30 November 2011

A Little Brag...

30 November
I am super excited to be able to say that I am below my pre pregnancy weight. Everyone keeps telling me that I dont even look like I had a baby 6 weeks ago. To them I say THANK YOU very much. I dont know how or why but the weight came off so much easier this time than it did with Ava. I am already back into my normal jeans and returned all my borrowed maternity clothes. I am hoping it stays that way. I have a weight loss goal and I am already half way there. I am going to watch what I eat and not snack a lot when I return to work. I really would like to be down to my high school weight but there is no chance of that ever happening again but to get close would make me happy.

6 weeks Already?!?!

30 November
I cannot believe. My baby is 6 weeks old already. Where has the time gone? She has gone from this little fragile thing to a little baby that is trying to hold her head up. She is more alert during the day and recognizing voices. I am not exactly sure how far she can see but she will follow Kenny's voice across the room and move her eyes and head with him. It is amazing how much happens in just the first 6 weeks. Ava was holding her head up completely by 8 weeks old and I think Hailey may be on the same track. She is getting stronger each day and bounces her head all around when you are holding her. We are giving her more tummy time on the play mat. At first she didnt act like she was too thrilled about it but now when she is a little fussy, tummy time will actually calm her sometimes. She is now eating 4 ounces every 3 or so hours during the day and at night she can sleep a stretch of 5 to 6 hours and then will go back to every 3 or so hours. The long stretch is nice because I actually get 3 or 4 hours of the 5 or 6 so I am not a total grump in the morning. I have started putting a little rice cereal in her bottle, it seems to help keep her full and make her a little happier. We have had some gas issues with her, changing her formula and adding gripe water has seemed to help a lot more. She still has some of her fussiness but its a little here and there instead of a large block of time. It has helped a lot in the stress department. She seems to be fighting her sleep a little bit. She will eat her 3rd bottle of the day, in the late afternoon, and will cry until she falls asleep. It can be a handful with Ava but my patience has stayed with me and I just work with her until she falls asleep.  We have been relying on the swing more and more. She seems to really enjoy it. She sleeps in it during the day when we are all out in the living room and there are times she will wake up and just sit and swing, watching her surroundings. Ava will go and talk to her and bring her toys. It has helped a lot when I am on my own. I am so waiting on her to hold that head up on her own so she can sit with pillows around her and enjoy playing on the floor a little more.

Thanksgiving

30 November
So Thanksgiving has become less busy as the years have come instead of busier, I have come to like it. This year was Hailey's first. Ava is at a really fun age, she still doesnt really understand what the holidays mean but she always has a good time with family. We missed Kenny that day, one of the few hazards of being married to someone in his field. But the kids had a good time and we spent the day at my moms. One of the best things of these kind of days is that I have a little help with the girls instead of doing it all on my own while he's working. Ava had a ball hanging out with mom's dogs and her Aunts. The next Sunday we celebrated the holiday with Kenny's mom and brothers. Ava had a ball there also. She always seems to have a good time. LOL.


22 November 2011

Fussy, Crying, and only a Month old

22 November
So the past week has been hard, Hailey has been going through a fussiness that I didnt experience with Ava. Around 5 pm every evening, she begins crying and cluster feeding. She only wants to be held, will not be put down, and this happens during dinner time for Ava, who by this time is usually huffing and puffing telling me repeatly that Hailey is crying. Like we dont know! LOL

Since Hailey's fussiness had become a habit and at the same time everynight, I got on babycenter and google and seen if all babies go through this. I also emailed a friend and asked her if she thought what I wanted to do to help Hailey would work. Everything I read was calling this was 'witching hour' which is a little creepy for a newborn's fussiness to be called this but thats what it is. I read what other mothers were doing to help their little ones and what worked. We were both wondering if this was colic or not, or maybe just a form of it. It makes you feel so helpless to watch your kid cry and you cant make them feel better. Nothing would help, I can say that I am thankful for Kennys schedule but also hate it with her being this needy. On the many days he is home, I have lots of help, he takes turns between entertaining Ava and holding Hailey to keep her happy. On the days he is working, well all I can say is I have evenings I could pull my hair out.

Ava being the active 2 year old she is, needs attention, needs to play, and needs time with us. So holding Hailey for almost 3 hours straight can take a toll. But she has been great. Better than I could have ever imagined.

So to try to cure the fussiness we have tried gripe water. So far day one of it, it has helped I believe. I think also that she changed up her schedule a little, instead of sleeping the middle part of the day she was up and enjoyed the afternoon playing with Ava. Everything I have read says that this fussiness could last a week or a few weeks so I guess it is a crapshoot to see how long we will be dealing with this. I just hope it doesnt last long, after a bottle with the gripe water, Hailey was a happy, content little girl and was smiling up a storm. I loved seeing her smile, it melted my heart. Hoping to see it more than those tears.

Success

22 November
So last week I wrote how proud I was of my little girl and no BINK...well this week I am here to SHOUT that she has gone over a week without it. She has had a couple meltdowns and one major one at 3 in the morning, a morning that Kenny was at work so it was just me to deal with it. After 45 minutes I convinced her to go back to sleep and she cuddled up against me and closed her eyes. Only to wake up a few hours later and start where she finished. Although at 6 am it was a little easier because Hailey was up and she soon became distracted with her baby sister and wanting to kiss all over her. YAY!

So over a week later and she tries to sneak Hailey's bink in her mouth every once in a while, and honestly I dont think she is doing it because she wants it, she is doing it to tease me. She will put it in her mouth and run back the hallway laughing, wanting me to chase her and tickle her. After I take it from her and tickle, she gives it back to Hailey without any issue. She has always loved to play, maybe sometimes a little too much, especially when I am trying to discipline her but she is almost always in a good mood.

I am so proud of her. I really didnt think it would fly. I thought it would be the biggest fight in our life. She was so attached but she is doing well.

(Bink Free in a PHOTO)

 

13 November 2011

The BINK!

13 November
Philips Avent Soothie Pacifier, 0-3 Months, 2 Pack
Ava loves her bink. Anyone who has met her knows the bink is a staple in her look.






Well one of the things Kenny and I have discussed repeatly is that we need to get her off of it. She is over 2 and doesnt need it. So while on my leave and she has been home, we have been trying to talk her out of using it. She hasnt used it at Beckys for months on end. As soon as she walks in the door, it goes on the hutch and she doesnt get it back until I come back to get her.

So yesterday for giggles, I took it when she was playing and hid it. She asked for it a couple of times, I replied with "I will get it in a minute" and she would continue playing without it and forget. I was really proud of her. She depends on the bink to soothe her, to calm her down, she had a few meltdowns and asked for it but we distracted her with taking care of Hailey, cartoons, and playing with her toys. I knew that bedtime would be the true test, well she went to sleep without it, very easily, almost too easy. I couldnt believe it.

Today is the second day without it and she is still doing well. I guess we will just roll with it and see where it takes us. I would love to get her to give it up completely. I think that it is helping that Hailey isnt too much into the bink. We remind Ava that she is the BIG girl now and doesnt need it, that binks are for babies. So hopefully I can keep posting that she doesnt have it, doesnt need it, and isnt demanding it.

Jealous Much...

13 November
Everyone has been asking how Ava is doing being a Big Sister and how she is liking her Little Sister. Well for now she is doing great. We have been doing everything we can to include her and to make her see that she is still loved. I do get busy with Hailey, and when Kenny is working, I can only do so much by myself but she has been doing good. She doesnt seem mad when I tell her I cant because I am feeding or taking care of Hailey. I ask her to please wait until I am done, and when I am done doing whatever it was, I will put Hailey down and go play or take care of Ava's needs. It sure is a balancing act. Sometimes its hard and I feel bad because I cant do it all at one time and take care of both of them at once, but Ava hasnt made it a big deal.

I honestly had prepared myself for the worse, we are also dealing with the terrible 2's so I thought bringing home baby #2 would do us in. But since day one she has been loving towards Hailey and tells her all the time that she loves her. Sometimes it can be a little too much, Ava will try to kiss her and squeeze her hand to hard, or try to press on her belly or something so we are consistly reminding Ava to be easy and that Hailey is just a baby and cannot do a lot. Ava wants her to play so badly. She tries giving her toys and wants her to take them.

When Ava tries to include Hailey, I try to make it seem like Hailey is there 100%. If she tells Hailey, "I love you" then I reply "Hailey loves you too", if Ava tells Hailey "Bless you" after she sneezes, I tell Ava that she says "Thank you".

I will say one thing, Hailey knows Ava's voice. There are times that Hailey will be fussy and I will ask Ava to talk to her and give her kisses. Once Ava is beside her Hailey will quiet down and looks in the direction Ava is talking from. It is really sweet.

There's only been one person I can honestly say that Ava has acted jealous around and that is her Aunt Ashley. Ashley was over holding Hailey and Ava asked her to give Hailey to me so that Aunt Ashley could play with her. It was really cute and I know it made Ashley feel loved. Emily used to do the same thing with Ashley when Ava was first born.

Ava has also gotten used to Hailey being around her, almost like she's always been here. When she goes to leave now she asks if Hailey is coming and will get upset if she doesnt. I went to drop Ava off at Becky's last week and she got very upset that Hailey wasnt staying. I love it. I thought for sure she would ignore her or totally not like her for a while but she has been wonderful.

I know within a few years that can all change and they will argue and fight and I will be busy yelling at them to be nice to each other but it has made the transition a little easier with Ava not being so difficult during this process. So I love that I can answer people when they ask, "Ava loves her and helps take care of her and is a great big sister"

Maternity Leave

13 November
My leave is half over, yea sad I know. I has went very quickly. Before it began I had a list a mile long that I wanted to get done while I am home. Well so far I have actually completed a little bit of the list, more than I thought I would get done. I had figured Hailey would sleep most of my maternity leave, which so far she has and Ava is old enough to play while I clean or even help a little. I am going to miss not having the time to do the housework whenever, I will be back to doing as much as I can on Saturdays. It has been wonderful being home when Kenny is home also. His schedule is pretty horrible when I am working 8 hours of his day off then the evening is busy with dinner, baths, and some play time with Ava. Now well have everything times 2 in the evenings, which has been a blessing but I know it will make for a fast and busy evening.

I am thankful to have the time off that I do. I know some people dont, if we couldnt afford it for any reason, I think right now I am in a position to return to work. I sit at a desk so not much stress on my recovery but yay for being home with my girls. It's been a little stressful with a challenging 2 year old, 24 hours a day but as much as Ava drives me crazy, she melts my heart.

It has been nice, I have been able to keep up on laundry, the dishes, and cleaning up after Ava, (well to a point, you can only clean up toys so much before it gets old).

The next couple weeks of my leave is going to be busy, Kenny will be hunting, so a little more time with the girls on my own, and we have Thanksgiving. We have like 2 to 4 dinners depending on who is cooking and that means traveling in cold weather. Yuck! Then before I know it, it will be that sad time to return to work.

I am hoping to finish a few more things on my list before I do return to the working mom category. I want to organize the handmedown totes a little more, I have to switch out Hailey's clothes already, she has growing out of newborn and moving to 0-3 months quickly, I want to begin my Christmas shopping, I need to exchange diapers, and I want to put the tree up and decorate for the holidays.

Well see how much I actually get done. I basically have 4 days with Kenny's work schedule, anything I want done with a little help will need to be done while he is home. I hope to do my shopping solo. I havent been out on my own with energy and no big belly for a while. It will be nice to walk through a store and not get winded or have to go to the bathroom a million times.

So I hope to complete as much as possible all the while taking care of my girls and giving them as much attention as I can. We'll see what happens, so far I have been taking it day by day and seeing how I feel, Ava's mood, and how Hailey sleeps before I make any decisions.

07 November 2011

My Husband

07 November
I know I have a lot of posts bragging about Kenny, but I cannot say enough about how much he has been there for me. These past 2 weeks, he has been incredible. First, he took great care of me and Hailey in the hospital, making sure all our needs were met. Then he worked it out to have 2 weeks at home with us while I recovered. The first 4 days at home were all him. He was taking care of himself, Ava, and Me. My only job was taking care of Hailey. He was helping me get up, get down, get dressed, and fed all of us. He kept Ava busy so that she wasnt too bored while I couldnt do much. He would take her here and there with him and allow me some time to rest.

As I began to heal, he began working on projects around the house, but was never far away if I needed him. It was wonderful having him home. We got to spend some time together and have family time which was needed. Ava really needed both of us here in the beginning to make sure she understood she was still important too. And I think him being home with me really helped with that. When I couldnt give her attention, he did. He also helped with her understanding of my surgery "boo boo" and she needed to be careful and easy around me and Hailey.

He's now back at work. It is coming with some adjustments because I am used to that extra hand. Now it is all on me for at least 24 hours until he comes home. I am just happy that my recovery went fast and is progressing well. Soon hunting season will be in full swing and even when he's off he wont be here, so Ava and I will be good to go with his help in the beginning of all this. I am pretty happy with life and I owe a lot of it to him. And he is such a great daddy.

01 November 2011

Halloween

01 November
So Ava's 3rd Halloween was fun! She was a little lion and did a great job trick or treating at our church's trunk or treat. She went on a hayride and played with her friends for a while before we made our way back home. Hailey, shy of 2 weeks old, slept in her carseat the entire time. I loved being well enough to be able to go and watch Ava enjoy Halloween.












Recovery

01 November
Recovery has gone well. At the beginning it was really rough. Everyone kept telling me how rough I looked. Way worse than I had with Ava, they would say. Yea that is exactly what you want to hear less than 24 hours after surgery. "You look tired" was the most used phrase.

I was nice about it. Didnt say too much but, 'yea I am tired'. Kenny and I both figure it was a little harder because with Ava, I laid in a bed for 3 days 2 of them with my epidural in, relaxed and waiting for the labor to come on and to dilate so we could get her out. After 56 hours of laying in a bed strapped to machines, they took her, I wasnt refreshed but I wasnt worn out from the labor part. Hailey is a different story, I didnt sleep well the night before she came because of being huge and uncomfortable. I worked a full 8 hour day, my job isnt the easiest and I was exhausted by the end of the day, and then before I could get home and relax, my water was breaking and I was stressed out trying to figure out what I needed to do.

We were discharged less than 48 hours of surgery and I was home with my 2 girls. It took about 6 days post partum to begin feeling like myself. I kept an eye on my complexion, I am pale as it is, but I was pale white until about 8 days after Hailey came.

I basically sat in the recliner only taking care of myself and Hailey, Friday through Monday. Kenny was awesome, he took care of Ava and tried to help me as much as he could. My brother in law Kelly brought me a step stool so that I could get in and out of bed, which was a great favor. I was originally going to sleep in the living room with Hailey so I could just get in and out of the recliner, but Ava was not having me sleep anywhere but my room. She is so used to her bedtime routine and having me there.

By Monday, 6 days after, I was bending over a little more, it looked a little awkward but I was doing it. I had Kenny work on laundry and bring the dried loads into the room and put on the bed, so I could stand there and fold and put away. I really felt like crap not being able to do my housework and depending on Kenny to do so much. It felt like forever this time to get to the point where I even wanted to do a little bit.

Ava got into a rythm of not being on my belly and watching my boo boo. She figured out a way to get into the recliner and sit beside me without hurting me and she could snuggle with me.

So now 13 days post partum and I am able to do everything I could before again. I am doing laundry and cleaning. I am able to have Ava sit on my lap. I am able to clean stuff off the floor, and with our 2 year old the floor is always a mess. I am still being very careful of my incision, making sure that I dont lift anything too heavy or do too much at one time. Ava is still watching where she is on my belly to make sure she doesnt kick or hit it. Everyday I feel a little better and a little stronger. I cannot wait to feel 100% better and able to do what I want.

I see the doctor soon and hopefully everything will look good with my incision so that I can drive and do a few other things. Then I get a 4 week break of just taking care of my girls and my husband until I go again and hopefully everything will look good to release me to return to work.

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