Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Routines...too early?

I love routines, I NEED routines in my life. I'm wondering if it's too early to start with Miss Abby?

Last night was the first night in her crib. I wasn't really planning on putting her in there yet. She'd just had a bottle, then a bath. I put on white noise in her darkened bedroom as I lotioned her up, dressed, and swaddled her. I figured we could try it! I rocked her for about 5 minutes and her eyes became super heavy. When I laid her down she was fast asleep. Chris gave her a bottle around 9:00 and she slept until almost 2 am. I put her back in after she ate and had a diaper change. She got up again around 5 am and I brought her out in the living room to eat so I could lay down, too. We both fell asleep afterwards, lol. I woke up around 6:30 and put her in the bouncer so I could pump. Afterwards she went back in her crib but she woke up shortly afterwards because Chris brought her in as I was showering :) He gave her a bottle and she went back to sleep in the bouncer as I got everything ready to go. We're going to try the crib again tonight. It helps that I don't hear every little sound she makes throughout the night.

I'm going to try to keep the bedtime routine going. We won't bathe her every night; I think we'll just go into her room for her evening feeding, darken the room and play white noise. Then we'll change her for bed, swaddle her and rock her for a few minutes. Then *hopefully* into the crib she'll go. Even if she doesn't sleep for longer stretches the routine will eventually get her there...and I do love routines! I'd love to hear what other people's bedtime routines are!

Abby had an appointment today for the second part of her Hep B shot. She weighs 10 lbs 9 oz! The nurse and doctor were very impressed. She does seem to be getting very big (and chunky...love it!)

I go back to work in just 2 weeks! Just in time for the last week of school. That is going to be one busy week, I'm scared! End of year records, report cards, packing up...in addition to teaching (oh yes, we teach til the end!) I am so excited for summer :)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Abby Mae is one month!

Let the picture overload begin!

A semi-smile...WOOO HOOO!

Definitely fell asleep AFTER I posed her :)

Love her!

Pirate Abby!

One month:

Eating & Sleeping
Abigail is a milk monster! She eats all.the.time. She's getting so big. I can't wait to see how much she weighs on Tuesday. She is pretty wakeful early in the day and loves to be held. She likes to sleep in long stretches in the afternoon/early evening. "Bedtime" is anywhere from 8-9 and she's up every 2 hours to eat (YAWN!)

We don't do tummy time very often, mostly I lay her on my chest as she looks around. She can pick up her head and turn it towards a sound (my voice, a rattle.) She's very good at keeping her head up when we're holding her. She stares at our faces and can briefly follow objects (i.e. her black and white pattern cards.) I've noticed in the past few days that she can bring her fist up to her mouth when she gets fussy.

I can't wait to see what month 2 brings!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Oh man...

I really need to get better about taking pictures of Abigail! I had a ton by the time Audrey was 4 weeks...when you have your hands full with a toddler and a newborn, taking pictures falls down on the to-do list!

I love her expression here :)

Our first walk through town

Where Miss Abigail spends A LOT of her time!

She really loves her baths!

Our sweetheart, all swaddled for the night!

My new favorite phrase...

The girls. Sweet girls. Our girls.

I just love the way it sounds! I still can't believe we have two girls! During a late night feeding I started to think about all the great things about having two girls; two shopping buddies, nail painting sessions, tea parties, playing dress up, recitals, driving dad crazy :)

I don't need to tell anyone what a joy it has been to raise Audrey. I am so excited to see Abigail come into her own. How will she be like her big sister? How will she be different? So far the differences have been like night and day...the pregnancies were different, and so far Abby seems like a much easier baby (oh crap, now that I said that...) It's very true what they say...you can't imagine that you can love your second child as much as you love your first...but you do! You love them just as much and in different ways. I barely know Abby but my love for her grows everyday.

Just last night Audrey was giving Chris a goodnight kiss. He was holding Abby and, without prompting, she leaned down and kissed Abby for the very first time on her own. I just wanted to freeze that moment! Yes, these two sweet girls were meant for us.

Click here to view these pictures larger

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Abigail is 3 weeks old!

It seems like it's been so much longer though :) I chalk it up to round the clock care...she's still pretty sleepy during the day and up every 2 hours at night. At this point I'm pretty exhausted! But she's growing and thriving and that's what matters! At her weight check up on Tuesday she weighed 8 lbs 13oz! Exactly what Audrey weighed when she was born, lol. Abby is eating about 3 1/2 ounces. Sometimes she'll eat 2oz, fall asleep, and wake within an hour to finish. Sometimes she'll take 4 oz at once!

My milk production is out of control...I started going 3-4 hours between pumping sessions and I even skip a session during the night (usually the 2 am!) The other day I ran out of storage containers so I froze most of what I had in the fridge...96 ounces! I have a good freezer stash already and soon I'll have to relocate the bags to our other freezer.

Our days are pretty routine: I'm up around 7 to pump and feed Abby (Chris has been taking over this feeding when he can.) Once Abby is fed I put her in the swing. I watch the news until I hear Audrey. Sometimes I'm pumping or feeding Abby when Audrey wakes up. If Chris is still home he gets her up; otherwise she waits patiently for me in her crib. She eats breakfast while I wash all the bottles from overnight. The rest of the morning for Audrey is spent playing, singing and dancing, and watching tv (Nick JR and Disney Jr are my new BFFs.) If Abigail is awake we try to do tummy time.

I think we may start potty training. This morning Audrey came to me and said she wanted her pajamas off. So I took them off; then she wanted her diaper off..."Nakey baby!" she said, lol. So we set her potty in the living room and she went back and forth from sitting on it to standing. She must've peed on the floor (the wood floor, thankfully) 5 times. Each time I rushed her to the potty and reminded her to try and pee ON the potty, not the floor. After about an hour she decided she wanted her diaper back on. We'll try again tomorrow morning! I'm not pushing anything for right now, just following her cues. I do plan on hitting it hard over the summer, so long as she's ready.

Audrey still takes her nap, usually around 12:30. Lately it's been short, though, around 90 minutes. Usually it's between 2-3 hours. I try to nap when both girls are napping but it rarely happens..by the time I've eaten lunch Abby is waking up. I've got to try timing that a little better :) The afternoon is pretty routine as well. Audrey wakes up and eats lunch, plays while I feed and tend to Abby. Chris gets home and makes dinner and takes care of Abby so I can pump and get Audrey ready for bed. We swaddle Abby between 8-9, depending on when she eats. I've been going to bed while she sleeps in her swing. Chris puts her in the co-sleeper when he comes to bed. I'm back up between 11-12 to feed Abigail and pump. I feed her in the living room so I can watch tv. She goes into the bouncer while I pump and she falls right back to sleep. Then it's back into the co-sleeper where that routine is repeated at around 2 am, 4 am, and 6 am.

I can go 2-3 days at home before I get cabin fever. On Monday we took our first walk through town (Audrey loved it; Abigail fell asleep.) We went to the mall on Tuesday after our dr appointment. Audrey loves the play park and I love watching her run around!

Stacy posted more sneak peeks on FB...I'm just loving them so much! I cannot wait to order announcements, make a photo book, and hang them around the house.

I see so much of Audrey in this picture!

I love this one so much...my sweet Audrey Cate!

Thins are going so well and I feel great, aside from the lack of sleep. But I have to say it's not as bad as I expected it to be! I have no problems tending to both kids...when they both need something at the same time (rare) I take care of Audrey first, then Abby. But when Audrey needs something and I'm in the middle of feeding Abby or pumping, she is so patient! I just love her, she's such a good little girl. I'm hoping she continues to be a good helper as Abigail gets older and in need of more attention. I think she will be; she's a very special kid! I'm loving my life with two girls :)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Friday, May 13, 2011

Monday, May 9, 2011

Abigail Mae

11 days into this and Abigail is such a joy! She sleeps all day (usually needs to be woken for feedings) and is up about every 2 hours at night. Lucky she goes right to sleep after the nighttime feedings. I put her in the bouncer while I pump then back into the co-sleeper when I'm done. We keep her swaddled tight and lay her on her side (eventually she ends up on her back.)

During the day she goes back and forth between the bouncer and swing and my arms. Loud noises do not bother her (she sleeps through all of Audrey's singing and banging around.) She's eating 3 oz every 2-3 hours. I started freezing milk yesterday because I have so much in the fridge! My goal is to keep pumping through the summer. We'll see what the new school year brings.

Her umbilical cord is hanging by a thread and will probably come off within the next day or two. Just in time for her newborn pics which are Thursday. I cannot wait- my friend Stacy is coming to do them and I know they're going to be amazing. She came down for Audrey's 2 year pics...I'm praying for nice weather so we can get some outdoor shots. As soon as those are edited and I can order birth announcements!

Her little head will NOT stay up in her car seat! I can't wait for her to get better control.

Abby on Mother's Day 5/8/11

There are those pretty eyes!

She gives Dad the biggest smiles!

This time around I feel like I'm enjoying the newborn phase more. I'm not sure what it is; maybe because I already know what to expect...Soon we'll be coming up on the colic phase and I'll be singing a different tune. But for now Abigail is a sweet angel and we just adore her so much!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

My First Outing with the Girls

Audrey's dance class isn't over until the end of June. We pay month to month and we could've easily called April her last month. I briefly considered stopping until the Fall but I just couldn't do it...her dance class is something special we get to do every week. I look forward to it just as much as she does and I just didn't want to give it up. Of course Christopher had to work, lol. I was still determined to go...it was going to be my first outing with both girls all by myself...but I was ready!

Chris gave Abby her 6 am feeding so I could sleep in (THANK GOD! This is the worst time of day for me because I know Audrey will up soon after Abby is done eating...and I'm just dead exhausted from being up throughout the night.) When I woke up I was able to pump and feed Audrey breakfast. I hit the shower and got myself ready while Audrey went back and forth between dancing in the bathroom and watching Disney in our bedroom. Abigail slept in the bathroom (loud music, bright lights and all!) Abby started to wake up as Chris was leaving. I fed her, changed her, and put her back down to get Audrey ready...but Abby didn't not want to be put down. She was crying non-stop...which she NEVER does (of course not, not until this moment!) I gave her another bottle (she drank about an ounce) and she passed out. Phew! We were out of the house and packed into the car by 9:30...success!

We arrived at the studio and everyone was surprised to see us! They oohed and ahhhed over Abby and even offered to help if she woke up during class :) But she didn't...she slept contently in her car seat as I participated with my sweet Audrey Cate. She was thrilled to be back at class and she did SO WELL! I'm incredibly proud of her.

Afterwards we went to Sonic and came home. Audrey went down for an early nap and I woke up Abby to feed her. She pretty much slept the rest of the afternoon and evening. We went out to dinner with my IL's to celebrate Mother's Day. We stopped on the way home for some DQ and by 8:00 I was ready for bed! I went to sleep early while Chris watched Abby. It's been smooth sailing so far because Abigail sleeps all.the.time. And I'm enjoying it while it lasts!

Ummm, there's a double stroller in my kitchen...

After months and months of research (and waiting for Stokke to invent a double stroller) I finally ordered one. When I started looking of course all the higher end models appealed to me...Bugaboo Donkey, Stroll Air, and Baby Jogger City Select Double were just so expensive! I listed my must-haves: easy to fold & maneuver, lightweight, independent canopies, good reclines, and it had to fit the infant car seat. I finally caught a good sale on the Peg Perego Aria 60/40 Twin stroller at Albeebaby.com. It was $199 with free shipping and it arrived yesterday. Chris set it up last night and when I saw it all set up I was in awe. Yup, we have two kids now...this is for real!

I'm pretty excited to take the girls for their first walk!

*Side note: Today was Abigail's official due date!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Life with Two Sweet Girls

And what a week it has been! This past week I was supposed to a) finish out a nice Spring Break with Audrey b) get all the last minute baby and school stuff done and c) work a couple days before going in for my induction. Instead I have a one week old baby girl! WOW.

Where to start...my hospital stay was amazing. Family came to visit us later in the afternoon on Thursday. Chris stayed with me overnight even though we sent Abby to the nursery. They kept her from 11:30-6:00 am...it was awesome to get a full night's rest. I began pumping that morning. Chris went home to take care of things and then brought Audrey back for some family time, just the four of us.

Chris took her back home in time for her nap. We figured it would be nice for he and Audrey to get home and settled before Abby and I came home. He got a bunch of things done around the house and I relaxed with Abby at the hospital. I had more visitors that evening and again I sent Abby to the nursery overnight. This time they kept her from about 10:30 until much later the next morning. Chris came with Audrey to take us home on Saturday. I got the TDAP shot (for prevention of Whooping Cough) and we were discharged!

Saturday was our first day home. It was a gorgeous day and even though I was excited to get home, I was a little sad about leaving the hospital. It was a little too real, seeing two little girls in our back seat. Once we were home Chris fed Abigail and I fed Audrey before putting her down for a nap. Abby pretty much stayed on a 2 hour feeding schedule. We'd give her colostrum first, then formula. The first night was rough because I kept her in the living room while I tried to sleep on the couch. She had spit up a lot over the past couple days and I had been advised to keep her upright as much as possible. So she went back and forth between the bouncer and the swing...but between pumping and feeding I didn't get much sleep!

The past few days and nights have been much better. Our wonderful friends sent us their co-sleeper and I started using it on night 2. What a difference! Just sleeping in my own bed, even for short periods of time felt amazing. Abby will go about 3 hours between feedings and I'm pumping every 2-3 hours...milk is fully in and I have a nice stockpile in the fridge already.

She is VERY sleepy during the day. I keep her in the living room where it’s bright and noisy but she sleeps through it all! It does make caring for Audrey easier (and getting things done around the house, and pumping every 2 hours, etc.) I’m already looking forward to the day she is sleep trained like her big sister ☺

First trip to the doctor 5/3/11 (weighed 7lb 5 oz and got her Hep B shot)

Audrey gets more and more interested in her each day. We usually have to prod her to come see the baby or give the baby a kiss. She’s her usual happy self and has been so good! Still sticking to her routine and just as fun as always. She seems so big to us now! She helps me out a lot during the day. I ask her to get me things or put things away. I try to involve her as much as possible in whatever I’m doing. So far, so good!

This time around definitely seems easier. We’re just taking it one day at a time and every day has been good. I feel fine, not overly exhausted (and so far no baby blues!) Chris does so much…he comes home from work and cooks wonderful dinners, cleans up, and is completely hands-on with both girls. That goes a long way!

I love being home and lucky for me summer is right around the corner!