Thursday, July 30, 2009

Mmmmm, that looks so good

Last night DH and I attempted to feed Cameron her first "real" food. I say attempted because she probably swallowed a gram. I say "real" because have you seen that crap? I wanted to try and give her some solids just to see if she started gulping down the food. That would tell me she was really hungry and my food supply wasn't enough. Needless to say, that didn't happen. I think we will be putting solids on hold for a while thanks to the comments on my last post. If it ain't broke, why fix it?

School has given us a new form to fill out now that Cameron is 4 months old. It is for the feeding of a 4-7 month old baby and includes cereal, veggies and fruit options. Um, how exactly will I know what to give her for the next 3 months? For now I will be filling it out to indicate she is still to get the three 4 ounce bottles and will update it in a month or so. I am tempted to have school teach her how to eat when we do finally introduce solids more regularly. One quick feeding session and the novelty of solid foods has passed. Plus it's really hard to squeeze it in during the evening. Has anyone else taken the path of less resistance and had daycare do most of the heavy lifting in acclimating you kid(s) to solids? Am I a terrible mother for wanting them to do it?

I do have a video to share but blogger has decided to not upload it. Look back for an updated once I get it to work.

Daddy prepares to give Cameron her first taste of rice cereal. I refused to taste it based on the smell. Ugh.
You want me to actually swallow this? You're kidding, right?
OK, this may not be that bad.
I'm only smiling because Daddy is feeding me and making funny faces.
Maybe if I keep spitting it out they won't notice.
Thanks but I think I'll stick to nursing.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Ditching the all liquid diet

At Cameron's four month doctor's appointment we were told she is ready for solids. For the past month Cameron has stared at me intently while I eat. She seems interested which is a good thing. I'm just not so sure her digestive tract is ready.

I was originally thinking that I would wait until Cameron was six months old and embark on the "baby-led" feeding plan. What is that? Basically it means you forgo the puree stage of baby food and start them on actual food at six months. If you are interested, here is a good overview of the program. But my doctor kind of pushed me towards starting Cameron on the rice cereal sooner than that. Her best argument? Cameron will probably start wanting more food and waking up more during the night. Ah, yes. She had me at less sleep.

So I am going to start Cameron on rice cereal within the next week or so. The thing that annoys me the most? That I have to use my precious breast milk as the mixer. I know, I know; I don't have to but I'd feel more comfortable. Why mix in formula or apple juice if she hasn't had those before either? One new food at a time...more for my sanity than Cameron's digestive tract.

But I am torn about starting her on other foods. Do you think I can stick with rice and oatmeal cereal for a while and then go to the baby-led method? Has anyone else tried that method?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

The many faces of Cameron

DH and I bought a pretty awesome camera so I thought I would finally sit down and read the manual. Memorizing all the features and functions will take some time but I have a few weeks to practice before we head out on vacation. For now, here are a few "artistic" shots of little Miss Cameron Patricia.

Mommy, do I really have to wake up now?
Cameron still loves her playmat.
Mmmm. Ellie the Elephant tastes yummy!
Cameron is very happy in the morning before school.

OK, is it just me or is Cameron not the cutest baby ever?!? Yes, I am a little biased but what parent isn't?

Friday, July 24, 2009

Cameron: Four months old

Dear Cameron,

Today you are 4 months old. 4 months! Where has the time gone? Your daddy and I are amazed every day at how much you grow and change and become your own person. You are still a very happy baby, particularly in the early morning. Which is a good thing because it makes it easier for Mommy to get out of bed and be happy that it's 6 AM on a Saturday.

Over the past month you have finally lost your little fuzzy ears (or Teen Wolf ears as Uncle Andrew called them) and I have no idea when it actually happened. I just looked one day and the fuzz was gone.

You love to grab everything and anything and stuff it into your mouth. Nothing beats your hands but toys will do in a pinch. I am warned that this could be a sign of early teething but there are no other signs so I have some time before having to worry about biting. You have also started to really kick with your feet. I blame Daddy for teaching it to you at bath time. Now there is a lot more splashing before bed.

You still aren't quite sleeping through the night but I know you can do it. I think once we introduce solid food in a few months Mommy can get a full night's sleep. And even if you like to get a pacifier insertion at 12 AM or a re-swaddle at 2 AM and a feeding at 4 AM at least you can fall asleep by yourself. Yes, other parents will be jealous to hear that you can be put down in your crib sleepy but awake for naps and bedtime and fall asleep on your own. Now if only you can learn to sleep more at school...


At least school is doing a better job than Mommy with making you do tummy time. I am still a wimp and turn you over once you start squawking. There are no signs of wanting to roll over yet but you are doing better at tolerating being on your stomach. I thought you were close to rolling over when I had to squirt saline up your nose when you were sick but that was you just trying to escape your mean mommy.
You still love to talk. All the time. At everything. Daddy and I love how you will talk to your mobile in your crib while we are getting ready to start the day. You would rather talk to me than eat which makes Mommy very grumpy. But when you flash that gummy smile at me I can't help but laugh and talk back.

Mommy misses you every day while she is at work but I know you love school. Well, the lack of napping would indicate that you are so enthralled with everything you would rather be awake than asleep. All of your teachers tell me how good you are and that they wish they could clone you. It's a running joke that you are always in a different outfit when I pick you up because of a blowout.

You are growing in leaps and bounds and we can't wait to see what you will learn or do next.

Love,
Mommy and Daddy

Thursday, July 23, 2009

4 month stats

Cameron won't officially be 4 months old until tomorrow but DH and I took her to the doctor's this morning for her 4 month appointment. We had to squeeze it in before our doctor left on her two week vacation. Plus I was dying to find out how big she is.

We had to fill out the 4 month questionnaire and were able to answer "yes" on all questions related to her development. Well, except for the ones like, "Do you think she has any trouble hearing?" As DH says, Cameron is trucking along being perfectly average. She did OK with the shots but this nurse gave her one in each leg so she is currently sporting two band aids. Needless to say she fell asleep as we drove home but I roused her enough to eat before putting her down for what will probably be a marathon nap. I'm working from home today so that she can actually get some rest since we all know she doesn't sleep at daycare! One thing I was a bit put out about was that Cameron wasn't comforted by the magic of the boob post shots. Nope, she wanted her pacifier instead. Not sure I like that...

Length: 24 3/4 inches (75%)
Weight: 13 lbs 4 ozs (50%)
Head: 40 1/2 cms (50%)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Channeling infant sleep patterns

To quote Alanis Morrisette, "Isn't it ironic?" Yes, despite having an almost 4 month old, I appear to be the one with sleeping problems. I have no problems falling asleep, it's staying asleep that poses the biggest challenge. I hear DH breathing away next to me and want to kill him. Even the dog is better at going back to sleep than me!

Up until last night I would wake up at every little Cameron sound and stay away for at least 10 minutes at a time. What changed last night? I decided that we would no longer have the volume turned way up on the monitor. Like so many other parents I felt like if the monitor wasn't loud I would miss something critical. But I slept so much better at a lower volume I had DH mark the dial so we could come back to that very spot. Oddly the monitor we use* doesn't have numbers on the dial so it's basically guess work unless you MacGyver it like we did.

And thus I have conquered the waking-up-at-every-little-noise-that-Cameron-makes problem. What I am still struggling with is falling back to sleep after I feed her in the middle of the night. Yes, our great experiment of trying to get Cameron to sleep through the night has failed. Don't snicker. We are naive first time parents. I have to time her middle of the night feeding so that she is hungry again around 6:30 AM or we are both out of whack. I've been forcing myself to get up around 2:30 or 3 AM and feeding her whether she is awake or not. It takes about 15 minutes and then I stumble back to bed only to lie awake for an hour or so. And that hour of sleep is so, so precious. I'm not that tired during the day (good) but find it very hard to get out of bed in the morning (bad) when I need to.

What have others done to fall back to sleep after you wake up? I've tried thinking about work hoping that obsessing about the placement of optical circuits would bore me back to sleep. No such luck. I've planned my dream house (two words: butler's pantry) and how I would spend my lottery winnings. All failures. Help!

*I don't recommend the monitor we purchased. The battery life is pretty poor and after about 2 months we had to start keeping it plugged in over night or we would be woken up with a loud beeping telling us it was dying. That was fun. Also, the monitors are very sensitive to other electronic equipment and we get a lot of feedback.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Playtime with Daddy

One of the major things I discovered while on maternity leave is that I am not cut out to be a stay-at-home mom. I was a terrible mother and would rarely play with Cameron. I fed her. Sang to her. Changed her diaper. Rocked to her sleep. But I don't have the patience for extended play periods. Good thing DH does! He is awesome at coming up with little games to play with her and Cameron loves it. It's probably why she views me as the "Lunch Lady" and saves all her smiles for Daddy.

How about the rest of you? Have you found that daddies are better at playing with kids? Do you think it's hard wired or are moms just burnt out from other nurturing tasks?

Daddy helps Cameron to tolerate tummy time.
DH demonstrates the effectiveness of Cameron's diet.
See? Cameron gets so excited to play with her Daddy. Her shirt even reads, "Daddy makes me smile."
At least Mommy can pick out cute outfits for Cameron to wear.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

How is it possible I'm already at 200?

In 298 days I have posted 200 times. That works out to be 2/3 a post a day. Wow, either I'm terribly interesting and have lots going on in my life or I just like writing about things. Yeah. Just like writing about things.

Unlike other posters I never bragged when I hit my 100th post. OK. I'll be honest. I would totally have tooted my own horn but I forgot. So that means #200 is twice as important. And wow, things have changed!

In honor of my 200th post I would like to share the things that have changed since I started blogging:

I am no longer pregnant. Thank goodness! Now, don't get me wrong; I didn't mind being pregnant. In fact, I had a very easy pregnancy. My biggest problem was getting up 5 or 6 times a night to pee. But I was more than ready to be done around week 32. So the last 8 weeks were very, very long. Plus the anticipation of meeting Cameron was just killing me!

I am now a mother. While I spent a lot of time being pregnant and thinking about Cameron, I didn't spend as much time thinking about actually being a mother. And now that I am one, I can't imagine not having the essence of "motherhood" in my life. Bear in mind that this is coming from a woman who didn't have much in the way of maternal instincts! Until Cameron I never understood what it mean to "fall in love" with your child. There are times that I look at her and I swear my heart breaks (in a good way!). I want nothing more than to cuddle her and protect her every minute of the day. Well, add in 8 hours of sleep...

I have become a juggler. These past few weeks mark my return to work and with it I have joined the world of parental jugglers. I feel like I am always worried about time. I want to make sure I'm putting in the face time and hours at work but I also have a much longer morning routine and want to spend as much time with Cameron as possible. I stress that people at work only see me leaving at 4:30 PM and don't see me arriving at 7:30 AM. But if I get my work done and do it well, it shouldn't matter, right? Then why do I feel so guilty? Gah!

Charlie has moved down in the pecking order. Don't feel too bad for him though; he still gets to sleep in bed with us every night. Interestingly, I think that he listens to me better now (well, with some things) because I don't have as much patience for him as I used to. So far he has shown little interest in Cameron but he does hang out with us while we are putting her to bed and seems to recognize her name. He also enjoys licking her after we get home from daycare. Cameron ignores him too so I guess we'll have to wait a while until they are best friends.

DH and I are now parents. Let's face it, before Cameron came along we had it pretty easy. Our biggest decisions involved home improvement projects and our biggest fight was over how to correctly cut crown modeling. Now we need to be a tight team and have open communication about what we expect and need from each other as we raise our daughter. Given that we are both fairly passive aggressive this is harder than I thought it would be! But I know our marriage is growing stronger as a result.

I'm even closer with my sisters. It is probably not surprising that all three of us have children under the age of 1. Bound to happen with triplets, right? A. was the first to experience motherhood with Finn. And while I love my nephew and even managed to arrive a few hours after he was born, I never really understood what she was going through. Ditto for Mommy, Esq. although I was pregnant at the time so I felt more connected. Now Finn has been joined (in birth order) by Ned, Penny, Cameron and Lucy. And my parents have gone from one grandchild to 5 in less than a year. The best part about all these babies is that I received lots of great advice (and clothing!) and have had two resources for every little question. A. and Mommy, Esq. listened patiently as I nattered on about every detail of Cameron's schedule on basically a daily basis. And I am more than happy to return the favor!

One thing is for sure, life has certainly changed a lot since I started writing this blog. I hope you have enjoyed my posts and I look forward to sharing more!

Friday, July 17, 2009

My super power

Before I get to revealing my awesome super power I wanted to provide an update on little Miss Cameron and our quest to have her sleep through the night. She required only two pacifier insertions by DH starting at 4:30 AM and I had to wake her up at 6:30 AM to eat. Yay! 1 night down, thousands more to go. Of course I was wide awake worrying about how she was going to react from 4:30 AM on but that's what being a mother is all about, right?

Last night DH and I finally got around to watching the season finale of Fringe. Yes, it's been about three months but nothing was spoiled for us. I didn't read any spoilers about the episode or what's on tap for next season. The finale was definitely good but the best part is that it supported my assessment of what my personal super power is. Don't read further if you don't want to know a key plot point! About 20 minutes into the episode I asked DH to pause the recording.

Me: I think that Peter will turn out to not be the real Peter but the Peter from a parallel universe.
DH: OK. I like it. Let's see what happens.

20 minutes later.

Me: I was totally right!
DH: You must have read something about it. How the hell could you predict that?
Me: It's my gift.

Yup, I completely predicted one of the major plot points. And that is my super power. I can predict what will happen in a movie or TV show about 99% of the time. Lost is probably the one show that I can't predict but even that is become a bit more predictable as time goes on. I accredit my super power to a couple of things. First, I am a former Creative Writing major. Did you know that there are only something like 12 original story lines? Everything is just a combination or riff off of those. Secondly, TV is predictable. Hollywood has made trillions of dollars but they usually do it by recycling the same stories. How else do you explain the remake of Footloose? Third, I read. A lot. And assuming I remember even 10% of the hundreds (probably thousands but I'm being modest) of books I read I will see something repeated in TV or movies.

The hardest thing to probably understand is why I watch so much TV if I can in fact predict most scripted shows. Well, I do watch a lot more reality TV (although DH will argue that that's because only reality shows seem to be scheduled these days). I also like the overarching story lines in most shows. Character development and all that.

So, that's my super power. What is yours?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

It must be done

This morning I decided Cameron will start sleeping through the night. Whether she agrees or not will be determined. Here's the thing. I don't mind getting up for a middle of the night feeding. But what it has become is more of an early morning feeding. 3:30 or 4 AM. I feed her, she goes back to sleep and I wake her up around 6:45 for another feeding before I leave. The problem? She doesn't really eat at that second feeding. She eats off one side for about 8 minutes and then usually spits up 1/2 of it. Then what happens is she wants her bottle at daycare earlier than normal and it cascades throughout the day.

I wouldn't even mind that if not for the fact that it requires me to pump immediately after arriving at work. That means my work day starts a bit later and I end up pumping 4 times at work. Yes, 4 freaking times! I am trying to cut back but there are those pesky supply issues I'm worried about. I've actually starting pumping just about what I need so I would hate to see that stop.

So here's my game plan: pacify her until 6 AM. Yup, that's it. The sum total of my awesome strategy. It will involve a lot of getting up by me and DH but I'm hoping after a few nights she will start sleeping on her own until 6 AM. It starts our morning juggle a bit earlier too but we can handle that. After all, it's not like we'll get much sleep with the "pacify her until 6 AM" plan. Am I crazy? Has anyone else dealt with this and have advice you can share with me? Or how about just good thoughts?

Cameron's last feeding is 4 ounces at around 6:30 PM if anyone is curious. We still keep her tightly swaddled throughout the night. Her stomach used to grumble while I was feeding her in the middle of the night but that hasn't happened for a couple of weeks so I don't think she's starving when she wakes up, if that makes sense.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The chunk monster

Cameron has definitely chunked up in the past few weeks. I think it's because she is getting 4 ounces in her bottles at school. And because she is getting older. We have her 4 month appointment next week and I can't wait to find out how much she weighs! Any predictions?

Speaking of school, there has been a case of rotovirus in her classroom. To say I am not happy is putting it mildly. Cameron has had her first oral for the virus but requires two more to actually be vaccinated. The school claims that it's no big deal and that "every" child gets it before the age of 5. If that's true then why is there a vaccine? Has anyone else experienced this? Cameron has been fine so far but I won't feel secure until she makes it to the weekend with no symptoms. I've asked that she not be placed in the shared big toys (like the swing and exersaucer) for a few days and do tummy time on a fresh blanket. The director was very amenable to that request. Are there other precautions I can ask for?

Cameron looks like she is ready to be a wide receiver.
Cameron loves watching baseball with her Daddy. Look at that double chin!
This picture is just because she is so darn cute!
Cameron enjoys her exersaucer.
video

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The things we do for love

Fever Pitch was on TV this weekend and it brought back a ton of memories about my first few months of being in a relationship with DH. I believe I've mentioned previously that DH is a huge Yankee fan. Huge is even a bit of an understatement. Even though DH grew up in Springfield, MA (not to be confused with every other Springfield across the country) his dad is a Yankee fan so naturally, so is DH. I also grew up in Massachusetts so naturally I am a Red Sox fan. A pretty mediocre one until I starting dating DH.

Like Drew Barrymore's character I started watching a lot of baseball when DH and I began seeing each other. Our first date was August 2, right in the midst of prime baseball. And so I watched baseball practically every night. I was also exposed to a lot of ESPN and even started reading The Sports Guy. I learned about fielder's choice, WHIP and ERA and the seven ways that a player can get on first base without getting a hit. And somehow I became more of a Red Sox fan. I could converse knowledgeably with my dad and brother about the team and actually recognized them without having to see their names on the uniform. I think my dad knew DH and I were destined to get married when I started spouting baseball statistics.

I even joined a free baseball league. Well, I joined, DH drafted and managed my team. Sounds fair, right?

Now that we are three years into our marriage I will tell you this: I am patiently waiting for baseball season to be over so I can get my TV back. I find myself hoping the Yankees will win so DH will be in a good mode. Or at least that the game will be mercifully quick. And don't even get me started about the post season...I no longer follow the Red Sox and couldn't name every starting pitcher. Heck, I can barely name 3 of them! I wonder if any of this has to do with the fact that the Red Sox finally won a World Series? Two of them even.

How about the rest of you? What have you done for love? And has it lasted or faded away like my passion for the Red Sox?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Look, Mom, no hands!

Last night we tested out the exersaucer and Cameron loved it! I didn't think she was ready for it but one of her teachers told me she had a great time in the one at school so I asked DH to break it out of the box and put it together. About an hour later and a dozen triple A batteries it was all set. We have to tuck a blanket around Cameron to keep her upright but I figure that just means she will be able to fit in it for months to come.

I'm excited to see her explore this toy. There is so much going on and she can already reach for toys so it makes it more interactive for her. The biggest problem? It takes up so much floor space!!! So, how long will this new toy entrance Cameron? What have your experiences been with this and other similar toys?

Yes, my eyes really are this wide all the time.

Sure, there's some drool but it doesn't interfere with my play time. Somehow I got this huge double chin in the last week. If you stare long enough it will stare back.
The "Tower of Daddy" didn't go over too well the first time around but I have a feeling it will quickly become a favorite.
video

Friday, July 10, 2009

An ode to working from home

While I was pregnant I found myself working from home much more frequently. In the past I worked at home if DH was traveling or I had some kind of errand that needed to happen during the day. But I found the frequency increasing particularly in my last trimester. It was just so much easier to walk down a flight of stairs and start working than haul my pregnant, very large ass to work every day. It started with every Friday and creeped up to 3x a week by the end. BigFinance is very supportive of remote workers. We even have a remote worker program where you get a WLAN router and VoIP phone so everything works exactly like you are in the office. Yes, I geeked out a bit there but I work in network services for BigFinance so I'm allowed. Thousands of BigFinance workers take advantage of the teleworker program and it has saved the company millions in real estate costs. I really think this is the future of work. Now people aren't tied to specific metros - you can live anywhere you want and it becomes all about talent recruitment for companies.

DH has worked from home for 4 years. His company (and my old company) SmallResearch was very cool with this as a few other employees worked remotely. DH just needed to build a business case and and make sure that they already had a tax ID set up in the state. Not a problem for Virginia when I was in business school or for Charlotte since there were already a few remote workers in NC. SmallResearch also pays for our phone line and Internet connection. Pretty good deal for us and them since it's cheaper for DH to work from home than taking up a desk in an office.

Technology has really enabled me to take advantage of working from home. I can forward my work phone to my Blackberry and VPN in to all required systems. Yes, VPN is now a verb, don't you know? My Bluetooth headset also allows me to be hands free just like when I am at work.

I have decided to keep working from home one day a week. It is something that I very much look forward to and think I am much more productive with my time at home. The best part is that it makes my evening juggle so much easier. I don't have to pack a lunch or think about what I'm going to wear to work. And it knocks off at least 90 minutes of getting ready and commuting time from my day. That's a lot of time! True ,I wear sweatpants and don't style my hair but video conferencing isn't the norm yet!

There is also the benefit that I can be more creative with lunch and perhaps throw some laundry in if I have a few minutes. I can also plan out dinner a little better in terms of defrosting stuff and maybe even get a walk in. Well, that last one hardly ever happens but a girl can dream, right?

What about the rest of you? Do you work from home all the time or occasionally? What do you like the most about it? Are there any negative aspects?

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Fussy, busy evenings

I have been warned about fussy evenings, especially with Cameron in daycare. Cameron isn't a fussy baby but she is definitely not getting enough sleep during the day at daycare. She's at about 2-3 hours worth of naps compared to the 5-6 hours she gets at home on the weekends. Sometimes she needs a 30 minute nap as we drive home and get settled. But even then she is usually in bed and asleep by 6:30 PM. Cameron's fussiness manifests itself in her wanting to be held basically from the time we get home from school to the time she goes to bed. Thank goodness there are two of us or we wouldn't have dinner until 8 PM.

Cameron is all tuckered out and needs a little cat nap.
I'm going to go ahead and put on my judgemental hat and ask, "How the heck can parents not put their kids to bed early?" I know parents who keep their babies up until 9 PM and even later. I shudder to think about the havoc that would wreck on Cameron's sweet disposition.

Of course with a very early bedtime for Cameron that means I am squeezing a lot into an evening. I am usually home around 5 PM and have to:

  • Start dinner (or DH does - he cooks more than me these days!)
  • Feed Cameron
  • Wash bottles
  • Wash pumping gear
  • Prepare bottles for the next day
  • Make my lunch
  • Prepare my outfit for the next day (I have been doing this for 2 years and I highly recommend it!)
  • Put Cameron to bed
  • Wash dishes (whoever doesn't cook does this)
  • Relax
  • Pump before bed

That's a lot to get done by 9 PM! I completely understand the "juggle" that so many people complain about. I'm living it! Why 9 PM? Well, that's when I go to bed. Yes, that's right. I go to bed at 9 PM, read and am usually fast asleep by 9:30 PM. I hate people who are totally fine on 6 hours of sleep. I need 8-9 or am much less effective at work.

How about the rest of you? What do your evening juggles look like? What do other parents do to make things easier in the evenings?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Slave to the pump

Warning: this is a pumping/breastfeeding post. So if you are not interested in why/how breastfeeding and pumping are stressful for moms, this is not a post for you!

Now that I am back at work I have already noticed a decrease in my milk supply. I used to be able to net 8 ounces a day for my freezer stash. Now I am at a -4 ounces. It is very, very annoying. I was pumping only twice at work but now I am upping it to three times a day. This is running havoc with my work schedule especially because I am usually in 8 hours of meetings a day. Yup, who has time to get real work done when there are all those meetings to attend?

Thank goodness for technology or I wouldn't have the flexibility to pump as often as I do. I have a Blackberry and Bluetooth earpiece so I can just dial into a meeting while pumping. True, it's a little weird but a mother has to do what a mother needs to do. The biggest challenge is that I don't bring my computer with me so I can't IM with colleagues throughout the meeting. But that's not necessarily a bad thing since it forces me to pay closer attention to the call. Me? Multitasking? Why, of course!

Anyway, back to the milk supply. I have been doing a lot of reading on the subject and frankly, I am not prepared to go the lengths recommended to ensure that Cameron has enough milk just off of my from pumping during the day. Apparently I am not supposed to be using my freezer stash - just giving her what I pump and if it's not enough she will adjust. For example, did you know that reverse cycling is a good thing for a working mother? Yeah, just what I want: for Cameron to wake up multiple times during the night to feed instead of once. Supposedly it is easier with co-sleeping but screw that! I like that Cameron is in her crib in her own room.

Another recommendation is to eat lots of protein and oatmeal. OK, I can do some of that but I am also the pickiest eater on the planet so that's challenging. Not to mention, who the heck has time to plan out lunches and dinners like that? I can barely get bottles washed in time for the next day!

So I have been supplementing with frozen milk and ending up about 4 ounces short a day with just pumping. I use 8 ounces of frozen milk and 4 ounces of fresh for her daycare bottles. I BF in the AM, evening and middle of the night. I do also give Cameron a small bottle before bed (with daycare leftovers and some fresh milk) so that DH can put her down and it's not always me. I also pump once before bed to "make up" for that extra bottle. Basically that means I am using 8 ounces of frozen milk and 8 ounces of fresh milk and only freezing about 4 ounces of fresh milk a day with my current pumping output (4 times a day). I am also exclusively BFing during the weekend to try and get my supply up. Cameron doesn't like that so much because she actually gets smaller amounts off of me during the afternoons than her bottles at daycare.

At my current rate with my freezer stash I can last about 90 days before I run out. Not too shabby, right? That means Cameron will be at least six months old and probably on solids at that point. So, why am I still stressing about milk?

Seriously, people, why? It's like I have this complete neurosis to make sure I can give Cameron plenty of food off of me. And it's not even like I am against formula or anything. I just know that Cameron reacts well to breast milk and she's never had formula so who knows what could happen? Yes, I am completely insane. Let's hear from other moms. How did you handle not having enough breast milk? Or what did you do to increase your supply?

Sunday, July 5, 2009

BBQ, drinks and a cute outfit

Really, doesn't the title say it all? What more do we need for a perfect 4th of July weekend? Plus we got to watch Tiger Woods win the AT&T Invitational. Is it just me or is Tiger really, really jacked now that he's back?

I'm sure you are all more interested in some pictures and video of Cameron in her adorable outfit. It was given to her by my friend Ross and is appropriately red, white and blue.

Daddy and Cameron hanging out before we head out to a neighbor's house.
The hat lasted about 15 minutes. Just enough time for everyone to coo over how adorable she looked.
Cameron is quite the talker these days. I keep trying to get her to say "Mama" but no luck yet! I think she will be more influenced by DH yelling at the Yankees...

video

Saturday, July 4, 2009

DH steps into the role of primary caregiver

BigFinance has July 3rd as a floating holiday because bank branches are technically open on Saturdays. That's what happens when July 4th falls on a Saturday. I decided to work from home because this was my first week back and I had to get a bunch of training done. I would have gone to the office but that adds at least 90 minutes to my day (getting ready, commuting) and I'm still pretty sick with this damn head cold. Plus I wanted to be able to breastfeed Cameron at least once during the day because my supply is dropping off. A whole post on that to come...

Cameron's school was closed for the day so that meant DH was on point as primary caregiver. I mentally rubbed my hands together in glee. Now he will see how hard it is to get anything done during the day! Of course when I told this to a few co-workers they all shook their heads and said, "You know she is going to be absolutely perfect for this one day, right?"

I promised myself that I would not help DH in anyway. He didn't want it and I didn't want it. Instead I locked myself in DH's office and ignored any and all sounds coming from downstairs or Cameron's room. DH had a list of things he wanted to get done while at the same time being the primary caregiver. He managed to do some cleaning while Cameron was napping which was great for me. I ended up knocking off work around 3 so it was a shortened day for DH to be the primary parent. What can I say? I missed my little Cameron too much!

DH did a great job, as I knew he would. Next up? An overnight. Well, maybe not for a few more months!

DH multi-tasks while watching Cameron.

Cameron tolerates tummy time. Who can resist those blue eyes?!? Cameron plays in her Bumbo DH teaches Cameron the importance of watching baseball.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Hooked on phonics

I will freely admit it. DH and I are bad parents. Cameron is three months old and we never read to her. I'll pause while you all gasp in shock and horror.

Yes, it's true. Despite my own passion for reading I can't seem to incorporate it into our daily lives. I've had a children's book sitting next to the glider for almost a week and I haven't even read page one of it to Cameron.

Now I haven't really been worrying about reading to Cameron. She is pretty verbal and gets lot of stimulation in other areas. But I do want to start reading a book to her daily. I'm just finding it hard to pick the right time to do it. Just before bed doesn't really work because she is usually really fussy. After work in general is tough because of all the things that need to happen. Ditto for the morning.

So what did you do to start reading to your child(ren) regularly? And when did you start the process? What are your favorite book recommendations for this age and as Cameron gets older?

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Settling in and hodgepodge of other topics

It's only Wednesday and I'm already exhausted. It's mostly because I should have foreseen picking up the cold that Cameron has. It really should have occurred to me by the sixth time she sneezed all over me. Because I'm back at work I have to save every brain cell for my job rather than coming up with entertaining blog posts. And I need to remember a million and one new passwords. Single sign on is a joke. If it really worked my phone, Blackberry, VPN and computer passwords should all be the same. And security wonders why we have to write passwords down.

It hasn't been as hard to "turn my brain on" as I thought it would be. It helps that I am still on my old team so the technical knowledge I acquired on my last project translates pretty well. The biggest challenge? Learning all the new players. And I'm terrible with names. I have a problem even remembering the names of the kids in Cameron's class. By the way, there is another kid in her class with the name Mr. That's it. Mister. M-r followed by a period. I actually asked the assistant director about it because I thought it was a privacy thing. Nope. Just crazy parents. Aside from learning all the new players I actually have to learn their voices too. Most teams at BigFinance are virtual. I worked with people for over a year and never met them in person. Sometimes it's nice when there is another woman on the phone (I work with 90% men) because at least I can pick her out! Of course that means everyone recognizes my voice and can address me by name while I flounder around trying to pin down who is who.

Is it sad that this morning I forgot my lunch and I was actually relieved it wasn't something more important like my pump? I now have to remember so many more things when I go to and from work. I can't just pick up my purse and computer and head out the door. BigFinance has a great room that I've been using to "do my business." That's my new code phrase for pumping. A. thinks it sounds like I'm going to poop. So if anyone has a better term, let me know. The room has a couch, a fridge and a lock on the door. Of course now I think of it as "my" room and get annoyed when the security guard is in there eating her lunch. But really she should be using the lunch room, not the wellness room. Other than her I haven't seen anyone else using the room.

It looks like we are heading toward another drought in Charlotte. It's been almost 3 weeks of 90+ degree weather and not a drop of rain. We have an irrigation system but it doesn't get everything and hand watering is just a pain.

How dumb can the soon-to-be former Governor of South Carolina be? I feel for his wife. The dumb ass actually said that his Argentinian mistress is his soul mate but he is trying to fall back in love with his wife. That poor woman should kick him to the curb.

The Democrats officially have 60 seats in the Senate now that Al Frankin has been declared the winner in Minnesota. That majority means the Democrats are officially filibuster-proof. I wonder if that will actually be much of a political weapon for them. There are conservative Democrats just like there are moderate Republicans. Not to mention Senators who have to take their specific state interests into consideration when voting on legislation.

Feel free to weigh in on any or all of the topics I've nattered on about here. I promise a more thorough debriefing of my first week back and Cameron pictures in a few days.