Monday, August 31, 2009

Happy Birthday Aunt Sheila!

My sister and first time aunt-extraordinaire is celebrating her birthday today! We're sorry that we can't join her down in DC, but hopefully we'll get some good quality time together early next week. We love you! (picture to come tomorrow :))

What a Difference a Day Makes

Last week, I had my 6 week appointment which means that, among other things, I was allowed to start exercising again. I was allowed to walk prior, but not much more than that. So, I tried to fit it in and it was difficult to do. Any time Cecelia went down for a nap, I would get to other things first and then try to exercise and then...she'd wake up. So, Jeff and I devised a system wherein, after Cecelia eats first thing in the morning, she'll get some quality dad time while I exercise and get the day started. We tried this yesterday and today, and it makes me feel much more refreshed and ready for the day. Now, when there's a jam packed morning for either of us, this might not be an attainable goal, but I'm really happy to be able to do it when possible. I'm also making more of an effort to get out and enjoy some nice walks with Cecelia before the weather turns too cold.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Ignorance WAS Bliss

Well, sort of...a friend lent me a video of the Dunstan Baby Language System. It's not a language per se, but can be viewed as such. Basically, a baby's body will make certain noises as reflexes to what is going on in their body. For example, when a baby is hungry and/or ready to eat, he/she will start sucking and emitting noise. The combination is the sound neh. So, when you hear the sound neh, you know the baby is hungry. Likewise, the tightening produced in the chest when you have a burp stuck combined with noise produces the sound eh. Cecelia makes this noise a LOT. One of the pointers that Priscilla Dunstan, originator/researcher of the program, pointed out, which is one I had thought beforehand and was confirmed by her, is that it's really important to get a baby's wind (she's Australian and I loved the use of wind for gas) out before feeding or else the food (milk) will build on top of the gas bubble and come out with it. This happens a lot in our house. So, I've been trying valiantly to discern eh from neh and let me tell you they sound an awful lot alike and when they escalate, oh boy. The other three sounds were eirh for lower wind, owh for tired, and heh for other discomfort (i.e. wet diaper, too hot, too cold, or uncomfortable position). What I would really like is the sound for all good, or all clear after we're done burping. It seems like there's always more burps, even when it seems impossible, and yet it's true. What is that sound?

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Not So Smart Phone

A little over a year ago, I purchased a "Smart Phone" the Palm Treo from Verizon.  Yesterday, I found out it was pulled from shelves and marked down significantly (which is why I bought it) because of major glitches.  Now, I've had trouble with it before (freezing up, slow to catch on to the buttons I'm pushing, not responding to the buttons I'm pushing, etc), but yesterday was a whole new low.  Yesterday it started shutting off and turning on and it wouldn't stop.  I tried to take the battery out and put it back in as this had worked in the past.  No luck.  I went to the Verizon store since I happened to be in the mall at the time that this occurred.  There they informed me that they would have to do a hard reset which would result in the loss of all contacts, calendar items, and other information stored on the phone.  Seeing no other option, that is what happened.  I have become much too dependent on technology as now I have no one's contact information, and no idea when my daughter's doctor's appointment is - fortunately Jeff has that (the appointment, not all the contacts) saved in his phone too.  I need to return to pencil and paper.  Ugh.  

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Farm Fun

Jeff and I belong to a CSA, Pennypack Farm, which is conveniently located less than 5 minutes from our house. I feel fortunate to have such a great resource of quality food so close to home. Wednesdays are one of my favorite days of the week because I look forward to picking berries and green beans in the field with Cecelia in her front carrier napping. It seems like each week lately, Wednesday is the hottest day of the week. Yesterday, we were able to take our time walking in the field enjoying the beautiful afternoon and really taking advantage of all that mother nature has to offer. It was really nice.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ahead of Schedule

Hmm, I didn't realize the level of control I had over Cecelia's eating schedule. She had been eating around 7, 9, and 12, but I had an appointment on Monday at 12, so I offered to feed her at 11 and she took the bait. But then, Tuesday and Wednesday, she wanted to eat at 11 again. Oops, I've forever altered the sands of time.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Age: 6 Weeks

Today I am 6 weeks old and I've taken a picture where it looks like I'm making eye contact with the camera!! In reality, I was first looking at the night light. I love looking at lights, so mom and dad turned that off. Then I was looking at the Baby Bjorn hanging on the door, and my eyes actually followed it as mom moved it - wow! I was also unhappy with my first outfit, so as mom was pulling it over my head, I decided to spit up all over the inside of the outfit (so much for that one). And, right after this picture was taken, I spit up on this one too (and a little bit on Fred), so I spent some time sans clothes to see what else I had in store this morning. I visited with friends and my cousins again this week - I can't wait to play with everyone! See you next week.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Who's The Boss

Cecelia - she is always the boss. Yesterday, Jeff had a full day of Cecelia fun. I had a baby shower about 2 1/2 hours away in Millersburg (the first where I received a baby gift too - thanks, Jaci!), and Jeff embraced the opportunity to take care of Cecelia for the day. When I arrived at the shower, and checked my phone, it indicated I had two missed calls from Jeff - what! But, upon closer inspection the missed calls were from Saturday (phew). When I did call to check in, both baby and daddy were doing great.

When I arrived back home, I was regaled with details including:
* She really didn't sleep much at all. (Good, she'll sleep tonight).
* She really liked going outside.
* We went through, like, at least ten bibs. (Par for the course).
* I used the sling to calm her down. (Told you so - no, I didn't say told you so, but still).
* I don't know how you do it every day. (Don't underestimate the power of the sling).

Thanks Jeff (and Nana :)) for watching Cecelia all day so that I could be a part of Jaci's shower.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Not so EZ to PASS

Today I rode the pike - the PA Turnpike and had a deja vu interaction with a toll collector. As I roll up to the ticket booth, the green light illuminates, indicating that I am free and clear to roll on through because I have an EZ Pass on my windshield. Only...I don't have an EZ Pass on my windshield. This has happened once before, but I'm fairly certain it was in my old car. So, I become that annoying person who holds up the whole lane because now I have to push the "Press To Talk" button. And I press it and I talk, but there is no response. Then I see a rather perturbed looking gentleman sauntering from the office. He approaches my car. I explain that I don't have EZ Pass. He tells me that the machine says I do. But I don't. He asks if I've been here before. I ask, "In life?". Yes, I've been through this particular crossroads before. Can I have a ticket, please? People are honking, people are unhappy. I'd be unhappy too. In fact, I am unhappy. Just give me the ticket. (Keep in mind that without this ticket, if I had rolled on through, when I exited the turnpike in Willow Grove, I would have had to pay the maximum toll for the entire state.) He proceeds to tell me I should get my car checked out because the machine says I have an EZ Pass. So, what exactly would they be looking for? A little white box that was gifted to me and is being paid by a mysterious benefactor? Mind you, the light NEVER illuminates on the other end of my trip, when it may actually save me a few dollars, just the beginning, when I need the ticket. The last time this happened (because, yes, it's happened before), the toll collector looked right at my GPS and said, see you have an EZ Pass. Don't you think I'd know if I had one? So, riddle me this - is there a chip in my brain that's causing all this confusion? Has anyone else ever had this experience? Or am I the last holdout who doesn't have an EZ Pass yet?

Saturday, August 22, 2009


Cecelia is a little girl with a big personality and we love every minute of it, but it's comical nonetheless. For example, she just smacked me and then pointed and stared as if to say, "I'm keeping my eye on you." We commonly put words in her mouth to accompany her funny expressions, cries, or actions. In early days, in the middle of the night, Jeff was trying to calm her when (we now know) she was mighty hungry. She literally punched him in the face 4 times with a closed fist and quite a wail. In his words, "WE'RE NOT FRIENDS...ANYMORE!!!!" Body language is another favorite. She is now sitting upright in her pocket sling, with one hand resting on top of the other. She also lies asleep on her side with both hands tucked up in front of her head (very angelic). And my personal favorite is still her use of her middle finger. She's cut back, but in the very beginning, it was definitely her favorite to show off.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Friday Funday

I thought yesterday was Friday. I even checked the time the pool opens because it is different on different days and looked at I missed out on 2 hours yesterday and today, it really does open at 1. See - I used to be a very schedule oriented person, and now that rotates around another nearly 9 lb. human being, and I couldn't be happier that it does...but it's a bit disconcerting to not know what day it is and have it make no difference at all.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Back to School...or Lack Thereof

I've been teaching for five years in both kindergarten and first grade and this is the first year since I started as a student in kindergarten myself that I won't be going "back to school" either as a teacher or student. The reason, of course, is that I get to spend some much appreciated quality time with my little girl. I'll either go back to school to teach in January or next fall, and either way I'm happy for the time I have now. I can't wait to take Cecelia on field trips of a different kind and to snuggle at home as well.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Heat Wave

In the midst of our first (and probably only) heat wave of the 09 summer, we've been getting out more than normally. On Monday, we hit up Hideaway and I got back on the diving board for the first time since being pregnant (that's approximately 10 months off the boards). On Tuesday, we went to a friend's house for a playdate and today, we'll be visiting with cousins, off to Peace Valley Park and then tutoring (if I have a willing accomplice in Cecelia that is, and if not, we'll sit in the house which is ok too). I'm excited to be enjoying the summer with baby. We'll even be headed down the shore twice in September, though thinking about packing for a trip that lasts more than a few hours is giving me anxiety. Any tips?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Age: 5 Weeks

Today I am 5 weeks old. I've taken two trips to the pool now. Not into the pool, but to the pool and I'm looking forward to my first trips down the shore coming soon in September. I'm able to take much longer walks in my stroller, so long as I'm not hungry of course. And speaking of getting hungry, that's getting a little more predictable too. I'm learning when I like to eat my meals each day. I also attended my first Birthday Bash this past weekend. A Birthday Bash is how my family (on the Chapman side) celebrates lots of birthdays at one time and I fit right in with my summer birthday. See you next week!

Monday, August 17, 2009


Conducting an experiment with a baby is tricky. Cecelia seemed to be gassy and spitty-uppy after eating, but not all the time, so I was trying to figure out if there was anything I was consistently ingesting that would result in this behavior, but I changed two things and now I don't know if both contributed to the change or just one and now I don't want to mess with a good thing while it's working. 1) I cut out juice (and soda... though I wasn't having soda often). 2) If Cecelia is still crying (before I thought it was all gas) I offer for her to continue matter how long she's already been eating. Before I thought this would make her spit up, now I think she spits up less...still spits up though, but there's less painful sounding crying, I think. It's a good thing I'm not a scientist because the idea of a control group is laughable.

Friday, August 14, 2009

1 Month

Today, I am one month old!  In addition to weekly photos, a new photo will be posted on the 14th of each month.  That way if mommy falls off the wagon with the weekly photos, at least she can (hopefully) remember one each month.  I've started to have a (sort of) routine for when I like to eat, though it can still vary.  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Cecelia seems to have settled into a routine of sorts. I'm trying to keep track to see if I can rely on this bit of information to plan when she'll need to eat and when I might sneak away from home base on occasion. I do realize that even if there is a routine now it's likely to change and I'm not naive enough to think that this is it. Yesterday, before I thought there was a routine, I was tutoring and ended up feeding Cecelia for an hour and a half or so at my tutor-ee's house. Patience isn't exactly a newborn's virtue of choice. Fortunately the family was very open to having me stay a bit longer than our scheduled time. And if this routine does continue, I can plan better for just such an occasion. Cecelia also ate in her Ergo Carrier at the farm, so it's not as if we have to be home to eat, but it would be good to know when to expect the demanding, high throttle cry. I've heard that babies sometimes settle into a more predictable routine around 4 weeks and Tuesday was when this began to be noticeably similar - how about that?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Elimination Communication

As with other things, I like to share what I've learned on this adventure and today marked something new. A friend of mine shared with me a practice she employs with her child called Elimination Communication. Once she explained it, I decided to give it a go and read a book called The Diaper Free Baby. Don't worry - we don't go entirely diaper free, but some people do. This is practiced in many countries around the world, just not our great one. The idea is that babies don't want to sit in wet/dirty diapers any more than we would and they'll let us know when they're about to "go." When I've talked with other parents about this, they've exclaimed yes - the poopy face, the face the baby makes right before they're going to go. So, we sit and watch the poopy face and then change the diaper, right? According to EC, no - you can help and save diapers in the process. I contacted a Yahoo Group prior to Cecelia being born and asked when this can be started and their reply was right away. I had heard before to start around 6 weeks and no later than 6 months and I'm no procrastinator. So, being the lunatic that I am, I tried it when Cecelia was 6 days old..and was semi successful. I caught her mid-stream of number 1, but did not catch any number 2, though I was sure I was seeing something...nothing. But, this week I noticed a pattern. In the DFB book, it was explained that babies don't have BM's during REM sleep, so when they wake up they will typically have a BM first thing in the morning. Before I was having trouble catching her "wake up." I tried on Saturday, and my impatience left me with a mess as she "went" right after I stopped holding her over the toilet. Yesterday and the day before I realized that she was waking up right around 7:30 and having a BM shortly thereafter, so I decided to try again today worked! I'm not going all out and trying to catch everything, I'm happy with this possible once a day catch for now. Next Wednesday, there's a meeting for this group of mothers who practice EC and I'm excited to get tips from them. I don't know about you, but I'm pretty fascinated by the whole thing and excited to try it. Sorry if I grossed anyone out, never my intent. But I do want to talk about the things no one else wants to share that they do, like this. Elimination Communication is also referred to as the Natural Hygiene method because it leads to better hygiene, no diaper rash or infection, think about it.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Age: 4 Weeks

Today I am 4 weeks old and getting big! I have lots of fun facial expressions and even smiled in response to my dad's goofy smile last night. Maybe mom and dad will catch one on film one of these days. I have longer stretches in between meal times and I'm sleeping very nicely during the night time too. Happy Anniversary mom and dad!

Happy Anniversary!

August 11th marks Jeff and my 3rd wedding anniversary and it was a special one indeed. For our third anniversary, we added a third member to our family :). We also had a wonderful babysitter for the afternoon (thanks Nana!) and went out to lunch. We went to Ted's Montana Grill which was a surprisingly eco-friendly spot with earth friendly straws (more on that later), recyclable table coverings and menu paper, borax soap, and dual flushing toilets. They also had a substitution of veggie burgers for any of their burger options. Many were topped with bacon, which sort of negates the veggie option, but regardless - a nice touch. Jeff and I walked around for a bit before returning to our baby girl. Happy Anniversary honey - I LOVE YOU!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

To Pacify or Not to Pacify?

That is truly the question. Before Cecelia arrived, I read Dr. Karp's Happiest Baby on the Block and noted his indication of a happy baby's need to suck and the role that pacifiers can play in meeting that end. He also indicated that if taken away at 6 months there should be no "addiction" problems. Addiction is my word, not his. Regardless, with that in mind, we got two 0-3 mo. pacifiers (Jeff prefers to call them nuks) and two 3-6 month pacifiers. I also read that it's important not to introduce a pacifier until 3-4 weeks to ensure that breastfeeding is well established. Well, breastfeeding was WELL established. Cecelia was eating approximately once an hour and when we went to the doctor, she thought that was perhaps more often than actually necessary and it was time for the introduction of the pacifier. There was one attached to the carseat and so, right in the pediatrician's office, the pacifier/nuk was introduced and I can understand why parents have trouble removing them at 6 months, so we'll cross that bridge when we get there. Cecelia's been eating with longer stretches in between, but still gaining weight well (she's outgrowing her newborn sized clothes). There are also times when she clearly does NOT want the pacifier. But, just in case, there is one connected to either her carseat or diaper bag, and one connected to the co-sleeper. We have pacifier pods from JJ Cole which have come in handy for keeping the pacifiers in central locations that keep them easy to find and so far we have not had any need to invest in more of them, though they're probably due for a good ole sanitizing.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Entering the Wireless Age

Cecelia's umbilical cord stump fell off - she's getting so big! Now we have to re-learn how to give her baths since we don't have to sponge bathe her anymore...though I like it that way, but I digress. Her bellybutton is an inny/outy - very cutey.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

B.I.B. and the B.C.

Jeff asked an interesting question the other day...does the word bib stand for anything? I don't really know the answer, but it came up because we have begun using the bib and the burp cloth all the time. Cecelia has many talents and one of them is spitting up. She tends to do it after feeding and then just as soon as the bib and/or burp cloth are removed from the area best suited for catching such fluids. I was reading in Dr. Sears' The Baby Book about spitting up. He indicates that most babies share some of each meal with their parents after eating and it's more of a laundry problem than a medical problem. We received many bibs and burp cloths as gifts for baby and to be completely honest, I thought there were far more than we really needed and planned to return some. I had some misguided notion that we wouldn't really need bibs until she was eating solids and dribbling carrots and banana down her front. Little did I know what our darling had in store for us. Fortunately I didn't get around to returning anything quite yet, because we will most certainly use them...all of them.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Age: 3 Weeks

Align Center
I am 3 weeks old today! It was a big week - I had my last weight check, had my first playdate, a restaurant outing, and my first bottle! Mom will catch you up on all those events shortly (she's been slacking!). As you can see, I'm getting a little bit bigger each week. Soon I'll outgrow my newborn outfits. I'm enjoying tummy time and walks outside much more these days. Yesterday, I went on a walk in my Ergo Carrier for four miles and I snoozed right through the whole thing.