Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Hardest Part...

The hardest part about getting up for work this morning.... .... is leaving these two behind.
I'm off to take Kinzie to school and then go to a client for day three of an audit. After that, I'll be going to my three hour Tax Accounting class at Towson University from 6pm to 9pm.
It's gonna be a long day....

Monday, April 20, 2009

Home Sweet Home

I haven't blogged since this past Wednesday night, but I think the word has spread through the grapevine (and Facebook) that Maeby finally came home from the hospital yesterday morning. Laura and I arrived at GBMC's NICU on Sunday morning at about 10am. After a short visit and a brief examination by the nurse practitioner, Maeby was given the okay to come home with us.
It was wonderful to finally be able to hold our little girl without her being wired up to machines.
I proudly wore a new pink polo shirt - the daddy of a tiny baby girl.
She fit perfectly into the Peg Perego car seat.
It was great to finally get some use out of it. It had been sitting in our living room few several weeks now. Maeby stayed wide awake throughout most of the drive home. Her new surroundings were much more interesting than the dark corners of the NICU.
Finally home!
We had a great afternoon, chock-full of visitors! We were all pretty worn out by the time we were left home alone.
Our whole family is doing great!
Thank you to everyone for your prayers and support. We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful circle of family and friends. You are all truly appreciated and we hope you get the chance to meet our newest addition in person soon!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Final Night at GBMC

The hours are quickly passing until Laura and I will be forced to check out of our postpartum suite at Greater Baltimore Medical Center. We have the lights dimmed, the Orioles game on TV with the volume low.... .... I am wrapping up some last minute April 15th Tax work.... (ie: posting this blog)
... and Laura is getting some much needed rest.
Unfortunately, Delaney Mae won't be coming home with us tonight. She is doing so well, but the doctors need to make sure she is completely healthy before we can take her home. I have changed two diapers today (including a big fun poopy fiasco while Uncle Will stopped by for a visit) and during our latest visit, Laura was able to feed Maeby from a bottle - and boy, did she suck that thing down quickly! It was pretty impressive!
So our plan now is for me to pack up while Laura continues to rest. We'll go upstairs for one final visit with Maeby before we leave her for the night. Its probably going to be tough leaving the hospital without her... we're already anticipating that, but we're going to stay strong with the thoughts that this is all for the best and her time to come home will come soon enough.
I guess the hardest part is knowing that she won't just be a few floors away for the next few days. Over the past two nights, we have made several late night visits with her. On Monday night, I was up there with her till 4:30am and last night I held her in the rocker well past midnight. She was wide awake while I was talking to her and it was almost like she was communicating back to me with her eyes. It was so fun and I am looking forward to spending many nights like that with her at home in her nursery. I know we'll be spending a lot of time visiting her at GBMC over the next few days and I will be sure to keep everyone updated on her status and with new pictures.
Thank you all for your well wishes and prayers. She is improving with every visit we make!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Newest Big Sister

Little Miss Mackinzie Joy Sroka officially became a big sister last night at 7:53pm. Unfortunately because of the sudden drama regarding baby Maeby's health, Kinzie had to wait until today to actually meet her little sister.
She was such a trooper yesterday. She arrived at GBMC shortly after mommy and daddy (around 11:00am) and stayed all day long and through into the night until Gigi and Pop-pop took her home with them (around 10:00pm). She enjoyed every minute of her hospital visit and even made a friend in the main lobby.
Although she was disappointed by not being able to see Maeby yesterday, she showed up this morning - ready for the big occasion!
.... and still in the same clothes as yesterday, but if you had super-cute "Big Sister" scrubs to show off to all the doctors and nurses, you'd wear the same outfit two days in a row.
So here they are: Sisters!
Our two little girls, photographed for the first time together. Mackinzie was so excited to meet Maeby. The very first thing she did was sing a song for her:
"Mackinzie loves Delaney, Delaney, Delaney; Mackinzie loves Delaney, Yes she Does!"
She was a little disturbed by all the wires coming from Maeby, and a few tears of sadness were shed, but she was able to swallow that up quickly and make the most of her first short visit.
There is still no major news on Maeby's health. We are going up to the NICU to visit her about every two hours. She appears to be improving with every visit. This is the latest photo, taken just a little more than an hour ago. She is breathing well and she has begun to make a 'sucking' motion with her mouth. She's probably very hungry because she has yet to have eaten anything since being born last night. The doctors have told us that getting her to breath properly is the top priority. Eating will come soon enough.
Please continue to pray for us. All signs are looking positive, so we are very hopeful!

Maeby Update

Laura and I slept about 3 hours last night in our post-partum suite. We left Maeby's bedside in the NICU at about 4:30am. She was at about 23% oxygen then. We went back to see her around 10:30am and she was off the oxygen mask (slash: spaceman helmet).
Here is our first family photo (minus Mackinzie).
Laura and I were thrilled to be able to hold Maeby! She looks so great, but she's still have a little bit of a hard time breathing. As of 2pm, she was going to get some spinal fluid tested for pneumonia. Her Xrays showed some grey cloudiness in her lungs and they couldn't tell if it was pneumonia or just some excess fluid in her lungs. We should be getting the results shortly. In the meantime, please enjoy these new pictures from this morning and I will post more information as it becomes available. (now that I have a better internet connection)
Mommy and Maeby
Me and my new little girl.

Monday, April 13, 2009

She's heeeere!

Just before 8pm, Laura gave birth to Delaney Mae Rode. She came out with difficuly breathing. They took her up to the NICU almost right away. We don't know her size and weight yet, but she seemed pretty big to me. She gripped my finger really good before they took her upstairs. I should be able to go see her shortly.
Please keep her and Laura and me, and Mackinzie in your prayers. Laura is doing excellent!! She did amazing! I am so proudof her.
I will fill in more details as soon as they're available.

Playing the Waiting Game...

No baby photos yet, so don't get too excited...
Our reglar OB, Dr. Zargarian, had to leave for the evening, so we just had the doctor on call come in. We're at 7 centimeters - YES! We're optimistic that baby Maeby should be here soon.
In the meantime, I'll keep keeping on....
Gigi, mommy and Sissy are all here for support!
Keep checking back... it could be very soon.

UPDATE AGAIN: Still Waiting...

It is almost 6:30pm. We arrived this morning at 10:30am. At last check, Laura was still just about 4 centimeters. Her epidural is in full swing, so she is feeling good, but just a little tired. Its probably going to be another few hours before any big news, but keep checking back.

UPDATE: The baby is coming today!!

I don't have any pictures to share yet, but stay tuned!
Shortly after I posted this morning's "3 DAYS" blog, Laura informed me that her water broke and we headed down to GBMC to delivery Delaney Mae.
As of right now, we're dealing with regular contractions, but Laura is feeling good.
I will update later today, so keep checking back!

Work Day Passes... 3 DAYS!

Its bright and early on Monday morning. We're just three days away from baby Maeby's arrival! (if Laura can continue to hold on that long....)I was up before 5am to perform my weekly office duty of installing the latest updates to our servers (and that is about as general of a description that I can give).
The good thing about being the only one in the office building that early is that I don't have to get dressed for work. Monday mornings, I'm a hoodie and 'jammie pants kind of guy. Thank God for the benefit of working from home for the rest of the day!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

One-Hundredth Post: 4 DAYS!

Welcome to the 100th blog post at The Rode Family Blog. We started this thing last summer as a countdown to our wedding and here we are now, just four days away from our baby's arrival. The nursery is complete! Yesterday, Laura and I put the finishing touches on every small detail of the room. The letters are hung, the video monitor is installed, the clothes are all washed and put away, the cable TV is hooked up, and the curtains are hung. We even installed a remote controlled light switch!
We planned on taking a few pictures to post, but by the time we were all finished, it was dark outside and none of the shots we were taking turned out very good. So for now, we'll leave you with this single photo and the promise of some nursery pictures TBP (to be posted).
Happy Easter everyone! The Lord has risen indeed!
Our family will be celebrating Sunday morning with Laura's family at their church followed by lunch and an Easter Egg hunt for Mackinzie and her cousins. We'll be ending our day with my side of the family for dinner.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Live in 5 DAYS!

We have a bush in front of our house (I have no idea what kind it is) but it blooms every year around early April. The pretty purple flowers only stay around for about a week and then they're gone. I always have meant to take a picture of it and I forget to do it every year .

Not this year! It was a beautiful day yesterday so Laura and Mackinzie posed for our fifth day countdown picture in front of our house.
Check back tomorrow as the countdown continues...

Friday, April 10, 2009

Less Than a Week: 6 DAYS!

This time next week, little Maeby will have spent her first night outside of mommy's body and in the real world. Its crazy to think about and we all can't wait to meet her!
Mackinzie was so excited that she had a hard time sleeping last night, so I had her hold up the 6 Days sign and take a picture for this morning's blog. It has been a long week and we have a busy weekend ahead of us in preparation of the nursery and house as a whole. Hopefully next week will go by quickly!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

A New Countdown: 7 DAYS!

Ladies and gentlemen, today we begin a new countdown at the Rode Family Blog.
Laura's doctor has scheduled to induce labor exactly one week from today. If everything goes according to plan, Delaney Mae Rode will be born on April 16, 2009. Her original due date was April 25th, but based on our last three weekly doctor visits, the doctor is extremely confident that Laura is ready to deliver.
These are the letters we have been working on for baby Maeby's room. It has been quite a challenge to cut out all the paper and shapes and Mod-Podge it all together on the large letters, but I think it has turned out pretty good. It ensures that Maeby's letters will be different from every other babys' nursery letter in the neighborhood.
I will be posting a new blog each day counting down to the big day. Please check back often and keep us in your prayers as we prepare for Maeby's arrival.