Saturday, September 29, 2012

Whew! Busy Weekend!!!

...whew! AR, Emma, Nana and I have had a BUSY weekend and it's only Saturday night! Last night, my mom, AR, Emma and I headed down to the Muny for Light the Night for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. My good friend, Laura, lost her mom to leukemia this past summer so we all walked in memory of her. It was a really neat event and there were lots of things to do there. Luckily, my mom came with me because I'd decided I needed to bring both my girls: AR & Emma. Here they are lovin' on each other.
 Here is me and my two good friends from high school, all of us with our daughters.
 Here's my girl and me! She was such a good girl, stayed up past her bedtime by a whole hour and wasn't a bit crabby. Of course, she slept awful but that's nothing new!
I have no idea how many people did the walk but it was such a neat thing. Everyone had balloons that lit up and we walked all around Forest Park. Well, my mom and I didn't walk the whole thing. We stopped at our car and left once everyone passed. Thank goodness because I'm sure it was a major traffic jam once everyone left. Hopefully this is a tradition AR and I will continue to do to let Linda's legacy live on.
OH! Linda's sister is a nurse at MO Bap. When we got to the event, I saw her first and said hi followed by, "The last time you saw me I was about to get an epidural!"
Then on Saturday, we had a special event at work. My mom brought AR up and an artist drew this of AR. Here she is saying, "Uh...that's supposed to be me?" Do you like how he as her sitting in what I'm guessing is a pool of pee?
She also had her foot and hand prints put on a plate, got to see a pony, saw HUGE pumpkins and heard some singers. She loved the singers and the band at the event last night. When she'd hear them, she'd start bouncing her booty to the music. I wish I could have walked around and done more with them but I had to work and it was BUSY! When I finally got home, I got this...a big hug and smile from my girl: 
Now tell me that isn't the best thing in the world to come home to! Now she's in bed and Nana, Matt and I are going to watch "What to Expect When You're Expecting." Matt and I were going to go see this on May 19 which was supposed to be the night before I was induced but instead I had a one day old baby! Thank goodness tomorrow we have a low key day to recover from the last 24 busy hours.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

On Being a Mom...

...they say that having a child changes your life and let me tell you it has! And I'm not talking about the obvious, here's what I'm talking about...

*Spit up is not as gross as it was before. A little spit up on your shirt ain't no thang. Burp clothes? Those are for the baby to know where NOT to spit up because I swear everytime, she does, it goes anywhere but on the cloth!

*I always thought babies with boogers in their nose was gross. Now I think boogers in the nose is a great idea! It's easier to hear the baby through the monitor at night.

*I remember seeing dirty diapers and thinking how gross poopy diapers are. Now that are just part of our every day routine and I look forward to them. I look forward to them because it's a sign that all is good and she's getting enough to eat.

*1am was late, 5am was all hours between 11pm and 5am just blend together and are neither early or late.

*Poop is a daily, sometimes hourly, topic.

*When I hear the word "pump" or "pumping," it takes on a whole new meaning.

*You will do anything and everything to make your baby laugh. No matter how dumb you look...and you will look pretty silly.

*I now fully understand the saying, "No use crying over spilled milk." However, I 100% disagree.

*Any mom is fair game for the gauntlet of questions I have regarding poop, breastfeeding, sleep, etc...

But the bottom line is...I wouldn't change it for anything!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Trying to Figure This Out Before My Hair Falls Out!!!

...OMG! I'm kind of at a point of I have no idea what to do regarding sleep and introducing solids.

I decided AR was ready for solids and started giving her single grain oatmeal. I read on this, called the Gerber hotline, I was ready. After 3 days, I stopped because I read about open gut and the nurse at the pedi office said to wait until her fouth month check-up which was yesterday. Those three days, she took it very well and seemed to like it. After her check-up yesterday, the doctor said to go ahead and intro. Plus she needs to be eating every 4 hours instead of every 3 and this may help. I have no idea how I'm going to stretch her out to 4 hours because after 3 she acts like she hasn't eaten in days!

So this morning, I decided to read up again on intro-ing solids. I'd decided we'd start again this weekend. Then I read that intro-ing solids could lead the baby to wean off the breast early. So now I'm back to being in limbo of I have no idea when to start! Ugh...

Her sleep...yeah, it sucks. She's STTN three times in the past month but those were only fakeouts because the other nights, she's up at 11, 1, 3 and sometimes every 30 minutes after that. At her check-up, the doctor asked if she was a good baby. I said, "She really is a good baby but she hates to sleep." Her response, we can fix that. Ha-like it's that' easy! I told her everything we do and she said that I should lay her down awake so when she wakes in the middle of the night she can put herself back to sleep. Okay, so most nights she falls asleep at the boob but not a deep sleep. Like when I lay her down her eyes open or some nights she's wide awake and I'll lay her down and she'll put herself to sleep. So I'm really doubting that this will work. In fact, I tried it with her nap just a few minutes ago and then spent 15 minutes calming her down. So yeah, I will never sleep again. Feel free to leave your tips but I guarantee I've tried it all...bedtime routine, dropped the night feeding, don't go in until she's crying and then just paci, ssh and rub belly if I have to. I tried about 5 minutes of CIO and put a stop to that. Both the nurse and doctor said I was doing everything right SO I just need to learn to function on zero sleep.

Then she said that she needs to be taking 3 naps a day totaling 4 hours and she shouldn't be awake for more than an hour and a half at a time. I looked at her schedule to see how we could adjust that and there's no way she'd only take 3 naps and not be awake for more than an hour and a half. As I type this, she's laying in her crib wide awake and has been awake for almost 2 hours.

I'm so frustrated of reading and stressing and trying things and it not working and reading and analyzing... I feel like AR is such a good baby, she just HATES sleep which affects the whole family and our attitudes. I'd hold her all the time to get her to sleep if I could but I can't and I know that won't help the problem. I really have learned to function on less sleep and most nights, I accept that when I lay down at 9:30, I'll be up in an hour or so but other nights, I just want to cry because I'! And I'm always the one that gets up to get her but Matt insists that he's up too because he wakes up when I get up. There's a huge difference between constantly getting up and sshhing (that's all I feel like I do some nights) and trying to fall back asleep vs waking up briefly and laying in bed while someone else takes care of her.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining (well, I guess I am). I just needed to vent this out. I love AR more than anything in the world and I'd give up every night of sleep for her. It's just frustrating because I know she can STTN but she just refuses too. Plus I have NO idea what to do with the food thing! I wish she'd come with an owner's manual :-)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Runners 4 Luke 5k...

...this morning was Runners 4 Luke annual 5k. It was perfect race weather. Not only was it my first race post-pregnancy (and in over a year!) but it was AR's first 5k too! My dad, MIL, sister and H did the race too. We all walked it and brought up the end of the race but we all finished in less than an hour. Haley and I ran the last quarter of a mile and OMG-I am so out of shape! All afternoon, I've been hobbling around sore from that much activity. Hopefully it'll kick start me back into gear!

AR did awesome! I was a little worried because the race started at 8 and that's when she normally eats. We got to the race and I nursed her right before the race started. Then put her in the jogging stroller and off we went. We all took turns pushing her. I thought she'd fall asleep about halfway through but it wasn't until right before the finish line that she passed out. She was alert the whole race looking around and taking in all the outdoors (which she loves just like her daddy). Most of the people that did this race were also from Matt's church so she met LOTS of new people today too.

Here's H, AR and I under the Spencer Creek bridge about a mile and half into the race.
Papa, H and AR after the you can see, she's passed out!
The whole clan: Sha, H, Papa, Star, AR and me. We all wore shirts from races in the past and I put AR in lime green pants to match us too. A big thanks to J from work for all the 6-12 months clothes. H and I sorted them last night and she's set for the upcoming season change.
It was a great morning but now I REALLY need a nap!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Introducing & Making Homemade Baby Food...

...I knew before AR arrived that I wanted to make my own baby food. Being married to an outdoorsman whose boss grows veggies and sells them to a local restaurant, it was really a no brainer for us. Once we fell into routine with AR and I saw all the fresh fruits and veggies around, I couldn't wait to start making baby food. Over Labor Day weekend, I took advantage of the lazy, rainy Saturday and started the adventure.

I searched all over Pinterest but mainly just followed this website. It lists what fruits and veggies to introduce at what months. I also read that baby food is good in the freezer for 4 months. Basically, everything I made over Labor Day weekend needs to be used before the end of the year.

In the next couple weeks, we plan to introduce cereal. I'm leaning towards starting with single grain oatmeal over rice cereal. Her 4 month check-up is on 9/18 so I plan on waiting until then and talking to the doctor. She's definitely showing interest in food but I don't think her swallowing is quite there yet. She always spits out her Vitamin D drops but I'm also thinking that maybe the cereal will help her swallowing (and cereal is much cheaper than spitting out those Vitamin D drops!).

Now on to the making of baby food! I spent about $12 for all the food and here's what all it made:
The haul included: green beans, carrots, zucchini, butternut squash, cauliflower, sweet potatoes, apples, plums & peaches.
I peeled, chopped, pureed everything and then put into ice cube trays. I let the trays sit for about 12 hours then popped them out and put them into freezer bags, labeled and put them away.
So here's how I did it...


Sweet potatoes, squash, carrots & zucchini:
I baked all of these items at 400 for about an hour. When it was soft, I pulled it out and let it cool. Then I scooped the insides out, put it in the Magic Bullet and done. I did add a little water to the thicker veggies to make it a thinner puree.

I didn't use the Magic Bullet for the sweet potatoes, I just mashed them with a fork, so they're a little lumpy (they were the first ones I made) but I figure I can puree a little more when I get them out. I used a HUGE zucchini. For the carrots, I wrapped them in foil then baked. The squash I used wasn't that big so it only made like 5 cubes.

Cauliflower & Green Beans:
I boiled the green beans and steamed the cauliflower. The I put in Magic Bullet and voila-baby food!

Plums, peaches & Apples:
Peaches and apples are both in the Dirty Dozen so I was sure to peel both of them. I also peeled the plums too. I used Golden Delicious apples but I think I'm also going to make some out of Granny Smith apples too. Once it was all peeled, I cut them into smaller bite-size pieces and simmered them in some water. Then I put in Magic Bullet and pureed. I tasted the plum on and it's pretty good.

I also plan on giving her bananas and avocados but those are so soft that I plan on buying fresh and mashing to give to her, no need to freeze. I figure any fruits she doesn't like, Matt and I can mix with oatmeal and as she gets used to more food, we'll do the same for her as breakfast. I'm sure with the leftover veggies, we can throw them in stew or chili or something so none will go to waste if she's not a fan.

I feel like we have a lot of orange veggies and not many fruits. I'm going to keep my eyes open for some other things I can make. I'm also starting to save coupons for yogurt so I can save some money there too. We plan on waiting to start on a weekend so tha we're not rushed. We also plan to start with veggies first so that she doesn't get used to sweet from fruit. When we get into regular routine, we'll do a fruit in the morning and her veggie at night. I'm excited to start this chapter with AR!

While I got the food out to take pics, I decided I'm show you how the breast milk is REALLY taking over the deep freeze. This is just the top layer, there's bags/cartons of milk below everything you can see too! And so far, we've only used 2 bags of frozen milk!!!
What foods do/did you plan to intro first? What did your kid like?

Updated: I forgot 2 things to tell you all! 1. I covered the ice cube trays with saran wrap when I put them in to freeze. If you find ice cube trays with cover, I'd highly recommend that instead. 2. The fruits were harder to pop out when frozen. My assumption is because they are sweeter and sticker so I had to use a fork on some of them to help get them out.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Four Months!!!

...16 weeks, four months and this baby is growing, growing, growing!!! This month I've posted her other bear photos for comparison and then both of her monthly basket pics.

AR 2 days old (May 20)

AR One Month Old
AR Two Months Old
AR Three Months Old
AR Four Months Old

Hey, not every picture is perfect-lol! In her defense, it was right before nap time. 
There you have it, my growing four month old baby girl!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Miss AR is 16 Weeks (or 4 Months)!!!

...well, my sweet baby is 4 months old!?! I know I say this every time but for real...where did the time go??? Unfortunately with going back to work, I have lacked taking pictures and the battery in our camera isn't working. :-( Luckily, Nana has been around taking LOTS of pictures. Next month, I should do an ongoing post so I remember everything because now it's the week of and I can't remember it all! Here goes though...

*All through the month of August, you stayed at home while I went to work. Nana, Grana or I were able to stay home with you. I LOVED this because Nana and Grana sent me pictures of you at work and I was able to call and check in with them whenever I wanted. Nana stayed with us at the house and she spoiled mommy and daddy too by cleaning the house and having dinner (and dessert!) every night! Almost every day you and Nana would be sitting on the front porch waiting for me to get off work. I loved pulling into the driveway and seeing you two. I barely had the car in park before I was out the door to get you.

The Tuesday after Labor Day, you went to the babysitter's for the first time. I guess you were anxious about it because you decided to wake up at 3am and NOT go back to sleep (first time you've ever done this too). Unfortunately, this made you pretty fussy all morning long at the babysitter's. I think that plus being some place new plus I think you may be teething made for a pretty rough morning. The sitter said after you got in a nice, long nap that you were happy and playing all afternoon. Of course, when I picked you up, you were crying and it broke my heart. I know it's just a transition time for both of us and I'm not sure who it's harder or me?

*Ever since the end of July, you have been a drooling machine and chewing on anything and everything. I think that part of your fussiness is because your gums are bothering you so I won't be surprised to see a tooth popping through sometime soon.

*Last Thursday, August 30, you rolled over...and over and over and over...You'd rolled belly to back one other time but not consistently. On Thursday, Nana called to tell me that you'd rolled from back to belly twice that morning. By the time I got home from work, Nana said that's ALL you did. And when you'd roll over, you'd be content for awhile then get bored and want us to roll you back over only so you could roll over again!

On Friday morning, I went in to wake you up. I opened up your swaddle and let you stretch. Within 2 seconds of being'd rolled over! You still do this almost every morning.

*I love hearing you laugh which you are doing more frequently now. Your cousin Haley was flapping a trash bag which made you laugh hysterically plus, as always, the dogs always crack you up!

*Daddy and I let you grasp our fingers and we'll say, "Big girls sit up!" and we help you sit up. Lately, when we say it, you'll scrunch up like you're trying to sit up yourself. In the past few days though, you go straight from sitting up to wanting to stand.

*In the evening when you start to get fussy, we'll take you outside and you immediately stop crying. Guess you're going to love the outdoors just like your daddy!

*This past Wednesday night you slept through the night but it was a one time thing.  I woke up at midnight because I heard you fuss but you never woke up. About 2am, I heard something strange on the monitor. I went in to check on you and you'd wiggled yourself sideways. You were kicking your legs and hitting the side of the crib. I gently moved you back and you briefly opened your eyes. I gave you the paci and you fell back asleep. I heard you fussing around 4 and thought, "We made it so close!" but you must've fallen back asleep because when the alarm went off at 5, you were still sleeping. Now though when you wake up, I don't feed you because I know you can make it that long without eating and you don't act hungry either. I give you your paci, ssh you and rub your belly and you're usually back asleep withint 5 minutes. I really think you'd like sleeping through the night so why don't you give it another try? It makes you and mommy both feel like rock stars the next day when you do. :-)

On to pictures, shall we?

Grana Star let you suck on a carrot one day because she thought it would help your gums...SMH. The next day Nana watched you and took this picture. She sent it to me saying you prefer Cracker Jacks over carrots.
Nana found all your bath toys and you guys decided to play with ALL of them!
Look at you, sweet baby, holding your own bottle. You do need help tipping it up but for the most part, you're doing it all on your own!
Look at those chubby legs! Chubby legs makes mommy feel good that you're getting PLENTY to eat. Mommy is contemplating when to start you on baby food. I think you're excited because you stare intently at us when we're eating.
 Look at me! I'm standing...kinda.
Happy 16 weeks Baby Girl! Momma loves you more than you'll ever know. OXXO (Not the store)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Lactation Cookies-yum!

...last week, there was a thread on The Leaky Boob about lactation cookies. Basically they are oatmeal chocolate chip cookies but you use flaxseed, Brewer's yeast and thick cut oats. Those three ingredients are supposed to boost your milk production. I'm not experiencing low production but I'm always game to try out a new cookie recipe! I found the following recipe on the Simply Real Moms blog:

Lactation Cookies
Author: Jasmine
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 10 mins
Total time: 20 mins
  • Lactation Cookies
  • Ingredients:
  • 1 C butter
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1 C brown sugar
  • 4 T water
  • 2 T flaxseed meal (DO NOT substitute)
  • 2 Lg eggs
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 C flour
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 3 C Thick cut oats
  • 1 C Chocolate chips
  • 2 T Brewers Yeast (DO NOT substitute)
  1. Preheat oven to 375.
  2. Mix 2 T of flaxseed meal and water, set aside 3-5 minutes.
  3. Cream butter and sugar.
  4. Add eggs.
  5. Stir flaxseed mix into butter mix and add vanilla.
  6. Beat until well blended.
  7. Sift: dry ingredients, except oats and choc chips.
  8. Add butter mix to dry ingredients.
  9. Stir in the oats and then the choc chips.
  10. Drop on parchmant paper on baking sheet.
  11. Bake 8-12 minutes.
They were pretty good. I think they tasted better after sitting overnight. Matt kept eating some and I would tell him I could see his boobs leaking. I'd say they worked. The next morning, after feeding AR, I pumped 10 ounces!!! Oh, I also heard almonds help increase milk production so I threw some in my recipe as well. Enjoy!