Thursday, May 15, 2014

Family and Friends.

Happy Mother's Day!  As Andrew and I get even closer to becoming 2nd time parents, we find ourselves lamenting over the fact that our own mamas are so far away.  There is a new breed of mother appreciation born with your first child and it only grows (and grows and grows!).

The month of April was a full one for us - first with a very first trip to NYC for Andrew's mom!  She was able to stay for two whole weeks and we were so happy that she was able to make the trip:)

We had one day between the day Andrew's mom left and the day Lua and I left for Nebraska, during which Lua had the misfortune of eating some bad food :(  We weren't sure we'd be able to get on the plane (what with the puking and all), but thanks to liquid-tight tupperware, we made it!  Lua was actually feeling about 90% by the time we landed and stayed stupidly happy for the entire trip:)

We also had the amazing fortune to hang out with my dear, lovely mama-friend Laura and her two girls:)  Laura and I were roommates in college and to this day, she is one of the few people who I know loves me for me and isn't afraid to tell me what's what when I need to hear it.  Friends like this happen very rarely and I am so lucky that we have kept in touch to see and support each other through motherhood!

I'll say it again, Laura, I wish we were closer than an entire country apart :(  Your gals are beautiful (sorry I didn't get any good shots of Genevieve!).

And then it was back to Aurora for more family and fun at the zoo, where Lu got to ride her first horse!!!

Hope you all enjoyed your April as much as we did!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

pictured, not pictured.

I stole this lovely post idea from one of my favorite blogs, Longest Acres.  Her photographs and writing about life on a farm in Vermont are just beautiful.  Check it out!


1.  Ingredients for my dad's famous oatmeal.  Seriously, I was never an oatmeal fan (the texture is, right?) until my father forced me to eat this concoction.  The secret is an ample (AMPLE) amount of cinnamon and a bit of maple syrup.  Put these two things in first, to taste.  After that, the sky's the limit!  I, personally, always have bananas, apples, walnuts and craisins on hand, but have been known to add peaches, dried pears, blueberries and almonds as well.

2.  This happy chickadee.  She is so into books lately, which is great, but she has this new found love for baby, sounds, touch n feel....which I guess is okay, right?

3.  Our redone serial killer bathroom.  It's hard to get a decent picture of the whole thing, but it looks SO MUCH BETTER.

4.  Me and babyKO2.  I am so excited to meet her and can't believe I'm soon to be entering trimester THREE.  Whoa.

Not Pictured:

1.  The terrible weather we've been having.  It's gone from 20 degrees and blowing to 50 degrees and raining all day.  Last night, I took Lua to the park at 7pm, because the rain had stopped for just a second and we were both so stir crazy.

2.  The now-infamous orange tutu (size 6-12months) that Lua insists on wearing all day, every day.

3.  Poor old Tank, who needs a good spring brushing, but keeps being put off because...well...he's an asshole.

4.  The pile of baby things on the dresser, just begging to be set up into a little babyKO2 corner.  I've promised Andrew that I won't buy any more clothes until I've gone through what we already have in storage (I pretty much saved everything) and I am feverishly itching to get to that 0-3months box!  Something about those tiny tiny clothes, you know?

Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!!!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

10 things I wish I would've known as a new mama.

So, I've been thinking a ton about this lately.  Maybe it's because I'm going to be a mama to TWO very soon.  Maybe it's because a few of my friends are becoming new mamas this year.  Whatever the reason, I thought I'd jot down my 2 cents.

10.  Starting here.  Don't listen to anyone's advice.  Ha!  Or, rather, don't take any advice as fact.  Someone tells you, "the only way to do this one thing is THIS WAY." Run.  Or smile politely and think about Ryan Gosling.  Babies are each their own, special, incredible beast.  Some need 5 forty minute naps, some sleep for two hours at a time.  Some babies love to be held/swaddled, some would rather have their space.  And to go with that, every family is different.  It works for some mamas to babywear their wees all day long.  Some mamas can't even sort of entertain that idea.  It never hurts to listen and try-out advice to see if it works for your family, but in the end, don't be afraid to chuck it all out the window.

9.  Get in the bathtub!  Seriously, don't buy a silly baby tub.  Just get in with that babe.  Put a towel over your legs (it's going to get wet in the water and can double as a washcloth) and enjoy that soaking time.  If you can't do that, or plain-old don't want to, the sink is a nice alternative:)

8.  Get some postpartum clothes that are comfortable and make you feel good.  Seriously.  You're going to feel like a hot mess and you're not going to have time to shop or even think about what you're wearing.  I'm not saying to go buy some skinny jeans.  Maybe more like yoga pants?

7.  Breastfeeding hurts at first.  Why some (most) lactation consultants tell you that, if it hurts you're doing it wrong, I will never ever ever know.  It hurts.  Don't say it doesn't.  Even if you have the most perfect latch.  Your baby's mouth is small.  Your boobs are 17x larger than they ever have been before.  Both of you are new to this. And this is (most likely) the first time someone has sucked on your nipples for an hour at a time, ten times a day.  So, it's not comfortable.  Or kumbaya.  But I'm here to tell you that it will be.  Stick with it.  MAKE SURE you have a proper latch.  Stick with it.  It will become kumbaya.

6.  Make time for daddy.  Not baby/daddy time, although that is important.  Mommy/Daddy time.  Whether it is a 30 second hug in the kitchen or catching up on the latest episode (or 13) of House of Cards.  You're not going to be able to (read: feel like) get down and dirty with daddy for over a month after baby and while he totally understands that, remember that this whole baby thing is as much of a life changing experience for him as it is for you.  He suddenly has a whole new set of responsibilities and worries and it's pretty easy to feel neglected when almost all the attention is piled onto you and the wee one (as well it should be:).

5.  Figure out how to use the shit you bought before that baby comes.  Take two hours before you get too close to your due date (2 weeks, maybe?) and figure out how the car seat attaches to the stroller.  How to use your Moby wrap.  How the heck to swaddle.  I'll never forget, 3 days after Lua was born, we had to go down to her first pediatric appointment.  We didn't have time then to figure out the whole car seat-to-stroller thing and ended up carrying the car seat onto the subway and for about 10 blocks after.  If anyone has carried a car seat before, you know that you kind of have to carry it up and away from your body, so baby doesn't bang against your legs.  Let's just say we barely made it.

4.  The whole "sleep" thing.  Ya.  So.  I was pretty determined NOT to sleep-train my babies.  I personally thought sleep training was stupid and inhumane and if you weren't willing to be sleep deprived, then maybe you shouldn't be a mama.  Please don't take me seriously.  I was pretty sleep deprived at the time.  I will say that this time I plan to make a teensy effort to help babyko2 by creating a distinct difference between night and day.  No more midnight movie screenings with lights and sound.  This doesn't mean that I've hopped aboard the sleep train (get it?), but I do think that you have to do what makes you the best mama.  There were some days after I'd only gotten about 45 minute stretches of sleep that I felt really crazy.  Crazy enough to do something stupid?  Not quite.  But I would be bouncing/shhhhing/rocking/dancing Lu to sleep for the 50th time and she would be wailing and I would think, I can totally see how some people throw their children.  Don't throw your kids.

3.  Frozen witch hazel pads and a postpartum support band.  Both of these are for vaginal deliveries only.  Get some witch hazel and pour a bit into a large, cheap sanitary pad (or 10 or 20...I recommend closer to 20).  Then, stick them in a couple plastic bags and pop them into the freezer.  After you get home from the hospital/birthing center/wherever you pushed that baby out, you will most likely be SORE in so many delicate places.  Take a pad out and let it thaw for a few minutes, then use just like a normal pad.  So heavenly and cool and relieving.  The postpartum support is not just to get your pre-baby body back sooner, but also because every time you stand up, you may feel like everything is just going to fall out of your butt.

2.  Relish the immobile phase.  We are in full toddler mode around here, complete with imaginary forts, lego-building, monster-hiding and games where the rules are little more than, chase me around!.  How I long for the days when she would stay where I put her:)  When the activity mat counted as exercise.  When I could wash the dishes without someone trying to climb me like a tree.

1.  Take your time, but not too much.  Four months after Lua was born, I found myself, still in sweatpants, in front of the computer, finishing another season of Parenthood while Lua slept.  I realized I had taken the take it easy 's from everyone far too seriously.  I found out later that I had undiagnosed Hashimoto's disease, but I think if I would've gotten moving sooner, I would've realized sooner that there was a problem.  Give yourself time to just sit in your pj's and enjoy your brand new baby, but try to move, even a little bit, every day.  I like this rule of thumb: 5,5,5 - 5 days to just enjoy your new family.  Don't get out of bed if you don't feel like it!  5 days of sticking around the house.  Take it slow, stretch and breath every day.  Take the last 5 days and try and make it out for a walk at least once a day.  Continue to stretch, breath and enjoy your new family!!