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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The End of the Beginning

Well I'm nearing the end of my maternity leave. I have this week plus two weeks left. We have decided to get our carpet replaced before I start again. With two little ones crawling around, we realize how nasty and dirty the current carpet is - we probably should have gotten new carpet after Guinness was potty trained, but once you have furniture in, its such a hassle! And we will be getting a bunk bed system for the girls soon, and it will be much easier to do the carpet before we start ADDING furniture to their room. So in preparation we have started a late summer cleaning of the whole house, but concentrating on the upstairs, where the carpet is. Man does it feel good! I didn't realize how much of my cabin fever was related to how much stuff we had accumulated and what a mess our house has become. It feels so good to go through things, organize it all and purge what we don't need. Rule of thumb; if you haven't used it or needed it in the last 2 years, GET RID OF IT. It's so liberating! And it looks soooo much better too. Let me tell you how much I'm looking forward to being done with the infant stage for good so that we can get rid of all the baby stuff!

Abby is doing great. She gained 7 oz last week and tomorrow is her 2 month appointment so we will see if she did as good this week. She has been starving all the time and feeding really well so I have a feeling she gained well. I looked at Rory's chart for comparison and at 10 weeks she was 8 lbs, 12 oz - so about the same. Even being aware of how fast they grow its crazy; she's done being super tiny... my little 6 lb baby is going to be 9 lbs soon! We have introduced the bottle too in prep for me going back. At first I thought she didn't like it but I realized A. I didn't have the right bottle (I was using the standard Medela one instead of the Playtex drop ins which Rory liked), B. We weren't trying it when she was hungry, but after a feeding as a "top off", and C. Didn't realize she just takes for freaking ever to eat! Three days in a row now she has had her breakfast in a bottle and taken 1-3 oz each time, and takes up to 20 min to drink it! Rory would down a 4 oz bottle in 10 min so I just was not used to that at all. But she's still not where she should be so we will see if they give me a hard time. I've been saving all my excess milk from the morning and evening pumpings and getting 16-20 oz a day stored. So every day I pump is a day's worth of milk for later. I got really worried when the crazy So Cal blackout happened last Thursday that I would have to throw out the milk I already had frozen but during the 12 hour shortage it didn't appear that any of the milk started to thaw out so I think it should be fine.

Abby's eyes are still a deep dark sapphire - at least for now. Ryan's baby book reports that his eyes turned brown at 3 months so we should find out soon enough! Her skin is definitely darkening up, that's for sure. And the hair is just as thick and dark. My little Ryan baby!

She is still on the same sleep schedule. We are putting her to bed earlier (like 7) because she gets really cranky if you don't put her down early. Then she wakes up about 1am, 3am and 6am for feedings. She is wide awake after the 6am feeding and really happy, until the 9am feeding, then likes to go down for a morning nap until the next feeding. We have figured out too (after MANY fussy nights) that she likes sleeping in her carseat best! Go figure. She didn't like the bassinet that we used for Rory, and while she likes the cradle swing we got her recently during the day and for awake time, she doesn't really like to sleep in it. But she always sleeps really well day or night in her carseat. So carseat it is!

Rory is such a good girl and I'm enjoying her so much. She's just a beautiful person, inside and out already. I feel so lucky to have such a wonderful person in my family. :0) She's sweet, helpful, thoughtful and intuitive. I swear she is going to go into some kind of care taking profession (nurse, doctor, vet, teacher...) She is talking so much too! Her words are adorable - no one can understand them but us but it's still so stinking cute. Yogurt is "oh-grit". Thanks is "sanks". She tells daddy and I to "calm down" and holds out her hand to exemplify. She tells Guinness "no barking, Guinness!". The other day I finished my bottle of prenatals, and asked her to throw the empty one in the recycling bin. She did so, but then went and got a new bottle of vitamins and gave it to me. I was stunned! Then today she was playing in the sand at the Cross's and she found a bottle cap and showed it to me. I showed her where the bottle cap bucket was, and told her if she found any more to put them there too. I opened a water bottle and set down the cap. I turned around a minute later and the cap was gone - Rory had taken it and put it in the bucket! lol. She takes initiative for sure.

I haven't been able to find too much time to do more than take the girls on walks, and so some planking here and there. It is helping a little though; my stomach muscles are less than a finger width apart now, and my weight is slowly creeping back down to that 140 norm range. I'm hovering around 146 right now. I'm dreading trying on all my work clothes to see which ones fit and which don't.

Ryan's birthday is this week; 31, old man. And my big 30 is next month. Holey cow! When did I get so old? Oh yeah, since I went to college, married Ryan, and had kids. I guess when you think back a lot HAS happened in the last decade for me.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Falling Into a Groove

Well Abby will be 2 months old next week and I can say that I am finally getting a routine down and *sometimes* feel in control and on top of things. First of all might I say that without a housekeeper I would be going absolutely bonkers and living in filth. Best $160 a month I've ever spent and Ill do anything to make sure we have enough money to keep this service.

That being said, the normal routine is getting up in the morning, feeding Abby, settling her down for her morning nap, getting Aurora up with her bottle and settling in front of KPBS for Curious George, Cat in the Hat, Super Why, Dinosaur Train (depending on what time we get up and how long it takes me to get breakfast ready and pack stuff up for the day). Then we eat, get dressed and go out for the morning activity. By then its between 9-10am. Our morning activity (some errand or the park) lasts until about noon, when it is time to head back home to get Rory in her bath before going down for her nap. Then while (hopefully) both girls are down for naps I can get some stuff done (like blogging). Otherwise Im trying to settle Abby if she's fussy for the entirety of Rory's nap. After Rory wakes up its time to check the mail, take Guinness for a walk and start dinner for when Ryan comes home. We eat dinner when he gets home, play with the girls, then start the bed time routine and have Rory and Abby in bed by (a goal of) 8pm so that Ryan and I can have a few hours to ourselves to watch (a goal of) 2 episodes of our new fav show, Battlestar Galactica before going to bed around 10pm. The next day, wake up and repeat. How the heck does the entire day go so fast???? I feel like I live for those few hours alone with Ryan to just sit back, relax and zone out (or rather in) to another world.

I have to say having two, especially this close together is HARD. Its overwhelming at times. Sometimes I think I will loose my mind. Then there are the times when both girls are happy, their needs are met, the house is not an absolute mess, I'm mostly caught up on chores, and I can just sit back, relax and enjoy my beautiful daughters... Abby starting to smile and look around as her eyesight improves, Rory in her joyous innocence, with such a sweet love of her sister and the fascinating world she explores. Those moments are priceless and enough to bring me to tears, and the tough times are TOTALLY worth it all. When its hard, I just have to remind myself to stop, breathe through it, and remember that this too, shall pass... and take things one step at a time.

I only have a month left before going back to work on Oct 3rd. So Im just going to try to enjoy it, because although Im craving my own time back now, I know Ill miss my time alone with the girls once it is gone.

Ive been going to Sharp's breastfeeding group which is amazing. Nicole introduced me to it last round of kids and Ive been going now that I have Abby too. Shes not gaining enough, and I really need to figure out how to get more into this child! At a good feeding she will take in about 3 oz at a time (other babies at this point are up to 4 oz or more). Which isnt totally abnormal, especially considering thats about the most Rory ever took in either at this age. But sometimes I dont get a good feeding in and she doesnt get that much. Shes only waking up twice a night; once at about 1am and then again at like 5 or 6 am. She gained 1 oz the first week I went to the group, then I spent a lot of time concentrating on getting good feedings in and she did much better at 4 oz the second week but then this last time she only gained 2 oz. So shes 7 lbs 12 oz now at 7 weeks old. Im going to start sleep feeding her an ounce with a bottle at night before we go to bed, and maybe introduce a bottle a day to start getting her ready for me going back to work and hopefully she will get a little more than she takes in through nursing with this new plan too. Cause they are going to read me the riot act if she is not up more than this at her 2 month apt in two weeks.

My mom's shoulder surgery seems to have gone well and now its all about healing and eventually we will see what kind of good the surgery was able to do. Everyone is getting surgery; just found out Ryan's Uncle Chuck is having a hip replaced. Do we really just fall apart so easily once we get over 50 years old??? Reminder to me to take good care of my body now so that it can serve me better later on.

Ooop, Abby is up! LOL. That didnt last long. At least I got to enjoy my bloody mary and get in a blog post! More later.