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Keeping track of your paci 🙂

You’ve been a great sleeper (5-6 hours at night) for several weeks now, so Mommy hasn’t been able to complain, but last night you went a whopping 7 hours and I’m going to call that officially sleeping through the night! Mommy on the other hand did not … I was awake as soon as it had been 5 hours and I figured I better get up and make sure you were still breathing since I hadn’t heard a peep out of you. There you were though, peacefully snoozing away in your bassinet. So, I climbed back into bed and waited and waited and waited …. for you to wake up. At 5:30am you started getting a little restless and Daddy and I figured you were hungry, so we both headed to the kitchen.

The beautiful part of this story is that our coffee maker kicks on at 5:23am, so the coffee was ready and waiting! Aaaaahhhhh

The not so beautiful part of this story is the gutwrenching screaming/crying fit that preceeded this full night of sleep. Yes, my dear, for about 6 hours (OK, it was really just 1 hour, but it felt like an eternity) last night you were inconsolable. After verifying that you were not hungry, didn’t have a dirty diaper, and were not bleeding (or otherwise injured), Daddy and I passed you back and forth trying various ways to calm you. No paci for you thank you very much … you just wanted to cry and drool and cram your fists into your mouth. We did a little online search to see if it was possible you could be teething already and as with all online searches, we found information to both support and deny that this could be the case. You finally settled down after an exhausting hour and then snuggled in close to me and drifted off to sleep. I let you sleep on me for about 45 minutes until it was time for your bottle. You pretty much slept through that feeding (but you did take almost the full bottle) and then it was off to la la land for you.

I encourage you to continue pursuing full nights of sleep as it’s good for all of us, but I have to discourage the use of tantrums in reaching this deep level of sleep. I know, I know, your cries are your way of communicating and Mommy is really working to understand just what you need. Please be patient with me as we figure this out together.

I love you so much and I’m proud of you for sleeping through the night … tonight I’m going for it with you!

XOXOXO,
Mommy

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sleeping in the carwash

Daddy says that I, not you, might have some attachment issues. That is why this past Saturday was such an accomplishment for me – I finally left you out of my care for the first time. OK, so I only left you with Daddy for about 45 minutes, but Mommy needs to take baby steps with this and one day I know you’ll understand. Afterall, who could leave this adorable face for any length of time?:

After asking Daddy a gazillion times if he was sure he was OK and didn’t “mind” my leaving, I finally climbed into the car with an empty car seat base parked in the back seat and pulled out of the driveway. Even though we haven’t been out much since you were born (thank you record snowfall), it still felt weird and I kept checking the rearview mirror as I crept down our street. I reached the stop sign and asked myself “what am I supposed to do with this time to myself?”. And then it dawned on me … I cranked up the heat on that leather seat, found some music that I love and proceeded to turn it up way too loud for a newborn – yeah, don’t mess with your Mommy, huh?

After racing through the bank drive through and a quick trip to the grocery, I headed over to the automatic carwash to finally get some of this 6 weeks worth of salt off of our car. I had snagged one of Daddy’s pre-paid coupons for the trip and handed it to the guy at the entry to the wash and then slipped the car into neutral. I, however, was not prepared for what happened next. As the car was slowly pulled along the track into the wash, the “swish, swish, swish” of the giant brushes instantly lulled me into what I would consider an “extremely relaxed” state. I don’t think I actually fell asleep and no drool was found anywhere on my person, but when I “came to” with those dryers blowing full blast on the car all I could think was “can I do that again …. please???”. Maybe someone could just hit reverse on those tracks and pull me back through …. or I’d be happy to drive back around to the entrance again. I’m not sure it’s worth another $12 for those 4 minutes of rest, but then again, it might be worth 10 times that!

So, yeah, maybe I’ve got attachment issues but I’m working on it. And next time I know you need to fall asleep but won’t … maybe, just maybe, Mommy will take you to the car wash and we’ll take a little nap together!

I love you my little sweetie!
XOXOXO,
Mommy

red eyes = healthy eyes?

First, let me start this post by telling you how much we LOVE and RESPECT your pediatrician, Dr. Irvin! It literally felt like we won the doctor lottery when we found him and we are thrilled to have Dr. Irvin caring for you (and we’re glad you love him too). At last week’s appointment, Dr. Irvin shared some really interesting information with us. He knows that Daddy and I are professional photographers and he said he knows that keeping the “red eye” out of photographs is our job, but …. with children it’s a good thing to see.

What? Red-Eye is a good thing in children’s photographs … why?

Sydney (with Daddy) showing off her healthy eyes!


Dr. Irvin told us that when we see red eye in photographs that it is a sign of healthy eyes. He said that when there are tumors, cataracs, glaucoma, and other eye disorders, they often show up in photographs. This certainly doesn’t mean that if a child’s eyes appear red then they can’t possibly have any problems, but what it does mean is that if one eye appears red and the other has a bright white reflection, then this may be something you would want to have checked out by a doctor.

Now the other big thing to note here is that in professional portraits, you shouldn’t see this anyway … we’re really just talking about snapshots that are taken with a flash in dim lighting. Under low light conditions, the pupil opens to let more light in so that we can see better. When the flash goes off, the pupil doesn’t have time to contract and the red that we see is actually the reflection off the healthy retina. If there is some kind of tumor or other disorder on the retina, we may get a white reflection instead of a red reflection. Lots of people like to use the red-eye reduction setting on their cameras to avoid this and that works by sending out a “pre-flash” so that the first flash causes your pupil to contract and the second one goes off when the picture is taken, thus removing the chance of seeing the retina reflection. Now Mommy and Daddy always knew what caused red-eye and of course how to avoid it, but we never knew that it was a sign of healthy eyes!

I know this is pretty scientific stuff, but one day you’ll understand it all – I promise. So the big lesson here is that even though we try to avoid red-eye in our photographs, we should be thankful when we see it every now and then as it’s a sign of healthy eyes. A big THANKS to Dr. Irvin for sharing this with us so that we can be better informed and pass it on to others.

XOXOXO,
Mommy

Before we get started, let’s enjoy this cute little video from a week or so ago:

So much has happened in the past week for you … but here’s the quick rundown:
snow snow snow … thumbsucking … snow snow snow snow … dr. appointment … snow snow snow snow snow … first trip to the mall … MOOOORE SNOOOOOOOOOOWWWWW!

Yes, we will always remember how snowy it was the winter you were born. Lucky for us, we don’t really have to go anywhere, so you and Mommy have pretty much been homebound since you were born. I seriously think we’ve only been out about 7 times total in the 7 weeks since you were born. We’re also really luck because not only do Mommy and Daddy own their own business, but this is the slow time of year, so Daddy gets to be home with us sometimes too. In fact, we can close up shop and work from home on a lot of days … like today … the snow is coming down heavy and Daddy went in to check on things, but is coming home to be safe with us.

Last week you found your thumb for real, not on accident like the other times … you were excited (so was Mommy) and I was so proud of your new ability to self sooth. I started envisioning how instead of fussing, you could simply shove that little thumb in your mouth and voila … pacifier always on hand (pun not intended, but still cute)! I mean think about it, you’d never have to fuss again. It was so cute to watch as you’d get that little thumb in your mouth and have the rest of your fingers sprawled across your face not knowing where else to put them. Then, seemingly just as quickly as you found that thumb, you seem to have misplaced it again. Don’t worry, it’s still attached, you’ve just decided that tucking it into your palm and folding your fingers over and then trying to shove your entire fist into your mouth is what you prefer these days … maybe it just got to easy for you and you needed more of a challenge … I knew you were an over-achiever!

We’ll chat more later about that doctor’s appointment you had last week … it deserves it’s own post. So, that’s all for now:)

XOXOXO,
Mommy

I have just one question …

Mommy has her 6 week postnatal checkup tomorrow and there is 1 question at the top of my list for the doctor …

Is there a lost and found at the hospital? Because that is the last place I remember having my mind.

Prior to your arrival, I read lots of articles and stories about how women get “Mommy brain” and tend to be a little forgetful after a new baby arrives. I laughed a little as I read these stories and thought to myself “Those poor ladies – they were probably already like that though before they gave birth. That won’t be me.”

Wrong-O!!!!
Take last night for instance – that little trip to Target for your diapers. You know I just really needed to get out of the house and Daddy was more than happy to be our chauffeur, but there was a list of things we needed (note to self: list should be written and not just mental) and it was good to be out. The biggest need we had though was your diapers and after strolling through the aisles and killing some time looking at anything and everything, we snagged a big box and headed to the registers. We paid the cashier and made our way to Daddy’s truck and as he fastened your seat in that’s when it happened … I realized that I had just purchased the wrong diapers. I looked at Daddy and said “WE (note I said we and not I) just bought the wrong freakin diapers!” Daddy then asked if it really mattered what we bought to which my reply was an “are you serious of course it matters” shake of the head and then I threw the diapers in the truck and said “Let’s just go”.

I was so upset with myself that I couldn’t handle going back in to return them right then. So we left and as we drove home I asked Daddy not to mention this to anyone (obviously I changed my mind about anyone knowing) because at that moment I felt like I must be losing my mind. Don’t worry, we did still have enough diapers to make it through a few more days so you weren’t going to be wrapped up in towels or anything.

Daddy just laughed about the whole scenario and keeps telling me that I am not losing my mind and that I just need some sleep … real sleep. How to get that is a mystery right now, so until then, please be patient with Mommy. I put empty containers back in the pantry instead of the garbage can and can’t find things that are directly in front of me, but I’m working on it.

And maybe just maybe you can teach me to sleep like a baby and this too shall pass!

XOXOXO,
Mommy

4 weeks ago today …

you arrived and life will never be the same.

Mommy and Daddy are enjoying every second of life with you and you seem to be changing just as rapidly. Right now you are down for a little snooze and you are definitely a world class napper (Mommy likes)! We’re developing a pretty good routine and you seem to be adjusting very well.

I did however find it interesting that you wanted to be up this morning when you officially turned 4 weeks old – 3:09 am – i gave you a kiss and a hug, told you how much I love you and let you finish your bottle. You went right back to sleep after you were done eating – good girl!

By the way, we got rave reviews on your birth announcements – Mommy sent those out last week and we’ve gotten tons of calls and e-mails letting us know how precious they are (I think it could have something to do with the cutest baby ever being on them!). We had 4 of your photographs from your first session (at 6 days old) on them and I can’t believe how different you look already.

You sure are getting more and more adorable by the day and I am enjoying having the opportunity to spend time at home with you. Our days together are truly priceless and I look forward to watching you grow and change before my very eyes.

XOXOXO,
Mommy

3 weeks ago today you made your official arrival into our world and life as I had known it changed forever.

You were born at 3:09 am on Christmas Eve morning and Daddy and I could not have asked for a more perfect Christmas blessing. You weighed in at 8 pounds 3.2 ounces and were 21 inches long. Your head was 13 inches and you came into the world with BIG feet and hands. (I knew I was being kicked by something pretty forceful and know I know what that was.)

Hearing your quivering little newborn scream was an overwhelming joy and a sound I’ll never forget.

We were fortunate to be able to bring you home late in the afternoon on Christmas Day and I had the cutest little Christmas sleeper on you – which we had to take off as soon as we got home since it was 50 degrees outside and a little too warm for the outfit.

The week following your birth was a bit of a whirlwind since everyone wanted to visit with us to celebrate the holidays and to meet you but you were the hostess with the mostest … letting everyone take turns holding you and never fussing a bit (unless you got hungry).

You’ve been a GREAT sleeper from the beginning and most nights we are still waking you up for a feeding in the middle of the night. You’re not much of a fusser – only when you get hungry and sometimes when you get tired. When you get hungry though, you turn into what Daddy and I call the “screamin meanie”. It’s only for a few minutes until your bottle is ready, but you can sure get yourself all worked up and make your face look like a tomato.

You’ve only been out from home a couple of times – the first was to Mommy & Daddy’s studio for your first portraits on December 30, 2009 (which are super fantastic – you are beautiful!), the second trip was for your first doctor’s appointment on January 5, 2010 (where your doctor said that you were just perfect – I agree), and the third was back to Mommy & Daddy’s studio so that Mommy could get caught up on some business stuff with Daddy.

Life for Daddy and I has changed a little bit with you in our life – but it’s all for the better! We love you more than you will ever know and couldn’t be happier. Getting up in the middle of the night is sometimes challenging but always special time with you.

You are literally the most beautiful baby I’ve ever seen (I’m getting this Mommy thing down pretty quick, huh?) and I still can’t take my eyes off you. You are changing everyday before my very eyes and I love watching every second of it. As you grow, I promise to keep track of as much as I can for you – since I know that one day you’ll wonder about life when you were little.

For now just know that you are loved beyond any words I know!

XOXOXO,
Mommy

Happy due date!

You are officially due today and Mommy can’t believe how quickly the time has gone. Although I’ve been ready for you to arrive for the past couple of weeks (since Daddy was certain Dec 10th would be your big day), I realized yesterday that this is one time when I have no control. At our doctor’s appointment last Wednesday we were told the same thing for the third week in a row – your head is way down (believe me, I know), I’ve thinned out quite a bit, but still no dilation. Mommy’s doctor says 2 out of 3 is good and that it might mean that once labor starts it will go quickly. I like the sound of that!

This past week I spent a lot of time trying to coax you out with spicy food, fresh pineapple, and many of the other wives tales that claim to put women into labor. It was to no avail … I realize now that it’s more important that you are ready for this world than for me to just want you here. But deep down, I think you are a pleaser and already like to do things for other people just like Mommy and Daddy. Yesterday for example, I really wasn’t going to mind cancelling the appoinmtments that we had (I knew you’d be on your way) and our clients were on standby. At the end of our last appointment though, I found out that one of their family members was leaving for out of the country today and that yesterday was the only option for them to have this appointment together. So good work little one – because you hung in there, they now have a beautiful memory together that they wouldn’t have otherwise.

Now Mommy is just going to try to relax and have absolute trust and faith that you’ll be here when it’s perfect for you to be here. Maybe you know better than Mommy what’s best right now … afterall, you have developed into this perfect little being all on your own while you’ve been inside me. I know that the choices that I’ve made are helping you to be the healthiest you can be, but you’ve developed an entire body – with a beating heart and working organs and arms and legs and a (hopefully not too big) head to protect your precious brain and mind, all without my touching you.

You truly are a miracle and Mommy is anxious to hold you!

XOXOXO,
Mommy

38 and a half weeks …

Hey cutie patootie … it’s almost time for you to make your grand entrance … are you ready? Mommy feels like she’s ready and I think that Daddy is ready too.

Mommy has almost finished the Christmas shopping and it’s been VERY busy for the past few weeks. Thanks for holding out past Thanksgiving … you were officially considered full term as of the Sunday after.

This morning we go see one of Mommy’s doctors and check our progress. I’m hoping he tells us that you are ready to go … are you? Daddy has been predicting for a couple of months that tomorrow (Dec. 10) is when you’ll be making your arrival. You can’t imagine how happy he’ll be if he’s right … a little “i told you so” goes a long way! We’re having some pretty crazy weather here since there is a big winter storm moving through (but there are some old wives tales that state that this kind of weather can put a Mommy into labor). The worst of it is staying to the north of us, but I can already hear the incredibly high winds that were predicted for today picking up, and it rained pretty much all night last night. The temperature is supposed to drop all day today and the high temperature is only going to be in the 20s tomorrow. This is when a warm coat that actually fits me would come in handy.

You’re movements have been understandably fewer over the past week (I know, I know, you’re out of room – so is Mommy), but still plenty strong and you especially like to push a foot (or knee, I’m not sure) out on my right side. At last week’s doctor’s appointment I was told that your head was pretty low and I can certainly feel that as well. We definitely look and feel bigger, so you must be doing your one and only job of growing. You make your Mommy so proud already!

OK sweetie, I guess it’s now just up to you to decide when you’re ready. Daddy and I are anxious to meet you as is the rest of the family and I promise you the best is yet to come. You have no idea how much joy and excitement you’ve already brought to our lives and how much we look forward to holding you in our arms. So you just let Mommy know when you’re ready and we’ll see you soon!

XOXOXO,
Mommy

By the way, the new plasma tv and sound system – all for you – Daddy figured we better have it ready before Christmas since we’ll be having so many guests (on your account of course – it had nothing to do with wanting a new one).

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today we have so much to be thankful for, not the least of which is that you and Mommy both are healthy!  I bet you are up to 6 pounds by now and you continue to get stronger and stronger (I can feel it).  For the past week you haven’t been as active, but Mommy’s doctor said that’s just because you are running out of room in my tummy.  But yesterday and today you’ve been a little more jumpy again and I like that feeling.

Today we are going to Auntie M’s (Mommy’s sister) house for our Thanksgiving feast.  Daddy’s family is out of town this year for Thanksgiving, but will be here for Christmas because they can’t wait to meet you.  We’re going to be leaving in just a little while and everyone pitches and brings part of the meal.  Mommy made pumpkin roll (yummmmmmy) and Daddy just finished the mashed potatoes (he makes the best mashed potatoes.  There will be turkey, green bean casserole, corn, and pumpkin pie also – which means you might be up to 7 pounds by the end of the day (but let’s hope not)!

Today I’m thankful that you are almost here because I can’t wait to hold you.  And I’m thankful that you have such a wonderful family – Daddy loves you so much already (he likes to rub my tummy and talk to you and can’t wait til you’re here), your grandparents are so excited to have a new baby in the family (it’s been a long time since either family has had a baby around), and your Auntie M couldn’t be more ecstatic (she’s wanted to be an aunt for so long and I’m thinking you’re going to be spoiled by her attention).  I’m thankful that we live in such a wonderful country full of opportunity and for the freedom to choose the life we’d like to lead.  I’m thankful for a wonderful home that will be just perfect for our new little family.  I’m thankful for all of the material possesions we have even though on a day like today, they don’t seem quite as important.  And I’m thankful for our health … stay warm and cozy and we’ll see you soon.

XOXOXO,
Mommy