Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Shake, Rattle (and Rolling will come later)

So, we are learning that every step in a baby's development is a big one. Today, Anderson grabbed his rattle and shook it (sort of) all by himself for the first time. Woo hoo!

Music City Measurements

Since we live in Music City it seemed only right to track Anderson's growth as it compares to Jonathan's guitar, and hopefully we are witnessing the birth of his own love of music.
Left to right: 3 weeks, 2 months, 3 months

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

I love my crib!

(Pictures: Left - A @ 1 week, Center - A @ 13 weeks, Bottom - A asleep in crib)

Two milestones were reached this week - Anderson transitioned to his crib AND he no longer needs to be swaddled. Although Jonathan and I were a bit nervous about having him so far away - well, he's really in the room right next to ours, but it feels so much further since he's been right next to the bed in his Moses basket since he was born - we have also survived the transition.

Reflecting back on Anderson's time in his basket, we can certainly see how much he's grown. I remember when he looked so little in the center of it - smaller than the stuffed koala bear we had lying in it before he was born with room enough to have his arms splayed by his sides, I believe. Back then, I thought he'd outgrow it widthwise first, but it turns out that it was his length that made the basket look smaller and smaller.

Moving him to his crib was rather uneventful, although he doesn't seem to sleep quite as long in it as he did in our room (4.5 hours vs. 5 - 6 before). I think that it will come with time. With our trusty monitor (thank you Laura and Earle), we easily hear when he needs us, and speaking for myself, I'm enjoying being able to move around our room more freely at night. And, his Sleep Sheep (thank you Easons) gently lulls him to dreamland with sounds of the ocean or rain.

Perhaps more exciting than his move to his crib was his new found freedom from the swaddle. We finally decided to try using his Sleep Sack after "Houdini" once again untangled his arms from his swaddling clothes but this time I found him with the upper part of the blanket over his face. I believe that it had only been that way for a short while and the blanket was a lightweight muslin, but it still made my heart skip a beat to see his face covered like that. So, we decided that it might be time to give unswaddled slumber another shot. Unlike the previous times we tried this, when Anderson thrashed about, hitting himself in the head with his unbound arms and quickly waking himself up, this time he just kept his arms by his side or rested them like goalposts on either side of his head. Although our little burrito was precious all bundled up, it is nice to not have to go through this step when putting him to bed.

We've started to develop a nighttime routine beginning around 8/8:30 after his last feeding. With abundant smiles (usually), we change his diaper, put on his PJs and sleep sack, read to him - right now we're reading Charlotte's Web, sing him a song and when he seems quite asleep we lie him down. We still frequent his room to make sure he's breathing and sometimes just to stare at him sleeping, so peacefully. "Sleeping like a baby" has taken on new meaning.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hey Mr. Tambourine Man Play a Song for Me

Much to Jonathan's delight, our son attended his first concert at the tender age of 12 weeks. Jonathan's "Riding the Storm Out" concert took place tonight and was a resounding success. He came up with the idea a few months ago. It's been a few years since Jonathan's last house concert and I believe that he has been hankering to organize some music, especially here in Music City. So, he came up with this idea as a wonderful way to combine his love of singer-songwriters with his grief support work.

In recognition of National College Student Grief Week, Jonathan planned the entire event, including booking the talent, marketing the event, managing the logistics, and acting as emcee. I had heard two of the artists before with Jonathan - Christopher Williams (left) played at a house concert in the "party room" of our condo building in Silver Spring and Amy Speace (center) played at the BlueBird Cafe when we went there with my parents (she also played the now legendary "rooftop" house concert that Jonathan hosted while living in Dupont). The third artist, Peter Bradley Adams (right), was part of a duo called eastmountainsouth that recorded a song - Hard Times - that Jonathan put on the first CD that he made me when we started dating. Jonathan knew that all three had songs in their repertoire that conveyed loss and would create the kind of reflective, yet not too melancholy environment that he wanted, and they did not disappoint tonight. Beyond their musicality, I was struck by their willingness to make themselves so vulnerable through their music. I know that for many, a creative outlet helps sort through the grief and the hurt, but to then make public such private feelings is so brave. As much as we, the audience, enjoyed the show, it seemed that these musicians enjoyed being part of it, too.

With the exception of an out-of-nowhere scream that was thankfully NOT during a performance, Anderson just laid back in my arms and took it all in (sometimes with his eyes open, but mostly with them closed). Perhaps he was so good because he was no stranger to these songs that he has heard often at home. Jonathan is doing his best to instill a love of music, preferably "our" kind of music, in our little guy. I'm sure this is the first of many opportunities for father and son to enjoy music together.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Rock A Bye

After mailing in our taxes, we readied the house for the arrival of Wawa and Granddaddy. Regina and Larry made the most of their drive and visited with Elias, Cheryl and Ken outside of Louisville before heading south on 65 to Nashville. This was Larry's first trip back to Nashville since visiting with us shortly after we moved here. We had a relaxing, yet eventful time.

Jonathan showed off his grillin' skills with dinner on Thursday night when they arrived. Friday, Jonathan went to class while the rest of us took it easy. Following a walk around the neighborhood, Anderson stayed home with his grandparents and Jonathan and I enjoyed a wonderful dinner out at Rumours East. The weather was perfect and we had a fabulous dinner outside on the patio with candlelight, wine, and yummy food. It was just great.

And the help for us tired parents didn't stop there. Regina (Wawa) insisted on taking one of the night feedings while she was here and we were happy to oblige. Thank you!! And Larry became expert at rocking our "little fella" to sleep at night. Clearly, Anderson iloves his grandparents.

On Saturday, Jonathan treated us to a french toast breakfast and we took in a Nashville Sounds baseball game that night. All in all, we had a great weekend.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Sunday, April 11, 2010

We had a Dino-mite week

Anderson keeps getting bigger and is fitting into 3 month old clothes, which meant that he was finally able to wear the Dino-mite jammies that his cousin Elias gave him. He's so happy in them, and especially likes his dino feet :)
The weather in Nashville was really nice this past week, despite the arrival of some humidity and pollen. Anderson and I went for a walk in Centennial Park - a great park across from my work building that has a replica of the Parthenon from the World's Fair years ago - and the tulips were spectacular. On Friday, a cold front blew in but we didn't let that stop us from going to our first Vanderbilt baseball game. We met up with my coworker, Kelly, her son, Jasper (who is 2 weeks younger than Anderson) and her husband, Brian and had a great time comparing baby notes. Sadly, our 'Dores fell to the Gamecocks 3 - 2. On the upside, we did not end up having to purchase a ticket for Anderson as we thought we were going to have to do - why in the world anyone would charge for an infant in arms to go to anything is beyond me. For now, I can save that strongly worded email :)

Anderson's smiles are plentiful in the morning and in the early evening these days. Jonathan is even able to get a little bit of a giggle every now and then (we think it's a giggle anyway). He's sleeping 5 - 6 hours at night pretty consistently and we will probably begin moving him into his crib, soon, although this move makes it seem like he will be so far away from us! He takes naps during the day, too, but we don't have a routine, per se. Jonathan and I are still on the fence about whether we need to create a routine or not, but for now, Anderson seems just fine and I'm enjoying his naps on my chest or in the crook of my arm since my days of this peaceful slumbering during the day are numbered. I am thankful for the full-time mommy time that I've had . . . it's actually getting to be fun . . . and love that Jonathan will be able to spend the summer watching our little guy (I'll try to hold my jealousy at bay).
Looking forward to hosting Wawa and Granddaddy at the end of the week!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Happy Easter!

We hope that Easter Sunday was as gorgeous where you are as it was here. The sun was shining, the flowers were in bursting with color, and the humidity had not yet raised its weary head. After the Easter Bunny came to visit, we got Anderson dressed in his (cousin's) Easter outfit and went to church followed by a nice lunch outside. I was eager to capture the day - Anderson's first Easter - and suggested that we take a picture to which Jonathan readily agreed. However, he thought I was off my rocker when he realilzed that I wanted to take a picture outside of someone else's house - can I help it if we haven't gotten around to planting in any flowers yet? We drove around the neighborhood looking for this yard, but Jonathan insisted that we park at home and walk to the house rather than do a quick in and out of the car to take the picture. So, here is our Easter picture of Jonathan and Anderson - don't you think that it was worth the little bit of trouble to get such a pretty background?! :)
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Saturday, April 3, 2010

Take Your Baby to Work and Family Day

We've had some amazing weather over the last several days. Blue skies and 80 degree temps without the horrid humidity - hopefully this will last a while longer before we leap into summer. Jonathan, Anderson and I have been taking advantage of the weather and our fabulous jogger stroller (thanks Speechleys) with daily walks around the neighborhood and sometimes to meals. We love where we live!

Today, Anderson woke us up around 5 a.m. asking for breakfast after going to sleep around 11 p.m. last night. This is the second night that he has slept 6-7 hours at a stretch. Perhaps it is still the aftermath of the vaccinations he received on Thursday - we are still hesitant to think that this is a new, wonderful phase!

Anywho, Anderson was fed and then coaxed back to sleep for a few more hours. We all slept in during the rainy morning, and when the sun came out, we quickly got ready and walked to brunch at the burrito place. Then we loaded up the car and headed to Shelby Bottoms for a few hours in the park - Jonathan worked on his paper, Anderson "rode his bike" until he fell asleep, and I read. When we got home, Jonathan and I worked in the yard a bit and then had dinner. What a great day! Here are a few pictures and some video from the park.

Earlier this week, Anderson and I went to my work where we spent more than 2 hours introducing him to everyone. They all noted his long eyelashes and most thought that he favored me. He made a wonderful impression -sleeping or smiling the whole time. Although it is going to be tough to get back into the swing of things, I was reminded of the wonderful group of people with whom I work. As when I was pregnant, I can't imagine a better place to be as a "working mom."

Anderson and I also had a lunch with my friend, Kelly, and her son, Jasper, who is two weeks younger than Anderson. Kelly and I work together and supported each other throughout our pregnancies as this was a first child for us both. Jasper's a cutie and is as fair as Anderson is dark. We hope to get together with them again, soon.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Two Months - Ouch!

Anderson had his two month appointment bright and early this morning. I think we scheduled his appointment for 8 a.m. back when we thought we'd be up with him already. Little did we know that he (and we) can sleep a few more hours after an early morning meal . . . ahhh, we live and learn.

So, our little guy is growing big and strong. He weighed 11 lbs 3 oz and measured 23" in length with a head circumference of 15" (if I remember correctly). Then came the tough part - he had to get three shots! The nurse instructed us (me) to hold his hands together at his chest which would help comfort him as she stuck him. At lightening speed, she poked him in both legs and although Anderson started to cry a few moments after the first stick, he was easily consoled afterwards. He did wonderfully - mommy got a little teary though.

Our next appointment is at 4 months.