Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pushing the boundaries of sleep deprivation

Jack hasn't been treating us very well when it comes to nighttime sleep. He was doing a little better last week so I can only hope this is his 6 week growth spurt. But he sleeps about 2 hours, feeds, then 1 hour, feeds, then 1 hour, feeds, and then 30 minutes and that's about it. He's done around 5:30. This is slowly killing John and I because it equates to about 3 1/2 hours a night when you factor in soothing him and then trying to fall back asleep.

Oddly enough, pre-pregnancy when I was a great sleeper and got about 8 hours a night, I would have told you there's no way I could function on 3 1/2 hours. But here I am. Somewhat put together and alert all day. And John is surviving work and getting home every night at 10pm. Amazing what the human body is capable of.

It's easy to get frustrated with the little guy at 3am, but then he goes and looks all cute hours later.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Cutest Day Ever

Yesterday was what I like to call Jack's cutest day ever. He was all smiles all day. Alert, happy (for the most part) and having fun. While today already seems to be going a different direction, I thought I should document how wonderful he can be as a constant reminder. I apologize for all of the pictures but he's just so darn cute.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Daddy and son

This is a post merely to show how damn cute my husband and son are. Enjoy!

Jack's pretty proud after spitting up all over daddy.

Jack discovering himself in the mirror.

Monday, March 28, 2011


It is obvious to everyone that sees Jack that he looks just like his daddy. And he does, no argument. We'll see how his face changes as he gets older but, for now, he's daddy's lil' clone which is awesome. He even got his dad's amazingly long eyelashes. (This pic doesn't do them justice.)

But, upon closer review, Jack did get a few of my traits, for better or worse. Mainly, what I like to summarize as "giant extremities". There are his big ears with big flapping earlobes. Just like mine.

Then there are his flippers for feet, just like mine.

But, most glaringly, he has the biggest hands! Giant.

They are basically meathooks. John swears that he better excel in basketball or the piano. I mean, look at those things, they are as big as his face!

And he loves flailing them around and making crazy hand gestures. My mother-in-law says that how she knows he's Italian...because he's already talking with his hands.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Today Jack is...5 weeks old.

Five weeks old and, to celebrate, the poor guy had his fussiest day ever. I don't know if it's gas or a growth spurt of something else, but he hasn't stopped crying from 6am to now. As I write this daddy is dealing with a screaming infant but, hey, blog posts must be written.

But, overall, 5 weeks old looks good on Jack. He's smiling and laughing more which is great. He still won't nap during the day unless his in my arms or in my lap which makes chores and meals very difficult. (Probably explains my messy house). We've tried to establish a bedtime routine which involves a nice warm bath. He finally has stopped screaming while in the water and now cautiously enjoys it I think. We still don't get giant smiles while in the tub, but I think he's enjoying it, just doesn't want to admit it in case something terrible happens. After debating putting him to bed awake and letting him cry at night (and attempting it one night), we decided to just forget it and we'll readdress sleep training when he's a little older. For now, just doing a nighttime routine has helped him sleep a little longer for his first stretch of the night so that's good.

After his two disastrous car seat rides to the doctor, we promised him we'd drive him to somewhere special. That special place? Target.

You can't tell, but I think he really fell in love with that store. And we got to buy some bigger onesies because he was growing out of his little ones. And some more pictures from this week...

Friday, March 25, 2011


When Jack was a few days old and we visited the pediatrician, she noticed that he was tongue-tied. Meaning that his frenulum (the little membrane part that connects the bottom of the tongue to the bottom of your mouth) was short and close to the tip of his tongue. It's a fairly common thing and it's genetic. One look at John's tongue and we knew where Jack got it from. It's obviously not a big deal (John seems to have done okay) but it can interfere with breastfeeding and, in some cases, cause a slight speech impediment. The solution nowadays is a very quick procedure where they snip the frenulum, thus freeing the tongue for serious movement. The pediatrician didn't think Jack's was too severe so she wanted us to wait and see how Jack breastfed. A few days after that the lactation consultant was visiting us and also noticed his tongue. She thought we should just have the procedure done.

Fast forward 4 weeks later (I'm a procrastinator) and we finally decide that we may have the procedure done. The doc says that he seems to be getting enough breastmilk so it's not absolutely necessary but it's our choice. I tell her that because he's tongue-tied, he has a hard time getting a deep latch while nursing and he's slowly killing me. :-) So she refers us to an ENT doctor and assures us it's a very easy minor thing.

So this week we strap Jack into his car seat to take him to the ENT doctor. I apologize to him profusely because every single time we've taken him for a drive, it's been to a doctor and brought pain with it. I promise him that one day, we'll go for a drive that doesn't involve torture. We roll up to the new doc's office and Jack takes his first elevator ride. He clearly was suspicious...

And he should have been suspicious because that elevator was taking him to no place he wanted to go.

I won't go into a ton of detail but, while it was a minor procedure (numb the little frenulum under the tongue, clamp it so there's no blood, and snip it with scissors), nothing is minor with a four week old. Jack screamed and cried while the doc examined his mouth, numbed the area, and clamped it. And then he unleashed a wail I'll never forget when he cut it. And another wail. And an neverending wail. He got so so worked up. He was bright red and sweating profusely. then because he was crying so hard, he got a ton of mucus in his throat and it sounded like he was having trouble breathing. Well, to his mom it sounded like he was having trouble breathing. The doctor did not seem concerned at all and just tried to suction it out of his mouth. To no avail. Jack's cries and sounds of agony seriously killed me. John did his best trying to calm both of us down. Nothing really worked (for Jack) until he eventually passed out in his car seat on the way home. As the doctor predicted, he slept for hours and hours after such a trying ordeal.

In the end, he's perfectly fine and will have no recollection of the entire event. (Unlike his parents.) And now he'll be able to do crazy tricks with his tongue and stick it out at me when he's throwing a temper tantrum.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Modesty must prevail

This is one of my favorite pics I've taken of the lil' guy. Unfortunately it was taken with my iPhone in low light but damn if it isn't still adorable. His expression is priceless. And his little long, skinny body. Of course, we have to keep his modesty intact, so I've added the censor bar.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Great Grandparents

Our little guy is enormously lucky because, unlike a lot of babies, he has a great-grandpa and great-grandma. They flew in from the east coast to meet lil' Jack this past weekend. We were hoping that he would behave during the visit and put his best foot forward. We wouldn't want them going back to NY and telling all of our relatives that he was an annoying pill. Fortunately, he knew what had to be done and was pretty darn adorable every day. He even managed to keep his cute bear outfit free from spit-up and urine for the first few hours to make a good first impression.

As I mentioned before, we took Jack's middle name from his great-grandpa (my grandpa). This was the first meeting of lil' Nunz and the original Nunz. I think it went well. Jack seemed pretty taken with his face and smiles. It was so great to have them in town and visiting. Hopefully they can come back soon!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

One month doctor's visit

So Jack had his one month appointment at the pediatrician's and we were excited to get his current stats and see how much he's grown. He went there without protest, asleep, peaceful, not knowing what he was getting into.

Unfortunately the minute we got there the nurse had us strip him down to weigh and measure him. The hard, cold scale was met with screams and flailing so she could barely get an accurate weigh-in. Then when we transferred him to the table to measure his length, he decided to protest by peeing all over the table and himself. John and I agreed that it was the most he had ever pee'd. He was swimming in it. The nurse didn't seem fazed at all. But we got his current measurements:

Height - 22 inches - 75th percentile (up from the 25th percentile at birth)
Weight - 9 pounds, 9 ounces - 50th percentile (same percentile as at birth, up two pounds)

We were very excited that he seemed to be growing well. The doctor came in and started examining him. He got fussy, started to cry. He really wasn't showing her his best side but I hope the doctor didn't judge too much. Next came the nurse with a big needle. It was time for his first vaccine. I had a hard time watching as John held his hand and the nurse came at his little pink thigh with her needle. As I turned I heard Jack let out a bloodcurdling scream that was not pretty. I think the needle and scream hurt me more than it hurt him. He kept crying and crying thought eventually we were able to soothe him. Man, that was hard though. I can't believe the next appointment he has to get three shots. Sad.

The doctor asked us different questions and we described life with Jack, including his nighttime sleeping routine. She said she thought he should be sleeping more than 2 hours at a time at night. Well, I agree. That would be nice. She wants us to try to establish a nighttime routine and put him down in bed while he's still awake. And possibly let him cry for a few minutes. She's not suggesting hardcore sleep training. But this seems like it'll be too hard for me and too hard for a 4 week old. Am I crazy? What have other moms done with babies this age?

Monday, March 21, 2011

Suspicious toys

So Jack is 4 weeks old and apparently we're supposed to start playing with toys with him. Just high contrasting colored toys. Seems a little early to me since he doesn't seem interested in anything but looking at our faces (besides breastfeeding, pooping, and spitting up). But we attempted it with his cute colorful friend "Elmer". An elephant character from an Italian/English series of kids books. (compliments of Ferrario and Swagner).

To me, he seemed at first oblivious and then suspicious. So not sure that's the desired effect...

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Wouldn't you know...

Remember when I wrote that post about the mommy utility belt? Well, would you believe that my good friend Colleen found one online and I got one in the mail a few days ago? Amazing.

Excuse the bad picture of me. But this belt from HippMama is exactly what I was describing. It has a ton of different pockets and a ring for a burp cloth as well as a hook for keys or a water bottle. Awesome. Thanks Auntie Colleen!!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Today Jack is...4 weeks old.

For those of you doing the math, he is one month old! It's amazing how much he's changed in 4 weeks. Physically, his features are more defined and mentally, he's so alert. My favorite times of the day are those 15 minutes or so at a time where he is a) awake, b) not crying, and c) just looking around and smiling. He loves all the bright colors and things on the nursery walls. He can stare at that stuff forever. The little guy really has started smiling more and I think this past week I heard what can only be described as a laugh. He still doesn't love baths but we're working on that. And at night he's certainly not sleeping 3 1/2 or 4 hours at a time like some of his peers, but, hey, at least he seems healthy and I can't help it if breastmilk is so enticing that he wants it every hour.

We're not sure how much he's grown but we'll find out at his one-month doctor's appointment this week. I'm guessing he's done a good amount of growing based on the hours of breastfeeding I've logged. Daddy went back to work this past week but he's done an amazing job of getting up for every feeding at night and doing all the diaper duty. A much appreciated respite for myself. And, luckily, I've been feeling pretty good. Not totally back to normal but I like going on walks with him and am not sore anymore. What the baby books don't tell you is that you don't lose your pregnancy weight from lose if from literally not being able to feed yourself much all day. It's a great diet that they should market to the public. Just have an infant or, if not, a doll, that you're not allowed to take your two hands off all day. Then see how much ice cream and brownies and burritos people can eat.

Anyways, happy birthday Jack! You're pretty awesome!

Friday, March 18, 2011

You do what you have to do

This week has been...well...different, without a husband, grandparent, or aunt to help take care of Jack during the day. I'd say difficult but who wants to hear about that? Actually, nevermind. Yes, it's been hard. It would be so much easier if I had a third arm. You never realize how much you actually need two hands to do basic daily tasks. So when you have to take care of an infant all day who can't hold his head up, let alone stay in an upright position by himself, you get creative. You may sit him in a bouncy seat in the bathroom in order to get that much needed hot shower. Even if it is about 10 minutes shorter than usual. You may strap him to the front of your body in a carrier and attempt to eat lunch, only to drop some pieces of food onto his head. You may play Queen's "Under Pressure" on repeat over 30 times (no lie) because it seems to calm him down. You may walk around with spit up all over your shirt all day because you can't find one minute to change. You may eat sour patch kids because you're starving and it's the only handy snack you can manage. (and those sour patch kids may make you very sick because you have an empty stomach.)

You may also find yourself with a sleeping baby on your chest for 2 1/2 whole hours and you use those precious hours to unwind and watch "Morning Glory" on pay-per-view. And, let me tell you, if you did that, you'd be pissed you wasted your time, let alone your $5.99. How you could take a clever concept and great actors with chemistry and flush it all down the toilet, I don't know. I blame the terrible director and writer. If I could have moved without waking up Jack, I would have. Instead, I sat there like a prisoner. Damn you Harrison Ford.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Meeting the relatives

Jack got to meet more relatives last week including his Aunt Julie who was home in California on her college spring break. She must have made quite an impression on him because he behaved so well! Julie definitely had the magic touch and knew just how to calm the lil' guy down. I'm sure he can't wait until their next meeting!

The two grandmas taking care of the lil' guy

Love this one...Jack looking up at Grandma

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

John on: "How Things Have Changed"

This is the first of what I hope is many guest posts from the new daddy.

Things Do Change…

Everyone says it’s a game-changer. Your life will never be the same. Say goodbye to your old ways of doing things. You’re truly marching to a different, completely arrhythmic and irrational beat. On my first day back to work from paternity leave, here’s how my life has changed thus far:

  • Vocab: My use of the word “fussy” has increased about 1 billion percent. “Uh oh, is he getting fussy?” “Here comes a fussy face.” “Do you think he’s being fussy? He seems fussy to me.” I think I’ve used the word “fussy” roughly 10 times before in my entire life before February 19th. Now I might use it 10 times inside of an hour. There has to be a better word to describe the moment between infant bliss and infant eruption. I hate the word “fussy” so, so much.
  • Musical Tastes: According to my account, my new favorite tracks are “White Noise” and “Window Fan Hum” by Twin Sisters Productions.
  • Robe Use: Up 3 million percent. My parents lifted a robe from their cruise last winter and brought it to me as a gift. (The gift of petty larceny.) I have used it on occasion pre-Jack. It’s a lovely robe. Super soft. It has pockets. If I tie it right in the front, I can even be presentable enough to walk out in the front yard of our house and not just the back yard. Now, it’s my suit of armor for 3 am feedings, early morning soothing sessions, and a not-so-subtle way of telling people that my dedication to social decorum has completely dissolved. I’m a pair of ratty slippers and a cigar from Oscar Madison. Unfortunately, since both Lisa and I are “Oscars”, I have a feeling we’re going to need the services of a “Felix” pretty soon.
  • Sense of Accomplishment: It is now largely centered on my ability to console an unhappy Jack. If I can calm him down from a real chin-trembler, it feels like a game 7 home run. Failure doesn’t feel like an option. I sing to him. I do a James Brown-style two-step. If desperate enough, I would punch a classroom of 1st graders in the face if it would calm Jack down. I’m hoping it doesn’t come down to that.
  • Love of Sleep: Yes, I miss sleep. A ton. No duh. But I love it now more when Jack sleeps. Not for the reprieve from a howling infant or from his flying poo. He is just a new level of cute. Lisa is cute when she sleeps, but inevitably will snore or drool. Jack’s offenses during sleep are so much worse: farts, peeing, pooping. Yet, somehow the cute power of the slumbering infant makes it all so much…cuter. It’s really remarkable. Like some sort of natural survival defense. He would stop a lunging lion in mid-air with his sleeping cuteness. Stupid cute.
  • Ball Bouncing: Lastly, I bounce on a ball. I don’t bounce the ball. I bounce with it. It’s like the bouncing balls have won. Sad day for America.
  • Patience: It’s on an upswing. I now can say I sort of maybe have it. I don’t honk as much in the car as I once did. I’ll preemptively slow down at a light I know is about to change. If Jack doesn’t feel like cooperating at 5am, I can feel a slight adjustment where I can accept it, and try a different approach with the little jerk.

Other than that, I’m exactly the same.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Spoiled Jack

Well, not spoiled yet. But Jack has been fortunate enough to have very generous friends and family. The craziest thing has been getting mail at the house with his name on it. So surreal.

He's gotten too many wonderful things to post but wanted to share a couple.

Very hip onesie courtesy of good friend Taryn.

Very clever onesie from former LA denizens Egan and Susan.

Sporty Eagles towel from Bubba and Liz.

Badass t-shirt from Aunt Janet.

Spider-man outfit from the lovely Spidey crew.

Absolutely adorable soft doggie blanket from Aunt Julie.

I mean, really.

And from high school friend Emily, the most "Newsies-ist" gift of all, Cowboy Jack socks. I don't think the lil' one fully understood the reference but I really appreciated it.