Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My baby, he amazes me

So, we had an outing today, and it was one I wasn't looking forward to. We had to go to the post office to apply in person for N.'s passport, which involved pictures of course.

I was worried he'd be freaked out by the time we got there (a 25 minute walk), or that he'd scream to high holy hell at strangers trying to take his photo. But, my boy, he's a trouper.

We dealt with a really nice lady at the counter first, who went over everything, and he just charmed the bejezzus out of her. He giggled, smiled, flirted, and chatted up a storm. Then a second lady took the first few photo attempts (all failures because the contrast on the camera was off), and he smiled for her, and looked directly at the camera the whole time. When another man had to come to fix the camera and try the picture again, N. was still pretty happy. The picture that ended up being used is slightly funnier than some of the others, but is just darn cute.

(I can't believe I'm getting a passport for a 3-month old)

We even got to stop at J. Crew on the way home without him melting down, so Hubby could get some polos on sale to replace the really scuzzy ones he's wearing now. Me, I got some headbands to keep my hair out of my face and out of N.'s little grabby fingers ;-)

Oh, and his 3-month weigh in? 14 lb, 9 oz, 24 3/4" long, and he's squarely in the 75th percentile. Well fed, and happy, and still sleeping like a champ. The little gipper is napping this afternoon (just like he did yesterday), in his crib, arms thrown above his head like he hasn't a care in the world.

I hope he feels that secure as long as I can manage it.

Monday, July 28, 2008


I had my first meltdown in quite a while this morning, and I'm guessing it was a long time coming. I can't even blame it on a lack of sleep, because my little champ is still snoozing now, at 9:15AM, like he usually is every morning.

I've been trying not to think about going back to work, but it's hard not to. As a post-doc, and as a scientist in general, it's difficult to have long absences from work, even if they're for child-rearing. I have to keep working as much as possible for my future, and for N.'s future, and my logical brain knows this.

Maternity leave here in the US isn't great. In fact, it sucks. I'm one of the lucky ones, because I know that some people only get six WEEKS, where I can take nearly 6 months. The majority of that is unpaid, but at least I get all that time to bond with my little angel. I don't like to think about the fact that if I'd stayed in Canada I'd have a year, and that I'd be paid half time for that whole year.

I still have lots of time left, but I have to start preparing to take N. to daycare, and that is breaking my heart over and over and over. I mean, he's my baby. He needs me, and I need him. I'm not sure how I'm going to be able to do this.

I also know it'll be good for him. We've been here for almost 16 months, but we're still strangers here. I don't have any friends in the city, and most of the time that's OK with me, but I think socializing N. with other babies and kids will be a really great experience.

But, he's my baby. I'm not sure how I'm going to be able to do this.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Can it be?

I have nothing really exciting to report... which is weird. Usually I'm desperate for blogging time, and I forget all the things I wanted to talk about, but this time, I don't think there's much.

N. is sleeping, which is a bit surprising. He woke up at 3:30 for his middle-of-the-night snack, which is hugely early, but seems to be content in there, little arms thrown over his head with abandon.

We're trying to wean him off his extra supplement (still 2oz per feeding) to see how he handles it, since by our dinky bathroom scale, he's weighing in at somewhere around (ie over) 14lb. Which I think is still OK, since he started off life big, but we want to make sure he doesn't end up overweight before he can truly enjoy the extra calories that put him there. (I'm saying this as a big girl from a family with several other biggies).

He's now on supplement every second feeding rather than every single one, and seems to be tolerating it just fine. He'd started spitting up quite a bit (and quite immediately) after almost every bottle supplement, which meant copious amounts after every feeding; at his age, it should be tapering off, from what everyone tells me. Now, when he only nurses, there's no real spitting up at all, leading me to believe he might have been overfull.

Fortunately we have an appointment with peds on Friday, so we can go over everything with them. He's still happy, and he's plenty porky, so I figure it'll be OK.

We're also desperately trying to get more tummy time in, and it seems like he's finally tolerating that too. Before, we'd get maybe 90 seconds before he got uncomfortable, but now, it's much better. He prefers tummy time on the bed, rather than his tummytime mat (natch, because we spent 30$ on the tummytime mat, and the bed was free).

And this whole blogging from Flickr - well, it only allows for one photo per post, and who the heck only wants one photo?

Notice my chins. Ain't no underfeeding happening here, nosiree.

Drunk on the milk-a

Just kidding, mommy! I'm not drunk, I'm just silly!

(All images copyright E. Boudreau)

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Again with the sleeping.


I know that we're reaching the age where babies are supposed to begin sleeping better, and even through the night, but it still surprises me. Particularly so because there are a number of babies born near N.'s birthday who are still waking up every 2 hours.

N. was in bed last night by 11:00PM. He'd started feeding at 9:30PM, a bit earlier than expected (based on his "every 3 hours" schedule), but went right to sleep. Because of that earlier feeding, I was expecting him to wake up around 4:00AM or so, but we were lucky.

Hubby's in there right now trying to get him to go back down for another little while, but I'm not optimistic ;-) He seemed pretty cheery and awake after his breakfast.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Things they don't tell you

  • Bibs. Buy bibs, lots of them.
  • Buying fancy blankies can be a huge waste of money. My kid likes cloth diapers.
  • The cuter the outfit, the harder it is to get on and off.
  • Sleepers with zippers or snaps only down one leg are a pain in the ass.
  • One hour of sleep will feel like a lifetime (and actually seem somewhat refreshing).
  • Babies grow FAST. (OK, they do tell you this, but no one believes it until it happens)
  • The bigger the diaper, the less you get in a pack.
  • You will learn to walk around with your shirt covered in spit up and won't care in the slightest.

And, finally -

That none of these things will matter when your baby looks up at you and smiles, because he knows you're his Mom, and to him at this moment, you're everything. Because forever, to you, he's everything.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Fire alarms

Well, it's been an interesting two days; we've had three fire alarms, and I'm hoping that they're finished.

It's one of those things that you don't think about. When I was in college, both in the dorms and when I was out on my own, a fire alarm was a simple thing. I had to grab my wallet, my laptop, and make sure I had enough clothing on depending on the weather.

Now, I have to find wallet, passport, clothing, and then grab the diaper bag, a blanket, and something to put the baby in, in case we're outside for a long time. Then I have to grab the baby, make sure he's secure in my arms, and figure out a way to go down the stairs AND cover his ears to protect him from the horrible thousand decibel siren that rings in our hallway.

Today, we had to do that twice, once at 5AM, once at 8AM. The first time I was awake, the second time, we were all asleep.

SO not fun.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


So I was right to suspect that N.'s routine is changing, but I'm not sure if it's temporary.

The past two nights he's been fussy, to the point where he shrieks if we put him down.  I know he's not doing too bad, because most of the time he settles when held, but not always.  Being the brilliant first time mom that I am, it took me forever to decide to check his temperature, which was a little bit elevated from his normal temp.  Nothing to call the pediatrician about, unless it hangs on, but still it was about a half degree higher than usual.  We gave him a tiny bit of acetaminophen, and he calmed down within the hour (without getting drowsy from the medicine, thank heavens; that would've made me feel guilty).

He still woke up for his middle-of-the-night feeding over two hours early, but went right back down when he was finished, and his temperature had returned to normal.  Unfortunately it's screwed with his normal daily routine.  He'd usually be eating right now, but he's been back asleep in his crib for an hour, having fed two hours early.  I'm not sure what it'll mean for bedtime tonight, but we'll go with the flow.

I ended up with about two fewer hours of sleep, but that's not what's bothering me.  It took me a little while to figure it out, but I'm pretty sure it's because I miss him.  Usually now we're having a very chatty morning feeding, and he's up until lunchtime.  I should be knitting (there are no dishes to do, hallelujah), but I'm surfing the net, trying to distract myself from the quiet.

It still amazes me just how much I love him.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Oh, we're so spoiled (and so screwed)

In the previous post, I talked about how good N. is, particularly in the sleep department. I must make it abundantly clear - I know this won't last. In fact, I'm expecting the good luck to run out at any time now. The problem is, I'm not sure how we'll handle it when it does.

Hubby is very practical, and although he's not always good at creating routines for himself, he thrives on them. Our nighttime routine involves him giving the baby his final snack, burping him, and putting him in the crib. Up until two nights ago, this was exactly our routine, and it worked out well.

The past couple of nights, though, N. has been a little fussy after nursing and getting his supplement. He sometimes spits up, sometimes not, but instead of falling asleep within seconds of being put up on Hubby's shoulder, he cries and whines. Hubby tries putting him on his lap, with a pinkie finger to suck on, but that doesn't seem to work any more.

And it freaks Hubby out.

His logical brain knows that N. is being a baby, and he'll change his routines a billion times in the next 18 years (and maybe even after that). The emotional part of his brain can't grasp why 'first X, then Y' might have worked before, but doesn't work now. He doesn't appreciate that change often happens without warning; tonight he said with desperation, "I just don't get it. I did this the other night and it worked. It's worked for 2 weeks. I don't understand why it isn't working tonight!"

It didn't work because N. is a baby. Sometimes Hubby needs to be convinced that a) he's doing nothing wrong, b) there's nothing wrong with N., physically or otherwise, and c) usually if we wait another five minutes (whether one of us takes over for the other or not), things usually settle. I go through it every single day when I put him down for his nap; he'll cry pitifully (not the 'pain' cry), and within 5-10 minutes, he's out like a light.

So, tonight, N. fussed for a few minutes, and I could see the look of panic in Hubby's face, so I took N. and put him on my shoulder to rock for a few minutes. Within 5 minutes, he was asleep, and I successfully put him to bed *myself* for the first time in about 5 weeks (since this is usually Hubby's job). I think it was a good lesson for both of us, that we have to be flexible.

But I know once teething starts that it won't be as simple as 'wait another 10 minutes'. I'm trying to bank up sleep in the meantime ;-)

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Sleeping through the night (now with totally unrelated video!)

N. is starting to try to talk lately, and his favourite word is "hello". We're convinced he'll grow up thinking that's his name. Everytime we catch it on video, I think to myself, "I know all babies do this cooing thing, but I'll be damned if my kid ain't the cutest one!"

He's asleep in his swing again - it seems to be the preferred location for the morning nap. I tried putting him down in his crib yesterday morning, but he wasn't having any of it.

The whole sleep thing - it's really rather interesting. I'm not sure what to think of it. I barely remember the first few weeks, but I know that N. was waking up at least 3 times a night, and I do remember being exhausted. The poor little thing was starving, and kept on waking up hungry and getting little to no satisfaction. I may have mentioned it before, but once we started the whole pumped breastmilk/supplementation routine, he's been sleeping better and better.

I've been reading up on sleep patterns, and what's normal for this age, and comparing it to our friends and coworkers with new babies/grandbabies. The royal "They" says that at N.'s age (2.5 months), most babies are starting to sleep through the night, but that "sleeping through the night" really means 5 hours in a stretch. My overachieving son has been doing this for ages - probably nearly 6 or 7 weeks. He totally seems to get the day/night thing. He can be having the fussiest evening (and they do happen with him, happy baby or not), but once he settles in for his bedtime feeding (at anytime between 9:30 and 10:30PM) he's down for the count. I nurse him on both sides, Hubby gives him his supplement, and then lifts him to his shoulder to be burped. Usually by the fifth pat on his back, N. is sleeping. Hubby puts him in the crib, where he may fuss for a minute or two, and we don't hear from him again until at least 4:00AM, sometimes not until 5:30AM.

As for napping in the crib - "They" say that letting your baby nap in his chair or swing means he's not going to want to go to sleep in his crib at night. With N., it's the exact opposite. Would I like him to nap in his crib instead of the swing or bouncy chair? Sure. Is it causing a problem with his nighttime sleeping? No. If it ain't broke, I sure as hell ain't gonna try and fix it.

I'm thrilled with this, but I feel bad for everyone else whose babies need a little more attention. My cousin's wife V. had her baby girl, C., the week before N. was born, and she's having a tough go of it. Nursing isn't going well (not for V.'s lack of trying - she's really sticking with it, and I admire her tremendously), but they're supplementing and that part's going OK. C. just doesn't like to sleep - she's still waking up several times a night. One of the girls in our business office has a new grandson, who still wakes up 5 or 6 times, and one of my grad school classmates has a new son, E., who's two weeks older than N., and he still stays awake at all hours. I seem to be the only one who's settled into a routine so early on.

I'm convinced it won't last, and once teething begins I'll be a wreck. But for now, I'm getting 8 hours of sleep (in two ~4 hour blocks), and it makes me a happier mommy.

N. should be waking up any minute now, for his lunch, so I think I'll finish the dishes, and try and find a clean outfit for the day. Dishes are done; laundry isn't, and we're nearly out of everything ;-)

Sunday, July 6, 2008

My happy boy

This is just one of the outfits my brother and sister-in-law got for N. The socks were purchased during their visit - a box of 6 different colors of argyles, my brother couldn't resist.