Sunday, December 29, 2013

12, 13 and 14 weeks old

On 12/13/13, Little E was 12 weeks old

 On 12/20/13, E-man was 13 weeks old, and 3 months old to the day

This past Friday, on12/27/13 E was 14 weeks old

He is doing very well, he is about 12 lbs now, firmly in 3 month old clothes (if not already growing out of some of them). He sleeps well at night, only waking to eat (usually twice after I've gone to sleep) and then going back to sleep. He has good head control but can't push himself up on his arms during tummy time (well, he's done it once). We are not anywhere close to sitting up yet. I have to remind myself that his adjusted age is only 8 weeks old right now. He loves bath time and could lay in there for hours. He has only pooped in the tub once! He also loves being carried in the moby wrap. He has not found his thumb but is instantly calmed by a pacifier. He is typically breastfed but will eat from a bottle and will take 5 oz if you let him (and then spits up 1-2 oz...he is not a good burp-er). He is wearing cloth diapers full time and has been since about 8 weeks old.

This is my last update before I return to work. My first day is January 2 and I am not looking forward to it. I will have had almost 15 weeks off of work and I simply don't want to go back, but know that I have to. We have had essentially no income for the last 7 weeks after my sick leave, vacation, and Afla.c pay all ran out. I have to say that I am lucky that I don't have to take him to daycare. Nate will be a stay at home dad for the foreseeable future, I don't know that he knows what is coming. He has already stayed home with him when I go out and about, but has never done more than 1 feeding without me.  He will figure it out, and I will try my very best to avoid being a backseat driver while he does. At worst, I am a phone call away.

I will have to put some of the cutest photos back on my phone to tide me over while I'm at work and away from E.  Here are some recent cuties:

His favorite place to sleep

Giraffe Hat I crocheted to match his outfit (I had extra yarn from another project)

Christmas parade downtown

Modified tummy time

Walk on Christmas day, first time in the stroller without the carseat attachment

His Christmas presents from my brother, my sister and us

Christmas santa hat on Christmas day

Dad has a matching hat (we didn't have a corncob pipe though)
same hat without the beard

Grandpa J visiting on the day after Christmas

Grandma S visiting day after Christmas and first time meeting E

Thursday, December 19, 2013

11 weeks old

Oh man am I behind on posting. I've got a couple posts in the wings waiting to be posted and all of my updates to do!!!

On 12/6/12 (nearly 2 weeks ago) Ethan was 11 weeks old!

He is as long as the basket now!

He weighs in around 10.5 lbs now and officially does not fit in any of his newborn clothing. I packed away everything that was in the closet and am putting everything else away as it is washed. I found one sleepsuit in his diaper bag labeled 5-8 lbs, talk about busting out the seams! He is officially in our 3 mos clothes.

By the way, baby clothes make me crazy. How are some 0-3 month clothes bigger than 3 months clothes? How are some 3-6 months clothes smaller than cloths labeled 3 months? Baby clothes manufacturers should get their act together!!!

He has never been a real crier but cries even less now. He smiles more regularly and is testing his buttons and levers to start to figure out how to laugh.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

A day in the life of our (nearly) 3 month old

I have been reading "The Baby Whisperer" and the author's methods seem sound. So I've decided to follow her advice. They had him on a 3 hour schedule in the NICU, but then when we got home, he worked himself down to a 2 hour routine and then back into a 3 hour routine since he has gained weight. Because he was already on a 3 hour schedule on his own,  incorporating the new routine was easy.

The author recommends an EASY routine. E-eat, A-activity, S-sleep, Y-time for yourself. I wanted to follow this routine for a very specific reason. I need something that will be easy for Nate when I return to work. I also want him to be a good sleeper because I need my rest too. I don't want to have to nurse him to sleep every night and for naps. This routine teaches babies over time to settle themselves down and put themselves back to sleep if they wake during the night. Also, this will be easier for Nate to follow as a stay at home dad. For some people, not nursing a baby to sleep seems ridiculous, but actually, for us, it is already working well. He eats as soon as he wakes, so he is more alert and eats better and more. He spits up less because he is not laying down right after eating. When he is fussy and yawning it is time for a nap, not a rush to get the boob in his mouth to calm. He is not outright showing signs that he knows what is coming next in the routine, but he does seem more content and less agitated.

For his age and weight a 3 hour routine is recommended, but then at about 4 months the author recommends a 4 hour routine, so after I go back to work, we will start transitioning. As of right now, he still is on the 3 hour routine around the clock, but we are trying to get him to drop at least one feed during the night in favor of a longer sleeping time. As a side note, you skip the A-part of the routine after he "goes to sleep for the night" around 8 pm. Also, you don't do a diaper change overnight unless necessary. As he gets older, the A-Activity part will increase in length and the S-sleep with decrease.

Other reasons I like this plan is because it is a routine, not a schedule, the order is specific but the timing is less important. Also, this routine has nothing to do with Cry it Out and the author firmly states that she is against CIO. She has recommendations for children who have trouble with the S-sleep part of the routine and it has nothing to do with CIO. 

For right now this is what our routine looks like:

7:00 AM: E-wake up and eat
7:30 AM: A-diaper change and time in the swing while mom eats breakfast and feeds the dogs
8:30 AM: S-1st nap, usually about 1.5 hours, in bassinet in our bedroom
8:45 AM; Y-mom makes bed, showers, does laundry etc.
10:00 AM: E-wake up and eat
10:30 AM: A-diaper change and time on his play mat, usually tummy time, sometimes this is time to run errands
11:00 AM: S-2nd nap, usually about 1.5 hours, in bassinet in our bedroom
11:15 AM: Y-Continuation of chores, also eat lunch
1:00 PM: E-wake up and eat
1:30 PM: A-diaper change and hold him on the couch or time with daddy
2:30 PM: S-3rd nap, usually about 1.5 hours, in bassinet in our bedroom
2:45 PM: Y-Continuation of chores, workout if haven't done it already
4:00 PM: E-wake up and eat
4:30 PM: A-diaper change, time in swing or hold him at computer
5:00 PM: S-nap in swing but he may not sleep
5:15 PM: Y-cook and eat dinner
7:00 PM: E-wake up and eat
7:30 PM: A-bath, diaper (load up on diaper cream), read a story
8:00 PM: S-bedtime in bassinet in bedroom
8:15 PM: Y- enjoy short evening
10:00 PM: E-dream feed then go to bed myself
1:00 AM: E-feed and diaper change, lots of diaper cream
4:00 AM: E-dream feed
7:00 AM: Start over

Do what works, right? For an almost 3 month old, this is what our daily routine looks like.

10 weeks old

On 11/29 (yes I'm a little late) Ethan was 10 weeks old.

We had a great week including his first Thanksgiving, as well as yet another doctor's visit. Ethan wasn't supposed to go back to the doctor until he was 4 months old, but I had a concern about how his circumcision was healing. It turns out that all is ok, but as a bonus he did get weighed in at that appointment. He was 9 lbs 6 oz.

We finally got control of his diaper rash this week by switching from a diaper rash cream to a powder.    

He has also started to smile at us and it seems to be under his control rather than a reflex.

He is bursting the seems on his newborn cloths but still wearing them. Same goes for his newborn cloth diapers.

Other than that not much is new. So here is his weekly picture, and there is a bonus picture with the hat I made, this hat did not fit him this year but probably will for the next 4-5 years.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

9 weeks old

Once again, I'm a little late. Last Friday, not yesterday but the week before, on 11/22/13, my little pumpkin was 9 weeks old.

He is bigger, stronger and...well...fatter. He is starting to pack on the pounds. At his most recent, doctor's appointment he weighed in at 8 lbs 10 oz and is 21 inches tall. He got his second round of vaccinations and is doing not just fine, but great.

We are still breastfeeding. I just typed and then deleted that we were doing it well, and maybe we are, but it sure doesn't feel like it. I think it's about time for a whole post on how breastfeeding has gone thus far.

This week on Wednesday we began a routine I will put all of that in another post.

E is wearing all newborn cloths and only cloth diapers. He has started to smile a bit, but it is more of a half smile and only when he is tired. He can't be bothered when he is awake.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Weekly Wednesday Weigh-in: 8 weeks postpartum

I kept looking back at last weeks post to really keep myself focused on my goals. I think it has really helped me to do so. I'm making progress and seeing changes.

In fact, I went to a baby shower for a co-worker this past weekend. No one has really seen me because of my maternity leave, they could not stop commenting on how much weight I've lost already and kept complimenting me and how good I looked. They also said that I look slimmer than before I was pregnant. I think they all just forgot what I looked like because I know I look almost exactly the same. Maybe it is that I am just happier and that is reflected in my overall appearance.

1. Reiterate my goal and where I stand in reference to this goal. (BMI info from this website)

Starting weight: 140 (6 weeks postpartum)        
Last Week's Weight: 139
Current Weight: 137 (-3 lbs total, 12 lbs to goal!!!)   
Goal Weight : 125       

Starting BMI: 24.8
Last Week's BMI: 24.6
Current BMI: 24.3 (In the normal range of 18.5-24.9)
Goal BMI: 22.1 for goal weight

2. Discuss what I am going to do to achieve my goals.

Progress on last week's activities:
1. Consume at least the recommended water intake for a breastfeeding mom, 64 oz
I've really done well at this. I fill my water bottle up and drink only from that. It is a 24 oz bottle. I have one bottle between midnight and breakfast, one before lunch, one before dinner and one again before midnight. I'm drinking very close to 100 oz a day but really nearly forcing myself to do so.
2. Purchase some sort of yoga video or program that I can realistically see myself doing
I figured out how to get youtube on our x box on our tv in the living room. I can do many yoga videos from there. On Friday night I did a Jillian Michael's yoga video, and it damn near killed me. It was a 35 minute beginners yoga and I could only do 20 minutes before I had to quit, I mean before dinner was ready. I will try that same video again this week and try to make it through it.
3. Walk at least 2x with E in the stroller
I walked my 5 k training session on Saturday night with him in the stroller. It was a brisk walk or slow jog for 45 minutes. I started at dusk and was out after dark, so Nate followed me with a flashlight. I did not get a second chance to walk with him, but now as an afterthought, I should have done so today.
4. Hike in the mountains with or without E
Rain kept me from hiking on the days planned. Yes you heard that right, it rained in New November...weird! The rain also soaked the cloth diapers I had out on the line, but whatever. I'm not sure I will be able to reach this milestone before it gets too cold. However, I have taken a hike on thanksgiving before and that gives me a bit longer to try to get one in.
5. Continue 5k training program, no skipping days!!!
I am surprised by my own commitment to this program. As I said above, I even did one session after dark when I normally would have just skipped it due to the inconvenience. I am determined to do this even though I truly hate running. I missed today because Nate was out of town and I'm not yet prepared to let someone watch my baby so I will have to make up tomorrow.
Activities for this coming week:
1. Continue with 100 oz of water intake daily
2. Complete 1 yoga video
3. Walk at least 2x with E in the stroller
4. Hike in the mountains with or without E before it gets too cold
5. Continue 5k training program, no skipping days!!!

3. Post anything else I feel like sharing.

I got a peek of 136 lbs on the scale one morning this week and panicked a little. Losing 3 lbs in one week is a little more than I planed for and seems excessive. However, it was only that morning, the remainder of the week I was somewhere in the 137's. meaning that my scale does give fractions of pounds, I simply don't post them here, it would make the math more difficult if I did.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

8 weeks old

On Friday 11/15 E was 8 weeks old. 

It is official, more than half of my maternity leave is over. I had originally had November and December marked off for 8 weeks of maternity leave in case I was recovering from a c-section. Because I had him 6 weeks early, that 8 weeks turned into 14 weeks! Unfortunately, it is mostly unpaid. 

My contract changed in June and I now have 3 weeks of vacation each year. I also have 6 sick days. Finally, I have Aflac which gets you 2 weeks of pay. So in total, I had about 6 weeks of pay. Because we had to spend 10 days in Las Vegas, NV (on our own dime) we are really living off of savings rather than that 6 weeks of pay. Oh well, we will survive. 

Anyway... back to the baby...

An 8 week old baby...he doesn't look 8 weeks old, he doesn't feel 8 weeks old, and I guess it is because he is only 2 weeks adjusted. I can't believe he is that old already. I'm glad I get another 6 weeks at home with him as I feel he is just getting into a routine and I am really just now getting to know him. He slept so much when we first brought him home. Now he has stretches where he is awake an hour or more at a time. From 35 weeks gestation to nearly 40 weeks gestation or birth to 6 weeks old, he slept nearly 22 hours a day total. Now he sleeps maybe 16-18. It feels a whole lot different to have a baby that is awake sometimes and becoming mildly interactive.

E weighed in at the pediatrician on Wednesday and he is now 8lbs, the size we expected him to be born at. He feels heavier...the carseat with him in it feels heavier! He is completely out of preemie cloths, they have been packed away and given back to those that loaned us clothing. He is getting much more use of of newborn clothing than we ever expected. I haven't pulled out the 3 mos old cloths just yet though. 

We are back in cloth diapers too. The circumcision is healed and we are finally getting a hold of this diaper rash. Just as the rash was beginning to heal it suddenly got worse. The doc said that he thought it might be a yeast infection and prescribed Nystatin at his appointment on Wednesday. It started to get better immediately. However, we were advised to switch to a different routine. We now wash his little butt in the sink after each poop, which is essentially every diaper change right now. Then I blow dry his butt with a hair dryer. It needs to be completely poop free and completely dry to apply the nystatin. It is truly unrealistic to let a newborn be without a diaper for any extended period of time, so this routine works best. However, it means taking a naked baby across carpet to get him to the sink. Having the diaper change station in the bathroom is not possible so the potential for a poopy carpet disaster is extremely high. I debated using cloth with the nystatin, but everything I've read says that it should be ok with natural fibers, so I'm using cotton prefolds and organic cotton all in ones. We shall see if it ruins them or if they simply need to be stripped afterwards. I just could not justify letting him outgrow my newborn prefolds without ever really using them. Also, I couldn't stand the though of buying more diapers. The cost of diapers is astronomical!!!

He is just my little cutey pie and I'm so happy to be his mommy!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Weekly Wednesday Weigh-in: 7 weeks postpartum

The first time I did these weigh-ins, I really focused on my goals. I thought about my next week's weigh-in nearly every day. This time around, sleep deprivation and the care of a little one have drastically affected my focus. However, I still managed to exercise even if I didn't look back at these goals until this morning...oops! I also dropped a lb. (However, I did see a much lower weight on the scale this week, the weight I saw this morning was more consistent with the gradual weightloss I expect)

Also, I have set a definite final goal as far as timeline goes. If I lose 1 lb per week, every week, I should meet my goal in 15 weeks or so. If I add 8 weeks for Ethan's current age and then do a little mental math...hmm, 15 + 8...23... divide that by 4 or so...I should meet my goal when Ethan is 6 months old ! Seems too coincidental that this would fall around the same time, so I am making my final goal the same day that Ethan turns 6 months old, that will be September, October, November, December, January, February, March...yes March 20th, 2014.

125 lbs by March 20th or bust!

I really do need the support and accountability of writing this all down here. As you'll read below, that alone is a milestone for me, coming here each week to put this all down.

1. Reiterate my goal and where I stand in reference to this goal. (BMI info from this website)

Starting weight: 140 (6 weeks postpartum)        
Last Week's Weight: 140
Current Weight: 139 (-1 lbs total, 14 lbs to goal!!!)   
Goal Weight : 125       

Starting BMI: 24.8
Last Week's BMI: 24.8
Current BMI: 24.6 (In the normal range of 18.5-24.9)
Goal BMI: 22.1 for goal weight

2. Discuss what I am going to do to achieve my goals.

Progress on last week's activities:
1. Determine how much water I am consuming each day on average:  
In General, I am not consuming enough. I have a water bottle that I like that holds 24 oz. Without making any effort to increase how much I consume, I realized I would only drink about 2 full bottles a day. That is only 48 oz. I do also allow myself one soda a day which I don't factor into my total liquid intake. The Mayo Clinic's website recommends 8 glasses a day, assuming they mean 8 oz glasses, that would be 64 oz. I'm simply not drinking enough liquids.
2. Find a way to do yoga at home, either buy a video or look online/youtube:  
Without a gym membership, I am limited to doing yoga in my living room as I refuse to pay a per class rate. I can hook my ipad up to my TV in my living room, but as I have the original Ipad 1, I can only play video from certain programs on the TV. This means that I either have to buy a video on itunes to play it or get a DVD to play. I did neither of these things this week, but did at least hook up the ipad to the adapter to see what would steps I tell you.
3. Create a walking schedule where I can push E in the stroller: 
I have been walking with E with a friend, but not regularly and we only went one time this week. We went on a 1.25 mile path in town and I had a blister from new shoes from the previous week, I could not possibly have gone any further that day. Then on the other 2 days we were scheduled to go, her sons were each sick and not up for it.
4. Hike in the mountains before it gets too cold: 
I just realized that E is not technically big enough by weight for the moby wrap or mai tai wraps that I have for him. I have used them around the house and when grocery shopping, but a worried about him in them when I am doing something more strenuous. The weight minimum recommended is 8 lbs. I decided to wait until we hit that mark to take him for a hike. I'd rather be safe then wish I had afterwards. I could plan to go without him but I'm not ready for him to have a bottle while I'm gone, unless it was for something truly necessary.
5. Look into/start a couch to 5 k program: 
I downloaded 2 running programs on my phone and one called runkeeper has a beginner's running training program. They don't call it a couch to 5 k, but it has you running a 5 k after 8 weeks of training. I did my first training on Sunday and my second one on Tuesday. It has me do some sort of running every other day. It seems truly do-able to me. I will be running a 5 k with the program on January 3rd. However, there is a 5k fun run locally on December 7th. I'm thinking of registering, but don't want to overdo it to try to be done sooner.
In summary: I put way less effort into this than I had hoped. I will try to do better this next week and will only be modifying my goals slightly.
Activities for this coming week:
1. Consume at least the recommended water intake for a breastfeeding mom, 64 oz
2. Purchase some sort of yoga video or program that I can realistically see myself doing
3. Walk at least 2x with E in the stroller
4. Hike in the mountains with or without E
5. Continue 5k training program, no skipping days!!!

3. Post anything else I feel like sharing.
I think it was in my running program that I read recently a quote that went something along the lines of "people who set goals are more likely to achieve their goals". When I first read it, I thought there was some sort of grammatical error, or that someone was trying to be funny or at least ironic...Well duh, how do you achieve a goal that you didn't set in the first place! Then as I sat on the thought and came back to it later in the week, I realized that to me it actually means that people who set milestones to achieve along the way are more likely to achieve a major goal. That will be my motto throughout the next 4 months. Set milestones, work towards these milestones and I will be able to achieve this major goal.