Monday, July 25, 2011

one month old ... and more



Amelia turned one month old on Friday, immediately offering yet another sign that she was getting older: She slept a 3 1/2-hour stretch Thursday night. Considering that you can almost set a clock by her 3-hour wakeups, this was a (welcome)change.

Of course, Ray volunteered last night to wake with her for her first feed of the night. We went to bed at midnight. Amelia should have woken at about 3 a.m. Instead ... she slept until 6 a.m. Which was still nice for me, since I then got an eight-hour stretch of sleep. But still. I know when I return to overnight duty tonight, she's going to wake up every three hours again. Funny girl.

Anyhow, she is one month old. She is getting bigger and more alert. We moved her from newbporn-sized diapers to size 1. But she remains in newborn-sized clothing. 0-3 months is still way too big (newborn-sized pants still fall off her non-existent baby bottom.)

She has a myriad of expressions, including her brilliant baby grins (which I have yet to capture "on film" but I am trying.









Not to be outdone, her big sister has been proving, too, how precious she can be herself.




I love my girls.
- Bethany :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

getting older...

At Lola's party on Saturday, her Grandpa Al gave her a big girl bike.

She has long been a great trike rider and pedaler. Still, the upgrade to a "real" bike was a change and the tippiness with the training wheels was a bit intimidating for her at first. Not to mention that back-pedaling, on a trike, does not initiate the brakes. This change, particularly, was slowing her down. A lot.

She spent Saturday getting accustomed to the new ride. She wanted one (or two) adults to basically push her along.



We had not had a chance to get back on the bike since Saturday. But, this morning, Amelia took a later-than-usual morning nap. Since it is beyond hot here, I figured that if we were going to go outside and play, we had to do it this morning because this afternoon will probably be miserable.

So, I suggested we go outside and ride her big girl bike.

We got outside, I got her on the bike and went to give her a push and she protested, "I don't want you to hold me, Mommy! Let me go."

So I did.

And she took off.



Sure, she still struggles from time to time with pedaling backwards and her feet occasionally fall from the pedals.

But she can do it ... all by herself.

She was so proud of herself, as she should be.

I was a bit in awe, a bit in shock. The thought that her trike days are behind us is a bit jolting. But, after watching her get more and more adept at powering and maneuvering the new bike, I had a belated awakening. And I went and took out the bike helmet. She now knows that the helmet is required for cycling.



This summer has been grand. Have I said that yet?!
- Bethany :)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Lola's party



We celebrated Lola's third birthday on Saturday with a party at our home.

It was a wonderful gathering, and Lola enjoyed it greatly. She was the perfect birthday girl.



The theme - which we obviously let her choose herself - was Rapunzel, or more accurately, "Tangled." Lola was thrilled to see the birthday balloons, plates, lip gloss necklaces, etc., all covered with Rapunzel's image. It was cute.

We ordered a cake from our local grocery store. But we asked for a few "tweaks" to make it a little more Rampunzel-ish. It turned out absolutely amazing. I was a little surprised that Lola didn't get sad or upset when we cut up Rapunzel's "princess dress" - but she, of course, was excited to eat the cake.




Amelia even got into the princess spirit a bit, as she got a hair bow and a princess onesie, instead of the dress. I snapped this picture before the party, but by the time the party got underway, Millie was fast asleep and didn't stir again until well after everyone had gone. She is such an easy baby...



It was a great day.
- Bethany :)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

three years old!

Lola is three years old today!

Happy birthday, Lola!

Her day started as it does every year: She woke up to me singing "Happy Birthday" and giving her hugs and kisses.




Fun times.

Once I got her dressed, she got her morning milk and started her wake-up time on the couch, snuggling with her Dora cuddles.



And, slowly, she returned to consciousness.



Happy birthday, Lola! We love you. Very, very much.
- Bethany :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

three weeks old



A lot has happened in just one week!

But, first, the main news: The pediatrician today called regarding Amelia's heart murmur.

(To recap: He had detected the heart murmur last Thursday. She had a heart ultrasound/cardoechogram done on Friday, which was then sent to the U of M for analysis. We have been waiting (impatiently, mostly) for the results since.)

The pediatrician called today to say that, overall, Amelia is healthy and doing well.

However, the doctors did find that she has a patent foramen ovale (PFO), which is basically a hole in her heart between the left and right chambers. It is something that, in utero, babies have that should close on its own at birth. Amelia's heart is among those that did not. It is relatively common and is not alarming; there is no cause for concern. Usually they close on their own by 1-2 years of age.

From the Mayo's website, which can explain it much better than me:

"A patent foramen ovale (PFO) is a hole in the heart that didn't close the way it should after birth. The condition is relatively common.

"During fetal development, a small flap-like opening — the foramen ovale (foh-RAY-mun oh-VAY-lee) — is usually present between the right and left upper chambers of the heart. It normally closes within the first or second year of life. When the foramen ovale doesn't close, it's called a patent foramen ovale.

"Most people with a patent foramen ovale never know they have it. A patent foramen ovale is often discovered during tests for other problems. Learning that you have a patent foramen ovale is understandably worrisome, but most people never need treatment for this condition."

So we are happy with the results.

***




Amelia continues to amaze us daily. She is now consistently holding her head up and is lengthening her periods of awakefullness. She does not play yet, of course, but she is taking an active interest in seeing brightly colored items and is intently focusing on our facial expressions.

Sleepwise, she is getting more difficult, but I blame myself and Ray for just lazy parenting probably.

She went from sleeping in her crib and bassinette to sleeping in her swing and bouncer chair. Which was OK ... but she became a little too dependent on her nuk and was waking up every 5-10 minutes overnights because she would lose her nuk and cry. This came to a head Monday night, when I slept, literally, on the floor at her feet so I could put her nuk in in a matter of seconds every so often.

That ended last night. When I basically just forced her to sleep without her nuk at all. After just a few minutes of rocking, I got her to sleep (sadly, again, in her bouncer chair) without her nuk - and she thanked me with a four-hour stretch of sleeptime. Yay!

Today, though, she returned to the basinette for naps. And I really, really hope to continue that into the overnight tonight...



***

Her most favorite activity continues to be skin-to-skin time - and she is fighting for it on an almost hourly basis. She cries until you pick her up and then she immediately snuggles her face into your neck and goes to sleep in a matter of miliseconds.

It takes all the strength I have to pull her away and try to get her to sleep in her bassinette. Espeically since, now, she moans a little bit when I peel her off of me, as if to say, "Oh, Mommy, please let me stay."

Too sweet.

- Bethany :)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Monday funnies...

Ray was holding Amelia in the living room this morning, waiting to hear where he needed to go for work. I was on the computer at the desk across the room. And Lola was sitting next to Ray "helping" with the baby.

He was on the couch when his cell phone, left on a table across the room started to ding to say he had new messages. I handed it to him and he said it was a text from his parents.

"They just want to know what the doctor said," Ray said.

And then Lola, who is always listening even if she seems not to be, added her 2 cents.

"No more monkeys jumping on the bed," she answered.

It took me a split second to put it together. Then I smiled and laughed, "Yes, Lola, that is what the doctor says."

* grin *

Anywho, no news yet. Which I am taking as a good sign. If I don't hear anything by noon or so, I will call and check in.

- Bethany :)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

waiting...

We did not get any results or interpretation of Amelia's test(s) on Friday.

A technician conducted an ultrasound of her heart. The ultrasound then was sent to the U of M for a doctor's review. Those results will be attached to her chart and left for her pediatrician.

If we don't hear anything my early Monday afternoon, I will call and check in.

So, for now, we are just waiting.

In the meantime, we are starting to clean the house and prepare for someone's third birthday party.

Three years old.

I can't believe it.
- Bethany :)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

two weeks old



Our sweet Amelia turned two weeks old yesterday. Amazing.



She continues to be a very happy, content, easy-going newborn. Although she also is a little stinker: She grabbed hold of her umbilical cord yesterday and ripped it off.

She is holding her head up consistently now and taking an active interest in her world around her. Today, she stayed away from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. - her longest daytime stretch...

As for the days and nights, I think (knock on wood) we have straightened that out. It has been three nights now that she wakes to eat and we get her back to sleep almost immediately.

***

She went in today for her two-week checkup. (To recap: she weight 6 pounds, 12 ounces and was 19 inches long at birth. She was released from the hospital at 6 pounds, 10 ounces.)

Her stats:
Weight - 7 pounds, 6 ounces (18th percentile)
Height - 20.5 inches (58th percentile)
Head circumference - 14.25 inches (55th percentile)

She seems to be thriving. Growing so fast...

The pediatrician did detect a heart murmur. Which is probably, hopefullly nothing to worry about her. They tested her oxygen levels, which were at 99 and then 100 percent, so everything seems to be fine. However, better safe than sorry ... so we are going to have more tests done tomorrow.

I'm trying not to panic. And if you know me, you can guess how well that is going...

***

On happier notes, we had a very productive and fun 4th of July weekend. The weather was gorgeous. And we had special visitors when my brother, sister-in-law and their boys came to visit Saturday afternoon (I, of course, did not take any pictures, though, sigh.)





***

I leave you today with a pair of Lola and Amelia photos:

Lola at 2 weeks old...



Amelia at two weeks old...



Such cute girls we have.

- Bethany :)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

one week old



My Amelia.

She continues to be the happiest, easiest baby. She rarely cries. It is more like she has occasional whimpers. Usually because she wants some skin-to-skin time: She just loves to snuggle.

Our biggest struggle right now is nighttime as she has her days and nights confused. She thinks it is playtime from 3-7 a.m. Really. So tonight we are going to try to keep her up a bit before bedtime. I figure a three-day weekend (when Ray can be home) is as good a time as any.

She has a few funny quirks, mainly that she insists on going potty when she is on the changing table ... and is not wearing a diaper. Seriously. You take off the diaper, she pees. OK, so you move her a few inches to a dry spot on the changing pad. She pees again. You move her a second time, she pees a third time. (Ray, unfortunately, got the poopy version of this "game" at 2 a.m. last night. Sorry I missed that one...)

Amelia now is holding her head up fairly consistently so we have implemented some tummy time, which she hates.. So, she rolls onto her side and tries to curl up to go to sleep (or so I'm told, as this, again, happened at like 2 a.m. this morning while Ray was on Daddy Duty).

She continues to get more and more alert. She loves to stare at the giant whale murals on her nursery walls. Really, it's her favorite part of the whole house. Which is so cool to see, considering the work Ray put into it.

Besides that, she loves her fingers, hates nuks and adores her swing, although neither Ray nor I are anxious to use it too much. Me because I don't want her to need motion to fall asleep, and Ray because, well, he put her in it last night and she puked all over the place (sorry I missed that one, too...).

I am loving my time at home. I am so very glad I decided to keep Lola home for a bit before deciding for sure about daycare. We are having a great summer thus far, just playing and learning together.

Life is good.

Happy Fourth of July.
- Bethany :)