Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cute picture with Dad

Declan fell asleep on Daniel the other night. I thought it was so cute. :)

OMG! He slept through the night!

He fussed and did his cluster feeding last night. We thought it was because he hadnt' eaten very much that day due to the vaccines the day before. So he got his normal bottle at 8, then wouldn't sleep until we gave him another, smaller bottle at 9:30. Then he went right to sleep and slept until 6:30 this morning! That's 8 hours. I'm amazed. Daniel said he didn't sleep very well because he kept expecting to hear him start crying for his bottle the whole night.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Our little guy is getting big!

We took Declan to the pediatrician yesterday. Boy, has he grown. He's up to 13 pounds, 12 ounces and 22.75 inches long. That means in the past 5 weeks, he's put on 3.5 pounds, and almost 2 inches. No wonder he was eating so much and stretching so much. He had to stretch all those growing bones and muscles.

He got all his 2-month vaccinations, too. Three shots and one oral vaccine. He didn't like any of them, and he howled through the shots. A bit of cuddling, and he was all better after 5 minutes. Or at least, on his way to falling asleep. However, he was in a bad mood all that day and most of the next. He was whiny and cried all the time he was awake. He even cried through his bath, which is usually his favorite thing. But by late today, he was in a good mood. I had him on his play mat, playing with a new toy, and he cooed and smiled and played for 30-40 minutes.

The pedi told us that in the next 2 months, he should start 1) sleeping 10 hours at a stretch at night, 2) start reaching for things, and 3) discover his hands. I think we're looking forward to the sleeping through the night the most.

He's already starting to separate his fingers from his fist. Last week, he was mouthing his entire fist. Today, he started putting just fingers in his mouth, 1, 2 or 3 of them at a time. Tummy time is still a bust, though. we manage a couple of minutes a day. But the pedi put him on his tummy and she was pleased that he already had the hang of it. He was trying to push up on his arms. She said some babies just stick their arms out to the side and lay on their chest and cry because they can't move.

I think Declan's starting to look like a cute, little baby. His face is rounding out, and his chin isn't hidden behind those chubby cheeks. His acne is clearing up, and he still has all that dark hair. His eyelashes are so long, thick and dark, they'd make a supermodel jealous.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

What Declan's Been Up To

My mother-in-law said she wanted more detail about what Declan has been doing. Mainly he's growing like a weed and fussing a whole heck of a lot.

He's starting to fit into some of the smaller 3-6 month clothes, although his 0-3 stuff still fits for a while longer. I measured his length a week ago, and he's 22 inches long. He was born at 19.5. Maybe that's why he's grumpy all the time; his bones hurt from growing so much.

In the morning, he's hilarious. I unswaddle him to change his diaper, and he immediately spends the next 5 minutes stretching every part of his body as much as possible after being wrapped up all night. Then it's bottle time, and lately, that hasn't been as hilarious. He'll get through a couple of ounces, and then he'll start the major league fussing. At first it was just in the evening, but now it's at every feeding, it seems like. He'll eat a bit, then he'll cry around the nipple and not eat anything. I can burp him and he might have some gas. He bobs his head around looking for more to eat, so I give him his bottle again, and he eats a few sips, then cries again. Then I give him his pacifier and rock for a bit, then he spits it out and wants his bottle. Repeat for the next hour or more until the bottle is empty or until he falls asleep. It's getting very frustrating when he does this 5-6 times a day.

This morning, he did it to me, but wouldn't settle down at all after his morning bottle. So we went for a car ride, thinking that usually settles him down. No. We pulled off at the safari zoo in Alvin and I gave him his bottle, but the stinker only took 2 ounces, then fell asleep. As soon as we got home, 45 minutes later, he wakes up and starts fussing and crying, but I'm onto him this time. I'm going to wait until he's full on crying and red in the face before he gets his bottle this time. No more snacking this morning. Right now, Daniel put him in his swing and turned on the fish and lights mobile above him, and Declan is fascinated with them.

On the plus side, he's smiling lots more. He likes to have his cheeks tickled, and he still loves to watch faces, especially if we start making funny faces at him or sticking out a tongue. He also likes the toys on his bouncy seat. They light up and make noise when he bounces around, and he can stare at those for a good 30 minutes sometimes. He's started being able to hold onto his blanket. Not that he knows he's doing it, but he's grabbing things more, and when they find their way into his mouth, he's happy as a clam gumming whatever it is. Here he is laughing again. You'll have to take my word for it, because it also looks like when he's getting ready to cry.

Speaking of gumming, he just learned to put his fist in his mouth on Tuesday. It's so darned cute. I want him to be able to soothe himself with his fist instead of a pacifier all the time. If he needs his pacifier, and he spits it out, he won't be happy until a parent gets up to put it back in. But if he's used to his fist, he'll always have that with him.

He has something of a routine during the day. He'll eat pretty much every 3-4 hours, starting at 6 in the morning. I never thought I'd be such an early riser, but I'm starting to like it. The morning is nice and quiet as I watch the sun rise. We try to take a walk in the morning or do some sort of outing, and a walk in the evening before dinner. Then he gets a bath at 7:30 and to bed around 8, depending on when he wants his last bottle. He still wakes up at 2 am every night for a bottle. I'm hoping he starts sleeping through the night soon, since I have to go back to work in a couple of weeks, and Daniel and I will have to figure out a schedule we can both handle.

He's grown up enough that he fills up the infant insert in his car seat. In another month or less, we'll have to take it out. He even fits into his sun hat now. See?

And here's his 6-week old picture. I like this one because he's roaring like the lion in the sign behind him.

One of the thing we did when Mom came to visit was go to Galveston. The weather was great; it was mild and surprisingly non-humid for this time of year. So here's Declan's first picture at the seashore.

And here's Mom holding Declan as he's trying on his wrist and foot rattles. He's still too young to understand those. They'll be more fun when he discovers his hands and feet.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Baby Declan Update

I thought I'd talk a little bit about how our little man is growing and changing. A couple weeks ago, he had a proto smile, and then he started smiling for real just after. I've caught it on photo a couple of times.

A few days later, he started really seeing the toys and lights on the play bar on his bouncy chair. He can sit and stare at the lights and sounds for a good half hour.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Busy Week with Mom

Somehow, we've been busy all week long while she's been here. Not a bad thing, I guess. We've gone walking, went to the community yard sale this weekend, gone exploring parks, did some shopping for a new bouncy seat and did some furniture rearranging. She also watched Declan while Daniel and I went to see the new Star Trek movie and went out to dinner. Loved the movie, and the dinner was good. We went to a place called La Tapa Tapa. It's a Spanish restaurant and it serves small portions of lots of different foods. We had veggie pizza, artichoke salad, beef and sausage skewers, stewed beef, and a cheese plate. Very good, although we wouldn't get the veggie pizza again. But everything else was excellent.

We went to Ikea one day and got some stuff to improve the baby's room and to rearrange the furniture in the front room. I'm going to move the guest bed in there and split the front living room into a living area and a guest room. I'm going to hang curtains down the middle of the room as a temporary divider. I don't want to build permanent walls, and I don't have time make screens, or money to buy as many as I need. It will still take a while to get everything moved. Especially because I tweaked my back a couple days ago, so Declan is as much as I can lift.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Hurray, My Mom's Here!

Someone knowledgable about babies who's here to help for a week! She got in yesterday, and got to experience a typical afternoon/evening with the kiddo. In other words, he was nice around strangers (her) all afternoon and slept lots, but he managed his evening fussiness right on schedule.

Tell me, why would a baby cry for his bottle, eagerly start sucking on it, then 2 seconds later, spit it out and cry, only to suck on it again? The only thing I've managed to figure out is to give him his pacifier for a few minutes, then he realizes he's hungry, and he wants his bottle. Repeat for 30-50 minutes or until the bottle's empty.

I even talked Daniel into going out for breakfast/lunch on Tuesday. We went to IHOP. I said if we went there and Declan started screaming, at least the other people wouldn't get too upset, as they might if we went to someplace fancier. Well, he managed to scream through most of the meal. He was hungry, even though he'd just eaten. So only one of us could eat at a time. But he still managed to charm all the waitresses. Guess it's something about really little babies.

And yesterday, I went to pick up my pictures from the photo shoot at Sears. They turned out nice, even though he didn't cooperate much during the shoot. We even have a few pictures of him screaming his head off. We're keeping those to embarrass him with when he's grown. :) I am ticked at Sears on one particular thing though. For as much as I paid for the pictures, I think it's wrong that they won't give me the digital proofs so I can print out more of my own later. I would have had to pay an extra $40 to get the copyright to my own pictures. That seems wrong to me.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day

Daniel got me a really cute card and he wrote a very funny little story inside. Had me laughing for a good long time. It was a take off on the Watchmen comic. He signed it with him and Declan, aww. And he got me some chocolates, hurray!

Declan got me a great present: he smiled and giggled and cooed 3 different times today.

This morning, we finally found a couple of parks that are nice. We went to Seabrook and found a nice park that had some picnic tables with a bunch of huge, old oak trees to give shade. There were lots of squirrels chasing each other around. Only problem is that there wasn't much in the way of walking paths there. Then this afternoon, we went to Walter Hall park in League City, and that one is very nice. It's got lots of shelters, walking paths, a boat ramp, some docks, grills and shelters. And it's not very far away. I think we'll be there quite a lot.

I was industrious over the last few days. Did all my baby announcements and sent them out, and last night I made nice dinner from scratch: chicken and dumplings from scratch and an apple brown Betty. I got the notion from Tyler Florence's Ultimate cooking show. It didn't look very hard when he was making it. Of course. Took a little longer for me to make it, but it turned out great. The apple brown Betty, on the other hand, wasn't so good. It was very dry and not that great. I had some for breakfast this morning, with some milk poured over it to soften it up and heated up in the microwave. It was marginally better, but still not great. I think I'll just eat the apple slices from it.

Now I just have to finish putting some of my pictures in my baby book for Declan and wash the cars. We're planning on taking my old car to Carmax to see if they'll give us a decent price. Would be a lot easier than trying to sell it on Craigslist.

Well, I think I'll try to find a couple more icons in the Great Cloth Diaper Hunt, and then I'm off to bed.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

He smiled! And I have the picture to prove it.

He's been smiling a little bit for the past week, but every time I tried to get it on camera, he'd immediately focus on the camera and scowl. Finally, I got him to smile when I was tickling his cheek. What a cutie!

He loves sleeping with me. Our combined body heat puts him to sleep almost every time.

I had a friend over on Saturday, and she gave Declan a new hairstyle. I don't think he's too impressed with it.

Don't you love sleeping babies?

Daddy doesn't mess around when he's burping Declan. He's gonna get that burp out!

More park explorations

Yesterday we went to Clear Lake Shores to look for a park there that I'd heard about. I never did find the road that showed up on Google maps, but we did find a couple places to hang out. Clear Lake Shores got hit hard by Hurricane Ike, and they're still rebuilding on lots of the houses down there. Looks like a very expensive community, the kind where everyone drives their golf carts around. And I saw boats parked in front of the houses that were 40 feet long, at least.

In the afternoon, we took a family trip to Galveston beach and walked along the seawall. Saw lots of little kiddies playing in the surf, some of them barely toddlers. We got down there around 3:30 pm, and the wind kept things nice and cool. I think it would be a fun thing to do later this summer or into the fall, once he learns to walk. Well, assuming he learns to walk early. If not, we'll be back next year and let him play in the ocean.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Oh, did I mention how the parks here aren't very interesting?

We've been trying to go to different parks every morning. My goal is to explore the area more than I have before and find some good places to go with Declan as he gets bigger. On Saturday, we went to Jack Brook park in Santa Fe. on the map, it looks like a good size park, but when we got there, all I could find was a 50 yard road leading to a historical marker. The rest of the park looked more like a wilderness area, without even any paths. Boring.

Yesterday, we went to Clear Lake park on the water. It might have been okay, except that the wind was howling from the lake, and Declan decided he didn't like that much wind. Plus, the ground was still saturated, with standing water, and it had gone fowl. The whole park stunk like a pig farm, weirdly enough. So we came home after a short time and played inside. Again.

I hate Texas

In April, we had a record amount of rainfall: 15 inches. Previous record was 10 inches. It hasn't rained in over a week, and yet there is still significant amounts of standing water all over the place. NASA cancelled the chili cookoff this past weekend because the picnic grounds were too wet.

Well, all that water breeds mosquitos, and there is an ungodly amount of mosquitoes around. For the third time this week, Declan and I have set out for a walk around the neighborhood, and have had to turn around and come back after less than 5 minutes. Even with Off, I'm getting eaten alive, and I can't keep them off Declan. I'm not going to put Off on a newborn, and I don't want him getting bitten. I can only imagine how grumpy that would make him.

To reiterate: I hate Texas!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

He smiled!

We were playing with him yesterday, and we got a real smile. Daniel would make faces at him and tickle him under the chin, and he'd smile. His whole face was involved, and his eyes crinkled up a little bit. So cute! So of course, we spent another 15 minutes trying to get him to do it some more.