7.5 weeks of Olivia!

So I totally dropped the ball on doing a 6 week update on Olivia, and we are already closing in on 8 weeks, so a 7.5 week update it will be ๐Ÿ™‚

You can read previous updates here:

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In the 4 week update I talked about how awake and alert Olivia was becoming, and that increased tenfold in the last 3.5 weeks. Now when she is awake she is full on looking around, making eye contact and following you with her eyes. As Olivia has started to awaken more to the world this means she sleeps less… and in the last 3.5 weeks that sometimes meant a lot less!

Around 5 weeks she started smiling and now she is smiling all of the time and it is beyond adorable. The above photo was taken at exactly 5 weeks old.

We also started giving her the pacifier around this time. Nothing cuter than a little baby with her suckie ๐Ÿ™‚ I know some people have a love/hate relationship with the pacifier but it has been a lifesaver lately, especially during the middle of the night wake ups!

We were still getting the long stretches of sleep up until about 6 weeks. Then suddenly at 6 weeks it was like a flip had been switched and for the past 1.5 weeks Olivia has been fighting sleep like crazy. Suddenly it was taking several hours to get her down for the night and when she woke in the night she was often awake or 1 – 2 hours. This made for a pretty tired momma!

Baby wearing was key during some of these more fussy periods in the evening especially since her daddy has been working night shift the last two weeks!

And, when all else fails, I would just let her sleep on my chest during the day as it seems to be one of her very favourite places to sleep and really how can you not absolutely adore these baby cuddles!

My laundry assistant!ย 

It was so fun watching Olivia start to really look at things over the last few weeks. Every morning I lay her down on her play mat and usually prop a book in front of her while I get ready for the day! She also LOVES looking at the collage wall behind our couch in the living room. We call them “her pictures”.

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She also got baby sat for the first time! She went over to my moms one evening while I got my nails done and then Eric and I rented a movie and ate sushi. Below is grammy giving her the bottle ๐Ÿ™‚

And here she is cuddling with grandpa (my dad) and below sitting with her great grandpa (my grandpa). This is one loved little girl!

As mentioned, around 6 weeks Olivia went through the 2nd leap in her mental development. We noticed she was more awake and alert than ever and all of a sudden getting her to sleep took concentrated effort. For the first few weeks she would eat and you would rock her and she’d be asleep. If you got her into a deep enough sleep laying her in her bassinet was no big deal and she would always stay asleep.

Suddenly you’d lay her in her bassinet and no matter how deep of a sleep she was in her little eyes would fly open! Argh! So we had to start getting creative and making sure she was really swaddled well and also give her her pacifier – and sometimes prop that pacifier in her mouth because otherwise it would fall out and then she’d really wake up!

We’ve also started to create a bedtime routine over the last couple of weeks that includes a bath, changing into her PJ’s, nursing her and then rocking her to sleep. As mentioned, sometimes the rocking part lasted 1 – 2 hours. Oy! Olivia REALLY loves her baths now though and no matter how upset or fussy she is being she always calms down and relaxes in the bath.

Olivia is still sleeping in the bassinet beside our bed at night but during the day she is taking naps in her crib. Luckily the amazing baby nest my grandma made us makes the transition between bassinet and crib really easy. We will probably start to transition her to sleeping in her crib at night around 10 weeks or so but we’ll see how it goes. Eric was just on night shift for 2 weeks so I felt more comfortable having her in our room. Also when she was suddenly waking up every 2 – 3 hours after going for 4 – 5 hour stretches before it was nice to have her in our room as I’d just quickly nurse her in the chair in our room or in the bed in the middle of the night. I can handle walking down the hall to the nursery for one wake up per night but it got pretty exhausting with 2 or 3!

My aunt hosted a baby shower for Olivia last weekend and she was absolutely showered with amazing gifts and love! We are so lucky. She got so many cute outfits and she wore this adorable outfit that Aunty Lisa sent up for her. Dressing a baby girl is so fun! ๐Ÿ™‚

Oh, and Olivia went to the doctor at 7 weeks and weighed in at exactly 12 pounds! She has been exclusively breastfed for the last 7.5 weeks and I have to say it’s a pretty cool feeling to know that the food my body is creating for her is keeping her happy, healthy and thriving!

I will leave you with this amazing photo my sister-in-law captured of her smiling the other night ๐Ÿ™‚

We are so lucky and we love this little girl so much!

 

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What’s saving my life right now newborn edition

As mentioned in my December recap post, one of my favourite podcasts series last month was the What’s Saving My Life Right Now series on The Simple Show. I thought I’d do my own post about what is saving my life right now the newborn edition…

Swing

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We have both this fisher price swing, which was gifted to us, and the 4 moms mamaroo. Olivia really liked the mamaroo when she was little little, but now seems to much prefer the swing. I would not eat lunch, pee or get anything done on some days without this swing! Usually she will happily swing away in it for a good 20 minutes, which is precious time with a newborn who always needs to be held / entertained when they are awake and alert.

Baby wearing

As mentioned, I have a bit of a fuss pot on my hands these days and baby wearing is another way I am managing to get things done with a little babe who wants to be held all the time. I love the ring sling for around the house, I find it the easiest to get on and get her in all by myself. The other day I did a couple loads of laundry and cleaned and organized her room while wearing her in this sling.

When we had some warmer weather last week we got out for some nice outdoor walks using the Ergo 360. This is a much sturdier carrier and nice for outdoor walks or if I’m going to be wearing her for a longer amount of time. I’ve also figured out how to get this carrier on all by myself!

I also have a boba wrap but I need to practice with it more because the material is soooo stretchy and I have trouble getting it tight enough. The one time we did walk in it I felt like I had to have my hand under her bum the entire time. But I know some people who love the boba and carry their little one in it until they are a toddler so I think I just need to practice more.

Indoor track

So a couple weeks ago it got down to -44 C (-47 F) and this week it is around -35 C (-31 F) with the windchill. I am soo grateful for the amazing indoor walking track we have available to us (for free!). Olivia and I have been going almost daily with my mom. We push her in our BOB stroller, which is also a baby product I LOVE.

Family

Eric is on night shift right now, which means he leaves for work around 6pm and isn’t home until 7:30 the next morning. This means he is gone during the hardest time of day with Olivia, 6 – 1oish pm. She is usually quite fussy during this time and the last few days especially putting her to sleep has been a several hour process. If I was staring down the barrel of handling 14 of these evenings in a row all by myself I don’t know how I would have handled it. Thank goodness for family, mostly my mom, who have been coming to help in the evenings. The above photo is Olivia cuddling with Grammy (my mom) the other night.

Wonder Weeks App

I’m so glad I downloaded the Wonder Weeks app. I haven’t read the book yet, but even just the app has been super useful for understanding what is happening in that little head of hers. Since Olivia was 11 days overdue she goes through her leaps early. She’s only 6.5 weeks old and already going through the second leap, which is part of the reason she’s been so fussy in the evenings and so hard to put to sleep lately.

Nursing Nightgown

I was never a nightgown person, but I love this nursing nightgown from Motherhood Maternity and now wear it to bed every single night. It’s super duper comfy to sleep in and perfect for those middle-of-the-night nursing sessions. I plan to order myself a second one!

What’s saving your life right now? Doesn’t need to be baby/child related ๐Ÿ™‚ย 

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Random Wednesday Thoughts

It’s 10am on Wednesday morning and I’m sitting here with my coffee reading blog posts while listening / watching my baby stir on the baby monitor and waiting until she actually starts crying to go get her because if I’m lucky she will go back to sleep. I am also looking at a pile of dishes on my counter and thinking about how I really need to have a shower and I should probably be using this precious sleeping time to do those things, but instead I’m reading blog posts, sipping my coffee and now writing my own blog post. Sometimes you just need to recharge.

I’m thinking about how tough last night was. It was the first shift of 14 night shifts for Eric. It’s not the overnight / middle of the night that’s hard, it’s putting the baby to sleep and dealing with the witching hour in the evening that was the toughest. From about 5 – 10 every night Olivia is fussy and just wants to be held and it’s also that early battle to put her to sleep for the night. Last night I started laying her down in her bassinet at 8:30pm and finally got her down at 9:45pm but I watched her on the monitor and she didn’t go to sleep until 10:30pm. Anyone else know that feeling where you just can’t relax when your baby is still awake? You feel tense until you know for sure they are asleep, or at least that’s how I felt. I finally got myself into bed at 11 because again – I just needed some quiet time in the quiet house for a minute. I ate a bowl of cereal and read my book and it felt luxurious. Luckily, our amazing sleeper slept until 3:45am and I was the one to get her up at that time because Iย neededย to nurse her to relieve my rock hard boobs.

The other thing I’m thinking about is all you mama’s who live in cities with no family support and whose husbands work long hours. If I was staring down the barrel of 14 night shifts in a row with NO extra help I don’t know what I would do. Last night was tough, I know that I will have help from my mom or other family members several of the next 14 nights to make it more bearable, or I’ll have family visiting during the day and holding Olivia so I can do other things around the house or nap (though napping continues to be hard for me even with a newborn). It definitely takes a village and I am oh so grateful for mine. It’s made this whole transition to parenthood much easier than I think it is for a lot of people.

I’m also thinking about how on Monday I’m going to start exercising again. On Friday I will be 6 weeks postpartum and ready to start adding workouts back into my daily life. I miss them a lot. I’ve already been walking for an hour almost daily and I plan to add in Fitness Blender workouts to start and maybe go back to yoga once or twice a week whenever I can fit it in if Eric is home or I have a babysitter. In the next few weeks I’d also like to get back into running, I haven’t ran for over a year and I miss it.

Any tips for postpartum workouts or adding exercise back in postpartum?

Ok, now I’m thinking I really better go get in that shower. I really can’t push it off another day and this baby is going to wake up any minute…

What are your random Wednesday morning thoughts?ย 

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