Wednesday, December 31, 2008


2008 was an amazing year for me. On March 2nd, I started Lupron for my very 1st IVF cycle. A month and a half later, on my birthday, we found out that we were finally pregnant! April through July were spent throwing up...literally! I was sick 24/7. There were even times when I thought pregnancy was a bad idea, but I never took my eye off the prize. I knew that I was holding my baby boy in my belly and that he needed me to be strong. Eventually the sickness subsided...and on came the contractions!

I began having contractions in August. I was in and out of L&D...thankfully no baby yet. On October 19th, my water broke while in NY for my baby showers. I was admitted to L&D for the duration on October 24th.

October 29, 2008 was by far the best day of my entire life. That was the day my precious son was born. At 8:46am, Carter John Butchino made his entrance into the world weighing 3 pounds, 14 ounces. Although he wasn't due for another 7 weeks, he was perfect and healthy and I couldn't have been more proud! 2 weeks later, he was released from the hospital and we have been the happiest family ever since! I love my boys more each day.

2008 had its ups and downs, but when all is said and done, it was the best year of my life. I finally have the family I have always dreamed of and I have never been happier. I just can't wait to see what 2009 brings our way!


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Another Dr visit...

Carter went to the pedi today. Last night, we noticed that his belly button looked was sticking out. It went away and then came back again this morning. I called the office and they told me to bring him in.

Due to the fact that he has been straining with all the gas he's had and that he doesn't poop very regularly, he has an umbilical hernia. It is common in preemies because their abdominal muscles do not develop the same way as a full term baby. Basically, as the doctor put it, its his "guts" pushing through into his belly button. Yum! Anyway, in most cases it clears itself up by age 2 and will not need surgery. Most importantly, it does not hurt him at all.

On a lighter note, my big boy weighs 8 pounds, 1 ounce! We must be doing something right!! Please pray that he keeps gaining and that his hernia clears up quickly. Prayer always helps!

Carter has a best friend already...his Soothe and Glow Seahorse. There are many times when he will not fall asleep without it. We also use it to stop him from crying when he gets upset. At one point, the seahorse was bigger than Carter, yet he insisted that it be where he could cuddle up to it before falling asleep. Before napping the other day, my poor baby was having trouble sleeping because he had very bad gas. The doctors told me all I could do was try my best to soothe him and get him relaxed. So I did the one thing I knew would help...and Carter and his seahorse slept soundly in the swing. They even decided to cuddle.

An amazing holiday.

My Santa Baby.

Our 1st family Christmas photo.

Best buddies.

Hello! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday. We certainly did! Christmas eve was Carter's 1st night in his crib...I was a basketcase and got no sleep. I even heard Santa putting gifts under the tree! Christmas morning was spent at home with our new baby boy. We bought Carter the Ocean Wonders mobile with remote. No more getting out of bed to rewind his mobile! We are also starting a savings account for him. My mom went completely overboard on Carter...and on us!! I got a ton of clothes and make-up (much needed) and Steven got a bluetooth (finally joining the millenium) and a new ladder, among other things. She is also redecorating our bedroom for us as a gift! We spent so much time and money on the nursery that we never even painted our room. It will be so nice to have somewhere cozy to go to bed! Steven also got me my mother's ring. It is an Opal which is Carter's birthstone, surrounded by Diamonds and Tanzanite (my 2 favorite gems!) What a sweet hubby!

We decided to go to NY on Christmas and surprise our families. After an amazing dinner (thanks mom!), we took off. We spent that night at Steven's mom's house and then went to my dad's on Friday. He got us all football jerseys, Carter included. Steven got a Steelers jersey and Carter and I got matching Brady Quinns! My dad is also a Browns fan! He was just so wonderful with his new grandson...what a proud papa! We woke up Saturday morning to Carter getting his bath! It was cute, but my dad was almost clueless!! Nonetheless, they got through it together!!

Saturday, we went to a party that was being thrown for Steven's uncle that lives in Australia. Him and his wife just had twins and this was their 1st time in the states. Once again, it was so cool to be the proud mommy introducing Carter to everyone! I enjoy it so much!! After the party, we had Christmas with my father in law, who was up from NC.

Sunday was Carter's 1st day in church. We brought him to our former church, the one we were married at. The people there are all so wonderful and I love them like my own family. It was so nice to introduce them to the miracle they spent hours praying for. What a true blessing that was!

We are now home and trying to unpack. Steven's youngest brother came with us for the week. I'm sure we'll have a fun time! He will be here for New Year's, which is awesome. Tomorrow we are all going to spend our gift cards that we got for Christmas...BRU here I come!!

Our Christmas weekend was just amazing. I am sure that I will never forget it. I truly have the best gift in the world...a family that I can love for many Christmases to come!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Hope you all have a Merry Christmas!

God Bless!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas par-tay!!

We had our family Christmas party yesterday. Not much to blog about, but I wanted to share this...

Isn't he the cutest ever??

Friday, December 19, 2008

My due date...

Today is December due date. I should be in the hospital meeting my baby for the first time today. Instead, I am home with a beautiful, healthy 7 week old baby boy...I couldn't imagine my life any other way. I am so thankful that things happened the way that they did. As hard as things were 7 weeks ago, life is perfect and I am so proud of my little man.

I had my 6 week OB appointment yesterday. Although Carter is 7 weeks, I had to reschedule because I needed my nurse to accompany me and her baby was sick last week. Everything went well and I am the proud owner of a brand new IUD! Is that weird to anyone else?? An infertile going on birth control?? I also got a prescription for Reglan to increase my milk supply. Since Carter still hasn't mastered the art of latching on, I pump every few hours. This can cause a low supply and I have even had to supplement with formula a few times. Hopefully I won't have to do that anymore. It seems like the formula makes him uncomfortable. Using breastmilk makes it so we don't have to figure out which formula would work best...because he would probably be uncomfortable the entire time.

Steven assembled all the extra parts of my new wheelchair today. I am pretty excited...its been a long time coming. I will post pics of my new whip later! Right now I am going to finish wrapping Carter's Christmas presents and watch the Cav's game with my hubby. Hope you all have a great weekend!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Our early Christmas.

Steven's mom, brother, grandmother, and godmother came from NY this weekend to celebrate Christmas. We planned this awhile back, before we got the OK to travel with Carter.

Friday night, we opened presents. Steven's mother went overboard on us, as usual. She is so thoughtful and always gets us such awesome things. My favorite gift from her is my digital photo keychain. It is full of photos of Carter already! She also got me some really cute clothes. They were much needed...I haven't shopped for clothes since I had Carter. Steven gave me my iPod Touch, as I mentioned in my last post. It is seriously my most awesome gadget! He totally surprised me. I put all of Carter's lullabies on my iPod Video and it has been docked in the nursery since he's been home. It plays great through the iBoom, but when headphones are plugged into it, it acts up. I've had it for a long time, so I kind of was due for a new one, but would have never bought it for myself. When I opened it, I couldn't believe it! Such a thoughtful gift! He really outdid himself this year.

Last night, Steven's mom took us all out for Christmas dinner. She said we could choose any resteraunt and of course Steven chose Smokey Bones. It was really nice to get out of the house, since I haven't in awhile. The food was good, too!!

Today, I went to lunch with my girlfriends from high school. We went to TGI Fridays. It was cool because we were all able to catch up on each other's lives. It was my first time being able to join in when all the proud mothers showed their kids' pictures!! It was so awesome!! I used my new digital keychain, LOL! Great gift!!

OK, I have a lot of cleaning to do. It was a crazy weekend and I have a huge mess to take care of. Here are a few pictures from this weekend.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Merry Christmas to me!!

I am just testing out my new iPod Touch that Steven suprised me with! It has wireless Internet and it's awesome!! We are celebrating Christmas with his family this weekend. I will post pics when I can.

Sent by iPod Touch

Saturday, December 6, 2008

More valuable than gold!

Thursday I got a call from the hospital's lactation consultant. She told me that I had left 3 decent sized vials of breastmilk in the NICU freezer. She asked me if I wanted it. Since it is such a far drive and Steven and I are still sharing my gas-guzzler for a couple more months, I told her I would try to get there. I thought about how difficult of a time I am having pumping now that Carter eats close to 3 ounces every 3 hours and I just couldn't let it go to waste. After Carter's pedi appointment, I drove all the way to Cleveland and got my 6 ounces of milk. I was kinda expecting more...since she said "decent sized vials" but that is a little over 2 feedings, so I'm ok with it.

Carter's appointment went great. The doctor kept saying over and over how great he looks. She weighed him completely naked and he was 5lbs close to that 6lb mark! My baby is growing so fast! He doesn't have to go back for another month, but he gets 5 shots then. Mommy is not looking forward to that!

Steven decided to try a level 2 nipple on Carter this afternoon because he still tires out during feedings. Of course I was afraid...I thought it may be too fast of a flow and that he may choke. He did really well with it! He didn't choke and it made his feeding seem so much easier for him. He just sat there sucking away and only stopped when he had to burp. It was actually a relief to see. He always stops to take breaks because he poops out. Now, he can just relax and eat! Good move daddy! We're really getting the hang of this!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Growing like a weed.

We had an appointment with a nutritionist at the health department yesterday to make sure the fortifier that we use in Carter's milk is doing its job. I also had to have my iron checked. It looked good, so I must be eating right. Carter was weighed and as soon as the number popped up on the scale, my jaw dropped. 6lbs 3oz?!? I was like "how much does his sleeper weigh?" The lady told me that she would say Carter weighed no less than 6lbs!! That would make it 15oz in 1 week!! He has his 1 month well-visit with his pedi tomorrow, so I am going to ask her how much longer we should keep him on the Neo Sure. He is gaining so much...maybe the breastmilk is enough.

Fed Ex just dropped off Carter's Synagis. The nurse is coming to administer it on Monday, so I had to put it in the refrigerator. For those of you who aren't familiar, Synagis is a monthly injection for preemies to prevent RSV (Respiratory syncytial virus). It is one of the major causes of respiratory illness in babies and preemies are more prone to it. So, Carter will need to have it every month for 1 year.

My blog won its first award, thanks to Making Babies! How excited am I to know that people enjoy reading about my everyday life?!

Now, I get to choose 5 of my favorites to pass it on to...
  1. Sara @ Gas Passer AKA partner in crime. She is such a strong and amazing mother and we all could learn a lot from her and her baby girl Brynn.
  2. Lisa @ My Journey Through Infertility. I just admire how she adores her little man, Cameron. Go Buckeyes!! Hehe!
  3. Beth @ Taking Chances. Her and I got our BFPs around the same time and I have loved reading all of her crazy posts! I can't wait for her little Connelly to be born!
  4. Tina @ So Very Blessed. She is an amazing mother of 6 and I have gotten a lot of great tips and laughs from her blog!
  5. S.E. at Riding the Roller Coaster. This woman is a true inspiration. She has had such a rough journey yet always finds the silver lining. I always say she has a huge miracle coming her way. She deserves every bit of it.
Thanks for blogging girls! Make sure you put the graphic up on your blogs and pass it on to 5 of your favorites!

UPDATE: Oh my!! I totally didn't realize that Lisa gave me an award way back in October! So, technically that would've been my 1st award.

I was admitted into Labor & Delivery right after it was given, so I guess I just missed it. So sorry Lisa!! And thank you so much!!