Monday, March 26, 2007

They Grow Up So...

fast. Yeah, it's a huge cliche, but they totally do. My 2 month old? She's wearing 3-6 month clothes. It makes me cry.

We're off to the passport office this morning to get Fi's passport. It's actually stage 2 of Operation Acquire UK Baby Passport. I had a scheduled appointment for Friday, but I was turned away for forgetting my marriage certificate. Long story. Ending in mommy brain and extreme frustration. Hopefully today will end with a stamp of approval and the handing over of 80 quid.

Speaking of growing up, I'll be a quarter of a century on Sunday. I'm having a Quarter of a Century Potluck and Board Games Party. Anyone up for a round of Balderdash?

Friday, March 23, 2007

eBay Loot 4 Sale

I'm going to sell my two MamaBless wool wraps on eBay. I've got the pink one (pictured above) and the blue one. Blue one's never been used, pink only used a few times. I'm selling them because even though they are technically for birth to potty age, they are just too big right now, and I need some that I can use right now, but I don't have the money to splurge on some new wool wraps.

So that said, if any of you have older babies and want first dibs, let me know. I'm going to start the bidding at £30 for the pair (new worth £21 each), but if any of our loyal readers are interested, we'll sell you the two for £30 even (or one, if you only want one, for £15).

I doubt any of you will, considering I posted Sir Quackenbush's difficulties with the thing, but perhaps not everyone is as inept as I, erm, Sir Quackenbush is.

Just thought I'd make the offer first.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Fussy Baby

We're super duper (yes, I said duper, and I'm not taking it back) lucky that Fifi is such a good contented baby. We are so aware of this, so don't take this as me looking for sympathy. It's just that having an easy baby makes the bad days really hard to deal with. Again, not looking for sympathy. She woke up last night at 2.45 and literally nursed from then until 6am. I mean, no breaks. And it wasn't the sweet, angelic nursing, but squirmy, kicky, latch-and-relatch nursing. I made her finish at 6, but by 6.30 she was fussing again.

She then proceeded to cry ALL DAY. Nothing seemed to calm her. She also managed to fill every nappy I put on her within ten minutes.

She had a check-up today at the doctor's. She cried through the whole thing. Also, by the time I got there, she'd used all her nappies, except the emergency one, and all the wipes. I had to change her during her check-up and had to humbly ask if they had any wipes, higlighting my crappy mothering skills. They did not, so they had to run some warm water for me and find some cotton balls. Then, she immediately pooed again. And not the it-can-wait-til-we-get-home kind but the threatening-to-leak-out-the-sides kind. Gah. The clinic didn't have any nappies so I had to design a make-shift nappy with a geriatric incontinence pad and a muslin square. And of course, a cup of water and the last of my cotton.

We came home, my darling screaming all the way, and I ran us a bath. Then I crawled into bed with her and nursed her to sleep. Oh blissful sleep!

She let me sleep until 5 in the afternoon, when of course, she recommenced her screaming down the house.

I'm cracking up.

But again, not looking for sympathy...

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Mummy Support

I went to my first 'group' today. Another mummy that I've gotten to know over the past few months wanted to go visit her old pals at the breastfeeding group that meets every Tuesday, so I tagged along with her. There were only two other mums there, so I didn't make any new best friends or anything, but it was a good start. They told me about several mother and toddler groups and also about a baby massage class at the hospital which takes place right after the postpartum 'shape up' class. I think I will go to the baby massage/shape up ones. I then invited my new friend (her name is Sharon) and her baby to join me for TinyTalk and the parent/baby screenings at the cinema.

I feel so... chick lit.

And I say chick lit because my mother-in-law (I might as well go all out and call her my MIL... gag) bought me a few small Mother's Day presents and one was a book called The Baby Group. As I've said many times, chick lit isn't my thing, but there was one other time in my life when I could tolerate it, and that was before I got married, and I read a book called Otherwise Engaged and kinda enjoyed it, despite all its shallowness, so I gave this book a try too. And, guiltily, I've enjoyed it. Only because I'm a new mother, of course, but yeah, okay, I'll admit it, I can't put the silly thing down. I mean, whatever WILL happen with Natalie and Jack??

Shut up. At least I'm not watching soaps.

I'm reading pulp and going to mother support groups. I'm sophisticated.

Monday, March 19, 2007

The Family Bed

I've never had a real problem with co-sleepers before. (And by never, I mean, not in a long while, since I got over thinking I knew everything about parenting even while I was still living under my parents' roof.) But I never intended to co-sleep with my children. I loved the idea of its' benefits: having the baby in your room, near enough to hear their breaths and touch their bodies, not having to fully wake up to feed or comfort them because they'd be right there. I just didn't think it would ever work for me. I used to say I was an aerobic sleeper, that sleeping was a sport, and I was too sound a sleeper to ever risk a baby being in my bed. So as a compromise, we decided we'd use a sidecar cot shoved up next to our bed so our babies would be an arm's reach away but not actually in our bed.

When Fifi was born, we hadn't acually gotten one of those cots yet, so into a little crib she went. We pushed the crib up next to the bed, but I still had to sit up and reach into it to pull her out when she was upset or hungry. Then when I put her back in it would always wake her up. I found all this particularly hard in the early days when I was still recovering from my surgery. I couldn't twist myself around into a half-sitting position, reach in and pull her out at an angle. I had to fully get out of bed properly, pick her up, lie her in the bed and then properly lie back into it next to her. This was really tiring.

Every now and then, we'd both fall asleep with Fifi at the breast. I'd wake up in a panic wondering if I'd rolled over onto her or if she was smothered by the blankets. She was always fine, though, sleeping soundly next to me, and I never found myself anywhere near on top of her.

Eventually, I started to relax a bit about her sleeping next to me, but I worried about the whole 'family bed' thing. Would she ever learn to sleep on her own if I let her sleep with me? Would Scott and I ever get our privacy back? These things concerned me, but on the other hand, I was getting wonderful nights' sleeps and so was Fifi. I still tried to put her back in her crib a few times after she'd fall asleep, but it nearly always woke her back up, and I'd have to pull my poor boobs back out until she nursed to sleep again.

Because I'd found myself a reluctant co-sleeper, I decided I better start researching the topic to make sure I did it safely. I'd already been stuffing a pillow between my bed and her crib so there was no place she could fall off the bed, and if she was between me and Scott, I always placed a pillow between her and Scott since he sleeps a lot more soundly than I now do. The more I learned about co-sleeping the more comfortable I felt about it. And the benefits I was reaping, like restful sleep and a happy restful baby, were pretty much all the convincing I needed anyway.

Now Fi starts and stays in bed with me. It's great. I can nurse her to sleep around 9.00 (instead of staying up as late as possible to 'cut down' the actual 'night' feedings, which really wasn't solving much in the sleep department) and if I feel like sleeping too, I can, or, if I feel like reading in bed, I can do that too! All without waking up Fi. During the night, I'm wakened by her early hungry waking cues and can nurse her before she even gets upset. It's great.

And what about the fear of rolling over onto her? I've just realised that I won't. Somewhere I read it called a maternal instinct to know where your child is. Maybe it is, who knows. But my brain has simply learned a few new rules: no rolling over without waking up 100% first, no pulling the covers over me vigourously while sleeping and check on her during a few half-wakings throughout the night. It's actually turned out to be no problem.

We did, however, go ahead and order our bedside cot. It has a special shallow bumper that rests between the two beds so there's no gap to fall into. I think I will actually prefer the bedside cot to her being in my bed, regardless of all I've just said. I imagine she'll still sleep next to me a lot, but the bedside cot will just give us a few more options. Scott's supposed to build it tonight. I'm looking forward to trying it out. And even if she remains in our bed most nights for now, it'll be perfect for when she's older and more mobile and even more perfect when we start trying to transition her into her own bed (to eventually go in her own room). And if we space our babies perfectly, by the time she moves into her own room, baby number two will be ready to fill the cot. Or at least that's how easy I'm dreaming it will be.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Let's Get Crunk!

Why? I have no idea. I'm just listening to that Mary J Blige song.

I can't write much. Fifi is in her sling, but she's fussing, probably hungry. But then, when isn't she? She's really quite clever these days. She's playing with my necklace right now. She's becoming interested in toys and things. It's neat to see her reach for things. She also likes her reflection in the mirror. And she giggles! Not very often, but every now and then something with tickle her fancy and she giggles. Today it was once looking in the mirror at herself and later at who knows what - a funny thought perhaps?

We're on a short cloth nappy hiatus so I can get caught up on laundry. It's crazy - I'm home all day long with her, but I can hardly get any housework done! You mamas who manage to keep clean houses while staying home with your wee ones, props! I find it hard enough to get a load of laundry washed, folded and put away in a day with Fifi's constant need to eat or be cuddled. And that's just laundry! Washing dishes, tidying away messes and cooking just add to the mayhem! But I love it. Boy, do I love it! I could never love any job more than I love mothering. I can't wait for the next one to come along! (But I will.)

My sis-in-law got Fifi the coolest baby swing today. I've been wanting something that will entertain Fi at those times when I really, really can't be holding her, like when I'm cooking or bathing. This thing is great. She seems to like it, though not as much as she likes her sling! Her face just lights up when she sees the sling come out. Almost as much as it lights up when she sees the boob come out!

We're also starting to use a few signs in front of her. She's too young yet to respond with signs herself, but I figure it's never too early to start the communication. We're just doing 'milk' right now, (it's the only one I know) but I intend to soon introduce 'bath' and 'love'.

Right, well, she's fallen back asleep (hurray!) so I better take advantage and get some stuff done. I'm pretty much ready for our company tonight, minus the meal. I'm making an apple pie!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Our Camera is Deid

Yesterday our camera finally bit the bullet. This really sucks because Fifi is smiling ALL the time now, and we won't be able to photograph it. We have our digital video camera, which we need to start using more, but I haven't worked out how to do still shots on it yet, not to mention it's way too fancy to just carry around with me everywhere. Nuts.

My mom left this morning. I miss her already. It was so good to have her here; I just wish my dad could've come too. That would've made it perfect.

We are planning on flying out to the States in May to introduce Fi to the rest of the family. That sounds like a long time, but it's actually only a month and a half... which also means I start working again in two and a half months. Arg.

It also means my birthday is only a few weeks away. Usually I'm planning my birthday extravaganza three months ahead, but it really just occurred to me yesterday that it's now right around the corner. This must be what having children does to you - it puts the rest of your life in a blindspot.

Fifi is sleeping, kinda, in her sling in my lap right now. It's a new thing I'm trying. I need to do some housework now that Mom's gone and Scott's at work (on a Saturday, poor fella), but I can't when Fifi is wailing, so I'm carrying her around the house in her sling so I can get some things done. It seems to be working. I'm also practicing feeding her in the sling, which isn't easy, but it's very helpful when you're in the shops or somewhere public, and she suddenly gets hungry. Rather than her scream the house down, if I can manage to get her in the right position in her sling, I can feed her right then and there, wherever I am, and continue on with my business. It may sound to some of you let-em-cry-it-out folks that I'm letting my kid be the boss and that I don't need to let her call all the shots, but dudes - she's an infant. All she knows is comfort and discomfort; she's not trying to snatch the credit card. Anyway, I like being able to comfort her when she's upset, and I like when she's not crying, so really, everybody wins.

.....Did I just get all defensive for no reason there? Sorry.

Anyway, as aforementioned, I have some housework to do, and the kiddo is actually sleeping enough for me to do it (unless she wakes when I stand up, which is likely), so I better get on it. And maybe take a midmorning nap. Ahhh.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Originally uploaded by superlori.
One of my favourite baby-bonding activities is bathing Fifi. She absolutely loves the bath - as long as it is very warm. I've learned how warm she likes it judging by how fussy she gets. We followed the hospital's advice for her first at-home bath, making the water body temperature, and let me tell you, girlfriend was not pleased with the chill. So next time we made it a bit warmer and a bit warmer until we've discovered she really likes a nice warm bath, just like her mummy (though she's not allowed to have it as hot as mummy likes it just yet). Today she lounged in her bath chair for at least ten minutes, if not more, before my knees started hurting and I really needed to take her out. She would've happily stayed even longer if I'd let her. This is a really good thing since I want to take her to the swimming pools as soon as I am allowed to get back in the water.

Tomorrow, Mom and I going to take a disc of digital photos down to Tesco to get them printed, as we still haven't located the missing cord to our printer, and I want to start filling up her photo album and record book. I'm glad she was being so good for so long, as it enabled me to get several shots of her in her bath.

These are important photographs; these are the ones we'll use to embarrass her in front of her boyfriends.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

All About Baby

I know how boring it must be for people who have been reading a blog for a while to have that blog suddenly become nothing more than a babyblog. I apologise. But there is such a good reason for this - mommy brain takes over the whole world. My replacement at work while I'm on maternity leave phoned to ask me some questions, and I couldn't remember people's names, what software I used, the world for 'timeline', anything. It was the most stressful conversation I've had in weeks.

So anyway, here I am again with some more baby talk.

Fifi took to a bottle no sweat. Scott was certain she'd have no problem, but I'd heard too many stories about babies not taking to a bottle, so I was worried. But the moment that teat touched her lips, she was devouring her milk. So I don't think we'll have any problems if we want the occasional night out. Which we're going to try to do at some point this week while Mom - I mean, Grandma -'s still here. (It seems 'Grandma' might stick better than 'Mamaw', I'm sorry to say. Though 'Papaw' will probably stick over 'Grandpa' for my dad.)

I can't believe how big she is getting. She's actually outgrowing several of her dresses (her big cloth nappy bottom shows under the hem), and she's nearly too long for her sleepsuits. This is not fair! She's too new! And her clothes are too cute!

With one week of my mom being here left, I've been trying to come up with ideas for how Fifi and I will entertain ourselves on our own. Besides daily naps (yes!), I'm thinking we could go to the GFT for their parent and baby screenings (for parents/carers with babies under 15 months only!), the Waterfront for swimming (I've been trying to get her used to the water in baths) and trips to parks and bays. But what I'm most excited about is taking her to TinyTalk classes when she's a few months older! They have classes in Glasgow on Mondays and Thursdays. I can't wait! (Yes I can. I don't like using the phrase 'I can't wait' anymore, because it sounds like I'm wishing away the time. I can wait. I just love Fifi being the age she is, and I'm so afraid it's going to go by too fast!)

We are now just on our way out to Scott's parents' house for dinner. Mom made a low fat chocolate cake. It's been great having Mom here; we've been so domestic! The house has been cleaned and organised, and we've been cooking and baking up a storm in the kitchen. I imagine Scott's enjoying this just as much as I am. (We especially like the third hand in the nappy-changing rotation.)

Fifi is crying. Though Mom is taking care of her, I should probably go check on her. She makes my heart bleed (and my boobs leak) every time she cries. :(