Friday, October 30, 2009

Two Month Visit(s)

Huh. I just looked it up.
Alex, at two months, weighed 11 lbs, 7 oz and measured 23.5 inches long.
Max weighs 11 lbs, 8 oz and measures 23.75 inches.

Just about the same. That's kind of neat! :)
Today, instead of seeing Dr. Brewer, we saw a fluffy bumble bee! I should have taken a picture, but I was afraid it might be a little too "camera nazi" (as Keith calls me...) to ask the pediatrician if I could take a picture of her dressed as a bumble bee. I think it's pretty neat that we have such a fun pediatrician, though! :)

Max is healthy, growing just fine, in the 50th percentile for weight & the 75th percentile for height. Dr. Brewer had no concerns. He might have a bit of thrush, so she gave me a prescription...but he had just nursed, too, so it's possible that he just had milk on his tongue.

Here's Alex hanging out with Grandma P during the appointment. Dr. Brewer gave him a pack of Halloween crayons to keep busy, so Alex and Grandma colored on the paper.
Here's Alex at his 2 month visit. Even then, he was fascinated with all the equipment on the wall. Now, it's hard to keep him from touching it when he's on the table!

I'd asked Grandma if she would mind staying in the car with Alex so he wasn't exposed to any flu germs in the waiting room, and she was willing to do that. (He had the regular flu vaccine last month, but hasn't had the H1N1 vaccine.) When I signed in, though, I talked with the mother of one of my former students. She's working at the pediatrician's office now, and she got us straight into a room without any I ran out to the car & told Alex and Grandma to come on in. We were 25 minutes early, too! :)

We also visited with Nana and Melissa at Cracker Barrel. Melissa is Nana's helper, and she's the mom of 3 boys. She's good at cuddling Alex & Max! Here are a few pictures from our breakfast.

Breakfast was first, then the pediatrician, and THEN we stopped at The Chocolate Shoppe for lunch...and we STILL made it home for naptime! Wow!
Now, we just have to wait & see how poor little Max reacts to his vaccinations. Alex felt miserable for about 24 hours after his 2 month shots. Hopefully Max isn't so miserable...I hate to see my little ones suffering! We'll just keep giving him Tylenol & hope for the best!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Two Months Old

Our little newborn is already two months old. Where does the time go? Wow!

Max is a pretty good little baby. He gives us big smiles, goes to sleep easily for naps & bedtime, and is often willing to lie contentedly when he wakes in the morning. He has his fussy times, mostly in the evening or during church on Sunday morning, but no baby is perfect!

Max has been sleeping pretty well lately. Most nights, he gives us a stretch of 5 or 6 hours - from 11 until 5ish. I'm enjoying that immensely! Now that I've said something, he'll probably sleep in 3 hour stretches tonight, ha ha! :)

The past few nights, I've nursed him, cuddled him until he's drowsy, and put him in bed awake. He is drifting off to sleep independently, which I think is a pretty important thing. That way, if he wakes in the night, he can get himself back to sleep. Good for you, Max!

He's starting to "talk" to us, which is one of my favorite things about babies at this age - looking right into our eyes and telling us those little baby stories. Wouldn't you love to know what babies are saying?
Max has bright, alert eyes. He loves to look around & take it all in. He often sits in my arms & watches Alex play. He will smile at Alex, and Alex just LOVES it!

Alex absolutely LOVES to hold Max. He will clap his hands and then hold out his arms, which I've learned means, "Mom, I want to hold the baby!" I'll ask Alex to go sit down, and he'll run over to climb onto the couch. He is so proud to be holding his little brother. Max doesn't always like it, as Alex doesn't really hold him securely, but Alex thinks it's the best thing!

Max isn't spending as much time in the swing, as we're working on more structured naps. He's taking a 2 - 3 hour nap every afternoon. It often coincides with Alex's nap, and I certainly won't complain about that! I'm kind of tailoring his mornings so that he will be sleepy at around the time I put Alex down for a nap...which means I usually wake him from his morning nap after about an hour of sleep. Then he'll stay awake while we play, eat lunch & read stories, and I'll put him in the bassinet either right before or after I put Alex to bed. There are days when it doesn't work out, but it sure is nice when it does!
Since he's in the bassinet, and I'm nearby, I let him take his daytime naps on his tummy. I'll swaddle him for his naps once in a while, but he is just so content to sleep on his tummy. At night, he sleeps swaddled & either on his side or his back.

Max will sit in a bouncer seat for 10 - 15 minutes...IF there's enough activity to keep him from getting bored! It's so nice having two bouncers this time around! We keep the "boring" bouncer in the living room, and we keep the Rainforest bouncer in our bedroom. He'll sit in the Rainforest bouncer & watch the lights while I take a shower or put away laundry. As soon as the lights/music stops, he'll start to fuss!

Max has pretty good control of his neck muscles. He loves to hold up his head & look all around. It won't be long, and he'll be ready to sit in his pretty, purple Bumbo seat. (Thanks, Aunt Leanne! Our boys are secure enough in their "boyhood" to handle a purple seat!) We tried out the Bumbo the other day, and it held Max very nicely, but I'm just afraid that he'd have a hard time keeping his head up on his own for any length of time. (After Max tried it, Alex thought it was great, climbed in, and got his little tushy stuck in the chair. Too bad I didn't get a picture!)

Max is still nursing quickly. I don't think it ever takes him more than 10 minutes to nurse fully. That boy likes his milk! I like the snuggle time, but it sure is convenient to have a little one who nurses so quickly.

Bottles? Well, he'll take them, but only when he's good & ready. He has to be REALLY hungry to willingly take it. Last night, he sucked it down just as fast as he nurses. Keith & I were shocked! Most nights, he grudgingly and slowly takes about 2 ounces and then stops. Usually, I'll let him nurse often in the evenings. I guess, for the sake of taking a bottle nicely, I'll have to make sure we wait 2 - 3 hours from the last feeding & make sure he's truly hungry - not just looking for a snack.

He's fitting 0 - 3 month clothes very nicely now. Everything seems to fit him just more "drowning" in his clothing! I love to see him in some of the outfits that were so cute on Alex. I often keep him in sleepers at home, but love to see him looking so "grown-up" in his nicer clothes, especially little polo shirts. Too cute!

I have to confess that I don't give him as much "tummy time" as I should. I'm sure the pediatrician will ask at his 2 month appointment on Friday. It's hard! If I put him on his tummy on the floor, Alex wants to sit on him! I try to give him tummy time on the Boppy pillow in Max's room when I put away clothes so I can keep a close eye on Alex, but then Alex drives his trucks up & down poor Max. I'm sure he'll still grow just fine without a ton of tummy time! :)

Like I said, Max's pediatrician appointment is this week Friday, so we'll have to see what he weighs at a little over 2 months. I'll make a guess of 11 lbs...and I'm sure to be wrong! So...check back on Friday for the real weight...and in the meantime, pray that Mommy & Max both handle Max's 2 month vaccinations just fine :)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Hi-ye Nana!

Alex is very into saying "hi" and "bye" lately. It sounds more like "hi-ye" and "bye-ye", though.

Keith called Nana (Keith's grandma) tonight to wish her well, as she is having surgery tomorrow. Alex crawled up on his lap, so Keith put the phone to Alex's ear. Alex said "HI!" on the phone for the first time ever. Lucky Nana was the first one to hear Alex say hi! :)

So, Nana, here are the pictures of your phone call with Alex!

(excuse the lack of clothing on a 50 degree day - this was right after dinner, and Alex was COVERED with mashed I stripped him down to his onesie!)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Today's Cuteness

Kiddos...they may drive you crazy some days, but they're just SOOOO cute that you have to forgive them for the crazy moments.

Brotherly love...Alex asks to "hold" Max every day. He LOVES when I take pictures of him and Max.
HAPPY Little Boy!
"Helping" Mama make an orange jello dessert to bring to Grandma's house.

It passes Alex's taste test! :)


So I don't forget the cuteness...

Yesterday, the boys & I went to visit Grandma & Grandpa S for the day. We had a simple lunch - cleaning out the leftovers from my mom's fridge.

Alex was eating some leftover waffles. He cleaned his plate, looked up, and said, "Awfuls! Moh awfuls!"

Complement? Criticism? Whatever it was, it was cute!
Thanks for the smiles, little man! :)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


My friend Karen gave Alex a Playdoh octopus set as a big brother gift. We already had some playdoh for kids I babysat, but now we have a lot more fun tools & toys! I pulled out the playdoh from time to time after Alex turned one, but he was more interested in eating it than in playing with it.

Now, finally, he's getting the idea! We can sit at the table & play for 30 minutes without playdoh entering Alex's mouth! :)

He usually chooses to play with yellow or orange dough. Poor Alex - his crazy mama only lets him use one color at a time, as I *hate* when the colors get mixed together. I probably need to get over it, don't I?!
He is not only learning how to use the tools, but also how to pick up what he has dropped and how to put away the playdoh and tools when we are finished. He's been very good about obediently putting away the tools when he's ready to climb down from the chair. I'm impressed!

On a funny note, I've left the playdoh box on the kitchen table for about 5 days...lazy me! I walked into the kitchen one day to find Alex sitting ON the kitchen table, pulling out his favorite toys & popping the lid off of a container of dough. Apparently, he was ready to play! (And, yes, he did get in trouble for sitting on the table...but, in his defense, it was the only way he could reach the playdoh!)

Friday, October 16, 2009

The rest of the pictures...


Click above if you're curious to see the rest of the Picture People pictures...all the ones that I didn't order, that is! :)

(If our last name is anywhere on the photo site, please let me know so I can remove the photo link. Thanks!)

Just For Fun...

We got a duplicate on a big brother gift, so I used the money to buy Alex a very special toy. He LOVES this latches board by Melissa & Doug toys! He even tried to take it in the bathtub one night because he wasn't ready to stop playing!
I wouldn't use the word jealous, but Alex wants to be in every picture with Max. He's very proud of his baby brother, and he always wants to be near Max.

He's sorting red & green noodles into red & green bowls. When prompted, Alex will say "geen" and "der". For some reason, he says red backwards. He will purposely put a green noodle in the red bowl, grin at me, and say "Uh-oh!"

Snugglin' with Daddy

I see this about a zillion times a day (slight exaggeration...), but Alex LOVES to cuddle with the baby.

He just looks TOO grown-up!

Cheap entertainment - and the contents were a VERY special treat for Mama!

enjoying the lights & music - sometimes he "talks" to the lights

ready for church in his Curious George shirt (Alex LOVES it!)

I was so sad when Alex outgrew this hat, and I'm so glad that it should fit Max through the winter!

Monday, October 12, 2009

A Day at the Mall

Last week, I took the boys to get their pictures taken at Picture People. I wanted to get there before Max outgrew his "Little Brother" onesie.

I try to take turns inviting family to come along for pictures, and I'd planned to ask my mom to come along. Unfortunately, that didn't work out...but Deb & Donna were able to come along, and it turned into a pretty nice day.

We got the first appointment of the day - 10 AM. Both boys were awake and happy, which I still find absolutely unbelievable! The photographer was GREAT at positioning the boys and capturing shots in that brief moment before kiddos moved or looked away. We got some great pictures that made me smile! :)

I exercised as much willpower as I could, getting just the free package with coupon, an extra page of 4x6s for aunts & uncles, and one photo sheet to fill our frame at home. There are so many other portraits that I *wish* I could have gotten, as well, but it's so pricy! I went in determined to keep it minimal, but it was TOUGH!

Alex got SPOILED on this day! Alex got to go on his first carousel ride at the mall, and he just LOVED it! We don't go to the mall often, but when we do, Alex loves to stand and watch the carousel. Aunt Deb treated Alex to his very first ride. He picked his horse, and he smiled the whole time! Thank you, Aunt Deb!

We had lunch at Subway, with a very special dessert - FREE cookies! We happened to be at the mall on the day that Mrs. Fields was giving away one free cookie per person between 11 AM and 1 PM. Yum!

Alex also got to ride on the escalator...which might not sound that special, but it's the first time I've let him stand on an escalator on his own two feet. He held my hand while his aunties & baby brother waited at the bottom. We went up and down, up and down. He was thrilled!

We'd borrowed Karen's double stroller - the Joovy Caboose - to try it out, and Alex loved that, too! He thought it was pretty neat to sit on the jumpseat on the back!

I'm not sure there's anything about this day that Alex didn't enjoy! I had a lot of fun, too, and enjoyed sharing a day with my sisters!

Max? He was just along for the ride. ;)

(I'll post the Picture People photos just as soon as I figure out where the scanner cord is hiding!)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Real Life

(written Sunday night, but just getting around to posting it now...)

An e-mail from a friend got me thinking. She said, "I don't know how you get it all done, you're so regular at blogging and obviously do a lot with the boys." Then, while glancing at Facebook as I de-stressed from a crazy day, I saw a post from someone that said it seems like everyone else has a good life while hers is tough.

Both of those posts got me thinking how we document/comment on the good stuff in life, but we don't often touch on the negative. Sometimes it's because we like to focus on the positive; other times, it might be a matter of keeping a certain image of the "good life". For me, it's not at all about portraying the image of a perfect's just that I don't see the point of blogging about the lousy stuff when there's so much good in our lives!

But, just to keep it real, here's an honest look at our past few days...from someone who does NOT want to use the blog to complain, but wants you to see that our life is just as normal (and crazy) as everyone else's life...

Thursday night (into Friday) was a terrible night for Alex. He just could not sleep, woke up crying many times, and needed to be put back in bed repeatedly. Nobody got much sleep. Friday was a long day, and I was tired, had to go to a midwife appointment, and didn't do ANYTHING around the house...including actively playing with a bored (and, therefore, mischievous) Alex. Keith came home to a messy house, frozen pizza for dinner, and a somewhat cranky wife.

Looking forward to a good night's sleep on Friday night...well, it didn't happen! Max was nursing about once every hour - hour & a half all day long. I figured he'd sleep extra well that night, but nope...the boy who's been sleeping a 5-6 hour stretch at night woke every 1 - 1.5 hours ALL NIGHT LONG. And there's no taking turns with night wakings when you nurse. A still-tired mommy didn't want to do ANYTHING on Saturday, either. We cancelled plans with friends that night, got a pizza for dinner, and bummed around at home. (I did manage to scrub the kitchen floor for the first time since Max was born, was getting pretty nasty!)

The constant nursing continued all day Saturday & all day Sunday, and I'm sure it was just a 6 week growth spurt. On top of this, Max hadn't pooped since Wednesday. (How's that for honest & real?! You probably didn't want to know that.) He was cranky, uncomfortable, and restless. Even in his sleep, he was grunting and moaning. He was uncomfortable on Sunday, and he cried almost all morning and early afternoon. We were all exhausted. I was so exhausted that I forgot to put Alex down for a nap on Sunday afternoon...and I *never* forget naptime!

The house is a wreck. The trash can and recycle bin are overflowing. The kitchen is filthy. The laundry is clean, but in need of folding/putting away. There are about 9,472 toys on our living room floor. I'd show you pictures, but I haven't even attempted to use the camera on this crazy day.

We've been bouncing, rocking, and doing anything else possible to keep Max comfortable. Alex wanted our attention, too, of course, so whoever wasn't bouncing & rocking was reading 37 tractor books in a row...or zooming cars around the living room floor...or letting the dog out for the 94th time today...or yelling at Alex for sitting in the baby's swing...or throwing something together and calling it a meal. We ate pizza three times this weekend. How's that for healthy?! (For the record, I could NOT have survived this weekend without Keith. He's a great daddy & a very patient husband!)

I'm sure this is more than you want to know, but Max finally had a 2 nice big dirty diapers on Sunday afternoon, which Mama celebrated by letting out a great big cheer and HAPPILY changing dirty diapers. He still had a lot of...uh...gassy issues to work through, so we spent the rest of the day taking turns bouncing an uncomfortable baby and keeping Alex occupied.

Now it's Sunday night. The house is still a wreck. Keith is at football night with the guys, hopefully enjoying some much-needed kid-free time. Alex is sleeping in his bed. Max is sleeping on my chest. (Ahhh, the sweet little moments...nothing better than a sweet-smelling baby cuddled on your chest!)

And I'm trying to relax after a crazy day...and let you know that we're just a real as the rest of you! :)

Brothers & Smiles

Max is giving out smiles a little more freely these days. It's just hard to capture it on camera...but here are a few smiles for you to enjoy! You'll see that Alex is anxious for Max to get big enough to play with him.

Max was giving Alex BIG grins as Alex drove the Matchbox car all over his little brother.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

1 Month

There's not much to say about a 1 month old, other than STOP GROWING!!!!! I don't think Max is keeping his promise to stay newborn forever. He's already noticably bigger, more alert, and outgrowing his newborn clothes.

We used up his NB diapers and moved up to Size 1 late last week. We've probably pushed the limits on the NB diapers, but I just couldn't let him grow! :) We're using our small cloth diapers when we're at home, but sticking with disposables when we're out and about. When he's a few pounds bigger, we should have enough cloth diapers that fit him, and then we can full-time cloth diaper him. (But that won't happen because I'm not letting him grow any bigger...)

Max is a fairly quick nurser, eating in 15 minutes or less most of the time. He's done that from the time he was born! It's so odd, since Alex took a lot longer, and I feel like I'm not feeding Max enough. I guess we're doing okay, since he keeps growing!

Max goes to bed around 10:30 PM, then usually wakes to eat around 3 AM, and then again at around 5:30 AM and 7:30 AM. He nurses quickly, then goes right back to sleep during the night. While my sleep is interrupted, it's not too bad since he's such a quick nurser. Some nights, he'll wake around 1:30/2 AM, and then he's usually up a few more times during the night. When that happens, he barely nurses & I can't keep him awake to eat more...which leads to those additional night-time wakings. It's frustrating, but it's only temporary...I can handle it! He's been getting better about giving us a longer first stretch, and we're hopeful that this will happen more and more often! We swaddle him for his night-time sleep, so hopefully that's helping to teach him that it's time for "real" sleep.

Speaking of swaddling, Alex loved it and we had to really work at getting him to sleep without the swaddle blanket when he outgrew it. Max...well, not so much! He tolerates it, but some nights, I'll go in to feed him & find that he has the swaddle wrapped around his middle with his legs and arms sticking out from above & below the wrap! Silly boy!

He likes the swing a lot more than Alex ever did. Max will contentedly swing to sleep. He doesn't care for bouncy seats as much as Alex did at this age, though. Max also LOVES to be in the sling! I mainly use it for shopping, taking walks, or holding him while out & about...times when it's the most convenient way to carry a little baby while still caring for a toddler. A few days ago, though, I used it at home because Max was fussy & the sling just totally relaxes him. It was the only way to get dinner on the table! I don't know how I would live without this sling - it's a lifesaver! So, thanks, random Walmart customer who makes baby were a BIG help! Thanks, too, to Grandma P for offering me the sling as a birthday present!

He has started following objects (like a rattle or bright toy) with his eyes or turning his head to follow it. We tried him under a play gym a few days ago, and he was content and enjoying the lights/colors, but I worry that Big Brother might step on him! Maybe I'll have to put a play gym in the pack n play to protect Max as he looks at the toys!
Max is generally a content, relaxed baby. He sleeps through just about any noise other than Maggie's barking. (If only he could teach his big brother that trick!) He doesn't usually fuss during the day, unless he has a specific need. He does have a fussy time most evenings, but it's not terrible. Hopefully he'll get past that before too long!

I'm pretty sure he smiled (a "real" smile) for the first time at about 4 weeks old. He was wide awake, sitting on my lap, and I was talking to him. He was looking straight into my eyes when he grinned. He did the same thing with my sister last week Tuesday at Kohl's. We tried to get a picture, but didn't act quickly enough. Earlier this week, he was smiling at Alex, too. I wish I had that on camera! He also smiled at Keith a few days ago, and he's given me a few more smiles late this week. It is awfully rewarding to see those first smiles!

Since we are skipping the one month pediatrician visit, we're not sure about accurate height or weight at one month. We stopped by my friend Karen's house this week, and we used her baby scale while we were there: 9 lbs, 6.5 oz. (Alex weighed 9 lbs at his one month visit.)
That's about all there is to say for now...he's growing, he's healthy, and we are totally in love! :)

(The pictures in this post are just a few random pictures from this month that hadn't been used anywhere else on the blog.)