Our Little Bunny is 15 Weeks Old

This past week has been a big one for us, as it was the first out-of-state travel experience for the little one and first plane ride (and second, third and fourth) for our girl. She was SO terrific. Literally she slept through each of the four flights and was such a happy little bunny.

This week she has become even more talkative and interactive. She’s SUCH a lovey. She is head over heels in LOVE with her dad and erupts in smiles when she sees him. And oy are they cute together.

On Monday night, she slept through the night for the first time in a long while. Her sleep is definitely becoming more regular. She’s been napping very regularly still, which amounts to once for every 1-1.5 hours of wakefulness. On an average day, she gets about 14 hours of sleep.

She loves toys and is really good at entertaining herself. This is pretty awesome for me while I’m at work. Now, that’s not to say that I can just put her down and let her do her thing, because of course, she still requires momma’s attention, but it does mean I don’t have to hold her every second.

She desperately wants to sit up and crawl. When she’s laying down, she’ll lift her head and shoulders off the floor, reaching towards her toes and when she’s on her belly, she’s moving her arms and legs, desperately trying to get somewhere.

She’s also able to push herself up onto her hands from her elbows (when doing tum time) and is pretty content on her tummy for 5-10 minutes at a time.

I know I keep saying this, but she’s SO close to laughing. She’ll let out 2-3 “ha’s” at a time, but they haven’t really turned over into a full on laugh quite yet. But, it’s coming. I just know it!

And, here’s the good stuff… our little bunny this week…

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Happy Halloween!!

Grandma’s Funeral

My Grams passed away one week ago today in Milwaukee, WI. Her funeral was yesterday in West Palm Beach, Florida. I wasn’t able to attend my grandfather’s funeral in FL this past June because I was 40 weeks pregnant, so the last family funeral I attended was my other Grammy’s back in 2002. Needless to say, I was anxious and nervous as to how it would go. But, I honestly think everything went so well. It would have been a celebration/memorial that my Grams would have been proud of.

Family flew in from California, Maryland, Texas and Wisconsin and there were friends of my grandparents from when they were kids and more recently from their “life extension” (as my uncle calls it) in Florida. People shared stories of Grams, they cried for our loss, smiled at our luck of having such an amazing woman in our lives for so long, and honored her life.

Hearing all of the stories and going through all the old photos really helped me to remember my Grams for who she was before Alzheimers. She was full of life and spunk. She had this way of saying things that was so matter of fact… it made things of such little significance to the world seem so important because they were important to her. She loved to laugh and loved to be surrounded by people. She always had a million friends. Her phone was constantly ringing with girlfriends who wanted to chat or vent or just check in. Grams was an amazing cook. She wasn’t the best at timing the food to come out at once, but it never mattered. You just kept eating and eating until the “courses” stopped coming. She was so artistic… an amazing painter, she could hem a pair of pants in no time, and dabbled in anything she had the opportunity to try, whether it was ceramics or jewelry making. Grandma was also very giving. She would literally give you the shirt off her back or, more likely, the bracelet off her wrist. It was not uncommon to hear Grams say, “You like it? Take it!” or, “You like it? Let’s get you one!” Grams was special. She was beautiful and loving and really had a full life.

Yesterday, someone referred to Grams passing as tragic. I have to say, I disagree. Tragic was the disease that stripped Grandma of her spark these past few years… but her passing, it would have been what she would have wanted. It was quick and seemingly painless. It was no-fuss. I think Grams would have approved. And more importantly, it was after an amazing life… 67 years married to SUCH a loving man, two pretty awesome kids, four grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

I know I mentioned this in a previous post, but Charlotte truly was a little ray of sunshine during this difficult time. She timed her smiles, coos and conversations perfectly to lift us up when things were feeling like a bit too much. And man was she a trooper. On Tuesday, she only slept 9.5 hours the entire day (including night time). This is a girl who typically sleeps 14-16 hours a day. Regardless, she was happy as a clam for the majority of the time and at her worst, just a little fussy. We couldn’t have asked for anything more from this tiny person. I will write more in another post about traveling with our little 3.5 month old babe, but for now, let’s leave it at this… I’d do it again!

Some of the family reunited... sharing stories, laughs and a good meal!

Some of the family reunited… sharing stories, laughs and a good meal!

14 Weeks & So Lovely

So, with everything going on last week, I forgot to post Charlotte’s 14 week update. So, here it is.

The little one continues to grow. She is no longer sleeping in a swaddle, which is a big deal. She loves her newfound freedom and frequently sleeps on her side or with both arms above her head.
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She copied me the other day. I rolled my lips to make a motor sound and she repeated. And now, she’s constantly spitting. Oops.

She’s still wearing 3-6 months and just seems so big. She loves sitting up (with assistance of course) and really enjoys her little activity mats.

She is also rolling over from Timmy to back again and seems like if she really put her mind to it, she could get from back to tummy.

She gets a huge smile on her face every time we go in to get her after a nap or night’s rest. And is a very happy little love.

She is really discovering her voice. She loves to “talk” very loudly. It’s one of my favorite things. She’s a talker like her mom 🙂

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Cutie Pie.

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Telling Lamby a little story.

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Happy little cherub.

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Where’s the milk???

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“No more pictures!! We’re spent!”

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Hi 🙂

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Talking up a little storm.

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So sweet.

Remembering

I remember once before a trip to visit my grandparents in Florida, my Grams and I were chatting and she asked me if the friend I was bringing with me liked to go shopping. I said, “I think so,” and Grams responded with, “well, if not, we’ll have to leave her at the house.” While she said it through a laugh, there was probably a part of her that was serious. Nobody was going to get in the way of Grams and I shopping.

Once during one of our many shopping trips, I told Gran that I needed to stop into Victoria’s Secret to pick up some cheekie underwear. I picked my 3 for $25 or whatever the deal was and as we stood in line, Grams said, “Meliss, these are kind of slutty.” I told her they were fine and that she didn’t have to buy them… I was happy to purchase my slutty undies. She grabbed the underwear, said, “I don’t have to do anything,” and bought me the undies.

Whenever I went to visit my grandparents in Florida, I would spend a third of the time at the pool getting as much sun as possible, a third of the time shopping with my grams, and the rest of the time trying to convince Grams that my sunburn wasn’t THAT bad.

At my sister’s wedding, my fam (cousins, parents, grammy) decided it was time to take a shot. Grandma led the group in sex on the beach shots.

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That’s one fun lady.

I’ve been lucky enough to have my grandma with me for nearly 30 years, until yesterday, when she passed away.

It’s funny how when you let yourself feel those extreme feelings of loss and heartache, it’s like a flood gate is lifted. Like all the loss you’ve ever experienced comes at you like a thousand daggers. My Grandma had Alzheimer’s and while that’s not what took her life yesterday, it is what took a lot of the life out of her these past few years. Her voice didn’t sound the same anymore. She rarely got excited about things… although, it must be said that her great grandchildren had a way of bringing back her spark.

Somehow, today, as we mourn the loss of my Grammy, I can’t help but feel like I’m finally morning the loss of who she used to be… a person who had pretty much been gone for years.

Today, as we mourn the loss of my Grammy, I can’t help but feel the pain of losing my Gramps who passed away at the end of May and the loss of my Grandma who passed over 10 years ago.

Flood gates.

Hopefully they’re all together.

And hopefully my Grandfather who is still with us can find peace. They were married for 67 years.

These are my grandparents…

 

 

My Newborn Must Haves

Since I’m definitely going to forget, I thought I’d take the time to blog about my favorite, must-have newborn items. As the days go on, I can see this list changing, but these are the things that totally saved me over the past three months.

1. The swing! OH magical swing. We received ours as a hand-me-down from my sister and this thing is a godsend. Judge away, but sometimes, I’ve gotta put baby girl down and get some stuff done. Not-to-mention the fact that she really loves hanging out in the swing. We put it near a window so she can look at the light or wherever really. It definitely calms her and me. This is an item she still loves (thankfully!!).

This isn't our exact swing, as ours is at least 5 years old, but it's Fisher-Price and looks pretty darn similar to this one.

This isn’t our exact swing, as ours is at least 5 years old, but it’s Fisher-Price and looks pretty darn similar to this one.

2. The Maya Ring Sling. So, I was all about the baby wearing. It’s the perfect way to get babes to chill out and take a napski while mom finishes dinner. At first, I tried the Moby Wrap, but when your baby is howling and you’re trying to get dinner ready, there’s no time for fabric origami. I also tried the Ergo Baby with the infant insert, but a) that thing is so big and bulky, we’d both be sweating bullets and b) it was a whole ordeal to get her in the infant burrito insert, then in the carrier. Long story short, neither option was quick enough. Then came the maya ring sling, which my sister found for me at a garage sale (best $20 spent EVER). It was so simple to throw on and totally calmed the nugget. Whether I was making dinner, walking around the house, or enjoying a 3-4 hour bridal shower, this thing REALLY came in handy.

The magic sling.

The magic sling.

3. The Bob Motion Travel System. I really wanted a bugaboo stroller. Yes, I’m talking about that $1000+ piece of equipment. After a few (understatement of the year) arguments with my husband, I decided that it made more sense to spend $1,000 on a bazillion baby necessities than on a baby luxury. SO, I went to BuyBuy Baby and tested out all of the strollers. I fell in love with the BOB and have been so happy with it. It’s easy to use, so easy to maneuver and not too giant.

The BOB.

The BOB.

4. Aiden & Anais Swaddle Blankets. I use these things for everything (except swaddling). I have at least one in every room. They’re perfect for wiping up spit up or drool or milk if I decide to spray my babe in the face, they’re great to drape over the car seat to protect C from the sun, they’re a nice blanket to lay on or keep the little one warm. They’re the perfect all purpose blanket.

I probably have at least 12 of these.

I probably have at least 12 of these.

5. The Boppy Nursing Pillow. The Boppy was such a godsend in the first couple months. For the bazillion hours spent nursing, it was perfect to prop baby up on. Not to mention the fact that I was so dang nervous with her in the beginning. The Boppy made me feel like my fragile little nuglet was safe and supported without giving me a total dead arm. Now that I’m working with Charlotte, the Boppy is once again one of my “must haves.” It allows me to work while she eats… And when she’s not using it, it’s super comfortable as a back rest.

Tiny babes sleeping on the boppy after a good snack.

Tiny babes sleeping on the boppy after a good snack.

6. Trail mix and my giant water bottle (with a straw). This is something I didn’t know would be so crucial. If you’re breastfeeding, those first few weeks bring a hunger and thirst like nothing I’ve ever experienced. I’m talking about a lightheaded, dizzy hunger. Your body is working hard and with all the baby care, it’s not always easy to go make a snack. I kept trail mix next to my bed, in the nursery, in my purse, in the diaper bag. Any place I might suddenly be attacked with a surge of hunger.

7. My nursing cover. Mine was the bebe au lait, which I thought worked very well. This thing allowed me to leave the house and provide 24/7 flood service to my babe. In not going to like though, I really do not enjoy breastfeeding in public.

8.HALO Sleepsack Swaddle. Our hospital gave us this as a little gift, and we really loved it. Not to mention, the little one loved it. And she was such a cute little burrito in it. We had a Summer Infant one and it SUCKED… velcro never stayed together and got caught on everything… and an Aden + Anais one, which we returned because it had snaps instead of velcro… that makes no sense at all.

Tiny person in the Halo sleep sack swaddle thing.

Tiny person in the Halo sleep sack swaddle thing.

9. Comfy yoga or maternity pants, hospital undies, nursing tops or stretchy tanks, and button downs / cardigans. This was so important. I had a c-section, so any low or even normal rise anything (underwear or pants) were an absolute no way. I literally took about 30 pairs of the free hospital undies they give you. They’re really not that bad… except they look like a diaper. But man were they crucial for avoiding the scar. Same story with the pants. As for the tanks, I lived in nursing tanks for a month, but then I started feeling more confident and was able to just wear nursing friendly shirts… mainly, stretchy tanks with a cardigan or button down over it.

10. My husband. Holy crap, I would not have survived without him. Beyond just those first couple weeks where everything hurt and I needed help lifting her, etc. But just everything. I mean, I literally did not change a single diaper… not a one… for just about 2 weeks. That’s at least 140 diapers, people. And he’s still just so amazing and helpful and hands-on. He takes her in the mornings, we switch off night feedings, he does research when I’m so tired I can’t think straight, he still changes diapers without complaint, he takes her on walks, he listens to me gush about her every night and watches every single video I take of her. Best of all, he loves her to pieces.

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Happy 3 Month Birthday… For Real This Time!

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I was a little confused about how to calculate Charlotte’s age in months. Without much thought, I assumed it worked like pregnancy. 4 Weeks = 1 Month. Not the case. SO, seeing as how Charlotte was born on July 16th, today she is officially 3 months old!

With that said, happy 3 month (or 13 week) birthday, sweet princess!

The past three months have literally been so incredibly full of love, I can’t begin to explain it. I absolutely love watching this little person grow and change and laugh and love. She’s the sweetest little nugget ever.

Over the past week, she’s again making big changes. She officially LOVES the paci. This might not seem like a big deal, but it’s crazy to me. We have tried to get her to even like the paci just a little and it always ends with gagging, so to see her instantly accept and love on the paci is a miracle.

Wubanub PACI!!!

Wubanub PACI!!!

She’s still waking up 2 or 3 times per night to eat, which hubs and I switch off taking care of. He feeds her pumped milk from a bottle and I breastfeed her. She is warming up to the bottle, but still does not get as relaxed as she is on the breast.

I have been testing out “airplane” with her for the past week or two (aka I lift her in the air so she’s flying) and this week she is just starting to show signs of enjoying it. The day where she loves it is coming.

Other than that, she’s still loving her toys and getting so good at grabbing them. In fact, today she grabbed her wubanub (paci with a stuffed animal on it) and got it in her mouth twice! She was so proud. Unfortunately, with her pride came an excited swinging of her arms, which pulled the paci right out of her mouth.

Oh! And how can I forget… she LOVES shoving her fingers/hands in her mouth. She’s quite talented, no??

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Mmmm... fingers!

Mmmm… fingers!

And now her 13 week pictures (from yesterday)…

Taking pictures is so booooring...

Taking pictures is so booooring…

Wait! HOW OLD AM I??

Wait! HOW OLD AM I??

That's crazy! I'm such a big girl!

That’s crazy! I’m such a big girl!

And cute as pie!

And cute as pie!

Super Soaker

No, I am not talking about the water guns… I’m talking about my out of control milk maids. It’s so random, but last night I was telling a friend about how a few weeks ago, Charlotte was minding her own business, eating a milk snack when she backed off for a break. To her surprise, my boobs didn’t get the memo and literally sprayed her right in the face. She was so surprised… nobody enjoys milk in the eye.

Now, fast forward to today. I woke up totally engorged. (Sorry for the TMI if you’re reading this, Grandpa.) Anyway, I had fed Charlotte last night at 10:30 pm and decided not to pump after. Typically, my routine is to put her to sleep around 6:30 with a big milk snack and then pump before bed (around 10). Since we’ve been doing bottles at night and my husband had the first shift, I slept until 6:30 am (thank you, sweet girl, for choosing not to wake up more than once last night). Anyway, I woke up at 6:30 really needing to get rid of some milk. I fed Charlotte, but unfortunately, she wasn’t as hungry as I needed her to be and I was in a rush to get ready for work and didn’t have time to pump.

Once we got to work and got settled, I proceeded to feed the sweet girl again and holy smokes. My boobs were literal weapons. Not only were they releasing excessive amounts of milk at extreme speeds causing the poor girl to keep choking, but they were out of control spraying everywhere. All over her face, all over me… it was a mess. I was literally trying to block the milk spray with my hand and of course, I didn’t have a burp cloth with me so I’m wiping excessive amounts of milk on my jeans, sweater, etc. and using my white shirt to wipe up the milk that was overflowing from her mini mouth. Oy. All the while, I’m trying to make the situation peaceful so she would go down for her nap.

A real milksplosion.

After she went down for her nap, I decided it was time to pump so we could have less dangerous feedings for the remainder of the day. I pumped out 8.5 ounces! Mind you, that was after I had fed her and sprayed milk all over the conference room at work.

Just another day in the life of a breastfeeding momma 🙂

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Back to Work

Today was my first day back to work. Yup, maternity leave is officially over. No offense to work and all, but I was totally stressing about today.

As some of you know, I work for my parents’ company and will be bringing Charlotte (and Toby the wonderpup) to work with me every day. Of course, this is SUCH an amazing thing. I cannot imagine having to leave my sweet baby girl each day and we can’t afford for me to keep hanging out in my pjs.

So, obviously, my transition back to work is MUCH easier than many. But, I have had so much anxiety about how it was going to work brining Charlie to work. Would she still nap? Will I be able to get things done? Will I be able to provide her with enough entertainment and stimulation without taking away from my job? Will I be able to get to work on time? Etc, etc.

Well, finally the day was here and I have to say, our morning sucked. Haha okay, in hind sight, it wasn’t that bad, but when Mark asked me how the day was going this morning at 11, my response was “terrible.”

Why? Well, I forgot Charlotte’s swaddle at home, which made napping a major struggle. Then, once I finally got her to sleep (about an hour past when she should have been sleeping), the cheap ass audio baby monitor my husband insisted we go with started screaming with feedback. Good morning, charlotte! Hope you enjoyed your 5 minute nap.

So, in total spaz mode, I left C with my mom and ran to target for a swaddle and a higher quality baby monitor. We went with the vtech and so far, it’s amazing. The sound quality is perfection.

Anyway, once my purchases were made, the day went very smoothly and I got a lot done. I could even go as far as to say I enjoyed my day back at work. It felt good to use that part of my brain again and to be productive outside of the house.

I think I’ll go back tomorrow.

It should also be mentioned that randomly the little one decided she likes pacifiers. What the heck? If you’ve ever seen her with a paci, you know that it’s the quickest way to make her gag and literally never the answer… Until today. She can’t get enough of it and takes it instantly. It’s probably because we’ve been giving her a bottle regularly.

Here’s the paci face in her work uniform (hooded sweatshirt and logo’d tee)… It’s only funny if you know my parents. This is what they wear… All the time! 🙂

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