Gone Coastal

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Here are a few pics for you visual types. Some would have gone with the last post if I'd been that coordinated, and some are just cuz (do I really need an excuse with a big gorgeous 4 week old boy?) One thing I missed in my last post was that Shannon will tell me I look great. Without qualification. Now I know that I faired pretty well through my pregnancy and even now I look decent for less than a month after delivery. But reality is I'm less than four weeks post partum, and it's nice to hear just "You look great" without the "for x weeks/months pregnant/postpartum." I realized this weekend at my mom's that it's probably a good thing we're rather short on proper mirrors in this house. Yeesh! Rest assured the pics here will include no belly shots. Just enjoy these.

This is our friend Amanda, working on the tile around the tub.

This is the picture Jack took of Tweetie and Sylvester. I should say, though, that Sylvester's hair is growing fast and yesterday I noticed little sideburns coming in, so he might just become Elvis.

This one was taken awhile ago on my lap. Okay, only a week ago, but that's a long time in his life!

This picture of contentment was taken shortly after he finished his last feed Sunday night at my mom's.

And just because we still have critters, and they're still cute, too...

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Takin' it easy

One of the big jokes in my mind as I look back on the early days with baby one was how often a list of 'shoulds' and 'ought tos' for the new mother was wrapped up with a 'and get lots of rest,' or 'take care of yourself.' Or how that well-intentioned advice came on its own, with no suggestions or offer of help to make that elusive goal more attainable.
Well, this time around has been different, marvellously. Of course, it helps when you're not a total greenhorn and you don't panic and lose sleep over every little thing. But even more so, it helps to have some good friends around you. And I have several, and it's been so much easier to take it easy, thanks to them.
The first of these here in town is right down the street. Shannon, who looks after Tweetie during the week, is only seven houses away. Whatever time I manage to get things together and wander down the block (and with T, I do mean wander), she's there. And she practically dares me to show up in my pyjamas or housecoat if that would make life easier. Sometimes just knowing that I could is nice. (And yes, in the ten months she's been watching T, there've been a few times I've arrived wearing my pyjama pants or the t-shirt I slept in.) Since I've been on leave, I've probably averaged at least an hour hanging out there in the mornings. Since Eli was born, it's often been a case of keeping him occupied in the sling until I can get T ready and out the door, so he gets fed at daycare. We're cutting back to twice a week at daycare soon, so I'll miss that, but I have an open invitation to visit.
The second also comes through the daycare connection. Amanda, one of the other moms there, has been another blessing. For a good part of the year, she's kept T in high fashion, as she worked at a local community center and would scope out the surplus donations for Tweetie-wear on a regular basis. She also gave me enough baby boy clothes to keep Eli pretty much covered for the first year! She's also working on becoming a registered doula, and as Eli's arrival loomed larger (look back at those last pregnant pictures to see just how large) she offered to attend the birth, and over the last few weeks before and after checked in on me and kept tabs on how things were going. Vince was glad again to have some backup at the delivery and someone to keep him calm, though he once more did an awesome job as my coach. And as an extra special post partum treat, Amanda stepped up, when Vince had to head out of town again, to tackle the tile in the bathroom so I could get back to having baths (almost there ... but that's another post).
And last, but never least, on the first Saturday that Vince was away, our good friends Jack and Jem, who had reason to be down at the coast, hopped the ferry to come over and bless me (read: spoil me rotten). And I, being a second-time mom and therefore able to fully appreciate such things, let them. They came over in their truck and stopped en route for lunch materials. Made lunch when they got here, cleared my kitchen table (a significant feat in itself) for us to eat at. Brought me drinks on the couch as I fed Eli. Put away the clean dishes in the dishwasher, and loaded everything up from lunch. Washed the frying pans in the sink. Wrapped up the leftovers. Brought gifts for T and Eli. And picked up take out and shared dinner with me before heading back to the mainland. A wonderful first day 'alone' with both kids. And made Sunday, which was a little hairy with T, much more bearable. Now I just need them to send me a copy of that pic they took with T beside Eli in his bucket seat.

Friday, June 06, 2008

May I present...

It's taken a bit, but I finally have some pictures I can put up of our little man. He's had a pretty good first week, and by all indications so far, he's gonna be a sweetheart like his big sister. He gives me a bit of a longer stretch at night, all on his own, feeds well, good color.
He had his first check up with the doc yesterday, and in her words, he's perfect. At least medically speaking. Of course, I think he's pretty close to perfect all around. He's stirring a bit in his little laundry bassinet, so I'll throw up some pics here and get on to him.

The weigh-in

All checked out

Hello, there

Mmmm...that's good stuff

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


I'm sitting on my bed with a cup of tea behind me (the cookies are gone), my laptop on my knees, and a gorgeous new little man sleeping off a good milk buzz at my side. I'm exhausted, but life is good. There are many things on my heart to share, but I don't know how far I'll get, so I'll start with the basics.

At 8:48 pm on Friday, May 30, after a fast and furious labour, our long awaited son, Eliakim Hunter, was born. He measured up a healthy 57 cm long, with a hat size of 36.5 cm (that's 22.4 inches and 14.4 inches for the imperialists). And he weighed in at ... wait for it ... 5224 grams or eleven and a half pounds! A few of you may have heard the early report of 11 lbs 3 oz, which was either misheard or miscalculated in the chaos of the delivery room, but when I double-checked the conversion this morning, the three turned out to be eight.
There was lots of extra attention in the delivery room, as I had just that morning been in for an ultrasound and the technician had estimated the size from the measurements there at 12 lbs 3 oz - the largest he'd ever seen. (Apparently we left before they could do the non-stress test. They seemed short on staff and the tech said that was it - I claim it was the shock of that prognosis that sent us running.) There are some extra risks with such big babies, so they had the obstetrician in attendance and an extra nurse or two. I wasn't paying much attention to such things (somewhat otherwise engaged) but I imagine there may have been a few extra bodies hovering nearby as I'd been the buzz of the hospital all day.
In the end it all went as well as could possibly be expected. A bare two and a half hours from the start of regular, serious contractions (during which I went to Thrifty's for milk and alfredo sauce - silly woman). That's the part where most moms in the readership declare their hatred for me. But then it was a good four and a half hours after delivery, parts of which were nearly as brutal as labour itself, before they decreed I was stable enough to be transferred to the mom and babe ward.
Eli came through with flying colours. Passed his blood sugar tests. showed no sign of nerve damage in the shoulder or other trauma. He even came out looking fairly human - in a five month old newborn sort of way.
The best part by far for me - better even than getting tubes out of me, or the end of assaults on my battered belly to assess bleeding - was having the two of us work out the whole nursing arrangement. I was able to get Eli latched on fairly early, and now that my milk is in, he's nursing up a storm. After all the trials we went through with our daughter, that little triumph raised a whole chorus of Hallelujahs and Amens in my heart.
Well, this has taken most of the day to write, so I think I'll end on that shining note, but stay tuned for more.