Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Growth Spurt...Again?

I think we are smack dab in the  middle of yet another growth spurt.  When we were at the pediatrician right after Lilly was born, she told us to expect growth spurts at 1 week, 2 weeks and 6 weeks.  I think.  Maybe there was one at 4 weeks, too?  Anyway, I feel like my child goes through one every other day.  Just when I think we're getting into a routine she throws me a curve ball and wants to eat every five seconds. 

Take, for example, Monday.  Monday was a good day.  We went to the doctor, they told us we were doing a great job, and assured me that I wasn't over (or under) feeding her.  The pediatrician also told us that at this point, Lilly shouldn't be able to hold any more than 4 oz. at a time.  Which is tricky because, just the night before, she took 6 oz.  Yes, you read right, 6 oz. in a feeding.  Well I guess it was 4 oz. and then another 2 oz. an hour later when she was fussy and I'd tried everything else before giving her another bottle and she sucked it down like I was starving her.  We told the pediatrician this and she said, wow, must be a growth spurt.  Yeah, who you tellin' sister? 

All day Monday and most of the day yesterday went the same way: she'd take her 4 oz. and then an hour or hour and a half later she'd be hungry again and would eat around 2 oz., then sleep.  Sometimes she would sleep for 2 hours and then want her full 4 oz. bottle again, and other times she'd sleep for 3-4 hours and then only want 1.5-2 oz. when she woke up.  I swear I felt like she was going to drain my milk all in that one day...I started pumping every three hours on the dot just to try to keep up, even though I was already 3 bottles ahead (yes, she was eating that much).

Another weird thing: her sleep patterns were off compared to normal.  Take, for example, Monday night.  She fell asleep at 9:00 p.m., which is typical - she normally goes to sleep between 8-9 and is up again between 11-12 for a feeding.  Sometimes after that she'll go until 3-4 before she wakes up again, other times she's up right at 2, but waking up once/night is pretty typical for her.  Dan and I were tired on Monday, so we did a few things we needed to around the house and then decided to go to bed early, around 10.  She was asleep in her bouncy chair, so we just took it into our room, figuring I'd get up with her between 12-1 and she'd go to her bed after that feeding.  She did not wake us up until 3:00 a.m.  It was glorious.  The angels sang, and I was giddy with a preview of what more than 3-4 hour of sleep at a time feels like.  Granted, I must have eaten something that didn't sit well with her because she was super gassy and didn't go back down until 4:30ish and was up again at 6:30, but whatever.  I was praying to God that this wasn't a fluke, that she was starting to get the hang of longer stretches of sleep...but it was a big fat joke because last night she was back to her normal up every 3-5 hours routine (closer to 3 last night).  I swear she was laughing about it, too.  Ha-ha, joke's on you, Mom.  And the feedings were still off - she took 4 oz at 8:00 pm, 2 oz at 9:30, 4 oz at 1:30, 3 oz at 5:30.  She is all over the place and I can't keep up.

I beg you, growth spurt, give the Baum household a break!  She seems to be doing a little better today, but is still pretty gassy and fussy.  I need to figure out what I'm eating that she hates. 

In other news, when Dan was trying to be helpful by opening and unpacking all baby shower gifts he threw away all instructions.  Our bottle warmer is acting up, and I called customer service to ask about it to find out that we've been using it incorrectly.  Awesome.  They gave me a few things to try and will replace it if nothing works, but in the mean time homegirl has been having to drink cold milk and she is NOT amused.  It's okay, though, because she's cute.  Evidence:

My sweet, sleepy girls!
Now, if only she would sleep like this at night...for 10 hours..we'd be all set.  I realize I am being an overachiever and she's only one month old.  The pediatrician said her sleep patterns are much better than most one-month-olds they see, but really I say it's all Lilly's fault for spoiling me on Monday night!

Also, Miss Pat helped us solve our bath dilemma!  Yesterday, Lilly had three blowouts before lunch time - and by blowouts I mean MAJOR, like outfit changes and full wipe-downs with baby wipes, so finally when I prayed thought she might be done, we decided to take a super early bath.  Miss Pat read the blog about how she doesn't like being cold, and sent us a bath luve duck.  It is made out of towel or wash cloth material, but you put it in the water with baby to keep them from getting cold during bath time, like so:

Genius, right?  You can get a frog or a fish, too.  And how cute is that picture?  Anyway, Lilly loves bath time, but normally she only loves it for 5-10ish minutes until she gets cold.  Yesterday was her longest bath yet, and she didn't want to get out!  In fact, she cried when I took her out.  Thanks Miss Pat for helping us love bath time even more!

So, the above random post is what's going on around here.  I promise to blog the newborn pics soon...still trying to decide on a picture for her birth announcements.

Happy Hump Day!

Sarah

Monday, February 27, 2012

1 Month Check-up

Today was Miss Lilly's one month check-up with her pediatrician.  I have been so excited about this appointment to see how much she's truly grown!  We can tell she's growing and changing every day, but today we got her official stats.

Backing up for a moment, I should tell you that getting to the pediatrician was quite an adventure.  I must have eaten something Lilly didn't like yesterday, because she was extra gassy last night - to the point where I was up for two hours at the 2:30 a.m. feeding because she was too gassy and fussy to go back to sleep easily.  I was planning to skip that pumping session - if I'm sleeping I can't feel my boobs hurting and letting me know it's time to pump - but since I was up with her for so long, I ended up needing to pump before I was able to go back to sleep.  So, she was extra tired this morning and slept until 7:30, when she woke up and we fed her.  Her appointment was at 10:30, and she's been eating every 3-4 hours during the day, so I just knew she was going to be hungry as soon as we got there and I didn't want her to be fussy.  I was trying to figure out whether to wake her up and feed her before we left, or what.  In the end, I let her sleep and just arrived at the pediatrician at 10:00.  I left the car on so we would be nice and toasty in the heat, took her out of her carseat, and prepared to change her.  I had a brief internal debate over whether to get the changing pad out because we were working with limited space since the carseat takes up half of the back seat and I was taking up the other half - praise the good Lord I did.  She was just wet, but the moment I started unfastening her diaper was the moment she choose to have a huge blowout.  I left the diaper on for a few minutes until I thought she was done, and it was a nasty one.  I started preparing to change her again, and then she decides she has to pee...three times.  It was a nightmare.  There was pee and poop everywhere.  The doctor doesn't like for you to throw away poop diapers in the office, so luckily I'd planned ahead and brought a plastic bag to store any poop diapers in until we could get home (it never fails that she poops at the doctor).  Even more lucky for me was the fact that I took several changes of clothes.  I ended up putting her clothes, the gross diaper, and the changing pad in the plastic bag to deal with when we got home.  After that was smooth sailing - we fed her in the car and by the time we went back to see the doctor she was happy as a lark:

Anyway, so the appointment was pretty standard.  They started out by taking her measurements, temperature and weight.  We have one chunky monkey on our hands!  She is up almost two pounds from her birth weight (7 lbs 6 oz), weighing in at 9 lbs 1.5 oz, which puts her in the 75th percentile.  The doctor said they expect a 2 lb gain in the first month, so that's perfectly normal.  Piggy!  Her height is 20 1/4 inches (up from 19 3/4 inches at birth), which is perfectly average - 50th percentile.  Her head is 14 inches.  I'm not sure what it was at birth, but she is in the 45th percentile (if you were to ask my lady parts whether her head was below average, I feel sure they would beg to differ, ha!).  I didn't think we were due for any shots until her 2-month check-up, but it turned out she was due for round 2 of Hepatitis B, so she got that.  She was laying on the table with her usual serious face on, behaving like an angel and taking it all in, even when they stuck her - for a second we thought she wasn't going to cry.  Then she let out the most heart-wrenching, pitiful cry you have ever heard.  It broke our hearts!  But the second I picked her up to love on her for a minute, she stopped.  Whew, crisis averted.  Here's her battle wound (and fat belly):

I had quite a few questions for the doctor, and then that was it.  They said that Lilly is "perfect" and that we're doing a "great job."  It's always so nice to get reassurance that we're doing okay, especially after I asked 23984723847 questions.

I will note that the doctor said (in response to my question) that it is for sure too early for her to be confused about day/night or to be in any kind of a routine.  When I followed up by asking why Lilly will sometimes sleep for 4-5 hours during the day but closer to 3 at night, she suggested that I not let Lilly sleep for more than 3 hours at a time during the day.  Wake her up after 3 hours and see how she does.  So, we'll try that tonight.  She also commended us for having Lilly in the crib already, and suggested that we also have her sleep in her crib for one nap per day - preferably the afternoon nap - so that when she is old enough to start recognizing routines she will know that's where she's supposed to sleep.

She has been a little fussier than normal this evening - not sure whether it's the after effects of the shot or she's just over-tired because she napped less than normal.  Probably it's a combination of both.  Anyway, all is well and our girl is perfect - but we already knew that.  ;-)

Hope everyone had a great Monday!

Sarah

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Definition of True Love...

If you read yesterday's post, you'll remember that Friday night was our first night out sans baby for a romantic dinner date.  Dan called on Friday afternoon to tell me that he had tickets to the Canes game for Saturday night, and would I be interested in going?  I was VERY hesitant about this.  First, no one has kept Lilly so far except our parents.  Second, dinner was like a 2-hour deal...hockey would be much longer.  And third, I wasn't sure if I wanted to leave her two nights in a row.  I told him I'd think about it, and when he asked again I told him let's take it one step at a time and see how dinner went first.  Saturday morning rolled around, and we needed to make a decision - either way, we needed to invite people to go with us to the game.  If I was going, it would be another couple, if I wasn't, it would be boys night.  I was leaning towards not going, because (a) I just really don't care about hockey and (b) I was having anxiety about leaving Lilly again, even though she did absolutely fine on Friday night with Grandmommy and Aunt Niecey.  HOWEVER, I could tell that for whatever reason, Dan really wanted me to go.  So, we called my  Aunt Jennifer, Uncle David and cousin Ethan to see if they'd be available to babysit, and when they said yes I decided to go to the hockey game.

The next problem we faced had to do with nursing.  I have been exclusively pumping for the most part this week, with some (but not a lot) on-the-boob time here and there.  We needed to leave for the game no later than 6:30.  I pumped at 3:30, and have been pumping every 3-4 hours during the day.  I also have been pumping for 30 minutes at a time because my milk lets down like 293847298374 times, so I'm trying to maximize the amount I get per pumping session.  Long story short: I wasn't sure how to deal with the pumping situation.  I didn't want to pump at 5:30 while I was getting ready because it was so soon and I wasn't sure it would be worth the effort (i.e. I didn't think I'd get much).  I also didn't want to wait until we got home from the game, because I knew it would be a painful (and leaky) experience.  6:30 would have been the earliest I wanted to pump, and that's when we needed to leave.  So, my friends, I give you the definition of true love:
Pumping in the car on the way to the hockey game.  Dear husband and child: please appreciate the things I do for you.  Hilarity and embarrassment ensued when we were stopped to pay for parking and I was just chilling in the passenger seat being milked like a cow.  Poor parking attendant fellow.  Not so funny was the fact that I normally pump for 30 minutes but only had time to pump for 20, so there was a LOT of leakage.  Thank the Lord I wore black and you couldn't see it.

The game was fine, except we lost in double over time (and yes, you can imagine my horror when I'd been counting down the  minutes and we went into overtime not once, but twice).  It was nice to get out of the house again and spend some time with friends.  AND I enjoyed my first beer since May 21, 2011 (Leah's wedding day, and I seem to remember a lot of shotgunning behind a barn...).  I'd be lying if I said I didn't worry about Lilly, even though I knew she was fine.  I only texted to check in during the first and third periods, which I felt showed remarkable restraint.  And really, I shouldn't have been worried at all.  She spent a lot of time like this:
My child LOVES to be loved on, so I'm sure she was just as much in Heaven as Aunt Jennifer, Uncle David and Ethan were!  They said she did great, that she was a little gassy (gets it from her father) but other than that an angel.

In the end, I'm glad I went to the game.  As Mom told me Saturday morning, I would had to have gone out and left Lilly sooner or later.  I missed her the whole time I was gone, but she was in great hands and she did just fine.

I'll leave you with some more cuteness from the weekend, really because I can't resist:

Look at that belly!
Happy girl this morning.  Thanks, Kristen, for the beautiful monogrammed gown which I LOVE to sleep in and Mommy LOVES because it's so precious!  And thanks to Aunt Andrea for the beautiful burp cloths that coordinate with my nursery bedding.  :-)
Happy Sunday!

Sarah

Saturday, February 25, 2012

1 Month Old

I feel like a terrible mother, because I had every intention of posting yesterday in honor of Lilly's one-month birthday and then I didn't get around to it.  Sometimes I really don't know where the day goes.  At least I took some pictures!  Meagan gave us some cute stickers to commemorate each month of Lilly's life for the first year, and I'm so glad she did - what a great idea (I know they are from etsy, I'm not sure which seller but there are tons to choose from if you do a quick search)! 

I must say that Lilly was less than amused by this photo op (Perhaps she didn't love changing clothes 6 times since Mommy couldn't decide on an outfit?), so the pictures are not the best, but we tried!  She has really good control of her head, but only when she wants to (Wonder where she got her stubbornness from?!  Between Mommy, Daddy and her namesake she didn't have a prayer.), so the result was that I would prop her up but by the time I got the camera ready she had wriggled herself down into an awkward position.  Anyway, behold Lilly at one month old:








Dan and I celebrated her one month birthday by going out to dinner last night for the first time.  Grandmommy (my Mom) and Aunt Niecey came into town for the night and kept her for us.  It was very hard to leave her, but we had a wonderful dinner and it was nice to spend some time just the two of us. 

We were reflecting yesterday on Lilly's first month of life, and what a wonderful (and wild) ride it's been so far.  Even though she's only been with us for a month, it's already hard to imagine what life was like before she was here.  She brings so much joy to us, and completes us in a way we didn't know was possible.  I told Dan last night, it's almost like she filled a part of me that I never even knew was empty before.  I never knew that my heart could be so big and full, or that I could love so much - that goes for both Lilly and her Daddy (and Layla, too!).  She is growing so much and changes so much every day.  I have already learned so much from her - namely, that I cannot control every situation and that my OCD needs to go out the window at times (and to trust my instincts and not be such a worry wart!).  She is a truly great baby - so happy (unless she's cold, hungry, or gassy - gets that last one from Daddy, ha!), and luckily for us, very easy.  I'm not saying there have not been frustrating times over the past month, but the great times have FAR outweighed the frustrating ones.  I know our journey is just beginning, and I can't wait to see what is in store for my perfect little family.  We are so blessed, and I thank God every day for that. 
 
In other news, we got her newborn photos this week!  They are SO GOOD, and I can't wait to share them.  Perhaps you can all help me narrow down which one(s) to use on her birth announcements?!  Anyway, stay tuned because they're coming up in another post this week.

Happy one month to you, sweet Lillian Grace.  Mommy loves you more than she knows how to put into words.

Sarah

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Pumping

Yesterday, I almost exclusively pumped.  I say "almost" because we nursed one time, yesterday morning.  Lilly kept falling asleep, as usual.  I gave her 30 minutes on each breast, and when she looked like she was in a milk coma I assumed she was full.  She had a HUGE blowout (the third of the night/morning) just before we nursed, and it was all over her clothes and pretty much every body part, so I cleaned her really quickly with wipes prior to feeding but decided to give her a quick bath after while she was happy.  "Happy" is relative, because she was NOT pleased about the bath.  Even after the bath, once she was clothed and warm and wrapped in a blanket, she was still fussy.  Since she mostly slept and didn't eat, I figured she was hungry, so we nursed for another 30 minutes.  She appeared to be in another milk coma, but then got fussy again 30 minutes later.  I gave her a bottle with 2 ounces of breast milk since she normally eats 4, figuring she got some while she was nursing so she wouldn't be as hungry.  Wrong-o.  We ended up giving her 4 ounces and then she passed out for 4.5 hours. 

My aunts and grandparents were here visiting, and after all of that it just seemed easier to pump, so I just did that for the rest of the day.  It worked out fine - feedings took 30 minutes instead of 1.5 hours, then I pumped for 30 minutes while she played and/or slept and we were done. 

My ONLY complaint about pumping?  The following photo is what I accumulated in just one day.  Behold:

The bottles take up almost my entire top rack in the dishwasher.  Some of them are from feeding Lilly and some are what I pumped into.  The two baskets on the counter are from her bottles (true story, we ordered a second basket because we were flying through the bottles), and the stolen pink hospital tub to the left is full of additional pump parts that I steam cleaned in the microwave because they're too small for the dishwasher and will float around everywhere. 

I have already sent Dan out for more pump parts one time - I now have four sets of parts.  If I am going to exclusively pump, I may get a couple more sets because prior to putting those in the dishwasher I hand washed the pump parts 3 or 4 times yesterday for re-use.  And now, I am running the dishwasher with a practically empty lower basket because I need for all of the pump parts and bottles to be clean.  I realize that is probably wasteful, but honestly it is a lot easier than having to hand wash everything - which I have also done but yesterday I was feeling lazy. 

I think a big part of the reason that we use so much stuff in a day is that she has been eating pretty often - normally around 8 times per day when we were giving her just 3 ounces.  Which translates to a LOT of bottles - two to pump into and then a different bottle which she eats out of (Dr. Brown's - love them!).  We started giving her 4 ounce bottles at the midnight feeding yesterday, and she only ate 7 times as a result - but there were two or three times when she didn't eat all 4 ounces.  It will be interesting to see if her feedings decrease in number with the larger bottles.  Once she gets to the point where she is going longer between feedings, we will obviously not use as much stuff during a day, but for now I am feeling like an earth killer.  Mom friends out there who are reading and exclusively pumped for any period of time - any advice?  One thing I've thought about is letting her drink out of the actual bottles I pump into instead of transferring the milk to the Dr. Brown's bottles.  However, and I know this will sound crazy - she is so much happier when we use the Dr. Brown's bottles.  I guess they are made better or something because she gets much less air and is therefore much less gassy and a LOT happier when we use them.

The good news is that since we made the jump to 4 ounces each feeding, she has slept MUCH better.  I am not sure whether this is due to the increased amount of breast milk - as mentioned above, a few times yesterday she didn't even eat the whole thing - or due to the fact that she was awake for longer periods of time yesterday, but she slept a whole extra hour between each feeding last night.  I know it doesn't sound like much, but I wish I could tell you how much even that one tiny extra hour helped me!  I needed it, and feel like a new person today.  Still tired, don't get me wrong, but feeling a lot better.

I still haven't made a decision as to whether to keep nursing with the shield or switch to pumping exclusively.  If we have any more incidents like yesterday where she just apparently was not eating when we nursed, then we will definitely make the switch.  Who can blame her?  It's much easier (and faster) for her to eat out of a bottle - she doesn't have to work nearly as hard.  So far today I've been pumping again, but if my pump parts aren't clean and dry within the hour we may have no choice but to nurse the next round.  Wish us luck.

Hope everyone's having a happy hump day!

Sarah

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

4 Weeks?!?!?!

I can't believe that my little Lilly Bean is four weeks old today.  Where has the time gone?!  Before I know it, it will be time to go back to work (let's not dwell on that, sad face)...and then she'll be crawling and then walking and talking and OH I just can't think about it.  She has grown so much already!  In her short time with us, she has already added so much joy to our lives. I honestly can't remember what it was like before she was here.  Sappy alert!  Here are Miss Lillian Grace's 4-week stats:


Weight/Length:  I am really not sure why I continue to put this category on here because I haven't really kept up with it.  Worst mother of the year award goes to me?  Possibly.  We have her one month check-up at the pediatrician next week, so I'll report back after that.  I can't wait to find out weight, length and percentiles!  I bet she's put on a few pounds...she has a big 'ole milk belly!


Sleep:  She sleeps really well, and I know I have made this statement several times before, but I am still trying to figure out whether she has night and day mixed up.  I have done some research to find mixed responses on this topic, so I'm going to talk to the pediatrician about it next week.  Most of what I've found says that prior to 2 months of age, she is not forming any bad habits - just trying to get the hang of things - which makes me think she may be too young to be confused?  Who knows.  She is normally up every 3 hours during the night, but sometimes during the day she'll sleep in 4-5 hour stretches.  I'm not sure whether I should be trying to keep her up more during the day, or what.  But honestly, that is an issue in itself - I can strip this child down naked and hold ice cubes to her feet and she'll just keep on sleepin'.  I read today not to let her sleep longer than 3 hours at a time during the day to help cure the confusion, so I'm going to try that tomorrow and see how it goes.  I'll report back!


Feeding:   Still eating!  Back to using the nipple shield, but I'm OK with it.  I had a lot of responses after last week's post from my Mom friends saying that they used the nipple shield for several months with no problems, and I got a lot of much needed encouragement and advice - I was feeling very discouraged!  I spoke with the lactation consultant at the hospital as well as her pediatrician, and decided to go ahead and let her use it again.  I would rather her nurse however she can will because it's a lot easier and (sometimes) quicker.  The general consensus is, as long as she's eating, who cares how she's doing it? So we've been nursing with the nipple shield for the most part during the day, and giving bottles of breast milk and pumping at night.  I ordered several extra sets of pump parts, and may even order some more to make it easier on myself.  The only thing I'm struggling with now is how much to feed her. Previously, I'd been giving her 3 oz at a time, because I'd read that they should be eating 17-21 ounces in a day at her age.  She has been eating probably 8 times per day, and I didn't want to over-feed her, but she was still more fussy than before.  I finally figured out that she was still hungry, and we increased her bottles to 4 ounces of breast milk, which she's done much better with.  I need to talk to the pediatrician about this as well.  I was hoping that increasing the ounces would increase the length of time she slept at night.  For the past two, that has not been hte case, but I'm still holding out hope.  For now, I don't think I'm over-feeding her, because she's not spitting up.  So, we'll see how she does and what the pediatrician says next week!


Firsts This Week:  I can't think of too much except for the first bath where she didn't cry!  We figured out that if we make the water just slightly warmer than "ideal" per her little winnie the pooh temperature tester and if we fill her tub a little more full so she's nice and warm, she is much happier.  She just doesn't like to be cold!  She LOVES it when you pour water on her, and when you wash her hair.  Sweet girl! 


Developments:  She's growing stronger and continuing to develop her little personality.  She holds her head up for longer periods of time now, and a few times this week I've been sure she was going to roll over onto her back during tummy time.  She's almost got it, just needs a little more head control.   Still figuring out how that tongue works and making all sorts of funny faces in the process.  She is making eye contact more often and holding our gazes, and is VERY alert and awake for longer stretches at a time.  She's finding her hands a lot more often and likes to suck on her fingers - we may have a thumb sucker, folks!

Likes:  I meant to add these two new categories earlier, but forgot.  Oh well, I'll have them from now on!  She likes baths (for the most part), cuddles, eating, sleeping, her paci, her swing, car rides, stroller rides, singing/music and her bouncy chair.  Oh, and peeing on Daddy EVERY diaper change, and having blowout poops that ruin her outfits because she has skinny chicken legs and it comes out the side of her diaper.  Ew.  She also likes bright colors and Layla.

Dislikes:  Hands down, being hungry, being cold and having her diaper changed.  I think the diaper change thing has something to do with her hatred of cold.
 
What I'm Thankful For:  My husband.  Watching him with Lilly makes me fall even more in love with him, if possible.  He was saying the other day how he feels like there's not a lot he can do for her at this point, since I'm the one that supplies the milk. But he's always there to take over when I need a break, and he's so helpful both with the baby and around the house doing things that I can't seem to find the time to get to.  His laid back nature is a good balance to my high strung, which makes us a great team.  He gets up with me for night feedings on the weekends so he can feed while I pump, which is quicker and allows for extra sleep - every 30 minutes helps!  He is so sweet with Lilly, and I'm not sure if he knows it but she already has him wrapped around her little pinky finger!


What I'm Looking Forward To:  Seeing my Mom and Aunt Niecey this weekend!  Mom has been out of town for work for two weeks, so she's coming to visit Lilly when she gets home on Friday.  This will be Lilly's first time meeting Aunt Niecey.  I think they're going to love each other, don't you?


Next Pediatrician Appointment:  Next week - February 27.  I am excited to see how much she's grown and what percentiles she's in, and also to bombard the pediatrician with questions.

How Mommy's Doing:  Great!  No real developments to report here.  I'm just about down to my pre-pregnancy weight (which let's be honest could have been lower, so I still have a ways to go to meet my personal goal).  I bit the bullet and tried on some pre-pregnancy jeans over the weekend, and I don't want to talk about it.  Let's just say there were tears.  The pounds are gone, I'm just so...fleshy.  Also, my rings still don't fit. Did anyone else have that problem?  Are my sausage fingers just permanently more sausage-y than before, or is there a chance that it's still some kind of swelling and I'll eventually be able to wear my rings again?  Other than that, just dreading the 6-week follow-up violation OB appointment in two weeks.

I guess that's all for this week.  I'm strongly considering a switch to monthly updates from now on, because it doesn't seem like too much is happening on a weekly basis.  Plus, I'll have some cute pictures to go along with those posts using the month stickers from Auntie Meagan.  :-)  We'll see how it goes.

In conclusion, behold some of the cuteness from this week:
Bath time!

 
Not sure what she is doing here, but it cracks me up.


LOVE this little duck outfit!  This was the only outfit that we saw in the months leading up to her birth that Dan had to have.  Of course it was on clearance 'cause y'all know he's cheap, but still.  So cute!

Sweet nightgown from Auntie Amanda, which both Lilly and Mommy LOVE!

Night gown take two.

Love watching them together.  Also love that she's smiling!


Future thumb sucker?  Maybe.

Hope you're having a great week!

Sarah

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Many Moods of Lilly

I have been meaning to write this post for 2 days but things are just so crazy all of the time!  Which seems silly, I know.  It's kind of like, how crazy can it really be? It's crazy, trust me.  Lilly and I have had another wonderful week at home.  I really feel like I've gotten the hang of things and my confidence is much improved, and we're settling into a nice routine (as much of a routine as we can have when she is going through these crazy growth spurts and eating all day long!). 

As I mentioned in her 3-week update, Lilly is becoming much more alert and is really starting to develop her own little personality!  It is so cute to see all of the funny faces she makes, so I thought I'd share some of them with you:

Blissful.  It was so nice out yesterday that we sat outside for a while, and she was so happy - she LOVED the sunshine!


Excited.  Or perhaps pooping - one can never tell.

Full!  Chunkster.  Look at that belly!

Happy.

Mad.  LOL.

Millk Drunk - or "happily naked," take your pick.

Milk Drunk

Milk drunk...milk coma, perhaps?

Definitely pooping.

Sad.  This one breaks my heart!  :-(

Serious.  The child is very serious - look at that furrowed brow!  She just likes to take in her surroundings.  This is pretty much the face she was making when she was born.  She just looked around with her little furrowed brow and was taking everything in - until the mean doctor pinched her and made her cry.  ;-)

More serious.  Thanks Auntie Amanda for the gown, I LOVED it!

Serious.  Also could be pooping.

Thoughtful.

Sleepy.  Always the touchdown pose and the crossed feet!

Sleepy.

Sleepy. 

Sooooooooooo sleepy!
These are just a few of my favorite expressions.  I guess I should take that back because, let's face it, ALL of her expressions are my favorite.  :-) 

Hope you're having a happy Saturday!  We have a pretty low-key weekend in store, and I am really excited about it.  Last night we had some friends/neighbors over for dinner, and Adria and Daniel brought lilly the CUTEST blanket, burp cloth, onesie and ballet slippers that she can't WAIT to use as soon as I get them washed.  This afternoon Lilly gets to meet Uncle Rich and Aunt Eliza, which she is super excited about.  Dan and I may even get a little crazy and stay up long enough to watch a movie tonight...watch out!  Tomorrow we really don't have any plans, and Dan has Monday off which we are all excited about.  As Katy would say, so much more room for activities!

Until next time...

Sarah

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Lilly's 3 Week Update

I'm a day behind on this one again, whoops!  I had every intention of writing this post yesterday, but we had a very hungry hippo on our hands (more on that in the "feeding" section below) so I really didn't do anything yesterday outside of nursing.  Oy!  Can we begin this discussion by stating that had I made it to my due date, Lilly would only be two days old right now!!!  Or possibly not even here yet!  Crazy bones.  Speaking of hungry hippo, I don't think I have much longer before the milk monster awakens from her slumber, so I better get to it.

Weight/Length:  Does it make me a terrible mother that I'm not sure?  It is honestly not worth the effort at this moment to try to measure and weigh her.  I'll try to do so tonight before bath time and report back.  I know she's back up to birth weight, does that count? 

Sleep:  Still sleeping really well.  The past few days, she has really woken up.  That is, she's been awake during the day a lot more than previously.  She is up twice at night - normally sometime between 2-3 a.m. and then again between 6-7 a.m.  Although I guess that's only considered being up one time since 6-7 is waking up time for most people anyway.  Normally after the 6 a.m. feeding she'll sleep for 3-4 more hours, so I've been taking advantage of that and going back to sleep with her - sometimes for the entire 3-4 hours depending on how the night went.  Fingers crossed she keeps this up slash starts sleeping ALL the way through the night soon - she's doing great!

Feeding:   Depends on the day.  Since my breast feeding post there have been a lot of ups and downs. Essentially, over the past few days she has been ravenous.  Like every one and a half or two hours.  Meaning, she'll nurse from 10-11, for example, and then be hungry again at 11:30 or 12:00.  I could not catch a break.  And a lot of times after nursing for an hour she would still be fussy and hungry and I could hear her little tummy rumbling so I'd supplement with some pumped milk.  I couldn't figure out what was going on - just thought maybe she wasn't getting as much as I thought she was since she's such a slow eater and likes to sleep while eating.  I also did some research and suspected that the nipple shield was a big part of the problem because it slows down the milk flow from the breast.  I called the lactation consultant yesterday to confirm this.  While I was waiting on a call back, Lilly got hungry.  I undressed her (we feed her naked in hopes that she'll get cold and stay awake for feedings) and laid her on the pillow and got ready to nurse before I realized I couldn't find the nipple shield.  I was sitting there looking around for it, and what do you know, she found my breast all on her own, latched right on and ate.  WHAT.  Is this really happening?!  I am happy to report that we have not used the nipple shield in over 24 hours now.  HOWEVER, our struggles are not over.  She is really lazy and has regressed to a terrible latch without the nipple shield.  She is SO stubborn (wonder where she gets that from?  wink!) - I know she knows how to latch, she's done it plenty of times before!  She just won't.  It's like she's teasing me.  Normally it will take 10 minutes of her crying and me calming her down and both of us getting frustrated before she'll latch on, and then the latch is really painful.  Allegedly, it's not supposed to be painful, so I have been breaking the latch and trying to reposition her, but in the end I have just suffered (and sometimes cried) through the pain and let her eat because I'd rather her hurt me and eat without the nipple shield than use it.  Last night during the 2 a.m. feeding she got so mad that I couldn't get her to eat, so I had Dan come give her a bottle and I pumped, but since then she's been ok.  I am getting very close to making a change and solely pumping and giving her bottles of breast milk.  I checked with the lactation consultant yesterday, and we do not lose any of the benefits of breast feeding by doing that.  It would be MUCH easier, would take less time for me (since she's such a slow eater), would be less painful, and Dan could help with middle of the night feedings.  I'm still chewing on it - we're going to give the breastfeeding another week-ish until we go in for her one month appointment.  In the meantime, I'm going to keep plenty of pumped milk ready for middle of the night feedings in case situations like last night occur and I'll try to stick to breast feeding during the day.  We'll make a decision on pumping/bottle feeding soon - and I'll keep you posted!

Firsts This Week:  Lots of firsts this week!  First time meeting Uncle Chris, Aunt Andrea, and cousins Ryan, Erica and Ian.  They were all enamored with her and SO cute.  We also went on our first walk in the stroller, which she loved - slept right through it.  First time out with Mommy - just to the drive through window at the bank for a deposit, but whatever.  First real bath (read: not a sponge bath).  First Valentines Day!  First time using a paci last night.  I was hoping to avoid that "first" until she got the hang of breast feeding better, but she acts hungry a lot of times when in reality it's just a self-soothing suck reflex thing, so the paci really helped her calm down and helped keep me from going insane.  Except for a two-hour period today she was not happy unless she had it, and she spit it out every 30 seconds, so that was annoying.

Developments:  As mentioned above, she's awake and alert a lot more these days.  She's discovered her tongue and sticks it in and out a lot.  She's found her hands a few times and sucked on them.  And she's just generally more active - always moving!

What I'm Thankful For:  Support from family and friends (recurring theme, yes?).  It is so easy to get frustrated with these feeding issues we're having.  I've heard from several of you over the past few days after my breast feeding post, and I cannot tell you how much it meant or how the words of encouragement, advice and support came at the perfect time - literally.  I really needed the encouragement, and it seemed like all of it came when I was at my wits end.  Proof that the Lord answers prayer, for sure - it was all such perfect timing.  I'm also thankful that Lilly is, for the  most part, a really great baby!  She really only cries when she's hungry, she's a good sleeper - if we could get the eating under control, we'd be as close to perfect as it gets!

What I'm Looking Forward To:  Having Dan at home on Monday - his firm is closed for the Holiday.  I'm hoping I can get out of the house for a few hours to run some errands, and I'm really looking forward to it.  I always feel so busy during the day, but it's still easy to feel cooped up. 

Next Pediatrician Appointment:  February 27.  Can't wait to see how much Lilly bean has officially grown!
How Mommy's Doing:  Still sleep deprived, but overall I'm doing great.  Lilly and I are settling into a sort of routine - as much of one as we can, anyway, given the fact that she is never hungry on the same schedule.  I'm down 25 of my 30 lbs of total pregnancy weight gain.  I have a feeling the last five are going to be a pain, especially considering I'd like to lose more than 5.  Still too scared to try on my pre-pregnancy jeans - I'm still pretty fleshy, so I'll wait a little while longer for that.  It feels like I'm mostly back to normal "down there," and I have already started worrying about my doctor appointment in a few weeks.  Other than that, still just learning the ropes and taking it a day at a time!

I guess that's all for this week - and perfect timing, too, because the milk monster is waking up to eat again.  Until next time, maybe you could help solve a discussion Dan and I are having:  Is Lilly considered to be one month old next Tuesday, since that is exactly 4 weeks from the day she was born?  Or is she considered to be one month old on February 24, one month from the day she was born (January 24)?  I need to know because I need to know when to take a picture of her using the stickers Auntie Meagan got us!

I was going to put some pictures of some of Lilly's firsts but I honestly don't feel like dragging out the camera, so I'll just leave you with one from today - her sleeping pose when she's not swaddled makes me laugh!


Sarah

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

And my how things have changed since last year! Dan and I have never been big celebrators of V day. In years past we've either cooked together or gone out to a nice dinner, but that and a card is typically the extent of our celebrations.

This year, I thought I'd make us a nice dinner to have at home while cuddling sweet Lilly. However, I couldn't get it together enough last night to even think about planning a meal much less go to the store, thanks to this growth spurt Lilly seems to be having. So, I thought I'd get a nice card and then make an effort today to look nice tonight - as in shower and if I was feeling frisky put on some makeup and straighten my hair. Due to aforementioned growth spurt, even that didn't happen. Sigh. Best wife ever, yes?

Luckily, my husband didn't care. Our night was spent eating takeout by candle light and cuddling Lilly while watching shows from the DVR. My sweet husband brought home flowers for his girls - lilies for Lilly and roses for me - as well as some chocolate from Videri (If you haven't had it yet, you HAVE to. We had the sea salt chocolate tonight and it is divine.). I die. And don't forget the awesome homemade card I made for Dan! We ended the night with more snuggles from our girls. See below for cuteness overload.

Best Valentines Day yet? I'd say so. :)

Hope yours was as well!

Sarah

Newborn Session Sneak Peek!

Imagine my excitement during this 2 a.m. feeding to discover an e-mail from Becca with the link to Lilly's sneak peek!!!

http://beccarphotography.com/blog/2012/02/baby-l-two-weeks-old-raleigh-newborn-photographer/

In other news, I meant to post this yesterday, but how crazy is it that yesterday would have been 40 weeks for me?! It is so strange to think about the fact that Lilly may not have even been here still today. I already can't imagine life without her!

Also, my little sister turned 17 yesterday, and that makes me feel super old. Love you, Syd - hope your day was fantastic!

Hope you're all dreaming sweet dreams - I personally can't wait for the day when 6+ consecutive hours of sleep occurs. That's soon, yes? :-)

Sarah (and a very hungry Lilly)

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