Thursday, November 4, 2010

How Things Have Been Going...

I've posted a lot of pictures, but haven't really given an adequate update on how things are going around our house since Olivia's arrival. And, since I was able to get a whoppin' 6 hours of sleep last night (not in a row, but hey, I'll take what I can get!), I actually feel like my thoughts are coherent enough to effectively communicate.
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I don't know what it is, but I think there is something that gets a little bit easier with each baby you bring home. Not that everything has been a breeze so far, but I think my expectations for what having a newborn means are definitely more realistic since I've already had two before. Plus, I know (from actual experience) that the late nights, the exhaustion, the emotional ups and downs due to all the crazy hormones, the crying, and the poop explosions are truly only temporary. And, because the end of Olivia's pregnancy was so physically miserable for me, when I do start feeling a bit discouraged, it helps me to remember how I felt last week at this time and then I feel an overwhelming sense of thankfulness that Olivia finally "popped out" (those are Zach's exact words in description of her arrival).
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I remember with Allie, as a first time mom, not even being able to see a light at the end of the newborn "haze" tunnel. Granted, she has definitely been our fussiest baby (hopefully I didn't just jinx Olivia's calm demeanor!), but everything seemed so new and foreign and I felt like I had absolutely no idea what I was doing. Now, five years later, I think I'm able to take things more in stride. I feel like I can actually enjoy having Olivia be so tiny instead of worrying about every little minor detail and feeling so overwhelmed.
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Granted, Ben has been home all week to help out and I have had quite a lot of help from my mom which has made all the difference in the world as to how I'm feeling right now. So...maybe in two-three weeks when reality sets in (aka-me, home alone with THREE kids!), I may be singing a different tune, but for now, I'm finding I'm able to really enjoy being with my family, newborn haze and all.
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Like I said, Ben has been a great help. Actually, right now he and Zach took Allie to preschool and will be stopping by the grocery store on the way home to pick up some necessities. The nights are usually the most difficult for me with a newborn, so Ben often stays up with her when she is fussy (and doesn't need to eat) so that I can get a little more sleep. I think he secretly likes the alone time with her, though....because there have been more than a handful of times that I have woken up to see him holding her on the couch and she is sound asleep (and would be perfectly content sleeping in her crib). So, I of course ask why she isn't in her crib (and why he's not in bed) and I usually just get a funny look and a "Because I'm holding her right now" in response.
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The kids are totally enamored by their new baby sister. They like to "play" with her and read her books. Allie even made a book for Olivia and reads it to her daily. Allie also asks to hold her at least a million times a day and revels in being able to help do things for Olivia like getting diapers, burp rags, picking out her clothes, and helping at bath time.
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Although Zach isn't as keen on holding her, he does like to "pet" her head and is always commenting on how cute his baby sister is. He is incredibly pleased to finally be a big "brudder" and reminds us of this new status constantly.
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Both kids were so proud to be able to bring a picture of their new sister to their preschool/ECFE classes this week to show Olivia to their teachers and friends. I'm sure the newness of having Olivia around will also eventually wear off, but right now, it is pretty darn cute!
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Olivia, herself, is doing great! She is my tiniest baby to date and she definitely feels small. I'm fairly certain her favorite thing to do is nurse...she does so about every 2 hours, round the clock. We had a rocky start with nursing, but after a visit from a lactation consultant yesterday, things are looking up. Like I said before, she is really not a fussy baby. She pretty much only cries if she is hungry or gassy. Otherwise, we've been able to enjoy a lot of quiet alert time with her and lots of cuddle time when she is napping.
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I think that about covers it for now. Since my boys are still at the grocery store, Allie is at preschool, and Olivia is snoozing away...I'm thinking it may be a good time for me to catch a little nap as well!

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