Saturday, April 27, 2013

Pick a label for Baby #2

We had a lot of fun with this last time so thought we would try it again. Pick your favorite name from the list below for Baby #2.

Only a few weeks left :)


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Stryder turns 1

"On the night you were born, 
The moon smiled with such wonder, 
That the stars peeked into see you.
And the night wind whispered, 
'Life will never be the same.'
Because there had never been anyone like you...
Ever, in the world. 
Not once had there been such eyes, such a nose, 
Such silly and wiggly, wonderful toes!

For never before in story or rhyme, 
(not even once upon a time)
has the world ever known a you, my friend. 
And it never will... not ever again.
Heaven blew every trumpet and played every horn,
On the wonderful, magical, night you were born!"
-Nancy Tillman, Author - On The Night You Were Born

Exactly one year ago today Stryder Don Kendrick came into this world. At 4:48PM Kevin and I received the best present we could have ever hoped for!

I've been thinking about this post for weeks now. Wondering how I could put in words what changes have occurred in the last year and how I feel about the time passing so fast. This past year has been a wondrous and magical experience! I cannot begin to explain how full my heart is and how much this perfect little boy has me completely head over heels in love with him. The mere thought of writing this blog brings tears of joy to my eyes. Every time I think of how desperately I wanted a baby and how little I understood what abounding happiness this tiny little person would bring me I get emotional. He is my miracle and I will forever be in awe that he is mine.
While Stryder is most definitely mine you would never know it. Physically he is the carbon copy of his father, he already has the loving and sweet personality of Kevinr as well. It seems the only thing he got from me is his need for independence. He is such a happy boy. We are constantly complimented on how good he is. What we consider to be a 'fussy' day, most parents tell us is a walk in the park. We have been truly blessed!

Getting here has not been easy. Multiple miscarriages along a 9 year struggle to get pregnant had me all but giving up on a baby. I have two boys who came to us at 8 and 14, I wish I had them as babies. To be able to experience everything we've experienced with Stryder, with them as infants. But, I feel that the time and struggle it took to get Stryder has made me a a better mother. I can't say for sure, as I'll never know what it would've been like had it come easily - but I can tell you that the hard days don't seem so hard. The sleepless nights, while exhausting, still come with an appreciation of this little wonder that is mine. I've struggled for this child, longed for him more than anyone could even imagine. I wish I had more time to enjoy each moment. He is full of smiles and I still want to take a picture of every single one so a moment is never lost!

I have favorite moments from the past year that make me laugh and some bring up so much emotion they make me cry!

When he was born I only saw him for a moment. The nurses were on their way out the door with him to get him breathing better. My Dr. asked them to stop so I could see him before he was whisked away. It was a brief moment but so memorable. I reached out to touch his face and said his name. Until now only Kevin and I knew what it would be, this was the first time it was spoken aloud to anyone else. The nurses asked me to say it again and then he was gone. I didn't see him again for nearly 24 hours. 

A baby, MY baby, in the nursery I'd always dreamed about, sleeping in my arms while I rock him. Smelling of baby and making little baby grunts. Oh baby smell!! Those first moments in the nursery with him were surreal. I couldn't sleep when he slept, I didn't know how to stop staring at him to even consider sleep! It took complete exhaustion to finally get me to bed. I know our families weren't thrilled with the idea, but I am so happy that we decided to keep everyone at bay and give ourselves time alone with Stryder. It was just myself, Kevin and the baby. Kevin and I could talk candidly and openly about what a miracle he was, what we wanted for his future and go through all the emotions without being interrupted. I will forever cherish the time the three of us had together. 
Stryder has an amazing big brother at home. Maliek always brings a smile to his face and has been so helpful to us. He is an expert at making bottles and watching for 'hazards' as Stryder has become more mobile. 

Kevin as a father. I'm so in love with this man, he's my soul mate. I didn't realize I could love him any deeper than I already did. Then he gave me a mini-Kev. Seeing Kevin with Stryder is a beautiful thing.  He is such a loving father. Much to my dismay Kevin is the favorite parent. Stryder lights up with his dad and has him wrapped around his finger. He is the spitting image of Kevin and has all his wonderful personality traits too. The two of them go to baby gym twice a week and Kevin is great at continuing to push the motor skills at home. When Stryder is restless he walks the house with dad in his carrier. He loves that thing! One of my very special Kevin moments was being able to listen to him as he read a book to Stryder. Kevin didn't realize I was standing outside the door and I was able to hear him describe the pictures and bring the characters to life. 

So much has changed in the past year, I have so much to be thankful for. I'm sad that I can no longer refer to Stryder's age in months but am excited to continue watching him learn and grow. It's been a whirlwind year and I wouldn't change a thing! My only wish is that I am able to continue appreciating the little moments and savoring each milestone.

Happy Birthday my little monster! Mommy loves you more than you will ever know!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Thankful for what I do have

Sometimes it's just way too easy to get caught up in the negatives, or what you view as negatives, in your life. I have been in a rut the past few weeks wishing some things were different, today I had a wake up call that my life is full of amazing and wonderful things. I have a lot to be thankful for.

Kevin is out of work. Bummer. But, bright side, he could have been out of work over two years ago when the layoffs started. He also is still holding his position with the company he was with and has been given a furlough. This means instead of being at the bottom of a list over a hundred deep for work at the hall that he will be the first one offered work once his company has work to give. Another amazing blessing from this is that he is a full-time dad to Stryder. Stryder gets to have a parent home with him and Kevin and I have complete control over exactly the kind of care and developmental activities that are happening. HUGE reward!

Money is tight right now. Bummer. Bright side, money isn't so tight that we are on the street. We have a roof over our heads, we still have cable, we can afford our utilities and food is not in short supply. Yes, I miss going out and I wish we could have done more for my birthday. But, I'm grateful we aren't facing the decisions and realities that so many other families are facing right now. We have our basic needs and a few of the extras. Not bad at all.

Sometimes avoiding the traffic and taking the back roads home gives you an appreciation for all the things you do have in your life. Seeing the poverty and living conditions of those who are really facing tough decisions tends to give you true perspective.

Saturday, May 26, 2012


I just finished watching Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close. It made me miss my Papa.

He was amazing.

He loved me.

I miss him.

Papa's, especially the one's like mine, have a way of making you forget the rest of the world. Papa's find a way to make you think of nothing. With Papa I never had to wonder where I stood in the world. With him I knew I was loved, that I was important and that I made him proud. I never doubted that... not ever. Even when I gave him every reason to change his mind (I wasn't the easiest teenager) I never questioned his love or my place in his heart.

When we knew the end was near and his lucid times were few and far between I asked him questions I knew the answer too. Just to hear the answer again. The last lucid conversation we had I asked him if I had made him proud. I knew I had, he told me enough and made me feel it enough that I didn't really need to ask. But I wanted to hear it one last time. The way he answered is something I'll never forget. He didn't get serious, it was as if my question humored him. He chuckled, smiled wide and answered with a laugh, "Of course you make me proud, what a ridiculous question." He patted my hand and then asked for a sip of water. It was exactly the way I needed the answer to come. It came from his lips as if it was silliness that he even had to say it.

I miss his easy laugh and sly smile. He understood me, in a way I can't describe. But, when I knew I needed it he still made me explain whatever was bothering me or whatever I was trying to figure out. Looking back I see that it was because talking it out is good therapy. He also knew the sweet sound of silence. I'm rarely silent, I always have something to say. But with Papa I found a comfortable silence. The air didn't need to be filled with sounds, I was content to just be with him. Fishing poles and a pocket knife were plenty of noise for a quiet morning. He was the supreme listener and the greatest fisherman I ever knew. He was patient when he needed to be, especially even when he realized I'd never learn to pee outdoors. But, he never let me get away with sassing my grandma. She was a lady, and was to be treated as such. Watching his love for my grandma he taught me that true love does exist. My grandma would always tell me that she hoped I would find someone as special as Papa, who would love me like he loved her.

He made the best hash browns and over easy eggs. He could make a killer sandwich. He taught me that hard work makes you stronger. He was terrible with computers.

He was my Papa, I miss him.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Puke Club - EW

I'm officially a member of the puke club - not willingly.

Everyone told me this was a part of motherhood - I told them they were crazy. I knew I'd get peed on, I knew I might get pooped on but I was confident I could keep from getting puke in my mouth.

I was sooo wrong. Last night I was playing with Stryder after dinner and I lifted him up, he was laughing so I brought him down and we touched foreheads (this is our thing where I whisper I love him or some other sweet sentiment) and sure enough he puked - right IN my mouth. I had no choice but to swallow or spit on my aunt's couch, myself or Stryder. I can't believe I didn't puke myself. OMG! So while I'm cleaning up baby and me the family is laughing hysterically. Ew! All in all it was a good Easter. LOL

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Stryder's first 4 months

These past four months have probably been the most exhausting but definitely, and by far, the most rewarding. I never realized how much joy a little smile could bring me. The last month Stryder has been showing us his personality and his face has completely come to life. He lights up when he sees me, and my heart melts each time.

He is looking to be quite a tall little boy. He's lean and tall, in the 50% for weight but 75-90% for height. Watching him learn is like magic. Watching him sleep is heavenly and when he cuddles into me my heart overflows. This little boy has me completely wrapped around his finger.

Below is a video I made of his first 3 months, as usual I'm late in posts so it's late too :).

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Stryder Don Kendrick

Well I'm a little late in getting Stryder's birth story posted but it's better later than never!

On September 20th just after 3:00AM I woke up to a strong kick and a gush of water. I actually heard the pop of the water breaking, it was the weirdest thing. I woke Kevin up and called my Aunt Red and we headed to the hospital. I was 2 weeks 1 day early so I knew that baby was definitely on his way, they wouldn't make me wait any longer this was finally the real thing.

They got me set up in a room and hooked up to the monitors. I wasn't contracting horribly bad and they weren't too close together. I was only at 3cm, which is what I was at my appointment a few days earlier, so the doctor ordered pitocin shortly after I arrived. Holy crap, that stuff works! All of a sudden the contractions were right on top of each other and incredibly intense. I was trying to hold off on drugs for as long as I could but I wasn't making progress after a few hours and I was in so much pain. I finally let them give me an epidural around 10am. WOW, epidurals are awesome - I could feel all the pressure but no pain. It kind of freaked me out feeling the pressure and no pain but it was definitely better. There was one spot that never did numb but I didn't think anything of it. Things were still not progressing, by 4PM I was still at 3 cm and the baby was starting to show stress with every contraction. The doctor ordered a c-section and the nurse told me it was going to be quick. I was devastated, I really wanted a natural birth. But, more than that I wanted a healthy baby so off we went.

The anesthesiologist gave me a big dose of medicine before taking me to the OR, I had that spot that wouldn't go numb and was able to lift myself up off the bed. When we got to the OR they started prepping me and the stubborn spot on my stomach happened to be the incision site - it was still not numb. The anesthesiologist had to redo the epidural with a spinal block. After over a dozen pokes (my husband counted 18 puncture marks in my back) he finally got it in right and they were able to deliver the baby.

Stryder Don Kendrick was born at 4:48PM. He weighed 7lb 1oz and was 21.5 inches long. He wouldn't cry much and though breathing on his own wasn't taking deep breaths nor was he getting enough oxygen. They took him to the nursery and tried to work with him while I was in recovery.

When I got back to my room they still thought he'd get to come room with me at night. I couldn't wait to see him so was trying to build up my strength to get to the nursery. I got the nurses to agree to let me go if I could get myself from the bed to a wheelchair. By 10PM I thought I could do it and was sooo ready to see Stryder. I called the nurse to help me, Kevin was in the nursery and was able to make it to the wheelchair. As I was heading out of the room Kevin came back to tell me Stryder had to be moved to NICU that he still wasn't breathing deep enough on his own. We couldn't go to the NICU so it wouldn't be until morning that I was able to see him. Kevin was so good and took lots of video and pictures for me to see. We were finally able to see him in the morning and though we couldn't take him out of the incubator we were able to put our hands in and touch him - I also got to change his diaper. He looked so perfect and made so many teeny little expressions, he was a million personalities in one tiny little man. We were in love!!! On day 3 he made it out of the level 3 NICU and was moved to level 2 where we could hold him and cuddle him all we wanted. He developed jaundice and had to get light therapy but finally 24 hours later he was completely healthy and we were able to bring him home. Wow, what a surreal moment, we were actual parents and completely responsible for this tiny perfect little human.

The past 10 weeks have been magical! Kevin was able to stay home with me the first 3 weeks and for the most part it was just the three of us. Stryder is such a mature spirit. He has a million expressions still and is our little Bejamin Button. The past week he's started smiling and trying to talk and laugh. He has so much head control and even from a couple weeks old was able to lift his head up and do tummy time.

Maliek is so excited to have a little brother. When Stryder cries he'll tear up sometimes wondering how he can help him.

Nine years of trying, nine months of waiting and we finally have our precious miracle. What a blessing!!!

Below are a bunch of pictures, I think they're pretty awesome! :)

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Pick a label for our baby!

Okay... not a big secret that we've struggled with this. Until we actually had a viable pregnancy and had to seriously contemplate giving our child their first and most prominent label we didn't realize how hard this would be. We've narrowed it down (we think) to a list of 8 names. These are in no particular order. Please select your pick from the poll below. Also, if you have a different combination of the names that you feel fits better - feel free to comment!

Thank you Friends & Family! Kylee is really looking forward to nailing this down so fate will finally allow the contractions to progress. For the last 48 hours she's had completely inconsistent but painful contractions.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

2011 Family Pictures

Family Pictures 2011 - taken by Tracy Porter Photography. These were taken at Antelope Island in Utah.

35 Weeks

Wow - my blogging goals are shot! I can't believe that I've waited this long to update.

The pregnancy is going well so far. And by well I mean that the baby is doing great - I'm miserable :). I'm convinced after this last week that the end of pregnancy is your bodies way of mentally preparing you for child birth. The discomfort and exhaustion actually makes you want to shove a watermelon out of a place that was never supposed to be that size. Honestly, I'm completely freaked out about childbirth. I've always wanted to be a mom, I can't remember a time as a little girl that I didn't dream of being a mom. But the actual getting the baby here part freaks me out!

I've always told people that my two boys are perfect - adoption made them that way - they didn't give me any stretch marks, no painful labor, no up all nights or diapers and potty training. Now, all joking aside, I'm freaked out about taking care of a new baby. I'm a control freak and there is nothing about the next few weeks (or months for that matter) that I can really control or predict. But, I'm also so excited to have him here!!

We still don't have a name for the little pirate. I like Kameron Michael, Kevin really likes Travis Ryan or Ryan James and Maliek wants to name him Chandler. I guess we'll know when we see him. We have everything we need but a crib mattress and we'll be getting that this weekend. The nursery is set up, the bassinet Kevin surprised me with has perfect little bedding his mother made ready to go. My hospital bag is packed, the diaper bag is packed, his coming home outfit is ready. The car seat will be installed this week. All we need now is a baby. His movements are so strong now and Kevin can really see him moving around under my skin. Kevin thinks it's hilarious to poke my almost outie belly button because the baby kicks back every single time.

We've been blessed with the timing of Kevin's layoff and he will get to stay home with the baby the first few months. This has really taken a huge load off my mind about daycare and going back to work. I'm hoping to go back after 4 weeks, knowing Kevin is home will make that goal a little easier. The loss of his check has hurt but we knew it was coming and planned as best we could. Now baby and daddy can spend time together through at least the holidays. He should be back to work in January as long as everything goes according to plan. It's crazy to think that we will have a baby home for Christmas this year. We've tried for so long to have one I'd let myself give up on the thought of a baby's first Christmas. This is really going to be a year to remember!

Below is a slide show from 13 weeks to now of my baby bump. My Aunt Karen has insisted that I post pictures, thanks to her I have this photo log of my ever growing bump.