Friday, February 27, 2009

We Love Grandpa Mac!

Yesterday Grandpa Mac came to visit us with his friend, Rainie. We named him "Grandpa Mac" because his last name (my maiden name) is McAllister and some of his old friends call him "Mac". I love that nickname! This was his first time to see Gage since we left the hospital. Gage was on his best behavior! He slept for part of the time, holding onto Grandpa's finger, which melted his heart. He did wake up with big smiles which disappeared slightly when the camera came out:

Monday, February 23, 2009

The Bassinet

So the time has come to move Gage out of our bedroom. Last night was his first night away from me, and it was a little sad. As much as those gurgles and grunts and squeaks have kept me awake over the past several weeks, they have also been reassurance that our baby is still breathing! But I am the one who told Craig that it is time. (He says he was ready weeks ago of course!) If Gage's bedroom could only be across the hall...but unfortunately it is directly beneath our bedroom, which is a million miles away! So for now his bassinet is in the living room. I can't wait for him to sleep through the night, and I can't wait for him to be in his crib, but that means he will be sleeping so far away and I can wait for that!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Just when I think I have him figured out...

I love Fridays!! It means that Gage and I will be seeing more of Daddy AND I will get a little more sleep as he helps out with middle-of-the-night feedings! And there is always the possibility of eating out which I love. 8-) It has been very interesting how our little guy changes from day to day. Not just in his looks or size but in his temperament as well. Just when I think I have him figured out he does something different! Eating and sleeping and crying are the latest changing behaviors. I guess that makes sense because he doesn't do much else right now! 8-) Lately he has been hungry every 1 1/2-2 hours rather than 3 so I am wondering if he is going through a growth spurt. He has also been doing his funny breathing/squeaking noises as he is downing his bottle again. It used to not bother him and he would seem to get through it okay, but now I am not sure if he is not getting enough air and if that scares him, because he is starting to cry and not wanting to finish his bottle! I notice that when he calms down and drinks slowly it doesn't happen, but I don't know how to encourage that behavior! (As I am writing this it looks like there might be a correlation between him not finishing his bottles and shorter intervals between them!) It is so hard to watch your baby struggle and not know how to help him...

On a very positive note, Gage has been sleeping in his bassinet for naps for the past 2 days! And not just catnaps but 1 -2 hour naps! He used to wake up as soon as I laid him in it during the day. As I am constantly trying out different things to find what works, I have found that opening the bedroom blinds during the day (I know it sounds crazy when you are encouraging sleep!) and turning on the humidifier seem to do the trick! Also, Gage slept 5 hours straight last night! The first chunk of sleep after his last bottle of the night is always his longest. It has been creeping up from 3 to now 5! We will hope that this continues and soon will be 8.?!

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Craig and I went on our first date without Gage on Friday, Valentine's Eve! My sister took time off work to come and spend some time with Gage so Craig and I could go out. I couldn't have asked for a better babysitter! Craig took me to Aunt Maude's, where we thought we'd be able to get right in due to the wintry weather happening at the time, but everyone must have felt that way because we had a 45 minute wait! We had a nice dinner, but we couldn't help feeling anxious to get home to see Gage and go to sleep - we were exhausted!

The next night, on Valentine's, I would say was the better date... We went to church where we put Gage in the nursery for the first time. I have to admit I had a few tears! Of course Craig thought I was silly, and I did too, but other moms understood! 8-) After the service it was a lot of fun showing Gage off to many people who hadn't seen him yet. We decided to go to Hickory Park for cheeseballs and ice cream but the lobby was so crowded we couldn't even get to the host stand very easily. So we thought we'd spend some time at Border's and go back when it would be less of a wait. At Border's we bought an iced tea and sat in some comfy chairs where Craig fed Gage and I asked Craig "Date Questions" from a book that was nearby. Gage was so good - even flirting with the ladies - and I found some things out about Craig that I never knew before! It was so much fun! Then we went to Hickory Park and had our cheeseballs and ice cream, along with great conversation, and Gage slept the whole time. We love that we can have a fun date with Gage along! (I wonder how long that will last...) When we got home I was undoing Gage from his car seat and when I opened his car seat cover there was a card from my sweetheart! I thought that was pretty sneaky and clever! (My card for him was still in my dresser drawer, so he beat me in the romantic department this time!) I love something he said in my Valentine..."It all started with just you and me..."

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A Month Gone By...

"Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from him." Psalm 127:3

My baby is already a month old - 5 weeks actually! How time flies! It is amazing how days spent mostly feeding, burping, holding and napping can go by so quickly. I had always heard new mothers talk about not having much time for anything else with a new baby at home and I just couldn't believe it! Don't newborns sleep a lot?! Well I have learned that it is so true: there is little time for anything but caring for your baby! These are some of our events from the past month:

I was an emotional wreck for the first week! As much as you are warned to prepare for exhaustion and hormones-gone-wild, there is no preparing for exhaustion and hormones-gone-wild!! You just have to find out for yourself as you live it out. At one point I told Craig, "I promise I will get through a day without crying soon!" And thankfully I did.

Figuring out Gage's most comfortable sleeping position has been a full time job! And we are still working at it! He started out only sleeping in his car seat for the first few weeks. We propped it up in his bassinet and tucked him in all swaddled and cozy. We continued to try to put him in the bassinet, swaddled and in between two "sleep positioner wedges", and found that he liked to sleep on his side like that. About two weeks ago we were thrilled to realize we had "broken" him of the car seat and he was in the bassinet completely, sleeping 3-4 hour intervals! Now we are working on his naps... So far he is a cat-napper who will not sleep in his bassinet during the day!

Gage loves to be held! As most babies do. But I have found that Gage really loves to be held! He will last for about 10-15 minutes at a time (if that) in the bouncy seat, swing, car seat, boppy pillow, etc. until he gets fussy. Besides our arms, it does seem as if the ottoman, where he can move and kick to his heart's content, is his favorite stationary place where he can last the longest! Don't get me wrong, I love holding my baby, but I do have to use the restroom and do some laundry now and then! 8-) (So we bought a Baby Bjorn last weekend and I am hoping it works...)

We have gotten out and about quite a bit! I am so happy that the weather has been cooperative and has allowed us to get out of the house. Gage and I have visited friends, gone shopping, walked at the mall, run errands, been to ISU basketball games and visited Daddy at work in the past month! Gage is such a good little shopper - as long as he's not hungry he sleeps the whole time! (We have had to take a bottle break in Wal-Mart twice now, so maybe that means Mommy spends a little too long there.?!)

That about sums it up! Overall it has been difficult but wonderful! I can't believe it's possible, but I find myself loving Gage more everyday! I feel so privileged to be able to stay at home with him and watch him grow and change daily. He is truly our reward from God!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Grandpa's Beard

Grandpa and Grandma Engelbrecht came to visit us last Sunday through Tuesday. They loved spending time with Gage and we loved having them! Yes, we are learning that we have slipped down a notch in the rankings and Gage is at the top now - but we wouldn't want it any other way. :-)

Gage was on his best behavior, enjoying lots of hugs and kisses and loving arms. We watched the Super Bowl, went out to eat and went shopping with Grandma, and just enjoyed hanging out at home together. Gage was fascinated by Grandpa's beard! All Grandpa had to do was wink and cluck at him and he was all smiles.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Aunt Holly and Cousin Will

When my nephew, Will, was born I truly felt that I came as close as I could to feeling the love for a child that a new parent feels. Now my sister is able to experience the love of an aunt for a nephew, and I know she has a lot of it! We were blessed to have a visit from Aunt Holly and Cousin Will on Saturday. (Unfortunately Uncle Craig couldn't come and we missed him.) Gage was loved on a lot! Aunt Holly had such a calming affect on Gage. He was so content in her arms. Will was excited to be able to hold Gage for the first time (and not have to just see him through a window!). If Gage got a little fussy Will would say, "Cousin, it's okay Cousin, don't cry..." When asked what he's looking forward to teach his little cousin he said, "To crawl."

Monday, February 2, 2009

First Milestone!

We found out the first night home from the hospital that Gage does not like to sleep on his back! So we have found that his car seat carrier has been a good friend! We put the carrier in the bassinet and it helped Gage sleep for a few hours at a time. Eventually we found that if we swaddled him and put him in the sleep wedge on his side in the bassinet he would sleep okay too. Well, last Saturday he had fallen asleep on Craig's chest on the couch. Craig decided to put him down on the ottoman on his back and he actually stayed asleep for over an hour that way! We were so excited - maybe this is the beginning of something good?!