Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Life has been going along as usual...nothing new around here. Thought you'd enjoy some random photos taken this week...

My Loves

This mint colored outfit was mine when I was a tot. My mom saved some of my clothes (the ones from the Diamond (wink wink)) and recently gave them to me. Most are still too big for Tessa but I had to try this one on and snap a few pics

I attempted to set-up our very own photo studio complete with a sheet backdrop and take pics of Tessa. It started out enjoyable for us both and then quickly turned sour!

like our fancy sheet's our old duvet cover..ssshhhh!

She started to complain...

and then like any high maintenance model/drama queen she threw a fit...

then it got sour - literally - she threw up (I'll spare you that shot)

and then she discovered the pretty bow attached to her leggings and had to have a taste...notice the throw up on the leg??

Tessa will be one in less than a week! I wish there was a way to bottle up all that is her right now...her "words", her smile, and especially her smell. This adventure started out pretty rough and the days seem to stand still but these last 9 months have flown by way too fast!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

1 year ago today...

is when our lives began to change. It was this day last year that Tony rushed me to the hospital. I was 23 weeks pregnant and my water had just broke.

The first 24 hours in the hospital were a nightmare. Once they confirmed my water had in fact ruptured I was given my first of two steroid shots. This is given to help the baby's lungs speed up the development process in case a delivery is in the near future. This shot was given at about midnight....and let me tell you...if there would have been a baseball bat in that room that poor nurse would have been missing her head. Those things are given in the hip and it isn't pleasant! At this point we were still in the ONLY room that was available...which wasn't what I would have called a room..more like a closet. NO KIDDING...and I had to share the bathroom with someone on the other side of the wall. OH JOY!

The next morning, still in the closet, we were consulted by the high risk doctor and a neonatologist from All Children's. This was when the nightmare peaked. First I was told there was a VERY high possibility baby (she didn't have a new yet...heck, we hadn't even prepared the nursery or got a shower was still over a month away!) would come in the next week but if she did stay in the chances she would continue to stay in got greater....HUH? On top of worrying if she was going to come...I no longer had amniotic fluid which meant infection was another BIG concern. Being that I was only 23 weeks along I was also informed that baby was not considered viable so All Children's probably would not come over to help stabilize and transport....HUH? YEAH...a lot to take in.....HOLD ON IT GETS BETTER! Then the neonatologist began to give us the facts...if baby is born before 28 weeks she most likely will have cerebral palsy, be blind and be deaf....HUH? I was then asked how aggressive we wanted them to be when it came to stabilizing her...HUH...WHAT? Were they asking me how hard I wanted them to try to save her...YES!! Thinking back, I don't know how the stress didn't put me into labor on the spot??!!

The day got better when we were moved into an antepartum with my own bathroom...which at this point I was put on STRICT bed rest and had lost my privilege of peeing and showering in a normal I could have given a hoot about the bath. The room also had another bed which came in handy the next 2 weeks for the LUCKY person that got to be my servant...I mean bunk mate! This was either my mom or Tony. Night two came along and I got my second round of steroids...this time I didn't feel a thing...which was a nice way to end the day from HELL!

The next two weeks were full of MANY visitors....I was never alone...not even to sleep...which I so much appreciated. My fear was that something would "happen" and I would be alone so the company was always appreciated! I was sent flowers and cards. People made and sent cookies. I was given REAL food not hospital seemed to be pretty good. My mom "showered" me every 2 days. God bless her she even shaved my legs and washed my hair with the shampoo that the astronauts water needed!!! Oh the simple things in life! It was during this time that I realized that Tony really truly loved me...I knew it before but I totally took it for granted. He would see me everyday in all my GLORY and still looked at me the same. GLORY was pretty can only do so much with yourself when you are on your back, someone else is washing you and shaving your legs and all you have to primp your hair is a comb!

During the 2 weeks everyone, especially my dad, kept insisting that we decide on a name. There was one....the first girl name we thought of and we both actually liked....but there was ONE started with a "T". We swore we'd never be that family...which for the record there is nothing wrong with "that" family we just didn't want to be the was bad enough we were already Tony & Tiffany! I kept telling everyone I wanted to see her first. When that stopped working I started to tell them that if we give her a name she will think it is time to come...and sure enough she did...2 days later!

Up until August 3rd I thought I could live like this for months. I mean, I wasn't due until November 10th! I was in no pain and for the most part pretty comfortable. I can't speak highly enough for the nurses that cared for me. In fact I became friends outside of the hospital with a few. I was in a large room with a bed for whomever felt up for the challenge of caring for me...which was not easy! I didn't want to keep bothering the nurses so my bunk mate often became my very own in-room private nurse...who couldn't live like that???

On August 3rd I woke up feeling a little different than I had the days before. My belly was tight and there was a lot of pressure. I told Tony I felt like Tessa was going to come today. As I waited for someone to examine me Tony called my mom. The next thing I know it is around 9:30am and I was on the phone with Dr. Biss. She told me she was on her way in and that Tessa would be born in the next hour. The Anesthesiologist came in, the nurses began to prep me for surgery and I was wheeled into the operating room. I was so nervous. Though Tessa was now viable (25 weeks) we still weren't sure how stable she would be. I can recall Dr. Biss explaining everything that was going to was so surreal...just like a dream. The spinal didn't take and it was on to plan B. The last thing I remember is looking to my right and seeing All Children's Transport Team filling the room....then I fell asleep. Tessa was born at 10:59am...1pound 15ounces, 13.5 inches long.

I woke to everyone telling me how TINY Tessa was. The family had been waiting by the elevator that the transport team would use to take Tessa to the NICU. They got to see her and they said aside from being so small she looked perfect. I was so weak from bed rest and surgery that it wasn't able to see her right away. To be honest I don't even remember the first time Tony wheeled me over to see was all still a blur. The next 3 1/2 months were nothing short of a roller coaster ride...I'll save that post for August 3rd!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Horton hears a Who

I just love this onesie...too bad it's pretty much painted on....she's getting chunky! I'll have to pack it away and save it for the next....if there is one!

Below you'll find she really does have other facial expressions besides the "DUH....uh what is that black thing you are holding in my face momma?" expression.

whoops....when good times go bad!

I'm pretty sure she's tooting.....LOVE IT!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

On the road again...

Tessa ventured out on her second road trip. This time is was double the time it took to get to St Augustine. Every 4 years my dad's side of the family gets together for the Van Frayen Family Reunion. Since most still live in Ohio and some of us are in Florida, we meet in Georgia at Aunt Ellen and Uncle Mike's house. They are amazing hosts and very gracious to open their house to the festivities for the weekend. In 2005 we had Olympic Games. Each "branch" of the family (aka Countries) competed in Olympic Games. As the Ambassador of Pattersonia, I am PROUD to say we WERE the raining champs. This year many were not able to make it so there weren't "official" games and I am SAD to say our family came in dead last. We've already started training for a comeback in 2013!

Heading over to pick up Grandma, Grandpa and Uncle Max @ 3am

Uncle Max wasn't awake

And 20 minutes later neither was Tessa...

8 Hours later!

Only in Georgia!

Grandma snuck Tessa her first Popsicle


Grandpa Van Frayen "hangin out"


No...Tony isn't taking the picture....he didn't come! :(

cousins, cousin, cousins!

O-H-I-O...with 2 sets of twins!

Kiddie Korner

the back of our reunion shirts

Top Chef - Reunion Edition

Porch Pong

We take winning serious...especially when our country is loosing

This poor egg didn't boil like the I dressed him up for the occasion


The Van Frayen Siblings

Pop Trivia night
The whole gang!