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One Month

One month is past; presuming no plans change, this is the last time we get to experience a newborn. From here on, developmental milestones will put us further and further from the skinny little newborn baby which already seems distant.

Coraline is 9 pounds, 10 ounces at 1 month old, putting her in the 55% percentile, and 21 inches at the 35th percentile.

She has little rolls on her thighs and wrists, something we never really saw from Jameson much. She has a great set of lungs on her, being quite a bit louder than Mr. Jameson was.

We refer to her most often as “Baby Coraline” for Jameson’s benefit, but it is sticking. Sometimes I call her little lady or Miss Coraline. We will see how that changes as she grows!

She is just beginning to smile and occasionally coo (or otherwise make noises that aren’t grunts and cries), though for the most part she is still an eat-poo-sit-sleep baby. Sometimes just an eat-sleep baby in the afternoons. We have managed to set a bedtime for her already. She goes to bed very shortly after Jameson does on a typical night, usually by 8:30 at the latest, sometimes 9 if she is a little fussy or overtired. The benefit of there being two of us is that we can put them to bed at the same time, and so far that is working out really well to allow us some evening time to ourselves.

Coraline is sleeping the first half of the night upwards of 6 hours, and I am getting about 4 hours since I go to bed a couple hours later. She gets up between 1:30-3:30 and either goes right back to sleep (great nights!) or stays awake for an hour or so before going back to sleep (frustrating nights). However, I try to remember that she is sleeping exceptionally well for being so young yet and try to keep my patience on those nights. She then gets up for the morning between 6-7:30, and takes a morning nap just an hour or so later. She used to go right back asleep again, but now she seems to need some awake time before going back to sleep. I actually manage to shower every day, though I don’t always do my hair.

I find myself wondering what we did wrong with Jameson that it took me so long to get to a routine like this (or was it just that we didn’t know what we were doing!?)

Our only big issue and concern with her right now is her refusal of the bottle. We have tried many times and only managed to get an ounce in her with a little similac bottle that came in the mail. I am going to try a couple other types, though I am disappointed that she isn’t taking to the same ones Jameson did since I have so many of those now! I didn’t want to try too many, since she isn’t taking a pacifier either, it just seems to be general refusal of having things other than the boob in her mouth.

I want to make sure that in two months when she starts at daycare that she is comfortable, and thus far the only comforting things that will follow her to daycare is the swing, being swaddled, and hopefully a bottle that she likes, since otherwise she is refusing the pacifier.

She’s a joy to have and we feel already as if she has already been a part of our lives forever.

Two Kids, One Mom

On Monday, we had our first nice day in a while, so I decided to be brave and keep Jameson out of school all day and had two kids by myself all day for the first time.

The morning went okay, I got Jameson up while Coraline was still content, but she quickly decided she wanted to eat, so I had to let her cry some while I got Jameson his breakfast. He was excellent though while I fed her, watching tv next to me and needing nothing. She didn’t really want to nap after that (or I couldn’t give her the time she needed to help get her to sleep), so I kept her awake until it was time to go to the playground!

We met friends Lisa and Vivienne at the playground mid morning, and they ran around the playground for an hour without pause except to swing. I had Coraline in the stroller, but I did bring my carrier in case I would need to follow Jameson closer. However, he was great at the playground and didn’t try to jump off of any high platforms. He particularly loved running up and down the ramps and the swing.

He also spied another little boy running around in the grass outside the playground, and of course he had to do the same.

I even managed to pack us a lunch! We ate there, while Vivienne slept in her mom’s arms. She passed out in the swing! Jameson asked to go play as soon as he was done, and he ran around for another 20 minutes or so before we headed home so I could make sure I fed Coraline before she got fussy. She slept the entire time.

After she ate, we watched some tv for a little while so Jameson could relax a bit since he skips naps at home. Coraline napped in her swing and I even got some photos edited!

Then we went back outside for more! By evening, I had Coraline strapped in the carrier and took Jameson on a walk in his stroller, a new umbrella stroller we got for him. He doesn’t get to ride in it much, and he enjoyed a nice walk. After dinner, we played a little with Lily outside before finally crashing.

Coraline was awake for most of the evening and loved being outside. She was great in the carrier though complained a bit toward the end of our walk. I couldn’t believe how smoothly the day went, though I have developed a new appreciation for those who do this day in and out everyday. As it was, I needed the tv to occupy Jameson so that I could do some things I needed to do; and I’m not sure how I would feel if I felt obligated to help educate Jameson. Luckily I spent the day just doing and having fun!

But really, it will have to be a nice day when I do it again. Jameson needs that outside time to blow off some energy!

4 Weeks Old

She’ll be a month old on Saturday when we’ll get to start the first of her monthly photos. Can you believe it!?

Coraline is turning out to be a very mellow baby pretty consistently (it doesn’t seem like it’s just a fluke of newborn-ness right now).

The only exception is when she gets tired. If you let her get over tired, it becomes pretty difficult to get her to go to sleep, and she usually needs to suck.

At the first sign of fussiness now, I will try her in another position in case she is bored, and if she doesn’t settle, I’ll begin swaying her to sleep. She really only gets fussy when she is tired or very hungry, and sometimes just bored. And even hunger she will grunt for a while as a warning before the all-out-yelling begins.

This week I really felt like I am understanding her wants and needs better and our days have run very smoothly recently. More smoothly, I think, than they did with Jameson.

Some differences, which make it really clear how different babies really can be:

  • Jameson always seemed bored, like he needed a lot of stimulation and activity. I was thankful for daycare for this reason; so far, Coraline doesn’t seem to need this same kind of stimulation. She likes to look at faces a lot, and observing the world around her seems enough, for now. I’m guessing she may smile sooner than he did, but we’ll see!
  • Coraline doesn’t take a pacifier (we’ve tried four), and has a big preference for breastfeeding. She had her first bottle which went well, but the two we gave her since then she hasn’t taken, which makes me nervous. The key seems to be that she is confusing us between when she is hungry and when she is overtired and just wants to suckle herself to sleep. Jameson was always a bit of a struggle with breastfeeding (especially at her age now), and took pacifiers and bottles easily.
  • She doesn’t seem to spit up as much as Jameson did.

  • Coraline is a very loud sleeper, grunting and whining a lot. She is fine though without vibration or a pacifier once asleep.
  • She likes the swing! Hurray for a baby who likes the swing!
  • Jameson pooped once every 5 days or so (this is a normal, though not very common, occurrence with breastfed babies). Coraline is of the much more common several-times-a-day pooper (though thankfully not often at night). Consequently, while he seemed frequently gassy, Coraline doesn’t often.
  • She likes to be on her belly. Jameson used to hate to be on his belly, unless he was completely and totally already asleep. She seems to find it comforting.

And similarities: Coraline and Jameson both seem to be pretty good sleepers at this age, getting up between one and two times a night, most often just once. They like to be swaddled too! And obviously, they look very similar, especially when I put her in some of the gender neutral sleepers (heck, even some of the boy outfits too!). She is more filled out than he was, but many features are similar.

She has good head control already, which I credit to being at a higher birth weight and overall more mass to support that head! It probably helps that she likes to be on her belly, so we put her in that position more, too.

This week she also started to coo every once in a while (maybe a couple times a day). I tried to get it on video, but once I brought the camera out, she sneezed and started crying. A sign of things to come?

Jameson continues to be an excellent big brother. Last night, she was crying on her playmat while Brian and I finished eating quickly. Jameson, already finished, got a book and went over to her, trying to read to her. It was very sweet; when it didn’t work, he yelled to us that she was crying.

Whenever she cries, he tells us that she needs a diaper change. He likes to say “ewww stinky” when we do change her diaper; meanwhile laughing with pride at his own accomplishments on the potty. Kids are funny!

Spring Weekend

Finally, spring weather seems to be here to stay!

This weekend, we got out a lot, even with a newborn and toddler. Saturday, we went to the meat market to stock up on fresh chicken and beef, and then stopped at the farmers market on the way back to pick up some apples for Jameson to take to school during the week.

We played outside, and it is so fun watching Jameson be able to run to through the backyard which is finally drying out a little as well.

It was even warmer on Sunday, and we went to the zoo! We met JP, Lisa and Jonathan there (and we were only about 10 minutes late, haha)

Jameson told us on the way that he was going to see zebahs (we were a little surprised at his choice of animals that he was intending to see, since lions and elephants are in more of the shows that we watch!). We did get to see zebras, but first we saw elephants and the lion, which was on his back, sunbathing.

The trip for Coraline was a bit anticlimactic, since she isn’t observing much yet! But I did breastfeed her, in public (with a drape), which I thought was an accomplishment. Much more convenient than bringing bottles, that’s for sure.

She napped most of the time, and was a little angel for the entire trip. I forgot how much easier newborns really are sometimes.

The toddlers went stroller-free, which was great. Of course, we couldn’t have done it without the two strong husbands to carry them when needed. It was so different, looking at Coraline bundled in her stroller and Jameson walking around and thinking that’s only two years away for her. I am regularly reminded of how fast the time goes, and perhaps more appreciative of that fact with her than I was with Jameson.

After some snacks and about an hour and a half at the zoo, we decided to get some lunch.

Lunch was wild! We went to Aladdin’s, and the boys did great with veggies and hummus and pitas, but Jameson clearly needed to go potty and kept refusing. We tried at the zoo at every restroom, and tried again at Aladdins another 3 times. When we spoke logically to him, he said he needed to go potty, but as soon as he saw the restroom, he refused. I am not sure where this fear of public restrooms came from, though I think it’s related to the automatic flushers; Aladdin’s didn’t have them though. Regardless, he started telling us he wanted to go home, and we quickly wrapped it up.

We tried at the public rest area off the highway with similar results. Somehow… he managed to hold it until we got home. I am still not sure how he managed that. This is the first time I have thought that being potty trained has its inconveniences. Not sure how to get him over this fear except to continue trying. Unfortunately, we only have opportunities on the weekends sometimes to get him to go at other restrooms.

Looking for any advice!

Easter Weekend

For Easter this year, my mom and sister came up to visit, and we enjoyed family all together on Sunday for Easter supper. This was Aunt Holly’s first opportunity to meet Coraline!

The weather was looking up a bit, so we spent some time outside on Saturday with Coraline all bundled up.

Jameson loved playing basketball with Aunt Holly (it was mostly just throwing and playing catch, but Jameson has taken to calling that basketball).

Meemaw brought the extra large bouncy ball! It quickly blew through the yard on the windy day, and I’m pretty sure Jameson encouraged some of that blowing away so they could run down the street chasing after it.

On Easter morning, Jameson very quickly saw an egg and understood the name of the game. He took a quick break to eat some breakfast midway through (thankfully, since he enjoyed eating a jelly bean or two from each of his eggs).

After finding all the eggs (18 eggs, filled with jelly beans, chocolate which he insisted he didn’t like, and 3 little cars), then it was time for the Easter baskets.

Both Jameson and Coraline have Easter baskets; Coraline’s basket is gray and pink, and Jameson’s is green and white, made from loopy chenille which is now a discontinued product and hard to find. The yellow basket you see in the photos above is my basket from my childhood.

Coraline got a giraffe hooded towel (kid-sized, so I expect Jameson will use it before it fits her!), a baby toy with mirror, small stuffed bunny, bunny rattle, puffs and yogurt drops for when she is introduced to food, a bunny rubber duck bath toy.

Jameson’s basket had pez and animal crackers, a shark hooded towel, coloring book, 3 mini reading books, flashlight, puzzle, and Finding Nemo. Finding Nemo did not overtake his love of the Lion King, but he did sit through most of it.

Meanwhile, Brian made a breakfast casserole for us. After all that activity, we didn’t make it in to church, but I did have everyone dress up for our first family photo post Coraline’s birth.

Contrary to this lovely photo’s appearance, it was much much harder to get everyone looking at the camera and smiling.

And by everyone, I mean Jameson and Sasha (I didn’t expect Coraline to be looking at the photo, though by some miracle, we captured a photo of her looking at the camera and not screaming). This was actually the only photo we got of Sasha in the frame as well, since she kept insisting on laying down.

Jameson was concerned about Coraline crying and the rush of the photo, and kept sticking his hand in dad’s pocket until we let him take a few of the photos himself.

I think everyone (including my belly, which was stuffed into those pants temporarily) was relieved when we managed to capture a couple good photos, and we were finished. These family portraits are important though, and I am happy we managed to take them at least twice a year.

Brian’s parents and sister came over then for supper. They brought over more Easter goodies for Jameson and Coraline, including clothes and toys and candy for Jameson.

Jameson’s fascination with spinning things made these tops a hit.

For supper, we had ham and turkey, salad, potatoes and green bean casserole, and fruit pizza for dessert. Coraline was sleeping off her own supper time in the bouncer.

After taking a couple photos of Jameson’s stash of blankets and toys on top of Coraline, I came back just moments later to find her head actually covered up under two layers of blankets. Ooops! We had to tell Jameson he can’t cover her head.

It is so nice of him to share his toys though, so we encourage that particular behavior and I love the way he wants to keep her warm and seems to believe it will help her sleep, just like they do for him.

After our nice family dinner, Meemaw and Aunt Holly had to leave and we relaxed for the evening. Everyone was exhausted!

The Newborn News

Coraline’s turning 3 weeks old tomorrow, and for some reason that seems much older than the 2 weeks she was… what, days ago?

She is starting to pick up on a few of Jameson’s habits: staying awake and struggling at times to fall asleep (and at other times, she passes out without trouble… the whim of babies!)

She typically stays awake 1-2 hours at a time after a feeding about twice a day at this point. This morning, it was 3 hours, struggling to fall back asleep a few times before success.

Coraline had a few adventures during my first full week without Brian home; we went to Target and the grocery store (the grocery store was a fast trip, since she was awake and fussing!). We visited our baby friend Adelyn, who was born just hours after her at the same hospital. A co-worker came to visit and brought a lovely meal (which lasted me days!), and we had a pro clean the house (way overdue).

Lily and Peyton came to visit from next door; they aren’t too pleased I am blocking their view of the tv here, which made me laugh.

Peyton is 7 months old here and seems to big compared to our newborn baby Coraline!

Jameson began showing a bit of jealousy on occasion. Nothing too extreme, and all he wants is to be held. Overall, he has still been really great with her and has shown not an ounce of violence or meanness to her. He wants attention from mom and dad, and luckily, Coraline has been a good baby, and we are able to give it to him in the evenings without too much trouble. We have still been taking turns with bedtimes with him and he is still getting plenty of mom time even though I am feeding her a lot. (A lot!)

Grandma and Aunt Melissa came over last weekend for lasagna dinner (and again over Easter) so Jameson has seen a lot of family and really enjoyed that attention. Papa showed him spinning coins, a progression from spinning coasters!

Obviously there’s been a lot of picture-taking at our house! Jameson has recently been taking my phone and telling Coraline to say cheese and smile! I have shown him how to hit the camera button, and he has taken his first few photos (very unfocused and not of baby Coraline without assistance). He did manage to get pictures of feet the other day though!

Anyway, Jameson has been pretty tolerant of all the photo taking, and I took a few of them in their Big Brother, Little Sister shirts since Coraline seems apt to outgrow her newborn clothes a lot quicker than Jameson did.

Shortly after the above photo was taken, Coraline sneezed all over Jameson, and Jameson refused to take any more photos! Haha!

We also bundled up and walked over to the neighbor’s in the snow (snow!), since Kelly hadn’t had the opportunity that Lily and Peyton did to meet her yet. (Mid-yawn:)

And finally, she suffered my traditional “baby on a bookshelf” photos that Jameson did, so I will have matching photos of them. Jameson’s was taken at one month old, but I wanted them of a similar size, and she is already larger than he was at a month.

We were excited that it finally warmed up enough on Friday last week to go on her very first walk; in fact, she went on two when another co-worker dropped by later that evening with her twins!

We managed to keep really busy last week, but this week is shaping up to be a little lighter, which is probably good. After the warm up to the 50’s though on Friday and Saturday, we have woken up to snow each morning (that typically melts by noon, but still!). I am still waiting for a final turn around to spring weather…

 

Coraline’s First Week

We all enjoyed Coraline’s first week at home, but I am getting antsy to get out some more and hope the weather turns around soon so we can all go on walks together in the evenings.

Coraline as I’ve mentioned seems pretty laid back. So far, she hasn’t taken to the pacifier but its still early. Mostly, shes pretty content while awake. She is usually awake for a couple hours at a time, and gets frustrated when she can’t fall asleep or when she is really hungry or cold. She smacks her lips and makes little baby grunts at night when she’s hungry, which I awaken to, for now, since she’s right next to our bed in the bassinet.

My mom came up on Sunday through Friday last week, which was convenient and enjoyable, especially for providing a little extra entertainment for Jameson while he was home from school ill. Coraline wore her green for St. Patrick’s Day most of the day, before she had an accident!

My mom also helped me take newborn photos of Coraline, who only really messed on the blankets once (but it was a big one! Thankfully mom got the stain out!) She didn’t want to fall asleep, no matter how hard I tried! She was just like Jameson, wanting to stay awake for her official photo shoot. I only got to use the new backdrop stand a little, but it seemed to work really well. I was happy with how her photos came out, and have already ordered her announcements.

It is a good thing we moved so quickly on her newborn photos, since she gets bigger by the day. She was back up and over her birthweight at 4 and a half days old (7 pounds, 3 ounces) and she matches Jameson’s weight at one month old of 7 pounds 6 ounces at one week.

Coraline had her first tummy time, but she was so exhausted from her photo shoot earlier that she passed out right there.

I love her little swirl of hair on the back of her head. She also has a birthmark on the back of her head there and on her forehead and eyelids which will all disappear by one year old. The sweet little eyelid marks are cute though, and I wouldn’t mind if they stayed. Her forehead mark is only apparent when she gets angry for the most part, but it is a pleasant reminder that even though she has a lot of similar features to Jameson, she is her own sweet little person.

Brian also was home from work all last week. We aren’t able to have him home extra like we had off for Jameson, so we are disappointed he has to go back today. Although, Jameson thrives on routine, so it will be good to return to that normal time of getting up and going to school.

She eats really well, which is such a wonderful difference from our first, and she was a little greedy the first few days of life which means my supply is still adjusting to her demand, but it hasn’t been too bad.

Coraline did not enjoy her first bath, but I did better with her second one keeping her warm with water down her back and wash cloth over her chest. It was almost as if I had forgotten how to bathe a newborn (I really had). Her cord still hasn’t entirely fallen off yet, but its still quite a bit easier than dealing with vasoline and a circumcision!

We also got to visit her Great Aunt Carol and meet my cousin Carrie who was in town. It was a lot of activity for our little one week old!

It was our second outing, after the doctors, to go visit Great Aunt Carol, who just had hip surgery. She loved seeing Coraline, and even put her to sleep without a rocking chair or swaying. She has the baby touch!

We were sad to say goodbye to Meemaw on Friday, but we’ll see her again this weekend for Easter, and Coraline will get to meet her Aunt Holly too! The time, as ever, goes quickly.