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Thursday, 20 March 2014

What to expect when your.........breastfeeding part one

Let me start out by saying I support all Mothers whether they breastfeed, formula feed, mix feed....if it works for you , your doing it right !!

Breastfeeding is HARD ! Yes it is rewarding and well worth the engorgement,  cracked nipples, blocked ducts and if your really unlucky a good bout of mastitis. ....do not get me started on the dodgy maternity underwear.
Benefits are in abundance , firstly the health benefits for you and your baby , it helps lower the chance of ovarian & breast cancer in mum , it helps stimulate your uterus back to its normal size, then there's the milk on tap whenever wherever,  no bottles -and all the jobs that come with them, no heating up or trying to cool it or keep it right.....PLUS its free...bonus! Not to mention the baby bonding naww.


But if you choose as a first time mum to breastfeed .....you don't quite realise what your in for (even if you went to the classes ) until your in the thick of it......that first ever feed with Olivia was so odd ( sensation wise) ....but I was lucky she was an awesome little feeder. ..I'm told she was ready and rearing.. sucking the midwives finger before she was completely delivered. ...and she left me with several hickeys before I realised she was looking for milk . The best thing for all is to get that baby on the breast as soon as possible.
I will be honest Mat and I did the obligatory breastfeeding class provided by the hospital and I am glad.......because Mat is a researcher & avid learner on anything that sparks that complex brain of his ...and to be frank  my attention span was less than perfect at 32 weeks ...so I looked like I was taking it all in but Mat actually did....he was a real man that day.....the only Dad to volunteer to wear the boobie apron.
Boobie apron ...my brave husband

My understanding of correct positioning and latch technique was.....lacking. ....So here in public I thank my husband ,without his help and support and actually teaching me correct technique I may have failed. .miserably. 

Definitely skill yourself in these areas....use your midwife/ nurse, use the wise ladies in your life, read the books and even you tube. 
For information's sake incorrect latch felt like lots of tiny hot needles .

The new born stage
Generally your baby will feed alot to help stimulate your milk to come in , so let them its a good thing ,usually milk makes an appearance day 3 -5...and you will rock a killer cleavage...feel like your chest is going to explode and you will feel hot and get sweaty ....truthfully the milk making an appearance is not pleasant. 
You are here by connected non stop to your baby, and until around the 8 week mark that's normal and exhausting......at some points of both Olivia's and Loxtons newborn days I did nothing else but breastfeed I did not leave the lounge.....!
Generally cluster feeds signalled a growth spurt.
Usually I would have a very hungry baby at around 4ish right till  my bedtime  10ish. ...which is at the time ,consuming but very normal...baby is filling up for night time .

sleep.....some do, some don't. ....I have been blessed with 2 fairly good sleepers....but that's not to say we haven't had our sleepless nights ....but here we would do a feed at around 10pm wake at 2am  for a feed then anywhere from 4am till 6am another feed then usually I would be up....my babies usually went back for more Zzzzz until 8am......So I think I was blessed but I also think ALLOWING them to cluster feed before going down for the night was a major help in a very few wakes night....by week 4 -6 both my kids slept through from 10pm till 5am until 4 month sleep regression (another subject all together)......I hope others can be so lucky.....I recommend lots of feeds in the day and allowing for the cluster feed before bedtime, pair that with a decent bedtime routine and your on the right track. 
Check back soon for more.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

my days

 I recently saw something similar to this post on another blog I sometimes read

Every one of us lives differently has different ideas , routines  and interests.
This post is about my day and my family......
People generally like to ask "what do you do all day !?" Like I am on some extended vacation, let me tell you and I don't mind saying it I do not stop ....... most days , I mean I do have pj days where I cannot seem to get going ( we are all entitled to those days right!?)
I recently resigned from my job as my maternity leave was up and there was no financial viability of my return to paid work, so for now  I am officially a stay at home mother .....this is my job, I take it seriously...... my husband goes out and earns the bucks so for ME it is important to keep our children happy our surrounds tidy (as they can be with kiddlets) and tummies full of healthy nutritious meals  .
I take pride in providing a certain ambiance in my home for my husband our children and the occasional visitor.

So here goes pictures and all ;)....

I generally start my day at anytime from 5am or rather my children start my day *yawns* ....some days I really could do with a few more minutes sleep but nonetheless I am awake.
My Little Ones

Now I don't drink coffee , tea is my poison ....what I need to kick start my day and psyche....sometimes if Mat is going to work  & I'm lucky he will bring me one in bed.

Loxton is still enjoying the benefits of breastfeeding and comes into my bed for a first morning feed.....great for Mummy & son bonding.....Liv usually joins us for a quick cuddle.
 
I generally like to get most of the housekeeping out of the way in the morning as the children are happier and more content.....then this leaves me afternoons for children's activities and miscellaneous things.
 
Olivia's breakfast is usually next on the agenda...Loxton is usually happy to wait and explore the toy cupboard and let the milk settle, I sneak in and put on the first load of washing. 


Soon enough we have toy chaos

Full clean dishwasher, beds, morning games and Abbey Dog
While the kids play/eat I will empty the dishwasher put away dishes and start to fill it again with the breakfast dishes , let Abbey out and start making beds....then quickly have my cornflakes while talking with Loxton & Liv .
Breakfast time, clothes for the day, washing & sneaky Abbey
I will then start the task of organising clothes for the kids, get Loxton his breakfast,  and pull out the washing from machine and quickly hang it out while Loxton is contained and busy eating toast. ..liv might help me or play on the back veranda .
Yum breakfast, Abbeys stolen prize
Sometimes sneaky Abbey has managed to spirit away with a piece of clean washing from the basket , rolls it in the dirt and requires me to scrub it out .....Abbey and I have a love/annoyance relationship....above picture of one of Olivia's better dresses meant that on this day it was an annoyance kind of day.
 
 
 
As time ticks on I endeavour to tidy the kitchen, vacume up all the mornings crumbs and finish putting away dirty dishes in the dishwasher my trusty side kick LOVES the dishwasher and always loves to help ....afterwards we finally get dressed and I squeeze in a shower ,Olivia generally draws, plays with her play dough on the back veranda, reads or plays with her pony castle or dolls house or follows me around helping .

Having a cluttered house sometimes leads me to feel like my mind is cluttered so I try to keep things in a orderly fashion ....rules in our house for all the kids (and adults too) is if you want to move onto something new , make sure you pack up your present toys/activity/game.....I find this helps keep things moving without an overload of 'stuff'  throughout the house ....mind you, rules aren't always followed.



Made beds













By now I have usually managed to get the house looking mostly spic and span , beds are made , dusting of lounge, dining room and quick wipe in all bedrooms. Loxton follows me or he and Olivia play trucks or blocks ( and fight over toys...while I try teach about sharing...we are not all there yet ;) )


We organise some fruit and drinks and head outside for morning tea together ,afterwards usually both kids will play on the back veranda while I hang out another load of washing ,then quickly wipe down the bathroom.



Loxton is usually ready for a small morning  nap ..so off he goes and that leaves some time for just Liv and I .....we like to read !  Generally I read to Olivia and then she reads the book to me (we are learning)

Reading is Awesome !
Then Liv has a quick lie down ...all is quiet for now
 


Zzzzz.....hehehe.


While the children rest I organise lunch



 
 
Sweet potatoe cakes (left over from last nights dinner)


 Just as I start cooking these up I hear some mumblings from up the hallway Loxton is telling his teddy stories.....he will soon get bored and start yelling out .

 
Everyone is wide awake , bushy tailed and....hungry, because it's such a nice day we eat on the veranda again .
 
Olivia tells me about the dreams she just had...that girl can tell a story !
Loxton eats and laughs at me .
 
 
 
 
 


After lunch we tidy up the dishes and today we have a box to have some fun with ...Olivia loves tunnels and crawling through things right now so we cut two entrances into the box put an old tea towel over one end as a door and Livvy decorates it with Stickers and some pencils ...Loxton wants to decorate too....but Liv delegates him to 'just watching' duties.
We spend quite some time playing with this box ....Liv also gets out her Tunnel and Dora tent and makes an indoor obstacle course .....Loxton Loves chasing us through.
 Loxton generally has a second nap but today he did not go down.

 
 
 
Around about now I might put the little vacume around again.....Loxton will chase me around he is intrigued by the vacume cleaners .
 
I follow a weekly/ (if I'm really organised fortnightly)  meal planner ....tonight we are having a pie made with the left over stew from the night before with salad. This means I only have an easy dinner to organise today ....So I make up the pie and prepare a small salad....the kids play around me .
 
 
 
Now that dinner is ready to pop in the oven later we can head outside , see the dogs , feed the chickens and have a run around  while Mummy waters the veggie garden..... and later today I might even fit in a workout I have not been as active as I would like lately due to illness, time and other issues ..but I'm trying to get back into a decent routine to allow for some physical activity (at least 3 times a week) .
 
 
Both Kids love being outdoors.....Loxton Loves patting tipsy our other dog and watching the chickens .....if he has any grass time he eats it so we have to  be careful or he won't have room for dinner.
 
We collect the eggs and Olivia "weeds" the driveway .
 
I quickly head back up stairs and get some afternoon tea for the kids to have while I exercise and a water for myself and we go to the shed so I can do some exercise.
 
Today my workout consists of  fast pace walking on the treadmill and sit-ups, girlie push ups, some other core exercises and some weights......I have an audience and Olivia runs around collecting things for me .I manage just over 30 minutes then Loxton starts to get bored on our way back to the house I pick in all the washing .
 
 
 
 
I quickly pop Loxton in the playpen and have a shower Olivia keeps me company and tells me stories.
When I get out I pop the plug in and run a bath for the munchkins....bath time would have to be Loxtons favourite time of the day, he and Liv splash each other , roll over and try get mummy wet...it's wonderful and probably a favourite time for me as there is an abundance of giggles and smiles and what parent doesn't love those !
 
After I get both kids dressed ...which is always a chore Loxton is like a slimy snake and wants to crawl around naked , Olivia wants help or doesn't..... depending on the day...both always end in frustration( mostly mine ha ha).....We have a few minutes of quiet time....Loxton goes into his room and has some books and toys Livy plays with her bits and pieces
 
 
While the children are occupied I put the dinner in the oven and fold up the washing and quickly pop it away.
Dinner is ready within 30 minutes , we all eat together at the table and I battle Olivia to eat her dinner ...Loxton eats all his without a blink, Matt is home later so his dinner is served up and waiting for him . After I have finished I put all dishes in the dishwasher ( I put the timer on for it to come on at 2am) , clean up the kitchen...while the children finish dinner   
When Matt gets home we might quickly skype Nan and Pop in Tasmania....usually on a later night Olivia goes to bed without a bedtime story....sometimes I might read while Loxton has a bedtime breastfeed or if it's a day when Matt is home we read a story. 
 
THE KIDS ARE IN BED !!!!!!
 
usually we have a chat, watch some television, have a cup of tea.....and i fall asleep on the lounge , Matt wakes me up and I drag myself to bed and fall asleep AGAIN. 
 
This is a typical day...throw in the occasional tantrum (The children and my own ;) ) Lots of nappy changes, teething troubles and yes even yelling.
 
Some day are different of course , Olivia goes to Kindy 2 days per week , We go shopping, to playgroup, I have baking days as I make all our  pizza bases ,biscuits , cakes etc and the bread maker does the bread  ..... some days Matt is home, some days we head out for family fun, we go visiting, we have visitors...but I try to always have a routine or schedule we thrive much better that way.
 
 
 
How do you spend your days?
Are you a working Mum/Dad?
What chore annoys you the most ?
Favourite activity with the children/ your partner/ friends? 

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

My Little Boy turns ONE !

Well This year has flown by .!.



I cannot believe that this time last year I was sitting in a hospital room waiting for the contractions to ramp up .....feeling excited but full of fear for what was ahead of me (it turned out to be not so bad) .


Loxton came slipping into our family at 9.21am on the 6th of March 2013 and what joy he has bought ... I can only imagine how much more we are in store for.


The First year of Loxtons life has taught me not to be so rigid ....that it will all work out okay and that contrary to my own rambling mind I "CAN" do this parenting gig without  major disaster happening so Olivia has gained a better mother by becoming a sister ;).


















The first few months of Olivia's life were a blur of sleepless nights, dirty nappies and unexplainable crying episodes (both my own and Olivia's) . I am thankful for my experiences the first time round it made it so much easier when Little Loxton came along .

I was pretty relaxed and have had only the occasional stress "meltdown" , Loxton has been a fairly easy baby , perhaps a tad clingy but a chilled out little man none the less.
I was prepared for the frequent and long nursing sessions and I  implemented a loose routine straight away...which meant knowing his cues for hunger and sleep, within being home a few days we were only  having the one wake up in the night for a quick feed.which then led to a few months of sleeping right through (don't hate me)...punctuated by a few scattered wakeful nights here and there usually due to a growth spurt or some other infant issue.

We managed a 2 week driving holiday (and a visit to my In-laws) to Tasmania when loxton was 4  months old.....we even took my 85 year old grandmother along......usually this might equal some stress but somehow we ALL came away unscathed and it only took a few days to settle into our routine when we returned home ...although our nights  changed to include  more wake-ups at night.











                              Loxton is a strong little boy with a curious sense of adventure

 















 
Loxton has developed a cheeky sense of humour over the last few months....we are in for some trouble later on along with some awesome days of fun and laughter.
 
 
 
 
So far Loxton has decided that walking is for chumps....why walk when your Sister/Mum/Dad/Nana collects every exciting thing that needs to go in your mouth...... for you ;) , we do alot of cruising along the furniture though and he can crawl to any dangerous object within nano seconds.
 
Not to many words pop out ...that's not to say he doesn't know how to say them .....I get plenty Mamma's when he doesn't want to go down in his cot for a nap,
Dad is used more as a way to describe happiness,
We are also throwing out the occasional Dog and Cat (words not literal dogs and cats...although if he could get hold of em).
Clapping is fun in Loxton land as well as pointing to everything .
If he has a rumbling tummy EVERYONE knows ....it's definitely put across with a series of wails and grunts ....I fill his spoon up and pass it to him when he's slurped that one dry he gives me a
"buh buh" and passes the spoon back (clever boy) for more...... of course.
 
As for weight at 12 months according to my scales he is sitting at 10.5kg but feels alot heftier.
 
Loxton gives amazing kisses and will seek me out for a cuddle *love*
He is still breastfed first thing in the morning and before bed....we will soon be winding down i think
 
 
One special thing for me is watching Olivia and Loxton together....they clearly adore one another but frequently have spats (already...*sigh*) but that makes me love watching them all the more as it's hilarious to see loxton fight back if he feels he should get the red blocks ...yes yes come back in a few years I'm sure the tune will have changed....on a serious note I am glad that they have each other ...having no siblings I value that I have given them both someone else to turn to if they need too .   
 
favourite things
  • His Mum....of course
  • Anything that has wheels or spins
  • Loves animals becomes VERY animated when he sees them...will bark at the dogs LOL!
  • talking to Nan and Pop on skype
  • Cuddles with Nana J
  • Food....any...food
  • Pulling Olivia's hair
We will have a little family dinner with my Mum and Grandma tomorrow evening and a small party in our local park on Sunday with a few family and friends .

Thank-you for being such a lovable little guy & cementing this family together , eating everything I put in front of you and for teaching me that Love does get bigger.
 




 
 
 
 
Posts coming soon- A day in the Life of 'this' sahm .

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Facebook

I am not very technologically savvy and I know there is a better way to do this ...but for now until I figure these things out if you want to follow my blog via facebook, please like my page via the following link

https://www.facebook.com/pages/My-journey-InfertilityPregnancy-and-beyond/617775448279520?ref=hl


cheers :)

It's not all lollipops and playgrounds !

One thing that I struggled/struggle with since becoming a mother twice over .....is feeling guilty about not being thankful when we are having a "challenging" day, and to be honest most days offer challenges.

Sometimes I feel terrible that I am not enjoying every moment (even the trying ones) with these two little people......I am coming to realise that it's okay to have these little moments because despite the hard bits I love being a Mother and it is what I wished, hoped & dreamed for.

Sometimes my heart fills and overflows for these little people that we created.

10 things that I dislike but are all part of being a Mother

  1. That baby cry that inconsolable one..that cry you just cannot seem to settle...it's not the cry as much as my inability to remedy what's causing it.
  2. Olivia's big tear welled eyes when she hugs me and looks up at me when dropping her at kindy....I feel so torn leaving her there.
  3. That one night Olivia eats a particular food and claims it's her "new" favourite...but the next night she spends  hours playing with said exact same food and announces she does not like this anymore.
  4. Watching your child do something that is guaranteed to end in tears & bruises and perhaps blood but being to far away to avert the inevitable.
  5. Finally getting that overtired, cranky baby/toddler to sleep only for the phone to ring, the other child to yell, or a door to slam resulting in one extra grumpy over tired baby/toddler being awoken so you can start the whole process of getting them to sleep again
  6. Olivia needing any medical attention from the doctor......she carries on like a pork chop
  7. Crazy people who think it's okay to put their fingers and or lips all over my child's face....as much as it's nice you think my child is cute please don't touch them unless absolutely necessary
  8. Any question's about my views on vaccinations or circumcision
  9. That even when I get the chance I cannot seem to sleep past 6am
  10. The feeling that I just never seem to get it right ....even when I put all my heart and soul into it 

sometimes it's hard

When you suffer any form of infertility.....the path to children or accepting that you may never experience parenthood is a bubble of intellectual & physical pain and an emotionally and spiritually draining ride.

Often that bubble can burst over the couple and it's effects are wide reaching............
 
One or both partners can experience an array of feelings and the key to moving through infertility is to know that it is more than a physical condition, often  feelings of anger, anxiety, frustration, helplessness, loneliness, grief, envy, and even depression are all there front and centre.
 
Staying connected to one another is imperative you are the only ones who know your own journey.....others may have similar experiences , but we are all different and  we walk these roads our own way.
 
Some couples will move inwards...protecting themselves from that pregnant friend or that colleague who has just given birth ....or make excuses when offered invitation to a baby shower or christening.
 
Others will branch out , sharing their journey with family and friends gaining confidence from support groups.
 
With Infertility becoming more common ,it is often asked how can I approach  a person/couple experiencing infertility.
Here are some points that I found or have learned from others, were helpful in easing the pain of disappointment of infertility.
 
  • Never downplay or offer empty sympathies if someone starts to let you into their journey....let them speak , just listen.........then if you feel you have someway that you may ease their anxieties tell them....ie - perhaps your friend has just told you she is on her 4th cycle of Ivf and that it is mentally and physically draining .....perhaps offer to drive them to their appointments or some home cooked freezer meals so that they have a meal after those hard days -perhaps after a negative test when preparing a meal seems like the hardest thing to do.  
  • While it may be at times painful for them to hear do not refuse to mention anything to do with pregnancy/children .....this can often be felt as a huge cold shoulder that your not good enough to discuss these things with ..that your knowledge is not important enough to be asked about...at the same time let them know it's okay to change the subject ....you will often find they are happy to talk about your sisters new baby.
  • Still invite them to family functions ie- Baby showers, baptism's , naming ceremonies....and don't be offended if they choose not to come or bow out on the day...they might be feeling especially fragile that day...perhaps they have only harvested a few eggs, perhaps a test has come back negative.....it in no way reflects on your friendship..be there when they are ready to face the world again.  I was once not invited to a baby related function due to my struggles and I admit I was deeply hurt .
  • Do not suggest you should "just" adopt ! ....most of couples experiencing infertility have thought about that ....it's not an exactly a easy process ...and acting like it's a casual way to get kids is ....frustrating.
  • Try not to offer  too many ...have you tried this....my brothers best friends aunties dentist tried this ...yada yada ya. especially if they have been trying awhile ...chances are if you've heard about something they have already tried it;).
  • This one...after a miscarriage......"At least you know you can get pregnant" .....don't say this EVER! 
  • Encourage them if you see a deep depression to seek some professional help....then offer to go with them if they need support.
  • Don't ask them ..."So which one of you doesn't know how to do it right"? or "Which one of you is broken"?

Many people don't understand why infertility can be so can upsetting or so draining .....it's simple when you come to want something so desperately and month after month(sometimes for many years) you are denied that one thing over and over again it simply drains your soul and the colour from your everyday life.

Now we are very blessed we have come to the end of our infertility journey (for now) we have two children thanks to someone finally listening and investigating the whys instead of offering empty niceties.....it may have taken us awhile thanks to uninterested doctors and specialists who saw me/us as young with plenty of time and a husband who's employment in the army meant that sometimes it was just impossible to even "try" for weeks/months on end.

To those perhaps still running the race ...I send you strength to keep going for the ending you want or the applause for accepting the one you never wanted.