Yesterday afternoon we had a lovely visit from Chris and Jolie and the twins. Ellie woke up a little off and a little crabby, and the girls spent most of the visit just giving each other the eye. But of course, in the last half hour (after eating) they all warmed up and were racing around the house like tasmanian devils. Jolie brought the Big Sister some fabulous new tutu wear, and we tried to snap a picture of all three dressed up together.
Yesterday was a rough day for us. Ellie was all out of sorts (what I thought was teething turns out to be an actual runny nose, she was tired, I was snappy) and we did not have a fun afternoon. Plus at 6:30am our power went out - a transformer around the corner blew and left us all in the dark for a few hours.
Thankfully, I was able to pack up the kids and be at Gigi's house by 8am for a cup of coffee and a second breakfast, and lots of extra pairs of hands. Then we went to a baby shower where Ellie was a terror, but my girlfriends did their best to keep everyone calm and happy.
I have to admit, I bow down to our moms. I don't know how they did it, especially each having two kids within 18 months. I don't know what I'd do without having both sets of grandparents close by and easily available. I don't know what I'd do without DVR and twenty episodes of Daniel Tiger and Sesame Street at my instant disposal. I don't know what I'd do without facebook, and the ability to launch my complaints out into the universe and hear from other mom friends that it's okay and they understand what I'm going through.
My girlfriends have been really amazing to me this past week (and in the weeks previous too.) This week we had our meal train come through - a hot, home made dinner every night. Even though I've been managing to get a decent meal on the table most nights that we're home, it has been SUCH A RELIEF to just come home and warm something up. We've had extras for lunches and leftovers and even some to freeze for later. And bonus: my friends are great cooks and everything has been insanely delicious. Plus we've gotten the company of seeing everyone, and they've all been happy to take a turn snuggling with our new young friend.
So we're continuing to muddle through, though I'm thankful we're not doing it alone.
This morning Tim took Ellie to swim class as Gigi is entertaining company. He reports that they had a great time and she did well, and they came home with a giant apple fritter, so everyone wins. Meanwhile, Adam and I went on a walk. I am amazed at how much easier my walks are now - turns out that it takes a lot less effort to push a ten pound melon in the stroller, versus trying to push a 35 pound melon while 38 weeks pregnant. This week I've even started jogging again, which feels amazing. I am hoping to run a 5K at Thanksgiving, and it looks like it should be completely doable. Now I have to decide if I want to be one of those jerks who also runs pushing a stroller and acting like it's no big deal - those ladies used to really piss me off when they passed me, back in my more serious running days. Now I am one of those insane people (though let's be honest, the only people I pass are the elderly, and those stopping to pick up after their dogs. Fast I am not.)
Our little pork roast of a son is officially a month old today! Time has certainly flown, and it often feels like he's been here forever. I am still sort of in disbelief that he's here, and that he's ours, and that he's as sweet as he is.
Overall, he's a good baby, other than when he's got gas issues. He's started to sleep some longer chunks at night, usually from 9pm until 1 or 2am. Then he spends an hour eating and goes back to sleep until 6 or 7 in the morning. By 7, we've usually got our little Miss up and about, and sometimes peeking into the nursery. The first thing she wants to do every morning is check on Adam, hold him and kiss him. I'm so glad that she's so in love with him.
He continues to gain weight like a champ, and nurse well. I feel like it's my reward for the nightmare that was nursing Elizabeth during most of the first year. If he doesn't fall asleep eating, he will consent to fall asleep while sucking on a binky, but you have to hold it in for him (lazy!) The good news is that a binky is not his dad's finger. We are all grateful for that! He's also taken a bottle every weekend for the past few weeks, and we'll continue to work with him on that, so I don't end up trapped with him like I was with Ellie.
So overall, a great little Piglet. He's starting to be more alert, and beginning to make eye contact. I can't wait to see how his little personality develops in the months to come.
Our two little gifts. I love that Ellie's pigtails turn into one big curl.
We are having a pretty banner day here at the Fords, after a couple of tough ones due to Adam's overwhelming gassiness and need to burp his brains out.
This morning we went for a full scale family walk, leaving from our house. We've been driving to the trail and parking to save me a mile of uphill walking, but today I felt like I could take it on, and I did! Pushing both melons in their stroller, no less! It was a good feeling.
Tim suggested we try to take our brood out for lunch, and after feeding Adam into a coma, and making Ellie promise that she'd be a good listener and not whine, we headed out for sushi. And it was DELICIOUS. Everyone enjoyed. Ellie had quite the spread
She also enjoyed playing around with her daddy
She was overwhelmingly a good girl, for which I was grateful. Meanwhile the other day I discovered the key to feeding oneself while also keeping a newborn happy. Step one, put him in the Ergo. Step two, put a napkin over his head to protect him from potential spillage. Step three, chow down.
See? He is pleased.
After lunch I made Tim go to JC Penny and buy some new pants. He said we shouldn't risk it, but I promised it would be quick and fun, and it was the best shopping trip ever. I shoved him in a dressing room and threw pants over the top and meanwhile, Ellie stared at herself in the mirror and danced around and admired her dress and jelly shoes. Adam slept. And now Tim finally has some new shorts - the ones he's been wearing every weekend for years were purchased in preparation for our trip to China. In 2007. Ellie also got a chance to go up and down the escalator while I paid for everything. She was so delighted for the expedition, and I laughed because I could hear her little Muppet voice across the store.
Both kids are now napping, and I ventured out for a pedicure. Hopefully everyone will remain in good spirits when they awake from nap time. But no matter what, at least we have a good morning to remember!
Can you believe it? Little Miss Elizabeth Rosemarie is officially two and a half years old, as of yesterday. Is she pleased about it?
Umm... not really. I mean, she does hate to have her picture taken.
This is the best one I got
With the aid of a piece of candy
At two and a half, Ellie can:
-count most of the way to 20
-spell her name
-identify her name, and a few others (mama, daddy, etc) and recognizes a couple of letters
-She loves to pick out her own clothes (favorite items include her purple striped shirt, her Eiffel Tower shirt, various tutu skirts, her bee dress and her blue lace dress)
-She loves her brother most of all, and wants to see him and hold him first thing in the morning. She shushes him when he cries, loves to tell him bless you when he sneezes, and is very concerned when he poops or needs food.
-Her favorite books include If You Give a Cat a Cupcake, Color Kittens, Baby Dear and Little Bear Goes to Sleep -Favorite songs are any Miss Elena song, Single Ladies, "The Book Song" (aka the opening song from Book of Mormon), Pineapple Princess and Call Me Maybe
-Favorite shows are Daniel Tiger and Poppy Cat
-She loves to dance, play catch and play with blocks. Still very into coloring, both with crayons and chalk.
-Favorite animal is still bunnies. BUNNIES FOREVER AND ALWAYS!
-Favorite foods are yogurt, anything she can dip into a sauce (waffles, hamburgers, french fries), peanut butter sandwiches, and turkey roll ups. And any sort of dessert item - ice cream, whipped cream, cake, cupcakes. She feels all parties MUST involve cake.
-She's taking one nap a day, and sleeping well at night. She loves her new room, and especially a new quilt she just received that has a plush underside (aka: "softee.")
She loves climbing and exploring, and spending time with her grandparents. However, her greatest joy is every day when her daddy comes home from work and she can run screaming to him for a hug.
Another day, another dollar. Or diaper, whichever.
Adam continues to be a pretty good baby, but an easy newborn is still a newborn. Every time I lay down with him at night, I hope that THIS will be the time he sleeps 4-5 hours. And then two hours later on the dot, he's awake, farting and hungry. His favorite time to be awake is 3-5am. Not just during those hours, but all of those hours. The good news is he's cute.
-burping like a grown man
-farting like a grown man
-squealing like a piglet
-growing some delightful fat rolls
-riding in the ergo
-sleeping with his arms unswaddled so he can flail around
-eating and then farting again
-cuddling with his sister
-trying to hold his own head up
He does not enjoy:
-being forced to stop eating in order to burp
-having his diaper changed
-getting put into his car seat
-being put down
-driving in stop and go traffic
-sleeping for any significant period of time
Ellie continues to be very funny and sweet with him, though a little overwrought overall. It's hard because I'm low on sleep and patience, and am trying to remember that you get out what you put in, so the more time I can spend being understanding or affectionate is only going to benefit all of us. It's hard to be understanding when she's being an unreasonable two year old though. I can't believe she'll be two and a half in a few days! (I also REALLY cannot believe that when our moms had two and a half year olds, they also had full on one year old children as well. The idea of that makes me want to go lay face down in a ditch.) She is obsessed with reading, especially when used as a stalling technique before bed time. She's started drinking from an open cup, and is obsessed with having "cereal with milk" in the morning. She loves green vegetables, but calls asparagus "beans." Delicious, delicious asparagus beans. The older she gets, the more of a Grizz's girl she is, and so it's been very nice in the afternoon to go over there and watch the two of them play (even if they are pretty terrible at keeping the volume at a reasonable level.)
We are continuing to muddle through, thanks to lots of help from the grandparents and Tim. I've been able to shower every morning and am getting back to my walking routine, so life is not too terrible.
Week two of our regular life, with Tim back at work. This morning felt much less overwhelming, even though it was busier (and I slept less last night. I swear, if this kid doesn't quit pooping himself every two hours on the dot, I'm going to cut him back to three square meals a day and no meals or snacks past 7pm!) Ellie had a great day at preschool, and brought home a picture for our fridge. What more could you want? Adam and I went on a nice walk, and then ran a few errands. Perfect!
This is how our morning began. Be still my heart.
We also had a nice family walk yesterday, though like a dolt, I forgot Adam's bear hat in the house. So, he wore a hand me down.
Pink carseat, pink sweater, he rocks them all. Also, I love this afghan. My mom made the center part, and the granny squares on the edges were made by my Grandma Pat before she died. It is the perfect blanket for wrapping up a baby in a stroller.
See? Everyone loves it (three month old Ellie. Someone give that kid a wheelbarrow for her big head.)
So we're okay, we're fine
Baby I'm here to stop your crying
Chase all the ghosts from your head
I'm stronger than the monsters beneath your bed
Smarter than the tricks played on your heart
Look at them together then we'll take them apart
Adding up the total of a love that's true
Multiply life by the power of two
Adam is generally a pretty agreeable little man, and a good enough sleeper, but sometimes he's awake at inopportune times. Like, right when we all sit down to dinner. The good news is we've discovered that putting him in the Ergo carrier and swaying for a few minutes will calm him back to sleep almost instantly. I think it helps that his favorite sleeping position is on my chest with his head over my heart.
It also helps in that it leaves me with both hands free. Which allows me to do things like carry a diaper bag and an angry toddler who starts sobbing about how she doesn't want to leave Panera, she wants to stay there FOREVER. Good thing my csection has healed, yipes.
Hard to believe that not that long ago, my big toddler girl was a little hippie baby too.
We're halfway through our first week of regular life, and things are going mostly okay. I am coping with the sleep deprivation, Tim is coping with the random, sometimes irrational text messages I send him during the day. Adam is a decent enough sleeper at night, though he rarely goes more than two hours before waking himself up with a giant poop or a cacophony of farts. I have been able to transition him from sleeping in his bassinet next to me in bed to sleeping in his bassinet in his crib. I'm enjoying being able to spread out and relax a little - slept on my back for the first time since the second trimester the other night! During the day he's hit or miss. Sometimes he's comatose for hours, sometimes he wails a half hour after I put him down, sleeping soundly. The best bet for all snoozes is to let him lay on my chest for five minutes before trying to move him. He's my snuggle bug.
Ellie continues to be mostly sweet as a big sister, though she's obviously a little stressed by the lack of my constant attention. I am doing my best to be patient with her, but we could both do better. Thank goodness for lots of doting grandparents. Yesterday she had a lovely Tuesdays with Mimi outing - I had a less fun Tuesday when I cleaned out my closet and found that Lulu had peed in a bag of brand new, never worn shirts. THANKS JERK. Today I put Ellie down for a nap at Gigi's house and left Grizz in charge so that I could take Adam down to meet the knitters. I figured I'd be home before she woke up, so of course she popped out of bed a half hour later and informed Grizz that she'd pooped. I had, of course, not left a diaper or any wipes, but there was one random diaper floating around and Grizz made the best of it, despite his protestations that he does not do diaper changes.
I took both kids to the grocery store today, which felt like quite the accomplishment. Ellie rode in the seat part of the cart and Adam fell asleep in the ergo carrier like the small hippie he is. I love that dang thing. Ellie was mostly resigned to the fact that she was not going to get to "ride momma." The nice thing about the Ergo is that she does still fit in it, even if post c-section I would not dare to try it with her (the last time I carried her in it was less than two months ago though! From an eight pound infant to a thirty five pound toddler!)
So mostly, we are just keeping on, getting our sea legs under us. I'm looking forward to Adam sleeping in longer chunks so that I can get out of the nursery and get back in my own bed (I don't see the need for Tim to wake up every two hours at this point.) And for him to start smiling and cooing and interacting with me. The snuggling is sweet and all, but I'm ready for a little less blobbiness out of him. It is nice that he exhibits a little less back talk than Missy Moo, but you can't win them all.
Finally feeling back on track, thanks to our double stroller. We took Goldilocks and her three bear friends out for a little stroll yesterday. Ellie was delighted to see all of her dog friends, Adam whined for about a quarter mile and then fell asleep as I hoped he would. I was a little sore afterwards, and Tim grew weary of me continually nagging him to slow down.
Today is Tim's first day back at work, much to all of our dismay. Things have gone pretty well, but it's only 2pm (both kids are napping!) Ellie cried at preschool drop off but then was in good spirits when I showed up. Adam stayed asleep in his car seat long enough for me to have a snack with Ellie, read her a bunch of books several times and get her down for her nap, so for that I am eternally grateful. My biggest challenge over the past two weeks has been giving her enough of my attention. I know it'll even out in the near future, especially once Adam isn't spending an hour at a time eating, and she's gotten a lot of good quality time with her daddy and her grandparents, but it's still hard.
The upside is that at least I'm not the guy who got her brand new pink ball stuck at the top of a very tall palm tree. That guy would be Grizz (thankfully, the ball was rescued not long after.)
Yesterday I ventured out with both kids by myself to visit Mommy Matters, even though Theresa (the nurse who runs it) forbid me from coming until Adam was three weeks old. I couldn't help myself! The cabin fever is hitting hard, and all of our friends from class had already come over during the week to meet Adam, so if he was going to be exposed to toddler germs, it had already happened. I'm happy to report that I managed pretty okay, and my girlfriends definitely looked out for me (as they've been doing this whole pregnancy.) My biggest worry with two kids is that Ellie will bolt in a parking lot and my hands will be tied in terms of running after her. The good news is she generally does a great job waiting for me to take her hand, and before we got to class, I impressed upon her the importance of being a good big sister and a good listener. She did great. She and her little girlfriends were enchantingly cute at class too, and there has been a remarkable uptick in taking turns and sharing in the past few weeks.
I love their sweet little Muppet voices, and none of us can believe how big the girls have gotten, and how quickly.
For reference, here are the same three ladies at Halloween 2011.
Also, I cannot believe how big he's getting, and how quickly it's happening. Yet he's still too small to fill out his newborn sized clothing (Ellie wore one newborn outfit a total of once before she was on to 0-3's.)
Well, the sunbathing worked - Adam got a clean bill of health at his follow up appointment today. He's much less yellow, and he's gained four more ounces in forty eight hours.
Yesterday after his sunbathing he was so hot and sweaty that we gave him a bath. His favorite part is the hair washing. The rest of it, he does not so much enjoy.
We've also started doing some tummy time here and there. It's mostly funny to me because Ellie is very invested in Adam doing tummy time, and meanwhile, she was the queen of pathetic, face down weeping when I put her on her belly. But she definitely wants Adam to get to work!
We brought Adam in for his first doctor's appointment yesterday. It was mostly a weight check to make sure that he's gaining okay. Usually it takes babies up to two weeks to regain their birth weights. Adam is already two ounces over his birth weight, and gained nearly two ounces a day between being discharged from the hospital and yesterday morning. I gave myself more than a few pats on the back for that one.
The only thing they're concerned about is his coloring - he's still fairly jaundiced, which is common, but less common in babies who are gaining weight and pooping and peeing as well as he is. So we go back tomorrow for another small check. In the meanwhile, I have been ordered to let him nap in indirect sunlight.
He's part cat!
We also started doing tummy time this morning. Ellie was very enthused about it, which is funny because she was the most pathetic little whiner about tummy time, and as we all know, was too lazy to roll over until well into her sixth month.
Tim and Meg met in 2003 at UCLA, only three weeks before Meg graduated, and only three months before she moved to Canada for graduate school. They dated long distance for a year, got engaged in 2004 and married in 2005. Tim makes video games as an actual job. After five years in LA, in a 500 square foot apartment, we moved back behind the Orange Curtain and bought our first house in October 2009. We followed up that fun by having our first daughter, Elizabeth Rosemarie in October 2010.
Tim is 6'6" and Meg is 5'3". Yes, we know we look mismatched in pictures. Yes, Meg tries to stand on things to be taller whenever she can.