January 1, 2017

Happy New Year 2017


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2017! OH MY!
This past year, 2016, was crazy, no doubt about it. We did a lot of traveling at the beginning of the year because two of Steve's brothers got married. I got pregnant. We bought a house. We moved in June. Cole started Kindergarten. Steve did a BUNCH of remodels on the house, with lots of help from Brent and friends too. We had a baby and became a family of five. And I turned 30!!!!

Seriously, how do you top a year like that?! It was all so busy and went by fast. I'm ready for 2017 to be the happiest year of my life because I'm not pregnant anymore and I have the cutest little baby to love on this year. ♥

December 30, 2016

Some Christmas memories!


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We all love Christmas-time around here, I just wish I was able to document it better than I did this year! It was so perfectly snowy this Christmas; I found myself wishing I could go hiking in the mountains just for the pictures! But it just was not realistic with a newborn. Steve even went skiing with his siblings. I wanted to come along but it just doesn't work when you're nursing a baby around the clock. It's ok. One of these days our whole family will be on the slopes :)

Here is what happened this Christmas season:

*The boys all dressed up for church the Sunday before Christmas #thebyersbrothers #looking #so #handsome ;)
*Crew not looking much like a newborn anymore!
*Cole on his birthday! It was pajama day at his school!
*We attended the live nativity our community put on. It was so uplifting ♥
*Crew turned 2 months old on Christmas day! And he was giving his daddy the cutest smiles. We love him so much.
*I had fun hosting Christmas Eve dinner and decorating my table for it! We had Steve's parents and siblings over! And it was fun reenacting the nativity with them! The kids loved it!!
*The boys on Christmas morning playing with their new toys!! They also got a full size trampoline (from us of course:) because they are spoiled!! haha
*Looking dapper on Christmas Sunday! Crew looked so huge in Cole's arms!
*Sledding and building snowmen on Christmas Eve! Cole can stay out in the snow for hours!!
*And the boys convinced me to buy them those Santa hats after Christmas because they were on clearance! I loved seeing how excited they were about it!

Christmas has come and gone and it was kind of a blur, not gonna lie. Life gets so crazy and I'm trying to keep up. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don't. I'm grateful for my Savior who fills in my gaps when I fall short. Which is more times than I'd like to admit. I'm grateful to him and that we could celebrate his birth this holiday season. I have a lot to be grateful for.

December 27, 2016

♥Merry Christmas♥ xoxox


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I had to share our Christmas card pictures! Thanks to my lovely sister in law, Alyse for taking these of us! We love them! It was 5 degrees Fahrenheit when we took these and so it's a miracle that we even got a picture that I like. Because we did not last long! I was so worried about baby Crew getting cold! Luckily he was fine. And now we have our first pictures as a family of FIVE!!!

I feel like this Christmas season was a little crazy, probably because we just had a baby. I don't feel like I got into the Christmas spirit as much as I would have liked, but I do love this time of year. And with it being so snowy this year, it makes it that much more magical :)

Merry Christmas!! LOVE, THE BYERS

December 9, 2016

The Byers Brothers


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Three boys!! Three brothers ♥♥♥  Now that there's three of them I thought they deserved their own hashtag now: #thebyersbrothers #thebyersbrothers #thebyersbrothers It's like it was always meant to be!

Little Crew is so loved by his older brothers, it melts my heart. I'm so lucky that they're mine. I filmed them a few weeks ago when Crew was 3 weeks old. Now he's six and a half weeks old!! This little video is a favorite of mine. I love my babies so much.

December 7, 2016

Becoming a mama all over again.


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When my sister Emma was in town, I had her take some pictures of me and Crew. He was only three weeks old and so itty bitty and perfect. He still is ♥ I love these pictures, even if I'm still so swollen in the face. Having a newborn is so heavenly and it's these moments and memories that I always want to hold on to. I think I'm happiest with a little baby in my arms. It's like I'm finally doing what I was always meant to be doing with my life in these moments. I love love love being a mama. And I'm so lucky to have Crew as my son. He is an absolute dream baby. As were all of my boys. I could not be any luckier.

Thank you for making me a mama for the third time, baby Crew. It's an honor. ♥

November 28, 2016

Life as we know it.


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A few snaps from the first few weeks with Crew in our family! Life as we know it will never be the same. In the best way possible!

November 15, 2016

Crew Anderson at three weeks old ♥


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Three weeks old sounds awfully close to one month old! It is truly incredible how much faster time goes by when you are no longer pregnant! I have been in just absolute baby heaven having Crew in our lives. He is such a chill baby and hardly ever cries, just like how his brothers were when they were babies. Not sure how I got so lucky to have three chill babies; it seems Steve and I just make them that way ;)

Emma is letting me use this bassinet basket and I think it is the cutest thing ever. I have it right next to my side of the bed and he sleeps in it really well every night. I just pull him into bed with me whenever I need to feed him. I've also been so lucky to have had such a smooth go with nursing, all three times now! I don't know how I've gotten so lucky, but I've heard horror stories of not producing enough milk or producing too much milk and getting mastitis all the time. All three of my boys have had such an amazing suck. I feel so lucky. No wonder I love the baby phase. No wonder I absolutely adore nursing as well.

I am in baby heaven for sure. I never want it to end! Ha! But at the same time I love seeing him grow. It's just such a happy time for me ♥

November 1, 2016

Crew's Birth Story


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Oh where do I begin?! I'm just so happy he's here! Life is so so sooo much better when you aren't pregnant. Even if healing after labor can be no fun. At least you have a cute little newborn to snuggle and make you feel better :)

Crew was born on Tuesday, October 25th, 2016, a whole five days early! I had my induction date set for Saturday, the 29th and I thought for sure he would be born that day. I told everyone this whole pregnancy that my babies don't come early and that I have to be induced for my babies to come out. Because I 100% believed that.  The weeks leading up to my induction date, I had sooo many things to do. I had so many pictures to edit from photoshoots, I wanted to deep clean my house, work on this blog etc. I got a lot of it done, but there was still quite a bit I never got around to.

On Monday, the 24th, I got so much done! I was on a roll! I somehow had so much energy. I went to my last OB appointment where she checked me and I was only dilated to a 1 which I was fine with because I still had so much to do. I even scheduled a dentist appointment for Wednesday the 26th because I had a filling fall out of my mouth (second one this pregnancy! Laaame!!) and that was how sure I was that I wouldn't be having my baby. Haha. I did loads and loads of laundry and I even made brownies and dropped them off at three of my friends' houses! I stayed up late that night editing pictures and keeping Steve company while he painted the baby's crib white in the garage. We were getting it done!! We didn't go to bed that night until about 1 am. Yikes.

Well, Tuesday morning, the 25th,  I was so tired. We all had a slow morning. I let the boys destroy the house because I was tired of getting after them. I talked to Steve's sister Alyse on the phone, and was planning on finishing some picture editing. After talking to Alyse on the phone, I decided I should probably fold all the laundry I'd done the day before. I went upstairs and started folding the laundry and putting them in piles by my bed.

That's when Lissie facetimed me. It was about 10 am. I hadn't talked to her in a while so I was excited to talk to her. There I was just folding laundry, talking to my sis when I felt something trickle out of me. I really didn't think anything of it because it was just a little bit, and honestly, stranger things have happened while pregnant, believe me. A few minutes later a little more trickled out. Again, I hardly made a mental note of it. I was just distracted by talking to Lissie. But then it happened the third time. And that was when I was like, wait a second, I don't think this is normal. I told Lissie to hold on and went to the bathroom where I tinkled a little bit and then was convinced it was just pee. I was so confused! All the while Lissie was talking to me on facetime and as I got up from the toilet, all of a sudden a LOT more came out of me! My water has never broken on its own so this was all new to me! Lissie was like "I was there with Emma when her water broke too!!" Haha.

I hung up with Lissie because I was still not sure what was going on. Was I leaking pee? Or did my water really just break?! I called Steve and told him what was going on and while I was on the phone with him a little blood came out too. That's when he was convinced my water had broken and he hung up so he could finish up with his patient and head home.

At this point my kids were still running around the house, making a mess, I had a bunch of unfolded laundry on my messy bed, breakfast was still on the table downstairs and my house was generally just a disaster. Not to mention, I looked like a train wreck. Luckily I had showered and shaved the day before (kind of a big deal when you're 9 months pregnant;) so I didn't worry about those things, I just tried to get dressed and ready and clean up and pack my hospital bag all while trying not to leak amniotic fluid all over the floor. I was trying not to worry but in the back of my head I kept thinking about how quickly Logan came once they had broken my water and I wondered if this little guy would come just as fast! I was also GBS positive this pregnancy which means that I needed to get antibiotics in me before the baby came out otherwise he could be infected as he came out. So I was generally in a hurry to get to the hospital but also look decent.

Yvonne had been in Utah for a few days and was on her way back as all of this was happening. Steve told her my water had broken and luckily she was only in Coeur d'Alene, about 30 minutes away. She came straight to our house and picked up Logan. Steve got home about the same time, packed his bag and then I fed Cole an early lunch since we would be taking him to a friend's house so that they could take him to the bus stop when the time came. We took him to my friend Staci's house and she ended up taking him all the way to school which was so nice of her.

Before we left, Steve gave me a blessing. It's amazing how blessings can make you feel peaceful in the moment when just seconds before you were feeling a little crazy. It was a beautiful blessing and what I remember the most was that I would have help from above. I'm so so grateful for that blessing.

Then we were off to the hospital! It was a beautiful day and Steve made a comment about how it was a perfect day to have a baby and how we didn't see this coming at all. I was probably contracting but if I was I didn't notice because it didn't hurt.

As we walked into the hospital, lots of amniotic fluid was coming out and I was so embarrassed because I felt like I was peeing my pants! I walked verrrry slowly. haha. They took me straight to my room with no problems, and my nurse told me to change into a gown and then she would check to see if it was really amniotic fluid or not. Up until then we hadn't considered that maybe this was a false alarm! I asked her "If it's not amniotic fluid then what else could it be?!" She was like, that's a good question! Luckily that little strip immediately turned bright blue so this baby was really coming. She checked me and said that I was dilated to a 2 and a half which I was kind of surprised about since I was only a 1 less than 24 hours before. When she checked me it hurt like CRAZY! I don't know what she did but it really made me cramp up. I was anxious to get my antibiotics in me since I was still thinking that maybe this baby would come fast. Teri, the lead nurse came in and she put in my IV. I requested that they numb me up first because of the bad experience I had when they put my IV in when I was induced with Cole. I also requested my left arm since that arm hurts way less than my right arm for some weird reason. She tired on my left arm, but it didn't work. So she put it in on my right. Getting my IV is seriously my least favorite part of the hospital experience. Once that IV goes in, I feel like I can't move my arm at all, it hurts so bad!!

Cathy, my midwife showed up shortly after that. Gosh, I love her. She was so great. She ordered my penicillin and told everyone not to check me for the next 4 hours so that I wouldn't progress and so we would have enough time to get all my penicillin in me. When they hooked it up to my IV, I had no idea how much it would actually hurt. Susanna was my nurse at the time and she accidentally had the penicillin dripping in too quickly and not enough clear fluid going in at the same time. I'm sure it made me look like a wimp but I did not care, I cried like a baby because it hurt so bad. It felt like someone was cutting my arm off and it burned so so bad. Steve quickly called the nurse back in where she saw me sobbing and easily fixed her mistake. She apologized so I couldn't be mad at her. She really was a sweet nurse. She brought in warmed blankets for me which made such a huge difference.

Once I got my first dose of penicillin, it was time to wait! It took about an hour for all of it to drip into my IV and then I needed to keep that baby inside me for the next 4 hours. Steve and I watched How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days on Netflix. I got up to go to the bathroom a few times since they were pumping so much fluid in me and I kept having to change the towels between my legs since I would gush amniotic fluid out of me from time to time. It was pretty gross, not gonna lie.

The waiting part was so hard! I was just nervous in general because I wasn't sure if I was going to get an epidural or not. I was afraid of the inevitable pain if I didn't get one, but I was also afraid of getting an epidural too. It's just such an ordeal getting a big needle put in your back; the thought of it just makes me queasy. We watched more shows. We sat around and talked since I couldn't get up and walk. It was the longest part of my labor, the waiting game.

When the four hours were up and I was due for another dose of penicillin, Cathy came back in and checked me to see if I'd made any progress. I was dilated to a 5 almost 6 and they thought that was great progress and they thought I'd have the baby before the next four hours were up. So did we. I was just glad I'd gotten my first dose in, so now I felt like he could actually come out. I really didn't want another dose of penicillin because it hurt so dang much getting it in. And I felt like my body was so pumped full of medicine and I was so hungry and my heartburn was getting so bad. I was just ready for him to come out.

It was around 5 pm at this point and we just kept sitting around, Steve watched shows, I watched my contractions on the screen. They came every 2 to 4 minutes and they didn't really hurt. I mean, they didn't feel great, but they didn't hurt. They just felt like period cramps, nothing more. The nurses and Cathy thought it was crazy that I wasn't in pain. My nurse, Susanna, told me that if I didn't get an epidural soon, it would be too late. I knew that deep down. I wanted one, but not enough to go through the process of actually getting one in my back so I never asked for one. And then she told me "You know you can do it though, right?" referring to going natural. And right when she said that, I think I decided in my head that I really could. It felt nice to have her on my side, helping me.

When Cathy checked me again a couple hours later, I was dilated to an 8. My contractions were getting more and more uncomfortable but really not that painful. And they just kept coming every 2 to 3 minutes. They were getting stronger on the screen but the baby wasn't dropping. Cathy said it's normal for the baby to take longer to drop when it's your third baby. I'm not sure why. But not only was he not dropping, he also kept changing positions and going back and forth from being anterior to posterior. An hour went by but and I was still at an 8 and not making progress, she tried having me lay on my side for a while to help thin out my cervix on one side. I did that for a while without much change so they had me get on the medicine ball and "bounce" around a little bit to help him drop. I was so swollen everywhere from all the fluid they were pumping in me.

By this time, I had a new nurse, Stacey. I loved her. She was seriously so friendly and sweet. And so encouraging! She was also really nice and supportive about me not getting an epidural. When the baby still didn't drop much after being on the medicine ball, I got back into bed and tried a couple more positions. Cathy came into our room at this point because it was after 10 pm and she didn't have anywhere else to be. She talked to Steve and I just listened to their conversation. I wasn't in the mood to talk. My contractions were getting more and more uncomfortable and they were starting to make me feel nauseous. Not eating all day I'm sure did not help. Then Cathy decided to put me on a little bit of pitocin. I'd never been on pitocin without pain meds before so I was really nervous about it. But they said it would just be a little bit and it would really get the baby to drop so I agreed.

I wasn't on pitocin for very long when I started to feel more pressure down there. I started having to breathe through my contractions because THIS is when it really started hurting. Cathy checked me after almost every contraction to see if he was coming down. It hurt. All of it. It just hurt like crazy. I was starting to lose it. Thank goodness for having Steve by my side. He rubbed my back and held my hand. For some reason being able to hold his hand really helped me through my contractions! I squeezed his hand so so hard and I remember digging my nails into his skin like crazy! Ha! I asked him if it hurt and he said yes but that he didn't care. You wouldn't think that would make such a difference, but it seriously helped.

When my contractions were on top of each other, I think I started to panic. I told everyone I didn't want to do this anymore. The thought of another contraction coming scared me. Cathy told me to breathe and let the baby come down and I remember I was able to force my body to relax for a split second and let the baby come down and I would hear them say to themselves, wow, she has such control! But my control never lasted for very long. He was posterior while he was coming down which means it takes longer. I felt like I was at a 9 forEVER, I was dying. I couldn't lay on my back because it hurt so so so bad. I wasn't really screaming, I was just moaning and panting and crying. Cathy had my laying on my side and I ended up delivering on my side too because she said you're less likely to tear that way. I was having a really really hard time and Cathy could tell I needed at least a little bit of relief to help get him all the way down. She asked me if I wanted some pain medication in my IV and I was like YES! After the fact, Steve said that he could tell a difference once they put it in my IV but in the moment I didn't notice any difference at all. It just hurt. Hurt like crazy.

When he was finally crowning and it was time for me to push, I was in so much pain! I wanted him out!!! I remember that I didn't ever really open my eyes, I just kept them shut the whole time. I remember Stacey being right there and telling me I was doing a great job. I kept saying out loud, Help me, help me. I think I was saying it to her, to Steve, to Cathy. To anyone who would hear me. It was almost like it was a prayer to God. Help me get him out. Help it end.

It was finally time to push. Pushing took away the contraction pain, but it caused a whole different kind of pain. A burning, skin tearing pain. They had me grab my legs and hold them up and put my chin on my chest and push with all my might. I screamed a few times but Cathy told me not to scream because I could use that energy to push. In the moment I was kind of annoyed but I know she was just trying to help me get him out faster. I think I pushed about 7 to 8 times. That might not seem like a lot but in the moment it feels like a lifetime when you have to push again. Cathy would point and say "push here" and when I did exactly that, I heard them whisper again, wow, such control! Having her point out where to push really really helped though.

And then I gave one more push with all of my being and I felt the relief as his head came out! Then his shoulders needed to come out. It hurt still, but not nearly as bad. Cathy didn't want me to push his shoulders out, she did something to help them come out in a way that I wouldn't tear. She really knew what she was doing and I was so grateful to have her there. Then his shoulders were out and he was completely out all together! Oh the relief!!

They put him on my chest immediately and he was so so so cute. Seriously, he had the cutest roundest face. The pediatric nurse was right there suctioning out whatever was in his throat. I asked her if he was ok and she kept saying yes. He tried to open his eyes but it was too bright for his little eyes. He had such a cute little whimper. He never full on cried, he just had the saddest little whimper. It was adorable. I immediately thought about how he looked just like he did in the dream I had about him a few weeks before he was born. His face was so familiar. I somehow knew he would look the way he did.

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^^He came out with soooo much of that white vernix all over his body!^^

Then I felt my placenta deliver. I wanted to see what it looked like, but I didn't have the energy. I was already asking for pain medicine because it still aches so bad after the baby comes out. It seemed like it took forever for them to hook up the motrin to my IV. Once the placenta was out, they had Steve cut the cord. One of the nurses took a picture of it but I think my privates are half way in that shot so it will never be seen haha.

They let him lay on my chest for a good while while Cathy checked to see if I needed stitches. I didn't! That's why she's awesome. I really think with anyone else I would have torn. I remember my legs were shaking for a good while before they put the motrin in my IV. You wouldn't think it would still hurt so much afterwards but it does!

The rest of the story is my recovery and that's not nearly as interesting. It's all gone very smoothly and I feel so so lucky. I'm in good health and it's only been a week since he was born! And baby boy is just a dream. I am so so so in love with him. He makes the cutest little squeaks and noises, eats and sleeps like a champ, hates having his diaper changed but is generally just the easiest baby. I thank God for him every day. I don't know how I got so incredibly lucky.

The next day we had to decide on a name. I don't know why, but naming this baby was so hard!  We had a huge long list of names and at the top of my list was Keith. I've always liked that name and since it's a family name, I really wanted to use it. Steve never budged on that one though so even though I kept bringing it up, it was never a realistic option. Other names on the list were:

Micah
Anderson
Heath
Keith
Asher
Ashton

It wasn't until just a couple weeks ago where Steve asked me out of no where one day if I liked the name Crew. At first I said no! Haha. I thought it might be too trendy. But the more I thought about it, the more I liked it. And I thought it sounded really good with the other boys' names. Cole, Logan and Crew. It just fit really well. And somehow, because baby boy has dark hair, Crew seems to fit him better. I'm not sure why! We decided on Anderson because it's my dad's middle name (and a bunch of his cousins middle name as well!) and since Crew is just a one syllable name, the middle name just needed to be longer. And I just love his name. Crew Anderson. So so perfect. We've been surprised at how many comments we've gotten on his name! Like, so so so many people have told us they love his name. We were not expecting that at all!

We're so glad he's here and a part of our family. Seeing my boys with him is just the sweetest thing. They love him to pieces. They are both such great big brothers and so far Logan is handling it very well. I feel so lucky to be the mother of three beautiful beautiful boys. I never imagined I'd have such beautiful children, I love them so much.

Welcome to our family, Crew. We've been waiting for you for nine long months and are so glad you're finally here ♥

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