Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Looooooong Weekend



T and Alex

with Diego at the pool

new fairy costume (a big sister present)

Well, we survived the weekend.

On Saturday Talia, Alex and I went to NanaPapa's house. I set up the sprinkler in their yard, which provided about 30 minutes of fun. It was a pretty relaxing day, except for all the crap I had to pack in and out of the car. I don't even think I forgot anything while I was there, which would be a first. I knew Alex would wake up on the ride home and he did. I was smart enough to stop at a school and let Talia play on the playground while I fed him. He did his "I'm hungry but I'm choking/ drowning and my stomach is making loud noises and I'm really frustrated so I'm just going to scream" thing. I finally threw him in the car, screaming, and somehow he quieted down. Right before we got to Philadelphia we drove through a huge rainstorm. Talia noticed thunder and lightening for the first time. She definitely didn't like it! One thing we discovered was... books on tape. Talia listened to her Curious George CD and followed along with the book and gave me no trouble at all! Thank you Jessi! Now we need more more more!

On Sunday I took the kids to Talia's friend Lily's house. It was the first time that T and Lily REALLY played together. They even went upstairs alone and we didn't hear anything from them for a while. Sadly, they both started melting down after lunch (which neither really ate) and Talia was a crazy cranky face when we tried to leave. She was overtired, hungry and for some reason quite violent. She was CONVINCED that we were leaving her hair clips at Lily's house but I had taken them out at home and she hadn't noticed. She was HYSTERICAL about it. She fought taking a nap but eventually crashed hard.

On Monday we went to the pool with Diego. Luckily we had a babysitter so it ended up being 3 adults and 4 kids. The babysitter took Talia and Diego in the big pool. Talia didn't want to go in the baby pool because it was "dirty" on the bottom and she didn't want to go in the big pool because there were some bugs in it. Eventually she did go in and had a great time. She freaked out if anyone touched her buckets or shovel or anything. One time though, a kid wanted one of her toys and she said no and I suggested perhaps she could share it since she was going in the big pool and wouldn't need it. She actually agreed-- and quite sweetly! The babysitter came back to the house with us and helped out for a few hours. I got to take a nap with Talia and she watched Alex- who screamed the entire time.

Ron took Tuesday off. We didn't get too much done despite our best efforts. Food was purchased, dinner got cooked, the house is... ok, and we took Talia to the park. Last night Alex was up and cranky a bunch of the time. I guess that cranky crying time is beginning. Great.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Miss Erica calls it MILK.

Me: Talia, here's your milky.
Talia: Miss Erica calls it MILK. Can you call it milk too?

My baby's all grown up

I remember when Talia was born I just wanted a week to have gone by. The first few days seemed to go so S-L-O-W-L-Y. I remember that by the time she was one month old, I felt like I pretty much had everything under control. I wasn't so stressed anymore and was able to enjoy her more. A schedule of some sort had emerged. I felt competent.

This time around, I can't believe a month has almost gone by ALREADY. I don't know where the time has gone. There have been some major changes in my baby. For one thing, somehow I noticed the other day that he got HUGE! I put him in an outfit that I had looked at when he first came home and LAUGHED at how big it looked! Now it totally fits. He also needs a little more entertainment than he first did. We've been putting him in the swing, putting him on the playmat, talking to him more. He also has infant acne. Yuck. I was hoping that somehow he wouldn't get it. It's not too bad yet and if I remember correctly, goes away pretty quickly. For some reason it doesn't really show up in basic photoraphs either. If it's not documented then I guess it doesn't really exist.

I know I'm supposed to really enjoy this time because they aren't small forever. I know I should spend more time looking at him, exploring him, savoring him at this age. It's hard to do that though. I'm still overwhelmed with taking care of two kids. I'm definitely stressed about the move (1 month from tomorrow) and now I'm nervous about this upcoming weekend-- Ron is working/ on call for FOUR days in a row. It's not that he won't be around at all, he spends a lot of time working from home but-- if he's particularly busy he won't be able to help much, he'll be stressed too and if he doesn't get sleep at night he'll be pretty worthless to me for days to come. We have plans for each day but that doesn't always mean an easy time...

Thursday, May 24, 2007


My first new car! We bought a Toyota Hybrid Highlander. It's pretty cool. Of course, my favorite feature is that I can type in a "to do list" on the computer monitor while I'm driving. THAT is awesome. Then when I get in the car the screen says "Get milk" or "go to the bank."

The car is NOT that big honestly. With the two car seats in, I can also sit in the back AND buckle my seat belt (which I couldn't do in the Mazda) but I can't fold down the second row seat to get to the third row (which is generally folded in the floor). This means that we will have to unbuckle the car seat to put people in the backy-back, although last night our friends just climbed in through the trunk... but they are an agile pair.

I feel so good about buying the hybrid. It's something that Ron and I talked about for so long. The truth is, I shouldn't feel so good. I mean, it's only money. If we didn't have it (well, we DON'T have it, but will soon) then we wouldn't have bought the car.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Not using my time wisely

My daughter, son and husband are sleeping. I'm cleaning, checking email, trying to find some dinner for my family. I haven't napped in a few days and I'm pretty tired. Somehow so far, miraculously, Alex seems to be asleep during Talia's bedtime routine (a long procedure that seems to get longer) and sometimes dinner too. He's not too bad at night. He seems to mostly sleep and eat with maybe an hour of fussiness (so far). My problem is that I can stay up late and get up in the middle of the night but come, say, 4 am- 8am and I just CAN'T get out of bed. I become lazy, not changing his diaper and feeding him in bed instead of getting up. Not putting him back in the co-sleeper after feeding him but letting him sleep on me because it's easier. This time around I didn't remove the featherbed or switch from our death trap down comforters or anything. It's interesting to see how things are different with the second kid (but that's another post).

Ron has been sleeping upstairs and coming down at 4am to do a feeding before getting up and going to work. I don't know if it's him or Alex but the baby doesn't seem to go back to sleep as easily at that time and Ron's a light sleeper so he's feeling very tired as well. He says he's more tired than me. What a laugh.

Ok, maybe I'll lay down on the couch for a little while since everyone else is sleeping. I can look at all the books I took out from the library today about parenting and discipline for toddlers. One is called something like, "getting up, getting dressed, going to bed and eating-- ending the everyday battles." Sounds like exactly our problem!

I hear some squeaks from the other room. Looks like maybe I won't get to lie down today after all...

Baby Announcements and Thank Yous

She writes!

So they're not in the right order, the "L" is upside down, and she needs another "A" but-- my baby is gonna write her name soon!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Another good day!

I made sure all of Talia's favorite clothes were clean and I promised her a lollipop in the car on the way to school but... she didn't give me any grief about going AND she was there about an hour and a half EARLIER than usual. Of course, that meant I didn't shower or eat or put clothes on Alex or anything but it worked out great.

She is wanting to help more with Alex by feeding him etc. I left him in the swing and went upstairs to put clothes on and I'm pretty sure she held his hand the whole time. As I was leaving school I think she thought I was forgetting to take him with me and she pointed to him and seemed genuinely concerned. She says she wants to help feed him, burp him and give him a bath tonight.

I spent the day shopping (new stroller, spare car seat base for the new car, some new pj's and t-shirts for T-- when and how did she skip 3T and go straight to 4T or even 4??!??) and cleaning the house. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on how you look at it, Alex slept all day. I did not take a nap because I was so excited to have the day "alone" and put my house back together after all the visitors etc. I was about to lie down on the couch with him for 30 minutes but I really wanted to cut up some vegetables for dinner since I PROMISED I would cook for my family since we've been eating such crap. So I didn't nap. But my house is clean. I taped some TV last night so I should be able to watch it in my bedroom while I'm up all night with the baby!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

A bit of confidence

Had a good day today. It was my first day alone with the two kids. Alex woke up every 2 hours or so but went to sleep easily (but only in the bed with me, not so much in his co-sleeper). I stopped breastfeeding. It makes me cry and I don't know how I would do it with a toddler too, considering I have low milk supply and would be doing it 24/7. Anyway... we had a playdate in the park and it was a beautiful day. We got in the car ok, we got to lunch ok (although I had to push two stroller at the same time- will be buying the Joovy Caboose Stroller tomorrow), and MIRACULOUSLY, we all napped at the same time-- for TWO AND A HALF HOURS. Don't know what will happen when that doesn't work...

Been thinking about child care in general and what help I'm going to need. Talia's preschool ends June 5th. Might have to find someone for a few hours Tuesdays and Thursdays, maybe Mondays too. Definitely need to find someone for Madison, since Talia is only going to go three mornings a week. (I have to check if there is more availability than that...). Never thought I would want a nanny but now I see how that could be a benefit with two kids. I'm still tired from the birth for fuck's sake! What I really want is a housekeeper (and maybe a nanny too!)

If I can make it to vote today (less than a block away), then I'll really feel like I've got it together. I don't know who I'll vote for but whatever!

Friday, May 11, 2007

still in the fog

Totally overwhelmed. I completely forgot how hard it is to care for a newborn. Add that to taking care of my toddler and I'm half-drowning. How do you even know what a newborn wants? I feel like I'm shoving my breast in his face every time he cries. Is that the right thing to do? I seriously can't remember what to do.
The Birth
Long story short, I went in for an appointment, the midwife did some manual manipulation "down there" (sweeping the membranes) and I started cramping right away. A few hours later I was pretty sure I was in labor. I had an acupuncturist come and she helped things along as well. I don't know how I would've known when to go to the midwife because my contractions were irregular-- 10 minutes apart, 4 minutes apart etc. Jessi came and checked my cervix and told me to get going (Thanks Jessi!). Got to the birthing suite at 7:30 pm. Most painful two hours of my life and then Alex was born.
He was breathing really fast all night and they wanted to transfer us to the NICU. Even longer story short, we went to the newborn nursery at Bryn Mawr Hospital, where Alex was admitted but I was not. I, therefore, had to sit on a chair near the newborn nursery 12 hours after I had given birth and just hang out. Fun. No one really did anything to him-- he had some bloodwork to make sure he didn't have an infection. Honestly-- he looked great but was just breathing too fast. They diagnosed him with TTN- transient tachypnea of the newborn, supposedly from coming out too fast (not fast enough in my opinion).
Then they sent us home. Talia was happy to meet her brother, I was feeling pretty good (energetic, happy to be home, ready to get started on my new life). The first afternoon we all took a family nap and nighttime wasn't too bad.
More newborn problems/ Breastfeeding
Of course Alex stopped pooping and peeing within the first three days. Same thing with Talia. Everyone knows I had low-milk supply with T and gave up breastfeeding pretty quickly. This time I was determined to work through it. We supplemented him so that he wouldn't die and kept going. Then he got jaundiced from not eliminating. We are still breastfeeding and supplementing. Breastfeeding is actually going better this time around. Every time he falls off the breast his mouth is filled with milk but then he starts crying and rooting and all that. Pretty much he seems like he's starving and downs two or three ounces of formula really fast- even if he's just eaten. I hate not knowing how much he's eaten. I also hate having to park myself for 45 minutes every few hours and then STILL have to give him a bottle. I'm sure he's going to start refusing the breast soon anyway. I'm having trouble taking care of Talia and breastfeeding at the same time. It's fucking with my head. Very confusing. I'm not sure why (or even if) I'm attached to nursing. I don't love it or anything. I remember that once I gave up nursing Talia I started feeling much better emotionally. So I don't know how long I'll hold on.
Bottom line/ Update: I still have no sensation in my breasts that milk has come in and definitely haven't ever felt a "let down". I think he's getting less and less-- lately there is a lot of sucking and little swallowing. Certainly there has never been a DROP of milk in my bra or anything. Alex is 11 days old now and I think I'm going to give it up. It's my
mother's day gift to myself, Talia and Ron. I'll find some way to make it up to Alex... someday.
Baby Blues
I miss Talia so much. I miss her when she's sitting next to me. I miss her when I'm hugging her. I miss her right now. She's not acting up too much. She has said, "Put Alex down" or "hold ME mommy" or other similar things.
As I said, I have NO IDEA how I'll handle two. I feel like I'm a terrible mother to BOTH kids. I just want Alex to sleep and I just want Talia to be a good girl. We've never really been big on discipline (our fault, I know) and now we're stuck on a few issues. Bedtime has just gotten longer and longer and more elaborate. We FINALLY are out of her room by 9:45 each night, regardless of whether or not she naps. The bedtime routine, which begins with her bath starts at around 8pm. She didn't cry tonight when I left her room. I guess that's a start.

I have quite a lot more to say but not a lot of time or energy to say it right now. More later, I'm sure.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Alex Judah Dolin 5/2/07 9:31pm

we're home, we're tired. natural childbirth-- at this point i'm not going to recommend it. ask me again next week!