Friday, October 30, 2009


After Christmas, Halloween is my favorite holiday. Halloween gets major points for the costumes, adorably scary decorations and candy. It also helps that it is in one of my favorite seasons. I've long been a fan of Halloween, holding great memories of marathon trick or treating sessions in our old neighborhood with my Dad and godfather (really). My Mom has made me some great costumes over the years with some memorable ones being a really colorful felt parrot mask and a more grown-up cosmopolitan / martini glass. Attending college at OU where Halloween shuts down the street, there were even more fun fright-night memories formed.

All of this, though, just seemed to be leading up to Halloween with a child of my own. I even bought his first costume be he was born. While I was really looking forward to Halloween with a Milo, let's face it trick or treating with a 7 month old is going to be a little anti-climatic (as the only treat he was really interested in was his bottle).
So we decided to start some new Halloween traditions. I made soup and invited some of Milo's favorite people over a simple dinner and handing out candy to the neighborhood kids. We also hit a couple of houses on our street with our little monkey in tow, but the real trick or treating will have to wait until next year. Now what should he be?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Comfort Level

I've been using the term "it's up to your comfort level" quite often lately. It is such a useful term I wish I would have discovered earlier. It connotes (I hope) the sense of here is what I do, but clearly do what is best for you. I used it earlier this week when a mom at mom's group asked about drinking and breast feeding. I told her I feel fine having a small glass of wine with food after I've fed Milo, but based on her comfort level she should have more or less or none at all. Same thing earlier today with a comment about coffee while pregnant. It was well within my comfort level to have half a mug on weekend mornings.

Thinking more about comfort levels, I've discovered some others of mine. I have a high comfort level for perceived germs. We wash our hands often, but I don't spend a lot of time disinfecting toys. I have a low comfort level for people I don't know very well holding Milo. I usually feel relieved when he spits up and I can snatch him back.

I like this comfort level thing, it's comforting to know I have a fall back phrase to use when discussing potentially contentious topics. So what are some of your comfort levels?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Growing Up

Before this week, Milo had only had a few ounces of formula. It was in the hospital, we were waiting for my milk to come in and the nurses were concerned he was getting dehydrated and turning jaundiced. Probably not the case, but we gave him a few milliliters of formula to tide him over.
Since then he has been totally breast fed or fed breast milk I pumped. I really feel breastfeeding is important to both baby and mama. It promotes bonding, it provides the best nutrition for baby, it transfers some antibodies from mom to baby to protect the baby's immature immune system and it is totally natural. Nothing more natural really and instinctual for both. I realize some nursing pairs have some bumps along the way and there is certainly a learning curve for both baby and mom, but I do think nursing is something worth making the effort.

All that being said, there is also a time when nursing needs to be ceased and the weaning process needs to begin. This could be a different time period for all - some women choose to wean when they go back to work at 3 months and some continue to the golden age of 12 months, while some go past that age. My original breastfeeding goal was 3 months. At that time, neither Milo or I was ready to give it up. So each day at work I pumped enough milk for him to eat the next day. While I knew I was doing the right thing, this started causing a tad bit of stress as I obsessively added up the ounces trying to get to 16 for my big eater.

Once home I thought things would ease up, but it is seeming like Milo now needs or wants more than I can provide. He's constantly hungry and it was disrupting his sleep. So Monday night we introduced a bottle of formula to him. He gobbled it up and quickly demanded more. He also slept better that night.

So I'm starting to slowly wean him from the breast, starting with one or two bottles of formula a day. While I might miss some of our nursing sessions, I am also feeling a huge sense of relief. Suddenly this little person isn't solely depending on me for the majority of his nutritional needs. I think I have served him well, but now it is time to begin to let go and expose him to new tastes and methods of eating. This realization, along with this picture of him make me think my sweet baby is quickly turning into a little boy.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Seven Months

Milo has now been in our lives for more than a half year. This past month I've mostly been home with him, and it's been interesting to see his personality grow as I've spent more time with him. In some ways (it might just be because he's a month older), I think he has really bloomed in this past month. He has totally come into his babyness. It's been a fun month with lots of kisses and hugs, laughs and grins and plenty of playtime on the floor.

What's new this month? To begin with teeth! Both of Milo's little bottom teeth are now clearly peeking through his gums. We kept wondering when they would make an appearance because he was showing all the signs (excessive drooling, night waking and chewing on everything in sight). He likes to feel his teeth to make sure the little buggers are still there. He is also liking to grab other people's teeth...I'm not sure why.

Milo still isn't crawling, but he is thinking about it. He's perfected sitting, but crawling still alludes him. He can scoot backwards and is starting to lift his hips, but can't put the forward motion together. He does a mean Cobra position where he can push up on his hands on straight arms, so I know he's building the necessary muscles. We often practice this yoga pose together in the mornings.

We're still having trouble in the sleeping arena. Milo wakes up several times a night and is refusing to nap most of the time. Although I was opposed to a crying it out sleep training technique, we're considering it for all our sakes. I know the whole family will be much happier with the proper amount of sleep.

Earlier this month, Milo had a blood test done that showed he does have some type of allergy, we just don't know what. All the common allergens he was tested for didn't show a reaction, but the marker that shows an allergic reaction was high. We'll be visiting an allergist in the next couple of weeks to get a more clear answer.

Otherwise Milo is doing great, at his 6 month check up he weighed in at almost 21 pounds and 28 inches. A big boy to be sure. Finding clothes for him that fit is a bit of a challenge, but with the help of Carter's we're making it.
Wherever we go people remark on what a happy baby Milo is. He has a smile for everyone as we're out and about. He likes to make faces and giggle at other people, other babies, animals and mirrors.

This coming month we look forward to Halloween! And hopefully getting on a schedule...

Monday, October 12, 2009

So Much Easier Then

Back before I started the parenthood journey, I had some very specific ideas of how I would raise my hypothetical kids. These ideas were primarily about three things: my kids would not watch television, my kids would not sleep in my bed, and my kids would not eat processed foods such as hot dogs, chicken nuggets and macaroni & cheese on a regular basis.

Now that my kid is no longer an imaginary being, but a real live baby boy, I've had to reassess these ideas. The television thing could probably be another post (but let me tell you I found a loop hole in this here laptop).

As for co-sleeping, well I'm still not a huge fan, but Milo has spent at least some of each night / morning in our bed. At times it's cozy to have a little person in footed pjs next to me and I'm glad to share that time with him. However, I still worry about the safety of co-sleeping. The bed also seems just a tad too small for Chris, Milo, Prada and me. I'm hoping to phase out the co-sleeping, but Milo seems to think it's the best thing ever.

So hopefully I can stay strong about the whole processed food thing. Otherwise I am 0-3 for how I thought I would be as a parent.

Monday, October 5, 2009


I suspected when we decided it was best for our family for me to stay home with Milo for a few months there would be ups and downs. Now, as I start my third week being a stay at home, I know this is true. Staying at home has been all I thought it would be and totally different than I thought it would be.

I still feel as though I am on vacation from work, that I'll be due back in a couple of days. That's not the case and part of me is still sad that I won't be going back to that particular job.

I am shocked at how many people are out and about during the day. It seems to be a little culture of people who don't work during the day. The gym is nicely crowded, there are still lines at the grocery stores and inexplicably there are still bad drivers on the roads.

We're starting to get a routine down (one that does not included naps, thank you very much Milo). Milo and I take lots of walks and spend plenty of time on the floor giggling. There is a flow to our days that makes them go quickly, but we're still both glad to see Daddy when he gets home.

Our house is not a heck of a lot cleaner than it was when I working, but it is on the to-do list. I do have time now to get laundry done and usually at least empty the dishwasher. Evenings aren't as much of a rush and family time is more enjoyable without the craziness.

It's a simple life, but it's one I'm glad to be living at home right now.