Saturday, February 28, 2009

Pregnancy in Brazil-Part 6

Well, we're one day away from the due date and Dawson seems to be content to just stay where he's at. I don't know what's up with my boys, but Camden didn't want to come out either. He was induced a week over-due. My Dr. checked to see if I was dilated on my Thursday appointment and said if she could, she would "strip my membranes" (which I had done with hurt SOOOO bad and didn't work anyway) if I was dilated enough. Well, when she checked I still wasn't dilated at all. So we continue to wait! I have another appointment with her on Tuesday morning, and she said if that by a week after my due date, he hasn't come yet, she'd put me in the hospital to induce me. Of course I'm ready for him to come out, but I really don't want to be induced again. I've been praying for a natural birth that starts on its own without any interventions. So please join me in praying that within the next week I dilate, contractions start, and that my water will break all on its own. Thanks!

On some side notes, I wanted to let you know a few things I've learned about "after" the baby arrives here in Brazil. While preparing all of the food for Camden's b-day, my mother-in-law told Renato in a passing comment, that "It'll be good if we have left-overs, then you don't have to prepare anything for the guests who come to see Dawson." What???? SO, we've learned that here in Brazil, people don't bring you food after you give birth (like when I had Camden, our friends all organized a bunch of dinners for us over the next few weeks after Camden's birth, which was a HUGE blessing), you're supposed to feed them when they come to visit you and the baby. Now, don't get me wrong, I LOVE showing hospitality and opening up my home and serving and feeding people, LOVE IT! BUT, not so much after I've just given birth. I guess that most people will start showing up and visiting us about a week after we come home, and that we're expected to have some sort of snack or cake or cookies with coffee to serve to them. All I can say is that I'm glad we do have some cookies left from the party to serve....and that we live only a few steps from a bakery, cuz there's no way I can think about preparing/cooking/baking anything for other people the week after I give birth. All I'm really concerned about is feeding my we'll see how all that goes. It will be nice to have visitors, I guess I'm just not too sure how it all works.

Then the other day, my Mother-in-law asked Renato, "So what kind of gift are you going to prepare to give people who visit?". WHAT????? Excuse me, but I'm not only supposed to have something for them to eat, but a gift too? Uh-oh. She told us that we should have some sort of small gift, like a little photo, candy with Dawson's picture on, or little keepsake made for everyone who comes to visit us. Ummmm, yeah. Bless his heart, all Renato did was shake his head and tell his mom that we didn't have anything planned and that we won't be preparing anything as a keepsake. I feel bad for Renato, because if I could take care of it, maybe we could do something very simple, but Renato would have to do all of the footwork and pretty much do it all, and I don't want to add more on his "plate of duties". I know some people do this in the states too, like have those cute "Her-shies" bars printed up and give to people, but the thought never even crossed my mind when I had Camden, let alone doing something like that here.

So I'm learning that having a baby here is a bit more work then I anticipated, but we'll make it. I'll serve and feed our visitors, but I'm sorry to say, they won't be taking home anything as a keepsake from Dawson. :) It's definitely been interesing to learn all of this here. I'm just ready for Dawson to arrive so I can hold him and kiss him and hug him! I'm not concentrating too much on all the other "things", but having a baby in a different culture is certainly a learning experience!

P.S. Please be praying Dawson comes on his own this week! Thanks!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cha de Bebe

Our little church here was so sweet to throw us a baby shower, or "Cha de Bebe". (Translated directly, baby tea) There was just a little misunderstanding though. We only know baby showers that are for women only....well, when my mother-in-law and I pulled up to the church and saw a bunch of men standing outside, I knew that we were mistaken! Yes, the shower was a "whole family" event, and Renato was at home with Camden, who was already in bed. We had no idea it was for men too! We tried to work something out last minute to get Renato there, but we decided to just go ahead with just me being the guest of honor, not both of us. :) Ooopppss!

It was really nice to have the men there. They were such good sports about everything! It was pretty much a "typical" baby shower. They played a bunch of games and there were some snacks and gifts of course. The main difference in gifts was that I had to give a list of things I needed. Then with the invitations, they let people know what's on the list and make sure everything is covered.

Here is a pic of the gift table and the cute sign they made for us. It's going to hang in the boys' room. It says, "Welcome Dawson".

My mother-in-law and I with the gift table.

Me with Pastor Jose and his wife Sonia.

The whole gang, although the pic is a little fuzzy.

What a blessing they are!! It was so great to celebrate little Dawson!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Pregnancy in Brazil-Part 5

OK, we're trying to be patient here....only a week away from the due date. I'm hoping he comes either today, or tomorrow, or then that he waits until next Tuesday. Renato has a translating job and is going to be working nights on Thurs, Fri, Sat, and Mon, so it would be crazy if Dawson came then. But of course, it's all up to him, not us!

I'm actually still pretty content and not too anxious yet. The only thing that is making me really miserable right now is how hot it is here. The past 4 days have been awful! I think I've sweat more in the past 4 days then I have in the past 10 years. YUCK! You know that if you're already sweating by 9am, it's going to be miserable. Yesterday I took 4 cold showers, and they only help while you're actually in the shower. As soon as you get out, you're sweating again.

The last few Dr. appt's have gone well, although she's not checked again if I'm dilated or not yet. Maybe it's a good thing not to know. I think it's keeping me less anxious.

Here's something that is different in Brazil. In the U.S., each delivery room has a contraction monitoring machine that monitors movements, heart beat, and contractions. Well, there is only one machine for the whole hospital. When I was induced with Camden, I was hooked up to that machine the whole time. Here, they just put you on when it's open, or every few hours to check to see if everything is still OK. I went in the other day to get monitored for 5 minutes so my Dr. could see how Dawson is moving. He was going crazy the whole time! So fun!!!

So now, we just wait. I'm trying to enjoy these last few moments with Camden as my only child. I know life is going to change drastically for us when Dawson comes, and I want to cherish the time we have left, just the 3 of us. Although we know life will only get better and more blessed with Dawson.

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Party of the Year!

Happy Birthday Camden!!!!!!!!

My little boy is 2 years old tomorrow! My goodness, how did we skip ahead 2 years already? It's been fun this year to remember Camden's birth and every feeling and all the excitement, because we're going through it again at almost exactly the same time of year, just 2 years later. (I have a feeling Dawson won't be born on his brother's birthday though...although a lot could happen in a day I suppose.) :)

I know last year I did a post about Camden's 1 year birthday and the crazy parties they have here in Brazil. I was just thinking this year we'd do a small party with just the immediate family....well...plans changed. Pretty soon we were inviting everyone and having a bunch of food and tons of sweets, and on and on. Renato and I still aren't sure how it got so blown out of proportion, but it's over now. We had his birthday party yesterday. It was great, and we're very glad it's over. We spent almost everyday for 2 weeks preparing for the party. As I've stated before, I didn't do this much work to prepare for my wedding. But, I figured it will be Camden's last birthday here in Brazil, so I just went with the flow.

Here's an idea of what we did, and the work we put into it....
-Food: We spent at least 3 days preparing the food. We made everything from scratch to help save money....although it still ended up being a lot. We made mini pizzas (over 100), esfihas (middle eastern type food with meat in the middle of bread--all individually made--over 120), cachorro quente (cut up hot dogs in a tomato sauce served in a sandwich), and Renato's mom made this layered chicken sandwich with lots of layers of bread and chicken (she used 3 loaves of bread in it). OK, that's just the "salty food".

-Sweets: We spent at least 3 days on the little tiny cookies we made. There were 4 different kinds. Then through a strange twist of bad communication, we decided to do a certain kind of "freezer" cake that would be cut up individually and wrapped individually. (bad idea--bad communication--I didn't know what it really involved) Anyway, so Renato's mom made 2 big cakes with this yummy custard in the middle, which we cut up in single servings, wrapped in pretty plastic wrapping, tied a pretty ribbon around each one, then curled all the ribbons. There were about 120 pieces. Again, NOT a good idea. PLUS I wanted to make a cake for Camden I'd found on the internet. We had a "farm" themed birthday and I found a really cute cow cake, and Camden loves cows. So, we also had that. PLUS...yes there's more.....we had to make these little balls of chocolate and coconut, roll them in sprinkles and coconut, and put them in tiny little cupcake like wrappers.

Whew...are you tired yet just from reading that? You could say we were happy the whole thing is over. :) But it was a good time, and I'm glad we did it.....although both Renato and I said we'd never do anything like that again. Ha!

I've got some pics to show from the day. We had a "farm" theme of cows and John Deere green and yellow...although they all thought the green and yellow was for "Brazil", which worked out perfectly. :) It all turned out great.

Here's the cow cake. Isn't it just adorable?!? I'm pretty impressed with first attempt at decorating a b-day cake. I think I'm hooked...can't wait for the next one. :)

Here you can see the whole table with all the little rolled balls of chocolate and coconut, along with some of Camden's John Deere toys and some balloons.

I love this picture as Camden is blowing out the candles, all the other kids are "helping" him. Too cute!!

Here we are with our 2 year old!

I love this picture! It was taken when we were singing, and Camden looks so cute, knowing that everyone was singing for him! I love his reaction!

I wish I'd have taken some pics of all the food, but my card on the camera was full. Oh well, you'll just have to take my word for it.

Tomorrow is Camden's "real" birthday. We're going to take him to the zoo to see the monkeys (his favorite) and then out for ice cream. We told him tonight that tomorrow is his birthday, he asked right away, "Party?". So that tells me he enjoyed his party and that makes it worth it. We all had a good time and it was so special having Camden's 2nd birthday here in Brazil with all of his family and friends here.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Letter to Dawson

My Sweet Little Baby Dawson,

Oh, how I can't wait to meet you! I've only got 3 more weeks until your due date, and I'm counting down the days. I'm so excited to hold you and kiss you and hug you and cuddle you! I can't wait to see who you look like. Will you look like your Daddy with brown skin and hair, and brownish/green eyes, or will you look like your big brother and me, with light skin and hair, and blue eyes? I'm so excited to see you!

You certainly have been an active little guy from the beginning. I felt you kick me from the outside at about 17 weeks, so I've been feeling you tumble and kick and move for a long time. I love your little hiccups! You get them so much! I'd say you have hiccups at least 1-4 times per day. I love watching my belly shake when you have them! I'm going to miss feeling you move and kick so much, but I'll love holding you and smelling your sweet new baby smell lots more.

Something that is really exciting is that you're going to be born in Brazil! Now that's pretty special. You'll probably be my only baby born in Brazil too. Your name, Dawson Daniel, sounds so natural. The name Dawson is actually the name of a little town that's close to the town I grew up in. I've always liked that name. And Daniel is your grandpa's name (my dad). 2 other people in our family have the middle name Daniel as well, your uncle Darin, and your cousin Dylan. So it's a pretty popular name! And you'll fit right in with all the other "Dockter" men (my maiden name). All of the men in that family have a first name that starts with "D", except for Camden! I guess we're all trying to really confuse Grandma. :)

You have so many people waiting to meet you and shower love on you. Your big brother, Camden, has been kissing you and hugging you for months now. He calls you "Daws" and says, "Baby Brudder". He LOVES babies, so I know he'll take such good care of you. I know you 2 will be the best of buddies and great playmates! You'll soon realize that you have the best Daddy in the whole world! He's going to take such good care of you, and he's SOOOO much fun too! Just ask Camden! I know you'll be wrestling around with Daddy in no time.

My prayer for you, is that you will grow into the man of God you are called to be. That you would be filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control. I pray that you will be a man of honor and strength, and that you would love the Lord your God, with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Dawson, you are a child of God, and I pray that you would follow after Him and serve Him, all the days of your life.

I love you so much! We are all waiting expectantly for your arrival. Don't keep us waiting too long!

All of my love,

Friday, February 6, 2009

Pregnancy in Brazil-Part 4

Does the baby at the top of the blog really say I have only 23 days left? Oh boy, we're getting close! I had my first Dr. appt in more than a month yesterday. My Dr. was on vacation, and she said she wasn't worried about me at all, so we could go the month without any Dr. seeing me. And she was right, all was well. :) From now on though, we'll have an appointment every week. Camden will be spending a lot of time with his grandparents in the next few weeks...which he loves, because remember the previous post....yeah, they have the pool! We've tried to take him with us to the appointments, but here in Brazil, I'm not quite sure how they schedule, but it's not done very efficiently. I have a feeling they put about 5 people all down at the same time, then whoever just shows up 1st, and 2nd, and so forth get put in order. So if you're usually have at least an hour wait. We've shown up early or on time for every appointment, and we usually finally get to see the Dr. about an hour after our scheduled appointment. Not very appropriate entertainment for a 2 yr. old. :)

Anyway, my appointment went well. Sad to say though, I'm not dilated at all yet. I am praying that Dawson waits until after Camden's b-day party next Sunday, then he can come whenever he wants. It would be kinda fun for him to be born on the 17th, Camden's b-day, but that's up to him! We also had an ultrasound on Monday. Dawson looks very healthy and is head down, so that's good. After we got home I was doing some calculations to convert all the metric measurements to inches and lbs so I can understand them. From the measurements they took they think he's about 6 lbs already. I'm just praying he has a smaller head then Camden did!

Yesterday we also got to take a quick tour of the hospital.....which they don't do normally here at all, but my Dr. gave us a tour to help me feel a bit more at ease I think. Here's where there's a difference in deliveries. I labor in my room until either I, a) want an epidural or b) am ready to deliver. Then they move me down to surgery. So if I get an epidural soon in the process I could be sitting in surgery for a LONG time....not fun. I'd really like to have a medication free delivery, but that all depends on a hundred different things, so we'll see. After delivery they take the baby to the nursery, and me back to my room. Now here's the weird part.....THEY KEEP THE BABY IN THE NURSERY FOR 4 HOURS. What? My Dr. said it was to get the baby acclimated to being on the "outside". I asked her about when I could breastfeed, because it's very important to feed the baby ASAP after he's born. She said after the 4 hours.......I'm not a very big fan of that, at all. But she said I could ask, and that it's up to the pediatrician on-call. So pray we have favor with the staff and that I can feed little Dawson before they take him away from me for 4 hours.

Also, at the beginning of your pregnancy here, they give you a little pamphlet that you carry around with you for the whole pregnancy with information in it, and the Dr. updates it at every appointment. Now in this little pamphlet they have some info for new mommies....about 4 paragraphs. That's it. That's all you get. (Not like the binder full of info you get in the states!) AND the best part, is they give you a list of things you need for the hospital, for you and the baby. Again, here is a big difference.....this is the list I need for the hospital:

For me:
~Bath Towel and Washcloth
~Toothpaste, Toothbrush
~Flip flops

Yes, I have to bring my own towel and pads. My Dr. said they have everything I need "medically", but I have to bring anything that would be "personal". I'm so glad I had a baby before and know how to take care of everything and that I know what I need. While I was in the US I bought some "extra's" I'm sure they won't have for me, like the Dermoplast spray, and the Tuck's pads....and I'm sure I'll have to bring my own ice packs too. I told Renato I'm going to need a whole suitcase. :)

For Baby:
~Burp Cloths

Yep, that's right.....they don't even provide diapers for the baby!!!......or a Blanket......or a t-shirt! Oh my.....yep, definitely going to need a suitcase.

So, as of yesterday, I'm trying to pack my bag (suitcase) with all that we need for our 2 day hospital stay. Whew, glad I'm getting it ready now, it's definitely not a "throw some things in a bag and let's go" type of list. 23 days and counting.....

Monday, February 2, 2009

Our Little Fish

Camden has a great opportunity here in Brazil that not many people get. He's learning how to swim in his grandparent's pool. We realize this is a luxury, and believe me, we are thankful for it! Especially on really hot days, when being in the water is the only place to cool off. Last year when we arrived, he was kinda scared of the water (only being one) and didn't really like it. Well, this year during the summer season, we can't get him OUT of the water. Everyday he asks to go to the "pool". On warm days when we don't get to Vovo and Vova's house (Grandma and Grandpa in Portuguese), I just put some water in a bucket I have and let him play in that....which he seems happy about too.

In December he was still a little hesitant about the water. He'd choke a lot and wanted to be held the whole time in the water.....that only lasted about 2 days. Then, we found some "bubbles" or arm floaties, and he's been on his own since then. Everyday he spends at the pool, the more he learns about swimming. He totally swims all over the pool completely by himself with his bubbles on. He's learned how to swim on his back, and the craziest thing he's just learned this past week, is to jump into the pool....without anyone catching him!!! He totally goes straight down in the water and comes back up without choking. He's learned how to hold his breath while jumping and yesterday, I think he crawled out of the pool and jumped back in at least 100 times. It's so cute, he stands by the edge and counts in Portuguese, "Um, Dois, Tres" and then jumps. He usually doesn't say the "tres", but someone else does. We're trying to teach him how to duck his head under so it's more like diving, but I'm sure he'll learn soon enough. He certainly is brave. It's kinda scary that he's learned so much in just a matter of about 2 months. I'm thankful for it though, he'll never be scared of water!

I wish I knew how download video...we took a very short video of him yesterday jumping in the pool, but I'll have to figure that out another day. Enjoy the pics of our little fish!!

This is Camden's pose...when we tell him to pose for a picture, this is what he does.

Here is Camden and his cousin Gabriel, we call him "BL". They look like a good example of "coffee and milk", don't they? You'd never guess they were cousins!

Enjoying the water!

Here's just another pic of Camden "posing"...can you see his tan? I know it's kinda hard to tell cuz he still looks very white, but his little bottom sure is white compared to the rest of him! He'd be a perfect poster child for the sunblock adds. :)