Sunday, February 27, 2011

My love

There's no need for me to state out loud that I don't know a darn thing about photography.  I love being able to see pictures that people post of their children or things around them that are breathtaking and beautiful and perfectly shot with the perfect lighting.  I just don't possess those skills to take that kind of picture.  Not a big deal - I am perfectly able to capture moments that I want to cherish later, just in an "average" kind of way. 

There are times though, regardless of my ability, that I capture a picture that still melts my heart....

Friday, February 25, 2011

The other 'child'

If you followed my blog before 3 months, 1 week and 6 days ago, when William was born, you would know that I have a puppy (OK, he's not exactly a puppy, he's 1.5 years old).  Before the birth of our son, he was our 'baby'.  All our pictures were of Tressel (named after the Ohio State football coach - yes, I'm a HUGE Ohio State fan).  We would run errands and Tressel was right next to us.  We would make trips multiple times a week to Doggy Disneyland (aka the dog park).  He was our guy. 

Everyone tried to tell us that after you have a baby, you just don't focus on your dog as much.  Sadly, this has come true.  We haven't made all those visits to the dog park.  We're lucky to capture Tressel in the background of one of the hundreds of pictures of William.  We bring William with us to run errands and that leaves much less room for Tressel to join.  

So far, Tressel has been such a great 'big brother'.  He is so gentle with lil'man and if Liam cries, Tressel either panics and comes to get hubby and me or he stays close to try to comfort him.  He has definitely been jealous.  If I'm feeding lil' man or he's snuggled on my chest, Tressel feels he needs to cuddle too and pulls all 80 pounds of him onto my hubby's lap or chest.  (it's somewhat hilarious to watch, actually)  He will always be our 'baby' too.  We still love him and I think he'll be perfect and ready to be best friends with lil' man as he grows up!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The love has grown

I love my hubby.  I have always loved him.  I feel like that love continues to grow each and every day as I watch him be a father our son.  He's gentle and caring and absolutely in love with William, as I am.  He plays with Liam and sings to him and rocks him and admires him.  My heart melts just seeing him as 'daddy'. 

I love you, Adam.

Before he turns 4 months.....

Before another month flies by, I wanted to make sure to get down my 3 month notes about William!
  • He's talking and smiling so much more
  • Mommy is happy - he's sleeping thru the night  (about 9pm until 6am)
  • He has found his mouth and loves to pull anything into it - toys, hands (his or other's), mommy's hair, etc.
  • He is starting to reach for things
  • He seriously LOVES his glow worm
  • Complete head control - he can sit in his Bumbo chair and bouncer
  • He doesn't like his afternoon nap - he must think he's a big boy and doesn't need it
  • He's already about growing out of his 3-6 month clothes, not too much longer...
  • Daddy is able to calm William when he sings to him - he especially likes Cee Lo "Bright Lights, Bigger City"
  • I'm convinced that teeth are just around the corner....mommy and daddy both had early teeth come in
  • Holy drool machine.....
  • He's sleeping in his crib all the time now - he's such a big boy!  No, literally....he could barely fit in his bassinet anymore

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Roadtrip almost complete....

Trying to keep a 3 month old entertained and happy in the car for 7 hour roadtrip...

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Friday, February 18, 2011

My favorite time of day

Morning - my favorite time of day.  I wake up (after about 3 snoozes on my alarm) and I sneak a peak at my baby boy, sleeping peacefully in his crib.  Shower, dress, pack lunch and get everything ready to leave for work. 

Then the day begins. 

I tiptoe into lil' man's room and pick him up.  He reaches his arms up to stretch and as I pull him to my chest, he sticks his little butt up in the air, like babies do.  While he's still half asleep, I change him.  Then I nurse him.  I don't turn on the TV.  I don't look at my phone.  I don't think about work.  I don't think about what I need to do after I get off work or tomorrow or next week.  I just nurse him and admire him.  His eyes are still closed and he makes a squeak here and there while eating.  He moves his fingers around and taps my breast.  He's mine...all mine.  He's the most beautiful thing that my eyes have ever seen.  How could I have been so arrogant to think I even had a clue what this would feel like before I was a mother.  My heart explodes.

I place him back in his crib until he wakes up for daddy to start his day with him.  Then the day moves ahead at fast forward speed as I head to work and when I get off, more 'stuff' to do.  But for those 30 minutes or so...just nursing and cuddling with my guy, nothing else matters.....

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Pumping at Work

Returning to work after maternity leave can be a big step.  You just had a baby and have spent time off recovering and cuddling up to your little one.  Now you are expected to jump back into the routine of things.  You still want to breastfeed to give your little one the benefits of your milk so you have to tackle pumping and work.  Here are some of my suggestions for returning to work.
  1. Know your rights - Ensure you understand your rights when you return to work in regards to your time to pump.  Your employer might already have guidelines and protection for employees to grant them time.  Also, because of federal health reform, an employer is required to provide appropriate time to women to express milk (may be unpaid) up to one year.  Some states have even more legislation protecting these women.  Check it out here:  Breastfeeding State Laws
  2. Plan ahead - Talk to your manager or HR about your plans to pump once you return to work.  Where will you be permitted to pump?  Your employer may have a space dedicated for nursing mothers.  If not, what accommodations will be made to allow you the privacy you need.  Keep in mind, under the revisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act, a bathroom is not considered a "permissible" location under the Act.
  3. Invest in a pump - Try to make room in your budget for one that will work for you, whether you are planning to buy or rent one.  Since you are returning to work, you might prefer an double electric pump for efficiency.  Check reviews, check manufacturing warranties, ask your friends.  Your pump will become your new best friend!
  4. Manage your time - Since you will be taking additional time out of your day to save some milky goodness for your little one, make sure you are managing your time wisely.  Be sure to schedule time on your calendar or with your job tasks that allows you to get the time that you need to do this without going crazy.  Work this out with your supervisor ahead of time so it's one less thing you have to worry about when you return.
  5. Minimize stress - Since stress can be a killer for your milk supply, try to minimize your stress levels [yeah, yeah, I now have a newborn and possibly other children and now you have to work....stress might be inevitable].  Once you get to where you will be pumping, try to relax!  Read a book, close your eyes, look at pictures of your little one, take your time - anything to help you relax! [I love taking my phone with me and watching a video of my lil' man that I have saved on it. It helps me relax, brings a smile to my face and even helps with my milk let down!]
  6. Seek help - Returning to work and pumping can wreak havoc on your milk supply. If problems arise, seek help early to get things back on track. Check to see if there is a La Leche League in your area or other breastfeeding resources available.
  7. Keep it up! - It takes extra time and added work to your already busy schedule, but keep up the good work!  You are giving your baby the best and you should be proud of yourself!  The same is true for anyone who decides to breastfeed, make sure you have family and friends around that are supporting of your decision.  They may be the ones to help you when the road gets rocky!

Tuesday Hopping

Busy Mom's Tips Tuesday Blog Hop

Sippy Cup Mom

To-the-TOP Tuesday

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

I can't help it.....

This isn't who I thought I would become. This isn't how I would have imagined I would spending my time - not because I HAVE to, but because I WANT to. I never thought I would care. I can't help that I am obsessed with color or where they come from. I seek guidance from complete strangers. They probably understand. How did I get like this......

Oh yes....I'm referring to my CD stash. We are going to be adding more very soon but how do I decide what to get?! Stick with what we know and have been using so far? That certainly would avoid training the hubby. Should we try something totally different? I keep looking online at all sorts of brands and reviews and colors and prints and snaps and to choose! Hehe.

What are your favorites in your CD stash?
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Monday, February 7, 2011

My Favorite Things - 3 months

Lil' man is almost three months old and hubby and I are starting to get the hang of things.  In general, we are trying to make an effort in our life to "minimize".  Really trying to think about what we buy and trying to clear out stuff we don't need around the house.  We are making some progress, but have light years to go.

With that said, most things are completely not necessary at all when you welcome a new baby, but they can still be amazing at making your life easy.  Three months in, this is my list of "my favorite things" for baby.
  1. Boppy - when creating a baby registry, my husband fought me on this one.  His reasoning: "Can't you just hold the baby while you nurse him?  We totally don't need that!", we don't "need" it, but it's wonderful!  I use it almost every time I feed LM and it's a nice support if I need to set him down for a sec.  I know there are plenty of options for nursing pillows out there, but I love my Boppy!
  2. California Baby Calming Diaper Rash Cream - YES, PLEASE!  We really struggled with LM's diaper rash when we brought him home from the hospital.  Since he wasn't big enough for his CDs, we were using another diaper rash cream and it just wasn't cutting it - almost 'burning' him.  Something needed to be done!  A reader suggested California Baby and we have never turned back!  It's definitely more expensive than other products, but it's all natural and CD friendly!  William's hiney is very happy!
  3. Co-sleeper Bassinet (by Arm's Reach) - It has been wonderful to have LM so close at night and if I needed to nurse him and just didn't want to get out of bed, he's right there to grab and feed.  He's still sleeping in it!
  4. Bravado's Original Nursing Bra - OK, this one is for mom.  I have absolutely loved my Bravado nursing bra!  It is so comfortable and is perfect to sleep in and it offers enough support that I can wear it during the day!  Must Have!
  5. Rumparooz Cloth Diapers - We have multiple types of fluff in our cloth diaper stash, but I'm a huge fan of Rumparooz one-size diaper.  There is an extra gusset inside so it's perfect for containing LM's running diapers!  You're going to pay more for these, but it's totally worth it in my book.
  6. Moby Wrap - It has taking some getting used to and I definitely had to practice to figure out how to use it, but I'm loving on the Moby wrap!  From going to the grocery store to carrying LM while I'm folding laundry, it's been wonderful!
  7. Changing table - we have a changing pad on LM's dresser in his bedroom upstairs, but it's so nice having a changing table in the living room. Completely unnecessary, but totally convenient.
  8. Medela Pump-in-Style - definitely a must have since I returned to work.  I knew I wanted needed a double electric pump to be able to pump efficiently at work and I haven't been let down

So I think that about sums up my list of make-my-life-easier things so far!  I'm sure I will discover plenty of other wonderful baby-related goodies as I go and my list will change as William gets older.  We have an upcoming trip and I know this list is accurate since all of these things (with exception of the changing table) will be packed and loaded in the car to take with us!! 

What are you favorite baby-related things that make your life easier?!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Breastfeeding Rebound

I want to thank for all the response to my Breastfeeding Troubles post.  Not only has it been so frustrating to have my milk supply decrease after returning to work, but it has been heartbreaking.  If things continued like they were, I don't think I would have made it to William was three or four months breastfeeding.  I felt like because I am a full-time working mom to support my family, it would hinder my ability to care for my baby in another way.  [I understand that might be ridiculous, but it's still upsetting]

I took the advice to add some pumpings through the day - I was now pumping about every other hour for a total of four pumping sessions.  I knew this couldn't last long because I just don't have that kind of time during the day.  But with the four pumpings, I was able to get enough for the next day at least and hopefully work to increase my supply a little.

I then started taking the supplement fenugreek.  Umm....hello again, milk!  It is working like a charm so far and I'm very thankful that my hopes to breastfeed is at least extended by this! 

Thanks for all the suggestions and support!  I'm sure if he could talk, William would thank you too!


William has made a discovery - he found his hand!  He follows it with his eyes as he moves it around.  I can only imagine what he's thinking - "It appears that this limb is attached to me..."  I refer to his hand as singular, because he seems to only have discovered his right hand.  I can't wait for his surprise to find that, in fact, he has two!  You would think my son has been accepted to a prestigious university for how excited I am!  My son knows he has a hand and follows it with his eyes!!  Yes, I'm aware, I'm THAT mother....

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Let it snow....

The "historic" blizzard is upon us.  Left work early to get home safe.  I pulled into the driveway to the sight of the hubby showing William the snow!  Time to stay home and snuggle with my boys!!

100 Followers WINNER

The winner of the shaggy necklace from Jaclyn1423 is.....

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