Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving

Wow! I did not mean to take an extended blogging break. I guess the holiday just snuck up on me. We spent a lovely 4-day weekend together as a family. Seriously, a lot of the time it was just the 4 of us and it was fun!

I know thanksgiving is over but I don't want the spirit to pass me by!

This year I am particularly thankful for family. I am thankful for my husband, who puts up with me (usually cheerfully), provides for us without complaint, is a wonderful loving daddy, and is still my favorite person to be around. I am thankful for my children, who are wonderful, healthy, joyful, fun, energetic little people (i am so blessed!). For my extended family who provide so much (never ending!!) support to us - whether it is from a distance or around the corner!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Nursing Dilemma!

Normally I don't bring too many "private" issues to light on my blog. I don't necessarily think this is too private to talk about (obviously . . . or I wouldn't be writing this) but some of my readers might.

So . . . if you don't want to read about breastfeeding, please skip this post. Consider yourself warned!

So I have breastfeed both my babies. Neither one has had a drop of formula. It's hard work to put it in mild terms. But that's a post for another time.

I nursed Abigail until she was 17 months old. I got pregnant with Elsie when Abigail was 12 months old and so I had adequate milk supply until about month 15 but we kept on for a while. I felt very good about that experience. One morning (the morning of her 17 month birthday) instead of nursing her first thing, I just walked downstairs and fed her breakfast. She never batted an eyelash, so obviously it was time to quit. She hadn't been very interested for about a month anyway.

I have nursed Elsie now for 12 months (what I consider to be my personal minimum amount of time to nurse a baby). I got pregnant with this baby when Elsie was about 9 to 10 months old (still not quite sure on that timing). Anyway . . . I was hoping to also hit the 17 month mark with her. However, I have a problem. I have hardly any milk left!

I discovered this when I went to a movie with my husband on Saturday night. I missed a feeding (Elsie got pumped milk and drank 5 oz). I pumped when I returned home and wasn't even able to come up with 1 single ounce. Depressing!

Elsie currently nurses about 5 to 7 times a day, depending on whether or not she nurses at night and after her naps. I know babies are more efficient than a pump but she can't be THAT much more efficient. She's still probably only getting 1 ounce per feeding and I think I'm being generous there.

My ultimate goal is to find a way to boost my supply so that I can keep going a few more months. I'm drinking a lot (of water . . . ha!), eating oatmeal, pumping after almost every feeding and before I go to bed, getting as much rest as I can, nursing Elsie almost whenever she demands it. Does anyone have any other suggestions?

I know she's over a year-old and can turn to other foods for her nutrition so I don't need to turn to formula. I just feel like she's not ready to quit (I mean really . . . 7x a day!!!!!) and I want to keep going for a while too (for her sake). My body is just not cooperating.

This is on my list to talk to my midwives about. Perhaps they have some experience with this issue. They are very supportive of my decision to continue to breastfeed during pregnancy and don't see any problem with it.

I'm just not ready to quit yet and it kills me that I might have to. Some articles I have read today have given some ideas on how to increase supply and give encouragement to just keep going until it's gone. Some others say that there is no way to recover (sad!).

Any advice (positive that is) is welcome.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Boy/Girl Thoughts

Lately I have been thinking a lot about the gender of this baby. While I really don't care whether this baby is a boy or girl, I have secretly leaned toward having another girl.

Mostly because I know girls. I have two, I am one, and therefore I just know what they are and how they work. I also think it would be cute to have three little girls.

But today . . . after a long day of toddler drama and girl emotions, I'm wondering if a boy might bring some low maintenance balance to this family that is currently female heavy. (Not to say that toddler boys wouldn't come with their own set of challenges as well.)

Just some thoughts.

In all honesty, I will be thrilled either way!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Elsie's 1 year check-up


I took Elsie to the doctor today for her 1-year check up. I forgot to write down her stats exactly (trying to manage a fussy baby!) so this will be from memory. I am going to call them tomorrow and ask exactly what her stats were for my own sake.
29 inches long (to me it looked like 29.5). I think she was at the 50% for height.
18 pounds (hasn't gained since her last appointment). 20% (guessing).
I don't remember her head but he said it had grown and was around 50%.
The concerns were definitely her weight! The girl eats and poops just fine but I guess she is just very active and doesn't eat a lot of fatty foods or protein rich foods. She essentially breastfeeds and then gets either fruits or vegetables at meals. I bought some baby food tonight with chicken and beef so we will be starting those soon.
He also recommended perhaps supplementing my breastmilk with cow's milk. Since I'm pregnant, I'm really not sure how good my milk supply is. I am very hestitant to feed babies cow's milk (Abigail has never had any).
So I am looking into alternative choices for her that offer the same fat and vitamins that cow's milk supposedly does. We'll see. We used coconut milk for Abigail but I need to find an alternative to that that does not contain so many processed additives.
I had decided to give myself a break and gradually start weaning Elsie by not pumping in the evenings to store up milk for her. Now I'm thinking that it might be helpful for me to keep this up a while longer and feed her the extra milk I'm pumping the next day. It definitely won't hurt my milk supply to do this.
Also we discovered that she has a little baby "hernia" - although my doctor was hesitant to diagnose it as such - the word did come out of his mouth. :) He said that lots of babies have them and not to be concerned but that it should close up on its own.
I did my own research and apparently this is true. From what I found if the hernia goes back inside the body when the baby is resting (not straining) then it should close up by itself although sometimes it takes up to 5 years. We'll definitely be keeping our eyes on it!
The poor girl is still teething up a storm. Her top tooth finally did come in today (I think) and I can feel that the molar is getting closer and closer to the surface. I can't wait for this to be done because she woke up 4x last night. Poor girl!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Emotional Girls

We're dealing with something new at our house . . . jealousy! Seriously! When Elsie was born Abigail was really just fine with it. She didn't regress in any way (that we could tell) and she was very gentle and loving to the baby.

Now that Elsie can crawl and stand up (not walk yet) and demand my attention, jealousy is abundant in our house. I just spent the last hour keeping my kids up before their nap by holding both of them in my lap.

If I just had just held one, the other would be crying, believe me.

I have been talking to Abigail about her emotions. I just told her that I love her and that even if she can't get the same kind of attention as Elsie (after all, Elsie is breastfeeding still) she was still a special girl. I told her this and she burst into tears. Poor thing.

I think some special one-on-one time is necessary after Elsie goes to bed at 7 pm!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

New Energy

Well folks, despite being also troubled by back/hip pain and sinus headaches I have found a renewed energy lately! Whew! It is about time.

My nausea is also better . . . not gone but better. I still cannot stand to think about or cook some vegetables but I've been able to throw together a few more meals for my family lately. I also haven't accidentally crashed on the couch in the middle of the day. Must mean the 2nd trimester is upon me. Yes!!!

In other news, Elsie has been really struggling (more!!) at night recently. She's been getting up every 2 to 3 hours. I fully expected her to come down with a cold or something else but it has been three days and she's fine.

It finally dawned on me last night that she did just turn 1 yr old . . . which means . . . molars! Sure enough, I felt around in her little mouth last night and it feels to me like she's working on getting 3 teeth in - 1 top front, 1 top right side, and 1 bottom left molar. I've been giving her motrin and orajel but it doesn't seem to last all night.

My darling, wonderful, helpful, husband is going to do a wonderful thing for me this weekend that is very exciting. I am going to sleep in the downstairs guest room (in the basement!!) and he is going to try to care for Elsie so I can get a full-night's sleep. He will just come get me if he thinks she's hungry. We'll see what happens!

It will be the only full-night's sleep I have gotten in one year except for about a one month stretch in the summer where she slept blissfully through the night. I wonder if I will wake up or if I'll just be able to crash.

Yeah!!

That's all for now. I'm just SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO glad to be feeling better! (Can you feel the energy?!)

Monday, November 08, 2010

Happy 1-Year Elsie Joy

Dearest Elsie Joy (or Pie),

How can you be 1-year old? It seems like only yesterday that you were in my tummy - a big baby for such a short mama - making me very uncomfortable! Ha! What a joy-filled child you are. I love to hear your laugh, see your smile and watch you dance.

I love to watch you learn new things and to watch you develop more and more into a little girl each day.


You are a mama's girl - big time. (In no particular order) . . . You love Dewey the dog. You are so gentle with him when you finally catch up and pat him. You love your sister. You love to play with her and to watch her do crazy and wild things! You love your daddy! You get so excited to see him and you've even started to reach for him. It's so sweet! You love our extended family and being played with, loved on and entertained by them!
We'll always have a special connection, dear girl. You see, I am also a second born girl. You are so very much loved, darling, but yes, it is just different for the 2nd. Just remember that in some ways, girlie, you have it easier than your sister. See, she is breaking us in - on the parenting front that is. You get the more relaxed and easy-going version of us because we've been there before! :)
My greatest desire as your mother is for you to grow up and know the love of Jesus Christ. It is so important, darling, that relationship. Never forget it and never neglect it.
Thank you for surprising us and for being in our family. I cannot imagine life without you, sweetie.
I am looking forward to watching you grow and discover new things every day!
Love,
Your Mama!
Elsie Joy
11/8/2009
2:53 pm
9 lbs 2 oz 22 inches long (BIG!)

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Blue or Pink

At my last midwife appointment (last Tuesday) they went ahead and scheduled me for my 20-week ultrasound even though it isn't for quite a while. So we'll find out on December 20th what the sex of this 3rd (and in my opinion . . . final) baby will be.



So . . . any guesses?



If you guess right, you might get a prize! Ha!



I have thought about being creative and wrapping up something for the grandparents to unwrap at Christmas telling the gender of the baby. I'm not sure if I'll do that or not. It would require several days of waiting time and I'm not sure that will work in our family! :) Ha!

Friday, November 05, 2010

At-Home

Today marks the one-year anniversary of me becoming a stay-at-home mom. Wow! What a year it has been.

There have been moments, minutes, hours, and days where I have felt so blessed and lucky to be at home with these beautiful girls.

And to be quite honest, there have been moments where I certainly could have used a day of just sitting behind a desk with no bottoms to wipe, noses to wipe, food to make, behavior to correct, babies to nurse, house to clean, etc.

I wouldn't trade it for the world though!

I'll take the bad with the good because it means that I get to be the one to see it all . . . all the firsts and the cute things said . . . and all the temper tantrums and messes.

I also realized that I haven't had one month go by since quitting my full-time job that I haven't brought in some form of income for my family. I'm not sure this will always be the case but I'm glad to have been able to always help out.

So it was on this day one year ago that I quit my full-time job. (Elsie was born 3 days later!).

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Swinging!

Elsie has been a pill lately but she loves her new swing! Unfortunately it is getting cold here so we won't be able to use it much until the spring time! Thanks for the swing Papa and RoRo!



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