Monday, December 27, 2010

a few cute pics from the week

little cousin Amory met ashlyn for the first time! She calls her "the B"
Pat and i have gotten lots of cuddle time in with our little girl

and we took a couple of christmas pics..... but i need to decide what is going on the card before i post more.

hope you all had a fabulous Christmas!!

Ashlyn Elise O'Brien

Okay so it has been 9 days...but as you can imagine things have been pretty nuts!
The good news: Ashlyn is here and she is absolutely perfect.

She weighed in at 8lbs. 8oz and she was 22 inches long.

The labor and delivery was pretty much textbook and i feel so lucky that everything went as smoothly as it did. Basically, I started having contractions last friday at 10:30 while i was vacuuming the house. They were only like 7-10 minutes apart, but weren't that awful so i hesitated to call anyone and let them know - i totally thought that it might have just been some cramping because i was sort of over doing it for being 39 weeks and 6days pregnant :). I did call Pat at work to let him know, but i was sure that they would stop as soon as he got home and warned him many times not to be disappointed if that was the case. Right around noon they were getting much stronger and only 5 minutes apart - so it was officially go time. We ate lunch, i took a shower, changed into some comfy clothes and headed out the door. Lets just say five minute contractions hurt much more than 7 minute contractions.....and guess what? Contractions every 2 minutes hurt WAYYYY worse than both of those combined

I got to the hospital and the nicest old man wheeled me in the door while Pat parked the car. He kept his hand on my shoulder the whole ride back to labor and delivery and seemed so excited for us that we were about to have a baby. I got checked out in triage by a nice little resident that had a "pocket guide to obstetrics" in his pocket filled with post-it notes and earmarked pages. Luckily it looked like he had read it a lot, but soooo funny to see an instruction manual in the "doctors" pocket.

Ummm just as we suspected before going into triage i was actually in they moved me to the Labor and delivery area. I was in between contractions and feeling okay so i actually walked to my room. Up until that point everything seemed so manageable. I could deal with the pain and the anxiety hadn't really set in. It kind of felt like an out of body experience - like i still wasn't "really" having a baby. Once we got into Labor and Delivery things changed. I think that walk to the room really kicked my butt. The nurse talked me into trying "the ball" (umm eww) I swore afterwatching way too many episodes of a baby story that i would never use the exercise ball thing but i was in a lot of pain at that point so any option sounded like a good one. 2 contractions later i was fahhhhhreaking over it and opted for the epidural ( sidenote: I truly couldn't care less if you want to judge me for this...cough cough..... Emily).

Let me tell you - Epidurals are magical!!!!

I got my epidural and within a couple of hours i was fully dilated and ready to go. I simply watched the monitor so that i could tell when i was having a contraction but i had enough control to where i could still move my legs. pat and i just hung out and he would tell me when it looked ike my contractions were getting huge. i just chilled. Things moved along extremely quickly and i felt like i had a ton of energy saved up for when it actually came time to deliver. that was a great feeling and i dont think it would have been that way had i been in agonizing pain for hours beforehand.

That is just my experience though - if you go without - that is great for you. Everyone has there own reasons for making the decisions that they do....and i respect everyone for having a baby no matter how they go about it.

So anyways, Ashlyn was born after about an hour of pushing. The full Labor and delivery time was 7 hours total. She was alert and happy from the moment she was born and totally healthy.

Now that we are home, she loves to sleep...even at night...and she just gets sweeter every day.
I have loved nothing more than to see Pat with his little girl too. We are so lucky and feel so blessed to have had the experience we did. Two minutes after having her I said "wow that was easy...i could have 10 kids...lets do this again"

So anyways...stay tuned. I will have many more updates on this little peanut.
We love her so much :)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

39 weeks 5 days

i am REALLY pregnant.....and i have been really bored....and now i think someone is trying to tell me something because BRAVO somehow disappeared from the channel lineup on my family room TV. Ummm how do you spend a lazy pre-baby maternity leave on the couch when there is no BRAVO available to entertain???

I know all i have to do is call in to Direct TVs customer service and have them re-send a signal, but dude......annoying!

I am going to take this as a sign that maybe i am "resting" too much.
i think i will spend this fine afternoon off the couch doing some baby yoga instead..... i love hanging out with "sunshine" the earth mother baby yoga instructor that graces me with her presence via DVD

Annnd in baby news: if i had to put a guess in I would say that Ashlyn is going to make her debut this Saturday. It is her actual due date...and it has been my guess all along.
Pat was born on his due date...he is a first born...naturally his daughter could do the same right?

I'll keep you all posted...the doctor sounded surprised that i have lasted this long so who knows it could be sooner (could be later).

Monday, December 13, 2010

Winter Turkey Chili Recipe

I don't know if your outside looks anything like my outside right now....but if it is snowing sideways and freezing (or even if it is sunny and you are just in the mood for a nice wintery meal) have to try this soup!

My friend Emily made it for Pat and I last week and it is beyond good. Pretty light, but filling all at the same time...... She got it off of the site (its Ellie Krieger) but I included it below for your convenience.

Bon Appetit!


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 stalks celery, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 3 medium poblano peppers (about 4 ounces each), seeded and white ribs removed, finely diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, more to taste
  • 1 pound ground white meat turkey
  • 2 (15.5-ounce) cans white beans such as cannelini, preferably low-sodium, drained and rinsed
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can hominy, drained and rinsed
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup nonfat plain Greek-style yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • Lime wedges


Heat the oil in large pot or Dutch oven over moderate heat. Add the onion, celery, poblanos, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin, coriander and cayenne and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add the ground turkey and cook, breaking up the meat with a spoon, until the meat is no longer pink about 2 minutes. Add the white beans, broth and oregano. Cook, partially covered, stirring occasionally, for 25 minutes.

Add the hominy and salt and more cayenne pepper, to taste, and continue cooking, partially covered, 10 minutes longer. Ladle into individual bowls and top each serving with 1 tablespoon of yogurtand 1 1/2 teaspoons of cilantro. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Per Serving:

Calories 320; Total Fat 6 g; (Sat Fat 0.5 g, Mono Fat 2 g, Poly Fat 1 g) ; Protein 31 g; Carb 37 g; Fiber 9 g; Cholesterol 30 mg; Sodium 310 mg

Excellent source of: Protein, Fiber, Thiamin, Vitamin C, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus

Good source of: Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin K, Potassium, Zinc