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Girls’ Nights

Girls’ nights have a new meaning over here.

It’s me, Livi and Bella 😉

Livi is the party animal- she drinks all night, wets herself and cries, I’m the one taking care of her while Bella gives us the stink eye. We’re a fun group, for sure.

Yesterday was my first day at home with the baby while Tom went to work, and also my first entire night taking care of her on my own. Tom had to fly early today, and since his life is in his hands while he’s flying, he has to get real, quality sleep. So that means that Baby, Bella and I had the master bedroom,

 master

and Tom was in one of the guest rooms. I missed him, but it was nice to know that he was just a couple of doors down if things went awry.

Even though I was anxious about it, we actually did pretty well considering that Livi is hungry every hour or hour and a half. Even though I feel like all I do is breastfeed and pump, I really want her to get what she’s needing, even though my boobs might fall off. I’m hoping that we find our feeding groove in the next couple of weeks. The good news is that I can usually get her out of the basinet before it turns into full-on scream mode, and we keep the salt lamp on by the bed so there’s a little bit of light, but it’s not too bright. The day is a lot easier than night, because even with very little sleep, I feel better during the day. Night makes me feel like a zombie.

salt lamp

Righty is still not producing as much as my left, Livi hates it and gets impatient, so for now it’s still feed on the left, pump on the right. Last week, we took her to the chiropractor for a little post-birth adjustment, to make sure that she wasn’t uncomfortable laying on her left side to feed on the right. She LOVED being adjusted –it’s more like a baby massage than anything- and we’ll probably take her back this week.

So we made it through our first day and night together, with only one major meltdown on both of our parts. It breaks my heart when she’s crying and I can’t figure out what’s wrong. She had just eaten, burped, and had a fresh diaper, so we walked around and rocked, I sang to her and she calmed down for a second… and right when we sat down again, waterworks and shrieking commenced. She was crying, I was crying, and my friend Michele called, whose baby is a week older than Livi, and we had a good chat about life.

As far as a schedule goes, we definitely haven’t settled into one at all, but here’s a snapshot of what today looked like:

12:40 am- wake up, feed, change diaper, back to sleep by 1:30

Repeat at 2:20, 3:30, 5:04, 6:10, and 9:00, when we woke up

9:30- 10 Get dressed while Livi is in the bouncy seat, make breakfast, drink tea, and pump at the same time (quite a sight, haha)

10:00am One more feeding before driving to the park to meet Kelly, Meara and their babies for a walk at 11

12:15 back home to eat, change diaper, burp her and she falls asleep while we watch Little Fockers

2:45 and She’s napping on her nana’s shoulder while I blog –both nanas came to visit today!- and I’m waiting for her to wake up for her next meal..

Check out the photo that Meg sent me last night while she was at my madre’s:

babies 

Baby Gina on the left, Livi on the right

There’s definitely a similarity, but I think she looks a lot like Tom, too

We made it out of the house today, which was definitely a success- even though Kelly and Meara had to help me figure out how to use the stroller. I think one adventure a day might be a good idea, just for some fresh air and a change of scenery.

strollers

(Orbit has a paparazzi shield- hilarious)

Slowly but surely, we’re getting the hang of things over here and I can already feel a closeness between us. I miss her while she’s napping, and I can tell this is going to be a very fun, crazy, rewarding adventure.

Sunday’s fortune:

fortune2

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101 Comments

  1. Racheal @ Running with Racheal on January 24, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    I love that picture! 🙂 You two do look a lot alike. Here’s to more sleep tonight! 🙂

  2. nay on January 24, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    Hi:

    Is this true? (Baby language) Dunstan baby language http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nv3-74EFtWQ

  3. Cara @ I Don't Believe in Diets on January 24, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Sounds like quite a transition but at least a good one that is worth it!

  4. Keely :) on January 24, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    I can’t believe how much she looks like you, although there is definitely a lot of the pilot there too! Either way, she was bound to be beautiful and that she is!!! xx

  5. Kris | iheartwellness.com on January 24, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    YAY! Congrats on your first evening alone!! I can’t imagine the feeling you have in your heart with that gorgeous gal of yours…so sweet…kinda makes me want one 😉

    What a resemblance!! The nose and lips!!

    xxoo

  6. Laura Jane @ Recovering Chocoholic on January 24, 2012 at 5:38 pm

    Aw, I love the photo of the two of you side by side. I think she does look like you. Glad you got to get out for some fresh air and that Livi got to spend some time with her Nana’s.

  7. Mandy on January 24, 2012 at 5:38 pm

    You’ll find your groove soon, I promise! Looks like you’re already starting to, anyway. 😀 Glad your night didn’t go *too* badly.

    I remember trying to figure out the stroller by myself for the first time. I was so scared of the thing! Not to mention sleep-deprived.

    I still think handling a newborn by yourself is among the scariest experiences life has to offer. Thankfully, babies adapt to life so quickly that soon it’ll seem like a distant phase.

    PS: totally jealous of your weather!

  8. Jess@pinkchilli on January 24, 2012 at 5:38 pm

    Great post today. I love the baby updates. Hope the booby situ sorts itself out soon!

    Olivia gets more gorgeous each day x

  9. Erinn on January 24, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    Hahah I laughed out loud at Livi the party girl!!! You’re doin a great job!!

  10. Amanda on January 24, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    What a cute comparison between mommy and baby!

    Thank you for keeping it real. I really, truly enjoy reading your post-pregnancy posts (and loved the preg ones, too!) to kind of give me a warm up at what to expect. I’ll be honest – reading what it’s like is truly terrifying. I’ve been comforting myself by saying “oh things will be so smooth over here…” but I know in my heart of hearts that just isn’t true.

    But keep it up – you’re doing great 🙂

    As a side note, I had no idea you could bring a baby to a chiropractor! That is really interesting.

    • Ginger on January 24, 2012 at 5:42 pm

      Amanda- the chaos doesn’t last long, I promise!!!! and it’s so worth it 🙂

  11. Ginger on January 24, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    the nursing frequency will change soon, don’t worry! I remember going through that and all sorts of people telling me things like “put her on a schedule” or “is she getting enough to eat?” it’s normal, and you’ll be amazed by how quickly all that yummy milk will plump her up (a good thing at this age 🙂 )

  12. Karen on January 24, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    So so so so excited you are having her “adjusted” already! The chiro at my office adjusts babies and little kids all the time- they really do love it!

  13. J9 on January 24, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    Cute pictures! Have you read “The Baby Whisperer” yet? It was my bible when my kids were small. She also has a second book (Baby Whisperer Solves all Your Problems) that gives a lot more detail.
    I love newborns and babies, but I don’t miss that crazy schedule! Hang in there. Everyone tells you it gets easier, and it really does. Have a good day 🙂

    • Jessica on January 24, 2012 at 5:58 pm

      Ditto to The Baby Whisperer, Happiest Baby On The Block is also good. And they are written well enough that you can find the info to helo you and read it very quickly, since it isnt like you have all the time in the world 🙂

      • Kate on January 24, 2012 at 7:30 pm

        I also agree on the BW — and also the book Healthy Baby Health Sleep Habits (I think). Sorry — this is all probably info. overload, but they did help me a lot!

  14. No Ordinary Mess on January 24, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    Glad you guys are doing well! I am SO sympathetic with her feeding schedule. I took notes every time my son ate when he was born and it was roughly every 1.5 – 2 hours and lasted about 30 minutes at a time. I was so not able to function on that amount of sleep. You are doing great! It just gets better (and easier!)

  15. Emily on January 24, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    Things will get easier and easier by yourself 🙂 I was so overwhelmed at first but now, part of me almost enjoys the time I have alone with the babies…but by 5, I’m definitely ready for hubby to be home haha

  16. Emma on January 24, 2012 at 5:53 pm

    Livi has such beautiful big eyes!

    Thank you so much for sharing your Mummy (Mommy?) stories. I’m not there yet, but reading about your experiences and Emily’s (Daily Garnish) makes me much less freaked out about what I hope is to come in my future 🙂

  17. Georgia on January 24, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    Hey Gina- I hate unsolicited advice- but here I go giving some! I know I didn’t have surgery on my right b. but it wouldn’t even hand express a drop. i was almost in panic mode. I think what helped was that we coslept there for a bit (I know.. I know) and she just used it as a pacifier almost (I know that’s weird). She would suckle at it for a long time and I would fall asleep. After a while it was the one she could/would stay on at night more- and it just started producing more… I know it STINKS when they girls don’t pull the same weight (literally!). Hope it works out soon! (so many jokes can be pulled from this).

  18. emily on January 24, 2012 at 5:58 pm

    Hi! I have enjoyed your blog for quite some time now but this is my first time posting. I can really empathize with the whole breastfeeding craziness. It took me a long time to get it down with my kids and involved lots of lactation RN consults, breast pumps, time and tears. I just wanted to throw in my 2 cents regarding something I noticed you mentioned. I was told to always have the baby nurse off of the side that is weakest first (not just use the pump) because the baby’s suck is so much stronger than the pump it is the best way to get that breast to produce more milk. I know, especially in the middle of the night, that this is much easier said than done when the baby is getting fussy. Anyway, as everyone has mentioned, it all works out. Take care and thank you for always providing me with some entertainment when I am surfing the net.

  19. Mary on January 24, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    My daughter would cry every night for the first 2 months, staring around 8 til about 10, and the only thing to console her was walking with her…as soon as I sat down…waterworks! I think I wore a groove into the carpet going back and forth through the living room and down the hall! She got over it, though!
    Keep up the great work…you’re doing awesome!

  20. Ali on January 24, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    Aww, girl! I am so sorry for the melt down! It must be horrible when she cries and you don’t know what is bothering her! I was collic as a baby, so I pretty much cried all the time. I hope that this is not happening to Livi! I am glad that you made it through your first night though. It also looked good that you were able to get out!! A routine will come for sure, and then life will feel real and normal again. Hang in there girl, you are doing amazing! And I am sending righty all the love and milk energy I have got 😉

  21. Lea on January 24, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    I think it is great to aim for 1 outing a day! The more you socialize your baby the better and easier it will be to take her just about anywhere. I think it is very important since you are a military family you will be moving a lot.

  22. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga on January 24, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    “Even though I feel like all I do is breastfeed and pump, I really want her to get what she’s needing, even though my boobs might fall off. I’m hoping that we find our feeding groove in the next couple of weeks.”

    You feel like that’s all you do, b/c that’s….all you do! I remember it all so well and no one really, FULLY prepared me for what newborn nursing is like…and even though I tell pregnant women, well, you’ll be nursing lots, at least 10 times a day…they look at me like I’m crazy b/c you just can’t believe it til you’re in it. You’re doing amazing!!!!

    3 days after giving birth, Scott left on a biz trip. It was me, baby, and no family within 3000 miles to help. Meltdowns happened but we made it. And you made it too, and just keep on keeping on, one day at a time, sweetie.

  23. Nicole on January 24, 2012 at 6:22 pm

    My husband worked at a milking farm when he was in high school. He used to compare breast feeding and pumping to what would happen with the cows. I know he was trying to be helpful, but it was not…at all. 🙂

    More unsolicited advice. You probably heard this already, but did you try having a Guinness. My OB suggested when I was nursing, I don’t remember why, but it does wonders for milk production. Of course you’d have to pump-and-dump, but it may be worth looking up.

    Also when I couldn’t calm my daughter down and all she wanted to do was for me to walk, for hours…I would swaddle her, hold her tight to my chest and bounce on my stability ball. It worked wonders. She is 20 months now and I still do it sometimes.

    She is so beautiful, just like her mama. Congrats again!

    • Alicia on January 25, 2012 at 3:38 pm

      You do NOT have to pump and dump!
      The alcohol content in your breast milk is the same as your blood. If you’re worried that the alcohol would get to the baby, just wait to feed or use expressed milk. You can pump and dump to keep up your supply or to relieve pressure but you do not have to pump and dump!
      I am comfortable having alcohol and breastfeeding as long as I don’t really feel it. That means I drink slowly and with food.

  24. Anna on January 24, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    Are you swaddling? Don’t underestimate the power of the swaddle. Aiden and Anais makes great muslin swaddling cloths that aren’t too hot to wrap Baby in.

  25. April on January 24, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    I have to pass this on because no one told me…babies will cry when they are tired, and boy does mine. In fact, he cannot handle more than 2 hours of awake time (he is 12 weeks) at a time and then he gets cranky and fussy. If I do not put him down for a nap at the right time then he is overtired hevwill be inconsolable. For the longest time I thought he was colic, but after reading The BAby Whisperer I realized he was just overtired. Some babies need to be soothed and put down for naps as they don’t know how to do it on their own.
    I am not saying this is why Livi cries (of coyese all babies cry) but just keep an eye on if she just may be tired. I really wish I would have known how short their “awake” time needs to be, it would have eliminated a lot of meltdowns these past 12 weeks! And I TOTALLY get the “one outing” a day..,it’s definitely enough:)
    Hang in there girl!

    • Heather Eats Almond Butter on January 24, 2012 at 8:03 pm

      April,
      Same thing with our newborn. I was often mistaking her being tired for hungry and just kept feeding her when all she really needed was sleep. That 2-hour window is no joke.

  26. Kaila @healthyhelperblog! on January 24, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    That side by side comparison is precious! I love how she is making the same hand gesture as you! SO CUT!

  27. Lauren on January 24, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    Wow, how adorable are you both! Love THe nursing lips, those are the best!!!

  28. Lucy on January 24, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    Sound like you all are doing well! Ditto Emily’s advice about feeding first on the side Livi doesn’t care for first. That is what I did, I am ashamed to say I timed our firstborn when she was nursing, and I switched sides every 5 minutes, so I started her on the left side, nursed for 5 minutes (while I kept the sleepy head alert by gently stroking the bottoms of her feet), switched to the right side for 5 minutes, then changed her diaper(she was SUCH a sleepy eater!), then nursed on left side for 5 minutes, and then finally on the right side for at least 5 minutes, usually more since that was her favorite side. And all three of mine nursed at least every 2 hours from the last time they started nursing. Our oldest like all the attention she got at night, so I became more playful during the day, and less at the very late night feedings. Early on with our first, I was so tired that I tried nursing lying down, but she wouldn’t have it, lucky for me the next two were ok with it occasionally. I think our oldest did not like the left side because it sometimes got more full, harder than the right side when it was time to nurse, so often I would manually squirt some milk out and then she would latch on (ok, reluctantly). I also co-slept, which is not for everyone, I relaxed feeling our babe next to me, while hubby would awaken each time our babe moved, sigh… Soon Livi and you will find your rhythm (ours ended up at 6 feedings during and 18 hour “day”) -it is so much fun (ok and work) to have a baby in the family. Enjoy (oh and as everyone kept telling me RELAX)!

  29. Sarah on January 24, 2012 at 6:54 pm

    Hey Gina! My little man is now 3 months old, and I sometimes look back on those first 3 weeks and wonder how I survived. It DOES get better and leaving the house with your entourage + accessories gets a lot easier too. I used to feel like a total ball of stress and now we are just fine. I think it’s fairly normal for one boob to produce more than the other, my right produces 1.5 – 2 oz pumping and my left anywhere from 3-5 pz (GO LEFT! lol)
    Oatmeal and Mother’s Milk tea helped a lot. But after a month and a half or so, your body will regulate and get into its groove.

    Love your salt lamp – seems like a good idea. I’ve started sleeping with the TV on because that bothers my husband less than having the lights on low dim – a girl’s got to see where that boob is going 🙂

    Livi is beautiful – what eyes! Can’t wait to see her in a few weeks time.

    Congrats again!

  30. Morgan @ morganshines on January 24, 2012 at 6:55 pm

    Awe you are doing GREAT Gina!!! Motherhood is no joke and when those little ones get older, you will forget about those rough few weeks with a newborn! Keep up the great work 🙂

  31. Carly on January 24, 2012 at 7:00 pm

    Those eyes! She is so beautiful!

    It will be fun for you to look back at these posts in a few months and laugh as it will all be second nature to you in no time 🙂

  32. ash on January 24, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    your doing a great job!!! love the salt lamp!

  33. MMiller on January 24, 2012 at 7:10 pm

    So glad you had a successful first day and night alone!!

    And wanted to tell you what my sister and sister in law did! For the first night time feeding, they used ready to feed bottled formula! It is a little thicker and richer and baby may sleep a little longer for you! They still breastfed and pumped during the day, just not overnight! And then baby would also take a bottle easily for the grandma’s when they would babysit, since they were already used to taking one sometimes! And even for Dad when he wanted to feed them!

    I had a screamer, and when my DH was in the navy and i was staying home with the baby, I would stay up with her at night and he would sleep in the other room so he could function at work as well!

    Good Luck Gina!! I’m sure Livi will settle down into a schedule or routine soon! I was never a schedule person with my kids, we just rolled with the punches! My nephews all needed schedules! If you were late for naptime, there would be a meltdown! So they all learned NOT to be late putting them down for a nap at the right time!!

    Every family is different and you will settle in soon enough with what works for you!

  34. Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie on January 24, 2012 at 7:12 pm

    That’s so cute to see you both side by side! Congrats on making it through your first solo night!

  35. Pam on January 24, 2012 at 7:15 pm

    What an amazing time in your life! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

  36. Jes Suazo on January 24, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    Congrats on the first night alone! You girls will get in a groove soon. 🙂

    She’s such a doll!

  37. Lara on January 24, 2012 at 7:43 pm

    I love your baby updates just as I loved your pregnancy ones. It seems like you guys are finding your groove. And the baby photos, OMG, Gina, she is truly a gorgeous infant. <3

  38. Amber L on January 24, 2012 at 7:50 pm

    She has the most gorgeous almond shaped eyes! I love how you are making the same pose! Congrats on surviving your first day/night. You are a great mom!

  39. Emily on January 24, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Hang in there, Gina! Glad you are attempting daily adventures, they will make you feel so much more human (and less like a dairy cow)!

  40. Heather Eats Almond Butter on January 24, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    Gina,
    I loved that fortune – perfect, and so glad you’re getting out and enjoying some sunshine.

    I know you’re getting bombarded with advice, but one thing that really helped us when I couldn’t figure out why Summer was fussy was bouncing with her on the exercise ball. Chris was champion bouncer, and it usually put her to sleep after about 5 to 10 minutes. Even if she didn’t fall asleep, it never failed to calm her down.

  41. Michelle (Better with Berries) on January 24, 2012 at 8:14 pm

    I love seeing pictures of babies next to their parents as little ones! There is definitely a similarity between you and Livi!

  42. Ashley on January 24, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    Hey mama! Just wanted to let you know the feeding groove will come as you guys learn each other better and better everyday 🙂 2 weeks is usually a growth spurt though, so that explains alllllll the feeding that feels non stop….I think it’s called cluster feeding , it sounds official, but basically they are ready to eat as soon as they finished it feels like lol only lasts a couple of days so hang in there! 🙂

  43. Karin on January 24, 2012 at 8:42 pm

    My son is now 3, but when he was just a few weeks old, he would cry and cry, and nothing made him happy. I was so frustrated, that I cried a lot. We took road trips in the evening, so that he would calm done. Nothing worked, but then, I started to play nice soft music, classical, soft jazz and it really calmed him. Just a suggestion. Hope it gets better soon, it will in time.

  44. Lynn @ The Svenson Life on January 24, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    Just reading your schedule made me tired! I would say that I think I’m in trouble in June when my first one is born, but you do what you gotta do and you sound great!

  45. britt on January 24, 2012 at 8:48 pm

    it definitely gets easier everyday (& night) but there will always be the hard days too. that’s the hardest part for me is making progress and then having “one of those days” where there is regression. i feel so frustrated because we worked so hard together for progress but i’m learning to just let it all be. i think you are doing amazing if you are already getting out of the house by 11. ha! i didn’t have a lot of friends where i lived so i just didn’t have that motivation and let the sleep deprivation keep me home. i would have killed for mommy friends when i was first starting out. hang in there! sounds like you girls are doing great 🙂

  46. Julie on January 24, 2012 at 9:02 pm

    Hang in there, mama! You are both getting to know each other and will find your rhythm soon. It usually takes about 2-3 months. By then too she should sleep longer stretches. I remember those all night buffets where I just fed the baby all night. It will pass!! Does she like the swing? I swear my little guy slept in his swing or the Ergo for the first 4 months. I also co-slept with him and nursed laying down at night so that I could rest too. As far as the not wanting to nurse on the right side, I am sure you probably know, but start on that side first and switch to the left if/when she gets too frustrated. Or try a different nursing position. Breastfeeding takes lots of work and commitment, right? I nursed both my kids til they were a year old and those first couple weeks are just hard, but it is all so worth it!

  47. Molly on January 24, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    what gorgeous big eyes your wonderful baby has!!

  48. Maria on January 24, 2012 at 9:22 pm

    Her eyes are so big!! I love it! My sister has big brown eyes 🙂 your first part made me LOL. Sounds like a party that I can wait 7 months to attend 🙂

  49. Sam on January 24, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    Not gonna lie….that fortune made me tear up a bit. Perfection. 🙂

  50. Katie @ Pop Culture Cuisine on January 24, 2012 at 9:38 pm

    She is gorgeous and it sounds like you are getting in the groove, as hard as that can be. All I can say (only 4 months in) is do whatever and I mean WHATEVER, works for you and try not to feel inadequate or pressure from what others did or are doing in the breastfeeding department. I have to say I compared myself to a lot of friends and family at first, trying countless things, and finally found what was right for us. It is so easy to get bombarded and feel overwhelmed by information, but just know you were created to be HER MOMMA and your instincts will tell you exactly what she needs, even though it doesn’t feel that way at times! 🙂

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