Wednesday, May 27, 2015

A Day in the Life of Mama and Nugget...

I've had an eventful few weeks with a new baby and blogging has not been at the top of my priority list.  She is changing so much every week and I'm trying not to miss a minute.  I will get "back to the grind" eventually but for now I'm going to blog what is most important to me.  My time with her is growing short and I return to work later this week, so I wanted to record what a day looks like during my maternity leave when my "all day every day" belonged to my sweet girl.

I should mention that yesterday was Memorial Day and my husband and I had a phenomenal weekend with all the chores saved for Monday evening...unfortunately our baby got to bed later than normal and it through off our typical times.

Tuesday, May 26

12:45 am  - Baby is awake and fussy.  She showed hunger cues so I nursed her.  She fell asleep after a fifteen minutes in our bed so we left her there.  We usually feed on demand but typically its about every three hours during the day and four hours at night.

5:30 am - I sneak out of bed to pump.  She normally wakes around 3 am to feed but didn't this morning and I passed out so I missed a pump session.  My boobs are screaming at me.  R usually wakes up at 5:30 am to go to the gym so it was a few minutes we could spend together.

6:17 am - Someone is ready to nurse!  This is our usual nursing time.  I change her pamper and she falls back to sleep.

8:45 am - Well she has been in and out of sleep for over half an hour - yawning, groaning, stretching, sucking her fingers but no crying.   I don't pump because I know it's just a matter of time before she wants to eat. I've already washed my face and brushed my teeth and ate a chia seed bar and banana waiting for her to wake up.

8:10 am - Time for breakfast and a pamper change, goodness this was a long nursing session.  I watch some Dr. Phil and check emails while I wait for her to finish.

8:45 am - Tummy time, we made it five whole minutes without crying.  Then morning cuddles, laughs, coos, and bouncing.  I prop her on a pillow and have a whole conversation with her followed by our favorite kiddo songs.  We "Pat a cake" and "Trot a Horse" until she spots the ceiling fan and stares at it for twenty minutes.  She isn't very fussy in the morning so this is the best time to play until she dozes off for her nap.

10:30 am - And she's napping.  

11:20 am - I text R to see if he wants to meet for lunch.

11:30 am - I get up to change into proper adult clothing (i.e., not my lounge pants) and made it half way through my makeup before I hear her cry.  She woke up with gas pains.  I gave her some gripe water and changed her out of her onesie and into a cute outfit for our lunch date.  I put her in the rock in play in the bathroom while I finish my makeup and hair - she was fussy but not crying.  

12:00 pm - I checked to see if she wanted to nurse before we left and of course she did.  We need to be in Raleigh at one so I hoped she would be quick.  She went about 15 minutes on one side before getting drowsy so I had to pump the other side.  She takes her time when she feeds, she smiles, coos, "talks" and gets distracted when eating.  She also likes to pause for a quick nap between gulps, so some meals can take a while.  I make a bottle really quick just in case she is hungry when we get to the cafe.  I also restock my diaper bag from our weekend outing.  I put the dog in the crate before I leave - she can't be trusted with any diaper in any trashcan ever.  

12:45 pm - And we're off!  After about 2 minutes in the car Ava was asleep.  This time she found her thumb and had it in her mouth during the ride.  I let R know we are on the way.

1:10 pm - We are at Seaboard Cafe and our food took about 15 minutes to arrive.  She was so good the whole meal and R took her out of the carseat to hold her.  She loved looking around at the plants and flowers at Logans Nursery while we ate.  

2:00 pm - We kiss Daddy goodbye and start the journey home.  Ava didn't cry at all during lunch but we hadn't even left the parking lot before she started to cry.  She fussed the entire way home and I'm miserable because I can't do anything about it.  I tried singing to the radio and wasn't sure if I was comforting her or making it worse.

2:25 pm - We are home, the dog is outside, and I take the bottle out to feed Ava.  Since I had already packed it and didn't want to waste it.  She slurps down 3 ounces and is a happy nugget.  I give her liquid vitamin D and sit her in the boppy lounger so I can pump.  It's my first time using my hands free pumping bra and was a total lifesaver so I could keep her entertained.  We played with different rattles and sang more kiddo songs - "Old MacDonald" and "She'll Be Coming Round the Mountain" are favorites.  We also have a necessary outfit change back into a onesie.

2:45 pm - I put her in her swing to see if she will sit independently for a bit...

3:05pm - ...twenty minutes!  It's a big deal when she can hang out for any length of time without being held.  Just over a week ago she needed to be held 24/7 or we felt her red faced wrath.  I put her in the JJ Cole Agility and we go for a walk with the dog.

3:30 pm - She's sitting on my lap and wants my full attention.  She and I have these "conversations" a few times a day when she is really engaged.  I talk an she coos back, then I say something and she chirps a response, I stick my tongue out and she tries it, etc.  She is fascinated with facial expressions and noises.  I love that she knows how to return a smile.  Today's conversation was a deep one regarding daycare and mommy going back to work.

4:45 pm - Hunger cues!  We nap nurse because she needs an afternoon nap and it works after about 25 minutes she is passed out.  I watch a couple of shows from the DVR.

5:30 pm - Daddy's home and nugget is starting to wake up.

6:00 pm - Ava is awake so I put her in pants and shoes for our evening walk (I add clothing to keep the mosquitoes off her legs).  I change into a tshirt and R gets the harness on the dog.  We walk around the neighborhood with Ava in the JJ Cole Agility.  About half way through the walk she closes her eyes for a mini nap.

6:30 pm - R starts dinner and I fold laundry while wearing baby.  We open the mail and straighten the house while Ava is content.  She isn't asleep the whole time but doesn't fuss.  Mostly she likes to look around when she is worn.

7:15 pm - Dinner is ready - crab carbonara.  A bit fancy for a weekday but we didn't get a chance to cook it over the weekend.  Ava still doesn't fuss but I know I will have to pump soon if she doesn't want to eat.  After dinner R cleans the kitchen and then takes Ava so he can spend some time with her.  

8:00 pm - I have to pump because Ava has not requested to eat.  Of course she starts to fuss as soon as I'm finished.  R changes her pamper and makes her a bottle using the milk I pumped.  She takes a full 3 ounces.

8:30 pm - I start my blog post and R entertains the baby - he sings and plays her music on his ipad.  He laughs his way through some Van Morrison.

9:00 pm - R gives Ava her bath and washes her hair. We just cleared up her cradle cap but we are still using a soft brush when we wash her hair.  He changes her into a fresh onesie for bedtime and walks around with her on his shoulder.  She puts her right arm around his neck and grips his shoulder with her left hand - it's his favorite thing ever!  

10:05 pm - I wrap up my blog post, I took  my time with this one.  It's been a while since I've posted and I've enjoyed some alone time while watching a few sitcoms.

10:15 pm - My shower time, if I don't take one at night then I don't get a chance to take one.  I wash my hair but I'm too tired to dry it completely.  It doesn't matter much anyway, it's easier to pull it up during the day while I'm nursing.  While I get ready for bed, R changes Ava's pamper and gets her in her Halo sleep sack.  We have to swaddle her arms down but hands near her face.  She sucks on her fingers for comfort and can sometimes soothe herself back to sleep if she wakes and isn't hungry.

10:40 pm - Time to nurse again until the baby falls asleep.  I check out pinterest while she eats.  We usually let her sleep for a few minutes before we move her to the bassinet. R usually falls asleep before she is finished.

11:15 pm - She's in her bassinet and its finally bedtime for me.  

I'm hoping to do a post like this every so often just so I can see how much our routine changes.  Now that I will be back at work and she matures a little every month every few weeks will be a new adventure.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Ava Rose at 1 month

 Nugget is a full month old, for real, we made it four full weeks y'all! Being a mommy is indescribable - tiring and thrilling all at the same time.  We are completely smitten with this tiny human being. Some facts about our sweet girl:
  • will take a paci about 50% of the time one is offered, and only wants the Advent Soothies brand
  • looks like mommy with daddy's nose and eye color
  • loves going for rides in the car
  • likes to take walks around the neighborhood and stays completely alert for them
  • prefers to do tummy time and activity time in the morning
  • mostly fussy in the late evenings and night
  • doesn't care for swaddling, we use a halo sleepsack and keep her arms free
April 2015
Weight: 5 lbs, 11.5 oz at the 2 week visit; she had gained all the weight she had lost.  In the days following her birth she dropped to 5lbs 2oz and we had to feed her every 2 hours.  She was such a sleepy baby we had to strip her to her pamper to encourage her to eat.  At two weeks we were told we could feed every 3 to 4 hours.  

Length:  19.5 inches

Hair: light brown / blonde and wispy.  Our darling girl was born with plenty of hair in the back and sides but it was very thin on top.  Four weeks in she has lost most of the hair on top and it has been replaced by new growth that is so blonde it's barely noticeable.

Eyes: brown

Clothes:  Newborn, I think we have few more weeks left in them.  Honestly, they swallowed her whole for the first three weeks and only recently look like they fit correctly.  We mostly dress her in footed sleepers and I prefer to keep her hands covered.

Diapers:  Newborn, I think we will be in them for a few more weeks.

Sleeping:  Every night is different.  Some nights she will go down in her bassinet and sleep for 3-4 hour stretches.  She either wakes us up to nurse or I set my alarm to wake her, but usually it is pretty close to 3 hour stretches.  Sometimes she goes back to sleep and sometimes she is super fussy.  Our girl struggles with gas pains and, like most babies, she fights sleep.  Other nights we are up begging, pleading, rocking, and bouncing. Oh and we have co-slept with her because sometimes you will do anything to get sleep.

Likes: Only wants to be held and will fuss if she is put down.  The song, "You are my sunshine", I sing it every morning while I change her and get ready for our morning feed.  I've also noticed that "Old MacDonald" will get her attention if she starts whining.  She likes to get real baths and she loves to nurse.  

Dislikes:  Sponge baths, diaper changes, quiet rooms, not being held.

Feeding:  Breast milk all day every day.  She received her first bottle a few days after the 4 week mark and will have to continue using a bottle every now and then to get her used to it.  I plan to nurse when I'm with her but she will be on the bottle in daycare.

Ava's favorites:  Little Me sleepers from Belk (they are a bit smaller than other brands and fit her petite frame well), Bright Starts Owl rattle, Advent Soothies pacifiers, the Piano Guys station on Pandora, Halo sleepsacks, the hairdryer sound on the Whitenoise app - a total lifesaver.

Milestones:  First bath, first car ride, first Easter, first bottle, first outing...a whole month of firsts!  We also started tummy time and we got our first shot.  

Our first Easter, Ava Rose was only 4 days old and such a bitty baby.  She woke up with a chin rash that improved by afternoon.  We had her newborn photo shoot in the evening.

Loves to be held while she sleeps.

 She enjoys her carseat and will usually sleep during a car ride and sometimes in her stroller.
 Early morning picture of her yoga stretches before breakfast.
 Playtime on her activity mat, she doesn't realize yet that the piano plays when she kicks it but she loves that purple rattle toy.
 Bright eyed after breakfast, she likes to play in the mid to late morning.  She adores staring at you when you talk or sing to her.
 Ava Rose's first bottle.

Grandma comes to visit a few times a week.

Lady Belle loves the baby and looks for her first thing every morning.
She usually falls asleep on her daddy's chest in the evenings...
or on her mama after a feeding.
The doctor cleared us for tummy time at our two week check up.
First bath!  She whined a bit at first, but in the end she loved it and it calmed her down enough to sleep mostly through the night.
Family picture with our 1 month old!

It's been a whirlwind month and we are getting more confident as parents.  Our girl is so strong, especially her legs (I'm convinced she will crawl early) and she is developing her own daily routine.  She is awake for longer stretches now and has her own opinion of bedtime.  Ava keeps us on our toes and we have enjoyed watching her grow...she has changed so much in four short weeks and we can't wait to see what May will bring!