Monday, August 30, 2010

1st day of Daycare - 1st day back to work!

Well... today was my first day back to work.

It was also the first day Brian and I dropped off Julianna at daycare.
That was one of the hardest things we've had to do yet!

I have to say ... after being home for 14 weeks, I am very certain I could never be a "Stay-at-home" mom. I just don't have it in me. We also do not have that kind of money plus we live in NJ, so it will never happen. However, I would have liked to stay home with Julianna for another month at least. Maybe another few months. But the state of NJ says you are ready to go back after 14 weeks.... so fine, I am back.

This summer, I did alot of great things I never would have been able to do had I been working... I visited friends, went shopping, spent quality bonding time with Julianna, went to the pool, took Julianna all over the place, to the park, long walks, and hung out with some good friends.
I got to see the inside world of the "Stay-at-home" mom... most of it was fun, but I am not sure it was that appealing overall.
Don't get me wrong, part of me would love to stay at home with Julianna and be the happy "Stay-at-home" mom.... but I am someone that needs her own life & money. I feel like if I didn't work, I would lose part of my identity & my independence. I could never be the person that has to ask their husband for money - I just couldn't do it.

Not to mention, when I was out this summer, and talking to various "moms" ("moms" being random strangers with kids I met along the way. You know what I mean; when you go to the mall or park or wherever during the day, and start chatting it up with another mother you happen to be sitting/standing near) - it seemed like all they did was complain about their lives & husbands. What is there to complain about?? Really? Enjoy the day with your child! I guess maybe they just want someone to listen to them bitch about their lives or their crappy marriage? After talking to enough of 'those' people, I was thinking that it was NOT for me. If I had to listen to those moms all the time, I would run away screaming!! I wouldn't have much to say to any of them b/c I don't have anything in my life to complain about. haha!

I did however get to spend quality time with some friends that I normally wouldn't have had time to see - and that was a treat! Julianna got to travel all over the place as well! It was a fun summer and will always think about this summer with my baby as being one of the best ever in my life.

Today - Monday - Back to the grind. Back to work... and Julianna to daycare. Bummer.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Julianna Update - 14 week progress

Time for the Julianna update!
She is 14 weeks today!
I'm not really sure when to stop counting weeks and start counting months. It gets too confusing when you hear people say "My daughter is 64 weeks old" - Huhhhh???

Talking - Julianna is talking all the time - all day long! She makes all kinds of noises and sounds. She is really finding her voice and every noise she makes, makes me smile and laugh. She is laughing out loud too - that is the best!!

Grabbing/Holding - Julianna is just starting to grab and hold things. She holds her bunny and pulls the ears into her mouth to suck on. Before she would bat at things - now she holds them. Pretty cool - at least Brian and I think so.

Video Camera - Brian and I bought a video camera like many first time parents do. I don't want to miss a thing!! I want to be able to look back and remember everything. I have some more videos to upload later.

Sleeping through the night - She is holding steady at 8 or 8.5 hours. Gonna start to stretch her out to 9 or 9.5 hours in a couple weeks. I think she is ready for it once we move her to eating every 4 hours (right around 4 months).

Smiling - She looks at Brian and I, and smiles all the time. Now, when we smile at her, she smiles back - talk about melting your heart! She giggles, laughs out loud and kicks her legs. She is a very happy baby!

Daycare & Back to work - Well this has been my last week off with Julianna... I go back to work on Monday, which means she goes to daycare. I am dreading leaving her... I know she will be in good hands but I am still going to have a hard time with it I'm sure. Luckily I have off Friday, and then Labor Day Monday, so it's 2 weeks in a row of 4-day work weeks.

Sitting up - Julianna has been sitting up in her Bumbo chair this week. She still needs help, but she is getting better by the day. I love the Bumbo Chair. She also sits up on my lap and can hold her head up strong!

Bath Time - Well, we attempted to move her into the regular bathtub. We put her baby bath tub in our tub... and attempted to bathe her in there. No go. It was like a circus act, it's hard to have that little tub in the big bath tub, and lean over the side comfortably and still bathe the baby correctly. We couldn't do it. Not enough room in our tiny bathroom. Looks like we may just need to bathe her in the sink until she can sit up enough to go in our tub.
We did buy this neat washcloth that is shaped like a frog - you get it wet with warm water, and drape it over her during bath time so she doesn't get chilly. She likes it!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Working out and other stuff

Yesterday was my first day of working out. Let's use the cliche' "Today is the first day of the rest of my life". I've got to do it. For real. It has been 2 years since I have done any physical exercise! Gasp!
I've got a long road ahead of me, but I have to start somewhere right? It's not like I can just take a pill and wake up in the morning 40 pounds lighter. That would be really cool, huh??

At this point in my life (our lives), the gym is not something I can get to b/c of the baby. I also don't want to go after work, that's family time.
I have never done the 'working out at home' thing - so for now, that is my most suitable option. So, let's see if I can make a go of it... Cross your fingers for me!
Oh, I guess I should tell you what I'm doing - It's the DVD called "Power 90" - It's the wimpy version of P90x & Insanity. Power90 is pretty hard, so I can't imagine how hard the P90x must be LOL!

Here are some cute videos of Julianna.
The first one is of when we went to visit Brian (Daddy) at work at the Power Place John Deere field day and the 2nd one is of us at the Pool. She likes the water a lot!

1. Julianna visiting Daddy at work

2. Julianna at the Pool


Sunday, August 15, 2010

I grew up watching Sesame street as many of you did ... I hope Julianna loves it as much as I did when I was a child. They didn't have Elmo or some of the characters that they have today - but I remember loving Mr. Hooper (I think he was the store owner) and Gordon and Big Bird!
Here is an interesting article I came across called "15 things you may not know about Sesame Street" ... Very interesting. It's a quick read- 2 minutes. Enjoy.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

12 weeks old - Julianna's progress

Julianna is 12 week
s old this Sunday ... Here are some comments on what she is doing now and what progress she has made in no particular order.

Drooling - Lot's of it! But I think it's cute. I never would have thought a drooling baby was cute before I had her! haha!

She sucks her first 2 fingers now. Loudly & Sloppily (if that's even a word). Hence the drooling. Julianna is sleeping 8 hours through the night now. WooHoo.

We have b
een going to the pool and she has gone 'swimming' with me a few times. She likes going in the water. Well, I am not sure she actually likes it, let's say she tolerates it. Not to mention she looks darned cute in her bathing suit & sun hat.

Smiles - Constantly. Real deep smiles! It melts my
heart! She hasn't belly laughed yet, but I think that is coming really soon.

She is getting good at enterta
ining herself. I can put her down and she will look around and study everything in the room ... or smile at a decoration on the wall LOL - She studies everything.

She loves to kick her arms & legs and 'talk'. She makes all kinds of cool baby sounds (Ayyyy Ayyyy and Ah ah ah and Coo'ing and Ayeeeee) - I think she likes to hear her voice!

Loves ceiling fans! She's obsessed with them!

Julianna holds her head up real well. Her neck is very strong! No more Bobble-Head!
She loves to camp out on our shoulder so she can look around.

At night, she rolls on her side but not rolling over yet. I think that's coming soon. She does this funny thing at night - we put her down with her head facing the top of the crib. About half way through the night, she is turned 90 degrees (like a clock hand would turn) in her crib. Then by morning, she is turned 180 degrees with her feet facing the top of her crib. All this is while she is still on her back. She is quite the wiggler!

She loves when Mommy & Daddy read to her. She enjoys looking at the pictures - or at least it appears she does.

She is getting too long for the Bath Sling in the kitchen sink... time to graduate to her baby bathtub this week. No more kitchen sink.

Julianna and I are out and about almost every day. She is the traveling girl! She is such a good girl when we leave the house. Brian, I and Julianna go out all over on the weekend. We really are blessed with such a good baby that we can go places with.

She loves interacting with Mommy & Daddy now. It's so much fun to play with her & to get her to smile and laugh. She looks at us and you can tell she loves us- what an amazing feeling that is!

Back to work - Ugh! I am dreading it. I go back in 2 weeks on August 30th. I wish I had more time off with her. It took about 8 weeks to get used to our new life and in a routine... so I have only been able to truly enjoy the last few weeks.

Julianna loves to grab her "Hug Cow" stuffed animal. It's very cute!

She hates the playgym that I Praised so much a few weeks ago. Easy come, easy go.

Ok - that's all for now. More progress updates in a couple weeks!
Have a nice night!

What is a "Cool Mom"?

So as I was driving the other day with Julianna, and we were listening to Metallica ...and I was wondering if I was a cool mom because I was listening to Metallica?

What exactly makes a mom a "Cool mom"?
I mean, how do you go from just a "regular mom" to a "Cool Mom"?

Is a cool mom defined by what your child thinks of you? or your child's friends think of you? Or what other Mommies think of you? Or what you think of your own self?? Are you a cool mom if you listen to 'young' music? Are you a cool mom if you dress your child in cool clothes? Is a cool mom someone who knows how to have fun with her family and friends? Does a cool mom let her children run wild with no boundaries? Does a cool mom comfort her children when they need to be comforted and held? I could go on and on ...
I really do not know the answer but I thought it would be fun to talk about without getting too serious.

I am thinking a cool mom does not wear Mom-Jeans...
For those of you who don't know Mom-Jeans, check out this hysterical Mom Jeans SNL clip.

I can remember when my mother pulled up at the mall entrance to pick me & my friends up, the door would open, and some Opera tune would be blaring on the car stereo! Was my mom cool? She probably thought so - but I sure didn't think that when I was mortified by her Opera blaring in the Gremlin! LOL! I guess my mom was a cool mom minus the Gremlin and the Opera...

Does a cool mom drive a Minivan?
Hmmmm...This is the age old question up for debate. I personally would never be caught dead driving a Minivan, this is the exact reason why the SUV was invented. But I do have Mom friends who drive Minivans and I personally think they are cool moms, so I don't think you can use that as the deciding factor. There are even commercials for the Toyota Previa with "Cool & Hip parents" calling it the "Swagger Wagon"... A car company trying to make the Minivan hip!! Imagine that!

Does a Cool Mom listen to Metallica, The Black Eyed Peas and Lady Gaga? If the answer is yes, then maybe I'm a cool mom!

I hope when Julianna is older she'll think I'm a cool mom. I think the odds are against us moms though. Chances are she'll be embarrassed by me and want nothing to do with me! Who knows... but I promise to Julianna that I'll never wear Mom Jeans. LOL

What is your definition of a cool mom? Do you think you're a cool mom?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Movies that I love to watch over and over ...

What does this post have to do with being a first time mother?? Absolutely nothing.

I was watching the movie "Beaches" today for like the forty-fifth time, and thought it would be neat to put together a list of "Movies that I could watch over and over" until I could recite the lines. Now, don't get me wrong, there are movies out there that I love (like Avatar) but that is not a movie I could sit there and watch over & over. That's the difference.

I'm talking about those movies that when you turn on any given cable channel are on what seems like all the time. And when it's one of my favorites, I will watch it to the end like it's the first time I've seen it ever. You know what I'm talking about, right? We all have those few movies that we feel that way about, right?? It's the type of movie I wouldn't go rent at Blockbuster, but I would watch 15 times on TNT! haha! Hopefully I'm not the only weirdo out there.

My list of movies I could watch over and over...

1. Beaches

2. Back to the Future Part 1 & Back to the Future Part 2

3. Field of Dreams

4. Star Wars (any of them)

5. Something About Mary

6. Raiders of the Lost Ark

7. Forrest Gump

8. Independence Day

9. Gladiator

10. Clear & Present Danger

Let me know some of yours!!

UPDATE 4:30pm

After I Posted this earlier, I realized I left out a whole bunch of super-classic 80's movies:

  1. Breakfast Club
  2. 16 Candles
  3. Better off Dead (That's the one with "I want my 2 dollars!")
  4. Beverly Hills Cop
  5. Pretty in Pink
  6. Big
  7. Weird Science
  8. Ferris Bueller's Day Off
  9. Top Gun
  10. Lost Boys

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

A few more of my Favorite Baby things...

1. Babywise. I can't praise it enough! For anyone that is going to have a baby, or knows someone about to have a baby, I highly recommend it for adapting your life and your baby's life into a nice easy routine. It's not for everyone because I know not everyone beleives in putting your baby on a 'schedule' of sorts, but it works for us. And trust me, she doesn't go without eating or anything like that. Our daughter sleeps 7.5 - 8 hours at night at 10 weeks. She is on the cusp of going 8-9 hours soon.

2. Happiest Baby on the Block. The 5 S's! It is a very easy method of calming a fussy or crying baby. Brian and I love it. Get the DVD if you are going to get it - the book is not as easy to follow along with.

3. The Swing - In a previous post, I mentioned that Julianna doesn't like the swing. Well, she has come full circle. She loves it now. I think with this particular swing, she was hunched over a little too much in the beginning when she was a complete Bobble Head... Now she is bigger and seems to be more comfortable in the swing.

4. Car Mirror (the one you put in front of her car seat). Love it. They don't make them to color coordinate with your car interior (bright blue with yellow & red sea animals doesn't exactly jive with my style LOL) ... but I do love being able to drive and look in the rearview mirror to make sure she is ok. Although, at night, I can't see her because Toyota felt it not necessary to put a functioning light in the back seat that you can turn on from the front while driving - So I can't even see her at night. But.... that's for another blog - I'll write one soon for reasons not to buy a RAV4. My husband will love that (NOT!).

5. Hanging Car Seat Toys - At 10 weeks, Julianna is mesmerized by her little hanging Sassy bugs.

6. Johnson's Lavender "Bedtime Bath" wash & lotion. Love it. So does the baby!

7. Terri-Cloth bibs - I love them. I know some do not use them before solid foods... but with bottle feeding, she dribbles sometimes. Not to mention, when she spits up (which isn't often), I would rather it go on the bib than on her clothes. I am a neat freak haha. Mommy doesn't like a dirty baby- yep I'm a freak.

8. Onsies - I said it before, and will say it again, I love Onsies. I love any item of clothing that I can unsnap her, change her, and snap her back up in no time. Love it. I wonder how I am going to deal with long pants for the winter for her?! I wonder how long she can wear those? Maybe til she's 16?? Hmmmm... on second thought. We wouldn't want to give her anything with snapable crotch at the age of 16! Too easy to get out of! LOL

9. Sea Horse - Fisher-Price Ocean Wonder Soothe & Glow Seahorse - This naptime toy is wonderful. Julianna loves it. Sometimes she needs a little help falling asleep. With a gentle squeeze, her cuddly friend glows and plays soft music, lullabies and soothing sounds of the ocean. After five minutes the music fades, lights dim, and Julianna drifts to sleep. Erin recommended this to me, and I am recommending to everyone!!

10. Carters Clothes - I am a huge fan of Carters! I love their clothes. I love how soft they are, how inexpensive they are and how they hold up in the laundry... and of course how cute they are. So far, they beat out any other brand in my opinion. Too bad she grows out of them so fast.


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