Friday, March 31, 2006

Coming Up for Air

Sorry for our lack of posting. Things have been a bit hectic and stressful in the Bowling household. Outside of the standard new parent stress factors, Mike's company moved office buildings last weekend, which has kept him away from home. He's been working very long hours, including all of last weekend. We desperately missed him, and I know he did us, so we're very glad he'll be around this weekend.

Ella is still precious as ever. She smiles more and more each day, but our nights are still long. I tell myself those sweet smiles are my reward for crying, sleepless nights. I also remind myself that these long, exhausting nights won't last forever. Mike and I tell Ella when she's having a crying fit and can't be consoled that we'll buy her whatever she wants if she'll just stop crying and go to sleep. Yes, we know we're pathetic -- resorting to bribery of an infant, but it's amazing the concessions you'll make when she's been screaming for three solid hours and all you want is peace.

I can't believe another week has passed. My maternity leave is going by too quickly. Each time I think about returning to work and leaving her for 8 solid hours, my tear ducts get a good workout. Instead, I just try to enjoy our moments and block out reality.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Ella has a new playmate!

I'd like everybody to meet Carter David Comer:

He's the newest member of our neighbors Mike and Jenn's family. And also another set of little legs that will be running around the Brockway cul-de-sac for a while. He was born on Monday morning, was 7 lbs. 9 oz. and was 18 1/2 inches long. Amanda and I made it over Monday night to see the little bugger (and his parents). He's very adorable, but then again, what baby isn't?

Unfortunately Ms. Ella won't be able to see him until Mike and Jenn make it home. The hospital has a policy that you can't bring a baby her age into the maternity ward. Mainly because they don't know if you are bringing in your own baby, or swiping somebody else's! So they plan to come on Thursday.

Jenny's pooped, but very happy. Amanda is very happy that Jenny will be home all day now so they, and the new babies can hang out together!

So congratulations to Jenny, Mike, big brother Aaron, and welcome Carter! (and I'll throw in Crusier, Callie and Marley just for grins)

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Making Feedings Fun

Last week Ella was diagnosed as having a pretty bad case of acid reflux. The nurse came to this conclusion, and luckily the doctor agreed, after watching Ella feed. The signs: She is a slow eater -- whether nursing or on the bottle. Feedings aren't particular fun or relaxing for her -- more so when she's on the bottle, but she fights the bottle and pulls off frequently. She's fussy after feedings. Her projectile spit-ups are record worthy, mainly in amount. Not only does she spit up immediately after a feeding (even after good burps), but frequently 45 minutes to an hour after a feeding.

The course of action right now is zantac, which she's been on for nearly a week. I can't say I've seen a huge improvement, but she doesn't seem to fight feedings as much anymore. The pharmacist said it could take up to 2 weeks before we notice a significant difference. Taking the medicine isn't Ella's favorite part of the day -- she hates the taste of it, but doesn't protest it too much. It was also suggested we switch bottles yet again. So, we're using the Dr. Brown bottles. I don't quite understand what makes them so special, but if they help then I'm all for it.

As for sleeping, her patterns are random. After a particularly rough night (neither Ella or I slept for longer than an hour), we've had two decent evenings in a row. We trying to incorporate a bed time routine that begins at 9. Last night, she was asleep at 9:45 and slept until 1:30. I woke up at 1 am in a panic because she hadn't woken us up by then. I cruised by her room and saw an arm move from the doorway, which was a relief to me. I wonder how I'll handle the first time she sleeps through the night.

Her weight is 9 lbs 3 oz. The doc wants her to weigh a bit more at this point, maybe the zantac will help with that.

Friday, March 10, 2006

Family Meeting

Ella gets to meet two more of her uncles this weekend. My brothers, Scott and Matt, are spending the weekend with us. I haven't seen them since Thanksgiving, so I'm excited to have them in KC. I'm can't wait to see my brothers interact with my daughter. Beyond hanging around the house and maybe giving Mike and I the opportunity for a long afternoon nap, the guys plan to hit the auto show and have a meal at Arthur Bryant's. I'm glad they have a few outings planned. Otherwise I fear, they'd get bored just hanging around the house.

Ella and I have gone a few outings. It does us good to get out of the house for a bit. We've been on a few walks, a quick run to the grocery store and a visit to Mike's work. I have a dentist appointment later today, and I'm going without Ella. Our neighbor Liz is coming over to watch Ella for me. This is the third time I've left her. Last Saturday, Mike and I went on a dinner date. It was good for us to spend time alone together, and it was hard to leave her. I surprised myself by not getting emotional. I was certaintly ready to return home though. She was in good hands, Larry and Glenda graciously agreed to babysat for us.

Next week is full of outings as well. We have a doctor's appointment, picture appointment and possibly visiting my work. Plus, we have a handful of visitors scheduled as well. I just can't believe how fast this time is going. Slow down, please.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

She Grew

I told Ella to think heavy on our way to the doc, and she listened. Momma was so proud. She weighed in at an astonighing 8 lbs. 8 oz. We've surpassed our birth weight by gaining a 1 lb, 1 ounce in a week. It felt good to know the weight is headed in the right direction. Typically, we wouldn't see the doc again until the 2 month mark. Since we've had the weight issue, she wants to see us next week for an actual appointment. I'll be curious to see how much we grow this week.

Friday, March 03, 2006

A Timeline of Ella's Night

10:28 p.m. -- Mom heads to bed (she wanted to go earlier, but laundry and trash beckoned.)
11:30ish p.m. -- Mike & Ella join mom (I may have this time wrong. Mike said something to me about when he put her down as I was awoken from my dream state by a screaming infant at..)
12:02 a.m. -- Ella's scream alerts Mike and I that she's starving. Her last feeding started at 8 p.m. and ended at 9 p.m.
12:30 a.m. -- Mom lays Ella down to prepare bottle after nursing for 1/2 hour.
1:07 a.m -- After 2 diaper changes and 3 oz of formula, Ms. Ella's eyelids are getting heavy.
1:27 a.m. -- Ella is asleep in pack n play.
3:31 a.m. -- Ella's cry jolt mom and dad awake
4:18 a.m -- Almost done with two ounces -- can we sleep past 7?
6:30 a.m -- Ella starts to cry, but it's small whimpers off and no, so we lay there for awhile secretly encouraging her to fall back asleep
7:10 a.m. -- Full-blown cries start
8:05 a.m. -- Finish the morning feeding, any chance we'll lay back down?

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Grow Ella Grow

Ms. Ella needs to gain some weight. Her weight was down to 7 lbs. 7 oz. at Monday's weigh in. We've started supplementing with formula with the hope that she'll pack on some pounds. She definitely is one leisurely eater. It takes her a good 1/2 hour to consume just an ounce of formula sometimes -- she doesn't seem to be crazy about the bottle or the formula. Hopefully, it's just an adjustment.

Otherwise, we are surviving and just enjoying Ella. We're a little sleep deprived, so we'd love for Ella to sleep for longer stretches overnight, but we know that will come with time. She and I have enjoyed the unseasonably warmer weather and have been on a few walks. It did me a world of good to get some exercise and fresh air.

Nothing else too exciting is going on. Life is good.