Sunday, January 30, 2011

a zoo day in January

This weekend was glorious. It got up to just above the 60s both days - so weird for January, especially considering the snow we had a couple days ago. We headed out to the zoo for the first time in months. G got to sit facing forward in the stroller for only the second time, the first being at a mall. He loves it so much! He'll kick his legs and squeal really loudly.

We got no fussing from him the whole time we were there, even though halfway through we realized it'd been a while since he ate. I found a quiet corner in the deserted amphitheater and fed him in public without a cover for the first time. Then we continued on our merry way with the zoo-venture.

One of our favorite stops is at the meerkats. We love them so hard. And we had great timing because yesterday was the first day the new babies had come out of the burrow to play in the sunshine. The zookeepers said they were probably about a month old. They were so tiny and fuzzy and wobbly. The adult meerkats were all on high alert. Every sudden sound or movement sent them chattering and running back to the babies. Something spooked them good once and they all disappeared for a few seconds, pulling babies down into the ground with them. We died from all the cute.

One of these days I'm going to remember to bring my zoom lens with me. Bleh.

Like usual, we went up to the big grassy hill and took some family pics.

All of that sunshine and warmth just makes me pine for spring even more. I'm dreaming of long walks, pushing G in swings, kiddie pools, cold drinks, and flip-flops.

Friday, January 28, 2011

I'm on a bed!

Grayson says,

I'm cutting teeth, but that doesn't mean I can't have my happy moments. Whee! I love wearing no pants!

What's over here? Anything of interest?

What about over here?

Over - oh, hi mommy.

You're doing that picture-takin' thing again, huh? You know that does not amuse me in the slightest.
Wait - what was that?

Ooo, squishy.

Aaah, let's fall right into bed.

Hey, your bed is comfy. It so passes the squishy test.

Can I just sleep here instead? You can have the crib.

And I'm up again. Time to drool.

 And look over here again.

Hi mommy. You're still there!

Why don't you put the camera away now?

C'mon. Put it away. You know you want to.

I fell over again. Are you taking a shot of my tushie? That's not very nice of you. I know you are!

Now mommy, put the camera away.

I'll just give you camera face.


Fine. This bed is way more interesting than you. squish squish

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

sicky baby

Last Thursday night, G's nighttime sleep just went haywire. He went from waking up once, maybe twice, to waking up every hour (if we were lucky). And it's been that way ever since. Last night he woke up every two hours and we felt so well rested.

Often a quick paci replace would get him to go back to sleep. But sometimes he wake up and take 30 minutes of rocking to go back to sleep. Or we'd have to put him downstairs in the swing. We have to get up at 5 so I can get ready for work, but we haven't had to use our alarm clock because he doesn't sleep past 4:30. Seriously ugh. Ugh ugh ugh. And 4:30 is actually good because he could be wide away at 3:30 and take an hour to go back down. The poor hubs handles all of the night wakings in case the sight and sound of me causes G to want to eat. If he's tired and I'm holding him, he goes ballistic trying to nurse. But anything G's up, we're both up.

It's certainly enough to make you reconsider having anymore children in the future. A reminder of that lovely newborn sleep.

Of course, we kept checking and checking his gums. Didn't see anything for a while. At almost eight months old, G is still toothless. After the first couple of nights, we started giving Tylenol. We had lowered the temperature in the house at night to account for a super high heating bill last month, so we bought him a fleece sleepsack in case he was getting chilly. These things maybe bought us the waking up every two hours that we got last night.

Also, he's rolling onto his tummy in his sleep. Over and over. He hates being on his tummy, so of course once he pops out of deeper sleep, he has a hissy fit about it. He knows how to roll onto his back from his tummy, but there's not enough room in his crib for all that rolling. You'd think he'd stop doing it since it pisses him off so much but nooo.

Along with the bad night sleep, G has exhibited other odd behavior. The worse is the random crankiness. We call him the "hot and cold baby." He'll be sitting and playing happily by himself one moment, then shrieking and making cry faces at you the next. He'll freak if you left the room to get a glass of water. He's learned how to push things away, so if you'll hold him and he decides to crank, he'll plant a little clawed hand against your face and shove. He doesn't want to drink from a bottle much, which is a problem on the mornings when I'm at work for over four hours.

On top of all of that, he developed a rash yesterday morning. It's now across almost all of his body, all of these tiny raised red bumps.

Since he didn't seem to be getting much better, we took him to the pedi today. She checked out the rash, said it didn't seem to be a contact rash like last time but rather a rash caused by a virus. A throat swab ruled out strep, so we're supposed to just keep an eye out for fever and worsening symptoms. Should go away.

She also did a thorough examination of his mouth and confirmed that he does indeed seem to be moving toward cutting his first teeth. Both of the bottom ones seem to be on the move. Yay for toothies!

I feel bad that my little one is in so much discomfort, but I'm glad that at least there seems to be (several) reasons for the nightwakings. I didn't like the idea of doing any heavy sleep training. G has always slid toward great sleep on his own, with us just aiding him and tweaking our methods as we go. It all seemed to be unraveling, but at least there's some hope that things will return to normal once the virus is gone and these first two teeth are out...

At least until the next teeth come along. Or he decides to start sitting up or standing in his crib in his sleep.

Sigh. There are people who have more than one kid! How do they ever get to the place where they look at each other and think, "Gee, I want to do it all over again"?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

my boobs of love and not-so love

This will be long.

So I've been sorta kinda considering quitting breastfeeding before G is a year old. I was thinking April when G is about ten months old, and we'll have enough milk saved up to continue for another couple of weeks. I won't quit before then, so I have a lot of time to decide either way. I keep going over and over in my head my list of reasons for continuing or stopping.

Here are my pros and cons for continuing to breastfeed past April.

Reasons I Want to Quit
Cheese. Glorious cheese. I got my first taste of it (in the form of chicken parmesan) in months last Saturday, and I savored every minute. G, while much better in his allergy, is not savoring the aftereffects, though his reaction has been way less severe than before. Meal planning is just so difficult without milk or cheese type products. I can't even use a lot of soup. I do feel as though I eat the same things week after week. After over five months without dairy, I'm just ready. It's clear that it will still be a while before I can eat cheese regularly, maybe well beyond G's first year, if I continue to bf.

My boobs hurt. They just do. I have to be careful about smooshing them with my arms. I can't hug G tightly because they'll ache. Hell, I can barely hold him in the morning without crying out in pain when they're full of milk. Right now I'm stuck at work and it's been three hours since he ate off me, and I just hurt.

My boobs are huge. I'm hoping they'll shrink at least a little after I wean so I can fit into some regular clothes again. I'm going to need a swimsuit this summer, so I'd like to wean in time for them to go down before I buy them. Maybe I'm asking too much in that regard, but a girl can hope, right? As a girl who used to be a B, I really hate my size DD/E boobs.

Pumping. Sucks. I have to pump whenever I'm away from G, which is three days a week, sometimes more. I don't get out much, so usually I have to pump twice to make a bottle. It's rather painful, and my nips will be sore for a while afterward. I did quit pumping in the middle of the night, which is heavenly.

I seem to have plateaued in my weight loss. I still have 5ish pounds to go and a lot of toning. I'd like to work out again in some capacity, but I'm paranoid about lactic acid making my milk raunchy. I need to lose this baby pooch!

G kinda is starting to ask for it. I mean, it's heart-warming and awfully cute, but I also worry that it means it'll be more difficult to wean him the longer I wait. I think it'd break my heart to have to tell him no if he's standing there tugging on my shirt and crying. This is also filed under "reasons to continue" below.

I'm tired of wearing nursing bras and nursing tanks 24/7. I'm a girl who used to sleep in only underwear or maybe some pj pants if I haven't shaved or it's cold. Wearing a shirt was a huge adjustment for me. Having to wear a bra to sleep starting when I was pregnant was even worse so. But having big boobs flopping around when they're all achy is not a good thing at all. 7.5 months into breastfeeding and they still leak. I want to be able to come home, take off my bra, and just let it all hang out. Is that too much to ask?

Sigh. This all sounds rather whiny, doesn't it?

Reasons I Might Continue
G loves the boob. Seriously, he looooves it. I'm actually afraid of the emotional damage I'll cause when I refuse to give up the boob. I think he finally figured out where I keep the boobs because he tries to get at them at random times. Like when I'm holding him, he'll duck his head down. Or if he's standing in front of me, he'll bend over and grab at my shirt. He's gotten better at turning side to side, so he'll twist sideways in my lap, grab onto my tank top, and mouth my chest. It's a weird new thing, kinda heartbreaking because I usually say no - no, dude, you just ate! I think he'd nurse off and on all day if I let him. Kinda sweet, too. But then, do I want to continue into toddlerdom with all the grabbiness? My boobs, kiddo.

G takes his naps on my lap. He falls asleep while nursing and often naps for hours this way. My baby needs a lot of sleep, and nursing to sleep is by far the easiest way to ensure that he gets it. He nurses to sleep at the beginning of the night, too, and often in the early morning when he has trouble getting back to sleep. I really don't look forward to not having that crutch anymore. I love being able to pop a boob in his mouth and off to sleep he goes. Plus, he sleeps on me, which I lovelovelove. I will miss his snuffles, his warmth, the way his shoves his free hand down my cleavage and leaves it there.

He wouldn't have to drink formula. If I wean before a year, I guess we'd have to switch to formula for a while. I doubt he'll be over his milk allergy enough to drink milk at a year old, and I'm not sure what options we'll have in that regard. We'd have to find out what fake milks are best for a one year old, or maybe give him toddler formula. I'm sure his pedi could help out. Formula kinda grosses me out (sorry, but it does). I'd prefer that he never had to drink it.

It's easy. He's hungry, so I pull him onto my lap and unclasp my tank top. That's it. When he's done, he pulls off or takes a nap. La di da.

All the usual breast is best arguments can go here. It protects against colds (G's never actually had one beyond one day of a slightly runny nose), it's the perfect food for him, it's healthy for me, blah blah. None of that changes, so we'll just add it to this list. I'd love to continue to provide for G that way. And myself, as well. He's starting to eat solids like a champ (though he still gags on anything that contains even tiny chunks), so I'm not worried about him refusing solids for boob.

And of course, there's this.
I know when I wean, I'll miss these quiet moments of breastfeeding. He often reaches up to touch my lips, chin, cheeks, neck. He loves when I kiss his fingers. He grabs a fistful of my shirt and pulls himself against me.

Maybe I won't be ready to give that up just yet...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Grayson's funny-sounding baby giggle

Okay, I promise I'm not going to spam my blog with (uber cute) videos of G, but here's another of him giggling. At least, I think it's a giggle. He has such a weird laugh! It makes me laugh every time.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Grayson's first YouTube channel

This is one freakin' happy baby. He just makes me laugh.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

rub a dub dub

I love bathtime. The hubs and I switch off on who gets to bathe the little one. He's still kind of wobbly sitting up in his whale tub, but we switched a few weeks ago when he was bathing the kitchen with dirty water by kicking his feet like crazy.

I love it anyway, though. He's a bit fussy in the evenings, in the moments before bedtime when it's been three hours since he last slept and he's rubbing those dark brown eyes. But once you start taking off his clothes, it's like he just knows what's up. More importantly, you're not putting any clothes back on (he hates that), and he loves nekkid time.

So he's sitting up like a big boy now. He'll grab onto the edges of his tub. The first day, he learned all kinds of new physics as he tried to grab at toys floating on the top of the water. I think he got frustrated because he doesn't grab at much anymore, except the washcloth. The washcloth as always been his favorite. I don't let him suck on it after the water's gotten kinda gross, but he wants it so bad. He also seems fascinated by his own naked body. It's not like he sees it all that often, and certainly not much beyond his toes when he was leaning back on the other side of the whale tub.

Then it's all suds and washy washy. It goes pretty quick because, well, even though he's in the top percentiles, he's still a tiny baby. He's fascinated with the water.
We grab a hoodie towel and pull him out of the tub. It's weird to see him standing there, so little on the bathroom rug, leaving tiny wet baby footprints on the cloth. I just died the first time I saw those after his bath. He's a bit unamused by the hoodie. Those chub cheeks in the first pic below just kill me. It's a wonder I can ever stop kissing his face.
After a quick drying so he's not cold and dripping, he's taken back to his room next door for a more thorough toweling off. I don't know why, but he just loves this part. He's all squeals. The bath makes him hyper, though he'll crash and be ready for boob and bed by the time he's in his pjs.

We have to make sure to dry in his neck folds as good as possible to prevent rash.
He doesn't have the bright blue of many babies, but he has the most gorgeous eyes. They're a deep, dark brown, framed by long black lashes. I could gaze into those eyes all day long. Often after he wakes from a nap, he'll just want to watch my face. I'll softly chat to him, and he'll reach up to run his fingers through my hair or touch my mouth and face.
Of course, one of his favorite things to do when his clothes (especially pants) are off is pull his feet into his mouth. I think he finds pants too constricting. Open mouth, insert foot.
Oh my, gorgeous baby. Give me that look, and you will get away with many things in life.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

gone baby gone

First day back at school teaching. Without G.

Getting woken up by way too awake baby at 4:30am? Check.

Having to leave a very happy baby who patted my check, mouth, and neck as he nursed? Check.

Spending way too much time scraping ice off my car? Check.

Learning that the heat in my car definitely isn't work, thus resulting in a 30 minute drive to work with no heat? Check.

Walking to the office without 1) falling on my butt on the ice, 2) being able to feel my toes? Check.

Arriving late because I had to make copies of syllabus? Check.

Missing every moment away from G? Check.

Heading home in an hour? Double-check!

Monday, January 10, 2011

grayson says... snow = icky

 Grayson says...

It snowed today. We got four inches, and the 'rents didn't have to go to work.

Daddy balled up some of the white stuff and put it on my tray. I immediately reached out to touch it (cuz I'm nosy like that). Mommy said something about building a snowman.
 Hey Daddy...
How come my snowman is only one ball? I mean, come on.
That's better. Hmm. I must study this small specimen of a snowman you've brought me.
 Yeah, I guess that'll do. So I just touch it, right? That's all you do with snow? I like grabbing things, so I guess that's okay.
 OMG what is THAT?
 I think it's... BITING ME. Why would you give me something that would bite me, Daddy?
 Do I just keep touching it? What's the point of snow?
 I don't like this very much...
 You suck, snowman.
I don't think I'm going to touch it anymore. I'm keeping my paws well away! You can't make me! You two have the dumbest ideas sometimes.
 But wait...
 Maybe I could eat it?
 ...No, really.
 Mr. Snowman is happily living outside on the deck railing now... away from gummy baby mouths.
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