Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Blog Award

I've never received a Blog Award before, but I have seen them on many of the blogs that I read. My sister-in-law, Blakely at With This Ring, gave me this award. Thanks Blakely! I appreciate it!

So, here are the rules:

Fill out the below questions, using only one word, pass along to six favorite bloggers, and tell 'em you did so.

Take it away...

1. Where is your cell phone? kitchen

2. Your hair? messy

3. Your mother? loving

4. Your father? giving

5. Your favorite food? carbs

6. Your dream last night? none

7. Your favorite drink? tea (iced & sweet)

8. Your dream/goal? success

9. What room are you in? living

10. Your hobby? blogs

11. Your fear? loss

12. Where do you want to be in six years? here

13. Where were you last night? home

14. Something that you aren't? hungry

15. Muffins? blueberry

16. Wish list item? Wii

17. Where did you grow up? NY

18. Last thing you did? ate

19. What are you wearing? pajamas

20. Your TV? Sony

21. Your pets? none

22. Friends? great

23. Your life? awesome

24. Your mood? lazy

25. Missing someone? always

26. Vehicle? Jeep

27. Something you're not wearing? socks

28. Your favorite store? Kohls

29. Your favorite color? blue

30. When was the last time you laughed? today

31. Last time you cried? unsure

32. Your best friend? husband

33. One place that I could go over and over? Vegas (good answer, Blakely)

34. One person who emails you regularly? Keith

35. Favorite place to eat? Mexican

& the next lucky winners are...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Starting Solids

We started feeding Jacob solids last week per the advice of our doctor. The hope is that the solid food will help his GERD and also will keep him from spitting up as much. So far, as a whole, I haven't really seen a difference in the spitting up, but I am hopeful that it will get better as his tummy adjusts to this new addition.

Like most babies, Jacob is eating rice cereal to start. I was hesitant to start him on solids knowing how messy and time consuming it can be (compared to breastfeeding). Also, I have heard and read many mom's opinions about not starting solids too soon. Most say you should wait until 6 months and Jacob is not even 5 months old right now. I certainly don't want to do anything that is not good for him!

Now, after a week of feeding him cereal once per day, I think I made the right decision. He is doing really good and seems to really enjoy eating! [Note: this does not suprise me since he is my son and I love to eat!] He eats really well from the spoon and he seems to like the cereal when it is thicker rather than runny. (The first few days, I mixed a lot of breastmilk in so that it was more liquidy. Now it is a more of a thick consistency and he is able to eat it a lot easier.)

I feed him the cereal during his late-afternoon feeding, usually around 3pm. Up until today, I was giving him the cereal first (about a tablespoon mixed with breastmilk) and then breastfeeding him. Today, I decided to do it the other way around and I think it worked better. He didn't spit up as much after eating and I think the heaviness of the cereal really did help to keep everything down, as the doctor said it would.

I haven't really decided what I am going to do about introducing other things - like fruits and veggies - into Jacob's diet. I am leaning towards waiting another month or so and just increasing his cereal to two or three times per day. I am not sure if that is a good idea or not (I have never done this before and really am just wingin' it!!) so we shall see.

For now, here is a little clip of Jacob's cereal eating from yesterday. (Please excuse the loud banging noise from me putting the bowl back on the table repeatedly. I didn't realize how loud it really was!)


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

First pair of shoes

Thanks to my grandma, who is visiting us from Rochester...

...Jacob has his first pair of shoes!

As you can see, he really likes them....

....and Daddy already has Jacob practicing his walking!

I love the shoes and am so glad that he has something to keep his little feet warm when we go outside now. THANK YOU NANA!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Is it Fall or Winter?

Fall is my favorite time of year. Who doesn't love falling leaves, apple picking, pumpkins, and the crispness in the air? Well, unfortunately this year, so far, Fall has not been "crisp", it has been downright cold (except for last Friday when it was 80 degrees...that's a bit too warm!!)

Even though it is only October, the weather here in Charlottesville has been pretty crappy! The past few days it has been rainy and the highs have only been in the 40s....brrrr!

Since I had a summer baby, I am not the greatest at figuring out how to dress Jacob for cold weather. Luckily, we were given a really cute winter hat from one of Keith's co-workers.

On Wednesday night, Jacob donned the hat* as we were leaving Katie & Shaun's house. I personally think he looks really cute, but I am not super excited about having to bundle my baby up just yet.

*Note: Jacob also had blankets on him, although they can't be seen in this picture. I don't want anyone to think that I took my baby outside in 40 degree temeratures in just a hat!

Fortunately, the weather forecast is calling for an increase in temperatures and we will be getting back to "normal" around here next week - highs in the 60s! That's the Fall that I like to see!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Four Months Old

Jacob turned four months old last week. Can you believe it? Even he can't believe that sign says FOUR months...holy cow...where has the time gone?

I can't believe how big he is getting and how he is turning from a small baby into a little boy. I have a hard time remembering how little he once was as he has changed so much in the last four months.

We went to the doctor today and she told me that he is just perfect (which I already knew!). He currently weighs 15lbs, 13 oz (70th percentile) and is 25 inches long (50th percentile). She was impressed that he was rolling over and that he had started when he was three months old. She said that means he is "ahead of the game" with his gross motor skills. I am already bracing myself for him to start crawling early!!

He also got three shots today and he did really well. He cried when he actually got the shots but once I picked him up and cuddled him a bit, he settled down. He even fell asleep on the way home from the doctor's office.

I talked to the doctor about Jacob's spitting up, which is really annoying (for him and me) and happens more some days than others. I was hoping that it was going to end sooner than later, but it seems to be continuing. She suggested that we start giving him a small amount of rice cereal before each feeding. She said that this should help keep everything down. I can't say that I am super excited about starting Jacob on solids, for numerous is messy, it is more work that just breastfeeding, and it requires more planning when we are out of the house. I am willing to try it though, so that he is no longer in discomfort. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes!

These days, I am really enjoying being at home full-time with Jacob as his personality is really coming out. He is such a happy baby - even first thing in the morning (he certainly didn't get that from me!). He smiles most of the day and is easily amused by the littlest things. His bouts of laughter are contagious - he sometimes giggles when other times, he lets out these huge laughs! He is also very ticklish and I can't resist tickling his little body so that I can hear him let out a little giggle.

He is especially happy and giggly when Daddy gets home in the evening. I think it is awesome to see the two of them interacting and I can tell the love that Jacob has for Keith just by the look in his eyes.

Keith is hoping to pass his love of books on to Jacob. Right now, Jacob is not super excited about books, but we continue to read to him and hopefully, as he gets older, he will learn to love them.

One thing he does enjoy is singing. And, although, I know that I don't have the best singing voice, Jacob really likes listening to me sing. His favorite songs right now are "The Wheels on the Bus", "The Farmer in the Dell", and "You are my Sunshine". Sometimes he even "joins" in while I am singing. It is so cute to see him being able to interact with me more and more.

Physically, Jacob is becoming stronger every day. He now holds his head up really well and loves to be on his stomach. He will lay on the couch or on the floor for awhile, just hanging out. He loves to look around and take in his surroundings.

I think he really enjoys the new views he is getting from being able to sit up in the Bumbo seat or play in the Hop 'n Pop.

He doesn't really "hop" too much, but he is learning how to make the music work by either extending his legs or hitting one of the buttons. And, he loves to watch the lights. It's so much fun to watch him learn new things.

Breastfeeding is still going really well, although Jacob does get easily distracted these days. He often will stop eating and start looking around if he hears someone talking nearby or if I have the TV on. I used to be able to feed him while catching up on my favorite DVRed TV show, but these days I am finding it easier to feed him in silence. This way he can concentrate on eating and not on what is going on around him. Also, I have learned that he and I can connect better when there is less going on around us. I love the closeness that I feel towards him when I am feeding him. Time is going by so fast that I know these days are going to come to an end all too soon.

Sleeping is also something that continues to go well, although the last week or so, Jacob has started waking up every 3-4 hours during the night (he had been sleeping for 10-11 hours straight most nights). I am attributing it to a growth spurt and hoping that it ends soon. The doctor suggested that I do not feed him when he wakes up and I may try that tactic tonight. I am not sure I will be able to ignore his fussing, but I will try.

He is definitely a stomach sleeper and instantly turns over onto his stomach when we put him in the crib on his back. He also has a tendancy to scoot up and sleep in the very corner of his crib. It is quite cute, but makes me nervous every time I see him like this. I worry that he is going to suffocate himself when he turns his face towards the bumper. I go in and check on him often when I am awake.
All in all, our little boy is growing up and I am happy and sad all at the same time. It is so awesome to see him acquire new skills and learn new things everyday, but I am sad that these "baby" days are going by so quickly. Like I have said numerous times, I am truly blessed to be Jacob's mommy and I love him more and more everyday!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The newest addition

The newest addition to the ever growing Stank family arrived yesterday. Katie gave birth to Reid Thomas Arnold at 2:32pm. He weighed in at 7lbs, 14oz and is 19 1/4 inches long. As you can see, he has a head full of dark hair (just like his brother, Pierce, did).

Even though Katie was 5 days past her due date and we were all getting very impatient, I believe the timing of his arrival was perfect. Katie did not want to be induced nor have an medical interventions (epidural, pain meds, c-section) and, thankfully, she was able to get through it just the way she wanted it to be.

(Side note: since I just had a baby 4 months ago and I feel like it was the WORST pain I have ever felt...and I only got to 5 cm dilated and had an epidural and a c-section....I give props to people like Katie who can go through the entire thing without any pain meds. Wow!!!)

We were able to meet Baby Reid last night at the hospital. It was definitely harder to be there with Jacob since he can't go past the check-in desk (they only allow siblings to be in the maternity rooms). I had to stay with him in the waiting area until Keith arrived and then we switched off. I finally got to hold Reid for just a minute before we needed to head home. Hopefully I will get a chance to see him again today, and if not, I am sure we will be spending some good quality time together once he comes home!

Here is a picture of my parents (Mimi & Papa) holding their newest grandson.

Even though I guessed that Katie was having a girl, I am super excited that Jacob and Reid are so close in age and will grow up together. I look forward to seeing them running around together (with Pierce as the ring leader, I am sure!).

Congrats to Shaun, Katie & Pierce! We love you and we can't wait to spend more time with all of you and your newest addition!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Pulling My Hair Out

Ok, I am not really pulling my hair is just falling out! Sometimes in handfuls. Yuck!

Everyone knows the usual pregnancy symptoms and what happens to a woman's body when she is pregnant - weight gain, heartburn, fatigue, breast tenderness, nausea & vomiting, frequent urination, food cravings, and all the other not-so-fun things. But, did you know that when a woman is pregnant her hair is affected? Yes, according to what I have read, due to hormones, a pregnant woman's hair is in a "resting state". This means that fewer hairs fall out when you are pregnant which makes your hair seem thicker and fuller. After delivery, your hormones return to normal levels and your hair returns to its normal cycle. Sometimes the hair that you didn't lose during your pregnancy all falls out at once. I can't say that I actually noticed that it was staying in more when I was pregnant, but boy am I noticing it on the other end now!

For as long as I can remember, I have had thick hair and some has always fallen out when I am washing or brushing my hair. But, these days, washing, blowdrying, brushing or just running my fingers through my hair can cause it to come out. It seems to fall out the most when I am washing and brushing my hair, but sometimes just touching it causes a few loose strands to fall out.

This is all very annoying to me for numerous reasons:

First, I am finding pieces of hair everywhere in my house - on the newly swept & washed kitchen floor, in the kitchen sink, in Jacob's crib and sometimes in his little hand (where he has probably touched my hair and "grabbed" a piece).

Second, I had to buy a drain cover for our bathtub because my hair was going down the drain and causing it to get clogged. Now, I have a "cover" of sorts over the drain and when I am done showering, I have to use a kleenex to grab the gob of hair out of the tub....gross, but I guess it's better than clogging up the drain!

Third, it is very annoying and distracting when stray pieces fall onto my shirt - or worse, down my shirt! Yesterday when I was at church, I knew there was a piece of hair down my shirt between my boobs (sorry if this is TMI) and it was so annoying and uncomfortable. I kept trying to get it out without looking like a complete idiot by sticking my hand down my shirt in the middle of the service! Eventually, I was able to nonchalantly move my hand in just the right way so I was able to get it out. Have you ever had a piece of hair on your face or shoulder or stomach or between your boobs? If not, be glad...because it isn't pleasant!!

And lastly, no matter how often I vacuum the bedroom (where I brush & blowdry my hair), there always seems to be hair! And, the vacuum cleaner is so full of hair, that I have to sometimes "unravel" it from the roller. Again....gross!

Thankfully, from what I have heard, I am at the peak of the falling out stage right now. It seems as though 3-4 months after delivery is when you lose the most hair, and by 6-12 months, it will be back to normal. Thank goodness! I am certainly getting sick and tired of it and thinking about getting pregnant again just so I can keep my hair from falling out. Ok, just kidding!!! It would be easier just to chop it all off. I guess I will settle for neither at this point and just look forward to the days when it decides to "rest" again. I am sure that before long, I really will be pulling my hair out as Jacob gets older.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Jacob in motion...

After many attempts at capturing video of Jacob to upload on here, I have FINALLY done it. I am still not able to move video from our videocamera to the computer (the firewire that I bought at Best Buy a few weeks ago didn't work). But, I am able to use the camera on my computer to get some good video shots of the cute things that he does! It's not the easiest way to capture video, but it works.

I spent an hour or so yesterday reading a tutorial of iMovie, which is the software that is on a Mac computer which allows you to edit video. Once it is edited, I use youtube to get the video uploaded to the web. It isn't really hard to do, it just takes time. I hope I can use it to produce many more videos to include in my blog posts.

For now, here is my first attempt.....

Thursday, October 1, 2009

I'm baaaack.....

I have recently taken a hiatus from blogging. Not on purpose really, I just have been a slacker about getting on here and typing up what has been going on with us.

Well, now I am back! I have a few posts in my head that I am going to type up in the next few days and I FINALLY have video of Jacob to share! It has taken me forever to figure out how to post a video and now I finally have one. Unfortunately, you will have to wait until tomorrow to see it!

I am leaving in a little while to go to the U2 concert at Scott Stadium. I am not a huge U2 fan but Keith wanted to go. His birthday is next week so this is his birthday present. My friend, and former co-worker, Roxann is coming over to watch Jacob for us. I am anxious about leaving him, but I know that he will be in good hands. I need to run now to get things ready for her.

Be on the lookout for new posts in the near future......