Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Taylor 2 1/2 Year Update

Oh where to begin? I can't believe that our baby girl is already 2 1/2 years old! It's true what they say about your first born looking so much older once you bring another baby home. Taylor seems to have aged an entire year in the four weeks since Logan was born. She is smart, sassy, funny, and loving, and Jake and I couldn't be more proud of the little lady she is turning into.

Although she is a tomboy at heart, she loves to play dress up and will spend hours trying on every piece of clothing she owns and accessorizing each outfit with a pile of necklaces and either her rain boots or a pair of plastic high heels. Her new favorite is a teal dress with a tulle skirt that I bought for her to wear for Easter, and she has insisted on wearing it every day since. Each morning, I get her dressed, fix her hair, and brush her teeth and within minutes she's bouncing around the corner wearing that dress. I have a feeling this won't be ending any time soon, but I've learned that some battles just aren't worth fighting.

Our girl is such a smart cookie! She loves to practice her counting on anything and everything, from her brother's fingers to the blueberries on her dinner plate. She points out letters no matter where we are followed by whatever word she associates that letter with ("P" is for "Papa," "B" is for "brother," and (her favorite) "T" is for "Taylor!"). Her vocabulary has tripled within the last couple of months due to her repeating everything she hears and inquiring about everything she sees. I answer the question, "What this, Mommy? What this?" approximately 900 times a day. It definitely gets annoying, but I will gladly feed her curiosity if she will learn something from it. And trust me, she always picks up something.

Most recently, we have been teaching Taylor to say her full name and, in doing so, she has learned that Jake and I have names other than "Mommy" and "Daddy." She will call us by our first names and then laugh hysterically afterward, almost as if it's some kind of joke. The first time that she called me "Jamie" I immediately prompted her to say it 10 more times, because hearing her sweet little voice say my name may be my favorite sound in the entire world. I cannot emphasize enough how much I love this little girl.

Taylor has really embraced the role of big sister. I was worried that she may be jealous of the lack of attention, but overall she has been very patient whenever I have to stop playing with her to tend to Logan. I try very hard to include her in everything involving him, from having her bring me wipes/diapers/pacifiers to letting her pat him on the back after I've fed him. She loves to lay on the floor by him and occasionally asks to feed him his bottle. Mostly, she just likes to kiss him on the forehead and give him check ups with her Doc McStuffins kit (which she is obsessed with). She is as sweet and loving as ever, constantly telling us, "I love you verrrry much!"

We love you just as much, my sweet girl!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Life with Logan

Well, we've survived our first (and almost second) week as a family of four. Life with two kids is equally amazing and exhausting. Logan currently has his days and nights mixed up and is going through his first growth spurt which means that I am running on little to no sleep these days. Thankfully, Taylor is still going to daycare during the day (since we pay whether she goes or not), so our days are pretty laid back, meaning I'm able to keep up with the cooking, cleaning, and laundry while Logan naps between feedings. But when 5:00 rolls around and Jake and the tot come bounding through the door it's a whole new ball game. Dividing my attention between the two of them is difficult, especially since I am still on restriction and unable to pick up the tot. But regardless of any struggles or difficulties we encounter, nothing compares to the abundance of love that currently exists within our home. We are so very blessed to be able to call these beautiful children our own.

Other than the day/night confusion, Logan has been a rock star baby. He has taken to breastfeeding so well and has already put on all of the weight he lost while in the hospital. He loves to be held and will snuggle into the side of my neck and drape his arms over my shoulder, which is quite possibly my favorite thing ever. And while he enjoys snuggling with me, he would rather be curled up on his daddy's chest than anywhere else. They are two of a kind. 

Logan currently sleeps in our room in a rock-n-play which he absolutely loves, and we love it because it takes up approximately one-third of the footprint that our pack-n-play did (which is what we used with Taylor). He has yet to develop any solid routine which means he is up at all times during the night, but occasionally he'll go a solid three or four hours giving both of us some much-need sleep. I'm sure things will start to level out over the next week or two, and I'm trying my hardest to embrace each and every moment with him rather than wishing it away for more sleep. But let's be honest, when you're running on two hours of sleep, sometimes that's hard to do.

Like most newborns, his wake periods are typically short-lived, but when he is awake he makes some of the best faces (like that perfect Blue Steel look below)! He is such a happy baby, smiling often and even giggling on occassion. I have been trying to capture these moments on video whenever possible, because I know this time is fleeting and he'll be crawling before we know it.

As for big sis, she is still all about her little brother and loves to help out whenever possible. She is beginning to understand that Logan requires a lot of momma's time, which means she has been spending a lot of one-on-one time with daddy. Jake has been amazing over the last few weeks, and has tried his hardest to master ponytails and piggy painting during my absence. I have made a conscious effort to keep things as normal as possible for her despite my restrictions.  We still snuggle in bed each morning and play when she gets home from daycare in the evening. My favorite time of the day is just before bedtime when the kids are freshly bathed and we're all snuggled up on the couch. With Logan nuzzled under my neck and the tot curled up under my arm, it is without a doubt the most rewarding part of my day. 

Life with small children is hard and adding a new baby to the mix is never easy. Most days, I'm lacking in patience and living on cold coffee, but these three are my world and I cannot imagine a better life than this.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Introducing Logan Thomas Eldredge

It brings me great excitement to introduce the newest member of our family, Logan Thomas Eldredge. Logan made his grand entrance into the world on Thursday, March 3, 2016 at 7:47 AM, weighing 7 lbs 12.5 oz and measuring 20" long. He is the sweetest, cuddliest baby ever and we couldn't possibly love him more!

After much debate and a lack of overall progress, we decided to go ahead with our scheduled C section on March 3rd. We arrived at the hospital at 5:30 AM where I was admitted, monitored, and pumped full of saline. I walked into the OR at 7:28 AM and Logan was born less than 20 minutes later at 7:47 AM. The procedure was almost identical to when I had Taylor, and once the epidural was administered everything happened so quickly! I remember Jake coming in dressed in a bunny suit, and the next thing I knew Logan was crying and being placed on my chest. Shortly after, he and Jake were whisked away to the newborn nursery while the doctors finished closing me up. Due to scar tissue from my previous C section, my doctor decided to put a wound vac over my incision and, aside from having to tote the clutch-size vac around at all times, it has been a huge help in the healing process. Thankfully, I only have to wear it for 7 days so we'll be parting ways later this week.

As soon as surgery was finished, I was taken back to my Labor & Delivery room to recover while Logan remained in the nursery. This part of the day is all pretty blurry due to the vast amount of pain meds and exhaustion from not sleeping the night before. Later that afternoon, we were moved to a nice, quiet room on the Post Partum unit. I was worried that recovery would be much worse this time around, but with the help of the wound vac, an excellent nursing staff, and knowing what to expect ahead of time, recovery has actually been much easier. I learned from my experience with Taylor that it's important to take pain medications as scheduled instead of as needed, take advantage of the nursery at night, and just how important it is to recover in the hospital rather than at home. When Taylor was born, we were so insistent on keeping her with us at all times that neither of us slept the entire time during our stay, whereas Logan spent every night in the nursery so that we could both get some sleep. Since he is breastfed, they still brought him to our room every 2-3 hours to nurse, but we were able to rest between feedings without waking every time he made a peep. With Taylor, we only stayed two nights and left on the third day; however, with Logan we decided to stay the recommended three nights and left late in the afternoon on the fourth day. It's amazing how much you learn from the first child to the next, and I'm already starting to feel like myself again.

As for Taylor, she is absolutely loving her little brother! She has embraced the role of big sister from day one, and I'm so sad that I don't have her initial reaction to meeting Logan on video - it was priceless! She is constantly asking to "hold it" and is sure to tell us when he is "pying" (crying). She's quick to let everyone know that he is her brother, and she tells him at least 20 times a day that she loves him. We have tried to include her in everything baby-related from having her throw away diapers to giving him his binky to rubbing his feet while he's nursing. So far, she has handled the adjustment remarkably well and has made this whole transition much easier than we ever could've expected.

Overall, life right now is pretty spectacular. Bringing home a new baby always has its ups and downs and acclimating to a new schedule is hard on everyone, but I think we are handling it quite well. Logan is such a good baby. He has taken to nursing exceptionally well, has unbelievably healthy bowels, only cries when he is hungry, and loves to snuggle. He is the perfect addition to our family, and we already can't imagine life without him. Jake and I are so blessed to have such beautiful, healthy children, and I thank the Lord every day for allowing me to be their momma.