Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Our latest issue: Solid food and solid poop.

Ever since we started feeding Linna solids, her poop has been solid. This of course is fine, but the little lady has to push SO hard to get her poop out, that TONS of milk comes out her nose and mouth:( And I know when it's going to happen because she starts grunting really hard, her face turns red, then BLEH! Out comes the milk. She gets so startled that she starts to cry:(

So far, we've only fed her breast milk, brown rice cereal, carrots, avocado, sweet potatoes, zucchini, green beans, peas, and apples. I feed her twice a day, with brown rice cereal at both lunch and dinner. Today I decided to cut out the rice cereal completely. We'll see what happens.

I literally change Linna's clothes five times a day, and between this issue and the drool, we go through at least 10 bibs a day. Has anyone else gone through this???

Thursday, January 19, 2012

5 months.

Well, I'm about a week late writing this, but Linna Jane turned five months old on the 8th of January! She is changing so much. From her hair, to the way she communicates, she's turning into a pretty smart little lady:)

We started Linna on solids at five months, after we had a couple rough nights. I thought she was just hungry and that by feeding her solids it would help. But I have to admit, I don't think solids was the answer. Don't get me wrong, Linna is a GREAT sleeper and we are very lucky. But even after starting her on solids, we still have the occasional rough night. By rough night, I mean it takes her longer to fall asleep at bedtime, or she'll wake up in the middle of the night. For the most part, she sleeps from about 7 or 8 p.m. to about 8 a.m. So far she's eaten brown rice cereal, avocado, carrots, sweet potatoes, and green beans. She has yet to figure out how to keep it in her mouth. I really don't think she's a fan, but there's nothing wrong with practicing the art of eating;) One of these days she'll figure it out. She just really loves her milk! Looking back, I kind of wish I would have waited to start her on solids until six months. She clearly didn't NEED them, but again, there's nothing wrong with practicing.

Linna blows bubbles, babbles to herself, smiles at just about everyone, and loves when we sing her songs! She hasn't figured out how to completely roll from her back to her tummy yet, but she does go from tummy to back. We've noticed that Linna's hair is growing too! She had so much hair when she was born, then started balding on the top, and now she's sprouting long "wispies"... just like me when I was a baby:) She's grabbing and holding everything, and of course EVERYTHING goes in her mouth.

We've also gotten Linna on a pretty good daily schedule. She used to just cat-nap whenever she wanted too, but now her schedule is pretty much like this...

Wake up around 8am, has a bottle, plays for an hour or so, goes down for a morning nap around 10am, sleeps anywhere from 30 mins - 2 hours, gets up and has some lunch (cereal and a veggie), has a bottle soon after, takes another nap around 1pm or so, sleeps anywhere from 30 mins - 2 hours, gets up and plays for a couple hours, then down for another nap around 4pm, sleeps for about an hour, has dinner (cereal and a veggie), plays with Daddy when he gets home from work, bath (every other night), then she has a bottle around 7pm and she's off to lala land. Our little love bug likes her sleep! I'm still breast feeding (pumping and feeding her bottles), and she'll eat anywhere from 5 - 8 oz. per feeding. At nap time, I lay her in her crib on her back, and she excitedly waits for me to give her the blanket so she can put it on her face, then pull it off! I watch her do this on her video monitor, and then she just passes out. SO cute!

This photo is both Grandma Specken and Grandma Saigh's favorite! They
both have it saved as their desktop photo at work.
Linna doesn't have any teeth yet, but she is a non-stop drooler! I think we go through 10 bibs a day. She also got her first cold:( For about a week now, she's been a snooty little thing, but it doesn't seem to bother her one bit. There's times when she's playing in her exersaucer, and I'll find her blowing snot bubbles out of her nose. Yuck! She can "kind of" sit up on her own, but after a few seconds she'll tip over. She has such a strong core though:)

She gets SO excited when you read her books, and of course she wants to hold the book and put it in her mouth! Linna really is such an easy-going baby. We're very lucky! Since Linna was born, a majority of people would tell us how much she looks like me. Well now, almost EVERYONE says how much she looks like AJ. I have to agree:)

Sitting by herself... for 5 whole seconds!
I can't believe that in a few weeks, our little lady is going to be half a year old! We've started thinking about getting the house ready for a mobile baby. Our house isn't very baby friendly, and I realize this every time we have a playdate with her "older" friends. I think we'll just learn as we go! If I could, I would keep her this age forever. It's so hard to think back at how tiny she was when she was a newborn. I miss those days, but I'm LOVING this age! I'm very happy that a few of my girlfriends are expecting, so I can snuggle their babes:)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Cancer, pregnancy, addiction, and infertility.

Photo Courtesy: Chanelle Young Photography
Most women go through it. You graduate from high school, go to college, and your circle of high school friends fizzles, and everyone goes their separate way.

This happened to my group of high school girlfriends, but a few years ago (about 3 years after college), my group of girlfriends were brought back together by a marriage. One of my best high school guy-friends married a girl I knew through the pageant circuit. And that was the rebirth of my friendship with my high school girls.

Today, the girls that I was friends with in high school (+1) are still some of my best friends. And in the last couple years, we've experienced (and are still experiencing) struggles with cancer, pregnancy combined with cancer treatments, infertility, and addiction recovery. All I can say is that I have the most amazing group of girlfriends, and they are some of the strongest women I have ever known.

To give you some background: One of these ladies is battling ovarian cancer and going through chemotherapy while pregnant. One friend is in recovery from alcohol and drug use (she is 2 years sober!). One friend who is starting in vitro fertilization (IVF) due to fertility struggles. And one friend has a father battling the very late stages of brain cancer.

This past Sunday, all of us got together to bake cookies, and the day ended with some much-needed emotional release. The six of us just sat around and opened up about what is "really" going on in our lives. Although we get together often, it's difficult to find out what's really going on in each of our personal lives, in a big group-setting. But this Sunday, we all opened up and shared our stories.

Stories were shared about anger with God, fears, anger at the way things so unfairly happen, and I really got to feel and know what my close girlfriends are going through on a daily basis. However, I know I will never REALLY know what they are each having to deal with.

I drove home thinking how unfair life is. Why is one of my YOUNG friends having to deal with the possibility of never being able to have a baby? Why is such a good person having to go through chemotherapy, while she's trying to grow a healthy baby in her belly? Why does a beautiful, successful and loving young woman have to live with the disease of addiction every day? And why is such a beautiful and loving young mother having to face the reality of possibly losing her father to brain cancer?

Life is incredibly unfair.

While I don't have the answers to these questions, I do feel incredibly blessed. However, I also wonder why my family isn't dealing with the pain that my girlfriends are dealing with.

Why them, and not me?

Part of me questions my relationship (or lack thereof) with God. Does being closer to God keep these circumstances away? This is an internal struggle I don't think I will ever understand.

What I do know is that there is a reason my group of girlfriends were brought back together after our years apart during college. We all need each other. I need them as much as they need me. I am so incredibly blessed to have each of these girls in my life, and one day the world will be touched by each of their amazing stories of courage and strength.

I love you ladies!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Linna has started solids.

After two nights in a row of 5 a.m. feedings, where Linna would house a six ounce bottle, we decided to introduce our hungry lil' lady to solids. After a lot of discussion, research, and questioning, the first food Linna ate is...


We put it in. She spits it out.
We decided to do organic, brown rice cereal, mainly because there's less chance of her having an allergy. I wanted to do avocado, but I'm so scared of her having an allergic reaction. And since the first few feedings are all about texture and learning to swallow "food", I thought rice cereal would be a good start!

We put Linna in just a diaper and bib, put her in her high chair, and prepared her first food! I made a really running mixture of Earth's Best Organic Whole Brown Rice Cereal and breast milk. The breast milk was room temp and I didn't do any warming. I made about a tablespoon of food.

Daddy likes to clean me up after every bite.
Her first facial reaction was priceless! She was so confused as to what was being put in her mouth. If you had been on an all liquid diet for five months, you'd be confused too;) Most of what I put in her mouth came right back out! I don't know if she figured out how to swallow it, but practice makes perfect! She looked like she enjoyed it a little bit, but I think she enjoyed spitting it out even more. I let her get the cereal all over her, but when my husband fed her, he cleaned her up after every bite because he's such a neat freak:)

What are you putting in my mouth mama?!
The whole process lasted about a half hour (mostly because I was having so much fun watching her reactions), and toward the end she got a little fussy. At one point she even slammed her fist down, as if she was telling me, "Mom, I'M DONE!". We'll try again tomorrow night, and after a week, we're moving onto greens! I can wait to see what kind of poops she makes;) To see more photos of Linna's first "experience with solids", CLICK HERE!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

No linna, you're not a newborn.

Besides a couple "off nights", Baby Linna has been sleeping very well! She's now almost five months old, and for the last few months she's been sleeping 10-13 hour stretches. Lately, her bedtime is between 7:30 - 8:30 p.m., and she'll sleep until 8 or 9 a.m. No middle-of-the-night feedings, sometimes a little squaking, but we haven't had to wake up in the middle of the night to get her out of her crib. Until this morning.

I had yoga, so my husband put Linna down last night at 8 p.m. after she drank about six ounces (this is normal for her). This morning at 5 a.m., I was woken up my Linna squaking in her crib. I went in thinking I would just have to pat her on the butt and she'd go back to bed, but no. Linna was all smiles and wanted to get up! I looked at her cute, happy little face, and thought to myself, "we're not going to make this a habit!".

I got her out of her crib, and brought her into bed with us... something I haven't done since she was a newborn. She sucked down a five ounce bottle (still breast feeding via bottles) and then went back to bed. While she was eating her bottle, Linna and I had a little discussion about the fact that she's not a newborn anymore, and we don't wake up at 5 a.m.! She slept until about 9 a.m.

My first thought is that she's hungry and ready for some "real" food. We're going to do our normal routinue tonight, but if little miss is up again before 7 a.m., I think we're going to start her on solids. We shall see...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Growing up way too fast.

4 months. Animal prints.
Happy 2012 from The Saigh Family!

With the coming of a new year, I'm realizing how fast my little baby is growing up! In just 7 days, I will have a five-month-old. That is unbelievable! I remember when I was pregnant thinking, "time won't fly by like people tell me it will"... and now we're creeping closer and closer to Baby Linna's first birthday. Unreal!

Last week, Linna started blowing spit bubbles, and she's talking ALL the time! I swear she says "mama", "nana" and "nigh nigh nigh", but I know it's just babbling. We put her in her Exersaucer (thanks Grandma and Grandpa Specken), and she just babbles to herself for so long! Linna is such a smiley and happy baby. My favorite times with her is in the morning when she is ALL smiles in her crib, and when she hasn't seen me in a few hours, then I say hi to her and it's like the first time she's seen me in years!

If you would have asked me two months ago when we were going to have another baby, I would have slapped you in the face and said "never". Newborns are tough! But now, I am SO baby crazy! I would LOVE to have another little Linna. However, thinking about it logically (and with my husband's wishes in mind), we're going to wait until Linna is two or three years old before trying for another baby. I don't know if I could deal with two babies in diapers. But if you ask me 90% of the time, I would LOVE to be pregnant with twins right now. I know... I may be crazy:) I'm just loving the phase that Linna is in... and it's amazing how fast a mom forgets how tough it is to have a newborn. Trust me, it will be at least two years before another Baby Saigh is "in the works";)

For now, I will just enjoy all of my friends' pregnancies and babies! Having a new life is such a miracle... and for all of you "trying" to get pregnant... I wish you all the luck in the world!

Happy New Year!!!