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Welcome Mia

Mia Mae Bowling arrived 9/24/2014

7lbs 6oz, 20″

Our little ohana welcomed its newest member last Wednesday.  We knew the time was getting close since Kitty was having trouble sleeping the previous three nights and started taking late night baths.  Late Tuesday night I was in our bed with Autumn, who had also not been sleeping for the previous three nights, watching an episode of Curious George.

Kitty came in the room and asked me what time it was.

“10,” I replied.

“The exact time,” she questioned again.

“I don’t know it’s 10.”

“Exactly 10?” she asked.

Agitated, I looked at my phone and said, “OK! 9:59pm.”

“Ok,” she said, “because I’m timing my contractions.”

This being our third pregnancy, and knowing Kitty, I knew what that meant. Before the next contraction even kicked in I was up and getting everything ready.  I called Libby who started on her way over to watch the kids. Kitty called the midwives who started asking questions about the timing of the contractions.  Kitty, also having been through this and knowing her body, just told them, “I’m coming in.”  We headed downstairs to wait for Auntie Libby.

On the scene was first responder Autumn Ann.  Autumn, sensing what was going on, set up a yoga labor area for her mom.  Apparently the white foam roller marked a line that was not supposed to be crossed, and when I crossed it and kicked the calf stretcher out of the way I was promptly removed from the area and lectured by Autumn.

Like this mama

Once Auntie arrived Kitty and I headed up to the mountain on which the OHSU labyrinth was placed. As we checked in the receptionist and nurses were asking an impatient Kitty about her contractions and how she was feeling.  You could tell Kitty was thinking, “Hey this baby is coming! Lets go!”  Once in the room the midwife came in and before she could even finish asking, “should we check…”  Kitty replied, “YES”. The midwife starts checking how far along Kitty has progressed… then says… hmm.  The nurse asks 8….9cm?  “Nope,” said the midwife, “she’s complete. You can start pushing whenever you feel like it.”  That was at 11:15pm.  Mia Mae was born at 12:19am.

Momma and baby did amazing, and later our pediatrician would tell us how surprised he was that, given the speed of the delivery, the Apgar scores were also 9.  He and everyone else couldn’t seem to get over how Kitty came into the delivery room fully dilated, then labored for an hour before delivering our little Mia.

This was a special delivery for me as well. Not only did I provide love and support, fetch water upon demand, and provide the necessary back massages during contractions, but I also delivered Mia myself.  The midwife was standing by but I actually had the honor of guiding my baby girl into this world.  There is nothing more amazing than a mother creating and giving birth to a child and so I was humbled and grateful to have the opportunity to have such an intimate role in the delivery.

Proud parents see their baby girl for the first time

The delivery and aftercare went so well that we actually left the hospital the same day! But before we could leave we promised Luca he could visit Mia in the hospital after pre-school. Luca had been eagerly awaiting the arrival of his new sister and is completely in love with her.

Luca says hello to Mia for the first time


Autumn also wanted to check things out…

and came bearing gifts

We are all settled* back home now and having a little party this weekend. We are so thankful for our family and friends.  We love all of you and thank you for all your love and support.


*settled – a relative definition.

Luca – Playing with two new dinosaurs and correcting Dad on the difference between a Sarcosuchus and a Suchomimus

Autumn – Telling mom to hold her and not Mia

Kitty – Trying to find anytime to sleep

Mia – Sleep, Eat, Poop, Poop, Sleep, Poop

Chris – Discussing dinosaurs, watching dinosaur movies, and reading about dinosaurs. Distracting Autumn with games, silly dances, and yogurt. Trying to make time for Kitty to sleep.  Changing diapers. Taking breaks by cleaning the house.  Loving every minute of all of it!!!


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We attempted a bit of a photo shoot a couple months ago. It sure is hard to sit still and follow grown ups’ instructions, but I think the two little monkeys did pretty well overall.IMG_7327 bwIMG_7453_bw2 IMG_7339_FotordlIMG_7340_Fotor sepia









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Get Ready Kids

 Here’s the official picture

IMG_6976(1) copyAnd here are some fun outtakes


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Welcome Autumn

Autumn Ann Bowling arrived 9/19/2012

8lbs 7oz  19 1/2″

Kitty had a wonderful and very easy pregnancy. We were eagerly awaiting the arrival of our little girl when at 4am on Wednesday she tapped me on the shoulder.  She said she thought she might be having a contraction.  After a feeble attempt to postpone the inevitable to a more reasonable hour by telling her “No,” I sprung into action… well as much as I can spring at 4am.  I called our nurse midwife and we decided since Luca’s birth only took 6 hours we should probably head to the hospital.  I loaded the packed bags, grabbed snacks, cameras, and music, and called Libby to come over to watch Luca for us.  We were not in a super rush so things were fairly calm.

We arrived at OHSU at 5:30am and got to our room.  I got Kitty water and setup KMHD jazz radio on our iPod.  It was Kitty and my plan to try for a natural birth as she was able to do with Luca.  She really prefers the ability to move around, change positions, and have that connection with the entire birthing experience.

We had a yoga ball in the room for Kitty to rest on between contractions 

During the contractions I massaged her back and encouraged her the best I could

After a little over an hour Autumn Ann Bowling was born at 6:37am.  The birth was wonderful, Autumn is beautiful, and Kitty, the love of my life, never ceases to amaze me.  The nurses and midwives were talking about how they wished they had video taped the entire birth as a teaching example.

Mom and baby meet face to face for the first time

Luca has been so excited for his baby sister to arrive. In the last few weeks he has been constantly talking about her and had some hand picked presents waiting for her.

Kiss from big brother

Everything went so well we were able to leave the next afternoon.  The nurses and midwives were great and we had a wonderful experience at OHSU.   We bundled Autumn up and headed home.

We’ve settled back in at home.  I headed out and bought 5 containers of purell to spread out around the house and cleaned the already clean house… Oh yeah I am the ubernester but that’s another story.  Autumn is doing well.  She’s mostly sleeping or eating, but when she’s awake she’s very alert.

Luca is going to be such a good big brother

 We wanted to thank all of our family and friends for your love and support, and we hope to hear from and see you all soon.

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Time for a baby update! As Luca successfully predicted on more than one occasion, he’s going to have a baby sister! Never mind that he doesn’t even know what a boy or a girl is…  We weren’t hoping for one more than the other, but we are definitely excited to have one of each. We’ve been talking a bit more to Luca about his baby sister and asking if he is going to be a good big brother and help take care of her. Sometimes he says yes, and sometimes he says no. He usually asks if he can hold the baby, but seems to be okay with having to wait a little longer until she’s ready to come out. One time he asked if he could eat the baby – hmm, not sure where that one came from. Who knows what goes on in the mind of a 2 year old…

We’re all doing well – plugging away with the day to day busyness of work and day care and dishes and laundry and always thinking of new ways to get Luca to listen and do what we want. Yes, I realize getting him to do something that wasn’t his idea to begin with is the inherent flaw in our logic, but we keep trying nonetheless. I’m feeling pretty good these days – no complications thus far, and always tired but with as reasonable an amount of energy as can be expected for a working mom with a busy toddler.

Here are a few pics of baby and belly and family to keep you all up to date:

Here she is waving hello

25 weeks along now!

This is Luca's version of cooperating for a photo

A rare moment of stillness

We found ourselves face to face for a moment, and Luca said, "Mama's eyes - Luca in there!" Sweetest moment ever!

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I didn’t have work today since it’s a holiday.  Kitty and I decided to go to our favorite Pho restaurant, Golden Deli, and get some Pho and spring rolls.  After that we went for a nice walk and then Kitty headed to her weekly doctor appointment.  Apparently Kitty is half way from fully dilated.  The doctor was a little surprised that she hasn’t even had a little discomfort so far and predicted the baby would probably come sometime this week.  Hopefully the birth will be as easy going as the pregnancy so far.  Given that Kitty is already technically halfway there, at this point I won’t be surprised if little Luca just decides to deliver himself, crawl to the fridge for a snack, and watch some Magnum PI while we are sleeping.  We are both very excited and looking forward to becoming parents.

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Almost here

With the due date quickly approaching there seemed like no better time to try to sneak in two bathroom remodels.  It’s definitely possible that I have been nesting more than Kitty.  I spent the week repairing the roof, doing bathroom remodeling work, upgrading outlets, painting, sealing granite counter tops, and taking care of numerous other odd jobs around the house.  Kitty is doing very well and has kept busy sewing a quilt for Luca while trying to keep up with walking/going to the gym and getting plenty of rest.  She worked until this past Tuesday and now has time off to prepare for Luca’s arrival.  Aside from that we received our first delivery of diapers this week.  At first I was a little apprehensive about a diaper service.  I just pictured myself having to hand clean dirty cloth diapers and trying to fumble around with safety pins.  After doing my research I found cloth diaper services are actually quick, clean, and easy.  We found Dy-Dee, a diaper service that is 3 blocks from our house and has been in Pasadena since 1938.  They say we will need 80 diapers a week…. really?!  Ok I’ve got to go rotate the laundry.  The next update may just be about Luca’s arrival!

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I decided awhile ago that come the beginning of the year it was time to finalize the baby’s room and get everything in place for his arrival.  Apparently I’m the one “nesting”.  We were both careful not to overdo the baby room, both of us preferring a simple and less cluttered approach.  We headed to the store to stock up on baby supplies.  There is nothing scarier than the baby section of a store packed full of pregnant women.  I’ve been in this situation several times now and have yet to find a successful strategy.  At every turn there is another pregnant lady walking down the isle in the opposite direction.  I turn to run but no doubt another lady turns the corner and I am trapped for the time being.  I have since learned from the sighs, huffs, and stare downs of pregnant women to leave my cart at the end of the isle.  In spite of that I still somehow always find a way to park it right in front of the one item that everyone seems to be seeking.  This time one lady let me know her displeasure by quickly thrusting her hips into the cart and sending it flying.  I later found that this was probably just part of her and her pregnant cohorts’ plan.  As my cart was now unprotected at the end of the isle, someone came by and snatched the last baby bjorn out of it.  Chris 0  pregnant women +25.

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Christmas arrived and after having received an email from Santa that I may have been on the naughty list this year I was happy that my last minute efforts were acknowledged and Santa did indeed make an appearance.  In the days leading up to Christmas day we received many packages, cards, and well wishes.  Kitty and I are both so thankful to have the family and friends we do and can’t wait for baby Luca to meet you all.  You are all very special to us.  Thank you so much and Merry Christmas!

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PT Baby Shower

Another baby shower!  This time I celebrated with friends from physical therapy school on a cold and rainy Saturday night.  We played a couple of fun games, including identifying names of various baby animals and guessing how big my tummy is.  Karen overestimated my size by cutting her piece of yarn almost twice as big as I actually am!  We all had a good laugh over that.  The rest of the evening was spent eating homemade lasagna and carrot cake, admiring baby pictures of each other, and opening some very fun and thoughtful gifts.  We all live in different parts of LA, so more than anything it was good to just spend time with each other (while I still have a little left!).

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