Sunday, April 27, 2014

three months old!

Happy 3 months, baby girl! We love you so much!

Charlotte is so tall! When she stretches out after a nap or a feeding, she looks huge! I'm also proud to report that our skinny lady now has a roll on each leg. That makes me feel so good, knowing that I'm helping her to grow a little chub. According to our scale, she weighs 13 pounds. Wow!

Charlotte usually wakes up around 2am but a couple times lately has been hungry at midnight or 1am. I hope this doesn't last forever because I'm very tired, but I do kind of like snuggling and hanging out with her at night. Also- as of this week Charlotte doesn't seem to want to go back to sleep after her 6am feeding, so we will have to see how the schedule adjusts based on this new trend! 

I think (fingers crossed) that Charlotte is now able to put herself to sleep for both naps and night time. We can lay her down sleepy but not fully asleep and she will usually fuss for just a few minutes before falling asleep peacefully. We REALLY hope this trend continues!

On Tuesday, Charlotte had her first day with our friend Melissa. They had kind of a rough day; Charlotte was fussy and didn't nap well. I was so confused and upset until we realized that I hadn't been leaving enough milk in each bottle. Poor thing was hungry! The next day I added an ounce to each bottle and she was much more content... she napped for at least an hour every time, and one nap was two hours long! :)

Poor little worm got her first cold a couple weeks ago. It was so heartbreaking, but fortunately she seems to be feeling completely better. The humidifier and NoseFrida snot sucker were life savers during those ten days of sickness.

We think Charlotte's neck strength is improving. She turns her head to both sides very well now, and doesn't seem to favor the left as much. She is also getting a lot more tolerant of tummy time, which is really great!
Awesome stuff!
Joel and I have made a social baby! Charlotte loves loves loves being around people! She doesn't seem intimidated by noise or big groups of people. She gives out big smiles easily and enjoys looking around at everything that's going on. 
Charlotte has just started to show real interest in her IKEA play gym. She lays on her back and stares at the toys with interest. She can also bat at them and usually makes contact!

On Wednesday afternoon I went in to get Charlotte after her last nap. She was all bundled in her sleep sack, with her hands tucked up next to her face. When I said her name, she looked confused for half a second, then got the hugest grin on her little face. So cute!

During Easter weekend, Charlotte got to meet some extended family members. Her Great Granddaddy, great aunt, great uncle, and two of mom's cousins hung out with us for an afternoon.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

angst about the ants

Yesterday evening I noticed, to my extreme annoyance, that we have ants in our kitchen.

I killed a bunch and quickly sprayed the counters with vinegar/water and wiped them down.

Then a few hours later I had to do the same thing, because the ants were still there. Only this time I removed every single appliance and random item from the counter and scrubbed the counters with a little more elbow grease. I kept making frustrated noises and exclaiming from the kitchen.

Joel patiently hugged me and told me he loved me and left me to my scrubbing. Things were clean but I still couldn't let it go. Having ants was making me so mad!

Once I started to analyze my frustration, I spent some time talking about it aloud with Joel...

I realized that the ants are just icing on my already chaotic and stressful cake.

The bottles get washed and the milk gets stored and the lunches get packed and the dinner gets prepared and the dishwasher gets run. We all eat healthy meals and take showers and Charlotte is clean and clothed. I get to snuggle and nurse my baby and I get to rest quietly with my husband. We are working hard and struggling to do it all, but it's not happening.

I know we are in a unique season. I know Charlotte won't be little forever and I'm fully confident that choosing to spend time with her, watch her grow, and invest in her daily, is absolutely the right choice.

But having a sink full of messy dishes and clutter all around my house is draining. Seeing those things makes me feel like a failure. And those stupid ants... they feel like the ultimate reminder that I'm not doing it all.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The first cold

I am very sad to report that Charlotte has gotten her first cold.

We first noticed some stuffiness and a slight cough on Thursday morning and it progressed over the weekend. Yesterday she was so congested in the afternoon that she was sleeping all the time and wouldn't nurse. When I called our pediatrician from my friend Mandy's apartment in Baltimore, the nurse said we should come in.

Charlotte was examined by the gentlest, kindest man who reassured me that she had a bad cold and severe congestion, but that was all. Her lungs are clear and she isn't having difficulty breathing. He suggested saline drops and a regular use of the snot sucker, especially before trying to feed her.

We had a really rough night last night because Charlotte was too stuffy to eat well and she struggled to settle down after I suctioned her nose. Then she coughed and puked up an entire feeding onto me and the bed. Our poor girl was so sleepy and congested and upset. It's so heartbreaking to have a baby who can't breathe well.

Today was better. Charlotte took three good naps and ate full feedings throughout the day. Tonight she had a tough time settling down, but slept until 4:20am.

Poor little thing. Being sick calls for lots of snuggles and some naps in the carriers.

Friday, April 11, 2014

two months old!

On Monday we went to Charlotte's two month pediatrician visit. Technically, she's 9.5 10 weeks now, but our visits are off by a week.

I've decided to start doing monthly baby updates, similar to these.

Charlotte weighs 11 pounds, 5.5 ounces, which is about 2 pounds bigger than last month. That puts her right about average for weight, in the 50th percentile.

She was 23.5 inches long, which is the 95th percentile for height. Joel was a very proud dad, despite the doctor saying she didn't put much stock in height measurements. Ha.

She wears mostly 3 month clothing, but many of her PJs in that size are now too short and she can't stretch her legs out fully!! Pants are better for her long legs, so she can wear those in any size.

Charlotte drinks breastmilk about 7 times a day. She eats at (approximately!) 8am, 11am, 1:30pm, 4:30pm, 7pm, and usually twice "in the middle of the night"... Often around 3am and then again around 6am.

This past week she slept through the night twice (!!!), waking up at 5am after going to bed around 8 the night before. Last night, though, she made me pay for all that delicious sleep and woke up at 12:30, then again at 4:30. Darn. :)

She goes to bed pretty easily most of the time. For naps, she can fall asleep on her own after being put in her crib sleepy but awake. She often takes a nap in her car seat/stroller if we are out and about, OR she snoozes in a carrier while Joel or I wear her around. She really seems to relax if one of us is wearing her and sometimes falls asleep in 2 minutes once she's in the carrier! It's so funny and cute!

Charlotte sleeps in her Halo sleepsack at night and wears her MiracleBlanket to sleep for crib naps. She has started to break out of her swaddle a little more often lately, so I wonder if the end is in sight for that... She very rarely uses a pacifier while sleeping, but sometimes it helps her to get settled in for a nap.

She has really started to enjoy her wake time recently. She smiles at us, lays on her back and kicks happily, listens to music, "watches" baseball on TV with Dad, hangs out on her tummy (for short times!), chills in her swing, snuggles with us, and looks around constantly. Joel is at home with her this week and told me that she is very interested in being outside; sometimes they walk into the back yard together and Charlotte looks around while Joel chases away the rabbits.

Charlotte hasn't had any health problems in her life so far. A few weeks ago I noticed her sniffling a lot while nursing and a couple times I had to suck snot out of her nose, but we tried using the humidifier during naps in addition to nighttime. That seems to have worked because she isn't sniffly anymore. Sadly, the antibiotic I'm taking to clear up a nasty cough I caught at school seems to be messing with Charlotte's little digestive system. Her messy diapers have been incredibly wet and runny, which may be the reason she woke up so early last night!Yesterday Joel put some infant probiotic powder (per the pediatrician's recommendation) in her first bottle. We'll see if that helps!

One thing we're keeping an eye on is that the left side of her head is slightly flatter than the right. This is due to her preference for looking to one side (the left!), which is common in babies. We've been told to have her do tummy time more often during the day and to help her stretch her neck out to the right. We also turn her head to the right when putting her to bed and I sometimes sneak into her room before we go to sleep to make sure it's still turned!

Awesome stuff!
Charlotte is a super smiley baby nowadays! She grins from ear to ear, especially if she's laying on her back, looking up at us! She also makes excited little noises when she's having a good time.

Yesterday Joel brought her to school to meet my students and colleagues. She was very calm and pleasant as she looked around the classroom and had her feet touched by 20 fourth graders :)

Lately when she's nursing at night she stretches her arm up toward me and then relaxes so deeply that her hand stays up, tucked under my shirt. It's so precious and calming and I adore it so much!

Last week Grandmommy Nelson discovered that Charlotte loves to listen to music! She was chilling on the ottoman, listening to the "Tracy Chapman" station on Pandora. Then, on Sunday, she was awake at the beginning of the church service and hung out happily in her Sakura Bloom sling during the singing. When the worship leader stopped to pray, though, Charlotte got fussy and had to leave the sanctuary. :)

Monday, April 7, 2014

Surprised by motherhood

I want to drink in these good, soul-soothing words today.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Charlotte's grandparent weeks

Our little lady has had two straight weeks with her grandparents while Mom went back to work for the first time after maternity leave. She spent a week with her Michigan Grandma and Grandpa and Uncle Nate, then her Grandmom Nelson was her this week.

She was a champ drinking from her bottle and she even had two nights without Mom putting her to bed. What a big girl!

Apparently Charlotte is a girl of her generation... She's already enthrall end by the iPad and knows how to change the screen to online gambling when Grandmommy isn't watching ;)