Friday, December 27, 2013

Merry Christmas!

 

Six weeks and Merry Christmas to our sweet Max! Hard to believe Christmas has come and gone and 2013 is almost done. Ever since having children (and the more children we have), the years fly by. 2013 has been a big year for us - job change, huge move and new baby...supposedly those items are in the top ten for the most stressful life events...truth in that! Max has been the best Christmas surprise we could have ever been given...stress and everything that comes along with it. He is such a sweet, little guy...a Christmas blessing!

 

So, what did week six bring for Max? Well, it brought Christmas! Honestly, Max slept the majority of the morning and early afternoon...and he only had one gift under the tree (not even from us)...so, he didn't miss out on much. No, I don't buy gifts for babies...just don't see the need. He was up for the evening and then had a really hard time going to sleep Christmas night (Merry Christmas to me!)...however, I will not complain because for the most part he is a good sleeper. I just wish I could get better sleep - I normally wake up in a panic thinking that he has stopped breathing...I am total crazy person! He got to meet Gramma Peggy and Papa Dan...very exciting...we LOVE having people come visit (hint hint to my three readers :)). He still has his most awake part of the day at night - doesn't really want to sleep, but he likes to be in the Moby...for the most part - sometimes he screams out like I am trying to cut his body in half. He still gets a bottle of formula every night - I believe this helps him sleep better at night...I would give him a tranquilizer if I thought it would help him sleep better at night...wait a second, where can I get my hands on some tranquilizers?!? Sometimes, the formula at night can backfire a little and it keeps him up a bit...but, still going to push the bottle at night. I wish he was going to bed at 7 - Sam was at this age and then we would wake him up for a dream feed...but not Max..he is most awake from 7 to 10...so much for my "me time"...we did decide to have four kids...my "me time" went away with my body! Max for the most part will remain fairly calm during this time...but he would like to eat A LOT...and no, thank you. Still no love affair with breast feeding...means to an end. Max still has a love affair with Mama - there is something about this early mother/baby bond that is so amazing...and completely draining all at the same time. I do happen to have the most amazing husband in the entire world (no joke...he cooked Christmas dinner all by himself)...so, Jake makes it easy for me to manage the insanity.




Max still doesn't get nearly as much tummy time as he needs...because he still takes FOREVER to eat!!! I think we both are to blame for the forever eating - praying it isn't like this forever because I would lose my mind! He is the gassiest baby ever, but the gas drops help and seems to be doing fine. The spitting up began this week - a couple puke sessions. He also gets the worst hiccups...like all the time...the joys of having a newborn.  Max still has a very weird breathing pattern where he gets into this frenzy...can't figure it out. He is smiling more, but doesn't seem very purposeful about it. He is total pacifier baby - I would be shocked if he drops the paci. He is definitely a Saylor - looks nothing like me...oh, well. He still looks so small to me and I get nervous he isn't getting enough to eat (yes, the eating thing makes me so crazy)...I know he is, but I still decided to start taking a supplement...Galactogil (it is French...not available in the US...no, that doesn't make me nervous...not one bit). Who knows if is works - it is grossly sweet and that is big for me to say since I love myself some candy. At least I don't smell like maple syrup (no more Fenugreek for me). And no, we still haven't moved Sam...Sam is sick...again (I didn't think it was humanly possible to get sick so many times!!!)...so, we are waiting...but it will happen real soon...real soon. The boys still are all over him - it is really sweet how much they love them. Honestly, all our boys are so sweet with each other - yes, they fight like wild dogs...but I know they love each other so much...only a matter of time before Max is running with them. Max is truly our Christmas blessing - a surprise Christmas gift...but those are the best kind!

 

Honestly, Max has made the transition to four monkeys fairly smooth...also, having extra hands around has made the transition smooth as well, but Max really is a sweet baby that LOVES his mommy. I love this little guy so much - I really feel like I am enjoying the newborn stage, but I am not feeling sad anymore...I feel done...family complete...and ready to move on. Nobody is missing - we are all here...now, it is just time to get my body back...wish I could just buy a new one!

 

Friday, December 20, 2013

Beautiful Chaos



Baby boy is five weeks and officially one month! Oh, my sweet baby. Love this little boy. It is hard to believe at times that we have four (FOUR) boys! That is a lot of boys! I am very thankful for each and every one of our boys...God placed Max into our lives because it was exactly what we needed. I have been a reading a book about wanting more (the "only if" scenarios) and placing yourself at the center of the universe versus seeking God's glory and placing Him at the center. So, as I have been doing things I am trying to say things I am thankful for rather than always thinking of myself and complaining...like being thankful for little hands when cleaning up messes, being thankful for full bellies when washing dishes or when the boys are destroying the house being thankful it is just a rental or when watching Homeland being thankful for pirated TV or when Max pees all over the bed in the night being thankful it is on Jake's side or when breastfeeding being thankful for plastic surgery (because no ladies can handle this much damage)...ok, just kidding...but I am really trying to focus on all the incredible blessings I have versus on what I don't have...it may be chaotic, but it is a beautiful chaos and Max adds perfectly to it all.


So, what did week five bring for Max? Well, it brought a big adjustment...Gramma Anne went home (ok, this was a bigger adjustment for me). My mom had been with us for two months...she had to go home. She was a HUGE help...she is missed. Not sure Max notices, but he feels it through me because Max and I are very tight. Max survived his first couple of days of me being solo (I should get a medal). I still think he has a growth spurt like every other day...and every night from seven until ten. That is definitely his AWAKE time...ugh. The difference with Max than our other boys is as long as you are holding him or feeding him, he seems fairly chill. The issue is feeding him for three plus hours is downright exhausting and evil...and just plain wrong...wrong! Breastfeeding has been going fine, but it is ugly - I am an ugly breast feeder...like pigs and hogs fighting all wild...just plain ugly. I am never comfortable doing it - formula companies should use me in ads - women would run from breastfeeding because it is so downright ugly. I normally will end this exhausting feeding marathon with a bottle. Thankfully, Max has no issue with a bottle and I give myself some grace - ain't nobody got time for that...for never ending breastfeeding sessions...too much to take care of, too many snacks to eat, too much smut TV to watch. Max has been sleeping well - this has nothing to do with me...all about God's grace. Honestly, he has had nine hour stretches at night...should I wake him? No freaking way and if my milk supply suffers because of it, then that is God's plan. And, the good news is - he has been sleeping on his own...but still in our room...Jake is still sleeping in the bunk beds. We still haven't moved Sam...it is complicated (not really, but I want it to sound really dramatic versus laziness). We'll move Sam...at some point. Sadly, even though Max is sleeping well, I normally don't sleep that great. Babies make a ridiculous amount of noise while sleeping and I can only sleep on my side for so long with a pillow over my head before I have to go back to my back to sleep...it is complicated (seriously). It will be good to get him in the crib...baby steps. We are still rocking the Woombie - this thing is amazing...no joke. 




I am also a total believer in the essential oils and use them all day on Max. Maybe I am crazy (well, for sure I am crazy), but the oils work...I swear. His brothers are still all over him - they love him and fight over who gets to sit next to him. Sam has been known to pull Max all over the ground when he is on his play mat...awesome. Judah lets me know that he can take care of Max and tries to pick him up...off the bed...that won't end well. Now that my mom is gone, Sam knows that when I am feeding Max he can get away with murder - that little boy is so mischievous - it is unreal. Max is getting more tummy time, but probably nowhere near the amount that is recommended...maybe he'll be a super late crawler...sounds fantastic to me. Our problem still is that he takes FOREVER to eat...seriously. So, by the time he is done eating - he needs to go back to sleep. I am not sure who is to blame for the lack of efficient eating - maybe it is me...who knows. I am just hoping it gets faster...like today...because these never ending breastfeeding sessions are gonna kill me! I swear Max is smiling at me - Jake doesn't buy it, but you know why he doesn't buy it...because he is jealous. Max loves me...big time. He just stares at me like I am the most important thing in his world...wait, I am the most important thing in his world. I have started to put away some of the newborn outfits - he can still wear the newborn outfits, but they are getting a little snug in the length. The problem is, he swims in the zero to three month outfits - he needs a tweener size. He still hates to have his diaper changed - he hates to be cold...I now understand why people buy wipe warmers...for reals. I still think he looks a lot like Hugh - Jake thinks so as well...he thinks Max has the Cro-magnon forehead like Hubey did (Hugh likes fine today with his big ol' forehead...hair can do wonders for a child). Only time will tell - maybe Max will be a good mix of Jake and me...we'll see. Overall, Max is doing great - he is sweet and so little...hard to believe how little he is! And, I survived my first few solo days of four kids...now for Christmas break with Jake being home...yay!


We are truly blessed...unbelievably blessed, and undeserving of these blessings. I pray my heart is to give thanks everyday and to laugh...laughing things off rather than freaking out is normally the best solution. I know the days won't be perfect (not by a long stretch), but I can choose my attitude...choose who I worship...self or God. Here is to beautiful chaos and Max's first Christmas!!!


(My computer died...I cannot be held responsible for the formatting issues.)

Friday, December 13, 2013

Growth Spurts


Yay for Max - four weeks old! He'll be one month tomorrow...hard to believe it has been a month already! And since he'll be a month tomorrow...it means Gramma Anne is leaving very soon...this next week. She has been with us for almost two months...she has to leave at some point...but it is never easy to say goodbye to your mom, especially knowing this time it will be a long time before I see her again. (I get super emotional just thinking about it...it is my mom and my hormones are crazy right now!) She has been a tremendous help - words cannot describe how incredibly grateful I am...all of us are. I am not sure I would have made it these last two months without her...even with her broken arm and everything! My mom is also the only non-immediate family member that has met Max (Jake's parents come at Christmas), which also makes me a little sad...just a different experience this time around. I loved living near family for so long - definitely took it for granted. I look forward to the day when everyone can meet this sweet boy!


 So, what did week four bring for little Max? Well, it brought growth spurts...or at least I tell myself that due to the constant nursing. I swear he has a growth spurt every other day. Max continues to find lots of comfort in being at the breast...ugh. He just loves me so much (I need to enjoy this time - it is short lived...our boys are Daddy's boys). Sadly, I cannot and will not nurse him all day. He doesn't seem too down with sleeping during the day (sounds like a couple of his brothers...Judah was our only rock star napper). He is showing no signs of colic (praise God) - he does cry...but then again, he is a baby. He is fairly content, but he loves to be held...and is most content when being held...especially when being held and nursing. He has had some longer stretches of sleep at night (as in totally sleeping through the night...I call it a fluke, not reality)...BUT, he still sleeps with me and is really the only way he'll sleep (just talking myself into the downward spiral right now). I blame the c-section for this. It was too hard for me to move after my section, so he just stayed with me...and naturally, slept with me. Now a month in and still going strong...ugh. I know we need to work on this, but he also needs a room, which he still doesn't have...definitely moving Sam this weekend! I have also realized that Max can cry...and he'll be okay. He is not my first baby - I have lots of little boys that need to be cared for in this house...so, as much as I want to lay around with my sweet newborn and hold him all the time...it isn't a reality...not at all.


So, sometimes he needs to be put down and cry...while I fish Sam out of the toilet, or prevent World War 3 between Hugh and Judah, or make dinner for lots of hungry mouths. I hate to see Max cry, but it is a part of life...that only the first born is able to avoid! We are still rocking the Woombie for most naps and nights...sure wish I had bought another one. We tried out a little tummy time this week - he was fine...and his brothers were ALL over him. Oh.my.word...they LOVE their baby brother. He doesn't seem to love the car seat...luckily, he won't be going too many places. He had his first doctor appointment - he weighs 7lbs. 6oz. and I have no idea how long he is because something gets said in centimeters and I lose it...I'll make sure to pay attention at the two month appointment. He is scheduled for a hip ultrasound - I guess they do it for c-section babies, which surprised the doctor because she said it is normally only for breech babies, and we are fairly certain Max wasn't breech at birth. Our doctor said she sees no issues with his hips. He went to church for the first time - he did great (he'll be with us until forever at church since they don't start creche (nursery) until a year-old). I swear he is just itching to smile at me...he just stares at me and opens his mouth so wide...like a smile...or, like a shark trying to eat me. It is hard to figure out his wake time - he still nurses for WAY too long, so I then feel like he already had his wake time, but he also sleeps when nursing...ugh...got lots to work on with this boy! All in good time...this isn't my first rodeo, so I know routines, sleeping, and life after baby come...all in good time...sometimes, you just want that good time to come sooner rather than later. I would have thought by my fourth rodeo that I would have had this thing wired...but that is not the case...and that shouldn't surprise me...it is me...and I do tend to over complicate things...hmmm, something to work on for myself. So, we got some things to work on this week...letting Max cry, crib sleeping, falling asleep on his own, and the list goes on...am I up for the challenge?...no, not really.


So, how am I doing? Adjusting. (Adjusting to life...and to post baby body (yuck)...funny line from Hugh..."So, if Max is now out of your tummy...then why do you still have a baby in there?" (I would like to see him say that after he has four kids...just be quiet.)) Scared about my mom leaving me with all my kids...but realizing I'll survive (or, at least I hope I will). Trying to give myself some grace with the amount of TV and iPad time my kids are having...it won't be like this forever...and I just want to survive...not trying to win any medals. Trying to give myself grace over the amount of TV I watch...I catch up on a lot of American TV while nursing...thank goodness for pirated TV with Turkish subtitles (totally legal here by the way)...the website is actually down right now and to say I am devastated would be a bit of an understatement...just a bit...I need my smut! Honestly, I just want to stay in my house...I am not depressed (I know what it feels like to have the baby blues)...it just seems so much easier to be home and to stay warm. I know it won't be like this forever, but again just trying to survive. I'll be setting some VERY low expectations of myself over the next couple of months...just trying to survive (see the theme). So, here is to survival...and to Christmas!




Friday, December 6, 2013

Waiting...


Mr. Max is three weeks old! Hard to believe it has been three weeks, but it also seems like it has been forever - I think things always seem longer when you lose a ridiculous amount of sleep each week. He seems to be figuring out this crazy life with our family...I am sure he misses the womb like I miss my waistline, but life goes on and it isn't always perfect. I am still figuring out this crazy family (and I won't get a true taste of my new crazy reality until after Christmas when all my help is gone!).


So, what did week three bring for little Max? Well, he is growing - not a whole ton (he is now 7lbs. 2oz.), but we don't make fat babies...we keep all the fat for ourselves. I still feel like breast feeding is going well - I have zero desire to breast feed in public...because I am going to look like a crazy fool...all in good time. He is still a super slow eater and gets super sleepy (just eat and be done already!!!)...praying for some efficiency this next week. My ladies are surviving...but not fully recovered from all the trauma they have to endure. Sadly, I have this ridiculously painful letdown - it is horrible. This breast feeding gig does not come naturally to me (it is for the birds)...not for one second, sadly...not even the fourth time around...even sadder. I am waiting to see if Max will show some signs of colic this next week since now we have reached the third week...the dreaded colic week. He definitely has some gas pains, but the drops seem to be helping (honestly, I am sure some of my food choices are hurting him...but changing my diet seems like the most daunting thing in the world (yes, I am super dramatic) so, not going to happen at this moment). He definitely has his moments when he just wants to eat.all.the.time...it is draining...he is not my only baby. So, he gets a bottle at times to help with his frenzy and I don't worry about it. I am using all sorts of oils on this baby...assuming it is fine...the oils are heavily diluted with coconut oil (side note - coconut oil is amazing). Yes, I am a believer in the oils...why not? (We have been using oils so much that Sam goes and lays down every night in anticipation of the oils...too funny.)


Max has been sleeping decently - however, he prefers to securely fall asleep in your arms and then he can be put down...he likes to be held (he is no dummy). I like to hold him...just harder when you have a bunch of monkeys running around. Some nights have been rough - switching those days and nights and wanting to cluster feed all.night.long...those nights are hard...really hard...and weigh heavy on my sanity (and it makes me want to list him for sale on eBay...kidding...well, maybe not). Thankful (Jake is more thankful) we have two sets of bunk beds now since Jake is shacking up with the big boys...Max still shares a room with us since Sam still sleeps in Max's room...what a mess. We are hoping to move Sam this week. I am ready for Max to be in his own room...however, I am not sure it will be a successful move since he is use to sleeping with me. Yes, I know it isn't a good idea...but you know what, Max sleeps and I sleep...seems like a win win at this moment...ask me again when he is twelve and still sleeping with me. My gut tells me his evenings are going to be tough...just like his brothers...I know he'll grow out of it in time. He looks like Jake - so, one of out of four looking me isn't too bad.  I personally think Max is going to look a lot like Hugh with a darker complexion and brown eyes...time will tell (Hugh would love this - he REALLY wants someone else in the house to have brown eyes). His circ is healing - nothing has caused me quite the anxiety as this circ...ugh. I just want it to heal. He hates getting his diaper changed and getting his clothes changed still...pretty sure this isn't changing any time soon. I just realized that he hasn't had any tummy time yet - honestly, he never gets put down when he is awake. Our living space is not the greatest to put him down and then his brothers are so crazy (and his Gramma is so clumsy...did I mention she broke her arm last week?!?), that I am afraid someone will crush him. Probably need to start working on some tummy time. He sleeps in the rock and play sleeper most of the time (I am a believer in the rock and play sleeper this time around). He is not a fan of the swing...sad. He rocked the Moby wrap this week - and I didn't sweat like a pig at prom this time around...thankful for some cold weather...I am normally a hot, sweaty mess in that Moby wrap that I can barely handle it. He seems to be into the Soothie "paci" (not "nuky" like Sammy has - trying to make these two very separate in Sammy's mind). He still gets locked up in his Woombie to sleep - seems to be fine with it...and it is always fun explaining the Woombie to a Swiss person. He had his first real outing this week - ventured to the store with him...made me realized that shopping with four kids is never ever (ever, ever, ever, ever, ever...) going to happen. I guess I am not quite ready to embrace this crazy life (had a little taste of it this week when my mom was at a doctor appointment...crazy doesn't even begin to describe it). Life would be boring if it wasn't pure crazy all the time (at least that is what I tell myself...to keep my sanity!)!


I am tired...like really tired. Like the tired you feel in your bones...and you start slurring your speech (and I am not really drunk...maybe just a little drunk...kidding...remember, no sleep...I am tired and crazy).  I am pretty sure a nervous breakdown is just around the corner (Jake loves those since he is always on the receiving end). I keep reminding myself that this is just a season and a quick season...and my strength comes from the Lord...not my sleep (but sleep sure is nice and I would LOVE for it to return at some point)...and I really do want to enjoy this season. A couple things I have learned with my fourth baby...we don't bathe him and I have yet to bust out the DSLR camera at home...he is an Instagram baby (that is sad...I need to start taking some real pics). I am really (really, really) trying to take each day as it comes...one day at a time (AA words to live by) and not think about when my mom leaves or when Jake starts traveling again...just take one.day.at.a.time. So, here is to today...bring it.