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Archive for December, 2010

What’s the opposite of writer’s block?  Because I have so many things I want to write about but need to get my thoughts un-jumbled so that I can write cohesive posts, and I need to find the time to sit down and actually write them.  Most of them are reflections on how amazing this year has been and how much it has taught me.

We don’t celebrate Christmas, but it has been a nice 5 day weekend spent with Lil Z-Bear, although I am working all of this week (Accounting and year-end close waits for no man!)  It was great to be snowed in, the only thing better than freshly fallen snow and hot chocolate is a cooing baby to enjoy it with. 

Yesterday, when hubby came home (he had to go to work, drag!) I was playing with Z-Bear after spending the entire day at his beck and call.  As soon as papa walked in, mama became invisible and it was all grins for papa.  It made me reflect on something: babies are thankless little creatures!  When I was pregnant, everyone told me that little boys love their mommies while little girls are more attached to their daddies.  Well, Lil Z’s face lights up like a burst of warm sunshine on a cold day every time his papa walks into the room, and mama is just a mere memory then.  I’d be upset and jealous, if it didn’t absolutely melt my heart to see these two so much in love!

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Diaper Duty

I was in Target this weekend and picked up a ginormous box of diapers and baby wipes and struggled to put it in my cart.  Phew…that should be enough…for a week, I guess.  You never truly understand just how many diapers you are going to change as a new mom until you actually have a baby.  Whatever number you have in your head, multiply it by at least 2.  So it baffles me when I see someone with a small pack of diapers and just one pack of wipes in their cart walking breezily down the store.  How do they do it?  I read that the average baby goes through 2,800 diapers a year.  That means more than 90 trips to the store if you buy the dainty 30 pack every time.  Wow!  I think I’d rather stick to the unsightly box of 200.  And today, I’d like to share my review on the baby diapers we’ve used for Lil Z-Bear.

Pampers Swaddlers – We were given Swaddlers at the hospital, and we continued to use them.  I like the soft, cloth-like feel, and it has a snug yet not too tight fit that contours very well around the Lil Z’s precious legs and bottom.  Also, as far as leaks ago, besides a handful here and there, (which was mostly related to either waiting too long to change his diaper, or my novice experience in putting the diaper on) we have not had any leak problems.  I confess I had never changed a baby’s diaper until Lil Z entered this world, and the Swaddlers are easy to put on, and the tabs are Velcro-like.

Pampers Cruisers – When Lil Z outgrew his Swaddlers, I was bummed out (no pun intended) since I liked the Swaddlers so much and because it meant Z-Bear was becoming a big boy (Waaah!).  The Cruisers are great, they are simply a larger and slightly thinner version of Swaddlers.

Pampers Sensitive Baby wipes – These are unscented and claim to be as gentle as water.  I love them, they don’t irritate Z-Bear’s bum, they are soft yet sturdy, and they aren’t sticky or messy.  I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to stay away from heavily fragranced products for baby. There simply is no need for it, especially if you have a baby with sensitive skin.  On the subject, I use Tide Pure and Gentle for baby’s laundry, and discovered it take out stains just as well as regular Tide, so I started doing all our laundry in it…it makes laundry a whole lot easier.

Diaper Cream:  Check out this earlier post.

Diaper Genie – I read mixed reviews on this, and I was skeptical about the Genie.  But now that we have it, I can’t imagine doing without it.  We use the Diaper Genie Elite II, and we have no problems with diaper smells.  The bags that need to be purchased separately can get expensive, but I think it’s a small price to pay for the convenience. 

Changing table – This is another essential that we can’t imagine doing without. It makes changing diapers so much easier, and is great for getting baby dressed.  If I could do it over again, I would get a changing table with a side table attached at the same level as the changing pad.  Because now that Lil Z is getting bigger, there isn’t enough room for the baby wipes box on the changing pad, and using the shelves on the bottom is an extra step that could have been easily avoided.

Diaper Stacker: This contraption made from cloth and a hanger seems unassuming, but I’d say it’s a must for every nursery.  Ours hangs on the wall at the same level as the changing table, and being able to just reach over and pull one out is a huge benefit.  It’s a lot easier than reaching down for diapers stacked in a box or bin. It sounds small, but with so much strain on your back with baby activities, every little thing counts.

Be sure to have hand sanitizer (with a pump) on the changing table.  Oh, and the baby wipes warmer…that you can skip.

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Ch-ch-ch-changes

Old Sadia: Gets excited over an expensive pair of shoes or handbag.

New Sadia: Gets excited over a top of the line…vacuum cleaner.

Having a baby changes everything.

Happy Weekend everyone!

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Lil Z-Bear turns 6 months old in just 5 days.  Wow!  Half a year…how is that even possible, he was just a couple of days old like a second ago.  With this milestone comes another one: I will stop breastfeeding in 3 weeks.  Rather, I should say I will stop pumping, because it’s been over a month since I nursed Lil Z.  Once I went back to work which meant spending a good part of the day away from Z-Bear, it got harder and harder to get him to latch on.  He has been drinking expressed breastmilk since then.  And now, he will be exclusively formula fed.  I feel comfortable with the formula we feed him (check out this earlier post), and he is doing great with eating solids. But I can’t stop feeling guilty about depriving him of my milk.  I wish I could continue the breastmilk, but two reasons why I am choosing to stop: I am spending so much time attached to the pump, and my supply has gone down so only 2 of his bottles are mama’s milk.  The rest is formula.

This post isn’t about making me feel less guilty about stopping the breastmilk.   I have read so much stuff that tells you not to feel guilty about giving your baby formula, because those babies do just fine and blah blah blah.   Deep inside as a mom, I know I should continue with breastmilk.  And I am ok with feeling guilty about stopping, it’s an informed decision I have made.  This post is simply mourning the impending loss of my body’s ability to provide nourishment for my baby.  And it’s to tell myself to enjoy these last 3 weeks where I can watch Lil Z guzzle food I produced for him.

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It is Tuesday, it is so cold that if I went outside and for some reason I decided to cry, I am sure my tears would freeze mid-run down my cheeks.  I am still sluggish after recovering from a cold.  And it is an uneventful week.  I mean, seriously, do you want to know what got me excited today?  While running some reports for work, I realized that the current month and the year-to-date field are the same: December.  So it meant I got to be lazy and didn’t have an extra field to populate.  How awesome is that!  Like I said…it’s a slow week.

 In the same vein, it is shaping up to be a slow week for blogging.  I haven’t jotted down anything on a sticky note about what to blog about this week like I usually do.  My sticky note today is completely blank, staring at me in a lackluster fashion, like the rest of the week.  So I browsed through my favorite mommy blogs for inspiration to strike me.  Here are a few things I found:

Great minds think alike!  I find so many versions of things I write on my blog about Lil Z-Bear.  It also tells me that I probably don’t really have a single original thought.

I get disproportionately excited when I see a mommy using the same baby monitor/piece of clothing/diaper bag etc. as I do.

When I see a baby wearing the same article of clothing as Lil Z has, I always think Z-Bear wore it better (what can I say, I’m one proud mama!)

All moms tend to exaggerate their babies accomplishments (or perhaps, not so much exaggerate, but they just seem so grand in our minds).  For example, I truly believe that any mom who says their baby who is under the age of 12 months 6 months sleeps through the night, what they really mean is the baby may or may not wake up for a quick feeding at either 12 am or 5 am, but after being used to feeding every 3 hours, technically anything over 6 hours is sleeping through the night.

Moms 30 and over blog differently than twenty-something mothers.  And I am in awe (also, perhaps a little irritated) when I see fresh-faced mommies of 23 blogging about their 2 year olds.  And I don’t believe their complaints about stretch marks.

When moms ask for advice on their blogs, if their baby is even a day older than Z-Bear’s six months, I refrain from responding.  Because the mommy club is all about seniority.  Everyone should respect that.

…Well, back to my slow week…although as a mom you never know, it could pick up any second…

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We have officially survived Lil Z-Bear’s first cold.  Our little cub is doing much better now, he had a stuffy nose and a cough.  Thankfully he did not have a fever, and even despite his misery, Z-Bear was such a trooper and had smiles for us even when he was struggling.  I got to use a lot of the stuff that new mommies buy in hopes of never having to actually need.  Little Noses Saline spray was a lifesaver in keeping Lil Z’s nose clear, as were the grape scented Boogie Wipes.  And I was loving the lavender scented Vicks baby rub and lavender and rosemary Vicks Vapopads.  They did wonders in creating an environment of comfort for the Bear, and for us as well…

Because in addition to spreading overall love and cheer to us, Z-Bear also passed along his cold to us.  The weather this weekend was perfect actually for staying in jammies all weekend, drinking lots of chicken soup, and napping when the little guy napped.  Lil Z, lovable bear that he is, was a sweetheart and didn’t bother mama and papa too much. I think he sensed that we were sick and needed some time to recuperate. 

Sunday I felt a little better, so I did a quick grocery run, and got this gorgeous organic butternut squash to prepare for Z-Bear.  Can’t you tell he is ready to dig in?

And later in the evening, as a treat, my sister and I prepared some yummy chocolate hazelnut cupcakes (recipe from a fellow mommy blogger).

Hubby and I still haven’t gotten rid of the sniffles, but nothing some extra cuddles from Z-Bear won’t fix…

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1.  Mint flavored anything.  The flavor of mint instantly transports me into holiday season mood.  Pair chocolate and mint, and I am in a winter wonderland.  I can’t get enough of the stuff, and the trails of foil wrappers left around the house prove that.

2.  My kidskin leather gloves (made in a small glove shop in Florence, Italy).  I’ve had them for years, and every winter when it is time to take them out, they are buttery soft.

3.  The cold weather.  Yes, I love it.  The bare trees, the feeling that the air is so crisp it is made of glass, how amazing it feels when you hold a hot drink in your hand, or walk in a warm building after facing the blustery cold, and how even more amazing it feels to slip under the warm covers of the bed at night.

4.  Speaking of cold weather…I love how everyone looks like Eskimos around winter time…the hats, the gloves, the boots, the scarves, and the red noses.

5.  Eggnog.  When I first heard of eggnog, it sounded disgusting.  And the first time I tried it, I thought it tasted gross.   But now, I love the stuff with its creamy, sugary, nutmegy goodness.

6.  Homemade hot chocolate made with 1 heaping tablespoon of Ghirardelli Unsweetened Cocoa, 1 cup warmed milk, 1/4 cup warmed cream, sugar to taste.  And topped with these mini marshmallows.  Not only are they delicious with a mild vanilla flavor, but they are made with fish gelatin (not bovine or porcine), which means I can eat them!

7.  Homemade fudge.  I love fudge anytime of the year, but especially in the winter.  Best fudge recipe: Heidi Swanson’s Fantasy-ish Fudge.  It has the sugary smooth texture of fudge that I prefer over the creamy kind, and it tastes yum!

8.  The anticipation of Z-Bear’s first snow!  Which means we get to bundle him up and take tons of cute pictures of him.  Let’s just hope the weather doesn’t disappoint.

9.  Creams, lotions and body washes that are scented like holiday baked treats. Especially the Philosophy holiday collection.

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