1 month

As I did with little J, I wanted to catalog baby D’s first few months via pictures and snippets. I reread my 1 month post about little J (you can do that here if you really want to) and know that mentally I’m so far from where I was then. Perhaps it’s a difference in circumstances, perhaps it’s a difference in their temperaments, perhaps it’s just the fact that I’m not a first time mom – but I was challenged by the words I wrote back then and resolve to think a little more like that in the days to come.

Quick Stats:

He won’t take a pacifier for very long but he does like with occasion. His longest nighttime stretch has been four hours and last night was the first night he only woke once in the middle of the night which is progress! He’s got a loud cry and we hear it a lot – hungry, tired, etc. he definitely wants to make sure we meet his needs. And we go through a lot of outfits and sheets because he’s a spit-er .

But that hair though and those cute cheeks…I think we’ll keep him!

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My Post Partaum Brain

I’ve been trying to write this post for two weeks and finally decided this afternoon to give up trying to make it gel and instead decided to just get the thoughts down and the memories recorded before I lose them. So here’s a very stream of consciousness post of the handful of fully formed thoughts that I’ve had in the first 3.5 weeks of baby D’s life.

My two year old is huge. Everything about him, his legs, his feet, the sheer weight of his body, his head. Everything that seemed so small about him before baby D are now gargantuan in comparison. And though little J is a huge cuddle-er and I love him for it, I’ve determined that baby cuddles are sweeter in round two because its nice to sit quietly with someone who doesn’t squirm and weighs so little!

Those little legs and hands that I could feel in my belly are amazing. I’m more enamored with them this time with baby D’s features perhaps because I know that in two years, they’ll be gone. I remember feeling very overwhelmed in the first few days of his life every time I held him by the miracle of conception and the growth of a baby in the womb. Psalm 139 was frequently on my mind.

These first few weeks where I’ve had to rely on help from others to watch little J have been hard. I was so present in his life a month ago and now I feel like I barely see him. The care that my parents and Alex have provided for him over the last three weeks has been immeasurably valuable but it breaks my heart a little that I’m not able to do more for him right now.

I can’t imagine doing this alone. Being able to tag team parent with Alex right now because he’s done with school and in transition mode has been an HUGE blessing. We’re getting closer to having bed time and nap time routines that work for everyone’s needs but we’ve had some off days and its been wonderful to know that he’s got my back so that I can deal with whichever kid needs me more at the present moment.

And lastly, of course, I can’t help but compare baby D to little J when he was a baby. Some of this things are easy comparisons – physical features for instance. Baby D has much darker and longer hair and longer, more slender fingers. His birthmark is over his lip where little J’s was on his nose. They have the same chin, but I think that’s the extent of their shared facial features as newborns but judge for yourself from the pictures below (D is first).

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SBJ @ 3 months

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SBJ turned three months old in Illinois {hence the delay in this post}. He’s adorably chunky in the arms and thighs and is a smiling, cooing, bubble blowing, little thing. Month three was a blast and SBJ was an absolute champ.

We spent  almost half of it in the mid-west because Alex was off of work for Christmas break (being a teacher has serious perks!). Over the 30+ hours in the car there and back, I think SBJ cried for 10 minutes and despite being passed around to over 45 family members and friends he didn’t once get over-stimulated to the point of tears nor did he get sick (happy, HAPPY mama!). And he got to rock his snowsuit while he experienced his first Chicago winter.

He even was awake for both of our Christmas mornings though he slept right through our New Years’ Eve party 🙂

Quick Stats: 
Weight: ~16 lbs.
Length: 26 inches
Life Notes: Nighttime sleep is getting longer! Our record long to date is 6 hours without a feed. He’s moving his head around a ton, make all kinds of fun noises and blowing bubbles all day long. He’s still not a huge fan of tummy-time unless he can find his fist to suck on.
What I’m reading: This month I finished up Mommy Time: 90 devotionals for New Moms. I totally, totally recommend it for all first time mama’s. I especially loved the first few weeks of devotionals as they were great at checking and informing my perspective. I often felt like I was talking to a friend when I was reading them because of the tone in which she wrote. Additionally, (and I’m sure other mama’s can relate) I love hearing about other moms and their babies so I really liked that she integrated snippets of her first few weeks with her son. I’ve also been reading Shaping a Christian Family by Elizabeth Elliott since September and am just about done. I’ve found it difficult to read more than a chapter at a time (as it’s basically a memoir) but the principles she talks about are amazing – things like how to get you kids to trust and respect you and be entrepreneurial and self-sufficient with a different perspective than what I often see on other mommy-blogs. I’d recommend it, just know that it’s a deep book that doesn’t contain a step-by-step list as much as it’s just food for thought and for personal reflection!

SBJ @ two months. getting the hang of things.

IMG_2015SBJ is two months old today! And time doesn’t really feel like it’s flying so I’m thankful for that. Perhaps it’s because we had some good family time in the last month because Alex was off of work for Veteran’s Day and for a 2 1/2 days for Thanksgiving; perhaps its because I’m able to be around him during the day because of my work situation; perhaps its because we’re just doing a good job treasuring. Either way, this has been a nice month. We’re getting the hang of this whole baby thing and enjoying life as a family of three.

Quick Stats:
Weight: 13 lbs. 1 oz.
Length: 23 inches
Life Notes: Naps have been hard recently. He’s reluctant to go down and has a hard time getting back to sleep at the end of his sleep cycle (~45 minutes). I’ve found that I can often get him back to sleep by rocking him, but not always. He’s awake longer during the days and is almost always a happy, cooing, and smiling babe.
Sleep: Our nighttime sleep is in four hour stretches and pretty consistent.
Sickness: Thankfully so far, we’ve mostly avoided sickness. We had a day where he had an eye infection it cleared up quickly with a little topical eye medicine.
What I’m Reading: This month I read Secrets of the Baby Whisperer (SOTBW) and picked up some good tips. It’s definitely on my recommended reading for new mamas. I had read On Becoming Baby Wise before SBJ was born and found it to be a good foundation, but it set me up to have un-realistic expectations. In the beginning SBJ flirted with being a by the book baby but now wake-times each day are different and maintaining the exact same schedule is too hard for us. So I found SOTBW to be a really helpful read to kind of fill in the gaps. And I think I would totally recommend it for reading between months 1 & 2 because at this point I know SBJ more than I did when he was first born and the things she writes about are much more practical now. I love her list of baby cues and cry interpretations and really enjoyed reading the scenarios of families with which she’s worked.
Milestones: He’s learned to smile and is sometimes waking up happy. And he has great head control when he’s held upright.
Favorite Baby Thing: Our SwaddleMe blankets. These things are amazing at calming him down and getting him ready for sleep. 

 

Numbers

IMG_0490[1]Six. That’s how many weeks old SBJ will be tomorrow.

Nine. That’s the number of days of my maternity leave that I didn’t have an overnight guest.

10,000 x 10,000. The amount of blessing maternity leave and our visitors have been over the last six weeks.

Infinity. The amount that I’m thankful that I work from home and don’t have to ever be too far from this little guy during my day.

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I’m loving SBJ at six weeks old. He’s become way more alert and he’s started making more noises and maybe even starting to smile! It’s also been a fun week because his Vlk grandparents have been in town over the long weekend and in the midst of  hanging out at the house and just enjoying SBJ we went to the Yankee Candle [Emporium] as I like to call it, antiquing, CW, and the Williamsburg Winery.

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SBJ @ 1 Month, the little days

 

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Over the weekend our precious little guy turned one month old.

Quick stats
Weight – about 10 lbs ; Length – 22 inches
Interests – the typical baby stuff…eating, making diapers, and sleeping. He still loves his pacifier but is clearly trying to get his hands in his mouth but often settles for his wrist.
Sleeping through the night? Nope. But he’s gone a couple of 4 hour stretches!
Happy baby? Yes, still. He’ll fuss when it’s time to eat or sleep but otherwise, he’s calm and nice to be around.

In the middle of reflecting on how amazing it is that we’ve managed to keep him alive for that long and visiting with my aunt and uncle who spent the weekend with us, I managed to snap this picture on his one month birthday. Hoping to chronicle each month milestone in a similar way so that we have 12 of them on his one-year birthday.

And yes, it’s crazy that he’s already (more than!) a month old. And yet, I find myself longing for him to be older. Because let’s be honest, little babies are kind of boring! I find myself longing to hear his voice. To truly play with him. And to hear him tell me that he loves me.

Last night Alex and I had a good conversation about treasuring the “little” days. The days when he needs me to take care of him. And the days when he is just little and oh so cuddly. The days when I can kiss him as many times as I want or mess up his hair and not get yelled at or told to stop. The days when, even though I haven’t yet heard him say “i love you”, I can clearly see it in his little eyes.

And so, I’ve tried to do that today and I think it’s worked. There is a lot of joy in taking the day at his pace and in holding him tightly. I’ve also been reflecting on Scriptures and hymns that remind us of the fleeting nature of life and the unchanging character of God. And this morning the words of Colossians 3 were fresh on my heart…”And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”  Col. 3:17. Momma mantra.

Weeks 2 & 3 – life’s a happy blur

SBJ is now more than three weeks old, my maternity leave is more than half-way over, and my parents left yesterday so we’re on our own with the little guy. The last two weeks have been full of visitors and diaper changes and baby acne. Thankfully the later is the only one that seems to be going away.

Uncle David, Aunt Michelle, and Great Aunt Donna have now all been able to meet the babe and it was great to spend some time catching up with them. Thankful for their company throughout the days they were able to be here over Columbus Day weekend and Michelle’s fall break respectively. SBJ was a great sport and a generally happy baby during their stays.

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Three week synopsis:  1) He’s still a good sleeper at night. We got him to sleep on his back in his crib on night four and haven’t needed the car seat since then. He’s good about just waking up to eat and then going right back to sleep. He’s just went through his 3-week growth spurt which made for more frequent feedings but it’s didn’t throw off his sleep, and for that we are so thankful!
2) He loves having something in his mouth – be it his hands or his pacifier. (As an aside – I never thought I’d be a pacifier mom, but he clearly needs it and doesn’t seem dependent on it to fall asleep so I’m riding it out).
3) He loves being warm and we’ve constantly got him swaddled in at least one blanket and sometimes as many as three.
4) He is growing!! I can tell, especially when I throw him over my  shoulder to burp him, that he is gaining weight. It’s most noticeable in his cheeks, arms, and thighs.

– 1 week –

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– 2 weeks –

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– 3 weeks –

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