Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye, 2007!

Don't you hate it when people say "See you next year!" when they're saying goodbye at this time of year, and then laugh like it's really funny and no one's ever heard that "joke" before? So far no one has said it to me, which is good, but I've overheard it at least three times. Not funny, people...not funny year after year after year.

This is a bit odd…it’s my first New Year’s Eve in Minnesota in four years. We’ve been in Texas the last two years and Scotland the year before. This will also be my first sober New Year’s Even in five years…not that I’ve gone of the deep end on previous holidays, but tonight I will be drinking my one post-breastfeeding with food alcoholic beverage that I’m allowed, and that’ll be it for me. AND it’ll also be the first New Year’s in at least 8 years where I doubt that I’ll actually be awake at midnight. So there you are – I’m officially an adult.

Since we’re not in Texas this year, Texas has come to visit us. No, it’s not warm and sunny here (in fact, the wind chill tonight is supposed to be -15 degrees!), but Grampa Steve and Gramma Angel arrived on Saturday! Chason originally talked about taking them sledding, but instead they went to Lake Harriet (a mile from our house) and walked across the frozen lake, then went to Minnehaha Falls to check out the frozen waterfalls. Romelie and I stayed home for this excursion – we could bundle her up so her body was nice and warm, but it’s just not good for her to breathe in that cold air for too long, especially since her nose is stuffy half the time already – and enjoyed the nice warm central heating.

Oh, and James and Erin came by on Sunday to visit and to meet Romelie, and I totally forgot to take a picture! I’ve started documenting her visitors by taking photos, and I dropped the ball. Boo. But we had a nice visit (just like with Ellen and Scott, she slept the entire time they were here!!), and I’ll be sure to get them next time.

My six-week checkup visit with Dr. Mitchell is Wednesday morning – I’ll let everyone know how it goes. In the meantime, I hope everyone has a happy and safe New Year!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Back to life, back to reality

Anyone else remember that song? I can't remember who sang it, but I have it running through my head over and over. Not the entire song...just that phrase. It's swell.

So hey! It's been a decade since I've blogged...sorry about that. But here goes with the long updates.

Last week, Romelie had to go in for a late notice doctor's appointment. She had a couple of poopy diapers with just a dot of blood - honestly, I wasn't too worried at the first one, but by the third one (not consecutive, mind...just a random diaper about once every other day or so) Icalled in and they told me to come in. No worries - she's fine. And she was up to 24 inches and 11 lbs. 12 oz. Bigger than your average 3 month old. We are getting darned close to outgrowing our 0-3 month clothes...

Last Friday, we had our first road trip. Woo-hoo! Paul, Romelie and I went to visit my mom up in Menagha. What would have been a 3-1/2 hour drive took 5 hours to get up (traffic) and then 5-1/2 hours to get back on Sunday (LOTS of snow). The way up was tough - she fussed for the first couple of hours and we had to stop at a tiny rest-stop where I had to feed her in a handicapped stall while sitting on the floor...awesome. But then she slept the rest of the way. The way back, though...she slept all the way until the last 15 minutes. I was SO grateful because I did NOT want to stop in a snowstorm and delay our return any more than I had to. Plus I needed to get back for the Vikings game...which we lost. Romelie's good luck winning streak has come to an end. Sigh.

We had lots of fun with Gramma Carol and Grampa John. We got to have our first visit to a bar (bar/restaurant, to be fair...), pet our first dogs and our first bunny, and got to sleep in our pack-and-play for the first time. Not a bad invention, I must say!
On to Christmas. Romelie got two awesome Christmas outfits - a onesie from Ellen and Scott (above) who were briefly back in town from their Up With People tour, and an Elmo outfit from her cousin Torin in Houston (along with Aunt Bronwyn and Uncle Shane - expecting a baby next month!!). I'm sorry to say that Romelie's onesie, which reads "all mommy wants for christmas is a silent night," was pooped on - both literally and figuratively. But she still looked cute in it. And she got lots of compliments on her Elmo outfit on Christmas day.

Romelie got some other cool fun presents (yay, toys and books and a bouncy chair!), and Chason and I got, among other things, a Roomba to help deal with the flea problem and ongoing cat hair situation. Haven't had time to try it yet, but I'm excited...we then went to my dad's house and thanks to my dad, finally have a kitchen table (yes, we are now officially grown ups). We went to my Uncle Mike's for lunch and then to my Uncle Larry's where Romelie met his family for the first time. More snowstorms made the driving interesting, but in all, Romelie was very well behaved and I think had a fantastical first Christmas.

And finally - my maternity leave is officially over. I went back to work on Friday, December 21. Paul watched her that day while I was at work - my dad has been watching her for the past three days - Grandpa Steve and Grandma Angel (coming into town tomorrow, we can't wait to see them!!) will be watching her on Monday - my mom will be watching her next Wednesday thru Friday - and then she starts daycare on Monday, January 7. I could tell you about what that will be like, but this blog is already super long, so I'll save it for a later date.

Will post more after Steve and Angel's visit. Happy New Year to everyone!!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Dancer family visits Santa Claus!

Aww...

Well, she slept through the visit with Santa...so no crying, which is good, but her head was flopped forward onto her chest, making her look like some sort of goofy elf. But that's okay...Santa was very nice :)

Of course, then she woke up and started crying about 10 minutes later when we were trying to get some holiday shopping done, and we had to take her to the family bathroom to change her and she peed all over the changing table (and while I had a changing pad down on the table and cleaned up the mess thoroughly, I couldn't help but wonder how many other babies had peed on that same table and prayed that the cleaning crew sanitizes that thing...). Good times.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

So if baby only weighed 8-1/2 pounds...

I'm feeling a bit frustrated with my extra weight today. I know that you don't lose "baby weight" overnight (except for the actual baby's weight, I suppose...), but to be perfectly frank about my weight, I'm at 214 pounds right now. Which is 25 pounds less than I weighed at the end of my pregnancy, but still 33 pounds more than I weighed at the beginning. And I was technically overweight then.

I think I've lost all of the water weight I'm going to arguably lose, and I've been told that it'll be hard to get rid of that last 5-10 pounds until I'm done breastfeeding, which won't be until she's at least 6 months if all goes well, and perhaps longer if things go really well. But really, this 33 pounds is wreaking some havoc on my system. My hips and knees are sore all the time, stairs have become an enemy, and when I'm carrying Romelie, everything is doubled in intensity it seems.

It extra-sucks because one of my guilty pleasures is watching "The Biggest Loser." And seriously, all of the women left on the show weigh less than I do. Granted, next week is the finale so they've been losing weight for the last 3-1/2 months, but it's somewhat sad to watch this "overweight" woman step on the scale and see numbers that are less than what I weigh. One of the women (who is much shorter than me, to be fair, but still...) STARTED the show weighing 212 pounds. Less than me. Don't worry - this isn't a self-esteem issue with me, it's a comfort issue - but still...

I have my six-week checkup coming up right after New Year's, so hopefully everything will go well and I'll be allowed to go back to working out. I haven't done it since March, so it'll definitely take some adjustment, but I felt a lot better last year when I was working out on a regular basis. In the meantime, when Romelie is being fussy and is only happy when she's being walked around the entire house, and my knees and hips are killing me, I'll just remind myself that every step helps me lose a bit more weight.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Boogers and Bottles

For those who are tracking this - Vikings are now 4-0 since Romelie was born. Three more wins and they clinch a spot in the playoffs. Go, little Romelie Viking Dancer!

It's been a pretty long and somewhat uneventful week - I must say, as cute as Romelie is, she doesn't DO very much yet...so it's tough to think of news to write. I don't think "She still eats, sleeps, and poops a lot" is particularly newsworthy information.

We did have our first outings in this last week. Last Monday, Tuesday, and yesterday we went to Target for various shopping purchases. She's pretty good at sleeping through them, so the trips have thus far been pretty chill for both of us. She also got to go to The Bakken on Tuesday and meet a lot of my co-workers, and there we got to have our first experience changing and feeding baby in public. Granted, "in public" means in the private bathroom with a lock on the door, not sitting at my desk or anything, but still - it was a new experience for both of us, and it went as well as can be expected.

We've also had our first stuffy nose - a few times. Gotta say, don't love the nasal aspirator. It's still too big for her tiny nostrils, so the only way I can actually suck the snot out of her nose is to take her in the bathroom and turn on hot water so it gets steamy. Then her nose starts to run a bit, so I can use the aspirator, but it takes a good 6-7 tries on each nostril - she does not enjoy this process one bit, and we've had to do it four times now. We bought a humidifier at one of the Target visits (yes, I say "we" as if Romelie pulled out her wallet and coughed up the $25 herself), and I'm hoping that helps the situation somewhat.

What else...we introduced the bottle on Saturday. Not so great. Romelie has a tough time with a pacifier as it is, and the bottle seemed to blow her mind a bit. It took an hour for her to eat 4 ounces of breastmilk...there was lots of frustrated crying involved, but she did it. Then I fed her a bottle yesterday (one a day, her pediatrician says, so she gets used to it by the time she has to be in daycare), and we got it down to about 40 minutes. So progress.

Other than that...more visits from Gramma Carol, Grampa Dan, and Uncle Paul...visited Great Grandpa and Great Grandma Schwantz on Friday...we got to see Aunt Crystal and her mom yesterday...and I can finally recognize one of her cries when I hear it. I recognize the cry that means "I have a wet diaper and I'm not happy about it." Which is cool. The other cries are "Pick me up, I'm bored/lonely," "Don't take off my clothes, I hate being naked," and "Stop poking and tickling me, it's jarring my system." We're working on the rest.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Are you freakin' kidding me?

First things first: Romelie had her first well baby checkup with Dr. Dukinfield, her pediatrician, on Wednesday morning. She is still 23 inches long, but she now weighs 9 lbs 8 oz. For those of you doing math, that means she's gained a pound since she was born. She's in the 95% for weight and 99+% for length for her age. Way to go, little piggy!

Unfortunately, at this same visit, I pointed out to Dr. Dukinfield that I had numerous little bug bites on me, and I had spotted one or two on Romelie. He asked if we had pets (we have two cats), and then suggested that it might be fleas.

Yup...it's fleas.

Oh my disgusting.

The worst part is, Jeffy (big cat) has been itchy for almost two months, and I've had the bites for about the same amount of time. I feel like a total bad pet owner for not putting two and two together - I assumed he had dry skin because when I scratched his back, he had some dandruff. And I kept meaning to ask Dr. Mitchell about my bites at my WEEKLY appointments and forgot, and I kept meaning to call the vet to ask about the cat but kept putting it off - and now we have a baby in a house with a flea infestation. Guilt guilt guilt.

Thankfully, I called my mom on Thursday morning and she came down that evening (Chason went back to work on Wednesday and I just knew I couldn't do it by myself). Both cats were treated with Frontline, and then my mom spent all day yesterday vacuuming the main floor from top to bottom (finding lots of dead fleas, ew ew ew, but at least they're dying). I helped when I could (laundry, etc.) but Romelie has been having a pretty demanding last couple of days - she doesn't sleep for more than 20 minutes, gets upset pretty quickly, and nothing will calm her down except feeding her which, since we're not introducing the bottle for another week, is automatically my job.

Today we get to tackle the basement, and then hopefully we will be pretty well set - we'll Frontline the cats again in 30 days and then 30 days after that, and we'll just try to vacuum on a somewhat regular basis to pick up the dead ones. I've asked for a Roomba for Christmas.

So my home disgusts me a bit right now, but thanks to Gramma Carol andFrontline, the situation is being dealt with.

Oh, and Grampa John got to see baby Romelie for the first time this week. He agrees with everyone in the universe that she is super cute. And she is. Can't wait to see Grampa Steve and Gramma Angel in less than a month!!!