Weekly Roundup

I finished week 3 of BBG last week & I’m LOVING it! I’m so excited to start week 4 tomorrow.  I’m doing the program with two friends & it’s so much easier when you have other people keeping you on track. We don’t do the actual workouts together, but we keep one another motivated with a group chat.

This pumping bra is awesome! I ordered it on amazon & highly recommend it. So if you’re a new momma & are looking for a great & cheap pumping bra check this one out.

This weekend we took William out to brunch & he did so well, he was just sitting on Chris’ lap just taking it all in & then decided he’d spend the second half of brunch snoozing.

Chris & I started watching The Crown on Netflix & it’s SO good. I wasn’t sure if I would like it but the show is really well done. We realized we knew very little about the Royal Family at the start of the series & each episode we end up googling something that comes up.

We got William a little activity seat (it’s what he’s sitting in on in the first photo) & he looks SO big to me! He’s still a little small for the seat & doesn’t love it right now, but when he’s in there holding his head up he already looks so grown up!

I’m starting to plan out my work schedule when I return & even though I’m not going back to work until mid September, I have to submit my requests for my schedule at the end of this month & it makes it feel closer than it is. It’s so bittersweet thinking about having to go back to work. It makes me so sad to think about leaving William for 11 hours at time but I’m admittedly getting a little stir crazy being at home with not much on the calendar

Chris & I went on a date this weekend, we went out to dinner & to a Bob Schneider concert. It felt so nice to get out for a few hours.

Below are some of the workout songs I’ve been loving. I usually listen to “Firestone” station on Pandora & then I get ideas for what to put on my Spotify playlist.

hope everyone has a great week!

Weekly round up!

I’m trying something new & am posting some of the highlights from the week before along with some photos.

The best moment last week was waking up at 7am & realizing that Will had slept through the night!!! It was amazing. He slept through the night twice last week & the nights he didn’t he slept from 7pm until 5am! I have to say I feel like a whole new person getting so much sleep last week. I’m definitely hoping for more of the same this week.

My go to breakfast that is great for breastfeeding mamas has hands down been oatmeal, either regular or rolled oats. I love having it in the morning usually after Will goes down for his first nap. I usually top it with cut strawberries & walnuts & some brown sugar.

I’ve started working out again & this week is week 3 of BBG. I love that it’s only 28 minutes & it’s such a good workout. I’ve had to make some modifications but overall I’ve been able to keep up with it, plus I’m doing the 12 weeks with two other people so it’s nice to have some accountability.

Along with working out I’ve been making an effort to take Juno out for walks alone in the evening. It’s nice that the sun sets well after William is in bed & the weather has been really nice. So it’s been a great way to get some fresh air & clear my head after busy days with my busy boy! The photos of the USF cathedral were taken on my walk Friday night.

This might sound silly but I bought these ice cube trays last week because our old ones kept cracking and leaking water & honestly they are AMAZING. I remember listening to Gretchen Rubin’s podcast Happier & she would talk about how simple upgrades can make you happier & it’s so true. I love having ice water & I was drinking less water because I didn’t want to deal with our annoying old trays. Well $12 later problem solved!!

We took William to Costco for the first time. Chris & I don’t venture to Costco all that often although we have a few set things that we like to get there & it was time for a restock. Costco on a Saturday in general can be a nightmare but I feel like the Costco in San Francisco is made worse with the crowds & city size isles. Will did awesome though!! he was awake the whole time just taking everything in.

Will has been LOVING the play mat we got him a few weeks ago! It’s so fun to watch him swing his arms & try to grab the hanging toys, he also is such a little kicker that the paino part of the mat is great (although the same song on repeat can only get a liiiittttlllleee annoying haha!) If you have a newborn & are looking for an inexpensive activity mat I highly recommend this one.

We don’t have too much planned for the beginning of the week but the second half of the week Chris’ parents will be here visiting so we’re excited for that!

Hope everyone had a great weekend.

2 months

I can’t believe my little guy is two months old today! Time is honestly flying by. Will has his two month doctor appointment tomorrow so I’ll update how much he weighs after that but I have a feeling he’ll be around 12 pounds? This past month Will has gotten the hang of sleeping at night. He usually goes to bed around 7:30-8pm & sleeps until 5am, have a quick feed and then sleep until about 7 or 8 am. This morning he slept until 9am(!!!), I woke up around 8:15 shocked that he was still snoozing. He has started sucking his thumb which I think is helping him put himself back to sleep. Whatever it is I’m thrilled, it’s been game changing having to only get up once with him at night.

Will loves his play mat, loves going for walks outside & continues to eat like a champ!

This weekend we’re headed to my parents house, I can’t wait to get out of San Francisco’s June gloom & into some summer sunshine. A bunch of family & friends are coming to meet Will for the first time so I’m really excited for that!

Summer Solstice

Happy Friday everyone. Yesterday was the summer solstice & a few friends & I took Will to the San Francisco conservatory of flowers. The conservatory is a ten minute walk from our apartment & a $6 entry so it made for a perfect afternoon adventure.

And last night was Chris & my first date!! We went to our favorite restaurant that does a delicious multi course food and wine pairing.

This weekend we have some friends coming to visit us and the weather is supposed to be AMAZING in San Francisco. Happy summer!

1 Month Old

Will turned a month old on Sunday & I can’t believe it. It feels like so much time has passed & that our week stay in the NICU was lifetimes ago, but then I think how he’s a month old & I can’t recall where that time went!! This month I’ve learned: he absolutely loves to eat, & when he’s starving he’ll angrily grunt while he chugs his bottle. He loves looking at the art we have in our apartment. He loathes being hot. He doesn’t mind bath time so long as his hair isn’t being scrubbed. He’s not at all interested in having his arms swaddled & he’ll gladly partake in morning snuggles.

The past three weeks at home we’ve worked on establishing some kind of routine & I think it’s finally starting to stick & I’m realizing I can kind of anticipate his sleep / wake cycles. He’s both bottle fed & breast fed. After some trial & error we found he’ll sleep longer stretches at night if we give him a bottle, otherwise it’s very hard to keep him awake nursing late at night.

Chris goes back to work this week & it feels oh so bittersweet. It’s been incredible to have him home & for the 3 of us to bond & for myself to have help in order to really feel recovered from birth. Part of me is sad that this precious time has come to a close but like many things in life they’re this sweet because they’re short lived & I’m made even more grateful because I know this special time is limited. I’m excited to start a new phase of being at home with our little guy & getting our own routine & just growing into day to day life. As of now I’m not scheduled to go back to work until the beginning of September so I greatly looking forward to cherishing the summer & making wonderful memories.

We’re off to enjoy a BBQ in Sausalito this afternoon & will be back home to watch the Warriors game.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!!

 

iPhone upload + 10 things

1. I can’t get over little baby dreams, I posted a little video of Will dreaming after I fed him, & it’s the cutest. He cracks little smiles or peaks one of his eyes open. It’s so funny to me. I could watch it over & over. & in the middle of the night when I’m exhausted feeding him at 4am it still cracks me up.

2. We signed up for Hello Fresh now that Will is here & this week is our first delivery. I normally love to cook homemade meals each night, but with a new baby the idea of meal planning, grocery shopping & actually cooking the meals seemed very daunting! Now that a major portion of my day consists of feeding our son, we decided to split up the duties of making meals, & using a meal service was a far less intimidating approach for my husband who doesn’t cook dinners on the regular.

3. Giving the gift of sleep might be one of the nicest gifts to give your spouse / partner. This past weekend Chris & I alternated Saturday & Sunday letting the other person sleep in. On Saturday morning he took the baby & the dog into the front part of our apartment & let me sleep uninterrupted until 9:30. It was GLORIOUS. & I happily returned the favor the following day. Getting a few hours of good sleep can totally change your mood & I think it’s one of the nicest & totally free gifts you can give your partner. Chris & I have always agreed it’s something we would continue to gift one another with.

4. We are starting to lightweight make plans for the summer that extend beyond our apartment & our little neighborhood. Although the idea of travelling in a car for a few hours with an infant, or sleeping somewhere that isn’t his little crib seems so extreme to me we want to be able to take our son places & not be tethered to our little baby bubble we’ve created. The only way to get comfortable doing these things is… to actually do them.

5. Right before Will was born we bought this laundry hamper & it’s quickly become one of my favorite things. We sort our laundry by: colors, whites, delicates. & this makes life so much easier. I’m no longer dumping out a full laundry hamper on the ground trying to sort clothes! It’s funny how sometimes such little things can make life so much easier.

6. William will be 4 weeks old on Friday & I can not wrap my ahead around it. I’ve always known that people say time moves incredibly fast when you have children & it’s so true. He’s already growing & changing so much, it breaks my heart a little bit! But I’m also so excited to see little bits of his personality pop out.

7. We are going to our first Giants game of the year in two weeks. We’re taking Will & I’m pretty excited!

8. Chris is going back to work next week. I’m so grateful he’s been able to take time off & work from home / only respond to emails the last two weeks. It’s been so great to have him at home & I don’t know what I would have done without him. It’s definitely going to be a major adjustment being on my own with baby & dog but I’m excited for the challenge.

9. I went to acupuncture this week for the first time since birth & it felt SO good; besides getting a 45 minute nap it felt so nice to relax & do something super positive for my body!

10. We’re watching the last few episodes of The Americans. The second to last episode of the series aired last night, we haven’t watched it because I can’t manage to keep my eyes open past 10pm but I’m dying to see how they wrap the series up!!

A different kind of paradise

Three years ago you could find me newly married, likely in a white swimsuit, on a beach in Bora Bora. If you had asked me right then & there I’d say I was in literal paradise. Flash forward to now, I’m sitting in a glider chair, rocking my 3 week old son, trying to get him to take his first nap of the day while my coffee sits in the microwave already heated for the second time this morning. But if you asked me today my answer would be the same, this is paradise. This paradise today is so much bigger & deeper than the crystal clear water of three years ago. I remember being on our honeymoon & feeling so in love I thought nothing could compare. And today I love my husband more than I ever knew was possible. We are living in our same San Francisco flat, but our home is so much more full today. Our guest room/ office is now a plant themed nursery for our sweet baby boy. On our wood floors you’ll find tufts of fur from our black lab & the walls are lined with framed moments of paradises past. Sure, I’m more sleep deprived than ever before (although nursing school is a very close second), & we’ll most likely spend our summer in the foggy abyss that is San Francisco June / July, not in an over water bungalow, sipping tropical cocktails; but I wouldn’t trade this moment in time for anything else. For these fleeting moments in time right now, when my baby will never be this small again, I know will be one of the sweetest paradises I’ll ever visit. (However this won’t stop me from posting some photos of the French Polynesian paradise we were at three years ago!)

Happy Friday, hope everyone has a great weekend! Shockingly we have very few plans for the weekend, aside from my brother visiting us & taking the dog for some walks. Also, this blog post is brought to you courtesy of the Time Hop feature on Facebook that reminded me where I was three years ago!

RIMG0271IMG_9455IMG_9620IMG_9521IMG_2438IMG_9266IMG_9234IMG_9204RIMG0392RIMG0382IMG_9093

Lessons from the NICU

When I went in to be induced at 40 weeks & 3 days I was just so excited to meet my baby. Not a single ounce of me thought we wouldn’t take our full term son home for seven days. Instead of leaving the hospital two nights after my delivery, my husband & I would spend the next week sharing a 10×10 hospital room. We would wake every 2.5 hours to walk the 400 steps to the NICU to see our baby boy. After a difficult labor, lasting over 36 hours, our little boy had trouble maintaining his blood sugar levels & would spend the following week in the NICU trying to manage his sugar. This was not the plan. I had spent the previous 40 weeks with an otherwise seamless pregnancy, each scan & blood test giving us reassurance that everything was on track.

Our time spent in the NICU taught me more than I ever realized. During that week, we lived in 3 hour blocks. Just waiting for the next blood sugar check, verifying how his dextrose infusion was being titrated, waiting on critical labs to return. The first few days I was somewhat in denial that this was my reality. The ER nurse in me kept thinking “they’ll stabilize his sugar & he’ll be back in our post partum room & we’ll be right on track to go home”. It soon became clear he was going to be there longer than we had imagined & that we were going to have a NICU baby. We were joining an exclusive club no parent wants to be a member of, a club that puts you on a crash course of endless love & fierce protection for this little life you created. Below is some of what I learned from that week.

Look for silver linings anywhere and everywhere: This was huge for us, it kept us floating. Our silver linings were anything from a solid blood sugar reading this hour, to taking advantage of the fact that our little boy was being put on a regimented schedule & was learning to self soothe in the middle of the night since the nurses couldn’t immediately run to him or that he was learning to simultaneously breastfeed & bottle feed. All of these silver linings would be things we’d be thankful later!

Take the help: This is as simple as it sounds. Take people up when they offer to bring you things from the store, clothes from home, keep your dog an extra night (or 5!). One night my best friend & Chris’ brother came over in between feedings & we ordered pizza to our room. People desperately want to help you. Let them. Everyone will feel better.

Sometimes Cuddles Are Enough – One night when we were in the NICU for a feeding & Will wasn’t doing the best at breastfeeding a nurse reminded us that sometimes just holding your baby & being in the moment is plenty. Even though we wanted each feeding to be a great success to help with his blood sugar it realistically wasn’t going to perfect every time. So she encouraged instead of putting pressure on every feeding, to relax & just let him lay with us & know that being on us was just as powerful as any IV infusion. He was gaining comfort & love & security all things he would need to get better.

Feel the warmth: Something that struck me right off the bat being in the NICU was how much warmth there was. As an ER nurse I’d say warmth can be hard to find in an emergency department, however there’s no shortage of it when it comes to the people who dedicate their lives to caring for tiny humans. My recommendation is to let yourself feel it. As someone who doesn’t readily accept hugs from strangers, I found myself gladly taking the hugs from nurses I had just met.

Prepare for setbacks: This lesson sucks. But inevitably you’ll take two steps forward and one step back & it’ll sting.  Honestly we weren’t prepared until we had our first major set back & it totally crushed us. A part of me felt guilty for feeling so crushed, when I looked around & saw babies on ventilators, or babies too sick to be held. I felt guilty for feeling so knocked down when our baby wasn’t close to being the sickest one there. Just know set backs will happen & it’s okay to cry, but know that it’ll get better. When we’d walk to the NICU for another feeding we’d talk about potential set backs & prepare ourselves for a low sugar & just talking about it being an option helped.

Think big: This became our motto before every blood sugar check. I’ve always believed in sending out good energy into the universe & as much as we mentally prepared for setbacks I think it’s equally important to be positive & to “think big thoughts”. Even though doctors & nurses are watching over, your baby needs you to believe in them & to be their cheerleader, now more than ever.

Do normal things. Walk outside. Listen to music. Shower. It’s amazing how a hot shower, or a walk around the block helped. It’s important to try to bring some normalcy to a very abnormal situation. There was a Starbucks one block from the hospital so we’d try to go for an afternoon walk & get a coffee. It felt so strange to walk outside & remember there is a whole world outside of the windowless walls of the NICU where our whole world lay in an isolet. I really believe those little pockets of normalcy kept us going, as did the afternoon coffees!

Support Each Other:  I would not have been able to make it through this experience without my husband. At various points we each had to be the person to pick the other one up. We knew our son needed us & he needed us to be in a good place. Who ever your support person is, let them support you. And return the favor when they need it. Celebrate the baby steps together, cry when you need to.

Lastly,

Know the NICU isn’t anyone’s first choice. No ones birth plan includes a week long stay in the NICU, ours certainly didn’t. This isn’t how it’s supposed to be & it’s okay to be upset about that. No one will truly understand unless they’ve been through it. The simultaneous urge to fiercely protect your baby paired with the total lack of control over the situation can make even the strongest people weak. For some reason I’ll never know, this was our journey. Having made it out on the other side I’m thankful for the lessons it taught me & how it forever shaped me as a mother. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the feeling of getting to dress our baby in his first outfit & walk out those double doors. The bitter-sweetness of being so incredibly thankful for the hearts that took such good care of him that week, but wishing all the babies got to go home.

If you stumbled onto this post because you’re going through a similar journey my heart aches for you. It aches for all the moms & dads that don’t get to walk out those doors with their babies like they planned.

^moments before we walked out of the NICU

7516842896_img_6739