For this week's installment of 'a day in the life', I am happy to introduce you to Mindy! We went to high school together, and I actually designed her wedding invitations long distance (I did the design, she put them together, you can see them here, on my very very VERY neglected business blog). She is pretty much a brand spankin' new mama, so I was impressed that she offered to get a post ready for me this week. Hope you all enjoy a peek at her day!
Hey everyone! I am so excited to finally be posting on Ashley's Day in the Life series. I have been reading forever, but I only just became a mommy! Our Lilly Anne was born on the 4th of July, and it has been the best month-ish of our lives so far. My husband and I (ok, mostly I) blog over at Meet the Gs--it started as DIY/home improvement (which was highly amusing since we lived in an apartment and were extremely limited...think woodcutting on a 4x6 patio!), went through a daily outfit and pictures of our cats phase, and now is pretty much dedicated to the baby. I am a former high school math teacher and cheerleading coach turned stay-at-home mom, and my husband Tommy is an attorney. This is similar to our regular days, but a little unique since Tommy was home on a Monday, and I had a lot of work to get done around the house so we didn't end up going anywhere.
I mean, if you really want the start of my day, this was technically it. Lilly Anne is still waking up about 3 times a night to eat, anywhere from 1.5 to 4 hours apart--usually more like 2.5-3, but we are in a weird sleep week (I've heard a lot of other moms complaining that their kids are freaking out--is it a full moon or something?). Last night for bedtime we put her in the crib for the first time other than a few short daytime naps, and she did really well, sleeping from about 10:30 to 1:00. I was hopeful that she would go back down in the crib after this feeding, since she has been doing much better about falling back asleep quickly, but no such luck. After an hour or so (who knows, it was the middle of the night!), she had eaten and had a clean diaper, but was not interested in sleeping by herself, so I just gave up and brought her into our bed. She was finally getting out of this habit, but this week has just been so weird, so I went with it.
This was a nice, long stretch between feedings, so even though she slept on me, I was pretty excited to get a decent stretch of sleep, even with the hour or so of nonsense getting there. This time, after she ate, she seemed pretty happy, if not sleepy, so I just set her in the bouncy chair by our bed and turned the sound machine on (more to drown out her chatty noises than to soothe her to sleep). Eventually, she must have fallen asleep, because I passed out and wasn't woken up by any fussing.
Even though we have had some luck with longer stretches at night, she likes to cluster feed in the mornings, which is awesome. Tommy got up at 6:30 to run (he's training for the Disneyland Half-Marathon over Labor Day), so I just nursed her side-by-side in bed and we both fell asleep halfway through. This is one of my favorite feeding times of the day, even though I'm usually exhausted by this point, because I love not having to get up and just cuddling in the bed. I love my bed.
|This is what I woke up to after some time with Daddy...|
Sometime around when Tommy got back from his run, little miss decided she was ready to get up for the day, even though I sure was not, so he took her out to the swing in the living room and they hung out for a while so I could go back to sleep. Have I mentioned how much I love days when he doesn't have to go to work??
|Staring at her favorite spot on the wall next to the changing table|
I finally dragged myself out of bed, feeling like a total lush, but also totally awesome. We had a busy week and weekend, hosting one of my best friends from San Diego, wine tasting, dinner with friends, and Lilly Anne's dedication at our church Sunday morning, so I was definitely exhausted. Not that I'm not always tired with a newborn, but I definitely needed those extra couple of hours of sleep today. I ate breakfast and watched Gossip Girl while I nursed Lilly and then tried to help her fall asleep. We have seriously gotten our $7 worth out of our Netflix subscription over the past month--I spend a lot more time on the couch feeding or soothing than I ever expected!
|Looks like success...right?!|
Lilly Anne seemed to be sleeping pretty solidly, so I set her in the crib and jumped in the shower. JUST KIDDING. She started crying about 2 minutes in, so I loofahed and rinsed the shampoo out of my hair as quickly as possible to go pick her up. She literally fell back asleep as soon as I picked her up and walked two steps, so I tried setting her down again to do quick hair and makeup. This time bought a little more time, but by the time I finished and threw some sheets in the laundry she needed to be held again--we have a very cuddly baby! She seemed a little happier, so I gave her a quick sponge bath. We do a bath every day because girlfriend spits up like a fountain, and she turns into a hot sweaty mess when I wear her.
|Gratuitous naked baby picture...you're welcome|
Tommy got home from running some errands and we traded off baby duty and making lunch, while I got dressed quickly (nothing exciting, just some Nike shorts and a tank top--I'm not planning on leaving the house today!). Little one was finally able to stay asleep in her swing long enough for us to eat, and I headed into the kitchen to do some baking, while Tommy went out to the garage to work on the bar he is building. We make our own whole wheat bread each week, and I had some ripe bananas to make into banana bread. I got about halfway through before the babe was ready to eat again.
|Totally unsure about this whole swing situation|
We finished eating and Lilly was content to hang out in the swing for a while, so I went in to finish baking. She started to get fussy as I was finishing, and I knew she would be tired, so I threw her in the Moby to get some chores done. We had company last week and have more coming this week, so I tried to fit all of the weekly cleaning into today. I spent most of the time ironing before she got hungry again. (Am I the only one who hates ironing? Especially in the summer. With a hot little baby strapped to you. Blegh.)
|Please ignore the fact that I left the flash on. Remember, baby brain is real.|
Hungry again! Time for another episode of Gossip Girl and some blogs :)
Lilly Anne will be 6 weeks this week, and even though I haven't gone in to see my doctor and get officially cleared to exercise, I have been dying to start running again, especially since I signed up for the Disneyland 5k over Labor Day weekend while Tommy runs the half marathon. I was bummed when I slept in so late this morning that I had missed my chance to run, since it was supposed to be back up in the 90s again today, but I was itching to go, so I figured screw the heat! It was hot and slow, but it felt so good to go back out! It made me a lot more confident that if I can get out in the mornings a few days a week for the next three weeks, I should be fine for the race!
After I got back from my run, Tommy wanted to show me the progress on his bar in the garage. I am super impressed with how it is turning out--it looks totally professional! One of our good friends is amazing at brewing, and I am stoked for the first party we can host with a pony keg of his beer at our new bar (I'm thinking beer pong with the baby in the Ergo...#momoftheyear)! After sufficient oohs and ahhs like a good wife, I headed back inside to bake some cookies (I swear I don't bake this much every day, I was just trying to get prepped for the week!) and start dinner. We had some leftover ground turkey, so we threw together a quick taco salad. We are trying to get better about meal planning and using up leftovers to avoid wasting as much food. While everything was heating up, I started writing up the morning before I forgot everything. Baby brain is real, people.
We ate dinner, and, not to be left out, Lilly insisted on eating too! We are still figuring out whatever this new routine might be, so I am hoping that she'll have a shorter stretch after this before she wants to eat again, and I won't be stuck waiting up until 10:00 to feed her. Bedtime starts with a 9 around here. After dinner, I finished cleaning up, dusting, and vacuuming to get everything ready for our guests while Tommy cuddled the baby and watched Criminal Minds.
Lilly woke up and started to get fussy, so we took turns getting ready for bed so we could get in after she ate. I crawled into bed to read and she fell asleep on my chest. I figured she would be up again soon since it had been almost three hours since she ate, but I was having trouble keeping my eyes open, so I just gave in. Aaaand that was the end of my day--somehow she didn't wake up again until after midnight to eat (6 hours, what?!)! Life is exciting with newborn!
What is the most surprising thing to you about being a mom?
I think I am most surprised by how much longer I take to do everything. I used to pride myself on being a very productive and efficient person, but that sure goes out the window with a baby! I am constantly surprised by how much time has gone by some days when all I have done is sit on the couch and feed and soothe the baby. I definitely don't mind it; in fact, it is a much-needed change of pace after the frantic business that teaching and coaching required. I have been reading a lot about how much we glorify 'busy' and use it as a measure of value in our lives, so I am embracing the not busy for this season.
What advice would you give to new or soon-to-be mamas?
Haha, I'm pretty sure I still fall into this category, and I have no idea what I'm doing. But, that said, I've definitely learned to give up my own agenda--this baby is going to eat, sleep, and poop on her own schedule, not mine. Every time we start to get into a routine, something changes, and that doesn't mean that something is wrong with her--she's just an infant! Follow their cues and adjust accordingly. The worst night by far was the first night we were home from the hospital, and we had this idea that she would sleep in the crib. And then we couldn't figure out why she was screaming and crying. First of all, I'm pretty sure cribs freak the heck out of newborns, and second of all, she was hungry. On my agenda, she couldn't possibly be hungry before 3 hours, but the second I gave in and fed her, there was peace. Every single time. And then she slept in our bed for three weeks, which I swore we would never do. Whatever, just go with it.
What are your top three baby products?
I just put up our first month favorites here, but of those, I would definitely say any kind of baby carrier to wear her. My arms would have fallen off and my house would be a train wreck without the Moby and the Ergo, but to be honest, I don't think it matters what kind you get. Just put that baby on. I am 100% on the baby-wearing bandwagon. Second, something small to put the baby in. I swore we didn't need a bassinet, but we use the swing and bouncy seat extensively, and I bet you we would use a bassinet if we had one. I would say the last one would be a Wubbanub or some kind of pacifier--it's hit or miss with her, but it can be a great way to soothe her and help her fall asleep more independently now that she is a little older.
Thanks so much for sharing your day with us Mindy!