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Kai: 8 months

Guys, our little monster is eight months old. It is freaking me out. He seems so grown up now, and for some reason eight months to me seems almost like one year. I know we have four months to go before we hit that major milestone, but I also know that July will be here tomorrow. Time, please slow down. But spring, keep up the good work!

Kai is still growing bigger by the day, and is wearing mostly 12 and 18 month clothes. I think he weighs around 22-23lbs. He has officially outgrown his infant car seat and passed it along to his soon to be baby cousin, and it in his big boy seat full time. Let’s see a comparison, shall we?

He looks a little less roly poly to me now and more like a toddler. Ok, let’s talk about sleep. Mister is on a pretty good and consistent schedule now, though he is still waking up too early for my liking. He wakes up at 6am, naps from around 9:15-10:30, then again from 2:15-3:30 (all give or take 15 mins or so). We have pushed his bedtime back to 7:30 in hopes of a later wake up, but so far that has not made a difference. We went though a rough patch this month full of pre-5am wake ups, which I think was due to teething and illness, so I can’t complain too much about the current situation. I had much hope pinned on daylight savings time to shift his whole schedule back by an hour, but it fell apart on the first day with a super early wake up and never worked like I had planned.

The main thing is, I don’t want him to have to go to bed in the 6’s at night, because summer is coming, and we have things to do. You know, places to go, people to see. I do not want to be chained to the house at 6pm every night when the weather is glorious and it is light out past 8pm. So we are doing our best to push bedtime back a little without making Kai too over tired. I am actually looking forward to the time when he takes one long nap a day instead of two, because it will be easier to be out and about. Having a pretty strict schedule is working for us at the moment though, both for Kai and my own sanity.

Kai was sick again this month, this time with a nasty stomach virus and it was the worst ever. He had diarrhea, fever, vomitting, the works. It was miserable. I have never in my life dealt with so much bodily fluid everywhere, sorry for TMI. But he was basically pooping out of every single diaper onto his clothes, my clothes, everywhere. He also puked down my robe in the middle of the night, it was awful. He wasn’t eating any solids, and would only drink 4oz of formula at a time. All he wanted was water from his sippy cup. We tried Pedialyte but he hated it (two different flavors). I felt so bad for him, and basically let him watch his beloved Baby Einstein videos all day until he felt better.

Kai has eight teeth now and another one about to pop through, but ironically he still really only likes to eat pureed baby food. We have found that he has an incredibly sensitive gag reflex, so any time a chunk or lump of something finds itself too far back on his tongue, he gags and sometimes vomits. We practice every day with baby puffs or yogurt melts, broken in half and placed right in his front teeth so he can chew it up. He really likes the puffs and has even placed one in his mouth by himself on a few occasions, but mostly I still have to put in in there for him. He takes forever to chew it up, so in a 5 min span, he may eat two entire puffs 🙂 Here is how long it takes him to eat 1/2 of a puff:

He still loves to eat anything that is smooth and sweet. His apple cinnamon oatmeal is a breakfast staple, and lunch and dinner is always baby food. He is very skeptical of anything you try to feed him, and will examine the contents of the spoon before allowing it to be placed in his mouth. He ate his first non-sweet meal (Gerber Chicken Noodle) a couple weeks ago, which was monumental. He loved it. However, it turned out to be an isolated incident, and he refused to eat the same meal again. Kid can pound down 1.5-2 pouches/food containers at a time. I have started to buy some of the gerber containers and other jars in addition to the pricey pouches. He is also quite the little ham apparently.

Kai likes to play with his spoon and make a mess, but shows no interest in actually feeding himself unless it is from a pouch, and even then he mostly likes to chew on the spout. As picky as he is, there was also the one time that Mr. Crabby Pants was instantly calmed by a lone piece of asparagus.

There is hope for him yet.

Skills: Though Kai has been getting up on his hands and knees in crawling position for over a month now, he still has not put two and two together and figured out how to move forward. He even goes up into full on downward dog position and moves his feet like he is going somewhere, but he hasn’t figured out how to pick up his hands at the same time to move forward. When he gets frustrated, he does this hilarious swimming on dry land thing and whines until you pick him up, at which point he rolls right back onto his belly and repeats the whole scenario. I am starting to wonder if he will actually crawl at all, or if he will move straight on to walking.

Kai loves to stand up by himself at the couch like a big shot, and is often no longer content to sit on the floor with his toys. He can’t pull himself up yet, but he can move a little bit from side to side to grab his toys.

He just got this walker from his cousin Aiva, and seems to dig it.

So far he goes backwards more than forwards and steers himself directly into whichever wall is closest, but it keeps him occupied for quite a while.

Kai also likes to drive his car, though he mostly keeps it in park and tells a lot of stories.

He likes to babble, yell, screech, scream and sing. Basically he likes to hear himself making a lot of noise. He loves to yell and sing in his stroller, now that the weather has been nice enough to get out for some walks. Fresh air for the win!

Kai had his first official bubble bath in the sink sans bath chair, and he absolutely loved it.

He tried to grab all of the bubbles and sat happily playing with his rubber ducky and other bath friends for quite some time. During his second bubble bath, he learned how to splash water all over the kitchen, so I think we may need to graduate to the big tub soon.

Recently (like over the weekend), diaper changes have become a nightmare. He will do everything in his power to roll over on his changing table, and it is like wrestling with an alligator to get his diaper on. I have resorted to changing him on the floor, giving him a toy or two, and pinning him down, which goes over about like you would imagine. I have gotten good at snapping his diapers on upside down, as well as putting pants on that way.

Kai is turning into a pretty rad little dude, and can even play the piano with grandpa and auntie.

Kai loves Zooey cat, and will stop whatever he is doing to grab her and give her a hug. She loves it, obviously.

He does not like strangers at all, and will cry if someone he doesn’t know gets too close. He even takes a little while to warm up to people he does know but hasn’t seen in a while. Overall he is pretty darn attached to mom and dad, and is content if either of us are holding him.

He is growing up way to fast, but each stage is more and more fun. I have a feeling I will be saying that every day until he is a teenager 🙂

 

 

 

 

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Kai: Six Months

Half a year, you guys. Woah.

Reading back over Kai’s five month post, it seems so long ago. Like it was so last year or something. Since then we’ve celebrated Christmas and New Years, and we are now settled in for a long winter. Blech. Ok, where to begin. I feel like this kid grows bigger by the day, and he is getting really heavy to carry around now. His six month check up isn’t until Monday, but a couple weeks ago at the doctor he was over 19 lbs and I am quite certain he is at least 20 lbs now. He is solidly in 12 month clothes, having outgrown his nine monthers in length. Let’s do a little comparison.

Chunka monka!!

I also need to show you his thigh rolls. They are amazing.

He has three teeth on the bottom now and one of his top teeth is beginning to poke through as well. Luckily he hasn’t seemed to bothered by teething lately, but he does chew and suck on anything and everything. Which brings me to my next topic, nursing. As in, we’re not doing that anymore. About a week before Christmas, Kai bit me while nursing for the first time. It took me by surprise, and I yelled out, which didn’t seem to bother him at all. At this point he still only had one tooth, but man that was a sharp little bugger. I won’t go into all of the details, but I will say he did not stop doing it, and on Christmas morning we had a rather traumatic experience for both of us, and that was that. I continued to pump for the next couple weeks, so he was getting both breastmilk and formula. I cut down to two pumps a day, then one, and then none. We spent a night away last weekend and I decided I didn’t want to bring the pump with me, so Tuesday of that week ended up being my last pump. He is still getting one breastmilk bottle a day from my freezer stash, which is nearly gone. So while I didn’t make it to my goal of nursing for six months, he has at least gotten some breastmilk for that length of time and I feel totally fine with that now. I did feel a bit guilty at first for “giving up,” but it was the right thing for us to do. Could I have kept pumping? Yes. But the thought of doing that for six more months made me cringe. Kai has never been one to really nurse for comfort, and he loves his bottles. LOVES them. When he sees one being prepared or in the warmer, he gets all excited and starts breathing rapidly, kicking his legs and flailing his arms. It often becomes a serious matter and he needs to have that bottle RIGHTNOW. He likes his bottles warmed up but does not like to wait for that to happen. Once it is ready we sit down on the couch and he opens his mouth and leans toward it like a frantic little baby bird. You would think he is starving or something, like we never feed him (see thigh rolls above). We had to upgrade to the level 2 medium flow nipples, and I am starting to think we could have just skipped straight to level 3.

Kai is also now a pretty big fan of solids, which he now usually gets twice a day. His absolute favorite right now is cereal mixed with applesauce. He would keep eating and eating applesauce until the whole big jar was gone I am fairly certain. He also loves prunes, pears, peaches, and sweet potatoes. So far not a fan of peas, green beans, or butternut squash, but that may have been because he tried all of those when he was tired and crabby. He loves to play with his suction cup highchair toys after he eats while I clean up.

So his eating schedule roughly includes a 6 ounce bottle when he wakes up around 6:30 or 7:00. Then he has some solids about an hour later. We were doing cereal at this time, but since this is his best (least crabby) eating time, I’ve been trying some other fruits or veggies here and saving the cereal for the evening. He has a 7 oz bottle around 10am, and then an 8 oz bottle around 1:30 or 2:00 depending on how long he naps. Another 7 oz around 4:30 or 5:00, and then 7 or 8 oz at bedtime with his cereal either in the afternoon or early evening depending on naps. So he usually averages about 32-36 oz a day (five bottles) plus solids. He gets hungrier as the day goes on and sometimes I can believe how much he can put away within a few hours at night.

Speaking of naps. I am so happy to report that Kai has relinquished his mayoral duties in the city of Catnaps!! He has now been known to take at least one, if not TWO naps that are longer than one hour per day. He still averages three naps a day, but sometimes only takes two. He is still ready for his first nap about 2-2.5 hours after he wakes up, and goes down sometime between 8:30-9am. This is usually his best nap of the day, often lasting an hour and 15 or 20 mins. He goes down for his second nap between 12:00 and 12:30, and this one is often just over an hour as well, though sometimes he wakes after only 35 mins or so. If he takes a third nap, it is usually around 4pm and is a cat nap, but he really needs it to make it to bedtime. On the days when he refuses that third nap, he is in bed for the night by 6-6:30. I don’t like doing that because he then he wakes up by 6am a lot of the time, but there is often no way he can stay up any later. If he takes that third nap he is usually asleep by 7:30, which is perfect. He almost always sleeps through the night for 11-12 hours. I cannot tell you how amazing it is to have him napping for more than 30 mins at a time, so I can get things done like writing this post. Also, he gets really excited when he hears me come in to get him when he wakes up, kicking his feet and smiling while he cuddles with his monkey lovey.

Now on to the sad part of the post. Kai had his first ear infection over new years and it was awful. It started with him coughing a little bit the Sunday before new years. His cough sounded pretty bad, but it didn’t seem to bother him too much, in fact he would cough at night and sleep right through it. He was still coughing by new years eve (wed), so I called the doctor and spoke to the nurse. She asked if he had a fever, and I said I didn’t think so (we never checked because he didn’t feel warm at all). She said to just keep an eye on him and let them know if he developed a fever. Well, we decided to take his temp just to be safe and it was 101.6. I called back and the nurse said I could just give him some Tylenol and keep an eye on him, and their office would be open again on Friday. Looking back, I think that advice was totally wrong, but I didn’t know. First time mom here. That night, he was a little more fussy throughout the night than usual, but it seemed that the Tylenol was helping. New years day he was still coughing and congested, and had a really low grade fever. We continued with the Tylenol, but that night was horrible. Kai was up crying non stop for two hours in the middle of the night, and nothing made him feel better. We fed him, held him, etc and he just cried and cried. Finally after another dose of Tylenol we got him to sleep and he slept though until morning. I called the doctor back and talked to the nurse again, and said I wanted to bring him in. He was crying when I would lay him down for a diaper change and pulling on one of his ears. This was the same nurse, and she told me I could come in that afternoon to see a different doctor, or I could wait until his doctor was available on Monday. Um, no. I took him in that afternoon and sure enough, double ear infection. He got his first dose of antibiotics that night, and that night was the worst. He went to sleep ok, but woke up soon after crying. The only thing I could do was hold him upright on my shoulder in the glider and he would stop crying and immediately fall back to sleep. The second I would go to set him down he would cry, poor guy. I tried taking him into bed with me and laying with him propped up, but he wasn’t having it. I was finally ready to just hold him in the glider all night, but he finally went to sleep. Luckily after only two doses of the antibiotics, he was feeling so much better on Saturday. He slept ok Saturday night, and by Sunday he seemed back to his normal self. Having a sick baby was the absolute worst, and I am hoping and praying he will stay healthy for the rest of the dreadful cold and flu season. Of course Steve and I got sick as well, and I had some oral surgery over new years too, so that was a fun week.

Alright, lets back up for a minute to Christmas. Of course it was so great to celebrate Kai’s first Christamas. I kind of never wanted the holiday season to end. He got to sit on Santa’s lap and as you can see he was thrilled.

Of course he got so many wonderful presents, but his favorite part of all of it was trying to eat the tasty wrapping paper.

We had a blast hanging out with family, and even though he was an overtired mess by the end of it all, I would say it was a great first Christmas indeed.

Kai still loves his saucer/jumper, and he is such a ham in there.

He prefers for you to be in the room with him while he jumps, and will let you know he is not happy if you so much as leave for a few minutes to throw in a load of laundry or God forbid, go to the bathroom. He frequently looks over to make sure are indeed still watching him and his fancy moves before flashing a big cheesy smile.

He can sit up unassisted for short periods of time, and likes to sit on the floor in his boppy pillow and play. He will grab anything and everything within reach and will also put anything and everything in his mouth.

When he is on his tummy, he will reach for things and go up on his knees like he wants to crawl, but he hasn’t quite figured that one out yet. He will concentrate very hard on reaching his toys, and has even figured out that he can pull on the mat to bring the toy closer.

He still won’t roll from tummy to back even though he has shown on multiple occasions that he can. He continues to prefer to whine until you pick him up or flip him back over. Silly boy. Kai enjoys going to kids club at the gym most weekdays after his morning nap. They seem to like him there, because obviously he is the cutest one 🙂

My favorite duo. I love listening to Steve play with Kai, it just melts my heart. Kai is very vocal now, and likes to yell, babble, shriek and giggle, and it is all too much. He also loves walking around the house in the Bjorn carrier (facing out of course), holding his feet up and taking off his socks during diaper changes (so helpful), and reading stories in the glider. He still has some crabby times, usually only when he is overtired, but overall he is a happy boy most of the time.

I think that’s it from the world’s longest update, though I’m sure there is plenty I am leaving out.

I just love this kid so much I want to eat him whole!

 

 

 

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Kai: One month

Someone please tell me how it is possible that my baby is one month old already. He is so big and so different from just a couple of weeks ago, it’s just crazy. A lot has been going on since Kai’s two week update, including his first vacation to Door County and many outings to friends houses, shopping, events, etc.

At 18 days, we took Kai to Door County for four nights, where we stayed at my aunt and uncle’s house with them while the rest of my family camped in Peninsula State Park.

Normally we would be camping, but obviously that wasn’t happening this year. I was glad we still got to go up and spend time with family, though the trip somehow brought out a fussy side of Kai that we had never seen before. Oh my gosh, the crying. It was bad. It was very nice to have so much family there to help though. When he would get super fussy, everyone would take turns with him to give Steve and I a break.

With Auntie Bethie.

While in Door County, Kai slept in his Rock N Play in our bedroom. He had one particularly awful night where he cried from 9:30-12:30 non-stop, and then barely slept for the rest of the night. The other nights were better, but in general we had a captain fussy-pants on our hands.

I took him on his first hike in the Ergo carrier, which he slept through. I think the carrier is actually too big for me, as I couldn’t get the shoulder straps tightened enough, but it worked ok for the short hike.

Sleep in general: When we got home from Door County, we decided to put Kai to sleep in his crib in his own room (he was 22 days). The first two nights in his crib were magical. He slept like a champ from 9:30-10pm until 7:30-8am with only two wake ups. It was glorious. Since then, it has been a little more touch and go. He always has a good stretch when he first goes to sleep, usually sleeping for 4-5 hours. Then I feed and change him, and lately he has not wanted to go back to sleep in his crib. I rock him to sleep, set him down, and 10 mins later he is thrashing about and grunting non-stop until he gets worked up enough for me to go back in and pick him up. I always try putting him back down, but for the past 3 days the only way I get him back to sleep is by bringing him to the couch and letting him sleep on me on his tummy. I know this probably isn’t the best habit to get into, but right now it is the only way I get any sleep in the wee hours of the morning so I do what I’ve gotta do. Plus I kind of like cuddling him for a couple hours 🙂

Also love when he smiles in his sleep and I can’t wait until he can flash us some real smiles. So all in all we’ve taken a step backwards in the sleep department, but at least he sleeps at night and isn’t up partying all night long.

Nursing: Kid still loves to eat. He is very demanding especially when he first wakes up, and I don’t even dare change his diaper before he gets to eat or he will fly off the handle. Plus he often poops while eating, so there’s that. I have started trying to pump once a day, and have had a mediocre success rate so far. I will keep trying it for a while, but right now I feel like it’s a huge pain and if we end up supplementing with formula sometimes when he is with my mom or I am not home, I am ok with that. We did try a bottle with grandma the other day, and he knew exactly what to do with it, no worries there.

Please also take note of his fluffy hair. I can’t even get over how awesome and old-manish it is, especially after he has a bath.

He doesn’t have another doctors appointment until he is two months, so I am not sure how much he weighs, but my guess is that he is close to 11 lbs. He is getting so big so fast.

Likes: eating, sleeping on Mom or Dad, his hands and arms (he found his fist and thumb and will suck on them quite a bit), his pacifier which he takes in with vigor, being outside, warm baths (but not getting out), being in places with a lot going on like restaurants, parks, etc., and looking out the window. He likes playing on his activity mat and has started to actually look at the toys.

Dislikes: getting dressed, having his diaper changed, going for walks in the stroller while he is awake.

Kai is getting better with his fussy times and sometimes spends most of the day content. However, there are still days/times where it seems like nothing will make him happy and we just have to deal with a fussy baby. He still has awesome and hilarious facial expressions like this one:

See also: baby acne. It started up right around 2 weeks and is still going pretty strong, though it has been looking a little better to me in the past few days.

I ordered us a ring sling to carry him around the house and when we are out and about, and so far he has tolerated it 50% of the times I have put him in it.

Mostly during the day we just chill out at the house.

But we also do a lot of activities like listening to music outside at Waterfront Wednesdays.

My mom has been an absolute lifesaver, stopping over almost every day to hang out with the little man and allowing me a break to do things like eat or take a shower. Kai also had his first babysitting time at Grandma’s house today while I went to give a massage. That’s right, back to working a bit already. I am fortunate right now that I work for myself and can gradually build my schedule back up, but at the same time it is stressful feeling the pressure to bring in enough clients so I don’t have to go back to a different job.

All in all we just love our little guy despite his demanding nature. It is so fun to watch him developing already, and I can’t wait to see him become more interactive with us and the world around him. It is already going by so fast, which I try to remind myself when he is fussy and I am frustrated and we are both crying while dancing to Dave Matthews in the living room (sweet visual, huh?). These challenging times won’t last forever (they will probably just change into other challenges). I am trying to soak in each moment when my little man is content and all is right with the world.

 

 

 

 

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Kai: 2 weeks

I meant to do a one week post for the little man, but somehow time got away from me and here we are over 2 weeks since his birth. He just had his 2 week check up with the pediatrician, and all is well. Her goal for babies is to be back up to their birth weight by their 2 week check up. Well, Mr. Kai weighed in at 9 lbs 10 oz, or a 19% increase from his birth weight of 8 lbs 1 oz. That’s my boy. He also grew 1 1/4 inches and measured in at 22 inches. These stats put him in the 96th percentile for height and the 77th percentile for weight. He has been in 3 month clothes from about a week old. He wore a few newborn onsies for our first few days home, but that was it. I had some newborn things washed and ready that he never even got to wear. Sad. Lesson learned though, I shouldn’t have washed all of his clothes until I knew what we needed. Most of his 3 month shorts are still too big, but he is rocking the 3 month onesies, shirts and rompers.

The first couple days/nights at home were rough, I’m not going to lie. The first night I put Kai to sleep in his bassinet in our room, and he did not sleep well. He actually threw up twice in his sleep which freaked this mama out, and was up more often than not. I will admit to having a little meltdown around 5am, when Steve finally took him out to the living room so I could get a little bit of sleep. Luckily, that was the worst night we’ve had. Overall he is a good baby, though he definitely has his fussy times and likes to be on his own agenda.

Sleep: Like I said, that first night was the worst. For the most part, Kai seems to realize when it is nighttime and sleeps fairly well. On a good night, he wakes up about every 3 hours to eat. There have been a couple times when he has gone 3.5-4 hours at a stretch, but lately he is a very hungry boy and 3 hours has been the max. He wakes up, I take him to the nursery to feed and change him, then I swaddle him and rock him back to sleep. The first few times he slept in the bassinet he did ok, but he now prefers to sleep in his rock ‘n play. It has a slight incline which he likes, so we have been letting him sleep in that all of the time. Initially I worried that it will be too difficult to transition him to his crib when it’s time, but I have decided that I prefer my sleep and want him to sleep well too. Lately he has been having some tummy trouble (read: gas), so his sleep has been a little bit interrupted by that. He will grunt and thrash around in his sleep and seems very uncomfortable at times. Poor guy. At times like this, he is very loud with all of his noises, so it is hard for Steve and I to get a lot of rest. Daytime naps are all over the place. Sometimes he will sleep most of the day away, while other days he has lots of awake time. He usually takes a killer nap in the afternoon/early evening, but not always.

Nursing: Kid can eat. A lot. In the beginning when he was sleeping longer stretches, he would usually go 2-3 hours between feedings, sometimes a little longer if it was a killer nap. Now however, he often demands the boob every 60-90 mins during the day. He will get fussy, cry, and I think there’s no way he could be hungry since he just ate an hour ago. But when nothing works to calm him down, I give in and he will latch on and eat like he was starving to death or something. I am hoping this is a growth spurt and doesn’t continue for long, because some days it seems like I don’t do anything but feed him and change him. I am thankful that he is such a good eater though and that he took to breastfeeding right away without any problems.

Bath time: We only had to give Kai two sponge baths, as his umbilical cord stump fell off at 6 days. He hated the first one just as much as he did in the hospital, screaming through the whole thing. The second one was better, but ended in him puking all over himself right after he was all clean, which pissed him off and screaming ensued.

I was so glad when we could give him a normal bath, and lo and behold, he likes it!

He owns his pink bath chair that he got from his cousin Aiva. Steve washes his hair and I wash the rest of him, and he just sits there calmly loving the warm water and the big warm washcloth we lay over him. He doesn’t love getting out of the warm warm water, but we do our best to wrap him immediately in his hoodie towel to warm him back up.

Random things: At 9 days old, Kai had his first real outing. Of course it was to Costco with mommy and grandma.

He slept the whole time, which was a relief. I also took him solo to Target for the first time, which I was nervous about but as long as I kept the cart moving he stayed asleep. He has met tons of friends and relatives, and even attended his first party at 11 days old.

Here he is at 3 days old in his first cloth diaper:

Cloth diapering will be a whole separate post at some point, but is going well for the most part after some trial and error. As of now he is in cloth 100% of the time at home, but I have been putting him in disposables when we are out and about. This is partly because we have a bunch of newborn disposables that need to be used up, and partly for convenience. Also, he already looks so different from the above picture. Gah! My boy is growing up too fast. I may or may not have shed a few tears about this the other day. Dang hormones.

Surprisingly, he doesn’t mind tummy time, and we do it a few times a day. Kai has a super strong neck in my opinion, and is able to lift his head all the way up to look at me. We also do tummy time with him on my chest, which he likes as well, especially when he can catch glimpses of the view out the window behind me. He loves to look out the window and will sometimes just stare mesmerized at the sky or a tree or whatever he sees out there.

We have been enjoying our walks outside every day since day 9 when I felt good enough to get out and get a little exercise. Kai usually sleeps the whole time in the stroller, but sometimes he is awake and quietly staring around. I am in love with the BOB stroller and can’t wait to run with him in there when he is big enough. Pushing it uphill is no joke, and I have worked up a good sweat walking plenty of times now.

My heart melts when I see things like this. Steve is such an awesome and proud daddy. Love my guys so much.

Mr. Man had some of the most awesome facial expressions I have ever seen, ranging from super serious to highly perplexed to little smiles in his sleep. He also has the best hair, especially after bath time. It gets incredibly fluffy and soft, it just cracks me up. He also LOVES his hands. He is always moving his arms around, putting his hands in his mouth and sucking on them. He wears gowns with hand mitts to sleep in because otherwise he will scratch himself silly with his razor sharp fingernails.

At two weeks, we took Kai for his newborn photo shoot, which he completely rocked. I was so nervous that he wouldn’t cooperate, but he slept like a champ and let the photographer do her thing. We used Andrea Nicole Images, and Andrea was so great to work with. She put up one teaser photo on Facebook, and I just about died. Can’t even wait to see the rest of the pics.

 

My recovery: Well, it was rougher than I initially anticipated. Healing from a 3rd degree tear is very slow and painful, but two weeks later, I am doing much much better. Like I said, it took 9 days before I could even get outside to go for a short walk. Now I no longer have to take Advil every day, and I think in another week or so I will feel pretty much back to normal. I weighed myself for the first time the other day, and was shocked to find that I have already lost 25 lbs. I gained about 33 lbs total with the pregnancy, so I was pretty happy to only have 8 lbs to go two weeks later. However, my weight is completely redistributed, and I don’t have a single pair of non-athletic pants that fit around my hips. I have been rocking the skirts on a daily basis, which is fine with me in the summer. I am sure I also have far less muscle mass than when I got pregnant, and overall I feel pretty fluffy. It is weird for me to have a soft tummy with no abs in sight, but I know that once I am able to start working out more and running it will come back. I can’t wait to start running, but I have no problem taking the prescribed 4-6 weeks to recover first, as I know that is what it best for my body.

Overall we are loving our little man, even though he has his fussy/crabby times that leave us frustrated and exasperated. I am torn between wanting him to stay a tiny newborn and being anxious for him to get a little bigger and start smiling, etc. I suppose he is going to grow at an alarming rate, so I am trying to soak it all in while I can. But just look at this squishy newborn face. Sigh.

 

 

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Kai’s first 48

Our two days/nights in the hospital after Kai was born were sort of a whirlwind. The day he was born, he got to meet a lot of his relatives. Grandma was the first to arrive.

Grandpa arrived a short while later.

Then a lot of other family members were in and out throughout the day.

As I mentioned in Kai’s birth story, I really couldn’t get out of bed on my own for 7-8 hours because of the epidural/fentinyl cocktail I was on. My legs were totally wobbly and I had to be helped to the bathroom during that time. Sometime in the early afternoon I finally felt steady enough to take a shower, and it felt so good to finally get cleaned up. Kai also got his first sponge bath and hated it. He actually liked having his hair washed and his head run under the faucet, but he screamed bloody murder during the entire rest of the process. Once the horribleness was over, he loved laying under the warmer and talking to his daddy.

By the time all of our visitors left on Tuesday night we were pretty well exhausted. In fact, I really can’t remember anything that happened between that time and late Tuesday night when the nurses came to take the little man to get weighed in the nursery. I guess we were just relaxing/resting and hanging out with our little man. He was weighed and checked over at midnight, and when the nurse brought him back she said it was common for babies to already have lost up to 4% of their birthweight by that time. Mr. Kai had only lost .2% because he was such a good eater from the beginning. I declined having him stay in the nursery that night because I wanted him right next to me, and he was pretty good about only waking up to eat and letting us get some rest. Steve slept on the pull out couch in the room (which was apparently hard as a rock and left him with a sore back).

Wednesday was a lot more relaxed, which was nice. Of course we still had some visitors, but they were spread throughout the day and we got to have a lot of quiet time as well. Our pediatrician came around 7:30am to check him over and declared him a perfect little baby before taking him to be circumcised. When he returned from the procedure he was understandably out of sorts and very fussy. It seemed like every time we would get him calmed down, someone  else would come in and need to do something to him. He had a fair amount of jaundice, so he needed a heel stick to test his bilirubin. After we got him calmed down from that, a nurse came in to do his first diaper change and check on his man parts. Ugh, rough morning for the little guy.

After a while, he entered what the nurses referred to as the newborn slumber, and he slept for much of the rest of the day. We had to wake him a few times to eat, but other than that he was out. Wednesday night was nice and quiet. Steve’s parents visited for a while, and then it was just the three of us. When the nurse came to take Kai to be weighed just before midnight on Wednesday, I sent along a cute little outfit for him to have his pictures taken, and I told the nurse to keep him in the nursery until he was hungry. I slept until 2:30am when she brought him back. He ate and fell promptly back to sleep so we were all able to get some more rest.

Thursday morning our pediatrician stopped by for another visit, and he got another heel stick to check his biliruben. His levels were a bit high, but not high enough to require any further action like the bili-blanket. He would be tested again on Friday morning at his pediatrician visit, and as it turned out, we had to take him to get tested one more time on Saturday morning. His levels were stable, which was a good sign. The doc said as long as he kept eating and pooping a lot he should be good to go (spoiler alert: he did just that :-))

We hung out in our room throughout Thursday morning. I ordered breakfast, took a shower, and got all of our things packed up. Just before 1pm, it was time to load up and head for home.

That cute little newborn sized outfit barely fit him in length, but we made it work.

I was wheeled out in a wheelchair with Kai in his carseat on my lap while Steve carried the rest of our stuff and went to pull up the car. And with that, we left the hospital as a family of three 🙂

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Kai Lawrence

Kai Lawrence was born on 7/15/14 at 5:29am.

He was 8 lbs 1 oz, and 20 3/4 inches long.

Here is his birth story:

On Monday, 7/14, I went to the OB’s office where I saw yet another new OB. I had been having contractions for weeks, as I have mentioned, and my blood pressure was elevated the previous Wednesday at my appointment. I figured if it was high again on Monday, I would listen to what the doc recommended, but I would also ask about being induced on Tuesday or Wednesday if he didn’t come on his own before then. Well, my bp was still elevated on Monday, and I was 3 cm dilated and 80% effaced at the appointment. Based on that news, the OB recommended I head to the hospital for labs and that I would likely stay to be induced that evening. He told me to take my time, go home and get my stuff ready, and head over. He said that he didn’t really think I had pre-eclampsia, but I did have pregnancy induced hypertension, which is also not good. He said that since I was already dilated 3cm and was 39 weeks 6 days, he saw no reason not to get the baby out sooner rather than later. I called Steve after the appointment around 3pm and told him to leave work and meet me at home because we were going to go and have a baby. We took our time at home getting everything together and got to the hospital around 4:30pm. I was under the impression that I would be sent to triage to be monitored and have labs drawn, but when we got there they already had a room ready to admit me. Alrighty then, I guess this is really happening.

We got settled into the room and the nurse had me change into a hospital gown. Someone from the lab came in to draw blood, and the nurse informed me that that the on call doc would likely order pitocin to start shortly. I think I somewhat didn’t believe that this was actually going to happen, so I asked if I should start making calls to my parents, etc to let them know that it was go time. She said yes, it was probably a safe bet. At 6:30pm, pitocin was started, and a few minutes later the on call doc came in to talk to me. I ended up really liking her, which was great. She came in, checked me (still 3 cm at this point) and proceeded to say, “ok, I’m going to break your water.” Um, ok then. She used the crochet hook thingy to do that and told me that whenever I wanted my epidural I could have it, and that she was very liberal with her drugs. Good to hear. Shortly after starting pitocin and breaking my water, I started having more regular contractions. They still weren’t too painful, and I was able to order some items from the clear foods menu. Juice, jello, slushy, etc. I ordered some extra things to keep in the fridge in the room like the nurse suggested. At 7pm, the night nurse Pam took over and told me that she would be with me all night, 7pm-7am. She told me that she had been doing this for 30 years, and let me tell you, she was amazing. Loved her.

Things progressed slowly, about 1cm per hour, and sometime a little after 8am the contractions started getting painful. I asked how long it would take to get the epidural once I said I wanted it, and the nurse told me she would find out if the anesthesiologist was in the hospital or if he would have to be called from home. Turns out he was in the OR, and could be relieved at any time to come up to my room. I debated holding off for a while, but as Pam said, the contractions are just going to get worse from here, so if I was going to get the epidural eventually either way, I might as well get it sooner rather than later. So I told her I wanted it, and the doc gave her ok. Around 8:30pm the anesthesiologist came in and gave me the epidural. By the time he got there, I was having very painful contractions, so the timing ended up being good. Once the epidural started, it was sweet, sweet relief. It was an odd sensation having my legs numb but still able to move, but I was so grateful to no longer be in pain. I could barely even tell when I was having a contraction, it was great. I told Steve that I didn’t know how anyone could do this without drugs. Obviously there are women that do it every day and holy cats do I give them props. Not for me. I think I can normally manage pain pretty well, multiple Ironmans, marathons, and ultra-marathons will teach you how to do that, but this was a whole different ballgame.

Shortly after I had my epidural my dad stopped by to visit. I told him it could still be quite a while before the baby came, it was hard to say. He headed home around 10:30pm and shortly after that my mom stopped by. She visited for a while, and then I was getting tired, so she went to the family waiting area so Steve and I could try to get some rest. I told her I would call her with an update. Around 1:30, I was checked again and was 6cm. I called my mom and told her she should probably head home and get some sleep, because things were still progressing slowly.

A few minutes after making that call, I started to feel quite a bit of pain again. I asked the nurse to press the self-administer button on the epidural, which she did. That seemed to help a little bit for a short while. Then it was as if the epidural just stopped working completely. The contractions were so painful. We pushed the button two more times and nothing. The anesthesiology nurse was called in and gave me another injection of the epidural straight into the port. It did nothing. Pam decided to check me again and I was 8cm and almost completely effaced. Each contraction was super intense and it felt like they were coming one right on top of the next (in reality, they were still 2-3 mins apart). Finally the anesthesia nurse offered fentinyl and I said yes. She injected it straight into the epidural port and with the next contraction, I could feel that the edge was taken off. Two contractions later I felt nothing. It was great. At this point I could still feel that my legs were numb but I couldn’t move them at all on my own. I tried to doze off for a while now that I was no longer in pain, and Steve and I both managed a bit of a nap.

Around 3:30am I was checked and was fully dilated. The OB came in and determined there was just a tiny bit of cervix left on two sides and told me we were going to try a push. They coached me through it since I couldn’t feel the contractions, and with one push I was complete. It was go time. I was told that for first time moms, it could take 1-3 hours of pushing, which was a little bit intimidating. I started pushing at 3:40am, and was making great progress in the beginning. The doc was very encouraging when she told me that I was doing great and there was no way this was going to take 1-3 hours. I started to get the hang of pushing, especially since now I could feel the contractions again. Steve was on my left holding my foot and Pam was on my right doing the same. There was a resident there as well, who kept telling me she could see his head, and to “curl around the baby” with each push. To be honest, she was really annoying me and I wanted to tell her to shove it. She kept making me think that the end was just around the corner when in reality I still had a long way to go. I pushed and pushed for nearly two hours, and was completely exhausted. Turns out Mister Man was stuck on my pubic bone, and no matter how hard I pushed, his head just couldn’t get through. It got to the point where his heart rate would drop after each contraction, meaning he was getting stressed. They put an oxygen mask on me and the OB came in to assess the situation. She said we couldn’t keep going like this because the baby was under too much stress. She called for a vacuum cart and quickly explained to me that she was going to try to suck him out with the vacuum, but if it didn’t work quickly, she would have to do a c-secion. I remember being so scared and looking at Steve with tears running down my cheeks. He looked kind of scared too and I told myself to hold it together and be strong. Before I knew what was happening, the doc had the suction attached to his head, and when the next contraction came I pushed as hard as I could. I heard her say great job and he was almost out, and with the next contraction I pushed again and out came his head. One more push and he was out and I immediately heard him screaming and crying. They plopped him down on my chest right away and I started bawling. Partially tears of joy, but I think mostly tears of relief that he was out and ok and it was over.

After a few minutes the nurses took him over to the warmer to get his measurements and Apgar scores (8 and 9). Then they handed him to Steve, who held him while I got stitched up.

I ended up having a 3rd degree tear from pulling him out so fast, and it seemed to take forever for the doc to stitch me up. In reality, I have no clue how long it was. Once that was done, he was placed on my chest again skin to skin, and he latched on to nurse almost immediately. The nurse was super impressed, and said that this is rare, especially for first time moms. That’s my little over achiever.

Around 6am Steve called all of our parents with the news, and my mom headed right over. Thus began a crazy day full of visitors, which was both great and so exhausting. At 7am Pam came in to say goodbye and tell me that I did a great job, and that she was so happy that he made it out before her shift was over. I gave her a big hug and thanked her for being awesome all night and told her that I was glad that she got to see the baby born before she left.

It took forever for my epidural to wear off, probably because of the amount they had to give me along with the fentinyl. My first trip to the bathroom was in a wheelchair, and I couldn’t stand or walk on my own for at least 6 or 7 hours. It’s still hard to believe sometimes that he is here and he is ours, yet at the same time it seems like he’s been with us for longer than just five days.

 

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39 weeks

Baby is the size of…. let’s go with a baby. Like a full sized, could come out at any time but is apparently very comfy and cozy on the inside and might be in there forever baby.

Ok, I know I am still a week from my due date. But damn, I never expected that the last couple of weeks would be such a mind game. I’m not sure why I allowed myself to get it in my head that he would come early. Maybe it was all of the comments about how he “dropped” so much a few weeks ago, or others predicting an early arrival, or the fact that I’ve been having contractions for weeks, or me just being done done done. In any case, I am still pregnant, the days are moving very slowly, and I am very uncomfortable most of the time. Patience has never been my strong suit, and though I have gotten a little better with it over the years, I can feel it wearing thin. Wah. Ok, thanks for letting me whine whine whine for a minute.

How I am feeling: see above. Really, I should not complain. Yes I am uncomfortable, but that is to be expected at this point, no? I can’t bend forward or roll over in bed or get up off the couch without gargantuan effort. I feel little feet in my ribs and poking out my sides. I am exhausted from not sleeping well. But, I know that compared to some other women at this point I don’t have it bad at all. I was able to go swimming at the pool yesterday, and it felt good to float around (I don’t know if I can call it actual swimming anymore) for 30 mins. I am still having lots of Braxton Hicks contractions, and over the weekend and on Monday I had a few that were slightly more intense and a little painful. Of course I got my hopes up, but now I am back to nada. Last week Wednesday at the doc I was 2 cm dilated and she estimated that the little guy was already 7.5+ lbs. Of course that is just an estimate she did by feeling him through my belly, but she has been at this for many years and has felt a lot of bellies. If she is correct, and I do make it to my due date next week, I fear that the kid will be huge. I can’t wait to see what she says at my appointment tomorrow. She also commented that I haven’t really been gaining any weight for the past few weeks, and I told her I was eating as much as I could but I just get full so fast. I would say my appetite has picked up a little over the past week though, so I won’t be surprised to find that I gained a pound or two. As of last week I was up 31 lbs, so right on track I guess.

Another reason it would be really great if baby boy decides to come out this week: my new OB will be on vacation next week, and my old OB will not return from maternity leave until the following week. So the week of my actual due date, I will have to see a brand new doctor that I don’t know and that doesn’t know me. Not ideal. I don’t care so much for the actual delivery, but what if I go past my due date and we need to make a decision on how to proceed? I would feel a lot better having a doc that I have seen before, but oh well. I am going to discuss this with my current doc tomorrow and see what she says.

The upside to not having a 4th of July baby was that we got to enjoy a fabulous holiday weekend with friends and family. I got my toes done for the occasion.

It started with brunch at a friends house on the morning of the 4th. Then in the evening, my mother in law, sister in law, and niece Aiva came over to grill out.

Those eyes! After dinner we headed over to the Sussex fireworks and met up with my cousins and their families. We were wondering how Aiva would like her first fireworks (she will turn one on my due date 7/15).

The answer? She LOVED them. She sat on Uncle Steve’s lap the whole time and was mesmerized. She would even get a little upset when there was a pause in the action, waving her arms until they started back up. I have never seen a kid that young love the fireworks so much instead of being scared by the noise. It was so cute and hilarious.

On Saturday we went to a party at our friends lake house complete with a pontoon boat ride.

And of course dessert!

No, I did not eat all of that by myself, it was a shared dessert plate. I swear.

Party ladies! Please excuse the fact that my eyes are closed and I look like I could take someone out with that belly. Sheesh!

Sunday was less eventful since Steve was out on a 5 hour bike ride and I was back at the house. I spent my day making banana bread, doing a little cleaning, and reading a book. I cannot even tell you how many books I have read over the past few months. Let’s just say I am getting lots of use out of my Kindle, the Amazon store, and library books. Then on Sunday night we went to tour the Labor and Delivery unit of the hospital where I will deliver. I was secretly hoping that my water would break or something while we were on the tour. How convenient would that have been? Alas, no such luck.

So there you have it. 39 weeks, still pregnant, unbelievably bored and just waiting for the little man to arrive. Luckily I have a busy day scheduled tomorrow with clients and my OB appointment, and though the house is pretty clean at this point, I suppose there is always more organizing that can be done. If you’ve made it this far through my rambling, congratulations. Please cross your fingers for me that this is the week!

 

 

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