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The Bohemian Baby Blog

From pregnancy to parenthood: Taking this crazy journey one day at a time

#Momlife is all about improvising

Goodness – I really thought that I would have more time to blog once I quit the day job, but little man takes up every minute of my day, and the time he doesn’t take up is filled with me trying to clean the house, get dinner made, and create.

Life is good.

Since overcoming the last cold, Dean had his nine month check-up where he measured in the 99th percentile for height and weight (still only 45% for his head haha) and the doctor said “It’s time to stop feeding him at night.” Sigh.

So for the last two weeks, Michael and I have been tag-teaming the night wakings, and have gotten Dean down to one night feeding. This has been good because the night before last Dean slept from 11 p.m.-5:50 a.m. which is AMAZING! Last night wasn’t that great, but he still is sleeping until 6 most of the time, so we’re making progress.

It’s amazing how quickly my breasts have adjusted to the change, but the rest of my body is slow to catch-up. I feel like I’ve had more anxiety the last two weeks than I did right after bringing Dean home – my fear of SIDS has been unreal and even when he sleeps in four to six hour stretches, I wake up every couple of hours and have to check the monitor to see if he’s breathing. My friend says that will ease up, and I hope she’s right.

During the day Dean is constantly on the move. He’s crawling, he’s climbing stairs, he’s walking around furniture, and it really seems like he’s getting ready to walk because he’s relying less and less on holding onto things around the house.

He’s also eating finger foods now and LOVING it – our boy loves his food!

We are also on our third round of swim lessons, and today Dean was more than ready to just dive in head first into the water … no fear.

It’s taken us forever to come up with a Halloween costume for our little guy but we finally settled on Harold and the Purple Crayon – which I think will be pretty cute, and Michael and I will go as purple stick figure parents in the style of the illustration in the book.

I had a lot of other things I was going to write about with regard to my anxiety, meeting new mom friends, leaving that one moms group that always rubbed me the wrong way (I’m finally having them vote me out this week – so silly), my wonderful neighborhood moms group and family/friends without kids no longer finding you interesting enough to spend time with, but I’m too tired to care about that stuff right now and in the big scheme of things, it probably doesn’t matter at all – at least the negatives in that paragraph.

In non-baby news (but let’s face it, it’s all related) I have really been gearing up my production of products for my iCreate uCelebrate business (www.icreateucelebrate.com) and my Etsy site is up and running. A lot of the times I’m making items in my car while Dean is asleep after swim lessons or a play date, or I’m making them with him on my lap, or at night after he goes to bed.

Right now I’m typing this blog on my laptop in my car, which is parked in my driveway, because we graduated Dean to a convertible car seat, so there’s no way to move him without waking him up and he needs a nap after swim class.

Life as a mom is all about improvising and making things work however you can.

This post isn’t as great as I’d hoped – it’s kind of all over the place – a reflection of my brain right now. I’ve got a lot of projects in the works (icreateucelebrate, plus freelance) and I’ve got Michael’s birthday, Thanksgiving and our wedding anniversary right around the corner – so November is going to be busy (plus Michael will be traveling three out of the five weeks in November, oy.)

Here’s hoping I make more time for the blog, and that I can continue to embrace the chaos that is motherhood!

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Sick etiquette?

We haven’t been to story time at the library in about two months because I was tired of getting Dean and I sick, and while we have still been social we have avoided the yuckies.

Until now.

On Wednesday we went to a play date with some moms from the neighborhood and one of the moms, who I normally adore, showed up sounding like she had a cold while her 9 month old was visibly sick with snot everywhere. We were already there and had said hi to people so I didn’t feel like we could just leave, even though that’s absolutely what I wanted to do.

Fast forward to just one day later and Dean has a runny nose. Fast forward to Saturday night and I have a baby who is running a fever on and off, has a runny nose and is completely miserable. He slept horribly – waking up every half hour making me a complete lunatic (literally I transformed into a monster) and today he’s been fussy and uncomfortable and I am now also sick with a sore throat and a runny nose.

What the heck is the protocol for dealing with this crap?! It’s taking every ounce of self control I have to not text her ‘thanks an f-ing lot for the germs you jerk, next time STAY HOME!!!!’ 

I really believe that if you or your child are sick you should stay the heck home and keep your germs to yourself. I do it – and I expect others to as well.

I know we all get stir crazy but if you’re that desperate to get out of the house, go for a walk or a drive, but don’t surround yourself with dozens of kids and their sleep deprived moms because that is just cruel. 

For future reference: is it ok to just say ‘uh, looks like you guys are sick, so we are gonna take a raincheck on today?’ I realize that may make me look crazy, but honestly I’d rather be crazy than sick, because I cannot function like this. 

Flu season is just around the corner and I feel like it’s just going to get worse – and I know kids get like 10-12 colds a year, but seriously I feel like we’ve met our quota and I am sick of people’s lack of courtesy.

Any thoughts out there on how to handle this next time, or any tips on how to get a sick baby to sleep??!?!? 

Here’s hoping Dean is over the worst of it and can maybe get some rest tonight. If not, I’m gonna need your happy thoughts and prayers that I at least handle myself a little better at midnight when I’m running on a mere 20 minutes of sleep. 

What’s happening, hot stuff?

I have no concept of time anymore so I have no clue where to begin …

Dean is now 8.5 months old! He climbs the stairs like a champ (and he seems to climb them when he has a diaper that needs changing … his changing table is upstairs!) He is eating his three meals of puréed food every day plus some teething crackers and cheerios. He will occasionally take breastmilk from a Nuk transitional sippy cup now (still working hard at this, just not hard enough – really gonna make an effort to attempt it daily).

He is getting better at petting the dogs and cat – less grabby and more patting. He is saying “mama” regularly but we aren’t sure if he’s actually saying it to me or for me or if he’s referring to his food, haha.

He is growing out of clothes at an alarming rate – he is wearing 18-24 month clothes comfortably and can even fit some 2/3T clothes – what the heck?! Slow down time. Also, I’m raising a giant, he is so tall.

He still isn’t sleeping well – but he has his nights and I guess I should count my blessings. He is an excellent shopping buddy and super nap buddy (when he takes an afternoon nap) and he’s so silly and incredibly sweet and curious. Being his mom is the greatest and if I could I would clone him again and again because he is just the most amazing little person! (But of course I won’t cuz that’s creepy!) 

We are still doing swim lessons and just enrolled for our third class today! He’ll be a swimming champ by next summer! 

In terms of motherhood I’m doing OK I think. I’m juggling things OK, not freaking out as much during the nighttime feedings (I’m a monster when I get less than 2 hours of sleep at a stretch) and I’m working on curtailing my cursing, since obviously Dean is now trying to speak. I should have done it a while ago but it’s such an impulse thing for me.

Anyway, my back and legs and everywhere in between is constantly sore because my baby, as previously mentioned, is growing like a weed. And because I’m doing all the lifting and carrying him around sometimes while doing things like vacuuming, lifting the car seat etc., I managed to strain a muscle in my chest wall and it hurts like a mothertrucker (see what I did there!?)

I’m going to try and get a chiropractor appointment this week because I desperately need an adjustment and I need some tips on how to keep my back strong. 

I’m also going to see our lactation consultant this week because I am hating nursing lately. I don’t know if it’s a hormonal thing or bad latch at night, but my nipples are so sensitive and breastfeeding just feels like pins and needles and it’s become the last thing I want to do after about 8 p.m. So I’m hoping for either a pep talk or some tips on how to transition to just pump and bottle because I don’t like feeling so frustrated or on edge about something like providing my child comfort and nutrients. 

Anyway, I think that’s a pretty complete update and hopefully now that I’ve got more flexibility I will start posting more regularly again!

Have a great week everyone! 

Stay at home mom

Ahhh so it’s happening! Week one of being a stay at home mom was a success … dare I say, though, that I am no less tired than when I was also working from home? (It doesn’t help that Dean is teething or something and therefore has been sleeping horribly).

My house is clean, we’ve had home cooked meals every night (new ones, not my go-to’s) and leftovers for lunch. We’ve had play dates and regular walks and the only hand I’ve had to hold is my child’s!

It’s been great.

Last week was crazy busy – I’m not sure if I was trying to squeeze in too much so that I felt productive or if there was just a lot going on, but I did feel satisfied and productive, albeit exhausted.

I also got my first paid gig for iCteateUcelebrate so that’s been fun (you can check out my latest projects on Instagram @icreateucelebrate).

I still had some lingering guilt about quitting the day job, but each day that goes by I know I made the right decision for myself, my son and our marriage.

Here’s hoping week 2 is just as good and stay tuned for updates on our parenting journey – everything from Dean learning how to climb stairs, to nearly being big enough for 2T clothing at 8.5 months old! Not to mention the pain that has been breastfeeding lately- oy. More to come! 
 

Two weeks!

Well I’m taking the plunge.

Almost two weeks ago, Michael came home from a week-long budget meeting for work and said “I feel really good about things, so if you still want to quit your job, let’s go ahead and put in your notice.”

Huzzah! It was music to my ears, but then instantly I started to feel guilty about wanting to quit my job and not bring in that extra income, so I had to sleep on it.

The next day we called our CPA who we’d met with a couple of weeks prior to discuss the possibility and feasibility of me leaving my day job and all signs pointed to yes. So when we called her this time her answer was “DO IT.”

So I did. My last day is September 16!

My boss is not thrilled, but she’s a mom and she gets it.

Am I relieved. YES.

Do I still feel a little guilty. YEP.

Why? Because until I became a mother I always figured out a way to juggle a million things at once and was determined to “have it all.” Then Dean came along and I said, “Wait, NOW I have it all” in one tiny little adorable package, and it rocked my world. So even though I KNOW I’m making the right choice, it’s still hard to deal with the years of conditioning I had telling myself I could juggle everything.

And I guess, if I had to, I could still juggle everything. Now it’s a matter of want. I don’t WANT to juggle everything. I want to spend my time being the best mom I can possibly be. I don’t want to get frustrated with Dean when he wants to play but I have to get an email out. I don’t want to get upset when Dean wants to be held and play with everything while I have to be on a conference call.

I realize I had a cushy gig working full-time from home, but when you add being a full-time mom to that, plus full-time caregiver for everything around the house, that’s a big job and not one I felt I was doing well, and if there’s anything that bugs me, it’s not doing a good job at something I’ve been tasked with.

I wasn’t giving enough of myself to my job and I wasn’t giving enough of myself to my son, my husband, our home, our family or our pets for that matter.

So now I think I will hopefully be able to focus and channel my energy a little better and find more of a balance.

I’m still going to freelance for a local magazine, and I’m still going to try to get my business – icreateucelebrate – off the ground, but those will all be secondary ventures, because my real calling is being mom to this amazing little boy.

I know I’m incredibly lucky and blessed to be able to be in the position I currently find myself, and I am so, so grateful for it.

Here’s to just two more weeks of having to do it all! I think I can, I think I can!

MOMtras!

So a few weeks ago while Dean was asleep on my lap, I started doodling when I had an idea for a fun, quick, coloring book for moms, and MOMtras was born!

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This is how the entirety of MOMtras was created. 

So over the course of a week, I worked on some illustrations, designed a cover, and then used CreateSpace.com to put it all together.

The idea behind MOMtras is just to have fun and give moms a quick 5 minute reprieve from whatever is nagging them on their to-do lists. Doodling always helps me relax and gather some perspective, and so does coloring, but no mom has the time to do one of those really crazy detailed (but awesome) coloring books that are all the rage these days.

And every mom needs validation and words of encouragement, so my hope is that with MOMtras, moms will find a little laugh, a little motivation and support, and my hope is it will help them embrace the crazy!

Speaking of crazy … I’ve finally been given the green light to quit the day job, but now I’m having doubt and guilt about that so I have yet to make a decision. Seriously, why didn’t anyone warn me that no matter what you do as a mom, you’re always going to feel guilty about something.

If anyone has some words of advice regarding quitting to be a stay-at-home mom, (rather than a work-full-time-from-home mom) which is what I’ve wanted from the start, I would LOVE to hear your thoughts.

And, to buy yourself, or a new mom you know and love, a copy of Momtras, click here, and enjoy!

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Dean approves of the finished product! 

Sleep is a fickle vixen

sleep-deprived
Pretty much. 

So the windi didn’t work – probably because I think we’ve figured out what’s going on and it’s not gas.

Dean cut another tooth the other night, so that makes four on top, three on bottom, and he’s chewing on things like there might be another one coming in somewhere.

We have a cold. He’s probably had it a few days now, because it hit me on Sunday, and it hit HARD. The last 48 hours have been seriously trying and frustrating and good God I’m exhausted.

Also we’re smack-dab in the middle of another “Wonder Week” phase.

So it’s a trifecta of things that are keeping us all from getting any amount of sleep.

For the last three days, Dean has been up every hour and a half to two hours. Last night he was waking up so much, and waking up so upset, that I ended up just staying in the nursery so he could sleep on me in the rocker. Even so I only got to sleep for maybe an hour and a half from 5-6:30 when, because every few minutes he’d stir and cry and the only way he’d calm down is if I stood and walked around with him .

Ugh. (I’ve decided sleep is like that guy in college that you like and you think likes you, cuz every once in a while he calls regularly and you guys go out and then he disappears for weeks at a time, only to reappear and act interested again. I totally thought I was done with all of that nonsense.)

So the only thing I can do now is pray. Pray that all three of these things will end soon, so that we can go back to getting maybe six hours of sleep – which seems like such an unbelievable luxury now. Heck, I’d settle for four hours of uninterrupted sleep.

I know that we’ll go through several more of these sleepless stages, but goodness this one in particular has been really rough. So rough that I’ve considered weening and getting Dean to only take a bottle because I just feel so “done” – especially at 3 a.m. when I have yet to have a moment of sleep.

Things always look better in the light of day, though, when he’s smiling and sweet, and playful and curious and I know that I can handle five more months of breastfeeding. He’s thriving, even when he’s not sleeping, and this is what I wanted from the beginning – to be able to provide for him as long as I could. So since I’m still able, I’m going to keep it going – and I just have to remind myself that things are good, we are lucky and we are healthy, and a couple of weeks of no sleep aren’t going to derail us.

In fact, it wasn’t long ago that I suffered through four weeks of no sleep during another teething/wonder week phase, so I know I can do it.

I just have to keep reminding myself that this too shall pass.

But God is it hard!

 

7 months and time is flying

Dean turned 7 months old on Wednesday and time is completely flying. My dashboard says it’s been 19 days since my last post on here, and the last 19 days I have felt like I’ve been submerged under water. Time has no meaning, my to-do lists all run together, and I just feel like I’m stretched in a million different directions with no idea which way to go first.

Blerg.

What’s made the last two weeks more of a blur than usual is the lack of sleep … again. This time it’s gas. Caused by the fact that Dean is now eating three meals of baby food a day. He LOVES food and he loves to eat, so that’s great, but his poor tummy just can’t seem to handle it all just yet so the nights are MISERABLE.

We’re keeping the foods simple and trying to use the least gassy vegetables, but it doesn’t always help. I’m still Dairy, Soy, Nut, Fish and Egg free, so my diet shouldn’t be contributing to the gas too much, although since I subsist on beans and vegetables I’m sure it is, but I don’t really have a choice there.

Last night I broke down and ordered the Windi … the gas reliever made by the geniuses behind the Nose Frida, so we’ll see how it works. I’m expecting gross things to happen, but if it’ll help him sleep and feel some relief, I don’t care.

Dean also has five full teeth now and he’s working on the sixth – the white tip is showing but it hasn’t made it’s way all the way down yet, but now he’s got a ridiculously adorable toothy grin.

My mother-in-law thinks the gas could be from teething, possibly getting even more teeth, so who knows. I haven’t really taken a good look around his mouth in a couple of days.

Dean finished his first round of swim lessons this week, and in two weeks we start Toddler 1 Swim Class, which is where we’ll actually practice going under water, etc.

I feel like I’ve been doing a little better job managing my time between work, house stuff and Dean, and Michael has been stepping up more during the day to give me a five minute break every once in a while so I can get something done. It’s not much, but it’s something.

ICreateUCelebrate is slowly getting off the ground, and I’m hoping things will pick up for the fall. I got a freelance writing assignment from the magazine in Charlotte I write for, so that’ll be a nice little boost to our savings account, and things at work are moving along as usual.

I’ve got a couple additional projects I want to get off the ground, so you’ll be hearing more about those soon.

I realize that in the same blog post I’m complaining about being overwhelmed, I’m listing all of the additional things I’m taking on, but my whole life I’ve never been able to not have a bunch of balls in the air at once, and apparently the insanity of motherhood isn’t enough to make me stop that now, so we’ll see how things shake out!

Happy Friday!

 

I Create U Celebrate – My new venture!

cutoutcreativeWell, after some serious soul searching, a whole lot of prayers and some kick-ass brainstorming with my mom, I have figured out what I hope will enable me to quit my day-job and get back to being creative, while spending more time with my son and still providing for my family financially.

I Create U Celebrate is essentially a party-in-a-box service that will allow folks to make their Pinterest dreams for baby, wedding, engagement showers and birthday parties a reality by having someone else do all the work for them … ME!

I love making invitations, party decorations, party favors, and everything in between, so with this business, I will make all of those things for folks and ship the products directly to them so all they have to do is set-up and get all the credit!

So dear readers, please tell all your friends, visit the website, www.icreateucelebrate.com, and find me on Instagram (username: icreateucelebrate) and let’s get the word out and get this party started!

 

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