Finally, I'm making time to write the birth story! Thanks for your patience from those of you who enjoy reading the details! :) I'm going to intersperse the story with pictures from that day.
First of all, to back up to my last pregnancy post, you may remember that we had used evening primrose oil to see if we could get anything started. At the time, I was dilated to about 3 cm and "very stretchy." Sherry felt like I would go really fast again, once things got started . . . but nothing really got started that day. That was last Weds, and nothing happened on Thursday at all, so I figured I was in for a bit of a wait . . . no big deal, since I wasn't even quite at the 39 week mark yet. The main concern was my blood pressure, which was the only reason Sherry thought it might be good if baby came sooner than later, but she wasn't really worried either way.
Sam had woken up just after the baby was born because he heard her crying. He peeked out of their room while we were still in the pool, and we sent him back to bed, with the promise that we would get him up to meet her as soon as we were all settled. He stayed wide awake from around 3:45 on, and we finally let him get up around 6 am. The midwives left by around 6:30, then Sam and Jim went to work making a big breakfast, while I snuggled in bed with Arielle (who was still nameless at that point). It took us the better part of the day to choose a name for her! We were finally able to start calling family and letting them know she was here, which was quite exciting. :) Then Jim and Sam cleaned up the birth pool and Josiah and Julia finally woke up and got to meet their new sister.
As you can tell, all of the kids were thrilled to find that they had a baby sister. Julia had been asking me almost daily if THIS would be the day that the baby would be born . . . finally her long wait was over! They marveled over Arielle's tiny fingers and toes, how tiny and perfect she was . . . and they still tell me over and over daily how cute and sweet she is. They love to hold her, and Julia is interested in all the "new" things that happen with a baby, like nursing and diaper changing. She can't wait for me to give Arielle her first bath, so she can help. :)