{IF} my husband and I hadn’t agreed!

A funny tidbit of information . . . If my husband and I hadn’t agreed!

You may think that choosing our boys names was easy. That we just heard them on TV & said, “yep, that’s it” . . . but, no, it wasn’t quite like that.

I’d always liked both of their names, before they were ever even born, but I never thought that I’d have a son named Chandler or a son named Marshall. I had super, ridiculously long lists for both boys; which my husband said “NO” to every single name on each list. When he started saying no to my initial lists, then I just started crossing off names that I thought he certainly wouldn’t like, one of them being Chandler. Well, one day we were at a friends house, when I was about 20 weeks pregnant with Chandler. My friends & I were discussing the, at the time, recent divorce of Jesse James & Sandra Bullock, when we looked up an article about, my friend started reading the article aloud and mentioned Jesse’s daughter’s name was Chandler . . . and my husband said, “hm, I kind of like that name”. I, flabbergasted of course that he liked anything remotely close to something that I liked, said, “You do?? That’s it. That’s his name!”. While I was on maternity leave with Chandler I started watching all of the seasons of “How I Met Your Mother”. At the same time my sister-in-law found out she was having a girl and decided to name her daughter Lillian, Lillie for short. I joked with her and said, “Oh! If I have another boy wouldn’t it be funny if I named him Marshall!?!” We both laughed it off, thinking I’d never have another boy (I was a miserable pregnant lady). Then, the time came . . . I was pregnant . . . with another boy! Marshall was the first name on the list followed by Maverick & Sawyer, which my husband promptly shoot down all three. My list grew, and grew, and grew and one after another my husband said, no, no, no! Then, he said, he’d think of some names . . . I waited, waited and waited. 2 weeks. No names had been chosen or discussed. Finally, I said, “look, you have to choose between these names on my list.” I talked each name up and waited for him to make a decision. Three days later, he said, “Um, I guess, Marshall” So, with that being said, we’re just an unintentional comedic sitcom around here . . . which pretty much rings true for our life!

If my initial baby names had won, the boy’s names would be Oliver & Sawyer. Ollie & Saw.

If my husband’s first selected baby names would’ve won out, the boys would be named Connor & Alexander. Con & Xander.

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Marshall’s {BIRTH} Story

I made the decision fairly early in my pregnancy to deliver Mars via c-section. It’s what I did with Chan, because of his size {10 LBS 1 OZ} it was a safer option for both of us rather than being induced and potentially having to be rushed for an emergency c-section anyhow after many hours of labor because he was simply too large to deliver. . . they predicted Chan would be 11lbs 1oz, so this was a scary thought for a first time mommy. Therefore, when we found out we were having another boy I made the  decision to have another c-section, assuming that Mars would be just as large as his older brother. The closer and closer that I got to my due date, the more reassured I was that I was making the right decision, this baby actually felt {BIGGER} than Chandler. My hip and pelvic bones felt like they were being crushed, my skin burned from the inside out from being stretched & he was apparently applying pressure to some of my nerves causing my left leg a shooting pain and then numbness . . . this feeling also occurred in my lower back. My belly size appeared to be the same but Mars was just a little {LOWER}. Marshall was scheduled to be delivered 7 days later than Chandler. I predicted that he would weigh 10 lbs 5 oz, the doctor predicted that he would weigh 9 lbs 8 oz.

So, let’s get to the {BIRTH} story . . . We arrived at the hospital at 4:30 AM super eager to meet our newest addition! My surgery was schedule for 7:00 AM, which meant that we had a lot of prep time a.k.a time to be nervous. I had been having contractions since the day before and around midnight they had become stronger, but still manageable . . . so manageable that I didn’t even know that I was still having contractions until the nurses told me. There were two things that I was particularly nervous about given my past cesarean experience: the spinal and the pressure from the surgery after the baby is delivered. I knew that I could mentally work through these nerves and avoid the anxiety attack that I had during my surgery with Chandler which lead to me be extra sedated. When they took me in for my spinal I kept reassuring myself that it was going to be smooth & quick . . . the anesthesiologist & I did great . . . got it done in less than 10 minutes (with Chandler it took nearly 40 minutes). Whew! That was a big relief. I expected everything else to go just as smooth and it did. But, after he was out & the surgery continued I started to feel a familiar feeling . . . a lot of chest pain & pressure. With Chandler’s c-section I mentally let this get out of hand and had an anxiety attack! I knew that I could calm myself down, I did NOT want the extra sedative, I wanted to be as present as possible and I am so glad that I was able to work through it. I was able to see Marshall, carry him up from the delivery room & watch his first bath. This was something new for me, they swooped Chandler off to the nursery as soon as I was sedated & I didn’t see him for nearly 2 hours after that. Overall, everything went great! I am recovering well & Marshall is an absolute dream. We are so happy to welcome him to our family!

Marshall's-Birth - C. Linz Photography

Chan to Mars - C. Linz PhotographyMarshall Stone Leo arrived on 12.12.13 at 7:17 AM weighing in at 9lbs 15oz and 22 inches long. Chandler was so excited to meet his baby Marshall! He thinks that he is so cute & already wants to help mommy out. He has visited his baby brother everyday & we’ve Face Timed him a couple of times before bed. We will head home tomorrow! Marshall has been eating well . . . a little too well, we’ve had to supplement a few times with bottles, but he’s doing great! He’s sleeping wonderfully as well. I do not know how we got so lucky to have two wonderful baby boys, but we did!

Marshall-Meeting-Big-Brother-

Absence & Surge of {MOTIVATION}

One of the most frustrating things about pregnancy is the {ABSENCE} of motivation! I do not remember this being so frustrating during my first pregnancy, but that is likely because I was not spending all of my “downtime” trying to keep up with a three year old boy. Last week was a {SURGE} week . . . I had so much motivation & I accomplished so much. Housework was completed, lunches made, photo sessions edited, on top of tasks at work & kept up with Chan, it felt great! However, after being away from the house yesterday for ten hours, the longest that I’ve been away from the house . . . ahem, my bed in months, I feel like I have no drive to do anything today. I cleaned out a piece of furniture in our living room which I plan to store baby things in and I felt as though I needed to take a nap! Resting is definitely {GOOD} for me and the baby, so I must oblige and allow my husband to pick up the slack . . . I bet he cannot wait until this baby is born 😉 Six more weeks and we will have sweet baby Mars in our arms and become a family of four!

We still have some remodeling to finish before we bring Mars home from the hospital, because we do not expect to be able to finish it once he’s here. Hopefully my husband can finish laying hardwood floor in our bedroom and Chandler’s room, build a built-in shelving unit in the master bedroom, make book ledges for Marshall’s room and finish decorating the master bedroom because I’m sure we’ll be spending quite a bit of time in there once the baby is born.

In the meantime, I will continue to grow, I will deal with the lack of motivation & hope for the surges of motivation, pray for a safe delivery & a healthy baby boy, try to keep up with Chan and housework as much as possible, while getting a lot of rest & drinking a lot of water. The good news is that the humid midwest summer is over and I am much more comfortable. . . as long as I have a nice {COMFY} place to sit!

Chan to Mars - Maternity Photo by C. Linz Photography

Thirty-three {WEEKS}

Things that I’m totally {LOVING} right now is the cool fall weather that we’re having in the midwest, lounging around with blankets, wearing slippers, resting as much as possible, that I’m in the home stretch of this pregnancy and these {PHOTOS} that my mom helped me take to document what is likely to be my last pregnancy! We are so lucky to live on a golf course with this {AMAZING} lighting & even luckier that there were no golfers out this evening. We managed to get {ONE} awesome family photo too, but we have to save that one for the Christmas card 😉

Chan to Mars - C. Linz Photography - maternity Photos Chan to Mars - C. Linz Photography - Family maternity Photos

Pregnancy {WOES}

When I was only a couple of weeks pregnant with Chandler my doctor warned me, “There’s something about a pregnant lady that makes people think it is okay to comment on {INAPPROPRIATE} things . . . so, don’t be surprised!” Well, since it was my first pregnancy I kind of took all of the comments, looks of shock and unwarranted advise in stride; after all, I was going to show them when I finally had this “giant” baby that I was carrying. Sure enough, I did! Chandler was delivered via c-section 10 days early and weighed in at 10 lbs 1 oz. He was predicted to weigh 11 lbs 1 oz at birth & he likely would have if I had made it to 40 weeks. Whew, I made it through . . . it was all over & now I could just tell the story about how large I was & how large my baby boy was.

SAM_0036And then, I got pregnant again! Now that I am 30 weeks pregnant it is starting all over again! I look like I could probably deliver this baby tomorrow, but I still have a lot more growing to do before this boy is ready to come out. I absolutely loath when people ask me my due date, which is December 12th, because I know exactly what their next reaction is going to be . . . the {PAINFUL} face that they’re going to make, the gasping “oh” & then the abrupt end to the conversation. Really!?! Everyone is different, people! I am short! I make large babies! The end. If a stranger asks my due date, I simply fib and tell them that I only have a couple of weeks left, that is far less awkward then the reaction to the actual due date.

This pregnancy has definitely been different than the first one. I gained the majority of my weight in the beginning months of the pregnancy (about 10 lbs a month) and since then I have only been gaining 3-4 lbs a month. It was much different with Chan, all the weight gain came in the last couple of months. I am already 10 lbs heavier than when I delivered Chan, which is kind of discouraging, but I know it’s normal. Also, Marshall seems much “lower” than Chandler ever was! But, as you can see from the photo, if Mars is going to be anywhere as big as Chan then my belly definitely has a lot more growing {OUT} to do! In the words of my grandma, “soon, it’ll all just be a memory!” Luckily, once the baby comes the memory of pregnancy seems far more {GLORIOUS} than the reality of the pregnancy.