Tuesday, February 25, 2014


On being flexible:

- We've stopped breastfeeding completely. Natalie is a 100% breastmilk fed baby. I'm an exclusively pumping mom. (Does this still make me a breastfeeding mom? I'm not sure.) After 3 visits with the hospital LC and 6 with our pediatrician's LC in the first 4 weeks, I've decided it's not for us. The screaming and stress that it was causing was far worse than anything. I have mixed emotions. On one hand, so many people on my FB are pro-EBF and make me feel so guilty for choosing this road. But on the other hand, I'm confident that we worked really hard to make it happen, and sometimes it just doesn't. And until those mamas encounter a situation like this, they're going to believe what they want to believe. I have to let it go.

- Before Natalie, we were completely against cosleeping. Until we were met with sleep deprivation. We still only cosleep once or twice a week, but sometimes it's necessary for sanity.

- Our roommate is moving out. It means a loss of income, but a gain of...something. I'm excited to have our house to ourselves and gain those two rooms, but it definitely means a tightening of purse strings. We've been able to loosen up because of the income, but not anymore. We'll work it out, but it's stressful.

- I'm excited to return to work, but not excited to leave my baby girl. I wish I could bundle her up and bring her to work with me. But ADULT INTERACTION! C'est la vie. I am, however, very excited to have Sean watch Natalie for his 2 weeks of bonding time. I'm glad he'll have the experience with her - and it'll ease me into going back.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Natalie - Month One.

Age: 1 month
Weight: 8 lb, 1 oz
Height: 21 inches
Clothing size: BARELY fitting in newborns. Legs fit in 0-3 months, but arms and belly are still huge!
Nicknames: Little Bits, Talie, Snuggleupagus

Dear Natalie,

How much you've changed in the first month! You went from being a sleepy newborn to an alert little baby. It amazes me. I see you changing everyday. 

You do not like to be cold. You will scream and holler until we bundle you up, and will not sleep unless you have a blanket over you. It makes me nervous, because you love to have things covering your face! I'm so thankful A+A blankets are breathable, because you prefer to be sleeping under a tent it seems. And while you don't like to be cold, you also don't like to be swaddled. If I swaddle you up, you holler (or cry) until you wiggle your arms free - apparently you sleep best with your arms straight above your head. It's hilarious, because there have several times where I look over and you're sleeping exactly like your daddy (with arms straight up, over your face, or your face buried under blankets). You also talk and coo in your sleep. I'm pretty excited to get to move you to your room so I can get a good night's sleep again, but we're going to hold off until you're 2 months old. You generally fall asleep around 9 or 10, and then give us 5 or 6 good hours before you wake up at 3 am. After that, you're generally on a 3 hour cycle, with the exception of a good awake stretch around 5 or 6 pm. And most of the time, you spend 15-30 minutes awake before you cry out for us. We definitely can't complain. 

Speaking of, you are all him. You sleep like him, you make faces like him, and you seem to be getting the same mannerisms. And your newborn photo looks exactly like Aunt Katie's. 

You do have my long fingers, toes, and legs though! You're still mostly in newborn sizes. Your legs are soooo long, and some of the sleepers don't fit you anymore - but if I put you in a 0-3 month your little arms get lost! You've discovered your thumb, which I'm trying to head off. You're ticklish, and you give funny funny faces when we mess with your feet. Bath time is not a favorite, but the cuddles afterward are totally okay. 

You are a cuddle monster. You love love love to be held and kept close - I've been carrying you in the Moby wrap, and while half the time is spent head banging as you work on your neck control, you're okay with being held. On the occasions in the middle of the night when you decide you need to be wide awake (yet not crying - so frustrating when I just want to sleep!), you're perfectly content to cosleep inbetween us, even just lying there wide awake. Unless of course you have hiccups. Which you get 3-4 times a day. It's so pathetic to see your face when you get them. 

Breastfeeding is still challenging, but we're working on it. It's hard, because I know it frustrates you and it is so much easier to just bottle feed you. Barb (our LC) keeps reminding me that I need to push you to nurse, but after a half hour I generally give up and cuddle you. We try to nurse every other feeding now - but when you were born you didn't latch for almost an entire day. Apparently your quick birth meant you swallowed a lot of amniotic fluid, so instead of nursing, you spent your first 24 hours trying to puke it out. You also have my very tiny mouth (sorry girl, braces are in your future), which means that it's getting easier as you get bigger. Or maybe I'll be an exclusivly pumping mama. That's cool too. 

We've had a busy month too! You've met your grandparents, your aunts Katie and Shanon, and my godmother Michelle. You've been to game nights, out to the Plaza on a gorgeous day, on several walks (when it's above freezing!), to the T-Rex Cafe, and even to a trivia night at a bar! But you're so calm that we take you right along. Next month we'll be going back to St. Peters, where you'll meet the rest of the family! 

My heart just melts around you. When you grab my hand or shirt collar with your hand, when you are content to just stare up at me, or when you make faces and smile. I love the way that right before you fall asleep, you peep up at me and smile contently. When your daddy holds you, and the way you look for him when he talks. I have a love for you that is immeasurable. I'm so excited to see you grow and change and develop your little personality - actually, it'll probably be pretty big knowing your dad and I.  :) 

Love you to pieces, 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Cloth Diapering - So far!

Every since little miss came home, we've been cloth diapering (okay, a few days after - we didn't want to deal with the nasty poop lol!).

Newborns are obviously tiny, and don't fit into traditional cloth diapers. Thankfully, we have an awesome cloth diaper shop 20 blocks north of us. We've done classes there where they literally walked us through everything cloth, which was super helpful (especially for Sean). But the best part? They do rentals. RENTALS. We've been able to rent cloth diapers in newborn size for 12 weeks - for $40.

It's awesome.

We've been able to jump right into cloth without having to worry about getting addicted to the simplicity of disposables. They're fitteds with covers, which means we're also used to the two step process - and to be honest, they're so easy. We wash them at home, which takes about 3 hours, but we're able to use regular detergent and everything. We have 25 fitteds with 4 covers, which lasts us about 3 days. And we've yet to have a leak. (and for those of you wondering - we only have snaps and velcro - no safety pins here!)

We haven't decided what diapers we'll be using after newborn size, but we're thinking about All-In-Twos. We're loving the two steps and not having to wash all the covers would keep costs down too. I love BestBottoms and Softbums (though Best Bottoms has a PUL layer that I like). They both run about $17/cover brand new, plus the cost of inserts. It's more of an upfront cost, absolutely. But it will definitely save us money in the long run.

I'm super excited!