Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Busy Day

Claire had visits from both her infant stimulation teacher and Physical therapist today. She slept through the first part of each appointment. The second nap was over an hour and a half long! Claire did a good job working with both of them and showing offher progress since twoweeks ago when they last saw her.

I took Claire for a walk in the stroller between visits, so I had no nap.

Claire was unusually fussy this afternoon and evening which was exhausting for me. Thankfully Beth came over this evening and took a turn with her and got her to sleep. I got to take a nice long shower.

Further progress on nursing: Claire actually got some milk this evening!! She took some by bottle and thenI burped her and put her to the breast and she immediatle latched on a began sucking. I had a bit of a plugged duct so I put a little presssure on the part that hurt snd Claire helped to relieve the pressure! She didn't stay at it for long, just a few muinutes, but I am excited about the progress.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Progress with Suckling

Thanks be to God! Claire latched on to the breast for the first time in months. She suckled for about 2 minutes on two occasions this afternoon. I am elated. I praised her profusely and she looked like she was very proud of herself. She also gummed me which was quite painful. My theory is that she is starting to get used to and interested in having various things in her mouth like cereal and spoons and banana... so she was more receptive. I used the clutch/football hold which I hadn't tried in a while (Mark suggested this). By the way, Claire seems to enyoy mashed banana too. She thinks eating solid food is great fun. She sometimes smiles and laughs during the meal.

She has been napping really well since we left for Lompoc last Wed. Thanks be to God. I was worried about this for weeks. I have been able to put her back to sleep when she wakes up after only 30 mins. I never had any luck with this in the past. I got a nice long nap this afternoon while she napped. It felt so good.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Loves cereal

Claire has developed a taste for her rice cereal. She laughed and squealed as I fed her this morning. She thinks eating cereal is great fun. I am looking forward to trying banana with her. We don't have any bananas right now...maybe we'll walk to the corner store.

Claire had 3.5 hour gaps between meals during the night. Hurray! She wokeup early and talked to herself till I got up and gave her breakfast. She was eating at 2 hour intervals most of yesterday, so I was worried she would continue that through the night.

I had another dip in milk supply yesterday but it's looking good so far today.

We woke up to the sound of rain. How lovely.

I've been struggling with alergies the past few days. My least favorite symptom is wheaziness/congested bronchials. I've had trouble sleeping because when I lay down I have a hard time breathing and have to cough to clear the airway. I need to call my doc and ask if its ok to use my inhaler while providing breastmilk. I'm hoping to have time to wash all our bedding and dust our bedroom before bed tonight. The last time this happened I used this tactic and it seemed to make a big difference.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Catch Up Blog

I'm blogging again since I hadn't written for a while.
Some highlights from our trip include Stopping off in Santa Barbara and taking a walk with Mark's dad. It was fun to see his landscaping project and great to hear that since his back operation (the week after Claire was born) he is feeling great and able to do the things he likes to do again. Wednesday evening we arrived at Mark's mom's house as she was arriving from the tea shop. We had one of Mark's favorite meals, Hamburger Stroganoff. Nanna agreed to take care of the baby during the mnight so we could get some much needed rest. Hurray! I got up pump at midnight and 3:30 because I woke up at these times. Speaking of pumping, there was always some one else to watch the baby while I pumped, so I got to read magazines and/or nap while pumping. Yay! We had a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with the addition of brussels sprouts and a twist on the sweet potatoes and mashed potatoes...they were served together both mashed with carmelized onions on top and swirled so that it was marbeled. It was delish! (My grandmother won't believe I just said that!) Friday we had second breakfast at the tea shop...quiche Lorraine. We took a walk and read and relaxed then had dessert and tea at the shop in the late afternoon. Claire fell asleep in my arms and I sat and read.

Another highlight especially for Mark was that we got to see his dad's bio diesel lab. It was quite impressive. He has a coop of about 8 people that he provides fuel for.
I need to log out cuz I have a neck ache.

Hudson Trip

We spent a very relaxing Thanksgiving in Lompoc. Claire did very well both in the car and at Nanna's house. She really seemed to enjoy the extra attention with 4 adults around to dote on her and I enjoyed having a little time to myself. With the extra relaxing/sleeping I was able to get on top of the milk production. I think I am almost caught up. Hopefully I won't have to used thawed milk everyday now because our supply is quickly dwindling. I think Claire was on a growth spurt while we were gone. On Wed. she slept almost all day and on Thursday she took 4 ounce meals all day long. Now she has really tapered off and quits after barelt finishing 3 ounces.

We also got to visit Mark's dad and his sister and family. Claire's 4 year old cousin Calan was quite taken with her. I was impressed with how much he'd grown up since we saw him a few months ago when he was still three. He is boy through and through, no hint of the toddler he was not too long ago. Cade (Almost 11) is nearly as tall as I am now, by the time he's 12 he'll have passed me up. Cole (almost 9) is not far behind him. It was fun interacting with them and we look forward to seeing them again next Saturday at our house.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Clare Can...

Claire can find her head with her hands. The result is that her forehead and sides of her head have little scratches on them. I keep trimming the bejeebers out of her nails but it is impossible to get them all short enough.

Claire now rubs her eyes when she's tired--very cute.

Grab a blanket or toy and bring it to her mouth. Mark enjoys watching her facial expression and she explores various textures.

She is also much steadier holding up her head, so she can ride in the sling facing forward now.

Hudson breakfast Tradition

We've begun a tradition of going out for breakfast on Saturday mornings: so far we've eaten outside at Fred 62 in Vermont village, outside at the Two Nine near USC and walked to our hangout the Ragazzi Room. Another destination we want to try is the Alcove in Los Feliz. This morning Claire had a nap on the way there and fell asleep again just before we reached home.

I did major floor cleaning in Claire's room yesterday which involved moving lots of stuff out so I could get at the floor. I moved out the TV tray, extra chair, fan, air purifier, diaper pail, two trash cans, baby bath tub, my foot bath, rolling cart with pump, laptop, and reading materials, bedside table, a whole jumble of cords, cables, speakers cd player tape player etc., extra seat cushion. Some of these things are finding a new home so as to make the room tidier and easier to clean. I also gave a cursory swipe at the kitchen floor and vacuumed the living room. Needless to say, I did not call Maria. I do have the number of a referral service and will try finding someone that way. I was exhausted yesterday evening. Claire had only short naps yesterday so I didn't end up napping at all and she was fussy in the late afternoon and evening so I ended up carrying her a lot. I had a backache. Mark gave me a nice massage when he got home and Beth came over and gave us a little break by taking care of Claire for a couple hours while we puttered/relaxed.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

new photos

future reader I just posted a few November photos on Flickr.

On Monday, Claire's doctor gave us some free samples of Aquaphor and suggested patting her dry after her bath and slathering it on. I did this at noon today and her skin feels much better! Hurray. She feels like a baby should instead of having leathery arms and legs. She still has a little rash under the chin and behind the knees. Her ankles are looking much better.

I put in an order to today and got free delivery with the coupon they sent. I wish Trader Joes had delivery. I think I might have some organic produce delivered after Thanksgiving. I was researching local businesses that do this and provide locally grown produce and found a few. It looks like it'll cost about $30 per shipment.

Banana leaves

From Claire's window you can see our neighbor's banana tree and for the past several days we have been watching as a new leaf unfurled. It started out as a stick jutting up into the sky and over several days gradually unwraped itself and now it is the only pristine leaf on the tree that is completely intact without shreds or tears. I feel peaceful looking out at it as Claire naps and I pump. The sun is shining through the tip of the leaf making it look like a giant lantern.

My parents did not end up visiting on Tuesday and Wed. My dad had a minor stroke so he spent Tuesday and half of Wed in the hospital. The tell tale signs were dizziness, double vision and weakness on the left side of his body. Thankfully there seem to be no lingering symptoms and he is feeling fine now. Please pray against future strokes as people who have had one are at a greater risk for having another.

The graveside service for Woody was lovely. A national guard seargent played taps and folded the the flag that was draped on his casket and presented it to Tammy. The pastor had interviewed each of the 5 children and used what they said to describe Woody's life and character. All of his children and grandchildren were present. Mark held Claire during the service and did a good job entertaining her.

Claire's eyelashes are longer than ever. I've noticed lately that her nose has grown and she is filling out all over. I think the major growth spurt she was going through is slowing down. She didn't eat nearly as much yesterday. She has this cute habit of pulling her hat down over her eyes right before a nap. When she wakes up in the morning she takes her hat off and starts scratching her head. I am having a rough time keeping her fingernails short enough so that she doesn't leave scratch marks.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

First Cereal Experience

We gave Claire some rice cereal for the first time this morning. At first she was frustrated so we gave her the bottle and then tried again. By the time she was finished with the cereal, she was grinning widely. She thinks the new oral sensation is great fun. Her mom thought this was great fun too. She actually got more in the mouth than on the bib too!

We are looking forward to seeing her Nanu and Papa this evening. They will be in town briefly for the funeral of our dear friend Art Woodman. Please pray God's comfort for his family. (Especially his daughter Thea (one of my bridesmaids) and his wife Tammy.) This was very sudden... due to a heart attack.

Woody, you were one of the most saintly men I've known. I already miss you. Your joyful attitude and warm love towards all are an inspiration.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Happy Day

I played my guitar for Claire for the first time this evening. She was watching me intently. She also watched me as I did some arm circles.

We took a trip down to Irvine today to visit my friend Jen. One reason for this was to ensure that Claire got a long nap. She got two long naps of about 2 hours each. (One on the way there and one on the way back.) She continued sleeping upon arrival on both ends of the journey. She was extra fatigued because this morning we went to the doctor and she got immunized. She is up to 10 pounds 5 oz. The Dr. gave me something for her skin problems. I got to ask the Dr. lots of questions. He suggested starting togive her a little rice cereal in the morning and evening. He commented that she seems ready since she is "violently teething" I think that's the phrase he used.

P.S. The other reason we drove down was to deliver a crib since they are expecting the "bourgeois-baby" any day now.

Sunday, November 12, 2006


I handed Claire a cloth book for the first time tonight and she seemed to know just what to do. She felt the fuzzy bee on the cover then after I opened to the first page she opened and closed it several times. After a little while her dad read her the book then she held it and looked at it and batted at it for awhile till she got sleepy. I set the book aside and she fell asleep.

This book courtesy of the Dooley's who gave us a toys-r-us giftcard. We also got her some teething toys, a sleep sac and rattle.

She was cranky today. I think this was because most of her naps were too short.

Friday, November 10, 2006


I'm feeling grumpy. I think its mostly from lack of sleep. I think Claire is on another growth spurt. Yesterday, in spite of feeding her 120-130 cc's at each feed during the day, she insisted on eating every two and a half hours and then in the evening every hour when she took a bit less. She woke me up 5 times during the night. (only 3 times with hunger) if you divide 8.5 hours into 6 chunks with time taken out for feeding Claire and expressing milk you understand why I'm tired. I'm cranky partly because Claire has had exactly two 20-25 minute naps since she woke up at 7:15 this morning. The first one was interrupted by a telemarketing call. The ringer is off in her room but the main phone is in the kitchen next to her room and I couldn't find the handset so it rang 4-5 times and woke her. The other nap she took the last 20 minutes of our walk and woke up 5 minutes after we got home. The amazing think is, that she woke up perfectly happy and seems fine with her little cat naps.

The drool rash on her chin is almost cleared up. She has bad eczema on the front of her ankles which has lasted for weeks. Her cradle cap is constant in spite of my best efforts to beat it. The skin on her arms and legs is dry and behind her knees is red and inflamed. Poor little cherub. It doesn't seem to bother her when I touch these spots. She seems to like the "butterings up" as we call them when we massage her head with oils.

She looks like she is just about to drift off in the swing as I pump and blog. Her Physical therapist arrives in 20 mins. Hmm.

To Do

1:45 Physical therapy for Claire

Sew new velcro onto diaper cover

Fold Clothes

Tummy time


Take Walk

Finish trimming Claire's nails

Don't add too many things to the "to do" list (If you put the two words to do together you get a Spanish word Todo meaning everything.)

Claire is so interested in grabbing things and attempting to bring them to her mouth or just holding onto them for several minutes. Yesterday as we walked she was in the Snuggli Carrier and was holding onto the strap. She sometimes squeals with delight and sometimes makes a noise that sounds suspisciously like a giggle.

We are still getting gifts in the mail for Claire. We got two packages this week. Thanks Nanu and Uncle Jerry. It is so much fun opening packages.

Mark and I are looking forward to having the weekend together. It was a busy week. Thankfully I don't think we have anything planned for this weekend.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

What is RSV

By the way RSV is a common respiratoy virus that most children get by age three. It usually shows up as a mild cold but it can be very serious in preemies.

"Respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a virus that causes a lung infection called bronchiolitis. Babies commonly get RSV. Two out of three infants are infected with RSV during their first year of life. RSV is highly contagious. It is spread by contact with infected fluids from the nose or mouth and through droplets in the air from coughing. RSV usually occurs in the wintertime.

Some children with RSV may have pneumonia or they need oxygen. Children born prematurely or who get RSV during the first months of life are more likely to have these complications.

Toddlers and older children with RSV usually do not have serious problems. For these children, RSV is usually no worse than a bad cold."

"Synagis is a medicine that helps prevent serious lung infections caused by RSV. Synagis is an antibody that is made using DNA technology."

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Claire got her first shot of Synagis, the RSV prophalactic yesterday. We had a longer than usual wait because one of the nurses (Our neighbor Patty) is on vacation. I was a little dissapointed that we didn't get to talk to the doctor, because I have my usual arsenal of questions. We will go back on Monday for her usual well baby visit, so I guess I can wait. She is up to 9 lbs 15 oz.

I took Claire into the LAUSD office briefly after the Dr. visit. I walked since it is just 5 blocks away. It was already very hot at 10:00 am. Everyone oohed and aahed. Too bad my boss was away at a meeting.

Claire is much more deliberate with her hands now. She is able to suck on one or more fingers (usually the whole fist) and keep her hand in her mouth longer. She is rarely interested in the pacifier now. She is getting good at grabbing things. Yeterday she was grabbing some of the hanging toys and seemed to get frustrated that she couldn't put them to her mouth since they were attached and wouldn't reach. She likes grabbing our clothing and still grabs my hair every chance she gets. She seems to be enjoying tummy time more and will stay on her tummy for several minutes.

Yesterday She had her biggest meal yet at 4.3 ounces! with her increased consumption, I have been thawing milk once a day. Hopefully my production will increase to meet her demand. It has before. Claire still refuses to nurse. She will sometimes take part of the breast in her mouth and play but will not latch on.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

good nap

Claire had a two hour nap this morning and was a much happier baby today because of it. Hurray! Her feeding were either 2 to 3.5 hours apart. Last night she had a 6.5 hour stretch between feeds 7pm to 1:30 am. She ate again at 4:00 am. We are planning on feeding her before we go to bed and see if she will take her nightime feed a bit later. She did sleep in till about 7:15.

I got to nap twice today and I'm still exhasted. I guess I'm still recovering from being sick. I hope to go to bed by 8:30.

We still suspect teething is in process although she doesn't seem to be in pain, she drools a lot (Her drool rash is almost healed.) She constantly wants to have something in her mouth (Still refuses to suck at the breast though.)

Friday, November 03, 2006

Feeling better

I'm feeling much better today. I guess it wasa 24 hour flu.

We called a houskeeper the other day. I thought she was coming today...maybe she'll come next Friday...Hmm. She came once before and was very thorough. We agreed that she should come twice a month on Fridays. I forgot to nail down an exact time. I guess I'll have to call her back.

There are new photos on flikr. Some with Claire's big smile captured beautifully. (Thanks to her dad's persistance)

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Mr mom

Mark stayed home today and took care of Claire because I came down with the flu during the night. He did a great job. I slept most of the day as I was feeling achy and feverish. I took something for the fever about an hour ago and I think it just kicked in.

Claire thankfully slept a 5 hour stretch last night 7pm to midnight. I got sick after that. She still doesn't nap as much as the books say she should. We've figured out one pattern... She wants to eat more frequently in the late afternoon/early evening. She seems to be tanking up for her long stint of sleep.

Kudos to Mark also for replacing our crusty worn out kitchen faucet with a nice new one last weekend.