Friday, June 24, 2011

Pine Point

When John and I lived in South Portland, we used to go to the beach all the time. Or at least we went a lot more than we do now that we live in Auburn. And by "the beach" I do not mean the lake, or the pond, but the ocean. Our spot of choice is Pine Point in Scarborough. Forget the crowds and noise of Old Orchard Beach, we like a more family-friendly environment, even from before we had a little Snuggler to think about.

Off we went with Sophia and some friends to the beach on Monday. So great to have John home on a weekday when the crowds have thinned. Sophia loved playing in the sand, and as it has been a year since we have been to the ocean it was so fun to see how much more she can do now! John got in his fix of game playing, from frisbee to hackysack to paddle ball. (Paddle ball got kind of intense, just ask Mr. Keith!) In the meantime, I soaked up the sun (safely, of course, with SPF 30 on board, thanks to Jen) and enjoyed visiting with friends.











Two things I really miss while pregnant . . . running and lying on my stomach. See the pile o' sand next to me? Meagan dug me a belly hole! She even made it the perfect size, neither too big nor too small. That's a true friend.


It was a full day at the beach, perfect weather, great food (my yearly fried dough!), and lots of kiddos running around having a great time. (Our boistrous group scared off the elderly Speedo wearing gentleman and his wife, for which I was grateful!) Can't wait for a repeat sometime soon before Baby Libby #2 arrives!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Pool time and a baby belly

Sophia has a little wading pool that has seen little use this summer due to the strange weather. Almost as soon as we brought it home from K-Mart the coldfront swept in and who needs a wading pool when it is 50 degrees? Please note, I am not complaining . . . while the rest of my household contemplated turning the heat on in June I reveled in a house that was a chilly 58 or 62. Ahhhhh!!! That's just how it is when you are an 8 month pregnant furnace of a person.

At any rate, this week we finally started using the wading pool again. And Sophia very much takes the "wading" part seriously. The only time she sits is when she slips and falls because the bottom is a little slippery. And then there is a quick gasp and an absolute rush to get back up and continue playing while standing. She's a tough cookie though . . . no crying.



(Yes, someone's bathing suit straps need taking up. After I finish the quilt! Or are there are any volunteers?!)




And, as promised in the post title:


35 weeks plus a couple days . . . baby is riding low this time around. Nanny says that means a boy, we'll see. Loves to bounce his/her head off my bladder, fun times! Much better to have a head bouncing on my bladder than stuck up in my ribs, though, so bounce away, kiddo.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Crust, please!

My daughter Sophia is quite possibly the pickiest eater ever in the world. I know, many of you have picky children, and you might think that yours is the pickiest. You are wrong.

When we were at the peak of trying to fatten Sophia up after she got titled "Failure to Thrive" lots of people had excellent suggestions of what to try to help her gain weight.

"Give her scrambled eggs!"

Won't touch them scrambled, or in any other form.

"All kids love avacado, and it's so high in good fats!"

All kids, that is, except for Sophia.


Nope. (Well, now she does . . . a very limited selection, but none back then.)

On and on the list of dislikes went. Fortunately we had three power foods to fall back on that she did like. Peanut butter, oatmeal, and ice cream. A few months ago you could always find Haagen Dazs in our freezer, and it wasn't for John or me. After careful study of the ice cream labels at WalMart, I found that Haagen Dazs had the highest fat content by far. We stuffed Sophia with it after dinner on the days that she didn't eat well, along with spoonfuls of peanut butter.

We've come a long way since then . . . Sophia still doesn't eat eggs or avacado, but she has added chicken, lasagna, and cheese quesadillas to her repertoire, so we do pretty well.

Recently, though, I was finding that instead of eating a whole peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch as she had previously, she would eat half. Or a quarter. Or a bite. And that would be over the course of half an hour or more.


After much experimentation, this is the solution I came up with.

One peanut butter and jelly sandwich, made in full view of Sophia while she is in her high chair. I cut off the crusts, and cut the rest of the sandwich in quarters. (Triangles or squares, she's not picky about the shape. Gotta give me a break somewhere!)

Half the sandwich is put on a plate and given to Sophia, while the other half and the crust remain on the counter, still in full view. I tell Sophia, "When you finish what is on your plate, you can have more!"

She scarfs it down! Five minutes or less, she is ready for more. So I give her another quarter, and again she bolts it down. Last quarter, same deal.

Why so eager all of a sudden? Sophia's motivation is to get to the crust! I've always cut her crusts off as it seemed to maximize her eating the rest of the sandwich, but now she thinks that they are a treat. She starts asking for "Crust, crust" halfway thru the sandwich, but I just tell her that she has to finish the rest of her sandwich first, because "we don't get treats until the sandwich is gone."

Down the hatch!




Just look at the joy on that face while chowing down on her crusts!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Turning, turning, turning

Two years ago at this time, John and I were doing everything we could to turn Baby #1. We knew from 28 weeks on or so that she was butt down. We tried moxibustion, the Webster chiropractic technique, a tilt table, going to the pool to turn somersaults, playing my ipod down low on my belly, an external version, ice packs to the top of my belly . . . I know there was more that I am forgetting . . . it was pretty much my full time job.

And it didn't work. The doctors even tried a final version when I had a spinal on board, but Sophia was a stubborn little peanut, and a C-section was the end of that story.

Fast forward to now. Pregnant with #2 I have been feeling super-paranoid about the potential of having another stubborn breech. Which is silly, really, because just now (34 weeks) and the next couple weeks is when the baby is supposed to settle into it's final head down position.

But I was so excited at 28 weeks when our one ultrasound showed Baby Libby head down. Yay!

And then so bummed when a week later bambino had flipped head up.

And I decided to be proactive in my attempts to get baby to turn head down. No more running, as discussed with my midwife, but what else to try at this point?

Keep in mind that I was only 29 weeks, so silly to even worry about it, but if you had my history you might be paranoid too.

My goal was to get baby to turn soon, and make it permanent, because with a kid running around I just don't have the time to do all that I did last time!

I knew that this kiddo likes to move, especially after I have just eaten. I never felt Sophia move so much, but this one is a regular gymnast. And I knew that the baby can move even better if I am relaxed, so wanted to combine those facts to get the answer.

So here it is, the Libby Method of Turning Babies, completely anecdotal and unproven by scientific study. What is it you ask? Perhaps a combination of the methods used last pregnancy?


Here's what you do (or what I did, and I am not recommending this!). Put kid #1 down for a nap. Then settle yourself in front of the toaster oven with a chopstick, glass of water, and bag of good quality marshmallows. Heat the toaster oven to broil, and toast a marshmallow until golden. Eat. Repeat with another 7 - 11 marshmallows. Drink water as needed so you can keep plugging away with the marshmallows.

When you are thoroughly sugared up and baby is starting to move from sugar buzz, head up to bed with hypnobirthing cd. Listen to half hour relaxation exercise while baby gyrates in your belly.

Repeat another two days, until you are convinced that baby has turned, or you just can't look at another marshmallow.

Then you just pray that your marshmallow binges haven't given you gestational diabetes and that you aren't growing a 13 pound baby now.

Scoff all you will, but Baby Libby was head down at my next appointment, and remains so now.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

34 weeks

Tomorrow I will be 34 weeks pregnant. And for the past week I have been mulling over a question the pediatrician asked at Sophia's last appointment.

"So are you ready for #2?"

To which I sort of nervously laughed and said that "I am trying to finish up projects and is anyone ever ready?" Of course, no matter how nice the pediatrician, I'm pretty sure the correct answer is "yes" . . . but I'm just not quite there yet.

I am frantically trying to finish sewing the baby's quilt, because I know if it is not done before he/she arrives then it will get packed away for a long time, and forget actually being able to use it as a baby. And then of course organizing the basement (again), and making food to have in the freezer, pulling out newborn clothes and finding a place to put them, and painting the cradle. Oh, and ordering all the homebirth supplies, and organizing them in some semblance of order, and perhaps continuing to take care of Sophia, pay the bills, and run the house amidst all that.

And then mentally processing having and taking care of not just one kiddo anymore, but two. I just don't think that you can be "ready" when you don't have the reality of it sitting in front of you.

At this point I am finally at a place where Sophia and I have our routines and know how each other works. Today we had errands, so we walked to the bank and the library, and had such a fun time together. In another two months if we walk to the bank and the library it will be with one kiddo in the Moby wrap, and other in the jogger, and I'll have to be sure to time it right with nursing #2, and naptime for #1, and don't forget the extra diapers for both of them . . .

Seems pretty exhausting to me! Yet people have been surviving and thriving with multiple children since Adam and Eve, so I'm sure we will be no different.

I think as a Type A list-maker, part of the secret to success for me will be to let go of my expectations of what I want to accomplish and be content with just getting thru the day for the first little bit.

And maybe just taking time to enjoy #2, and all of us getting to know each other without worrying about making the perfect dinner, or having just the right seasonal decor, or doing whatever project I just have to get done. Loving on the Snuggler and the Bump, and let's not forget John!

So, for those of you with more than one kid, what is your advice for this pregnant mama? Your "how to survive the first 3 months and enjoy it" tip?

Signing off, as I have a sleeping kiddo and a quilt to finish!

Friday, June 3, 2011


Sophia is turning two in July. That fact has been becoming more and more apparent this week as she has started asserted herself in so many facets of life. Some occasions have been really cute and funny, and others have been maddening, and some have been both at the same time.


We started off the week on Tuesday, John's first day back at work. Monday is his day off, so that still counts as the weekend for the Libby family. After Sophia finished her breakfast she headed into the living room to play and I settled myself at the computer in the dining room to pay bills. Of course, paying bills is far more fun than toys, so as soon as I was sitting down Sophia wanted to come sit on my lap.


She decided that my calculator made a great phone (never mind that she has an actual cell phone to play with . . . John's old one that we cancelled service on), and just had to play with it. That works great until Mama needs to do up the totals in the checkbook, and needs the calculator to actually use.

Usually I give Sophia fair warning that I am going to need something that she has decided is a toy, and she'll give it up without a fight. Not so on Tuesday!

I finally had to take the calculator, and put my now screaming child down to have her temper tantrum on the floor. (We're still at "I can count my kiddo's temper tantrums on one hand" but apparently not for much longer.) Calculating anything was lots of fun then, with little Sophia turned mutant crazy child tearing at my shirt/pants, attempting to climb back on my lap, all with the calculator as her goal.

I finished my work and put the calculator away in the den (not giving it back after all that) . . . meanwhile Sophia was getting over her sob fest. Or I thought she was getting over her sob fest when I picked her up to wipe the snot and tears off her face/hands/clothes.

But no, the crying restarted. And this time didn't stop until my little Snuggler had puked everywhere. Down my shirt (not just on it, no, DOWN the inside of it), all over her cute little dress, on her bedroom carpet (thought she was done . . . nope!), and then the tub and bath mat for good measure.

FYI, oatmeal as a facemask is much different from a whole bowl down your shirt. One is fun and relaxing, the other is most definitely not.

End scene.


And now a cute one.

I was (again) in the dining room on Wednesday while Sophia played in the living room. She was being a very good girl, playing with her teddy bears in their little house. Or at least I thought she was.

Then I realized that I was hearing sounds of exertion coming from the next room. I assumed that it was the post-breakfast poop happening, smell soon to follow. Until I heard several different thumps, followed by joyous exclamations of "I got it!"

I peeked in to see what was going on, and realized that my 22 pound child had just pulled down a huge coffeetable type book. Off a shelf that is over her head, which she can barely reach! Not a small book, at least five or six pounds, and about 20 by 16 inches.

Usually Sophia would come asking for help with something like this, but obviously Mama's help is not so essential these days.

"I got it!"


Obviously Sophia can reach things that I thought she could not. So I was not terribly surprised when I walked into the kitchen and found that she had reached up to the mug tree and grabbed one of the bottom mugs off of it.

I took the mug back, told her she was not allowed to get those down, and that seemed to be the end of the incident.

Until I walked back into the kitchen 20 minutes later and saw that she had taken another mug down . . . and was smirking at me! I know many of you may doubt that sweet little Sophia has it in her to smirk, but trust me on this one.

I said "Sophia, Mommy said no playing with the mugs. Please give it to me." as I headed toward her. My little docile child continued to smirk as she extended her hand toward me . . . and then deliberately threw the mug to the floor.

Can you say "Terrible Twos?!"


We (and by that I mean "I") have been doing lots of extra laundry this week. I think Sophia is trying to get me ready for the newborn laundry that will be starting back up when #2 arrives.

Wednesday we were at a friend's house and Sophia had some trouble settling in for her nap, but yesterday we were home again and as soon as I put her down it was quiet.

I should have known.

I walked back up to get her three hours later and found . . . Naked Sophia!

I had purposely put her pajama pants on, as she was wearing a dress that day and I was concerned that she might pull her diaper off. So, on the floor: dress, pajama pants, and dry diaper. In the crib: naked Sophia, wet sheet, wet quilt, wet crocheted blanket . . . thankfully the four stuffed animals were saved.

Of course, this is coming after I found her in only a diaper Sunday night, crying because she was cold . . . because she had taken off her zippered footie pj's. We've tried a variety of solutions to keep clothes on in the crib since then, and I thought that tights or pj pants was going to work longer than a few days.


I don't know what we will do when it warms back up again, but I'll tell you what worked last night . . . zippered footie pj's on BACKWARD.
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