Saturday, November 27, 2010

The Holidays are HERE!

I love the holiday season. Christmas movies. Christmas music. Christmas trees. All the red and green and silver. And snow. I'm so excited to share the wonder and the warmth of the holidays with my little Owlet! The hubs and I were talking about how great its going to be to see the joys of the holidays through our child's eyes, and I can't wait! Although this year might not be super special for him (as he'll be only 4-ish months old) I know it's going to be spectacular for us.

I especially can't wait to see how he reacts to the Christmas lights, since the ceiling light seems to be his best friend nowadays. He can stare at that thing forever, and he loves it even when it's not on!

Part of the holiday season means sending Christmas cards! I've wanted to send photo cards for years, but never seemed to get around to taking pictures and getting them on a card. This year, however, is going to be different! I am determined to get a great holiday-esque picture of lil man and send his adorable face off to friends and family everywhere. The dilemma, however, comes when trying to choose just which card to go with! Here are some of my fav's, all from

Shutterfly also has really cool gift ideas too like calendars or fun holiday cards!

What card would you like to get? I guess half the battle with choosing is deciding what pictures I currently have of lil man, and taking more pictures, right? It shouldn't be hard, since I feel like I'm constantly photographing lil man anyway. Now all I have to do is find the time to take really good pictures, upload them and order the cards. Hopefully all this can get done before the Holidays are over!

Friday, November 26, 2010


I am filled today, with sadness and worry. My best friend from high school lost her husband today in a head on collision as he was driving to work. I hate living far away from everyone I grew up with, because I would love nothing more than to run to her aid. But we are 2,000 miles apart, and I am stuck here wishing I could fly back for the funeral to be with her.

I found out this news through Facebook, of all places. Can you believe it? In a way I guess its a good thing, I don't know that I would have found out otherwise until it was too late.

This one piece of news has rocked my world today, and not in a good way. I feel like all the little petty things I get so worked up about almost daily are nothing now compared to what my friend with her two small children must be going through. I cannot even imagine losing my hubs. Which of course, brings on the worry.

I am a worrier by nature. I think its genetic. (Thanks, mom). I worry about everything, and everyone. I've always been a worrier, but when I got married those worries doubled. I worried about something happening to my hubs, about something happening to me. And now, that I have a son, the worries have tripled. I don't want to raise my son in a world of fear. I want him to embrace life, to take risks (as long as he's careful), to enjoy his life to the fullest, because, as I learned today, it can all come to an end far too quickly.

Friend, you are in my thoughts always, and even more so at this tragic time. I love you and I'm sending you positive healing thoughts that you may more easily get through this incredibly difficult time.

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving! Today I am thankful for:
* A loving husband who understands my crazy ways and still loves me for it.

* My little owlet.

* Starbucks coffe in their glorious red cups because it means seasonal flavors and that Christmas is almost here

* Family, both near and far

* Alex's laughter, smiles and coos

* naps

* tiny little hoodie sweatshirts and overalls

* My wonderful husband and my darling son. Yes I've already said I'm thankful for them, but I'm so thankful that they are in my life that they're on here twice.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


I feel like a failure today. I'm sure its the first of many times that I'll feel like I've failed my child, but as its the first, it feels pretty stinkin' bad. My owlet has been awake for close to 4 straight hours tonight. This after almost zero naps today. All of his "naps" were more like nap-lettes. Tiny little 20 minute things that couldn't even be called catnaps. I don't know what's going on with him, which is another reason I feel like a failure. He might be teething. He might be fighting off a cold. He might be going through a growth spurt. I have no idea. All I know is that in 4 hours I have not been able to soothe him to sleep. I have done everything. I've fed him, changed him, shushed him, rocked him, sung to him, "flipped" him, completely undressed him and tried to do skin to skin, let him suck on my finger, let him suck on a pacifier. The hubs took him for a long ride in the car, then put him on top of the dryer in his car seat to rock him to sleep, I guess. He walked him around the house rocking him and shushing him. And what put him to sleep? That last little thing.

I'm not going to lie. I want to be the one to meet my owlet's every need. Is it great that the hubs finally got him to sleep? Of course. Do I feel like it should have been me to finally lull my precious one to sleep? You betcha. I feel like I failed my son. I couldn't do whatever it was that he needed done. Some tiny little thing, out of all the things we did tonight, and he's finally asleep. Although he's been "finally asleep" several times tonight, all of which lasted about 10 minutes.

I think part of my frustration comes from worry. Worry that something's wrong with Alex. Worry that as a first time mom, I'm going to mess something up. Worry about how I'm supposed to do this tomorrow night when the hubs is back to work and I'm here by myself with a screaming baby.

I learned tonight that I cannot just let him cry it out. The sound of him screaming from his crib makes me sick to my stomach. I want to do everything I can to make him stop, to soothe him.

Except, apparently, sometimes, there's nothing I can do.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

random thoughts/confessions

I have a fussy owlet this morning. We started our day with him throwing up all over me as I was making breakfast. Its been a long time since he's thrown up so much, pretty much since I've cut out dairy. I can only think it was something I ate yesterday, but I feel badly. He got one good 4 hour stretch of sleep last night but was then up every 2 hours after that. I've taken to holding him on my chest very early in the morning so that we can both get a little more sleep but I'm realizing that this week will be the last time I'll be able to do that, except for weekends. I'm going to miss it.

I am desperately searching for a new job. This is no surprise, but I'm finding it hard to find something I'm actually qualified for, since my entire work experience consists of therapy or retail, neither of which I want to do right now. I feel like I'm applying for anything and everything that I am remotely qualified for, that pays well and that has part time. Something's got to stick, right?

I have not put laundry away in 3weeks. Part of me wonders if we will ever have clothes put away, since once I return to work I will want to put it away even less than I do now. I also haven't swept or vacuumed in almost as long. Not cool. There seems to be a small dog growing in the corner of the living room with the amount of fur that is accumulating there.

And, we have survived the first week of the hubs' new work schedule. It has only resulted in 2 meltdowns by me, which I think is pretty good, considering. I think its going to take a loooong time for us both to get used to it, but we're hanging in there.

So instead of tackling the number of things that needs to get done today, I think I'll just curl up with lil man on the couch and enjoy this time while I have it. Everything else can wait.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

hello, my name is Overprotective Mom

I started work today, but that's not what I'm going to blog about. Not really, anyway. Although I guess what I am going to blog about is somewhat related... my MIL watching my lil man. While I work. Ok. It is totally related. Whatevs.

I am in the process of writing a mental list, which will soon turn into a for real list of things that my MIL needs to know about watching Alex. Am I crazy? Perhaps. Overprotective? A smidge. But I've spent everyday for the last 10 weeks with this little man, and I know the ins and outs of his cries, his naps (or lack thereof), his needs and his wants. I think I'd do the same thing if I was leaving him in the hands of a complete stranger at a day care or with a nanny. But since it's family, it feels a little weird.

So in no particular order, here is a rough draft of what I've come up with in my head of what MIL (and the hubs, since he'll be there too) needs to know about a day in the life with lil man.

1. He sometimes takes 2-3 naps a day. Sometimes he doesn't. If he doesn't have a morning nap (around 9 or 10) then he will usually take a long nap mid afternoon, around noon, sometimes lasting until 3:00, sometimes much shorter. I try to put him down for these naps, either beside me on the couch or in his pack-n-play, rather than holding him, although sometimes he wakes up when moved.

2. He typically eats about 3 ounces at each feeding. I learned this from lactation group. He will usually eat every 2 hours or so, unless he takes a long nap. Sometimes he only eats a little, falls asleep and then eats more an hour later. Please don't feel like he needs to eat all 3oz at every feeding. When we feed him from the bottle we usually take it away from him every oz or so to see how he's doing. When he licks his lips it usually means he's full. If he cries, he may need to be burped, rather than needing more food. Sometimes it takes a long time to get a burp, so don't give up after a few minutes, especially since he's eating from a bottle. If he makes the hunger sign (moving his head back and forth with his mouth open) feel free to give him a little more.

3. Cures for fussiness: putting him over your shoulder and patting his back while lightly shushing him directly in his ear. Laying him down, sometimes he just wants to kick his legs, especially if he's been held for a long time. Laying him down and bringing his legs to his belly. Sometimes this helps with the gas. Trying to burp him. Lightly massaging his belly. I typically try all of these things before giving him his binky or feeding him.

4. A has really sensitive skin, so I've sent the hubs with a blanket to lay him on the couch or the floor. I think you have a blanket too, we can wash this if you want because we use free & clear detergent for everything. If he soils/messes anything, send it home with the hubs so we can wash it. Scented detergent makes him rashy.

5. Speaking of rashy, if his bottom looks a little red, you can use the Buttpaste. (I love this stuff)

6. He spends a lot of time sucking on his hands. This usually doesn't mean that he's hungry, he just does it to soothe.

7. His gas cry is different than his hunger cry. His gas cry is more of a grunting type cry, where as his hunger cry sometimes has a "mwah" sound to it. Sometimes. Other times it's a full on wail. But this could also be his over-tired cry.
So. what do you think? Too much? In no way, by the way, does this make it easier for me to go back to work. But at least with this list I can pretend.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Changing of the Guard

The hubs has started working nights. I hate this. But he needs to do it and it's not a forever thing, its a for now thing. He's only had 3 shifts so far, but I cannot even tell you how difficult this has been on me. Which is weird because for the most part Alex pretty much sleeps all night. Except for last night, when it took him an hour and a half to fall back to sleep after his 3:30 feeding. Which means I went back to sleep around 5:00. This is all fine and well and good right now (ok, its not fine or good at all) but since I'm still home all day for the next few days, I can sacrifice a little bit of sleep in the wee small hours of the morning because it means that I can sleep until 11:00, like we did today. BUT in 2 days, when I go back to work, when Alex is still awake at 5:00, there will be no going back to sleep, I will just need to get up and get started with my day. I don't like this thought, since I have never been a morning person. Just ask any of my college roommates. Or my husband. Or my mom.

Anyway, once I go back to work, the hubs will be watching our little man. With my Mother in Law. At her house. So that he can sleep. Now, I understand that working the overnight shift wreaks havoc on your sleep schedule, because I did it too for like a year, and I never got used to it. Mostly because I didn't allow myself to sleep when things were going on. I do like that he'll be around to help my MIL out, and that he'll have some time to bond more with lil man. But here's what's unfair: all along when you're home with your little one, everyone says "sleep when they sleep" because of all the sleepless nights (or the hour and a half that it takes them to fall back to sleep after eating...). So, does that mean I get to nap at work? I wish. But no. So instead, I get to be sleep deprived in the middle of the night, and stressed that it feels like I'm doing this all by myself, except from about 4:30-8:00 every night.

Quick shout out to single mom's out there: I don't know how you do it. Seriously. Mad props to you all. Especially mad props to my mom who was a single mom for far too long and had to deal with a little one who wouldn't nap in the middle of the day so that she could sleep, because she worked the swing shift. What a brat that little girl was!

What was I talking about? Oh yeah. So, starting Friday, the hubs will come home and get our little guy and take him up to my MIL's house, and I will head to work. And cry. And at some point, I will come home and take over. I know it's early with this whole thing, but I need this to get easier. Right now.

Monday, November 15, 2010

visiting friends and family

We've had a busy week last week! Alexander had a visit from his Grandparents from NH (the other set). It was so great to see him interact with my dad, the look on his face the first time they saw each other was priceless!

I like watching Alex interact with other people, he loves studying faces right now and he almost always smiles at other people. It's also kind of neat to see my little guy being held by someone else, it's like it gives me a different perspective on him, since I'm so used to holding him close or having him right next to me.

Alex also attended his first wedding this weekend, and he had a grand time. Mommy, on the other hand was a little worried that he would cry during the ceremony (he didn't) and that all these people would try touching him (they did.) But it was great to get out with friends, they love Alex almost as much as we do, and they've just met him. This is probably a good thing, since they've agreed to be his Godparents.
While it was great to be out and visiting with friends and family, it wreaked havoc on our sleep schedule. Poor Alex was very fussy for the past couple nights, and I feel like it's taking a while to get us back in the swing of things. I'm worried now about how we're going to deal with the holidays, how to get a consistent bed time, how I'm going to manage going back to work in 3 days. Ok, so that has nothing to do with sleeping, but since I worry about it all the time, there you go.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

the work issue, again.

So I found out yesterday that I will not be able to return to work part time. I cannot even begin to describe how much this upsets me. Apparently my boss "tried everything" to allow me to come back part time, but it's just not feasible. I cried over this I don't even know how much yesterday. Returning to work is not something I even wanted to do, but we decided I needed to because we can't afford for me not to. I was ok with going back to my current job when I thought I could come back part time. Except, I wasn't that ok with going back to my current job. I am completely burnt out with that job.

I realized yesterday too, that if I return to work part time, and the hubs goes to the night shift, that we will see each other for maybe 4 hours everyday, and we will never have a day off together. Ever. Which is another reason part time would be ideal. I would be able to take at least one day off during the week that the hubs also has off. Now? Not.

I would do anything for my lil man. Anything. But I don't know that returning to my current job is possible. I desperately need to find something else, something that allows me to be part time so that I can spend time with both my men, and something that doesn't make me feel totally drained at the end of the day.

Because that's part of the problem with my current job. The whole being burnt out thing means that I am completely drained at the end of the day.I felt like on some days that I couldn't even take care of myself or my own needs, let alone the needs of a baby boy, who I can't just tell to go play by himself for a few minutes while I chug a glass of wine and relax. No, my little man relies on me for everything, especially right now, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

And here I am, looking desperately for a new job, in this job market, when really I should be thankful that I HAVE a job, even if it's one that right now, sadly, I hate.

We all make sacrifices for our little ones. Husband is going to be sacrificing sleep so that he can be home with Alex during the day, so that I can return to work, even though I don't want to. SAHM's make sacrifices when they spend all day every day with their little ones, moms who work full time make sacrifices since they aren't able to see their little ones as much as they would like. I've said before that I want the best of both worlds. I want to be able to stay home with my guy a few days a week and work a few days a week, so that we can (1) make enough money and (2) I won't go completely stir crazy staying home with lil man every day.

But don't get me started on the ethical dilemma of returning to work KNOWING that I am going to leave again, hopefully sooner rather than later. How do I start working with clients again, only to up and leave again? How is this good client care? Why is this even weighing into my decision about what I want to do?

Seriously, I could really use that lottery money, so if anyone wins it, please send some my way. In the meantime I'll be spending every waking minute spoiling my little man, and dreading my eventual return to the work force. (and by eventual, I mean next week.)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The First of the Firsts.

Alexander has hit the 8 week mark. I know it's still not *quite* 2 months, but I don't care. Everyday I am amazed at how much I love this little being, how I see more and more of myself in him, and more and more of who I think he might become. I have so many hopes and dreams for him, but really all I care about is that he is happy and healthy and does what he loves. I think he's going to love animals though, because I am going to force it on him nurture it in him.

Plus this morning i woke up to the sounds of him "laughing and talking" to the owls on his mobile. Not only was it wonderful to wake up to that noise rather than him screaming because he was hungry, it solidified it in me that this kid is going to be an animal lover. Maybe all that work I did with the raptors and at the zoo while I was pregnant with him really did pay off.

Speaking of the zoo, we took our little owlet to Boo at the Zoo on Halloween weekend. I cannot believe how crowded it was, or how cute Alex was in his zebra costume! He got lots and lots of compliments.
I mean come on, how can you not love this little guy? Someone asked me if I thought he would remember this Halloween, and I said no, but that I would. I mean seriously. He was 7 weeks old. Do they really expect him to remember it? He also couldn't eat the candy, but that didn't stop me from trick-or-treating with him in the Bjorn.

So many "firsts" for Alex and our little family this year: first Halloween, first Thanksgiving and Christmas. While he will still be way too young to remember any of it, the memory of all these wonderful firsts will be burned into my memory forever.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

the monster within

I have a problem. I think I am two people. One normal, typical mom, and one monster. This monster of a person rears her ugly head sometime between midnight an 4am. It usually happens when Alex has only let me sleep for an hour (or less) since his last feeding. Sometimes this crazy monster person shows up several times in a night, like last night. This horrible person showed up at like 1:30, and again at 4:30, and then at 6:45. Alex starts crying in his pack-n-play and I can't believe he's crying already, even though I just finished feeding him (or so it feels like). So I let him cry it out for a few minutes, thinking that maybe it's just gas, so angry and frustrated at the fact that he's crying. again. already.

It's not gas, of course, he is hungry. Again. And I don't want him to keep crying, I want to meet his needs, but, at the same time, I am. So. Tired. And I don't want to wake the hubs up before it's his turn to deal with the little one. So I get up, grumbling, frustrated and ready to pull my hair out. Who the heck is this person? How could I not want to tend to my little one's needs? How could I wish for just a few more minutes of sleep, when my little guy is hungry and needs food? Every night when I put him down to sleep, I listen to him breathe because I'm so afraid of that terrible "S" thing that I can't even write, and here I am, wishing that he would just go to sleep already. Well, what if he fell asleep and never woke up? This thought comes barreling into my mind as I'm slowly getting up to get him, which guess what? Makes me feel even more terrible.

So I sit there, half asleep watching bad television so that I can try to keep myself awake. (By the way, Saved By the Bell is on really early in the morning if you're up and nursing and need something mindless to watch.) I kick myself for getting mad that this tiny little person who is so dependent on me for his every need actually needs me, and that it interrupted my sleep. I worry about how I am ever going to manage going back to work, since we typically stay in bed until about 10:00, although a lot of that isn't me sleeping, it's me waiting for him to fall asleep.

And, eventually, he makes his little contented sigh, pulls off and falls blissfully asleep. That is, until I go to move him, of course, and then the whole cycle starts again.