Monday, November 29, 2010

The good stuff...

Watching football with Dad

Aaaand - action!

Too big for newborn size, too small for 3 month

Quiet alert

Big yawn!  (Yes I say that every time she yawns)

Time to put on the crankypants

Messing with a good thing

So we're shaking up our bedtime routine (if you can call it a routine).  Since the second night home, Lia has been sleeping in our bed in something like this:

I love it, absolutely love it.  While I still have to get up and go to the nursery to change her diaper in the middle of the night, night nursing is a breeze, and it could not be any easier for me to look over and check on her when she starts to make weird noises or conversely, she's been unusually quiet and I'm suddenly afraid that she's dead.  I have moderate hearing loss, so it's extra nice for me to know I'm not going to miss her cries in the middle of the night.

So, what's the problem?  Lia's getting too big for it!  She still fits now but we're getting to the point where we need to start transitioning to Plan B.  Problem is, we can't really come up with a good Plan B.  Lia's nursery is right next to our bedroom, so it seems the most practical to start getting all of us used to her sleeping in her crib at night.  I've considered all sorts of other options, from buying a co-sleeper (tough to fit in our already-cramped bedroom), to moving L and I to the guest room bed (would need to buy rails for the bed, plus then R and I are sleeping apart indefinitely) to buying a new mattress for our king bed (our pillowtop now is too soft and unsafe for L, but we love it), to me sleeping on the floor in the nursery (obviously not my favorite, and unsustainable).  I never thought I'd be one of those moms who wanted to sleep with their children, never in a million years, but it's been working for us - we all get more sleep this way - and I love it.  I love having L nearby and being able to look over and see her little face.  I love knowing that she's right there, safe with us, and we can respond immediately if something's wrong.  I love being able to check her hands and make sure she's not too hot or too cold (totally don't have the 'dressing a newborn in the winter' thing down yet).  Bottom line, I love having my whole little family cuddling together in bed.

But, we've got to find a sustainable option that results in everyone getting the maximum amount of sleep.  So, last night, I tried putting Lia down in her crib after her 1:30 am feeding.  She typically goes down really well after her middle-of-the-night feeding so it seemed like a good time to try out the crib thing, and she was pretty good.  She slept there until 4:30, when I think she woke up because she was cold (I botched the swaddling job) and decided she was hungry.  I gave up after that feeding and put her back in our bed for the rest of the night/morning.  When she was cribbing it, I put the baby monitor in bed between R and I, and we both heard it and responded, which was reassuring.  Unfortunately, I was not so cool - I was wired for awhile after I put her down, just listening to and watching the monitors and being sad because my baby wasn't in bed with me.  (Maybe I cried a little - what is going on?  This is so not me.)  Since she was tough to get down for the night earlier last night, I ended up getting only a few 1.5 hour stretches of sleep total.  I'm not sure whether to blame the crib transition or not - maybe it was just a rough night for us and would have been regardless.  And maybe, for the first night of working on a new sleep thing, it didn't go so poorly - she did go to sleep, easily, in her crib for a few hours.  But, I'm not sure this is the solution for us.  R and I both got less sleep because of Plan B than we would have normally.  We'll see.  For now, L and I are going to have a very low-key, quiet, stay-at-home day.  If we do go out of the house, it'll be for Starbucks.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Brain Dump

Lia is with Grandma right now so this is my chance to update.  Things are going well.  Lia was four weeks old yesterday (!!!) and we celebrated by doing some Christmas shopping.  It's actually easier for me to take her out to run errands than to stay home and try to get things done around the house.  She likes riding in the car, and I pop her into my wrap once we get somewhere, and we have a grand old time browsing around.  The only downside is that it's starting to get cold here so it's tough to run errands at several different places, in and out of the car. It's much easier to just head to the mall but the mall only has so much....

Our nights have been a little tough lately, mostly rough on Robert since he takes the early evening baby shift.  Lia's been Grumpy McFussypants from about 7:00 to 11:00 at night lately.  I know it's typical, and it does help to remind myself that it's a phase, it's temporary, and it's very very normal.  But it's also tough to deal with a screaming infant.  She wants to nurse pretty much that entire time, which is frustrating for me, but it's also frustrating for Robert when he's on duty since he can't really placate her with anything.  (Although she does reliably calm down to the "Oscillating Fan" noise on the White Noise app for the iPhone.)  But, last night went a little better.  I think we were both more patient and gentle with her, and knock on wood, she seemed to respond to that.  Regardless, I'm anticipating her six-week birthday since I keep hearing that babies get easier by then.  (Gonna be pretty bummed when she doesn't magically turn into Angel Baby in one week, six days from now!)

And in light of the evening shenanigans, we've been talking about starting to supplement Lia's diet with formula.  On one hand, it'd take a load off of me (I'm pumping like a maniac now to put together her evening bottle), I think we'd all end up ultimately getting more sleep, and I think we're going to have to  put her on part formula anyways when we're apart for two out-of-town trips in the spring.  On the other hand, I don't want it to be the first step on to a slippery slope that ends with her getting 100% formula in a few weeks.  (I don't have any issue with formula, honestly, I just like nursing - and its convenience and price - so I don't want to stop yet.)  I've been going to a new moms' group at the hospital where I delivered, and they all had some nice insight, and R and I have been talking it over, so we'll hopefully make a decision in a few days.

So, I need some pictures of the baby to post up here but I don't have any super-recent ones, so I'll just post my update.  Four weeks after giving birth, I feel pretty much back to normal.  My endurance is low but I'm definitely stronger and I can walk uphill again without dying.  I know I've said this before, but I was terrified of being pregnant.  I read every "Symptom of Pregnancy" list and thought I'd get every single one and by the end of the nine months I'd be a swollen, hemorrhoidy, hairy, gassy, stretch-mark clad hormonal beast.  I wish someone had told me that it's not necessarily that way.  I never got: morning sickness, hemorrhoids, UTIs or yeast infections, high blood pressure, varicose veins, crazy cravings, out-of-control appetite, out-of-control mood swings, painful Braxton-Hicks, or incontinence.  I had only very mild general edema, intestinal disturbances, heartburn, and increased appetite.  I was terrified of stretch marks, and I have none on my stomach or anywhere else but a few on my boobs (which mostly appeared after delivery, ironically enough).  I was pretty tired for most of the first trimester, and by the very last two or three weeks of the pregnancy, I was pretty exhausted too.  I also struggled to keep up with my (mostly) daily walks and I could tell that my body was just having some trouble carrying around all the extra weight by the very end.  But all very normal and very manageable.  Really, it wasn't that bad.  I ended up gaining about 40 pounds (maybe more but I refused to step on a scale the last two weeks so I'm just going with 40!), which was of course more than I'd wanted to, but I lost 20 of it by a week after delivery.  Another 5 dropped off the second week, and now I'm just waiting for that other 15 to disappear.  I hear it won't until I wean Lia, but I'm determined to get back in shape and hopefully shed at least some of that extra weight sometime soon.  Soon-ish.  Maybe after the holidays.  ;)

Recall: delivery day

One week postpartum

Two weeks pp

Three weeks pp

Four weeks pp
Most of the change happened in the first two weeks and I expect improvement to go slowly from here on out.  Hopefully soon I'll post pics of Lia and her development, which is way more interesting!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Well there is so much going on and at the same time so little.  Lia is getting more alert by the day - I can't believe she's already 3+ weeks old!  She'll focus on our faces now, and sometimes even track things going across her field of vision.  Once I smiled at her and she smiled back (which I know is just coincidence at this early age but I'll still pretend it was intentional!).  The books say she can't smile socially yet but that she will smile out of contentedness, and I think we're getting an occasional contented smile. :) She seems to be less edgy and a little calmer overall.

Yes that's a dog nose dangerously close to her head.  She got a lick right after I snapped this!

Yes my little peanut?

That's how much you love me?!

Seriously the most adorable baby ever.

Lia went to Grandma's house yesterday for a few hours.  It was bittersweet for me - I don't know how I'm going to handle her going to school in a couple years!  I felt all lonely watching Grandma drive off with my baby.  But, they had a great time, and I got a massage and went shopping and collapsed on the couch for a little bit.

I had to buy pants in a size that I've never bought before in my life, which was incredibly depressing, especially as I hear more and more that the last of the baby weight doesn't come off until the baby is weaned.  So I feel kind of doomed.  On the other hand, I got a pair of Sevens for $34.99 (thank you TJ Maxx!) so that mitigates things a little.  I have postpartum photos but I haven't gotten the courage to post them yet.  I'd much rather post adorable photos of Lia.  I know I'm biased but she is just the most beautiful baby ever.

Aunt Sarah is coming in to visit tonight.  We're excited to have her!  Hopefully we'll get out a little, do something fun, and have more photos to post in a few days.  :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

8 lbs, 1.5 oz!

Lia was 8 lbs, 1.5 ounces at the doctor's office on Wednesday!  She's gained about an ounce a day since we left the hospital.  That's seriously crazy.  Again, I'm amazed that this little creature is subsisting entirely on milk that is coming out of my boobs.  And I'm kind of proud of myself too.  :P

"Undress my baby for the doctor, you say?  But she's so cute in her outfit!  I'll just take some pictures of her instead."

"Oh she's pretty cute this way too."

I'm hoping to get in to a routine soon.  I have family in this weekend, then Monday we're officially on our own, Lia and I.  On one hand, I'm excited to try taking care of Baby all by myself, and on the other hand, it doesn't really excite me.  It's been really nice to have my mom here these past two weeks.  Like, last night, I handed her a bottle and the baby at 3:15 pm, and slept until 9:00.  I won't be able to do that once she leaves.  I have a great mother-in-law in town who is more than willing to help out and watch Lia, so I'm not entirely on my own, but it's just different from having someone who's actually living in the same house.

Anyways, we're off to the hospital to get Lia's heel stuck again.  I guess they screwed up some of the newborn screening tests so we have to get them repeated.  The doctor assured me it doesn't mean there's anything wrong with any of them, but I'm still a little worried.  But honestly, I'm more upset that they have to hurt my little baby again because someone out there messed up. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A few quiet moments...

It's just been one thing after another here.  Lia is a great little baby but she's still a newborn and on that three-hour cycle of eat, poop, sleep and repeat.  Right now is perhaps the first few minutes of quiet time I've had since my last blog post.  I put her in her crib (she's barely spent any time in there so far - she's been sleeping in our room at night) and I'm on the other side of the house and kind of a nervous wreck.  I have two baby monitors by my side and I keep checking on her.  She's fine, of course - just sleeping adorably - so I'm trying to turn this into a lesson for me in chilling the f out.

We have a pediatrician's appointment this afternoon, just the routine two-week check-up.  I'm totally excited to see how much weight she's gained.  I mean, I grew her inside my stomach from an itty bitty blastocyst to an actual baby, but I'm somehow more amazed that I alone am keeping her alive with milk that's coming out of my boobs.  It's magical, seriously.

The weather here is freaking gorgeous.  My body has made it clear that I need to take it easy for a little bit longer, so I haven't been able to walk the dog or head to the park as much as I'd have liked, but I think I'm going to go sit outside and bask in the sun a little rather than keep playing on the internet.  Right after I go check on the baby again...

Didn't I say I was going to wrap her up in hoodie towels every day and take pictures?  Hard to tell in this photo but it's a duck.  Totally adorbs.

Check out those baby reflexes!  She's so smart.

She's so much cuter in person, I can't even tell you guys.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Keeping up with life?

It's been a few days since my last post, but honestly it's been so busy with so much nothing that I haven't felt compelled to write.  But I've got a few minutes in the quiet of the morning so I thought I'd put a brief update out there.

Lia is doing awesome.  She's gotten a little bit fussier, compared to her first few days home from the hospital, but nothing too bad, and still way below average.  She is breastfeeding like a champ, which is phenomenal.  I heard so many horror stories about bf'ing (hmm, just like pregnancy and birth) but we haven't really had major problems (hmm, just like pregnancy and birth).  Although, Lia's a champ, so the bf'ing success is probably more to her credit than my own.  I'm sleeping a bit better because I'm finally internalizing that every little coo and cry doesn't mean she's upset or hungry, and I can just ignore 90% of the noises she makes.  She's been great as far as nighttime sleeping.  It takes awhile to get her settled in the evenings, but she sleeps from about 10:00 to 2:00, then it's up for a feeding and a diaper change and she goes back down again from about 3:00 to 6:00.  A far cry from my previous life sleep schedule, but all told, not that bad.  We've been out to the park twice this week, and today we're going to the mall since the weather's supposed to be crummy.  I'm really excited to get out of the house.  I always go a little stir-crazy when I've been stuck inside too long.  I'm anxious to see how an actual outing goes.  And retail therapy never hurts.  :)

Monday, November 1, 2010


So I pretty much have the best baby ever.  She had a feeding last night around 9:00 pm, then another at 2:25 am, and now it's 6:30 am and I'm sitting here in bed waiting for her to wake up again.  *grin*