Wednesday, September 29, 2010

One of THE best sounds. Ever.

Today we hit a major milestone for pregnancy. Hearing the heart beat with our doppler.

For me, the 1st trimester is the worst. I don't really feel pregnant - except for the increased tiredness (though, I can't tell if that's because I am pregnant or because I am chasing after three small children), the extreme bloated feeling at the end of the day and the fact that I haven't had a period since July 26th.

You can't feel the baby move and up until today, I never knew if everything was okay in there...I mean, is the baby really in there? Is everything progressing normally? Am I really pregnant? I hate it. It just worries me. I like it when I can feel the baby doing acrobats and I like it when I actually have a baby bump instead of just feeling overly bloated and chunky.

Anyways, when I was pregnant with Mairead, we bought a fetal doppler. It came in handy for me and I loved being able to hear the baby whenever I felt like I needed reassurance. When I hit 8 weeks with this baby, I knew the time was coming that I would be able to hear this baby's heart beating away. I had tried a few times later last week, but I couldn't hear anything, and with the baby potentially measuring a week behind, I knew it could be a lot longer, so I wasn't too concerned. Well, today, Mairead was asking about the "baby" - and I thought it might be fun to get the doppler out. Of course, the girls gathered around me waiting with baited breathe to hear the baby's heart beat. I told them the baby may be too small to hear the heart, but we would try.  I searched. And searched. And just as I was ready to give up, there it was.......Thump. Thump. Thumping away. Ahhhh.....that beautfiful sound. At 9 weeks 2 days, we heard the heartbeat. As soon as Kevin got home, I pulled the doppler out and listened to that sweet sound..........again. I could listen all day long!

I am so excited that Mairead and Lilah are at such great ages (especially Mairead) for this pregnancy. Lilah was just a baby while I was pregnant with Clara, so she doesn't remember much, and Mairead remembers a lot - so I can't wait to build on what she has already experienced. She is so very interested in every aspect of pregnancy and babies, and I can't wait to teach her all about it.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Let's Party!!!

Today, we celebrated Clara's 1st birthday! We invited family and friends over to celebrate our sweet little girls birthday. Kevin smoked a few pork butts on Friday so we would have BBQ pulled pork sandwiches to eat! Mmmmmmm!

Since Mairead's 1st birthday, I have started two little traditions of my own for the girls. For each birthday, I make a homemade cake and decorate it myself. As the girls have gotten older, each girl gets to request the type, color and decorations. For Clara, I chose the family favorite 'marble cake' with pudding frosting (one large box of vanilla pudding to a pint of whipping cream) in a circle color. Clara, of course, was able to indulge in eating some cake batter and frosting and she loved every second of it! In one hand she had the vanilla cake batter and in the other, she had the chocolate. She was in heaven! The other tradition is I let them pick out a new 'birthday dress' - of course, Clara couldn't pick hers out, so I chose one from Baby Gap. I thought this one would show off her gorgeous eyes nicely!

Once all of our family and friends arrived, the fun began! Clara enjoyed playing with all the kids, though she is going through a bit of a stage where she gets a little clingy around a lot of people. Of course, once it was time to sing happy birthday, she was having a lot of fun and didn't want too much with her high chair, but once she realized cake was coming, she was very excited! Once the cake hit her tray, she dove right in and didn't look back. I love first birthdays for this very reason - all they care about is the cake!

We didn't do presents while everyone was here because,'s not like Clara really knew what was going on! Once things calmed down, we did presents and she had a blast, though, I think her sisters had more fun than she did! She got lots of cool toys that we didn't have, some beautiful clothes, an awesome new Pottery Barn chair, so she can sit next to her sisters in their chairs and lots of other cool things! We're so lucky to have such great family and friends who are able to celebrate along side of us!

Friday, September 24, 2010

"First" Appointment

This afternoon, I had my first OB intake appointment. It was as exciting as it sounds.

It went something like this:

Fill out this, this, this and this, but only fill out bottom and top on this one, but just the top on the other. If you fill this out first, we can get you in faster. Get it? Got it? Good!

Mind you, this was not my first time at this office, but yet, I found myself filling out the exact same paperwork I filled out while I was pregnant with Clara. What a waste of paper!!! And time!

Then, the nurse called me in to the room. I hadn't met this nurse yet. She was very nice and conversed with Mairead while I finished my paperwork.

She went over the paper work, saw this was my 4th pregnancy. She looked at Mairead "Is she your oldest?" Me, "yes" and she laughs. Yeah. I guess we're a little crazy! But, who isn't?

Then she asks "Morning sickness?"

Me: "Nope. I am lucky, but I do get blessed with all sorts of other pregnancy goodies - you know, like cerclages, a million and one vaginal ultrasounds for cervical length, riding the fine line of a normal pregnancy and bed rest and all sorts of other fun!" 

We went over a lot of paper work, most of it she says "Hmmmmmm....I guess you know this already" - "I guess you're probably an expert by now" and then the paper work discussing "Daddy Boot Camp" - she laughed and says "You're husband is probably an expert in this department. He could probably teach this class!" She's right - I think Kevin would have a blast teaching other dads about "pregnancy and parenthood".

Then, she went over the "practice" - did she forget, I had been a patient there before? She then tells me, "You'll have appointments every 4 weeks starting at 10 weeks until so many weeks" - then she pauses and says "Ohhhh....yeah, you're high risk, aren't you. You'll probably have more than that!"

Uh huh....I sure will. It's called a frequent flyer. You'll see a lot of me and my crazy crew tearing apart your office. 

Then, she takes my blood pressure. Takes my weight. And sends me on my merry way. See you in two weeks.

I left wondering....and what was that for again? I'm glad I'm not a first time mom because I'd be left wondering when I'll actually get to find out if there is a baby in there and not just "pretending" :)


Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Today, we had the first field trip of the year with Mairead's preschool class. It was a beautiful early fall day here in Maine - the perfect day to go farming!

Living here in Maine, we're lucky enough to live surrounded by nature - and people embrace it here. They take advantage of it. It's such a great way of life. No matter what time of year it is, or what day it is, you always see people outside enjoying nature. I am so glad our girls have been given this opportunity to live here and see how wonderful nature can be.

Today, we visited Alewive's Brook Farm in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. The children were going to learn about farming and where fruit & vegetables from from. The owners were very welcoming and generous to give all the kids and their families the run of the farm. The kids learned how to pick all sorts of vegetables and keep them to bring home! Mairead and Lilah had a blast! I am so glad they got this opportunity. You see, this summer, we've been trying to buy all local produce, so we either visit farmers markets (which happen several times a week around here) or going to local farms and buying fresh food there. This was the perfect way for the girls to see exactly where their food is coming from.

We picked strawberries, green peppers, eggplant, basil, tomatoes, corn, carrots, broccoli, red onions and beets. We got to bring everything home. We had two reusable shopping bags full of everything we picked!

Tonight, we steamed our freshly picked today broccoli and carrots for dinner. The girls were so proud of themselves - actually, I don't think I've ever seen Mairead eat the veggies so fast and be so eager to eat them!
All of our veggies!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Happy Birthday, Clara!

Happy 1st Birthday, Clara! We love you!
Happy 1st Birthday to my sweet little Clara belle. When you're in the "thick of it" it's hard to really tell just how fast life travels until you hit a major milestone like the first birthday. I think back to the last year and think about how wonderful life has been. The girls have been such a joy to be with and we've all had so much fun together. Watching the joy and laughter that Mairead and Lilah have for their little sister is just overwhelming. They just love her so much. They get so excited for her. And she loves them so much. It really is the sweetest thing. Watching their relationship only makes me more excited to bring another sweet child into our family. I can only hope the closeness they share today will continue on through their lifetime together.
Mmmmmm! Apples!

At 8:10pm, Clara turned exactly one year old. Her birth was so very intimate, almost perfect. It went almost textbook perfect. Labor was fairly easy. She was born healthy, especially for being 36 weeks. I remember how she never left my chest for two glorious hours. She nursed instantaneously. During my labor, we listened to Ray LaMontagne's CD and each and every time I hear a song from him, I think about Clara's birth. It brings back so many wonderful memories. We never listened to any music with Mairead or Lilah, so I don't get brought back to their day unless I am looking at photos or watching their video or talking to the girls about their special day.

Tonight, we took the girls to Flatbread pizza to celebrate. It was music Monday tonight, which made the night even more fun. All of the girls danced and it was so fun to watch. Then, the band started to perform 'You are the Best Thing' by Ray Lamontagne. How very perfect. The very song that really brings me back to Clara's birth. It brought a few emotional tears (pregnancy hormones kickin' it?) to my eye. To look at Clara and think about how she really is the best thing. She was meant for our family. She fits in perfectly. She brings us together. She brings happiness and laughter to our sweet girls.
6 Months

Clara is a trip! She definitely fits in to our crazy little - or not-so-little family. Her personality is blooming that's for sure. She tries to talk and can say several words - "HI" (her favorite), "Mama" (her close second favorite), "Maaaaaaaaam" = milk, and I swear she says "RARA", "Lilah" and a few others. She babbles all day. She loves to wave hi and say hi to strangers in the grocery store. She is on the verge of running. She has 4.5 teeth with another one starting to peek through. She loves apples and I mean loves them. If she gets her eyes on one, she will throw a full on fit until she gets one. She loves her babies. She is learning to climb. She loves to play with her sisters. She is definitely not quiet. You always know she is around. She isn't afraid to tell her sisters to buzz off. She can be super independent one second and hanging on my leg the next. Her nickname "Clingy Clara" still exists.
9 Months

Her baby-ness is gone. 

She is 100% toddler. We are on to the next stage. The stage with so much learning. So much joy. They are little sponges learning every little thing about life.

I cannot wait to see what more she brings to our family in the future. We are so lucky to have such a sweet, happy, loving little girl. We are so lucky to have three of the same, all so different, but so very sweet, happy and loving.

We love you Clara belly.....

She really loves her baby dolls

Saturday, September 18, 2010

...And even more fun!

I have to say we've been having lots of fun! It seems summer has ended here in Maine and fall has arrived. The days are cool and the nights are chilly. The sun is setting earlier and earlier, which I absolutely hate!
Alex with Lilah & Clara

With Alex visiting, it has forced us to get out and have fun! On Wednesday, we picked Mairead up at school early and headed up to New Gloucester to go apple picking. It was a beautiful day! The girls were so excited. Last year, our sweet Clara had just been born, and this year, she was running around the orchards eating apples like a crazy lady! My, how times have changed! The girls really "got it" this year - they knew how to pick the apples (and eat them), and I think they really had a blast together. Not only were the apples fantastic, but the apple cider donuts were to die for! I couldn't get enough. It was one of those days where I used the "I'm pregnant" excuse to grab that extra donut! The girls also had a blast playing with the pumpkins and picking one out for home, too. Apple picking is probably one of my all time favorite fall activities! Of course, once we got home, I made some homemade apple crisp! Definitely a Ferrie family all time favorite here!

The fun didn't stop that evening either! We had a sitter to watch the kids while me, Kevin and Alex met one of Kevin's friends for an evening of sailing on Casco Bay. I was excited, though I knew it was going to be cold, but, hell, it was a few hours away from the kiddos and some alone time with Kevin. I forgot we'd be sailboat racing that night, so once we got to the boat, the fun began. The wind was whipping at 20-30mph and it was hairy out there! When I was asked to put my life jacket on, I knew things were about to get a wee bit rough out there! We almost collided two separate times with other sailboats and we watched one boat almost capsize because of the wind. It was insane but soooooo much fun!!! Talk about a rush of energy. It felt great to get out there and have some fun!

On Thursday, I had an ultrasound to see what was going on inside of my belly. We decided to bring the girls and of course, Mairead was asking all sorts of questions. I told her we were going for an ultrasound to see if there was a baby inside of mommy's belly. We learned the baby was measuring about one week behind my dates, but we did see a heart beat flickering away! I knew I'd probably measure behind since I ovulated so late into my cycle. Other than that, everything looked normal. Mairead was so excited to learn there was indeed a baby excited, she proceeded to tell every Tom, Dick and Harry about the baby inside mommy's belly. Not only was she excited, she kept asking the U/S tech to check if it was a boy or girl. I told her the baby was too small, but that only confused her, so I told her the baby was the size of a M&M. That helped - so not only did she tell people there was a baby inside of me, but she told them it was also the size of a M&M! :)

Overall, a really great week! We spent some time with my parents, Mairead's 2nd soccer game and a birthday party for a friend. Life is busy, but we're together, and that is all that matters. It's like a huge brick was taken off of my more stress.....enjoying life....and I'm happy. Next week we'll be on to bigger and better things - Clara's 1st birthday, Kevin's birthday, field trip and Clara's 1st birthday bash! Can't wait for more memories to be made.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Enjoying life...

Since Kevin came home, life has been good. No doubt. Life is just happier with daddy home!

Mairead was so excited to have her daddy home for her first soccer game on Saturday! She did really well! I'm not so sure she knew exactly what was going on, but she had fun, and that's all that counts!

On Saturday night, I decided to plan a little "surprise welcome home" party for Kevin. Kevin knew my parents and my brother's family would be coming up for dinner, but little did he know that almost all of our friends would be there, too! After the soccer game, we had to head to the grocery store. Let me tell for the party with him there was not easy, but I did it without him figuring out why I was buying so much food! Once my parents came, he thought that was it, until people kept showing...and showing.....and showing up! Once people kept coming, he knew what was going on! It was awesome! He didn't suspect a thing! We all had a blast celebrating Kevin being home. Thanks to my family and friends for helping to make it such a fun, special night!

Dance Class (Mairead 3rd, Lilah 5th)
On Monday, Alex (his sister was our exchange student from Spain back when we were 13) came to visit for the week. He had been traveling 'Around the World' since April. It was so great to see him. I forewarned him about coming into the land of 'controlled chaos'. The girls loved him and he was really great with the girls, too. We started his visit off with a trip to a local dance store to buy tap and ballet shoes for the girls. Lilah was so excited to finally be getting tap shoes JUST LIKE 'Annie'. She wore them all the way home and ready for her very first dance class that afternoon. Lilah thought she was going to be dancing on stage that very day! Mairead was excited, too! Though, I think because Mairead had dance class before, it wasn't that crazy excitement Lilah had. They both did really well in their class. Mairead listened well and really participated! Lilah did great for a two year old never having dance class before :). It was a blast watching them dance together. I am glad I put them in the same class. It's going to be awesome watching them progress throughout the year.

Alex & Lilah
The next day, Mairead had school. We dropped her off and headed to Lilah's swim class. Lilah did great, as always! I love watching her swim because she is so good. After swim, we all went to Prouts Neck and did the cliff walk along the water. We have lived here almost 2.5 years and we have never done this.....and it's about 3 miles from our house. It was absolutely breathtaking. The weather was beautiful. Unfortunately, we couldn't finish it because we had to head back to pick up Mairead, but I am so glad we did it. It is definitely something I will do again before we move. Later that night, Mairead had her swim class. She is doing amazing, too! This session, she is in a class of all boys, but that doesn't intimidate her at all!

I can't even explain how nice it is having Kevin home again. Everyone is just happy. And I love that.
View from the Cliff Walk - who knew THIS was so close to our house!
Kevin, Alex & Lilah

Saturday, September 11, 2010

1, 2, 3...........................4

I'm counting to 4.

Do you know why? Because in approximately nine months (if everything goes as planned) that is how many children we will have and I will need to count them all to keep them all straight. Yep. I'm pregnant. Yes, again. No. really, I am. And, Yes. We are happy!

You could say I am in shock. Disbelief. Yes, we wanted one more baby, but we didn't think it would happen so soon! I have just had one cycle since having Clara. With Lilah and Clara it took several months to get pregnant with them. My cycles were irregular and it took time. When I wrote a blog several weeks back about Kevin being deployed to Mobile, Alabama, you may remember me talking about being upset that we may have a limited time to try for a baby. Well, I guess I don't have to worry about that, do I? Everything happens for a reason.

After having two....yes two negative pregnancy tests and being late on my period by about a week, I just figured it was my body playing funny tricks on me again. After a week of a missed period, I retook the test for the third time. Positive. I didn't believe it! Seriously? With the three others, I had a positive test before I even missed my period! This is just crazy!

I didn't tell Kevin right away. I had grand plans to tell him in our anniversary journal the following weekend. Yes, I had to keep my little secret to myself and it was not fun. I wanted to share the joy with him. I wanted to hug him. I wanted to be excited. When I awoke the following morning, I had an email from Kevin. He told me he had had a dream that I was pregnant. I gasped when I read it. How did he know? Talk about crazy. That's when I knew we were still on the same wavelength.

A few days later, I had some bleeding and I found myself upset. Stressed. A mess. I told Kevin I was pregnant and bleeding. He was a bit confused since I had told him I had had negative tests! I have had 1st trimester bleeding with 2/3 of my pregnancies and all have resulted in healthy babies, but every time I bleed it scares me. I had some bloodwork done which revealed healthy numbers indicating a healthy pregnancy, though, until I see that little heart flickering away, I won't believe it.

I am scheduled for an ultrasound next week when I will be 7+ weeks pregnant. We're in shock. Definitely unexpected.....but so very wanted! We've just started telling people and it is starting to feel real. We're starting to get excited! It's hard to believe we're adding another bundle to our beautiful crew! I know the girls will be so very excited. I can't wait for this to be real for them! we go! Jumping into another high risk pregnancy with a hopefully very healthy baby in the end! 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Ahhh...Together Again.

Yes, you read that right! Kevin is home!
Daddy with Lilah

Kevin was able to hop on an evening flight home last night! Our neighbor sat here while I went and picked Kevin up very late at the airport. Can I just say how nice it felt to crawl into bed with my husband? Seriously. So good. I didn't tell the girls their daddy was coming home. I wanted it to truly be a surprise. And it was.

When I knew the girls were awake this morning, I went into their rooms to get them. I told them to get into my bed and we'd lay together before we started our day. The girls ran into our bedroom (Kevin was under the blankets) and climbed up onto the bed. Mairead tried to crawl under the blankets when Kevin popped up! She was shocked! If I could only explain the look on her face! Lilah had the look of excitement. Pure happiness. Once the shock wore off for both of the girls they were so happy. It felt so good to be together again as a family.

Today was also Mairead's first day of preschool. We all took Mairead to school as a family. Everyone was surprised to see Kevin home. Mairead was so excited to be at school. She had been talking about it for days! She just loves school. While she was there, the rest of us went home and just enjoyed each other. Kevin played with Lilah & Clara and I just sat happily watching. It was awesome.
All ready for school

After Mairead finished with school, we spent the day together. Had lunch. Rested together. Just enjoyed.

Not only was Maireads first day of school today, but it was also her first soccer practice. Ever. She did really well. At first, she was barely kicking the ball, but by the end, she was catching on! Her first game is Saturday and it is going to be a hoot! Nothing like clueless 4 and 5 year olds on the soccer field!
Future soccer star?

We enjoyed a wonderful dinner together. It was just so nice to finally be together again. I am still in denial that he is finally home. In some instances, the time seems like it went fairly fast after looking back, but in others, it seems as though he left so long ago.

I'm just glad he is home. Safe and sound.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I can see the light!

It has been three weeks today since Kevin left for Mobile. A long three weeks. Thankfully, the last week went fairly fast! We spent the week going to the beach, having a sleepover with friends and then Kevins parents came into town for 4 days to hang with us. They live in Florida (and planned their visit before they knew Kevin would be gone) and one can say they are used to the hot, 90+ degree weather, but they aren't! We don't have air conditioner, so I am sure being inside or outside was torturous for them! It was so hot here! Our living room was a steamy 86 degrees! I think they were thanking their lucky stars for staying at a hotel where they could get reprieve from the heat in their hotel room! After having a hot and steamy summer without air conditioning we weren't phased too much by the heat. The girls ran around as if it were cool outside!

On Thursday, we decided to take the girls to Funtown/Splashtown USA in Saco. The girls had been talking about going there all summer long and I figured if we didn't go now, it wouldn't happen, so off we went! We all had a blast and the girls enjoyed spending time with Kevin's parents, too. I think we chose the perfect day to go because it was so hot! After going to the water park back in August, the girls were really excited about going to another one! Mairead was a pro! She did awesome and had a blast. Lilah did a lot better than she did previously! She even went down the bigger waterslides by herself. I was so proud of her! Of course, Clara had a blast splashing in all the water around her and even going down the baby slides with me holding her. Being wet the entire time, you didn't even realize just how hot it was outside until we got home! Mairead's first soccer practice was even canceled due to the heat!
Little Lilah comes out of the 'tunnel'
Mairead & Lilah take a few practice runs before hitting the 'big ones'
...and they're off!

The next few days were spent hanging out and letting the kids have fun with their Mimi & Papa. The weather was cooling off a bit so it wasn't so miserable outside for them. I was able to run some errands while some of the kids stayed home. I have been consumed by overwhelming tiredness. I think it's just a mix of being stressed and not sleeping at night. It seems as though it is always something or someone waking me up. Between the two dogs and three kids there has been at least one kid/dog up at night and it is just catching up to me! Before Kevin left, Clara was sleeping 10 hours straight, and lately, she's been waking up frequently. I think our dogs have been up more in the last few weeks than they have in the entire past year! Damn dogs.

On Saturday, Mairead woke up with a nasty cold. I figured something was up because she had been up multiple times overnight. You could tell she felt miserable, but tried so hard to have fun and want to do things! She had a low grade temp in the afternoon but still wanted to head to the Lobster Shack for dinner. I hate seeing my little princesses sick! It wasn't exactly the way I had envisioned spending our 5th anniversary (without my husband, sick kids), but overall, it wasn't too bad :)

Kevin's parents left on Sunday morning, so it was just me and the girls for the rest of the day. We had a quiet day playing outside and enjoying each other. By the end of the day, I was spent. I couldn't wait for bed time. I can't wait to start feeling not so tired!!!

I have to say long weekends without a husband isn't a lot of fun! Weekends are for family time, so no one was around. Overall, it was a quiet weekend, but at least it ended on a positive note! Kevin called on Monday evening to tell me he was going to be home by Friday! Talk about music to my ears... It was like a huge brick was lifted off of my chest. Things seemed so much more doable. manageable. happier. There is talk he could be home late Thursday night, which would be awesome. He'd come home after the girls go to sleep, so he'd be home when they wake up on Friday morning. I pray that will happen. I'll have to video their reaction!

Well, I am off to get my massage courtesy of Kevin's parents! I will hopefully help make these next few days go by super duper fast! 

Saturday, September 4, 2010

5 Years...

Today, Kevin and I celebrated 5 years of marriage. It's hard to believe it's been five years already. Honestly, the time has gone by so incredibly fast and I have loved almost every minute of it. It is definitely the best five years of my life, and I hope he feels the same! We have accomplished so much in five years...three beautiful little girls, a few moves and countless other things. We have learned so much about each other and what it takes to make a marriage work and be successful. I've never been happier. Don't get me wrong, we sure have had our fair share of troubles, heartaches and times we never thought would get better, times when we wanted to throw in the towel, but it has always worked itself out making our marriage stronger and happier.

Mairead, our oldest, was a honeymoon baby, so when we came home from our honeymoon to learn we were pregnant was a bit of a shock! Not only were we learning about each other, we were preparing to become parents! Talk about jumping right in. Once we jumped in, we never looked back and kept on going. Looking back, I'd do it the same all over again. I'd have our children the same age apart. I'd marry Kevin all over again. In a heartbeat.

I think back to our past and it still amazes me how we reconnected. It really is an amazing story. If you missed that part of our story, you can read I'm a New Englander...He's a Floridian...How did we meet??? I believe our marriage was truly meant to be. I never in a million years thought I'd ever see Kevin again once I left Florida. And when we did reconnect, it was like we never were apart. It didn't take long for us to feel a special connection.
Our 1st weekend together @ Boston Red Sox game

Even though being apart from Kevin these last few weeks has been incredibly difficult for everyone involved, it has surely shown us just how much we really do love each other. Just how special we are to one another. He is my best friend. He is my lover. He is such an amazing daddy to our girls and we cannot wait to have him home with us!

I look back at photographs of the last six years we've  been together. We've made so many beautiful memories. We have had so many laughs. And we have made three beautiful children together. I can only hope the next five years are just as special and memorable as these have been for us. I hope we can continue showing our girls what a marriage should be and how wonderful love can be...because I am in love.