This past month has been a blur and here we are, in our second week back to school and shuffling her around from place to place for just a couple more months and then we have two and half months off with our almost one year old - GAH! We were so blessed to have 2 weeks off with our baby this month over Christmas break, you really can't beat being a teacher. It made the transition to us both returning to work that much easier because we knew we'd have this time with Lemon. Our break flew by but was so relaxing, we didn't have to worry about getting the baby anywhere or being on a schedule and some days she took a really late nap and some mornings we just slept in an cuddled (some pics at the bottom). I love being home with her and love it even more when Ian is home too, I wish we both had jobs where we could both be home - oh wait, we'd have to be rich for that to happen! We thought about requesting another leave for one of us but realized that we would then have to work over the summer so we are just going to plow through these next 4.5 months and get to summer where we will have plenty of time to spend together and with our muffin. We can do it!
Last week we were all sick and thank goodness my mom had already taken the whole week off to watch the baby because we couldn't have brought her from place to place feeling yucky. This week it's our new schedule and today she is at day care for part of the day and then my mom is picking her up. Day care you say? Ugh! Well we actually found a place, less than 5 minutes from our house, that is part of a school district that mostly watches teacher's kids, only take 8 babies at a time (until walking) and you can opt to send your baby either 3 or 5 days per week. It's not part of our district, of course, our district is a half hour away but this one is right by us so it's really convenient. And, if we taught for that district, then we would get 30% off the price - something to think about for next year! But it really is cheap and right now we are paying $550 a month to bring her 3 days a week (or less). This week we only had to bring her 1.5 days, next wek 2 days and the week after (while my mom lays on the beach in Hawaii!), 3 days. So, hopefully she gets used to it and doesn't mind going. Yesterday was her first day and it was rough, they said she was teary all day, refused to eat and only took 3 half an hour naps (resulting in 3 wakeups last night for mommy and baby). Today she is back until noon (when my mom gets her) so maybe they can get her to eat and sleep, I hope so! They said our babe just liked to be left alone, sitting and playing with toys, then being changed and held. The changing table they have is hard plastic so they said she screamed about that, but was content just playing on the carpet by herself or with other babies, she was fine as long as they didn't make her do anything. That sounds like her, our little independent lady!
(Day Two - fell asleep at Christine's.)
(In the car with Espen driving to school!)
(Happy as a clam.)
Tomorrow Lemon is going to my friend Melissa's house to spend the day with her and her daughter, Alivia who is 9 months. I'm afraid that my mom watching her, plus day care, plus Melissa is a little much and that maybe two options will be better in the future. I am hoping to elimitate day care and just have Melissa and my mom watch her, if they have the time and want to, but we will see. We go off of my mom's work schedule (she is supposed to be retired but is in such high demand as a teacher trainer!) so whatever days she can't do it are the days we have to find another option. I know that Lemon will get used to day care, eventually, and Melissa's, but know that these next few weeks might be tough getting her adjusted (and tough on us too!). Last night she didn't sleep well be cause she didn't sleep well during the day and probably because her schedule was off. I understand why they can't stick to a schedule at day care but you'd think they'd try, who knows. There is a younger gal there who helps out and she send me pics yesterday, so that was nice, and it really wasn't as bad as I thought dropping her off. We paid for "extended care" so that we could drop off Lemon after 7:30 but didn't pay for "before care" so we could drop her off after 6:30. We leave our house for school at 7 so Christine has volunteered to help us drop her off on the days she is supposed to go and today she took a little nap at Christine's all bundled up. Too cute. Poor tired baby has no idea why she is being shuffled around, hopefully we can get more into the swing of things, all of us, soon. Oh and did I mention keeping track of all of her stuff at all of these different places?! Forget it, I have no idea what is where and how many diapers I need to bring to what place, etc. My head is just spinning thinking about it. Thank god my mom has her own stuff at her house and Melissa has everything a baby might need - that saves me some time. And now the day care has some of her stuff, which is good, so maybe next week will run a bit more smoothly (because we have been late to work almost every day this week!).
(We took Lemon over to Melissa's to get used to her house and her and Livvy got to just sit together and explore each other, it was too cute!)
Tomorrow, when I wrote this (above) is actually today (which will be yesterday when I post this tomorrow - ha). Here are some pictures from Melissa's - the girls had a BLAST! Lemon did really well, only napped in her standard 45 minute increments (ugh) but was happy to be with Livvy and Melissa all day. I am so lucky to have a mommy friend so close that just loves her baby and mine, like her own. She is truly amazing!
Ok so sleep? She's doing alright. Like I said in my sleep post, it seems to change every week. This week she falls asleep on me every night, poor tired baby, and then wakes up at 5:30am (something she has never done in her whole life) instead of sleeping until 6:30-7 like she usually does (this has happened the past three mornings). Everything I've read online says this is because she's overtired and I bet she is, so many changes this week. But this 5:30 wake up has thrown everything off for us in the mornings, I keep having to get up earlier and earlier to get ready before her, looks like it will have to be 5am tomorrow - ugh. I don't know how to get her to sleep longer, I tried patting her back to bed this morning but it didn't work, she popped right back up. And no, a later bed time isn't the answer, research shows that an earlier bedtime actually means a later wake up time. Plus, she is SO tired by the time she gets home from everywhere I'd hate to try to keep her up later and feel like a 4:30pm nap will just confuse her (although we tried it today and she slept 30 min. and woke up still so tired). Another aspect we will have to see that may just work itself out. But, is it all too much for her? I worry that all of this shuffling around may cause her to get confused, or be more overtired as the weeks go on. Should I just plan on my mom and one other place for now? I have no idea but we will see how it goes. I'd love to be able to just pay Melissa but we are going to see how the girls get along and if she even wants to take on more days. And, my mom is busiest for these two months - maybe in March things will slow down and we will all get back to sleeping in a bit! I bet she is just adjusting this week, it has been a tough and busy one for all of us. I'm happy it's almost over!
Food - well she still isn't really a fan of solids. I have a funny feeling that if we gave her a whole piece of something, like a banana, she'd love gnawing on it instead of having it mushed up for her. I feel like it's the pureed foods that she hates and the mush - but both Ian and I are too afraid that she will choke on anything bigger. We even tried giving her a puff last weekend, yep just one, and it was scary! So, no solids really for now although we try something every day like a sweet potato cube (I make it, freeze it and then she holds it and sucks on it), an applesauce cube (same thing) or like last night, a banana. I keep thinking that one day she will just get it but who knows. She really likes banana and she liked a spinach/pear organic packet that we gave her but just doesn't seem to get the point yet. She puts her hand in the mush, likes gumming the spoon but putting the mush into her mouth is a whole other story. Breastfeeding, on the other hand, she loves and she will take a bottle like a champ, except for from the ladies at day care apparently!
(Making homemade baby food with our Beaba that my friend Busy got us!)
(Ugh nursing - is there anything better?!)
And this month, actually last week, Lemon was sick for the very first time and it was so sad. There is nothing like having a sick baby (or child I would guess) and feeling like you wish you could take their sickness from them. She had been sleeping the same every night - going to bed at 7, waking up between 12-2 and then going back to bed until 6:30-7 but then one night, two Saturdays ago, she woke back up at 2, after being put down again at 12, and wouldn't go back to bed. After Ian tried and tried he came in and got me and told me she had a stuffy nose. And sure enough, she did and it was stuffy really until yesterday when it finally seemed to be getting better. She actually got sick before going to day care and right after she got her flu shot at her 6 month visit (it's a dead virus, that wasn't it, but she must have been exposed before the vaccine kicked in). She went to her first Gymboree class while we were on vacation, that Thursday actually, so we are thinking that was it because, of course, everything went in her mouth. So Sunday was spent laying with and cuddling my girl and Monday, my first day back to school in 2 weeks, was spent at home doing the same. And at 7:30 that morning Ian came in the room (after I thought he had already left for work) and said he had been throwing up all morning and was staying home too. He stayed home two days, I stayed home one and then by Thursday wasn't feeling so hot myself (just a tummy ache, thank goodness) but stayed home Thursday and Friday while my mom took the baby to her house. I am so thankful for her because Ian was so sick and then I was, I just have no idea how parents take care of a sick baby when they are sick themselves! I also feel like I was saved there, in the beginning, so I could be the one taking care of the babe because Ian was totally down for the count for two days. This flu is a killer this year (literally, I've read)!
(She LOVED music class at Gymboree!)
(Sunday sick day)
(After Ian threw up all morning I donned a mask and spent the rest of the day in it. I even ate my lunch and dinner outside so I wouldn't get sick!)
(Of course she thought it was really weird.)
(And my first sick day home on Thursday, I got the sickness but thank goodness it wasn't as bad as Ian's!)
Lemon's shots went the same as at her 4 month but the next day wasn't nearly as sad. She recovered pretty quickly the day she got them too, just was a bit scarred afterwards for a couple of hours. No fever or sleepless nights, she really handled it well. She weighed 16 pounds, 4 ounces, was 24 inches long and had a 17 inch head! She is always a little above the 50th percentile for height and weight (perfect girl!) but has a huge head, I think it was in the 76th percent! Oh well, I like it, it has always been so round and perfect, who cares if she won't be able to fit in 6 month old hats, I think it's cute! Both Ian and I went with her to her doctor's appointment and Ian saw her get her shots for the first time, I think it's harder on us as parents then on the babies.
Mommy news - I finally weigh, this month, what I weighed before I was pregnant - 125 pounds! I normally hate when people talk about weight because I get that some people just weigh different things and skinny to some is not skinny to others - but I also promised myself that if I met this goal again that I would celebrate so here it is. You never really think you're "skinny" (whatever that means to you) until you aren't and since October 2011 I have not felt skinny. Remember, before that I was pregnant also, and so it seems like a good 2 years of my life I've either spent pregnant, depressed or trying to work off baby weight. So, now that I'm back and feeling like myself again, I am celebrating it by wearing leggings almost every day that I'm not at work, and short jean shorts with boots in the winter. Yep, I'm that girl and I'm going to be that girl until I can work on this sagginess and end up in a teeny bikini this summer on a boat with my besties. So, congrats to mama this month - I made it back! :)
It's like so much more than just weight to me. This job as a mom is hard, I mean really hard, harder than anyone told me it would be and harder than I could have imagined. And, half the time, I think I am really sucking at it and spend most of my time worrying about things. But, this weigh in was so symbolic for me, it was like I was leaving the past two years behind and have finally made it here, as a mother, to this beautiful baby girl. Every day that is tough I am so thankful that I am here, and that I have this little girl here with me. Most days I even find it hard to connect to this life, sometimes it doesn't feel real and like I am living someone else's life - no way I am a mother to this gorgeous baby. No way my life revolves around her sleeping/not sleeping! I am Allison, for sure, but not Allison the mom, no way. And Allison the mom who goes to bed at 8pm because she has no idea if her daughter will be awake again at 10 - that's not me! Does every other mother feel like this? This has been such a journey for us, it is truly unbelievable sometimes and I feel like I've been plopped in it and am slowly dog paddling for my life and have no idea what to do at times. But, I wouldn't trade it, I am still so very lucky.
We have been trying to teach our baby "mama" this month, kissing and waving but it hasn't gone very well. She can say mama and dada, for sure, but has no idea why she is saying it. I also want her to learn to reach for me (that would just be the COOLEST) but she hasn't quite gotten the hang of that yet either. I can't wait for the day she can say mama and call me; and then I have a feeling it will get really old really quick! Ha.
My bestie, Lemon's godfather came to visit from Oregon over break and I am so happy he got to meet little Lemon. We planned on him coming out to do some sort of blessing for her (not a baptism per se) but I didn't arrange anything in time so we didn't do it. But, we did end up leaving Lemon for the first time overnight at my mom's so that he and I could go to Ian's show
(My sister-in-law, Ashley.)
(The morning after the show, sans baby, cuddles. We were up until 4am, haven't done that in a year!)
Lemon is still loving her swim class, now we take her on Saturdays so we can go with her and not miss the fun!
iPhone pics (oldest to newest):
(We put Lemon in her swing a couple of weeks ago when she hadn't been in it in ages. She FREAKED at the bugs hanging from the top, she couldn't get enough of them!)
(Baby leg microphone)
(Patty watched Lemon before break when we both had to go back to work.)
(Daddy bath time)
(Two babes dancing on the bar - out to lunch with Ian's family!)
("Turned off" by tickling!)
(The day after Christmas we walked over to the Scottsdale Center for the Arts, thinking we were going to Shake, Rattle and Roll at the library. It was cold but we got some cute pics!)
(A late night walk after a nap that lasted until 6pm!)
(Salsa cups make the best toys!)
(Dinner with Sir Greg at his house.)
(Christmas break sleeping in ruled!)
(You guys, a shining moment - that barrette is actually attached to HAIR!)
(Teaching her kisses!)
(Lunch with Sir Greg)
(Someone discovered the crib camera this month.)
(Lemon got to spend a ton of time with her Nani last week and there is definitely more to come. Look at this cute outfit she dressed her in! Her name is @lemonsnani on Instagram!)
(Lemon rediscovering the guitar with her Daddy. She loved it!)
(Bundled for a walk!)