Monday, June 28, 2010

Did she just "cry it out"???

Emma had a meltdown this afternoon at the New Mom's group that I go to. It was quite embarrassing because she interrupted everything.

I could tell that she was exhausted so I left the group, came home and put her right down to bed. That was around 1:30pm. She was initially asleep but awoke about 20 minutes later crying. I tried to soothe her back to sleep with no luck. Finally I fed her even though it was not time to eat. That didn't help either. She continued to wail in her crib. And she wailed. And wailed.

But...according to my video monitor, the little munchkin is asleep. Really? Can it be? We'll see.

Update: Yep, she ended up sleeping for about an hour and 15 minutes! Good girl. Painful to go through but if it helps her learn to self-soothe, probably worth it.

Monday, June 21, 2010

3 Months Old

Here's where we stand 3 months into this wild ride called parenthood (sorry, kind of lengthy, but this is a great way for my own selfish purposes to capture how things are going)...

Miss Emma Grace:

Sleep: Emma is finally in her crib! Hip hip hooray! And she's sleeping pretty well. We elevated the mattress some to help with the reflux. We try to put her down between 7-8pm. She usually goes until 2-3am. Feeds quickly and I put her right back down. She then sleeps until around 7am. I feed her quickly again and put her right back down. Then she sleeps until about 9am. She then can handle about an hour of wakefulness before she goes back down for a nap, which usually lasts at least an hour. Then, throughout the day, I let her have no more than 1 1/2 hours of wakefulness and then try to get her to nap. She has good napping weeks and not so good ones. But all in all, we are pleased with where we stand sleep-wise.

Reflux: Emma takes a 15mg solutab of Prevacid once a day. I think it's helping. She hasn't been nearly as fussy, she's spitting up less and doesn't seem to be in pain.

Developmental: The big milestone recently was rolling from stomach to back. She really has to work hard at it and sometimes won't do it all. But it's fun when she cooperates. She also babbles a lot, has great neck strength, and bears a lot of weight on her legs when you hold her up. She also seems to recognize her daddy and me and usually rewards us with some precious smiles. But she also will give strangers smiles, so no anxiety yet.

I've printed out a list from the American Pregnancy Association that details milestones by month. Yes, I know each baby is different but it is nice seeing around what month she should be doing what. The items listed for the "Fourth Month" that Emma hasn't started doing yet are: tries to reach for objects but overshoots, grasps objects with both hands (she does do this with her blankie), and laughs. I can't wait for the laughs!

Work: My paid maternity leave ended on June 11th. I was very fortunate to get 12 weeks paid. I am now on the remaining 4 weeks of unpaid leave that I get under FMLA (in the D.C. area, you get 16 weeks for some reason). That takes me until about mid-July. I am going into work this afternoon to meet with the head on my account to figure out what kind of part-time options I may have. I know for sure that I'm not going to go back full-time. I would love to figure out something that allows me to do a certain number of hours during the week so I can work at night and over the weekend and not be locked into a set 8 hours workday. And something that limits the amount of time I have to be in an office. We'll see. I have my own research consulting company that I started a few years ago and have been fortunate enough to get some work during my leave. If I can't figure out something with my current employer, I may try to ramp up my own business so I can work from home.

This Summer: In about three weeks, hubby, baby, and I head to BERMUDA for a wedding. I absolutely can't wait. I've always wanted to go there. Of course, I didn't think I'd be toting an infant, but it will be great nonetheless. This will be our first plane travel and hotel staying with Emma. Hopefully it will all go smoothly. It is less than a 2 hours flight so it really shouldn't be bad at all. And we got a crib for our hotel room so hopefully Emma won't know the difference.

Sunscreen: I'm starting to stock up on sunscreen, which I use on Emma every day and will load on in Bermuda. So far, I really like California Baby (though it's WAY too expensive) and Blue Lizard Baby (much cheaper). I read that you should use a non-chemical kind with zinc and/or titanium dioxide that just sits on the surface of the skin. I tried Neutrogena Baby Pure and Free sunscreen and it gave Emma bumps on her skin, which is weird because I don't think she has sensitive skin.

Favorite Toys: Emma really doesn't pay any attention to toys yet. I put rattles and other fun, colored stuff in front of her and she just stares. She does love, love, love her playmat (and it was a free, hand-me-down, so even better!). She will stay on it for 20-30 minutes straight, just staring at the blinking lights and kicking her feet. She also just got some black and white animal flashcards that she seems to like. Again, she just stares but it seem to captivate her and hopefully it's making her into a genius :) It will be so much fun when she plays more, but that brings more toys and we don't have much space in our condo.

The wrap-up: I think that about wraps it up. I find myself frequently saying "I can't wait until Emma does..." such and such. But then I stop and kick myself. I want to enjoy every single day with her and appreciate the stage that she is in that very day. I don't want her to grow up too fast. I want her to be my little baby girl for as long as possible. And I sometimes kiss her chubby cheeks or stroke her back and think that at some point she won't want me to do that anymore. So I try to appreciate every single second. I think I fall more in love with her everyday. Ok, I better stop. Getting a little choked up! Kudos to those of you who read the whole post! Thanks.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Daddy's Day!

Today is my husband's first Father's Day.

Emma (aka Mommy) made him a card with a poem based on the book "Snuggle Puppy." It went something like "Oooo Snuggle Daddy of mine, everything about you is especially fine..." I guess if you know the book you might appreciate it :)

Here's a picture in honor of my hubby who is really a terrific daddy.


And Emma is three months old today. Wow! My little girl is growing up!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Please stop crying!

Emma has been SCREAMING in her crib for almost 2 hours.

I'm way past my limit.

We've picked her up and rocked her probably five times already. She goes back to sleep. And as soon as her head hits the mattress, it's ear-piercing screams.

Thank God hubby is here or I might have left the house!

She's such an angel 90% of the time...but when she's not, she's really, really not!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Rolling Over!

We started working on rolling over - tummy to back - yesterday...she's a fast learner!

video

Friday, June 11, 2010

Anniversaries

I have several anniversaries this month. So "Happy Anniversaries" to me!

1) On June 8, 2009, I wrote my very first blog post on Hope in Virginia. This is my 74th blog post since then. Happy Blog Anniversary! I love all the blog friends that I have found over the past year and so appreciate your love, support and comments!

2) June 9th was the 9 year anniversary of saying "I Do" to my hubby, my best friend, my high school sweetheart. We went on our first date in 1995. I was 16. He was 18. Six years later, in 2001, we married. And here we are...9 years later. It definitely hasn't been easy but there is no doubt in my mind that God put him on this earth just for me! I love you, Mr. Hope!

2) Finally, June 18th marks the one year anniversary of starting my IVF cycle that resulted in my precious, beautiful baby Emma. Boy, what a year its been. One year ago, I never imagined I'd be holding my little baby girl, but here she is.

Friday, June 4, 2010

2 Months, 2 Weeks, 2 Days

Yep, that's where we're at...two months, two weeks, two days. It seems like forever ago that we brought Emma home, yet it feels like just yesterday. A contradiction, of course, but the truth.

An update on sleeping...She seems to be in the process of figuring out more of a routine. Twice last week she went to bed around 8pm and slept until about 8am with one feeding during the night. While I don't enjoy the middle-of-the-night feeding, I rather that than the fussiness we were having from 8pm-11pm each night.

My sleeping concerns now are:

1) We have a very hard time putting her down awake as recommended in all the sleep books...she just won't fall asleep and ends up screaming. To her credit, tonight I put her down mostly awake. She started fussing about 10 minutes later. I put her pacifier back in and rocked the carseat some and she did fall asleep.

2) She still refuses to sleep in her crib. We can get her to take her morning nap in the bassinet but that's the most she'll give us. No other naps can happen in the bassinet. Hopefully things will just click eventually for her but until then, it's still sleepy time in the carseat.

An update on reflux...The doctor switched her to Prevacid last week. She got the order called in as a liquid since otherwise it is in pill format. Well, apparently the only place that makes it into a liquid suspension is this place called a Medical Arts pharmacy that 1) doesn't take insurance, 2) doesn't take medical savings accounts cards, 3) is about a 30 minute drive away, and 4) charges $75 for a TWO WEEK supply. Needless to say I got her next refill done as a solutab that I'll dissolve myself. That came to $40 for a one month supply. Much better and the medicine seems to be working.

Here are some recent pictures of our little baby girl...

Sucking on the hand, one of her new favorite tricks. Hopefully it will lead to self-soothing.

Storytime with Daddy before bedtime.

With her rabbit blankie...she doesn't pay much attention to it but I think it's cute so I try to get her to hold it.

Camouflage on her playmat. She's just started trying to roll onto her side.