Saturday, January 11, 2014

Life Lately: Back to work again & our favorite foods and snacks for Mira

I started working on January 6th at OptumHealth, part of UnitedHealth Group, which headquarters in the twin cities. I honestly haven't been very optimistic about it since I interviewed, for different reasons, but I'm going to give it a chance. I'm still pumping, so luckily there are 3 "mother's rooms" in the building, each loaded with a table and chair, a sink, and a fridge. It has been rocky, though, trying to fit pumping into my scheduled break times and fitting that in with other pumping mama's ideal times, too. I do miss being able to sit and pump at my own desk in my own office and didn't have to worry about pumping at the "appropriate break time", I even worked while I did it. But I've only been there a week, so we will see how things go with that.

The big plus side is that my boss is fun and hilarious. Her sense of humor reminds me of Chelsea Handler, except not as depressing. Her voice even sounds like Chelsea Handler, with a strong Minnesotan/Wisconsin accent. I have already laughed so hard to the point of crying at least twice. My coworkers are all great so far too, we've all had fun this week. Apparently people love potlucks at this place so we're planning on doing a potluck every payday. I'm in! 

These are foods and snacks we've all tried with Mira. Her favorites are the happyyogi yogurt chips and the white cheddar crunchies. 
I'd have to say my favorite, as far as actual food goes, are the Plum organics pouches. I have to mix them with fruit for Mira, usually like applesauce or pears, otherwise she doesn't like it (she's definitely got a sweet tooth). But they have the best combinations. I also buy Wild Harvest organic jars for fruits.   Mira wasn't too fond of the chicken casserole from Ella's kitchen, even when I mixed it with fruit. It was pretty chunky and she is still easing herself into different textures. And like I said last post, the Earth's best formula is just for nighttime before bed. 

Hoping next week goes well. This week was tough for me, adjusting going back to work. It was hard because Mira isn't getting the care we expect from her daycare providers, it was hard because I question that I will even like this job, it was hard because I was getting less than 3 hours total out of my whole day to be with Mira, and it was hard because we cannot go to ECFE anymore. ECFE was great for both of us; Mira got to play with other kids and toys while she was still within an arms reach of me. And it was great for me because I got to engage in conversation about our kids with other moms, bond with them over it, and then learn new parenting skills and ideas from our ECFE teacher. I got an email from ECFE while at work yesterday and just started crying, because the first ECFE day we missed was picture day, and the email was a group photo of everyone except me. It still hurts to think about it. I didn't even get to say goodbye to them. We'll hopefully be able to join an ECFE class that runs in the evenings next time. I'm just stuck in a rut over all of this. I hope it gets better or I adjust. I already miss the stay-at-home-mom days, but I realize the party's over and I need to get back out there. All I can hope is that it ends up being worth it. 
Saturday, January 4, 2014

10 months!

Time seems a lot faster as Mira gets older. I remember doing Mira's one month and two month sticky belly photos and they seemed so far apart. Now her monthly birthdays creep up on me and I sometimes don't realize it's her monthly birthday until the actual day, in the middle of the day at that.

Some of our favorite things that Mira does:
- Carries objects in her mouth and crawls around. It honestly reminds me of a dog, but so so cute.
- She hugs us. A lot. Especially when we go and get her from her crib after nap time.
- She gets goofy. She will just randomly get hyper and roll around and fall on top of me.

Mira's current favorite things:
- Playing in her self-proclaimed "activity center" AKA my jewelry chest and night stand area. She likes to take out everything out of the chest and then take out all the drawers, then when she's finished with that part she'll play with all the cords, then she reaches for whatever is on the nightstand. Usually we keep our bedroom door shut for this reason.
- Taking things out of containers. I wonder when she will start putting them back in?
- Biting. Not so cool... She's bit me several times while nursing (it's getting to be more frequently now, like once a day) as well as on random places on my body. It HURTS.
- Falling into people. She likes to take a few steps and then just fall onto someone. She does this when she's having her goofy moments.
- When someone is laying on the ground, according to Mira, it's fair game to attack that person. She will try to climb us like a jungle gym, slap us, and once again, fall all over us. She will grab and pull my hair in this occasion.
- When we pick her up and run with her. The smile on her face and that little giggle she does is equivalent to being on a blissful tropical island. It just takes me to my happy place.
- Playing in the fridge. The second we open that door, if she is within a 5 foot radius, she books it over there. She just likes to stand inside and attempt to take everything out. She did help me out today, though, she found an old bag of bacon that needed to be thrown out. Good job Mira!
- Helping me "unload" the dishwasher. I have to immediately take out all the dangerous stuff, like knives and forks, but after that I let her have at it. Good thing our floor is clean!

Height/Weight: TBD at her appointment on Friday (which Adam is taking her to for the first time by himself! Exciting!) She's around 17 pounds right now.
Feeding: Breastfed throughout the day, between 3-4 ounces each time I'm guessing, then she's getting breakfast, lunch, and dinner eating solids. She loves breakfast because it's always a fruit, then lunchtime I usually give her a fruit mixed with a vegetable and she'll only eat about half, and then dinner I do the same as lunch but sometimes with a meat. Dinner is when I try new foods with her, so it's always reallllly messy because she ends up smearing the food everywhere. I bit the bullet and splurged on the Ella's kitchen, Plum organics, and Earthland's Best premade baby food pouches. The combinations looked so fun, because they use things like quinoa, kale, chickpeas, etc.

Mira's favorite foods: pieces of bread, pancakes (no syrup), yogurt and yogurt chips (finally!), fruit, oatmeal mixed with fruit, and snacks such as corn puffs, apple + ginger biscuit cookies, waffle wheels, etc. We've really had a lot of fun with the snacks in the baby/toddler food area of the grocery store.

I've also started giving Mira a bottle of formula (about 4-5 oz) before bedtime. I started doing this mainly because my milk supply is at its lowest this time of night, and it's an added bonus that it helps her sleep through the night longer. She was also in the 20th percentile for weight at her last doctor appointment, and I think just adding formula at night like this has helped her gain a lot of weight. I'm interested in what percentile she'll be in at her next appointment!
Clothes size: 9 months, still some six months, 6-9 months, and getting into 12 months! Crazy!
Diaper size: As of today, we just started her in size 3!
Development: Has 4 teeth! She drools like crazy now. And we have a walker! Took her first steps on Christmas Eve Eve. So cute to see her walk. She really thinks she's talking now, still no official words yet, though! She's always been so advanced with all her motor skills and overall physicality, the only thing I can think of that she's not advanced in is eating. She just seems so picky, but we just keep trying.

I'm in the process of booking Mira's ONE YEAR photos! So weird. It's exciting, though. She is at SUCH a fun age, we laugh so much at her, she has the best personality. I just can't get over how cute she is! We probably say that way too much for her own good ;)

Closing off with Mira walking with her walker (which I am obsessed with, but sorry everyone who got her gifts but it's her favorite christmas present)

Friday, January 3, 2014

Goal for the New Year

My goal for the new year is to focus on myself and my family. 

The one thing, the one single thing that makes me lose sight of what I have is comparison. Comparing what I have to what others have, and 99% of the time it's comparing myself to people that I don't even know in real life. It's people that I've seen on tv, or on instagram, or in magazines, or a friend of a friend of a friend's facebook profile that I stumbled across. I compare my house, my looks, my career, and any other materialistic thing you can think of. Honestly I think we do have a nice house, and I like the way I look, and I have had a good career for someone my age, and we do have a lot of nice things. So why do I let people I don't even know take that away from me? I don't know what goes on behind closed doors, and for all I know these people I'm comparing myself to might struggle a lot in areas that I'm flawless in. Nobody is perfect, I know this. So why do I trick myself into thinking that they can be? 

I made a facebook status a while back to remind myself to live my life at my own pace, in my own way, without watching how everyone else is doing it: Like doing yoga, learn to listen to your own body to dictate how your practice should look. By imagining there is no one else in the room, you can't compare your position or flexibility to others' and are completely fulfilled by where you are. 

This is exactly how I feel and need to remember to follow this. With that being said, I need to remind myself of all the great things we have going in our life, and all the great qualities I have and Adam has. I'm gonna write them down in big bold letters and hang it up on the fridge if need be. This year I want to be more positive, and replace words of negativity and complaining with words of kindness, affirmation, and positivity. 

So, I need to quit comparing, and to be positive about my own life. It's more important now than ever because we have a daughter now and I need to show her what she should be truly valuing in life. 
Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014!

I started off the year 2013 pregnant. I rang in the new year with a glass of fake champagne and a ripped maternity dress. I was a hot. mess.
This year I got to have a few cocktails, didn't feel like a balloon in my outfit, and still got to come home in time to feed our sweet baby for her first nursing of the night. (I'll go into THAT another time...)

Reflecting on 2 0 1 3....
I made it to a couple days short of 42 weeks before Mira finally decided to come out.
In 2013 we had a baby, something that I've always wondered what would be like my whole childhood. I couldn't have imagined her to be as perfect as she is. And I know Adam agrees. 

And I became a mom. I gladly make sacrifices for her, I want to ensure she has the perfect childhood, I just simply want the best for her. 
Each month that has gone by has had its highlights for Mira:

O N E  M O N T H - Mira started smiling at us

T W O  M O N T H S - Started rolling over front to back, and back to front

T H R E E  M O N T H S - She was laughing, babbling, grabbing things, and scooting forward during tummy time. This was the month we knew she was gonna keep us busybusybusy forever.

F O U R  M O N T H S - Giving us sloppy "kisses"

F I V E  M O N T H S - Started sitting up

S I X  M O N T H S - Started solids, started saying words in variations of 'mama', 'dada', 'baba', etc., started breast feeding herself by crouching down, and starting crawling army-crawl style.

S E V E N  M O N T H S - Started full on crawling at full pace and pulling herself up to stand

E I G H T  M O N T H S - Started free standing and got her first tooth! She also weaned herself off of her pacifier.

N I N E  M O N T H S - Took her first steps! And we started finger foods (fun, but completely a shitshow of a mess).

I can't believe in just a few days Mira will be 10 months. That means I'll be having to post another 10 month sticky belly picture, when it feels like just a couple days ago I was doing the 9 month one. I'm going to have to start planning her first birthday party, which is both exciting and sad at the same time.

Thank you for being good to us, 2013. We got so lucky with Mira, she couldn't be a better baby. Adam and I have never been closer or more in love, and we have our sweet little girl to thank for that. Here's to another good year filled with health, happiness, adventures, and good luck. Hello 2014!

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