Friday, November 20, 2009

Freedom


My mother-in-law and brother-in-law come to visit tomorrow, so I am enjoying my last night of complete freedom for the week.  I love my in-laws (and don't think they have discovered this here blog)but we have a very small house.  860 square feet small.  So it can feel a bit crowded when you have 5 humans and a dog sharing the space; little things like freely nursing become more constrained.  Motherhood has significantly reduced my modesty, but I still don't feel like showing my stretch marks to the world. 

But we have an exciting week ahead of us.  MJ's christening tomorrow, a week of baking, a turkey to fry, and an on-demand babysitter.  Posting may be slim (or extensive, depending how things go.)  Enjoy the deep philosophical ponderings of Vito and MJ.

Crib Cam

Not to freak you out, but our baby has a live video feed on the internets. 24 hours a day, you can see her thrash and snooze in her crib. Well, this would be true if she were actually sleeping in her crib, but in theory it's good. Furthermore, you can remotely control the camera, so you can watch me stumble in at 4 am with my sleeping mask atop my head and my shirt still in nursing-ready position.

Yes, folks, we have a web-cam attached to her crib that broadcasts her every little grunt and flail. This feed is password protected, and only the grandparents and other close relatives have the password.

But such an arrangement begs the question: how long can we keep this up? I have started to wonder when we will have to remove the camera from her room. And when she will understand what it is. At what point does a child need privacy? At some point I know they demand privacy, sometime around the time they discover that the opposite sex isn't aways gross. But do they need privacy before they even demand it? I haven't decided on this one yet.

And best of all, will she think we are just omniscient when we know that she has been climbing on her crib while she's supposed to be taking a nap? Let's just hope she doesn't hold this against us when she begs for a live internet feed at the age of 13.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Better living through blogging

There are a number of blogs I read written by women I would like to meet. Some of these are even local folks who I feasibly could meet. But how would one go about such a thing? Is that stalking?

I have a hard enough time getting the balls to befriend a real-life person. You know how it goes; you meet someone you like, someone you could see yourself befriending. Then you what? Ask for their cell number? Call them and ask if they want to go for a walk? Or get coffee? Or skip rocks in the local pond? Or play laser tag in the park? See, I'm not very good at this. I'm getting better, largely with the help of my husband, who is responsible for me figuring out the "get their cell phone number" part. I usually ask for their email address, because that's the kind of geek I am, but that requires planning an event in advance and emailing them in advance, which I'm not good at. Cell phones allow for more last minute planning.

Anyway, how do you befriend someone in the blogosphere? I guess you start off by internet stalking them. See if you can find them on Amazon and get their address. Then do repeated drive-bys of their house until you have their schedule figured out. Then arrange a casual run-in when they are emptying their trash, and off-handedly mention that you read their blog. This seems totally feasible, I should really get on that.

On cleanliness

Any time I actually buckle down and clean a room, I realize it really doesn't take as long as I have built it up in my head. In fact, if I spent less time farting around the internet, I would probably have a sparkling house and still have enough time to paint my toenails.

My kitchen floors have been grossing me out for weeks. One of the consequences of lactating is not just milk-stained shirts (and thus lots more laundry) but dirty floors when you drip all over them. (Am I grossing anyone else out?) Then those sticky milk drips collect dirt. So I buckled down and cleaned my kitchen today, including the floors, which is probably my least favorite cleaning activity. And you know what? It only took an hour. From top to bottom. Including a good scrub down of the microwave. Now, to be fair, I know have much lower standards than most people (not including my taste in men, DH). But I put it off for weeks and in 1 hour I was able to make my brain at peace.

This was only possible because I have discovered something about my dear child: even though she thinks she's all grown up and doesn't need to sleep during the day, she is wrong. She dropped her afternoon nap about 2 weeks ago, and was thus only getting very short cat naps during the day. And she was also grumpy, which I attributed to some feeding issue. But yesterday I forced her to sleep by placing her in her crib and closing the door, thus shutting her off from stimulation. She fussed a bit, but didn't cry (I'm not a monster). And after about 20 minutes she was asleep (how I love a video monitor).

She is like her father. She will sacrifice sleep if anything remotely interesting is going on (which includes just staring at me). She wants to be part of it all. She wants to stay up late, drinking martinis and talking about boys. She wants to carouse the neighborhood and TP houses. And unless I force her to take some time for herself, she will think she can do it all. I suspect this is a trait that will stay with her for a while.

So the cleaning only happened because I discovered the beauty of forcing her to take an afternoon nap. She is happier, my house is cleaner, and now I even have time to watch the season finale of Mad Men.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Strike negotiations

I am trying to avoid an impending strike. MJ is seriously contemplating quitting the bottle. And since I never thought to make her sign a contract, we're having negotiations, most of which consist of very tragic faces on her part.

It actually gives me immense satisfaction to know I am enough for her, she doesn't need some plastic contraption for fulfillment. Because when she's a teenager she will much prefer the plastic contraption to me. But the idea of being tied at the boob to my child is rather terrifying, so negotiations will continue until we come to some agreement. A strike is just not an option.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Watch out for exploding uteri

Seriously. MJ wore this to mass, I was afraid every womb in the place was going to simultaneously contract. She's just that cute.
 
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Sunday, November 8, 2009

Sleeping through the night

So here I go, imparting all my vast mama wisdom (similar to a 1st grader telling you the secret to achieving academic success). Here's the recipe that seems to be the reason our baybee sleeps through the night.

1. When the pediatrician tells you to supplement with pumped milk because your baby has lost too much weight, completely disregard the amount she told you to feed your baby and cram her full of as much milk as she wants, even if she pukes half of it back up. This stretches out your baby's stomache and causes her to demand more milk, and also causes her to gain a whopping 12 ounces in 3 days.

2. When the pediatrician tells you you really don't need to feed your baybee so much, and that she doesn't need to gain weight so fast, you listen intently. You try to implement this, but now she has come to expect a lot of milk when she's hungry. Her stomache is stretched.

3. Try your darnedest to reduce the amount of milk required at each feeding, because your boobs just aren't that big and can't hold that much milk. Fail, utterly.

4. Adapt to the status quo. She feeds all day long, cluster feeding in the morning and evening. Since your boobs can't possibly produce milk that fast, you implement a power pumping session after she goes to bed so that you can have extra milk to supplement her during the day.

5. This baby stomache is now the Hummer of baby stomache's. Tough to fill, but since it allows her to sleep through the night, your baby is a status symbol that causes jealousy in other moms. Put her down at 9 pm, pump for a while for the next days feedings. Have a glasss of wine and watch your favorite TV show, knowing she will not wake until ~6 am.

P.S. Make sure to put her in one of the snazzy night time diapers before she goes down.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Luckiest mama alive

Okay, I haven't been talking much about Madeline. Being as this is, unavoidably, a mommy blog, I am supposed to talk about my baby. That's how these things work. That's what people expect out of a mommy blog. So why haven't I been talking much about my darling baby? Because all those mama's will slaughter me. Because, truly, I have been blessed with one of the easiest infants ever.

Don't believe me? She was sleeping through the night by 2 weeks. By three weeks she was sleeping between 6 to 8 hrs a night, and at two months she's up to 8 to 10 hrs a night. This is a breastfed baby. She wakes up happy. She cries when she's hungry or needs to be fed. We might have a total of 15 minutes of unexplained crying throughout the day, and the rest of the time she is happy. She predictably takes a nap from ~1 pm to 5 pm. She nurses well. She smiles a lot.

That is why I don't talk much about her. Because I'm afraid I will be hunted down for being happy and well rested. You are not supposed to have a 1 month old and feel sane, apparently. It starts to become more acceptable to be sane with a 2 month old, which is why I'm finally coming out of the closet.