Friday, August 18, 2006

settling in

Can you believe that six weeks - half! - of my maternity leave are over as of today? Where did the time go? Eleanor was five weeks old on Thursday. Sometimes it feels like it's flown, and sometimes it feels like she's been here forever.

It's hard to believe how much she's already changed. A month ago she was just a tiny bundle of needs - now she's starting to have a personality. We're starting to discover her likes (being held upright, looking at herself in mirrors, peeing on us as soon as we open her diaper) and dislikes (being strapped into her carseat, being put down while mom and dad eat dinner). She started smiling, very occasionally, last week - there is nothing more heart-melting than sitting down to nurse and getting a huge gummy smile. (I think she may actually be smiling at the boob and not me, but I'll take what I can get.)

She's starting to develop slightly more predictable eating and sleeping patterns; she's going longer during the day (3 hours or so), then cluster feeding in the evening, then going 3-4 hour stretches at night. My mom was visiting again last week, and she helped me get started with a bedtime routine and with transitioning Eleanor to her crib in the nursery instead of the swing in our room. This "bedtime routine" stuff actually works - I think it's the fifth night we've done it, and tonight she went down faster than ever. I'm about to go grab some sleep myself before her first night waking (generally around 2:30). I'm doing pretty well with the sleep deprivation - going for two three-hour stretches with a short feeding in between feels like a hard-earned luxury. Often on weekends Andy will get up with her first thing in the morning and give her a bottle of pumped milk, which also helps.

We're getting better at taking her out and about - when I'm home alone with her during the week it gets hard to work up the motivation to get out, but I feel so much better when I do that I really need to make the effort. She's been to a few restaurants (mostly fast-food places like Quizno's, but a few sit-down places during off hours); to just about every store around; to friends' houses; and today we took her to a local county fair, which she slept through entirely but which gave us some good practice.

Oh, and we're moving...the Northern VA move is definitely on. We're getting ready to put the house on the market. This seemed a lot less daunting before the baby was actually here, but I'm still really excited about it.

OK, need some sleep.


At Friday, August 18, 2006 11:54:00 PM, Blogger Internet Street Philosopher said...

Eleanor's a cute little baby!

At Monday, August 21, 2006 12:37:00 AM, Blogger Julian's Mom said...

Look at those eyes and that mouth! What a gorgeous girl... Congrats on getting through the sleep deprivation thing. I feel like I have to try to take a different philosophical attitude every day to get myself through it. Today, I'm trying a nice big glass of wine and trying to pretend I'm pulling an all-nighter like when I was in college. (Right, pretend I'm 18 again and can totally survive on 3 hours of sleep...)

At Monday, August 21, 2006 6:04:00 PM, Blogger Bronwyn said...

Baby E is absolutely adorable! The move sounds exciting. Time to put down some roots!

At Monday, August 21, 2006 8:46:00 PM, Blogger Rachel said...

She is so beautiful. I am so happy for you guys. I was waiting to see another picture of this little cutie.


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