Monday, September 30, 2013

Fall-ing in Love

My favorite time of year is setting in, and we've been going for long walks as a family. Mostly to see the requisite bulldozer or dump truck that Levi constantly asks about :) Theo zig-zags from tilting his head back while I carry him in a wrap and waving his arms around, to completely passing out all snuggled up against me.

If the walk isn't far, Tim will sometimes take Levi out in his "tiny car" wagon. Recently, while out on a walk,
Levi decided rather than ride in his tiny car, he'd like to "surf" on it. He stood up in it and bent over, one hand on the wheel and one hand behind the seat, riding it sideways down the street. Thought it up all by himself :)

I'm constantly amazed by his creativity. The other night he wanted to wash his sheepie, one of his stuffed animals. Logically, he went and got him while we were going to take a tubby and plopped him in the water before we noticed. So sheepie had to spend a night "sleeping" in the tub while he dried off hanging from a hook.

He's fallen a bit in love with the library. Each time we go, I try to grab a few books on one of his recent favorite topics -- cranes or fire trucks or construction vehicles. He surprised me the other day by calling one of his toys an excavator - quite a large word, I thought! We've been stopping by a construction site in Lancaster where they're building a parking garage with a gigantic crane that's right in front of the sidewalk. Levi will stand and watch for hours if we let him, and can talk about the boom
and the hooks and probably other construction terms I don't even know.

He finds himself almost as entertaining as we find him these days. We took a short road trip to Long Island a couple of weekends ago. We took Tim's car, which has a third row that you can fold down into the floor. We stuck Levi's seat back there and stacked some luggage next to him, so he was in his own little cave. He entertained himself for four straight hours on the ride back - singing, telling stories, laughing uproariously at his own jokes. At one point he started shouting "Josh. OOO. Ah!" I don't even think we know anyone who goes by Joshua (unless he picked up on the rare friends reference...anyone?). So sheepie also goes by Joshua, apparently.

We also have been cementing prayers with Levi at bed time and naptime. Rather than follow anything preset (the sun and the moon and the apple trees!) we opted for a traditional beginning of "Dear Jesus" and ending of "keep us healthy and safe," with "thank you for" fill in the blanks in between. On any given night we thank Jesus for jammies,
strawberries, baby Theo, daddy's car, etc. Levi does start every prayer session with "Thank you for trucks!" Sometimes we prompt him with things we know he's done that day (bubbles, books, whatever), but sometimes he fills in the blank himself - with names of his teachers, things about our house or school, or his favorite - cars and trucks. He's been thankful for Lightning McQueen on more than one occasion :)

Enough about the toddler, onto the newborn! Theo is now eight weeks old. His life is rather uneventful, so not a lot to share there. He can hold his head up and swing it around with force, and I'm wondering how I haven't gotten a bruise on my face from that yet. If you see me with a shiner, I promise my weeks-old baby did it. He's incredibly grabby with his hands, and I see now why people get a "mom" haircut (i.e. short short) when they have kids. Conducting a symphony, as my mom says.

Theo has started to smile and gurgle regularly - although still at the strangest things. Or at nothing at all, it seems. I just had him propped next to me facing away, and he starts cooing and I leaned a bit and realized he was smiling. Nobody around, nothing in front of him in his line of vision except a burp cloth and remotes on the couch. Whatever floats your boat, man.

In other news, we finally asked the doctor to give him some meds after he went an hour one night crying and not eating because his acid reflux is so bad - we could hear him constantly making choking sounds and swallowing it back and screaming whenever we tried any position except directly upright. It's one of those things I wish we'd just called the doctor sooner - he had stopped fussing almost entirely except for a few minutes in the evenings, so I didn't feel like much was wrong even though he still was waking himself up regularly and having trouble falling asleep and you could tell he was uncomfortable. But he seemed so much calmer I figured it was all right - boy was I wrong. He now sleeps for incredibly long stretches at night (went almost 8 hours last night, what??) because he can handle laying on his back without waking up grunting and groaning every couple of hours. He's happier during the day, and before he'd be choking back reflux for up to two hours after he ate - now its only a few minutes. All of the above are great, since today was my first day back at work part time. I got through 155 of my 757 emails....progress, I think :)

Levi is actually starting to really want to spend time with Theo - we'll sit and read books together, or he wants Theo to sit next to him or to give him toys to play with. Levi will go over to the bassinet and rock it and sing "rockabye baby" if Theo's fussing. Although he also tells Theo to calm down when he's fussing, and sometimes not so nicely.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Early Days

Life has been moving somehow both quickly and slowly - I've only got two and a half more weeks until I go back to work part-time; yes a lot of the moments during the day seem frozen, whether it's because Levi isn't listening or Theo is doing something cute (or vice versa).

M/W/F, Levi is home with Theo and I all day. In the morning we do chores and Levi plays while I take care of Theo, and then late morning we try to go somewhere like the library, the park, peach picking or just a long walk. Then its naptime for all! and then Daddy comes home and we often go for an evening walk. After Levi goes to bed, Theo generally hits his witching hour from 8 - 10 p.m., so Tim and I take turns calming him down while he fusses and struggles with his tummy troubles.

We're working on pronouncing words correctly with Levi,which has led to him repeating us regularly, down to the exact inflection, without us meaning him too. It's pretty hilarious when someone parrots a random phrase you've just said exactly as you've said it. Levi has also fallen in love with the library, and LOVES to go out and pick out books. Or, help me find books. We've
also done some walking around town - its kind of nice to live in the city where we can walk to the library, the market, and several parks. Not to mention getting to see dump trucks, back hoes, and gigantic cranes from the construction projects downtown, which are always enthralling :)

Theo is both a very calm baby as well as sometimes a very upset baby. He's got tummy troubles, so sometimes if he has painful gas or acid reflux, he turns all red and screams for a few minutes until it passes. But then sometimes he's all upset already and it's hard to calm him back down for another few minutes. The only other thing that seems to upset him is sitting in the car when it's stopped. Downside of driving around the city, unfortunately. He put on a hefty three pounds since coming home from the hospital, and weighed in at 11 lbs. 1 oz. at his one-month checkup. Because of his tummy troubles, I had to significantly change my diet (never even knew I could or should with Levi!) so now I can't eat most veggies, tomatoes, garlic, or spices. Soooo....I've got carbs, meat, fruit, and dessert. Not the worst thing ever :) Theo sleeps well at night, and five weeks in I finally figured out why sometimes he has trouble sleeping in the early hours of the morning - light coming in from the window onto his crib. A big beach towel put an end to that problem permanently, I hope. (He would go back to sleep after eating around 4 or 5 a.m., but
then he'd be grunting and coughing and hiccuping for 45 minutes or so, which seemed to be the only time that happened. He'd usually stay asleep, but keep me up, or sometimes get so squirmy he'd wake himself up, grrr.) He's started to grin occasionally, but always it seems to be at random things - the curtains or when Levi drives a truck by him.