One

Our sweet little baby boy turned one a week ago and he’s growing up everyday!

I’m so proud of him and the amazing kid that he is becoming.  He started daycare a few weeks ago and has been a champ when it comes to getting settled there.  He clings to me when I drop him off, but he’s happy as can be just minutes later.  He’s eating well and napping decently, which is all I can hope for right now.

At home, he’s become a bit of a mama’s boy, which I suppose is probably normal now that we’re separated all day long.  I’m not complaining, though!  My older son has always favoured his dad, so it’s nice to be someone’s first choice for now.

Eating

We’re still working on offering a variety of foods at home.  Bo is slowly losing interest in the purees, which is nice.  He accepts a larger range of textures now and shows interest in new things when placed on his tray.  He LOVED his birthday cupcakes.  Let me rephrase that, he LOVED the icing on his birthday cupcakes.  He licked them clean!

I’m still breastfeeding, but pretty much only twice or three times a day.  I feed him first thing in the morning and right before bed a night, with a quick feed right after daycare some evenings.

Sleep

The most amazing thing happened when Bo started going to daycare all day… sleep!  For the past couple of weeks, he has been sleeping 11-12 hours straight at night.  This is incredible.  For most of the last year, he woke at least twice per night, sometimes more.  My older son didn’t sleep through the night consistently until close to age two.  I know things can change with the drop of a hat, but my goodness, this is just dreamy.  I will take any bit of sleep I can get!

Development

There’s been lots of babbling going on around here.  My favourite, of course, is “mamamamama” but there is also a lot of “babababa” and “nanananana”.  No other real words, although he’s let out a few “uh ohs” and “wows” at appropriate times.  He’s finally showing interest in standing and will pull himself up using a couch or chair, but not too much in the way of cruising yet.  His crawling is very fast and effective (especially if he knows the fridge or dishwasher is open!) so he doesn’t have much incentive to walk right now.

He has six teeth with one more that looks close to breaking through.  His hair is pretty full and he’s even had a haircut (by daddy) already.  His big brother was still shiny-bald at age one, so this is new for us!

Personality

Bo is a sweetheart.  He’s easy-going and happy most of the time.  He’s not really a crier, but will whine a bit when he starts to get tired.

He is really starting to enjoy playing.  He actually pushed a car across the floor the other day and I heard him mumble, “vrrrooom!”  He is even happier when he’s playing with his favourite person in the world – his older brother.  There is nothing better than listening to my two boys laughing together.  It’s the best.


One Year Stats

Height: 30.5″
Weight: 22lbs 13oz
Teeth: 6
Clothing size: Tops/onesies/sleepers-12 months, Pants-9 months
Sleeping: 11 hrs per night, plus two 1-1.5 hr naps per day
Eating: breastfeeding 2-3 times per day, plus breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner (including homo milk in cup)

Pain in the boob

The combination of full days at daycare and sleeping through the night (yes, you read that correctly!) are wreaking havoc on my breasts. I woke up this morning and nursed Bo, as usual. Then I realized something: my left boob still felt full. Dammit!  We’ve got a clog. 

The whole weaning process is definitely a pain. Neither of us is ready to wean completely, but since I go back to work in a week, we won’t be able to do more than about 3 nursing sessions per day (morning, after work/daycare and bedtime).  

I know this current clogged duct situation is kind of my own fault. Rather than attempt to drop the pre-nap feeds at home, I decided we’d go cold turkey when Bo started napping at daycare. I knew he’d be super-pissed at me if I tried to put him to bed without breastfeeding first so it would be easier on both of us if we kept doing it. At daycare, he went to sleep fine without nursing because I wasn’t there. 

And then the sleeping. I will not complain about this because it is amazing. For five weeknights this past week, Bo slept 11-12 hours straight. Yahoo for STTN!!  He woke once each night this weekend (we’re at the farm) so, of course, my boobs got confused again. 

Amazingly, as I typed this, my little barracuda just managed to clear the clog. During his morning nap, I applied a heating pad and massaged like crazy. Once he woke, with a little acrobatics and combo of football hold and our regular position, he seems to have emptied me out. Hallelujah!

I have a feeling I’m in for some more pain over the next couple of weeks as we complete our transition from stay at home mom to working mama. 

Eleven months

My baby is eleven months old today and what a busy month it’s been!  The biggest news this month was the start of daycare.  We’ve made it through week one without any major incidents.  He’s been relatively happy there, although there are still some hurdles to cross before he’s completely settled in (i.e. actually attempting to have him nap there!)  At least we still have time before I go back to work.

Personality

He’s definitely getting a bit more shy these days.  At his big brother’s birthday party last weekend, he was not really a fan of the people and the action.  When he was littler, he would smile and go to just about anyone.  Now, he wants to keep his parents close by.

At home, though, he’s all smiles and laughs.  He loves playing with his big brother (who he finds totally hilarious!)

Sleep

Daycare must be wearing him out because he’s slept through the night a few times this week.  Anywhere from 8-11 hours, which feels AMAZING.  Of course, after five days at the daycare centre, he sounds like he’s coming down with a cold, so there’s a good chance this stretch of good sleeping is about to come to an end.  Oh well, I’ll take what I can get.

Napping is still going very well and he consistently does two naps a day.  Morning nap happens around 9:30am and usually lasts 1.5 hours.  Afternoon nap moves around a bit more but he’ll often do another 1.5 hours in the afternoon.

Eating

Surprise, surprise, eating is still a challenge.  He was really into the smooth purees a couple of weeks ago and we were flying through them.  Now, he’ll eat a few bites and start shaking his head (no).  He loves crackers.  He enjoys pita with hummus.  But cooked vegetables?  Eggs?  Fish?  Chicken?  Forget it.  If I put bits of food on his tray, he touches it with his finger, makes a face and smushes it.  We continue to offer him a variety of foods but, for now, he’s still nursing quite a lot.

In preparation for daycare, we spent a lot of time this past month working on drinking from sippy cups.  We finally discovered that he enjoyed using the cup with a straw so we bought a bunch and he uses them for milk and water.  Ever the picky eater, it turns out he only likes warm milk, so we’ve learned to heat it up if we want him to actually drink it.

Development

He still isn’t cruising, but he’s finally pulling himself up to standing position more frequently.  He’s a super-fast crawler these days so we have to make sure to keep things out of reach if we don’t want him to get them (especially his brother’s toys!)  He continues to be obsessed with clapping and wants me to clap every time I sing (which turns out to be very often!)  As soon as I start singing, he comes over and grabs my hands, clapping them together for me.  Hilarious!

IMG_2125

IMG_2147

IMG_2135

IMG_2130

Two more weeks

I’m entering my final two weeks of having Bo at home with me full-time.  I don’t return to work until March, but we start paying for daycare on February 2, so we will likely start transitioning Bo right away.

I know I am ridiculously lucky to have had a whole year at home with each of my babies.  I know there are lots of moms who had to go back to work much, much sooner.  But even though I know these things, it still feels much too soon to leave my boy.

I’m trying my best not to think about it too much because I don’t want to spend these final precious days feeling stressed and sad.  However, I have to think about it a bit because I need to start getting Bo ready to be away from me for longer stretches (ok, for any stretches!) of time.

The biggest issue, of course, is eating.  This kid is a boob man.  He still nurses like a champ and knows how to ask for it.  He has this cough/pant/laugh sort of sound he makes while grabbing at me, making it perfectly clear that he wants the breast.  He still won’t really take a bottle (we try every once in a while but it seems wasteful and pointless since he barely swallows anything).  We’ve started trying a variety of different sippy cups, in hopes of finding one that he’ll drink from successfully.  We’ve given up on offering any formula because he shows zero interest in it and we’d have to supply it if we wanted him drinking it at daycare.  So, now we’re on to homogenized milk.  I think he drank a bit today, but mainly he just chews on the sippy cup spout and then maybe swallows a bit of the milk that dribbles out.

We continue to offer a variety of foods, but the only thing he consistently swallows are purees.  (Go figure.  His older brother flat-out refused the stuff).  He eats baby greek yogurt like it’s his job.  Other than that, he’ll munch on foods and then spit them out.  Apple pieces turn into a pile of little apple chips.  He expertly places Cheerios into his mouth and gums them until they become soft and mushy before spitting them back out.  He used to love cheese, but now, just like pretty much everything else, he spits it back out.

The other thing I worry about is sleeping.  This baby loves his naps.  Just yesterday (during his morning nap), I googled “when to drop the morning nap”, thinking that it will be hard to drop him off at daycare right when he’s ready to be sleeping again.  Of course, then he promptly slept for 2.5 hours.  I guess he was telling me he’s not ready!

So, ya.  All that is swirling through my head.

I know I should try not to worry so much.  In all likelihood, the transition to daycare will go just fine.  There will be some hard moments, but I’m sure he’ll settle in okay.  Most kids do.  But, we had a bad experience with the first daycare that Littleman attended when he was Bo’s age (will share that story another day) so I know that there are instances where a child never actually does “settle in.”

OK, enough of the “poor me” stuff.  I am going to take a few deep breaths and then get the sippy cup ready for after nap so we can practice some milk-drinking.  And then I’ll let him eat puree for dinner because I’m a sucker that way!

Ten months

My little one is now ten months old!  It feels like Bo spent much of the last month being sick (first a stomach virus, then a nasty cold) but when he wasn’t feeling miserable, he was busy mastering new skills.

Personality

It appears that Bo is becoming more attached to me as he gets older.  At the moment, I’m definitely his favourite person.  I’m ok with that for now (nothing makes me feel better than seeing him light up when I enter the room!) but he’ll need to get over his attachment soon so that I can return to work in a couple of months!

He’s really into clapping right now and especially enjoys when people clap for him.  If he starts to get whiny or fussy, sometimes all it takes is a round of spontaneous applause to cheer him up.  Then he starts clapping himself and forgets what he was whining about.

Sleep

%#$&!  It’s not going well.  All the recent illnesses have really wreaked havoc with our sleeping and I’m starting to feel pretty run down.  Last night, Bo woke up five times in the night and would only settle if I went in and nursed him.  (He doesn’t actually fall asleep nursing, but he eats hungrily and then allows me to put him back down awake).

I’ve tried letting him cry but then he starts coughing so hard that he gags and then gets really, really mad.  I really hope that he recovers completely from his cold soon so that we can try to get back into a decent sleep routine.  I’m just way too tired right now.

Eating

Being sick really messed up the whole eating solids routine too.  He went a few days where he refused to eat anything solid, but continued to nurse (thankfully).  He seems to have his appetite back, but we’re struggling a bit with textured foods.  It seems that he really likes his puree right now.  His current favourite is a pouch of organic turkey and vegetables.  He’s also digging the plain greek yogurt.

Development

The big news this month was that Bo finally started crawling!  At about 9.5 months it just clicked and off he went.  He’s quite the speedster now, which left us scrambling to make sure our gates were up and nothing dangerous was left lying around.  Life is definitely a bit more complicated now that he’s on the move, but it’s also pretty fun.

This morning he pulled himself up to standing for the first time.  He’s always been pretty wobbly and, until now, showed absolutely no desire to stand up (even if you held his hands).  Then, all of a sudden, he just did it like it was no big deal.

Bo celebrated his first Christmas this month.  While he didn’t care much about the presents, he sure loved all the cardboard and wrapping paper!

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/968/49197018/files/2015/01/img_1449.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/968/49197018/files/2015/01/img_1741.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/968/49197018/files/2015/01/img_1657.jpg

Breastfeeding my second baby – part three

A summary of my breastfeeding experience so far wouldn’t be complete without talking about how my baby’s personality played a role.  Thinking back over these past nine months, it’s really quite amazing how much our breastfeeding relationship has evolved as Bo has gotten older.

Aside from the pesky tongue tie issue (and subsequent bleeding nipples), Bo actually latched on right away after he was born.  I remember making D take a photo of us because I was so amazed that my brand new baby was actually feeding the way he was supposed to.  It was so different from the first few days of Littleman’s life.

As we got into the swing of things during the first few weeks of Bo’s life, I remember struggling a bit to get him to latch on when he was hungry.  He would straighten his arms against me so that I couldn’t get him close enough to my breast.  It was frustrating because he was obviously ready to eat, but wouldn’t allow me to position him properly.

After that phase passed, we moved into the assault and battery phase of breastfeeding.  Around five months or so, Bo took to hitting, pinching, slapping or punching me while he ate.  It was mainly my chest or my face that was on the receiving end of his abuse.  Fortunately for me, it didn’t last long.

Of course that brought us to the distraction phase.  By seven months, I could no longer feed Bo anywhere and everywhere.  All of a sudden, he was aware of his surroundings and would forget to eat.  Gone were the days of being able to feed him in the living room while chatting with a friend or playing with Littleman.  Now, I have to feed him in his room – the darker and the quieter, the better.

Something I’ve always found quite amazing is Bo’s ability to communicate his hunger. Pretty early on, he developed a sort of laugh/cough/pant that he does to tell me that he wants to eat.  If I don’t respond quickly, he can get quite frantic with it.  Lately, he’s started smacking his lips before I feed him, too.

One thing that has pretty much remained the same the entire time is the speed at which Bo eats.  He’s pretty quick.  Most feeds are five minutes or less these days, with a longer feed right before bedtime.  Even as a newborn, when he ate more frequently, I remember being amazed that most of his feeds were only about 7 minutes long.  His older brother could eat for 30 minutes, sometimes from each breast!  It felt like I was feeding all day long.

Yesterday, we took Bo to the pediatrician for his nine month check up.  He’s doing great and growing well (21lbs 14oz!) so I know that what we’ve been doing is working.  The doctor told us that Bo can start drinking cow’s milk anytime now, which made me realize that our breastfeeding days are nearing the end.  I nursed Littleman for 14 months and hope to do something similar with Bo.  I know that we probably have a few more months to go, but I’m also seeing how quickly he’s growing up and realizing that he isn’t going to be my baby much longer.  Regardless, I’m so happy that I had the chance to breastfeed this baby and to share this experience together.

Breastfeeding my second baby – part two

I have an app on my iPhone that I use to track my baby’s sleep and feedings.  I intended to use it for the first few weeks to make sure we were on track when it came to number of feedings, wet diapers, etc.  But I quickly fell in love with it because it helped me remember which side I had last fed from and gave me a sense of how long Bo was going between feedings (which was super helpful because my post-baby short-term memory is awful!)

The app also provides summaries, which I find quite entertaining.  For example, in the past seven days we’ve had 62 nursing sessions for a total of 10 hours and 37 minutes.  The average duration of a nursing session was 10 minutes.  As suspected, Bo spent almost an hour longer on the left side than he did on the right (see yesterday’s post!)

Anyway, here are a few more observations about my current breastfeeding experience:

The girls

One of the trickiest things for me when it comes to breastfeeding is covering my breasts.  For the first few weeks, my boobs were ginormous and uncomfortable.  I had saved my old nursing bras, but even they couldn’t contain the ladies.  I hated to spend money on bras that I would wear for such a short time but I gave in and bought a couple of humongous ones.  Of course, as predicted, my milk regulated itself and my breasts shrunk down to a more manageable size.  I was able to fit into my old nursing bras again, which helped.  However, after all that use, they started to wear out (and imagine my surprise when an underwire poked me in the chin while I sat down for lunch one day!) so I ended up purchasing a few more new ones.

I also do a couple of fitness classes each week and took up running this year.  This required more than just a normal nursing bra.  Of course, even if I could squeeze my bosom into my regular sports bras (yeah right!), I wouldn’t have been able to feed Bo, who accompanies me to my classes.  I managed to find some nursing sports bras that I really like.  They aren’t perfect but they do the trick.  They are fine for exercise class.  If I’m out running, I usually layer them with a tight tank top to keep everything supported nicely.

Positioning

One of my “must haves” when Littleman was a baby was my nursing pillow.  I was totally dependent on that thing and I loved it.  Littleman seemed comfortable and I could nurse him pretty much hands-free.  It was great.

So, of course, it was one of the first things I packed for the hospital when it was time to deliver Bo.  I used it for the first couple of days after he was born.  Then, due to pain and bleeding nipples, I made an appointment at our hospital’s breastfeeding clinic.  The lactation consultant looked at my pillow and then suggested gently that I consider trying some different nursing positions.  I was game to try just about anything and when she showed me the “laid-back breastfeeding” position, I was hooked.  Instead of sitting upright with my shoulders hunched and a pillow strapped around my waist, I learned to relax, lay back and make myself comfortable on the couch with my feet up and my baby laying on me.  It was fantastic.

With Littleman, I always got out of bed and carried him into the nursery to feed him in his glider during the night.  With Bo, I scooped him up and fed him in bed.  Divine.  Ditching the pillow also meant that we were totally comfortable feeding just about anywhere, which leads us to…

Discretion

I never felt very comfortable nursing Littleman in public places.  I had a nursing cover, but didn’t try using it early enough so neither I, nor Littleman, ever felt confident nursing with it.  Blankets always slipped out of place and, since we always used a nursing pillow at home, we were already out of our comfort zone when nursing anywhere else.  Basically, I did whatever I could to avoid nursing in public.

The second time around, I approached it all differently.  I tried using the nursing cover right from the beginning.  That helped a lot.  But also, I just didn’t worry about it as much.  The truth is, sometimes I think the cover draws more attention to us than using nothing.  And until recently, I could nurse Bo just about anywhere and feel pretty comfortable doing it.  Now, though, the kid is just way too distracted by his surroundings.  If I use the cover, he flails around until he can whip it off.  If I don’t use a cover, he pulls off to look around, leaving me exposed (and possible spraying milk everywhere!)  No good at all.

Now, I do whatever I can to avoid nursing anywhere but home.  It’s much more efficient – and less stressful – to fill his belly before we leave home.  And, luckily, he can go much longer now between feedings so it isn’t much of an issue.

Coming up next: Bo’s breastfeeding style.  He really brings his own personality into the whole experience!