Holy $hit it’s October.

Which means a lot of things:

I have a two month old. TWO MONTHS have gone by since I had this baby?! It’s so weird what babies do to time. They generally are an enormous timesuck- I swear I just woke up and all of the sudden it’s noon and whoa I’m still in pajamas and yes I’ve done about a million things already and all while the baby peacefully sleeps in his swing…the damned swing of neglect.

I go back to work soon- assuming I have settled on childcare– which I haven’t really. I’m waiting to hear back from a family friend about Wed. and Thurs. I am almost certain we have someone for Tuesdays and Fridays. I still have no idea how this whole- getting out of the house/ready for work/to the sitter/to work on time is ever going to work out. And I have approximately 12 days to figure it out. 12 days seemed like an eternity when I was pregnant. I know it will fly by now though- because the last 8 weeks have definitely flown.

Which by the way- with October in Ohio means winterish weather which BLOWS- for a number of reasons- I’m cold (number one reason). Also almost every outfit we own for the baby is a summer outfit. We do have lots of hand me downs from Aunt Gretchen but ….oh wait- they live in SOUTH CAROLINA. Don’t really have a lot of fleecy winter-y outfits in those boxes. So I’ve been using a lot of blankets to bundle him up when we go outside…and somedays he just wears pajamas all day. Better do it while you can, kiddo.

We had the appointment with the Endocrinologist at Children’s hospital yesterday. Let me tell you, I would like to purchase a plastic bubble in which to roll ourselves in and out of that place. I mean. you think daycares are bad- I can’t even fathom the germs floating around that hospital. My hands are cracking from how many times I washed them and used hand sanitizer yesterday.. in the 2.5 hours we were there. Simon was an awesome baby in the hospital (as always). He only cries when we leave the doctor it seems. With the exception of a half hour, he was awake and lovely the entire time- smiling and staring at the room. I think it’s because he loves being naked and I just kept him that way after they weighed him.

My little turkey weighs 12 pounds 10 ounces and is 23 inches long. Almost 13 pounds?! That explains the dull pain in the back of my neck.

The endocrinologist doesn’t think there is anything to be worried about and actually wants to do ONE MORE BLOOD DRAW (dammit) and check for antibodies. Because if there are antibodies attacking his thyroid, they’re likely from me and we don’t have anything to worry about except perhaps about my thyroid..which we’ll figure out after we get him all squared away. I’m waiting to get his blood drawn for when Gabe can go with me- because last time I almost passed out. I do not like them poking around in my baby’s arm for a vein, sorry folks it’s enough to make me throw up and pass out all at once. Simon has yet to really act like it bothers him when they take his blood. He has another thing coming next time we go to the doctor though- because we have the vaccinations…Yuck. Not looking forward to this business. And since when did kids get a chicken pox vaccine? There are so many vaccines now it just seems like a lot for a tiny baby to have to handle. Why don’t they wait longer before they give them? And seriously- chicken pox? I mean that won’t kill you. I don’t think autism is caused by vaccines but I do wonder about slamming a kid with all of these things at once when he’s only been around for 8-10 weeks. I mean, I felt guilty if I took a tylenol while pregnant and now we’re loading him up with deadened viruses and just cross your fingers he doesn’t have some sort of reaction to it?! Nuts. I just wish we could wait longer before he had to deal with it. So he could TELL me if he thinks he’s coming down with a mild case of Measles. Instead I’ll just watch him really closely and “only call if he cries for more than THREE HOURS STRAIGHT”?? Are you serious people!? That’s what the paperwork says!

Anyways that’s the next appointment. Likely Simon’s thyroid is fine and the dr thought he looked really healthy and good. I had to agree.  See here:

IMG_3613

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And now my monthly letter to the boy:

Dear Simon (AKA Stink, Lil’ Sleeper, My Turkey, Sy)

You’re 8 weeks old now. 8 Weeks! Two months! Time has flown by but at the same time I feel like you’ve always been here. It’s a strange and surreal feeling. Happy birthday little buddy.

You are getting to be so much more fun now that you’re waking up a bit. I mean, really kid you get more adorable every day and I’m constantly amazed by your cuteness.

In the past month. we’ve eliminated one night time feeding. which means I only (usually) have to get up at 5am now. I am planning to eventually squeeze a workout in at this time but so far I haven’t been able to do anything but feed you and rock you, then put you back to bed. Of course, we’ve slightly increased the amount of milk you’re eating with each meal so now at night when you eat you start to doze off at the end of a bottle, and you get all adorable and floppy when I try to burp you afterwards. Then you bury your head into the crook of my elbow and make your little “oh” face after spitting out your Nuk. Then I rock you and whisper things in your ear while you breathe milk breath in my face.

We’ve gotten ourselves into a bad habit though- at around 6am you start to stir and I pick you up and put you in bed with us- on my chest. I know this is a bad idea for a million reasons but waking up with you face to face is just about the most amazing thing ever. Your little eyes light up when you look up at me and I look at you and we yawn and we stretch together and have our morning time- that sadly no one else gets to see because I’m convinced you are at your best in the morning. We sing and dance around the upstairs while I make the beds and get you ready. Your favorite songs are: Bushel and a Peck, The Good Morning Song. BINGO (sung with your name SIMON instead) and We’re On our Way to Grandpa’s Farm.

At night we have made a routine already- Bath, Bottle & Bed- and you still love the bathtub. You really are starting to kick in there and splash around which is hilarious to watch. I cheer you on and try to get you wore out so you pass out cold after the bottle. You seem to really like your sleep though so it’s not been a huge problem yet. You fall asleep easily in your room to the sounds of the rainforest toy in your crib, or the Beatles CD by your bed.

Though last night, I put you in adorable Halloween pjs, rocked you a bit and laid you down to sleep. Then I went downstairs  to watch a movie with your dad. I typically go to bed around 10:30 or 11 and your dad gives you a bottle between 1 and 2am. I usually don’t wake up when that happens, and he brings you into our room. But last night at 1:30am I woke up to hear your ANGRY SCREAM down the hall. I figured your dad had it under control- probably gas or something but you wouldn’t let up after a few minutes so I came down to your room to find you naked, and your dad looked at me and said- “big blow-out.” You were a total mess. Poor thing- it was almost like you knew and were embarrassed. We cleaned you up and calmed you down and you went back to bed by 2am, though you would have much preferred to stay naked I think. You love being naked.  It’s just too cold right now though- if you still like it in the spring and summer we’ll let you be naked again, promise.

In the last month we’ve also watched the beginning of Buckeye Football here and you are the perfect addition to Saturday afternoon football games on television. You have more gear than me and it’s fun to dress you up in new OSU outfits. You’re definitely the cutest little Buckeye I’ve ever seen. Uncle Brett and Aunt Kristen came up to watch the game and you seemed to enjoy their visit. After the game we got to go to a party and they watched you for the evening.  Aunt Kristen read you books and rocked you to sleep in your room.

Gunner, Uncle Brett and Simon

Gunner, Uncle Brett and Simon

Over the past month we’ve dealt with baby acne and you scratching the hell out of your face when you get angry. Your dad and I finally figured out that you needed the baby equivalent of a stress-ball to squeeze with your tiny hands when you get angry. After trying several different things, you have grabbed onto this giraffe from your Aunt Gretchen. and you will not let go. We have several other types of blankie-objects like this but this is the only one you will knead in your hands and hold onto. I’m thinking we may have to invest in a few more of these just in case this one falls apart or gets lost somewhere:

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We’ve had several visits from your grandparents on both sides, and I’m looking forward to a Date-Night with your dad tomorrow night when Nonni and Papa come up again to watch you. I can’t decide where we’re going to go but I’m excited that they enjoy hanging out with you so much. Your other Grandma and Grandpa came up to the football game too and enjoyed visiting for a bit. Grandma and I went shopping one day and took you along and you were so good! The stroller definitely puts you to sleep.

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My maternity leave is coming to a close and we’re having a hell of a time trying to find someone suitable to watch you during the week while we’re at work. Neither of us are thrilled with the prospect of leaving you with anyone but family but we’re trying our hardest to find someone that will love you. Right now your dad comes home from work during lunch to visit you and it’ll be hard for him when he can’t do that because you’re at the sitter’s.

dad home on lunch

dad home on lunch

I’m so proud of you already and you’re only 8 weeks old- I mean let’s be honest, there’s not a whole lot you’ve accomplished as of yet but still- I’m so proud. You’re adorable and easy going for the most part and you’re starting to want to be awake more often and that’s so fun. You’ve just started making new sounds and I’m starting to be able to recognize which ones are whiny cries and which ones are feed-me/change-me/burp-me cries.

I love getting to know you and to me you are the very best baby a person could ask for. Happy 2 month birthday buddy. I love you more than you know.

XO

Mom

How I’m managing

Well- I’m tired. That goes without saying. The days are flying by and I’m still not certain who will be watching our baby when we go back to work. I’m meeting with a potential sitter today at 3:00pm. I’m nervous about that, but exhausted, too. My days are broken into two hour segments due to being the sole feeding machine for Simon. It’s hard to get much done in between the pumping sessions- and if Gabe isn’t around to feed the bugger a bottle, that ends up taking an hour up, so really there’s only one hour between pumping. It’s insane. I think I’m dealing well considering, but mostly because I am imagining the breastpump is a liposuction machine and is sucking the fat stores out of my enormous a$$and legs. I realize this probably isn’t true but it helps me look forward to each pumping session when I’m across the room from the baby, milking myself like a dairy cow, watching my boobs do the only “job” for which they were created.

I’m not going to go into a lot of detail about how freaked out I am about my body right now- because that would be selfish…No…really I am not going to get into it because the post would take too much time and I only have 35 more minutes before I have to pump again. But I’m wearing maternity pants- the only pants that fit me. And yesterday I dug out some of the big blousy shirts I wore last year thinking they looked like maternity tops and perhaps they would look good/fit me now in this strange postpartum period. Nope. They just made me cry. Why in the world did I get rid of all my fat clothes?! Never again.

We caught our first Simon Smile on Camera. Simon has tons of them and though most are done in his sleep- along with full-on laughing. The boy giggles in his sleep at 2.5 weeks old! Don’t tell me it’s gas- he’s laughin’ at his dad. I have a feeling I’m going to be way out-numbered by smart-asses in this house.

charmerWe also busted out the stroller yesterday for our first “walk” down to get some brunch. The stroller is a pimped out contraption. We like it alot. Simon’s not quite used to it because every time we go over a bump his little startle reflex sends his arms and legs flying out to each side like he’s free-falling. When we DIDN’T hit bumps he seemed pretty okay with the whole strollin’ deal. Here we are about to embark on our block-and-a-half stroll to the restaurant:

seatbelt- check, nuk- check, toys I don't know how to play with- check

seatbelt- check, nuk- check, toys I don't know how to play with- check

And then strangely enough, fall weather hit yesterday, and the chill in the air has led to us putting pants on the boy for the first time in his life.

First time wearing pants.

First time wearing pants.

So I’m thinking for the next 30 minutes I”ll watch the baby and make sure he doesn’t fuss too much, mess around on facebook, then at noon,  pump myself. Then after that take a nap- make Gabe watch the baby while I do that, or take Simon to bed with me…then when I wake up from that- pump (should be 2pm by then) and get ready to go meet sitter at 3pm. Then after that I’ll come home- (hopefully around 4ish)  pump, and then go to the grocery store to pick up the things that I can’t ever seem to remember to get when I’m out running errands.  I could go on for the rest of the day and let you know how insane the milking schedule is, but I think you get the picture. Of course the adorable baby and all of the health benefits are worth the inconvenience and discomfort for sure.

And here’s a photo with his friend Alien, who also happens to have a similar body shape.

brothers?

brothers?

I swear to you we feed the boy- I have no idea why his legs are so freaking skinny other than to say his dad has long skinny legs…and those tree-frog toes aren’t from my side either…

Well, for only having one real weekend day

We did cram a lot into it! Sunday the researchers came and that was a short but hilarious experience.  Gabe and I were taken by two separate researchers into different areas of the apartment (Gabe took his to his man-lair of course) and we were asked to go over our Time Diaries and do a few more exercises separately. We basically had to rate our investments in certain things like Social Life, Parenting, Spouse/Partner, Other, Work, etc. I had to do it for now, and how I imagine it will be after the baby. Then I had to guess what I think Gabe’s “investments” are now and later for the baby. That was kind of fun.

Then they set up a few chairs and a video camera and gave us each a sheet of paper with “problems” on it that most people in relationships encounter. They included: money, work, in-laws, drugs/alcohol, pregnancy, sex, communication, etc. We had to rate them (separately without discussing) on a scale from 0-10 of “how big of a problem” each one was. Well…I didn’t like this to begin with because I don’t see this things as problems so much as issues and already I don’t like the terminology. I start writing my “issues” down…and Gabe does his. At the end we’re asked to write down/fill in two additional problems that we’ve most recently argued about…and I wrote in Videogames (as did he) and then we were asked to pick one and discuss it on camera for 10 minutes.  I mentioned that we don’t often get to discuss these things so it was probably good that they came over. We discussed the videogaming- “she gets mad cuz that’s all I do” and I said, “but I realize that he can’t do it later when the baby gets here so I feel bad about it but don’t understand how someone can spend that much time playing” and he said, “I do spend a lot of time playing and it is excessive but once the baby comes it won’t happen so…” so halfway through this discussion I peek at Gabe’s paper and all of his “problems” are listed as Moderate to Moderate-to severe. I laughed and said, “I wrote all of ours’ as slight problems”….so I finally filled in the second blank with Gabe’s Negative Attitude as being the second thing that I view as a Problem in our relationship (even though it’s only a slight problem).

All in all this exercise made me feel pretty good about our relationship. We laughed about it and I thought- boy we don’t have as many problems as I thought. That’s good news.

Then they (researchers) wanted us to role-play and Gabe was all- “Awesome!” until we realized that we’re supposed to play with a baby doll pretending that it’s the first time we’re seeing/bringing our baby home. The researcher pulls the baby out of the bag, puts it in a Moses basket and lays it in front of us….all still on camera mind you. The babydoll DOESN’T HAVE A FACE. I can’t pretend with this. I pick up the baby (trying to fake it) and look at Gabe and say, “It’s a bag of rice dressed up in pajamas without a face…” I couldn’t bring myself to pretend this was my baby. If my baby were born without a face I would probably have the same reaction.. Then it was Gabe’s turn to play with the baby and he was super awesome at faking it. I asked him, “How are you doing that? IT doesn’t have a face?!” and he said (smiling) “It’s because I’m just a better actor than you.” HA- not likely but whatever.

After that weirdness they had us sign a waiver and handed us $40 and left. Pretty awesome, right?

So after that we went to Target and got our extension cords and other random stuff that we needed around the house. And after THAT we went to the Jazz and Ribs festival downtown and had a really nice day down there. The weather was great, it wasn’t super crowded and it was the perfect little spot of downtown to have the festival- right near the water of the lovely (though filthy) river.

I am officially ugly-pregnant. Here are some pictures.

wow we got fat

wow we got fat

Perhpas this is why?

Perhpas this is why?

There's a riverfront in Columbus, kind of.

There's a riverfront in Columbus, kind of.

Gorgeous day and lemonade

Gorgeous day and lemonade

So that was that. We walked all over creation down at the Ribs fest, and took ribs home with us for leftovers. I swear we walked for miles. Then we got ice cream and walked around at Antrim Park. I’m trying to walk as much as possible. Walk walk walk. Even though I’m probably not walking as far or as long as I’d like to think, it certainly seems like I’m walking forever. With a baby head dangling between my legs. That’s what it feels like. But we continue to walk.

Last night we went to Babies R Us to pick up some things that we needed – Infant Gas Drops, strange but apparently necessary breastfeeding accessories I didn’t know existed, swaddler blankets, one of those baby-sack things, and a diaper changing caddy to keep downstairs so we don’t have to haul the baby and/or diaper stuff up and down the steps everytime he needs changed. It’s very cute. We also found (miraculously) this foot stool/foot warmer thing that easily fits under the crib and is PERFECT for our rocker in the baby room. It’s just a little mound of cushion to push off of, but it was on clearance and it has little pockets to put your feet in so they don’t get cold while you’re sitting there. It’s really neat. So that was fun.

And this morning, I got on a fellow pregnant friend Ria’s blog and realize — SHE HAD HER BABY!!! Hooray for Ria! He’s beautiful and I’m so happy for her. This made me realize, that holy shit I’m probably next. Wowza.

Monday is my birthday and it’s so un-fun-sounding this year. I mean, what am I going to do? Eat more? Awesome. No drinks, no fancy dinners, no looking cute and getting people to buy you drinks, etc.  But my friend Carie may be having a bon fire at her house Friday to celebrate our birthdays together  and fulfill my craving for S’MORES since we couldn’t go camping/cabrewing this year. Next year maybe…next year…

But oh yea I’ll probably have a freaking baby soon. Whoa….

Dear Thumbkin,

Well, you’re getting enormous. My co-workers can see you through my shirt at work as you wiggle around in there and try to make extra room. It really grosses out my friend Mandy, but most things relating to human reproduction do so that’s not a problem.

It has been perhaps the most beautiful summer I’ve ever experienced in Ohio. It’s reminded me of the summer I spent in London 3 years ago- with big fluffy white clouds, a nice breeze and we haven’t had to turn on the air but for 2 weeks all summer. It makes me think that the weather being this nice is for me for some reason…since you’re coming and all- a celebration or “favor” from the Universe or God or Whoeveryouthinkcontrolstheweather.

Everything is a go- meaning, we have everything ready for you. Carseat, swing, bedding’s washed, diapers, everything is DONE. I have a sneaking suspicion you’re Done cooking in there too, because you’re spending an awful lot of time playing around in there- dawdling. No dawdling! Come out and meet us! We have so much to do- like get ready for football season and then halloween (we’re going to dress you up) and then Thanksgiving and Christmas….and showing you off and staring at your face for hours on end and taking endless amounts of digital photographs and forgetting to print them and wondering what you’ll be “into” someday, if it’s dinosaurs or pirates or outer space or dolls. It can be dolls- I don’t care. I just want to know who you are so get here already!!!

I love you but am firmly asking you to please LISTEN TO MY WORDS and come out. We’ll have much more fun, I swear. Your dad’s even getting anxious to meet you- though I think he’s going to be disappointed by the dieting that comes along with it.

I can’t wait to meet you. Remember, my birthday’s next week…..

love you,

Mom

Attack of the baby belly

These pictures are kind of scary….I’ve reached the point where I’ve given up on trying to look decent.. I don’t look good, my clothes don’t fit, I’m just lucky if I can get the inertia behind me to hoist my body up from a seated position.

I am still wearing the same stretchy pj pants that I’ve been wearing for months, but they no long stretch up around the belly. The belly has taken over.

hmmmm

hmmmm

My size small men’s tank tops are now completely stretched to the limit, and what used to be a tiny sliver of “cute” baby belly a few months ago, now looks like a Homer-Simpsonesque beer belly that one would see hanging out at the Columbiana County fair near the Apple Dumpling cart. Mmmm fair food. Good thing Homer Simpson is Gabe’s favorite character.

37 weeks tomorrow. Stick a fork in me.

37 weeks tomorrow. Stick a fork in me.

Errands

Running errands on my day off literally feels like I went running. Panting, sweating, thighs rubbing together, huffing, puffing, bringing groceries in, turning on the A/C even though our Electric bill was ATROCIOUS, using all of my might to close windows- and being exhausted afterwards. I hate feeling this weak and out-of-shape.

I find myself wondering, “how much longer before I start to feel normal?” I mean, of course after the baby’s born…I realize nothing will be “normal” again but when will I be able to do lunges? When will I be able to feel like I REALLY have to pee- and then I will ACTUALLY pee as much as I anticipated. I have no idea. If I’m nursing (which I plan to) will all the fat in my thighs be turned into buttermilk and move to my boobs so the baby can suck it out– like healthy lipo? I know that’s wishful thinking but man it’d be nice. 

So here I am in my purple dress that G hates:

34 weeks and 5 days.

34 weeks and 5 days.

And the baby’s room is mostly done. It’s so strange to see it- be a room that’s entirely for a baby, a person who isn’t here yet. Before, when I had the ironing board/iron in it and my maternity clothes– it was just a dressing room of sorts for me. It was my dressing room that just happened to have some baby furniture in it. Now it’s a 100%  baby room full of pacifiers, baby bath stuff, diapers, wipes, everything we need really. It’s crazy. I really like the way it turned out given that we really didn’t buy much of anything. We were so lucky to have inherited the crib and the dresser/changing table. I would say that we’ve probably spent $200 total on the whole thing- that includes paint, vinyl stickers, tiny bookshelf, humidifier and a 5×7 shag rug. Everything else was either given to us or we are using things we already had. I think it looks pretty good– I hate it when things are too matchy-matchy. We moved G’s Grandma’s rocker up there and I put a blanket on it to add some “flair”.  We also purchased a little bookshelf to shove all of Thumbkin’s books into and also place the lamp on. Our weird (old) apt. has strange electrical outlet placement so we HAD to put the lamp in that spot. I think I like it. Now, when I get a little tired as I’m getting ready for work in the mornings, I’ll just sit down here in the chair and imagine what it’s going to be like when he gets here.

rockin' chair and bookshelf

rockin' chair and bookshelf

As you can see, he’s accumulating quite a bit of toys for his shelves. We love the stuffed animals and sometimes G and I go in there and resist the urge to bring them back into our room. Yes, we’re 30 and 31 years old.

Possibly the most crowded room in the apt.

Possibly the most crowded room in the apt.

So what’s on tap tonight? Ummmm we’re grilling out (G is anyways) and I will probably watch a movie while G plays videogames some more. Woo hoo! Friday nights…awesome.

We won the jackpot!!!!

That’s what it felt like when we came home from work yesterday to the front room filled to the brim with our baby shower trappings. Again, I do not have time to write down everything that happened this weekend, but I thought I would at least post a few pictures to tide you over.

Let me remind you that I am 33 weeks pregnant. I’m also carrying a tiny baby in my chin (in addition to the one floating around in this big belly). There are about eleventy majillion pictures of me opening gifts where I look like a mammoth multi-chinned being but I’ve picked out a few that aren’t completely ridiculous.

 

Yum, cake!

Yum, cake!

 

adorable outfits

adorable outfits

 

My cousin Beth and me, pondering things.

My cousin Beth and me, pondering things.

 

And now...where to put it all????

And now...where to put it all????

I promise I will write more later. Right now I”m heading into work and thankful this week is halfway over. I’m still only half-awake.