Monday, January 31, 2011

The Joy (or lack their of) of (NOT) Walking

Back when Superman was 9 months old and learning to cruise along furniture, I was certain that he would be walking very soon.  By Thanksgiving he was cruising so proficiently and taking a couple steps here and there, I was certain we were days away from having a walker on our hands.  Here we are, days from him being 13 months, and he still isn't walking.  Sure, if he is highly motivated, he will take up to about 8-9 steps at one time, but he has to be really, really motivated (meaning I have teasing him with a remote or cellphone).

What the heck?   

The thing is, he loves to walk!  When he uses the walker or pushes his wagon around, he is grinning from ear to ear and squealing the whole time.  When we are inside, he will cruise to get where he is going rather than crawling there, even if crawling would be faster.  

I am beginning to wonder if he will ever walk independently.  He still hasn't even attempted to stand up without holding on to anything and I am pretty sure he has to learn that before he will really start walking.  

Oh and for all you moms who think I am insane for wanting him to walk (because I know you are out there), please let me take a minute to explain.  First, my back is killing me and every time I have to lift him up it yells at me.  Second, my back is killing me and every time I carry him from one place to another I want to cry out in pain.  Third, my back is killing me and I would rather put a leash on my kid than carry him. 

So I am thinking we should start taking bets on when he will be a completely independent walker.  Anybody want to make a wager?

Note: I realize that he is still within the total normal range of development and that there really is no concern that he isn't walking yet.  I think that I am more dumbfounded than anything because we were so flippin' convinced that he would walk early.  I guess he is just showing me how little control I have in some of his development.  Now if I really wanted to talk about an area that I am concerned, it would be his lack of speech, but we will save that for another day...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Baby #2: Week 17


January 29, 2011 

How far along: 17 weeks 

Baby's size: onion
Symptoms: Feeling pretty good....tired, but good.  My lower back has been hurting a lot, but I think that is just from lifting Superman so much.  My husband is doing an awesome job helping lift him when he is home (and reminding me to ask him for help).  

Sleep: Because of my back pain, it has been difficult to get comfortable at night.  I also have carpel tunnel so my hands (and sometimes my arms) go numb if I lie the wrong way.  Between that and having to pee several times a night, my sleep is not great.  I think it is time for me to pull out more pillows and create a "nest" for me.

Total Weight Gain: I gained 2 pounds this week!!! That puts me +1 for the pregnancy.  Maybe I need to lay off the sweets. 

Maternity clothes:  Yes.   

Best moment this week:  Realizing that my belly is growing.  I put on a regular shirt and was shocked how tight it was on my belly.

Movement: Not too much this week. Can't wait for the little kicks to start!

Food cravings: anything bad for me....seriously.  Look at my weight gain.

Gender:  My husband thinks it is a girl and I think that his family has so many boys in it that I am likely to have another boy.

Labor signs: none

What I miss: been wishing I could have a beer this week.  

What I'm looking forward to: My next doctor's appointment on January 31st. Hopefully we will schedule the anatomy scan at that time!!

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week):  Nothing wise for you this week.

Milestones:  Another week down!

Emotions:  Sadly, my husband's grandmother passed away this week. It has been an emotional and tiring week. 

Exercise:  Another bad week with exercise. 
Baby Boot camp-30 minutes, Monday and Wednesday
Walking with Superman 20 on Thursday and Saturday 

Tandem Nursing:  
Officially over. 

Till next week!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Time away...

This week has been tough.  My husband's grandmother became very, very ill last Wednesday.  Fortunately, my in-laws were here visiting from the Midwest.  Since she has proceeded to get worse, they have postponed their return home indefinitely.  It has been really hard on my family.  My in-laws are traveling 45 minutes to an hour each way to the hospital to sit with her, my husband is feeling torn between work and being with his grandma and supporting me, and I am wishing that I could be there for everybody, but need to focus on Superman and taking care of me. 

 Because I don't know if I will be alone with Superman each night or not, I am resting during his naps to save energy.  Being pregnant and taking care of a toddler is kicking my butt this week.  This means that I have no time or energy to focus on the blog right now. 

I wasn't sure if I wanted to share this all with everyone, but as this all continues I feel like I owe you all an explanation for my absence.  I hope you understand.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Baby #2: Week 16


January 22, 2011 

How far along: 16 weeks 

Baby's size: avocado
Symptoms:Starting to feel better!  I still get nauseous if I don't stay on top of eating, but it isn't nearly as bad as it was and I am not having as hard of time coming up with something to eat (preparation has helped).   I continue to be tired, but this is a tough week to gauge because it was a tough week in general.

Sleep: The night wake-ups to pee have times y'all, fun times!

Total Weight Gain:I gained a pound this week and am now just 1 pound down from my pre-pregnancy weight..

Maternity clothes: Yup, although I still just look more chubby than normal. 

Best moment this week: Not pregnancy related but, my in-laws are here this week and I love watching them play with Superman. 

Movement: Not too much this week.

Food cravings: back to craving OJ and Oreos (not at the same time)

Gender:  My husband thinks it is a girl and I think that his family has so many boys in it that I am likely to have another boy.

Labor signs: none

What I miss: I am happy to say that there is nothing I miss this week.  Very grateful to be pregnant. 

What I'm looking forward to: My next doctor's appointment on January 31st. Hopefully we will schedule the anatomy scan at that time!!

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week):  Getting bigger when pregnant brings up a lot of different issues for women.  I remember last time hating this phase of looking heavier and not looking pregnant.  I feel like I am embracing my body this time around.  I know how amazingly hard it is working to create my perfect little is hard for me to beat myself up when that is happening. 

Milestones:  Another week down!

Emotions:  Many, many tears have been shed this week.  In fact, a break from my emotions would be great.  I am missing my stepmom, Donna, a lot and then my husband's grandmother got very sick and is in the hospital. 

Exercise:  Not a great week with exercise. 
Baby Boot camp-30 minutes, Monday (had to leave early to deal with some paperwork that I had forgotten about)
Walking with Superman 25 minutes, Tuesday and Thursday  

Tandem Nursing:  
Officially over. 

Till next week!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Baby #2 - Week 15


January 15, 2011 

How far along: 15 weeks 

Baby's size: orange
Symptoms: Still nauseous.  It is the worst in the morning and then again in the late afternoon around dinner time.  I feel like I am starting to get my energy back, but the nausea stops me in my tracks. Starting to get some round ligament pain as well.

Sleep:  Had a night or two where I had to get up in the middle of the night to pee.  Oh joy, the fun of not sleeping well is starting already!

Total Weight Gain:Still 2 pounds down.

Maternity clothes: Yup, although I still just look more chubby than normal. 

Best moment this week:  Nothing too exciting happened this week, so I guess listening to the heart beat with the doppler. 

Movement: Not too much this week.

Food cravings: nothing sounds good this week

Gender:  My husband thinks it is a girl and I think that his family has so many boys in it that I am likely to have another boy.

Labor signs: none

What I miss: having energy.

What I'm looking forward to: feeling better (and Superman is getting his one year pictures done today!)

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week):  I am not a wise woman this week.

Milestones:  Another week down!

Emotions: It is amazing what can get me crying...I am a sap.  

Exercise:  Baby Boot camp-60 minutes, Monday and Wednesday
Walking with Superman and a dog- 35 minutes, Tuesday and Friday 
(Friday was supposed to be boot camp, but my in-laws were flying in that day and Superman was going to miss his afternoon nap.  So I just went for a walk so I could make sure he got a really good morning nap in.  It worked too!  Superman slept for 2.5 hours!)

Tandem Nursing:  
Well, we are officially done nursing.  I am sad, but grateful that it was an easy transition.  

Till next week!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Top 5 Toys For My One Year Old

Between Christmas and his birthday, Superman has recently received more toys than I can count.  When I was looking for toys to buy him I found that there just isn't a whole lot of help out there.  If you go on Amazon, you can't search for toys for a 1 year old.  The closest you can get is birth to 24 months...really, Amazon you need to rethink this.  Do you not understand how different a 3 month old is compared to a 12 month old compared to a 24 month old?  Craziness.

There are a few good lists if you do a Google search, but really I didn't even know what I should be looking for in toys for him.  I wondered:  What skills am I trying to foster in him through play?  What toys will grow with him?  What skills should a one year old even be working on?  Well I gave up trying to figure it out. We got him a big gift for Christmas (see below) and a big gift for his birthday (a wagon) and we called it good.  And it was great because everyone else knew better than I did and he ended up with some great toys and books!

Before I get to what he actually plays with, I was really grateful that some people gave us toys targeted for 18 months so he wasn't given all his gifts to play with at one time.   One of the cool toys for 18 months and older that I can't wait to see him play with is the Fix N' Learn Speedy (amazon says it is 6 months - 3 years but that isn't what the box says).

So what did he get?  Along with the toys I mention below, he got a bunch of new books (which I am really grateful for since we do story time 3x a day), bath toys, plastic beads, music, and stuffed animals.  There isn't a single toy that he doesn't play with on a daily basis...seriously, not a single one.  

So without further adieu, here are the top five toys Superman has gotten in the past month.

5.   B. Sugar Chute - Basically this looks like a big gumball machine filled with different colored balls.  Superman is obsessed with plastic balls that fit in his hands to begin with (thanks to the Playskool Explore and Grow Busy Ball Popper which we have had for some time, but is still one of his favorite toys).  I love that this provided him some challenge.  Of course, he could just reach in the top and grab a ball, but we were able to put it on the coffee table and teach him how to get the balls to drop and then how to pull them out of the little door at the bottom.  He struggled with this quite a bit, but once he learned to use two hands he was on a roll.  He also loves throwing the balls into the top after he has retrieved them from below. 

4. Count and Learn School Bus - The bus comes with 4 colored balls that have sensors in them.  When you put the ball in the special hole it tells you the color or the animal that is on the ball.  The top is also open so if they can't get it in the hole, they can still put the balls in the bus.  It took him a little bit to learn how to do it, but Superman loves to push the ball through the hole and watch them roll down the bus and out the door (the door opens and closes).  He does this over and over and over.  Downside to the toy? Both my husband and I have the song it plays stuck on our heads at this point. 

3. Mega Bloks Maxi Tub with 140 pieces - I wasn't sure if he would know what to do with the blocks and, frankly, he doesn't know how to build anything yet.  However, he loves to pull the pieces apart and to wreck anything we build.  The big thing that surprised me was how much he likes to open the lid, take out a piece, close the lid, put the piece on top or on the ground and then repeat the process over and over and over again.  It was the first toy that he really "played a game" with by himself.   

2.  Mega Bloks Cat Large Vehicle Dump Truck - It is so big that he can push it around the living room while walking.  He loves to throw blocks into the back, pull them out again or tip the truck over to get the pieces out (he knows that they are supposed to "dump" but he hasn't figured out how to unlatch the bin so this is his version of it 'dumping').

1.  Smart Trike - He loves this thing!  I bundle him up and we go for a walk and he literally sings the whole time.  I have never seen him happier than he is on that trike.  While he is still too little to pedal it, the pedals disengage so they don't move as you push it and there is a little platform that drops where he can rest his feet.  There are also rails on either side of him that keep him from falling off.  The push handle, rails, and sun shade remove so that it grows with the child. (I am proud to say that this was actually our gift to him from "Santa"!)

Note:   Although I am willing to do product reviews upon request, I was not asked to do these reviews nor was I given anything in return for my opinion in this post.  These were truly gifts given to Superman from our friends.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I Need Headache Help!

I have a headache.  I woke up with it and just can't seem to shake.  I have tried just about every trick I know and nothing is working.  There is one trick that I want to try, but I can't remember the specifics.  I am hoping you can help me!!

When I was pregnant with Superman I got a lot of headaches.  The nurse at my doctor's office said that they are really common and to try putting my feet in water and a wet cloth on my neck.  The problem?  I can't remember the temperatures of the water. 

Are my feet supposed to be in cold or warm water?

Is the wet cloth on my neck supposed to warm and cold?

The only thing I remember is that the two temperatures are supposed to be opposite. 

I appreciate your help!

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Baby #2 - Week 14


January 8, 2011 -Superman's 1st Birthday is today! 

How far along: 14 weeks 

Baby's size: lemon
Symptoms: Nausea seems to be getting better and I had one day this week where I felt like my energy was back to normal.  The rest of the days were not as energy filled, but I feel like it could come back any day least I hope.  This week was filled with heartburn!  I didn't have heartburn much at all last pregnancy...I hope this isn't a sign of what is to come.   

Sleep:  Doing great- Superman is sleeping till 7:30 now and I LOVE IT!!!!!!! 

Total Weight Gain:gained 2 pounds this week so now I am just 2 pounds down.

Maternity clothes: Yup, although I still just look more chubby than normal. 

Best moment this week: Had another prenatal visit and found out that our risk for downs and trisomy 18 has been lowered thanks to the results of the ultrasound and blood work. :) 

Movement: Not too much this week.

Food cravings: cheese and orange juice (but not at the same time)

Gender:  My husband thinks it is a girl and I think that his family has so many boys in it that I am likely to have another boy.

Labor signs: none

What I miss: having energy.

What I'm looking forward to: feeling better (and Superman's birthday party today!)

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week):  So this isn't really wisdom, but thought I would share. There are so many people pregnant right now!!  Someone mentioned on one of my friend's facebook pages that the year of the rabbit is about to start...we all know what they say about rabbits! 

Milestones: Another prenatal appointment down. :)

Emotions: I am much more emotional when I get nauseous lately.  I think I am just so tired of it that I am breaking down. 

I thought I would add another category.  One of my goals this pregnancy is to continue to stay active as I did with Superman.  With my first pregnancy I did water aerobics several times a week for much of it and yoga once a week.  Towards the end I was too tired from teaching to go each night and I really missed the outlet. 

This pregnancy I am doing Baby Boot Camp (goal of 3 times a week) and eventually will be going back to pregnancy aerobics (goal 2 times a week).  In addition, I want to try and walk 30 minutes each of the days that I don't go to boot camp (either in one outing or two depending on the day).   Each week I will let you know how I did! 

Exercise:  Boot camp- Wednesday and Friday; walked Tuesday and Thursday for 30 minutes. 

Tandem Nursing:  
Nursing Sessions:  only morning- (not everyday)- I learned the hard way that if the bottle was with me, that is what he wanted
Supply: almost none existent.
Pain: none
Nausea while nursing: None  
Positions for nursing: cradle hold
Other thoughts on this: Just plugging along and going with the flow (or lack of it).  The last day of frozen breast milk was Monday, Jan 3rd.    He doesn't seem to miss it so that is making it a bit easier. 
Till next week!

Friday, January 07, 2011

Loving Motherlove - A product review

I have eczema.  It is on my fingers and I struggle with it year round, but during the winter?  It is much worse.  And when I am pregnant? Ugh! It is awful.  So here we are in the winter and I'm pregnant and there isn't much I can do about it since steroid creams are not recommended during pregnancy. 

When I was pregnant with Superman I used my paraffin wax dipper thing a lot.  I would load my hands up with a high quality cream and then dunk my hands.  It worked okay, but the results never lasted very long and doing it multiple times a day was not possible.

Well this time around I have this blog and with that comes companies occasionally wanting me to review things.  I was lucky enough that in October a representative from the Mother Love Herbal Company contacted me and wanted me to do a review.  I didn't know I was pregnant yet, but told her that I was still nursing and do struggle with eczema (because frankly even my prescription doesn't work that well).  She said she was sending me their nipple cream for any nursing issues and the Green Salve for my eczema.  (I have been fortunate not to need the nipple cream, so this review is not going to include any information on it.)

Shortly after I got the products I found out I was pregnant and, once I knew the Green Salve was safe during pregnancy, I began to use it.  I have to be honest, it only worked okay.  At this point I had several cracked areas on my fingers (to the point of bleeding) and I was desperate for it to work.  Unfortunately, although it gave me some relief when I put it on, the results did not last long.  In fact if I put it on at night, I would wake up with my hands just as bad as before I used it. 

So I sent an email to the representative saying that I didn't think I should write a review given my results (she said that I could still write it because they are looking for honest reviews from people).  However, she forwarded my email on to the owners of the company and they came back with the suggestion that I try the the Diaper Rash and Thrush salve.  It contains myrrh and oregon grape root (both are anti-bacterial and anti-fungal).   I was willing to try anything at this point so I agreed.

The first night I put the Diaper Rash and Thrush salve on my hands and went to bed.  The next morning I woke up, and I swear to you, my hands were so healed I couldn't believe it.    I was (and am) so grateful that the rep. was willing to take that extra step to find something that did work for me.  It isn't every day that you find a company willing to do that. 

At any rate, they were so healed that I didn't have to even apply it to my hands for 4 days.  After 4 days they started to get a bit dry and I figured I would prevent a huge attack by putting on at night again.  Then the worst thing happened....I couldn't find it anywhere!  I searched my house from top to bottom...staying up way too late searching for it.  Yes, it works that well.  Finally after about 40 minutes, I realized I had put it in my laptop bag...pure relief. 

Then a strange thing happened.  I didn't really get the same results that I did the first time.  In fact, my hands didn't really look any different in the morning.  So after trying it a couple more times, I decided to switch back to the green salve, thinking maybe whatever was causing it this time could be solved by it.  It got a little better, but not great.  Then? I get the brilliant plan to put them both on my hands together.  This? Worked perfectly!

I am still not sure how it all works (and because Motherlove is an herbal company they "can't make medical claims to cure any conditions or diseases"), but from what they are suggesting and the research I have done, it appears that eczema and yeast can go hand in hand with some people and I am one of those people.  It makes me really wonder about the prescription stuff I normally use...maybe a trip to a naturopathic doctor to see if I can learn more about this would be a good idea.  Either way, I am just grateful that I found something that works during my pregnancy.

I highly recommend the Motherlove Herbal company if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have a baby.  They have been around for 20 years and based on what I have read about them, really strive to provide the best products possible with the least amount of impact on earth.  Many of their products are certified organic and never contain mineral oil, lanolin, parabens, or synthetic or artificial ingredients.  They have amazing customer service and have been a real pleasure to work with. 

Disclaimer: I received 3 products to try for free from the Motherlove Herbal company in return for an honest review.  What I have written here are purely my opinions and should not be considered medical advice. 

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Pure Joy

I don't know what happened to somehow got away from me.  At about 4:50 I realized that I never sat down and wrote.  Not good.  In fact, I wasn't even really sure what I was going to write about so I was very close to just forgetting about it all together.  Then bath time happened.

For days my husband, who is in charge of bath time, has been telling me that Superman has been leaning over his bath seat (which is similar to this one) to try and stick his face in the water.  My reply each time has been, "so let him".  My husband was all concerned that he might hurt himself, but I tried to assure him that as long as he was there watching and he didn't let him stay under for more than a second, the worst that would happen is that he would hate it.

So tonight, as I was folding laundry in the next room, my husband called to me and said that he was trying to do it again.  So I rushed into the bathroom to take a look.  Sure enough he was bending way over and putting his mouth into the water.

My response? Lots and lots of cheers! So then he wanted to do it again and again and again.  At one point he did a raspberry into the water and blew bubbles and I went nuts!  I was so proud of him for a) liking his face in the water and b) being able to blow bubbles so young.

My husband, not to be outdone by his son (I tease), decided he would start blowing bubbles too.  Superman thought this was just great and began giggling up a storm.  Of course it also just made him want to put his face in the water more as well because he loves to imitate what his daddy does.  He successfully blew bubbles several times and if we had let him stay in the bath any longer, I am sure he would have really gotten the hang of it.

Tonight was one of those moments that I hope I always remember.  The pure joy and laughter was something I wish I could bottle and keep forever.

I would love to hear some of your moments of pure joy with your children!

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Doctor Dilemma

Let me start by saying that I love my doctor.  Specifically, I love his approach to medicine.  But sometimes? I think about leaving his practice because when I call the advice line, I am not always comfortable with the advice I get.  Then yesterday happened and now I am really not sure if we should stay or not.  Let me back up...

Superman had his one year, well baby appointment. Overall it went fine...or at least ended that way.  The way our doctor's office works is that you get brought into the room by a nurse who takes down any concerns and does the child's weight and height.  Then (on well-baby appointments) the nurse practitioner comes in.  She does a full exam, addresses any concerns, and talks with you about the things you should know about a child at X age. 

Finally the doctor comes in, looks over the nurse practitioner's notes, pokes and prods the child a little bit, talks with the parents about any remaining issues, and then you are done.  (Unless your child needs vaccinations.  Then the first nurse comes back and gives them to your child. Then you are done.)

So everything was going well until the nurse practitioner (or NP as she will be referred to from this point forward) came in.  The one we usually see was out sick, no big deal but thought I should clarify that I hadn't met her before.  Anyway, we talk about some of my safety concerns (Superman is OBSESSED with drawers right now) and she bugged me a little with her condescending response, but whatever, I asked the question.  

I also had a question about the amount of whole milk he should be consuming (he gets about 24 oz per day now).  She says that is too much...should be more like 16-18 oz.  She then wants to know how he is eating.  I tell her that he loves cheese and yogurt and feeding himself.  The he does pretty well with eating in general, but has times when I wish he would eat more but refuses.  She says that he can't possibly get enough food feeding himself.  I tell her that he sure seems to eat till he is full, but that I could be wrong. 

So then we looked at Superman's stats.  At 9 months he was at the 24th percentile for weight and 74th percentile for height (we think they measured his height wrong because up to that point he had always been in the 30-somethingth percentile).  At this appointment he was in the 18th percentile for weight and 33rd percentile for height.  The NP said that this was a concern.  She said that it probably is because he is self-feeding and he can't get enough food. 

I explain that the doctor told me that a dip in percentiles is normal from 9-12 months because they become so much more mobile.  In fact, when we were there for a sick appointment back in December and I brought up the issue?  He told me to stop worrying!  That S looked great and as long as we keep offering him food till he is full, we are good. 

Her response was that maybe it was that he was drinking too much milk.  She didn't address what he said at all.  I was just dumbfounded.  At this point I was exhausted and didn't want to deal with her any more.  I thought about arguing with her about the fact that 1 year olds are supposed to be self-feeding and that it was supposed to be a great thing that he is doing, but decided to just keep silent and ask the doctor.  

 So the doctor comes in and I bring this up to him.  I tell him that the NP thinks I should stop letting him self-feed and that I thought it was developmentally appropriate.  He said that she was wrong and that he was doing just fine.  We looked at the charts again and he said that his weight may be a little low, but given how active S was, it wasn't surprising (Superman did not stop moving the entire appointment.  He was cruising around the room, pulling up on the doctor, trying to climb get the idea.).  He said to keep letting Superman feed himself and offering a good variety of foods, that he will eat when he is hungry. 

So in the end I was fine with the appointment.  I had the information I wanted...although I kicked myself for not asking the doctor about the milk amounts.  But how do I deal with an office where the doctor is great, but some of his staff doesn't give out the same information as he would?  I thought about calling the office manager and expressing my frustration, but my husband pointed out that the main boss is the doctor and since I already shared with him what she told me, there isn't more I can do. 

What would you do in this situation?

Monday, January 03, 2011

Changing Things Up

Weaning Superman has meant more changes than just giving him a bottle when I would have been nursing him. 

At first it was just nap times.  When I was nursing we would just head upstairs, I would change his diaper, put on a sleep sack, then sing the "night night" song as I nursed him.  But when he wouldn't take the bottle after I sang the song, I began to give him the bottle downstairs as we wound down from playing, then continue with the bottle as I got him a new diaper, a sleep sack and then read stories to him.  So by the time I finished with the stories he would basically be done with the bottle and it was time to turn off the lights, turn on the white noise, and sing the song.  

This made room for some cuddle time that we had not had previously and I love it!  As I sing his "night night" song he rests his head on my chest, wraps his arms around me (the best he can), and we rock together.  I get so few moments throughout the day where he will just sit still in my arms, I usually continue rocking for a minute or two after the song ends just to stretch the cuddling out a wee bit longer.    

So when I stopped nursing Superman right before bed every night, our evening routine morphed a bit to look a little like the nap routine.  My husband would give him a bottle as he got him ready for bed and as he read stories to him.  But then I would come in sing the "night night" song (while my husband is still in the room) and attempt to give him more milk.  Then husband would leave and I would try to give him more milk.  Usually? He would drink a tiny bit or just flat out refuse.  So then he and I would cuddle and rock for a minute or two and I would put him to bed.  After about a week I realized that I was becoming obsolete.  There was no reason for me to come fact it would probably be less disruptive if the same person did the stories, the song, and the rocking.

So last night when my husband suggested that since he had just done the bath, that I do stories and put him to bed.  I jumped on the opportunity (first I made sure everything was okay with my husband because he rarely gives up the opportunity to read to Superman).  It worked fabulously, he went to sleep almost straight away and it was perfect.   Why we didn't think about this sooner is beyond me! 

So now we have a new plan.  On the days that Superman gets a bath (every other day), I will do the bedtime stuff.  The other days? My husband will do it. 

What I realized this morning was that this is a fabulous way to transition him to getting used to me not putting him to bed regularly.  Once the new baby comes I doubt I will be able to do it every night and it is nice to know that it won't be a complete upheaval of the routine.    

So what are your bedtime routines?  How do you share these responsibilities with your partner? 

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Baby #2 - 13 weeks

week 13
January 1, 2011- Happy New Year!!
How far along: 13 weeks 

Baby's size: peach

Symptoms:Nausea is doing okay, still there and still annoying.  I really have to stay on top of my eating or it gets bad...really, really bad.  I am also SO exhausted this week. I just can't seem to get enough rest.   

Sleep:  Sleeping fine, but I wish I could sleep more.  I worry about napping too much because then I might not be able to sleep at night.  However, some days my eyes just won't stay open at all and I am grateful for nap time.

Total Weight Gain: staying steady at 4 pounds down

Maternity clothes: Yup, although I still just look more chubby than normal. 

Best moment this week: Being able to tell the world that I am pregnant.

Movement: Lots of flutters this week!  Now I am pretty convinced that it is the baby and not my imagination.

Food cravings: cheese and orange juice (but not at the same time)

Gender:  ?????

Labor signs: none

What I miss: Feeling rested and feeling better.  I miss being able to help out more around the house.  I hate watching my husband rush around on Saturday to get 10 million and 1 things done because I can't do it during the week.  It is frustrating and I am hoping that I start to gain the energy back this week. 

What I'm looking forward to: The start of the 2nd trimester and feeling better.

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): I have nothing wise to say this brain has turned to mush.

Milestones: Telling the world I am pregnant.

Emotions: very emotional...crying at the drop of a hat it seems.

Tandem Nursing:  
Nursing only morning- sort of
Supply: almost none existent.  Superman will nurse in the morning for a few minutes on each side and then we head downstairs for the bottle.  I doubt he is getting much, but it hasn't been hurting so I am going to continue (the few times that it has hurt I try getting him to latch again or we just give up for the day).  He has been getting 6oz of frozen breast milk mixed with his other bottles through out the day.
Pain: Minimal- mostly due to poor latch when there isn't any milk
Nausea while nursing: None  
Positions for nursing: cradle hold
Other thoughts on this: Superman turns 1 tomorrow and part of me thinks I should just stop and celebrate that we made it to a year.  The other part of me thinks about wanting Superman to decide when he is done (as long as it isn't causing me pain).  I also think about how awesome it would be to have him nursing when baby #2 is born so that he can help me boost my supply...yeah, I am being purely selfish there.   So I am just going to play it by ear and see what happens. 
Till next week!

Happy Birthday to my Superman!

Dear Superman,

What a year it has been!  I can honestly (and easily) say that this was the best year of my entire life...and the hardest.  My world changed so dramatically the moment you entered it and I love it! 

Prior to your arrival, I was an ESL teacher in a local elementary school.  I worked long hours, going in on the weekends frequently.  I loved what I did and considered it less of a job and more of just who I was...yes, it defined me.  I was a teacher.  Today?  I find myself struggling to find that part of me.  Sure I try and teach you lots of things, but somehow it is just different.  A great different, but different. 

You make my heart sing with every smile, giggle, and squeal.  I melt every time you reach for me, crawl across the room to sit in my lap, or cuddle up close.  As someone who struggled to sit still and focus on one thing at a time, you have shown me the beauty of slowing down and enjoying the moment.  You have taught me to see the world through your eyes...exploring how each toy works, the leaves that we find, or the planes that fly over head. 

As ill prepared as I thought I was to be a parent (because really who can really be prepared to be a parent?), you showed me that I did have skills to take care of you.  You were patient with me (as much as a newborn could be) when we struggled with nursing.  You played along and stopped crying when we tried out our new skills that we learned from Dr. Karp's book and video (although your dad was really the rock star when it came to many of the soothing techniques compared to me).  And when I would freak out about one thing or another, you would cuddle with me and over time show me that really, everything was going to be okay.

In the first month we had lots of visitors and I had lots of help taking care of you.  However, my favorite time of day that first month was about 3-4am when I would wake up to feed you.   The whole house was quiet, I had a strange amount of energy, and it was just the two of us.  You loved to cuddle and it was at this feeding that I got your first little smile as you fell asleep in my arms.  It was great to have so much family around, but I cherished having those moments with you. 

As the next several months went by I loved watching you learn new things...from holding onto toys, to holding your head up on your own, to actually playing with your toys for the first time.  However, once June hit I felt like you started taking on more and more skills that added to your personality.  You rolled over and could sit up on your own (once we put you in the seated position that is) that month which just opened up the world to you.  I could no longer put you down in one place and expect you to be there when I returned!   You also were babbling more and more and laughing at the things you thought were silly.  In August you learned to do the army crawl and you were on the move.  Then September came and you began to learn to get yourself into a seated position and pull yourself up to standing.  By October you were a cruising around the living room!  We spent November and December saying that you were going to walk any day, but you had other plans.  You focused on getting more stable on your feet, exploring your new world, and teething molars (the most pain I think you have been in since you were born).  You are getting closer and closer to the day that you will walk independently though, standing on your own for a few moments while you play with your toys and taking a few steps here and there...I have no doubt that you will do this in your own time (and once again your actions are reminding me that slow and steady is a good way to go through life). 

Watching you with your dad is one of my most favorite things to do.  You love your dad so him huge smiles (and sometimes squeals) when he walks into the room.  Your dad loves playing with you, giving you baths, and reading books with you at night.  I look forward to seeing your relationship grow as you get bigger. 

This upcoming year will be an exciting one as well.  You will be learning more and more about the world around you, will begin to walk and talk, and find new skills that I can't even think of right now.  You will also become a big brother this year! 

I had hoped that I could adequately describe how much you mean to me, but I don't know if there are adequate words to do that.  So I will leave you with a huge 'thank you' for being my son and teaching me so much this year. I love you up to the moon and down to the sharks and around the world a million, billion times!

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Baby #2- 12 weeks

December 25, 2010 - Merry Christmas!

How far along: 12 weeks 

Baby's size: plum

Symptoms: Holy Nausea Batman!  It has been really bad this week...really bad.  No getting sick, just nausea but it still sucks.  Very little sounds good to eat and dinners this week have been mostly rice and cottage cheese. 

Sleep:  Doing well!

Total Weight Gain: staying steady at 4 pounds down

Maternity clothes: Bought some new pants!  I can still fit into my jeans, but they are not comfortable at all.  I have a few pairs of pants from my first pregnancy, but with Superman I tend to get dirty a lot more so it was either do laundry more (no way) or buy more pants. 

Best moment this week: Hearing the heartbeat with this at home fetal doppler.  Last time I rented one, but thought I would take my chances with this purchase (since it was less than what it would cost to rent).  I am thrilled that it worked! 

Movement: I think I felt the baby!  I feel like it should be WAY too early to feel movement, but Sunday I felt a few flutters in the same spot.  It would flutter, stop, flutter, stop and repeated that a couple times.  Then I was driving one night this week and it happened again.  I have no idea if it was actually the baby, but it sure felt like it.

Food cravings: cheese!

Gender:  ?????

Labor signs: none

What I miss: feeling better and beer

What I'm looking forward to: Christmas!  Technically I should be writing this on Christmas, but it will be a busy day so I am writing on Christmas Eve.  We are going to tell my husband's uncle, aunt, and cousins at dinner Christmas day.   I am also looking forward to the ultrasound on Monday.  We are going to announce on Facebook and this blog after the appointment.

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): I don't remember much of the bad parts of being pregnant.  I mean I remember not feeling well as an event that happened to me, but not as an emotion or feeling.  Does that make sense at all?  I also can't remember what the pain felt like during labor even though I know that it was the worst pain of my life.   It truly is amazing that our brains allow us to forget those things. 

Milestones: possibly feeling the baby kick, hearing the heartbeat on the doppler

Emotions: doing okay this week

Tandem Nursing:  
Nursing only morning and night...sort of
Supply: almost none existent.  I have to supplement for both morning and night.  Superman still will latch on and nurse for awhile so I am letting him...but he certainly isn't getting any real milk from it.  
Pain: None
Nausea while nursing: None  
Positions for nursing: cradle hold
Other thoughts on this: I have heard that many babies will continue to nurse for comfort till the milk comes back after the baby is born.  I am beginning to wonder if I am willing to stick with it though.  I am really appreciating the bottles (and sippy cup now and then) and dream of a day when my husband and I can take turns sleeping in.
Till next week!

Baby #2- 11 weeks

December 18, 2010
How far along: 11 weeks 

Baby's size: lime

Symptoms: The nausea seems to be getting better, but I have been really tired this week. 

Sleep:  Figured out that I can't take a nap in the afternoon and sleep well at night.  Otherwise, sleep is good. 

Total Weight Gain:  total down 4 pounds
Maternity clothes:  I have been wearing a lot of maternity clothes.  My belly is slightly bigger, but I just look chubby.  All my normal shirts are now tight in the belly area so it is just more comfortable to wear the maternity ones.  I have discovered that I hate my maternity jeans...or rather I am remembering that I hate them.  They drove me insane last pregnancy because they would never stay up.  I am not in search of new jeans.
Best moment this week: Some friends and I did a cookie exchange.  I know this isn't pregnancy related, but those cookies and other treats were sooooo good. :)

Movement: too early

Food cravings: nothing really sounds good

Gender:  ?????

Labor signs: none

What I miss: feeling better

What I'm looking forward to: being able to tell people--only a little over a week to go!

Weekly Wisdom (aka what I learned this week): A cookie exchange doesn't have to be just cookies.

Milestones: moving into maternity clothes

Emotions: still riding the emotional roller coaster

Tandem Nursing:  
Nursing only morning and night
Supply: low.  I have had to supplement in the mornings a few times this week.
Pain: None
Nausea while nursing: None  
Positions for nursing: cradle hold
Other thoughts on this: Our nursing days are numbered.   It is becoming obvious to me that my supply will not stick around with just two feedings which is highly disappointing.  He is still getting breastmilk in his bottles (mixed with whole milk), but I don't know how much longer he will put up with a low supply on my end.
Till next week!

Birth Day Remorse

A year ago today I was heading to the hospital...didn't get my baby till 5 minutes into the next day, but it is still a day I will remember forever.  Unfortunately with this remembering comes a lot of odd guilt and remorse.  I know this will sound silly to many of you, but I am hoping at least one person out there gets what I am feeling.  I am remorseful that Superman wasn't born till the 2nd.  

Seriously, I feel silly just typing it, but it is true.  I feel like if I had held it together and tolerated the pain a little better I could have pushed him out while it was still January 1st.

You may be asking yourself, "why does it matter?"  It has nothing to do with having a New Years baby if that is what you are thinking.  The whole day the doctor was sure that he was going to be born that day.  It was me that had to take a break 2 hours into pushing because the pain was just too much.  It was me that didn't know what I was doing so I didn't get it done.  It has to do with the fact that it doesn't feel like he was born on the second.  I labored all day on the 1st.  I pushed on the 1st.  I was in pain on the 1st.    I expected him to be born on the 1st after all that I had gone through.  

All of this makes me worried that every year on January 1st I will be feeling all nostalgic about his birth and not so much on the 2nd.  Please tell me I will get over this stupid emotional tie to January 1st and begin to appreciate that the 2nd is truly his birthday.