"So throw away those Lamentations,
We both know them all too well.
If there's a Book of Jubilations,
We'll have to write it for ourselves.."

-Josh Ritter

Thursday, September 22, 2011

More random favorite moments to share

I like the ernest, confidential look of this one. You just get the feeling that Eric is imparting some crucial fatherly wisdom to his daughter. Or they're talking about pooping. Either way.

My little hippy spawn demonstrates how to snuggle your baby in a kangaroo carry in a sling. And comes frighteningly close to getting it right.

And for your daily dose of awwwww....

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Ellie's First Bottle

I have gone into this baby experience (ugh- that sounds so pretentious, but I can't figure out a better way to say it. Let's blame sleep deprivation.) with the rose-colored Nora glasses. And Nora had no issues with nursing. She took to the bottle like a champ. She never refused either it or the breast and, in fact, never really seemed to show a preference either way. She nursed up until I was ready to give it up at 13 months, then (figuratively) walked away and never looked back.

Any woman who has nursed a baby, but still planned to return to work at some point can relate to this, I think. Giving that kid a bottle is a very mixed bag. The lactation consultants will tell you not to do it too soon or else! You'll confuse the baby and she'll never take the breast again! She'll always want the bottle and every time you nurse will be a struggle from here on out! You won't have as much milk! Pumping is not as efficient!

Maybe not. But I also have a job that expects me to return to it eventually. The reality is that any child of mine is going to have to learn to take a bottle from other caregivers. That doesn't make it easy. The first couple of times someone sticks that bottle in a breastfed baby's mouth, she gets this perplexed look on her little face. It doesn't matter in that moment that there is breast milk in the bottle. I can't help but feel like I'm a giant traitor to this tiny being that depends entirely on me for sustenance.

And I'm not sure if the feeling of betrayal gets better or worse when that look disappears. Whether the baby is resigned to the bottle or excited about it, my hormonal lizard brain is telling me that she should be with me. All the time. No matter what. I'm sure no one will mind when I strap her to my back and start rounding on patients. Right? I could just whip out the boob in the middle of a meeting. That's totally professional. (OK- To give credit where it's due, I don't actually think that any one at my work would mind either of those things. It wouldn't be practical or good for the baby, though.)

So, that's the postpartum-emotional back story. All of which I lay out there to say that we gave Ellie her first bottle . She did not take to it easily, like Nora. We are experimenting with different brands of bottles to see what might work best. I'm not admitting anything, but secretly, that might have made it a little easier on me.

But when Daddy got to be the one to feed the baby, it made it worth it. Nora seemed to enjoy the novelty of the event, but Eric got the familiar old blissed-out-on-baby look. I can definitely understand that. Up until now, his role has been two-fold: holding the baby when she's already heavily sedated by boob or alternately, holding her when boob didn't work, I'm exhausted and she's royally pissed off. It's tough to have a rewarding relationship made up of those things.

So in the end, I'm glad that we've started trying the bottles. It's going to take a while to get it right and Eric is going to have whole days alone with her starting in only (gulp!) three weeks. While it's tough to let go enough to diffuse the love a little, I know that's it's good for all parties involved. I mean, hey- last night, I napped for two hours and awoke to find out that she had gotten a bottle. That's a pretty awesome trade.

Saturday, September 3, 2011


I just gathered up this batch of cuteness and felt compelled to share.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Ho hum

There's not a lot to say here. We had an appointment with physical therapy to fit Ellie for a reflux wedge and to get some exercises, positioning tips and whatnot to help her be more comfortable. Suddenly, she is able to sleep for a couple of hours between feedings. I haven't been so thrilled to have two hours of uninterrupted sleep since residency.
I've been walking as much as I can, trying to get my pelvis back in shape, so that I can get the rest of me back in shape. Luckily, Ellie thinks that stroller time is the greatest thing ever. Eric, being the supportive husband that he is, bought a bug net for her. Now, if I could just have one for me! We walked 3.2 miles yesterday, which was awesome. I thought that it would be nice to use the Superior Hiking Trail to cut through Hartley Park from my house to the grocery store, which was less awesome. It was sort of like I would imagine Southeast Asia- hot, insanely buggy and terrible terrain for a stroller. Lesson learned- stay on the roads, or at least the packed trails.
Nora is currently delighted with a new hen who made her way into our lives. Her name is Tulip and she is not friendly. She is a good layer, though, and Nora loves going out to look for her little brown eggs.
Autumn is coming fast and the garden is definitely winding down. Squash marmalade is in jars in the fridge, salsa is made and apple is frozen. Leaves are changing and the air is cooler every day. I'm trying to not focus on the coming winter, return to work and upcoming challenges of integrating Ellie into our lives. For now, I think I'll just worry about today. My family is healthy and happy and all is right with my world. It doesn't stop the presses, but it's enough.