Monday, April 30, 2012

Road Trip

Overall I would say our road trip was a complete success. We had a few curveballs thrown in there, but we overcame and conquered! When you have a child, you have no choice. Our four hour road trip started with E taking a 2.5 hour nap...amazing! My outlook on the rest of the trip at this point was quite positive. WE CAN DO THIS! Chris made me check on E's breathing/airway status a couple of times. We were beyond disbelief, borderline euphoric. E finally started stirring around, so we decided to stop and eat and let little man stretch those chunky legs out. By the time we left the restaurant, it was getting dark. We loaded E back in the torture device known as the car seat and headed into the wild blue yonder. E apparently is not fond of dark car rides. About five minutes into this ride E starts crying. Being the good Mommy I am, I jump in the back seat and try to console E with all of my magic tricks. Paci, not working. Toys, not working. Blanky, not working. The crying continued. Next step, call the mother. She has more tricks up her sleeve than I do. I accredit that to her actually having common sense, unlike the fine specimen (me) that she made. Her answer, quite simple, why don't you turn the lights on in the car, maybe he's scared of the dark. My thought "Whatever Mom, it's not that easy." Of course I didn't verbalize this, my days of talking to my mother like that ceased when I got married. When my mom stopped being my arch nemesis and instead my best friend. Heck it was worth a shot. Flipped the switch and all crying ceased. Holy smokes! It worked! Maybe my Mom does know what she's doing. Five minutes later E's out like a light and I flip the switch back off. A few miles down the road we run into a DWI checkpoint. Lovely. E starts crying again. Even better. As the officer is shining the light in our vehicle, I am halfway craned over the seat trying to calm E. It was obvious the officer understood our situation. He pretty much said, "May I see your license (without really looking). Okay, go ahead." Completely disregarding my two month expired inspection sticker. Thank you fine officer of the law.

We get to the hotel and check in, which was about a twenty minute wait. Nobody was at the front desk and E was still enjoying his ride on the fuss bus. When the lady finally decided to show up, she had issues figuring out if we had paid or not.  This "euphoric" trip was going to hell in a hand basket fairly quick. We tote all of our luggage, primarily E's, upstairs. I start unpacking the important things; i.e. the pack and play. Because it is way past E's bedtime. On this part of the story, remember the common sense gene I'm lacking. Chris and I spend thirty minutes trying to figure out how to open the pack and play. I remember when my mom and I sat it up for the first time we had an issue, but I couldn't quite remember what. Pregnancy makes you lose brain cells, I'm certain of it. So I called Mom again, for the second time in an hour. She wasn't surprised. She couldn't remember either. Mom fails, youtube it! Apparently you can't put the bottom down first, you have to pull the sides up first. Who would've thought?! Pack and play up- check. Next up- bath time. I brought naked baby E to the bathroom. Low and behold, this bathroom has no bathtub, just a shower. Wonderful . I've never attempted to bathe a baby in a shower and that night wasn't going to be my first. Sink it is. I called for backup. Chris was in charge of holding. I awarded him the gold metal for worst holder EVER. E was slipping and sliding all over the place. I just wanted to get this kid bathed without any head injuries. It definitely ended up being the fastest bath in E history. Whew, kid was finally bathed and fed, time for night night. And out he went. But not for long. The day before we left I got the wise ideal to change E's formula- brilliant, I know. Why must I mess with a good thing? Because I always think I can make it even better. For the last couple of weeks E had been spitting up a lot, so I decided to try him on Enfamil AR since it seemed like his colic/belly issues were gone. This formula has rice starch in it so it weighs the formula down to stay in E's belly. The packaging claims with no constipation. Hmmmm. I'm going to disagree on that one. I'd like to see the research on that. Get where I'm going with this? We had a fourth passenger that showed up on our trip and its name was constipation. Mr. Constipation decided to wake our little angel every two hours. Miserable. Miserable. Miserable. Poor baby would wake up groaning and pushing, face as red as a tomato. I felt absolutely horrible.

At 5:00 in the morning I decided a WalMart trip for our old formula and some prune juice was necessary. Did I mention I forgot the Garmin? So I was going strictly off iPhone map directions. This from a person who couldn't get herself out of a cardboard box. I got lost there and on the way back. And it was only eleven miles away. Chris finally called to make sure I was still alive and wasn't in the back of a rape van. I would have driven 100 miles for that formula. I came through the hotel room like Super Mommy to the rescue and of course E had fallen back asleep by this point. The attack of prune juice would have to wait. When E decided to rise Uncle J made a stop by to play. E loved it! A new face.

It's finally time for the game. E is mesmerized by the field. His first real ball game and surely not his last. E napped during the game twice. Once in his stroller and once in Nonnie's arms. He had a few bouts of straining and pushing. Still no poop. It comes time to leave, so we pack it up and head back to the B-town, constipated baby and all.

The trip home starts like the trip there. A sleeping baby. Then as soon as we hit Ruston, whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Poor boy is screaming in pain. Pit stop. We take E out of the car seat and let him stretch. Thinking this will help with is clogged bowels. The best we could get was one little rabbit terd. This whole thirty minute process of push and pause is taking place outside of our car door, in the parking lot. E finally settles down and is content with his one pellet. We trot off into Quiznos for some dinner. Dinner was uneventful. As we head out to the car to finish the last leg of our trip, E begins another thirty minute routine. We have been at this stop for about an hour and a half now. E's grand finale was quite impressive. The only way I could describe it is it probably felt like a pine cone exiting his butt. I think Chris and I did a happy dance right then and there.We knew our fourth passenger had finally left. It's amazing how our world revolves around our child's bowel movements. E is usually quite regular, so when he's not we assume the worse. He's going to get a head bleed from pushing too hard....he's going to get an obstructed bowel. Yes, we over exaggerate a little. Maybe a lot. The rest of the trip was traveled in quiet peace.

We faced some definite obstacles in our journey, but we survived and regardless of the curveballs we had a great time.

Nap number one

Grannie and Paw

Nonnie and E

All the nice lookin' fellas

Nap number two

Uncle J pitching

Sad to say bye to Uncle J

Friday, April 27, 2012

Pre baby packing

This weekend we are attempting our first road trip as a family. I'm fairly optimistic about it and super excited. We're going to see my brother, who's in the minor leagues, play some ball in Pearl, Mississippi. The last time Josh (my bro) saw E, he was two months old and was on a nonstop ride on the fuss bus. Now that E is fun and doesn't cry alllllllll day long, I know Josh is really going to enjoy him. I'm scared E might've scared Josh and his wife Sara into NEVER having kids. So as I begin my packing escapade today, I come to a realization (once again) that it's no longer about me.

This is what my pre-baby packing consisted of: My packing always began at least two days ahead of time. Because it took me that long just to narrow down what I was bringing. Otherwise, I 'd bring the whole closet and then some. Then I'd try things on to make sure they went well together. Next, was the shoes. I couldn't just bring a couple of pairs of shoes, every outfit had a set of shoes to go with it. Half the stuff I packed I never wore, but I needed options. Once I figured out my "outfits," I moved on to hair and makeup. I basically took the whole cabinet. I had one bag just for toiletries. I know pretty ridiculous. Now I laugh about all this, because ohhhh how things have changed!

Jump right to the present day. Now my packing begins the night before. And I start with packing E's things. Do I need one burp clothes or two? Do I need 2 outfits, 3 outfits, 4 outfits.....? Don't forget his hat. Oh shoot what all do I need to bring to bathe him? Which stroller do I bring? Can't forget the camera and video recorder. How many bottles do I need to bring? Two hours later (amidst entertaining my child in between) still working on E's suitcase. My packing....haven't even started. Doubtful it's going to happen tonight either. E's packing has worn me out....primarily mentally.

And this is only a two day trip.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

There's always tomorrow

E's mood in the morning is usually a good indicator of how the rest of the day will play out. Usually he wakes up and is happy with the world. Well this morning he was a grump pot and wanted to be held and have your full attention the WHOLE time. Today he was making us work for it. I would say at least eight full hours were devoted to just him today. Now mind you, on normal days E would prefer to play by himself- whether it be on his play mat, in his bed, or in his swing. He's a fairly independent baby. Many times he gets fussy when you interrupt his play time. I guess he's kind of making up for the first three months, in which we held him for hours and hours on end. Today I was having flashbacks of those first three months. It's crazy because every time I hear that blood curdling scream come out of his tiny mouth the first thing I think is "Oh my gosh, oh my gosh....he's fixing to revert back." Knowing he's not going back, I just always think the worst. Used to we would have to pull the hair dryer out to calm him down (crazy I know, but it worked), now I can dance around like a monkey and act crazy and usually it will get a good laugh out of him. Not only was E fussy all day, he was The Nap Nazi today. My child who usually takes an hour and a half to two hour naps, decided thirty minutes would be sufficient today. Further escalating his mood. Chris went into work at 3:00 today, so there goes my sidekick/backup. By 4:30 E was a raging baby who needed some sleep. What to do...What to do? Go to Nonnies. No matter what Nonnie can put him in a good mood. Wrong. Not today. Nonnie held him and rocked him to sleep after much moaning and groaning on E's part. We had a wager on whether he would sleep over an hour. I won, he didn't. And when he woke up, he was mad as a hornet. Poppy tried to calm him down, E wasn't having it. Once you thought he was finally calm, he'd take a big deep breath and let out another wale. Non and Pop had to go to the other grandkid's ballgame, so I packed up and headed home. Screaming baby and all. The car ride seemed to calm him down. Game plan: drive around B-town for forty-five minutes until it's time for his bath. Plan worked. After his bath I gave him his bottle and my plan was for him to be so tired from his nap evasion all day that he'd crash and burn right into his crib. Plan didn't work. E just wanted to be held some more (no fussing, just wanted to be loved on). I can handle that. Finally my sweet boy passed out and hopefully he'll catch up on all the sleep he didn't get today. Tomorrow is a new day, a fresh start. If tomorrow is just as bad, there's always the next day and the next day and the next day.

Positive for the day: E was so exhausted my trip to Tahiti wasn't interrupted today. (See prior post for explanation- Splish Splash)

This was what nap time consisted of today. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Diary of a Poopy Kid

For those with a weak stomach, this is not for you.

In the past when E does his daily numero dos you could always tell. He was by no means shy about it. He would groan and grunt and push and turn red. And you could always tell when he was done, because all of the above would stop. All of a sudden he has decided to drop silent poop bombs. Has happened twice today. The first time with no incidence. Not true for the second time.

E was playing on his playmat and had scooted himself completely off of it (pics to come). So I go pick him up and put him back on the mat so he won't crack his skull open on the fireplace. Low and behold what do I smell? Yep, a poop bomb. I had no clue at what point it had happened, but he acted like he was done with his business. So I toted him off to his changing table to handle up. My suspicions were verified. So I take the diaper off and start wiping the poop off, didn't bother putting another diaper under him (HORRIBLE IDEAL). You would think after him being on this Earth for 4 1/2 months I would learn. Well much to my surprise, E wasn't done. Bad judgement call mom. So he continues to do his business all over the back of his onesie. I attempted to throw a diaper under him, but this further escalated the mess I had. E was kicking all over the place (would't you if you had poop all over your back). I was grabbing wipes left and right. Just so happens the wipe despenser only had about five wipes left in it. Clearly not enough for the mess on my hands. And the pile of dirty wipes/diaper I had created.... E was kicking them like a mad man. Add poop to his legs and feet now. I think at this point he thought it was a game. Not a game.  You can't just pull off a onesie that the whole back of it is coated in crap. It would be up his whole back then and his head, not happening. So the medical professional in me came out, trauma shears! I cut the onesie off. I can take a loss on the clothes, as long as E doesn't have poop on his head. I'm sure at this point you are probably asking "Why didn't you just call for help from your husband?" The husband was out picking up our dinner. So it was just me, E, and his poop. We survived it, and E came out with a poop-free head. One day he will thank me for this.

Yes, there is poop in there.

Maybe, this is his new look of poop concentration?

Was it the poop or the scooting that wore him out?

Friday, April 20, 2012

Splish Splash, my attempt at a bath

A few weeks ago, when we started sleeping E in his crib, I had my bath hijacked. After finally getting E down, I decided it was mommy's turn to relax a little in a nice warm bath. As I'm dreaming about being in Tahiti in an itty bitty bikini (RIGHT), I hear the pitter patter of puppy paws through the monitor. I don't fret, I give it a few seconds and I don't hear them anymore. Back to Tahiti. Five minutes later, tap tap tap. This time they're not stopping. And I know E is one tap away from waking up. I jump- literally- out of the bath tub, yank my towel off the bathroom door, fly through our bedroom onto the ceramic tile of the living room floor. Can you tell where this is going? Mind you when I grabbed that towel, I didn't grab it to wipe myself down. I more so grabbed it as a shield from my open blinds in the living room. As soon as I hit that tile I start ice skating across it. Arms flailing in the air, towel in the air with them. So much for that shield. I barely escaped from face planting the ceramic tile. After recomposing myself and recovering my girly bits, I make it to the guest bathroom (across from E's room) to find Peppi the dog digging in the garbage can. Apparently I left the baby gate open. In my quietest mad voice I say "Peppi! Peppi!" He comes. Yes, I saved the day. No raging baby.

Skip to today. Once again, end of a long day. Relaxing back in Tahiti. Monitors set up to where I have an Eagle's eye on E. Any slight movement and I can spring into action. As I'm washing my hair, I hear a little rustling through the monitor. I can't see the monitor because my glasses are off. Thanks Mom for the wonderful genetics for poor vision you passed down. All of a sudden I hear "WHAAAAAAAAAAA!" Crap. Here we go again. Grab the towel. Hair full of shampoo this time. Take off running. (No I didn't learn a lesson from the time before.) The lengths I will go to to keep my baby asleep. Luckily this time I didn't go ice skating across the floor. Once I got to E, I throw the paci back in, dripping water all over him. But thankfully, E went right back to sleep. And mommy headed back to relaxation.

Ahhhhh....the life of a mommy :)

Spring Cleaning

Today I decided to clean out E's closet, a task that I have continuously put off. There were WAY too many clothes with tags still on them. Since E was born 6 pounds 1 ounce (at his smallest dropped down to five pounds) he wore premie clothes for the first month. By the time he was in actual newborn and 0-3 month clothes it was starting to turn warm. Thank you Louisiana weather! So he pretty much just got 1 1/2 months worth out of the 0-3 clothes. Oh well, here's to hoping the next one is a boy. With our luck, we would get a boy, but he'd be born the opposite season.

Rambling about clothes not worn wasn't the point of this post, it just kind of took an ugly turn there. My actual point is that E is growing up way too fast. I look at some of the clothes I thought were huge and he'd never fit in. The clothes I'm now throwing in the "he's too big for this box." And it breaks my heart. Where does time go? These last four and a half months have flown by. Can I please turn it back, just for a day! Can I go back to the days when he'd let me hold him all day? What's so sad is during that time I was saying "I can't wait till he's older and more independent." Proof that I need to learn to live more in the moment. Even though I know times were tough for the first three months, the good times are the part I remember the most. The first smile, the first giggle, the first cooing. Those are the things I remember.

Evidence that E's growing too fast

My BIG boy

Monday, April 16, 2012

Tales of the crib

This is the two month journey to E sleeping in his own crib. E slept by my side all the way until his four month mark. We started him off in a rocker that had an incline to it because of his reflux, then at three months I got a wild hair (primarily due to peer pressure) and decided to try him in his crib. EPIC FAIL. That lasted approximately one hour, not even one day. And I was so optimistic about it in the beginning. Now mind you, E was not used to such an open space and he also wasn't used to lying flat. The rocker was very compact and held him in tight. Plan B: start putting him in the pack and play in our room. That way we don't have to run to his room on the other side of the house every five minutes for consoling purposes, instead we can just reach off the side of our bed. Finally after a month in the pack and play I decided it was time for round two of operation baby bed. To be honest, I was in no hurry what so ever to get E out of our room. I honestly wouldn't have minded him staying in there for a year. But I think Chris and I were waking him up with our teeth grinding, snoring, tossing and turning. After reading every possible book under the sun about sleep training, let me sum them all up- you must find the trigger for your baby waking. This was my attempt at that. So here was my plan, I was going to blow up the air mattress and sleep in E's floor. Yep, that was it. The grand plan. Night one, E woke up a couple of times and I replaced the paci and he was fine. He woke up around 3:00 to eat, but the night went better than when he was in our room. One night my mom decided to stay the night to help me try to figure out why E was still waking up so much in the middle of the night. Guess where I made her sleep....air mattress in his room floor. And yes she thought I was crazy. Of course E only woke up once for her. Don't kids always act better with the grandparents? The next night I was back on the air mattress. Every time I turned I cringed because that air mattress was so loud. There was a point when my body ached from laying in the same position for so long, because I didn't want E to wake up. Then it dawned on me, Brandi why don't you tote that air mattress to the "man" room and sleep in there. So ten feet away I went. Stationed with my monitors surrounding me. I have two monitors, one a video and sound and the other a motion monitor. I got the motion one after I started putting E in his crib, because I was/am super paranoid about SIDS. After a couple of nights of that it was time to return back to my nest. My baby was going to be okay on his own. This moment was extremely bittersweet. This nailed down the fact that he was no longer my little newborn, he was my growing baby.

In honor of me becoming a "big" girl my amazing work friends threw me a BIG girl party with brownies and ice cream. I am so fortunate to work with such amazing/supportive/crazy/fun people.

This is our night time station set up
Operation Eagle Eye

On an exciting side note, somebody whose name starts with an E rolled from back to belly. Another stark reminder that my little boy is growing up WAY too fast. Moments like these are treasured forever. 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Don't wake the sleeping baby

So the other day Paw came to visit E. Well of course little man was down for his nap. He was about an hour and a half into it. Which his naps usually last anywhere between an hour to two hours. So I go to the bathroom and finish getting ready while Paw and Chris visit in the kitchen. Well about five minutes later I hear Chris blowing his duck call at the top of his lungs. I flew around the corner like a complete mad woman. What do my eyes see? Chris, Paw, & E in the "man" room & Chris blowing his little heart out on that duck call. (I think he thinks if he blows it enough at E he'll be the smallest child to blow a duck call at the ripe age of six months old.) Paw was holding E and his back was to me. I mouthed to Chris "DID YOU WAKE HIM?!?!" Finger pointed, scowl on face. Thankfully, my husband had more sense than I gave him credit for and he didn't wake the sweet sleeping baby. The timing just happened to be just right that E woke up just as I went to the bathroom. With all the sleeping issues we had with E in the beginning, you never wake the sleeping baby, NEVER!

This is how I find E. Teether over shoulder and crinkly noisy puppy dog on head. He's still trying to figure out that hand control thing. 

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A baby changes EVERYTHING

As I look around my living room, a room that used to be decorated and cleaned to a T, it is now filled with playmats, and bouncers, and a boppy, and a bumbo, with a few burp clothes lying around too. My living room has now become my child's personal playroom. I will never forget when my sister had her first baby (approximately nine years ago) and her living room became over consumed with baby this and baby that, I SWORE when I had a baby my living room would not be their personal romper room. I thought my sister was absolutely insane for allowing her living room, her own personal space, to be overrun with loud, noisy kid toys. And here I sit, nine years later, in her same boat. A boat that I wouldn't change for the world. So what my shelves are dusty, so what my floor needs to be mopped, so what it looks like a ravage tornado swept through my house. This is my life now, and I'm loving every single minute of it. It's not until you have a baby that you realize how invaluable actual materialistic objects are. I could care less about those candlesticks or that picture frame (unless of course a picture of E is in it).

Another thing I SWORE I'd never do is play that annoying baby music in the car that my sister tortured me with when we went on shopping trips with the baby. Well, guess who bought the same exact annoying baby music CD that my sister had, ME! And if E is in the car it's a must that it has to be on. Granted he's four months old and could probably care less. I don't want to fill my sweet four month old's head with some of the vulgar subjects today's music contains. We want to know about the wheels on the bus, and Mr. Sun Mr. Sun, and Old McDonald.

I SWORE my designer purse would never turn into a diaper bag. As soon as E popped into this world, my purse is now that blue gingham cloth diaper bag full of diapers and butt cream with Ethan sprawled across the side of it. Oh how life changes. My clothes are covered in spit up and my hair is constantly being pulled at. Which I don't have a lot to begin with, considering half of it has fallen out post pregnancy. But this is my life, a life of love, a life of laughter, a life of 100% pure happiness. I have always been a happy person, but this is a different kind of happiness, an indescribable happiness.

For humors sake, last night Chris was feeding E in the living room and I was in our bedroom and I heard somebody release a loud fart. I call it fart, you call it poot. But you get the point. I had to ask Chris "Was that you or E?" It's sad when you honestly don't know if that atrocious noise came from your husband or your baby. And this is not a question I ask once a day, but multiple times a day. I guess the saying like father like son, proves true.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

There is a light

We have found the light at the end of the tunnel! Hallelujah!! Once Ethan hit four months old, something amazing happened...he started sleeping through the night. Not only did he start sleeping through the night, but he also started taking an hour to two hour naps. Un-freaking-believable. Our sleep deprivation got a tad bit better. We also no longer rock Ethan to sleep. Which is extremely bitter sweet. That was one of my favorite times. Holding that sweet baby in my arms. Even though usually he was fighting us tooth and nail. Oh how quickly we forget. We put Ethan in HIS crib and pat him a few times and he goes out like a light. Did I mention we're also in our crib?! Another thing I was in no rush to do. E wakes up usually one time a night and it's due to that darn paci falling out. We put him down between 7:30 and 8:30. We dream feed him between 10:00 and 11:00 and he doesn't wake up for a feeding until 4:00 or 5:00. Which he goes back to bed until 8ish after that feeding. We really couldn't ask for a better baby. He's so much happier and less fussy. I feel like we have the "dream" baby. I love seeing him so happy. I also took E off his being a person who works in the medical field sees Zantac as a medicine EVERYBODY takes, so I assumed there are no side effects. Well thank goodness for Nonnie who took the time to actually read the COMMON side effects. Which include, headache, nausea, stomach upset. So I decided to take him off of Zantac and see how he did. And he did great! His feeding schedule was also changed from every 4-5 hours to every 3 hours no matter what. I don't think he was getting enough calories during the day so he'd wake up hungry at night. So quite a few things changed at four months, I'm going to go ahead and a say it was a combination of all these things that gave us this completely turned around baby. It was literally an over night change. I can't wait to see what five months holds for us :)