Monday, July 31, 2006

Flying Solo

So The Hub had to go back to work today. Big frowny face. The good news is that the road is (provisionally) open as of today. The bad news is that they are only letting traffic through at 6 am and then again at 6 pm. So here I am, just past the halfway mark and I'm still holding it together. Barely. The tot and I managed to stay pretty much asleep until 7:30am, which was pretty impressive, I thought. Then he was up a half an hour before taking another (well earned) nap. Not too bad! Then he cried for the next three and a half hours. (With brief breaks for nursing and 5 minute naps...) Yikes. He's either napping now, or just lulling me into a false sense of security before busting out with another howl session. Cross your fingers.

Jokes on me. He's up.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Sweater, Stars, and a Sad Story

Hey folks! I had some crafty stuff that I wanted to share with you, but the second item sort of brings up a subject that some of you may be unfamiliar with, so I feel like I need to bring it out in the open... so brace yourselves. But first, my Knitting Prowess! I have finished my very first knit sweater ever! (Yes, it is a baby sweater, I'm not crazy after all!) The pattern is from, and yes I was lost a few times, but (with some help from AK) I sort of winged (wung?) it and it came out just fine!

And here it is on the miniature Runway Model...

Fits perfectly! Right, right? Hmm, did someone say something about a gauge swatch? Thank heavens its about a million degrees out and he won't need it for a bit...

The second crafty project is a quilt. With a story.

I started this quilt about 10 years ago for my first baby. I didn't get around to finishing it and then my grandmother went into the hospital. I used one of the squares to make a pillow for her. She then passed away just after Thanksgiving. Then my son passed away right around Christmas, a month before his third birthday. I pretty much lost my marbles for a year and packed the whole thing up and didn't look at it again. Earlier this year I showed the squares to a friend here (Mrs. Crazy Talent) and she just couldn't stand the idea of it sitting around unfinished. So we had a few get-togethers where she ascertained exactly how I had imagined this thing to look and then disappeared into a sewing frenzy. The end result is so beautiful. I don't know how to thank her.

Friday, July 21, 2006

No Visual Aids Today...

Hey Kids! Here's a fun experiment that you can try at home (or at least at my home). First jaunt over to the bathroom and trim your little pinky fingernail down as far as you dare. Then wash your hands real good. Then come pick up my squalling tot and let him suckle said pinky finger with the pad of your finger toward the roof of his mouth. Now what you may notice is that this fierce little (zitty) critter will slurp your finger into his mouth almost to the second knuckle. And he will proceed to not only gum this finger for all he is worth, but also to slowly grate away at the flesh with his gritty little tongue. Now imagine that this tough pinky finger is one of your more delicate parts. Lets just say that breast feeding isn't getting much easier.

I realize that folks are only trying to help when they say "He must not be latched on correctly, take him off and try again." But folks, a) that hurts even worse and b) I have received approval that he is indeed latched on correctly. I have tried everything I can think of from pre-freezing the nipple (fairly painful on its own!) to supplemental B vitamins. Now I don't mean to be a Doubting Thomas, but it is way more of a surprise to me that this process is supposed to somehow NOT hurt, than the fact that I am enduring nipple twisting pain approximately 12 times a day.

So, just wanted to get that offa my (ahem) chest there. Thanks for listening.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Acne! She Is Worse!

My son is disappearing behind an alarming red bumpy facade!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Three Weeks!

So we're here at the three week mark, and poor Lizard Baby has become poor Acne Baby. I haven't documented this on film, he gets too wiggly when I get near with the camera. Can't say as I blame the poor critter. This was a few days ago at the end of the facial peel period...

He's become somewhat fussier in this third week of life, and spends considerable time grunting and kvetching while trying to fart and poop. But we'll take grunting over outright screaming any day... So kvetch away little dude!

It seems from my latest batch of photos that The Hub and The Critter seem to spend a fair amount of time napping together on the couch. Dad napping on the baby...

The baby napping on Dad... (while both smile!)

And I just have to point out the adorable hand thing in close up picture form...

Ooh, ooh, and the fact that our little dude now has ManBoobs! We visited the midwife on Thursday and found out that the little sumo wrestler has been packing on the pounds! He's up to 9 lbs 2 oz now, which means he's officially larger than the cat! Yay Jackson!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

I Am Always Ever So Polite

Hey! I finally got around to recording (my version) of the birthin' of my son! (If The Hub and Lovely Lisa have more to add hopefully they'll pop it into the comments.) Warning! This entry could be considered graphic and or yucky by some! Please skip it if goo and ooze creep you out!

Saturday, June 24th. I woke up at 6:30 am with a slight crampy feeling low in my belly. I visited the little girls room and discovered some "spotting". Hooray, something is happening! It is pretty early so I didn't wake everyone right away. The sun is just up and I look out on the back yard to see an adorable fuzzy bunny hopping around. Alright enough shuffling about, time to call the midwife and let her know something may be going on. Both The Hub and Lovely Lisa hear me talking to the midwife and all of a sudden everyone is up and in action. I am told to start timing contractions, and I sit at the dining table to record times and read blogs while Lovely Lisa takes a quick shower.

So the first contraction I have written down is 6:46. Then there's one five minutes later. And another five minutes after that, and again and again. I'm baffled. I keep thinking that this must be that irregular period before they settle into a pattern and that the next ones will be 10 minutes apart, right? They couldn't be just five minutes apart already, could they? They still aren't too strong, so I don't have to do any funky breathing or meditation.

Lisa gets out of the shower and is dismayed to find that I haven't made myself any breakfast. She sets about to make a smoothie, and asks me to come in and show her where the blender is. I make it to the kitchen, but then have to sit right back down because a strong contraction hits. I may have put my head on the table and started moaning. Or maybe I just wanted to.

Next thing I know I'm in a big rush to get to the bathroom, I have GOT TO GO NOW! I'm sitting there emptying my entire digestive tract in 3 seconds flat when I get hit by a tidal wave of nausea. By now The Hub is somehow in the picture, and I'm asking for a bucket. He gets a panicked look in his eye and I can tell he's not sure where one is. So I start bellowing "spaghetti pot, spaghetti pot" at the top of my lungs to be sure that he'll hear me. Lisa is there in the bathroom with me (bless her soul) making sure I don't fall off the toilet. At this point I've gotten myself fairly comfortable and am leaning over resting my head and arms on the cool comforting sink to my right. Pretty sight I'm sure. Ends up that the nausea passes and I don't need to ralph into the spaghetti pot. Thank heavens. (PS wanna come over for spaghetti sometime?!)

Lisa gets me cleaned and dressed and we try to head out of the bathroom. We make it about 7 feet, to the bed in the master bedroom, and I collapse with another contraction. This one is not comfortable. I think I freaked out poor Lisa, I am moaning, and sort of thrashing. It does not feel like I should be laying down on my side. Or laying down at all. There is another minor problem with the bed. We haven't made it yet. Meaning it still has my favorite sheets and my grandmother's handmade quilt on it, and we haven't done the cotton sheet set-plastic sheet-second cotton sheet set thing that the midwife suggests.

I think I start bellowing that I want to be on the floor. Someone suggests putting me on the dog bed. I vehemently protest. Gross, hairy dog bed. Lee, I think, manages to get a nice cushy set up with the lambyskins and some towels on the floor between the bed and the closet. They get me down there and I politely request that someone get the absorbent blue plastic pads from the birthing kit too. (Okay, maybe I wasn't so polite...) I didn't install the laminate flooring to have it get full of birth yuck.

So here I am on hands and knees on our bedroom floor in the three foot by six foot space beside the bed. Labor has come on with a vengeance. I am trying to make all of those low "O" sounds that are recommended as being so helpful, but I think I end up sounding like a drunken Santa "Ho Ho Ho-ing" while throwing up in the Scotch Pines behind the little elves' workshop. Oh well. Lisa gently suggests that I try and stay "low" and I snap "I am low dammit!" The Hub gets close to my face to tell me that he loves me and that I'm doing great and I snap "Hot. Breath. Outta my face." Nice, huh?

We have all lost complete track of time by now, and I suggest (politely, I'm sure) that someone call the midwife posthaste! At this point I feel something coming down the birth canal. None of us can believe it is happening so fast. The Hub sees it. I reach down to touch what I think is the head, but it feels funny, sort of rubbery and slippery. Can't say anything because another contraction is coming. What we thought was the head proves itself to be the amniotic sac by inflating and exploding with a watery gush in Lisa and the Hub's faces. Wow. Yuck.

At some point here I (again, politely, I'm sure) requested the big physical therapy ball. It is really hard to hold the hands and knees position for over an hour. I am occasionally racked by the full body shakes. The poor Hub tried to help by holding my hips, but this directed my attention back to that area too much so I (politely) barked "NO TOUCH, NO TOUCH" at him. Poor Hub. With the PT ball I could rest my arms at least and collapse my chest onto it. Someone brought me a drink (with a bendy straw!) but somehow I misfired and ended up drooling apple juice all over the ball and then rolling my face in it. Dignified.

Here's the thing. I have always hated this stupid PT ball. It is big and ugly and rolls around on the ground picking up all sorts of dirt and pet hair. But during labor, LOVED IT. Wanted to marry it. Have its blue plasticky children. Moving on...

Lisa has now come around and is holding my hands and putting a cool washcloth on my shoulders. Did I mention that Lisa's superpower is that she always has cool hands? It could be 110 degrees out and she has cool soothing hands. Love her.

I want to warn them when a contraction is coming so I start tapping her wrist when I feel one building. She gets the picture after one or two contractions, thank heavens. At first I was trying to verbalize it, but then I found I didn't have enough air in my lungs to moan like an inebriated fictitious winter solstice persona, and thus resorted to the tapping. At some point I think I ask where the !@#$%ing midwife is, and Lovely Lisa assures me she's on her way. I then casually mention that I think the head will be out in one or two more contractions.

The Hub springs into action and rushes into the living room to get the squeezy bulb and placenta catcher. Quick thinkin' that Hub. Love him. And then I have one contraction where the baby's head shows, and then the little dude thinks twice and scoots all the way back up into the uterus, or so it feels. And then one or two huge Ho-Ho-ing contractions later the head is out. Along with the left hand. Supposedly he is already trying to breathe and wiggling his fingers. There is a brief rest here where I get to reach down and feel the baby's head and catch my breath. His little head is so velvety soft. (And a bit gooey, but nevermind that...) Then one or two more contractions and the baby is born. The Hub, now Poppa, catches the slippery critter deftly and we're done. He's so excited he can't help practically yelling out "its a boy!" I turn over and sit down and clasp my newborn son to my chest.

The midwife rushes in. The bed gets made, the baby and I get moved up into the bed. The midwife deals with all the yucky stuff, placenta, stitches and umbilical cord. Poppa can't stop grinning. Critter latches on with a vengeance. I get to shower. The end.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Two Whole Weeks!

Aunt Talley has returned home, and passed the caretaking torch to Aunt Kathi... with a brief interlude of Aunt Lorena and GrampaTarnay in between. The tot is now two weeks old and has already had five sleep-over visitors. He's so popular! However, the neighbors have started making offers on the ever rotating array of cars in the lot. Sold! To the highest bidder!

Speaking of which! Sadly, we have sold Zippy Car. It is with a heavy heart that we let him go, but he has now been replaced by yet another hybrid, a Prius, that will actually fit a baby seat in the back and perhaps even another passenger! I do have to mention that Zippy has gone to family members, so we still have visiting rights to ease the sting a bit. So welcome to the family Priscilla! Of whom I will post a pic as soon as I remember to actually take one.

And speaking of pictures... We have moved into the slightly scary realm of the cloth diapers, they are still a bit large on The Spud, making him look like a colorful pear with legs, or a teeninsy sumo wrestler. But a cute pear/wrestler! And I have to say they do work quite well, I think we've had less leaks since the Big Switch. (Except for that one huge poop blowout, but sadly I didn't get a picture for you!)And Poppa has stepped up to the plate and become diaper launderer extraordinare, getting just the right temperature, water level and cycle all sussed out. What a stud.

And now for some random cute...

Sleep tight kiddies! Since you know we aren't! Ha ha ha, heh. Oh and PS, we had our first visit to the Pediatrician and the tot has gained around 6 ounces since birth, getting close to that 8 lb mark!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Banner Day

Lizard baby continues to shed and mom actually put on shoes for the first time since birthin'. Well,flip flops but still it's a first.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

New Milestones Everyday...

For some reason I am a bit behind here in the Baby News, despite still having Aunt Talley here to cook, clean, and help calm fussy babies. But better late than never, so here's the latest news bulletin from The Hoop Ranch...

The spurting fonts of poo have now turned from green to yellow. I know... the headlines! The critter does have a bit of jaundice (perfectly normal!) that requires daily five minute sunning that we have dubbed doing the "rotisserie". (The midwife popped back over to check the degree of jaundice with this nifty little clear plastic tile with a range of yellows spaced out on it that she presses on the baby's nose, crazy high tech gizmos!) He is also going through a bit of a lizard phase, and is shedding some skin at the joints. Ew.

Nursing is still bracingly painful, but only for the first 20 minutes or so, ha ha,ha, heh. The critter had his first bath with The Hub, and I did take pics, but they are a bit racy for public consumption, sorry. (But I do want to say that The Hub looked HOT all nakeyed up holding his offspring!)

And the piece de resistance... Junior is now in possession of a Big Boy Belly Button and the whole gooey stump idea is a thing of the past! Yay!

I somehow have caught a touch of those Dratted Steinbeck Skitters again, so I am relegated to complete bed rest for a day or two. So pass the remote, and peel me a grape, would ya?