Tuesday, March 19, 2013

eleven months

11 months, time sure does fly. Just one more month, sweet Cora and you'll be one year old. We are cherishing this last month of baby-dom, then its off to being a toddler. I remember around this time last year I was huge, feeling your little bottom flop side to side (I should have known what a firecracker you'd be)... and counting down the days to when we'd get to meet you. This march is a very different march last year. Our lives are so completely different than we could have ever imagined. This life is wonderful with you, Cora.

What you have been up to this past month...
  • you walk about 90% of the time, and crawl the rest. Your waddle is getting more stable every day. You just figured out how to stand up from sitting, while using your stuffed animals to push off of.
  • you have two bottom teeth! they are adorable and small and jagged.
  • we call you our little coranado. You are non-stop, a flurry of toys... total destruction in your path, all over the house. It's exhausting and wonderful at the same time.
  • popsicles are a blast. not only do they help you with teething, but you love them.
  • you prefer to use a fork or spoon with meals. you intently "work" on feeding yourself every day.
  • You wave hello, you "cheers" your bottle with our glasses, and you smell flowers with your scrunchy nose.
  • you went to the park for the first time and you loved the slide and the swing. I see lots of park-time in our future.
  • You are a very happy child, who clearly loves us. We couldn't be more proud of you as our daughter.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

first teeth!

...cora feeding herself, as per usual. without a bib...uber messy and super cute.
As you know...we have been "teething" for months, like 6 months. I say we...because it has been a family event. Cora gets a tad bit grumpy, we feel bad for her... we orajel the hell out of her...give her way too many teething-toy options...then no teeth. Well, we have teeth! They are cute and jagged and sharp and tiny. Her two bottom ones came in first. We don't have any others in sight yet, but this is fun. She looks like she is growing up. Her smile is changing...do you see them?! Oh, maybe not. I'll try to take more mouth-photos. She's just so quick!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

weight woes.

april 2012 to feb 2013, and 50 lbs lighter.
Cora has gained a few however... like 14 lbs and walking legs! Yay Cora!!
Well I am super excited to say...that today... I am finally at my pre-pregnancy weight! Eesh. That took only 10 months. Yay!! Now, even though the scale says I am 170lbs... it's a new 170lbs. My body really doesn't look at all like it did before pregnancy. I am saggy, floppy, and stretch-marked. I can fit into my pre-pregnancy clothes, however I look different in them. If I want to get toned, it will take some serious work. Maybe its that I'm 29....or maybe its that having a baby takes a toll on my body. Either way, I'm pleased with my weight loss...and its okay if I have to wear mom-jeans forever. After all... I am a mom.

It all started back in October Matt and I decided we had enough of our chunky bodies. We were lugging around this extra weight...feeling bad about ourselves...for what? A few tasty beers and french fries? Silly really. I was realizing that I made enough excuses for myself...oh, I'm pregnant (okay..that one is semi-justified) or...I just had a baby.... or... I'm breast feeding... and then I ran out of excuses. I didn't just have a baby, she was 6 months old....I couldn't ride that wave forever.

We needed to do something immediately, because if I didn't start loosing weight, getting healthy, or being fit...I'd just have another baby and get bigger and bigger. Pre-pregnancy I was already a size large at 170 lbs (I'm almost 6' here...I've never been tiny)...so they start to run out of sizes for people like me. After baby, I was an XXL, and snug at that...and a consistent 196 lbs- not 195, not even 197...196. wtf. I wasn't loosing any weight after pregnancy- which I talked about a few times on this blog. I thought the weight would "fall off" with breast feeding- kind of hilarious actually...in that sad, crying into a glass of wine kind of way.

So we chose to join a gym...matt and I. I started off with 5 sessions with a physical trainer. It was grand. I was quite nervous about using weight machines. So the trainer helped me to feel more comfortable- that I too can belong in the gym. I also learned most importantly what my body needed to get these goals:

1. get to pre-pregnancy weight of 170, then maybe 10 more pounds of weight loss (in progress).
2. have a strong core (my abdominal muscles are shot after pregnancy)
3. get nice toned arms and legs (to play endlessly with our little cora)

Matt had similar goals... but a little more weight loss and to sculpt a bit more muscle mass. We also drastically changed what we ate for a few months...about Nov-Jan. We cut out 100% of alcohol (if you know us.... this was a biggie- matt loves his beer, and I love a glass of wine here and there), lowered carbs, ate healthy, no sugar, no eating out, increased protein. This extreme diet was a bit ...well...extreme- we knew we couldn't endure this forever- we love eating. But it could get us down to our target weight...to then get a more workable baseline and teach ourselves how to eat in moderation and healthfully for life.

I actually almost started sobbing during our first work out... here I was actually in a gym, as a mom...doing it. I thought back to pushing out a human being from my body... I am strong, I can do this. I am doing this. I held back the tears, mind you. But gosh, this was a huge hurdle for me. Then I looked over at my husband... he was doing it, and rocking it. He can run on a treadmill? Floods of emotions. Emotions that I just don't get from a candy bar (well, sometimes I think I do). So we keep going. We are succeeding at this. Its not easy, but the way we feel from eating healthy is amazing.

This is what 35 lbs looks like for matt. (sept 2012- dec 2012) Oh, I'm so proud of him.

Longer term goals:
-To be able to do an overnight backpacking trip with Cora like the old days pre-cora
-To maintain a healthy weight...where we feel good and look good.
-Next time I get pregnant to be healthier and maybe not gain 50 lbs.
-To be able to have an active lifestyle with our kids

So, its hard. From about Feb-March...we've gone out to eat, had tasty things, alcohol... its tricky. Matt is starting to go back to the gym. I am going to eat healthier- cut out the processed foods. Its a work in progress. With warmer weather I plan on playing a lot outside with Cora... I can't wait. But this weight loss feels better. It's something, phew! 50 lbs gone. Yay!!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

helicopters for parents.

peeking under the door. she loves closing doors...then opening, then closing, then opening.
 watch out tiny fingers!

So, I am not a helicopter mom... I know, shocking... it's written all over my child's healing forehead. I wasn't really sure how I would be as a mom, but I am rather lax and so is Matt . I believe in letting her grow and explore...and learn perhaps the hard but pretty safe way. This means she gets a few bumps and nicks along the way, ie. stitches to the head at 9 months. Whooops. This keeps me up at night, literally. I feel awful. I am thinking about adopting some helicopter traits for my own sanity.

I usually let cora explore, with my hands close by to help aid her falls, remove dangerous items, say uh-oh appropriately, watching her every move/facial reaction from afar (because she endlessly enamours us)... but the little head knocks on the chairs- that's ok by me. She will learn spacial awareness- which she is! I never gasp before she falls, I let her learn her own reactions/consequences, not to be scared by mine. But she is walking, standing, and crawling fast. She puts everything in her mouth. She is gutsy and seems to like everything she shouldn't. I am a Montessorian by nature, and well also my 1st career. I believe in letting kids have their independence with some boundaries and respect. So now I just have to mentally balance my choices in mothering. I have to be okay with the bruises if I'm not going to hover over her every move. My little person is growing in this awesome brand new world. It's not always going to be pretty.

So, is this why I have nightmares about my kid rolling over on a knife?! Awful. Of course knives are never allowed even in her vicinity, but having this independent little soul makes my dreams nervous. It's a ton of responsibility. But eeesh... I need these dreams to go away. I am happy that matt is on board... we actually have rather similar parenting styles so far. Happy, encouraging, calm, and patient. So that helps.

Would you say you're a helicopter mom? How does the balance work out?

Sunday, March 3, 2013

white noise

I realized I forgot to tell you all about the white noise we use! I posted about cora's sleep routine [here]...but I failed to mention that we have been using white noise of some sort since she was sleeping through the night. Coincidence? Possibly not.

We started off with a fan/ air purifier thing. We turned it on for every nap and nighttime. Then it started making a weird sound/smell and freaked us out. So we put in a portable speaker, ipod, and a brown noise "song" on continuous in her room. That worked well, except when the speaker's batteries died it would make a horrendously loud static noise, scared the shit out of us- so that happened every 3 days. We also love this white noise app on our phone- we use it at the grandparents, traveling, etc. We put our phones on airplane mode....and play away. But we don't want our iphones tied up in her room... how could we live without them in the middle of the night? 

THEN we got smart. We purchased a sound spa- white noise machine. So simple. So perfect. It was at bed bath and beyond, also you can find some affordable ones on amazon [white noise machines]. This one plays about 6 nature sounds- soothing, but we like the white noise best. I covered up the clock with black electrical tape. And the best thing is it plugs into the wall! No batteries, however if you want it to be portable it can be. And it just plays and plays until you turn it off. PERFECT... that only took us 10 months to figure out.

This is awesome for our smaller house, where we like to watch TV after she goes to bed, maybe load a dish or two in the dishwasher...you know living on the wild side. So this cancels our sounds we make. She sleeps quite soundly, we can still hear her peeps on the monitor through the white noise. I read that the white noise volume should be set to if you were standing in your bathroom listening to the shower and we turn it down a little from that (talked about here in this article, it's no where near scientific research... but it appeals to my motherly instincts/needs).

I think this will be important to have one for cora... one for us... and down the road one for the next babe. One big house-o-white noise.. So synthetically peaceful.