Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Happiness

Yesterday was one of those perfect days where nothing extraordinary happens but you just love your life. Vaka was able to spend more time than usual with us at home, Jacob was happy ALL day long, and we just loved being together as a little family. Days like these make me wish I could be a true stay-at-home mom and get to spend every day with my cute little munchkin. Hooray for the semester being over in exactly ONE WEEK and we'll hopefully get to enjoy a full month of many more days like these!! Here's a glimpse at my cute, happy boys.

video

Thanksgiving in Vegas

For Thanksgiving we traveled to Las Vegas to stay in our timeshare since its the halfway point between Brandon, Tonya & JT in Arizona and the rest of us here in Utah. It was so good to see them and have them finally meet Jacob. JT has been wanting to meet "baby Jacob" ever since he was born and it was fun to finally see them interact. I think it certainly prepared him for his new brother or sister that will be joining their family in the next few months!

Jacob did so well in the car. Lucky for us, he loves the car. However, traveling with a baby is exhausting!! Just having to make sure we had everything we needed, scheduling activities around his feeding/nap times, the extra time it takes to pack up and get out the door.... whew!! Luckily we had the lots of helping hands. How cute is he with his little monkey!?!

Jacob & Grandpa ready for Thanksgiving dinner


Checking out the toys in the Black Friday ads


JT & Jacob


Apparently Vegas brings out their scandalous side :)


Rebekah took JT to "Build a Bear" for his birthday present. It sure was fun to watch him and how excited he was about his bear.

The morning after, while I was sleeping, my mom and Tonya decided to dress Jacob in JT's bears clothes... JT was NOT happy about it!!


Our growing family. I sure love them!! I think it was definitely one of my more memorable Thanksgiving's and am grateful we were able to spend it together!!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Party time!!

Its been a busy weekend!! Friday my cousin and close friend Amy got married in Manti, so I had my first experience "traveling" with a baby. It was definitely a good trial run to get me ready for our trip to Vegas for Thanksgiving this next week. My dad was Jacob's babysitter during the sealing and successfully fed him and changed a poopy diaper... go grandpa!!

Ever since I worked as a florist Amy had always talked about me doing her wedding flowers one day... well unfortunately the timing wasn't great and I decided it would be too much to take on with a baby, so I stuck with making her bouquet and leaving the rest of the flowers to someone else. It was a long and exhausting day, but I was grateful to be a part of it. Congratulations Caleb and Amy!!

The beautiful bride and her dad

Saturday we watched the much anticipated BYU vs. Utah game, but unfortunately there wasn't much to celebrate. Better luck next year right? Oh well, we are still die hard Cougar fans and for now, Jacob doesn't have a choice otherwise!!


Our cute cougar!!

Today Vaka is 29 and Jacob is 2 months old so we partied hard!! Those of you familiar with Fox News and Bill O'Reilly will recognize Vaka's shirt... the perfect birthday gift for the huge fan.


For those of you unfamiliar with the show, here's the definition. :)


I sure love my handsome boys!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Jacob's Blessing

Playing catch up here...

We blessed Jacob 2 1/2 weeks ago. It was such a special and memorable day. What an amazing thing it was to witness the blessings promised to your very own sweet baby and catch even just a glimpse of the things he has the opportunity to accomplish in his life. Thank you to all of our family and friends who came to show their support, we felt very loved!!






Side note: Vaka was SO picky about the blessing outfit. We went to every store possible and this was the only one other than a TUX that cut it. He was even willing to make an extra trip to a different location because the store we originally went to was out of the size we needed. Who knew?!?

Monday, November 17, 2008

As if the Proposition 8 issue isn't enough...

Last week, Barbara Walters had a special titled, "What Is a Man, What Is a Woman?" Featured, was Thomas Beatie (first pregnant "man" and now pregnant with #2). In the interview, he said, "The face of families is changing". Because state officials wouldn't allow them to list Thomas as the father and his wife as the mother on the birth certificate, (being that the person who gives birth is usually listed as the mother) they changed it to say Parent/Parent rather than Mother/Father.

I am more than a parent, I am a mother. I am not simply a child, a sibling, a spouse; but a daughter, a sister and a wife.
I want that to remain sacred.
I remember anxiously awaiting the day we would find out the gender of our sweet baby, so we could say HE or SHE rather than IT. God intended there to be a definite distinction of the two. I can't believe society has reached a point where we are fighting to define what a male and female are.

I have accepted that people have homosexual tendencies and are going to pursue those feelings. I have accepted that trans-gender families are going to continue having babies. I am tolerant of these situations, but why do I have to agree with them and support them?

I don't.

Moving to Tonga and living a simple, protected life on a remote island is sounding pretty good these days.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Just thought I would mention...

that my SIX WEEK OLD BABY ROLLED OVER the other day. Sadly, I wasn't around to see it. Grandma put him down for "tummy time" while I was at work and there he went!! Since when does a 6 week old ROLL OVER!?! He is growing way too fast!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Our Little Pumpkin

I have quickly learned that holidays are so much more fun with kids!! Even though Jacob couldn't enjoy Halloween himself, we sure enjoyed dressing him cute and having him participate in the festivities.

Heading out to the ward trunk-or-treat


Trick or treating is so exhausting!


Ready to go trick or treating around grandma's cul-de-sac

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Forget Lullabies...

So this week has been a rather rough one, life with a newborn has its ups and downs and this has definitely been a downer!! We still love our sweet Jacob more than anything, but he has been giving us a harder time than usual. He goes from smiling and cooing to instantly crying so hard he can't breathe... literally going from 0-100 in 1 second flat!! Monday night this occurred while Vaka was gone to class, and I spent an hour and a half rocking, walking, talking, and singing primary songs, without much success. I was obviously tired by the time daddy walked in the door and passed Jacob right off. I went downstairs and not more than a minute later, the crying had completely stopped. I could hear Vaka singing to him (as he often does), but couldn't make out what he was singing this time. Curious, I went back upstairs, and what did I discover? He was singing the Hokey Pokey!! Now why didn't I think of that?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

One Month Old!

I can't believe my little boy has already been with us for a month now. I think the horrendous last few weeks of pregnancy make the first few weeks of motherhood go by in fast forward. Other times, it seems like we have always had him and can hardly remember what life was like without him here. He is growing so fast, and it makes me sad! Everyone that sees him comments on how "advanced" he is. He can already hold his head up, sit up for a few seconds on his own, and he has amazing strength in his arms and legs, loving to stand and just look around.

I went back to work yesterday, only for 4 hours, but it was the longest I've been away from him since he was born. Thank goodness I only have to go back part-time, but it was still hard! It's comforting to know he is with my mom, and we all know she is much more capable of caring for him than I, but I still wanted to be with him myself to make sure my sweet baby was safe. I know it will be good for both of us, and who knows, maybe Vaka and I will actually venture out on a date in the near future!

In other news... gas is under $3.00 a gallon. WAHOO!! Really awesome for us since we both commute... (yes, this was the only other exciting news I could think of that is not related to Jacob. What can I say, he is our life these days, and that's not a bad thing!)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Family Pictures


Last week I had my old friend Ken from my high school days come take pictures of our baby boy before he grows too fast!! Not only was it good to see him again after over 7 years, he did an amazing job. Here's a sneak peak at a few of the shots, if you want to see more or check out more of his work, go here. More to come when we get the CD of proofs!!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

And so it begins...

A lifetime of Jacob having his mommy taking a bunch of pictures he'd rather not have taken... :)

Doesn't he look thrilled?

Rebekah had school off Thurs & Fri so she and my mom came up Wednesday night to spend the weekend with us and hit up the shopping venues in SLC. Friday we went to Gardner Village to window shop and see their witches display, and we couldn't resist taking some halloween pictures of my cute baby boy.


Between work, school and his calling as Elders Quorum President, we definitely don't see Vaka much these days. So it sure was nice having an extra set of hands around here again. It had been a week and a half since my mom had gone back home, and while I'm finally feeling comfortable with my routine and can get around easier now, I gladly welcomed the help!! It was nice to be able to get out and about and enjoy what little of the fall weather we have left. Thanks for the fun weekend!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

SO very worth it!!

We're all a little tired these days....


But it is so rewarding, especially when our little guy gives us one of these!!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Surprise!!

Jacob is one special baby, his Aunty Annetta and Uncle Pate flew over 2,000 miles to meet him!!

Thursday night was a long night without much sleep thanks to our baby boy. I've quickly learned to take advantage of any time he sleeps to sleep myself, so since he finally decided to fall asleep for a good few hours around 8 am, I didn't get up until around 11:00 yesterday morning. Soon after, Vaka's cousin Tae called to say she was coming over. Tae showed up at the door, and then Annetta appeared behind her. I really thought I was seeing things, and with lack of sleep, anything is possible. :) But it was true, Annetta and Pate had made a last minute trip out here for General Conference, and of course, to meet the newest member of the Tu'ifua fam. We're waiting on the rest of you now!!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

More Jacob

Sorry for the delayed updates... life with a newborn is definitely an adjustment!! Recovering from a c-section and coming down with the stomach flu at the same time didn't help... but luckily I think we're finally recovering and getting the hang of things around here!!

So here's what you've all been waiting for... more pictures of our adorable little guy. He definitely has his daddy's Tongan nose, and we're hoping he keeps my blue eyes!!

How we got him here...

For those of you who've been wanting the details...

We went to the hospital around 9:00 a.m. Monday morning (the 22nd) and I slowly but surely dilated about a centimeter every two hours. Around 1:00 the doctor broke my water, at which point the contractions definitely started coming on stronger. By 3:00 I was ready for the epidural, thank goodness for modern medicine. :) Unfortunately, the side effect of the epidural was nausea... not fun, but luckily I was only on liquids!! At 11:30, after over 14 hours of labor, I was finally completely dilated and fully effaced and we were ready to bring this baby here!! Unfortunately, Jacob was posterior and the doctor was unable to get him turned. He could have been delivered this way, but then as I continued pushing, his heart rate started dropping with each contraction. After 2 hours of pushing and not much progress, the doctor advised our little boy was under too much stress and that a c-section was probably the best option. We decided to try pushing for another half hour, and he only seemed to get worse, so after lots of tears, we decided we needed to do the c-section.


My amazing support, all suited up for the c-section

The c-section was definitely an interesting experience... something I would never wish on anyone!! The hardest part was being unable to have that first experience I always pictured having with my brand new baby. Vaka was able to be with him immediately while they cleaned him up, weighed him, etc. but it was 15 minutes before I was even able to get a glimpse of my little boy. Even then, my arms were strapped down and I had an oxygen mask on, so when they brought him over for me to see him, I wasn't able to have any physical contact. Emotionally, that wasn't easy!!

First few moments of life

Vaka went with Jacob when they took him down to the nursery, but I was in the operating room another 30 minutes by myself. My family had come to the hospital about the time I started pushing, so luckily my mom was able to be with me once they took me to recovery for another hour while Vaka was with Jacob. I don't think I would have made it without her there!! For some reason, due to either a lapse in communication or preparation, after the c-section the anesthesiologist stopped the epidural before the morphine had been prepared. So basically, I had just had my abdomen cut open and was left without pain medication for an hour until it was ready. AWESOME. After that kind of pain, I think a normal, vaginal delivery without an epidural would have been a piece of cake.

They wouldn't move me down to my room until my pain was under control, and I couldn't see my baby until I was out of labor and delivery and down in my room. 2 hours after my baby boy was born, I was finally able to be moved to where I could hold him and love him... and then he wasn't there. I immediately demanded that Vaka go and get him because they had had more than enough time to take care of him in the nursery. Vaka thinks I was drugged and loopy, I think I would have been just as demanding if I hadn't been, and I'm sure any other mom can relate!!

Our little family finally together

It was so amazing to finally be able to hold my little baby after it was such a long, hard day to get him here!! Obviously, there just aren't words to explain it. It took us the whole 41 weeks to decide on a name, but once he finally arrived, we knew Jacob Cory Tauelangi was the perfect fit. Jacob means "to hold", Cory (after my dad) means "God's peace" and Tauelangi (after Vaka's great grandpa) means "reach the heavens". We sure do love him and are so blessed to have him in our family!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Introducing....

JACOB CORY TAUELANGI TU'IFUA
September 23, 2008 @ 2:20 a.m.
8 lbs 8 ounces, 19 1/2 inches


14 hours of labor + 2 1/2 hours of pushing - success + baby boy's struggling heart rate + emergency c-section - effective pain killers = our adorable miracle of a boy

Stay tuned, more pictures/info to follow at some point....



Thursday, September 18, 2008

Remembering Jake

One positive thing about being overdue?? I can still make the trip today to pay tribute to an old friend.


Meet Jake Whetten, a giant both inside and out. He was 6' 7" and his heart and soul were just as big. Jakey was one of my best friends in high school, and was taken from us way too soon. (read about it here) It was a Saturday morning, just a few weeks into my last Fall semester at BYU. Its hard to believe its already been 4 years since that day.

When we as Jake's friends asked what we could do for his family, his parents simply told us to help Jake be remembered. So remember we did. Along with some other friends I gathered memories and pictures of Jake and compiled a book for his family. His brother set up a website, for others to share their memories. And I hope his family knows that still, even 4 years later, I do remember.

The first year it was hard to remember. I missed him and the memories brought sadness. My first visit to his grave, I had a good cry. But time heals, and now anytime I think of Jake, I can't help but be happy. Yes I still miss him, but I am confident he was needed much more somewhere else. I imagine he is the same fun and crazy Jakey, blessing just as many lives elsewhere as he did here. I am grateful for the tender mercy that despite our busy school schedules, it somehow happened that Jakey and I were able to spend a lot of time together the week before his death. That he just happened to drop in and visit me at work the evening before.


Jakey was crazy and adventurous. He was spiritually sound. He was a people lover and people loved him. More than anything else, Jakey contagiously loved life. And I love September 18th for reminding me to love mine a bit more, just as Jakey did.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What's wrong with this picture??


No, we didn't just forget to inform you all that the newest member of our family had arrived. I am OVERDUE and hating it. Our baby boy however, must be completely comfortable right where he is, as he's showing no signs of making an appearance anytime soon. Keep your fingers crossed!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

SINGLE DIGITS

See that little ticker to the right?? It finally hit the SINGLE DIGITS. Lets hope this little boy decides to come within those few DAYS left!! (Nope, I'm not sick of being pregnant. Not one bit.) :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Our current "happily ever after":



You got it. These days my prince charming pampers me by massaging my swollen feet each day when I get home from work, painting my toe nails (its a pet peeve of mine to have them unpainted and is obviously difficult for me to do myself these days) and going downstairs in the middle of the night to get me a glass of cold water.

In a religion class at BYU one semester, my professor shared a talk by President Kimball, "Oneness in Marriage" that I have never forgotten. I love how he addresses what a realistic "happily ever after" is. "Some think of happiness as a glamorous life of ease, luxury, and constant thrills; but true marriage is based on a happiness which is more than that, one which comes from giving, serving, sharing, sacrificing, and selflessness."

Based on that criteria, I think we're doin' just about right. :) Needless to say, I think we're also both looking forward to having this pregnancy over and done with in the next few weeks... and seeing what our new "happily ever after" holds in store!!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Thank you!!


Because a shower never got put together and my due date is fast approaching, my coworkers decided to throw me a simple shower on their own and treated me to lunch at PF Changs, and of course, LOTS of presents. I sadly forgot to bring my camera and snap a picture of all of us together, but here is what I came home with. Thanks so much!! I'm definitely looking forward to a nice break from work, but am excited for the opportunity to go back part-time so I don't have to say my goodbyes to all of you yet!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Summer Lovin'

Has this summer come and gone in a flash for anyone else? There were definite moments (mostly due to pregnancy) that seconds felt like hours, but overall, I can't believe school is back in session, and in a few short weeks we'll be experiencing that freshness of fall.

This is my favorite feel good song of the summer. It played continuously on the radio when we were in Hawaii, so every time I hear it since, I think back to those lazy summer beach days. It surely will remain on my playlist all year long, as I will definitely need a reminder of the beautiful summer days when its 30 degrees and snowing outside!!

Take a peek. I dare you to be unhappy while listening!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

36 week stats

2 cm dilated, 40% effaced, here's to hoping I continue to progress and am not one of those women who measures the same for the next month!!

The doctor's comment of the day: "Is he this active ALL the time?!?" Yeah, pretty much. Hopefully he's right that he'd be surprised to see the babe stay inside another 4 weeks. I think a Labor Day delivery sounds just about perfect. :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Growing, growing, growing....

Here's a look at some things that have been expanding, other than my feet. :)



We planted a small "garden" in planters on our back porch a few months ago. The "then" and "now" pictures show you just how much it has grown!! We've had a few tomatoes and one pepper, and unfortunately I've neglected to use the basil as much as I could, mostly due to my lack of cooking recently. I am just so proud of myself for not killing it all; the only thing that didn't make it was the cilantro. :(

And my waistline is obviously expanding. You all have been begging for pictures, so here they are. I wasn't lying when I said I was a whale. :) Surprisingly, I stepped on the scale at my appointment last week and had lost 5 lbs since my visit 2 weeks prior. I made a comment that it must have been wrong, because I sure didn't feel like it or look it, and the doctor reminded me that I should just take it for what its worth and feel good regardless. Very true!! One other positive note, doc says he estimates this little boy will weigh in at a high 7, low 8 lb range at delivery, so hopefully he is right and I'll deliver an under 10 lb tongan baby after all!!

24 weeks


26 weeks


28 weeks


30 weeks
(thank you Hawaii for making my whole body swell!!)


32 weeks


34 weeks