Thursday, January 31, 2008
After our outing this morning, we took Uncle Willy to the Minnesota Zoo to show him the aquariums. He took a ton of animal pictures to put in our "A Trip to the Zoo" album that I am making for Alex. We had fun "finding Nemo"-- there's only one clownfish in the coral reef exhibit-- (Will was laughing because I was more excited about it than the flock of HeadStart kids next to me-- I tried getting their attention, but they could have cared less). We hit Discovery Bay, the Tropics, and suited up for the Minnesota Trail. I can't wait until it's nice enough to walk around the outside exhibits, too-- but right now those three take about an hour to do with the baby, so the timing is perfect.
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
After a quick nap and lunch, we headed to St. Paul to meet Melissa and Graham at the Children's Museum. Alex had a great time watching Mr. Graham explore, and even did some tummy time at the ice fishing hole in the HabiTot exhibit. She will really enjoy this in a few more months when she's mobile! We ran into our Ole friend, Sarah Beggs there. She was facilitating the drum gallery, and the kids had tons of fun experimenting and listening to different noises.
Tonight we're headed to Northfield for dinner with Uncle Willy-- we're not sure where we're eating yet (Will requested anything but rice & beans after a month in Costa Rica), but Alex is looking forward to picking up her monkey that he promised her from the wilds of Central America. I just hope it's litter-trained.
To see more pics from the Childrens' Museum, click on the gallery link on the left side of the blog.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Other than that, today has been pretty quiet. While we were waiting for Uncle Willy to come home from Costa Rica we ran some errands, strolled around the Burnsville Mall (yea for HUGE clearance sales at The Children's Place-- we got a snowsuit AND puffy jacket for next winter for $10 each!), and took Copper for a stroll around the block in the balmy 40 degree weather!
Sunday, January 27, 2008
We came home, had a quick nap (Alex), lunch (Alex and parents) and then Alex and I went to Mommy & Me Yoga in Shakopee. The instructor, Miss Susan, is our ECFE instructor as well, so Alexandra loves to go and visit with her. Everything was going very well until we started lifting babies up over our heads (Think of it as resistance weight). Alex smiled and smiled as she slowly rose up, up, up-- over my head. Then, as my leg muscles were burning from the exaggerated squat I was in, I felt something warm and liquidy running down my head. As she was pushed up into the air, right on cue, she spit up all over me. Motherhood. We recovered, wiped off quickly and went on with the routine, somewhat sticky, but determined to finish! She really liked the inversions and infant massage parts of class this morning, and I got a good workout as well.
After an afternoon snack and nap, we headed up to St. Paul to visit Auntie Carrie's apartment and go out for dinner. Alex played for a while, then took a nap in her carseat while the adults ate at Mai Village (yummmm.....).
As Daddy put her to sleep, we discovered that our little girl is growing up WAY too quickly. First off, the sleeper she is in in a 6-12 month size. Notice that she fills it out rather nicely. Then, look closely at WHO is holding the bottle for the first time ever!
She insisted on holding it herself-- whenever Dave had to help her reposition, she fussed! We've known she is an independent soul, but tonight really cemented it.
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Alex had her first professional photo shoot today. We went to Heritage Photography in Lakeville, and they did a fantastic job. Today they took some family shots and the requisite 'baby nestled in blankets' and 'baby staring headfirst into the camera' type pictures. We'll go back for her 6, 9, and 12 month photos as well-- they have a great little studio AND hobby farm that supplies the animal props in the spring (lambs, chicks, kittens, and a sweet little brown and white Shetland PONY!). I can't wait to see Alex on that cute guy when she's a bit older!
If you go to http://www.heritagephotographyinc.com/ and click on "client gallery" at the bottom right, you can enter our password-- maroamy -- to see the proofs (and order them directly in case you want a 24 x 32 portrait of our beautiful little girl hanging on your Great Room wall). We'll eventually buy digital rights to all our proofs, so if you see something you really like and can wait another 9 months, we can get you a copy without the watermarks.
In case you missed it, or didn't have a connection to download a HUGE file, we compressed the best jumper video. Enjoy!
Friday, January 25, 2008
New from December
Des Moines - Madrigal Dinner
posted by Dave at 8:52 PM
Back down in Des Moines for Rorie’s “Madrigal Dinner”. Rorie is the ugly wench… or something like that.
- Alex traveled very well. She slept the whole way, while Amy drove. (White-knuckle experience for her w/ the snow and having all of us in the vehicle, trusting her w/ our lives.)
Alex is up to ~14lbs. She has been finding her hands to placate herself when we can’t get her a pacifier. (Often times preferring the thumb to a pacifier…). She’s looking around a lot. We can get her to tolerate tummy-time for almost 5 minutes now.
Back at work. Between roles.
Amy and Alex went to the Zoo. Alex talked to the bald eagle, tree kangaroo and the leopard shark – she really liked the shark. Basically, the animals that actually moved she enjoyed.
At home she has been knocking down blocks and petting kitties. (Only a matter of time until she starts knocking down cats and petting blocks… ;-).
She was baptized on Dec. 30th @ Mountain View Lutheran Church. (not the 29th when Cathleen first showed up at the church). Thank you Jeff Loehr and Cathleen Saylor for being Alex’s sponsors.
Alex did great waiting in the ‘audience’ during the sermon, and slept most of the time while on stage. Alex woke up while Amy and Claude sang during their duet across the church – she was a little confused about where the voice was coming from. While up on stage, groggy, she was doing just fine - But when Claude put the holy water on her head she woke up. (Well, her eyes stayed closed initially, but both legs and arms all stuck straight out each time the water touched her.) She didn’t cry.
Getting Alex to that point, however, did not go quite as smoothly.
Note To self: Confirm that the baptismal gown actually fits BEFORE the day of the baptism. Alex was the same age as Amy and I when she was baptized – however, apparently she’s been eating better. (hurray for that supplemental formula!).
Plan A: Put Alex in Amy’s baptismal outfit. Problem: Pants were a little too tight. They didn’t ‘leave anything to the imagination’. And Alex doesn’t like tight clothing (e.g. tights = not her friend).
Plan B: “David and Carrie’s gown will work!”. So we figured we were fine. We got to the church and began the change-over. First issue: Alex’s arms are a little larger than ours were – so the gown was cutting off her circulation. (Grandma Mary to the rescue!) With a pair of scissors mom ‘loosened’ the arms a little. Second Issue: Buttons on the back were coming off! Oh well – we kept her back towards the front of the church so the audience couldn’t see… (Only God could see her transgression ;-).
But like I said, aside from the outfit issue, it all went great.
After the baptism we had almost 40 people over to my parents house. We had great food (thank you Annamaria for the Lasagna and Mom for everything), family and friends all over to celebrate with us. Again, lots of fun (aside from it being a little chilly outside for the non-midwesterners.)
Alex seemed pretty content and enjoyed the crinkling of wrapping paper. Next Christmas will be even better when she’s actually aware of what’s going on.
Two weeks in AZ
Everyone’s convinced that Alex grew a LOT during the almost 12 days we were down in Arizona. With all the new people to continually interact with and new experiences each day she seemed to grow both mentally (looking around more) AND physically (we kept her well fed w/ formula – since _everyone_ wanted to feed her (which made our lives easier)).
posted by Dave at 6:04 PM
Alex is asleep in her crib.
posted by Dave at 6:34 PM
Dear Family and Friends,
It's been a few years since we've drafted a Christmas message, but there has been a number of changes in the Marotz household this past year, so we decided it was once again letter-writing time.
In case you've been living under a rock, Miss Alexandra Mary Marotz joined our family at 12:08am on October 1st. Dave live-blogged most of the labor, up to the point where we were rolled into the O.R. for the c-section. Apparently Alex is going to be an acrobat, because she was playing "Cirque du Solei" with her umbilical cord. This caused a bit of concern for the doctors, but thankfully everyone was happy and healthy. Alex weighed in at 7 lbs even, and was 20.5" long.
The "boys" (Percy and Huxley) have adapted to living with a little two-legger rather nicely. You'd think the baby would be the noisiest thing in our household right now, but Huxley continues to vie for the title, and so far has maintained his reputation as the most obnoxious (but loving) yowling feline. Percy has accepted Alex as one of his own, even to the point of including her in his grooming ritual, but he is always startled off when she flails her arms and laughs in the middle of her "bath".
Copper is still my best buddy. She has decided, however, that she enjoys the attention she receives from the veterinary students at the University of Minnesota. Alex and I have been hauling her up there quite a bit recently (due to glaucoma in her right eye), and she seems to think that her therapy dog skills are sorely needed in the waiting area. She honestly thinks she's on-duty to comfort and encourage waiting owners. She's lost vision in her right eye, but it doesn't seem to be slowing her down any. She's still an active pup (for a basset hound)!
We are very thankful that Dave is no longer traveling to Washington D.C. every week for work. He is still with Accenture, but now has a long-term role in northern St. Paul. Last summer he hiked Machu Picchu with his family (I got to stay home and sweat through summer school in maternity clothing). Besides summiting the Inca Trail, I know he enjoyed sampling the local fare—guinea pig and alpaca. Now in his spare time he changes diapers and reads The Economist out loud to Alexandra, complete with his own conservative commentary.
I have had a complete career change in the past year. Copper and I had been teaching middle school English at Minneapolis Academy for three years. It was very hard for us to say good-bye to colleagues and students there, but we couldn't be happier with our new profession. At least I couldn't be happier—I think Copper misses the kids at school. As a full-time mom I spend my days cuddling, playing with, feeding, singing to and teaching my beautiful little girl. We attend Early Childhood Family Education classes on Fridays, playgroups on Wednesdays, Yoga and Me classes Sundays, and have outings with friends for lunch and/or museums once a week. I know, I know. What can I say— I'm type-A and enjoy having a schedule.
We hope that you all had a great 2007! If you ever want a quick update, or Baby Alex photo fix, Dave is still maintaining his blog at www.davidmarotz.com . We can't wait to see or talk to you all in the coming year, and hear how everything is going for your families. Have a happy holiday season!
The Marotz Family
posted by Dave at 9:31 PM
We also got Alex a Bumbo seat. (Very difficult to find right now). She really likes it - it helps her practice sitting up. (As soon as the kid can hold their head up themselves they can sit in it.) We, of course, are not using it as a high-chair or putting her on the table with it. (I think there was some news article about that being an issue...). But she seems to really like it.
posted by Dave at 8:24 AM
Note to future fathers (and for next time around): Keep the real camera in your pocket. Although, for this next time around I now have the gallery setup to automatically accept camera phone pictures - so i'll be able to post pictures even faster :-D.
posted by Dave at 8:20 AM
moar funny pictures
posted by Dave at 2:02 PM
posted by Dave at 10:24 PM
posted by Dave at 6:35 PM
So far the flight is on time, but they are expecting ice storms down there today. Hopefully i can get back ok!
Oh, and amy took alex to walmart today. Alex loved it - she stayed awake the whole time (bright lights and lots of things to look at)
posted by Dave at 12:28 PM
posted by Dave at 7:08 PM
She loves her nursery rhymes and imitating sounds mommy makes. She also has started paying attention to the cats and 'pets them' with amy's help. Copper enjoys 'tummy time' with Alex and wants to lay down right next to her.
The other day Copper was at the Vet w/ Alex. Two curious dogs decided to wander up to Alex to take a sniff and the baby started to cry. Once Copper heard this she started barking at the intruders. Good to know she's protective. Not so good to have to calm a barking dog and crying baby in the waiting area.
Alex also really likes her swing. She seems to be quite content to sit in it, right next to me, staring at me, while I
SHe's also eating 6oz at a time now - up from her previous max of 4oz.
posted by Dave at 8:24 PM
We had a wonderful time down in Phoenix this past weekend. Alexandra did wonderful on the plane both down and coming back. She only squawked briefly when she was hungry and wasn't being fed fast enough.
Our plane last night was delayed by almost two hours - so we didn't get into Minneapolis until 1:00am. So we weren't home until 2:30am. This morning we all slept in a little. Amy had to get up to take Alexandra to her 2mo doctors appointment. I had to snow-blown the driveway and register the QX4 in my name. I think I had the easier task today.
Amy called me after going in to the doctor. It was a rough time for both Alex and Amy. Alex had to receive her vaccinations today - 2 shots in each leg. Amy said it was painful to watch - seeing Alex in so much agony and not being able to help her. Amy pointed out that it was the first time that Alex has really felt any intentional injury - but the long term benefits should be worth it.
Alexandra is now 23" long and 12.1lbs. That puts her at the 75% for height; 75% for head circumference; and 90th% for weight. Apparently she's eating a little too well! But the doctor said she looked great, and very proportional. And he also mentioned that Alex should be able to be making it longer through the night, and is just using us to comfort her rather than calming herself down. So we get to try to start weening her off her dependency. So much for all the books saying you don't have to worry about that until she's at least 3 months old. She's progressing in her development quite rapidly!
posted by Dave at 12:59 PM
Here's a picture of Alex and Amy from her first plane flight at 7 weeks old.
It went really well. We had plenty of gear to keep her entertained. In the end the college kid next to me was the one that spilled his drink on me. Other than that, it was a good flight. Alexandra recieved a "First Flight" certificate from NWA signed by the pilot and head flight-attendant.
Grandma has a crib setup for Alexandra now. So she resides just across the hall from us in the evening. On Friday we went to "Once upon a child" and picked up a cheap little travel swing - so now we have somewhere to put her when she's in her, "I don't want to be touched, but I don't want to just sit here" mode.
The weather has been rainy :(. So we can't do much outside.
More pictures to follow.
posted by Dave at 11:19 AM
Alex Sleeping, loudly
8hrs of sleep, condensed down to 8 minutes
posted by Dave at 6:58 PM
posted by Dave at 11:51 AM
According to Amy there is a new feeding schedule at night - but apparently I don't know what it is now that I get to sleep through most of the night.
Copper's procedure went well. She's now completely blind in her right eye, which is a good thing (i guess...).
I dropped off Copper at the clinic on Monday early AM. Amy got the call at ~11:00 to come and pick up Copper. Everything went well for Amy, EXCEPT that she got out to the car w/ Alex and Copper and noticed Copper still had the IV needle in her leg! So Amy took copper back in. At this time Alex was beginning to get fussy. So Amy took Alex into the bathroom thinking, 'This will be a quick fix'. Little did she know there would be a total blow-out in the diaper. I think Amy contemplated just tossing the outfit after this event. The baby was 'smeared' up to her armpits. At about the time Amy was thinking, "uh oh", she heard copper return to the waiting area with Amy no where to be seen. So Copper did her nice quiet, "amy, where are you?" howl - for several minutes while Amy attempted to bring Alex back to a presentable state. Eventually she managed to resolve the issue w/ Alex and get copper and allow the waiting room to return to its normal calm existence (with ~30 people waiting with small pets of a variaty of types...)
posted by Dave at 9:15 PM
This weekend Steve and Sue visited Alexandra (and us.). We had a very nice dinner at Perron's (Uncle Willy came too.). We hadn't considered Perron's to be a 'kid' friendly restaurant, but Alex was a perfect baby, once again. She spent most of her time staring at the candles. We only had one incident of a dirty diaper. Amy said, "I think she has a dirty diaper issue. And there is a changing table in the bathroom." So i picked up Alex and her bag of 'goodies' (the diaper bag - not the diaper) and headed off to the bathroom. I got in there and looked around and didn't see a changing table. I walked back out of the bathroom and saw a table, next to coat rack. (a coat rack full of nice jackets.....). I thought to myself, 'that can't be the 'changing table' that Amy was talking about.'. I went back into the bathroom again, into the empty stall. I closed the door and figured, 'well, i've changed a diaper on the floor before - w/ the protective drop cloth.'. Then thought, "no, there's a table out there - and Alex doesn't have the trajectory to damage the coats...". Well, thankfully (for teh coats) there were several people in the area as well. So instead I headed back into the dining room. Five minutes had transpired since I had left. Amy looked at me and said, "All done?". "Nope. Here." And promptly handed her off to Amy.
Thank you Steve and Sue for the great gift. We greatly appreciate having the new camera and will be posting lots of pictures for everyone to enjoy.
posted by Dave at 8:33 PM
Don't get us wrong - she's a good baby. She's been with Amy to a doctors office every day this week w/ Copper. Yes, copper. We have one sick puppy. Not sick as in 'cold' sick, but sick as in, "I have glacoma in one of my eyes and it may spread to the other one and we may have to remove one eye to make things better" sick. (ok, it's not funny - it's expensive, and not funny.)
(My contacts are going fuzzy on me right now, but i can't get up to actually remove them becasue 'she' will wake up - so my attrocious spelling is probably even worse since i can't validate what i'm writing.)
I just took a break to attempt to read what i just wrote to Amy. Her comment, "Ohh, SAD..." (with a slight laugh at my description).
This past weekend Copper's right eye started to appear to 'roll-back' in her head. WE figured it was her third eyelid that was agitated by something and figured it could wait until Monday since she seemed to be able to 'focus' and bring it back into position (so she no longer looked like our dog had been treated by the Umbrella Corporation. (See the movie Resident Evil).
Copper went into the local vet and they said it looked like she might have GLaucoma and should go into the doggy-opthamologist at the U of M's St. Paul campus. THey got her in on Tuesday. They said she had lost all vision in her right eye and gave AMy some prescription drugs / eye-drops to try to control the swelling and hopefully protect the second eye. She went back in again today for another exam. Copper has no vision in her right eye any more and the left has not gotten any worse. Options: A)Surgically remove eye. $1,000. B) Remove eye and replace with prosthetic $1,500 (high likelyhood of infection - but the dog won't look like the aligator from Happy Gilmore), and C) Ablation of the eye with poison - kill the cells that generate the tears that are causing pressure in the eye - only $300. (For everything else there's mastercard.)
So Copper's going in for the ablation on Monday. THere's a high likelyhood that the other eye could eventually suffer the same fate as the first one.
Eventually we'll have a blind-dog with a bad knee and heart murmur... Oh, and our house is going to smell like oranges and pepermint. Why? And the cat's are getting bells. Can you guess why yet? We'll probably also put rugs in front of the doors and other 'markers' by the steps - and put something on the strollers wheels so, you guessed it, Copper can still maneuver around the house. We figure my parents dog Coquette (20lb Bichone frise) was diabetic for most of her life and pretty much completely blind for the last few years. A 20lb dog you can just lift up and put where you want. (Also a good way to punish them... (JUST KIDDING)). But w/ a 40lb bassett hound that's a little more challenging - so we have to help her out by providing 'signals' that she can register. There's nothing wrong with her nose or hearing (yet!).
Keep your fingers crossed.
((Amy's re-assuring me that we won't actually notice the smell - since Copper's sense of smell is so much stronger than ours we shouldn't even notice.)
Well, my typing doesn't appear to be soothing Alex anymore, I guess i better go try changing her diaper again, or handing her back to mom for the 15th feeding of the evening...
posted by Dave at 8:50 PM
Althought I heard her make the noises at 2:00am, so I could be
I have also temporarily resolved the issue of her 'freaking out'
after/ during her diaper changes at 2am as well. I just have to make
certain she burps _before_ getting to the changing table - then all is
well, she goes back to sleep just fine.
posted by Dave at 6:43 AM
I received the line-item bill from the hospital yesterday. I'm not sure exactly what insurance paid for in full, and what we had to pay 15% for - i just know our percentage of that total bill is less than 15%, so i guess i can't complain too much. (HOw can anyone expect healthcare to become more efficient / cost effective when no one knows what the heck they're paying for - what insurance covers etc.). If i were fully responsible for the bill, next time I'm bringing my own Advil to the hospital. Each 600mg pill was $10.00. Each prescription pain pill was $20.00. Amy had one of each ever 3 and 4-5hrs respectively for 4 days. Once we were out of the hospital a ~30 pack of the prescription pain pills was only a $10 copay. (So i figure some similar arrangement was made such that insurance pays the bulk.)
Amazing, as i typed Alexandra actually fell asleep. Pacifier fell out, she made a few 'sucking' motions with her mouth, and silence. Guess I'll just have to balance her on my lap more often in the future when she's not wanting to go to sleep and just start typing. (My carpal-tunnal deffinately enjoys this :-/ )
ok, time for bed. (or, time to wake up Amy so _I_ can go to sleep :^).3
posted by Dave at 9:39 PM
Anyways, we went to the Zoo today with Graham (and Melissa, Jeff and Lynn). Yesterday 'the family' (minus copper and the boys) went to the Arboretum. I have the pictures posted to the Gallery.
(I think we've created a monster. When the pacifier falls out, she starts to wimper. I then offer it back to her and she voraciously attempts to re-attach!)
posted by Dave at 9:35 PM
And two excited trick-or-treaters...
posted by Dave at 8:54 PM
posted by Dave at 6:26 PM
Sunday, October 28, 2007
As you may have noticed my blogging has slowed down dramatically. This is due to that pesky day job getting in the way. Alex keeps Amy too busy during the week to make any posts. So, here's an update:
1) Alexandra's First Smile We managed to catch Alex's first real smile while she's been awake. We've watched her practice while she's been sleeping (hurray for night vision). But this time we think she actually smilled in reaction to to Us (well, Amy) - and we don't think it was just gas ;-). Click Here to download the video.
2) Alex Meets our Olaf friends Mike Wacker was back in town this weekend, so Jake invited everyone over to his house for a get-together. It was great to see everyone. Alex was awake most of the evening. pictures here The question now, of course, is which couple will have the next baby?
3) Alex @ Olaf. Class of 2030? We drove down to Olaf this afternoon for lunch w/ Will. (Amy was craving Indian food and there's a really good place down in Northfield.) Here's a picture of the family under Grandpa Emmon's tree. (Class of '35).
4) Alex heads to the Dog Park(and copper gets violated...) This picture was taken moments before Copper was violated by an overly friendly lab. (fortunately no one was physically harmed - just mentally... And Amy will have nightmares for a month) Alex was protected from the 'event' by the baby bjorn and a fleece jacket. (That's her little yellow pom pom hat sticking out.
posted by Dave at 5:01 PM
Saturday, October 27, 2007
Webcam is finally online :-).
In theory, if it's on, when you refresh this page (or go to the webcam page...) you'll see Alexandra.
posted by Dave at 11:11 PM
Sunday, October 21, 2007
I have posted more pictures online.
Our happy girl in her carseat:
And her after having a bath:
We went out to eat at Red Lobster on Saturday night with Alexandra for the first time (and uncle Willy joined us). Red Lobster is a nice, loud, child-friendly place. I saw several fathers and mothers go walking (quickly) out with children that were 'upset'.
Alex did a VERY good job - she only got fussy once. This gave Amy the opportunity to don her 'poncho' and feed the baby.
posted by Dave at 6:27 PM
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
We took Alexandra in for her two week 'Well Baby' exam. Everything was perfect.
50th percentile for weight
The doc said she typically is just looking for a breast fed baby to
There was a med student tagging along w/ the physician. The doc
One interesting item we were told: Babies only breath through their
Amy's having fun staying home with Alexandra and trying to figure out
Amy has ventured out to Target by herself - her first solo grocery
Thursday, October 11, 2007
More pictures added.
Let's see, what else is new:
- We took an excursion up to Baby's 'R Us today. We can take trips that can be completed round-trip (including packing/loading time) in <3 class="byline">posted by Dave at 4:23 PM
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
I just posted a five minute video of Alexandra's first bath. It's a 60MB file. Let me know what you think :-).
posted by Dave at 6:13 PM
Monday, October 08, 2007
Alex christened the room again... w/ Amy changing her diaper. :-D
posted by Dave at 8:15 PM
We just finished dinner. Lasagna. We wanted to take a moment and say, "THANK YOU ANNAMARIA!!!!". Our freezer (deep freezer in the garage) is _completely_ full. And our fridge is stocked. I don't think we'll have to do more work for dinner than thawing out and heating up an meal for quite some time!
posted by Dave at 7:58 PM
Alexandra is currently in her swing. It's keeping her entertained. (by 'entertained' i mean asleep.)
Thinking of entertainment... At what point do you have to curtail the watching of TV shows that may not be appropriate for little ones? Example: South Park - in this last episode Cartman pretends to have turrets. Which, of course, leads to him saying about every curse word you can w/o being kicked off TV (or being on at Midnight...). Meanwhile Alexandra is sitting in her bassinet right next to Amy and I - fortunately, asleep.
The 'stay at home years' won't be so much fun if Alexandra is a light sleeper.
posted by Dave at 7:53 PM
Home Nurse visit
The home nurse visit was this AM. The nurse had a list of topics that she covered with Amy and me. She put any concerns that we had at ease. Alexandra has been eating well. Her birth weight was 7 lbs 0 oz. Discharge weight: 6 lbs, 6 oz. Today: 7 lbs, 1 oz.
The nurse also removed Amy's staples - so she can now sit-up w/o the 'pulling' sensation. The nurse also managed to ignore the cats as they walked across the table while she talked.
The Evening Routine
Our evening routine got a little more complicated last night. Previously it would be: wake-up, change diaper, feed, swaddle, put back in cradle to sleep. Now, before the 'put back in cradle step', there is now the 'spend 3-5 minutes holding child so she falls asleep.' We couldn't figure out what was wrong last night. Diaper was clean. She had burped several times - but kept whining. Finally Amy just held her for a few minuets, and she settled down.
Baby 4 - Mom and Dad <1
Alex has been going through a LOT of diapers. Unfortunately she has this tendency to decide to wet the diaper right after the diaper has been removed... Amy was the unfortunate victim today. We thought this was only a problem w/ little boys. Apparently this assumption was wrong.
Thinking of diapers. The changing table Grandpa Steve made has been great. The drawers are very deep - and there is plenty of room on top for the baby, and all the rest of the 'critical' items one needs in the middle of the night.
posted by Dave at 11:55 AM
Sunday, October 07, 2007
I have now figured out a way to still be able to work on the computer AND spend time w/ Alexandra: The BabyBjorn. (Hurray for a 'slightly-used' $8, instead of $80, item.)
posted by Dave at 11:49 AM
Three Nights Down
We have now completed three nights at home. One by ourselves, and two w/ Rorie here. Rorie has been a HUGE help here during the day, and at night she has taken care of Copper when she's locked out and starts whining - but we haven't bothered Rorie w/ Alexandra in the evening. (During the day, however Rorie has spent her time watching 'boring' Alex.)
We're still trying to keep to a 3hr feeding schedule at night w/ Alex. She's only woken up once 3 minutes ahead of schedule and started whimpering. Other than that, things are going well.
First signs of Independence
At <1 style="font-weight: bold;">First Play-Date
Little 8-month old Graham Olson came by yesterday with his parents. Graham scooted all over the house and had fun exploring the fridge (With Dad's guidance he found the BBQ sauce and kept it in his 'pocket'). Graham stared at Alex for a few moments (occasionally shaking his toy/rattle), and when Alex didn't move he moved on to other more exciting things - like the Dog. Copper did very well with him. When he was 'running' after her in his walker she slowly walked off to hide. When he was on the ground at the same level as her, she just laid there while he approached her tail.
Grandpa Bob comes to visit
Last weekend my dad had to unfortunately leave a few hours early, before Miss Alex entered the world. So this weekend he flew up to say, "hi" and see his grand-daughter. It was just a quick trip - he was able to see her for a few hours in the evening and then again this morning before having to catch a flight home.
Amy noted that when dad first had Alex in his hands for pictures Dad has his signature doctor baby hold. By the end of the evening she was nestled in the crook of his arm, in true grandpa-style.
Quote: "Usually I just give them away. This one I get to keep."
[I'll get the pictures online shortly. My camera's batter died and I failed to copy over all of dad's pictures to my computer :(. We do have it all on Video - I'll see about getting that online too.]
While Carrie and I were dropping dad off at the airport. Amy, Anna Maria, and Rorie took Alexandra for a 'walk' in the stroller. This was Alex's first adventure to the outside world. (again, no pictures, but we do have Video...]
posted by Dave at 11:14 AM
Friday, October 05, 2007
FAQ Of the Day
How is Amy feeling?
Amy is doing really well. Remarkably well for having had abdominal surgery. She has been up and around and has been taking short walks (much to Copper's chagrin). Staples will be removed on Monday.
Have you had any sleep?
Last night was the best night of sleep Amy has had. She slept much better being in her own room and in her own bed. And having the night vision camera definitely helped. (I had better sleep the previous night w/o everyone else - but i guess that goes w/o saying...) If I can continue to get 3hrs of sleep at a time I would be VERY happy.
If we stay on top of her feeding schedule and wake her up before she wakes us up we shouldn't (knock on wood!) have any problems. The books tell you, 'don't put your newborn on a schedule'. The hospital put her on a schedule. Schedules work well for us 'Type-A' people.
First: Wake up baby -
- Step 1) Change diaper
- Step 2) Change diaper again (most likely she made a mess in the new one before it was even totally 'closed') - Back to step 1. (yes, this could be an infinite loop)
- Step 3) Bring naked, possibly screaming baby to Mom.
- Mom feed's baby. (Sometimes it's 30 minutes, sometimes it's 45minutes.
- Dad burps baby (unless dad can pretend to have fallen asleep in <15 style="font-style: italic;">How's Alexandra doing?
She's been doing VERY well.
Very CALM. For a new-born she seem to be very alert.
She's feeding very well.
Doesn't mind being dressed up in different outfits.
She's been opening her eye's more and more each day.
Getting stronger every day. (Stronger grip. Trying to lift her head during 'tummy time'.)
Any funny 'quotes' to share?
"Suck, don't bite!" Amy to Alexandra
Amy: "Is she hungry?" - Dave: "She's eating her blanket."
"She peed on me again!" (dave)
posted by Dave at 2:30 PM
We're finally home.
She is SO tiny in this 'large' (compared w/ the 200sq ft recovery room) house. Her room is about the size of our recovery room. (However, I think we had more room to move around in the hospital room than here!)
Copper Meets Baby
We pulled up to the house, like so many times before. Opened the garage door. As soon as it was up, we could hear her. "bark. bark. Bark. BARK. wimper. wimper."
I let her out, and she came bounding down the driveway towards the car. She was _SO_ excited to see Amy. I took Alexandra out of the car and brought her over to see Copper. Copper turned her head towards Alex. Took a quick sniff, and was immediately back to Amy. Alex slept through the entire loud encounter.
Alex and the Cats
When we first saw the kitty's, they looked like 'monster pumas' (per Amy). Huxley and Percy weight ~19.5 and 15.5lbs respectively. Alexandra = 6.6lbs; 1/3 their size!
Huxley sniffed her, but walked off.
Percy sniffed, stared, and appeared to be thinking: "Friend? Foe? Food? Toy?" - and quickly changed his approach to match his thought pattern.
The cats now hang out in the babies room. Huxley seems to be just fine w/ her, ignoring her most of the time. Percy, however, when Alex starts to make lots of noise when she's getting changed he bolts for the otherside of the house. (I found him hiding on a chair under the kitchen table.
This morning I was reminded of an event when I was little that my mom recently told me about. When Carrie was really little, and we were all in the car, I turned to her and said, "It was a lot more fun when it was just Mom and me." (Matter of factly, not spitefully). The cats seem to have a look that says the same thing. Sometimes w/ more spite than others.
Mom - thank you SO much for your help these past few days. It was SO helpful to have you here. Whether it was just holding Alex while Amy and I tried to take care of other things, taking care of the animals, or bringing your starving son food (hurray for McDonalds!). We greatly appreciated it!
Hurray for Night-Vision Camera's
A few weeks back I picked up a night vision camera that I hooked up to the computer. The computer now resides in our bedroom. The camera is setup to peer into the bassinet. So we can now see our baby girl on a 17" monitor w/o having to get out of bed. With the screen we can clearly confirm she's still breathing, and see if she's coughed up anything. It puts our minds at ease so we can actually get some sleep. I'll see if i can get the feed online too :-)
Another nice tool: MutliTimer (I think that's the right link). You can set up to 10 different count-down timers. Right now we're just using one to track feedings (every 3hrs).
Percey just crawled into my lap and _really_ wants some attention. So i'll wrap this up for now.
I'll also try to get some of our Video online too.
Btw - does anyone know how to get rid of hiccups in a baby? Our kid gets them A LOT.
posted by Dave at 8:34 AM
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
This evening I have decided to take the day off and let Amy experiance what is like to be completely in charge.
You thought I'd actully leave her there, didn't you?
Actually, I did... But she has ALL the nurses there to help, and I only _just_ left here there 30 minutes ago (~6:30). The nurses will take Alex to the nursery while Amy is sleeping and bring her back out every 3hrs to nurse. I had to come home and get the animals back on a 'normal' routine. I have one of Alex's blankets on Copper's bed. I have her jacket in the Cat's bed. I put her pants in the basenet. The other blanket of hers is now in her swing. Hopefully this helps the animals adjust before she's actually here!
The cat's are going to have a really hard time. They always sleep with us. However, between the baby in the basenet and Amy's large abdominal scare (and Percy's propensity to play, "Bonzi Kitty" from the top of the armour) we think it may be best to just kick them out for a few weeks. (again, they won't be happy).
I'll also try to get the first 'formal' pictures of Alex and Amy online. (I was at the house taking care of the animals, so I was left out.)
I will probably also need to straighten a few things up. Overall the house is clean, but I just came back from 4 nights at the hospital so all the mail, and my stuff, is all over...
Update: Here are the formal pictures. (She's not this red in real life...)
It is just amazing to watch Alexandra change from day to day. The first day she wouldn't hardly open her eyes. Today (Wednesday evening) she was looking around the room for almost 10 minutes!)
posted by Dave at 7:35 PM
Well, Amy and the baby are definitely not going home today. I will be - I can't spend a 5th night on a 'bed' that is 2' by 6' bed (in a freezing room...).
Amy's recovery is going well - but her blood pressure is still high (which was why we were in here early for induction to begin with). So the Doc wants her to stick around through tomorrow, especially since by the real calculation we're only on recovery day 2, and insurance covers up to 4.
They will probably remove her staples tomorrow. (Yes, staples - ~12 of them. Gotta love modern medicine. I guess they needed a better alternative to fire-ants... which is amazing: ants (as staples) --> string --> metal staples...)
Voracious Eater, Part 2
Alex's only 'problem' is that she falls asleep easily - and possibly the 'barracuda mode' she gets herself worked into if she doesn't get presented with food soon enough. (E.g. when Dad's given the job of waking her up (un-swaddling her, and possibly taking off her onesie.) and having to get her back to mom... by that point she's probably wailing and ready to snap at anything in front of her face - much to Amy's chagrin.)
Also, Amy wanted me to mention an event from last night:
Amy - "Is she Hungry?"
Dave - "Well, she's eating her blanket. So i'd say so."
(Amy then hold her stitches while she laughs).
posted by Dave at 11:15 AM
Tuesday, October 02, 2007
"she who hesitates is lost" that is alex's moto when feedig. Amy like's to call her the 'little barracuda'. When shes hungry she tracks down what she wants....
We're headed to bed.
Let's see, what has happend in the past 24 hours since Alex has arrived. (She's now 1day 12hrs old)
- Even baby girls can pee on you. I had checked her diaper, only a small mess. I took off the old one, was trying to clean her off and 'whoa!'
Preparing for Guests
- Waterless shampoo is good for more than just 'camping trips, after sports activities, and when feeling sick' - also good for hospital rooms.
- Several people called to ask if they could stop by. I invited everyone. I quickly realized that everyone was going to be here Monday afternoon. I knew Amy would not be excited,'looking like she just had a baby'. Fortunately with the the 'shampoo', some make-up and a quick straighting up of the room everything worked out well.
- Thank you everyone who stopped by yesterday! We had a great time visiting with everyone. (Mom, Carrie, Garrick, Jayne Solberg, Eddie, Jackie, Will, Melissa)
- Prepare for going through lots of tops
- If you bring in your own hat, make certain there aren't any tags. I couldn't figure out why she kept crying. My typical approaches didn't solve the issue (diaper? Nope. Swadled? not it. Swaying? nope. 'Shhhhh'? Nope. taking off the hat w/ the tag in the back - yep.
The, "Who does she look like" game
- 'Does she have your eye's'? (Amy to Dave)
- 'I think she looks like Dave'
- 'I think she looks like Amy'
- 'I think her chin looks like Will's'
- 'I think she looks like great-Grandpa Marotz'
- etc. etc. :-D
- Never under-appreciate the Nurses. They help with everything, all hours of the day.
- They are also the ones that can take the baby to the nursery so you can sleep through the night, and bring her back every 3 hours for feedings. (Which only really interups Amy - assuming I can sleep through it...)
- First 10 minute walk outside of the room on Tuesday @ 8:00
-- She had no concept of where we had entered the hospital, where we are now, and where the OR was.
- No more tubbing on her legs (prevent blood clots), No more pressure wrap on the scar (~12 stapples), No IV, No more catheter
- Woke up in the middle of the night shaking 'like a heroin junkie' (in her words). We think it was probably caused by low blood-sugar. After drinking some orange juice and eating some crackers it went away.
- Recovering very well, 'for someone who just underwent a C-Section'
- Looking forward to a shower
- After shower = much better.
- Managed to succesfully learn to feed child, prepare child for first formal pictures, swaddle child, and get back into bed in <1.5hr>Baby
- They make strange noises. (Squeaks, squaks and random gurggles)
- You can spend hours just staring at them. (Either with amazement, concern (not knowing if she's still breathing), and wonder)
- She seems to already know exactly who we are. She was freaking out when the Lab woman stopped by and left her unbunddled while she tried to sort out the MRN id's. After the lab work was through, Alex was handed back to Amy, and immediately relaxed.
- We love her.
Dad's to be
Remember that we're here to support the wife. (We're then suported by our Family and Friends.) The nurses will get you a blanket or two - and they're ok with you finishing off the wife's meal when they can't eat it all. But beyond that it seems like we're just another body in the room. (I guess in today's world you have no idea whether the guy in the room is the husband, boy friend, 'baby-dad', or the new guy...) We're on our own for food - so hopefully there's a friend or family member that can bring you something, or can drive you home briefly while the wife is recovering so you can take out the animals, shower, and get something to eat.
All-in-all, an amazing experiance.
posted by Dave at 9:18 AM
Monday, October 01, 2007
Here's the first picture I've been able to get online of Alexandra.
Update on last night:
- Contractions were coming very frequently last night. Averaging 1-2 minutes appart. 2.5 minutes being on the long side.
- Epidural was placed quickly (Pitocin was cut back. Contractions continued to occur frequently.
- Amy felt pressure in her abdomen. Nurse came back in and said, "well, maybe I'll check a little early". She checked and said, "you're at 8?!" She watched the monitor for ~30 seconds, then called the OB
- OB came in, quickly. She watched the monitor (contractions & baby's heartbeat). The baby's heart rate kept dropping and recovering. But the recovery wasn't as quick as they'd like
- They attempted to place the more accurate sensor (attaches to the baby's scalp). They had some difficulty, but I think they got it. The doc touched the baby's scalp and the baby's heart responded, which gave them encouragement.)
- They watched it... The doc said, "I'll give it two minutes to see how it goes". At about 1.30 they got the consent form out for Amy regarding the risks of a C-Section. Amy signed it. The doc said, I think we need to do a C-Section. And off they went down the hall to the OR.
- I followed after the cart. I got to the double doors, they said, "Wait here - someone will come out w/ scrubs". I waited. I tried to get a cell phone signal - nothing. There was a nurses station right there. "Can i use your phone to call long distance?", "Oh, i'm sorry - you have to use your room phone."
- I checked my cell phone again. 1 bar. I dialed my mom. Call dropped. I dialed it again using speakerphone. Got connected. "Amy's going in for a C-Section"
- Next I got some scrubs, still wearing my slippers, i put them on - and waited. Staring at the doubl doors, unable to see around the corner.
- Finally someone came to get me.
- The OR was COLD. Amy was shivering. I was able to sit by her head. We sat, and listened. (well, amy shaking a little here and there - not from the cold, but the kind of shaking after you had just run a long distance...
- We heard suction, "watch out for the bladder".... Then...
- "Waaaa.... Wuhaaaaa..." I watched the nurse run off to the other room w/ her. (one of the other nurses said, "Is it a boy or a girl". Amy mumbled, it has to be a girl....)
- I saw the baby go, and followed (briefly torn between my wife on the table and the baby crying in the other room.)
- I walked into the other room w/ Alexandra getting cleaned up. I just stared at her before asking, "Can i touch her?" - They were all wearing gloves, i didn't want to infect her ;-). They said, "Sure!"
- They completed their observations - suctioned out her stomach - and wrapped her up, and handed her to me.
- I immediately took her into the other room where Amy was still on the table. I held Alexandra out for amy to see. (it was tough to position her w/ the lights and poles hanging around where my seat was behind the guard. )
- I held Alex w/ the "Dr. Marotz baby hold" (tight grip on the back of the head so they can't move / slip ;-), so Amy could see her and touch her. Amy didn't have her glasses on so I had to hold her close.
- The nurses then had me take Alex over to the Nursery to wait for them to finish up w/ Amy.
- It took forever for them to give me the goahead to go see Amy. So it was just me, and Alex, and some quiet newborns hanging out in the nursery w/ the occational nurse.
- So only started yowling a few times. Fortunately I had paid attention to the video, "The happiest baby on the block" and she calmed down quickly.
- Finally I was able to bring her in to see Amy in the recovery room.
- Amy was still shaking. After ~10 minutes they finally had a drug to help her relax and stop 'shivering' (although she was overheating...)
- We were able to put the baby on her chest and get her to eat.
- Finally, at ~2:00 in the morning they were done getting Amy setup, and I could finally go to sleep.
- Alexandra was sleeping in the corner of our room. She didn't make much noise.
- A few hours later the nurse came in and took Alex for her bath - I was exhausted, and Amy was in no condition to follow - so we slept.
Now this morning Amy is hooked up to the compression boots to help prevent blood clots. They 'feel good, but they're a little hot - since it's plastic. but they're kinda like a massage'
The baby gets fed every 2-2.5hrs.
My mom just got here a little while ago - so she's rocking her right now, giving us a small break (although, more than anything, it lets her be held by someone while Amy and I can relax.)
So, now you know the rest of the story....
I'll try to get more pictures online later. The hospital's network* is 'being difficult'. [*Amy had me update it... the Hospital has been fine, the network was teh issue]
(oh, and she may need another diaper change...)
Update: Here's our RN - Melissa.
posted by Dave at 9:12 AM
October 1st, 2007
Mom and baby are doing fine.
posted by Dave at 12:43 AM
posted by Dave at 11:45 PM
Amy's doing well.
We'll try to get some sleep now.
posted by Dave at 11:16 PM
my to keep posting as i can. The contractions have gotten much more
frequent and Intense! Every minute or so. I'm not able to complete
this post w/o Amy going through another contraction. (her legs are
The Doctor will check her again in an hour.
Thank you everyone for your emails and support - Amy has really
enjoyed hearing from you!
posted by Dave at 9:46 PM
most likely, optimistic and pessimistic estimates - and we use that to
drive w/ 80% the time the baby will get here ;-).
posted by Dave at 8:22 PM
of minutes, but we have one anyways).
The Project Manager in me has come out (and being a Guy - i want to
have a laid out solution... and this way the Nurse and OB (female as
well), have an idea of where we'd like this to go:
6:30 - they checked. 2-3cm, no additional drugs, just more IV
8:30 - will check again. So far contractions are continuing at 2-3
(The rest are just next steps - w/ no times associated w/ them on our
white board ((Yes, we have a white board)))
= Lab work to prep for Epidural
= Pitocin, if/ as needed
= Sleep (hopefully)
= Labor (more)
I'll guess ~5:00am for Alex to arrive. Any other bets? Text message
me or email email@example.com and let us know what you think :-D.
We're just going to be watching TV.
posted by Dave at 8:12 PM
figure she needs to get some rest now before the next phase kicks in.
At ~6:20 we'll get an update on the next steps. She hasn't had
anything to eat since lunch. The concern is whether or not she'll end
up needing a C-section.
posted by Dave at 4:20 PM
They're evaluating the next step.
posted by Dave at 2:13 PM
Guess we'll just be watching LOST until then.
posted by Dave at 10:07 AM
ready for this"
posted by Dave at 9:43 AM
posted by Dave at 9:13 AM
We have a new nurse - Patty. They nurses have 8hr shifts.
OB Update: 'just a dimple'. So we have a ways to go.
posted by Dave at 8:35 AM
At 8 they'll evaluate for pit.
Amy woke up again at 5, the nurse came in and helped her. I was kinda awake, but didn't move.
posted by Dave at 7:29 AM
posted by Dave at 2:54 AM
Tomorrow will be the big day, we hope!
posted by Dave at 10:50 PM
drip... that's about it. Tonight, we wait...
posted by Dave at 9:48 PM
I think if i'm going to spend the night in the hospital again I'll
bring my own sheets and blankets. This isn't exactly the best. (but i
guess i have little to complain about - i'm not the one w/ the needle
in my arm, two puncture holes, two monitors, and getting probed every
few hours - and going to the bathroom every 20 minutes... and I won't
be pushing a kid out in <~24hrs either).
(OB Update: 80% effaced.)
posted by Dave at 9:20 PM
Amy's veins were difficult to find for the IV. She got stuck 3 times.
They were smart to just bring in the expert after two times. (Her left
one is still throbbing - the needle got stuck in a valve...)
Now we sit and wait. They'll feed amy something. (Hopefully there's
some leftovers, and i can snag 'em ;-).
Garrick, Cory, Leah and Sarah are down at Froggy Bottoms for the Olaf
five year reunion. They text messaged us.
posted by Dave at 6:35 PM
'00. (Married to an Ole too... Chris Rasinen)
posted by Dave at 5:52 PM
have to patch into the wall 'private network' afterall...
Amy's getting the IV right now. It will probably take overnight before
we see any 'movement'.
posted by Dave at 5:38 PM
If you need to reach us our cells work - or email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
posted by Dave at 4:54 PM
posted by Dave at 2:44 PM
posted by Dave at 1:31 PM
posted by Dave at 11:28 AM
posted by Dave at 10:13 AM
(By "we" i mean Amy... kinda like 'we're pregnant'. ;-) I'm just
throwing that in because Amy doesn't like that phrase.)
Anyways, It's 5:45. Amy got up at 5:15 to be ready to call at 5:30.
She called, and they're 'booked'. Hopefully at 10:00 they'll have
better news for us.
Well, the longer it takes today the more likely Alex will arrive on
Sunday - which is the cats birthday as well.
I've jokingly 'told' Alexandra - 'by hook or by crook you're coming out!'
posted by Dave at 5:48 AM
posted by Dave at 10:54 AM
Well, she's the right size for a 36 weeker - but compared to the 4mo pregnant woman nancy and her med student had just seen, she's big...
posted by Dave at 6:46 PM
Yesterday we had the one-day child birth bootcamp (we opted for this one instead of the 6 week course.) bottom line was, 'your body will do what it needs to - you just need to learn to cope w/ it'.
(ps-these are all posted via my phone.)
posted by Dave at 8:26 AM