Saturday, October 31, 2009

Trick or Treat

Halloween in photos - and a few words!

It wasn't Halloween yet...we were just getting ready :)

Five weeks old and ready for bed

On our way out into the neighborhood to go Trick or treating

Mommy's little pea pod

Trick or Treat!

No body's home at our first house.

Oh good, Maria's home!

We borrowed the Thompson's pumpkin as a photo prop.

Daddy dressed as a football player

Our family self portrait

Time for a story before bed :) Thanks for the book Nana and grandpa Hooke

Friday, October 30, 2009

Back to Running

So today I did something I haven't done in 10 or 11 months. I RAN...well actually it was more like a jog, but I got on the treadmill for 30 min. I was slow and only ran 2 miles but I did it and it was good. Now to just find the time to do this 3 times a week with a newborn. That will be tough :)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

A mom date?

So a mom from one of the groups I am in exchanged numbers with me today so we could get together to walk or something. Its kinda like mommy dating. I haven't dated in 8 years. Do I wait 3 days to call? Do I send a text? Not quite sure what the etiquette is on this one....

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Its been a while

So since my mom left a few weeks ago I was diagnosed with Thrush - which I still have three weeks later. Its like fire runs through my boobs and makes my nipples fairly tender. I feel like they will never heal. I hope this isn't my daughter and I passing it back and forth to one another. I think I might try this Gentian Violet stuff next week if my OB and her Ped. have nothing to say.
The Hooke's also came to visit for a week. Joe Sr. was great about taking care of Bear as he always is whenever he comes to visit. I wished he had felt more comfortable holding Kirsten. I know he wanted to based on his love for her, but he expressed to my husband that he was a bit afraid. I wish guys weren't so afraid. They aren't really that fragile as long as you you don't drop them :) Mary helped me with the household chores as well as cleaning up my garden. This was a huge favor. I hate the part of gardening that requires hard labor and she does such a great job of it. I really can't thank her enough for getting all that cleaned up and thrown out.

We've gone to Rudner's wedding and Kirsten got to meet her cousin's for the first time. They were beyond loving to her and it warmed my heart to see them with her. They couldn't stop touching her and loving her. It was so nice to see - especially Thomas. Boys always seem so afraid of babies and it was nice to see him not afraid what so ever.

Kirsten seems to be developing OK. She holds her head up great and this allows her to sit up a bit. She had some crazy poop today that was foamy. I don't just mean a little foamy - it was like it had been made in a restaurant by a designer chef foamy. Both her Ped. and the LC think it had to do with the fact that I ate broccoli with dinner last night. There goes that vegetable for a bit :)
Mentally I'm doing pretty good. I am amazed at how much we sleep and how well she is doing. We tried something new tonight which is at her typical 7pm fussy time - put her to bed (which I must note is still in her swing - but exclusively her swing). Which worked. We then had a peaceful dinner and after she woke up at 9:15 for her next feeding, she went right back to sleep and we are watching the game. If this can be a routine - that will make me very happy. Now to just transfer her from the swing to the crib - I think I might wait until after Thanksgiving or even Christmas. Swaddling though works like a charm.

On a totally different note - I have a new dessert love - Pumpkin pudding - YUMM-O! Getting ready for Halloween!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Thank You for Everything MOM!

This afternoon I drove my mom to the airport and as I watched her walk into the terminal with tears in her eyes, I wished there was more that I could do or say to tell her how incredibly grateful I was for all that she did for me. On a hurt ankle she went up and down the stairs, carrying laundry, the baby, everything. She made my bed, changed my sheets, cooked me meals, did the dishes. Everything.

Not only did she work like crazy while she was here, she was also my emotional rock at all times. She held my hand, rubbed my back, gave me hugs, wiped my tears and supported me throughout all the struggles a new mom faces. I have now become a mom and I hope that over the next 30 years I can grow to become half the woman and the supportive mother that she is to me and my sister.

Mom, I can't tell you how much I love you and thank you for being here. I know I told you over and over, but it was so incredibly special to me that you were here. I can't express how grateful I am for all you did. I just hope for the birth of my next baby, that we won't have to worry about flights home and that you can just drive home :) Cross your fingers.

Love you, Em

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Reflections on week one - warning - lots of info...more a spot for me to reflect than to share

So we have had the baby home for exactly a week today. It was a really tough week for me but in the end, I think I am in a much better place because of the events. When I came home from the hospital my nipple were incredibly cracked and very sore. I felt like watching my daughter latch on, I was trying too hard and in the end I think I was passing on my stress. It hurt - EVERY time. I was told it shouldn't hurt, but it did. So I just let it hurt and figured that this too shall pass.

By Tuesday, I could tell my nipples were in worse shape. I had tried to call a LC, but their return calls were while I was at the pediatrician. I went to do an afternoon feeding and my nipple started bleeding into my daughters mouth. Watching my daughter have blood coming out of her mouth caused me to break down incredibly. I had to feed her so I switched her to the other side, but I was a mess. I tried to return the LC's phone calls in whatever way I could. I was finally instructed to pump for the night and come in to the office in the morning to figure out what my next steps were.

I was told I had the Grand Canyon of cracked and bleeding nipples. I was put on a hospital grade pump, told to feed my daughter using a paced feeding method using bottles and apply Jack Newman's nipple ointment after every pumping. I was also told to let my boob get some air drying and sun whenever possible.

Here I sit, Sunday evening and my nipples are as good as new. I am producing anywhere from 2-3 oz. at each pumping. My daughter is sleeping great and gaining weight. My husband seems to enjoy the fact that he can bond with her. I have 4 bottles stored in the freezer and three in the fridge and I am able to leave her at home and go run errands. Overall, things are going REALLY well! I certainly had the baby blues for a few days this week, but if anything this has been very helpful to that recovery. I think when I go back to nursing - hopefully gradually tomorrow - I will be more calm and relaxed, knowing I have alternatives.

I would love to be an exclusively breast feeding mommy, but if I have to be a pumping mommy that is OK too. I just want what is best for her and I know that the milk she receives from me is exactly what she needs. I can't wait to go back to that mommy, baby bonding time that comes with nursing, but then again, I get lots of that at night and during the day - like right now :)

... A funny side note story from this week, on Wednesday night, I pumped 2 full oz. and was incredibly proud. We read we could leave the bottle out for 4 hours and after around 3 I got nervous so I had my husband put it in the bag of ice next to me. In both of our extreme exhaustion, the bottle tipped over, losing over an ounce of milk. Once J noticed this he went into panic mode, thinking how am I going to tell her about this. He thought of a way to separate the milk from the water - to no avail. So he told me...instead of breaking down, I just said, OK...I gotta pump! While pumping he realized that the bottle was leaking and so I didn't have to make up for the 1 ounce that was lost but the entire 2 ounces since she really got only about a 1/4 of an ounce. I was glad I held it together and this probably was the turning point.

I am proud that I can type about the challenges of this week and not cry. That's a first. I guess I really just realized that as my parents always say - God only gives you what you can handle - obviously he believes in me quite a bit, because I think he gave me a lot this week. Most of all - he gave me someone I love so much and I treasure every second with her. I can't wait to watch her everyday as she continues to grow and change!