Friday, August 30, 2013


I gave Judah a haircut this evening. I guess it's his second full on cut. Maybe his third? I trimmed it once, so idk if that counts or not. I was home alone with the kids (Bill has been working night shifts on the ships lately), but luckily for me, Shoshana is still a top contender for chillest baby ever and just hung out in her bouncer chair the whole time. 

I bribed Judah to sit (relatively) still by letting him play games on my iPhone (angry birds, always angry birds. So much for the ten thousand educational apps I bought for him to use). He sat still for me cutting the back of his head and one side, but then on the second side my scissors decided to crap out on me (the handle broke), which made me accidentally pull on his hair. He then started pulling away. Saying, "owie!" (even when I hadn't touched his hair- it was just anticipatory owies). And telling me, "no, mommy!"

I had to MacGyver the scissors with duct tape in order to continue, but continue I did. He agreed I could keep cutting his hair if he got to keep playing angry birds. We had to revisit this agreement several times. 

It sure isn't perfect, but it's done. And now he looks like even more of a big kid (isn't it funny how haircuts do that?). 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The End... Of our time with the midwives

Yesterday, Shoshana and I had our very last appointment with our midwifery team. It's crazy. I've been seeing them at least once a month since last November.

Toward the end of pregnancy it was twice a week and then down to once a week. And then there were 6 postpartum visits. That's a lot of time together, especially since each appointment last about an hour. And that hour is pretty much all talking, which means I spent somewhere around 25 hours with these ladies- that's a lot of hours of chatting.

Now, that's over. That's it. All done. It's strange to think that I won't see them anymore. Even if I was to have another baby I still wouldn't have the same team. I would still have my head midwife (and I will be seeing her annually for my well woman check-up). The other two won't be there though. They're finishing up their training with a local midwifery college and will move on and become lead midwives of their own. 

- Cortney, Cassie, Shoshana, & Jamie-

It's been great. A girl couldn't ask for a better midwifery team. I will definitely miss all of them. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Cannon Beach Adventure

We took a day trip to Cannon Beach this week. Bill had a day off in the middle of the week and we had been talking about taking Judah to the coast ever since our (childless) get away at Depoe Bay for our 5 year wedding anniversary this last spring.

This was only Judah's second time ever at the coast. When he was not quite two months old we took him to the Washington coast, to the area around Forks. Needless to say, he got a lot more out of it this time around.

We were pretty sure he would like it, based on his love of the sandbox and throwing rocks into rivers. And we were correct. He was a big fan.

He really liked the birds and kept trying to get close to them, but oddly enough they just kept flying away. We had him try to feed a seagull so he could get a bit closer. However, he interpreted our directions as 'run directly at the seagull while concealing food in your fist'. Wouldn't you know it? The seagulls would then fly away. We tried showing him how to throw the food, but he couldn't launch it far enough (in part because he is 2 and in part because it was windy).

Despite the fact that we went to the coast in the middle of freaking August, the temperature was only in the 60s. And it was overcast. And gray. And windy. And started to rain. And then kept raining progressively harder. Eventually our gumption ran out and we retreated back to the car and changed into dry clothes and headed home.

We got in a good 4+ hours on the beach, but I'm sure if it was warmer (or if he was in warmer/waterproof clothing) Judah could have kept playing until the sun went down (and then some). We will definitely need to take him to the coast more often than once every two years.

We found a bunch of sand piles/castles that Judah played on. He climbed all over one particularly large mound of sand. Once he would get to the top he would slide down face first. He got just a tad bit sandy in this process.

He also destroyed an entire little city of sand castles. I'm pretty sure he didn't start out with that as his goal. He had found a feather and wanted to put in the top of one of the castles, as one of the other castles had a feather topper as well. However, his none too gentle insertion of the feather just ended up smashing the castle. He figured out that was pretty fun and went on to smash all the castles. Plus, a group of 6 or so grandparent aged people came upon him and thought he was just so adorable that they encouraged him and even took pictures of him in the process. That kid loved his adoring fans. 

He received a fair amounts of compliments, which was largely due to his Superman shirt and cape. He picks out his own clothing and that morning he pulled all of the t-shirts out of his drawer until he came to his Superman shirt. It was definitely a good choice for a windy beach day. Bonus: the cape did double duty as a snot rag (since, of course, with it being so cold his little nose started dripping).

Bill also picked out his own clothes, appartently with the intention of camoflaging himself within the surroundings. Only his stark white socks gave him away. Also, wtf, why even wear socks and boots to the beach? I know he wore them so he could check out tide-pools (we got there a little too late to see the good ones around Haystack Rock, but we still got to see a few smaller ones and Judah was suitably impressed with those). What I don't get though, is why he didn't change into his sandals (or just go barefoot) once we were done with the tide-pools and were just playing in the sand? Whatever. Judah and I enjoyed having our feet in the sand (that is once I finally took his shoes off after they were soaking wet and covered in sand).

Despite the lack of photographic evidence, Shoshana and I were also there. She spent the her time at the beach strapped to us in her Beco. She slept pretty much the whole time we were out on the beach. The sound of the ocean has that magical effect on babies. It was the same way when we brought Judah as an infant.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Shoshana at One Month

My little lady was one month old on Tuesday (the 13th). It is crazy how fast this last month has passed. Newborns just grow and change so dang quickly! I never realize it more than when I see someone else holding Shosh.  It is in those moments that I can truly appreciate how much bigger she is from a few weeks ago.

She now weighs 10 lbs 15 oz (an ounce more than Judah did at 1 month). After her two week appointment where she weighed in at 9 lbs 12 oz, I predicted she would hit 11 lbs by one month. I'm sure she held off on that last ounce just to prove me wrong (mothers & daughters, amiright?!).

I took monthly photos of Judah for the first year. They were all a similar set up of him in front of a propped up backdrop using a sheet or blanket. However, I discovered I truly preferred the more natural style photos of my boy. Lifestyle photography is pretty much how I roll. I felt like I had to keep doing the backdropped monthly photos though, since I had started with them and I might as well see it through. I was all too happy to give up those style photos when he reached a year, and I haven't looked back since.

With Shoshana, I still want to capture her each month on the 13th (or as close to it as I can get), but I won't be doing them in front of draped blankets. Of course, her newborn and one month photos are still in front of super simple backgrounds, because, well, all she can do is lay there, so it pretty much has to he her laying on a blanket or swaddling cloth. As she gets bigger and can sit, crawl, and eventually walk her photos will follow her progression. They will show her as she grows and changes. Playing in the house or yard. Or out at the park or in the bath. Or whatever is going on in her life on her monthly birthday. 

She has started developing a bit of baby acne. I keep thinking it is going to get worse, but so far we have been able to keep it in check. Her skin tends to look worse as the day wears on. I think that is because she has her face and body pressed against ours so often (either from nursing, or being in the beco, or just being held). I think the heat and oils from our bodies make her skin react. Her skin is noticeably clearer in the morning after sleeping all night in her bassinet. I also think out cleaning routine helps. She has yet to have a full immersion bath or use any soap. Instead, we just use a washcloth and warm water to wash her down before bedtime and follow it up by massaging coconut oil all over her. Plus, then she smells all yummy like a coconut.

Last week, I brought Shosh (and Judah tagged along) to a craniosacral appointment. I had noticed she has been strongly favoring turning her head to the right. No matter how I set her down to sleep she always would turn her head to the right. I also noticed she had a much easier time nursing on my left side (when she had her head turned to the right). Judah favored one side as well as a newborn (I don't remember which way though). We took him to a chiropractor in Tacoma that specializes in babies, but we certainly weren't going to trek all the way back there for Shosh. I asked my midwives for recommendations, and while they didn't have a chiropractor that specialized in babies to recommend, they did have a craniosacralist- Carol Grey (honestly, I'm not even sure 'craniosacralist' is a word, but I'm going with it anyway). Since her appointment, I have noticed a marked difference in Shoshana's ability (willingness?) to move her head to the the left (yay!). Carol (who was very nice and welcoming, btw) thought Shosh's favoring of the right side was probably due to her positioning in the womb, which makes sense because my placenta was located in the top left of my ute, so Shosh was in pretty much the same downward position on my right side for quite a few months (ROA for those keeping track).

Her patience was waning
The craniosacral appointment also marked my very first solo outing with both kids in tow. It went much easier than I expected. Carol's office is located in the Pearl and I ended up parking a few blocks away, but Judah did really well walking with me out in public (Shosh rode in her beco baby carrier). I didn't have to pick him up and carry him or anything. And when I needed to go into the street to unlock the car (the battery in my key is dead, so I can't just press a button to unlock the car) I told him to stay in a particular rectangle on the sidewalk (it was a grate cover) he did just that... and kept chilling in his rectangle while I got Shosh all loaded into the car. The ease of the outing gave me the courage to take them both out the next day to do a non-appointment related activity (the aquarium). Again, it went very well. Shosh chilled in her carrier the whole time and Judah had a blast looking at all the fish (as he always does).

and this is how you know the session is over

I was home alone with the kids when taking her photos this month, so you might be wondering what Judah was up to while I took Shoshana's picture. Well, here it is:

Thank you, Netflix on the iPhone, for allowing me to have 15 minutes of uninterrupted shoot time

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Newborn Shoshana

I'm not sure if it is due to the fact that this is not our first rodeo, or if it is just the way she is, but Shoshana is a crazy mellow baby. Perhaps, it is her way of making it up to me for the long pregnancy filled with flu like symptoms and exhaustion that she made me endure. Whatever the reason, she is pretty much the world's chillest baby. Of course, it could also just be the whole newborn thing. Only time will tell.

4 days old
She is a very different nurser than her brother was (btw, I had to wean him around 19 months because it hurt to nurse due to being pregnant with her. We did it gradually and he did just fine with it). She only nurses for about 5-10 minutes and is done. Judah used to just nurse and nurse and fall asleep and still keep nursing. I have an app on my phone that tracks nursing and it is pretty interesting to compare their visual nursing charts side by side.

1 week old
However, she is pretty gassy. She burps and farts with the best of them. And barfs... sometimes immediately after nursing. Everything she just drank is expelled right back on me. Other times, she waits until it is partially digested before she lets loose. As she grows (she is already 4 weeks!?!), she is spitting up less and hopefully that is a trend that will continue.

1 week
Currently, she is getting up 3 times at night, which isn't too bad at all. Especially since she is a quick nurser, which means I'm only up with her for 10 minutes or so. Of course, sometimes she doesn't go right back to sleep, either because she is gassy and needs to burp, or she is still hungry, or just isn't tired, or who knows why, but thankfully that hasn't been happening too often. She even had her first 8 hour stretch of sleep last week on the night of Aug 6th! This phenomenon has yet to be repeated, but I have high hopes. Usually her first sleep chunk (always the longest of the night) is more around 4 or 5 hours.

1 week
We did Elimination Communication with Judah starting around 4 months (which is when I first learned about it). We credit EC with how we are able to have Judah potty trained by the time he was 2 with relative ease. This time around, we started EC with Shosh right from the beginning. It's going well. She will sometimes fuss when she needs to pee, so we unbutton her diaper and she will pee into her open diaper. I find it awkward at this point to hold her over Judah's potty insert. Once she is bigger we will switch to that. She also poos into an open diaper, which is way easier to clean as it doesn't get all over her. 

1 week
Her umbilical stump fell off when she was 6 days old. It was hanging on by the tiniest, gross, little thread all day on Thursday and we kept hoping it would fall off, but it just kept dangling there. We resisted trying to remove it by force, because we know we are not suppose to do that, but she kept touching it and we didn't stop her, as we hoped maybe she would knock it off herself. She didn't. It fell off sometime during the night. When she got up Friday morning, Bill found it in her jammies when he changed her. Her belly button was still pretty gooey and scabby for a while. It didn't really start being an adorable swirl of a button until the last week or so. 

Cute button swirl at 3 weeks
She is gaining weight like a champ. She has even surpassed Judah's weight gain when he was newborn. She is shaping up to be a nice round baby with lots of chub and rolls. Yay! I love those chubby babies and their accompanying cheeks.

1 week
3 weeks
She has another check up on Monday, so we will get to see how much she weighs. Then, on Tuesday, she will be a whopping one month old! She weighed 9 lbs 12 oz when she was 17 days old, so I would guess she might even be up to 11 lbs on Monday. 

1 week
For the first 6 weeks, Shoshana and I both just see my midwives. We had a check up at 1 day, 3 days, and 1 week where the midwives came to wherever we were (the 1 day was at the birth center, the next two were at home). Then there is also a 2 week, 4 week, and 6 week check up which take place at Alma. We got back the results of both rounds of newborn screenings for her and everything looks good.

3 weeks
Her eyes are still that dark newborn gray. Judah's didn't settle into brown until about 3 months. I'm still hopeful that she will get her Dad's pretty blue eyes, but he is convinced hers will be brown like mine.

3 weeks
We had family portraits done the Friday after she was born (the same day her stump fell off). Our photographer was the super talented Posy Quarterman. We got our online gallery of images a few days ago and we should get our set of prints and disk of images in the mail this week. Shosh kept pooping throughout the hour long session. I'm pretty sure it was just one poo, but we would keep changing her diaper only to find she had pooped more a little while later. We had her in disposables for the session, because the cloth diapers were kind of awkwardly large on her at that point and they made her cute little romper fit a bit odd.

3 weeks
With Judah, we didn't put him into cloth diapers until around 2 months. We had her in them at just a few days old. Part of it was with practicing EC it just made more sense, and this time around we are much more accepting of leaks (which really haven't even really been happening with her. It might be since the diapers are have been used already they are more absorbent than when they were brand new and still had sizing in the material). We are using disposables at night though, so that we don't have to change her at all during the night. Night diaper changes just force us and her to wake up more than we want to.

3 weeks
Okay, I need to go to bed. It is later than I want it to be. And I still need to start a load of diapers in the wash. And shower. And get ready for bed.

Before I go, here are some pictures from the other day of Judah holding Shosh, as per his request. Oh, also, when Shosh was 3 days old, Judah told her (unprompted by us, mind you), "I love you, Shoshana" at bedtime. It was the absolute sweetest thing. Ever.