Sunday, October 30, 2011

Swimming and One New Friend

Today PJ went swimming for the first time. Turns out he is a natural. Our baby actually laughed when his head was dipped all the way under the water.

The water was baby friendly (read: quite warm), so the camera steamed up quite quickly but here is a short video of the fun:

In other exciting news, little man made a new friend today. This time I know its for keeps.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Christmas in October

Mr PJ got one heck of a package from the US yesterday. I asked my mom to pick up a few long sleeve onsies for the man and she had a fabulous time (and did a great job!) shopping for him. PJ was a little overwhelmed by the flush of new clothes.

He's already rocking the clothes with style!

Thanks 'Rents!


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sleep Training

The first few months of PJ’s arrival into our life were chaotic at best. We dealt with breastfeeding issues, post partum depression, colic, and sleep problems. From the beginning we planned on having PJ with us in our room for the first four to six months, sleeping in a side car that fastens onto our bed. We chose this semi-co-sleeping route to make breastfeeding easier, encourage sleep in the entire family, and because I was petrified of squeezing out a little guy from the coziness of my uterus and then plopping him into a cavernous (for him) room. 

But within a few short series of days the semi-co-sleeping route was history - so much for “I’ll never do that…” - and little PJ and I were sleeping together on my side of the bed.

We lay belly-to-belly with my arm gently resting against the top of his head and, at the beginning, my legs bent to rest against the bottom of his feet. As he grew, my arm stayed in position and slowly his feet, then his calves, and finally his knees rested on my thigh. Every time I woke up I had a kink in my neck, my shoulder was half asleep, and my lower back was aching. Sometimes I got to wake up to the joy of getting kicked in my tummy and then later, as PJ grew, my crotch. I got my hair pulled and the front of my chest was always cold since there was no way I was putting my blanket anywhere near his face. Anytime I moved, he moved too and most of the time he would let out a little complaining cry.

Lets just say it wasn’t easy or incredibly comfortable.

Yet, we did get more sleep than we would have otherwise and I knew that PJ needed me. He needed my smell, my warmth, my breath. And as breast feeding started to work, he needed the reassurance of my breasts, often. It was the right solution for us at the right time.

But all things come to an end.

After weeks of discussion and negotiations (and lots of conversation with other mommies), we started “sleep training” a la Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child. Almost two weeks ago we started with the Mr. gently putting PJ to sleep for the first part of the night in his own, beautiful crib in his own room.

When he woke for the first time, I would go pick him up, carry him to our room, nurse him, and then we spent the rest of the night together. Over the past week it has morphed into PJ sleeping alone throughout the night and for almost all of his naps. He is going to sleep hours earlier than he use to, sleeping longer than he use to, and taking significantly more naps than he use to. These changes are NOT all due to “sleep training”: he recently doubled his weight, his strength increased, he sees better, hears better, likes to play on the floor alone for short periods of time, and is just older. I think we got lucky and caught that moment in time where he was ready to sleep longer and alone.

Not that we knew that going in. It was a scary transition for me. Sleep has been my saving grace and I was really worried that we would all crash and burn. But by night two, PJ was going to sleep on his own relatively easily and I was happy to be sleeping by myself again, with both sides of my chest warm and the freedom to move whenever and however I chose. I know PJ and I are both sleeping better and I’m pretty sure the Mr. does too.

Now, just a few days after the transition, I’m already slowly rewriting history - just like with the pregnancy, the birth, and the pain of breastfeeding - I’m forgetting the ugly and remembering the wonder. The wonder of his smell, his breath, his little coos, his tiny hand wrapped around my thumb all throughout the night. The wonder of him finally waking without panic screams to look up at me and smile his toothless grin just seconds before he dove for breakfast.

Time really does fly. At a supersonic speed.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Belly Time

The video isn't that exciting this time, just a short video of little man's belly time. Enjoy!


Saturday, October 22, 2011

End of an Era

Over two years ago while visiting the US, my sister and I bought ourselves some pretty rad, extremely goofy sunglasses. Mine were red with bizarre stars on them; hers were orange with something I can't remember on them. I liked the looks of amusement, what-is-she-wearing (nod to Style Queen here), and sometimes stuffy disgust when I wore mine out and about, especially recently while baby wearing PJ. When Little One was here, we got to rock our shades together all throughout Heidelberg.

But yesterday an era ended: my crazy red-with-stars sunglasses broke in the diaper bag.

And lately that is how I have been feeling: an end of an era. I jokingly tell people that life with PJ got easier when I forgot what it was like before and then I laugh. But really, honestly, its the truth. I cannot really recall what life was like before PJ arrived anymore.

Did I sleep late? Did I shower longer? Did I eat slower? Did food taste better warm? What was it like to drink two glasses of wine? Did I walk more? What was regular yoga like? What did I talk about? What did I read?

Yeah, I don't know. An end of an era. And something about that actually feels right.

How 'bout them apples?


Friday, October 21, 2011

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Bouncy, Bouncy!

You guys loved the video yesterday - so here is another one! There is sound in this video as well - so don't open at work with the speakers on silly friends of mine (and there was more than one of you!).

Here is PJ when we first got his little bouncy chair. The concept of the chair, called the Baby Björn Babysister (creepy name), is that the baby can bounce the chair by himself. At this point in time, the chair did NOT bounce and PJ was not impressed with the chair.

Here is PJ in his very favorite bouncy chair yesterday. Not only does it bounces but Mr. Man PJ loves his little chair!


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

10 New Friends

PJ has made 10 new friends: his toes!

Turns out the biggest one is also pretty yummy. Who knew?

And a video too!


Monday, October 17, 2011

Making a Reader

I am a big reader and hope to give that pleasure to our little boy. In that vein, I have been reading two short books to PJ as part of his bedtime routine for a few weeks. In the past couple of nights, he has been paying attention to the pictures and responding when I take too long to move a page. I hope this is a start of a happy reader!


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Mommy's Night Out

Last night mommy had another first: she left the house without PJ for over 45 minutes. The Mothers of Pre-Schoolers (MOPS) group that is helping rescue my sanity, I mean, I am involved with here had a mommy's night out. My husband, my sister, and all of the women at MOPS encouraged me to go, get out of the house, just be a girl again for a few hours. With some hesitation and trepidation - and just raw fear - I accepted the invitation, pumped like crazy all week to get two bottles for the Mr while I was gone, and last night I had my very first mommy's night out. All 2.5 hours of it.

When I got to the party, I felt naked, alone, missing a heavy car seat and a plunging diaper bag. On a positive note, I felt unbelievably thin too. I was greeted with a sunny "You made it!" and tears started rolling down my face. Thankfully I was in a welcoming, supportive, and totally understanding environment. I got two hugs almost instantly and then some concentrated distraction from the ladies. And these are Good People; I was laughing, goofing, and learning from war stories within minutes. Two and a half hours flew by and before I knew it, I had to get going.

I came home to a quiet apartment, a sleeping little boy, and a husband who welcomed me with a big smile and an understanding "I didn't get ANYTHING done."

Lets be honest, it couldn't have been any better.


Friday, October 14, 2011

14 Weeks

PJ is 14 weeks today! The past few days have been sorta difficult. I think he is missing Aunt Little One who after three fabulous weeks took off on Wednesday. We both miss her very, very much. PJ has a number of great reasons to miss Aunt Little One:

She was an excellent form of mobility;

ensured that PJ got to new heights and enjoyed beautiful views;

held up not just the Heidelberg castle but our general positive attitudes;

and taught him all sorts of new joys. 

And I miss her for the shared coffees, warm teas, excellent conversations, reassuring voice, massive amount of affirmations, and warm arms for PJ at 6am.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Guess Who's Playing

There is a football (soccer) game tonight. Guess who's playing.

One more guess:

Got it?


Sunday, October 9, 2011

By Request: Make New Friends

PJ made a new friend this evening, it started slow...

...but it grew quickly. 

I think it'll be real love.


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Three Months and What a Day!

PJ is three calendar months today! He has been growing and growing the past few days and we have had to sort out even more clothes. We estimate he's grown about an inch and gained almost half a kilo in the past week alone. Thankfully we still have some outfits to dress him up in, including the most adorable outside outfit EVER:

  (one picture just wasn't enough cuteness)

Today we finally made good on the planned sushi outing, meaning PJ got to cuddle and flirt with some very hot ladies while mommy enjoyed sushi! Yummy, yummy sushi; how I missed thee.


Then Little One (also referred to as Super Sister), PJ, and I walked through a gentle fall rain in the center of Heidelberg checking out shops.

To wrap up a wonderful day, PJ added his own touch by pooping all the way up his back and into the folds of his neck - Folds. Of. His. Neck. - and then splashing around in a very, very necessary bath.

Post bath (check out the adorable little fatty winkles!):

All around, a wonderful way to celebrate little PJ's entrance into the world three whole months ago.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Our Little American

We took our little PJ up to the American consulate yesterday to apply for his American passport and social security number. The process was surprisingly organized and simple; we were out in about 90 minutes. Way to go Frankfurt people!

To celebrate we taught PJ an American tradition: we stopped at McDonald's and then ate in the car. He was less than impressed.

Our little American:


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Hanging Out With Myself

Drum roll: At this very moment I am not in the very same physical location as PJ.  About 30 minutes ago the Mr. took him off to his work for some show-and-tell.

Applause? Because this marks the first time that PJ and I are in different locations since he was born in July. It took some serious preplanning because we needed to arm the Mr. with some breast milk and I’m not a “good” pumper. Which means, while I can quite well feed my child directly at my breast, I can’t effectively feed a pump. Which translated into three pumping sessions to get one bottle large enough for the Mr. to take with him.

Applause? Because I’m not clapping yet. Instead I feel a little naked. I dreamed of taking a nap but can’t; in part because the Mr. sprayed his deo in our room right before he took of and in part because its just strange not to have PJ here. I considered working on the book I’m scribbling but can’t; basically because I can’t concentrate on more than:
    “Is PJ okay?”
    “How is the Mr. holding up?”
    “Are his colleagues handling PJ well?”
    “Is PJ hungry?”
    “Will the Mr. know when PJ is hungry or will he wait for him to cry?”
… and so on.

Like this picture - 

I’m sure my men are doing just fine and I never thought I’d be one of the mommies that feels this way. I thought it was going to be easy to kiss our little boy on the forehead and take off for an evening out with the ladies. In fact, I very naively planned a sushi date for “6 weeks after birth” (that didn’t happen). Maybe I will morph into one of those women over time but right now hanging out with myself is a bit of a challenge.

I think I’ll go take a bath.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Final Proof: He Has Taken Over

The above picture is the final proof that PJ has taken over our lives. Its a little difficult to see but if you spend too much time looking you'll see that almost every hook on our coat rack is occupied by PJ jackets. Lots of PJ jackets.

And aint they all cute?

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