Wednesday, November 25, 2009


I know that folks say --- soon he will talk so much, he just will not shut up...

But is it is so precious to watch them learn new words. The ones that really get my attention are the ones that he picks up that we aren't even pushing. For example, I set my son down on his changing table and he looks over sees a ball and says BAl.... just a slight L so it was BA. We hardly ever play with that ball. Then early this week, I realized on the changing table (I just realized my child is a genius on the changing table, I bet this means he will get all his great ideas in life on the pot!) that he was say diaper.... he version is DAper. I definitely haven't been working on that one. Lesson learned, listen a bit harder to what sounds like ramble. It just reminds you that they are taking in a lot more than you realize.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Crumb Land

As my son approaches the 1 year old mark, I am finally realizing that the floor will truly never be clean again. At least it isn't carpet. After dinner there are bits of food everywhere. Then some how he finds bits to eat later, even though I cleaned up. Or really my husband who can't stand messy! I wish I hadn't agreed to sell that little annoying robot vacuum.

He has his favorite foods - Bananas - he can eat 2 whole bananas no problem, YoBaby Yogurt, and Cheese. When he sees a banana in the store he turns in to a monkey. I thought I was in the clear the other day after getting him past the pyramid of bananas in Trader Joe's. Only to have a customer in the dry food aisle come up with her arms full of food, including bananas. At that point it was grab a banana or leave. He also knows the yogurt container in the store and gets very excited! Of course, after his banana and yogurt he does not understand the concept of all gone. Thankfully, he doesn't quite understand what a block of cheese is until it is in mini cubes on his tray.
Seriously, his enthusiasm for his favorites in still refreshing at this point.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

My Alarm Clock

I should get to bed, my alarm clock is going to get me up at 6:20 AM. That may seem like a good time to get up to you but I rather rise at 8:15, I live a mile from my work. Of course, motherhood, has brought responsibility in my life, I need at least another 10 minutes to get my son ready for daycare. If I have to drive him... add 20 more.

As my son approaches 11 months old - tomorrow! I have now enjoyed about 1.5 months of getting sleep at night (It makes the months before that seem like a distant blur!). We put my son down (isn't that odd to say "put him down") at 7:30. It doesn't matter if he gets a treat to stay up late... every morning at 6:20 him and his invisible friend have vocabulary practice. GRUNT GRUNT, UH OH, GRUNT GRUNT, UH OH, GRUNT GRUNG, MA MA, MA MA. And so it goes until 7 am. As the weather has changed, we have to leave our bedroom doors open so the heat spreads through the house. This is quite loud and hard to ignore. Thankful, about 10% of the time, after breast-feeding for 10 minutes, he will roll on his tummy and let us sleep in. There is no guarantee that this treat will fall on a day when you yourself can join him in this slumber. I've only set my REAL alarm 3 times - in case my new alarm fails me.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Bed time for you baby

There are things you just will never understand until you are a parent. I often laugh at myself around 8:30 at night. By 7:30, I am SO ready for my son to go to bed but an hour later I miss him. I am so glad I decided to become a parent. After sleeping well for a month, all the hard work of those first 9 months seem like there were all worth it. And my mind is gearing up to want to do it again.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

What is up with babies and drawers?

I put stuff in in the drawer and my daughter takes it out. She loves to unload my pajama drawer all over my bedroom floor. Somehow though the fun stops and taking stuff out of drawers. I've never seen her have a blast folding stuff neatly and putting it back in the drawer. I wonder why that is? Any child development experts out there have a clue?

Saturday, September 26, 2009


It has finally happen, my son bit me while nursing. I screamed he cried. He has had 4 teeth for some time so I was waiting. I admit I have a little fear about nursing tonight!

Anyways, teeth. They grow in a lot slower than I realized. My son has been "getting" his front teeth for over a month now! They still don't seem like they have grown in enough.

He seems to get grumpy when they break the gum and then shortly afterwards too. He will have nothing to do with a teeth ring. He much prefers to chew on his wooden blocks. His father will not let me try the teething tablets so I don't know if that would help. But I guess I rather take teeth grumps over dinner time screams any day.

Take care fellow moms!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Baby as Confidence Booster

It is natural as a parent to think your baby is the cutest thing in the world so when people tell you your baby looks like you it may lead to the following conclusion:

My baby is the most breathtaking creature alive
Stranger thinks my baby looks exactly like me
Stranger thinks I am the most breathtaking creature alive

Even though the logic behind this equation is faulty who really cares if it makes you feel good.

Monday, September 7, 2009

It is unavoidable – your baby will grow up

You may think you are prepared for this fact since everyone grows older but it comes as quite a shock when your own child does it. As that first birthday approaches you may throw yourself into other things to keep from thinking about your baby turning one so quickly. You might, for example, spend hours gluing black dots onto a plastic tablecloth for her ladybug themed party.

Your unexplained emotions over this event (that you knew all along was coming) might cause you to ask yourself if you are crazy. The truth is we start going crazy the minute that child is born but we don’t realize at first how every missed nap, every minor scar, and every diaper that refuses to contain a wild poop has slowly chipped away at our sanity. You might have told yourself “I will not be crazy like my mother”. I recently revised that to “I will not be AS crazy as my mother”. By the time my children go off to college I will probably wonder how my mother managed to stay so sane.

On the other hand the first year is a wonderful magical ride even if it is too fast for my sensitive stomach. The only solution I can see to this little first birthday existential crises is to have a leap year baby and push off that first birthday as long as possible.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

From Jar Food Queen to Creative Food Momma 3 easy steps

I don't know if anyone still reads this blog but here I go.

So I didn't really think in advance that I would a jar food momma. I didn't think there was anything wrong with it, I just didn't really think about it. For a family that has two working parents it is a must... convenient and worth the money! We used any organic brand we could get our hands on. Don't feel guilty just do it!

Want to be creative, no worries, that is what you do from 9-12 months. Well if you are desperate there are stage 3 jars. A boxes of Os will become your best friends. Stage 3 doesn't work for me because we aren't giving our son gluten or meat. Yes, you can mash up what you eat but there are still two problems. 1. There are still things you can't give your child until they are 1. 2. You aren't with them at lunch (try and remember some left overs from the dinner before).

I am still learning but if I do make up something - I try and make up three baby meals worth. Since most things are good in the fridge for 3 days. Unfortunately, my favorite kitchen tool is not as handy in this stage - Hand Blender - but adding a little water helps. The most frustrating part from my perspective is it seems like every corner has a new stage of mommy feeding anxiety around it.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

I might just finally enjoy breast-feeding

Yes, there have been moments, almost once a day that I can really say, I enjoy breast-feeding. Now, I enjoy it even more. Why you ask, I finally have given up pumping at work. Rejoice, Party!!!! I took down the sign covering my office window, like a ceremony! I AM SO HAPPY! I slowly transitioned from pumping 3 times a day to 2 to 1 and finally, I am free. So now I feed my son in the morning, when I get home and before bed. He is so wiggly at 9 months that I enjoy the time as we snuggle (he has eaten laying down since he was 2 months old (I just couldn't get the angle right!).)

In retrospect, I have to say, Abner was FINE going on formula. I knew he would be but the transition was a major mental block for me. Now he has 2 - 4oz bottles (I never could figure out how to get to bigger bottles) and 3 oz of juice a daycare (with the 3 feedings at home).

I just wanted to share my joy with you. 5.5 months of pumping was plenty for me.


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

If you think they can't, they can...

I often assume that Zachary can't reach certain things or isn't strong enough to pull something or sometimes I just assume he "wont be interested" in something... well, lately I've been needing to think again! He was recently playing in the fridge (has done this many times before) and noticed my egg container (which I didn't think he could reach, pull, or would be interested in doing so).. well you guessed it, 18 eggs splat all over the floor/fridge/baby. Not one egg remained uncracked. I should have taken a picture!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Old Stuff & 2 of my faves

Baby clothes and things become old really fast. It seems like at least every three weeks you need to go through stuff and get rid of what will no longer fit. I have two bags in my son's room - "save for possible baby #2" and "off to goodwill." Some things were never or hardly warn (since i live in a place that actually has seasons), that cute ranger fleece pjs just doesn't work in the middle of summer.

I thought i could highlight some of my favorite purchases:

Mclaren Volvo - umbrella stroller - easy to use, easy to close, good height for me as I am slightly taller than average

Fisherprice Booster Seat - we didn't want a high chair, this is perfect, although it will get so crusty you will not want to take it on the road

More to come...

Friday, August 14, 2009

the joy of motherhood

i thought i should post this while i was still feeling it.... i don't think you can explain this feeling before you have children. but there is a joy to motherhood, a joy that makes it hard to leave to go back to work. maybe it is my son's age (8.5 months), he is starting to interact with the world, pulling himself up on tables.... always wanting to be up, figuring out balance. laughing so hard when his dad tickles him... i want to capture it in a bottle. then joy fills my heart. i am so thankful to meet my little guy. gush.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

First baby? You need a bigger hard drive!

So, moms, are you completely overwhelmed by the photos and video you've been taking of your baby? I'm a librarian - I pride myself on my organization and classification skills, but the sheer number of baby photos and videos is pretty daunting. My son is only 7 months old and I can't believe how much we've already amassed. I've been keeping things loosely organized, but the system becomes less effective with every passing month. Videos are especially hard - you can't tell what they are at a glance, so if you don't get them labeled right away they just end up in the black hole of "miscellaneous" items. We have a 1 terabyte external hard drive and I assumed that would be overkill for a long, long, time, but I'm beginning to wonder...I feel sorry for the second kid, if we have one - there's no way we can sustain this pace!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Babies don't always get along with other babies!

Well my baby likes to take what other babies are playing with. He only wants it because the other baby has it! If the other baby moves on to another toy, my baby follows and is then interested in THAT toy. It is a fun thought that a bunch of babies together play together nicely, but do they really? No. :)

Friday, July 31, 2009


I would have never believed what therapy facebook would provide. Sometimes you just need a minute... and since that minute is likely to be a noisy one facebook easily provides 60 seconds of catching up, playing with a zoo, and if you are really at your end you can rob museums and fight mobsters. All in good fun. Facebook is a friend too moms!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Green Mom

I've always tried my best to take in and use things that were good for me.  This means special soaps, etc.  Although are they really special, perhaps instead they are just what nature meant them to be before we started fooling with everything.  I am accused of being preachy.  People fear giving my child gifts.  My passion comes not from snobbery but from love.  I want my child, my husband, my family and my friends to live good and long lives.  I am not a gorilla recycler - attention everyone - I throw away my yougurt containers at work!  I just do the best possible within my means.  That means I don't want my son to have plastic toys.  That means I feed him formula that the doctor gave us for free but it breaks my heart a little bit because it is not organic.  I know organic things are expensive but when I think of some of the other junk I buy it makes sense to me (plus there are many veggies/fruits that you don't need to buy organic - example avocados.) As my son crawls I worry about the dirt I find on his hands of our just vaccumed floor.  I want to do all I can, yes, I can not control the outcome of life but I can know that I did my best.  There are times, many times, that the opinions of others get to me, that I want to throw in the towel.  Then I start to think I must be crazy.  Thankful this week when I was just about to throw in that towel, I found the right book for me.  I skimmed it in two hours and felt renewed passion.  I am assured again the purchasing that special sunscreen is worth it!  What ever you do, what ever you can do, do it.  I think moms love judging each other.  Just do it your way and be okay with that.  And if you hear me share about how anti-bacterial soaps have a pesticide in them know that I am not saying, I told you so.  I am sharing my knowledge because I want to protect you.  Anyways if you were wondering what book that was - Healthy Child Healthy World by Gavigan.  Thanks for listening.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Baby's Don't Like Cold Water

Yes, when you buy that cute summer pool and those little swimmer diapers... and run in the house and blow up the pool and change the diaper.  WAIT.  Put the pool in the sun after you fill it up, let the water warm up a bit.  Lesson learned.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Making new mom friends is like dating – actually speed dating- all over again.

I haven’t posted in a while because I’ve been on a mission to make new mom friends and have been forcing myself to get out of the house and hunt them down. It is really important to have other moms to share this experience with but unfortunately they don't send you home from the hospital with all of the contact information for other new moms in your area. Although it has been slow going, I’ve learned a few things in the past few moths.

1) Pick up lines are a lot easier to come up with when you’re a mom. Who can resist a conversation that begins with “Would you look at that? My child just ____ to your child. You can fill in this blank with limitless options since babies are always doing bizarre things such as: licking each other, pulling off each others shoes, stealing each others bottles and binkies, and sticking their fingers in others orifices. This will also help you weed out the other moms who don’t have a sense of humor about your child, their child, or their child’s orifices.

2) Scheduled play groups, mom’s club outings, support groups,, storytimes, and classes are the best way I’ve found to meet other new moms. I have a friend who met her husband in line at a coffee shop. I’m not that quick with any of my relationships. If you are though, you could probably have a lot of luck at your local park or open play area.

3) You do not have hours to talk to other moms. If your lucky you’ve only got a few minutes before you are interrupted by a baby spitting up, pooping, getting hungry or sleepy, or crawling or toddling off so you have to jam pack all your wit and charm and general likableness into just a few sentences. It might be easier if you start when your baby is really young and still sleeps most of the day.

4) Just like the dating books say when talking to a boy, if another mom is reluctant to open up it always helps to compliment them. Tell her something nice about her baby. All babies have something going for them so this should not be hard to do.

5) MOST IMPORTANTLY: Do not seem too desperate or try to push the relationship too fast. I have to admit I’ve made this mistake. Don’t let your new mom friend know that you are penciling her in as your new super best friend on your first play date or push for your husbands to meet so you can start planning your annual double family camping trips. As with dating, if you are prone to fantasies about the future of your relationship, it’s best to keep those fantasies to yourself for now. You can laugh about them later.

6) Lastly: If you are invited somewhere by other moms go! It's the only way you will build the friendship.

Good luck moms and happy friend hunting.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Solids in and solids out

As a new parent you get all excited when you can final feed some solids. It is very cute to see that messy face. I have to say I wasn't ready for the change in poop. My son probably eats about 6 oz of jar food a day and his poop looks like smashed brownies! Where was the warning on this one moms. I have started giving him a little bit of water everyday just so that I can eat beloved brownies again in my life time.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Dressing Routine

Mornings are very routine now. Dad takes a shower, mom feeds boy, dad dresses boy, mom gets bottles ready..... Routines aren't fun and when dad is running late I have to dress our son. Earlier this week I put his romper on backwards (he actually left the house this way!) I can't say I enjoy dressing in general, as my son flails when I put his shirt on. I think he thinks I am trying to smother him. BUT my favorite part, that stops me in my tracks to smile on the most routine of days, is when I stand him up and pull up his little pants over the diapered baby butt. So precious!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Joining the poop club

Have you ever noticed how much parents talk about their kids' poop? When I was pregnant, all the parents I knew seemed to delight in telling me stories about the massive blowouts they had to deal with when their kids were babies. It seemed a little odd to me at the time, but now I sort-of get it. They're just happy to have another member of the club. I mean, you bring your baby home from the hospital and all he does is eat, sleep and poop - you naturally start to obsess over those things. My husband and I give each other regular updates about our son's poop habits. If you listened to us you'd think we were crazy.

The latest in our house is that my son has stopped pooping when he's with my husband - I don't think Eric has changed a poopy diaper in 2 weeks! Eric jokes that they have an arrangement, and what's my comeback supposed to be? Poop equals love? Not exactly a winning argument! I've started singing "Saving all my poop for you" to the tune of "saving all my love for you." It's the best I can come up with.

... how much I would enjoy our first bath

We have been bathing our son in the shower. Now that he can sit I took my first bath with him yesterday. It was pure delight to watch him splash and reach for his duck. We were probably in for 10 minutes and I only had to correct his wobble twice. It is so fun to see his mind absorb new things - it really is like a sponge. He is also so huggable now. AHHH.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Babies - They will find it and they will eat it.

Babies can find anything. They play sweet, innocent, and clueless but in reality their fuzzy little hairs must act as homing beacons for everything you don't want them to find. You can clean your floor 3 times a day but that only makes it easier for your baby to zero in on the one burr or wood chip your dog has dragged in on her fur. If the U.S. really wanted to find Osama Bin Laden they should have sent a bunch of babies into Afghanistan. One of them would eventually have tried to put Bin Laden's toe in their mouth.

Which brings me to my next point. Once they find it they will either try to stick their finger in it or (even more likely) try to put it in their mouth. My daughter and I were at a playground the other day and without warning she stuck her face in the ground and purposely took a huge bite of sand. At first I thought that'll teach her but then I realized she's probably thinking -OK I can check sand off my list now what else can I stick in my mouth. Oh well Que Sera Sera.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Perhaps it is easier to move when your are pregnant

I can't say I know both sides but trying to move with a 6 month old is incredibly difficult. I have already been in tears twice. Somehow we managed to back (probably after he was down for the night) but unpacking, cleaning, painting, etc. WOW... that is difficult. Call in the troops to help babysit. Also maybe when you are pregnant because you can't lift it is easier to feel okay about being bossy. - V

Monday, May 25, 2009

New Moms Group

I just wanted to put a word in for new moms groups. They are awesome. Many hospitals have them set up throughout the week. The place I gave birth at has at least 4 different groups. I went when Abner was only 2 weeks old. I did not take him because he was so tiny. I just sat there with tears streaming down my face the whole time as I listened to other new moms going through the sames things I went through.
At the group I attended we just went around the circle and each mom would share any highlights of their week and then ask a questions. The facilitator would encourage members to share their wisdom. Of course she had a lot of advice to give if no one offered any up.
I went for the 12 weeks I was home and then two other times. At my group you are allowed to go until your baby is 6 months old but I had to go back to work.
Group is good for many reasons - to know you are NOT alone, to give you support if you don't have family close, to share tips and tricks, to meet moms that you will visit with after 6 months, and many many more reasons.
If you feel like you need to share after you have your little one, see if you hospital offers this great service.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

A few more words about fitting back into our jeans

Are we talking muffin top or no muffin top?

Since dieting has never really been my friend to begin with losing the baby weight is not fun. I actually weigh less now than I did before I got pregnant except all my extra weight relocated to my stomach. So now I equate my stomach to Florida. It's where retired fat cells go to spend the rest of their days.

As for exercise, I do tapes and walks and even go to a stroller strides class once a week. My new brilliant diet plan, however, is to hire two large German weight lifters to follow me around all day and knock any junk food I try to eat out of my hands. If I wanted the food bad enough I'd have to wrestle them for it. I'm sure I'd work off more calories than I was able to consume. Anybody know anyone who is up for the job?

Saturday, May 16, 2009

That teething would be so hard to identify!

I keep waiting for Zachary's top teeth to pop through... blaming every bad day or fussy period on "teething". Is it really teething? I will never know. :-)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Crying It Out

I am writing as my daughter cries and every once in a while screams "mama" from her crib in the next room. Letting her cry it out is the hardest thing I have had to do so far as a parent.

Since she was born she has been the best sleeper. She was usually asleep by the time she finished her nightly feeding or would fall asleep after being rocked for a few moments. In parenting terms, this means I commited a cardinal sin. I let my daughter fall asleep in my arms every night. There was no problem until she turned about 7 1/2 months old and now falls asleep in our arms and then wakes up as soon as we put her in her crib. If we pick her up, she stops crying immediately but once we put her back down it starts all over again. Our only choices now are to move her into our room, sleep on the recliner with her in our arms all night, or let her cry it out. We have chosen to let her cry it out and this has brought both Paul and I at one point or another to tears.

I know most parenting experts recommend not rocking your kids to sleep for this very reason but I still can not recommend that. I love holding my daughter while she falls asleep and watching her little angelic face as she dreams away in my arms. I just want to warn you parents who are like me, you will at some point pay for those precious moments. The up side is that although at night it is torture, she still wakes up a sun shinny baby in the morning.

I have faith that some day the crying it out stage will be behind us. How long did it take all you moms out there to get through it? Any tips? It sounds like little Ava just fell asleep. Tonight it took a half an hour.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

that is would take me 5 months to get back into my jeans

Okay, time for a less depressing post! :) I hope all you new mommies out there have had a wonderful mother's day. I did!

So for mother's day brunch my husband brought out my jeans (I had been wearing a size up and he told me the other day that they were looking roomy). They fit!... well perhaps they a bit too tight but I can zip and button them.

My secret to get those pounds -- wii fit and returning to work. I must walk 2 miles at work, that help with those last stubborn 10 lbs. There is still a bit of back fat but that may be my friend for life now. The stretch marks seem to be fading too (I was quite pissed about those because I never saw one the whole time I was pregnant, I buttered my belly like a baked potato. Then I come home with Abner and I have stretch back stretchmarks --- WHY didn't anyone prepare me for this, I thought I was out of the woods).

Friday, May 8, 2009

How hard it would be without family

If you have family close, be thankful. I could not comprehend what having family far away would mean. It means that in the early days when you don't know what the heck you are doing there isn't a mom there to give you a hug. It means when you just need to get away for awhile that your spouse has to watch the baby and then when you get home it will be your turn. It means that you don't have that extra helping hand. It means when family comes to visit that you will have to fight to see your baby because they will gush love on him or her. It means when your baby hits a milestone they will not be there to see it. I hear a lot of moms complain about how hard things are but I know they have family helping... I don't ever say anything but my brain thinks it. It means that you may go through major life events and you still will not have family there to help. Perhaps I am a bit emotional right now... so all I am saying is if you have family appreciate them. If you family is far, try to get a friend to move to your new town (that is what i did ;) ). Be thankful for friends who give you a hand and get ready to dole out the babysitter bucks. Join a mom's group for support there are LOTS of mom's out there like you. Sorry this posts isn't going to get anyone laughing, this blog is for crying too.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Common Mommy Myths

Or things moms think that are seldom, if ever, true.

1) Parenting gets easier as the baby gets older.
This might be true when the baby turns 18 but when they are young this is definitely not true. They constantly find new ways to challenge you.
2) It is possible to feed your baby “real food” and in less time than it takes to watch the movie Parenthood and also manage to keep the kitchen, yourself, your baby, and your baby’s clothes clean.
I almost had a little breakdown when I started solids because it seemed like our days consisted of breastfeed the baby, play with the baby, feed the baby real food, clean myself - the kitchen- and the baby, let the baby nap for 2 minutes, and then start the whole cycle over again. Most of my clothes and my baby's clothes now have at least one food stain. Eventually, you will learn some ninja-like feeding maneuvers that make the process easier but by that point they want to try and feed themselves (see #1).
3) Babies instinctively know not to put their hands/feet in their poopy diaper. Oh how I wish this one was true.
4) Everyone knows that your baby is the cutest/smartest/funniest baby in the world.
I think we all are programmed to think our babies are the world’s most brilliant baby or a lot less of them would survive. We wouldn't be that excited about our babies if we thought they were mediocre now would we?
5) Teething might be painful but at least it doesn’t last that long.
My daughter has been teething for 4 months but still has no teeth. Of course this allows us to blame all her grumpiness on the teething so we can still delude ourselves that she is a perfect angelic baby that never fusses without a reason.

I know there are tons more that I am not thinking of right now. What are your favorite mommy myths?

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Relax, your kid is normal

As a new parent, you will become obsessed with developmental milestones. Can my baby hold his head up? Does he laugh? Can he grasp a toy? Yadda, yadda, yadda. I have 2 nieces and 3 nephews, and my cousins have 7 kids between them, so I thought I'd come to the sensible realization that every child develops at his or her own pace. The milestone lists are not a bad guideline, but they're certainly not a universal schedule. I know from family experience that some kids talk early but are slower to develop motor skills, or vice versa. Eventually, they pretty much level out.

But it doesn't matter what you know in your rational mind. When you become a parent your anxious brain takes over and you can easily fixate on what your child is or is not doing (e.g. he's late tracking objects with his eyes - something's wrong! or, he's rolling over in both directions - he's a genius!). I have to remind myself: stop thinking so much! Relax and enjoy this time, because the baby is changing constantly and these little phases of development don't last long.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Still Balding

I had planned a post on hair loss but G beat me to the punch. There are things you don't know when you get pregnant. Someone at work just happened to mention that my hair would fall out in clumps after I gave birth. I did not sign up for that! I am sure my husband appreciated 9 months of a hair free home though. My hair has now been falling out for three weeks. It started right after my son turned 4 months old. I have an awful habit of raking my hair with my fingers, I always get at least 1 hair. It is like a compulsive tic, usually I get 10 hairs. Will I have any left? I honestly didn't notice that my mane looked any nicer when I was pregnant. By the way, this tic will freak others out - they to do not know that postpartum's long list of pay back includes bald spots! Perhaps I should weave a bird's nest.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

When to start solids...

When your little one turns 4 months old the pressure for solids starts... people start asking you if he is on solids yet. There is a rumor out there that rice cereal at night makes babies sleep longer. BUT every scientific study proves it doesn't. What do you do when your pediatrician tells you that that is true though. Supposedly, an infant is ready to swallow some where around 5 months and 1 week. On the other side you have the breastfeeding champions with their banner for 6 months of only breast milk. Like many things in the parenting realm you are not given a one size fits all answer, it is your choice. We will probably start on some weekend between 5.25 and 6 months. We said we were going to start several times after work but then we get tired and forget. I will give you updates!
We started sleep training last night so that will be our main focus for the next two weeks (remember if you have a baby that slept through the night early to NOT complain about other sleep issues, the sleep deprived will want to throttle you!).

Monday, April 20, 2009

Soon I will be bald

When you are pregnant, your hair gets thicker - nice bonus, right? All the pregnancy books talk about it. Of course, they fail to mention that a few months after your baby is born all your nice, thick hair starts falling out. Every time I wash or brush my hair I lose a handful or two, and now that my son has taken to grabbing and yanking my hair every chance he gets, I figure it will only be a few more weeks until I'm as bald as he is.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Time for a Hotel Night

Signs you may need a night away from baby, a hotel night:
  • You pour your cereal into your water glass in the morning, not the bowl you set out
  • You open the car door to get out of the car into oncoming traffic
  • You keep replacing words in your sentences with completely unrelated words
  • You have not slept for 8 hours in a row for 4.5 months
  • You pumped at work with the blinds open to the outside world
  • You pumped at work without putting the bottle on the pump, only noticing when you tipped forward and got milk on your hand and clothes
  • You have since pumped at work and forgot to put the bottle on 3 more times - thankfully catching it before the tip forward
  • You can't spell you own last name when asked to spell it over the phone
  • You meet a Realtor to see a house and you are waiting at a different house on the same street
  • You keep telling everyone that you have a 4 month old who does not sleep through the night in hopes that they will excuse the confused look on your face
Yes, all these things happened to me in the span of two weeks. After hitting "bottom" on Thursday night, a hotel night gave me enough rest to slightly resemble a human again. No not 8 hours (I had to pump!) but enough for now. You better NOT tell me I look tired!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

There is no need to state the obvious

We know we look tired. WE ARE TIRED. If after knowing this, you still feel the need to tell us we look tired you run the risk of "accidentally" being poked in the eye with a binkie.

The only exception to this rule is the sentence "you look tired, let me take the baby so you can take a nap."

P.S I am the mother of a good sleeper and I have a helpful husband. if you tell the mother of a bad sleeper or colicky baby, the mother of multiples multiples, a single mother, or a mother who has more than one child under the age of 5 she looks tired you could be seriously injured.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Recovery is a bitch, part II

Following up on MamaMeg's post...

I debated about bringing this up, but honestly, this is one of the biggest "Things I Wish I'd Known" thus far, so if you're squeamish about blood and girl parts, just STOP READING NOW.

I was ready for the blood during delivery. I'd been in the delivery room a couple of times with family members, so I knew what to expect (although I still want to know how we ended up with blood on the chair behind my bed - can't figure out that trajectory). But I didn't realize that following the birth I'd have what is essentially a 5-6 week menstrual period. Yeesh. And every time you go to the bathroom there's a cleansing/pain relieving ritual you have to go through. Forget taking a quick pee. Those days are over for awhile.

And did I mention that you can't use tampons during this time? Yep, you're stuck with maxi pads, and at the beginning you need BIG ones. Not fun. You're already uncomfortable walking and sitting due to your downstairs trauma from the birth, and then you factor in the maxi pad and you develop this really attractive bow-legged waddle.

To top it all off, one of the signs that you're supposed to watch for so that you know if you're bleeding too much is, I kid you not, passing "blood clots bigger than a golf ball." Holy cow! 

If you can read this post and still want to have a baby, you're probably ready (or else completely warped, but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt).

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Breastfeeding and Working

... can be a challenge.

I have been back to work full time for 3 weeks now. Thankfully, I have an office and some schedule flexibility because I am a supervisor. I pump three times a day.

First Lesson - Stress on the job makes pumping hard... it just doesn't go fast if you are stressed so grab a book and try to relax.

Second Lesson - EVERYONE knows what you are doing... it is a fact of life... oh well.

Third Lesson - Trying to do something away from work at a workshop or conference is trying. You need to call ahead and have them find you a place. It may be an awkward conversation but it worth it that day. You will already have enough issues getting yourself and all your parts out the door, you don't need to worry about where to hide. Breaks aren't going to line up so you will miss programs and networking but oh well. Don't forget your cooler.

Working and breastfeeding is hard, working full-time and breastfeeding is harder. You will want to give up and some point. Vent to someone, hey vent to us, so you can go a bit longer and when you can stand it no longer... don't beat yourself up. You can still try and do 4+ feedings at home. Goodness knows that it is going to be the cleaning of bottles after work that is going to be the end of me.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Recovery is a Bitch

I wish there was a nicer way to say this but there isn't. Recovery is a bitch. After I had my baby I wondered why no one told me and then I realized some of my friends had tried. They told me it was terrible and I remember thinking it can't be that bad. Plus when you are 8 months pregnant all you can think about is having your baby out of your body safe and sound so you are pretty much willing to endure anything to get to that point. Here are a few tips to make the recovery process a little easier.

  • Buy a donut/hemroid pillow. You can not imagine how uncomfortable it will be to sit

  • If you leave the house for any reason without your baby those first few weeks you should probably print up little cards to hand to people you may run in to that say "I just gave birth and have therefore donated what feels like half my brain and most of my blood to the good cause of bringing a precious little being in to this world so please be patient with me."

  • Have someone you know and love promise (before delivery) to bake your favorite treat after the baby arrives. Then ask them to repeat the favor about 25 more times.

  • Your stomach will look scary. My advise is don't look at it. Now I totally understand the whole Elizabethan Collar. It was invented by a woman who just gave birth and didn't want to look at her stomach. If you can find one I would suggest buying it. Also avoid full length mirrors. If you know you will encounter them often invest in one of those t-shirts with the perfect bikini body painted on it. It will go well with the collar.
The good news is your new baby will take up most of your time and occupy almost all of your thoughts so you won't have too much time to reflect on how hard recovery is until you are through the worst of it.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Amazing Milk Powers

No one told me that you can actually squirt breast milk a few feet by squeezing your boob when its full. I knew it had to come out somehow but I expected it to ooze or dribble (which it does too) but I never expected to be able to aim and shoot. Why aren't women taking more advantage of this fun and amazing talent. Men have pissing and spitting contests so why aren't women lining up to see who can shoot their breast milk the farthest?

A few other things my family has learned about breast milk, it keeps avocado (for the baby) greener longer and heals cuts remarkably fast. Its pretty much an amazing super serum.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Cute clothes are kind-of a pain

Before I became a mom I almost always bought cute outfits as baby shower gifts. I will never do that again! Seriously, most of the cute stuff is such a pain to get on and off that we don't bother with it unless we're taking photos or something. Calvin's been living in footed sleepers - the Circo ones with the zipper are our favorites and you can get a 3-pack for $10 - and now that the weather's getting warmer he's just wearing onesies during the day. Pants? Shoes? Forget it! Not worth the bother most of the time.

more about laundry

Tag-teaming off V's post below:

We also gave up on sorting the baby laundry - forget it! I use Shout Advanced Gel for our stain remover, but the best discovery I've made yet (thank you, Internet) is that the miracle stain remover for baby poop is...drumroll, please...sunlight!

Just wash your items as usual, but instead of putting them in the dryer lay them out in the sun for a couple of hours. Stains are completely erased. I've tried it on whites and colors and it works equally well. It also works on set-in stains, so don't despair if you've already washed and dried an item and it's still stained. I haven't tried this on stains other than baby poop, but have read some pretty impressive testimonials online. It works so well for us that we're thinking about hanging a clothesline in the back yard.

The downside to this option is that you can't use it if the weather is bad, but if you have a bad stain and would have to ditch the garment otherwise, it's worth hanging on to it and waiting for a clear day.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

... about laundry

I had everything ready to go when our son came home. You are already tired and learning how to take care of a new person and we were doing a load a day. It does get better as you learn what you really need to use but be prepared. (Watch out for the grandparents - they like to use lots of blankets! ;)) This is a great way visitors can help out. We are down to 3 loads a week but it seems endless. If you feel yourself stressing because you are out of burp clothes again, do yourself a favor and buy some more! My husband and I gave up sorting whites and colors a long time ago!
We use 7th Generation - cheaper at WF than BRU. For milk stains we soak in OXO Brite and then rewash with other clothes in 7th Gen. OXO helps with poop too but isn't perfect. I have no answers for that one! - V

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

I wish I'd been better prepared for breastfeeding drama

You'd think, breastfeeding being the natural option, that it would be easy, right? Yeah, not so much. We had some latching problems (ouch), then, when we got past that, we had a milk-flow issue. My son's doctor told me to eat more protein (I already eat a ton) and drink WAY more water (so I have to pee ALL THE TIME). We finally got back into a groove and then I went back to work and now I'm pumping 3 times a day and feeling rather cow-like. Here are a few things that helped:

  • Soothies - a little pricey, but very nice when you are really sore.
  • Protein water - I get tired of regular water, and this helped me get extra water AND protein - bonus! Also comes in powders that you can add to your own water.
  • Protein shake powder - I made a shake most mornings with this, a cup of milk, some fruit and ice. 25 grams of protein - woohoo!
  • Medela Pump in Style dual breast pump - a friend told me that I could NOT get a single pump, and now that I'm using this regularly I am so glad I followed her advice. Expensive, but totally worth it. (Watch for the 20% off coupon from Babies R Us, and you can save a bit).

Monday, March 30, 2009

I never knew this sentence could bring me so much comfort

"Let me wash my hands before I touch the baby"

I know that eventually, as moms, there will come a point when we will just shrug when we see our kids eat things like dirt or glue but when you first bring that little spud home you automatically become the "germ warrior". Luckily the paranoia that everything and everyone in life exists just to make your baby sick wears off just as you begin to develop new ones. There is only so many paranoid delusions one woman can handle.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

I wish I understood what lack of sleep meant...

Everyone always tells you that you will not get sleep when you bring your newborn home. You know that this will be true but until you have a newborn under your roof you don't understand what that means. As a parent-to-be you read books and they say that newborns sleep 8 hours at night and 8 hour during the day. That only leaves 8 hour, right? Wrong. To all of you women who have/had sleepers - I am jealous. My little guy still will not sleep much during the day. He also had jaundice at birth so that meant nursing every 2 hours.
So to all you future new mom's out there. Here is how my first month went.
Feed - 45 minutes (YES, 45!) - Burp 10 minutes - Diaper 5 minutes
Then choose 1 activity - eat, shower, or play with baby.
Repeat 12x a day. My guy only had 12 possible hours of sleeping, not 16 and of course he did not always go to sleep after he ate. - V

Welcome to our new blog!

There have been many stories that we have shared as new mom's. We have learned some things along the way too that we want to share. We hope you like this new blog.

- V & G