Saturday, December 31, 2011

Looking Back on 2011...and forward to 2012

It has been another great year with some ups and some downs.  Here are some of the highlights:
  • Wyatt turned 2 in February and started being able to talk to us a lot more.  He also had a brief trip to the hospital at the end of November for what seemed to be an asthma attack, but we are hoping that it is a one-time occurrence and not something that we will have to watch for during cold season.  He is also mostly potty-trained which is awesome as it means we will only have one child in diapers in 2012 :)
  • Connor turned 4 in August and started Junior Kindergarten in September at Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha.
  • Julie and Geofford celebrated their 5 year wedding anniversary on September 16th.
  • We welcomed Elena Kwok to the family on February 20th.  She is the third child of Francis (Julie's youngest brother) and Jaclyn.
  • Damian (Julie's middle brother) and Michelle got married on October 1st, so we had  many excuses to have parties: Stag and Doe, Bridal Shower, Bachelorette, Bachelor Party, Rehearsal Dinner, and the actual wedding!
  • Cassie (Geofford's cousin) and Ian got married on April 8th in London, England, so Geofford and Julie decided to make the trip across the pond.  Julie had a bit more vacation than Geofford (since she didn't accompany him to Prague in 2010 for the WUCC), so she went for a week whereas Geofford was in London for a long weekend (Thursday morning to Sunday).
  • We also had the opportunity to celebrate friends' weddings: Cindy and Zach (June 4th), Tony and Whynter (July 30th) and Kevin and Lily (October 8th).
  • Julie got called for jury duty in March, so she got to see the justice system first-hand.  She's glad to have experienced it, but hopes that she will not have to do it again.
  • Julie's Poh-Poh (maternal grandmother) passed away on April 14th.  She lived a good life (she would have been 100 in September), with 11 children, 25 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren (I hope I'm not missing anyone) at the time of her death.
  • Julie was able to attend the Parapan American Games in Guadalajara, MX in November.  It was an amazing experience and she thoroughly enjoyed her first multi-sport games.
  • Geofford was the best man in Damian's wedding and a groomsman in Tony's wedding, so he had a few commitments attached to each of those weddings.
  • Geofford also played competitive ultimate with the master's team GLUM again this summer.  They came in 2nd at the Canadian Ultimate Championships (which were held in Ottawa) in August.  It was a disappointing finish for the team as they were hoping to win, which meant that the team's leadership would have the opportunity to select the team going to the World Ultimate Championships in 2012 which will be held in Sakai, Japan from July 7-14th.  Geofford has applied to be a part of Team Canada, but hasn't heard back yet.  He is supposed to hear sometime today if he made the short list, so we shall see...
  • Baby Seaborn #3 was conceived and has been demanding a lot more attention than his/her older brothers did while in utero...I wonder if that is a sign of things to come in 2012 and beyond...

Here is our year in review in photos:

As the year comes to a close, it is traditional to make resolutions for the New Year.  We have already started one of our resolutions, and that is to eat healthier and with a better social conscience.  It is something that we have been thinking about for a while and the opportunity dropped into our laps during the holidays.  We received a visit from Nutrafarms asking if we wanted a free meat sample.  We decided to listen to the pitch and found out that the meat is not organic, but it is all from Ontario and it is all free-range, grain/corn fed and antibiotic free.  We decided to give it a try as we were trying to purchase things more local, but meat was something that always alluded us because we didn't have the time to visit different farms/farmers markets, etc. to source out our meat.  We are going to try it out this year and see how it works out.  The cost works out to be about half of our yearly grocery bill, but we figured the value should be worth it.  We received the shipment of meat yesterday and we will see how things work out.  Here is a picture of the meat:

The other big resolution that I want to make is to try and spend more quality time with family and friends.  This may be a difficult one to keep, depending on Baby #3's temperament, but as I will be on maternity leave for the majority of the year, I'm hoping that we can make it happen.

With everything that we have been through the past couple weeks, a few people have commented to me that I have been quite optimistic through everything that we have endured.  I guess my initial reaction was that this is nothing that I can control and if I keep thinking positively then I will be able to get through this rough patch, because that is all that this is, it's a little bump in the road of life.  In the grand scheme of things, my life is pretty good and that is what I focus on.  I was listening to the CBC this morning and I was reminded of the letter that Jack Layton wrote to Canadian's right before he passed away.  The closing paragraph is quite moving and is something that I will strive to achieve:

"My friends, love is better than anger.  
Hope is better than fear.  
Optimism is better than despair.  
So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic.  
And we'll change the world."

Wishing you a wonderful 2012!  


Monday, December 26, 2011

Happy Boxing Day (aka the 2nd Day of Christmas)

We hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, Chanukah, Festivus, or whatever else you celebrate at this time of year.  We are celebrating the fact that we are still a family of 4 and Baby Seaborn #3 is still enjoying his/her home in my belly.  It has been two weeks since I was admitted into the hospital and I feel like we are in a good place right now.  I am almost at 28 weeks (which is apparently a major milestone in baby development) and so far so good.  Modified bed rest is a lot better than complete bed rest and I was happy to be able to leave the house twice on Christmas day - once to go to mass and the other to go to Christmas dinner.  It was nice to go out into the world and see friends and family outside of my home.

There was a challenge called the Hourly Photo Challenge that was issued by a blogger that I follow.  I was able to capture most of the day with the exception of the two hour block that I was napping in the afternoon.  I managed to post most of my pictures on twitter/facebook before nap, but everything post-nap I uploaded to today.

Here is my Christmas Day in photos:

9:00am - The boys actually let us sleep in past 8:00am, so my first picture was of us having breakfast after we opened our stockings.

10:00am - Getting ready to go to church, I wanted to capture the fact that it was actually a White Christmas

11:00am - I was actually in mass, so I couldn't capture a picture, but I did take a picture of the alter and environment after mass at Good Shepherd Parish (so this one was actually closer to noon, but not quite there, so I count it for the 11:00am picture)

Noon - My parents came over after mass and my mom made the boys reindeer hats, so I thought that they were pretty cue.

1:00pm - The tradition at our house (so far) is to open stockings before breakfast, have breakfast, go to mass, have lunch and then open the gifts under the tree.  The boys don't know any better at this point, so it stretches out the day (but also compresses the gift opening time as Wyatt still needs to take a nap).  So far, we have always made the same breakfast strata for lunch and it seems to be quite the hit as Geofford hasn't let me make anything else.  This year it was a team effort as I can only do so much in the kitchen.  Here is what was left after everyone had lunch.

So for the 2-4pm hourly photos, I was unable to take any there is a slight gap in our day.  Wyatt and I were napping, but I'm not sure what else was going on the house...

5:00pm - Part of the boys' stockings was a beautiful wig - all of the male Seaborns (from my immediate family) donned these wigs to enter into the house for Christmas Dinner.  I personally think my boys look like Thing 1 and Thing 2

6:00pm - The exchanging of the gifts - round 2.  This is a beautiful tissue pouch designed and created by Geofford's cousin - Chidima Nzakamulilo.

7:00pm - We are starting the first course of dinner: Geofford's aunt's fabulous Vichyssoise and her wonderful rolls which are a family secret.

8:00pm - The turkey dinner with the Seaborns is always a feast, so I took a picture of my plate, which is a pretty good representation of all of the fabulous dishes.  I think the only thing that I am missing is the cranberry sauce, which was very tasty.

9:00pm - I didn't get a very good picture of the plum pudding, but I didn't get to eat it anyways because of all of the brandy on it, so instead I took a picture of my Christmas Cracker (and the obligatory joke contained in it).

10:00pm - The last photo of the day.  The boys were already in melt-down mode seeing as it was 2.5 hours after their regular bedtime, so instead I took a picture of the Seaborn's fabulous tree.  I wish we had taller ceilings to accommodation such a big tree, but we don't have that many ornaments yet, so it's probably better that we have a smaller tree :)  The picture doesn't do the tree justice, but I would guess that it is almost a 9' tree.

I really enjoyed the Hourly Photo Challenge and hope the next time I do it, I can actually take and post the pictures throughout the day :)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Happy 35th Birthday Geofford!

Happy Birthday to Geofford!  He turns 35 today and he is still only has to care for two children.  Baby Seaborn #3 is still growing nicely and I haven't had any other abnormal pains, which is great!  We have made it to Week 27, which is still 10 weeks from full term, but as everyone keeps telling me, every day/week counts, so it's a good milestone.

The adjustment to bed rest has been quite difficult, but I have been lucky to have a very supportive family who have all helped out immensely.  The boys seem to understand that something is up and have adjusted to all of the extra attention from our extended family, so they don't miss not having as much of mom's attention.

Fortunately, I only had to do 4 full days of bed rest at home.  At my appointment with the Maternal-Fetal Medicine Day Unit (aka High Risk unit) at the Civic Hospital on Tuesday, I was informed that the leak in the amniotic sac was probably high and was able to seal itself as I was no longer leaking fluid.  Also, during the ultrasound that same morning they were able to measure adequate amniotic fluid around baby, so that was all great news.  The only bad news that we did receive was, during the ultrasound, they found that the baby has an enlarged kidney, which he/she may grow out of if he/she continues to develop in utero.  As the baby's structures are so small, just a small blockage in the ureter could cause the build up of urine in the kidney.  There is nothing medical that they can do at this point except to monitor the kidney and hope that it can be resolved before the baby is born.

I was told that I was being discharged from High Risk and could continue following my own doctors for the rest of the pregnancy unless something else came up.  Since I was no longer with high risk I was told that I could do modified bed rest, which is essentially house arrest with the ability to visit the outside world on an as needed basis.  This was great news to my ears, but I do realize that I still have to be very careful as to not go into pre-term labour.  I'm going to bring it up with my OB, but I am hoping that this means that our original plan of having the baby at 37 weeks is still on the table, but I will find that out at my 30 week appointment on January 12th when they schedule the c-section.

Modified bed rest has been ok for the past two days.  It is nice to be able to sit at my desktop computer instead of having to work off of my laptop, but I do miss all of the ergonomic upgrades that I have at my desk at work.  I never really realized how much they do help.  If all goes well over the next few weeks, then I hope to be able to able to go into the office a few times a week after the school Christmas break, but I was told by a few people that I shouldn't rush things, so this is all pending my progress.

In non-baby news, my family was able to trim the tree (I just took pictures) with the kids.  We were lucky to have purchased our tree before I was admitted to the hospital, but we did have a naked tree (as coined by my niece) for a week.

More pictures of the kids with the tree can be found on our flickr photostream as well as other pictures of our adventures.

Thanks again to everyone for all of your love and support, I will try and respond to your messages, it just may take me a little while, but I will have some time in the next couple weeks :)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Escaping from the hospital!

I have been given the official word from the doctor that I will be going home today.  I am no longer leaking amniotic fluid (so potentially the leak healed, or it is just up high) and I do not seem to be going into labour, so that's great news.

I will be on bed rest for the next little while, but bed rest at home will be way better than bed rest here at the hospital.  My first goal will be completed tonight as I will return home, so I guess the next short term goal is to keep baby in the oven until at least 2012...which doesn't seem so bad, but it is 16 days away.

Thanks for all of the positive vibes and messages!


My doctor came in this morning and ran a test.  If the test comes back negative and my ultrasound (that is booked for this afternoon at 3pm) goes well, then there is a good chance that I will be able to go home today!  There seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel.

The attending physician at the High Risk Unit also came to see me and indicated that he felt that I would also probably be able to return home today, so that is double hope.  He also seemed to indicate that if things go well in the next week, I would only have to return to the High Risk Unit next week for a follow-up appointment and an ultrasound, and if all went well then I would be discharged from High Risk and could continue seeing my own doctors.

So does this mean that if all goes well in the next week, I will be off bed rest?  That was the question that I didn't think of until after he left.  Is that hoping for too much at this point?  We shall see.  I guess one step at a time is what I should be doing at this point.  My short term goal is to go home, so I will continue focusing on that.

Thanks for all of the thoughts and prayers thus far.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A slight complication...

Here is a quick update on Baby Seaborn #3.  It has been an eventful last few days to say the least.

I was admitted to the Civic Hospital on Monday evening because apparently my water broke which is an indication of labour.  Seeing as I am only at 25 weeks gestation (which is about 6.5 months, full term being 37 weeks or about 9 months), this is too early for this to be happening.  As far as the doctors can tell, I have not gone into labour yet, which is good but I have been placed on bed rest for the remainder of my pregnancy (which will hopefully last at least 2 more months if we are lucky).  I am in the hospital as they are administering antibiotics via IV to try and close the hole in the amniotic sac or at least to prevent infection for me and the baby.  Also, I have been given steroids to help the baby's lungs and brain develop in case I deliver in the next few days (eek).  I was informed though, that the chances of the baby surviving at this point is about 80% if I deliver today and if the baby survives there is a further 70-75% chance that the baby will not have any major complications.  All that being said, the odds of having a healthy baby increases every day that I can keep him/her in utero. 

My current plan is to leave the hospital tomorrow (since I will have completed the IV antibiotics) and then ideally deliver the baby via c-section (due to history and another fun complication with the umbilical cord) at 34 weeks (where the risk of infection outweighs the risk of having a pre-term baby) which puts the delivery date around February 9th, which is a little earlier than I originally hoped which was 37 weeks.  But on the bright side, I don't have to worry about the baby being born on February 29th (seeing as this year is a leap year).  Again, this is my plan, but as history has shown, my babies do not like to follow the laid out plan (Connor being born during 2007 Nationals and Wyatt being born a week and a day before the scheduled c-section).  Let's hope that this baby listens better to the previous two, but I can only hope.  Again this is my plan, but I still have to wait and see what the doctor's say.  I am hoping that they agree with my plan, and all things look good so far).

When I stated that I wanted to update the blog more often, I was hoping for bi-weekly updates, but it looks like I have a little more time on my hands, so I hope to able to provide more updates on Baby #3 as well as the rest of the family.

Latest ultrasound taken the morning after I was looks ok.

A gift from niece Norah.  On each day of advent, their advent calendar has a family member's name.  Tuesday's name was Baby Seaborn #3.  She drew us a picture of all of the people praying for a safe outcome.

Her other gift to me was a drawing of herself.  Since she couldn't come to the hospital, she drew me a picture of herself so she could keep me company at the hospital :)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Time flies...

It's hard to believe that it is almost the end of 2011, where does the time go?  I can't believe that I have already been married for just over 5 years, I have school age child, another who is almost out of diapers and a third on the way!  Yikes!

November flew by, mostly because I was in Guadalajara, Mexico for the 2011 Parapan American Games for work for just over two weeks.  It was an amazing experience as it was my first major multi-sport games and I was part of the Team Canada Mission Staff.  It was great getting to know the athletes, their coaches and the support staff.  I worked on the operations team which meant that I lived right in the Athlete's Village and helped Team Canada with anything they needed.  Although the days were long, I was very lucky to be able to be able to watch some of the competition.  I didn't get to all of the events that I would have liked, but I did manage to watch Wheelchair Basketball, Sitting Volleyball and Goalball.  Here are my pictures from Guadalajara.  I decided to just post them on facebook as the seaborn flickr stream is more about family stuff and my personal flickr isn't a pro account, so I'm not sure if I could get all of the pictures on it...:p

Connor has been really enjoying school.  He has been introduced to a Math Program online that we play a few times a week (when we have time) that he really enjoys.  His teacher has also started a blog to help keep the parents informed on the activities that they do all day.

Wyatt had an exciting end of the month.  He ended up in CHEO for a three day (two night visit).  He was diagnosed with Asthma Exacerbation, which means that that he had an asthma attack, but he is too young to diagnose asthma, so it could have been a result of a virus or his environment.  Since his environment hasn't really changed, we think that it is a result of a virus, but after talking to some other parents with children with asthma, this is how it begins.  He has been ok since the episode, but we have been given some Ventolin to use as needed and we will definitely monitor his breathing.

Geofford has briefly un-retired from ultimate and is playing on Sunday nights in the 4 on 4 league.  It isn't his favorite type of ultimate, but he is out with friends playing with a disc, so it's better than nothing :)

We are gearing up to be parents of three.  The boys are sleeping in the same room and the nursery (aka Wyatt's old room) is now full of boxes of kids' clothes.  I hope to have some time between now and the end of the calendar year to sort through all of the clothes.  It was originally on my list of things to complete before summer started, but things always come up.  I am definitely looking forward to my full year off with the new baby.  It will be my first full year off with any of the kids, so I can't wait!  My list of things to do is lengthening, but my priority will be to enjoy the time off with the kids because they are only young once, and there is always tomorrow :)

Here is a link to our family picture from Damian and Michelle's wedding:   (The photographers for their wedding was pretty amazing to be able to get all of us looking at the camera at once).  Please feel free to look at the other pictures from the wedding as well...they are stunning.

Here are the Santa Claus Pictures from this year (I love the set at Place D'Orleans and also the new format where you get digital rights of the pictures so you can print them anywhere):

The boys with Santa

The family with Santa

The cousins with their wranglers (as Jaclyn said it best)