural and started begging for more. By the time the new meds kicked in, I was fully dilated and ready to push! So, I pushed for 50 minutes and welcomed an 8 lb, 13 oz and 22 in long baby boy into the world at 9:50 am on July 11th, Spencer’s due date. What an amazing experience! I’m so glad to have been able to experience labor and remember Spencer’s birth, as I don’t remember much at all of Alex’s C-Section.


Monday, July 8, 2013

Waiting for Baby

I actually have everything checked off my “nesting” list, so we are just waiting for Baby at this point. Friday’s 39 week check-up went well and I am scheduled to go back in on Wednesday. After lots of reading and soul-searching, I decided to cancel Thursday’s scheduled C-Section and to let him appear when he is ready. Of course, there’s no guarantee he won’t end up as a C-Section like Alex when the time comes, but at least this baby won’t be induced and stressed out.

So, how are we keeping busy in the meantime? With lots of play, of course!

photo 1
We paint in the art studio/upstairs playroom/guest bedroom/office.
photo 2
We crash trucks in the water.
photo 3
Alex and Tim have been moving rocks from the back of the yard to the patio.
photo 4
And we’ve all been trying to rest as much as possible! Look at that sweet boy hugging Clifford.

Baby Brother, we are all ready to meet you!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Trucks in the Water

I don’t know about you, but we are getting tired of all this rain! Tim hasn’t been able to cut the grass, so the yard is out of control, and parks are out of the question since so much of Charlotte has been flooding. So what do you do when you are tired of playing inside, but not willing to join the crowds at all the indoor play spots? You turn on the sprinklers, of course!

Alex and I filled his water table boat with soap suds, turned on his sprinkler ring, and added much more water to our flooded yard today. Alex had a blast “bathing” me, all the while telling me that I was dirty and needed to be washed. I was soaked and cold! He also spent a lot of time crashing his trucks in the rocks and rescuing them with more trucks.

Washing baby dump truck.
Big truck to the rescue of baby dump truck and dig.
“Sitty down in the water, Mommy.”
“Beep … beep … beep.”

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Chocolate Face

Things are slowing down in the Strunck household as we wait for Baby’s arrival! We ran errands and did lots of cleaning last weekend, and will probably do some more cleaning this weekend … then we sit around and wait!

At least I was able to capture this silly moment: Alex ate a HUGE chocolate chip cookie after running errands over the weekend. What a disaster! I had to treat and wash his shorts 3 times before all the chocolate came out!