I’m FINALLY done with the annual reports. I’ll stop here because it’s just werk werk werk werk talk. Suffice to say: YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!!!!!!!!!!111!!!!!

When we last left off, I was worried about my sweet dumpling. He ended up being fine, just one of those kid things I suppose. He had an elevated temperature (though not technically a fever) Monday morning. We gave him some Motrin and Luffy administered a lunch dose, and he was fine by the end of the day. No clue what happened. [Insert shoulder shrug emoji]

In other news, I, uh, have no news. It’s been a hectic week. But I realized that I left a cliff hanger open on the last post and I couldn’t have that!



It’s 6:45pm here. On any other day, we’d be starting the dumpling’s bedtime routine right now. Filling his bath, getting his room ready for nighttime. But not today. Today, as I was cooking an early dinner, I realized he felt warm. Too warm. Fever-ish warm. Sure enough, he was running just a hair under 101. My biggest concern with that is that just five and a half hours earlier, he’d had a dose of Motrin (he’s finally cutting those molars through, lol). He shouldn’t be running a fever and, more importantly, had a little dose of teething-related Motrin masked a fever all afternoon?

So we did what we could: dosed him with more Motrin; tried a cool bath, though that didn’t go over at all; and put him to bed. He fell asleep almost instantly, even though it was over an hour earlier than his usual bedtime. And now we wait. I’ve got both my sound and video monitor here, trying to keep an eye on him. I plan to take his temperature before heading to bed myself and briefly contemplated setting an alarm for the wee hours of tomorrow morning in order to give him another dose of Motrin (until I realized that would mean that I couldn’t take an accurate temperature reading in the morning).

And now we wait.

When you become a parent, new worries seem to crop up over night. When he’s brand new, you worry about breaking him – dropping your precious, but oh-so-tiny newborn. You worry about SIDS and your little one suffocating during the night. Then he grows a little bit and you worry about choking as he learns how to eat. Then he starts crawling and you worry about choking hazards around the house as he crawls, yet again, towards a random button you’ve never seen before. Then more worries come along with walking and then running and then jumping. But almost as quickly as the fear appears, it subsides. He gets a little bigger, a little stronger, a little more coordinated and suddenly you’re not as worried that he’ll fall as he runs in the park. This worry though, this fear for your sick baby, is always present.

Not only do I worry about the possibility of another febrile seizure, I’m also just plain concerned that he’s getting sick. Nothing pains me more than having a sick dumpling, mainly because there’s usually not much I can do for him besides keeping him dosed up on Motrin. And it’s not like you can talk sense into a toddler (you try telling him that he should really rest instead of run around the house in a fever-fueled frenzy). And and! It’s totally my fault. I’ve been telling everyone that the dumpling has been fine through mine and Luffy’s never-ending illnesses. I totally jinxed him. That and we shared a spoon today when we got fro-yo. All my fault.

And so, there’s nothing to do for now but wait and see. We’ll know more tomorrow.


We’re alive!

Blurgh – those were a rough few days, but I think we’ve turned the corner (frantically knocks on wood).

Luffy ended up going to urgent care at like 7am last Friday morning because he needed help with that cough. He lost his voice, he coughed so much. They gave him a steroid shot and a stronger cough medicine. He’s still coughing, but I think it’s less? So yay?

I cried uncle Monday morning. My allergies gave way to a sinus infection, which left me with excruciating sinus pain all weekend (even WITH sudafed). The last straw was pink eye. I woke up Sunday morning with some crust in my eye, but groggily wiped it all away without really inspecting the damage. Monday morning though, I couldn’t even open my eye so off to the doctor I went. Sinus infection – check. Upper respiratory infection – check. Bacterial pink eye – check. Lots of medication. Twas fun. Especially because this antibiotic gets the medal for being the first ever to make me vomit. Yay!! (It’s one of those that’s supposed to be taken on an empty stomach except that I can’t handle that and need to take it with a few crackers.)

So now that we’re all on the mend, I have a few important updates to get to:

I bought the dumpling a play kitchen and it truly might be the cutest thing I have in my entire house (except the dumpling himself, obviously).

We had an old gift card to Toys R Us lying around and I realized that we should use it pretty quickly if we wanted to use it at all. I’d been eyeing a few play kitchens recently, wondering if the dumpling was old enough to enjoy them now, so I decided it was time. With gift card in hand, I purchased a cute set on Saturday night and was astounded to see it on my porch on Tuesday. I put it together immediately because I have no cool, though I did at least have the presence of mind not to show it to the dumpling until he actually had some time to play with it (our nights are pretty busy between our evening walks and his extended dinner time). This morning he got up early enough to have some time to play with it after breakfast and I’m pretty sure he loved it. He was excited to find all of the little hidey-holes and things-that-open and things-that-make-noise.

In more adorable news, the dumpling has started taking a stuffed animal with him to bed. It all started Sunday night; in a typical act of toddler stalling, the dumpling was requesting item after item from the bathroom counter. In trying to appease him (and stave off the meltdown), Luffy handed him the humidifier cap. The dumpling then refused to let go of it while we were dressing him and getting him ready for the night. So much so that we couldn’t get it away from him when we put him into his crib. What’s the harm, we thought and figured we’d sneak in to get it after he fell asleep. We watched on the monitor as he fell asleep, holding the cap with both hands. It was precious.

The next night, Luffy gave him a stuffed dog to take with him and the dumpling was delighted with the new cribmate. Plus, watching your toddler cuddle with a stuffed animal is about THE most precious thing you will ever witness.

One last item, just for me. Yesterday I wore my very smallest pre-pregnancy work slacks for the first time. Go me!

Spring has sprung

…and it’s kicking our asses.

Luffy has had a cough since we caught that virus at the concert. It keeps getting a little better worse better worse definitely worse.

The dumpling’s been congested for a solid week or so now. Poor baby alternates between a nose that’s completely blocked or running like a faucet.

And me? Well I’ve been better, thanks.

Back in January, after I woke up to huge, puffy eyes again, I finally made an appointment with an allergist. (I don’t want to search through the archives right now, but in case I haven’t mentioned it, the puffy eye thing has actually been a recurring issue since that first time. It varies in severity, but it’s happened a dozen times or so.) Now, I don’t mean to brag or anything, but my skin panel was impressive – even to the allergist! I had a positive result for literally every single thing they poked me with*. Even worse news, I had severe reactions to at least one plant, though often multiple, in every season. So that means whether it’s spring, summer, or fall, if something is actively growing I can pretty much guarantee that I will be suffering from allergies.

Now, the allergist was quick to recommend allergy shots with “results like mine.” We looked into it and while it’s something that I might ultimately do, we’ve decided to hold off for now. They’re just so expensive, on the hope that they work well for you. Luffy pointed out that the severe reactions started shortly after I stopped eating kimchi like clockwork. If you do any research into fermented veggies, many people tout their usefulness in helping allergies. I rolled my eyes hard when I read that, mostly because you frequently come across sites that get a tad bit … carried away in their benefits list. Gastric problems! Allergies! Skin issues! Headaches! Cold/flu! Aging! Cancer! World hunger! World peace! THE LIST GOES ON!!!! Ahem. However, when Luffy made the connection, it did give me pause and I wondered if it might be more than just hippy-dippy nonsense. So I’m picking the kimchi habit back up.

Anyway, all of that to explain that these past two weeks have looked like this:

Tree pollen: VERY HIGH
Grass pollen: MODERATE

And so, you see, I have been better. I hope pollen isn’t wreaking havoc for you.

*The skin panel is done on your back, so you can’t see the results (obviously). As I was laying there, I remember the doctor only calling out a negative for one test spot. After I got home, I was eager to see the one thing I was actually NOT allergic to. It was the control. I laughed so hard at that. Officially allergic to ALL THE THINGS.

Life Data, pt 2

I’ve been a little obsessed with the last post. Oddly enough, this milestone seems monumental in ways that others have not. I keep opening the app, fiddling with the screens, looking at when the last updates were made to different modules. For instance, I last recorded a nursing session on October 31st, at 6:44am. It lasted just four minutes; he would fully wean himself just a few days later. My last recorded pumping session was October 9th at 8:28pm (which tells me I must have taught class, otherwise I’d never have pumped in the evening). I didn’t even update the session to include how many ounces I produced. Little bits and pieces of the dumpling’s data, there for me to review. As I was meandering through, I realized that I could export the data and my accountant-self got real happy. Without further ado, I present to you some numbers from the dumpling’s first 16 months of life:

– All total, we spent 23,765 minutes breastfeeding in twelve months. That’s a little over 396 hours or 16.5 DAYS.
– Our longest session was recorded was on February 4, 2017 at 57 minutes and I can tell that must have been an AWESOME day because the third longest session (at 41 minutes) is also from that day. Other than these two, most of the longest sessions were from the very early days (November and December 2016) and many of them occurred in the wee hours of the morning.
– The duration of each session generally shortens over time, with the 30+ minute sessions concentrated in his early weeks of life and the <5 minute sessions coming at the end as he grew out of nursing. There are a few exceptions though – for instance, a 28 minute session on the morning of October 7th, 2017 – that I hope I cherished as I got to spend an unexpected few extra minutes snuggling.

– All total, I spent 11,146 minutes pumping in eleven months. That’s 186 hours hooked up to a machine that I begrudgingly accepted.
– In those 186 hours, I produced 1,754 ounces of milk. That’s just under 55 quarts of milk or 14 gallons!
– To put those ounces produced into a bit more perspective though, the most I ever produced in one session was 9oz. The average pumping session yielded just 3.25oz and lasted 20 minutes.

Other fun highlights:
– In his first month of life, we changed 335 diapers.
– The longest recorded sleep was on January 13, 2017. He went to sleep at 7:15 Friday night and woke up at 8:30 the next morning. That was after his second full day at daycare. It also happened to be the day I decided I couldn’t take him back to that place.
– The dumpling has slept 12 hours or longer overnight just twenty times in his life. He averages about 9.5-10.5 hours right now.
– Our app has a note taking feature and I made some adorable notes about when he lost his umbilical stump (11/9/16), when he had his first real bath (11/12/16), and when he moved up to Size 1 diapers (12/11/16).
– As of his 15mo check-up, he’s gained just over 13lbs and grown 11.4in. 

And I’ll leave it on that note, as those are the only numbers that really matter, in the end.


Life’s Data

A week into the dumpling’s life, I downloaded one of those tracking apps for babies. If you are not a parent, you might not know these exist, but there are dozens of apps to help you track everything from nursing sessions to baths to sleep.

In the early days, the app was a life sanity saver. We’d show up to the pediatrician’s office for well baby visits and they would want to know how many wet diapers he’d had in the past 24 hours (answer without app: more than one, fewer than a fifty?? answer with app: seven) or how long he was nursing for on each side (answer without app: hmmm, awhile? answer with app: usually 8-12 minutes). The app was a fantastic reminder that the baby needs to eat again even though it totally feels like I just fed the baby. When he took multiple naps a day and we were firmly beholden to his max wake times, the app again proved invaluable in making sure we helped the dumpling get the sleep he needed. In other words, the app took much of the burden of keeping up with the dumpling’s ever changing schedule of needs, giving me the freedom to remember things like when was the last time I took a shower. Ah, the joys of motherhood.

So, for the past 16 months I have tracked the minute details of the dumpling’s life. Nursing. Then bottles. Then solid food. Naps, catnaps and crap naps and holy-crap-he’s-still-sleeping naps. Nighttime sleep, or lack thereof. Wet diapers, dirty diapers. Pumping sessions, both length and output. Everything that made up his day. Then, slowly, I started dropping one thing or another. I stopped entering his meals when he stopped nursing, for instance. I no longer needed to see how quickly my stash of breastmilk was being depleted, so entering his bottles (“6oz – formula”) felt unnecessary. And though our particular app does allow you to track solid food, trying to quantify how much food he was eating (“3.5oz – veggies”), seemed ridiculous, so I stopped. I was more than happy to stop tracking my pumping sessions – FAIR WELL PUMP! Around this time, I also stopped entering wet diapers. He was old enough that wet diaper output was no longer critically analyzed, thus there was no need to track that information. And so, piece by piece, I stopped recording his day until all that was left was sleep.

For the past week or so, I’ve found myself entering multiple days’ worth of sleep all at once. Trying to recall when, exactly, he went to sleep yesterday or woke up two days ago. All of a sudden, it hit me that I’m to that place again, where it no longer feels necessary to enter “Sleep – 7:25pm – 6:00am” each day. So I’ve stopped.

Why am I telling you about this, you might wonder. I’ll remove the links and widgets from my phone and will not make a note about when, exactly, the dumpling falls asleep tonight. Big deal.

Except it is, to me. My baby isn’t a baby any more. He’s growing so fast and so big. It no longer matters if he’s been awake for 60 minutes versus 70. It no longer means anything if he eats a little or a lot. The only concern I have about the state of his diaper is if it’s actively leaking and/or ridiculously full. And so, just another sunrise, sunsetthat’s all.

Blog Reruns

I got all charged up to talk about my hunt for a new bra and had this moment of deja vu when I sat down at the computer. Oh right… I’ve already talked about this.

I talked then about how my “real” band size is a 28 or 30. I don’t have any bras in my “real” size. All of my current bras are from VS because I know exactly what size will (mostly) fit me there. However, I’ve spent the last two weeks trying to purchase my “real” size through an online store. I’ve purchased two separate bras and had zero luck so far. The first was just laughably big, by every measure, because I had a moment of amnesia and blissfully forgot about the whole “real” size issue. The second bra I’m less sure about. To be fair, I probably chose poorly, in trying to buy my first “real” sized bra because this particular style was flagged as running shallow in the cup. Order a up a cup size! the site told me, so I did. And it doesn’t really fit. My boobs still seem squished in the center. I ordered another cup size up (which, for anyone keeping track, is now two cup sizes above what I really am), but I had the thought that maybe it’s just the design of the bra.

I hate that I’m paying $7/bra to try these things on (essentially, as that’s the cost to return the bra). I’ll probably try going into an actual store later on, if this third round of bras yields nothing. Or, you know, I could just forget the whole endeavor for a while and try again in another couple of years. Stay tuned!

Speaking of boobs (nice segue self!) how was your Valentine’s Day? Ours was nice. I decided on Monday to make a nice dinner for Luffy and myself. Nothing fancy, just something with a tad more effort that a typical Wednesday night dinner. I decided to do big, thick steaks and my favorite mac and cheese. We shared my good champagne and I made Luffy’s favorite mini cheesecakes. It was a really nice night if we don’t speak of the overstimulated, sugar-blitzed toddler I wrestled and wrangled from the time I picked him up to the moment I tossed him (lovingly) into bed. Poor kiddo was just plumb tuckered out from his first Valentine’s Day party.