Sunday, May 22, 2011

"Family Habit Overhaul"

That's what we're trying to do. We have fallen into a funk since Nathan was born and we tried to get a handle on life with a kid. After almost seven months, we've realized all of that effort left behind a disorganized home and stressed-out parents! (Not to mention a Nathan who still won't sleep!)

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we feel it is our responsibility to always do certain things. Some of these things include studying the scriptures daily, praying as a family and on your own every day, and attending an LDS Temple regularly. The only one you are accountable for these things to is the Lord. It's a very personal commitment that can bring families closer to each other and to the Lord.

However, with busy school and work schedules, and learning how to be parents, we have fallen a bit behind in all of these things that are supposed to be habitual. We still feel close as a couple, but we've noticed something missing.

In addition to these things, we are lacking in more secular habits, like organization, scheduling, meal times, homework/study times, chore schedules, etc. We've pretty much been flying by the seat of our pants, which is pretty taxing on all of us! The most scheduled part of our day is Nathan's bedtime routine.

Here is the plan that Mitch and I came up with together today. This is going to be very hard on us, but it needs to be done in order for us to be productive. No more sleeping in (mostly trying to catch up for time we were up with Nathan during the night), and no more pajama days, which tend to happen (with me) a lot, since I only go to class at night and online.

This is our new schedule, starting Monday morning (May 23rd):
7:30 am--wake up & exercise
Two of my least favorite things, at my least favorite time!
8:00 am--showers for both of us
Sometimes I don't shower until Nathan's down for an afternoon nap; usually because that's the only time I can get to it! Doing it before he wakes up works too, though...
8:30 am--study the scriptures on our own
I'm not so good at this; Mitch is a pro.
9:30 am--breakfast together
Usually Mitch grabs breakfast to go on his way out the door, and I rarely eat it, which is a horrible habit when i'm nursing!
10:00 am--study the scriptures together
We'll share what we learned on our own or study something different, depending on what we want to get out of it.
11:00 am--off to school (Mitch) or online schoolwork (me)
This is our normal start time for the day. Since Nathan still goes to bed around 10:00-10:30, he usually sleeps until about this time in the morning.
4:oo-6:00 pm--"rest time" and dinner
This is when our brains get a rest and we get to watch tv, get on Facebook/Blogger, etc. And of course fix and eat dinner.
6:00 pm--any work or leftover schoolwork we need to do
This is about the time my night classes start, and I also work every once in awhile in the evenings for the Ticket Office on campus.
10:00 pm--plan the next day and have family prayer
This will give us the organization and "heads up" we need to orchestrate getting places on time during the day with one car, who watches Nathan when, etc.
10:15-10:30 pm--put Nathan down for bed
Eventually this will be an earlier time, but most of my classes go until 9 pm and I really don't want to miss bedtime with my little Nathan!
11:00 pm--our bedtime
This is a lot better than the 1:00-1:30 time we usually end up going to bed at. We just lose track of time while we try to hurry and get done everything we didn't accomplish that day!

And then it all starts over.

This is going to be hard, but we both need it.

It is very similar to the schedule that full-time missionaries from our Church follow. So, Mitch lived this every day for 2 years. Lots of members of our church follow it for years after their missions because it makes them feel very healthy.

I feel like sharing this will make us feel accountable to someone else to keep this goal. We're eventually going to implement some sort of chore chart and assign days to grocery shopping, laundry, etc. We understand that our schedule could change completely based on our school schedules. Sadly, school has to come first right now, and we have to work around it.

I will share our progress every once in awhile to let you all know how we're doing.
Then i'll share the goals that we've set to go along with this schedule, and how we're doing with them as well.

I'm still grumbling at the fact that I have to get up at 7:30 tomorrow! Ugh!! The last thing I will ever be is a morning person!

And, since a couple of you chose to read this far, you get a picture :o)
Our bald little Nathan is finally big and strong enough to sit in the front of the grocery cart! He loves it! When we put him in the front and buckle him in he holds on tight to the cart and gives us this cute, apprehensive smile!

One day he'll have hair! For now we call it "infant male pattern baldness."

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

It's finally spring!

We have been waiting, pretty much since Nathan was born, to play outside. And when you're born in Idaho in the beginning of November, that can be a pretty long wait.

But, when you finally get springtime to come and get to wiggle your baby toes in the grass for the first time, it can be really fun!
Or, you can hate it like Nathan did.
He didn't like it at all. I guess a lot of babies are like this, right?
We loved his little adidas shirt and sweatpants, though. It's a very "Mitch" outfit!
And then on Sunday he was wearing my favorite outfit, and it was pretty again, so we had to head back out! I'm sure our neighbors think we're "those people" that take billions of pictures of their one kid everyday...they should see my memory card!

This is as close to a smile as I can ever get:
We love the dark blue shoes in that last picture...$1 for leather Baby Gap shoes at our thrift store! Score!Now I need to learn how to edit pictures so I can make these look all fancy!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Six Months and Worrying

WOW...Nathan is six months old today! (November 2nd)'s amazing how fast the last six months have flown by...and how fast our love for him grows every day!
That also means that my sweet little great-grandma, his great-great-grandma, is 98 1/2 years old...Nathan was born on her 98th birthday! She is awesome.

Nathan has learned how to:

-roll over and over to explore things and get closer to toys
But occasionally forgets how, leading to screaming fits of too much tummy time!

-make hilarious, throaty noises that he repeats over and over again...
(that GASP!-y noise that gets everyone's attention) Tonight we were "those people" in Walgreen's with the crazy noisy child that wouldn't stop gasping at every new aisle! I didn't know Walgreen's was that fun!

-reach out for someone/something
It's so cute seeing those two little hands and ten little fingers try to grab something!

-pull hair like a champ
It took him this long to find and start pulling mom's short hair!

-sit up on his own for about 20 seconds at a time...woo hoo!
After that he needs his boppy for support :o)

-eat rice cereal like a champ, whether it's mixed with breastmilk, water, or Pedialyte
This week we start baby food! Woo hoo, go peas!!
(Nathan and his best friend, Burton, going for a ride in our car)
I'm sure there's more, I just can't remember it! This kiddo hasn't mastered sleeping well yet...he occasionally sleeps more than 4 hours at a time, but most nights he's still up every 3-4 hours wanting food. There's more to life than sleep...right!?
Anyway, on to the next subject...worrying.

I keep convincing Mitch that it's normal for moms to worry more than necessary. He doesn't believe, and thinks i'm going to have an aneurysm at any second.

I usually worry about one thing in particular, which is a very silly worry that I'm, for some reason, consumed in.

I am so worried that the next baby will have to come by c-section.
I know, crazy, right!?
At this point, Nathan's next sibling's going to be, like, 4 years younger than him!!

Plus, in order for me not to be considered "high risk" and give my incision time to heal, it is "strongly suggested" that I wait at least 2 years from the time he was born to get pregnant.

You got it, doc!

VBACs are 75% successful. Those are good odds. My body didn't have a single problem getting fully dilated, etc., it was all Nathan laying on that dang cord. There is no reason I shouldn't be able to have a normal birth with the next baby, in fact, my doctor said I was one of the best VBAC candidates he'd ever seen.

And there is no reason I should be worrying (and losing what sleep I get) because of this.

Mitch thinks i'm a basket case, but baby #2 will determine a lot! He/she will determine:
-if I have to have a c-section with every baby from then on (after 2, it's c-sections all the way!)
-how many kids I can have (after 2, they judge it one at a could be told in surgery that you can't have any more kids...)
-how every recovery will be from then on (I've been told by countless women who have c-sections every time that every recovery is harder than the last).

Now, for those of you that i've advised that a c-section is not the end of the world, DO NOT LOSE FAITH IN ME!! It really isn't!! My recovery was a breeze, I remember every minute of that day (not a foggy narcotic-head here!), and I, personally, LOVED the extra time in the hospital. Ask my mom; she was there to see how easy it was.

This is just an irrational mom worry. A rut I'm stuck in.

Has anyone out there had to have all c-sections, or just one, and can give me good advice?

Even if it's, "yes, you should worry..." I want to hear it. I want permission to worry or not worry. I know it makes no sense, but it will make me feel better!

I feel cheated out of the "normal" experience. I labored all day and got to a 7-8 before the epidural, and 9 1/2 before they called for a c-section, all to earn the satisfaction of seeing that baby. And I didn't get to meet him for 2 hours. I know it doesn't sound like much time, but everyone got to see him before me. Dad, countless doctors, nurses, pediatric heart expert guys, and no mom. If it wouldn't have been an emergency, he would've stayed right there in the OR, but they whisked him away to NICU to check out that heart, and I pretty much demanded Mitch follow them, that I was fine. Our poor baby was alone, and I hadn't even seen him yet!

Yet, I still feel, after all of this worrying, that nothing could make me want it any other way. That c-section made me trust doctors and procedures...everything I was scared of before. The doctor that swooped in and helped our midwife save the day was SO patient and only opted for a c-section when he knew it was the only option. He gave me so much time to try for a normal birth, I just couldn't get him here quick enough (ooh! Another tinge of guilt!)
We got a perfectly healthy baby when he had every sign of congenital heart failure. Mitch says he was so alert and aware, even after being drugged to the max! We had a great recovery. He's been awesome (except the colic...) every day of these last six months!
I'm so glad Mitch took this picture. I felt so nasty after everything, but these couple of minutes that I got to be with him in recovery were just priceless. Look at that scrunched up little face snuggling up to his mama! I love this boy :o)