Tuesday, August 18, 2009


We decided a while ago that we wanted Molly weaned by the time I start back to work so that on the days I am working Bill and Molly will have a pleasant day, rather than experiencing a meltdown that lasts most of the afternoon, resulting from Molly's inability to access the breast. Well, we have modified that just slightly to have her, by the time I return to work, only nursing first thing in the morning and right before bed. My first class is a week from tomorrow. We have been having two daytime feedings for a few weeks now (in addition to the morning and bedtime ones), and that has been going fine. Yesterday I denied Zelda the boob all day, except for the morning and bedtime feedings. It did not go so well.

I thought it was all going well until around 2:30 or 3:00. I was really proud of myself for fending her off. She has developed the habit of just pulling up or pulling down my shirt, depending on the day's attire, when she is ready to nurse. It is kind of cute and endearing, and it does not bother me at all because she was obviously communicating her desires. I was able to successfully distract her until the middle of the afternoon. Around this time, I could not calm her down. She was screaming and arching her back and pulling on my shirt and crying and crying and crying and crying. I took her to see our neighbors. I turned on cartoons. I gave her milk from the sippy cup. I gave her a snack. I tried everything (except M&M's, Kim--maybe today I will resort to that. :) ). She would calm down very briefly, but SHE WANTED THE BOOB! Bill got home around 5:45. (Usually he gets home a little after 6, but I called and begged him to come home before 6.) She seemed to calm down a little when he got here and I was able to escape to another room. It seems to be worse if she knows the boobs are in the same room as she is, but she just cannot have them. When she was finally able to nurse right before bed, she was a happy camper. She went to bed exhausted and slept later than usual this morning, until around 6:45.

Hopefully today will be better. She had a teeny little meltdown an hour or so ago, but nothing too big. I distracted her, and now she is napping. I am not quite sure of our schedule for fully weaning her, but I suppose we will probably be on two nursings a day for maybe two weeks, then cut out the morning one. The bedtime one will be the last to go, as is usually the case when weaning.

It will be kind of sad for me to be finished nursing. My whole life has pretty much revolved around it for nearly the past 15 months (well, taking care of Molly in general has been what my life has revolved around). I will not have to pump on my teaching days anymore, and Molly will be able to be away from me for more than a few hours. This was much more intense, obviously, before she started eating solids and drinking milk. My wardrobe can also change now, which is not something you really think about. You have to wear shirts that allow easy access for nursing or pumping, and a nursing bra is a must. These are not too big a deal either, but it's something different. I think about everything I eat and drink because of nursing. Probably not to the extent that some mothers do--I have not denied myself spicy food or caffeine or alcohol (I drink both caffeine and alcohol in moderation)--but I do eat a LOT. And I make an extra effort to eat a lot of fruits and vegetables and to get plenty of calcium. These are all things (except the alcohol) that I did when I was pregnant, of course. Very soon, Molly will be completely independent of me, physically speaking. That is very strange to me. We have been connected physically since November of 2007. Bill calls us ET and Eliott. I know she will still need me emotionally, though.

She's awake--gotta go!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

2 posts in 2 days?????

Molly is napping right now so I thought I'd do a quick post. Molly was coughing a lot last week, so I took her to the doctor toward the end of the week. She apparently has a little lung condition where her lungs seem to overreact to minor irritants, such as viruses, pollutants, and allergens. They tend to produce a lot of extra mucus, and they get inflamed, causing her to cough. The doctor is treating it as a mild form of asthma, but she is not giving the diagnosis of asthma. She has a steroid inhaler that we have to give her twice a day for a few weeks. Then we will take her off of it, and see how she reacts. If she seems better, that's great; if she gets worse again, we will just restart it. She also has another fast-acting inhaler that we give her as needed. She only needed that for a couple of days, except for this morning when she was coughing some. Otherwise, the inhalers seem to be doing their jobs. The doctor said she is a little concerned about the winter, when there are more irritants around. She is not very worried about it for the long run, though, so I'm not either.

I am also trying to increase iron intake for both Molly and me. Her one-year blood work indicated her iron was low, and I think my iron level is also low (I have diagnosed myself, based on some internet research. :) ) Today we picked up a cast iron skillet so we will start using that to see if it makes a difference, in addition to eating lots of iron-rich foods.

This morning we went to the farmers market, and we saw a lot of our friends, who all have little babies. Molly got to give some hugs to her buddies. In a few minutes we are leaving for a picnic with some friends from my mommas group.

As for the tomatoes, I have decided to make a fermented salsa and some tomato sauce to make eggplant parmesan (we also got a big eggplant from yesterday's farm delivery). Those will both make good use of my extra onions and the peppers I also got yesterday.

Friday, August 14, 2009

14 months!

Wow! It has been so long since I posted. Molly is an extremely energetic baby, and she really needs constant supervision. By the time she goes to bed, I am ready to just kick back and relax. She is still not napping in her crib. We have tried really hard, but it is not working. She will sleep in her crib all night, but she will only nap in the car, stroller, or the carrier. She is napping on me right now. I guess we will try again in a few weeks. She just will scream and scream in her crib during the day. Maybe it has something to do with the light? I don't know. Anyway, we will try again soon.

Otherwise, everything is really great! Molly is having so much fun. She is almost walking by herself. She can walk pretty far holding one hand. She can also take a few steps by herself. I know it is going to be so crazy when she does start walking, and then running.

We are going swimming this afternoon. I've been trying to find outings for us every day. We have mommas group on Tuesdays, we usually go to story time at the library on Wednesdays, and we go swimming on Fridays. In between, we have play dates at the swings or other outings. this week was busy, but it's difficult to think of things to do all the time. I am a little anxious about wintertime when we will not be able to go outside as often. Right now, though, Molly is pretty happy to just be outside. I think things would be a little easier if Molly actually napped in her bed because I could get some stuff done around the house, or I could just sit down and relax for a little while. But...as my mother-in-law said, if this is the worst thing I've got to worry about, we're doing really well. SO TRUE!

Molly is turning into quite the comedienne. She loves to make faces and crack her parents (and herself) up. She really is a funny girl. She has started imitating us. This morning, I was turning my head away from her, and then turning it back toward her quickly and making a face. She started doing the same thing! It was hilarious. She will also play peekaboo with us, covering her face with her hand.

I start back to work a week from Wednesday. I will be back to teaching one day a week, and Bill will resume his weekly Wednesday duties. I'm looking forward to it, though I know it is going to be really hectic and busy. We are heading to Texas next week to see Bill's sister and her husband, and our month-old nephew, Alexander. It will be really sweet to see Molly and her cousin together. She has been hugging other kids, so I hope she gets to give the little guy a hug.

What else has been going on? Hmmm...I've been making a lot of food, like yogurt and bread. I'm getting into fermenting a little bit. The bread was the most challenging, other than the first time I made sauerkraut, but it turned out pretty good after I figured out what I was doing. My friend, Abby, who also is Molly's godmother, is a really good break maker, so she gave me the inspiration to make it. The first loaf tasted okay, but it was about as dense as, um, what was it as dense as? I don't know, but it was really dense. I think I didn't let the starter ferment long enough the first time.

We started to get our farm delivery again because it seems a little cheaper than going to the farmers market for everything. The downside, though, is that we end up with tons of things that pose a challenge to full consumption. Last week, for example, we got about five onions. We ate two in the week, but that was kind of pushing it. What can I do with the onions? Any ideas? I am thinking either French onion soup or...wait for it....fermenting the onions! Onion pickles anyone? Sounds pretty good (in moderation, of course). This week I got a bunch of tomatoes. Normally I love tomatoes, but I am running out of things to do. I'm thinking tomato pie or just a big vat of (possibly fermented) salsa.

This post is getting pretty long and rambling so I will sign off. I hope to update more frequently. I am going to try my best to get back in the habit of posting more often!!!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

cute picture

I am so tired right now that I want to just veg out on the couch, but here is a cute picture of Molly drinking through a straw for the first time. We were having tacos at 5PM (that's why no one else is in the restaurant), and Molly was having a drink of horchata. This was taken by Bill and posted on his Twitter page.

MZ drinking horchata through a straw. on Twitpic

Monday, June 8, 2009

Happy Birthdays!

Today is my birthday, and tomorrow is Molly’s birthday so this post is guaranteed to be a little sappy. I cannot believe that I have been a mother for 364 days. My life has been turned upside down and made so sweet.

Here is a recap of Molly’s and my birthdays last year: One year ago today I was supposed to be on modified bed rest because of preterm labor and a three-day stint in the hospital three weeks earlier. I was feeling pretty good, though, and it was my birthday, so I decided I was fine to spend the day out with Bill. We went to lunch and walked around a bookstore. I was feeling contractions all day, as I had been for the past two months or so, so I just mostly ignored them. I would sit down when they got stronger, but I mostly paid them no mind. We went out to dinner, and I went to the bathroom to wash my hands after a delicious Ethiopian meal (which you eat with no utensils so your hands get pretty messy). I had a bit of fluid, but I did not think it was too big of a deal. I waited until after we paid the bill and were out the door to mention it to Bill. Because of my issues a few weeks prior, he drove the car toward the hospital, despite my protestations, as I called the doctor on call. I thought there was no way there was anything wrong. We were only about a half mile from the hospital so we were there before the doctor even called us back. She said it sounded as though my water had broken, and we should get to the hospital. We were already there, thanks to Bill, and we went on up to get admitted, even though I knew this was all a big fuss over nothing. They admitted me, but they told me I might be in the hospital a couple of weeks. I could not leave because my water had broken, but they wanted to try to keep the baby in as long as they could. I slept fine that night (well, as well as one can sleep in a hospital bed, with lots of IV lines coming out of me, and a fetal heart monitor strapped around my belly). I woke up the next day, and Bill said he wanted to go get a new camera. Most of you know the story from here. Bill was gone about 2 hours, while my friend, Kristen, came to visit. Bill got back, and about 45 minutes later Molly was here.

The nurse checked my dilation, and said, “You’re having the baby.” She made some urgent phone calls, and within a few minutes the room was a flurry of doctors and nurses, both obstetric and neonatal. The sweet Southern doctor, who we had just met that morning because my doctor was stuck in traffic, convinced the nurses to let me “hold” the baby. When Molly came out after two little pushes, the wonderful nurse held Molly up to me and let me put both hands on her for two seconds, and then my baby was whisked away from me so her life could be saved. She was put in a turkey bag for warmth and given oxygen because her little lungs couldn’t support her yet. I wouldn’t get to see her again for a couple of hours. Bill followed the NICU team up to the neonatal floor while I delivered the placenta.

The day was a whirlwind of emotions: terror, joy, grief over not being able to hold or nurse my baby. The next five weeks were mostly hell, but there were a lot of sweet moments in there, too. Molly is so healthy and happy now!

The past year has been wonderful. I never realized how complete motherhood would make me feel, as I’m sure most of you mothers (and fathers, of course) out there know.

Okay, my sappy time is over. It’s my birthday! I went to see Up in 3D. It was so amazing and sweet! There were a lot of parenting themes in it that made me cry a little (because I was already feeling a little emotional today anyway, and because I am a huge sap). Bill, Molly, and I went to have sushi for dinner (Molly even ate some of the cooked fish, tofu, and edamame). Now I am going to have a glass of wine and some of Molly’s leftover birthday cake, and hang out with Bill.

I'll try to post more tomorrow and talk about our visit with Kelly and James and Molly's birthday party. Here are some pictures from Molly's birthday party.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

So, it's been a while since I last posted. I got really SICK about three weeks ago, and I was sick for almost two solid weeks. Not since 7th grade when I had chicken pox (yeah, I got it a littler later than average) have I been sick for so long. Then Molly got sick for a week or so. It was really hard to be sick and try to take care of Molly. Bill was great, of course, but it was the end of the semester for him, and he had a really big project he was working on around the clock to try to finish. This was a time I definitely missed being near family. It would have been so helpful to have a grandparent or auntie come and help out, or at least to provide some moral support. I felt terrible, and Molly was in a really bad mood, and it was starting to really wear on us. She was so fussy and clingy. Of course she was, right? She's a little baby, and she needed her momma. It is all fine now, though. Molly and I are well. Bill is a little sick now--he's going to the doctor to try to see what he can do for his aching sinuses--but at least now I can take care of Molly, and he can mostly take care of himself.

In other news, Molly has napped in her crib for a few days in a row. Yesterday she slept for two hours! She has been asleep now for about 45 minutes. In that time, I straightened the kitchen and living room, put a load of laundry in, folded another load, and straightened out some things with one of my students. Now, I am hoping to finish this post before Molly wakes up. Wow! Motherhood makes one rather efficient, yes? :) Oh! She is crying now, but I am going to wait a little bit to see if she will go back to sleep.

We had a nice Memorial Day weekend. We went to a couple of bbq's, and on Saturday we went to a Cal baseball game. It was SO COLD! We were wearing hats, scarves, sweatshirts, and jackets. We still left early because the game was going really long, and it was so cold.

In two weeks from today, Little Zelda will be a year old. Isn't that just unbelievable?

Okay, I don't think she's going to go back to sleep. I better go get her. I'll post again soon!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

so much!

I cannot believe it has been so long since I last posted! We have been really busy with travel, and Molly has been really busy being a maniac. Three weekends ago we visited some friends in Santa Barbara. We had a wonderful weekend tasting beer, eating, and kayaking. We drove home on Highway 1, right along the coast. There was a heat wave throughout California that weekend, and we discovered on our way out of Oakland that our car's air conditioner was BROKEN! It was not really too bad driving south, but by the end of the weekend, the temperatures were in the high 90's. Poor Molly was roasting in the back seat. On the way down, I put some sunscreen on Molly. She rubbed her hand across it before I got it all rubbed in, and she smeared some in her hair. Because we had to ride for six hours in the car with the windows rolled down, it was as if she put some gel in her hair and then took the hair dryer to it. It was outrageous, all spiked up.

Two weekends ago we went to Louisville for the Derby mini marathon. Bill ran it (in just over 2 hours), and I walked it (in just over 3.5 hours). Molly stayed with her grandparents through the race, cheering us on at two different points along the route. It was another sunny, extremely hot day. Some in our family who ran the race (we had a crew of about 10 people from our family, including in-laws and in-laws of in-laws) had some problems, but everyone has recovered now. Grandma Lola did not want to be responsible for any Molly sunburns so she went a little overboard with the sunscreen. Molly does not have too much hair so she just rubbed a bunch in Molly's hair. It was pretty gross, but she did NOT get a sunburn!

Last weekend we took Molly to a babysitter for three hours, and we went to the annual Derby party in San Francisco. Molly stayed with one of the mommas from my mommas group. She did really well! They said she was happy the whole time and played contentedly with her little friend, the said momma's son.

Molly has been crawling all over the place! She has been unstoppable for a few days now, considering no obstacle too great to her travel. She can pull herself up with no problem, too. It is not unusual to set her on the ground in the kitchen and turn around a few seconds later to see her crawling toward the cat food in the hallway. She is all over the place.

She was fussy earlier this week, and I remembered from a few months ago when she was about to cut some teeth. She pretty much only wanted me, and she mostly quit eating solid foods, wanting only to nurse. This is what she was doing earlier this week. Sure enough, Bill checked her mouth out, and she had her first molar. So now she is up to 7 teeth! In the last few days she has been a little better, but last night she did not sleep well at all. She was up at 11:30, 12:30, 3:30, and 5:30. She eventually went back to sleep, but she has been sleeping really well through the night lately, not waking up at all between 8:30 and 6:30. She woke up today with a really snotty nose so I guess she was not feeling well overnight. She seems to be in a great mood today, even if she is pretty snotty.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Sleeping, part 3

Molly went to bed last night at 8:30 almost immediately, and she slept until 7 this morning!!! She woke up twice, but she put herself back to sleep in under a minute both times so we did not have to go in to comfort her. Bill and I were in bed before 11 so we got a good night's sleep too. Whew! I hope this keeps up. We are going to Santa Barbara this weekend so we'll see how it goes.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

sleeping, part 2

Tonight, Molly Zelda fell asleep in less than one minute!!!! She cried, but it was for a very short time, and now she is asleep. I hope it lasts!


It has been way too long since I posted! For the past two nights, we have been working on Molly's sleeping. Back in November she was sleeping through the night really regularly. Since then, however, she has not been sleeping well. With Christmas travel, teething, and illness, we did not really think there was too much we could do about it. A week or so ago, I kind of started to reach a breaking point. I was constantly way too tired, and it was starting to affect my mood. (Those of you who know me well know that, at least before Molly was born, I really needed a lot of sleep. Since she has been born, I have been surprised at how little I can get by on, but the cumulative effect was starting to catch up with me.) Anyway, I talked to one of the other mommas in my group because she mentioned in passing that her daughter sleeps through the night, but it was a bit of a struggle to get her there. I remembered her saying this, and it made me realize that there is in fact something that we can actively do, rather than just passively wait for this phase to pass (most kindergartners sleep through the night, so I figured it would eventually pass, right?). She gave me a book by Richard Ferber, which has helped tremendously. He explained in the book what we were doing wrong. Letting Molly fall asleep on me, and then sneaking her into bed resulted in Molly's being startled when she awoke in the middle of the night because things were not as they were when she went to sleep. That is, she fell asleep cozy in her momma's arms, but she woke up alone in her crib. Understandably, that would result in some anxiety and difficulty getting back to sleep. So we have tried putting her down in her crib while she is still awake, and then letting her cry in increasing intervals until she falls asleep. I let her cry for three minutes on Monday night before I went in to reassure her that she was safe and that I was close by. Then I let her cry for five minutes and went in again. I was going to wait 7 minutes to go in again, but she fell asleep after five minutes. Dr. Ferber recommends that parents do this same thing when the baby wakes up in the middle of the night--no nursing as I have been doing. She only woke up once Monday night, and I only had to go in to comfort her two times, as I did when she went down for the night. Last night, we did the same thing, but instead of starting at three minutes, we started at five minutes. After five minutes, Bill went in to comfort her briefly, and then came out. Again, we were going to wait seven minutes, but she was asleep after about five minutes. The same thing was repeated around 1AM when she woke up, and Bill only had to go in one time to comfort her before she fell asleep again. Around 4AM she woke up again, but she got herself back to sleep, and we did not have to go in at all. Hopefully, the progress will continue, and she will be sleeping well through the night very soon. One interesting thing is that Molly Zelda has been sleeping on her belly now, for the first time. She gets on all fours as she is crying/whining, and she just kind of ends up on her belly. She seems to just prefer sleeping that way now.

We had a nice Easter. It was pretty low-key, but the best part of all was that I got to talk to Kelly for a little while. Yay! I miss her. She sounds good, though. We had dinner with our neighbors, which was delicious and fun as always.

Oh! and Molly has been saying mamamama and papapapa and bapa a lot. It's really cute. She says mamama when she is crying, and she will also reach for me a little bit so I am convinced that she knows what she's saying. Am I crazy? Maybe, but it makes me happy to think that she is calling for me. :)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

It seems like it has been a while since I last gave an update about what Molly has been doing. She has started to put Cheerios in her mouth by herself, which is pretty cute. Sometimes she misses her mouth altogether. Yesterday she finally started rolling from her back to her belly, which is pretty significant. I wasn't sure she was ever going to do that. She also really wants to stand all the time. She likes to hold on to something and support herself. She is becoming kind of mobile as she sits on her butt, scooting around the floor. She's starting doing this thing where she just shakes her head like a maniac, as though she's saying no, no, no, no, no, no. It's really funny. If Bill or I imitate her, she will pause, and then do it some more. Hmm...I think that's about it.

Last Friday, we went to the pool as we have been doing the last few Fridays. There was some problem with the chlorine level or something, so we all had to just wait around for a long time in our bathing suits (we ended up never actually getting in the pool). I was standing there with three other parents and babies, and by the end of the time, all the parents had pee on them. The babies just wear swim diapers, which are intended to catch poop only. So now we know that four out of four babies pee in the pool within the hour allotted to baby swim time. We are all swimming around in lots of baby pee, so I guess I'm glad for the chlorine in the pool. :)

Yesterday, our very good friend had a baby so Bill, Molly, and I all went to visit the little guy and momma. He was born at the same hospital Molly was so we decided to go visit our friends in the NICU. We have been talking about doing that for a really long time. I wanted to see the nurses and show Molly off, but I guess I have had a bit of an aversion to going back there. It was actually a little anxiety-provoking for me to walk in the hospital and go up the elevator to the delivery ward, which was on the same floor as the NICU. I know, it's a little dramatic, but that was the worst five weeks of my life. Anyway, the short visit ended up being very, very nice. We got to see two of our primary nurses. Needless to say, they were thrilled with Molly's huge-ness. She was in a really good mood so she was smiling and laughing as they both held her. As we were leaving, Bill exclaimed that we should have taken pictures with the nurses. We had our camera, but we just didn't think about it. Too bad.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Lola

Happy Birthday Lola
Originally uploaded by billstron
Another cute birthday picture!

Happy Birthday, Lola

Happy Birthday Lola
Originally uploaded by billstron
Happy birthday, Mom!
We love you. We hope you had a wonderful day!!!!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Grandpa, again

Happy Birthday Grandpa
Originally uploaded by billstron
Here is another cute birthday picture.

Also, a side note: I must be really sleep deprived because when I was making this sign, I spelled 'grandpa' incorrectly THREE times. Yup. This sign was my fourth attempt. I was at our neighbors' place because they have so many art supplies (particularly for two grown ups). Amelia offered to write it for me in pencil and let me color it in.

Happy Birthday Grandpa

Happy Birthday Grandpa
Originally uploaded by billstron
Happy Birthday, Dad!!!
We wish we could be there to have a beer or two with you. (You know how Molly likes to chew on the top of beer bottles!)

We love you!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

More Teeth

Molly Zelda now has SIX teeth! Yesterday we noticed two more coming in on the top. She is looking so big and old! She has not been quite as polite the last two days while she nurses (i.e., she has bitten me a few times), but I just immediately pull her off and tell her no. She is getting better at not doing it. She is just such a sweetie, and she still really loves her milk. Molly has also been pulling herself up in her crib from a seated position--she still cannot get herself up from lying down so we do not yet have to worry about her climbing out of the crib. She LOVES standing up in her crib, and she will just stand there and laugh and laugh. It is so novel to her that she can stand there on her own.

Last week Molly and I went home to Louisville for a few nights. We got to see a whole lot of family because of Mom's retirement party, but the main reason we went home was to see Aunt Kelly before she deployed to Afghanistan, which she did this past Sunday (on her 30th birthday, no less). We had a very wonderful visit, but it was extra sad to leave.

Bill, Molly, and I will be going back to Louisville at the end of April for the mini marathon. It will be my third plane trip with Molly and Bill's first. It will be very nice to have some extra help on the plane. On the trip over Christmas, we did not really have any trouble at all. Kelly flew here to fly to Louisville with me, but I flew back by myself. Molly did really well on that trip. This trip, she was fine, but she is a lot more alert and curious now than she was a couple months ago. She liked to grab everything and touch the woman sitting next to me. It is actually quite interesting how in everyday life Molly is a people magnet (who doesn't like a cute baby?), but on a plane she magically becomes a people repellent. Fortunately, there were still a few people who did not mind sitting near us, and I was able to let some of our new plane-friends hold her so I could use the bathroom on that flight. Molly was actually quite charming on the flights, singing and squealing a lot. On the way back to Oakland, at the Chicago airport (luckily I only had to change the diaper once on the plane, and I did it right in the seat, and it was only pee), Molly peed all over her changing pad and her clothes. I had changed her diaper and turned around to throw the dirty diaper away. when I turned back and was starting to put her pants back on, I felt that everything was wet! She had turned herself just slightly so that she peed all over herself, and the pee actually ran under my changing pad. I ended up just throwing that away, thinking it would be a huge mess to clean up and try to put back in my bag.

Molly and I have been going to our weekly momma's group and to our swim "class." It is nice to have regular social engagements.

We have been trying to set a bedtime routine lately. We eat dinner, I give Molly a bath, Bill reads her a story, and then I nurse her and put her to bed. Bill comes in to give her a kiss right before I put her in her crib. It is really nice, and it keeps us on track to eat dinner at a decent time. Before Molly was born, it was not unusual to eat dinner at 9PM. That does not work so well with a baby.

Tonight Bill and I made a bunch of applesauce and canned it. It tastes really good, but I hope the canning process worked. If it does, we will probably buy a lot more apples at the farmers market and make more in the next week or two.

Needless to say, Kelly is pretty much constantly in my thoughts. I have the most amazing little sister!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Sick Baby

This is a quick post because I am really tired and about to go to bed. Molly has been a little bit sick since Friday. We took her to the doctor on Friday because she had a fever. Her fever went up and down over the weekend, but she seemed to mostly feel pretty well. This morning she broke out in a strange rash so I took her back to the doctor this morning. Our pediatrician (who we absolutely love!) did not seem too worried about it. She did not really think it was a reaction to the penicillin Molly has been taking since Friday. She thinks it is probably a virus, the same one causing the fever. She prescribed the penicillin just in case the virus caused a bacterial infection. Basically, she was just being cautious. Anyway, the rash seemed to get a little worse tonight, after office hours, so I called the advice nurse on call. She said we should give Molly a lukewarm bath to relieve the itching, stop the penicillin (just in case it is a reaction to it), and go back to the doctor tomorrow. I will call her first thing in the morning and try to get Molly in some time tomorrow. She seems mostly to be feeling pretty well, but Bill and I think the rash on her back is uncomfortable for her, causing her to be a little fussy. I'll update tomorrow hopefully!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

trip to the museum

Today Molly and I went to the deYoung Museum of Fine Art in San Francisco. The first Tuesday of the month is free so I figured it would be a great outing. When I found out about this monthly event, it was the first week of February, but after Tuesday. So...I have been looking forward to this outing for almost a month. I was actually considering not taking Molly today because she has been unusually fussy the last couple of days. I decided to go, figuring the worst that would happen would be that I would be out the gas it took me to get there. If Molly got fussy, we could come home. At least she would get a nap in the car. Well, we ended up staying for three hours! It was pretty much a perfect day. (I even got a great parking spot in the garage, right by the entrance, so I did not have to even go out in the rain, and I could leave my jacket in the car.)

There was a very cool Andy Warhol exhibit that I wanted to see. Molly really enjoyed the exhibit, too. There was so much color and light that really mesmerized her. She just looked around at everything. After about an hour and a half, I started to walk quickly through the rest of the exhibits because I figured Molly would be ready to leave soon. As we were walking through another exhibit, she just fell asleep so I just took my time and walked around for a while longer. I just felt so peaceful and happy to have the time to bond with my baby. She was very pleasant all day. She did not even 'sing,' as she has been doing lately, practicing her most newly found pastime. This usually entails her saying something like, "babababa," and then gradually increasing her volume to a happy yell. She is so thrilled with her ability to make loud noise, but it can be kind of distracting in a public place (not to mention at dinner in our apartment).

Monday, March 2, 2009

Another Tooth, Standing

Molly officially has teeth (as opposed to a single tooth)now! The second one broke the surface. The first one is becoming more visible when she opens her mouth.

Molly has been trying to pull herself up, too. Her favorite new trick is to lean over to the railing in her crib when we put her in it in a sitting position, chew on the railing for a little while, and then try to pull herself up. See pictures below.

She also is getting pretty good at standing with only minimal help from us. She does still need to lean on something, though.

She seems to be on a bit of a hunger strike; she mostly just wants to nurse. I'm not sure what that's all about. Does anyone have an idea? I am attributing it to teething and assuming she will start eating again soon. I will probably call the doctor in a day or two if she does not start eating again soon. I love nursing, too, so it does not bother me. She seems to feel great so it's probably no big deal. Maybe she just wants to make sure she looks good in her bathing suit.

Molly is also starting to move from a sitting position to all fours. I know she will be mobile soon, but right now she just usually turns over onto her back. Then she is stuck, like a turtle.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

funny parenting moment

Bill and I have been pretty sad the last few days about losing our ol' hound, but something pretty funny happened that I wanted to share. Many who know my husband know that he is an extremely heavy sleeper. When Molly cries in the middle of the night, I usually wake up right away, but Bill takes a little longer to wake up, if he does at all. Last night Molly started crying in the middle of the night, and Bill, ever the sweet, sweet Poppa, reached over, grabbed the monitor, and put it on his chest. I was not really sure what he was doing until he started trying to shush and comfort the monitor, saying, "It's okay, baby. It's okay."

Monday, February 23, 2009

Goodbye, old friend

We had to put our old hound dog down this morning. It was unbelievably sad for us, but we know it was the right decision. I won't go into too much detail about it here; you can check out Bill's blog. Daisy started to feel a little sickly last week, but she still seemed fairly chipper, greeting us at the door, etc. Then a few days ago, she just really went downhill. She did not want to go outside anymore, and she completely stopped eating--she did not even eat the gourmet meal of chicken and rice that Bill made for her. We took her to the vet on Saturday. She seemed bad then, but then last night, she really took a turn for the worse. She barely got up at all--Bill had to carry her outside to pee. Then she started vomiting. There were a few drops of blood in it initially, and then it gradually turned into just puddles of blood. It was so sad. Bill and I took turns staying up with her last night. She never closed her eyes. It was almost as though she knew if she closed her eyes, she would die. This morning we took her to the vet, and she went very peacefully. Bill and I were both touching her as she died--the life just seemed to drift calmly out of her.

She was a crazy mutt, but we loved her so much. She was with Bill and me for 10 years, and she was such a part of the family. She was just starting to get to be friends with Molly, too.

Saturday, February 21, 2009


We went to the pool yesterday for swimming. It was super fun! It mainly consisted of singing songs and splashing the water. You can't see how extremely cute Molly's swim diaper is, but it has little whales on it, and there is a ruffle on the butt. We went with a couple other mommas from the group I have been getting together with every Friday. We will probably go back fairly regularly. Did you notice how big my muscles are getting from carrying around that heavy baby? :)

Thursday, February 19, 2009


Tuesday morning I was changing Molly's diaper, and I casually asked her if she got any teeth, as we do every morning. To my surprise, there was a tiny little tooth sticking out. It's just the very top of a tooth, but it is most certainly there. AND...she slept all the way through the night Monday night and Tuesday night. Wednesday night she just woke up one time. She has also been actually napping the last couple of days. Bill's trick of getting her to nap is working really well.

On Monday I read an article about feeding babies meat, so I decided this week would be the week we would try meat. I think that did it. She decided, finally! I will let that tooth pop out. We gave her her first taste of animal flesh yesterday, a very gourmet meal consisting of boiled chicken, pureed with carrots and olive oil. Yum! Sort of. The idea of pureed chicken is kind of gross, but Bill was a huge fan of the meal, and I thought he might start doing the dad thing (well, what my dad always did and still does) and eat the rest of Molly's food. He resisted, though. She still prefers vegetables, but I think she will come around to it. Tonight I am going to make chicken soup for dinner, and we will all three eat the same meal, for the very first time. Molly's will of course be pureed.

Monday, February 16, 2009

We have had a good couple of weeks, but Molly has not been sleeping very well through the night lately. I am not really sure what is going on, but we think maybe the last couple of nights trees brushing against the windows, which has been caused by the heavy rain and wind we have had, have woken her up. Usually, she just wakes up one time, and every once in a while she will sleep all night. The last few nights, though, she has woken up multiple times. She seems to feel fine during the day, though. She is not really sleepy acting. Bill has developed an ingenious trick for getting Molly to nap, too. He rocks her to sleep and then puts her in her crib slowly, keeping his chest against her the whole time, until she is lying in her crib. Then he gently lifts himself up. He showed me how to do it, and today she slept for an hour. Brilliant!

MZ is still eating like a champ. Yesterday she ate an entire avocado! That was in addition to other food. I think we will probably introduce some meat this week, which has a lot of fat and other nutrients (e.g., IRON) that is important for muscle and brain development. Today she ate egg yolks with butter and vegetable broth.

Molly has been really cute with Daisy. She smiles and reaches out for Daisy when she walks by. That good little 'ol hound we have isn't crazy about the extra attention, but she tolerates it and lets Molly touch her ears and head. We trying to make sure she is gentle with Daisy because Molly likes to grab and pull, rather than pat softly.

Molly has been responding a lot in the way of giggles to different 'cheers' and songs. For example, we have been giving her cheerios, so I started saying "Give me an 'O!'" Of course, the response is "O!!!" "What's that spell?" "O!!!" Okay, I do all the call and response, but it kind of cracks Molly up. She also was really liking the Chinese New Year greeting, "Gung Hay Fat Choy!" For some reason, that really tickles her, too. She has started laughing so hard a few times that her eyes watered. Once, she was sitting in her crib and started laughing so hard she fell over. It was hilarious! Bill also likes to play a fun little game called zero G baby. He kind of throws her a little in the air, as though she were not subject to gravity, and sings a special little song that goes something like this: "ZERO G Ba-BEEEE!!" It really cracks her up.

Let's see, what else? She likes to get her mouth wiped off after meals if you pat her face gently and playfully with the washcloth and make any kind of silly noise. That usually gets a lot of giggles while she tries to gum the washcloth. Bill's beard is getting pretty substantial, and the bushier it gets, the more Molly loves it. It really tickles her when Bill kisses her bare belly.

We went to the Chinese New Year parade last weekend, which was extremely cool. I haven't been to a parade in a long time, and I don't remember ever having gone to a night parade. It is touted as the biggest Chinese New Year celebration outside of Asia. There were a lot of lights and floats and lion dancers for Molly to look at. She slept through a lot of it, but she definitely had a great time watching the parade and the people who were watching the parade. There were a lot of really loud firecrackers, but they did not seem to bother her.

Things with Bill and me are going well. I am working all day on Wednesdays. Molly seems to be doing better with not nursing on those days. As I mentioned earlier, she is definitely eating much more solid food so that makes it much easier for her to get through the day without nursing.

Still no teeth, but we check every morning, first thing.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

It's been a while since I posted. I right now have only a few minutes while I am waiting for a student so this might be a little choppy. Things get hectic, and it is difficult to sit down and write. Anyway, we have had a wonderful week! Molly slept through the night once, and the other nights she usually only got up one time. I came into her room to feed her, and she went back to sleep. She has accumulated quite a repertoire of foods she has eaten: carrots, sweet potatoes, lentils, spinach, broccoli, butternut squash, refried beans, beets, bananas, papaya, vegetable broth, avocado, and split pea soup. Not bad, huh? She likes pretty much everything. In the mornings she will eat a little bit, but at lunch and dinner she usually eats a bit more. I usually mix rice cereal (for the iron and other vitamins it is fortified with) and broth or milk in with her food. Two nights ago I made split pea soup for dinner, and I thought we'd see if Molly liked it. I scooped a little out before we ate so that it would cool. She LOVED it. I wish I'd gotten a little more out for her.

We have also recently discovered two new favorite activities: swinging at the park, and reading magazines. Well, it kind of looks like she is just tearing and eating magazines, but we can call it "reading." :)

She has become rather infatuated with faces. She really likes to touch my and Bill's faces. She particularly loves Bill's beard. Molly has also become rather attached to Daisy. Daisy is a good 'ol hound, and she tolerates the lovin' from Molly.

Molly has sort of regressed in her napping. She was taking good naps in the morning and afternoon (even if they were a little short). This week she has really not wanted to nap, fussing and crying for a while. She will fall asleep in the car or in the stroller on a run.

Okay, I did not get it finished. Now it is Thursday, 5:30 PM, and Molly is finally napping in her crib! We went to lunch today, and Molly had a bit of hummus, and she also sucked on a pickle (that's my girl!!). Aunt Kelly will be quite proud, too, that MZ is a fan of pickles. We also gave her a little plain yogurt this morning, which she kind of liked. Maybe with a little fruit mixed in she'll like it better.

Molly's new favorite book is Dr. Seuss's ABC: An Amazing Alphabet Book! (I love that this kids' book has both a subtitle and an exlamation point.) For Z, it says, "Big Z, little z, what begins with Z? A Zizzer-Zazzer-Zuzz, as you can plainly see!" Well, naturally, we have nicknamed Molly Zizzer-Zazzer-Zelda.

We go back in a week for another Synagis shot. I think we have February, March, and April still on those horrible shots. Okay, they are not horrible if they prevent Molly's getting RSV, but they really hurt! We will see how much our little chubster weighs.

She is growing lots of hair. We had dinner with our neighbors last night, and A.P. swore that she grew hair between the time we arrived and the time we left. Oh, and no teeth yet.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Hectic Week

It has been a bit of a crazy week! Molly has been really fussy all week, and she has not wanted to nap or sleep at night. However....right now it is 6:30AM, and she is still asleep. I, on the other hand, cannot sleep anymore so I decided to get up and take advantage of the little bit of quiet before Molly wakes up. I hope I can make it all the way through this post. :) I suppose she is teething. We've been saying that for months now, but this seems to be the worst she has felt. I know that the fussiness is exacerbated by the lack of sleep so hopefully she will feel better today. I have been just getting up with her and trying to rock her back to sleep, instead of bringing her to our bed and feeding her every time she wakes up. It is more difficult for me, but I don't want to get her or us in the habit of just bringing her to our bed to sleep. I usually fall asleep while feeding her because I just put her down between us. Sometimes I wake up and take her back to bed, and sometimes she just stays there for a while. She usually wakes up a half hour or so later, so maybe she just does want to eat. Regardless, hopefully we are back on path for her to sleep most nights through, and we will not need to worry about this much more.

We got Molly a booster seat on Monday so she has been able to sit at the table with us to eat her meals. It has worked out beautifully. She really enjoys sitting in it and watching us. She can entertain herself a bit by just looking around at us, at Daisy, and at other things in the room. She is really loving her veggies. She has eaten broccoli potatoes. She really likes broccoli, and she is rather indifferent to the potatoes (but she still ate quite a bit of them). We also gave her lentils again, and now she digs them. Next up: beets. I still have a lot of frozen food from before I left for Louisville, but I am almost out so I need to make some more batches of food, the first of which will be beets. They're high in iron and very pretty. Hopefully with a little butter she will like them and not get herself stained. I might take off her shirt to feed her, just in case.

We rearranged our apartment this week so now Molly pretty much, but not quite, has her own room. We moved the office things out to the living room so that Molly has room to play in her room, and we can rock with her in the chair in her room.

The weather her, until Wednesday, has been beautiful, with temperatures in the 70s. We went to the Berkeley marina on Monday and enjoyed a picnic, looking out over the Bay. Molly had a great time sitting and lying on the blanket in the sun. You all know me--I did a good job keeping the sun from hitting her directly.

Wednesday is my first day back to teaching, so Bill will be with Molly by himself longer than he ever has been. We both are a little nervous about how Molly will do going so many hours without nursing. She will have plenty of food and milk to drink from the bottle, but she really is comforted by nursing, and it usually helps her to sleep. We have been trying to give her at least two bottles a day to get her used to it, and she is getting much better at taking her milk that way.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Happy New Year!

It's been a while since I last posted so it will be difficult to remember everything that has happened. First, though, I would like to say that I am rather happy to be back to California, where the temperature today reached 77. I really, really miss Louisville already, but I heard that there were record cold temperatures today. I was wearing a t-shirt and no jacket today. Okay, enough about the weather.

Molly and I spent four weeks in Louisville. It was supposed to be three weeks and 6 days, but my flight from Chicago to Oakland was canceled due to inclement weather so I stayed in Louisville an extra night. While we were in Kentucky, Molly started turning over from her belly to her back, and she started to sit up for very long stretches. Her sleeping worsened, though. Before we left, she was mostly sleeping through the night, but she slept through the night only once while we were in KY, and she usually woke up multiple times through the night. About halfway through the visit, I theorized that she may be uncomfortable in the Pack n Play so I started to put her in the bed with Bill and me. It seemed to work. I guess she was getting too heavy to sleep comfortably with such a small pad.

I had to take a break, but I'm back now. We had a wonderful time in Louisville, and we got to see lots of extended family, most of whom met Molly for the first time.

Molly has been recently introduced to a number of new foods including papaya (liked it for two days, but not so much after that) and broccoli (LOVES it, but it is kind of dry so she probably needs a drink in the middle of a feeding). We are working our way up to three meals per day, but she just still loves to nurse so much that we are usually having one or two feedings per day of fruit or vegetable. The pediatrician says that is fine--she is getting plenty of nutrition from the breastmilk, and the milk should be her main source of nutrition now anyway. We don't want to cause any stress; we want eating to be pleasurable for Molly, and if we force it too much she may resist it more. She is clearly gaining weight (weighing in at 21 pounds on Thursday) so we can take our time.

When we got back to CA on Tuesday, we put Molly in her crib for the night. It was the first night I had not slept in the same room with Molly since she came home from the hospital. It went well. She woke up a couple of times for the first few nights, but Thursday night she just woke up one time, and last night she slept until about 5:40, which I consider sleeping through the night because Bill and I got more than 6 hours of sleep. She is sleeping right now, and I am hopeful that she will sleep well again tonight!