Thursday, June 30, 2011

Family Time

Oh my, the last couple of days have been crazy, but I'll spread that out over a few posts.  Short summary involves the typical angelic then fussy baby, returning to work, going to the emergency room, and Monster getting into a very bad fight.  But I'll just start with there being a lot of visitors.

My parents were obviously here to watch Robby during the wedding, but then on Saturday my brother and sister-in-law came down for the first time.  They were a very enthusiastic aunt and uncle, although I think the visit re-affirmed their decision that they're not ready for kids yet.  And Brutus, the bulldog, is TOO enthusiastic.  He knocked my mother over trying to get to the crying baby.  They certainly thought he was cute, but were uncomfortable when he got fussy.  At least my brother got to change his first diaper!  And, since I have to catch up on errands since other things have occupied my time...I'll just leave you with pictures.





  

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Our First Night Out

The Lion's a month old, so it's time to dump him with a baby sitter, right?  ;)  By babysitter, I mean exceptionally eager grandparents who drove 8 hours to watch him while we went to our friends Mark & Jen's wedding.  It seemed like a worthy occasion to try and get out of the house.


It was wonderful getting all snazzed up, and I was so excited that I had my parents bring all my old law prom dresses up from Ohio.  I fit in everything...except my bridesmaid's dress from my brother's wedding.  It looked fantastic...except that the *hmm hmm* very top wouldn't zip.  I suppose that's an ok place to have gained weight from 5 years ago.  


I was in trouble because I was running late, but I've got to blame the Lion.  Selfish little guy wanted to eat.  I suppose I can forgive that.  We left 8 oz with my parents when we left at 5pm, assuming he'd be asleep by 8:30.  Well...he was, but (spoiler) HE ATE ALL 8 OZ IN 3 HOURS.  No wonder the 3 month clothes are already tight.  Sheesh!  Anyway, we had asked forgiveness from the bride to miss the ceremony because of logistic difficulties, and arrived at the reception, as it turned out, 1/2 an hour early.  So there had been no need to stress about lateness.


Soon the doors opened and we headed into the cocktail hour.  And, of course, here are the obligatory pictures of Cathy.  You'd think it was her blog, right?  She was pointing to which positions we were assigned to at our "Padres" table.  (We were assigned that team because of all the new fathers.)  We had joked that Cathy, Chris and I were unloved as we were at the bottom as pitchers...but then we realized Tim was a Pinch Hitter and felt superior.


Yes, I was trying to look crazy.


I know, not the greatest picture, but it's the best one I have of her dress.  Which is exactly what I would have pictured her in and was perfect.


Also perfect for the couple?  The Star Wars groom's cake.


And before you think I'm the only crazy one.  View Tim in the wresting mask that everyone was passing around.  I refused to put it on because of my "other people's sweat" aversion.  Ew!


Exciting events involved having to pump in the car in the middle of the evening and getting honked at.  Really? I'm hoping it was for some other reason.  I was covered, and not being inappropriate at all.  I was fairly embarrassed.  Also?  The groom is a damn good dancer.  Didn't know that.  Impressive.  Long and short of it?  I had a wonderful time, the grandparents, while frustrated that they couldn't get Robby to quit crying for 3 hours, survived and still think he's the greatest grandchild ever.  AND Robby slept for 12 hours that night.  With only one hour awake in the middle.  Which was nice after being out.  So, the evening was a success, and

CONGRATULATIONS JEN AND MARK!!!    

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Lion at 1 Month

Can you believe it?  Our little man is already a month old!!!  And...he looks about 3 months old, but that's just the chunk on him.  This is why you missed getting a 4 week post on Monday, because now?  We are up to using the big "M" word.


Yep, my little chunkster is already sitting up that well.  I can't even believe it!  Of course, having a wide base of support helps.  ;)  Unfortunately, I can't tell you how much he weighs, as we don't go to the doctor until next week, but I can tell you that he has a big ole frog-belly.  


Favorite Things

He really likes to watch the fan, the stripes on his walls, trees, and look at framed pictures on the walls.  He loves to be sang to, and his favorite songs are currently Stormy Weather, Head Shoulders Knees and Toes, and Old McDonald.  I need to learn more lyrics to songs.  If you're not singing, he'd prefer you to still keep talking and is starting to smile when people converse with him.  Horrifyingly, his biggest smile occurred when Chris's boss told him that he'd go look for some Brandy for him.  His favorite positions are flung over the top of your shoulder, being patted rapidly, and fairly hard, or asleep on Mom's chest.  


"Routine"

We still don't really have a "routine" per se, but he sleeps well!  He goes down around 9, wakes up around 6, and only wakes to be fed once or twice around 2:30 (always) and 4 (usually).  I REALLY appreciate this.  During the day, he's starting to be awake more.  He's most likely to be pleasant at 8:30 am, most likely to be asleep at noon, and most likely to be screaming at about 6 pm.  Other than that?  Can't tell ya.      


Size


Yep, no weight to report, but he's in size 1 diapers, and starting to grow OUT of some of his 0-3 month clothes.  For example, this onesie in the photos.  Perhaps he's enjoying his food a little too much?  NO socks fit him, except a few toddler ones we have.  I need to go on a search for some bigger ones.  (See picture.  They're halfway down his arch.  Bah.)


The only way he wants to sleep during the day anymore.


Grandma found a new game he loves.  Watch the video for evidence of why he's his father's son.

video




Monday, June 20, 2011

Birthdays in Our 30's

I've noticed that birthday parties look quite a bit different now that we're in our 30's.  Here are pictures from my birthday only 4 short years ago.



Yes, this was Joel and my 26th, not St. Patrick's day.  Even if we are all wearing green.  And now?  Matt and I both have kids, and well, Joel's still living the fast life, but it now involves jet setting to different tropical locals every other week.  Lil jealous.  And...I've totally lost touch with both of them since I moved (though I should really remedy that).


This weekend was Tim's 30th..  Still fun, but very different.  It involved lots of children.  In fact, it was Robby's first party.


He did...alright.  He had to eat twice (fortunately, I just took over Dean's nursery), and screamed a lot at first, but then Jen managed to get him to fall asleep on her for a couple hours.  Which was wonderful for me.  Perhaps not so much for Jen.  ;)


Dean was entirely pleasant.  Just that couple months older made a huge difference.  He was very smiley, and cute in the outfit his mom made.  We were all cracking up when Cathy & I both recommended to a pregnant friend that she should get Summer SwaddleMe's, and Cathy demonstrated by putting one on Dean.  He has LONG since outgrown them and looked quite like a stuffed sausage.  He was laughing as much as the rest of us, though.  Robby was asleep, or I would have contributed an appropriate-sized model. 


 The boys did spend some quality time together.  Early on in the evening, they even were dressed so similarly that people joked that I was going to take the wrong baby home.  They were cheerful and happy until Robby started punching Dean in the face.  Obviously, this wasn't intentional, or hard enough to hurt him, but it did make him start to cry and broke up the blanket party.  Way to go Robby.  Whole new kind of drama to experience at parties.


All I can say, is that at least enough people are at the same stage of life that they don't mind us bringing along our screaming, uninvited guest.  Ok, maybe he was invited.  But he was still screaming.  I hope he didn't worry the pregnant friend too much.  He did that to another pregnant friend we ran into on a walk the other day.  I just want them to be as glowing and radiant as they should be.  Not shaking in their boots.  :)

So, bars may not be in the plans for birthdays any time soon, but I think all the little men getting to join in just adds to the fun.  Happy birthday, Tim!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Easier than Expected

I wish I could say this about every step of parenting, but we have recently gone through one of our first transitions that proved to be much easier than I anticipated.  Robby had been sleeping in a bassinet.  It was still in the nursery, but just a smaller space.  Earlier this week, every time I woke up to check on him (all 500-or-so times a night), he would have rotated himself 90 degrees, and pushed his face up against the side.  Not surprisingly, I became a little concerned that he was going to suffocate himself.  Therefore, I made the decision that the bassinet was out, and we were going to have to move up into his "big boy bed"...of a crib.  ;)



Initial trials did not go so well.  This picture is just from the middle of the day, though, not when I was actually trying to put him down for a nap or the night.  Fortunately, it turned out that he just didn't want to be set down, and not that he cared one bit about actually sleeping in the crib.


Two days later?  He has not had a lick of trouble sleeping in there, and actually we had one of our best nights yet last night, though it probably was due more to dad feeding him a MASSIVE bottle (4 oz) of pumped milk before bed, not that he was in the crib.  He slept from 9 to almost 2.  We may start making the big bottle a nightly ritual!  


Anything for that milk drunk look, right?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Controlling the Flow of Visitors

A new mom has a split personality.  She both desperately wants to show of her newborn, but also wants to keep him all for herself.  These two extremes create a precarious balance for what is already a delicate emotional time.  Honestly, the blog world allows for thorough bragging without making me relinquish my death-grip, doesn't it?  Kidding, kidding.

We're slowly learning what we can and can't handle.  If I go a week without seeing people?  Not so great.  I start feeling alone, and like the world is passing me by.  However, through trial and error, we have come to realize that 3 sets of visitors in a row will lead to me sitting in a corner and crying because I haven't gotten to hold my son in too many days.  Also, not such a pretty picture.  Therefore, we have established that balance, above all, is key.

I somehow managed to miss taking pictures of both my Uncle Peter, and my mother-in-law when she was here most recently, but they were both tremendous helps.  Here is a little peek at other people that have come by.

GREAT great-grandparents


Hard to believe that Dean was born at the same weight as Robby only 2.5 months ago!  They grow so fast!!! (Man, I need to bother drying my hair sometimes)



Don't they look like a family?  So cute.

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Lion at 3 Weeks

One of these days I'll get back to posting more than just the weekly update.  Been a little busy recently.  I'm trying, really I am.


Every day, Robby continues to wake up a little more, be a little more interactive, and, thank goodness, a little less fussy.  (Though, right now he's screaming.  Must go get him....Returning many hours later.)    


Activity

He continues to get stronger and will now rock to his sides while on his back, but he can't turn his head to the other side to look at you yet.  Though I drove him nuts talking to him from behind his back this morning.  He holds his head up longer and longer, and can sometimes manage to grasp things that interest him, like hair, necklaces, pacifiers, or toys.  Not always, though.

Fussiness

Cleaning up my diet has helped quiet a bit, as has tracking his behaviors.  I'm quicker to catch hunger or dirty diaper cues, which avoids any meltdowns that are related to them.  He still has gas, or boredom, or overtired, or whatever it might be meltdowns in the evening, if nothing else, though.  Last night he lost it, being much too tired, and ended up keeping himself awake for many hours past his typical 9pm bedtime.  That was less than fun.  I'm not sure what I learned to prevent it, though.


Cuteness

He's gotten quite pudgy!  Well, as pudgy as a 9 pound-something 3-week-old can be.  He's outgrown newborn clothing and diapers, which actually saddened me a little bit.  The first milestone of many that shows he's growing up!  He's responding more when you talk to him, reacts to his name, my voice, and his favorite songs.  He LOVES the "flying monkeys" that hang over his pack-n-play.  We're starting to see some flickers of what seem like real smiles, but I'm not sure.  It'd be a little early, but who knows with him.  I haven't been reading any "real" books to him, yet, and I don't know when people usually do, but I have certainly started reading some of my books to him, just because he likes the sound of my voice.  So, if you want to know what Dr. Oz says about parenting, Sookie Stackhouse is up to, or Crawley's latest failure at being a demon is, he's your man...baby...whatever.  (Currently simultaneously reading You: Raising your child, From Dead to Worse, and Good Omens)

Generally, it's been a pretty good week, even if it's kept me on my toes.  Here's to hoping for continued good cheer!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Lion at 2 Weeks

This week has been a little less fun than the previous week, but we're working on it. Robby has been FUSSY. But he's still cute. And that counts for a lot around here.


"Routine"

Still...eat, poop, sleep. In any order or combination. We've figured out that he doesn't necessarily need to eat every time he says he does, and that a pacifier will work just fine when he's just trying to soothe himself. Because of that, we're down to feeding around every 3 hours, though it's often more frequent during the day, and less frequent at night. I need to start keeping a journal again to try and figure out what really is going on, because quite honestly? I've totally lost track of time at this point.

video


Proof of Genius

Actually, we haven't really had developments this week. He continues to hold his head up a little better and focuses on your face if your close, but hasn't figured out string theory or anything. We're absolutely disappointed in him on that front. ;)  Oh, and he might now be completely rolling from front to back.  He did it 4 times in a row while I was writing this.  So no coincidence.  We're in trouble.


Why he's cute


His newborn rash has cleared up pretty well, as has the clogged tear duct.  He makes funny little gremlin noises, and is VERY interactive with his facial expressions when you talk to him.  He enjoys being sang to, especially if it's a lower-pitched jazz standard like "Stormy Weather" or "Suppertime".  Chris claims he loves "Creola" by Jimmy Buffett, though I haven't witnessed it.  He's developing a bit of a gut, and weighed in at a whopping 8 pounds 6.5 ounces when he was at the doctor last Wednesday, so we're betting he's close to 9 pounds by now.




Sleep

It's still pretty good, but not necessarily consistent. I continue to wake up entirely too frequently to check on him, even if he's not awake, so I've managed to exhaust myself. We also may have overdone activity this weekend with lots of visitors and things going on, so by last night I was a hysterical mess sitting in the nursery with tears streaming down my face as I nursed him. Poor Chris was a little uncertain what to do, but insisted that I go to sleep and he and his mom would take over, even if it meant using formula for the next few hours. It didn't, and I took him back at 1 am, but it was nice to get a couple hours of uninterrupted sleep. I still don't think any of it's "baby blues" or depression, it's just plain old exhaustion.


The Bad and the Ugly

The Lion screamed from Saturday through to today. Without many breaks. He had VERY bad gas, and then would get himself so worked up over it that there was no calming him. I took him on many walks, and yesterday, not even the stroller worked. I ended up carrying him as I pushed an empty stroller. We're seeing if eliminating gassy foods like beans and broccoli from MY diet will help, but beyond that we're a little mystified.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Friday 5: Biggest Postpartum Surprises



It's only fair to balance out pregnancy surprises with what I've learned since Robby's been born.  Right?  Even if he's only 11 days old?  I'm sure as he grows, I'll continue to be amazed.


1.  No baby blues!  I think that baby blues and postpartum depression have come an amazingly long way from being the untold secret of new moms, to well-known.  By NO means am I belittling the problem, or making light of a very difficult circumstance should you encounter it, but I just had been so inundated by information that I assumed it would happen to me.  Between doctors always bringing it up in appointments, insurance sending information, receiving notices about support groups, and even that they highly encouraged me to take medication immediately after birth because my "history put me at a greater risk"... nothing.  If anything, I had more trouble with depression and negative thoughts DURING pregnancy.  I'm feeling very upbeat and happy now that he's here!  Therefore, I am THRILLED that I refused to take Zoloft in the hospital, and insisted on the "wait and see" method.  Because, no, not everyone experiences the blues.


2.  The Lion would hate "baths"  His umbilical cord stump has fallen off, but the pediatrician said to still wait a couple more days to give "real" baths, as it still looked like it could harden up.  Therefore, "baths" means wiping him down with a washcloth.  You'd think we were torturing him.  It is not a pleasant experience.


3.  Weight loss  I know this is getting to be old news, and I'll try to stop being so effusive about it soon, but I thought it would be more of a struggle!  However, my co-worker (who looks phenomenal after her 3rd child) predicted that the first 20 pounds would fall off, and then the last 10 I'd really have to work for.  As I've been stuck at 20 for 2 days, that has crossed my mind more than a few times.  And then I remind myself that it's been TWO DAYS and to get over it.  I have started some minor "exercise", so we'll see how it goes from here!


4.  How SOON I'd be up for exercise  Yesterday, I couldn't take it anymore.  I was going stir-crazy and feeling pretty good.  So I both took a stroller walk with Robby earlier on, and then once Chris got home, left Robby in his care, and took Harper out for a couple miles.  I was a LITTLE achy last night, but really, not too bad, so I'm very pleased to know that a whole new world is back at my fingertips.

The other exercise I'm doing?  Entirely kid related.  My biceps are getting toned because the Lion never wants to be set down, but he's also encouraging a great stomach exercise.  He truly enjoys "standing" (almost entirely through my help) on my stomach and getting bounced as I tighten my abs.  Hey, great win for both of us.


5.  How awake the Lion would be  This is an odd statement, as he's currently asleep, but he really has been awake a very large portion of most days.  He doesn't seem all that much like a "newborn".  But, most of the time he's pretty happy as long as he's being held.  So, I really enjoy the interaction I get to have with him!  

Join in on Kat's fun!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Animal Reaction to the Baby

Things have already changed a couple of times regarding the animals.  I suppose that's the nature of any relationship, though.  Dr. Oz actually said an amazingly insightful thing on today's show to that effect.  He has been married to his wife for 26 years, and said that during that time, he has been married to 4 different women, because she continues to evolve and change.  It really made me think about the need to stay connected to the person you are with TODAY, rather than who you assume they are.  Anyway.  Pets.  Right.


When we first came home, Monster was incredibly clingy.  He couldn't get enough of the baby, and would cuddle up next to me while I was nursing, and be desperate to sleep in the nursery with us at night.  However, this has now changed into complete avoidance.  He wanders around the house yowling and will NOT come to me when I call him (yes, our cat used to do that).  Seemingly, he now feels that he isn't receiving the same level of attention that he is used to and requires.  And rightfully so.  Therefore, I only have pictures with Monster and Robby from the first couple days, as he is virtually never in the same room now.

Day 1 photos

Harper was initially intrigued, but she was more interested in reconnecting with us than checking out the baby. She wanted to smell and lick him, but would quickly give up and move on.  However, she has now transitioned into full-blown jealousy.  She "knocks" on the nursery door multiple times a night (by banging the hang tag on the doorknob), will stare at us from as far away as she has a clear line of sight, and does anything in her power to get our attention.  This includes stealing clothes and/or pacifiers out of the pack n play, trying to give Robby toys, licking him, and ringing her bell to go outside frequently.  Her EPI is also flaring up, she's losing weight, and she's back on antibiotics.  It's not out of control, though, which we had feared would happen.

She definitely is torn between interest in and jealousy of Robby, though.  The pictures below are from today.  She wants to be around him, but also misses being the center of attention.  Overall, we're lucky that both animals are very well behaved with him and are doing well, but we're still working on finding a good balance.  It would be easier if Chris wasn't hurt, because he's having trouble walking Harper, and I haven't been up for it yet.  Though, I did take my first stroller walk today, so I may try taking her on her walk tonight to give Chris's hand a break.




I can only imagine how difficult it is introducing a second HUMAN child to a family, with how much our furry ones are struggling.  We'll all get used to the new nature of our relationships soon.