Liebster Award!

I got an award!  Broken Condoms finds me interesting!

The Liebster Blog Award rules are:

1) Answer the 11 questions written by your nominator.
2) Nominate 11 other bloggers who have less than 200 followers.
3) Write 11 of your own questions for each nominee to answer.

1. What is your favorite post you have written?

All my posts are random trains of thought – it’s not like I worked hard on any of them (which you can probably tell).  So I guess my favorite post is this one because it’s when I became a mom, which is the whole point of this blog.

2. Why did you begin blogging?

I found out I was pregnant.  We were getting married in 10 days.  We planned on having kids eventually, but certainly not any time soon.  Then I was late, the test came back positive, and Shit Got Real.  It seemed like a good time to start documenting things!

3. Why do you blog now?

Unfortunately I don’t blog nearly as much anymore – shocking, I know, since I have so much more free time these days to sit around and contemplate my thoughts.  But if the point of my blog in the first place was to document things, this is a dumb time to stop – things are just starting to get interesting!  A few weeks ago I was talking to a pregnant friend who was telling me all about the books she’s reading and other things she’s doing to prepare for labor.  And I remembered all the work I did to prepare, and all the time I spent thinking about it…and then in 8 hours, the whole thing was over.  And now I have a KID.  For the REST OF MY LIFE.  When I was pregnant, giving birth was sort of the end game.  It was the primary thing I thought about and prepared for.  Now that I’m on the other side of it, I see it as a blip – a really big, exciting day, but one that ends pretty quickly.  Like the wedding vs. the marriage.  So if I didn’t want to forget anything about pregnancy, I definitely don’t want to forget anything about parenthood.

4. What is your favorite date night activity?

Beer and a movie.  I love beer, and I love going to the movies.  On our first baby-free date night, we got hamburgers at Nation’s and ate them at Beer Revolution, then went out to see Taken 2 (spoiler alert: it sucked).  That’s pretty much the best.

5. You have an entire day to yourself, what do you do with it?

Sleep for many hours!  Then sleep some more!  Go to Fenton’s for ice cream.  Eat a lot of it.  Go to the movies, and see the dumb romantic comedies I can’t force the Lumberjack to watch with me.  Take an incredibly long shower.  Go back to bed.  More sleeping.

6. If you could give one piece of advice to other moms, what would it be?

To trust themselves.  I’m not a huge fan of the whole “Mother’s Intuition” concept – I think it prioritizes birthing a child over being a parent – but I do think that the idea behind it is true.  If you’re the parent, if you spend a lot of time with your child, you’re going to know the right thing to do.  Don’t think you need to read 17 books on parenting first.  Just go with it.

7. Imagine you went back in time to talk to your 18-year-old self, what would you tell her?

Mike is an abusive asshole.  Getting punched in the face is not romantic.  The relationship will not improve; dump him immediately.

8. What Christmas tradition have you developed in your family that you love?

At some point in our childhood, my brothers & I started sleeping in the same room on Christmas Eve.  I think one of us was getting a big present (it might have been the year I got a desk) that had to be put in their bedroom, so my parents put all of us in one room to throw off suspicion.  The following year we demanded to do it again…and then it just stuck.  Having a slumber party the night before Christmas always seemed like the most exciting thing EVER, and sharing that excitement made me feel very loved by my brothers.  I vividly remember falling asleep to the Joshua Tree album one year when we all slept in Matt’s room (as the oldest, he automatically had the best taste in music), and feeling so loved and safe within my family.

This tradition also started another family tradition: we open presents on Christmas morning (opening them on Christmas Eve basically makes you a psychopath), but my brothers & I open the presents that we got each other on Christmas Eve.  This is because we would always end up telling each other what we were getting during our Christmas Eve slumber party.  Why we didn’t tell each other any other night is beyond me.

(And both of these traditions are why the Lumberjack & I are definitely having another fetus, although the next will not be done shotgun-style.  I want Atticus to have the same bizarre sibling support.)

9. Any pets?

Two cats, who are woefully neglected what with the kid entering the world.  I’m sure they’ll forgive me eventually.  Maybe.

10. What is your favorite thing about yourself?

I’m sensitive and empathetic.  Sometimes I take it a bit too far (I almost cried during the World Series – not out of happiness that SF won, but because I felt bad for the Tigers), but overall I think it’s a good thing.  I see things from other perspectives, and I take other people’s feelings into account when making decisions.  I’d rather care too much about others than not care enough.

11. What did you study in school?

Most things.  I kept taking 101 level courses, becoming infatuated with the subject, changing my major…then taking a 201 level course and getting bored.  Again.  And again.  And again.  Such as: geology, sociology, biochemistry (that was sophomore year when I wanted to create the super drug – a hybrid of mushrooms and peyote), philosophy, american studies…my final major was women’s studies with a minor in religious studies, since that was the only major I had enough credits with to graduate on time.

My Nominations:

The Baby Gang!  We all had kids within a month or two of each other, and hopefully said children will grow up to be a frightening gang of children, roaming the countryside/internet.  My kid will be the muscle, since he is enormous.
& squatch makes three
Dear #$&!% Baby
Southern Fried Chicken in Vegas
Broken Condoms
Growing Itty-Bitty

New parents that are not new to the parenting game – they popped out babies around the same time I did, but they each already have an older kid so their perspective is super helpful:
9 Years Later
I’ll Sleep When They’re Grown

Breaking the rules: more than 200 followers, but I still like them and you should too:
The Waiting
Fit and Feminist

And, my internet friend Jess’s blog: krista and jess.  She and her wife raise chickens, bees, & a killer garden.

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Heavyweight

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THIS KID WEIGHS SEVENTEEN POUNDS. He’s not even three months old yet. W T Fuck?!

Baby’s First Vote

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Starting him young. He grunted his choices – we seem to have a little liberal on our hands.

Two Months with Atticus

Okay, it’s gotten to be RIDICULOUS how much I love this little baby.  I simultaneously can’t wait for him to keep growing and getting bigger so we can do more and more things together, and hoping he never changes because having him sleep on my chest all tiny and wrapped up in my arms is the best.  The best!  You’re killing me, baby!  How are you so amazing?!

That is one regal baby

This month we went on lots of picnics.  The weather has been amazing, so I’m trying to get him outdoors as much as possible.  Look, kid, it’s the sun!  It’s fun to hold things under his nose and watch him smell them for the first time.  Grass seemed to make a big impact.

Doing his best to outgrow his napping chair.

He’s growing at an alarming pace.  He was 7lb 15oz at birth.  He is now 14lb 2oz.  Well, that was last week.  Who knows what he’s at now – at one point he gained 10 ounces IN FOUR DAYS.  Dear god.  He’s in the 89th percentile for weight, and the 100th percentile for height.  This kid is going to be enormous.

Going to bed is serious business.

This month we started working on a bedtime routine.  We used to just let him nap in the living room with us until I was ready to go to sleep, and then I took him to bed with me.  Not anymore!  Now we put him to bed at 9pm, and then I sneak in whenever I feel like going to bed.  I’m an adult – I go to bed WHEN I PLEASE.  So far he’s been super easy to put down.  I nurse him, sing a few songs (Baby Beluga and Goodnight My Someone are the two hits for now), then put him down in the middle of the bed all swaddled up.  Sometimes he wakes up 5 minutes later crying and I go nurse him again and then he’s out, but most nights he’s just out all by himself.  I go to bed around 10/11ish, and he doesn’t wake up for a feeding until 12:30/1?  Around then.  He’s waking up every 2-3 hours at night.  I just scoot over to him and give him the boob, and he eats for about 4 minutes and then falls asleep.  So, not too bad.  I’m looking forward to longer stretches of sleep, though.  Annnnnnny day now, buddy.

He’s still sleeping in our bed, right in between us.  We are getting a bit torn on this.  On one hand, it’s so wonderful to have him right there, to cuddle up to him, hear him breathing, be able to feed him without having to get up…on the other hand, that kid thrashes around a lot while “sleeping” which is tricky, and I do miss cuddling with my husband.  So, we’re not sure what the plan is.  But for now I get to curl up with a lightly snoring little puppy-like human when I go to bed, and that can’t be beat.

Breastfeeding is still going great.  I’m thankful every day that it’s been as easy as it has for us.  I’m still making way more milk than necessary – after I feed him in the morning, I pump about 5 ounces on each side for freezer storage.  He eats almost every hour during the day (this may explain how he is nearly 15lbs), so it’s wonderful to have the food always on hand.  Or, in bra.  Two weeks ago he was getting a lazy latch, so my nipples started hurting a bit again (like they had in the beginning), but otherwise there’s been no pain whatsoever since week 3 or 4.  We are pros!

Cloth diapering is getting much easier.  I still hate how wet they stay on his skin, but it doesn’t seem to bother him all that much so we’re going with it.

I used a stroller for the first time last week!  And hated it.  It was great to have a little bed for him to sleep in (I took it to a picnic) so I didn’t have to be holding him the whole time, and it was nice to be able to bring more stuff with me (basket below carried the picnic blanket and food), but the wheels are so annoying and it’s just weird to have him away from my body.  So, it’s nice to have the option but I don’t think we’ll use it that much.  I’m using the carrier (Beco Gemini) constantly.  My body hurts a little bit, but it seems to just be from all the walking combined with the extra kid weight – there’s no specific back pain from the carrier.  So: Beco Gemini is a good fit.  I still covet every other carrier I see, though, sort of like how I used to be obsessed with purses.  Accessories are so fun!  But damn, carriers are PRICEY.  So, I’ll stick with the Beco for now.

This was a very filthy baby.

He’s starting to like bath time!  We now bring a space heater into the bathroom and make sure to have as much of him under water as possible, and now he loves it!  And holy crap, a naked baby laughing in soapy water is probably the cutest thing ever.

He makes noises now!  And laughs!  It’s amazing!  He does this coo/gurgle thing while staring at us intently, so it seems like he’s really trying to communicate.  Because, you see, my baby is a GENIUS.  But also, so cute.  It’s awesome to see him learning how to exist in the world, and trying to connect with us.  We went to a baby sign language class today (free classes at the Oakland Library, Thursdays at 2:30pm all month – except Thanksgiving – if you’re local!), which was fun.  Supposedly kids can start signing at 4-5 months, so we’re starting a bit early.  My current method is to say “do you want some MILK?” with the sign for “milk” each time I’m getting ready to feed him.  I ask “are you DONE?” with the “all done” sign, and then confirm “all done!” while signing it again if he doesn’t keep eating, or say “okay, let’s have MORE” with the sign for “more” if he’s still hungry.  That is my elaborate plan for teaching this baby to communicate.

Two months old!

So, we’re doing good.  He’s healthy, happy, and seems pretty fond of us.  We are totally smitten and regularly exclaim to each other “HOW IS THIS BABY SO CUTE.”  I am grateful every day that getting (and staying) pregnant was so easy for us, and that he came into the world so quickly and painlessly and that we get to have him in our family.  This baby is awesome.