Monday, March 31, 2008

merit's birthday

If you look down a few posts, you'll see a timeline of the day before Merit came. I could just pick up where that one left off, because I never went to sleep that night. I don't know if it was normal restlessness from pregnancy, or if I had some intuition about what was to come, but wide awake I was. Around 3 am, things started to get exciting...

3:05 am - I felt a painless contraction, but assumed it was only a Braxton-Hicks.
3:15 am - I felt another contraction, but this one was different and stronger, making me feel like I should maybe start timing these things.
3:15 am-3:45 am - Contractions started to come 8-10 minutes apart and were getting more painful. I decided to wake Kevan up.
3:45 am-5:30 am - Contractions continued anywhere from 4-10 minutes apart; Kev finished up some last minute things around the house and we decided we are going to the hospital.
6:00 am - We left for the hospital, but had to stop by CVS first because our camera battery was dead! Kevan called the doctor on the way to CVS. While Kev was in CVS, my contractions started coming 3 minutes apart and I got really nervous that I'd have to give birth at CVS.
6:20 am - We arrived at the hospital and checked in...I didn't read anything I signed.
6:30 am - I was taken to triage to get checked out and see if I was truly in labor.
6:45 am - The nurse told me I was already at 5 eyes got bigger than they have probably ever been before as I did not expect to hear that. Ohhhhh, nervous.
7:15 am - Finally, I was taken to Labor room #3114. Nurse Nancy asked if I was ready for an epidural and I gave her an emphatic, "Yes, please."
8:00 am - Received the beloved epidural.
8:45 am - Nurse Nancy came in to check my progress...almost to a 10. What?! I hadn't expected things to progress so quickly!
9:00 am - Dr. Hirsch came in to break my water. Wow is all I can say about that experience.
9:30 am - Dr. seemed concerned...he and the nurse talked under their breaths for a bit and the ultrasound machine was brought in. Not knowing yet what was going on, I was worried...
10:00 am - Dr. explained that Merit was coming face first ("face presentation") and a c-section would be the safest way to deliver. They prepped me for surgery.
10:30 am - Taken into the operating room, the coldest room in which I have ever been in my life. I had a range of emotions at this point...a little nervous about having surgery, but SO excited that we were about to meet our daughter in a matter of minutes! It was very surreal.
10:57 am - Merit Fey was born! Her cry was the sweetest sound I've ever heard. I could hear the nurses commenting about how she sounded like a cat and then about how long her eyelashes were. Kev followed her to the table behind me while she got cleaned up. He kept looking back at me with the biggest smile on his face. When they brought her over to me, I said she was beautiful and then tried lifting up her little hat and asked if she had hair. Merit, I apologize for not asking if you were healthy first. :)
12:50 pm - After a nap, I woke up to realize that neither my husband nor my baby were in the room with me. Wonderful Nurse Nancy sent for them, and I finally got to hold my baby girl in my arms! We then spent some time just the 3 of us...some of the sweetest moments of my life.

The rest of that day is a blur of excitement, emotions, phone calls, and visitors. I loved everything, and most importantly, who March 22nd brought us. What a perfect day. I can't even find words to explain how I felt that day, and how I continue to feel about my new little family. All I can say is that Merit has arrived, and in many ways, so have I.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

what's in a name?

mer-it (n). - claim to respect and praise; excellence; worth;
precious baby girl

When we found out we were having a baby, and even before, we could think of several girl names we liked, but we had trouble coming up with very many boy names. On November 5th, when we discovered that our baby was indeed a girl, she pretty much immediately became "Merit"--it was a name that both of us really loved, so we went with it. 

I had thought of it a year or two before. Kev brought home a CD of the artist Tift Merritt, and I thought her last name would be a good first name. I then thought about the word merit, and thought about what it meant to have good merit, and to merit, or be deserving of, blessings and good things in life. 

I had a college professor say once that the meanings of names are important, because people grow into their names. That professor shared that her name meant "bitter", and she felt that had influenced her demeanor and often, her outlook on life. I felt sad for her and told myself I would never give one of my children a name that didn't have a purposeful meaning, or at least a great story behind it. After only knowing my baby girl for a week, I can tell that she is already growing into her name. We cannot possibly give her all the love that she deserves. She has already blessed our lives so immensely...and that merits all the love we have to give.

Her middle name is a special name to both of us. I had a sweet grandmother named Fay, "Fay Fay" to me, who passed away when I was 6, but to whom I still feel very connected. Kevan has a precious grandmother named Faye, "Grandmother" to him, who lives in Plainview and is very special to both of us. We wanted to honor both of them, but since each of their names are spelled differently, we decided to go with Fey...3 letters like my Fay Fay, and including an e like Kev's Grandmother. 

So, there ya have it...Merit Fey. After keeping it a secret for so long, I love to hear other people say her name and seeing it written makes me smile. Shakespeare wrote that even if a rose had another name, it would still smell just as sweet. I could say the same for Merit, but to me, a name is an important part of who we are, where we come from, who we'll be... so I wouldn't change it. I guess the name we chose is, in a way, our prayer for her.

Monday, March 24, 2008

merit pics

Until I can update, here are merely a few of the pics taken during Merit's first 48 hours to tide you over...

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Guess Who's Here?!?!

Merit Fey Albright

Born March 22nd 10:57 am

8lbs 5 oz.


More details to come!

Friday, March 21, 2008

due date eve

Well, here I am, two hours away from a date in March that I have been repeating to inquiring friends and strangers and counting down to since July 21st. It is exciting that the day is here, while also a bit frustrating that the baby, well...isn't. Today I needed to keep busy (tomorrow I'll have to do the same...) so here is how I spent my Due Date Eve.

10:30 - took advantage of another day to sleep in...watched the remainder of Price is Right...missed Bob Barker.

12:00 - talked Kev into visiting my favorite local fabric store...paced the aisles pointing out all of my fave fabrics and designers to Kev...he was a trooper.

12:45 - I'm hungry...we headed to my favorite restaurant in Nashville...Bread and Company...  mmmm...I enjoyed a delish "Gourmet PB&A" sandwich, as well as many stares from other customers as I waddled about.
1:45 - we wandered about Borders...I sat in the craft book aisle for 30 minutes, debating which book I wanted...finally decided on this one.

2:15 - I love Maggie Moo's ice cream so much that I am on their email list...used my "free cone on your birthday" coupon to get a strawberry with brownie mix-in cone...was generous and shared one bite with Kev.
2:35 - go into hardware store to get some keys copied...come out to a car that won't start...we both have a bit of a freak-out moment...Kev asks what looks like a kind man to jump start our car...he replies he has no time...he has to meet the tile guy...Kev tries again and a kind citizen who doesn't have to meet the tile guy jump starts our car and we head home.

4:00-9:30 - watch Oprah and wonder #1 why anyone would want to be a ploygamist and #2 why I am so interested in them...walk Lola with Kev...make made dinner....and then..... make Kev go out with me to stare at this.....

....and beg it to work its magic on me!!!!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

just add baby

Well, after only a couple of days with no school, I have been able to get more done with the baby's room than I have been able to do in the last 9 months. I still have a few things in mind for it, but it is basically ready to go. It is, hands down, my new favorite room. I cannot stop going in there! I have to stop by and look around every time I pass it, which, in our cozy duplex, is often! I am so excited to bring baby girl home. I hope she likes it...

sewing projects complete

butterflies from baby's viewpoint
still looking for the perfect mirror to go above this dresser we bought off of's from texas :)
we got the changing table off of craigslist...can you believe someone wanted to get rid of that adorable thing??
39 weeks--maybe the last belly pic?? 
daddy kev. he is so cute.

I go to the dr. in the morning. I will keep you updated!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

bad sister, rad brother

Here it is, March 16th. Eight days after my brother Matt's 30th birthday, and I didn't even make mention of it on my blog. I just started thinking about how I paid tribute to my dad and oldest brother Paul on their birthday in August, and I did the same for my mom in January. I feel terrible that I forgot to say anything for Matt last Saturday.  You see, he is the middle child and has been dealing with this kind of thing for 30 years, or at least since I came along. (I came home from the hospital on his 4th birthday, and he just won't let that go...) :) So, Matt, I apologize for not giving you the proper sisterly blog birthday love.

Matt is such a great brother and has forever been one of my greatest friends. I look up to him more than he knows and always have.  I am sure I tagged along way too much when we were kids, but I loved being around my brothers and loved doing (or watching) what they were doing. Now that we are older, it is no different. I love being around Matt any chance I get, and I truly enjoy getting to witness him doing what he does for a living. He is a major part of a ministry called Dry Bones that works with runaway and homeless teens and young adults on the streets of Denver, CO. If you've never heard of it, please go and check it out. He and his wife, Nikki, have been working with Dry Bones for several years now, and I am still in awe of what they do. Matt is also the adventurous one in our family. He is always doing crazy things like bungee jumping in New Zealand, climbing to the base of Everest in Nepal, or accompanying Kevan to Bonnaroo each summer--all things I will most likely never do. He is indeed a unique individual, and I love that about him. 
So, Brother Matt, Happy Birthday a week ago! I love you very muchly. Let's end with a few of my fave pics of us that we took last summer...
here we are being ourselves
here we are imitating the other (i squint my eyes and matt slaps on a sing song face...nice.)
here we are both being me...
...and then both being matt.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

preggo pics

Last weekend our friend and talented photographer, Aubrey Strano, snapped a few shots of Kevan and me. We loved how they turned out and felt they were very "us". She took a couple hundred...I wish I could put more on here, but it takes blogger forever to upload pictures on our computer. I did upload several to snapfish and you can go HERE to see them. Here's a little peek at a few of our faves...