It’s a boy!

Rockster

Introducing the newest member of our family – little baby ‘Rocky’. He was born at 8:06am on Wednesday, 6 March 2013, weighing 8 pounds, 4 ounces (3.7kg) and 50 cm long. The birth story will come later – for now I will just say that we are so very, very grateful for his safe arrival, for his good health and relaxed temperament (hello! I’m writing a blog post in hospital right now!). We are absolutely in love with him.

Why Rocky? It goes with Pebble!

Why Pebble? When Paul and I first bought our house together our friends christened it “The Rockgarden” – a mash up of my maiden name and our family name. The name stuck (and also became the name of a blog). When Pebble was conceived one of our friends nicknamed my baby bump ‘Pebble’. It just made sense to keep using that name for our daughter on the blog.

It’s been trickier trying to force a  name on our newborn son. I think nicknames are much more fun when they occur naturally – but I needed to choose something, so Rocky it is. Thanks to those who gave their suggestions on Facebook and Instagram :) ‘Bam Bam’ was a cute option, and ‘The Rock’ and ‘Rocco’.

I had better sign off for now because it will be time to feed and I’m feeling ever so sleeeeeepy from the pain killers that the nurse gave me a few moments ago!

I can’t wait to share more about our little Rocky – and how our little Pebble is smitten with him.

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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Pregnancy Update – 39 Weeks

39 Weeks

I’m really getting to the pointy end of things now. This baby could decide to make an appearance any time now… except for the fact that my doc says, “HA! Fat Chance!”. Just like last time I have a stubborn baby who is way to comfortable in it’s current accommodation to consider moving out.

If I learned nothing else from my first birth it’s that you can’t choose the birth experience that you’re going to have – you can only choose how you respond to it. Right now I am SO excited to meet this baby, I don’t mind how it arrives. I feel ready. I just want to get on with the business of getting to know him or her, introducing Pebble to her new baby sibling, and enjoying my growing family with my husband in our home. A teeny, tiny part of me is reminding me to savour these last few days or weeks of pregnancy, as it is planned to be our last. A HUGE part of me is saying GET IT OUT! I am quite large, quite uncomfortable, and these muggy Adelaide days are doing nothing to improve my mood.

My reality right now is trying to keep on top of daily house stuff, so that things are kind of in order for while I’m in hospital. Not perfect, just vaguely organised. It makes me feel better about things.  However, I have washed the sheets or cleaned the floors and tried to force this baby out by sheer will… but it’s not working. Another day or two goes by and the washing basket is full again. The floors are gritty again. That will just have to do.

I’m also living out of a suitcase because I’m already packed and ready to go. I’ve packed everything including a bag of activities to keep Pebble amused during visits and …. my hair straightener. Yes. My hair straightener. These days I almost never straighten all my hair. Who has the time? Besides, I quite like my natural waves… except the freak of a wave in my fringe. That thing must be tamed. Daily. I didn’t do it once. For some reason that one time was on the day of BLOGOPOLIS last year. I know, right? And Grace captured it forever more on video. So THAT’S why I am taking my hair straightener in my hospital bag. P.s. I was four weeks pregnant at Blogopolis – awww!

So. This pregnancy thing. It continues, but it must end. I’m sure I’ll be back soon with some happy news. For now I’m just enjoying the fact that I’m healthy, bubs appears to be healthy and… really… aren’t I lucky that I can make babies at all!? Yes, indeed.

For more on this pregnancy so far you can check out these posts:

14 Weeks

20 Weeks

27 Weeks

33 Weeks

Linking up this dose of my reality with Picklebums Real Life Wednesdays.

Real Life Wedneasdays at Picklebums

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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7/52

7-52

Pebble – 3 years old – I love this photo. Blurry and bright, just like her :) She loves her swings, and is learning to “kick your bottom, kick the sky” to push herself. I love that after three years we’ve finally put some lubricant on the squeaky bush (that’s what Paul tells me it’s called) and now the swing is beautifully silent as it flies back and forth. I’m sure the neighbours appreciate it too.

7-52 Bump

Bump – 37 Weeks – Subtle changes – the dark eye circles, the unmade bed and washing hanging around, the scrappy hair and old singlet. I’m sure if you look close enough they’ll be a food stain on my big ol’ belly. I’m a little more tired, a little more sore, and a LOT more grumpy at the moment. Three weeks to go (or less!).

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013

52 A Portrait a Week

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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Mini Meditation for Mothers {free printable}

Mini Meditation for Mothers {free printable}  |  Octavia and Vicky

In case you missed it (!!) Paul and I are counting down the weeks until our second child will be born. We feel a lot more prepared this time around. We already have all the baby furniture and bits and pieces – that’s a no brainer. This time we also have a little bit of experience! We have been there and done that. Of course, each baby is very different, so who knows what this little one will bring? Not to mention that we have a toddler to fit into the picture this time too. However, we are comforted by the lessons learned the first time around.

Before baby arrives, however, must come the birth. Last time I thought I was prepared. I had read many books, blogs and articles and thought I knew what I would need to have a calm, focussed labour, and then a swift recovery. Without realising it, I had some fairly high expectations. I took it for granted that my waters would break, I’d have some contractions and then I’d push the baby out. Sure, it might be long, it might be painful, but I’d get there in the end.

The reality for me was quite different. You can read Pebble’s full birth story here – but the long and short of it is I ended up needing a caesarean and we were blessed with a robust and healthy baby. We were delighted, if a little shocked by it all!

This time around I have no expectations for the birth at all. None. I’m leaving them at the door, along with any hope of a good nights sleep for the next six to twelve months…. perhaps longer! One thing that I learned from my first birth was that the birth itself is not the most important part about becoming a mother. Not at all! It was the furthest thing from my mind once I was holding our baby.

Paul and I quickly became all consumed by loving and caring for this tiny human. How to feed her, how to wrap her, how to change her, how to bath her. How to love her. How to be our best selves for her. We thought we were prepared, but it was a steep learning curve for two *cough* fairly highly strung new parents.

On returning home I had another reality check. I had more high expectations about how life at home with a baby would be. I was lucky enough to enjoy a year of maternity leave and had planned to be a super mum – of course I had! Our house would sparkle like never before, our linens would be fluffed and folded, our dinners would be nutritious and delicious, and our baby would be the happiest and most educated and cared for child that ever was. This wasn’t a conscious expectation, it’s just how I thought it would be – it was only when reality took hold that I realised how I had set myself up to fail.

Instead we struggled with a baby who wouldn’t sleep for more than twenty minutes at a time and who wasn’t getting enough milk from me (yet another high expectation – that I would breastfeed easily!). It took us three months and lots of help to get our daughter (and ourselves!) settled. We found our family rhythm, and Paul and I began to enjoy being parents. I began to spend a lot more time playing with Pebble, visiting family and friends and delighting in the daily discoveries of life with a baby. I let the dust gather and the washing pile up occasionally, and sometimes we had toasted sandwiches for dinner. I found what was important for us, and that was enjoying being a family, learning to be a mum, and giving myself a break. Pebble will not remember whether the floor was swept but she will always feel loved.

I know that sometimes I will forget this lesson. Sometimes I will feel overwhelmed by the need to cook and clean and organise. Or the need to be the ‘perfect’ parent. Sometimes mother guilt will overcome me and I will want to run, or scream or cry. Sometimes I will run and scream and cry. This time around I have experience, lowered expectations. I also have the warm words from a friend to help focus my mind – a meditation for when it all becomes too much. I’m not usually one for meditating. I’m too busy rushing about doing sixteen things at once, and I used to think that I somehow needed to learn to do it “properly” or had to set aside lots of time for it. Now I know differently and I feel very strongly that I need to stop and focus with this birth and second child. I need to put the brakes on those negative thoughts before they take hold. This mini meditation is written by a friend, Mel Dunn. Actually, she’s my step-cousin :) My family is wonderfully complicated and I’m very lucky to have my life collide with so many awesome people. Mel is a mother, a teacher, and a woman who has one of the biggest hearts that I can think of. Mel has shared this meditation with me and other mothers to give guidance as they navigate the highs and lows of motherhood, and she has given me permission to share it with you all too.

 Mini Meditation for Mother’s {free printable}Mini Meditation for Mothers {free printable}  |  Octavia and Vicky

I hope this meditation helps you as much as it has already helped me.

What helps you to feel calm during the storm? Linking up with Real Life Wednesdays over at Picklebums.

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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6/52

6-52 Pebble

Pebble – 3 years old – cuddling with her Daddy before bed time

6-52 Bump

Bump – 36 Weeks – Heading out for date night! Our first date night in a long time and probably our last for even longer!

A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013

52 A Portrait a Week

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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