The Lady Gray

A household chronicle


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4 Months

Here I am, roughly 2 weeks late, writing Evie’s 4 month update! There are so many things that are happening with her that I don’t want to forget! There are also things that I WOULD like to forget and I hope soon I will! Or else this child may be the only one ;).

*Edit! It’s been another week since I started this post. So, now I’m 3 weeks late!

4 months has been a bit trying for us.  She has learned so much and with every month comes more abilities and skills and joys. However, I think every month also comes with new trials and tribulations. These would be easier to deal with if we were both getting more rest at night. I have such hope that she will go back to sleeping 5-6 hour stretches at night…hope reigns eternal, right?!

Things I don’t want to forget:

  • The laughs. The giggles. The belly laughs! She has discovered how hilarious Archer is. The best part is that because she loves it when he plays so much, that we are more likely to play with him with her, to please her. (Like a little dictator!)
  • She still doesn’t roll over. But, she does like to roll to one side and grab her feet. Especially during nakey time!
  • She loves her crib right now. Her room is always so warm so it’s perfect for her to have nakey time. I’ll put her in her crib, naked, with toys to entertain her while I take a shower or accomplish some other task.
  • Evie still doesn’t enjoy her current playmat. She likes to be on it for a few minutes and then gets furious that she can’t fit entire toys in her mouth. Reason takes no part of this – it’s pure emotion!
  • The doctor said she needs more tummy time. She apparently has a little flat spot on the back of her head. I’m not sure how, as she doesn’t spend much time on her back at all. I personally can’t find it myself, but I’ve taken to calling her little flat head…haha!
  • We’ve been working on the bedtime routine this month. She now has a pretty steady bedtime routine, of which I’m pretty proud! It starts at 6:30. 6:30 bath, lotion, nighttime diaper, jammies, story time with mommy and daddy, then nursing to sleep (or, nursing to right before sleep and then praying it works)
  • She was in a dress for the first time in her life this month. It’s the CUTEST thing in the world. I love it. I can’t wait until Spring and warmer weather when she can wear them more frequently!
  • Evie has appeared to have found her voice. She is incredibly chatty. She loves to sing us the song of her people! All the time. Also, she has a funny knack of laughing/talking at the WORST times. When someone shares bad news, the negative part of a story, etc etc, that is the time she will laugh.
  • Her hair is losing it’s fluff and no longer stands completely on end. I hate that. But, it’s growing so long and it’s this stunning chestnut color. In the sun, there are golden strands. I hope hope hope that it stays brunette!

She is so interactive now. I love that! I’m looking forward to what’s to come.


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Teen Mom Finale

Some thoughts on the Teen Mom OG Finale (and yes, I watch that show – it’s the one Teen Mom that I watch, because I’ve seen them grow up from 16 and pregnant on and I feel invested in seeing how their lives turn out – STOP JUDGING ME)
*Farrah is still awful, awful, awful. I feel bad that her baby daddy died and that she’s had a hard life, but dang, I feel like she needs to take some responsibility for the person she is today. She is spoiled, conceited, rude, etc. A 17,000 dollar ring looking cheap? Wanting at least a 60,000 dollar ring? Come one. Also, her pissy fit at the end was nuts. 
*I love Catelynn and Tyler and I totally relate to Catelynn’s struggle with anxiety. It totally sucks and the fear that you will always have to deal with it for the rest of your life is so real. I worry about that, too! Also, I know that Butch is trying really hard now that he’s out of prison…but April was right. She shouldn’t need to leave something early so Butch can be there. He was the one who abused her. He has to take responsibility for that.
*Maci is still my favorite! She is a great mom and it seems like she’s got a good thing going with Tyler. I’m just beyond amazed that Ryan finally stepped up to the plate! He’s doing a much better job of being a Dad and the fact that he put his relationship with Bentley above the relationship with his potential girlfriend is AWESOME!
*Amber has never been my favorite but I’m glad that she and Gary worked out a custody agreement…even if Gary only agreed to it because of the child support. (Really, that’s what it seems like!)
I started watching 16 and pregnant so many years ago. I don’t watch a lot of reality tv because it’s dumb – but I care about the original teen moms for some reason. I’m really not interested in teen mom 2 or 3 or 4 or however many there are. Anyways, it was a good finale and I’m excited to see the reunion.


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Improving Sleep

Well, January was a rough month in this household. Jake’s been in a class all month (ending soon, hallelujah!) and it’s been very labor intensive. Lots of busy work and homework and long days. He’s had something almost every weekend with his class, too. So, I’ve been doing this whole baby thing pretty much by myself. It’s been challenging. Evie hit her 3 month growth spurt in early January, and it was followed immediately by her 4 month sleep regression (early – probably having to do with her being 10 days late.) Throw in her beginning to teethe and WOW my month was awful!  She stopped sleeping. We were waking up some nights every single hour, some nights maybe every two or three hours. Some nights, every 20 minutes. I felt like I was dying. Then, just as I would get *this* close to having a nervous breakdown, blessedly she would give me a night of rest.

My therapist recommended this book to help:

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I’m loving it so far.  Right about when I started it, Evie’s sleep started getting back to normal.  But, I have been learning a lot about infant sleep and how to improve her sleep whenever possible.  Also, I’m really hopeful that it will help with our naps.  What I’ve learned so far about her sleep is that she has learned to sleep by sucking – she has a very strong sucking-to-sleep association. So I am starting to try to teach her to fall asleep on her own. It’s going pretty well so far and I am confident that with time and repetition she’ll get the hang of it.

And, I’m getting sleep again. THANK GOODNESS! I can start to function again!


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Animals

Yesterday our cat seems to have finally realized that there is a baby in the house. She saw the baby playing on the mat yesterday and jumped next to her (more interested in the swinging toys than the baby, I believe!) Then last night when Evie was freaking out, Twinkie started crying and trying to hop up on the changing pad where the baby was.

Evie still hasn’t really realized that Twinkie exists. She sees her, but her eyes sort of pass over her without actually taking her in. Evie definitely notices Archer – she thinks he’s hilarious.  Although, Archer is about 10 times the size of Twinkie, so it makes that he’s more noticeable!

This morning something else happened for the first time.  I was letting Evie sleep and listening over the monitor. She woke up and startling babbling to herself and generally being adorable.  The noises she was making were really disturbing Archer!  He heard her over the monitor too, and he actually left the family room to get closer to her. When her squeals got a little more indignant and less joyful I went in to check on her – and Archer barged in too!  I laid down next to Evie and Archer squeezed himself in between the two of us!  He rested his head on Evie’s body. It was so, so sweet! However, he’s about 90 pounds so I was really worried that he would crush her. But, there were no complaints from her, so I figured she was alright.  I wish I could have gotten a picture of it because it was just so darling!

All in all, the animals seem to be coping well with the addition of Evie to our household.  They are definitely feeling the lack of attention.  Twinkie takes every opportunity to snuggle while we are nursing and Archer is almost always within arm’s reach.


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3 Months

My baby is now 3 + months old. She is a joy and sometimes a challenge.  We made it through the 3 month growth spurt just to encounter more sleep problems after it finished.  I’m thinking it’s either teething or the 4 month sleep regression come early.  Either way, it’s been total hell here in the night.  Last night she was a dear and she slept normally for the first time in close to 2 weeks. It was like the universe knew how tired I was and how much I desperately needed that rest!

Despite the lack of sleep, all is well.  Evie seems to have a wonderful temperament and it usually takes several days of sleep deprivation to dampen her spirits. I think we’re going to have to have the stranger danger talk repeatedly with her, as she hasn’t met a stranger she doesn’t like yet. She’s full of smiles and wiggly excitement.

I’ve been feeling her gums looking for signs of teething, but I can’t feel anything. However, I’m pretty sure that teething has started.  She loves chewing on my fingers and her fingers, and drools like crazy. She’s been comfort nursing a ton recently. I’ve barely been able to pump recently because she’s just draining me constantly! Here are some more things I don’t want to forget about this age:

  • She has started laughing repeatedly if you do something she thinks is funny.  For example, she laughs when I pretend to eat her belly.  It’s just darling.
  • Her hair is starting to lay flat on her head (sadness!) I’ll miss the cockatoo look she’s been rocking since birth.
  • She’s starting to be able to bring things to her mouth.  She can’t seem to hold them there for long – but I’m sure that’s next!
  • She is getting so close to rolling over.  Her legs go 90 degrees up in the air and she uses that momentum to get to her side. She can’t seem to get over that pesky arm, though!
  • If she is lying flat or at a an incline, you can see her trying to lift her head up because she wants to be sitting.  Working on those baby abs!
  • She’s really discovered her voice.  There’s lots of ‘joyful noise’ happening right now. Squeals and screams of delight! And of course, the squawks of disapproval.
  • Her crib mobile is a big hit right now. It plays music and has Winnie the Pooh characters that circle.  It excites her so much!
  • Music in general is a big hit.  Her favorite toys are the ones that rattle or make noise. She loves when I sing to her, or when music plays. The Itsy Bitsy Spider is one of her favorites right now – her favorite part being the spider going up the spout.
  • She is still a string bean, but finally seems to be getting a little bit more chub. She’s got one little leg roll! Just one! I’m hopeful for more – I do love a chubby baby!
  • We’ve grown out of all the 0-3 month clothes and are very close to being out of 3 month clothes as well. I’ve located all of the 3-6 month clothes we have for when we have to make the switch.
  • She notices the dog now, and she thinks he’s funny.  She has yet to really notice the cat.

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Crappy Sleep

Evie’s sleep schedule always gets jacked up with a growth spurt.  Last week was just ridiculous – up every hour or two nursing, crying. Some people can function well with no sleep…I am not one of those people. I turn into a total mombie. I cannot function at all.

Then, it got better. We got two great nights of sleep! I thought – okay, back to normal!

ENTER NEXT MENTAL LEAP

It’s not as bad as the growth spurt sleep.  But it’s the opposite of great.  Here is Evie’s current sleep schedule:

Don’t nap well all day. Become super crabby and sleepy at 8ish. Fall asleep around 9. Wake up around 2. Nurse. Wake up around 4-5. Nurse. Wake up every hour after that and nurse.

Every hour from 4ish on. Even if I go to bed at 9, I’m still practically awake from 4 in the morning.

I just keep repeating to myself that it’s just a phase. It’s just a phase! I can do this. Even though I’m tired. And I have a headache. Because I’m tired.

 


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it’s hard to get things done with a baby

It’s really hard to get things done with a baby.  She loves and desires my constant attention, affection, and entertainment.

Here’s what I did today:

  • folded half the clean laundry sitting on my dining room table
  • pushed one load of laundry through
  • vacuumed half of a room
  • cleaned the kitchen (minus two cast iron skillets that still need to be washed)
  • made banana chocolate chip muffins. [of course – I forgot I had an appointment and I had to turn my oven off during the middle of baking and finish baking them when I got home. Not recommended, fyi!]
  • made a sub-par pot roast in the crock pot. Seriously, it really didn’t turn out how I hoped it would!
  • loaded the dishwasher and remembered to run it

Of course I also loved, fed, changed and played with my daughter! And I also managed to use the bathroom and feed and water myself today…easier said than done with an infant.

It seems like most of the time when I start something I can only do about half of it before the baby starts needing me. I think I’ll just have to get used to it – it doesn’t seem like something that will change soon.  Instead of cleaning a whole room at a time, I’ll have to pick and choose what I can do in a limited amount of time.