Tessalou bow (ETSY)
Cheers to pretty baby girls!
Morgan's outfit of the day is brought to you by her stylish sister from another mister down in Jacksonville, Miss Collins Grace! Morgan may live in NYC, but CG's mom finds all the best baby clothes and clues me in on what is up.
Tessalou bow (ETSY)
Cheers to pretty baby girls!
I take it all back. Every dramatic word in my update post of two days ago and write to you now as I sit in Morgan's nursery as she babbles herself to sleep in her crib. Has this chicky found her voice or what!? I knew it was coming, slowly but surely the coos & sweet "ahh--ooo--awws" were becoming more consistant, lasting longer, and just as adorable as can be. Life is funny like that right? How completely on the edge you can be for days and then suddenly feel so alive and have a sense that you really own it.
My little girl has come out of that newborn shell even more over the past few days and I love being able to watch the evolution of her spirit. It's fascinating and completely incredible to witness!
Today was a GREAT day!
Fresh air, happy baby, and a street churro...I'll take it!
Speaking of taking it...my daughter has taken a bottle every day for the last 3 days. WHEW.
Ps: thanks Auntie SKiener for the bear cub onsie! Fits M like a glove;)
I wrote a terribly depressing post sometime last week and took it down after 36hrs. I wasnt ready to put that all out there yet and hit publish without thinking that one through. I then wrote a glaringly honest and post-partum anxiety tell it all email to my high school girlfriends on Saturday morning which had to leave them feeling like I was one crazy mama. Maybe not insane, but definitely they could sense my feelings of overwhelmingness through each line. What's going on in the world of Morganland is one that I think most moms emerge from after the adreneline wears off and your hair starts falling out (yep, those lucious pregnancy locks are now falling out like mad and I find them in clumps in my baby's tiny hands...gross)---it's that the new normal around here is quite literally nothing I have ever, ever experienced. I'm adapting daily and peeling back layers upon layers of who I am and revealing to myself all that I have the potential to be. I don't even recognize myself in the mirror some mornings as I put on the same pair of Lululemon pants and one of 4 long sleeved tees that I rotate along with my totally unsexy nursing bra, but I'm there underneath it all. My mind is mush and I'm laughing at how I made sure to stock up on my favorite makeup before Morgan was born because guess what, I put on makeup maybe 2x a week. And haven't even had to open any of it. "Did you shower while I was out at the gym?" my husband said on Sunday morning. "No, I just actually washed my face and straightened my hair and put on some mascara." That this scenerio has become our banter cracks me up. Even in the baby haze of those first 8 weeks, I had time to shower and I was fueled on some crazy concoction of hormones. As those all settle and I emerge from the newborn mama status, I'm simply a ponytailed mom who has a short term memory of a gnat. (Seriously, Lee has asked me to pick up bandaids for days now and even 4 reminders on my phone don't help.) I planned a little girls night with some friends for tonight and I hope and pray I can formulate a sentence without pausing to make sure I don't sound like a rambling idiot or look down and realize there is baby spit up on my shirt, then frantically mumble about how I have zero to talk about except for nap schedules and bedtime routines. The Sarah that I was is gone...gone in the way that I will never be the same person or Lee & I the same couple that we were pre-children. And that's OK! It will be years until we know the freedom like we had those first 2yrs of marriage. But finding myself and granting myself the grace to change and get through the thick of it (it's not going to be pretty) one day at a time? I can do this. I know I can.
This week we're hoping to arrange for a part-time nanny to start, take Morgan to the daycare at Equinox, and attempt baby storytime at the library. And after a standoff of a few hours this weekend, our stingy little girl gave in and took the bottle again (twice!). Life is different, life is good, life is just where it's meant to be. Embracing it all on this Monday morning...
It's definitely safe to say I am loving 3mo old Morgan. The animated faces and smiles, the wanting to sit up in my lap, the ability she has to play on her playmat and stay entertained by the floating animals...stepping back from it all, I sometimes can't believe she was a newborn just over 90days ago. 90 days only! That's NOTHING. And I wanted to know more as to what was going on mentally and physically with my girl (the pediatrician only seems to give that high level overview...I want the nitty gritty!) Thanks to my high school now mama pal Marie who cued me into reading the book THE WONDER WEEKS---a perfectly organized little baby book of the developmental leaps that occur and what to expect. It takes the guessing out of certain "when did she start being able to do X" and enjoy the stages with a greater understanding. We are in the middle of "smooth transitions" right now ie, movements aren't so jerky, the Moro reflex disappears (aka less swaddling for fear she'd flail her arms and wake up), etc.
We went through a major growth spurt (hello child who went from eating every 3hrs like clockwork to a fussy girl that you'd think couldn't last one minute past 2hrs without milk) these past few days and it is amazing to see the changes in her motions settle in a bit. One thing is definitely for certain...stranger anxiety is starting to hit like crazy. This morning while visiting my friend Laura and her edibly adorable new bundle James down in Chelsea, Morgan's bottom lip curled and wailing ensued when in Laura's arms. Even when I was changing her in James' room she let out some inconsolable cries that seemed to be of the "I don't know this place and it's making me nervous!" variety. Once outside again, she was fine but wow---wasn't expecting this so soon!
Someone just loves her mommy right now!
Three months! No longer an newborn but an infant! This milestone has been one that's been on my mind since you were born. I remember clearly in those first few weeks of getting to know you how I, admittedly, wanted to press the fast foward button and get to 12wks. I knew you'd be more used to the world around you and I would be less of a frazzled new mama. While the former is certainly true, I'm working daily on improving the latter. The changes you have exhibited since last month have been great, not only in your growth but in how you interact and see the world! At three months old you are just a hair under 15lbs and a total chubbster already in 3-6mo clothes for the past 2 weeks. I take loads of pride in those rolls and just love it when strangers comment on how HEALTHY you look. Words like that can simply make my day.
Developmentally, I dont even know where to begin! While you still absolutely HATE tummy time (your fiesty spirit really gets going even when I begin to flip you over, it's like you know what is coming and you do NOT like it!)...you will humor me for a few minutes a few times a day. Proving to Mama just how strong you are you rolled over for the first time while home in Pittsburgh visiting Pap & Gramma! To have them there to witness it was just priceless and the cheers that resounded in our house in Country Manor must've been heard by the neighbors! You love tracking things with your eyes and will happily follow stuffed animals from right to left and back pretty much all day long. You show your excitement by constantly kicking your arms and legs (you have a keen affection for kicking your feet on Mama when I hover above you and play) and have started to show an interest in reaching for things to grab, but not consistantly. If I put a rattle in your hand you immediately latch on and can move it up and down, my what strength you have! Perhaps the most exciting milestone of the past month is all the chatter that comes out of your sweet little mouth! It comes and goes during the day but I just LOVE our "conversations" back and forth and those coos and gurggles have a greater range and last longer than they did at the beginning of the month. You simply light up when I put my face close to yours and your gummy grin is one of my absolute favorite things to see everyday!
...the battle with the bottle continues but we are hanging in there. Breastfeeding is going so well for us but I could really use a break every now and then where you could take some expressed breast milk from a bottle so that I could use a sitter or have Daddy feed you. While home in Pittsburgh you resisted for almost 2 hours, only to give in and take the bottle from ME! This goes against all the theories that babies won't take a bottle from their mothers so who knows what is going to work. We are trying to give you a bottle every day but it just seems to be inconsistant as to what makes you OK with it. I'm not really sure how to make this work for us but I'm trying to stay patient and know that you CAN take the bottle you just prefer it from the tap;) You are nursing 5-6 times a day right now every 3hrs or so and I will occasionally do a "dreamfeed" if your last nursing session seemed short. Speaking of dreams....they are SWEET around here these days. For almost 2-3wks now you have been sleeping through the night from about 7/730pm all the way til 645/7am! It is incredible. I will take every other baby hurdle if we can get a full night's sleep. Now if I could only shut off my mama brain and not wake up at 2 & 5am frantically checking the monitor to make sure that you're ok, we'd be in buisness. You have really learned to self soothe these past few weeks and pretty much go down with nary a peep at nap time and certainly bedtime. If I'm being honest, your independance makes me a bit sad at times as you're much less of a cuddler these days and 100% wanting to see the world, soak it in, and do things on your own (this includes being rocked to sleep...there are times when you wriggle your body and are just like "put me down mama!".) A true firstborn you are!
We are loving each milestone, each smile, each way that you continue to show us who you are, Morgan! Cannot wait to see what the next month holds in your life :) I hope lots of giggles!
My sister Elizabeth bought me this book Things I Want My Daughters To Know for Christmas and winding down with a quick chapter a few times a week before bed has been a wonderful ritual. Alexandra Stoddard does such a beautiful job encapsulating all those small life lessons we hope to pass along to our daughters...and in reading her words it's allowed me to refocus on the things I still want for myself and for Lee. It is so easy to get lost in the world of being a mama 24-7 but in finding even a moment or two for myself to think & plan & figure out ways to keep myself thriving---yoga, quick meetup with a friend, a walk to and from the park, fresh flowers, trying new restaurants, decaf soy mistos, a candle/tea/book before bed all come to mind---I know I'm doing a great favor to who I am.
"Do the things you most enjoy. Do them often. Stock up. When you discover something you love, do more in love." -A. Stoddard
::Thank you Kendall from Pearls to Pampers for sharing! Had to reblog::
We are sitting at lunch one day when my daughter casually mentions that she and her husband are thinking of “starting a family.” “We’re taking a survey,” she says half-joking. “Do you think I should have a baby?”
“It will change your life,” I say, carefully keeping my tone neutral.
“I know,” she says, “no more sleeping in on weekends, no more spontaneous vacations.”
But that is not what I meant at all. I look at my daughter, trying to decide what to tell her. I want her to know what she will never learn in childbirth classes.
I want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing will heal, but becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional wound so raw that she will forever be vulnerable.
I consider warning her that she will never again read a newspaper without asking, “What if that had been MY child?” That every plane crash, every house fire will haunt her.
That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die.
I look at her carefully manicured nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive level of a bear protecting her cub. That an urgent call of “Mum!” will cause her to drop a soufflé or her best crystal without a moments hesitation.
I feel that I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed by motherhood. She might arrange for childcare, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting and she will think of her
baby’s sweet smell. She will have to use every ounce of discipline to keep from running home, just to make sure her baby is all right.
I want my daughter to know that every day decisions will no longer be routine. That a five year old boy’s desire to go to the men’s room rather than the women’s at McDonald’s will become a major dilemma. That right there, in the midst of clattering trays and screaming
children, issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester may be lurking in that restroom.
However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess herself constantly as a mother.
Looking at my attractive daughter, I want to assure her that eventually she will shed the pounds of pregnancy, but she will never feel the same about herself.
That her life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child. That she would give herself up in a moment to save her offspring, but will also begin to hope for more years, not to accomplish her own dreams, but to watch her child accomplish theirs.
I want her to know that a cesarean scar or shiny stretch marks will become badges of honor.
My daughter’s relationship with her husband will change, but not in the way she thinks.
I wish she could understand how much more you can love a man who is careful to powder the baby or who never hesitates to play with his child.
I think she should know that she will fall in love with him again for reasons she would now find very unromantic.
I wish my daughter could sense the bond she will feel with women throughout history who have tried to stop war, prejudice and drunk driving.
I want to describe to my daughter the exhilaration of seeing your child learn to ride a bike.
I want to capture for her the belly laugh of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog or cat for the first time.
I want her to taste the joy that is so real it actually hurts.
My daughter’s quizzical look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes. “You’ll never regret it,” I finally say. Then I reached across the table, squeezed my daughter’s hand and offered a silent prayer for her, and for me, and for all the mere mortal women who stumble their way into this most wonderful of callings.
Please share this with a Mum that you know or all of your girlfriends who may someday be Mums. May you always have in your arms the one who is in your heart.
By Dale Hanson Bourke
‘Chicken soup for the woman’s soul’!
Nothing better than being home with Pap & Gram!!
(Seriously, if I could have 2 extra sets of hands around at all times that would also be fabbbbulous.)
(Also, grocery shopping alone feels so indulgent.)
I've now successfully traveled on three flights with Morgan now and I've gotta say (brag) that she has been a total in air champion! The past few days have had me stirring about my choice to really embrace the present moment and be guided by my daughters natural rhythm---I've felt less on edge but still treading lightly on expecting the best. Well would you know that on a crazy travel day (up at 430, airport security, nursing up in the air, shortened morning nap) that Morgan has had what is actually one heck of a day. I'm talking easily her smoothest day in the past week. She's teaching me lessons this baby of mine!
Cuddled up in my parents living room while the little one naps. Is there anything better than a trip back home to your roots, the place that gives comfort its unique scent (I always think my house smells like tea!), the comings and goings of the CBA ladies, the sound of the garage door going up when my Dad returns from school?! Nothing better than that!
Sarah: one part of a family of THREE with my husband Lee and sweet girl Morgan, simply wanting to chronicle the path I'm on and the path that will come to be. For now it's NYC urban mamaville where everyday is a new adventure! (Actually, just getting to the post office is an adventure.)
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