Tuesday, December 21, 2010

It Never Gets Old

As I was wrapping Maddy's gifts last night while she was sleeping, I wrote on a tag:

To: Madelyn

From:  Mommy and Daddy
           We love you so much!

And then it hit me, as it has so many times in the past. 

I am a mom. 

There is a tiny human toddling around our home.  A little girl who demands the tree, garland and village lights be turned on every morning.  A little girl who will soon be spoiled with too many gifts from family.  A little girl I never thought would be a part of our lives.

It is so easy to get swept up in the day to day hustle and bustle of motherhood.  Then out of nowhere it hits me like a ton of bricks.  I stop in my tracks and take it all in.  She is here.  All those struggles with infertility and in spite of it all, she is here. 

Just the other day it happened when I tripped over a toy.  I bent down to pick it up and then stared in amazement.  There are baby toys in my house.  I have a baby.  Or when I'm folding her laundry, or packing a diaper bag, or watching the back of her head as she walks to the door.  These moments take my breath away.

Does it sound strange to still be shocked you're a mother 15 months after the birth of your child?  I wonder if it will every end. 

I kind of hope it doesn't.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Another Boring Post

A week before Thanksgiving we took Maddy to Disneyland.  I must say I had pretty low expectations taking a 14 month old.  I wasn't sure how long she'd last in the park, how napping would go, how she'd do in lines, etc.  I love my baby but she is not the easiest going.  I'm happy to say, we had a FANTASTIC time!  It was so much fun!  She was such a trooper on all the rides.  We took the poor thing on Haunted Mansion first.  She did well. She just buried her head in my neck when she was scared.  Then she'd look around a bit and bury her head again.  And what is with the Fantasyland rides being so scary?  There are barely any totally upbeat rides there.  I didn't realize it until I took a child there.  She loved "It's a Small World" the best.  She was clapping her hands at all the "dancing babies."  DH and I loved going to Disneyland just the two of us and it was even better with our daughter. 

Somewhere in between my last post and now she started walking.  It started slow and then one day she just decided she didn't need to crawl anymore.  She is such a tiny thing still.  She looks like a little doll walking around.  She had her 15 month appt last week and she finally made the 20 pound mark (exactly).  We are going to finally buy a "big-girl" carseat for her.  I have one all picked out that rear faces until 35 pounds.  So Maddy can rear face until Kindergarten at this rate and forward face until high school. 

She was a hot mess last week as her teeth as coming fast and furious.  We've got 6 teeth out and three molars partially broken through.  Plus countless others right below the surface.  That on top of getting a fever and rash from the MMR vaccine at her appt and it was not a good week.  She is finally feeling better.  Poor thing.

Still not a lot of words!  Everything is mama.  She points to everything and looks at me and says "mama?"  Then I tell her the name of it and she smiles and moves on the next thing.  The doctor was not concerned.  He just asked me if she understands language.  And she does.  She understands everything, almost to the point that DH and I might have to start spelling certain things so she doesn't get distracted or excited about something. 

I love her so much.  She is so much fun.  She has such a fiery, passionate personality and keeps us on our toes, but I can't imagine her any other way.  She is joy. 

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Time for an Update?

I need to blog more. 

I never filled out one baby book for Maddy.  I got three of them from my showers and I haven't wrote in a single one. 

At least I have my blog. . . as sparse as it is lately.

Maddy is 14 months old today.

Right after her 12 month appt, when I was concerned because she wasn't clapping or waving, she started doing both about two days later.  Now she claps all the time and waves hi and bye.  She claps when she's happy.  She claps if she likes the strawberries she's eating.  She claps and pats her legs in her attempt at rhythm when a favorite song comes on.  She claps when I come in to get her in the mornings. 

She's still not walking, although she has taken her first steps.  If you walk with her and get her some momentum, she can waddle one, two or three steps to someone else.  She still has not taken any on her own accord.  She is very content with crawling.

She's still not talking much.  Although she does have a great understanding of language.  If I start reciting one of her books (which I have memorized after countless readings), she will go and find it and bring it to me to read.  She can touch her nose and tummy.  She knows socks and shoes go on her feet and hats go on her head.   She says "mom" or "mama" for most things now.  Every once in a while I have heard her say "Ra-ra" for our dog Rudy.  She says "dad" sometimes and a "hi" or "bye" every once in a while.  Nothing consistent that I am confident she knows what she is saying.   

She is relying on other ways to communicate.  Just last night she hadn't ate much dinner and right before her bedtime she crawled over to her high chair, stood up and pointed to it.  I asked her if she was hungry and strapped her in.  I gave her her leftover dinner and some water.  She immediately started clapping. 

Halloween was so much more fun this year!  I have to put a comparison picture here.  Most pictures are on DH's iphone and I can't get them on my laptop when I need them.  It was much more pleasant not taking a screaming, colicky baby to the pumpkin patch. 

I think we're teething again. . . Naps are not consistent and she's been waking at night.  (She only has her top two and her bottom two. ) She just woke up after a 40 minute nap.  Ugh! 

Maybe this is why I don't blog anymore. . .

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I'm going to be an aunt (again)!

DH's sister is pregnant!

She has been suffering from PCOS and has been gearing up for her first IUI after clomid and other drugs weren't cutting it.  She got lucky and it worked on the first try.  She announced last night that she is seven weeks preggers. 

We knew the exact date of her IUI procedure and when we didn't hear much from her and she avoided family gatherings, we figured the news was not good.  Fortunately we were wrong. 

It's amazing how much better I can handle pregnancy announcements now.  If this were three years ago, I'm sure no matter how happy I would have been for her, it still would have stung.  She was seeing our old RE, Dr. G.  He even called her himself to let her know the good news. 

Hoping for all the best and that Maddy gets to meet her next cousin this June!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Thank You Kindermusic. . .

. . .for Maddy's first cold of her life, my first cold of the season, a cold for both grandmas and a cold for her three month old cousin.  You really are the gift that keeps on giving.

Actually, it wasn't all that bad.  Everyone's colds were mild.  If it weren't for Maddy's runny nose, I wouldn't have known she was sick.  She was grumpy sure, but she's grumpy an awful lot so that alone wasn't a clue.  She ran a very mild fever one night.  And I am proud that she made it almost 13 months without getting sick.  Maybe all that breastfeeding paid off.

The music class is once a week and she loves it!  She loves the other babies more than the music.  She's super social and crawls over and kisses the other little girls.  Hence the cold I'm sure.  That and the shared musical toys.  Gross!  Last week's class had 12 kids . . this week's 3. 

Must have been a plague for sure.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

She's Huge!

Not really of course.

But huge to me!

Maddy weighs 18 pounds, 8 ounces.  She has moved to the 10%!  Her length is the 21% and her head is the 48%.  So interesting dimensions to say the least- tiny with a normal sized head.

What is she doing at a year?

Walking:  Not unless she is holding on to something.  She's gutless- afraid to take those first steps alone.  Put her behind her push car or her baby doll stroller and she's all over the house.  She pulls up on everything but won't let go.  That girl does everything on her own schedule.

Talking:  Not really.  "Up", "Mama", maybe other words.  Not sure.  Not sure she even knows what she's saying are words.  She points to everything! She points and says, "ba!" or "da!" or badawa!" or any other combination of syllables.  I think she's a little behind in the talking department.

Social Skills:  She loves to play.  She scrolls through the songs on her keyboard, push car, stroller, block stacker (anything that plays music) until she finds her favorites.  Then she dances by shaking her butt up and down.  She still loves dolls. She actually plays with them.  She kisses and hugs them, covers them up with blankets, puts them in their little stroller and gives them a ride,  She did this all on her own with little encouragement from me.  She loves jewelry and shiny, girly things and I have to admit- I love it!  She still loves books.  She'll crawl over to me with a book in her hand and crawl up on my lap and wait for me to read it to her.  After two pages she'll crawl away, but hey, it's a start.

She does not however clap her hands together and she rarely waves.  They asked me that at the doctor's yesterday.  The nurse was filling out some form and she asked me about clapping.  I said no and she looked at me like I had two heads.  "She doesn't clap her hands?"  I said, "No.  She bangs toys together but she doesn't clap if she's happy."  I felt like a failure.  She does so many other things.  Should I care that she doesn't clap?  Damn!  These milestones are killing me.

Sleeping:  Great at night.  CIO was the best thing I ever did.  Ever.  Now if her teeth are bothering her she just whines at night and tosses and turns until she gets back to sleep.  I don't have to go in there.  Naps are becoming trickier.  I know she still needs two naps a day.  But lately she has trouble falling asleep in the morning, even though I know she's tired.  I let her try for an hour to get to sleep.  If she doesn't I get her up and we try again around noon.  On those days she only gets one nap.  Or other mornings she sleeps over two hours in the morning and then has trouble getting to sleep in the afternoon.  Those days are terrible- the days she misses her afternoon nap.  I hear they start transitioning to one nap in the next few months. 

When did your baby go from two naps to one?  What was your transition like?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Picture Post (Finally)

Some pics from her first birthday, my brother's wedding (end of July) and a few randoms:

The Birthday Girl
(She mostly just massaged her cake and ate very little.  Needless to say her cake was nice and relaxed)

One of two outfits (too bad she didn't stand still long enough to see it)

A Princess Dress from DH's coworker. 
(One of her many presents.)

Getting ready for her uncle's wedding.

Maddy and Daddy
(one of my favorite pictures)

She sure loves books!  ("Go Dog Go!" is a favorite)

Having some fun in her new car.


Friday, September 3, 2010

Tomorrow's the Big Day!

Maddy turns one!

I have been in party planning mode all week. I taught Monday and Tuesday and have been running errands nonstop since Wednesday. Decorations, food, drinks. . .I am up to my neck in it all. It's not even a big gathering-just 15-20 adults and a handful of kids. Still. . .the planning.

I went with a festive, colorful theme instead of a pink princessy one. I love pink, but it didn't seem right for a bunch of adults. Maybe I'll save the girly theme for a party she'll remember with friends of her own.

I can't believe the day is almost here. I remember rocking her through her colic/reflux and thinking we'd never get there. How can the days go so slow and years fly?

Happy Birthday Madelyn!

Enjoy your last day as a baby.

We could not imagine life without you.

Monday, August 16, 2010

A Marathon Post

With a little bit of this and a little bit of that:

Our First Vacation
It went very well! We had a great week full of boating, swimming, skiing, drinking, eating and relaxing (okay, as much relaxing as you can do with an 11 month old). Maddy coped well with her change in routine and learned she had to nap when she could and not always in her crib. She napped at least once a day on the patio boat. This was amazing and so nice. The only glitch came on our way home. We were towing my dad's ski boat when our truck broke down 30 minutes from home. Everything just shut off on the freeway-no power steering, no power brakes, no nothing. Luckily DH got it on the shoulder and we called for a tow. My parents were following us so Maddy and I went with them while DH waited to be rescued. It could have been an even worse situation so I am grateful it wasn't.

Car Troubles
Bad news on the truck though. Looks like it will cost over $1000 to fix. The computer was totally fried. Ugh! Oh and to make matters worse, the Honda wouldn't start the other day- just turned over and died try after try. We have two out of three cars in the shop at the same time and the only one left is a two seater. You can do the math. We had to borrow DH's dad's car. All this and I have been without a paycheck since June. I'm counting down to my next one at the end of this month.

I have always been hesitant to speak negatively of DH on this blog. I'm not sure why. It's anonymous after all, but I just don't feel comfortable doing it. I think it is because he really is an amazing husband and I feel bad bagging on him. Well, anyway, I'm going to do it now because maybe some of you SAHMS are in the same boat. I work 50% of the school year- two days one week, three days the other. I also work 50% at home. That's the part DH doesn't get. I always hear "Well you only work PART time." whenever anything isn't done around the house or I ask for help with a specific errand or chore. The other day it came to a head when he called from work and I was frustrated because Maddy was not napping. I was in a pretty negative mood. He told me that it hurts him when I am not happy staying at home with Maddy. He said that he is working full time so I can have time at home and I am not even grateful. Then he says "Most moms love being with their babies and love being home with them." That pissed me off. Of course I LOVE my baby and LOVE the time I have with her! It is also HARD WORK and I should be able to share my frustrations. I don't think he realizes how much it hurts when he says those things. I don't like people criticizing me as a mother. He isn't happy with his job and he's jealous I get to stay home more. I give him two weeks and he'd be begging to go back full time! Unbelievable.

11 Month Update
Wow. Eleven months! Almost a year! Incredible. I need to post some recent pictures of her. She is more and more fun everyday. She has been very sensitive lately with other children. She gets her feelings hurt easily if they take a toy from her or bonk her while playing. She gets a real pouty lip and crawls over to me sobbing. She wraps her arms around me and buries her head in my neck and cries. It is so darn cute! I try to foster independence and let her know she is okay without too much coddling. She is becoming much more affectionate- hugs and kisses abound. I fear separation anxiety and stranger anxiety is right around the corner. We have been doing well without them, but I see hints of their arrival. She's such a little person now! I love her so much. We are having a Labor Day Weekend BBQ for her first b-day. I haven't done anything to prepare except send out invites. Any cute first b-day ideas?

I'm all caught up with your blogs and will start commenting again. . .

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Packing Anxiety

Our first vacation with Maddy is a little less then two weeks away.

I am not ready.

I'm a little overwhelmed at the thought of packing for our adventure. I hate packing as it is. Throw a baby in the mix and it becomes really daunting. Therefore I am procrastinating.

We are staying in a cabin on a lake. We aren't isolated, but trips to any real store besides the marina mini-mart require a 30+ minute trip, so I want to be prepared. I keep asking myself, "How many diapers?" "How much formula?" "How much food?" "How many outfits?" "What kind of clothes?"

She has to sleep in our room in a pack and play. I'm not looking forward to that. She's a light sleeper, so I worry about waking her. She also cries out in her sleep, so I worry about her waking me. CIO sucks if you're stuck in the same room with them.

I found a cheap portable booster high chair to use there. Other than that and the pack and play, I'm not sure what other big items we need.

Any tricks, tips, advice for a week long getaway with an infant?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Paci Wars

Maddy loves baby dolls. She will purse her lips and kiss them on demand and on her own. Kissing is one of the sweetest things she does.

She has a doll that comes with a paci. Recently she has recognized it as such and pulls the paci out and tries to suck on it. Hard to do considering the nipple is no more than a nub of hard plastic. Just the same, she pulls it out of the doll's mouth and attempts to suck on it whenever she's playing in the toy bin.

Lately (because this is where your mind goes when you are stuck at home all summer playing with an infant) I've been making crying sounds when she takes it out of her doll's mouth. She looks strangely at the doll and I say, "Give the baby the paci. That's the baby's paci." Of course she doesn't give it to the baby. She usually just pushes it aside when she's done with it.

Today, when she tired of the doll's paci, I put it back in the doll's mouth. She watched me do this from across the room. Maddy then crawled over to the doll and ripped the paci from its mouth to put in her own. Later, when she was distracted, I gave the paci back to the doll. This time she didn't see me do it. As she's playing I see her glance at the doll. She stops what she's doing, crawls over to the doll, gives it a dirty look and once again rips the paci out. This became a very fun game for me, one which Maddy repeated multiple times. She would not allow her doll to have a paci which she felt belonged to her.

I guess we're going to have to work on sharing.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

10 Months

Ever since nine months I have really noticed a movement from baby to toddler. Nine to twelve months is such a transition time. Pretty amazing.


Sleeping- You all know how that's going. . .

Eating- Loves finger foods (carrots, peas, green beans, toast w/cream cheese and butter, pasta, peaches, pears, cheerios, yogurt melts, puffs) Not so hip on pureed foods anymore but will eat them. I have to go shopping with her meals in mind. It's such a change. I offer her 4 six ounce bottles a day (one of these is usually breast milk, the rest formula). She usually ends up drinking anywhere between 18-22 oz a day. She eats three solid meals a day. All this and she's still tiny. That's just how she rolls.

Playing- She enjoys flipping through board books, especially the touch and feel kind. I know she needs more interactive toys now rather than those you chew on, but I have yet to fork out the money to go on a buying spree. Her first birthday is just around the corner and I'm hoping she gets some at her party.

Mobility- Yes! She officially crawls on all fours now. She pulls up on everything and cruises about. She's afraid to walk around any corners yet. So if she's pulled up on the changing table she has to sit down and crawl to get around to the other side. She also won't take any unassisted steps no matter how short the distance. She likes to be sure before she tries something.

She still has only two bottom teeth and she is not a big talker. We only hear mama and baba (not sure if this is her name for DH?) and that usually is only when she's tired. She's still working on waving and she'll only point if the object is very close to her. She does not clap. There are many things I'm looking forward to. This baby has her own agenda for sure.

Monday, July 12, 2010

CIO Update

It's going. . .

Let's see if I can remember.

Night 4- 26 minutes
Night 5- 10 minutes (woke up in the middle of the night for 50 minutes)
Night 6- 10 minutes
Night 7- 5 minutes

So nights are better. Naps SUCK! I think it has more to do with the teething and less to do with the new routine. She is now averaging about 10-20 minutes for naps but they are SO short! There were three days in a row where she only napped twice for 40 minutes each. Not enough sleep for sure. I can see her top front gums are swollen and red so I am really hoping it's any day now.

All in all, I'm glad we decided to change it up with her and go this route. I know it will be well worth it.

It already is.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

CIO Night 3

Does this shit really work?

What is wrong with my daughter? Why does she have to be the most passionate, stubborn child on the planet? Thankfully her mother is a teacher and knows how to put her foot down, but geesh!

Last night she found a way to stand up again and screamed BLOODY MURDER at bed time. I'm not kidding. BLOODY MURDER. I had no choice but to laugh out loud at her antics. I could see her humongous mouth wide open eyes squinted shut profile on the monitor. I mean really, what choice did I have but to laugh? It isn't a torture chamber. It's just a crib and it's time to sleep. GIVE IT UP ALREADY! She finally fell down from standing and eventually fell asleep after about 40 minutes-up from 26 the night before. She slept straight through until 6 am but I knew she needed more sleep. I let her try to get back to sleep until 6:45 to no avail. So she started the day tired and grumpy. Joy.

Naps have been harder then nights. Just this morning she screamed for 40 minutes. Her paci had fallen out of the crib after the first 20 minutes. I was so tired of listening to it. I ran in threw a paci in the crib and ran out. This calmed her. I then watched her fall asleep sitting up and slump over.

She's on to us and isn't going to give in without a fight.

Laying down is for the weak.

It is getting worse before it gets better.

I am doubting it will get better. . .

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

CIO Night 2

Last night DH and I lowered her crib even more. She was in no risk of climbing out before, but with all that standing it put our minds at ease. Looks like those last few inches made it too hard for her to stand last night. Score one point for mom and dad! So she only cried for 26 minutes. Quite an improvement from 2 hours and 20 minutes. She woke twice in the middle of the night (at 11 and 3) and only cried about five minutes each time. Then she slept until 7. Naps have been averaging 20 minutes of crying.

She is a smart cookie so I know it won't take long for her to get the hang of her new routine. Even last night as the song ended she was nodding off in my arms. Her eyes flung open when it was over. She was anticipating me putting her down and leaving.

All in all, better then I thought. I know we will have setbacks, but at least I know she is capable of doing it all by herself, even in the midst of teething. I feel more empowered and free. Thanks for all your encouraging words.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Operation CIO

I have a confession. . .

Up until last night we have been (gasp) still swaddling and rocking Maddy to sleep.

I know!

But had been working. She was sleeping through the night and napping for long periods. I was under the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" mentality. I always knew something would have to change. I couldn't possibly swaddle her forever (could I?).

Recently I had become resentful of naptime/bedtime routine. I felt I was doing a disservice to her, at now 10 months old, by not teaching her to sleep on her own. I was somehow always waiting for the right time. Last night was it. I had been psyching myself up for it for weeks. I knew she'd cry. She's always been passionate and stubborn. I was ready for hours of crying/screaming. I knew the first night would be the hardest. But that baby threw me for a loop.

DH and I did our normal bedtime routine of a bottle, a bath, a story and a song. The only things we changed were the duration of the rocking and, oh yeah, she wasn't swaddled. I did however have her in a sleep sack. I wanted to give her some kind of extra signal it was time to sleep and I figured still putting her in something would help. I rocked her for the bedtime song only, gave her a kiss and laid her down. I then started the song again (it runs about 5 minutes) and left the room.

The screaming started immediately (with cries of "mamamamamama" as an added bonus). No surprise there. The surprise came when I checked the video monitor and saw her STANDING in her crib!! Never in her life has she been able to go from laying to standing (sitting to standing, yes). She was in a sleep sack and still managed it! Well now I was stumped. I wasn't sure if I should go lay her back down or ignore it.

After 10 minutes I went in and laid her down without even making eye contact. She immediately stood up and screamed.

I waited 20 more minutes and tried to lay her down again. She immediately stood up and screamed.

I was extremely frustrated, agitated, nervous and upset by this point. Why the hell was she standing?! This was not part of the plan. The whole reason I started it now was because I thought she couldn't stand yet.

I decided not to go back in. I wasn't going to get caught playing the standing game all night. I knew she could get down from standing because at one point I watched her sit down, get her paci, and then stand back up. Luckily DH was very supportive and on board. He said she had his stubborn streak and that I should go to bed and he'd wait her out. There was no way I could sleep though. I had to see it through.

TWO HOURS later she was still screaming, still standing, and totally exhausted. She would lay her head on the rail and rub her eyes. It was the saddest thing I ever saw. At one point I thought she was going to fall asleep standing up. I couldn't take it any longer. I went to bed and left poor DH to deal with it.

He came in 20 minutes after I went to bed and told me she was finally asleep. He couldn't take it. He decided to lay her down one more time and put her paci back in. He was in and out. She immediately fell asleep and slept straight through 'til 7 this morning.

I think she was too wiped out to even sit down. She was stuck standing. Poor little crazy baby.

Here's how it's gone so far:

Night One- Cried for 2 hours and 20 minutes (slept through the night)

Morning Nap-No crying, no standing, fell asleep after 20 minutes (very short nap)

Mid Morning Nap (needed because the first one was so short)-Crying, screaming, standing. I went in after 40 minutes and laid her down. She then fell right to sleep.(long nap)

We'll see what the next few days have in store for us. . .

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Oh Breastfeeding. . .You tricky bitch!

Now I see why they tell you to never use formula when you are trying to establish your supply in the beginning of breastfeeding.

I am drying up as fast as the Sahara desert.

It started off with two bottles of formula a day- one mid morning and one before bed. The only time she BF any substantial amount was early morning. The rest of the day she would only nurse a few seconds and then push my boob away with a disgusted look right as I let down. Not fun. She'd then take a bottle of pumped milk instead. Finally she began to reject the breast even for her first morning feeding. So I started using more formula and I started pumping less because I was so NOT motivated. It was a slippery slope and soon I was only pumping three times a day and getting an ounce or two total each time. Without her actually sucking, my well is running dry.

My baby weaned herself. She doesn't want to BF anymore. :( I have mixed feelings. In one sense it's freeing, in another it is an end of an era, and a big pain in the ass because now the only way she's going to get breastmilk is if I pump.

Here's my new plan. I'll pump three times a day and give her whatever milk I can from this until there is no milk left or until we reach 11 months, whichever comes first. My bet is on drying up first. This plan will be hard to stick with. I honestly am not sure how long I'll continue. We'll see. . .

Part of me wants to just throw in the towel.

Is that bad?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A Simple Errand

It should have been a simple errand to BRU.

I should have remembered nothing is simple anymore.

Snag #1- Maddy is a beast today. If these top teeth don't come in soon, I'm going to reach in there and pull them out myself. Sad, pitiful, pouty mouth crying for three days on and off.

Snag #2- Must walk to the guest parking spaces at the other end of your condo development (about 1/8 mile- oh yeah, guest parking here sucks)because we have three cars and two assigned spots. The third car is in one of the spots because the battery ran low this morning and DH needed it close to fix it. Get the stroller out of the garage and start hiking.

Snag #3- BRU (I hate that place.)

Snag #4- I put Maddy in the Bjorn to shop because she is less fussy when she can look around and see everything. (I still haven't found a shopping cart cover that works universally. Such a pain.) Then I smell poo.

Snag #5- Get back to the car and realize the poo has leaked out of the diaper, on her pants and on the Bjorn. Thankfully the carrier soaked up most of the poo sparing my outfit.

Snag #6- As I'm opening the back hatch door to change her, rusty leftover rain water leaks down all over us. I honestly don't know where it came from or why it happened at that moment and not earlier that day.

Snag #7- Search the diaper bag for a change of clothes and realize DH put them in the other bag that he carries when I am not around. (He's not comfortable with the new shiny Coach one he got me for my birthday). Strip of pants. Leave on onesie- It will have to do.

No folks, nothing is simple anymore.

Monday, June 14, 2010

I'm Back

Wow! I've been a slacker lately. School is finally out for summer and I have more time on my hands. Today is my first official day off. I love it.

Maddy had her 9 month appt a week ago and has officially moved from the 2% to the 3%! (hee,hee) She weighed 15 lbs 3 oz. I had a mental goal of 15 pounds so I was pleased. We also started formula last week. Two bottles a day, one in the morning and one at night. I still breast feed and pump in between so it is not saving me any time and is not any more convenient. If anything it is more of a pain because I have to pump more often. I do feel better bulking up her fat and calories. I also felt this huge sense of relief when I realized she'd drink it. I was so afraid she'd reject it. It was like, finally all of the nutritional burden is not on me anymore. I guess it hasn't all been anyway with solids, but still. . . We'll see if this helps her weight gain. I've decided to continue BF until our vacation in August and then I'm done. I'll celebrate her 11 month b-day with a final breastfeeding session. And then. I'm. done.

She is still not crawling but has mastered moving around by dragging her lower half with her arms. She pushes off with her toes too and can move pretty darn fast across the room. It is time to baby proof. That will be my goal this week. You realize how fast something can happen. Kinda scary!

We will be going on our first boat ride with Maddy this weekend. My parents have a patio boat that we will be out on for Father's Day. I also need to shop for a life vest. My family has been boating all our lives and we'll see how Maddy takes to the open water. She'll probably love it until nap time and then I'm not sure what we'll do seeing as how she never naps on the go. That should be interesting. DH and I have decided on a strict policy of the life vest on her the moment we get out of car upon arrival until the moment she gets back in the car to leave. Safety first as my dad says. I'm also looking forward to the Father's Day gift I (Maddy) made for DH. I did a cheesy video montage with pictures of the two of them. I will post it here as soon as he sees it. I think it turned out pretty good, but I'm biased.

I went to a fun bachelorette (my spell checker is not helping me with this one) party last weekend. It was my first night away from Maddy. I felt confident in DH's abilities and was able to have a good time despite missing my baby. Seven out of nine guests were lactating so we had a little pumping party in the hotel room before dinner. We've all been friends since high school and it is fun to share this part of my life with them too. Let's just say that's not what we all used to do before going out for the night. :)

Later this month DH and I both will leave Maddy for the night with her grandma and grandpa when we go to said friend's wedding. That will be harder to do, but I am looking forward to a night out with DH. I never wanted to leave her until I was sure she could get through the night without a feeding. I didn't want to burden people with that.

Baby is up from her nap. I'm off to the races!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Eight Months

So, I notice my blog becoming boring, monthly updates on my daughter. I really do have other thoughts on motherhood I want to share, or questions that come up I could use answers to, but somehow I never get around to posting. I hope to do better this summer when work doesn't get in the way of blogging.

For now. . .Maddy is 8 1/2 months old! They really do get more and more fun.

Here's what I want to remember:

She loves tags. Tags on her toys, burp clothes, bibs, changing pad covers. She is fascinated with them and chews them soggy.

She loves remote controls and cordless phones. She likes to chew on them and push their buttons. Makes me wonder why we have all these toys if all she wants are tags and remote controls.

She is still not crawling. She is starting to pad forward on her hands when she is sitting. Lately she has been raising her butt while she's lunging forward. I think someday she'll get on all fours from there and maybe one day crawl. If she's on her stomach she stretches out her arms as far as she can to get something. She'll also try to push off on her toes.

She'd much rather walk. She wants to stand all the time. She pulls to standing while holding our hands. She moves one foot in front of the other for forward motion.

She eats pureed baby food (fruits, veggies, turkey, chicken) and some finger foods now like cheerios, puffs and yogurt melts. We tried some cut up elbow macaroni the other day and she eventually ate that. She feels food with her fingers first. If it feels mushy like pears or bananas, she won't eat it. She almost didn't eat the pasta for this reason until she saw me eating it off her tray and then she took an interest. I can get her to eat most foods this way. She is very dramatic and gaggy if she doesn't like something.

I think she's gaining some weight. Her face seems to be filling out and she feels a little more solid when you lift her. I'm sure she's still underweight, but maybe we're making a little progress. She eats a lot now: 1/4 c yogurt, 3/4c fruit, 3/4c veggies and 1/4c meat a day plus finger foods. She hardly nurses for long now, maybe 7 or 8 minutes tops but she does snack often throughout the day. She takes 2-3 6 oz bottles for my MIL on the during the days when she's here.

Shreiking is her new thing. She babbles often too. Mama, dada, baba, to no one or thing in particular.

Sleeping. We've had some really good nights. She goes to bed around 7:30 and won't wake up to eat until sometime between 5 and 7 and then usually back to bed until sometime between 7 or 8. She seems to be getting better at putting herself back to sleep in between. Some nights we've had to let her cry herself to sleep as nothing will work to soothe her. This can take around 30 minutes. Her naps the last two days have been awesome (and surely a fluke), two 1 1/2 hour naps, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. It still makes for a long evening as her stretch from 3-7 is hard, especially because she has been bothered by her top teeth for almost a month now. Hello teeth! Come out, come out wherever you are!

Let's see what else. . .Oh, she purses her lips and scrunches up her nose and breathes in and out in a huffy way. Sometimes she'll almost close one eye while she does it and looks like Popeye.

We just love her so much. Every once in a while when I look at her I see glimpses of little girl in her face instead of baby. I can't believe how much personality she has. She is such a joy.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Seven Months

She's going to think her name is tiny. . .

That's what everyone who sees her calls her.

I figured I better hurry up and do a seven month post before she turns eight months in a couple of weeks!

So what's up with Maddy?

She can sit on her own and play.

She is in love with our dog! He can put her in a good mood when no one else can.

She has two bottom teeth and is working on her top two (teething is still not fun).

She can push up to all fours but not for very long. She wants so badly to move now and gets frustrated when she can't.

She can go anywhere from 9-11 hours at night without eating. We are working on getting her to go back to sleep on her own in between. She is not a solid sleeper. Sleep is one of our biggest battles still.

People call her a happy baby. It blows my mind considering where we started. It's true, if the sun, stars and moon are all aligned just right and nothing is bothering her, she is a very happy, smiley baby.

I wish her digestive system were more mature. If it were, I could fill her up with more fatty foods. Everytime I try, something seems to bother her. We rotate between constipation and almost diarrhea. It is a delicate dance. We tried yogurt yesterday and I'm not sure her system handled it well. I'll wait awhile before trying that one again.

She took her first swing ride today. I think she would have enjoyed it more if she hadn't been overdue for a nap.

We love you sweet Maddy!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

She's Baaaaaaaack!

AF returned.


I'm truly suprised.

It's only been seven months. That's not much of a break. I feel like I've been BF more now than I have been in months. She's been teething so she has been eating longer for comfort.

I guess that means I'm fertile again. Haaahaaahaaahaa. . .ha. . ha! Yeah right. I am surprised my ancient eggs got back on the bandwagon so soon. I guess you can't keep an old egg down.

The benefits of BF are dwindling. . .

Thursday, April 8, 2010

I've Been Distracted

I'm such a dork!

I have FINALLY joined facebook. I think I may be the last person alive to do so. I'm not sure why I have been a hold out. I just thought it sounded lame and stupid. Well, it is lame and stupid, but so damn addicting! All of the sudden I'm searching for this person and that one, feeling like everyone from high school has aged but me, neglecting my poor baby. I need to stop.

Part of me is really glad I never joined before I had a baby, in the days of my infertility. It would have been too hard. Everyone has a freaking kid! Everyone. It would have hurt too much. I like blogging better anyway, especially my anonymous kind. I can really say what is on my mind.

Meanwhile my baby turned 7 months old on Easter Sunday. I will do a seven month post soon. For now here are some pics:

Friday, April 2, 2010

Oh, so that's what the fuss was all about.

Maddy cut her first tooth.

I felt it this morning.

She had been waking up several times a night for the past three or four nights. I was suspecting reflux again. It's my go-to. We had pretty much counted teething out. We had symptoms for so long but no teeth.

It was a relief to see the reason for the fussing and wakefulness. I bet the second one is right behind it, because I see no relief for her. She was very cranky this morning and biting my finger and anything else she could put in her mouth. That little sucker is sharp. No wonder she was so upset.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

My Big Girl (well, not really)

Will somebody feed me please!

I mean it people. I need to grow!

Next weekend Maddy will turn seven months! That is starting to sound really old. She'll be a seven month old trapped in a four month old's body (and I'm being generous with four months).

She is still.so.small.

Everybody says that she looks so cute, like a little doll with her blond hair, blue eyes, and teeny tiny body.

I was a bit discouraged after her six month appt and worried that my milk supply was not keeping up. I started taking fenugreek (finally- not sure why I didn't start this sooner) and pumping three times a day when not at work to try to supplement her feedings. She doesn't feed very long at all. She gets so distracted even when I go into another, quieter room. I'm not sure if this is from her reflux, her developmental curiousity, or she just isn't that interested in nursing anymore. This behavior I suspect is hurting my supply. It's like a slippery slope.

She doesn't seem hungry all the time. If nothing else is bothering her like gas pains or reflux, she can easily go 9 to 10 hours without eating at night. She eats a good amount of solid food now too. If it were all my lack of supply, you'd think she'd start gaining once on solids. This doesn't seem to be the case. I think she's growing long, just not fat. Her arms are like little spaghetti noodles.

She's meeting all her milestones and is full of energy, so I am not too concerned. It just get so hard to hear people remark how small she is all the time. I feel guilty and responsible because I am still her main source of nutrition. I've given thought to supplementing with formula, but she has so many issues with reflux and her digestive system struggles with anything other than breastmilk. I'd be afraid this would mess with her uneccessarily. I do want to start weaning her this summer. My goal is to go nine months. I don't think we'll make it a year. I don't think I have it in me much longer. So she will be on formula eventually. I'm hoping by then her system will have time to mature. I'm assuming she will be at the bottom of the growth scale at our nine month appt.

I am starting my research now. How many of you supplement or rely on formula for feedings? What kind do you use? Maddy's is very sensitive and gets constipated easily and suffers from reflux still. Any suggestions for a formula? Help!

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Yesterday morning was so nice.

Maddy woke up early at six for some reason. I know it wasn't hunger. I've stopped trying to guess anymore. I let her work it out herself, going in to check on her now and then, until seven when I changed and fed her. She was still so tired.

DH had just gotten up for work so Maddy and I went and laid down in bed while he got ready. I was thinking to myself how nice it would be if she'd just take a nap right there with me. That girl never sleeps anywhere but her crib.

She sat there and watched her dad until he left. Then I laid her on her side and laid next to her. She just stroked my face and smiled as she sucked her paci. Finally she nuzzled into my neck and fell asleep. She slept that way with me for almost an hour and a half. I wish I could have slept too, but I am not used to co-sleeping so I just laid there and enjoyed.

Sleep does not come easy for her. She has trouble shutting down. She hasn't even fell asleep in the car for months. Although just the other day she slept on the way home from my parents. That was rare for her too. And last night she slept ten hours straight. We only had to go in once and stick a paci in. Maybe this sleep thing will get easier for her someday. Or is that just wishful thinking?

In the meantime, I'll take my sleepy snuggles when I can get them.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Sping Has Sprung!

I've been swamped with conference and report cards at work. I have not got to read, blog and comment as much as I'd like. Thankfully it is all over and the weather has been so nice this week. I have many updates to post soon, but first I'll leave this picture* as proof of our nice weather.

(*I tried to crop out my horrific profile. Sorry I couldn't figure it out on this computer. )

Thursday, March 11, 2010


And I'm not talking about milk.

It's Maddy's new spot on the growth chart (at least weight wise).

At this rate, she'll waste away to nothing soon.

Sorry baby.

I felt like I fed her all day yesterday. She had early morning milk. Then she ate milk, oatmeal and squash for breakfast, milk and sweet potato for lunch, milk and avocado for a mid afternoon snack, and milk and oatmeal for dinner. This was all followed by breast milk before bed and an 11:00 bottle by dad to top her off for the night.

This was the most she has eaten in a day.

She better start gaining soon.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Sunday, March 7, 2010


DH teases me for having "monsters" in my life.

It all started when we (DH) were driving on a foggy interstate on our way to Disneyland one year. This stretch of highway gets socked in with fog. It was getting late and the fog was getting thicker and thicker. Nothing makes me more nervous than driving and not being able to see more than a foot in front of you. It is a helpless feeling and you are totally stuck. You are screwed if you pull over and possibly screwed if you keep driving. I got so stressed on this particular trip that I freaked out and threw a blanket over my head like a little kid. DH accused me of being afraid of the "Fog Monster."

From then on any thing that bothers, annoys, scares me or throws off my life has been referred to by him as my monsters. Since the Fog Monster, I have had Gas Truck Monsters (I hate driving next to those things on the road), Food Poisoning Monster (you should see the precautions I take cooking chicken), and Turkey Monsters (I hate those ugly birds that populate our neighborhood) to name a few.

I've found my daughter has monsters too.

These are the things that throw her life off and annoy her to the point of interfering with her overall happiness.

I'm afraid her monsters have become my monsters:

The Acid Reflux Monster- The biggest of them all.

The Poo Monster- Constipation and gas

The Teething Monster- We're not sure if this one really exists. We have yet to see this one. He comes and goes.

The Coffee Grinder Monster- Her newest addition. It is the first time DH has ever seen her get scared and cry. This one lives at my MIL's house.

She is so darn aware of EVERYTHING. I don't think there's an easy-going bone in this girl's body. She is concerned about everything around (and inside) her.

DH says that reminds him of someone.

I have no idea who he's talking about. . .

What monsters are out from under your bed?

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Six Months

It's my baby's first 1/2 birthday. (Half birthdays are something my first graders love to point out.)


It seems to have flown by and yet it feels like it has taken forever to get here.

She's trying really hard to sit up on her own. She can balance for a few minutes before she folds over in half and then topples to the floor. If shes' sitting in her bouncy chair on an incline, she does a little sit-up until she is in the upright sitting position. She holds onto the sides to keep herself up. It is so funny to look over and see her sitting there and looking all around.

She is becoming more like a little person. She makes her likes and dislikes known. After her final late afternoon nap, we count the minutes to her bedtime. She spends most of that time cranky. We find it is a nice time of night to run an errand or go out to dinner. She does a lot better when she is distracted. If she's not, she makes a constant whining sound almost all evening. It's not a cry, but it gets annoying just the same. As long as it's not a colicky scream like it used to be, I'm fine.

My MIL found out that she loves it when you blow gently in her face. She smiles great big when the breeze hits her face. She laughs when you kiss the back of her neck or her thighs (if she's in a good mood of course). She's in love with our dog. Any floor time is spent watching and reaching for him. Our dog also loves to kiss her. I don't love this so much, but Maddy does. She opens her mouth real wide for them. Gross!

We tried sweet potatoes today. I can only imagine how much those will screw up her bowels. Her anal fissures seemed to have healed. So far the only bleeding episode we had was that one day. I forgot to note her weight at the appt last week. She had gained another single pound in a month and a half (12 lbs 12 oz) and had moved down to the 5%. At least she's gaining, just slowly. We'll see how long she is at the appt next week. More shots at that one. She's old enough for the flu shots (seasonal and h1n1) but I'm not sure we are going to do them. If it was fall with the whole flu season ahead of us, I might consider it more. We'll see. . .

I can't believe in another six months we'll be celebrating her first birthday!

Now that will be a milestone.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

What I am Going to Get Tired of Hearing. . .

But first, what I love to hear. . .

"Oh your baby is so cute!"

Followed by what I am going to get tired of hearing. . .

"She's so tiny though."


Friday, February 26, 2010

Let's Play a Game

It's called

"Let's Fuck With Mommy's Sanity"


Let's play.

What do you do when your baby is skinny and you feel guilty?

Answer: Double her serving of oatmeal. She loves it!



What do you do when your baby gets anal fissures from constipation due to her new serving?

Answer: Cut out oatmeal for a week to get her back on track.


Wrong again!

What happens when you cut out oatmeal?

Answer: You get raging acid reflux.



What happens when you get raging acid reflux?

Answer: No sleep.


Right again!

What happens when you get no sleep?

Answer: I become a raging bitch.


You win!

Your prize- a never ending clusterfuck.


Really, I had no idea how much her oatmeal must have been keeping her reflux under control. Couple that with a Prilosec refill that was coming due and you get a very unhappy baby. Last night she'd spit up then scream. She was more worked up then I've seen her in awhile. As I was rocking her I started brainstorming what had been so different the past two days. The only thing I could come up with was that I stopped giving her oatmeal.

We got a new refill last night and this morning I started a very small dose of oatmeal again. So far she has been fighting her morning nap with a passion. I'm going out to dinner tonight with friends. I'm sure she'll be an angel for DH. She always is. Does that ever happen to anyone else? Your babies are cranky for you but angels for other people?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

And It Just Keeps Getting Better*

(* That is my attempt at sarcasm)

Yesterday I was sleep deprived for the first time in months. We went to a concert the night before. My mom babysat and we didn't get her home, fed and into bed until 2 am (she slept earlier in the evening at my mom's). I got five hours of sleep but it wasn't enough.

DH worked from home and I took the day off. It was a cozy rainy day. I put a roast in the crock pot for french dip sandwiches and we started a fire. It was going to be a nice relaxing day. . .

Do you see where I'm going with this?

When Maddy first woke up yesterday she had a nice big poopy diaper. Two days before she had had a firmer stool than usual so I was glad to see she was back to normal. I had upped her serving of oatmeal two weeks ago and since then I had noticed firmer poo, still regular, but firmer.

After her morning nap I heard her go again. This time it was runnier and slightly greener. I thought, huh isn't that interesting, twice in one day again.

After her breastmilk lunch I heard more squirts. Now it was mucus green with tinges of pink mucus too.


I would have freaked out more, but she was in such a good mood yesterday. She slept, ate and played well.

I emailed my doctor and he wasn't too concerned. I swear this man doesn't get concerned about ANYTHING. He thought it might be from cracked nipples. Um, okay. . .but my nipples aren't' cracked! Whatever. Thanks for all the help.

I called my friend who also has dealt with bloody diapers. Her son has a milk protein allergy. She was super informative and together we decided it probably wasn't an allergy because those usually show up much earlier than almost six months. It could have been the scary intussuception (a type of bowl obstruction), but she had no abdominal pain and no "currant jelly" stools. It could be anal fissures.

The fourth diaper of the day had even more blood mixed with green seedy stool.


The fifth diaper had . . .you guessed it. . .even more blood.

Shit (no pun intended).

I had had it, by now it was after hours so I phoned the on call nurse. She consulted with the doctor who thought because she was acting normally it could wait until an early morning
appointment the following day. She let me know to call back if she started hemorrhaging from her anus. Thanks for the tip.

I call my friend back who is way more helpful than any doctor or nurse by the way. I learn more from other mothers and the Internet than I ever learned from any doctor. She told me to spread apart her butt hole and use a flashlight to see any evidence of cuts. I tried it before bed and I was relieved to see a small red cut at the opening of the anus. It looked irritated. I slept better after that. So did she. She went a solid eight hours, had a bite to eat and then slept four more until I had to get her up for our appt.

So this morning in the car on the way to the doctor she shats. It is so smelly DH and I can hardly stand it. No blood in this diaper but a whole lot of runny shit. The doctor finds the anal fissure (which looks way better and more healed than last night) and tells us to put Vaseline or A+D on it. So what's with the poopfest? He has no idea and doesn't really care. Shocking!

I am cutting out the oatmeal for a week to let her little digestive system get back on track. When I reintroduce it, I will go back to the smaller serving. I think the extra iron was backing her up and causing the tear.

I still don't know why she has been pooping so much. Maybe she has a little bug. Who knows? I just don't want that scary bleeding to come back.

First comes colic, next comes reflux, then comes teething (which I have yet to actually see any), now bloody diapers.

I'm not really digging this infant stage.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Make It or Take It

Baby food.

What to do?

To be completely honest, I don't want to make my own. I feel like a bad mom for feeling this way. Aren't I supposed to be doing what is best? Is homemade really best or just the less expensive option? There are so many options now in the store, like organic for instance. Is it really worth the work? We don't even own a food processor so we'd have to invest in one of those or one made exclusively for baby food.

I think I am feeling guilty because it feels like everyone around me IRL and in the blogosphere is making their own. I think this has something to do with the women I follow. Most of them are determined, intelligent, driven women who have been lucky enough to kick infertility's ass and are now kicking ass as a mom. Why don't I feel like kicking ass and making baby food? I kicked ass and breastfed. Still am. I guess I just don't feel that passionate about baby food. I feel lazy instead.

So, to all of you out there who do make their own baby food, why do you do it? What is your motivation? Are you looking to save some money? Do you not like the idea of jar food? Share your thoughts please. . .

Friday, February 12, 2010

Dear Teething

You're a bitch and I hate you.

You have ruined my happy little baby. You know, the one I waited all through colic for? You just rush in with your puddles of drool, red cheeks, fussing and no sleep.

You're such a tease. Rising to the surface only to stop and prolong the misery. You've ruined all the sleep training I've done.

You bite. You make my baby bite. And chomp on everything and anything. No amount of chilled rings or Tylenol can ease your pain.

Who needs you anyway? We don't. Go away. We'll get a pair of baby dentures. I'm sure I can get a hold of some.

You suck and I hate you.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Five Months

How did that happen?

Oh wait, I remember, very slowly at first. I swore she would scream and cry the rest of her life. I thought my baby would be the one who would never outgrow colic, never smile and never, ever, laugh. I'm proud to say we have overcome! Things got much better around the four month mark. Is life "perfect" with a five month old? Yes, and no. It's perfect because I have a five month old. It's not because, well, she's five months old. Here's what she's up to now. . .

Crying- Waaaaay less. She cries now if she is overtired or hungry. She no longer cries in her carseat (unless she is said overtired), after a bath, or during tummy time.

Smiling- Waaaay more. She can be such a ham with people. She doesn't mind being passed around and flirts a little closed mouth smile with most everyone she meets. She is not a big laugher though. You have to work really hard just to get a short chuckle. I wish she'd do it more.

Sleeping- It's okay. She still wakes up once a night for food, usually around 1 or 2 am. The stretch after the feeding has gotten longer. The last week or so she doesn't need to eat again until 6 or 7 am. So for now I don't mind the nightly feeding. I am considering working to drop it all together at six months. Naps are okay too. She wakes up like clockwork after her first 40 minute sleep cycle so we are working on getting her to go back to sleep after. This is where the crying usually occurs. She is still tired, but can't get back to sleep.

Eating- She is a "power eater" this girl can nurse like nobody's business. She eats so fast that I am afraid she is not getting anything, so I keep trying to shove her back on only to have her spit up copious amounts after the feed. She really only needs 10-15 (though more like just 10) to get enough. That's about 5-7 minutes per boob. I've realized now that is just how she eats and I need to be grateful and get over it already. She can go 3-4 hours now without eating. It's amazing that my life doesn't revolve around feedings anymore. She is still eating oatmeal twice a day. I will stick with just this solid for another month, then I will move on to veggies.

Pooping- Much less now. Every 2-3 days. I've heard it slows down anyway about this time. I think it was a coincidence that we started cereal around the same time. She is not constipated and never really was. She just goes less. She farts at every feeding though. Man can she let 'em rip! I find it hilarious.

Developing- I am in awe at all the things she can do now. She is so strong. She rolls both ways easily. She wants to reach and grab and put everything in her mouth (especially her new-found feet). When she is on her tummy she tucks both legs underneath her and raises up on them. If her upper body were stronger she'd be close to crawling, but thakfully she is not. She does most of her "talking" (babbling, shrieking) when she is tired. We found a "Jumperoo" on craigslist for cheap. She gets frustrated in it because she wants to put all the toys in her mouth but she can't reach that far. She still has no idea how to jump in it. So far I'm glad I did not pay full price.

More Sleep- We still swaddle her for sleep. We still velcro her swaddle to her wedge so she can not roll and wake herself up (as evidenced by the picture above). I worry about the day she can no longer (or no longer wants to be) swaddled. She is so crazy with her rolling. I can't see her ever calming down long enough to fall asleep. Not to mention the limbs that go flying out through the bars and the head baning. You see I am paranoid and afraid of those "deadly" bumpers. I see some sleepless nights in our future. . .

Oh and I have a cold. Thanks a lot first graders. Breastfeeding, you better pay off with all your "immunity" powers. . .

Five months!

Our life has changed.

Our life is better.

I see now why people like their children. :)

Friday, January 22, 2010


I'm obsessed with it.

I looooove it.

So why doesn't my daughter?

Oh it's really not all that bad. It just isn't consistent. Some nights she has her last feeding at 8 pm and goes for nine hours. She might wake up once before then but a paci will usually hold her off. Other nights she only goes five or six hours before needing to eat. The problem is, once she eats she only goes another four or five hours max more before waking up and wanting to eat again. So if she wakes up to eat at 1:00 am, she might wake again at 5:00 am and then it's broken choppy sleep until 7:30 or 8:00.

(If I read this post the first two weeks after I'd given birth, I would have slapped myself upside the head for complaining. Sleeping four or five hours straight would have only been a far off dream of mine then.)

She is so tired in the evenings. She's really done by 6 or 6:30. I hesitate to put her to bed this early for fear of her not getting enough daytime feedings in and being up all night. Last night I was reading some things that said the earlier they get to bed the better they sleep because they're not overtired. She had gotten enough feedings in yesterday so I feed her for the last time at 7 instead of 8, and put her down an hour earlier than usual.

I'm going to blame last night on a bad coincidence.

She stirred and needed soothing (a paci in and a pat) at 10, 11:00, 11:30 (DH was still up thank goodness). I fed her at 1:30. She cried out a few times after that but went back to sleep on her own. She then woke at 4:00, 4:30, 5:00 and I finally had to feed her at 5:30, followed by waking at 7:30 and never really going back to sleep even though she was tired.

She was basically restless all night. I have narrowed it down to three (okay four) possibilities:

1) Her reflux meds are wearing off and we need a freshly compounded prescription (I totally agree with you Carrie- one month is bullshit, it stops working after two weeks). I put in a call to our pharmacy but they are giving me the "It's too soon" crap. I emailed my doctor instead. Hopefully we'll get this squared away soon, but not before the weekend of course.

2) She is going through some kind of growth spurt and was genuinely hungry. Starting solids has not helped her sleep longer consistently. That's bullshit too.

3) She might be teething already. It has been drool central and she pulls our fingers into her mouth and bites down HARD. I know it's a little early. I try to inspect her gums but her tongue is always in the way.

4) She is just a high maintenance baby and always has been.

I can't wait until I get some kind of "all clear" to let her go all night without feeding her. I wouldn't mind dealing with her waking if I knew it wasn't because of hunger. It would rid me of some guilt. I constantly wonder, "Is she hungry? Should I feed her?" My gut tells me that most of time it is not hunger. I really think she only needs to eat once during the night, not twice. If she didn't have the slow weight gain I probably wouldn't give in like I do. It's not the feeding I mind, that doesn't take long, it's the holding her upright for 25 minutes after (because of her reflux) that is the real drag. If she wakes and I feed her, we are looking at 45 minutes to an hour before I can get back to bed.

How long do your babies go without eating at night? When did you get rid of the middle of the night feed? Thoughts please. . .

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Record

My baby is setting a personal record. Probably not a good one.

She has not pooed in over three days.

Thank you very much rice cereal.

I asked her doctor about switching to oatmeal (thanks for the tip Shannon). He suggested we try that but said all cereals can be binding. He did not seem concerned because she was breastfed and said those babies can go a long time between bowel movements. Well, she is not exclusively breastfed anymore and she has never gone this long before. Before starting solids she would go 2-3 times a day. He said to wait for her to go and if her stool is hard then he'd have other suggestions for us. We started to oatmeal last night, if she doesn't poo by tomorrow, I'm calling the doctor back. This just isn't normal for her.

Okay, let's switch gears. I've been meaning to blog about going back to work part time. . .

This was my second week back to teaching. I am lucky enough to be doing a job share 50% of the time with another teacher. We share a class. She filled in full time for me until I got back. So when I walked in the room last week for my first day, they treated me like a substitute. I hate being treated like a substitute. I never liked subbing anyway and I think I only did it one day during my student teaching placement. It felt strange to be in my old classroom, teaching the grade I have for seven years, and to have 20 kids telling me how I am not doing it the "right way". "Mrs. So and So does it this way." "That's not the way Mrs. So and So does it." "Mrs. So and So let's us do this." Ugh! I was trying to be so nice because it was the first day after all. I didn't want to send them home crying, but give me a flipping break! This week I was able to crack down on them a little more. Their behavior has been horrible with me. In time I'm sure they'll learn what they can get away with with me versus their other teacher. I knew it would be this way this year. I just have to let some of my control issues go. Easier said than done. . .

Then there is the whole juggling mommyhood and work. I am very lucky that my husband is able to work from home on the days I go in. Poor guy. Talk about juggling, I don't know how he does it- taking care of Maddy and working. Thank goodness she naps now (anywhere from one to two hours two or three times a day) or he would not be able to do it. It is soooo much easier for me to go to work knowing he is the one home with her. I honestly don't worry at all. I am able to focus on work and I don't feel guilty. We are hoping his job will let him continue this arrangement until June when I'm off. If not I think we have enough family members who are able to chip in to get us by until then. We will have to look at a more long-term solution in August when school starts again.

Probably the most annoying thing about going back to work is pumping. I hate pumping. I am not very good at it and only get 3-5 oz total in 10-15 minutes, and that's in a morning pump. If I pump in the afternoon it is so pathetic, I feel like it was a big waste of time. On the days I work I pump in the morning when I get up. I usually feed her once before I leave. I have to pump at lunch and sometimes before I leave (it is late) or when I get home. My pumps are better on the days I work because I go so much longer between feeds. I think we can get by with my production. I was worried we'd have to switch to formula if I wasn't able to keep up. With all her issues, I'd prefer not to have to introduce formula for as long as possible. If I had to go back full time, it would be a different story.

Pumping at work sucks! We have a 45 minute lunch period. At 11:28 exactly I walk my class to the lunchroom, then race back to my classroom. I pull the drapes shut and lock the door. Then I sit and pump for 10 minutes and hope the janitor doesn't decide to come in. Oh the horror! By the time I clean up my supplies and get down the the staff room to eat it is noon and I only have 15 minutes to eat, go to the bathroom and call my DH for an update. So much for a break. I used to love my lunch break. Sigh. . . my days of leisurely eating ended long ago.

I keep telling myself I am doing what is best for my daughter. I am amazed I was able to keep her nourished with my body alone for four months (actually 13 months if you count pregnancy). But breastfeeding is a sacrifice. I can't eat spicy, gassy, acidic foods anymore or it bothers her reflux. Gone is my beloved Mexican food and pizza. I watch my formula feeding friends go away for the weekend and leave their four month old daughter with her grandparents. I don't produce enough milk to store to even consider that. I hear stories of how soon they all slept through the night. Their babies are plump and my baby is skinny. I worry I don't have enough milk for her anymore, even though I'm sure that's not true. That was my biggest worry in the beginning but I started to feel confident as she began packing on the pounds. With her slow weight gain now, I worry again. It is such a feeling of responsibility to know that you are the only one able to nourish her. It is a proud feeling, but it can be overwhelming at times.

I have sure spewed a lot of random thoughts on this post.

I better go change her diaper.

Let's hope for a dirty one!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

My Skinny Baby or Why I'm a Bad Mother

Friday we had Maddy's four month check up. I found she had only gained ONE POUND since her two month appt! Why didn't they just stamp "Bad Mother" on my head? Instead of taking blame, I turned to my daughter after the nurse weighed her and said, "Ooooh you're going to be in trouble." After all she's the one not eating right? She thought this was very funny and gave me a huge grin. I think it has a little to do with her reflux and not eating for long periods at each feeding due to discomfort. My side of the family is made up of lean people, so part of it might be genetic too. To my credit she did grow two inches and the head circumference had increased also. So she is growing, just long, not fat. The doctor was not too concerned. He had hoped she'd gained a little more weight though. Because of this and her reflux issues, we decided to start her on some rice cereal twice a day. Ideally, I would have liked to wait until six months for any solids, but I think in her case the pros outweigh the cons.

I am still struggling with what to do about her reflux meds. I had switched her back to Zantac for a couple doses until we could talk to the doctor. He suggested we mix the Prilosec with simple syrup (a sugar/water mixture) to see if she'd take it better that way. We tried her first dose with that last night. I'd say she kept about half down. This morning I tried Carrie's technique (thanks!) of slowly shooting it in the corner of her mouth while she was sucking on a paci. This worked and I think she finally kept a whole dose down. The real test will be tonight to see if it can be repeated. If not, I might just switch her back to Zantac. She really wasn't doing horribly on it and the doctor said if we go back to that we can up her dose of it again. I hate that we have to mix the Prilosec with sugar, but I'm assuming if they add flavor at the pharmacy that there is sugar in that too. ? Between that and the rice cereal I feel like I am polluting my baby with all this gunk I am shoving down her throat. I feel like she looks at me sometimes like, "Mom I just want your boob." Oh well. I think I am doing what's best. . . I think.

I have three days of work in a row coming up. That sounds like an eternity compared to my two last week. How did I ever do five? Oh that's right. I didn't have a baby.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Four Months

This week marked two important milestones. Maddy turned four months old and I went back to work partime. For fear of this post being too long, I will share about Maddy first. She's more fun than work anyway.

Wow four whole months. She has changed dramatically. She grew from a constant crying, screaming blob into a smiling, talking/cooing, little person. She has matured so much. She has found other ways to communicate and soothe herself. She sucks on her fingers like nobody's business and will take a pacifier now. She talks to herself when she's tired instead of screaming. She falls asleep for her naps in her crib after being put down relaxed but awake. Sometimes I need to go back in and soothe her with a paci or a pat, but I never pick her up anymore. Most days I only need to go in once or twice if at all. She still only sleeps 45 minutes to an hour, but I hope those times will stretch into longer periods.

What is still tricky about Maddy? Her reflux issues continue to keep us on our toes. About a week after we first upped her Zantac dose, I noticed it becoming less effective than it had been initially. It was very slowly becoming a problem again for her and us because she won't sleep as long as she should at night without the reflux pain waking her. This Monday I asked the doctor about switching to Prevacid. I know may people online who have had great success with this type (Proton Pump Inhibitor) of medicine. He told me that Prevacid was not approved for children under one. This surprised me as many babies online are on this. He suggested we try Prilosec instead. It is the same class of medicine as Prevacid. I happily picked up the Rx on Tuesday night and was happy to bring some strong relief to my daughter. The pharmacy had mixed it into a liquid compound that we could give through a syringe.

Tuesday night she promptly spit it out. Wednesday morning, she spit it out. Wednesday night she spit it out. Thursday morning she spit it out. . . Do you see where I'm going with this?

We have tried every trick in the book: shooting it down the back of her throat, shooting it into the side of her cheek, keeping her mouth closed to try to make her swallow, blowing in her face to try to make her swallow. This morning right after she woke up I mixed it in a half ounce of breastmilk and gave it to her in a bottle. She drank half of it right away because she was so hungry, but then she made a sour face and pushed the bottle away. I fought hard to get most of it in. Today I wondered just how bad this could taste so I stuck my finger in the medicine and tried some. OMG!!! I almost gagged. Really I almost did and that was just with a finger coating. I can't imagine a whole ml. The rancid taste was followed by a bitter finish. No wonder she won't take this! I wouldn't either.

I read online that when you add flavoring to the compound, it reduces it's shelf life, which now is only 30 days in the refrigerator. At this point I don't care if I have to get a new Rx everyday, just make it palatable. In the meantime, her reflux is back because she hasn't had any meds in her for three days! I'm so frustrated. I know in the long run this medicine will be better for her if we could just get her to take it. I'm ready to go back to Zantac.

Maddy's four month check up is today. I'm going to talk to the doctor about this. I will add it to my long list of questions. . .

Has anyone out there had their child on Prilosec? Does anyone know anyone who's child was on Prilosec? Is there any other forms besides a compound? Any dissolvable flavored packets like Prevacid? How the hell can I get her to take this medicine??? Help!

In other baby news, my daughter is a cross between Houdini and an Olympic gymnast. She finds new and interesting ways to perform tricks in her sleep. Her most recent includes rolling over in her swaddle and ending up on her stomach in the middle of the night. I didn't like waking up and finding her sleeping on her stomach so we bought some of those bumper wedges. These worked great until we decided to put her crib mattress on an incline due to her reflux. Now she scootches down past the bumpers and rolls over. This morning she was once again on her stomach. I've decided to Velcro her swaddle to the wedges so as she scoots she takes the wedge with her. She got both arms out of her swaddle this morning and woke herself up with her flailing appendages. There's never a dull moment with this one!

Stay tuned for my working mom adventures. . . (I'm sure you're on the edge of your seat.)