End of 2019-Present day

I haven’t shared a post in forever. The main reason being soon after my last post we got a surprise and found out I was pregnant. The beginning part of my pregnancy left me sick and tired and no energy to do some of the things I love, such as writing. Right after my first trimester we went on a fun trip to Arizona. Chris had a work thing and we decided to tag along to see family. We almost didn’t go since we had a trip planned in June to do Arizona and Mexico with both our families.

That trip to Arizona was the last trip we took before the Covid Pandemic hit, and due to Covid we couldn’t do our planned Mexico trip in June. I’m really glad we were able to go in February.

Being Pregnant during the pandemic was really interesting. Like I mentioned it wasn’t a planned pregnancy and after the initial shock I was looking forward to being pregnant for the last time (hopefully). When I was finally feeling better after that first trimester the pandemic hit and all the shopping I was looking forward to doing for the baby, I just couldn’t do it. I was able to do online shopping, but it wasn’t quite the same. There is a 7 year gap between my last two kids, and we thought we were done, so I gave away all the baby stuff. With the pandemic we weren’t sure if Chris would still have a job or what would happen with that which made buying all new baby stuff a little stressful. Luckily everything worked out well for Chris and he is still with the same company.

Most of my doctors appointments were canceled due to the pandemic and I only went in for the major ones. I think I went in a total of 4 times. The pandemic felt real when I went in for the anatomy scan. I had to go by myself, and it felt so eerie. (This was the end of March 2020 so when everything was shut down and so many unknowns.) I had to do a check in at the door where I got a fresh mask, temperature taken, screening questions, and they marked my hand as all clear. There were very few people in the waiting room and chairs blocked off. Doctors and technicians were all in protective gear.

My delivery of our new baby went well. The main difference is I didn’t have any family come. My previous two births my mom and my mother-in-law were there, and people were at my home helping with childcare. Two weeks before my due date, my water broke. Chris and the kids all drove me to the hospital while I was checked to see if I would be admitted. Sure enough I was. Chris left and did a few things at our home with the kids and then he dropped them off at a friend’s house, then he came to stay with me while I labored and delivered. While I was in the hospital waiting for Chris to come they gave me a room, did a Covid test, and when it was negative I didn’t have to wear a mask again. Labor hadn’t really started for me so I was able to call family, and read. It was actually super relaxing. They gave me Pitocin to help my body go into labor to prevent infection since my water had broken. Due to Covid protocols I wasn’t allowed to leave my room, and the nurses didn’t come in very often to check on me. I actually really liked that. When Chris made it I still wasn’t in active labor and still felt pretty good. Chris did have to wear a mask when anyone was in the room with us. I was also allowed to have two support people, but chose to have just Chris. No visitors were allowed aside from my two support people. That was the hardest part not having my big kids come to the hospital to meet their baby sister. I had seen where big siblings go to a window to meet their siblings that way, but I was on the fifth floor, so that wasn’t an option. Overall I was very grateful for my hospital’s policies that kept things so normal, while still being cautious. I think they did a perfect job of balancing those things.

My delivery was super easy. When I was admitted they checked to see how dilated I was, but they didn’t check again until after I had my epidural. When it was time to push the nurse called the doctor and 4 minutes later Ellen was here. My nurse told me I should push and the doctor told me not to push, just breathe and out she came. Ellen was born and now we are a family of 5!

During Covid going out in our boat was so wonderful. We went out so much as soon as boat launches were open again. We went to Seiku many times and did fishing off the coast. We boated around the San Juans, to Bainbridge, Coupeville, Oak Harbor. Really we went all over. It really was wonderful and I feel spoiled that one of our hobbies let our lives feel so normal during such a crazy time.

We did have company come right as everything was shutting down. They left the day we found out the kids would not be going back to school. In 2021 we had company come and meet us on the coast. It was so fun sharing a place we love with people we love. Even though we did go a full year without seeing family, we found ways to stay connected to our out of state family. We played virtual games and did quite a few video calls.

Chris no longer goes into the office for work, but gets to work from home. I love it and would love it if he always worked from home. We also switched the kids to a homeschool, public school hybrid, which is awesome. I teach them English, Math, and History. They take science and other fun classes in person. It’s really perfect. The school also provides the curriculum for us to use for free. Life definitely looks different for us than it did in 2019.

8/11/2020 Baby Ellen is born
Ryan holding Ellen for the first time
Lillian holding Ellen for the frist time.
When Ellen was a tiny baby we went to see a lot of State Parks in the area. It was a lot of fun!

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