Friday, January 18, 2013

Braylen's First Turkey Day

Braylen's First Thanksgiving was a success! We spent the evening before Thanksgiving with Nana Jennings in Kansas City eating a feast of seafood. The next day we went to Nana Burkett's for lunch. Braylen got to meet all of his Norwich family for the first time- including his new cousin Mila who is a week younger than him! It was a busy day and the boy was definitely worn out! Here is our Thanksgiving in pictures...


Braylen Meeting Friends

I wanted to post a few pictures of Braylen meeting some of our favorite people when we got back from Ohio. Braylen was a VERY busy boy his first week in Kansas City.

Edison meets Braylen
 Tom & Lisa came from STL
 Gigi couldn't stay away...back in KC already
 Kelly & Kirra
 Nana Burkett & Braylen
 Aunt Kathi meets Braylen
 Braylen met Kim at a bar after a wedding
Aunt Jacque & Uncle Scotty with Braylen
Meeting Keene
Auntie Kristi making everyone be quiet
Catching up with the Jones'
 Braylen hanging out with Kynsey
 Tired babies
Celebrating Casey's birthday
 Snuggling with Aunt Eva & Uncle Jake
Meeting Papa Mark
Watching football with Uncle Corby
These are just a few of the many people we love and wanted Braylen to meet in his first few days...

First Visit to the Doctor

Braylen's first pediatrician appointment was November 15th. He was 17 days old. He weighed 8 pounds 3 ounces and was 20 1/4 inches long. He was in the 50th percentile in both categories. BUT....I got a talk about childhood obesity. What?!? Are you serious? There are lots of babies that weight more at BIRTH and my baby is 2 WEEKS OLD!! Our pediatrician was concerned that tiny little Braylen was gaining weight too fast. He had been eating 3oz of formula every 3 hours like clockwork since he was 2 days old. She told us we would re-evaluate at his 2 month check up. She is right about that- we will finding a new pediatrician! :)

Our "obese" little baby boy!

O - HI - O

Our time in Ohio was a whirlwind...I am writing this post about 2.5 months after the fact (don't judge- I have been a little busy lovin' on my baby boy) so hopefully I can remember the details surrounding bringing Braylen home! This may not be the most interesting post, but I am attempting to keep a journal for Braylen to know the details surrounding his birth.
Wednesday, October 31:
Happy Halloween! We spent the day with our sweet boy at the hospital. We also spent a lot of time with Braylen's birthmother and her family. It was so nice to be able to learn more about her so that one day we will be able to answer any questions that Braylen may have.

That afternoon we went on a tour of all the Babies R Us and Target stores in the area in search of a carseat and a pack and play. Apparently, there had been a lot of babies born recently in the small town we were in so we had trouble finding the carseat we wanted. After a few hours we were finally successful and headed back to the hospital.

Wednesday night we were able to have our own room down the hall from our birthmother's room. This made it so much more convenient and we didn't feel so far away from Braylen.

Thursday, November 1:
I did say it was more convenient to be staying at the hospital, but maybe not so comfortable. :) Hospital beds are not the best and I am guessing Q will say the same about the awesome cot he got to sleep on. Oh, well. We again spent the day in our birthmother's room with her and Braylen. Late that afternoon, she asked to spend some time with Braylen alone before she was discharged that evening from the hospital. I'm so glad she got the chance to snuggle him and say goodbye before she went home. I know it was really hard for her to leave that night, but I am so very thankful for how strong and brave she is. I can't imagine the courage it took for her to leave the hospital that night. Our hospital room suddenly became much more lively as Braylen moved into our room that night. Even though we didn't get much sleep, it was the best night- it was the first night we felt like an actual family! So blessed.

Friday, November 2:
As of 7:31pm tonight, our birthmother could have signed her adoption consent (there is a 72 hour waiting period in Ohio), however the hospital did not discharge babies at night so we had to wait until Saturday for her to sign the consent and us to be able to leave the hospital. Friday was spent hanging out at the hospital. Not sure if any of you have spent much time in a hsopital, but it is a really strange experience for everyone to be completely healthy and still having to hang out in the maternity ward. The nurses and doctors were great and let us have a lot of freedom, but it was still a little strange to be there- we just wanted to go home!

This was the day that my Mom, Dad, Tyler and Stacy arrived from Wichita. They are such troopers and drove like 16 hours so we would have a car to drive home with Braylen in. Thank you soooo much!! Actually, they just couldn't wait any longer to meet sweet Braylen so they used the car as an excuse to come see us! :)

Saturday, November 3:
Best. Day. Ever. We got to FINALLY leave the hospital...yay!! Although this was such a happy day for us, it was an incredibly hard day for our birthmother. As if Thursday night wasn't hard enough for her, Saturday was definitely not easy. Thank God she had a supportive family by her side during this process. The social worker arrived at the hospital about 10am to sign the paperwork with our birthmother. After she was done signing, she got to spend some time with Braylen while we signed our mountain of paperwork. Then for the hard part- we had to go say goodbye to our birthmother so we could leave with Braylen. Hardest. Thing. Ever. It is so strange to be so incredibly happy, yet so incredibly sad for someone else at the same time.

We finally left the hospital with my parents around noon and went to meet Tyler and Stacy for lunch. What else do you do with a newborn just discharged from the hospital? Go to Chili's and watch football, right?!? We then went to check into our "home away from home" - the Residence Inn for a few days while we waited for our ICPC adoption paperwork to clear so we could leave the state.

Sunday, November 4:
Oh, how different things are with a newborn in a hotel. There is no way we could all sit in a tiny little room all day. So, what did we do? We went to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame! This is definitely something I would reccomend for every 5 day old to do! :) Lucky for us, Braylen was an awesome baby and slept his way through the museum. Late that afternoon, we went to a place called Melt Bar & Grill. This place had amazing gourmet grill cheese! I would highly recommend it if you are ever in the Cleveland area! My parents decided since they were in a swing state during election time they might as well go to a Mitt Romney rally. Check that one off the bucket list, Mom! Oh, and we snuck in a photo shoot with Aunt Stacy...

Monday, November 5:
Tyler and Stacy flew back to Wichita that morning. We decided to visit the Cleveland Aquarium. It was neat to see, but not quite as big as we had anticiapted. We also drove around to check out Lake Erie and all the industrial areas (Dad is intersted in all kinds of crazy things). We also had our first of 7 social worker visits. We will now have one once a month until we go to court to finalize Braylen's adoption on May 6th!

Tuesday, November 6:
Election Day! Wow, I can't imagine living in a swing state. If you thought ad's, picketers, etc were bad in your town you have no idea what Clevelad was like. So crazy, yet kinda cool to experience. We were a little low key today- just ran a few errands and hung out at the hotel.


Wednesday, November 7:
This is the day we decided to start migrating south. We left Cleveland and drove to Canton to visit the Pro Footbal Hall of Fame. Again, something every newborn needs to experience! The Hall of Fame was pretty amazing! We then drove through Amish country and visited a few wineries, cheese places and some amazing restaurants on our drive to Columbus.

Thursday, November 8:
We got the phone call! Yay! We can leave Ohio! Thank you ICPC for moving so quickly! After hearing horror stories of people having to stay in birth states for weeks and weeks I was a little nervous that it may happen to us to, but luckily the paperwork was filed Monday and just a few short days later we were able to head home! Since we were already in Columbus, we stopped by the birthmother's adoption agency to drop off some cookies and say hello. Q also had to swing by The Ohio State University to see the football stadium (Dad was oh so thrilled) before we hit the road. Did I mention that my Dad had been sick all week? Well, by Thursday he pretty much looked like death. And as most men are, he is not a good sick person so he was super pleasant on our drive home. :) Especially after we gave him some Nyquil and knocked him out. This was probably the one and only time he sat in the third row seat of the Tahoe and slept his way across the midwest.

We knew we wouldn't be able to make the whole drive in one day so we decided to stop in STL for the night. This worked out well because Kelly and Landon were able to come meet Braylen. Braylen loved meeting one of his BFF's!


Friday, November 9:
Up not so bright and early to drive from STL to KC. It was so amazing to finally be home with our sweet boy! Nana Jennings and Auntie Kristi were so excited to meet Braylen they were almost at our house before we were! :)


So, this is the story of our time in Ohio. It was probably more time than I ever wanted to spend in Ohio (not the ideal vaca spot), but definitely worth every minute. Where else could you go and come home with the best baby boy in the whole wide world (I know, I may be a little biased). Welcome home, Braylen Scott. You are so very loved.