Friday, February 20, 2015

Violet Eve -- 0-3 months

Now that we've made it through the fourth trimester with Violet, I'm finally feeling like things are settling down a bit and our routine is somewhat predictable (on good days). I'm hoping this will give me a chance to take up a bit of blogging again, but I'm guessing I'll be lucky if just get a post a month done. Life is flying by so quickly and I feel like I have so many things I could write about, but there just simply isn't time in the day to sit down and write. So, I'm hoping I can at least get some monthly updates in and maybe one or two additional posts throughout the month, depending on how things are going.

I never did monthly updates for Tessa, but now I wish I had, so I want to make sure I do them for Violet. I find that I'm constantly trying to remember at what age Tessa did certain things, and where Violet's at in comparison, but other than the things I wrote down in her baby calendar or in blog posts, I just can't remember! So sad. You think you're going to remember all those little things, but unless you write it down, you probably won't. Lesson learned!

Anyway, our first three months with Violet started out easy-peasy, then got hard, and are now somewhat leveling out again. She spent the majority of her first 6-8 weeks literally just sleeping and eating, and was really content and easygoing...she'd sleep anywhere, anytime, only cried when she needed to eat, and was pretty much locked into a 3 hour feeding routine from the day we brought her home from the hospital. But then she started waking up and being more alert, and it's been hard trying to find the balance between her needs and Tessa's and finding a new groove with two, along with getting done all that needs to get done around the house. We're slowly getting there, but it hasn't been easy, and I think it's safe to say that having two kids under two is probably one of the harder things I've ever done. But it's not supposed to be easy all the time, now is it? I'm not complaining, nor do I regret having them so close together, I'm just saying that it's been hard at times. I suspect that adding another child to the family at any time is hard, no matter what the age gap is, since it's a major life change and a huge adjustment for everyone, and that's hard no matter what.

Routine: Like I said, Violet's been great with settling into a routine. She eats every 3 hours, pretty much like clockwork, which makes getting out and doing errands pretty easy. I always know I have exactly 2.5 hours to get out and back home before her next feed, and so far she's had no trouble napping on the go. I suspect that will change as she gets older, but for now, I'm taking full advantage of it when I need to. I try really hard to have both girls sleeping at the same time in the afternoons, and on good days, that happens for about 1-1 1/2 hours right after lunch. I call this my "magic hour". I really need this time to either get something done or to just sit down in the quiet and rest, so on days when it doesn't happen, I really notice and feel like I'm playing catch up the rest of the day. Tessa still naps about 2-3 hours each afternoon (12:30-2:30/3pm), so with the way Violet's naps are right now (12pm & 3pm), it also allows me to have a bit of one on one time with each girl every day, which is important to me too.

Sleeping: We've been doing things a bit differently in this area than we did with Tessa. We've been trying to follow the Babywise principles, so we worked hard to establish her on a feed-wake-sleep routine, have been trying to encourage her to fall asleep on her own, and are working towards lengthening naps and nighttime sleep. She's responded really well for the most part, and by the time she reached 3 months, she was consistently sleeping from 8-10 hours at night. Naps haven't been going quite as smoothly, but we're seeing progress and are hopeful that we'll soon get to where we want to be.

Eating: Violet took to breastfeeding like a pro, which I am so, so thankful for. Tessa and I had a difficult start to breastfeeding, so I was afraid that it would be the same for Violet, and especially with her being a preemie and having started out on bottles. She didn't even get to breastfeed for the first time until she was 3 days old, and started out with only a few minutes at a time, so I definitely worried how the transition to exclusive breastfeeding would be, and if it would happen at all. It was really hard having to pump every 3 hours around the clock for the first several weeks of her life, but thankfully that's in the past, and I'm so happy to say that Violet has had no trouble at all with breastfeeding. We are so fortunate to have a wonderful clinic in our city with two doctors who specialize in breastfeeding, and I was able to get in to see them right away once we brought Violet home. We discovered that Violet has an upper lip tie, but fortunately it hasn't interfered at all with nursing, so we chose to leave it alone. We only needed 3 or 4 appointments there before they discharged us with Violet nursing like a pro and gaining weight beautifully. She continues to nurse well, every three hours during the day, and is growing like a weed. She was in the 6th percentile for weight at birth, and at her 3 month appointment was over the 60th and has gone from a scrawny, skinny little peanut, to a chunky monkey with lots of squishy rolls.

Doing: Like most newborns, she didn't do much of anything her first couple months, so there's really not a whole lot to say. She still sleeps a good part of the day (when she naps well), but when she's awake she likes being around people. She likes watching Tessa play and loves when her dad and I make faces and noises. She has the biggest, sweetest smiles and is such a happy baby. She absolutely loves her baths, and can go from crying and fussing to completely content and all smiles when we put her in the tub. She's not really attached to any toys yet, in fact, she kinda doesn't even care about them at this point, but she'll bat at things on her play mat and can hold on to something when you put it in her hand. She prefers her fingers to anything else, and they are almost constantly in her mouth. I love the way her face lights up when she sees me or her daddy and she always seems to have a little twinkle in her eye. I have a feeling she will be a little mischief maker when she gets older...maybe even more than big sister is!

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