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About

Ashlee is Mama of one darling boy. A 28 week early bird, now 1 and some change, doing beautifully. She lives near Chicago with her sweetheart husband and French Bulldog. She's a thinker not afraid to get her silly on. Babywearer, veggie queen, photography nut. Before the domestic days Ashlee was pursuing a future in developmental psychology but has happily shifted gears in favor of staying at home and couldn't imagine doing anything else. In her free time (ha!) you can find her whipping up babyslings, holding down the fort at Mama Speaks and spotlighting as an Itsy Bitsy Yoga Instructor.

Mama's Nest

Wordless Wednesday - Quack Wednesday, January 31, 2007 |

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• 14 Chirping

Happy Home-iversary Saturday, January 27, 2007 |

One year ago today we brought our baby home for the first time. All 4 pounds 12 ounces of him. He was 44 days old. The longest 44 days of our life.

We'd slept over at the hospital with Xavier the night before in the NICU's special 'parent care' room- our trial run for coming home. He was still hooked up to monitors, but the joy of sitting on a couch or taking a phone call and having him right there was amazing. We woke early and had breakfast together... all of us- as a family. The nurse came in and took X back to the unit so they could get his stats and wait for the doctor to do his rounds. We waited, and waited and waited... minutes taking hours in our eager anticipation. Finally the doctor came to do his rounds, we nervously stood by hoping he didn't find some last minute issue that would keep us from going... finally he turned to us, "He's ready for discharge."

We had checklists to go over, papers to sign stating that he was in fact our child, one last shot to squirm through. His nurse removed his leads and monitors and handed him to me - for the first time cord-free.

Before I knew it we were snapping him into the car seat, grabbing our things and preparing to leave. It was so surreal. After so many days this artificial place had become our home, the nurses and doctors our extended family. As eager as we were to put it all behind us I was beginning to realize there was a part of me sad to leave. We said our goodbye's and Donna- our angel of a nurse- led us to the NICU door and for the first time we stepped over the threshold with our boy. It was really happening. Down the hospital hallways to the front door- she waited with me as David pulled up the car - "hospital policy", but we both knew it was more. We couldn't have done it with out her.

David arrived at the curb and she walked us outside. He'd never been outside. I will never forget the bite of that afternoon - the sun in the sky, the crispness of the air - we were REALLY about leave. I put X in the car and slid in beside him. David got behind the wheel. We said goodbye to Donna, and drove away never looking back.

We arrived at our house and it immediately became a home

• 11 Chirping

Pick Me Up |

I've been researching babywearing lately (I'm working on a project to be disclosed soon, I promise!) and came across these wonderful facts - as if we needed reasons!

1. Baby-wearing recreates the oneness of the baby and mother that existed in the womb which is absolutely necessary for proper development of the infant and the mother's levels of mothering hormone, prolactin.

2. Baby-wearing provides fathers a way to share the nurturing as well as enhances bonding in the family.

3. Baby-carrying helps the baby maintain equilibrium and provides movement to the baby in all three directions, essential to proprioception (body awareness).

4. Baby-carrying provides the natural rhythm of movement and tactile stimulation that small babies need for proper neurological development. Constantly carried babies fall asleep quickly in the comfort of their sling - some babies may always fall asleep while carried.

5. Baby-carrying stimulates optimal development of the cerebellum of the brain, the only part of the brain that continually increases in cells as the baby gets older.

6. Baby-carrying enables the mother to be acutely responsive and aware of her baby's cues and signals. Baby-carrying increases maternal sensitivity and heightens parent's perceptions of their children's needs. Mothers become so sensitive to their baby that they can anticipate hunger needs, waking, and the need for a clean diaper.

7. Baby-carrying holds baby securely leaving the parent's hands free for working at a desk, in the kitchen or garden, or shopping at the market.

8. Baby-carrying allows the baby to be an active participant in the walking, talking, laughing, movement, and working of the parent.

9. Baby-wearing in a sling or backpack is the most comfortable and easy way to hold baby on the parent's shoulders, backs and hips. Baby-wearing distributes weight evenly from parent's shoulders to hips and aligns baby's center of gravity as close to parent's body as possible. Plastic carseat carriers create severe torsion and strain in the caregiver's back and arms, and an unnatural gait.

10. Baby-carrying develops the back muscles necessary to carry the baby and corrects posture in the caregiver.

11. Babies are easy to wear and parents learn to relax and touch, even if they were not touched often as children or are awkward with physical intimacy and closeness.

12. Carrying infants lowers the level of stress hormones and adrenalin circulating in the blood stream of the infant, as well as the parent/caregiver.

13. Infants who are not carried can be at risk for the brain pathways that modulate pleasure being improperly or incompletely developed, and thus prone towards addiction later in life.

14. Babies that are carried develop a strong bond with their mothers and a solid emotional security pattern in the foundations of their psyche.

15. Baby carrying greatly reduces crying and fussiness (one study reported in the 1986 Paediatrics Medical Journal found 43% less crying during the day and 51% less at night), mothers feel more competent and nurturing toward their infant and are less likely to act in abusive ways towards their children. This author found that baby-carrying resulted in crying less than 1% of the time for the first year of the baby's life.

16. Continuously carried infants actually initiate separation faster and become more emotionally self-reliant.

17. Baby-carrying creates autonomy as well as a healthy development of physical intimacy and touching between parents and children. Baby-carrying gives healthy messages of touching to children and they learn to give and receive affection and touching in healthy ways. Carried infants are less likely to have sexual problems later in life.

18. Babies who are touched and carried continuously develop larger brains than infants who are denied this stimulation.

19. Babies who are carried have a lower mortality rate than infants who are denied this constant contact.

20. Baby-carrying greatly benefits premature infants and lowers their mortality rate (called Kangaroo care in Neonatal nursing).

21. Babies who are carried cry less, smile more, are less prone to vomiting and spitting up.

22. Infants who are carried experience reduced or little incidence of colic.

23. Carried babies experience an enhanced degree of bonding with their caregiver.

24. Baby-carrying allows parents to accomplish their day-to-day activities and still be in close physical contact with their babies.

25. Baby-carrying develops bonding and attachment between parent and child, shows love and affection, and parental-child love is expressed and actively demonstrated on a constant basis.

26. Baby-carrying tells children they are loved, safe, secured and cared for.

27. Baby-carrying creates children that are more involved in their parent's life and more likely to be involved in their own lives and less isolated as adults.

28. Baby-carrying allows children to be AT the center of activity rather than being the center of attention, which is a healthy atmosphere for development of empathy, affection and a healthy sense of self.

29. Baby-carrying offers constant and easy access to the infant's food source, mother's breastmilk.

30. Babies sleep comfortably and for longer periods of time while carried.

31. Babies who are carried have a solid sense of self-esteem and independence.

32. Carrying of the infant is the most important factor responsible for the infant's normal and social development.

33. Baby-carrying is a natural soothing baby tranquilizer which helps fussy or tired infants fall asleep.

34. Baby-carrying stimulates the tactile receptors in the skin, developing muscle tone, increases cardiac output which increases circulation, promotes respiration and aids in digestion.

35. Baby-carrying on the body provides the elements of pressure, motion, pleasure, warmth, security, sound that is essential to the development of the vestibular nervous system during infant development.

36. Baby-carrying provides the exact level and kind of stimulation an infant requires, energizing their nervous system and providing quiet and calm alertness in the infant.

37. Older infants learn more as they are in a vertical position or semi-vertical position which encourages an alert state of arousal. Baby-carrying develops the muscles needed for the infant to sit, stand and walk. The baby must use his muscles to fight gravity and hold his head up, building necessary muscle strength, control, and coordination.

38. Infants who are carried have less head lag, stronger neck and shoulder muscles, and walk on their own by ten months old versus the average North American walking age of eleven and a half (or more) months. Baby-carrying allows infants to retain the standing/stepping reflex present from birth which they use to push themselves up and grab onto mother.

39. Carried infants experience less vertigo and increased physical agility in adulthood, a superior sense of balance, precision of movement, and an awareness of their position in the space around them.

40. Baby carrying shortens the period that an infant is dependent on his caregiver, and carried infants initiate separation sooner and for longer periods due to their more secure attachment to the parent.

41. Baby carrying constantly allows the baby to complete its extra-uterine gestation period which is needed for the proper development and health of the infant.

42. Baby-carrying creates an intuitive sensitivity that allows mother to anticipate her baby's every mood and need and fully experience the joy of mothering.

43. Babywearing can help reduce the severity of postpartum depression in mothers who have had negative or endocrine-disrupting (epidurals and/or IV pitocin)) birth/delivery experiences, and can help stabilize new mother emotions.


Source: Lotus Fertility
Image: Getty Images

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• 7 Chirping

The Name Game Friday, January 26, 2007 |

I read Stephanie's post this morning and got to thinking about our little one's name. I think one of the most exciting parts of becoming a parent is naming you child. (One of the greatest responsibilities too!) The second I became pregnant I started dreaming up names. Ever where I went I listened carefully to people's name- strained to hear what the mother in the grocery store was yelling across the aisle. David and I would lie in bed at night at rattle off names that popped in our heads, people we'd known, celebrities, sometimes coming up with really awful one's just for laughs. Thankfully we had the same opinions about most which made things pretty easy.

We didn't know if we were having a boy or girl and didn't want to find out so we kept a running list of favorites for each gender. We made the mistake of sharing a few with family and friends... we loved the name Anouk (after falling in love with the little girl from Chocolat) you can imagine the faces our family made about that one. And I loved Jackson for a little boy, we'd call him Jack I thought... until one of David's co-workers pointed out that there's a country singer (I know nothing about country music) named Allen Jackson and our boy would be Jackson Allen, yeah - that was just too much for me. At which point we decided to keep out lips sealed.

And then our babe surprised and decided to he was ready to be out in this big world. We only got a brief glimpse at him, but David and I looked at each other and just knew he was to be named Xavier. His middle name took a little longer - I wanted something a bit unique, David more traditional. He wanted his middle name to be Michael, the same as his (my brother's middle name too). And I just wasn't sure. He went without a middle name for a day or two (no rush since we weren't going anywhere) and after thinking it over (and talking to hubby and my brother) I relented and went with Michael. And it just fit perfectly.

And so our boy was named - Xavier, means "new house or dwelling" (also the patron saint of the Orient and missionaries if you're into that sort of thing)- Michael, means "who is like God".

I'd love to hear how you came up with your children's names too. Let me know in the comments if you'd like
!

• 11 Chirping

Wheee! Pee... Thursday, January 25, 2007 |

Xavier's little potty has sat in our living room for a couple weeks now. About once a day he shows interest in it and I remove his diaper and set him on it, like a true man he asks for a book and I sit with him and read until he signs 'all done'. No results, but he's seemed to really enjoy the routine. Today, however... David and I put X on his potty to read his animal book over... and over.. and over again as he demonstrated how he can "quack" and "woof" and "cock-a-doodle-doo". Eventually tells us he's done and I help him down - but wait! There's pee in there! Celebration, clapping, and cheers ensue! and then the day moves on. After all that had to be a fluke...

Fast forward an hour or two, Xav and I are immersed in our cars and trucks - pushing and chasing and vrooming all over the place, when he gets this funny look on his face, crab walks it to the pot and says "Uh-Oh!" I run over take off his diaper, help him up, grab the book and immediately he pee's. In his potty. Again! So cool! Is this supposed to be happening?!

I am definitely entering uncharted territory here! Do we get more proactive with the training or continue following his lead - I certainly don't want to put any pressure on him, but if he's initiating I don't want to hold him back...

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• 11 Chirping

Wordless Wednesday - Uh-Oh's Wednesday, January 24, 2007 |

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• 16 Chirping

Crapple Juice Tuesday, January 23, 2007 |

Please save yourself the trouble and never, NEVER buy natural apple juice on clearance. Especially if there's no expiration date. I thought I'd save a couple of bucks but ended up wasting two and a whole bunch of taste buds instead. I can't even describe the horror, no longer juice, not quite liquor - somewhere in between in liquidy limbo. Anyway, consider yourself warned.

• 5 Chirping

Easy Like Sunday Morning |

I was talking to an old friend the other day - catching up and mostly raving about our little ones as usual. We were getting all gushy and such and then she told me I was lucky that Xav was so 'easy'. What?! I had never thought of X as easy - probably because I've never thought of parenting as easy - I generally have the mind set that if things are easy you're doing something wrong. I finally got to the bottom of what she meant, which was that we haven't had any battles with Xav. We don't struggle at bedtime, have feeding, crying or 'discipline' issues. I think part of this is his temperament, he's a pretty happy guy, but he's also very independent and has quite a feisty streak. But more than that, and I'm not saying that we do anything or everything right here, I think our style of parenting has created a relationship where those battles simply have no place to exist. If I had to define how we parent we'd definitely fall under the Attachment Parenting label, but I like to think of it more as Intuitive or Instictive parenting. I have simply let my instincts guide me. If my baby cries I comfort him, if he's hungry I feed him, if he's tired he sleeps - if not he stays awake, if he is 'acting up' I take the time to see things from his eyes, figure out what's going on and respond appropriately. We spend a lot of time together, not just doing busy life things, but really paying attention - I know him and he knows me. We have a relationship built upon a foundation of trust and predictability.

I think this is what's missing from so many babies lives. And so many parents are missing out. In fear of spoiling their babies they try to teach them to be independent, "They need to cry it out and learn to soothe themselves", "Don't let that baby manipulate you." What they don't realize is that you can't spoil a baby, they are not manipulative and they are innately dependent. Human babies are one of the only living 'animals' that need complete care at birth. They are made this way for a reason! These parents may eventually say, "Now I have a good baby, she rarely cries and goes to sleep by herself, etc.." But what they've created is a broken baby, a baby who is defeated - she's been shown that her cries - her only means of communication - mean nothing. That they don't warrant a response - that what she feels doesn't matter. Now don't get me wrong, babies - kids in general - are incredibly resilient. These babies will be ok. There are children who go through hell and back that end up changing the world. But I for one am not striving for 'OK'.

I think our society has a lot to do with it. It seems to absolutely promote detachment parenting under the guise of doing what's best for your child. And I'd go so far as to say that our consumerism has a lot to do with it as well. There is so much 'stuff' out there for babies. Things that new parents think they need and have to use (I pretty sure my dad thinks X was abused because we never had a baby swing). There are lists everywhere of the basics and extras and stuff that you must have before you bring your baby home. And if we're to be good parents we need to run out and register for or buy it all right? I wish someone would have told us the truth when I was pregnant! I learned very quickly that there was actually very little I needed: diapers, sling, clothes, mama - um.... you get what I'm saying? The swings, bouncers, cribs, play yards, exersaucers ... all too often become baby holders or baby sitters. I read somewhere once that babies in other cultures are held 90% of the time - American babies less than 25%. That just makes me sad. Why don't we realize that the only holder baby really needs is someone who loves him. Babies need their mothers beside them.

I don't mean to rant or criticize, this is just something that has always weighed heavy on me. Don't get me wrong I think every parent does the best with what they know at the time. I just wish more parents would listen to themselves - shut out all the noise of the world and those around them and just listen to what's inside. Follow the instinct that is inherent in all of us whether it is acknowledged or not and simply trust what it guides us to do.

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• 11 Chirping

Happy Monday - Happy Knees Monday, January 22, 2007 |

Xavier crawls with this sort of crab walk, where one knee stays bent, foot flat on the floor while the other scoots across the ground, propelling him at alarming speed. Very cute. Very efficient. But not so nice on his little knee. He also has quite a Buddha belly, pants dig in and his tum rolls over, which means when we're home he's almost always scooting around in a just a shirt or onesie. Naked legs (or leg actually) on a cold hardwood floor, have led to a chapped calf and semi-calloused knee. I've tried pants- to slippery and the belly issue of course, long socks- saved the calf, but also slippery and still leave that knee wide open... I was beginning to think I needed to resign to grimacing as he shuffled across the floor and just keep on providing a super tender leg massage at the end of the day to repair the damage.

And then... Steph, recommended some Baby Legs, which she'd just bought for Gray. I did some searching and headed over to Urban Baby Runway to buy a pair. They arrived this weekend and are perfect! Hooray for happy knees! So for your viewing pleasure - here's X rocking his Bones Baby Legs on his new potty!

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• 10 Chirping

Hungry Anyone? Friday, January 19, 2007 |

I decided to have my first cup of coffee in over a year at 10pm tonight. Caffeinated coffee. I was beat and needed to get some work done so I threw caution to the wind and got a little crazy. It tasted great and I got my work done, but I feel a little loopy and have a splitting headache. Oh, yeah and it's now 1:30am and I'm still wide awake.

The result? I've finally posted some recipes on my foodie blog... Tasty Vegan just incase anyone else feels like cooking the night away...

• 9 Chirping

Wordless Wednesday - Finally... SNOW! Wednesday, January 17, 2007 |




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• 20 Chirping

Mama Needs a Nintendo DS Sunday, January 14, 2007 |


Can you see why?! Papa's Nintendo has become one of Xavier's favorite 'books', but with a house full of boys pink stuff is strictly Mama's domain. We all know I need all the 'hip'-ness help I can get and after nearly 2 years of 'mommy brain' maybe that 'Brain Age' just might do me some good!

You can join the fun courtesy of Crazy Hip Blog Mamas

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• 3 Chirping

What does love mean? Saturday, January 13, 2007 |

My darling husband sent me a link to this post -
ENJOY!

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• 4 Chirping

Baby-Free Thursday, January 11, 2007 |

For nearly 13 months Xavier has been by my side (on my side is probably a more accurate description). And with the exception of the necessities in the NICU I have not left him. At all. With anybody. Not even his Papa (who is, I might mention, a wonderful Papa).

Partially out of philosophy
(I just don't think someone else should watch my child), part necessity (nursing) and a whole lot of desire (why would I want to be without him for a second!) ... And I have loved, without reservation, every second.

I spent a lot of my life moving through awkwardness. I was shy, self-conscious, never quite fit in - which was ok because fitting in wasn't necessarily my style - but I felt strange in my skin none the less. Since becoming a mom, however, I've found my purpose.
This is my calling. This is what I'm here for. And all at once I have transitioned into this woman who is comfortable in her skin. Confident. Focused. At ease.

And so, since becoming a mother - Xavier's mother - I have found no desire to 'take a break' or have 'me' time. This is all I want to do. I have embraced it. We 've centered things around our new family, child-focused and molded the rest of life around.
But...

I'm going to start teaching yoga classes within the next month and while I'll only be away for an hour or two once a week, I started to think it probably wasn't a good idea to wait until my first class to leave Xavier for the first time...I decided to see if Stephanie would like to go out for her birthday. Just the two of us. Babies at home with our darling husbands. Just her and I for soup and sandwiches and lots of chatting at Panera. Close to home but still away. Did I mention no babies?

So around 5:45 this evening I made the rounds with kisses, said 'See you later', and walked down the stairs to the car for the first time in a year -
by myself. I felt naked. I felt nervous. I cried pulling out the driveway. But then something wonderful happened. I felt great. Relaxed, peaceful, proud. David and Xavier were going to be fine and I was off to have a great time with my best friend. And we did.

I picked up Steph, we headed to Panera, ordered our meals, placed our cell phones on the table and got lost in good food and great conversation for an hour or so. We trekked over to Target to pick up a few things (did you know they make sleds for babies? Yes, we're praying for snow) and then we headed back home. To our husbands and babes and boys. A simple night, but wonderful.

I came home to a house still standing. A house happy. Toys all over the place. David and Xavier being silly upstairs, still sparkling from the bath. I shouted I was home, climbed the stairs. As I peeked around the corner Xavier got all kinds of excited - began to crawl towards me and smile. The kind of smile that says "I'm really glad to see you, but it was kind of nice not to see you for a while." And after some thought I've decided that is a wonderful thing.

Sure I missed some things. X learned how to say pig and oink while I was gone. But I gained a lot. I feel refreshed, have a spring in my step I didn't know I was missing. Bonded with my buddy in a way we haven't yet, we're like sisters - separated at birth, but since we've met we've always spent time together focused on our little one's. And probably, best of all, my boys spent time together. Just the two of them. Being boys. No girls allowed.

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• 15 Chirping

Wordless Wednesday - Spaghetti stand-off Wednesday, January 10, 2007 |

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• 22 Chirping

How are you supporting breastfeeding this year? Tuesday, January 09, 2007 |

You can start by taking the Motherwear pledge to support breastfeeding in 2007. You don't even have to be currently nursing to participate - you can just vow to support those who are!

It will make you feel nice and toasty... (and you can win $100 gift certificate!)

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• 5 Chirping

My Resolution - Stillness |

"Stillness is not the absence or negation of energy, life, or movement. Stillness is dynamic. It is unconflicted movement, life in harmony with itself, skill in action. It can be experienced whenever there is total, uninhibited, unconflicted participation in the in the moment you are in-when you are wholeheartedly present with whatever you are doing"
-Erich Schiffmann
"Yoga, The Spirit and Practice of Moving into Stillness"


This year, I will slow down. I will be present in each moment. Fully present. Fully aware in whatever I do. Wholeheartedly immersed in whatever it is. This means doing the impossible, limiting multi-tasking, keeping but one ball in the air at a time - at a time when I am stretched in more directions than ever before. It will be worth it. Time gets so fragmented and we often miss so much of the little stuff in trying to do it all. I don't want to miss a thing. None of the important stuff anyway...

Slow down. Be still. Be present.

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• 4 Chirping

They Say it's Her Birthday... Monday, January 08, 2007 |

Be sure to head over and wish our dear
Stephanie (Adventures in Babywearing)
a Happy 30th Birthday!

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• 3 Chirping

Updates....Pacifier's and Pee-Pee Friday, January 05, 2007 |

Chapter 1: The Pacifier
Xavier's always been indifferent about the car. He likes going out and usually doesn't mind the ride, he just doesn't like the confinement. Usually not a problem but lately if we combine a sleepy X and an excursion the outcome is unpredictable. Sometimes he'll coo right to sleep, others he starts to cry. And he's not a crier but this is the "there is absolutely nothing in the world other than getting me out of this seat that will calm me down" cry, "even if I'm choking and purple". If David's driving I ride in back and nurse him in the car seat - problem solved. But if I'm alone, there's been nothing I can do, I've tried EVERYTHING and it just breaks my heart to hear him cry like that...

I'll start this paragraph by saying I HATE pacifiers (do you see where this is going, yet?) especially when they are referred to as "plugs" and used as such. Xavier had a few nurses in the NICU who were huge fans of pacifiers, I would "accidentally" drop them on the floor or in the trash every chance I got and I think they eventually got the hint. So from there on out no paci's for my guy. But as I said I was running out of options and so at the age when most mommies are trying to wean their babes off the pacifier I get the bright idea to try to introduce one to mine.

So, we're grocery shopping and I take a detour to grab a pacifier and a thing to clip it to the car seat strap (who knew there were so many options!) after much debating X and I decided on one highly recommended by someone's orthodontist, at least that's what the package said. Next time we head out I explain to Xavier what it is and show him how to use it. He listens well enough and looks kind of excited about things. So I hand it to him. He shrieks with delight, promptly starts tweaking the nipple side with one hand and shoves the handle in his mouth with the other. Ahh, that's my boy!

Chapter 2: The Pee-Pee's
Xavier, in his robot tee and fresh diaper, was playing of the floor tonight with his Papa - being all kinds of silly at my feet as I put together some Chick-Un Pot-Pies for dinner. Xavier starts grabbing at his diaper and making a little noise. So we ask if he went pee or if he needs a new diaper and he indicated he does. David goes to change him and he lays down quietly, lifts his legs and helps out beautifully (a big change from the Olympic sport that has become diaper changing in out house). Night goes on, not too much later he does the same thing, I ask, he indicates, happy diaper change. Then bed time rolls around - he stops in the middle of nursing and sits up, to give me the usual delirious smile and giggle I'm certain, but he points to his diaper and excitedly tells me "eeee-eee". I check and sure enough, fresh and warm. I'm not big on Elimination Communication, but I've always taken him to the bathroom with me and I explain what's going on when I change his diaper and such. Not sure if this means it's time to invest in a Xavier sized toilet or just keep an eye on things but an evening's worth of pee has never made a mama so proud.

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• 6 Chirping

This Is What I Live For... |

• 9 Chirping

The Dangers of Co-Sleeping Thursday, January 04, 2007 |


  1. Parents and infants sleep better
  2. Breastfeeding is easier
  3. Babies get more caregiving
  4. Parents and infants become more connected
  5. Higher self-esteem
  6. More positive behavior
  7. Increased life satisfaction
  8. Promotes sensitivity
  9. Reduces bedtime struggles
  10. It fosters an environment of acceptance
All of this topped with a pre-warmed bed, an entire night of snuggles and waking up to a chubby little hand tracing your cheek...sounds pretty risky doesn't it?!

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• 13 Chirping

Super Late Wordless Wednesday Wednesday, January 03, 2007 |

"Whatever... I rock"

• 8 Chirping

Yum...Food |

After 2 days - I can eat. I'm rejoicing. I love food.
I hear you kind of need it too.

• 1 Chirping

The New Years Curse? *updated Tuesday, January 02, 2007 |

Last New Year's was a joy. Yes, X was in the hospital but at 2 weeks old he was on an upswing, had begun breathing a bit on his own and was digesting a bit of my milk via feeding tube. All of this meant more time out of bed and in my arms. New Years Eve, David and I stayed at the hospital and rang in the New Year at Xavier's bed side with his nurses. New Year's day was wonderful, for the first time I was able to hold my baby boy hours uninterrupted. David and I went home that night for dinner with a peace we hadn't known in a while. Our darling was doing so well. The phone rang a few minutes after we'd been home. Hearts sank. David answered. My eyes pleaded. He tried to repeat what they were saying. It was the doctor. That meant trouble. Stopped breathing. Intubated. We couldn't get back fast enough.

Long story short Xavier had a serious respiratory infection. His throat had clogged with mucus that had probably been draining as I held him upright, but when placed on his back blocked his airway. He completely stopped breathing, had to be bagged and intubated. Put back on the ventilator, a machine taking every breath for him. A few days of fighting, another blood transfusion and slowly our fighter regained momentum.

Fast forward to this year. Glorious New Year's Eve party with family and friends. Home snuggled together in bed. Excited for the fresh start a new year brings. Looking forward to relaxing New Year's day, maybe removing every trace of Christmas and getting our house back to normal. Soon we're fast asleep. David wakes me up about 4am, he's shaking, tells me he's freezing and can't move. I touch him and he's burning up. Socks and blankets, get him up and moving, heating pad and tea. The chills subside a bit. His stomach is upset too, we suspect food poisoning or the flu. We're back to sleep soon and he wakes feeling a bit better. After breakfast I head upstairs to indulge in Xavier's morning nap with him. As soon as I wake up it hits me, I'm freezing, stomach churning... yuck!

It's the flu I'm convinced. We're feeling a bit better, still weak but starting to recover. I'm convinced this has become our unwelcome, very unwelcome, New Year's tradition. Hope your's is off to a better start!

*I wanted to reference my darling husbands post on this sick stuff... we're blaming it all on the tattooing...

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