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Penelope Katherine Smith

Baby Penny has arrived!

Welcome Penelope Katherine Smith, 2/8/11, 9lbs 10oz


Pregnancy Update

So I am officially 32 weeks as of Tuesday.  Up until a couple weeks ago everything had been going really smoothly, and this pregnancy had been completely uneventful.  But apparently when it rains it pours, and the past couple weeks have been pretty crazy!

Two weeks ago, at 30 weeks, I went for a routine ultrasound with my parents, just to check for signs of early labor.  Thankfully, no signs of labor, but unfortunately they found a large cyst in the baby’s abdomen.  The perinatologist on that day (Dr. Carlson) couldn’t pin down where the cyst was coming from, so he referred me to the fetal diagnostic and testing center at CHOP to spend a day getting checked out.

We had a loooooong weekend waiting for that appointment, but went there on Monday the 13th.  After a couple ultrasounds and a fetal echocardiogram, and meeting several different doctors, the general consensus was that the cyst was likely on the baby’s ovary.  The good news is that ovarian cysts in baby girls don’t pose much of a risk to the baby, the worst case scenario is that the cyst could twist, or hemorrage, and she would end up losing the ovary.  Obviously something sad, but thankfully we have two, and the Drs said it wouldn’t affect her overall fertility much, if at all.

At that point we were given the options of draining the cyst in utero, which has risks similar to an amnio–infection, early labor and delivery, etc., or we could wait and see what happens to the cyst.  We chose the second option, and returned a week later for a repeat ultrasound.  At the second ultrasound they found the cyst was mainly unchanged.  At 7cm it is still quite large (a “whopper” the fetal surgeon said) but not really affecting her in any way in utero.  At this appt we met a few more of the doctors (Dr. Bebbington and Dr. Kahlek–high risk OBs, and Dr. Scott Adzick, the chief of pediatric and fetal surgery) and the decision was made that we should deliver at CHOP so that the baby could be examined immediately, and would be watched carefully at the NICU  there just in case.  Then when  she’s a could days old the plan is to perform laproscopic surgery to remove the cyst and try to preserve as much ovarian tissue as possible.

We left CHOP with appts to return in one week on the 27th for an ultrasound, and again the following week to complete my “trasfer of care”.  I saw Tara at my regular OBs office that night and she agreed that the plan to deliver at CHOP made sense.  No matter where I delivered the baby she would likely get transferred there, so if I could deliver there too it would allow me to stay close to her right after birth.  At this point we felt good, we had a plan, the baby was fine and happy, and thankfully the problem they found seemed to be minor and easily fixable.

Then, the next morning as I was walking into work I stumbled on some loose gravel and fell in the parking lot, landing square on my (very large) belly.  I was pretty shaken up, and called my regular OB who sent me straight to Bryn Mawr to get checked out.  Matt came and picked me up and off we went.  They were waiting for us when got there, and immediately got me changed and hooked up to monitors which showed that the baby was fine, but I was unfortunately having regular contractions.  They sent me down for an ultrasound, mostly to check on the placenta (coincidentally I have an anterior placenta this time around, which means my placenta is right across the front of my belly and took the brunt of the fall) and to look for signs of preterm labor.

Thankfully everything on the ultrasound looked fine, but the contractions were coming fast and furious and werent slowing at all, so the Drs at Bryn Mawr starting talking to me about the possibility of delivering the baby pretty shortly.  They immediately gave me  a shot of steroids for the baby’s lungs, and we discussed the cyst and the new plan where I was supposed to deliver at CHOP.  Unfortunately they cant transfer a mom in active labor, so if it was going to happen, it was going to happen at Bryn Mawr, and the baby would be transferred as soon as she was stable to CHOP’s NICU.  Thankfully, she is a healthy 5 lbs already, so wouldnt be dangerously small, but because of the cyst, we really wanted to avoid having her at 32 weeks!  And at that point they were talking about a C-Section, which would mean the baby and I would be separated for days while I recovered at Bryn Mawr, and she at CHOP-ugh!!

To Be Continued…

Just Only Girls Can Go

Over the weekend, Emily’s GaGa and I took her to see her very first movie in the theater. We went to see Tangled, and Emily LOVED it! She sat very still through the whole movie, and immediately wanted to go see it again “tomorrow”. Daddy was a little sad to have missed all the fun, so we mentioned that maybe we could go again with Daddy, to which Emily responded “no Daddy. Just only girls can go to see ‘Punzel”. Looks like Daddy will have to wait for a different movie.


So I’m a little behind, but just wanted to share some pictures of our Halloween this year!  We all had a great time, and Emily really got into the whole idea of dressing up and going trick or treating.  She decided she wanted to be a doggie this year, and picked out her costume all by herself–she LOVED it!  Every time she put it on Tucker would get all worked up and run around nervously, which Emily thought was just hilarious. 


The Friday before Halloween, Emily’s school had a big party, and a halloween parade, where all the kids get to march around the block wearing their costumes.  Emily was a little shy at first, but held her friend Valerie’s hand while she marched and had a great time!  Valerie was dressed up like Scooby Doo, and Emily told me that “Valerie and I are both dressed like doggies because we are friends”, it was adorable. 


Emily all bundled up like a Mummy

On Saturday we got all ready for Halloween, and carved pumpkins and roasted pumpkin seeds.  Emily had a blast and was very sweet, wanting to paint baby sister’s pumpkin for her.
Painting Baby Sister’s Pumpkin


On Halloween, we took Emily to Linvilla Orchards for a couple pictures and apple cider donuts, then we came home to go Trick or Treating!  Emily had so much fun, after every house she would ask us “Can we go to another house now?” and ended up filling her bucket so much that it was too heavy for her to carry.  She had Daddy carry between each house and enjoyed every minute of it.  She even checked out a haunted house someone had set up in their house, which was a little strange, but very spooky.   All in all it was a great Halloween and we cant wait to do it again next year!

 Click HERE to see all of the Halloween pictures from 2010!

Pretty Girl

Emily is getting so big, so fast!  Her latest favorite word is “awesome”, and she loves to use it to describe clothes, and in particular, t-shirts.  The other day, she was wearing one of her favorites, and out of nowhere she tells me, “my t-shirt is awesome”.  Next, she tells me “Daddy’s t-shirt is awesome”.  And of course, this is followed up by “Mommy t-shirt?  Not awesome.”  She later explained that it is a “work tshirt, not awesome t-shirt”  Silly girl!

I’ve recently gotten back into photography as a hobby, and have been taking pictures of Emily like crazy!  I loved how this one turned out:

I took a bunch of pictures last night in the back yard, and I tried using the RAW format for the first time.  Now if I can ever figure out how to process them through my free trial of lightroom, maybe I can post them up here someday, ha ha

It’s a Girl!

It's a Girl!

So it’s official, we are going to have another little girl!  I had a consultation with a Perinatologist around 15 weeks (because Emily was early) and they did an ultrasound as part of the visit.  Both the tech and the Dr. independently decreed baby Smith a little girl!  I am so excited for Emily’s little sister, I can get out all the tiny girl clothes I was sad to put away again!

And in even more important news, Baby #2 looks healthy in all their measurable ways, and as of now I show absolutely no signs of going early again.  They are having me take progesterone shots once a week as a precaution, and I will get checked again around 26-28 weeks, but otherwise everything is pretty routine, thankfully.

Baby’s First Submarine Visit

Today New Baby visited their first submarine–The USS SCRANTON