Baby D Makes Three

born December 27, 2012

my favorite time of day

it’s early and still dark outside but I am dressed and ready for work. I sneak into your room with a warm bottle. as much as I try not to wake you, you do, and you sit up and lift your arms to me. I pick up your warm, sleepy body and cuddle you. we sit in the rocking chair while I feed you your first bottle of the day. you look at me with sleepy eyes that are full of trust and the weight of your tiny body in my arms reminds me of why I do everything I do. it’s all for you. it’s my favorite time of day.

it’s the end of my workday and my heart races a little. it’s time to go pick you up from daycare. it’s my favorite time of day.

I arrive at your daycare and you see me walk through the door. you make a sound of delight and race over to me, crawling as fast as you can and sometimes tripping over yourself. I pick you up and you laugh and bounce and give me a hug. it’s my favorite time of day.

it’s evening and we are living life: feeding you dinner, playing with you, cooking and eating our own dinner, bath time. you have added so much to our life. you make it more fun, more hectic, more messy, and totally worth it. it’s my favorite time of day.

it’s bedtime and you are in your cozy footy pajamas. you are holding onto your lovey, and I am holding on to you. I rock you and sing our special lullaby. you look at me with those same sleepy, trusting eyes you did this morning. I linger, not wanting to lay you down in your crib, but knowing I have to. I kiss your little forehead and tuck you in. it’s my favorite time of day.

it’s the middle of the night and something has woken you from your sleep. you are cranky and crying. I am so tired I can barely see but I stumble into the nursery to pick you up and comfort you. we rock and I rub your back. you drift back to sleep and again I linger. not wanting to put you down, but knowing I need to go back to bed myself.  It’s my favorite time of day.

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“I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22” – err. 28. I turned 28 two days ago.

Dear 27,

Thank you for a healthy pregnancy. Thank you for a natural labor and birth. Thank you for a healthy daughter. Thank you for motherhood. Thank you for more love. Thank you for more kisses. Thank you for more patience. Thank you for more grace. Thank you.

Dear 28,

I hope to get a little more sleep. I hope to be a better wife, a better mother. I hope to continue to find time to be silly with Cora. I hope to find balance with my time. I hope to spend alone time with my husband. I hope to have some me time. I hope to make new friends and spend more time with old ones. I hope to grow in my faith. I hope.

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hot mess

this weekend was a total hot mess at our house.

I ate something bad on friday. so I had stomach flu-like symptoms for most of the evening and into saturday morning.

saturday morning came around, and Cora had a runny nose, and was very congested. it was also 106 degrees by the afternoon (I meant hot mess literally). since Cora didn’t seem overly cranky, we chalked the runny nose up to the change in weather, and went to a second birthday party where Cora enjoyed splashing in the kiddie pool, and J and I melted (did I mention 106 degrees?). over the course of the afternoon, as I used more and more boogie wipes, I started to wonder if this was a cold and not weather related. but she continued to power through it with minimal crankiness.

sunday morning came with more congestion, and a little more whining, but nothing too awful. we went to church as I was scheduled to volunteer in the nursery, and Cora had fun with the few toys I handed her.

sunday afternoon is when the real hot mess hit. this is definitely her first cold. she was congested, runny-nosed, cranky, and having a harder time eating. it was also pretty obvious the teething fairy had visited at the same time. she was inconsolable. she hates having her nose wiped or suctioned, and her poor teeth are hurting her so badly. towards the evening, I started to feel like I was coming down with a cold too. my throat started hurting, and my nose started running. perfect.

it was so hard to listen to my precious, teeny, baby girl sniffle and cough on the baby monitor. and even worse to hear the whimpers throughout the night that to me say, I don’t feel good. I was up way more often than normal, retrieving her pacifier, or just going in to put my hand to her forehead to check for a fever, or to kiss her and hope that my love could magically take the sickness away.

we had a rough night to say the least, and when this morning came, Cora had a small cough and was still congested. my head feels like it’s going to explode, my throat is sore, and my nose is a faucet. J stayed home with Cora as I went to work. I felt so guilty leaving her since this is her first sickness, but I was scheduled to observe an administrative hearing this morning, and I felt I needed to do that as a refresher for my job. I’m so thankful J has a flexible job too, and can stay home with her when I’m not able to.

now I’m counting the hours until I can go home and cuddle my baby, who will hopefully be feeling better.

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dear Cora,

there are so many things on my heart right now. I wasn’t prepared for this confliction I seem to feel about everything now that I am back at work. being a working mother is wonder-awful. I am so in love with you and wouldn’t trade being your momma for anything. but it seems there is a flip side to almost every wonderful aspect of working motherhood; a negative side, lurking just beneath the surface.

here are a few examples of wonder-awful working motherhood:

I am overjoyed that you are happy at daycare. I am saddened to be away from you.

I am thrilled you are such a good eater and get so much to eat during the day. I am heartbroken that I do not seem to be able to pump enough to keep up with your appetite.

I cherish the moments late in the evening and early in the morning when I nurse you; it is our special time together. I am exhausted from going to bed later and getting up so early to be able to nurse you.

I love seeing your happy face every morning before I go to work. I hate to leave you.

being back at work is easier than I thought, and a lot more rewarding. I miss you all day long, and feel guilty you are being cared for by someone else..

evenings are sacred; you are only awake for a few hours after work and daycare, and I try to squeeze a whole days worth of love, snuggles, and kisses into those precious hours. there is not enough time to go around, and I find myself stressing over the chores that aren’t getting done.

my body was your home for 9 months, it protected, nurtured, and grew you; that is amazing to think about, and a huge blessing. my body looks like it grew and birthed a human; I am uncomfortable and self conscious of my new physique.

you are a happy, healthy, intelligent baby! I constantly worry about your growth and development.

my love for you expands every single day. you bring joy and wonderment to my life. you make me a better, more loving, more patient version of myself. And there is no awful flip side to that. so I’ll hold on to that as I start another day, and hope that today holds more wonderful than awful.

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month 5

dear Cora,

you have been 5 months old for a week and I just haven’t found the time to write this post. you seem to grow and change and advance every single day. I am so in love with you.

this month was huge for you in terms of food. you started eating rice cereal on May 9th. to say you LOVE eating solid foods would be an understatement. you do not patiently wait for your next spoonful. you yell if mommy or daddy isn’t being fast enough and you basically lunge at the spoon instead of waiting for it to reach your mouth. super cute. rice cereal didn’t really agree with your tummy however, so we quickly switched to oatmeal and that is much better for you.

you also tried peas and HATED them. you screamed so loudly, and we couldn’t get you to swallow them or spit them out, it made me sad. we kept trying to get you to drink some water to wash your mouth out, but you just wouldn’t. we finally had to get a cloth and kind of scoop them out of your mouth. we will probably try something a little sweeter instead for your next foray into veggies (I’m thinking sweet potatoes).

at the begining of this month you were sucking on your pointer finger and thumb together, and only once found your thumb by itself but you kept gagging yourself because you were sticking your pointer finger in your mouth too far. you finally found just your thumb towards the end of the month but we try to replace it with your pacifier when we see you sucking on it, because we’ve read that pacifiers are better for teeth development, and there is less chance of needing braces (let’s just all hope you didn’t get mommy’s teeth and end up needing them anyway).

you really try to sit up by yourself. you will push away from whatever is supporting you (us, or the boppy) and kind of wobble there. you have even kind of grasped the concept of putting your hands in front of you and holding yourself up that way, but you eventually topple over.

we went to Chico to watch your daddy’s cousin’s Christian and Danielle graduate from CSU Chico. I was so nervous about the trip because it is about a two hour drive each way and I didn’t know how you would do. we left at 5 am and you slept the whole way there! you did great at the graduation too, even though it was a long day, and you slept at the park where we barbequed for a little while. we left to come home around 3:15 and you slept the whole way home! it was fantastic.

this was my last month staying home with you so I tried my best to soak up every minute of being with you. since the weather got very nice this month, you enjoyed sitting outside waiting for daddy to come home from work most afternoons. you really love being outside, and sometimes would get really cranky if we spent too much time indoors.

you had a discovery day at daycare which is basically like a practice run day. I took you at about 8:30 and went home and cried. I was so sad to be without you. but it made it better knowing you were in a great school with people who were going to take really good care of you. you did fantastic! daddy and I picked you up together at bout 4:15 when he got home from work and you were napping but so happy to see us when you woke up.

your ezcema has gotten really bad this month. we switched your soap to what the doctor recommended we use and it just seems to make it worse, so I found something different that is for ezcema and we are trying that now.

for the first half of this month you still wore size 1 diapers but they were getting pretty snug so we switched to size 2s but not all diaper sizes are created equal we are finding. the Luvs 2s were too big, so we tried huggies which work a little better size-wise, but I don’t really care for their absorbency level. you are still wearing size 0-3 clothes (my petite baby!) and we are mixing in the 3-6 month stuff even though they are still roomy.

your sleep this month still hasn’t been great. hopefully that changes soon since daddy and I are both back to work now.


Cora – any soft stuffed animal, oatmeal, dancing and singing with mommy in the mornings, being outside, when daddy comes home from work

Me – snuggling with you, quick dry nail polish, boppy


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day one

we survived day one. yesterday was not nearly as bad as I had anticipated. in fact, overall, it was a pretty good day.

I woke at 5 and got myself ready, then woke Cora at 6 to change her diaper, change her out of her jammies and into clothes, and feed her. after burping her, she projectile spit up all over me, herself, and the recliner :P. I didn’t even know what to do. J was still asleep so I had to yell and wake him for him to come help me. she was immediately happy and smiley after that, so maybe she was just overfull from her 3 am feeding. I quickly changed my clothes and rushed out of the house, still making it to work on time.

my coworkers had decorated my desk with Disney princess streamers and confetti, a princess crown, and other fun decorations. we had a ‘welcome back’ meeting and everyone brought breakfast foods and we caught up. it felt so special to know I was missed so much.

the majority of my day was spent sorting through the 913 emails I had in my inbox. by the end of the day, I had 300 left, and I’m afraid I’m down to the ones that I actually have to read and can’t just skim and delete 😛

I teared up saying goodbye to Cora in the morning, but I didn’t cry, and I didn’t cry all day. I worked in three pumping sessions into my day, and had an adventure getting my parking access and direct deposit re-instated. I had to leave the 8th floor, and go to the lobby and out to the parking garage to get my license plat number. then from the lobby to the 12th floor to have HR sign off on my parking form, and submit the direct deposit form, then from the 12th floor to the 3rd floor to turn in the parking form to facilities, and then from the 3rd floor back to the 8th floor to return to my desk. I don’t think I have ever done so much floor hopping before 😛

of course the best part of the day was getting to go pick up my baby girl. she was happy and smiley as soon as I walked in, and it felt so good to get a huge smile when I went to pick her up. she was a little fussy when we got home so she took a short nap before we left for bible study.

it must have been a busy, tiring day for her because we went to bed at 9:30 and she slept 7 hours in a row! we got up at 4:30 which is about 30 minutes before I really need to be up, but she nursed for about 8 minutes before falling back to sleep, so I spent a little while cuddling my sleeping babe before work, which was worth the 30 minute loss of sleep.

and now, for day two…

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A new chapter

My last day as a stay at home mom has come and gone. I now nurse my baby girl at 3 am, knowing I must get up in 2 hours and head to work.

I am incredibly grateful I was able to have 5 whole months at home with my love bug, most new moms are not this lucky. And yet, it wasn’t enough time. Perhaps no amount of time would ever be enough.

Baby girl, I loved every minute of our time together. Even on days when I was exhausted and you were cranky, I still loved it. I know you will have so much fun at daycare. You will make friends and learn new things and have even more people who will love you.

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(Found this in the draft folder from March 17. Oops)

I have agonized over where to take Cora for daycare since early in my pregnancy. It’s hard to imagine finding someone or someplace you trust enough to hand your child over everyday.

J and I ruled out in-home care pretty quickly. We did not know anyone who could give a recommendation and didn’t feel comfortable trusting online reviews written by people we don’t know. Plus, I really want a pet free environment and it seems all the in home care I found had pets. We also felt strongly that we wanted some sort of educational aspect. For those reasons we decided a school was going to be the best option.

We had about 5 options to look into, and narrowed it down to 2 based on location, information we found on their individual websites, and in one case, finding the school was closed when I went to visit. This left our choices Kindercare or Merryhill School.

We toured Merryhill School at their open house on a Saturday in early March. The Principal took us on the tour and we were very impressed with her organization and passion for the school. The tour was about an hour long and we learned about their curriculum and each of the different levels Cora would attend before leaving for kindergarten. We were especially pleased to learn they offer a pre-k 2 class. Cora’s December birthday means she will miss the age cutoff for kindergarten and will be a little older when she actually starts kindergarten. The pre-k 2 class means she will get additional teaching to prepare for kindergarten instead of repeating pre-k again.

During that next week we took a tour of Kindercare. We were not impressed by the location we looked at. When we first walked in, we noticed it smelled strange. I made an appointment, however, the principal did not seem prepared for us at all. She basically took us to the infant room, told us how many babies are enrolled and waited for questions. If we hadn’t toured Merryhill, I wouldn’t have had a clue what to ask.

There were a ton of differences, but what sealed the deal on Merryhill was really the curriculum (I feel Cora will get more from Merryhill than Kindercare) and the bottle issue. Kindercare requires you bring bottles every day, already prepared (breast milk thawed or formula already mixed). This seems awful. Cora seems to eat a different amount every day. I would be so worried I wouldn’t send enough, but on the other hand, if she doesn’t drink it, it gets wasted. I spend precious time with the breast pump procuring that milk. It is too precious to waste. Merryhill lets you bring in a big bag of frozen milk and enough bottles for the day and they will thaw and prepare the bottles.

So we are now part of the Merryhill School family. I am so happy we found a place I am comfortable with. It is still going to be difficult to go back to work, but knowing she is in a safe place will hopefully help ease the transition.

disclaimer: I realize child care is a VERY personal decision. You may not have had the same experience I had, and probably made different decisions regarding your child care. I am in no way judging your decisions. You made the best choice for your child. I’m just sharing my experience.

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Bump Update: 36 Weeks

36 Weeks

How far along: 36 weeks

Baby’s size: large cantaloupe (19 to 22 inches, 6 pounds)

Total weight gain: 35 pounds

Maternity clothes: same shirts with regular pants, although now that I am officially on maternity leave, it will probably be yoga and sweat pants from here on out 🙂

Stretch marks? yeah same clusters, but they seem to be less angry-looking this week

Sleep: has not been very restful or comfortable

Best moment this week: so much good stuff happened this week. my work threw us a lovely baby shower, I finished my last week of work, and we had our childbirth class which was very informative.

Food cravings: pretty much sweets of all kinds

Food aversions: cucumbers are not my favorite thing anymore, which is weird, I usually love them in salads

Gender: ribbons and bows

Symptoms: so tired, my back aches pretty much all the time, heartburn is wicked, and I’m pretty sure little girl is right on my bladder because I feel like I spend more time in restrooms than out of them.

Belly Button in or out? still technically in, although very flat

Wedding rings on or off? off

Happy or Moody most of the time: pretty happy

Looking forward to: some rest this week, re-packing the hospital bags (the childbirth class gave me some different ideas), and getting the house more in order

What I miss: sushi. my lovely coworkers gave J and I a satori gift card at our baby shower – they thought we could use something for us and not just for little girl. I am so excited.

Movement: yep. she’s been getting the hiccups way more frequently and she likes to throw private dance parties

Doctor’s appointment: on tuesday

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dragging on

it’s going to be a long week. mostly because it is the last week I will be working in this pregnancy. I worked 10 hours yesterday and will work 10 hours today. this is because I had started working bits of overtime here and there earlier this month in order to have accrued 8 hours of flex time to use in december, however, now that I won’t be working in december at all, I need to hurry up and get that 8 hours earned so I can use it in november instead of a day off I took earlier this month which is one more day of vacation for after baby girl comes. so I drove to work in the dark yesterday morning and drove home in the dark yesterday evening. that wasn’t great.

also adding to the longness of the week is the fact that I have very little to do around the office. all of my workload has slowly been filtering to the other members of my team, and now that we know for sure I’m not coming in next week, I’m not getting any new assignments.

short-timer syndrome has definitely kicked in. I have a feeling I will be spending a good portion of the remainder of the week clearing out my desk of old papers and notes that I no longer need. a winter cleaning of sorts. it’s a good thing I have quite a few meetings scheduled wednesday, thursday, and friday to break up the days. it’s only today that my calendar is wide open and staring at me mockingly.

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