Wednesday, November 26, 2008

got soy milk?

Well, after 5 days of being dairy, chocolate and caffeine free, I can honestly say that there has been some improvement in the colour and consistency of Miss Maya's poo poo. Yesterday it went back to green again temporarily, but it looks like it's come back around to yellow. I am pretty sure this points to the fact that she is very, very sensitive to dairy. Makes sense, her daddy was the same way when he was a baby.

Substituting soy has been pretty easy. I'm lucky to live in a day and age where there are countless substitutes for just about any dairy or meat product you can think of. Here are some things I've learned:

Soy milk - GOOD
Chocolate soy milk - VERY GOOD
Soy cheese - NOT SO GOOD
Soy sour cream - PALATABLE
Soy yogurt - BLECH
Soy ice cream - YUM

So, we're managing.

Maya's getting so good with her hands now. She grabs things and holds on tight. When wants to nurse, she'll practically pull my shirt up. She's also laughing a lot lately. Especially in response to being tickled. It's adorable.

And, in the last couple of weeks, Maya has been taking naps! She just kinda fell into a routine and it's been great. She usually has one nap in the morning, about an hour and a half after she wakes up, and then another nap in the early afternoon.

Speaking of naps, someone is just waking up from hers now.... gotta run!

Thursday, November 20, 2008


I love animals. Big fan from way back. It may even surprise you to know that my college major (before I dropped out) was veterinary science. I've always had pets and even used to volunteer at the local animal shelter. Yup, I sure do love me some animals. But I guess I don't love them enough to not eat their delicious meat, drink their yummy milk, or wear their supple leather.

HOWEVER. I DO love my baby girl enough to do absolutely anything. And if it means practically going vegan, well, then, so be it.

I discovered some mucous (in addition to a lovely green-hued poo) in this morning's diaper. It was this finding that landed us at the doctor's office at 2:00pm this afternoon. With the diaper in tow.

After some discussion and a quick exam, the doctor proclaimed that Maya's recent diaper excitement is likely NOT the product of a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance as originally thought, but probably instead a sensitivity to something in my breastmilk. I did question why Maya is suddenly reacting now - 12 weeks in - when I have been eating essentially the same stuff since the beginning. To this, my doctor just said something to the effect of it being "cumulative" and added that "babies are strange little creatures."

So, I have been instructed to remove from my diet:
All dairy
and *sniff sniff* Chocolate

I'm not really a big fan of seafood anymore (I used to like it until I got preggers and ever since I just can't stomach it). So that really just leaves poultry. Not that I really ate that much meat before. But the dairy, oh the dairy...that's going to hurt. I yearn for yogurt, I cheer for cheese, I melt for milk, I beg for butter, I scream for ice cream. But whatever. I'll do anything for Maya. No biggie.

So I am to keep this regiment for two weeks to start. At that point, we'll assess if Maya's poo has returned to normal, and if it has, then I can slowly add things back in to my diet until we figure out what is causing the upset. If there is no improvement, it's back to the doctor with us. I really hope this works.

*Raises a tall glass of soy milk* Here's to a beautiful yellow poo, as bright and perfect as a summer's day!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

st. patty's day came late this year

Shamrocks. Spinach. Cash. Grass. Trees. Granny Smith apples. Emeralds. NyQuil. Envy...
...and my baby's poo...
All lovely shades of green!

Yes, for the past 72 hours, Maya's poo has been the colour and consistency of *ahem*
pesto. TMI? I have no doubt.

A lengthy internet search and a call to the 24-hour nurse's hotline resulted in the following information:

Green baby poo in an EBF (exclusively breast-fed) baby is either caused by:
1. A foremilk/hindmilk imbalance
2. An allergy or reaction to something in the mother's diet
3. A virus

I'm also informed that green poo is not *usually* something to be concerned about unless that kiddo is showing other signs of illness as well.

I'm really not sure what to think. At 12 weeks, an milk imbalance would be unusual, I think. But who knows? Also, I have been seriously GOING TO TOWN on the chocolate lately. Can that cause it? Oh I hope it's not a virus; luckily baby girl is showing no other signs of feeling sick, and seems like her normal self. No fever, no vomiting. She has been quite gassy over the last couple of days and that has made her a bit cranky...she did cry a bit from gas pain earlier...but she does do that from time to time...

I let her really drain both breasts tonight so I'm hoping that maybe that'll fix things. Shall I keep you all posted? I know you're all at the edge of your seats, waiting with bated breath for the next installment of "Maya: The Poo Chronicles"...

Anyone got any advice, expertise, experience to share? My little leprechaun and I would sure be grateful.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

bath time and other adventures

Thanks for all your comments and advice, guys. We're still on the fence about the whole city vs. country thing. We're going to stew on it for a good while and see how we feel in a few months. No rash decisions here. (But I have a feeling this discussion is no where near over.)

Maya is 12 weeks old today! She is "talking" (babbling) more and more all the time. I love to have baby conversations with her, it's so funny. Her favourite conversation buddy is Elmo. My parents gave her this Elmo doll (who is exactly her size at this point) and she loves him so. Every time we bring him out she gets all excited and tells him all her secrets.

Maya has also started laughing and giggling a little bit. I've only managed to coax out a laugh maybe 5 times so far, but I feel like I've won the lottery when it happens.

Over the past couple of weeks, I've noticed that Maya has woken herself up crying a few times. It's heartbreaking to watch, it's almost like she's having a nightmare. Once she's awake, she immediately stops crying and looks kinda confused. I don't know what the heck she's dreaming about that upsets her so much. Maya so rarely cries when she's awake, I hate to think that she's dreaming about something bad or scary.

Our routine is pretty much solidified now. Solidified into basically not being much of a routine at all. We've got the whole bedtime thing down pat - 6pm bath time, 6:30 feeding, 7:00 play with daddy while I make dinner, 7:30 feed again until sleeping and then at that point, our little girl is out for the night.

But daytime is another story. I try to get her down for naps, really I do. But she just doesn't nap well, or consistently. Some days she'll get maybe two hours in and other days (most days) she gets 10 minutes here and there but nothing to speak of. I can't really complain though; she sleeps about 12 hours a night and usually about 6-8 hours at a stretch. She sleeps through the night at least once or twice a week now. We're very, VERY lucky that way.

I guess it's my fault that Maya's not a great napper. We're always filling our days in different ways so she never seems to have the same day twice. Some days we stay home all day, some days we are out running errands, visiting friends, going to storytime at the library or out for a walk. I think all that variation really confuses baby girl's little "internal clock" so she just kinda naps when she naps. If she naps at all.

Here are some pictures from Maya's bath time last night. I "styled" her hair for the first time and was laughing so hard at how adorable she looked that Maya started grinning and squealing back at me as if to say, "I'm funny but I don't know why!" I had to grab the camera. Check out my little cutie:

I am sooooo in love!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

city mouse, country mouse

I am a self-proclaimed, big-time, big city girl.

I live in Vancouver, British Columbia - quite a metropolis in my opinion. It's not like it's New York City or anything, but it's definitely a big city. And, we live in the heart of downtown. In a high-rise condo. There is a grocery store, two coffee shops, three restaurants, a post office, a bank, a liquor store, a travel agency, a salon and a doggie-accessory shop (I'm serious) just in the bottom storey of our building alone. We can go downstairs and quite literally eat at one of a zillion restaurants. I don't have to leave the footprint of four city blocks for anything; it's all right here. This is city living at it's finest and we've absolutely loved living here.

But something's changed. Now we have a kid.

Suddenly, out of the blue, I find myself thinking about a house, a yard and small-town lifestyle. I used to scoff at my friends, tried and true city folk, when they started having babies and were struck with this very same notion. And here it is, happening to me. Today, during Maya's nap, I guiltily started searching online for the most-livable towns in British Columbia, researching school districts, crime rates and family statistics. I actually started imagining a life in one of these small towns, hours and hours away from the city I've lovingly called home for these past 6 years.

D wouldn't have to work nearly as hard or as long to support us; the cost of living and the housing prices would be way cheaper than what we're paying now, and therefore we'd have more time to spend as a family. We could easily trade in our two bedroom brownstone for a 6 bedroom house on acreage for half the price. I could send Maya outside to play in the yard, rather than take her to the public park. The sound of traffic and sirens would be replaced with birds and crickets. We'd know our neighbours. We'd be able to see the stars at night. I can't believe I'm typing this, I can't even believe I'm thinking this, but it's all starting to sound so...appealing.

That's not to say that city living doesn't offer some advantages when it comes to raising a kid. We've got a great community centre only one block away. We don't need a car; in fact, we don't even own one, and there is an elementary school just across the street. There are a million great places to take a kid in the city - the aquarium, the planetarium, the library, different neighbourhoods and streets to explore. And as far as amenities, it really doesn't get more convenient. Vancouver is such an awesome city.

So this is all kind of a conundrum. I am really confused. And I need your help.

What would YOU do? Comments, advice, words of wisdom - totally appreciated.

Monday, November 10, 2008

what a difference a year makes

November 11th is a significant date to me. It was my LMP (last menstrual period). This time last year, I was gearing up for the IVF and on November 11th, the "cycle" officially began. Two weeks later (on November 25th) I'd have the egg retrieval and 5 days after that (November 30th), I'd have the transfer. The transfer of one perfect, gosh darn beautiful blastocyst.

This morning, I looked back at my posts on my old blog, The Trying Game, from this time last year. It seems like just yesterday and so long ago at the same time. I was reminded again, like I am every minute of every day, how incredibly blessed I am. I have the baby of my dreams and I am loving every second of motherhood. Every.Single.Second.

This time last year, I remember feeling full of worry, anxiety, and nerves. I remember some dark, dark times. I also remember feeling cautiously hopeful.

I never imagined that my life would turn out this blissful.

This time next year, I will be the mother of a little girl who is one year and three months old. She might be walking, starting to talk.

My birthday is at the end of November. I will be turning 32. For the past few years, I was always a bit sad on my birthday. My birthday reminded me that I was getting older and I wasn't living the life I wanted. I felt like I was failing.

This year will be different. Last year I was a wreck and this year I am completely happy, content and fulfilled. This year, I will wake up on my birthday and look at Maya's sweet face and feel like the luckiest person in the world. I wished for a baby when I blew out the candles on last year's birthday cake. My wish came true. I am finally a mother, and it is everything I hoped for and waaaaaaaay more.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


She did it!  My brilliant little baby can finally hold her head up, nice and steady, all by herself!  What a big girl I have!

I'm so proud.  I'm seriously bursting with parental pride. I must have the smartest, most advanced little baby genius ever born. Of course, I could be biased.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

a day in the life

If you have a baby AND hold down a job or have other kids, you're my hero. If you have a baby AND hold down a job AND have other kids, well, there are just no words to describe my amazement.

I have one baby and my only job is to be a stay-at-home-mum. And I can't believe how fast the day goes and how little I get done. Seriously. Sometimes I look at the clock and it's 7:45am and then 5 minutes later I'll look again and it's 4:30pm. And I can't name a single thing that I've accomplished in that time. But there are women, millions of women out there, who have jobs and multiple kids and still find time to check email, have a hobby and exercise on a daily basis.

What am I doing wrong?

In an attempt to answer this question, I am outlining a typical day in my life with my 10-week-old baby Maya. Please note that the following does NOT take into account if we have to leave the house for any reason (doctor's appointments, grocery shopping, etc.) or if Maya's having one of her hungry or gassy days that require even more of my attention than usual. That's a whole other level of craziness.

It should also be noted that Maya is a fantastic sleeper but a terrible napper. Bless her heart, she will sleep for about 12 hours at night and usually for 6-8 hours at a stretch without waking up to feed. But napping is another story. She takes random catnaps here and there - if I'm lucky - and those typically don't last more than 30 minutes.

So here we go, here is a typical day in the life:

7:00am - Maya wakes up, feeds, change diaper
7:30am - Playtime
8:45am - Feed, diaper change
9:00am - I *try* to get Maya down for a nap, doesn't always happen. If she does nap, I try for a shower, I do laundry, empty the dishwasher, try to get some breakfast, etc.
10:00am - Feed, diaper change
10:30am - Playtime
11:30am - laundry, feed, diaper change
12:00pm - Playtime, if Maya isn't been too demanding I try to eat something quick
1:00pm - Feed, diaper change
1:30pm - *Try* to get Maya down for a nap. If successful, check email, blogs, laundry, etc.
2:30pm - Feed, diaper change
3:00pm - Playtime
4:00pm - Feed, diaper change, more laundry (if you're keeping count, YES, I do laundry ALL day)
4:30pm - Playtime
5:00pm - Feed, play
5:30pm - Feed, play (Maya is always really hungry in the evenings)
6:00pm - Bath time
6:30pm - Feed
7:00pm - Daddy plays with Maya while I make dinner. She usually nods off around 7:00/7:30pm
7:30pm - Parents eat dinner
8:00pm - We watch some TV
9:30pm - Bedtime for parents. I try to wake Maya for a feed around this time so she'll sleep longer but she usually doesn't wake up. Check diaper.
1:00am - Occasionally Maya will wake up for a feed at this time, maybe twice a week.
3:00am - Feed, change diaper
7:00am - We start all over again!

So what am I doing wrong? Where does the time go? Is it me? Am I missing something? I really want YOUR opinion. Please comment if you have any ideas.

I feel like I'm insanely busy all day.  But busy doing what?  I know it seems like I do a lot of feeding, and I do. But I let Maya feed on demand and for as long as she wants. I don't know how else to do it. I don't want her to be hungry. I do want her to feel like she can eat anytime she feels the need. Is that wrong?

Is anyone else experiencing this black hole of time suckage? I feel like I have to formally schedule in cutting my fingernails and drinking a glass of water. And going to the bathroom.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

in touch with the world again

My wonderful darling fabulous husband bought me a new computer. I had a desktop computer before and now I have a shiny new lovely laptop. Which means....I can post a lot more often than I have been since Maya was born AND keep better tabs on all my bloggy friends. Having the mobility of a laptop makes it a lot easier to do computery things with a baby. RIght now, for example, she is asleep next to me while I am clickity-clacking on my new computer on the bed. Hooray for my new computer!

Other news: At our last doctor's appointment (the one with the dreaded vaccines), Dr. M took a swab of Maya's blocked tear duct because it was a tad bit red and irritated looking. She called me yesterday to tell me that the results were in and the eye seems to have a very scant infection. So, she prescribed some eye ointment for us to use three times a day for a few days.

Have you ever tried to put ointment into a baby's eyes? Well let me tell you, it's not easy. The good news is that it seems to be working already. Her eye looks waaaaaay better than it did yesterday. Thank goodness.

Gosh it feels great to be able to post whenever I want now. And to check emails. And surf the web. I don't think we ever need to leave my bedroom again!

Observe: Maya's awake now and we are enjoying our new toy on the bed (this cool new computer has a camera built into the screen). Photo taken with Photo Booth.