Friday, December 2, 2011

Milestones and Memories: Week 28-32!

October 9-November 12, 2011

You have grown and changed so much in the past month and a half! You sit up for long stretches at a time unassisted, you smile with a scrunched up nose, you talk and sing and babble. You have become very clear in your communication and desires.  You kiss and snuggle us fiercely.  You have claimed my iPhone as your own (for chewing, taking your own picture, and talking with Dada) . Some of my favorite you-things: You and Legobrother love on each other so hard.  He makes faces and funny sounds and smiles at you and you absolutely BEAM.  He won't go to sleep unless the two of you have a gentle head bonk, and Blue-eyed Brother has taken up the practice as well.  You absolutely love wine glasses and like to watch the liquid slosh and move and with the more sugary wines, you follow the legs as they trickle down the side of the glass.  You love to feel the glass on your gums, too (no wine! only glass!).  You appear to be a wine lover in the making (give it another 20.5 years or so, ok? Dad and I have already discussed that we will teach you to have an incredibly advanced palette, so that you will turn up your nose at the booze your young friends may have readily available!) We co-sleep, and your favorite way to snuggle at night is with your face towards mine,  a leg thrown up over my side, and a little sleep-smile on your face.

You have some favorite toys including Murray the orangishpink lamb-thing (it's creepy, you LOVE him!),  Lucy the pup, Sophie the giraffe, your "Baby's first pocketbook and cellphone" from Jordan, Dad's iPad, the ABC music maker, rings, and the Mozart Magic Cube from Rossi.  You're now bouncing up and down in your musical jumper and it absolutely delights you.  If you are hanging out in it, playing with all of the bells and whistles, and Dad or I come up to you and jump, jump, jump - you do too!

We've been up to a lot! When you were 28 weeks old (10/14), I took you to your first Kirtan while the boys all had movie night together.  Mark Nanni from The Now performed (drums, voice, percussion) and you sang and cooed and looked around with the brightest eyes.  It was so special spending that time with you, snuggling and singing words and songs that have such meaning.   The following week, OmBoys Juice and Smoothie Cafe opened, right by the yoga studio, and we were some of their first customers.  (The Pink and Perky is my very favorite drink.) We went on our own, and we also brought Dad for a lunch date. 

You turned thirty weeks old on the 23rd of October. This was also the weekend that Sri Dharma Mittra came to CNY Yoga.  On Saturday, I attended the Satsang, and on Sunday morning we began our longest ever time apart (about 4.5 hours!). For a little bit of that time, you had your first ever babysitter (Mer!) with neither Mom nor Dad around (Dad was at SYO. Mer reported that you were delightful).  On Sunday, Sri Dharma taught at the Genesee Grande, in the ballroom, and it was incredible.  Meditation, Pranayama, Asana, Lecture... it is hard to write about, because I am still reflecting on all of those lessons learned (or visited) in a time span of less than 24 hours. I asked Lorie if you could accompany me to the psychic development lecture in the afternoon, and she welcomed you freely.  You were a doll, and wanted to coo and sing to the friends all around.  I did not want anyone's meditation to be disturbed, so I nursed you and we listened from a distance.  I think you felt all of the amazing energy in the room.   I left that weekend so inspired and feeling so a part of the CNY-Yoga Center family.  I felt warm with receptiveness, compassion, love and light, doing right because right must be done, and knowing that all in our life is as it is meant to be.  (As I am writing this, it is over a month later, and I can't overstate the impact this weekend had on me. I think hindsight is necessary to pinpoint turning points in one's life, but I think that this was a turning point)  My eating habits have changed, my outlook on life is magnified,  I am loving harder than I have ever loved before.  I am so glad you were there with me that for afternoon.  Perhaps you're on a very early start towards the path of enlightenment. 

During this Thirtieth week of your life, you also sat in a restaurant high chair for the first time, you started to scooooootch backwards on the floor, and you had Maddie visit as a Mother's helper while I taught lessons.  Legobrother was diagnosed with Pneumonia and Dr. P said you needed to be far apart from oneanother.  Both of you hated that.  This also marked the first time that you really noticed the boys leaving when it was time for them to go back to their Mother's house.  You cried (I mean: CRIED) and it broke Dada's and my heart.  I think it will only get harder with time.  On Saturday, your Dada conducted the Faure Requiem at the OnCenter as the Buglisi Dance Company danced.  It was amazing, Bellabean.  You will be so proud of him in your lifetime.  He is amazing, beautiful to watch, and such a gifted artist and musician.

For Halloween, you were a bunny.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  Adorable (in my totally biased Mama opinion) ! Blue-eyed Brother was a gangster, and Legoboy was Captain America!  You make quite the threesome.  We went to your brothers' Halloween parade at school, attended parent teacher conferences, had an appointment with Susan (our midwife), and then you helped me pass out candy to Trick-or-Treaters!  Dad traveled to Wisconsin for a gig, and the ladies ruled the house.  The pups and we snuggled tons while he was away, and Friday, we met up with Karen for a windy but wonderful walk at OLP.  Saturday, you had your second trip to Icihiban, where we celebrated Legobrother's 8th birthday.  You loved watching the flames and seat-side cooking. 

Legobrother turned eight on the same day you marked 32 weeks on the 'outside'.  We had a great big breakfast for LB, and then the day moved quickly with an SYO concert for Dad, CW rehearsal for Mom, and your first Daylight savings (so not a big deal for you because instead of waking up at noon, you woke up at 11! Nightowl baby ftw!) You helped me run lots of errands this week (Farmer's co-op, Wegmans, post office, voting, vets for the pups checkup, etc.), and you're getting to be a pro at the new carseat (I wish my seat in the car was as comfy!)

On Wednesday (11/9/11) you performed with your first quartet.  Blue-eyed Brother was practicing 'Cello, and I asked him if I could join on flute.  Well, when I play flute, Lucie howls/sings/screams, and you thought that all the sounds were quite hilarious, so you joined in and SANG with us! The four of us played/howled/sang to the Banana Boat song until BEB and I could not play because we were laughing so hard.  I SO wish we had video of that moment. 

Every moment with you is a gift, a jewel, a perfect package.  My heart aches at your smiles, breaks with your tears, and absolutely melts at your giggles. I love you endlessly and completely and with every fiber of my being.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Our Hospital Packing List

When I learned that I was pregnant, I began reading and reading and reading... I read every pregnancy, labor, and birthing book, magazine, blog, and message board that I could get my hands on.  I knew that I wanted to be as well-prepared and well-informed as possible.  I love sharing my knowledge with others (I can't help wanting to teach, it's who I am at the center of my being, no matter the subject) and so some of my posts will be full of information that helped me along our path and things I wish had been in one place when I was researching.  Future posts will include: mama/birth blogs I follow, mama/birth books I read, cloth diapering suggestions, what AP means to us in all of its different forms, how yoga and hypnobirthing make such a great pair - please let me know if you have requests! I have already had some wonderful correspondence with experienced mama friends and great friends who have become pregnant over the past 6-12 months and I have honed some of these posts from letters, facebook messages, emails, and conversations with these lovely mamas and mamas-to-be.  Thank you LJ, AC, TH, AE, KH, JR, BPM, SA, SN, HS and lots of other mamas for wonderful mama chats that helped me develop these posts.

Our Hospital Packing List

I grew up participating in an organization called Pony Club, and the group focused on helping kids become great equestrians, but also even more on being an excellent partner with your horse, taking the best care of them, and valuing horsemanship over all else. Well, my Mom and Dad still cry "pony club!" whenever they see me plan, organize, and pack anything, as packing up a horse for an event, rally, or pony club event taught me to be more than thorough.  (I once overpacked luggage for a trip.  It was over the 50 pound limit.  By thirty pounds.  Oops!) The hospital list? Totally Pony Club. 

Here's what we packed - if you are thinking of putting together your own list, I hope this helps!

Packed for Mama:
Hospitals scare me.  I don't like the smell or feeling or equipment or fear in the air.  90% of me wanted a homebirth, but the 10% that felt comforted by the hospital birth (and the feelings of Handsome Husband) made our decision.  (If I had another baby, home it would be, I think, but that's for another discussion!) Anyway, I wanted to create an atmosphere that was as comfortable and home-like as possible.
  • toiletries: lip balm, hair ties, lotion/face lotion, brush, shampoo/shower gel, makeup (it's nice to be able to spiff up for visitors, pictures), deodorant
  • socks, slippers, flip flops
  • undies, nursing bra(s), day/days after outfit and going home outfit (think comfy yoga clothes, you'll probably look and feel and be your 5 mo. pregnant size)
  • boppy, own pillow and colored pillowcase (colored pillowcase so your pillow doesn't get confused with hospital pillows)
  • mints and snacks (granola bars, little candies)
  • phone charger
  • toilet paper (hospital tp is awful and it is nice to have comfort!)
  • soft home towel in a color other than white (see tp explanation and colored pillowcase explanation)
  • nightgowns/robe (never wore the hospital stuff, didn't ruin either, was SO grateful for the robe after as I was absolutely FREEZING and couldn't warm up for anything)
  • camera/video camera/chargers/cord to hook to laptop
I packed two bags - one for stuff I wanted during labor and one for after.  We arrived to my birthing suite with only the stuff I needed right away, so that it did not feel like we were moving in, and if they had sent us packing (I knew they wouldn't) we wouldn't have had to drag everything out.  Also, I knew labor, delivery, and recovery would be in one suite, and then we would move to another wing - we waited until the move to get the "after" stuff. 
Brought but didn't use:
Keep in mind, I arrived at the hospital at 6pm on Saturday, Isabella was born at 1:58am on Sunday, and we were home by Monday early afternoon.  If I had a longer labor and recovery, or if I had a section, I am sure I would have been at the hospital longer, and required a different list.
  • journal, glasses, magazines, music (I thought I would need entertainment, but my phone was enough and I was laboring quietly with HH, snuggling my baby, or sleeping!! No time or real need for entertainment)
  • pump
  • pads (used the hospital ones)
  • birth plan (had discussed it with my providers ahead of time, and felt so much conviction and no pressure from them to vary - I never brought it out.)
  • many of the snacks/crystal light/tea - the hospital kept decent food coming (super accommodating to veg requests)
  • id/insurance card
  • bathing suit for water labor (modesty was SO gone by the point I was in the tub!)
Packed for Bellabean: 
  • 2 diapers
  • baby blanket
  • receiving blanket
  • going home outfit with hat
  • change of clothing sizes in case she was a super-peanut or mega-monster
 The only things we used for her were the going home outfit and blanket for the car ride! Everything else was hospital provided for the stay (receiving blanket, bulb aspirator, diapers, blankets, clothes)

Packed for HH:
  • comfy clothes for the stay
  • bathing suit
  • night clothes
  • toiletries
  • laptop
  • magazines
  • phone/laptop cords
Packed in the Car:
  • car seat, fully installed
  • garbage bags and towels (just in case we had a highway delivery!)
I felt really prepared with the "stuff" we had packed and ready, and I am comforted by preparation.  Hope this list helps someone someday! Mamas, is there anything you would add?