Sunday, April 24, 2011

Our "Easter-versary" :)

Well, here it is... April 24th. As I sit here writing my latest blog, I am struck by how much significance this day has:

Our one year wedding anniversary: I can't believe we got married a year ago today!!! Last year, Bill and I thought we couldn't love anyone more than each other as we vowed to take each other for the good, the bad, and the ugly. There is no way we could have known that on our one year anniversary, we would be holding the greatest joy of our lives, and that there was indeed someone that we could love more than we love each other. I can't imagine spending our anniversary without little Drew!

Easter: The day Jesus rose from the dead for my salvation, so that I could be free and have everlasting life. So that I can teach my son to walk in the way of the Lord, so that his life may be fulfilling and so that one day we will rejoice together in heaven. Knowing that my heavenly father willingly gave his life on the cross for me has so much more of an impact on me now that I am a mother. I would do anything for Andrew!

Easter at Sito & Gramps (12 weeks old)
This was such a busy weekend for us! We took Andrew to celebrate Easter with Bill's side of the family on Saturday. So many of his family members had yet to meet the little guy in person. He was SO well behaved and everyone commented on what a sweetie he was. I'm sure part of it was due to the fact that Friday night he got 8 straight hours of sleep (WOW!) and then went down for a 3 hour nap after his morning feeding. No wonder he was so happy!

Bill with his goddaughter, Emily, and baby Drew
On Easter Sunday, we woke up early (after another 8 hours of straight, uninterrupted sleep!), to find that the Easter Bunny had visited the Pantuso household for baby Drew! Drew's basket had a cute onesie (that says King of the Crib), a couple board book classics (Guess How Much I Love You and Pat the Bunny), socks, and chiller teethers. We were off to church for the first time since Andrew was born. Two good days in a row was obviously too much to ask for. We were "those" people at church with a crying baby, having to get up about every 10 minutes to take him out to calm him down. The fussiness continued at brunch at my mom and dad's and again at Easter dinner at my Aunt Gina's with my mom's whole side of the family. There were some moments where he was calm, but I didn't take many pictures on Easter because he was crying most of the day! I even had this cute baby blue onesie for him to wear with a puffy bunny on it that said "Happy Easter". Every time I tried to get a picture of him in it, he would cry and squirm and you couldn't read the shirt. Then he spit up all over it at my aunt's house. Oh the joys. We got him home and he was so tired.... he was falling asleep eating. Bill swaddled him up and put him down for the night. Here's hoping for another 8 hour night!

The Easter Bunny came for baby Drew! 

Cousin Leah with Drew

Cousin Sam with Drew

Mesmerized by the ceiling fan!
Wardrobe change! With Auntie Desi in the sleeper she got him. 
The life of a socialite is SO exhausting! 

What else is new in Drew's world,  you might ask??? His HANDS! He has discovered that his hands are very interesting to look at and very tasty! He prefers sucking on his whole fist as opposed to the pacifier. If you put the paci in his mouth, he will make a very grumpy "stink-face" and spit it right out. I guess we won't have a problem weaning him from the paci! His new "pose" is blocking his face with his hands or having his fist near or in his mouth. Sometimes he gets both fists near his mouth and he looks like a chipmunk. Such a cutie.

Another milestone we hit (not because we wanted to) was the introduction of formula. Drew just loves to eat and I was stressing myself out because it has been so hard to pump at work and make what he needs. I put so much pressure on myself that it was affecting me physically. Finally, I just said "enough is enough" and started introducing about one bottle of formula per day. Drew loves it and it has given me so much relief, knowing that if I have an "off" day, I've got a backup plan. He's still receiving about 80% breastmilk, which is the most important part to me. I want him to have it for as long as I can make it! The benefits to him are phenomenal, and it's not so shabby for me either! I've lost all the baby weight plus some by just breastfeeding alone. With all the stuff that's going on with my back, I haven't been able to exercise... so thank God for burning those extra calories!

First bottle of formula (4-17-11)
A year ago, I would never have dreamed that I would be sitting here writing a baby blog on my "Easter-versary". I'm just so thankful for the blessing of a happy, beautiful, healthy child. He makes me look forward to what the next year of married life will bring!

Kickin' in the crib

Monday, April 11, 2011

The happiest baby on the block

Before Drew was born, one of Bill's coworkers gave him a book and told him to have me read it. He assured Bill that if there was only one book we read about parenting a newborn, this was it. The book was an easy read and I had it finished within a week. "The Happiest Baby on the Block" is written by Dr. Harvey Karp. It explains how important it is to recreate a "womb-like" setting for your newbown for the first 3 months of their life. Dr. Karp calls the first three months the "fourth trimester". He gives 5 ways to calm your baby, and says that if you live life by the "5 S's", your baby will be less likely to be colicky.

The 5 S's: 
Swaddling- We swaddle Drew in a "swaddle-pod" every night. It has made a world of difference in his nighttime sleep. He will sleep anywhere from 4-7 hours straight when swaddled.

Shushing- Babies come from a loud environment when they are in utero and are not used to the quiet when they come out into the world. We have a little fan that we run when we put Drew to bed, to give that extra "white" noise. If he's awake and fussy, we will "Shhh, shhhh shhhh" close to his ear. We also haven't stopped "loud" activities when the baby is sleeping (laundry, dishwasher, dogs barking, vacuuming, etc.) We've found that these things actually make him a better sleeper. He can sleep through anything!

Swinging- Drew loves his swing or being rocked. Again, it mimics the feelings he must have felt in the womb when momma was moving all around!

Sucking- His favorite way to soothe...whether at the breast or sucking on a paci. He'll fall right asleep either way!

I am so happy I read this book before Drew was born. I started applying the "5 S's" first thing, while we were in the hospital. Dr. Karp says that sometimes you will need all 5 "S's" to calm a fussy baby and sometimes you might need only one or two. It is amazing to know that I have this little "bag of tricks" that I can use to calm Drew down when he's really fussy, and that it works within minutes!

I am hearing that Dr. Karp has another book out called 'The Happiest Toddler on the Block". I'll definitely be reading that one too! :)

Doesn't this look like a happy baby?
Last week was Drew's 2 month doctor appointment. My mom and dad came with me and got to meet Drew's pediatrician, Dr. Fisher (or Dr. Jeff and he calls himself to Drew). Our little guy is getting so big! He measured 24 inches long and 11.2 pounds. Since Bill was unable to be at the appointment, Dr. Fisher wanted me to assure him that it looks like we're on track to have a little linebacker. He said Andrew is doing great and is ahead of the curve developmentally (my little prodigy!).  Then came the unpleasant part of immunizations. Drew got one oral immunization (which he loved!) and 3 pokes. The nurse felt bad because he's so long and lean that there's not much pudge to poke the needle in. Drew took it like a champ and only cried for a little bit. We got home that night and he wanted to be close to mommy all night... and of course, I let him.

I just love the little person he's becoming. He's so well behaved and so happy. He's discovering that he's not his own little world... that there are other people that he can smile at and look at and touch. He's learning his own voice, testing it out by cooing and giving out tiny squeals when he is excited. He wants to see things and doesn't like being held with his face against our chests anymore... he wants to be turned out to face the world.

I love to kick the chime toy in my play-yard!

I'm too tired to lift my head, mommy!

Wide eyed!

My focused 10 week old

Hangin with daddy!

It's been so long since I've seen you, Auntie Desi! 

That's a big dog! 

I love my Auntie Desi! 

Friday, April 1, 2011

It's a jungle out there!

So I recently realized that I have not posted any pictures of Drew's nursery! This just goes to show how my mind is so preoccupied with a million other things since Drew's been born. We've had his nursery done since the end of December. I guess I don't really think about it because right now it's like one of those replicated rooms when you walk through a museum or historical home... you walk by it and everything is fully functional and in place, but you never use it.

For the last 2 months of my pregnancy, my sweet hubby had to hear me endlessly nag him about how important it was that we get the nursery done before the baby was born. I guess I didn't realize that we wouldn't be using it right away. Drew is still sleeping in his bassinet in the pack and play and we're using the changing table that is attached. Right now, everything is centrally located in the living room. I'm just not ready to have him be all alone in his huge, vast crib! I also cannot bring myself to have Bill move the glider from the living room into the nursery just yet either. I honestly think I will wait to introduce him to his nursery until I'm on summer break from work. I just can't imagine one of us not sleeping in the same room as him. And I'm not ready to be sleeping on the floor in the nursery just yet. :)

I love my crib! I just can't sleep in it yet!
It was so fun picking out things to decorate Drew's room. As soon as we found out we were having a boy, I knew I wanted a jungle theme. I had no idea there were so many designs to choose from. I ended up falling in love with the "Baby Cocoa" design at Babies R' Us. I love all the browns and green. Everything came together so nicely in Drew's room. I just love going in there!

Welcome to the jungle!

The rocker will eventually be where his swing is

Oscar's new favorite spot...under Andrew's crib

Under the one can find me here!
In other events, we met with the pediatric urologist this past week to go over Drew's test results. We were so happy to hear that everything is looking good. The fluid is still there, but it's not posing a problem. The doctor told us we could take him off the antibiotics and that we just need to monitor him with ultrasounds every couple of months to make sure the condition isn't worsening. We were so happy to hear that everything is great! Drew's next doctor appointment is with his pediatrician, Dr. Fisher, next week for his 2 month well visit. Mommy is nervous because it's his first visit where he'll receive some of his vaccinations.

I also had some appointments for my back this past week. I had an MRI over the weekend, which showed that I have a disc in my lower spine that has completely shifted out of place and a piece of that disc has broken off and is just floating around my spine. The specialist told me that is why I've been having all the shooting pains down my side, since the nerve is exposed and irritated. So, I went to get an epidural steroid injection a couple of days ago and am hoping to feel some relief soon. I guess I should also schedule physical therapy too. I'm just trying to figure out when I'll have the time for all this!

On a positive note, we're still having fun showing the baby off to family members and people who haven't got to meet him in person yet. Last weekend, Bill and I visited with his Aunt Beth and Uncle Joe (at my in-laws house). Drew was so good. He loves being handed around. He's just happy when he's cuddled up in someones arms.

Great Aunt Beth feeding baby Drew

Watching basketball with Great Uncle Joe

Loving all the attention

Chillin' with Uncle Tony
 This little guy is growing so fast! He's 9 weeks old now. We officially retired all of the "newborn" size clothes. We noticed that they still fit him in the midsection, since he's lean... but since he's so long, they don't fit him that way. And his feet are too big for the onesies! He's fitting really well in his 0-3 month clothes now and it's just so fun to see him changing before our very eyes. His personality is coming out more and more every day. He's just a laid back, happy baby. He's smiling more and loves to be held where he can see things. He's so observant (like his mommy!) and just seems to study everything. He is content being held and it doesn't matter who is holding him. He loves listening to music and will kick his legs and flail his arms to the beat. He's so strong too! He's holding his little head up without support most of the time. The time is just going by so fast. I'm learning to cherish these moments now... these moments where I can set him down and he stays in one place! Before I know it, he'll be rolling over and wanting to move around. And Lord, help us all when that moment comes... I'll be wishing for these days, I know it! :)

Tummy time- lifting my head!

Tilting my head 45 degrees (a developmental milestone)

Hangin' with Gramps

I heart my mommy!

9 weeks old today!