Newborn no more, and yes I am that Mom

Leia will be 16 weeks tomorrow. Apparently you are only a newborn up to three months. Now she is an “infant”. She is so different! She is still petite for her age. I am so curious what she weighs. She looks much tinier than a lot of other babies I see her age or younger. She is actually tall though, (tall and slim, she did not get that from me!), but I don’t think it is noticeable because she is so tiny otherwise. We go to the doctor August 8th, and I just hope she weighs “enough”. The last thing I want to hear is that I should supplement formula or something, she seems to eat a lot to me and it is a lot of work! I know breastfeeding is supposed to help keep a baby from being obese and even somehow supposed to help it be less likely to be obese later on, so I am hoping she is just a perfectly healthy trim girl!

I feel like she is changing all the time. I have to look at pictures to remember the newborn face already. Tonight on our evening stroll I noticed she took up so much more of the car seat than she used too.  She smiles more and more and I even heard a wonderful laugh yesterday! It was maybe the best sound I have ever heard! She is soooo wiggly now. She has rolled both ways for a few weeks now. At night she just scoots and rolls all over the crib. It’s crazy I will put her in the top middle of the crib and I go in to get her and she is in the bottom corner and has gone horizontal instead of vertical! She was getting her legs stuck in the crib slats until I bought a mesh bumper called “breathable bumper”. At the advice of all the experts and APA I removed her pretty crib bumper when she started rolling (which for us was very eary!) because I just want her to be safe even though i love her pretty bedding, but then found she was getting her little legs stuck in the crib so had to find the mesh bumper to stop that. I would highly recommend it to anyone, I feel much better. The first night I bought it I came in to check on her and her face was smashed right up against it, so i was glad it was breathable!

I think some of this mobility could account for some of the sleep issues we have been having. Well that is one of my many theories anyway. We went through that growth spurt and though her sleep has gotten better it still isn’t what it was.  It is a constant puzzle to me. She seems to do well with her naps most of the time during the day, she goes to sleep at her normal time at night, but then this month night is kind of a free for all :/

I am trying to see if we can sleep without Woombie. (If you don’t know want woombie is check it out, one of my FAVORITE things! http://www.woombie.com/static.php?page=product_overview) The main reason I am trying to do that is because she is getting so adept at rolling and i don’t like the idea of her rolling on to her tummy and getting stuck because her arms are swaddled (this happened one night and I awoke to a VERY angry baby, she hates being on her tummy!).  It’s exciting to see her becoming more mobile and growing, but it is tough too. I love Woombie! I love seeing her bundled up in it, and just the fact that she has sort of outgrown it makes me tear up.

It is things like this that make me realize I am fully Mom now. I tear up so easily! just looking at her, hearing her laugh, putting away little clothes she has outgrown, etc, etc, etc makes me feel like a Hallmark commercial. I look back and remember all the times I thought “Gee Mom why are you crying?” and now I understand. Though I still think my mom could out- sap me, I know Leia Juliet will be wondering why I tear up over all kinds of things she does.

 

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Growth Spurt Blues

I am pretty sure Leia is having her 3 month growth spurt. From what I have read it is the only logical conclusion, and if they really do last 10-12 days I would say we are somewhere in the middle of it.  This has been the worst growth spurt yet in my opinion! She has been extra fussy and her sleep at night all over the place.

It is just so frustrating, I have tried since she was born to have her on a flexible, or “parent directed” schedule of some sort. I am not super organized about it, and I don’t know if it is as much her nature (or the awesome woombie) as it is my efforts, but for the past month or so she has been on a really predictable sleep pattern. Nap from around 1-3, bed around 7:30-8:00, dreamfeed at 10 or 10:30 and then she would sleep until about 4:30 or 5! Pretty cool if I do say so myself! She has been a good little sleeper since she came home, I wasn’t expecting that at all, so it makes it all the more disconcerting when she goes through messed up sleep times. I feel like I messed something up or we are moving backwards, but really I think it is just a growth spurt. Babies grow so ridiculously fast!!I haven’t changed the routine up and she wants to eat so much more than usual.

I miss the routine! I am tired out from the extra feeding and the crazy nights. I feel really bad for her too, it cannot be easy growing so rapidly 😦  It is stretching me as a Mom in several ways. One, like i said I try hard to have a routine. In my mind it seems really good for her, so I arrange our day around her sleep times. I have been pretty successful so far and I think we have both thrived with our schedule, and then it all seems to fall apart and I have to try and figure out what is wrong and hope things can go back to normal, and then I question my efforts and what she needs. Should I be more organized or less, is she really hungry again, yes it seems so! What else could be bothering her? (I am always wondering when she will start teething too!?) Basically, it forces me to see I don’t have control.  Then of course physically, extra breastfeeding and less sleep leaves me pooped, combined with extra fussy time, I am beginning to feel like a zombie by the end of the day.

It is amazing to me though how I always find the energy and patience I need to care for her. In the middle of the night stumbling to her room, or after changing my shirt for the third time in one day due to spit up or pee, i always have what I need to love her. I get nervous about providing for the needs of a new baby when the time comes and Leia at the same time, but I know I should trust the Lord that He obviously gives us what we need for our callings.  Being a Mom has made me see my capacity in new ways, and see God’s grace in new ways! Coincidentally, I think it has made me braver, I can kill spiders now on my own for some reason.

Off to dreamfeed, a few days ago I thought I might give it up because she has been waking up anyway, but since I now am convinced it is a growth spurt I am going to stick to the routine for now and hope the ship holds together!

diapers and other strange obsessions

I remember talking about cloth diapers with women before I had Leia, and hearing them say they were “passionate” about cloth diapers. I will admit, though I planned on cloth diapering I thought that was weird. I mean we are talking about diapers right? What could be more of a necessary evil? I loved the cost of cloth compared to disposables, and disposables just felt so wasteful to me in general. I think I feel since I am blessed to be a stay at home Mom when I can save our family money I really should too, so maybe it is a bit of me trying to be a Proverbs 31 chick too lol.  I saw no reason why I couldn’t succeed with cloth, I have my own washing machine (not a community one in an apartment building) and I am a full time Mom.  I didn’t think they would be a “passion” though.

Well, as weird as it may seem , I love cloth diapers!! Seriously, it is like a hobby (not the actual diaper changing of course, but even that gives me a chance to connect with Leia and try and make her more comfortable and happy). There is totally a cloth diaper community out there too, apparently a lot of Moms get passionate about cloth diapers. I guess part of it is just the amount of time you spend cloth diapering and the overabundance of variety available in cloth diapers. There are so many kinds to try and you change so many diapers so comparing them and finding ones you like comes naturally, and even getting excited about certain kinds that make your life easier or have other qualities you like. I definitely get why people don’t cloth diaper, if I was working outside the home I will be honest I probably wouldn’t deal with it, if I had to share washers with an apartment building full of people I might not want to soak my poopy diapers in everyones washer either 🙂 But for me I just have not found cloth diapering to be too inconvenient. The only time I have used disposables was the hospital, because well I just had a lot on my mind going there and didn’t want to deal with packing all my new and unused CD stuff, and then our road trip to San Francisco because you just have to pack so many CD’s (though our last long weekend at the beach I did do cloth 🙂 For long vacations I plan on giving into disposables with the exception of swim diapers most likely, again just because of the packing issue and having transport all my dirt diapers back home. (I don’t want to be soaking diapers in a sink at a resort in Hawaii!)

So I don’t even really know why I love them I just do! I know that I love the cost, I feel pretty confident they cause less diaper rash and have less nasty chemicals and things to rub against a baby’s skin, I love that I don’t feel so wasteful, and they are super cute and to me look more comfortable than disposables. My favorites FYI are envibums. I will include a link because I love the company and the product so much! I hope to have envibums take over my whole CD stash.  They are all in ones (this means they basically are like a disposable in that you just velcro the diaper on baby and then throw the whole thing in the wash when it is dirty) and fit from 7lbs to 35 lbs! So even though they are about 20$ a piece (I am building my stash slowly) they can last all of baby’s diapering days! http://www.envibum.com/

My other thing is my Beco baby carrier, aah I love it. I researched and researched baby carriers before choosing it. I knew I wanted a back pack type carrier as well as my wrap. The wrap hold is great at having a nice tight swaddle type hold for a new baby, but yikes it is super hot to wear and just not working now that it is summer. The Beco is a versatile carrier, baby can ride facing me, facing out, on my back or on my hip. Right now, she just rides facing me, she is just about old enough to face out a bit if she wants. I love the freedom it gives me to walk the dog, push a grocery cart instead of a stroller or a grocery cart taken over by her in a car seat. It really is pretty easy on my back, which for me is a big deal. It really is a great tool if you want to stay active!

I wouldn’t say breastfeeding is an obsession, it definitely isn’t a hobby for me. I think it is totally worth it and am really thankful I have had a pretty smooth experience so far with it, but even when it is going well I find it to be hard work! It is just a lot to feed a baby every two hours. I always remind myself that bottles are probably an even bigger pain in a lot of ways, but it kind of wears you out! I mean it takes about 1200 calories a day, that is no joke! On the bright side it has meant for me a great natural weight loss plan 🙂 So I don’t obsess over it in the way I do my diapers, but it is hard work and it is hard to not be proud about it sometimes. Maybe that sounds dumb, but when you do hit a rough patch with it and keep going and overcome it it seems like a big deal and you know you are only doing it because you feel it is best for your baby so I can just kind of understand why some women get so big into lactation rights and everything, it isn’t totally my thing, but I can understand it. I remember as a teenager thinking I would never breastfeed, but I am a very different girl than I was then 🙂 It is pretty cool that God can use your body to provide such specialized nutrition for your baby. An even though, personally I am kind of looking forward to the day I can just hand her some cheerios and a sippy cup when we are out in public, I feel blessed to be able to breastfeed and really hope to do it for a full year (though if at 6 months she seriously slows down or something I don’t know that I will be quite as upset as I thought I would have been before I was pregnant)