Friday, June 7, 2013

Sixteen Weeks

Alternate title Rollin' Rollin' Rollin'!

Allie turned sixteen weeks on Wednesday.  She has been able to roll over from back to front for a while now, but suddenly in the last few days it's ALL SHE WANTS TO DO!  From the second she's put on the floor or any flat surface, she immediately starts to roll herself on to her tummy.  Suddenly I am all too aware that it's time to child proof everything, and that I need to be very careful where I leave her for a second because she can pretty much flip over wherever.  I feel like mobility is coming very soon here.  Greg and I will be searching for some fences/gates.  I'm a little afraid about what life with a mobile baby is going to be like.  I've been lucky enough that in the first months of Allie's life I haven't had many issues taking a shower  and getting other tasks done.  While I always needed to plan around naps or happy times to get things accomplished, she has usually been able to hang out stationary for long enough for me to do stuff.  Now I really have to be aware of her ability to move and in conjunction, she seems way less happy than before about being confined in the swing, the Rock N Play, and other devices that can hold her now because she wants to spend every waking moment practicing her new tricks.

Allie is still happiest in the mornings.  She loves to smile and laugh at me and listens to every word I utter to her.  She is very into toys that make noise right now, especially this musical panda.  She also still likes rattles and things that squeak.  Freddie Firefly is another one of her favs.  She also likes connecting rings and if I hold them in front of her, she'll grab them and examine them.  Very cute!  You can tell in the last week or two that a lot is really coming together in her head about how to do things with her hands and body.  It's exciting to watch!  She loves stimulation and I can tell I need to play with her a lot to keep her amused these days.

Allie is still a good sleeper.  Although, as soon as I typed this statement she did have a night when she was up about three times, but those nights are rare.  Luckily it seemed to be a fluke, because the next night she was back to normal.  Her typical sleep schedule goes something like this:

Start bedtime routine between 7:30-8:30 (tonight it was actually earlier).  She gets a bath about every other night, then changed into a fresh diaper, jammies, read a story, one last feeding, then down to bed in the Merlin's Magic Sleep Suit in the crib.
She either sleeps through the night or is up once for a feeding and diaper change (usually around 3am), but usually goes back down without a problem.
Wake time is anywhere from 6ish to 7:30am.
She has a nap or two at some point in the morning, but morning seems to vary pretty wildly.  Sometimes she'll be napping an hour or two after she's up and then have another late morning, sometimes just one nap in the middle of the morning, sometimes it's short, sometimes it's long, there's really no definite pattern there.
She has her longest nap for the day in the middle of the day, which I attribute that to happening when I drag her to lunch or other places with me.  This nap can be anywhere from an hour to three or four hours max (that's when I do the drive to/from Hilton Head, because she can usually make it almost the whole way there in the car sleeping).
She has one more short nap late afternoon, and then is up til bedtime.

I really don't know if this is "normal" compared to other babies her age.  I know there's a lot of controversy around whether you should plan around baby's sleep or whether you should do what you want and have them adapt to your schedule.  I feel like I do a combination of both.  That midday chunk when she naps while we are out is more me taking her to what I want to do, but the rest of the day I just try to be conscious of what she might need  in terms of naps and follow her cues if she seems fussy/tired.  For instance, if we get home from an outing and she's been asleep in the car seat for two or three hours, I know that she's definitely going to need a good chunk of play time at home out of the car seat and try not to drag her anywhere else.  That includes walks in the stroller, because I hate having to put her back in the car seat again if she just got out of one.  I feel like this works reasonably well for us.  I actually think we both do better overall on days when we do have plans and get out of the house than when we're stuck at home.

Napping on me the other day.

I don't know if this nap schedule, or lack of one, will change when she goes to daycare and is in one place all day long.  I just know that it's worked well for us so far so I hesitate to change anything, even though I'm guessing that most babies do a more evenly spaced nap schedule instead of that big midday nap Allie usually has.  I just hope when she does go to daycare that whatever she does for naps there doesn't change our nightly schedule because if it stays like it is now, I should be able to get enough sleep for work.  If she decides to be up more at night, it's going to be rough!

Allie babbles constantly now.  She says "ohhhh" over and over in a soft, cute little voice.  It pretty much melts my heart.  Here's a video of her doing it, and playing with the bird attached to her play mat.

We just got back from another visit with my parents in Hilton Head.  We were down there for about five days but it went by SO FAST!  Before I went on maternity leave, I couldn't wait for these visits because I thought it would feel like so much more leisure time to spend there, but they seem to go by just as fast as when I would go for a weekend before I had Allie.  I also end up teary and sad every time I leave because I just enjoy the time with my parents so much.  I love watching them with Allie, it makes my heart so full.  So far we've managed to visit at least once a month if not more, and I hope this continues.  Allie seems to love it there and is usually really happy and sleeps well.  I am thinking about moving in...  just kidding.  Sort of.

Breastfeeding is still going really well.  I've heard about babies getting to a stage where they get annoyed if you talk while feeding them, and Allie recently started this.  She doesn't really like any major noise that might distract her while eating, including phones ringing, loud TV, dog barking, etc... and will sometimes unlatch and give me a look like "Hey!  I'm eating here, do you mind??"  It's funny.  I would say she eats about 7-8 times a day (including the night feeding if she has one), or about every 2-3 hours.
I was getting worried about her taking bottles because a bunch of times Greg has tried and while she'll eat some, she rarely would finish a bottle.  Thankfully, while in Hilton Head this week, my mom successfully fed her some bottles and she either ate most of or finished them so now I'm less worried about it, which is important for daycare.  I am pretty sure I have decided to at least try pumping at work and having daycare feed her breast milk to see how it goes.  I have a private office and my own mini fridge at work and have always been able to pump pretty quickly, so I feel like it could work for us.  I just need to see if pumping, daycare feeding, and the whole equation all work once I go back to work.  I really don't have anything against formula but kind of don't know where I would even begin to figure out what kind Allie would eat if we were going to go that route since she hasn't had any yet.  I will talk to her pediatrician about it at the next appointment just in case.

Allie laughing at me singing "Don't Worry Be Happy" to her.

Allie is wearing 3 month and 3-6 month clothing.  She's in size two diapers now.  I even gave away a bunch of unused, size one diapers because it was obvious she can't squeeze into them anymore.
She has her four month appointment coming up in about two weeks, so we should have more stats on her then.

I feel like Allie and I get closer every day and I'm more and more in love with her.  I can't stop sniffing her, kissing her head, and hugging her.  Watching her grow and learn is amazing.  The experience of being her mother is truly amazing and surreal.  I feel like I'm still figuring out all of the emotions I'm feeling. Everything from that this is how it was always meant to be to what happened to my old life?  It's all in there and I kind of feel like I haven't exactly figured out how to feel about it all yet.

Probably the biggest challenge of all has been for Greg and I getting used to marriage with a baby.  It's been tough, but I think we're slowly getting acclimated.  I think because we spent over eleven years together and almost seven married years without children, it's been a really big adjustment for us.  Greg was never a one of those guys who always wanted kids (he was open to it, but didn't have an overwhelming desire like I did) and I think this is a bigger adjustment for him than me.  A lot of my friends have told me their husbands had trouble bonding and adjusting to the baby in the first months and I definitely think that's the case for us too.  Especially with him gone a lot.  It also didn't help that he was very sick for a few weeks of her life and really avoided holding her during this time in fear of getting her sick.  I really hope his bond with Allie will continue to get stronger, because I see the potential of what their bond can be.  I think Allie is lucky to have such a smart, interesting father, and I know she's going to learn a lot from him.

I am below my pre-pregnancy weight now.  I still think my body is shaped a lot differently and I have had to retire some of my old clothes and buy new stuff that fits my shape better.  I think I'm just lucky, because working out has actually taken a back seat lately, more than in the beginning of life with Allie.  I haven't been to a yoga class in weeks, running rarely happens, and even walks are getting difficult because the hot weather  (and lots of rainy days too) has arrived in Charlotte and it's hard to find the perfect time to walk with Allie and Clyde now that I can't just walk out the door in the middle of the day because the temps are above 80.  I also feel kind of exhausted a lot of the time and it just doesn't seem that appealing to work out.  I was talking to my mom about my running the other day and made the point that I love running so much more when I can do it regularly and have broken through that "threshold" of running comfort.  Running can kind of suck when all you can do is get in a couple miles once a week or so and you're never really getting over that hurdle of building any kind of endurance or speed.  I know I should try to make it a bigger priority, but right now I kind of don't care.  Hopefully I'll find the time and desire again.  I will say that I think I'm still pretty active.  I do still go for a lot of walks, and I am rarely just sitting.  That probably helps!

I will update more after Allie's four month check up!


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