Thursday, December 29, 2011

Terrible Twos or Just Terrible

Ok….so this is something I just now starting to deal with…I wish I didn't have to though…here goes:

So the other day the little guy and I went over to Barnes and Noble to look at books and play at at the Thomas the Train table. La La La..everything was going great. The little dude was playing with a slightly older dude and they were both running the trains every which way and then….cue Jaws music…

A kid who was about 2 years old comes over to the train table. Initially, he looked innocent. Then, he beelined for my little guy and smacked him over the head. Thwack! My eyes went wide in disbelief and I sat there dumbfounded. Did that really just happen???? I think so because my little guy looked at me so sad and with his mouth all scrunched up they way he does before he cries, which is a very rare occurrence. Once I got my bearings back, I looked at the mom and she says that my son must have riled up her son. WTF?!?!?! Seriously lady?!?!? My kid is one and was playing right in front of me with another kid when your son marched over and popped my kid on the head. Trying to keep my composure, I took a deep breath and encouraged my little senor to resume playing with the trains. And then it happened again…the terrible two year old marched right back over to my kiddo and went to whack him on the head again. This time, I grabbed his hand midair and told him that it is not ok to hit other kids. The mother just stood there and never once offered an apology. This time I gathered my things and we left the kiddie area of the bookstore. Is this normal? I was so riled up after this event I didn't know what to do with myself. What do you do? Can you teach a grown woman a lesson? It was after this episode, I realized how strong my maternal instinct is to protect my kid. It makes perfect sense to me when people say they would go to the ends of the earth for their kids :)

Moms PLEASE weigh in!!!

Monday, December 26, 2011

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Thursday, December 1, 2011

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: Six in One, Half a Dozen in the Other

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: Six in One, Half a Dozen in the Other: Ok, so you all know I struggled with the identity crisis of not going back to work for so many months. It took me forever and a day to say I...

Six in One, Half a Dozen in the Other

Ok, so you all know I struggled with the identity crisis of not going back to work for so many months. It took me forever and a day to say I was a stay at home mom with a smile. I would internally cringe for the longest time when people would say "oh, how nice for you…you get to stay at home with your baby." I mean, yes it was and is nice but I always wanted to say…"I'm staying at home because my kid doesn't take a bottle." Would it change anything if I did say something? Nope! Who knows why I was never comfortable being a mommy of leisure during the day, but just as I have started to become comfortable with the idea…the potential for change is on the horizon.

So here I am with a kiddo who is just about a year and a potential job opportunity has come my way. The interview process has been nice. Why you might ask? Well getting dressed in professional clothes…ok, maybe its just some chinos and a striped shirt..but professional in comparison to my workout clothes and shorts and tanks I have been sporting for almost the last year. LOL! Each interview has felt like a mini-therapy session. Why you might ask? Well, I spend so much of my day talking with other moms about how solid food eating is going, new lotions for eczema that have come out and teething that talking about marketing strategies, branding and other like subjects for a couple hours made me feel like a new person. I came out of each and every interview with a cheesier grin. The hubs thought that maybe this company offered me the position on the spot thus causing the cheshire cat grin. So he asked…how was it? All giddy like a school girl, I said it was awesome. He asked…did they hire you? Not that I am aware of I said. Then he asked…why the silly grin? And with I chuckle I explained that for the first time in almost a year, I feel like there was another part of me people were interested in talking to other than the mommy me. This is where it gets interesting. So as I have progressed through the job interviewing process, the dread of going back to work continued to grow. What would happen to my little guy during the day? Would he be happy without me? Would he survive? Would I survive?

Go figure, that the grass is always greener on the other side. When you you stay at home, you have work envy. When you go back to work, you have stay at home mommy envy. For now, for this cow…the grass is greener right here with my little man.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: Competitive Mommying Part 1

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: Competitive Mommying Part 1: So after meeting a girlfriend for coffee today…I realized that competitive mommying, as I like to call it, starts in the womb. Its a little ...

Competitive Mommying Part 1

So after meeting a girlfriend for coffee today…I realized that competitive mommying, as I like to call it, starts in the womb. Its a little hard to tell which side, pre or post womb, is more competitive…but here is my take. For the in the womb mommy battles, there appears to be 3 main components:

1)Mommy weight gain in pounds: Nobody wants to gain the most. Everybody wants to be "all belly." Ok ok, so I am super duper guilty of this desire except the fact of the matter is I was the size of a small beluga whale. Yes, I somehow managed to gain 60lbs eating fruits and veggies with a cookie tossed in here and there. I try to blame the majority of the weight gain on bed rest this but we will never really know why I desired to look like a beached whale. I always thought that I would be this hip and chic pregnant girl glowing from head to toe, but who doesn't want to look like that?!?!

2)Size of supposed baby in belly: Ok, so while preggers I too wanted this humongo baby. I now ask myself what the heck was I thinking?!?! Who wants to birth a huge butterball turkey?!?!? Not me! So, if we are going to be honest here…I think I was secretly hoping for this HUGE baby so that there would be less weight to lose after the dude was born. Not my luck…our little senor was just a mere 6 lbs and 7 whole ounces! The doctor told us at least 8 lbs but they never really know for sure until the babe arrives. What was the point in gaining 60lbs for a 6 pound and some change baby???? I sure as heck don't know. As I was so deflated when they yelled out my little man's weight, I even asked if they were sure that there wasn't another one in there. Holy smokes…53.5lbs to lose after a c-section???? Oy Vay!

3)Infant trivia: Ok, so that may sound a little weird but for all you mommies and mommies-to-be …you know its true. It seems like everyone has done the most or best research on baby goods for their registry. But, lets face it…we all have different tastes and needs, thus we all seem to pick different items, but we all think what we have is the best and most definitely will tell you why. So it actually can be pretty funny watching new moms and moms-to-be critique baby registries. So while infant trivia is quite entertaining already, it does not seem to end there. It gets really funny when all these mommies…ok, ok, I know I am included here…get going on crib bumpers, co-sleeping, bottles, baby carriers, colic and it seriously could go on for decades. I think the funniest part about infant trivia is the back chatter after moms get together. The "i cant believe she thinks la la la.."Too funny!

Stay tuned for Part 2...

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Kids do the darndest things :)

The other day I had a 2.5 inch slit open to the yard where the dogs so I could refill water bowls and such. I usually set my little guy at the end of the hallway to give myself a running start to this activity. The kid isn't walking yet but he is a serious kind of crawler who follows me everywhere :) It seemed that in less than a blink of an eye I turned around and my little guy had followed me into the guest room and was standing in the sliding doorway I had slightly opened. hmmmmm…what was he planning on doing. I know he loves the dogs but they aren't quite as much a fan of him as he is of them. First, came the wave and then the "da da da da," which in little senor's language is "Doggies!" A few licks of the face and a few little fits of giggling and then the cutest things happened. He reached into the dog biscuit box. I thought to myself…whats the worst thing that could happen here. Maybe he will grab a biscuit and try it out. He is not a great solid food eater so I wasn't too concerned about him eating a biscuit and liking it…lol. Plus, who wants to eat lamb and rice dog biscuits. Yuck! So here is what happened...he reached into the box, grabbed a biscuit and handed one to our oldest dog Madison. On first thought, she wasn't sure she should take one but then decided on a very quick second thought… you could see her thinking it's a biscuit…give it to me! With the success of the first biscuit, my lil man was ear to ear smiles. In the box he went for biscuit #2. Success again with Memphis! Back in the box for the third time and I lifted him up to give it to Digger who also was unsure of whether to take the biscuit. With an OK from mom…biscuit was taken and happily eaten and I was ear to ear smiles. It was in that moment, I felt so lucky to be able to be home for such an event. Its crazy how fast kids learn and mimic. I guess it is time for me to be on my best behavior :)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Stroller Wars

Alright…so I officially feel like a mom with this blog entry. Really??? Stroller wars??? Self…get a hold yourself…lol. So true though. Just as of late I have traded (bought and sold on Craigslist..yes I am an avid Craigslister)the bain of my existence although pretty stroller for a utility-based stroller that brings daily joy into my life :) *Disclaimer: Bob stroller not up for discussion…awesome…a little bulky but awesome!

Ok, so I think I started out on the wrong foot with the stroller.

Problem 1: Did not consult other mommies about what stroller to purchase while preggers
Problem 2: Watched You Tube videos to see how to use stroller
Problem 3: Purchased stroller based on You Tube videos and looks

So you might ask…what the heck can of stroller did I buy pre-babe? A Bugaboo Cameleon. First I was drawn to the options this stroller comes with. It has a bassinet, car seat adapter and toddler seat. Now what pregnant mom did not envision herself strolling down a tree lined street pushing a bassinet "Father of the Bride 2" style??? Not only did this vision sell me, the you tube videos are awesome. I highly suggest if any one is bored to start checking out the baby product you tube how-to videos. I swear you will end up buying a product because it looks like so much fun to try all the options these items suggest and they all make it look so easy. I had this same sort of strange desire to buy the magic bullet because I loved the informercials so much. Ok, so I realize I am getting off topic. So the Bugaboo…love the way it looks and it folds up pretty compact; however, it is difficult turn the baby around in the middle of a walk and assembly and breakdown require to baby-free hands. Now when I was pregnant and someone told me that babies like to turn directions…I would have thought you all were nuts. Seriously!!! Don't all babies just face outward and check out the world??? Ok, so here is a perfect example: I was on a walk and the little guy was facing outward and then in the snap of a finger decided he needed to be in on a conversation I was having with my girlfriend and he started to fuss and cry. Seems that at the beginning of any fuss…I go into a tailspin wanting to make it stop. With my bugaboo, its really hard to unsnap the seat, pick up the seat and turn it around with baby in it and re-snap it in. Is it impossible? No. Would it make my life easier if the seat rotated…yes! So this among other issues with my Bugaboo, like the single drink holder that leaves a lot to be desired, the terrible customer service, the fact that the stroller was too wide to fit in a lot of store aisles and the requirement of two hands for assembly and breakdown made me give this stroller the boot. So back on Craigslist it went and on the hunt for a new stroller I went. So what did I find? The Orbit :) Designed by two engineers, this whole stroller is about ease and utility. You can pop the car seat right onto the stroller, pop that off and attach a bassinet or toddler seat. All items can turn 360 degrees at the drop of a hat. You can steer the stroller with one arm while holding baby in your other arm…YES! Two drinks in the drink holder. Why is this a must have? One for water and one for coffee :) The toddler stroller seat also works as a high chair at restaurants. In two seconds, the baby is able to slide under the table and face the dining table as well as being the perfect height.So now when the little senor fusses mid walk...I simply lift two levers and spin him around. Sweet! Fuss averted! Yes! One last fantastic feature, ok well maybe really probably a dozen more but we will stick to two, is that I can fold up the whole thing with one hand and its made with all okeo-tex green materials that are wonderful on little senor's sensitive skin. One more thing, all the seating attachments have fabulous full covering sunshades that also have a full-length cover attached to them so if the baby is sleeping you can pull it right over them. No more blankets over the stroller to keep the sun out. Oh, Oh the car seat base allows you to turn the car seat towards you to fasten or take out the kid and turn back to rear facing…So stinking easy! Love it! I could go on and on and on. Orbit…you rock my world so much that I just put a sticker on the back of my car. I know I surprised even myself with that one. Yes, I feel like starting the Orbit Stroller fan club…it could be ilke the Eichler home club for strollers….hmmmm…I think I am on to something…lol…

So what I have learned about myself: Utility, ease and organic seem to trump everything :) But seriously…did I just write a blog post about strollers and wanting to start a stroller fan club…OY VAY!

Friday, June 24, 2011

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: UNCLE!!!!

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: UNCLE!!!!: "Yes, thats me yelling UNCLE and holding up the white truce flag. Why you might ask? Well, for awhile here its been fairly easy hanging with..."


Yes, thats me yelling UNCLE and holding up the white truce flag. Why you might ask? Well, for awhile here its been fairly easy hanging with the little guy, running errands, going places as long as it was between the baby business hours of 8am-4pm. As of late, thats all changed and I think I have lost every shred of dignity that was lingering around me. How so? Everything was manageable prior to the dude learning how to crawl.That was only a mere month ago at the ripe age of 6.5 months. I know some people are really impressed with this, but while its nice to check off a new skill learned…its a game changer. Now, that he is able to use his legs, his new hobby has been crawling up mom at all times. No, he cannot be still like most babies. In his mind, why not crawl up moms love handles while pulling down her shirt, stick a finger up her nose and pull out her hair and maybe having a foot slip down her shirt. Fun right??? You betcha!!! Especially while trying to have a meaningful conversation with someone. Everyone always says…awww how cute…boys will be boys….Ahhhhhh!!!! I always thought I would be one of those put together mamas looking cute all the time with my sweet boy attached to my side. Ha! I do have a sweet boy that I love to death but about me being put together…not even close! As of late, Im lucky if I come home resembling the person that left the house the house earlier that morning. Lets just say mirrors are not my friends.

One would also think that by learning how to crawl that this would be enough for the dude for a LONG while…nope!!!! As soon as he mastered getting his crawl on, then came the crawl to sit, the sit to knee pull-up, the full on pull-up and now attempting to walk last night…WHY???? I am not going to lie here…its really neat to watch how excited he gets about how mobile he is getting, but I would be totally, totally, totally fine with him waiting to walk for another 6 months at the minimum. I mean for goodness sakes, there is no need to rush here. Anyhow, back to the topic at hand. Why am I yelling UNCLE at the top of my lungs??? Well, after thinking that his crazy busy behavior was a small passing phase, I have learned that it is not. I kept thinking that if I just continued on with my life the way it has been, going out to our favorite restaurants, shops and so on…he would just adjust, hang out and chill. No! He always wants to be on the move and yabbering at the top of his lungs. This is where a small problem comes in…while I am not any where close to be a germophobe…all floors are not suitable for crawling even by my standards. So what do you do in this sort of situation. I give in advance. For example, I have been looking forward to going to Miss California for months now to see friends, meet up with my other Miss CA has beens and most importantly see my little sis give up her title, but I feel like if I cry UNCLE in advance I just may be saving myself from disaster. Can you imagine getting all dressed up, hair done and then taking the little guy with me to the pre-pageant reception and then having him pull my hair out, fingers up nose, foot down dress and throwing the nursing cover off??? I can…and thats where my last remaining shreds of dignity will be lost. Like everything, this too shall pass but I think I rather have it pass in the comfort of my own!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Developmental Milestones…Love 'em or Hate 'em

So recently at one our 6-12 month parent classes, the facilitator passed out recommended developmental milestones for babies birth to 12 months. She asked all of us to check off where our babes were from birth to 7 months. Could they sit on their own, were they rolling over, were they babbling, blowing bubbles, putting things in their mouths, etc. As I was looking at the check off sheets…I started to think. What if the little guy was one of the babies that wasn't hitting these supposed milestones? How would I feel? Should I have read him more Baby Einstein books and less Dr. Suess? Was I doing something wrong as a mom? And then I stepped back and really thought about all of this. Did it really matter that much? The answer is generally, no. What would it mean if the little senor couldn't do these things…I don't know.

Would he thrive in life if he couldn't roll over? So after class, I called my mom. I asked her if I hit all the "supposed" milestones on time. She replied, I don't know that was over 29 years ago. Why are you asking me? Are you having difficulty rolling over, sitting, sticking things in your mouth??? No, I replied and started to laugh. This is when I realized that it is nice to double check to see if your baby is growing on target but these are general milestones. Some you will hit early and others late but at the end of the day as long as you have a happy , thriving baby thats all that really matters :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Apples, Pears and Cinnamon…Oh My!

So its been awhile since I have been able to sit down and blog. Its been busy around here to say the least…other blog posts to come will detail our lives lately. So one of the fun things we have been doing now that the little senor is 6 months old is starting solids. Now you may be wondering how a person can get excited about eating solid foods but in our household it means that the little guy is one step closer to becoming a self sufficient little dude..ok, so that might be a slight exaggeration but true :)

As soon as my mom found out we were pregnant last year, she was dying to buy us a baby cooker. More specifically, the Beaba. I have to say, I thought it was quite the marketing piece…an expensive babycooker. What was wrong with the good ol' stove and food processor??? Anyhow, since my mom was so dead set on getting us the Beaba…we said sure and for Christmas this year we got one. Being my mom, not only did we get the babycooker we also got the BPA free food storage containers and the Top 100 Baby Purees book to name a few. Since then, this set of baby food making supplies has been looking at me for the past 4 months. During this time thoughts of panic were swirling around. Was I really going to make my own baby food? Would it taste good? Was I finally becoming domesticated? Would Amazon take this back? Wouldn't it be easier just to buy food? Ahhh! What to do, what to do…with each passing day, I was one step closer to having to answer these questions...

Nonetheless, the inevitable happened. The dude celebrated his half birthday and was ready to begin the world of food. To continue the postponing of the making of food, we started him on bananas. Super easy. All you have to do is scrap some banana onto a spoon and you have instant baby food. We did this with steamed sweet potatoes, avocados and pears. Life was good! Baby was on solids and I had yet to take the Beaba out of the box. After a couple weeks of this, I knew it was time. The little guy needed a puree…

With a lot of encouragement from the hubs…we whipped out the Beaba and the baby food making began. Truth be told, on this same day my love affair with this machine began as well. I cracked open the Top 100 Baby Purees. First up, pear compote. Peel the pear, cut it into a few pieces without the seeds and put it into the basket to steam. 15 minutes later dump steamed pears into the food processor part and add in some water and VOILA! Pear compote complete! Yes! First puree under my belt.

Now it was time for the test…what would the dude think. So we set him into his high chair, bib on and in the spoon went. Would he spit it out? Would he cry? Success, the little guy loved it! Granted 50% of the food ends up all over him but he was smiling and trying to shove the spoon into his mouth. Since then we have added sweet potatoes and apples with cinnamon into our baby food repertoire. Today I am blending in broccoli with the sweet potatoes and pears with the cinnamon apples.

So contrary to popular belief…I am having a blast making baby food. Its fun and it tastes great. I kinda wish I had a Beaba before we had the baby. It makes the perfect serving of fresh applesauce or sweet potato casserole for dinner so easy. So at the end of the day I say...Apples, Pears and Cinnamon…Oh YES!
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Saturday, April 23, 2011

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: Taboo Topic #1: Who's down with PPD…I guess maybe ...

From Tiaras to Teething Rings: Taboo Topic #1: Who's down with PPD…I guess maybe ...: "So I have gone back and forth as to write about this. I know a blog is 'supposed' to be an online diary but some subjects still seem a littl..."

Taboo Topic #1: Who's down with PPD…I guess maybe me?

So I have gone back and forth as to write about this. I know a blog is "supposed" to be an online diary but some subjects still seem a little taboo, like this one…the dreaded post partum depression (ppd). ok, so it sorta makes me feel like a crazy person for even saying that I have been dealing with ppd. No, I am not a stage 5 Bay Bridge clinger but certainly past the "baby blues" stage. If I had to place myself in a stage, I would go with Stage 2 Cave Dweller. This stage stage includes wanting to crawl into a cave with my hubs and little guy stuffing my face full of chinese food and cupcakes. Its so funny that I have said this to a few people that I have had this and their reaction is "oh you are just adjusting to motherhood." No, I am not…well yes, I am…but my hormones are WAY more out of whack than just being a new mommy. I cant speak for everyone here but I have never really had hormonal issues until now. Somewhere in the six weeks after giving birth to the little senor, I had a few afternoons of crying while watching the Real Housewives of Somewhere…Really?!? I cried during a Bravo reality show. Oy! I should have known right there that something was wrong. I mean I love me some Bravo shows but usually they make me laugh and smile….not cry! But my strange mood appeared to be a-ok based on what I read online about post birth hormone fluctuation. It wasn't until a few weeks later when I was reading my little guy a book, "That's Not My Monster," and started crying that I knew something wasn't right. I mean it is really sad to go through the entire 8 pages of the book of why it wasnt my monster. Was it because the monster's paws were too rough or its nose was too blobby. I desperately needed to know was which one was my monster. My monster has the fluffy ears! So I am getting little off topic here, my roundabout point is that when you start bawling your eyes out reading a super cute book to your baby who is laughing, something isn't right. I called my hubs right away. Through my tears and muffled speech, I think he gathered that I was having some sort of ppd but was still safe to myself and the kiddo. So this is where I find this subject to be taboo. You shouldn't have to make it point to let someone know that you are not in post partum psychosis just some stage of depression. It seems that everyone assumes that if you are having any sort of ppd you are the Stage 5 Bay Bridge clinger which I am not. I was just somewhere else on the spectrum past Stage 1 Baby Blues and Stage 3 Couch Potato. Ok, so back to some sort of point. Being the sweet and solution oriented person my hubs is, he emailed over some ppd support groups in the area as well as suggesting that I go do something for me like acupressure to help relax. Wanting to get out of this funk asap, I emailed the support group and checked out two books from Day One. The Brook Sheild's "Down Came the Rain" book and Post Partum Depression for Dummies. Honestly?!?!? Post Partum for Dummies???? Great title…I think this was the humor relief I was needing and it looked like a fab resource. But seriously, they couldn't come up with a different title ?!?! I made an appointment for reflexology that day and started taking some Omega supplements to help stabilize my mood. Somewhere between taking the supplements, reflexology and talking to a few other new mommies dealing with ppd…there was a light at the end of the tunnel with a rainbow nearby. Yes, I still have days of crying over reading "The Hungry Caterpillar" and feeling irritated out of nowhere for no reason… but overall things are looking rosy colored. Woohoo!
What getting reflexology looks like these days. Insert baby on chest :)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Already has a mind of his own...

So I am sitting here laughing at myself as I think about this post. No, I wasn't "that" neurotic pregnant woman researching every last detail about what the best baby products were and "knowing" exactly what my baby was going to need…ok, so maybe I was a little neurotic. Nonetheless, I did my research and then ebay-ed and craiglisted away when I found the baby products I knew my baby was going to love. Ha! So today, I have been busy putting a list together of all the stuff I need to sell. Why you might ask? Well, my baby has a mind of his own. He simply didn't agree with the choices I had made for him. So lets start with a few prime examples:

1. Cloth diapering: Lets face it, diapers take years and years and years to decompose in the landfill. Since my hubs owns a green demolition and hauling business and is heavy into recycling and re-use, I felt that I needed to do my part of raising this little guy as green as possible and diapers were on the top of that list. After endless hours or reading and you-tubing the different options of cloth diapering, I decided on Grovia hybrid cloth diapering system. Figuring that I simply needed to commit to this, I bought an entire package that was to last the little man till he was potty trained complete with hemp liners and a diaper sprayer. Go figure two days after I start cloth diapering the kid breaks out into the most horrible diaper rash. After talking to the pediatrician, she said that his skin cannot handle the moisture and that this will be an ongoing issue. In essence, she was saying that I am doing my kid a disservice if I continue cloth diapering because he already has sensitive skin and eczema. Seriously?!?!? But it was in my eco-baby plan to cloth diaper….arghhh!!!!

2. Bottles: So who actually thinks that their baby will not take a bottle??? I certainly was not thinking it would be me. That sort of thing happens on such a rare occasion and I figured it was some sort of scare tactic on internet baby forums. Right??? I had such grand visions of my hubs being able to feed the little man. I was so committed to this idea I bought a bottle sterilizer, breast pump, bottle warmer for the car, a slew of glass Born Free bottles with silicone sleeves, etc. So do you want the good news or bad news first? I will go with the good news…I have a great package to sell someone that has a baby who is friends with bottles. The bad news…well I guess there really is no "bad" news. One lesson I learned about my dude is that he is more of a straight from the tap kinda guy so we have become more like the dynamic duo the past 5 months :)

3.Bedside co-sleeper: Yes, another one of my fabulous visions. I saw the dude sleeping in an extension of our bed in the acclaimed Arms Reach Mini Co-Sleeper. He would sleep right next to the hubs and I when we were snoozing at night. I could totally picture the little guy rustling around in the sleeper and my maternal ears would hear him and then I would simply roll over to the side where his sleeper was and roll him into bed with to feed him and then roll him back to his abode. Nice plan, right??? I thought so. Small problem…he didn't. So the very cute little co-sleeper has stayed attached to our bed and served as a fabulous basket for my water, tea, magazines, cell phone, lap top, etc. for the last few months. You know if it doesn't work for the babe, it makes a wonderful bed side table for new moms.

So I guess I have learned a very valuable lesson here: I should go back to my old ways of never planning. If I don't plan for anything, I can never be disappointed in the outcome. No good can ever come from planning…LOL!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Half Empty or Half Full

Today I was reading an article on Miranda Kerr, the supermodel married to Orlando Bloom, and how much she loves her less than 3 month old body post pregnancy. I would too, she looks AMAZING! She said that watching her diet, yoga and breastfeeding is the key…I do that and more…hmmmmm

So we all know that I have been struggling with post-preggers weight loss. Prior to having a baby, I assumed that women who were unable to lose the weight were simply not disciplined. Was I wrong or what?!?! I am "that" woman who is struggling to lose the weight. I feel like I had a head start since I gained almost 60 pounds and was on bed rest. I seriously thought that as soon as I jiggled my more to love self, the weight would fly off. Ha! I would say the first 45 came off pretty fast which was awesome because I realized I ankles again. I cant even tell you how many women told me that if I was breastfeeding the weight would melt off week after week…Not even! What these women forgot to tell me is that happens to about 50% of women. I don't happen to fall into that 50%…why would I be??? It would be too easy! For those of us in the "other" 50%, I guess our bodies decided it needed extra fat stores to produce milk. I beg to differ but I am not sure who to take the complaint up with. Lol! So currently in my weight loss arsenal is Baby Boot Camp, Yoga twice a week, daily walks downtown Walnut Creek and the elliptical machine.

I am learning to become more comfortable with the extra pounds I am sporting these days but its hard. For the past few months, I have been stuffing myself in my old clothes and honestly I looked like…well how my babe looks when he outgrows his clothes every week. I guess we are two peas from the same pod, suffering from the same affliction. After too many months of feeling like an extra large sausage in a very small blanket, I bought a few new pants and tanks that fit. So while it feels good that I have a few things that fit, its hard to look at the sizes. The pants are 4 sizes larger and the tops 2 to 3. So this is where life sometimes feels like one step forward and two steps back...

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Paranoid Parent…Who me???

I have always thought other people were a little over anxious about what could be wrong with their baby. I mean really…what could possibly go wrong. When you look at the statistics, it simply doesn't seem possible for there to be something wrong ALL the time. So the kid sneezed, hiccuped, had watery eyes…Who cares?!? They will live, right?!? Well, I have continued with this thought process of how crazed other parents were until that fateful day when I became a mom…

I would say in general, I am a really positive person who looks at the world through rose colored glasses; however, when it comes to my baby I seem to make mountains out of mole hills. So I am learning that some of it is the doctors/nurses fault (yes, I said that), some of it is me being a paranoid parent and the some of it I grow out of every single day as I gain confidence in me and the kid. And yes, the kid is still breathing from the last time I checked 30 seconds ago :)

Ok, so here's a few examples of why I say sometimes "its the doctors and nurses fault:"

Example 1: Well, you all know that I had quite the birth story. So as soon as the little man was out of the womb and into the real world, I went into a tailspin. What if he wasn't healthy? What if he looked funky? What if, what if, what if...For the first time, it hit me…me and the hubs were now parental units. Holy guacamole! Who thought this was a good idea??? I didn't even know how to change a diaper and I am now a mom…OY!!! Any how, the first thing the nurses yell out about the little man is…he has 10 fingers and 10 toes…OK, we knew that from all the ultrasounds. But hey, the womb is a funny place, you never know if the little man decided to grow an extra toe in the last few weeks to be more like my brother. Yup! My brother has eleven toes…fancy huh?!? Well our little guy wasn't luck enough to have an 11th toe but he was quite the sight when he came out. The left side of his face was completely smushed up and wasn't moving as well as a cone head full of hair reminiscent of Marge Simpson. The nurses looked at the baby and then at the hubs and me and said "isn't he beautiful???" Ummmmm…I know this is where I am supposed to say yes and burst into happy tears…but did they seriously just say that??? Well within a minute or so, the little guy's face came to and the hubs said he was definitely a-ok by the time the umbilical cord was cut and he was weighed. OK, so speaking of weight he only weighed in at 6 lbs 7oz…Huh?!?! I put on like 60 pounds and that was all the little guy weighed. Seriously?!?1 I was quite convinced he would be at least the size of a decent butterball turkey…oh well! So about an hour later in the post op recovery room, I was attempting to nurse when a nurse came flying in asking if our little guy was the baby with paralysis his face…ummmm What paralysis??? Was there something else we didn't know??? Did she have to say it so nonchalantly??? I know nurses and docs deal with several babies a day but we as new parents have this one experience. So after much panic and tears…we were assured that all was good on the healthy baby front

Example 2: Once you have the baby and move into postpartum, it seems like there is always someone coming in to check your physical recovery, blood pressure and temperature. As soon as that is done and you are about to close your eyes for a little snooze, someone else comes in to check the babe's temperature, heart rate, amount he/she has eaten and the diaper count. So herein lies the "it's their fault I am paranoid." Nurses and doctors seem to always be concentrating particularly hard and take a long freaking time when they check the babe's heart rate. I think they monitor it for over a minute and while doing it they have silence in the room and furrow their brows. As a new parent, you are thinking it only takes them a mere moment to check mine, is the baby ok? The answer is generally yes. I guess newborns have irregular breathing and heart beating patterns and that is completely normal. It takes them about a minute to get a good idea of the pattern. So here is where I say it is their fault that I am paranoid. They don't tell you this…it was only after several doc appointments before the hubs asked and they told us this and we both let out a HUGE sigh of relief. I also learned at this same doctor appointment that babies tend to have have heart murmurs when they are first born and grow out of it within a couple months. WOW! So much to learn…

Well the last 4+ months have been nothing short of a fast learning curve for me. From learning the fastest way to get boogers out of my little guys nose (thanks NoseFrida), to combatting acid reflux and mastering the art of nursing…life has certainly changed from a year ago…next up teething…

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Hitting Pause and Taking it All In

Every day begins with hustle and bustle at the Crownholm household. The hubs gets up WAY early to work on the computer usually right at the same time when I am finally taking in some much needed REM sleep. Once I do get up a couple hours later…it seems that in a flash the day is gone. From taking a quick morning shower, to putting check marks on the To-Do list, nursing the man, going to a parenting class, cooking and cleaning, etc…there doesn't appear to be too much extra time in the day to spare. I used to wonder what stay at home moms did all day…lets just say I don't wonder any more. In fact, I wonder how I could work a 40 hour work week from home and still get everything done and be sane. The hubs always reminds me that something always has to give. Sometimes its the home cooked food and other times its simply prioritizing the to do list. Either way, lately it seems that I have lacked time to hit pause for a moment and reflect on all the blessings I have. I was reminded to do this just a few minutes ago after reading some overdue emails. It seems that in the last week, I know of several amazing people that are or have dealt with some serious illnesses in their families and were simply asking for some thoughts and prayers during their difficult time. It seems that all in an instant, life seems so much clearer. Life is short. Life is a blessing and I have so much to be thankful for. So to all my family and friends, I am thinking of you all now and thinking how grateful I am for each and every one of you. So if you get a chance, take a minute today to hit pause today and reflect on all of life's blessings.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Just when I thought I had a plan...

Its so funny how life can have a totally different plan than the one that I had for myself. Never in a million years did I imagine being a stay at home mom. For all of you that now me, domesticated is not exactly synonymous with my name. I have always loved working and growing professionally especially as of late when I was working for a family foundation. My entire life, I always thought that I would get married, get pregnant, have a fabulous/glowing pregnancy, have the baby and return to work 12 weeks later. HA! I am honestly laughing out loud as I write this post. This is so not what happened…well the first two parts are true. I did marry my best friend and we did get pregnant. Easy pregnancy…I think not! Fabulous and glowing pregnant woman…I beg to differ. I did gain an obscene amount of weight while eating like a rabbit but we did give birth to our healthy, precious baby boy. Return to work…NOPE! In all seriousness, I did try to and there were so many forces working against me that we decided that it was meant to be that I stop working and hang with the little man who laughs at the face bottles. You are thinking to yourself that this would be awesome…right??? Not in the least bit. I love having him with me all the time but since he eats on demand it makes it quite difficult to enjoy a nice big glass of wine or go out to dinner with the hubs. One day….

Not working has brought on a totally new set of adjustments…I don't think I have ever thought about not working. So when it happened all of a sudden, I went through an identity crisis. Kind of like the same one I went through when I officially changed my name after I got married. Its strange. With the name change, I'm the same person on the inside with a new id on the outside. Now, I am the same person on the inside and outside with a new job title, Director of Daily Operations at the Crownholm Household. Yes, it's a self appointed position and title, but I really needed some sort of job with a description to make me feel proud of myself at the end of the day/week/month. When you are working, every time your boss tells you "good job" or a project is finished on time, you feel a sense accomplishment. Being a stay at home mom, you don't get that. Nobody tells me how wonderful your laundry folding is or that you vacuum with such finesse. Nursing your kid also seems to pose the same problem, although I will say that as of late the little man smiles at me after every feed or gives me a pat on the chest. I take that as it was a good feed or job well done mom :)

Even yesterday, the hubs, the babe and I went to a Sign Language class at Day One. Now, I frequent Day One frequently….do I really need to say that I go there almost every single day for a class of some sort. Now, you would think that another weekend class would be a piece of cake. Not even! We get there early, sign in, feed, diaper change, weigh the man and sit down at our seats. Everything appeared to going well and we were the first people there. As the class filled up and the instructor began, the little mister decided he would rather us not learn sign language to communicate with him. He promptly directed me to the room outside the classroom where there were rocking recliners. He was thinking that at noon he would prefer to eat and take a siesta. So we left 30 minutes later with a book on sign language and left to our own devices to learn how to sign properly.

So, I guess the moral of the this story is that just when I think I have made a plan for myself, life or something like it has a whole other one. Such is life!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A few of Eddie's favorite things 3 months in...

So in his 3 months of life so far, Eddie has compiled a list of must haves. He says that he simply couldn't live without the following:

Nap Nanny coupled with Muslin blanket
1. Nap Nanny: This is the ultimate comfy, cozy chair for all babies and then it transitions into the ultimate toddler chair. We tried it out at my friends Danielle's house and it was an instant hit. We put him in, he sat like a little king and smiles went round for hours. This is also a great seat for babes with reflux. While our little one doesn't spend a lot of time in here, he does enjoy playing with his toes and toys in it as well as taking a nap.

2. Organic Cotton Muslin blankets: These are a definitely a must have for our little one. He truly enjoys covering his face in blankets and this is really breathable blanket for when he is in the car seat and I don't have my eye on him the entire time. These are also good for playing hide and go seek with your feet :)

3. Security blanket from Aden and Anais: Also a cotton muslin blanket piece with a fantastic satin ribbon edging. This provides "to die for" sucking and soothing. This one baffles me because we went to a class and they talked about babies getting attached to a lovie/security blanket and that it helps them feel safe and secure. So we bought one while he was all kinds of fuss fuss in his carseat and instantly he was happy. Amazing!

Sassy rings and foot catching
4. Whoozit, Sassy rings and any other Lamaze mirror and toys: We don't go anywhere without all of these items. It is quite amazing to me that as a 3 month old he has the attention span of an amoeba. Ok, ok so amoebas probably don't have an attention span…exactly my point :)

5. Aquaphor lotion: This is probably the best lotion for kiddos with super dry skin. Its totally paraben free and all other chemical free. So it s really really safe and good quality. I have to say that I was taken aback by the almost $20 per tub price but at the rate we are going it might last us several years. Eddie know that when he is in changing table and this tub comes out, it is LOTION time. Lotion time consists of my terrible singing which makes him laugh, baby massage and super moist skin. Oddly enough, we both really enjoy it!

6. Bebepod seat with the tray: So I learned that there are two types of Bebepods…one with a tray and one without. Somehow I didn't know this and now we proudly own two Bebepods…one without the tray and one with. Both are great, but out little sweet pea seems to look like the leaning tower of Pisa without the tray to help keep him upright. These are pretty great to sit him on a table or desk while we work or eat. The best part is that they transition into a booster seat.

7. Reading books with his dad: Some of the all time bests include "Thats not my tractor," "Thats not my puppy," "Thats not my truck,"etc

Lets see…Eddie also likes long walks, bubble baths, his daddy's bear hugs, being sung to, cuddles and lots of lovin'

Sunday, February 6, 2011

The revenge of the muffin top...

Its so ironic that when you are pregnant, doctors make sure that you are gaining a consistent amount of weight. Not too much and not too little. For me, the second we said we were trying to have a baby my body said, sweet, lets pack on 10 pounds for absolutely no reason. For my first trimester nobody knew I was pregnant, I just looked like a super happy and fat newlywed. Ha! I wish! Well, I take that back. I am and was and am incredibly happy newlywed but the additional 10 pounds had nothing to do with anything and it certainly was not a happy addition to our family.

So post birth, I think I ended up a near 60 pounds over my pre-preggers weight. Crazy huh?!? That number still shocks me to this day because I don't think I looked that big and I was eating a very well balanced diet and not indulging in fried foods, fast food, ice cream or candy.

I was eating a TON of fruits, veggies and hormone free meat. I feel a little slighted that I didn't eat more yummy foods for the weight that I put on, but now thats neither here nor there since I am post birth. Its been a horrible struggle with body image and confidence the last 13ish weeks. Right off the bat, I lost 25 pounds of just water weight. That felt great and I realized I had ankles and knees again :) Pregnancy cankles were not a hot look for me. Everyone around me kept/keeps saying that if you are nursing that weight will literally melt off in weeks. NOPE! With daily walks, post-partum yoga and eating really healthy, I have been able to lose an additional 20 pounds…awesome but I am still struggling to button my pants. After nine months of pull up pants and empire waisted shirts, I was dying to put my regular clothes back on. I have run into two problems: If I am able to get my jeans up my cellulite-y thighs, they are near impossible to button. The really stretchy ones button and then without missing a beat my muffin top spills right on over. EWWW! The other problem is and was my boobs do not fit into my pre pregger tops. I went from a solid A cup to a DD/E, so you can imagine what I look like in my shirts. I dread the day I stop nursing because I am quite certain I will return to being an A cup and hoping that I don't need to always wear an underwire bra to contain my saggy boobs. Ugggg! So, nursing tanks are my new best friend. Its absolutely amazing how truly unattractive they are but extremely convenient and useful. For quality, Bravado nursing tanks take the cake. For looks and a longer length, the Gillian O'Malleys from Target are awesome. So you are wondering…what do these stylish tanks look like. Plain spaghetti strap tank tops with some lace. Yes, lace! I say that with enthusiasm because the second I put on the tank, I felt girly for the first time in a long while.

So here is where I stand…15 pounds over my pre-preggers weight and plateauing. Some people said that they held on to this weight until they stopped nursing when the kid turned one. Thats another 9 months from now…fingers crossed that this is not my destiny. Its been hard enough the last 3 months trying to feel comfortable in my more to love body. The hubs has been so supportive and loving but yet I still feel horribly uncomfortable and unattractive in my stretch marked skin. I am truly envious of women that seem to regain their pre pregnancy figures so quickly after birth. Here is to losing a pound this week :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Calling Crownholm Party of 3

So over the past 10 weeks from our first trip to Labor and Delivery a lot has been going on. First bed rest…BORING! Testing positive several times on the fetal fibronectin test…STRESSFUL! You are probably wondering what the heck that is a fetal fibronectin test…so was I. So I learned is that if you have regular contractions , which I was having every few minutes and not the Braxton Hicks, you get to take this wonderful test every two weeks to see if you are "threatening" to deliver early. Nice terminology right?!? Why the heck would I want to threaten to deliver early?!? Anyway, this test has a 33% accuracy test that you will deliver in the next two weeks. Well, I tested positive each and every time I took it. I have to say the the 10 weeks leading up to delivery weekend were beyond stressful. The only positive I had was that at each of my weekly doc appointments I never dilated or effaced at all. Yeah! The irony of the whole situation was that at my 38w5d appointment (Friday Oct. 29th), the doc said that if I didn't make some progress soon I was going to have to be induced. Go figure! First you have to keep the little bugger in and then you have to maybe be induced to get him out. Any how, they were going to give me a week to make some progress…

I have to say giving me a deadline is the best way to get me to get things done. Well that and I really really wanted a Halloween baby :) I kept telling the hubs that the little man was coming on Halloween. He kept asking, "how do you know?" I didn't know but my heart was set on it.

So Saturday rolls around and we head out to our favorite Indian buffet with my parents. They, whoever they are, say that spicy food helps induce labor. Not sure if thats what kicked me into a tailspin or the fact that I was almost 39 weeks pregnant. Guess we will never know. Well, just a few short hours after lunch…the cramping began. These were some serious cramps. Was it because I hadn't had my period in almost a year or something different. I waited a couple more hours waiting for my parents to leave for their party. The second our front door closed, I called my friend Carrie in a panic. She answered thank goodness and in her calm, cool, collected self said "hey lady! whats going on?" Insert cheery, cute Carrie smile. Ummm, I said, I don't know if I am in labor. Are cramps part of the deal? She said, Yup, you better get to the hospital. Called Jessica, our doula, and off we went to the hospital. When we checked in, I found out that I was 70% effaced and 4cm dilated. Fabulous! I was just starting to think that natural labor wasn't all that bad. Yes, it was a little annoying having an IV hooked up because I had to had to have antibiotics for Strep B flowing through an IV before I gave birth but I was still mobile. Jessica breathed with me, held my hand, calmed me down, helped supported the hubs, read the monitors and probably a million other things that I honestly cant remember. Each time the nurse came in to check on me and the baby, I was another couple centimeters and completely effaced. By 9pm that night I was dilated 9cm…only a centimeter away from pushing. I was starting to panic. Not because I was about to have a baby but because I was supposed to have a Halloween baby…OK, this is when I learned the whole careful for what you wish for thing. Little did I know that the next three hours were going to be a sheer nightmare.

For the next three hours my contractions were one on top of the other, back labor started from the baby turned the wrong direction, my water still had not broke and I was starting to panic. The doctor came in and broke my water. And still nothing…I was stuck at 9cm. The hubs knows me well enough that when I start panicking and telling him the pain was too much, I was being serious. He quickly got the nurse who paged the anesthesiologist right away. 30 minutes later, I had the epidural and pertocin to hopefully get the baby to drop and help me to dilate the last centimeter. Somewhere in there, I passed out because my body does not react well to drugs. Little man Crownholm's heart rate dropped to 60bpm from 160 bpm and the panic in the room began. Doctors and nurses came flying in, fetal head monitors went in and I awoke to someone putting shots in my arm to stop the contractions. Thank goodness Jessica was there to support my hubs and he stood by not totally knowing what was going on.

Somewhere in there I feel asleep until 7:30am…Halloween morning and still no baby. No dilation and we were off to have a c-section. Boo! I was even more scared about having a c-section than delivering naturally. The fact that I would be awake while having a pretty serious procedure done. The good news was that the baby would be out in 30 minutes. Well whether I liked it or not, it was going to happen. They pulled our baby out and I know you are supposed to have the "OMG they are so precious looking" reaction but we didn't. Baby C came out with a whole head of hair on a serious cone head. To make matter worse, his face was all smushed up on one side and paralyzed looking. The hubs and I had the reaction of "WOW! Thats our baby???" We will just say he was not quite a looker post birth. Did we absolutely fall in love with him…YES! Something else people don't tell you post birth is that you will shake uncontrollably for what seems like forever. I wanted to hold our baby but I was far too shaky. It took almost a half an hour before I was able to hold him. And when I did…it hit me. We were parents, this was our son and we had truly began our family.

Another thing…nobody tells you that you literally blow up with all the IVs…I think I was 11 in and puffier than I could ever imagine.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Baby Must Haves Part 1 I have never spent a lot of time around infants, thus the past few months have been a HUGE learning curve. Some baby must haves that I have learned a new mom needs include:

Mylicon: A great gas cure
Colic Calm: A more organic way to get your baby to pass gas

*Never have I been so excited for a man to pass gas...yes a peaceful gas passing has been exciting news for me the past month

Destin: Diaper Rash solver
A and D ointment: to help prevent diaper rash

For the time before cloth diapering begins...Pampers Swaddlers SENSITIVE is a must. I learned the hard way that the dry max causes some serious diaper rash which then causes some SERIOUS discomfort. OK…so we keep trying the cute cloth diapers but this little guy needs to seriously put some chub chub on his legs still…so for now we have gone with compostable diapers Seventh Generation. Awesome!

A Wiper Warmer: I totally thought this was such a joke but every mom of a baby boy swore by this. In good faith I set it next to the changing table but did not plug it in. I think after the 20th time of getting pee'd on I thought maybe I should try this thing…fancy enough…haven't been pee'd on since :)

The latest and greatest...NoseFrida, the Snotsucker

So after stalking several Whole Foods for "Frida" as I more commonly refer to her, I finally have my own. Yes, she is now my prize possession as gross as she is. After several nasal aspirators that didnt work and some serious panics to a few other new moms, she came highly recommended. So what is this thing? You put a little saline solution up the little mans nose and then you take frida and suck the snot out. See pic below. My husband swears I LOVE this thing, but who really loves a snotsucker that you have to change the filter on. This contraption has made me feel like I broke the barrier into mommyhood. I get excited to suck boogers out of my son's nose. I feel like such a warrior when I get some really good ones out too! Wow! Life has changed!