Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The First Week - and Mother's Day!

Well, it's officially here - the "new normal" as I've taken to calling it. My very first day watching two kids under the age of two. Without James.

One might wonder how I'm even blogging on a day like today, and I'm thinking the same thing myself. I should be continuing my nap. (I did manage to snag an hour or so, at least.) I should be responding to unanswered e-mails. I should be writing thank you notes. I should be sweeping and swiffering our floors. Or I should be drafting my grocery list as I've eaten maybe three real meals in the past week. (Real = something other than a turkey sandwich.)

Alas, the kids (kids! I have kids - plural - now!) are napping, and this is about all the energy I have to exert right now.

I sound tired and a little cranky, but honestly, we couldn't have had a better first week home from the hospital. The first few days, I felt absolutely fantastic. I didn't mind - and almost embraced - getting up for Libby's 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. feedings. Some time around mid-week, the exhaustion and whole birthing thing finally caught up with me a bit, which resulted in some random naps through the end of the week. (I don't think I've taken a nap at 5 p.m. since college....)

I'm not sure if my girl is a bow and leopard kind of gal just yet (or if she ever will be), but she certainly has inherited my ability to express exactly how she's feeling through her facial gestures....

Physically, my body felt at about 75 percent back to normal, which I thought was great. I spent a lot of the week outside, we were taking walks on day two of being home, we went on a few outings, and I was still able to at least follow Sammy around the playground (so long as James wasn't too far behind). I now feel like I'm at about 85 percent back (minus the whole tired thing), and could not have asked for a better recovery.

Our annual trip through the tulip gardens at a nearby park. 

Also, in general, life with a newborn is just so much easier and better this time around. It really is true what everyone says - you stress so much less, and you're able to embrace this time, rather than willing your baby to get older. (At this point, if Libby doesn't walk or crawl or eat real meals until she is two years old - I'd be okay with that!) I can't tell you how much I've loved just being able to hold Libby for hours, regardless of whether she's sleeping or awake.

Quality tummy time.

And thanks to James, I've been able to do that a lot. Though I've tried not to ignore Sammy or pay any less attention to him, it was pretty much impossible to be with him as much as I was before, and thus James stepped in and got lots and lots of Daddy / Sammy time this past week. I don't think Sammy has received this much attention ever, and I know James loved being able to have so much quality time with him. They spent hours outside together, mowing, mulching, digging in dirt, swinging, walking, going out for coffee, going to Lowe's for errands - you name it, they did it. "Watch Daddy?" and "Mow lawn!" have been Sammy's two main phrases - repeated over and over - for the past week.

To top off a really nice first week home, we had a fabulous Mother's Day. I was majorly spoiled and received the most thoughtful cards prior to walking around town, where I enjoyed my first post-pregnancy caffeinated Starbucks latte, as well as a croissant from the (mediocre) French bakery. Then in the afternoon, my whole family came over for a cookout, which began with champagne on our patio, and ended with this fabulous lavender / chambord / raspberry cake (I hope I got that right!), made by my pastry chef sister.

Sammy's cheese face and Christmas jammies kicked off my Mother's Day.

If anyone saw this past week's episode of The Office (which I sobbed my way through), you'll understand the significance of the tea pot, which held one of my gifts.

That's a non-decaf latte!

Three generations! (All sharing the same middle name, too!)

Queenie, me, aunties (or Honorary Moms) and our kids.

One of the prettiest cakes I've ever seen. Though it's taste far out-rivaled it's beauty.

I am now getting back to this post on Day Two of the New Normal to successfully report that we all survived Day One. The remainder of Day One wasn't bad at all, even considering I had two crying kids to deal with at bed time. (James had a late meeting to attend so I was on my own.) We got out for a nice walk, Sammy got plenty of quality time with his mower, everyone was fed, and I believe there was even an educational component thrown in there, when I taught Sammy about not eating food off the ground - especially that which is covered by ants. Ah, it's the little things.

This got me through Day One....
... As did this sister (for at least a few hours).

And now on to Day Two...! (After one more cup of coffee.)

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