Happy birthday

{ Saturday, October 19, 2013 }
Today, our little peanut turned one. I've been remiss in posting here but I've had so much I've wanted to say. Someday I'll find time to type it all out. There's something so amazing about this first year--I feel truly fortunate to have witnessed all of these huge changes in our peanut. In some ways it seems like so long ago we were bringing this little (not so little) baby home from the birth center. When I look at pictures now, I hardly recognize that sleepy newborn. On the other hand, of course, the time has gone by so fast. Too fast. In those first few months, when we were blessed with so many offers of help, I took every opportunity I had to just sit with him. I held him while he napped and watched him sleep and I felt none of the anxiety around "getting stuff done" that I felt when our bean was a newborn. I knew there'd be time for dishes and laundry and cleaning up and I just wanted to soak up as much baby as I could.  Sadly, in recent months, there's been too much life going on for me to do as much "soaking" in as I'd like, of either the baby or the preschooler. 

And that's the thing, I guess. Our first year with the bean was this huge adjustment to being parents. And this year with the peanut has been a huge adjustment to being parents of TWO.  While mothering the peanut was easy in a lot of ways (because we KNEW how to care for a baby, we had some experience to fall back on), mothering two children has been uncharted territory. It's been a challenge. I honesty don't think I'm all that good at it. To give all of your love and, most importantly, attention to two people at once, who often want to be in two different locations doing two different things. Ugh. Hard. So while my story at our bean's first birthday was about our transformation into mothers, the story now is all about handing the baby back and forth--you hold him while I cut her waffle and then he's reaching for me so I'll take him back and nurse him. Yes, bean I'm watching you dance, but I need to change your brother's diaper, one minute, one minute--Such wonderful, happy chaos, but chaos nonetheless. 

And this boy. Oh, what an addition to our family. He's a joker, always laughing and playing tricks. Always with a smile on his face and so patient, so amazingly patient with his sister as she carries him around, grabs toys from his hands, and poses him like a doll. They love each other so much and it melts my mama heart to see them laughing and playing together. It's also broken my heart, to see how hard it's been for her to share the attention, for him to share it, for me to divide it.

So this is it. Our last baby isn't a baby anymore. He crawls and climbs and doesn't much care about learning to walk. He has a shockingly large number of teeth and a ton of hair and is as big as a two year old. He loves bananas and hates riding in the car. I've had such an incredible time getting to know him this year. Happy birthday, baby boy, and many more. Many, many wonderful years more. 

Mother's Day

{ Sunday, May 12, 2013 }

I'm not sure what happened, but I blinked and six months just flew by.  Our little peanut has gotten so big--he weighs as much as a one year old, has six(!) teeth, rolls both ways and is working on sitting up by himself.  I'm writing this while I snuggle his little sleeping body and look down at his peaceful baby face. His older sister is playing nearby and I'm struck by how amazing this motherhood journey has been so far. This is my fourth Mother's Day and I've learned so much in that short time.  Even though I felt prepared for motherhood, there was no easing into it. It was sink or swim as I, as we, struggled to keep our heads above water.  The only thing I know for sure with this second baby is that I still don't have all the answers, but this time around I'm OK with that. 

Soon this little guy won't want me to snuggle him. He'll be too busy, like his sister, to take time to sit with his moms. My days of holding a sleeping baby are numbered and soon we'll move on to different stages.   I'm trying so hard to savor these days; to forget my frustration over not having two hands free to do things around the house. I'm trying to remember all the silly and enlightening conversations I've had with my almost four(!) year old. I'm so fortunate to have the opportunity to help mother these two little beings, these beautiful, perfect babies who are growing too fast. I'm trying, trying, trying to learn how to be their mama and do the best job of it that I can. I am freaked out almost daily by the realization that I'm the grownup, I'm the one whose supposed to be responsible and have the answers. It's a serious job. Scary and fun and tiring and mind blowingly amazing all at once. It's been the best four years.  Happy Mother's Day to all the other women finding their way on this journey with me. 


{ Saturday, February 16, 2013 }
Hoo boy, have we been busy with our two littes.  We've started to settle into life with our sweet peanut and we're all in love.

Have you seen a monthly picture with a sleeping babe?  Not on this blog you haven't.  But this boy actually likes to sleep.

He is such a happy, smiley (not so) little guy.  He loves to laugh and coo at everyone and loves to get attention from his big sister.  And oh she loves to snuggle him. 

Our peanut is growing and growing and interacting more and more with us and his environment.  On his two month birthday he rolled over from belly to back for the first time and did it twice more over the next couple days.  He's currently taking a break from that skill and hasn't repeated it once, even by accident.  Today, just a couple days shy of his four month birthday, he rolled from back to belly and got stuck that way.  Hopefully he'll relearn the belly roll and we'll have proper rolling going on (in both directions).

The peanut has also been getting better and better at holding things in his hands and has been putting everything in his mouth and drooling.  It looked an awful lot like teething but I didn't believe it because its too early for that.  So, of course, last week not one, but two bottom teeth pushed their way through his gumline.  That'll show me!

Last week was a big week for us because poor Mr. Peanut also got his first illness.  Bronchiolitis--the same virus our bean caught for her first illness.  Not my first choice but I guess I have no say in the matter.  We have tried very hard to keep the peanut healthy and, with an older child in school, I think we did pretty well to ward it off for almost four months.  Luckily, it seemed to be fairly mild and the Peanut is recovering well.  Hopefully we can make it through the rest of the flu season without too many more illnesses (for any of us!)

Peanut's birth story

{ Wednesday, November 28, 2012 }
I have no excuse for taking almost six weeks to type up this story, except that, you know, the newborn.  And the toddler.  They're taking up some time.  Anyway, here goes.

I think I posted here that I had been having contractions on and off for a couple days before Peanut was born. I kept calling the midwives thinking I was getting ready, but the contractions would then stop.  Finally, Thursday evening I had bloody show and went to bed with contractions that were 6 mins apart.  I woke up at 11:30 still having them (every other night they had stopped when I slept) and they were a bit more uncomfortable.  I slept on and off all night and they kept coming, but they weren't getting closer together or more intense.  We decided to keep bean home from school Friday just in case and sent her to stay with our neighbor for the day.

41 weeks

We already had a nonstress test scheduled for 10am so we went to that--baby looked good and I was contracting away at 4cm.  They sent us home to rest and told us to call when contractions were 4 mins apart.  We went out for breakfast and then the boy decided to go next door to play with the bean while I napped on the couch.  At some point around 1pm I realized I was no longer sleeping through the contractions and was needing to focus when I had one.  I decided to take a shower and thank god I thought to text the boy before I did.  At this point I felt like something was different--I was having to really concentrate to get through the contractions and was keeping my eyes closed between them--really starting to focus inward.  The boy came home and asked how far apart they were, but I couldn't pay attention to timing them.  The boy timed a couple at 4mins and one at 3mins, so we headed back to the midwive's office.

We arrived at 2pm and I still felt like we had a lot of time, so we were both shocked when the midwife checked me and I was 7-8cm.  We headed upstairs to the birth center and the boy started calling people to hurry and meet us there.  I got in the tub and labored there for about 1/2 hr.  The whole experience was so different from the bean--I was focusing to get through contractions but then just having normal conversations and joking between them.  I still felt like we would be there for hours.

At some point when I was in the tub, things changed again and the pressure in my pelvis was too intense.  I got out and the midwife suggested I sit on the birth ball.  That really helped for about 4-5 contractions and then I started to feel pushy.  I had been telling everyone for 9mos that I did NOT want to push on my back but for some reason I turned to the boy and said, I'm gonna do it on my back!  I just felt like I didn't want to hold myself up anymore.  The boy argued with me and we never really settled the matter before a huge contraction hit that made me stand right up.

With the next contraction, I leaned on the boy's shoulders and pushed.  I felt my membranes bulge and then my water burst all over the boy's feet.  I don't really know why but I got a little hysterical after that (although I laugh so hard now thinking back on the expression on the boy's face).  I remember the midwife telling me that everything was OK, that my water had just broken and I was saying I know, I know, but still kinda freaking out.

I climbed up on the bed on my hands and knees, fully intending to flip over onto my back, but another contraction came and I had to push.  I heard the boy ask if the baby was crowning and the midwife said no, but before we knew it I had another contraction and I felt his head.  Another push and the head was out.  One more each for the shoulders and the body and peanut was born.  Six pushes and six minutes after my water broke!  Out of all the positions I could have been in, I had not planned to push on my hands and knees but there really wasn't time to think that through.  There also wasn't time to set up the video recorder, or the mirror that I had wanted so I could see the birth.  Although my total labor was 16hrs, I was able to pretty much ignore the contractions until the last 3hrs, so it felt like it went very fast.

Peanut was born at 3:45pm.  Bean had planned to help catch him, but in the end she was nervous about how much noise I was making and she didn't want to touch the blood so she just watched.  She actually wouldn't touch the Peanut until we had him all cleaned and dried because she didn't want any blood on her.  We spent so much time preparing her for the birth and for her new brother, but I guess we didn't talk enough about that!  Because of her reaction, I was worried she'd be upset, but she got over it quickly and she's pretty excited now that she got to see it.  She loves her baby brother so much!


{ Sunday, October 21, 2012 }
Baby boy peanut
10lbs 11.5oz 22.5in