Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Dear Lucia, (Ten Months)

Dear Lucia,

I am not going to lie, it has been a very rough month.  I lost my Mother this month, and in turn you lost your maternal grandmother. Let me tell you a bit about her…

She was selfless.  She always saw the good in others. She made friends wherever she went.  She could be a bit flighty, but it was all part of her bubbly personality. She loved myself and your aunts and uncles unconditionally. She was never quick to judge.  She enjoyed reality TV, garage sales and a hot cup of tea with cream.  Her smile was contagious.  She loved acting silly.  She made the best pierogi, lasagna, pasta salad and potato salad. 

You have truly been the light of so many people’s darkest days these days. You make your Granda smile and you keep me afloat.

You are so much fun and doing so much.  You have begun to test your balancing skills by letting go of what you are holding and putting your hands in the air.  You stay up for 5 seconds and then fall, but so proud of yourself.
You continue to love music and dancing whenever your favorite tune comes on.

We love you so much Lucia.



Monday, September 18, 2017

Dear Lucia, (Nine Months)

Dear Lucia,

You have officially been out in this world longer than you were inside mama!

You my sweet daughter are definitely more of a little girl than a baby these days and we are absolutely loving watching you grow.

You are saying a couple of words now including dada, baba and mama.  You only say mama when you as a last resort when someone is doing something you are not a fan of (diaper changes and sleeping in your crib).

You have really begun to put a word to a few items. If we say "light" "butterfly" or "food" you look at those objects knowing what we are saying. You also dance on command and have begun to wave and give kisses. These have been sporadic but have been becoming more regular.

You love food!  You are a huge fan of banana pancakes in the morning and tried pastina with bone broth a couple of weeks ago.  You are not a huge fan of being spoon fed by others and prefer to self-feed with your fingers or by grabbing the spoon from our hands. It's a treat and more often than not very messy.

You are always moving.  You are pulling yourself up and working your way to walking around objects that you have pulled yourself up onto.  You more often than not prefer army crawling but if you see something that catches your eye that you want you are quickly up on all fours and moving faster than I thought was possible. 

You love to play, but have spent the majority of your days exploring.  You love blowing raspberries whether it be on our arms or the couch cushions. Your favorite toys are stainless steels bowls, measuring cups your table and stuffed animals namely Curious George and your Jellycat lamb.

You are outgrowing your 6-9 month clothing, but a lot still fits.  You are a bit of a peanut.  Your feet are still so small (3.25 inches) and chubby.  The perfect size to nibble.

You amaze us each and every day!


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Dear Lucia, (Eight Months)

Dear Lucia,
What a month it has been!  You are officially 4 months away from your first birthday, and full of just as much spunk as we knew you would have. Although, you still do make people work for your smiles and rock the 'suspicious' look more often than not.

You are definitely beginning to transform from baby to little little girl.  You are literally growing up before our eyes. We are cherishing every moment and every step along the way.

You have developed quite a few solid loves over the past month including Mickey Mouse, your bunny lovey, chewing on your baby spoons, walks to the park, anything musical, water and being a part of our family meals.

This month we went on what was your first family lake vacation. We rented a cabin with your Aunt Rita, Uncle Brian and Derek on Lake Delton. The views from the cabin was beautiful and you enjoyed gazing out to the lake.  You also enjoyed your first visit to the beach, albeit short visit as you could not grasp that sand was not edible. 

You were such an easygoing baby on the trip! You specifically enjoyed getting a taste of some real food at dinner each night. You tried french fries, perch and mashed potatoes. 

You love to babble. You have been babbling much more than before as of recently including 'dada' over and over and over again.  You love to lay in bed horizontally and push your feet into Daddy when he is sleeping and say 'dada' repetitively until he gives you 100% of his attention. 

You are not crawling but you scoot and roll as your primary modes of transportation. You have no issue from getting to your destination.

The end of the month was a rough one.  You were unable to rest and were much more clingy than usual and were waking a couple of times at night. We were unsure what the deal was but realized on August 2nd when your first tooth broke through!

We love you Lucia and are anxious to see what the next month will bring!



Monday, July 24, 2017

Dear Lucia, (Seven Months)

Dear Lucia,

You are seven months old and I can hardly believe it.

I guess I can sum things up by saying...

You are a ton of fun. You love life and the glimmer in your eyes tells us so. You are full of spunk and personality.

I have said it before and I will say it again we are so blessed to have you in our lives. Your smile is contagious and any inkling of a bad day can be remedied with a smile from you.

You have begun sleeping in your own crib. You love your own space and more often than not we have to retrieve you when you have woken because you do not cry, but instead babble or play with your paci or toes.

You have begun eating solids. You have tried mashed/pureed avocado, green beans, carrots, sweet potatoes, egg yolk, broccoli and pears. Your favorite being sweet potato mixed with egg yolk.  You also love drinking a bit of water from your Hello Kitty sippy. Your reaction when you get a drop or two of water is priceless.

You love to play both independently and with others.  You love to hear us sing with your favorite songs being, "Itsy Bitsy Spider" and "If Your're Happy and You Know It..."

We had your six month pictures taken and here are a couple of our favorites.

We love you so very much Lucia. 


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Exclusive Pumping

Not everyone has a 'journey' to exclusively pumping there can be more than one reason others may 'choose' to exclusively pump.  I think its important to note this because in the beginning I was completely naive to this concept. I just assumed ALL mothers wanted to either formula feed or breastfeed their babies. This is not the case.  There are also mothers out there who want to feed their babies breast milk without breastfeeding. 

My journey to EPing was not an easy one.  Lucia had issues latching. We worked with numerous lactation consultants. She did not have a lip or tongue tie.  She had a small mouth, was very eager to eat and lacked some coordination to do so.  The thing is breastfeeding isn't as natural of a process for some as society may lead us to believe.  

I began hand expressing colostrum and spoon feeding her and she would have an occasional latch for a very short period of time. On the second day I began pumping. I continued attempting to feed her from my breast. I was constantly ringing the LC's for assistance.  

We left the hospital two days after Lucia's birth. The pediatrician was a little reluctant to release us as she lost a little bit more than the acceptable 10% weight loss but agreed to do so after we agreed to a weigh-in two days later.  

My milk came in on the third day just as we had hoped. This was huge as I had a few risk factors in issues with delayed lactation including a long induction, cesarean section and large amount of blood loss after delivery.  It was at this point I came to grips with the fact that my heart was set on breastfeeding, but in the end my heart and mind were truly set on feeding Lucia my milk or breast milk (I would have considered donor milk) until she was one year old.

I continued to try and breastfeed Lucia for a couple of weeks after we were home, but also continued to pump every 2.5 hours to maintain and grow my supply. When I was not pumping I was practicing skin to skin and attempting to have Lucia latch. 

After many sleepless nights and numerous lactation consultant visits I decided to exclusively pump.  

Was I disappointed? I was and still am a bit sad, but I am also thrilled I have had enough milk to feed Lucia from day 1. 

I have been exclusively pumping for 6 months and 18 days and have been blessed to be able to feed Lucia solely my breast milk. It has not been easy, but it hasn't been extremely difficult neither. The pros outweigh the cons. When I see her thriving and enjoying mamas milk it makes me beam with happiness. 

Do you have any questions regarding exclusively pumping?   


Thursday, June 15, 2017

Dear Lucia, (Six Months)

Today is your 1/2 birthday! We did not celebrate with cake, but instead your very first taste of food other than mama's milk. Avocado was a hit.  Proof.  

You are such a sweetheart.  You melt the hearts of so many around you. Your personality has continued to blossom.  You continue to be very curious and are always smiling and/or laughing. We have been stopped on more than one occasion by someone commenting on what a happy baby you are. 

The pediatrician called you a 'little firecracker' this afternoon and you really are.  Your facial expressions say it all. You have no qualms about letting us know what you want. You have also began to fuss if a toy is taken from you.  You can see the motivation in your eyes when trying to reach for an object or move around. 

You sat up in the shopping cart for the first time, and absolutely loved it. You looked so proud and giggled all the way through our shopping trip at Trader Joe's.  I am pretty sure Saturday morning grocery trips will become a thing for us through the years. 
You still fit into most of your 3-6 month clothing but that is not a surprise as you are quite petite. You make the 10th percentile look fabulous.  Your Nonna and Nonno are quite certain you will grow to be taller than both myself and your Daddy, but your pediatrician begs to differ. 

Lucia I wish I could remember every second and detail of the days that pass. 

Love you lots & lots, 


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Baby Must Haves {First 6 Months}

I have kept a running list of my baby must haves with Lucia to share with my sister-in-law and brother who are going through infertility treatments.  They recently had a very successful retrieval with excellent PGS results - okay, perfect PGS results! 

I figured I could share my baby must haves with you! These are my must haves for the first 6 months and also some honorable mentions. 

Cloud B Sleep Sheep - Lucia needs white noise to sleep, and that is not a bad thing. There are several advantages of sleeping with white noise.  The white noise is a cue for Lucia to sleep.  When she hears the noise she almost instantaneously closes her eyes and drifts off into a peaceful slumber. Are sleeping babies not the sweetest thing? Anyhow, there is also this study which shows that babies who sleep with a fan in their room are at a lower risk for SIDS. It could be the air circulation, but could also be the white noise.  The white noise reduces active sleep and active sleep is the sleep state where SIDS is most likely to occur.  White noise is also a tremendous help for when she is overstimulated. Again, it has a calming cue. We have several white noise machines around the house in the areas she sleeps and then also the White Noise app for on the go. 

Fisher Price Kick and Play Piano - This was the first toy that Lucia was interested in and still finds interesting. I can see her playing with this for months to come as it 'grows with her'. The music stimulates her and she loves to kick the keys to set off the music.  She found this much more interesting than her $80 play mat especially in the younger months. This is a great toy to introduce to your little one around the 2 month mark. 

Fisher Price Rock n Play - This has been the single most necessary baby item for us.  The only thing I would change is I would purchase two seeing we have a two story house. Lucia suffered from some nasty acid reflux and this little contraption has been her saving grace. We do not use the vibrate or auto rock functions but Lucia has been sleeping in this contraption since she refused to sleep in her expensive bassinet and crib.  As much as I love it, I know that this is going to be a very hard habit to break and need to begin transitioning Lucia to sleeping in her crib. I should have begun this like yesterday (months ago). I plan on beginning the transition tomorrow evening. Wish me luck - I am going to need it. 

Lifefactory Silicone Teethers - I feel as if I have purchased every teether known to man, but these were clearly the winners with our sweet Lucia. The different textures, ease of bending and overall design have been key in helping with the pain associated with teething.  They are also made in the USA! 

Hanna Andersson Pajamas - If you follow me on Instagram then you know I have a slight infatuation with these pajamas, but seriously these are the best pajamas. Lucia has been wearing a few pairs of HA jammies since she was born and is just now outgrowing them (size 50) She could not wear 0-3 month (too big) clothing when she was born, but was able to wear the HA (size 50) with obviously months to grow! They are made with organic cotton, no flame retardants, and are super soft (and get softer after each wash). In addition, these suckers wear well. They look almost brand new. The zippered long johns have been my favorite for all of the midnight diaper changes. 

Munchkin Waterproof Changing Pad Liners - We use these suckers everywhere there may be a mess (bouncer, changing pad, pack & play) etc. We also used them during the newborn stage when we would change her on our bed because let me tell you even girls get a bit wild when they pee.