Thursday, January 28, 2010

Piper is 5 Months Old!!

Five months old already!! And as you can see in these pictures, she's really "chubbed out" in the last few weeks...or at least I think so. She's full of smiles and even a few giggles too. Here are some cute shots from our photo shoot today.


She was falling over, but smiling at the same time!! This one's our favorite!

And a little drool too...


The End

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Switcheroo

We had a BIG event last night! It was Morgan's first night in her "big girl" bed and Piper was transitioned to the crib. It was time. Here are some "before" photos before they went to bed.

Morgan's new bed all made up.

Trying it out for the first time

Piper's checking out the mobile. See Morgan's head behind the crib? She likes the music the mobile plays too and now goes in the room and says "more!"

I thought I'd throw in a random pic of Piper in the Jumperoo. She's gotten the hang of jumping this week because more of her feet touch the floor now.
Soo...our first night in the "new beds" was a little rough. We got them to bed late as it took us a while to switch the rooms/furniture around when they got up from their afternoon naps. After some stalling and a little crying everyone was asleep by about 10:30 pm. This process included a few Piper soothing sessions and one "standing in the bed" incident for Morgan. Whew! Piper woke up earlier than usual in the night, but that was better then expected. Morgan woke us all up at 5:00 am with some yells. A look in the video monitor showed that she was not in the bed at all. Yikes! We're not sure if this included falling out or if she climbed down on her own, but when David opened the door she was standing right there. There was no going back to sleep after that though. We hope she will sleep in later tomorrow. One night down, it can only get better from here!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Diaper Bug

We were getting ready to go out on an errand and I left Morgan downstairs for a few minutes by herself. When I came back down she ran up to me and said "diaper, diaper!" At first I thought she was telling me she needed her diaper changed (which could have been the case, because when I did it was pretty wet). Then I looked at the area we change diapers downstairs and saw this...

Hee hee!! She just cracks me up! She's been obsessed with this changing pad for a while, now she's putting her toys on it like they need their diaper changed. Too funny!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Piper's Wall Letters

It's Piper's turn for wall letters!! Here are Morgan's letters. I've started working on them, but Grandma B may need to help me with the ribbons and bows. She did such a nice job on Morgan's.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Bliss

It's a blissful day in babyland (as my sister-in-law calls it)...Morgan is down for her nap and Piper just fell asleep ON HER OWN in the swing. She also slept for a stretch of 7.5 hours last night. Woo Hoo! Now, except for the strange fact that she's only eaten twice today (and it's 1:30 pm?), we are all good. If she's sleeping I guess she's OK. She might make up for it with a vengeance when she wakes up though. Just a little snippet for today...

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Monday, January 11, 2010

First Haircut

Morgan got her first haircut on Saturday! It was a long time coming. This first picture of Morgan in her kitchen is somewhat of a "before" picture. Her hair has gotten rather mullet-like and scraggly. She did really great, no crying. Towards the end she wanted to get "down," but timing was perfect and the haircut was done.

Cooking in the kitchen

Just arrived at the Hair Zoo. Sitting on her rhinoceros.

First snip!

She likes it! She also had a video of Elmo to watch.

The first lock of hair. They gave us a cute certificate for her first haircut with a bit of her hair attached.

Getting to hold the combs

Smiling at Mama and Grandma

Helping comb her hair

Mama's checking out the final product

Making the bangs a little shorter

We don't have a great "after" shot. I'm trying to retrieve one from my Mom's phone. Will post soon!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Crazy Train

Per my post yesterday, on Tuesday morning I had an epiphany...

...I am riding the "crazy train."

I realize I've been completely obsessed with breastfeeding my child (I'm sure you got the idea from Tuesday's update). I did acknowledge that there are other things I need to focus my mental and emotional energy on. It just really hit home with my little breakdown the other morning.

I also thought of an analogy for how I'm dealing with breastfeeding. This one just shocked me. It's like a bad boyfriend I won't break up with. Isn't that terrible?! It's that relationship that is full of worry and stress and unfulfilled expectations, trying to be with someone who is just not right for you... all in the effort for those few and far between "moments" that are good. Or...you stay in it just so you can say you are in a relationship. Then the more you fight the reality of it, the more the bad boyfriend starts to resent you...then you are the one that gets dumped instead of the other way around. Wow.

Breastfeeding is supposed to be a wonderful bonding experience, but for me most of the time it's not. The only time I feel that bonding is when Piper falls asleep in my arms while nursing. This happens maybe twice a day, but most of the time I'm fighting what a friend calls the "scratch and grab" because she's not getting enough milk. Is that really worth the craziness? I know breast milk is the best for my baby, but a sane mommy is even better, right?

I have a lot of friends who have had low milk supply issues or other issues with breastfeeding and they simply decide to quit or just not do it...and they're fine with it. I think to myself, how can they do that so easily? No big deal, I'll just go the formula route. It's simple...unlike me, they do not ride the "crazy train." I think this is a combination of stubbornness, competitiveness and my family background of addiction and depression. I've found myself on the crazy train in so many situations in my life, relationships, career, it's just the way I operate. Somehow I relate breastfeeding my child to being a good mom and if I can't do it, I'm some how "less than." I really think it's time to get off the train, don't you? Can I really do it? Can I break up with the bad boyfriend and take matters into my own hands? Believe me, this one is going to be mulled over for the next few days. The first step is acknowledging the problem right? Maybe I'm finally on the right path.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The Bottomless Pit

This blog was started as a way to keep family and friends informed about what is happening in our lives, especially to show pictures and tell stories about Morgan (and now Piper). We do not live close to most of our family, so this was a good way to keep in touch with everyone. I've been finding more and more, especially lately, that it is a good outlet for thoughts that may not be so "nicey-nicey" (I know that's not a word, but it's what came to mind). It really helps me put some things in perspective. I don't want it to be a place where I just complain, so I will do my best to balance these things with cute photos of a smiling toddler and baby, but I also want to be real...and life is not always so "nicey-nicey."

I had a thought this morning (or Tuesday morning as I am scheduling this to post on Wednesday)...and this is amazing because I had the WORST night with Piper. She is in the middle of what can be known as the "4 month wakeful period." Not that she's been a great sleeper. Ever. But, she's waking up at least 3 times every night lately. I'm so tired. This morning Morgan also woke up at 5:15 and whined and whined and wouldn't go back to sleep. I lost it. I won't give you the gory details, but poor David had to endure it. He took over and gave Morgan breakfast which let me rest (not really sleep) for another hour. He saved my day.

Interestingly enough, I found this quote on a blog I read regularly (dooce.com).

"There is no reason whatsoever to freak out about those things, but when you let sleep deprivation creep up on you, or certain other parts of your life start to spin out of control, those little things can seem like a giant concrete wall holing you up inside a bottomless pit."

This woman just knows how to say what I can't put into words. She is a mom of two with a new baby and deals with depression and anxiety. She has an amazing sense of humor and knows how to cut to the chase. I love reading her posts because I relate so well. Please read her post to get the context, but she's talking about how a lot of small things can just add up to completely overwhelming you. This morning I felt like I was in that bottomless pit. For me, to get through it I just have to keep moving. Getting out of the house helps. We made our occasional "pilgrimage" to the Babies R Us on the northside of town. They only had one of the things I wanted, but it was helpful to get out nonetheless. The pit doesn't seem so bottomless right now.

I had another epiphany this morning, but it is too much for this post. I will post more tomorrow... thanks for reading.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Nursing Update - I think I've been "Lapped"

I'm not sure this is a good analogy, but it's sort of how I feel. I think about a week ago Piper overtook me and I've been "lapped." Until then I'd been killing myself to keep up with her, but my supply lost out. She's suddenly taking more formula at bedtime and during the night to get to sleep. I still don't supplement much during the day, but feedings are frequent. I just haven't been able to keep up with her anymore. This is a crucial time (between 4 and 5 months) that babies really ramp up the volume of their feedings. I'd already been wondering how I could possibly feed her more often to increase my supply. I was feeding her 10-12 times a day at that point. Yikes!

This is bittersweet, but possibly also a blessing in disguise. I'd hoped to make it to six months...I still may, but at this point I'm just taking her lead. I suspect she may migrate more towards the bottle (more reliable at this point) and then my own milk supply will just slowly diminish. Hopefully I can keep a few feedings for a while, but weaning off very slowly will be the best for both of us, physically and emotionally. I'm not actively "weaning," but if that's the direction it goes I'll just go along with it.

This is bittersweet because as hard as it's been I've loved this bonding time with little Piper. I really felt like I missed out on this with Morgan, so I've cherished being able to have another chance to experience it. I think I've mentioned this before, but I've been told that this is a bit of a "heartbreak" when it ends for all Moms, no matter how long they nurse. It's a loss that needs to be "grieved" as well.

As I mentioned it's also a blessing in disguise. I've begun to realize that this will be good timing to take advantage of the "freedom" not nursing will allow me. I need to start working with Morgan on potty training and other developmental areas. I've known for a while that too much of my mental energy has been spent with continuing nursing (or figuring out how to continue). It's time to move on. Morgan thrived on formula and Piper will continue to do so as well. David has also mentioned that he is willing to take over some night feedings on the weekends when I am ready. Did I mentioned how great my husband is and what a great Daddy he is?! Who volunteers to do this?! He loves being a big part of his babies' lives. Such a blessing! I'll also be able to focus a little more time on myself by making it back to the gym more often. I found during my pregnancy that this really boosted my energy and mental well-being. Now that I am a Mom of two this is essential!! Morgan does well in the childcare there. It is good for her to have time with other kids. Piper has been a few times now and I expect she'll do fine too.

Overall, I know I've done my best. My Lactation Consultant told me last week, "if all my patients worked half as hard as you have, I wouldn't have much of a job." That made me feel good. This is the same woman who told me with Morgan "I just don't think you have the patience." I remembered that. Well I had a leg up with Piper as she tried harder as well, but I knew I wanted to give it my all. I know I have done everything I can to nurse Piper as long as possible. Now it's time to slowly move towards the next chapter. Thanks for keeping up with my "saga." I hope it hasn't been TMI, but it's helpful to record my thoughts on it. I'll keep you in the loop on how things wind down in the next few weeks or however long it lasts.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The Jumperoo is back!

After a "vacation" at our neighbors' house, the jumperoo came back this weekend! It is Piper's turn now. Check out our little pumpkin...her feet just touch the floor!

Hi Mama, I can barely see over this thing.

Toes just touch, but no real jumping yet

Look at all this cool stuff!

Kinda yummy too

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Kitchen

Here's Morgan's new play kitchen! This was the BIG Christmas present. Sorry no pictures of Morgan playing with it. As usual, she is more interested in looking in the back of the camera than actually being in the picture. I'll keep trying to get some shots before she sees the camera!

It took a little while to put it together. This was our first experience with "assembly required" for Christmas toys.

The cookie and tea sets came from Aunt Cristen (thanks!!) and Mommy and Daddy bought her the pots and pans and food groups set.