Wednesday, June 24, 2009

3 weeks

Chewie is 3 weeks old today. She has discovered how to cry, quite loudly, as well as the joys of gas. Her little legs held rigid, her face purple, she screams with a painful rage whether she is awake or asleep, and then is fine and you'd swear she had been quiet the whole time. I hope this phase will pass quickly (ha, I said pass. Like pass gas. Ha!) because it is irritating as hell. She did manage to poop this morning and she rip a few with no fanfare so maybe it is passing. 

We're getting into a routine during the day. Well, we've been on one since we got home but it mostly consisted of me feeding her constantly, changing her diaper in an attempt to wake her a bit, and then her sleeping. Now she's going a little longer between feeds and has a bit more awake time before her naps. She's also not falling asleep as easily though since she is more awake, so I'm going to have to start doing more than just putting her down. But she's napping in her crib which is something the Princess refused to do this early and she's fallen asleep on her own plenty of times. I think the last couple of days she's been getting very overtired because of the gas waking her up and interrupted her bedtime sleep and her naps. And siblings who like to run around the house playing music band. But mostly I think it's the gas. 

We had someone come over yesterday as a mother's helper and it was great. She's the daughter of someone my BFF knows and is very good with kids. As soon as she got here I sent her outside with the 2 stir-crazy children. Although they both hid under the kitchen table when she got here, it was in silliness not shyness. They both willingly went outside and I could hear SkyWalker tell her all about his preschool kids that are going to kindergarten with him. He was not shy at all. It was amazing since he's never met her! And if he's comfortable with someone, the Princess is, so she was fine. It worked out really well. When she left she said something about SkyWalker really liking to talk and I just had to laugh. I can't believe this is the boy who hid in the bathroom at our first playdate. It really makes me feel like everything I've done (mom's group) has had an effect. And the added bonus is that the Princess seeing him comfortable with people will hopefully prevent her from becoming painfully shy too. Of course now that's he's going to kindergarten we've been telling him about strangers and who he can and can't talk to. It's funny--didn't have to worry about that before because he didn't talk to anyone! 

The Princess was up a lot last night. My poor mother took care of her before Vader could get upstairs. I don't know what her problem was and hope she's not getting sick. Chewie was up every couple of hours but she was just up to nurse and then right back to sleep, no in between painful gas crying, so it wasn't that bad. And I'm pretty sure SkyWalker peed the bed again and I'm pretty sure my mother (who is sleeping in his room) dealt with that too. He's had some dry nights so I know he can do it. We went to Denny's for dinner though and it was later than normal and he drank a boatload of milk. I should have had Vader go up and have him pee twice last night. Oh well. 

I took all the jedi to the train station yesterday to pick up Nana. It was the first time I had the three of them myself. It was also the first time I drove in 3 weeks. I had to remember what to do. It always feels so weird when I don't drive at all for a few weeks. I obviously don't forget how to drive, but it just feels weird. 

And with that the dogs have woken Chewie. So much for my peaceful time. 

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Mishmash of random unrelated things

I'm happy to say that nobody's milk was spoiled. We had to throw out some chicken, but you all know I'm not crying about that (I hates the chicken, I do). Vader and I were able to pull off the back wall in the fridge, blow dry some ice away, and we now have a working fridge. I ordered a $20 part on the internets and hopefully we'll get it soon and we can prevent this from happening again. So much better than needing to buy a new fridge. I do think we will get a freezer though. We have a lot of frozen stuff--chicken nuggets and fish sticks for the kids, frozen vegetables, pizza, etc. And when I make spaghetti sauce and turkey balls I like to make more than we need and freeze the rest. Same with turkey meatloaf. It would be nice to have more space to do things like that. 

I also need to get a new steam mop. Less than a year ago I got the Shark Steam Mop. I knew people who had it, I did the research and read the reviews. It worked great on my bathroom floors and was so much easier than anything else for getting little boy pee off the floor. I loved it. And then it stopped working. It just won't steam and that's a pretty crucial part of the whole process. I tried running vinegar through it to clean out any accumulated deposits. I tried that CLR stuff. Nothing works. I decided I'm done with it and I'm giving it to my sister--so she can try and get the handle off and put it on her Shark mop. Because her mop, that she had for less than a year, is also broken. The handle just snapped right off. We spent $80 for this! And what will customer service do? We can pay to ship it to them and they'll fix it or send a new one and I'm sure we can pay for that shipping too. Screw that. For $80 this thing should be working right and if it doesn't I should get a free replacement. So I am now in the market for a new, different, steam mop that will let me clean the bathroom floors quickly and easily. If anyone has any recommendations I would love to hear them. 

Vader goes back to work tomorrow. I'm not quite ready for that. And not only is he going back to work, but because he was so busy before and then he took 2 1/2 weeks off, he will be working late every day this week. Luckily my mother is coming on Tuesday and staying for the rest of the week. Otherwise I would have some stinky kids. I don't know how I would give all 3 a bath! Maybe he'll be home in time for that though. In any event, we've all gotten used to Daddy being home and although he has done a lot of outside stuff he's brought both SkyWalker and the Princess with him which has been very nice for me and for them. The Princess especially has really enjoyed having some Daddy time. Hopefully my mother will be enough of a distraction for SkyWalker and he won't miss Daddy too much. I'm not thinking about next week yet. I do have someone coming over on Tuesday morning who is a potential mother's helper.  I don't have the cash to have someone everyday, but once a week would be nice. And when we go to the beach. If it ever stops raining. 

I think I decided to go with Chewie as a blog nickname for the newest member of our family. It actually makes sense for reasons I shall not disclose. Chewie has been doing well, she's up to 6 pounds now and is nursing well. She's been getting more vocal, particularly in the middle of the night. The other night she had really bad gas and when she wasn't nursing she was screaming so we were up all night. I did not get up at 5:30 yesterday. I took her temp when we did get up just in case because I am now paranoid mama after the Princess and her kidney problems. Her temp was fine and she did a big poop shortly thereafter, which was another reason I took her temperature. Never underestimate the power of a thermometer up the ass. She did much better last night and actually did a 3 hour stretch (she hasn't been going more than 2 hours lately) and then she started crying again. She pooped a couple of times, the loud explosive kind, so hopefully she's getting it out and tonight will be better. I remember when SkyWalker had problems as a baby he would always want to nurse all night long until he finally got it all out. And the Princess would always have her big poops in the middle of the night.

It is wet and raining again, as it's done all week. This is sucky, BUT the rain meant that Vader did not have to water the trees so that was good. And it's filling up our pool, albeit slowly. We're trying to fill up the pool without emptying our well. Our water is so messed up--with the sulfur and the clay--that have two filters on it. The chlorine filter takes care of the sulfur and works immediately, but the clay is different. That filter uses something called F-86, some chemical and it mixes with the water in a big tank and makes the clay settle at the bottom. It takes time to work. If you take a lot of water out of the system it doesn't have the time to do its job. And then the water gets all cloudy and dark. Which is how our toilets looked on Thursday when we started filling up the pool. This is why I wanted Vader to do it in May so we'd have more time to get it done and balanced and could enjoy it for the summer. Although with all this rain we wouldn't be using this week anyway. 

The dogs went to the vet the other day to get their outstanding shots. Isaac has been doing okay with his leg. It's clear that it's not exactly right, but he has some days that he doesn't limp at all. We've been giving him an arthritis vitamin every day and that might actually be helping. Vader mentioned the leg to the vet tech, but the actual vet didn't even say anything about it. So unless he takes a turn for the worse I think we have avoided surgery. It doesn't make sense to do it when he can still function and run and doesn't seem to be in any pain. We have a new shampoo for him to try to help his itchiness. And he apparently has a consistent low-grade yeast infection in his ears. Vader cleans his ears constantly. The next time he starts scratching and head shaking again we're just going to shove some monistat in his ear. Haze, of course, has no problems but has put on some weight. She is now over 60 pounds and Isaac is over 70. 

And I should get off the internets and do something productive for my last 30 minutes of freedom. 

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Friday, June 19, 2009

Somebody's milk is going to spoil

I've been seriously considering getting a separate freezer not just for my accumulating breastmilk but also so we can stock up on things that we eat all the time. There are 5 of us now, with plans for another, and the freezer in our fridge is not really all that big (it's a side by side fridge). The freezers are not that cheap if we want a good one that will hold more than just a few things, but I think it would be worth it in the long run. So I've been researching them. Can anyone guess where this story will end? I will give you a hint, the old me would think the universe was plotting against us. Now, I just think it's funny. Irritating as all hell, but funny. 

Our fridge isn't working. 
We heard a clicking noise a couple of weeks ago but it went away. The last couple of days I noticed that things aren't as cold. We have about 3 gallons of milk there. Gah. I looked it up online since we have no manual (fridge came with the house) and because there is also some frost on the freezer side it looks like one of the defrost things may not be working. So we'll have to take everything out of the freezer, open up the back wall, get to the coils and if there's ice we'll have to melt it/dry it with a hair dryer. I don't know if that will solve the problem or just be a quick fix until we can get something else. 

How funny is that I'm looking to spend money on a freezer and at the same time the fridge decides to die?? I'm not quite sure we'd have the money to buy both a new fridge and freezer. Unless maybe we can get some kind of deal for buying two together? Hopefully we can fix the fridge before all the food goes bad, and do it quick enough that the frozen stuff (like my breastmilk) doesn't go bad too. Should be fun! It'll be a race to see who's milk will spoil first!

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Saturday, June 13, 2009


Yesterday was SkyWalker's preschool graduation. I fully expected that at some point during the ceremony he would have to come sit with us because of stage fright. I fully expected no participation at all. Which would have been fine because, quite frankly, I wouldn't want to sing This Land is Your Land in front of a bunch of grownups taking pictures either. It started out with the kids walking in two-by-two and his teacher was smart enough to pair him with his lovely Juliet (this girl has him on a short leash). I'm pretty sure the only reason he made it down the aisle to the front was because lovely Juliet (yes that's what he calls her) was pulling him there. When they got to the front they had to go their separate ways and the teacher had to physically separate their hands because lovely Juliet was determined to just pull him along her way. Luckily he went where he was supposed to and sat where he was supposed to and stayed there. He didn't sing all the words to all the songs or do all the silly hand movements but he did *some* of them and that is a major improvement for him! I really wasn't expecting him to do anything and would have been happy with him just sitting up there the entire time. When it was time to get his diploma I thought he wouldn't come but he did and he waved to the grownups just like he was supposed to. I was really really surprised. I was also really surprised that I had to repeatedly bite my lip to keep from crying. I am seriously sleep deprived and there were lots of moms crying and Grama was crying (Vader also graduated from this preschool a million years ago) but I don't cry at these things. But seeing him actually participate and not being so shy... it was very nice to see.

It wouldn't be a blog post from me without some mention of poop. Really, look at my tags. I bet poop is the largest one. Anyway, I am happy to report that SkyWalker has been pooping normally for months now without the aid of daily miralax. I thought the new baby might set him back but it hasn't! It's such a relief. We still have the September kindergarten hurdle to get through and I still have the bottle of miralax just in case, but I remain cautiously optimistic that we won't need it. 

The Princess is doing fantastic on the potty. I'm not going all out with the underwear yet. She still happily pees in her diaper/pull-up but she's told us a few times now that she needed to poop on the potty and did it. Every morning when she gets up we put her on the potty and she does her morning poop. If she had a cup of coffee too I'd think she was my father. She almost always produces something when she sits there. I'm not sure if she can physically hold it in yet, but I'm happy enough to have her in pull-ups and have MOST of the dirty work wind up in the potty.

Speaking of diapers, I discovered something amazing the other day. The newborn diapers, the Pampers Swaddlers that actually say newborn with the umbilical cut out part, have a yellow stripe down them. Do you know how long it took me to realize that the yellow stripe turned blue? Far too long! Apparently when there is urine it turns blue! An easy way to count wet diapers. I wish I had realized this last week when I was trying to guess whether there was just too little urine or none at all. Seriously, that's frickin' cool.

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Friday, June 12, 2009

A few pics

Yes, I'm aware that I am putting a picture with my big butt in it on my blog. I thought it was too funny to pass up. What are we all looking at?

Somebody's umbilical stump fell off after just a week so she was able to get a bath! She did wonderful and did not cry until it was all over. I wish Vader had gotten a closer picture that truly showed her skinny frog like legs but this will have to do. 

I know SkyWalker is not looking at the camera but I love this picture anyway. I think it's cuter. The way the Princess is staring at her baby sister. They both look so gentle with her. This is pretty much how it is. 

And this would be the newest addition to our clan. Please note that her eyes are closed and mine are accentuated with dark circles underneath them. Hmmmm....

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

In the zone

This is what I have been waiting for. 

Nine months, or, well, less, of vomiting and back aches and insecurities and vulnerability and no energy and it's all good because it leads me to this. I had a baby less than a week ago. I've packed up all my maternity clothes and put them back on the top shelf of the closet. Sure, I could use a girdle. I am awake and up before my children and dogs and husband and enjoying the private me time that I've needed the last 9 months but had no energy for. All I needed to do was have the baby. It's amazing how quickly I've settled into the old routine--feed baby, get up, pump, drink tea, go online, feed baby. I could barely drag myself out of bed before. And now that I have a newborn, my 3rd, and I'm up every couple of hours at night I find myself with energy and motivation that I forgot existed. Mostly motivation. I won't lie, I'm wicked ass tired by the time dinner time comes and I fell asleep watching Kung Fu Panda last night, but I am motivated in ways I haven't been in a long time. 

Last night the baby, who is in serious need of a nickname for this blog, fed at 12:30 and then not again until 5:10. I don't really want to go over 4 hours at night this soon but she's been pretty good about waking up at night to feed so I figured she knew best. And I did feed her just about every hour before we went to bed. She weighed 5 pounds, 11 ounces at birth. When she came home on Thursday she was 5 pounds, 8 ounces (which was funny because SkyWalker was 5 pounds, 7 ounces when he was born). By Friday she dropped another 3 ounces. I've been waking her and feeding her every 2 hours during the day and at yesterday's weight check she was 5 lbs, 10 oz. I think I'm going to do every 2 hours until she gets to 6 pounds and then we'll get onto the 3-hour routine that I love so much. 

When you first change a low-birthweight baby's diaper you think there's no way you can do this without breaking a bone. It's almost too frightening to attempt. But this is not my first low-birthweight baby and not my smallest either so I was able to skip over that this time and see the benefits. I had SkyWalker first (obviously) so I've always felt that boys are easier to change than girls--sure there's more chance of getting shot with some errant urine, but there are fewer nooks and crannies for the explosive mustard poop to hide in. When I had the Princess it was ridiculous. I declared that girls are ridiculously hard to change. I hereby modify that to say that girls with chunky legs and fat rolls (i.e. normal ones) are hard. The low-birthweight baby girl is wicked easy. She does not have any fat anywhere in her nether regions. There's no poking around looking for the stray poop. 

She's doing well. I'm doing well. The older jedi are doing remarkably well with her. The dogs are behaving. Vader is home for another week or so. It's all good. And with that I am going to attempt a shower before the 7 am wake up call.

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Friday, June 5, 2009

Divine intervention

You know I've been ready for this baby for weeks if not months now. I had Vader put the infant car seat in last weekend. Everything was done. On Tuesday Vader miraculously fixed our garage door opener so we could have the van in the garage again. My BF, Shinesalot, and her son came for a visit on Tuesday and to spend the night. And although it was only going to be one night I was grateful for any time I could see her. We had a great time all day Tuesday and because SkyWalker was so comfortable with them so was the Princess. She acted like she had known my BF her entire life too. I looked forward to playing more on Wednesday before I had to take them to the train station.

And then my water broke.

Well, not quite then. Sometime shortly before 2 a.m. (why is it always in the wee hours of the morning when that happens?), I felt and heard a "pop." This is significant because at Sunday's Mom's Book Club at my house one of the moms talked about hearing and feeling a pop when her water broke. And I laughed because my water had never broken and I would rather have it done naturally than have it done by the doctor. So when I heard this pop, I said "Oh crap. No." Because on Tuesday night, or Wednesday morning really, I was only 36 1/2 weeks. I went to the bathroom and everything was fine so I thought "I'm so suggestive. It was probably just gas." I went back to bed. And then felt something shoot out of me and thought "that's weird". I went to the bathroom and saw that I was a bit wet and then that I was A LOT wet and said "Oh crap." By the time it actually all started coming out it was 2 a.m. 

On the ONE day of the year that my BF was sleeping in my house. 

Do you understand the significance of this?

My husband and I left for the hospital knowing that our sleeping children were in good hands in their own home. We had to go to a different hospital which sucked donkey ass but that's another blog post. Labor and delivery was rather uneventful and 6 hours later we had our new baby girl.* Born on Wednesday, June 3 at 8:01 a.m., she was just 2 days shy of 37 weeks, which I believe is considered full term. Not ideal, but full term. Don't tell that to the people at the hospital though who apparently enjoy saying the phrase "gestational age" a lot. Anyway, the absolute best part is that my BF was able to come to the hospital and hold my new baby girl and be a part of this for me again. And that could only be explained by divine intervention. 

*No, you're not getting pictures. That involves walking down the stairs and I'm not doing that yet. 

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