Sonny @ 12 months

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Growth & Appearance:

Your teeth are starting to make their way in. Your one fang is still the most prominent but you have it’s opposite as well as your top two front teeth also just starting to poke through. Otherwise, not much change; your hair is still a light brown, eyes still grey, same size 4 diapers, and same size clothing (12-18 months).

Your hair grows by the second is most always in your eyes. We’re letting it grow out and I joked to your Papa that we should just dress you as a girl for a few months solely for the purpose of using a clip to keep it out of your face.

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Sleeping:

Much the same as last month as well; you’re awake from about 7-10am, then again from 2-4pm, and again from 6-8pm. The rest of the time is spent napping or sleeping through the night. You sleep in your crib, with your blanket, which you don’t show any real obvious signs of attachment to. I try to keep the blinds open for your afternoon nap so as to not create any sort of consistent sleep environment, the hope being of course, that you will nap anywhere and everywhere. You go down without a fight, ever. Nursing rarely puts you sleep except on the rare occasion.

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Eating:

You’ve spent the last month throwing the majority of your food on the floor. With less time to give it much attention, I’ve wrote it off as part of teething and am leaning on a hope and a whim that you will eat when you need to. Somedays it feels like you hardly eat anything at all. You’ve even thrown some of your favorites, which makes me think it’s your teeth causing you pain. You had a fever for at least a week and seemingly a cold for several weeks. You were on antibiotics, which helped, but then you got another cold soon after that. So, eating has suffered this month.

I refer to crackers as my ‘shut-the-fuck-up-biscuits’ and they’re my go-to when you’re losing your shit at the table.

That said, nursing has been easy. I’m ready to be done with it and have weaning in the back of my head, but we’ll get there little by little. I cut out your late night feeding so I am no longer waking you up to feed you before I go to bed. I’ve been going to bed earlier because of it, which is a nice reprieve. I’ve also started giving you some cow milk during the day just to give you a taste and get you used to taking a bottle from me. You don’t drink more than an ounce or two from it, but you seem to take to it well enough. You breastfeed 6 times a day.

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Development:

You figured out how to get off the bed all by yourself by turning over on your stomach and going down feet first. You fell face first off a rock at the beach the other day and I watched as you climbed right back up it and tried again, using your getting-off-the-bed technique. You were quite proud of yourself.

You say ‘thank you’ and you use it appropriately; meaning you aren’t just repeating it back at us but instead you will say it after I give you a cracker.

You’ve fallen off your ‘ut-oh’ kick; meaning you’re only saying it a few times a day, which is a dramatic decrease from the nearly 100 times you were saying it last month.

You can blow and make the cutest pursed lips when we put a candle in front of you.

You attempt to jump but your feet don’t actually leave the ground.

You scream at the top of your lungs when you want something. It’s the most piercing and gut-wrenching thing. You’re the worst to bring to restaurants and you shrill turns the head of any guest we invite into our home.

You love the beach and will wander off on your own and entertain yourself in a way that makes me think we need to spend all 7 of your waking hours at the sea.

You play quite well by yourself in your crated off area in the morning but after that you get kinda pissy about being pushed off to the side. You’ve actually started moving the entire contraption; using it like an old man would a walker. It’s quite the scene to be doing the dishes in the kitchen only to be interrupted by you turning the corner pushing a five foot long plastic crate full of toys. the stork & the beanstalk photograhy
Favorites:

You’re quite in to the mini hand sanitizer bottles as well as the kids medicine bottles. I think the ridges on the tops of the medicine bottles feel good on your teeth; in any event, they are strewn all over the floor in numerous rooms of the house.

You also love being outside.the stork & the beanstalk photograhy

Sonny @ 10 Months

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Growth & Appearance: You hair is lightening, but still brown. It is fine like Hooper’s but similar to Van, you have a lot of it. And it’s long. As in you seemingly will need a haircut soon. Or we’ll just let it grow. TBD. Your eye color still has me scratching my head. Still no teeth, but your upper gums are swollen and white and at least 4 teeth are ready to pop through any day now. Or at least I’m guessing any day now.

You’re in size 4 diapers and have grown out of 12 month clothing a while ago so I’m buying more 18-24m, which is a little big but a nice amount of room to grow into.san clemente family photographer-5004

Sleeping: I can’t remember the last time you woke during the night and am happy to say those days are behind us. Every day is more or less the same and the predictability is nice. You wake up around 7:15am and are ready for a nap around 10:30am. If you’re not awake by 2pm, I wake you up but usually you’re already awake and just sitting quietly in your crib. You run amuck and are ready for your evening nap around 4:30pm. I wake you up around 6pm because there’s just not enough time in a day for all these naps. Ha.

We moved your crib out of our room mid-way through your 9th month. The transition was seamless and you’re now sharing a room with your brothers.

Generally you’re awake when I put you down for the night and you go to sleep on your own with ease. You’re a blueprint of both of your brothers in this sense.san clemente family photographer-5001

Eating: Breastfeeding can be a struggle at times. I feel as though I should have mentioned this months ago as it’s not necessarily a new development. To keep your attention I feel like I need a bottomless bucket of distractions set to the side of me, to distract you enough to get you settle enough to eat. It’s probably a sign that I don’t need to feed you as often as I do and we have cut out another feeding, so I think we’re working to find a middle ground. I feed you 7 times a day; first thing in the morning, before and after your morning nap, before and after your afternoon nap, before you go to bed, and then before I go to bed.

You still love solids but aren’t as agreeable as you once were. If you don’t like what’s in-front of you, you throw it wildly off your highchair. Your favorites remain the same: banana, avocado, sweet potato. You now like apples and berries so long as they are warm and soft. You’re not the fan of vegetables that you once were; you’ll eat a few, but you’re not a bottomless pit for broccoli like you are for banana.

We introduced scrambled eggs and you love them.

You eat three meals a day.san clemente family photographer-4931

Development: Last month made this month look more-than-promising in regards to walking but lately you’re simply not interested. You can walk with a push toy and enjoy doing so. And you’ve taken several consecutive steps here and there. But your main mode of transport is still crawling. You’re more speedy that way and lower to the ground, which serves your need to put every-damn-thing-in-your-mouth well.

You can stand for minutes unassisted and like to do squats, where you bend slightly at the knees and push back up again. You can also squat all the way down to pick up a toy and stand back up again.

You wave on command and it’s the sweetest wave we ever did see. But you’re stingy as all getup with your kisses; you’ve given ten and refused hundreds.

Jimmie came running into the room the other day and clear as day you said “dog-gee”. We did a double take and were just about to write it off as coincidence until you repeated it, clear as day, about five times in a row. We think you also say “bye” but aren’t totally convinced just yet.

You nap often but when you’re awake you’re moving a gazillion miles a minute. If left unattended for more than a minute, you’re most often found at the base of the stairs or – if you’re near a bathroom – at the toilet. You can climb all the way to the top of the stairs in seconds flat.

Bathing you is an absolute nightmare. You throw yourself all over the place, could care less about going under water, and have zero hesitation to pull to stand on every slippery surface. In fact, as soon as you see the water filling you’re at the baths edge, ready to launch yourself overboard head first. The sink may be the best bet but I’ll be damn if there is ever a time it is clean and empty.

You’re more independent and are able to entertain yourself for a bit when we have to put you in the gated off area. But the more I walk by you, the more pissed off you get. In general, if you can’t see us, you’re fine but if you see us, you want us. Especially me. Cuz, well, I’m still your numero uno.san clemente family photographer-4999

Favorites: The stairs hold your attention more than anything else these days and if you had your way you’d spend your entire day climbing the stairs. I only wish I had the same passion.

You love being chased and teased. Remotes and iPhones still rank high on your list. And me, you love your mama. But really and truly, the stairs rule all.

Sonny @ 9 Months

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Growth & Appearance: We have yet to take you in for your 9 month well baby appointment but they put you on the scale a week or so ago when we took you in to see about an ear infection and you were 20.8 lbs. No ear infection.

You graduated from wearing your helmet, though it wasn’t quite the send-off we had anticipated. I guess I had hoped they would have said, ‘congratulations, all better, you’re done’. Instead they used words like ‘improvement’ and left us with the option of another 14 weeks of treatment to strive toward ‘perfection’. We declined. We’re happy with the shape and any deformity at this point is hard to notice, even when looking at the images they provided us with.

I guess your eyes are hazel. They’re not blue and they’re not brown. So I’m going with hazel. Dark hazel. Your hair is light brown with a hint of strawberry in it; similar to Van’s at the same age.

You’ve grown out of much of your 12 month clothes due to height and are on to 12-18 or even 18-24. We just switched you over to size 4 diapers. Dressing you, in general, is no easy feat. You’re super squirmy.

san-clemente-family-photographer-3320Sleeping: You fell asleep in your highchair the other week. You’ve also been known to fall asleep in your little play area; it’s not uncommon to find you in the sitting position with your head in your lap, flat as a pancake, fast asleep.

When you wake up, you stand in your crib and start making noises until I look at you. And then you cry as I go to the bathroom as if you can’t wait another second to be held and fed. It’s sweet but it’s also loud.

You wake up around 6:30am, which is earlier than we’d like and still just slightly before your brothers wake which means you’re still in our room despite me mentioning moving you in with them every damn month. You are ready for a nap around 10:30 and sleep for 2-3 hours. If we’re home in the afternoon, you take another nap, around 3:30pm or 4pm for an hour or two. You fall asleep on your own around 8:30pm and then I wake you for one last feed before I go to bed around 10:30pm. And you sleep through the night, in your crib, next to our bed.

san-clemente-family-photographer-3301Eating: I finally got you to eat more fruit by warming it up first and mashing it in with your oatmeal. I can now give you strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries but even with the added cinnamon you’re still not into apple. You eat vegetables with ease; asparagus, broccoli, peas, carrots, sweet potato. In general, you eat whatever we’re eating unless we’re eating crap, which we do more often than is worth admitting. You also tried tofu this month and dig it. And egg whites, too.

Your favorites are still avocado and banana.

You recognize foods and get excited when you see something you particularly like; like when I sat down with yogurt the other day and you started rocking back and forth like a cowboy on a horse until I shared with you.

You breastfeed three times in the morning, twice in the afternoon, and 2-3 more times in the evening. Some are better quality feeds than others.

san-clemente-family-photographer-3338Development: I found you splashing piss-filled toilet water around. Gross.

You appear to be right hand dominant and can be found crawling with a toy in your right hand.

You’re happy as a clam and love to laugh and play games. You know when you’re being teased and you revel in the attention.

You still put everything in your mouth; each and every little bit of anything on the floor goes in your mouth. I’ve pulled out leaves, strings, rug fuzz, little itty bitty bits of wrappers, legos (oh the dreaded legos), oh, and yes, dog food. You really liked the dog food.

You’ve begun showing some feistiness. We were at a party and you screamed in disgust when another little baby took a balloon from you. Then, at Thanksgiving, you kept grabbing the face of another baby. I have a sneaking suspicion there is a monster a’ brewin’.

You’re as busy as a bee in the hours that you’re awake and keeping up with you is a full-time job. If you were a snail, you’d have tracks all over the house within just an hours time. You’re into everything and get anywhere in seconds flat. We had a gate up on the stairs but Hooper knocked it down and it has yet to go back up. You love opening the cabinet doors in the kitchen and thrashing around. It’s only a matter of time before you break something and by something I mean everything.

You are starting to follow commands. You know how to kiss but are rather stingy with giving them out. You’ve waved a few times.

Early in your 8th month you started standing unassisted. It started with just a couple of seconds and quickly matured into a good solid stand. Your balance has improved over the month and on the eve of your 9th month you took 5 steps. There were a lot of breaks in-between (balance-step-balance-step) and you have yet to repeat this feat. Crawling is still your chosen mode of transportation. You furniture walk and can transfer between pieces of furniture with ease.

san-clemente-family-photographer-3314Favorites: You love balloons. There is a golf ball that you like to throw and then crawl after and then throw again. Otherwise it’s the same ol’ story: phones, remote controls, and all the other stuff we value and don’t want in your mouth. And mama. You love me and if I’m in the room there’s no one you’d rather be with.

A Bath

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san-clemente-family-photographer-0015 san-clemente-family-photographer-0021 san-clemente-family-photographer-0024 san-clemente-family-photographer-0017 san-clemente-family-photographer-0026I haven’t been picking up my camera for the sake of purely picking up my camera lately. It’s easy to feel inspired when we travel or celebrate but the everyday gets so hectic, now more than ever, that I’m shooting less. I suppose that’s complicated by the fact we are still unpacking and getting situated and the environment I live in at the moment doesn’t lend itself to the inspiration I need to feel motivated enough to actually pick up the damn camera. It’s a work in progress though and if I’m being honest it’s more the everyday mess that makes me turn the other way as opposed to what sits unfinished or in progress.

In any event, I stuck Sonny in the sink the other day and captured these images, which proved a more  dangerous endeavor than I anticipated. And more wet than I had hoped for. But, alas, a clean baby, clean counters and floor, and these images to look back on. Dedicating myself to revitalizing my love for shooting in-home, starting with my own in my own home.

Sonny @ 4 Months

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Growth & Appearance: The left side of you head is still flatter than the right. You prefer turning your head to the left and even if I turn your head to the right, more times than not, two minutes later you’re facing the left again.

Your eyes still appear blue, but a dark blue. Nearly gray. If I had to bet on your eye color at this point in time, I’d guess they’ll ultimately be brown.

Your hair, it seems, is on it’s way to blond. It seems to be closer to Hooper’s in texture; soft and fine as opposed to thick and wiry like Van’s. It has grown significantly in length.

You’re in size 2 diapers and on days that we put you in clothes, you seem to be in the 6 month range. And on the days you’re in clothes you’re usually wet, from all the drool. Lots and lots of drool these days. The amber necklace is worthless, but beautiful, so we keep it.

You weigh 17 lbs, are 28 in long, and have a head circumference of 17.5 inches. You are above the 97th percentile for both height and weight.

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Sleeping: You still sleep next to me, in your wombie. I say it every month and one of these months it will finally take place, but the plan is for you to go to your crib as soon as we move into our new home. Until then, the crib has remained in the garage and you’ve remained next to me. We have no intentions of continuing to co-sleep and I’m eager to get you set up in your own bed.

You tend to fall asleep around 9:30pm. I wake you up before I go to bed (around 10:30), feed you one more time, change you, throw you in your straight jacket, and put you down. Nursing still puts you to sleep but you’re fine with putting yourself to sleep too, it seems. You’ve slept through the night several times, waking up about 6am, sometimes 7am. If you wake at 4 or 5 or 6, you’ll feed and go back to sleep. If you wake at 7, we start our day.

You never cry when you wake up; instead, I’m awoken by you lifting your legs up in the air at a 90 degree angle and then slamming them down on the bed, making a loud thud. The thuds get closer together the longer I ignore you. We refer to this as “the whale flap”; Papa, “did the whale flap wake you up this morning?”, Me, “sure did”.

If you’re not waking me with your whale flap, you’re waking me with your monstrous, man-sized, farts.

You nap throughout the day, with no noted routine. san clemente family photographer-3349
Eating: You nurse every two hours, on average, during the day. You’re much quicker and efficient, taking about 10-15 minutes total during most feeds.

You love to grab at my shirt when you’re feeding and you watch your hand catch my shirt and release with fascination.

I’ve tried pumping after your morning feedings but am getting very little extra now that you’re sleeping through the night and my milk has regulated to such.

You seem to have some awareness of what goes into my mouth and like to watch as I eat. san clemente family photographer-3344
Development: You love sucking your thumb and your toes.

You’ve rolled from your tummy to your back a few times and are able to scoot, without rolling, over enough of the bed that it’s unsafe to leave you unattended. You’ve rolled from your back to your tummy a few times as well, but it’s hardly a regular thing; more of a fluke.

You smile with your whole body and are happy most always.

Everything goes in your mouth. You love to get ahold of your onesie and stick it in your mouth. You also like putting whatever blanket is on you in your mouth. My favorite is when you grab my fingers and direct them to your mouth.

Your hand-eye coordination is still developing but every now and again, by chance, you’ll get a grip on something. Like the other day when I left you on the bed and you caught hold of a candlestick and smacked yourself in the face with it.

Your little legs never stop kicking. Always in motion. san clemente family photographer-3327

Sonny @ 3 months

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Growth & Appearance:

You’re the size of most 9 month olds, the only thing giving away your age is your mannerisms; the newborn-like gang signs always a dead giveaway.

We had to buzz your random tuft of long hairs because you looked like Sloth from the Goonies.

I think your hair is turning blond. Your papa says it’s still brown. I agree it’s brown, but it seems to be transitioning to blond. In my opinion, anyway.

The left side of you head is flatter than your right, as you favor lying with your head turned to the left. We’re working on correcting it. You’re welcome.

You’ve grown out of the 3-6 month onesies as well as size 1 diapers, which truthfully should have been swapped out for size 2 sometime ago but I was determined not to waste what we had left of size one. Technically speaking, I think you meet the weight requirements for size 3, so it’s possible you’ll skip size 2 all together except the fact I don’t want to waste the size 2 diapers either, so you’ll probably be a size 3 kid in a size 2 diaper just as you’re a size 2 kid in a size 1 diaper. Ho hum. Can’t win.

San Clemente Family Photographer-0133 Sleeping:

It’s as if you wake eager for someone to smile at. I can see you, out of the corner of my eye, just waiting to lock eyes; a smiling beaming from ear to ear after a nights rest.

In the beginning of your third month you were sleeping an average of 6 hour stretches; going down around 10pm and waking in the 4 o’clock hour before going down again until 7 or even 8. Just a few days before turning 3 months, you made it all the way to 6am. Nothing super consistent but movement in the right direction for sure.

Napping is hard because as the third born you’re just kind of thrown into the mix. You nap here and there but it’s never something official and it’s often interrupted by one of your brothers smooshing your checks together to make your lips flang out in such a way as to resemble a fish.

You’re still in your woombie at night and still seem comfortable with the whole straight-jacket concept.

You put yourself to bed quite easily, usually by sucking on your fingers. Then I bring you to bed when I’m ready, try my best to wake you for one last feed, and put you down next to me. As soon as we move, we’ll get your room or corner situated and you’ll be in the crib. San Clemente Family Photographer-0144

Eating:

I feed you on demand. I pump each morning after you feed and have been donating the milk I get during that time.

If I had to guess, I’d say you nurse between 9 – 11 times per day, with some of those being cluster feeds; meaning an hour or less will pass before you’re wanting to eat again.

We don’t give you a bottle as often as we should but you still have the hang of it more-or-less. We’ve found you’re more inclined to take it first thing in the morning, when you’re still sleepy and super hungry and less discriminative about what nipple gets put in your mouth. So we practice then.

You’re much quicker when it comes to your time at the breast. Gone are the days I’d take the time to find a show to watch… you’re practically done by the time I flip through the DVR and find something worth watching. Unless you’re nursing to sleep, then it’s worth sitting for a bit.

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Development:

You’ve started pushing with your legs. Sometimes I have to sit sideways in a chair because during feedings you’ll push against the arm rests with your legs and it’s hard to feed you. You’ll also put weight down on your feet when I stand you up.

You’re working on rolling and able to lift one hip and push, turning slightly to one side.

Tummy time isn’t your favorite, but there are times when you don’t fight it. You rolled over once, from your stomach to your back but it hasn’t happened again since.

You’re a bonafide cooing machine.

It seems as though you are starting to respond to your name. Or maybe persistence just pays off as we call your name until you glance in our direction.

Your brain still can’t tell what your hands are doing but if it could, you’d be grabbing everything. You like to tug on my shirt when you’re nursing, your sharp little nails digging into my skin. I’ve gotten my hair caught in your grip a few times and it never feels good.

You smile with your whole body.

You notice the TV when it’s on and turn your head in it’s direction.

You’ve found your feet.

You took your first flight to Seattle and handled it like a champ albeit reminding me that traveling with a champ on your lap is still hard.

Sonny @ 1 month

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Growth & Appearance: You were born with brown hair. It’s not as dark as I remember your brothers’ at birth and I anticipate that it will lighten, as theirs did, over the next several months.

I had to trim your nails in the hospital as being ‘overdue’ allowed you to be born with daggers. You scratched yourself often until I was able to give them a proper cut. I’ve had to cut them twice since then.

By your third week of life, you developed a bald spot on your head. Near your cowlick you have a longer patch of hair so you look a bit like this.

Your eyes are a deep ocean blue, which again is reminiscent of your brothers and I imagine they, too, will change with time.

Your fingers, toes, and limbs are all long. Like, really long.

At birth you weighed 10 lbs, 22 inches. At about a week old you were 10.4 lbs and 22 1/2 inches. At your one month appointment (at 5 weeks) you weighed 12.5 lbs and were 24 inches long. Your head circumference is 15.5 inches. sonny05b

 

Eating: I breastfeed you on demand. I’ve been floating through these days too much to take note of any sort of pattern, but there does seem to be some vague sense of one forming.

You like to cluster feed, especially in the evenings and will either flip flop between breasts several times or separate feedings by a mere 30 minutes.

You have a great latch and fortunately the whole breastfeeding gig has been smooth for both of us.

You’ll take a bottle and we’re trying to remember to give you at least an ounce of expressed milk once a week or so to keep up on this skill.

You’ll latch onto anything. A video of you latching onto your Papa’s nose has generated over 81K views on instagram with only a small handful exercising their social media policing powers. Hashtag: eye roll.

If I had to guess, I’d say you nurse a total 8-9 times during the day and 2-4 times during the night. sonny07b
Sleeping: By your second week, you were sleeping in 2 to 3 hour increments, with a rare 4 hour stretch thrown in once, I think. For the first two weeks, feedings took an average of an hour (30 minutes on each side).

By the third week, our nighttime schedule looked like this: go to sleep about 10pm, wake up around 1am, 4am, 7am. I think there was one 5 hour stretch slipped in on one of those nights. Feedings took an average of 15-20 minutes on each side, for a total of 30-40 minutes per feeding.

At one month, you wake, on average, every 3 hours and nurse for a total of 15 minutes or so on each side. Sometimes you’ll fall asleep without taking both sides. Most nights we go to bed around 9 or 10pm and you wake around 1 or 2am, again around 4am, and for the day around 7am.

We’re sleeping together, in the guest bed.

You’ve been sleeping in the woombie, which Hooper refers to as your ‘worm packet’ since week one. You sleep much better in it.

Even when you wake to feed, you don’t cry; instead you let out a few grunts and gently start kicking your feet.

Your farts during the night are enough to make the bed vibrate. sonny20b
Development: You spend much of your day either sleeping or eating.

You prefer turning your head to your left over the right. The doc noted that the left side of your head is slightly flatter.

You’re independent in the sense that you don’t need to be on or around anyone; you’re content to snooze wherever we lay you and in true third child fashion, not much disturbs you. This is in-spite of the fact you’re constantly being kissed by your brothers or licked by Jimmie. I suppose it just comes with the territory and you’ve proven to combat any distractions with some wonderful adaptation techniques.

You don’t mind being on your tummy.

Other than peeing on me during your bath, twice, you have not sprung a leak while having your diaper changed. Considering your brother peed in your Papa’s mouth, we’re all celebrating this small victory.

You’re patient. Again, I chalk this up to being the product of a third born. You rarely cry when you’re hungry or need to be changed, using quite grunts to tell us gently that you’re hungry or uncomfortable.

When you are awake, it’s obvious the wheels are spinning. You lock eyes with us on occasion and study our smiles; I can tell you’re trying to smile back, it just isn’t translating quite yet.

You don’t care who holds you, you’ll cuddle with whoever’s arms you’re in. I’m sure this will change in time, but I remember both of your brothers’ always preferring to be on me, at all times.

You’ll take a pacifier for a short period of time but end up spitting it out. You prefer to suck on a finger instead. And not your own, unless – that is – it happens to land in your mouth. In general, you’re just not that coordinated yet.

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All of these lovely images are by my talented friend, Noel, whom I am greatly indebted to. You can check out her site here and follow her gorgeous instagram feed here

Newborn Daze

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I’ve mentioned before that the newborn phase has never been kind to Willy and I’s relationship and I think it’s fair to say that lack of sleep, in general, is never a recipe for a successful marriage. This third time around, however, we’ve changed our game plan and thus far, Sonny has afforded us the smoothest transition. Everyone says the jump from two children to three is the hardest and while I’m sure there are hard days ahead that are surely chuckling at us as we make such grossly ignorant statements so early on, thus far it’s been the perfect amount of team work combined with smooth sailing with, of course, the small doses of tears and tantrums that, in part, are to be expected. Just fewer than I anticipated, I guess.

So what’s changed, you may be wondering?

With both Hooper and Van, Willy and I shared nighttime duties. I found it hard to get any sort of solid sleep when around the baby because I was always on-edge and anxious over the thought of them waking up hungry, ready to feed. So after a feeding, I would go to bed and Willy would sleep on the sofa, with the baby, and wake me when it was time for the next feeding and then we’d switch. It was fair and afforded me at least a few hours of promising sleep but it also left both of us in that survival mode; depleted and rundown. And it opened the door to a lot of bickering that really had nothing to do with whatever subject matter was brought up in said bickerments, but instead in the fact we were plain tired; our reserves empty.

With Hooper and Van now older, it seems silly to have us share the newborn responsibilities. In hindsight, it was probably silly to share it even back then. What we’ve found is that the best way to divvy up responsibilities is to have one take the nighttime shift (me) while the other takes the supportive role. And when you have two already, it’s kinda a draw as to which one is easier. Thus far, these roles have worked in such a way that a transition we were both kinda dreading has actually become sorta – well – enjoyable. And I think that’s because we have a good balance.

I’m getting a few solid hours of sleep at night, in chunks of course, but there’s also no rush for me to start my day because Willy has been getting up with the boys, fixing them breakfast (never mind the fact it’s Eggo waffles most days… which I pick up off the floorboard of the car days later in their stale, hardened state), getting them ready for school, and dropping them off.

The days are slow and most days are spent checking off the bare necessities a family needs to accomplish to get to the next day, but happiness and joy have been encasing us. Alas, we have found a system that allows us to enjoy these fleeting days just in time for it to all change; because that’s how these early days go, isn’t it? In any event, trying our best to take it one day at a time and to welcome the changing tides. And feeling grateful for our current situation; having Willy around as often as I do is something I didn’t have with Hooper and Van.San Clemente Family Photographer-3724

Post Birth Ramblings

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San Clemente Family Photographer-3749 Sonny San Clemente Family Photographer-3914Hooper came home from school with his belly button painted purple and red looking like a makeup artist got ahold of him and gave his belly button a good bruising. When questioned about it, he said he wanted his belly button to look like Sonny’s.

As Sonny laid curled up into me in the hospital bed, I couldn’t help but think how the kicks from him while inside me were so reminiscent of the kicks I felt with him lying next to me.

One of the nurses commented as I ate my meal over a breastfeeding Sonny that I must not be a first time mom. It sure is a lot easier the third time around.

I’ve always said that the newborn phase isn’t really for Willy and I, that we’d rather jump right into the toddler phase. But I guess with each child you gain a better sense of just how fleeting and unforgiving time is and for whatever reason, I’m really enjoying this newborn phase. Willy too.

Questions asked by the boys: Why doesn’t he open his eyes? Can we watch him suck your booby? Mama, when are you going to fill your belly up again? When will he be able to tell jokes?

Hooper broke out into full crocodile tears when he had to go home from the hospital without Sonny and I. Through choked up words and flowing tears, he said, “I want mama and Sonny to come home too”. Broke. My. Heart. He also cried heavily after Jimmie accidentally scratched Sonny.

Highlights from the hospital: lavender towels delivered by the sweetest of volunteers and home made chocolate chip cookies.

My first day home I watched Van pick a very large sized booger and was actually relieved when he put it in his mouth, allowing me to stay sitting on my injured lady parts.

Van, being to boob man that he is, shared the following observation: “Wow, mama, that is the biggest I have ever seen your booby”. Followed by, “Can I squeeze it?”.

Speaking of boobs, Hooper made one out of his legos. He used a long stick looking lego for the nipple and it resembled the fembots from Austin Powers.

Jimmie spent the first week of Sonny’s life rather out of sorts. He welcomed him home by peeing all over the hallway floor, the stairs, and the landing area.

I’ve rediscovered sleeping on my back, which never felt like something to write home about before but is nothing short of a privilege now.

My doctor’s response when I told him we’d like to save the placenta, “Um, okay. Gross”.

The following conversation took place:
Van: “How come your tummy is still big?”
Me: “Cuz there’s still gunk in there”.
Van: “But gunk only comes out of your ears”.

Willy, on having another boy: “It’s nice not having to wipe poop out of a vagina”…

My vagina itched in the worst way possible following the delivery. It’s one thing to be awoken by your newborn baby, but it’s an entirely different thing to be awoken by my own labia. In any event, desitin worked magically. Take notes.

I had made a list of things to do once I felt labor coming on on the back of a tear away calendar. When I came home from the hospital, I turned the list over only to discover that I had written it on March 17. Here I am visiting the magic eight ball’s website trying to figure out when this baby would come when all I had to do was look on the back of my pre-labor to-do list.

Van peed in his bed one night, followed by throwing up in his bed the night after that. Willy has been in charge of household duties so Van spent the next two nights sleeping on semi-barf sheets.

I texted my mom “shit just got real” the morning Van woke up with said throw up. I thought that day would be the day that would do me in but it was the next day, when Van was back to being healthy, that the first I-don’t-know-if-I-can-do-this tears started flowing. Luckily, they came and went.

I’m eating my placenta, which sounds better than the truth which is I had it encapsulated. I’ve never had post partum depression but as soon as I heard that it could* help with post partum hair loos, you better believe I was in.

Sonny’s belly button stump smells like an ape’s armpit. We ended up using alcohol on it to speed up the falling-off-process and I’m happy to report that the problem has been resolved.

Willy caught a video of me giving birth and I’ve only been able to watch it once or twice. In fact, every time Sonny cries that high-pitched newborn cry I am reminded of that video and equally troubled as the first time I saw it.

Sonny’s balls are the size of the rock of Gibraltar.

Van refers to the suction/bottle part of my breast pump as “water blasters” and has taken to carrying them around the house, one in each hand, shooting them like you would a gun.

Hooper asked if he could carry Sonny down the stairs, pointing out the fact he’s 5 and therefore totally trustworthy.

He’s here…

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Sonny Jennett
Born 3-17-2016
10 lbs 0 oz, 22 inches long

As soon as I am comfortable enough to sit for the amount of time to write about his birth, I will. Until then, I have loads of sessions to catch up on sharing as well as a few interviews and various other things I’ve been meaning to share (including photos and tales from Cuba, which is long overdue).

Sonny and I are home and doing well. Thank you to all of you who have supported my family and I through this journey… I’ve shared more over on instagram, if you want to take a peek.