Wednesday, April 27, 2011


That clever little acronym is used on to refer to when your baby sleeps through the night. I never really thought about this, because I figured we were a long way off. Well... for the past four nights, Charlie has, in fact, slept through the night. He has dropped his 12/1 o'clock feeding and now sleeps from 7:30 to 3:30. Today he actually didn't wake until 5 AM! I was staring at the video monitor for an hour watching him breathe because I was so nervous that something was wrong! Of course, my body is adjusting to these longer stretches and I'm in a world of hurt when I first wake up. Thank goodness for hand expression and my pump! I've read that babies do this sometimes for a week or so, and then go back to waking more frequently at night. I will enjoy the sleep while it lasts!

10 hours of sleep??!! This boy clearly takes after me. :)
I toured a day care center in town yesterday and would feel comfortable having them care for Charlie. I forgot to ask about cloth diapers though, so hopefully that won't be an issue. We are touring another center tomorrow; once I've seen it, I can make my decision between the two.

Breakfast - Fiber One toaster pastry; two hard-boiled eggs
Snack - organic granola bar
Lunch - soy chicken patty on a whole wheat wrap; side of mac n cheese; side of mixed veggies (broccoli, cauliflower and green beans)
Snack - mango sorbet
Dinner - two slices of margherita pizza; garden salad
Dessert - Easter candy

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Photos

We didn't take Charlie to see the bunny this year. Honestly, I think mall bunnies are slightly creepy and I was a little hesitant to let some stranger hold my little guy since he's still so small.  I'm sure we'll do it next year though... For now, here's a few we took tonight:

Happy Easter!

Charlie attended his first Mass today - and he did such a wonderful job! He slept through the opening procession and woke shortly after the music stopped. I nursed him downstairs and then my mom held him for the rest of the service. He was smiling at me the whole time and barely fussed at all. Way to go buddy! I should also mention that he had his longest sleeping stretch ever last night (he ate at 7, bed by 8, and didn't wake again to eat until 2:45!) He must love that new crib that Vavo and Grandpa bought him. :) In other sleeping news, he also took his first "un-swaddled" naps today. Here's proof:

I still plan to swaddle for bedtime, but we'll keep trying naps this way so we can start transitioning without it at night. Plus, I feel better about leaving him with other people who haven't quite mastered the swaddle (ahem, JA, ahem). ;)

Breakfast #1 - egg and cheese sandwich on a deli flat with ketchup
Breakfast #2 - egg white veggie flatbread; decaf latte
Lunch - vegan tortellini stuffed in an acorn squash; garden salad (romaine, tomato, cucumber, carrots, and croutons) with Italian dressing
Snacks - Easter candy
Dinner - leftover tortellini and mixed veggies (carrots, asparagus, snap peas)

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cloth Diaper Update

I am happy to announce that we have solved our overnight diaper dilemma! I put a Thirsties hemp insert behind a bumgenius microfiber insert and stuffed them both into the pocket. So far, so good! The hemp inserts are really thin, so as Charlie gets older/sleeps longer/wets more, we can put two behind the microfiber. I hope his future wife appreciates my commitment to keeping his little guy chemical free! (Disposable diapers have been linked to infertility in males.) In addition to the health benefits, I love that cloth diapers are saving us so much money. Because we're nursing and using cloth, Charlie is practically free right now! :)

Thirsties hemp inserts - sunflowers not included
This afternoon I called our top two child care centers to schedule tours for next week. Eeek! I've actually already viewed the one in town (and I liked it) but it was over the summer. I'd like to see the regular schedule and what the curriculum would be like for Charlie's age group (he'll be seven months when he starts). The other center is one town over from where I work. JA would take the train from here too, so when we become a one car family in June, it will be helpful to commute together to the same place. I'll update next week after I tour both centers.

I also spoke with our pedi office. Green poop (along with yellow and brown) is perfectly normal for a breastfed baby. Good to know. :)

Breakfast - Fiber One toaster pastry
Snack - banana
Lunch - black bean burger on a whole wheat tortilla with ketchup and mustard; raspberry sorbet
Snack - BBQ POP chips
Dinner - ziti with marinara sauce
Dessert - Tofutti ice cream sandwich

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Goodbye yoga pants...

...and hello real clothing! ;)  I have been living in yoga pants since Charlie arrived in early February. It's just an easy, comfortable look for hanging around the house. And to be honest, I usually wear them to run errands as well. So I was very excited to open my email this morning and see this notice from Banana Republic: 40% off dresses! Ohhh... I could use a new dress for the Christening in May. Of course, my second thought was that it had to be easy enough to nurse in. That Mommy gene is too ingrained now! So after perusing the website, I decided on this one. And so apparently did the rest of America, because by the time I put it in my cart and fed Charlie, it was sold out in my size! :(  Thankfully we have a slew of BRs in our area, and the second store I called had it. Goodness. What's a girl gotta do to get out of her yoga pants already? Now the only thing left to do is find a cardigan... and maybe some shoes. ;)

I mailed the baptism invites this morning. I also need to look into a caterer for the event. Lots to do... lots to do...

Lastly, I am starting to wonder if Charlie might have a food allergy. Babies that are breastfed should have poop that's mustardy-yellow and seedy in texture. Sometimes Charlie has this, but sometimes it's green and mucusy (hopefully you don't read this blog while eating). My friend google says this, along with excessive spit up, could indicate a dairy sensitivity. I could test it out by cutting out dairy for two weeks, but this would make me vegan - and that would be an intense commitment. I would have to make sure I'm getting enough protein, which would be difficult without dairy. I think I'll call the pedi in the morning. This has been on my mind for a while now, so I need peace of mind.

Breakfast - all natural PB&J on whole grain toast; apple
Snack - Fiber One toaster pastry
Lunch - Amy's organic cheese and bean burrito; Quorn chicken nuggets
Snack - raspberry sorbet
Dinner - mixed veggies and whole grain brown rice

Monday, April 18, 2011

Bad Blogger

I used to be able to post every day... every now and then I'd miss one, but almost never did I go two whole days without posting. What can I say? My priorities have shifted. :)

JA and I weren't able to take Charlie to the park on Saturday because it was raining - boo! But we did have a great day down the shore yesterday celebrating Palm Sunday with JA's family. Charlie was adorable, of course, and celebrated his own personal achievement. He went an entire day wearing the same outfit. If your baby spits up, then you know how much of an accomplishment this is. We may have gone through a few bibs (ok, like seven) but we managed to contain everything onto them so we could remain in our cute outfit and not have to change into one of the three sleepers Mommy brought with her (just in case). ;)  Of course, we are currently in our third outfit this morning (it's 10:30 AM as I type this) but let's just focus on the positive!

Last night was pretty good sleep-wise. Charlie went down a little after eight (no fussing at all) and didn't wake until close to 2. Of course, I had to stay up until 10 or so addressing his baptism invitations, but I still got almost four hours in a row. And then... we ran into our typical problem of falling asleep before getting a proper burp out. So he was awake again at 4 having spit up in his crib. I picked him up and tried burping him for several minutes and then he fell asleep again! I kept him upright for thirty minutes or so and he woke up, burped super loud, and ate. Sheesh! This kid drives me nuts with the burping!! JA and I try to model good burping all day long, so you'd think he'd have the hang of it by now. ;)

And since it's been a while since I've posted a video, here's our little man. He's not doing anything particularly out of the ordinary on his playmat (aside from admiring his reflection), but I did finally capture a baby sneeze - which I think are totally adorable!

Breakfast - all natural PB&J on whole grain toast; cranberry juice
Snack - small bowl of Cracklin' Oat Bran with organic, low fat milk
Lunch - black bean burger on a whole wheat tortilla with cheese, romaine, ketchup,and mustard; baked fries
Snack - pretzels
Dinner - lasagna
Dessert - Tofutti ice cream sandwich

Friday, April 15, 2011

A Sleepy Day

First of all... Charlie slept until 7 AM this morning (woke at 12:30 and 3:30). That, in and of itself, is a feat. But then he spent the rest of the day in a mostly sleepy state, so I think he was just having one of those days. He also napped from 3:30-6:00, which made me extremely nervous about bedtime. He did go down at 8 though, so we'll see what happens... Tomorrow we have big plans to go to the park to see the cherry blossoms, so I'm hoping he has a good night. :)

Branch Brook Park, NJ - betcha didn't think Jersey could be this pretty, right? ;)
Breakfast - two organic scrambled eggs on whole grain toast; grapefruit juice
Snack - pear; handful of sourdough pretzels
Lunch - Quorn chicken nuggets with BBQ sauce; baked fries with ketchup
Snack - apple
Dinner - black bean burger on a whole wheat tortilla with ketchup and mustard
Dessert - two peanut butter Oreos

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Play Date/New Phone/Sleep Update

Yesterday Charlie and I walked over to our neighbor's house to meet Mira. She was born a week or so before Charles. While they didn't really play (one ate while the other slept and vice versa) it was great to spend some time with another mom and get out of the house for a bit. There are actually two other babies on our block who were born in the past two weeks, so the foursome will go through school together. Cute!

Today I got a new iPhone - yay! It had been a long time coming. As past tradition dictates, JA was my first phone call. And then Charlie was my first picture. He's already been set as my wallpaper. :)
Our little guy is doing such a nice job in his crib... I bet he barely even remembers that Rock n Play sleeper. I've even removed the rolled towels from under the mattress so he's officially flat now. Last night he woke at 12:30 for the first time (a five-hour stretch!) Unfortunately he fell fast asleep before we could get a burp out. I also fell asleep and when I woke at 2 to put him in his crib, he woke with a gas bubble. I HATE when this happens, because we spent the next hour and a half trying to get it out. He finally fell back asleep at 3:30, woke again at 5:30 and went back to sleep until after 7 (a first!) Every day/night is a new adventure. ;)

Breakfast - all natural peanut butter on whole grain toast; grapefruit juice
Lunch - veggie burger with lettuce and tomato
Dinner - Amy's organic bean burrito
Dessert - two homemade brownie bites

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Getting Better

I didn't post after night 2 in the crib because I couldn't even see straight, let alone type. ;)  Charlie was up at 11, 1, 3, 4, and 5. Yikes! I did manage to drive down the shore yesterday so we could visit with Grandma and Grandpa. Maybe the sea air helped him sleep better because last night was bed by 8, up at 11:30, 3:30, and 5 - more like our "schedule" when he slept in the Rock n Play. I hope this is the light at the end of the tunnel!

An unfortunate side effect of the crib sleeping is diaper leaking. Not sure what that is about, but apparently when he lies flat for a long time, the diapers leak up the back. I posted on the cloth diapering board on for some advice, but if you have any, please share it! I hate having to undress him in the middle of the night because his back is soaked!  (**Update - many people recommend hemp inserts. I'm going to order a few and try it out...)

I ordered Charlie's baptism invitations today. Here's the photo I ended up selecting (though I made it black and white). Cute right?

Breakfast - all natural peanut butter on whole grain toast; grapefruit; cranberry juice
Snack - Fiber One toaster pastry; light chocolate soy milk
Lunch - Amy's organic burrito; organic tortilla chips and salsa
Snack - vegan fruit, nuts, and seeds bar
Dinner - veggie burger on a whole wheat tortilla with ketchup and mustard; baked fries
Dessert - half a black and white cookie

Sunday, April 10, 2011

We Survived

It wasn't exactly pretty, but Charlie survived his first night in his crib. We started our bedtime routine at 7:00 with a bath and PJs then headed upstairs to the nursery. He was down a little after 8. He woke up for the first time at 11 and only nursed for about 10 minutes before he was asleep again. In hindsight, I probably should have tried to get him back to sleep without nursing, but I'm just so used to feeding him when he wakes at night. He woke again at 1:15. This time I did try just soothing him, but nothing worked until I fed him. He finally went back to sleep around 2:30. Then he woke again around 5:15 and we were up for the morning. John tried soothing him a bit, but Charlie wanted nothing to do with sleeping any more, so I took him downstairs to play. He's pretty tired this morning, which is always a problem because every time we nurse, he falls asleep before getting a proper burp out. And if I lay him down without burping, he's up within ten minutes or so spitting up. So after walking around the house with him for at least thirty minutes, we finally got a burp and he is now sleeping (flat on his back - we're practicing!) on the couch beside me. The thing about first-time parents and their babies is that so much of it is trial and error... just when something starts to work well, something new comes along to throw a wrench in the works. I am glad that he's in his crib now, and even though it might take a few nights to get back to where we were, I'm confident that Charles can handle it. Whether or not his mom and dad can handle it remains to be seen...

Charlie's just lucky I don't put him in a crib like this... then he'd really have something to cry about! ;)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Transitioning to the Crib

So, my plan was to start this in the next couple of weeks. But if you know me, you know I can be a bit forgetful sometimes. I have a history of locking my keys in the car, forgetting my purse/phone/etc. somewhere... you know the drill. And since I left Charlie's Rock n Play Sleeper at my parents' house in Massachusetts today, Charlie will begin transitioning to the crib tonight. Eek! Actually, I'm OK with it... I think it's time. He's getting bigger and he was going to outgrow the RnP soon enough lengthwise anyway. So I'm sure I'll have quite the report tomorrow (or I'll be so sleep-deprived you won't hear from me for a couple of days). :)  The plan is to put a few rolled towels under the mattress to create a slight incline. Many girls on have done this and have had success, so I'm hoping it works for us too. I'm not looking for him to sleep-through-the-night... just hoping for our usual schedule (bed by 8ish, up around 12/1 and 3/4). Wish us luck!

The Rock n Play never factored into my nusery plan anyway... the colors were all wrong. ;)
Breakfast - scrambled eggs with ketchup on a whole wheat tortilla
Lunch #1 - vegetable lasagna
Lunch #2 - veggie burger; handful of fries; pink lemonade
Dinner - Amy's organic vegetarian burrito; four potato and cheese pierogies

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Another Fabulous Day

It's official... Charlie loves Massachusetts! :)  He had another awesome day today with his mommy and Madrinha at the mall. Even though we didn't find an outfit for him to wear after his christening, we did find some great ideas and we'll order something online. Charles slept in the car on the way, we did two feedings in the women's lounges (Nordstrom's lounge is awesome!), he slept again in his Peanut Shell all during lunch (fantastic!) and slept again on the car ride home. When he was awake he was a happy little baby, just taking in all the sights, sounds, and smells along the way. Of course, he also attracted quite a bit of attention from the ladies. He's such a charmer!

Oh, I did pick up a little something for myself while we shopped. In honor of Charlie's February birthday, my mom treated me to an amethyst Pandora charm for my bracelet. Obrigado!

Breakfast - one organic egg with cheese on a deli flat with ketchup; cranberry juice
Snack - decaf latte; reduced fat blueberry muffin
Lunch - white bean hummus and pita bread; fresh vegetable salad (romaine, radicchio, tomato, cucumber, asparagus, green beans, apples, and cheese) with pomegranate dressing; mango smoothie
Snack - organic granola bar
Dinner - two slices of tomato and basil pizza; pita pocket with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, cheese, pepper and oli & vinegar
Dessert - Fiber One granola bar

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The Perfect Day

I realize the overnight hours are yet to come as I type this, but Charlie had such a great day today that I had to celebrate him. I attribute so much of this to my mom, who played with him all day long. I spend so much of our days together talking and singing with him, or reading him books, but I have to say that I haven't been exercising his body as much. Today he did about four sessions of tummy time, baby sit-ups, and a bunch of other activities with Vavo - she tired him out! :)  He took a three hour nap this afternoon (haven't seen one of those in weeks!) and was asleep at bedtime within five minutes. Wowza. Now if I could just convince my mom to retire early and move to New Jersey we'd be all set. :)

This is Charles' exercise plan for tomorrow.

We also visited my aunt today (my mom's oldest sister). She is the baby whisperer. I loved watching her with Charlie... he was in love! Apparently she helped raise my mom, and myself, so she knows what she's doing. We were there after five o'clock and it had been close to two hours since he ate, but he was, once again, perfect! Here's hoping he has an awesome day tomorrow too, since we'll be spending the day with his Madrinha shopping for something cute to wear to his baptism after-party.

Breakfast - egg and cheese on a whole wheat tortilla; Greek blueberry yogurt
Snack - Fiber One granola bar
Lunch - vegetable soup; soy chicken patty on a deli flat; baked fries
Snack - low fat, low calorie ice cream bar
Dinner - acorn squash stuffed with tortellini; side of butternut squash (all made by my dad and SOOO good!)
Dessert - organic apple; half an English muffin with natural peanut butter

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Charles is two months old!

It's been a whirlwind weekend, and I am now reporting live from Massachusetts! Charlie was a dream on the drive up, considering he was at the doctor getting his two-month shots in the morning. We nursed right after he got them, and he was just fine the rest of the day and night. The only time he really cried on the drive up was when he was hungry. Of course, this turned our four hour drive into a six and half hour drive, but what can you do... a boy's gotta eat!

Charles is growing beautifully! He's currently 11 lbs. 10 oz. and 23 1/2 inches (50%ile and 75%ile, respectively). We're going to stay the course with exclusively nursing and plan to introduce solids at six months, unless he's starving before then (as the doctor put it). We shall see how it goes. I mentioned the spitting up, and as I expected, the doctor is only concerned if he's in pain as it's happening. Since he's not, he's referred to as a "happy spitter." Mommy is not so happy doing all the laundry, however, but at least he's healthy. ;)

Here's what's new with our two-month-old:
Your baby can tell the difference between familiar voices and other sounds, and he's becoming a better listener. He can also show you that he's in tune with his environment. Notice how he looks to see where certain noises are coming from.

An ongoing conversation (although seemingly one-sided) can help your baby develop his sense of place. He may even watch your mouth as you talk, fascinated by how it all works. You'll be amazed by his ability to communicate with a growing repertory of coos (musical, vowel-like sounds), smiles, and unique cries to express his different needs.
JA and I are convinced Charlie will be an early talker. I feel like he's trying to talk me now! I think he'd say something like, "Mom! I'm hungry!!" (like Will Ferrell's character in Wedding Crashers) Just a hunch, though... To celebrate Charlie's two-month birthday, here are a few photos I took recently. Not sure how it's possible, but he's getting cuter and cuter each day!

How could you not love this face??

Breakfast - Greek strawberry yogurt; natural peanut butter on an English muffin; cranberry juice
Snack - Fiber One granola bar
Lunch - veggie burger on a deli flat; vegetable soup; fruit juice bar
Snack - organic apple
Dinner - vegetable soup; something yummy my dad will make me :)

Friday, April 1, 2011

I'm in love...

with Peapod! All of my groceries arrived in great shape and were carried right into my kitchen. Seriously the coolest thing ever. It was so nice to have real food to eat today. My mother-in-law also brought us food yesterday, so Charles and I will be able to enjoy something more nutritious than half a cucumber for dinner. :)

As I type this (with one hand) Charlie is now going on 2.5 hours since he last ate. Could we be turning a corner? I don't want to get my hopes up (especially since he was up from 1:30-3:00 AM last night - and ate again at 4!). But maybe I'll get those three and four hour stretches back one day... a girl can dream. (Which is an ironic statement seeing how I'd have to be sleeping in order to dream.) ;)

Breakfast - one organic egg with American cheese and ketchup on whole grain toast; grapefruit juice
Snack - honey wheat pretzels
Lunch - garden salad (lettuce, tomato, cucumber, peppers, onions, broccoli, and olives); side of mac n cheese
Snack - grapefruit
Dinner - veggie burger with ketchup and mustard; potato pancake
Dessert - soy ice cream sandwich