Saturday, July 31, 2010

Sleeping baby

She occasionally does nap... if conditions are right!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Practicing her range of emotion

Yesterday Adam was holding the Little before he went to work and I have no idea why, but she would smile at him and then stick her bottom lip out in a huge pout, and then a second later smile again! It was so funny, we were cracking up. She must be practicing her dramatization of emotions.

She has that pouty lip DOWN, doesn't she?  She has learned it gets a big reaction when she does it!

Practicing that sitting up Thing!

She has found her fingers, and they are mmm mmm good!
Avery in her "fluff" (cloth dipe)... she no longer looks like a q-tip in them!  They still give her quite a cushy tushy, though.

Baby feet.  Mmmmmm..... nom nom nom.

She's 13 weeks today!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Just gotta sit up!

*YAWN*  :)

Avery is such a curious baby.  Now that she has figured out that sitting up is a "Thing" and that you can see all around really good when you do it, she wants to be sitting upright ALL. THE. TIME. !!!  She loves to pull herself up when you hold her hands and help her.  Sooo... I went and got her a Bumbo chair to help her sit.  She loves it.  I wasn't going to get this thing, but she wants to sit up so badly and she can't quite do it on her own yet! 
She has changed so much in the last couple weeks and she is getting really good at head and neck control.  She also is smiling all the time.  Just give her a reason to smile and she breaks out in these huge grins.  It's really the cutest when she tucks her chin down and smiles... this picture doesn't do the cuteness justice!


Monday, July 19, 2010

Thyroid Cancer Update & Radioiodine Scans on Oahu

I never blog about thyroid cancer anymore.  Not because it isn't still a Thing I have to deal with.  It just isn't a Big Thing anymore.  I'm down to having scans every two years so I didn't even have to think about that this year.  Yes, it was a pain in the rear to worry about my thyroid levels while I was pregnant, but other than that, it's really sort of a non-issue in my life right now.

I have wanted this blog to be a source of information and consolation for anyone diagnosed with thyroid cancer who is surfing for info on the internet.  I know when I was diagnosed, I was on the internet for EVER reading everything I possibly could about it.  And I really loved reading personal accounts because it makes you feel not so alone, and it gives you an idea of what to expect, and you see that you really can get through it.  I hope that people find the stuff I have written to be useful, comforting or inspiring!

Every once in a while I receive a comment from some such person who found my blog looking for thyca info and I feel like creating the record was worthwhile, such as it is.  "M" asked a couple days ago where I did my radioiodine scan here in Oahu.  It was at Queen's Medical Center in Honolulu.  I'm a military spouse so normally I would go to Tripler Army Hospital, and they do RI scans there, but they couldn't take on another patient at the time so they referred me downtown.  My scan there was about the same as the ones I did on the mainland.  Let me know if you have any more  questions!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

I did it

I submitted my formal resignation.  Avery is happy.  Bring on motherhood full time!

Saturday, July 17, 2010


The Little Elf is 12 weeks old today!  The last of our family left on Wednesday and it's been back to the calm Seiler household I'm used to.  Avery was a real trooper meeting so many new people all at once.  The first day you could tell she was totally overwhelmed, but by the end of the week she was letting people hold her for more than 5 minutes.  She is changing so much recently.  Her face is filling out and she is getting chubbier.  She is also trying so hard to sit up!  When she sits in her bouncy seat, she tries to lean forward and will not rest her head back.  She is also starting to notice that her hands belong to her and she can sort of do stuff with them.  She still can't grab toys on her own, but she is getting so close.  She is finally becoming interested in toys and will stare at one intently if I hold it in front of her.  You can just feel all the neurons in her brain firing!

I am on the verge of quitting my job and I just cannot make myself send the final email that will seal the deal.  I am supposed to end my maternity leave on Monday so it has to be sometime this weekend.  I started talking to my boss in December about possibly returning to work on a part time basis.  I knew when I was pregnant that I would not want to be away from the baby for so long every day.  I've had a confusing back and forth with him over the last month in which he sort of told me no you can't work part time and then at the 11th hour told me ok you can come back part time for a few weeks.  But I think I have pretty much made up my mind to stop working altogether.  I know I don't want to work full time anymore and I know that part time work is only a stop-gap in this job, so I need to just cut my ties now and not drag out the inevitable conclusion.  I don't want to miss out on Avery's life.  And I can't stand the thought of some stranger caring for her.  Plus, she won't take a bottle.  Not even a little.  Sure, maybe she would eventually, after much crying and upset, but I don't really want to put her through that. 

I have many, many worries about stopping work.  Of course there is our financial situation.  Me no longer working means our income is reduced by nearly 50%.  That is a scary equation!  We are lucky that Adam's job provides enough for us to live on without me working, but still, giving up my salary means giving up significant savings and not having to worry about "having enough" ... ever.  Thinking about losing my salary and not working brings grim thoughts and what-ifs to my mind and I'll just say I guess that is the reason we have insurance and LIFE insurance, dear lord take these thoughts from my mind.

Probably my primary concern about stopping my job is that I will be bored and lonely not working.  What if I go crazy as a stay at home mama?  As much as I love Avery, bearing the burden of parenting her constantly, 24/7 is a big job and often a lonely endeavor.  The week my mom left me was HARD, y'all.  Avery is a much easier baby now, but ....  It is still hard for me to take her anywhere since she screams in her car seat and still needs such constant contact and attention.  Mom is still here but she is going to leave me soon/eventually and I will be alone.  Work is a convenient escape and break from constant parenting.

It's funny because if you know me in real life I am kind of a lone wolf.  I like being by myself and can be happy and entertained for hours or days without any company.  But since Avery's birth, I don't really like being alone.  It's like being shouldered with the sole responsibility of baby-care makes it overwhelming and sad!  I can't remember whose blog it was, but somewhere I read that it's like digging and carrying a huge precious stone out of a deep cave in the earth - it's the most beautiful, precious thing, but it's so hard to carry.

But I know in my heart it's the right thing for both me and for Avery.  I can work any time.  I may never work in my field again; I may find myself completely behind the "power curve" if I ever want to try.  But Avery's infancy and childhood will only happen once.  Her time line goes in just one direction.  As cliche as it is, I know that at the end of my life, I will not be thinking I'm so glad I kept working, but rather, I'm so glad I spent all that time with my Little Elf.

I will let you know when I get the guts to send the resignation email.

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Little Elf is baptized!

Yesterday was the baby's baptism!  She did really well and didn't even cry when the priest accidentally poured water in her face.  She looked like a little angel in her baptism dress.  Our families are still here, but everyone is starting to leave today and tomorrow.  It's been fun having so many people around to love on the baby!

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Avery's First Month

Posting is likely to be a bit sparse, if not nonexistent, around here for the next week.  We've got Adam's family - mom, dad, two brothers and a girlfriend - coming to stay with us, as well as my parents and my sister in town!  It's going to be a full house.  We're going to baptize the baby on Sunday and my sister is the godmother, and Adam's youngest brother is the godfather.

In the meantime, check out the slideshow of the book we made of Avery's first month!  I recommend watching it full screen so you can see the text!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Ten Weeks of Avery

My Little Elf is ten weeks old today!  She has been mostly delightful for the past couple weeks.  Thank goodness we passed through the 6-8 week slump of fussiness, nap resistance, wailing and disgruntlement!  Everyone said it would start to get easier around 6 weeks and I was feeling hopeless when it got harder for us!  If there is anything that is true about babies, it's that change is a given.  You never know what each new day will bring.  She is changing all the time.  Sometimes it's a new skill or milestone she hits on a particular day.  Sometimes she has a rough or moody day.  But then the next day it can be totally calm and mellow.

In the past couple weeks, Avery has really become more babyish and less of a newborn infant.  She is much more playful now and will sit and smile at you if you talk to her.  She has also started "talking" herself.  My mom taught her to say "ah-goo" and it's really cute, she will say it!  I'm sure it's just developmentally easy for her to make that noise, and she can't always do it, but when it comes out of her she just about turns herself inside out with excitement.  She also loves getting massaged.  Rub her feet and she will just sit there and bliss out.  Like mother like daughter.

The nights are still occasionally killing me.  We are still co-sleeping and I'm growing to like it more and more.  The best part about having her in bed with me is that I often don't have to get up at all during the night.  Yes, she is still waking up to nurse every 2-4 hours depending on the night, but I don't actually get out of bed unless she poops or her diaper leaks (which unfortunately happened TWICE in the last week!).  It's never the sound you want to hear at 3 in the morning - the baby ripping a huge poo in the silence of the night.  It doesn't always happen, though, so sometimes I get to stay in bed all night.  But when it does, or her diaper leaks, or she is having tummy issues, and I only get 4 hours of restless, broken sleep during the night, I start to feel like the days are impossible and the baby is out to get me and there is no way I will ever be able to hack this motherhood gig. 

I love waking up with her in the morning.  I undo her swaddle and her little arms pop up like rubber bands and she starts stretching and squirming.  Then I nurse her and we doze a little while longer and she's so cute with her little belly against mine and her head resting on my boob and she will occasionally stretch out her arm and whack me in the face.

She still loves to be held constantly.  But she is getting more comfortable with sitting in her bouncy seat or her swing.  Now instead of 2-3 minutes, she will sit there for 10 or 15 before she gets frustrated and demands to be picked up.  This would have me exhausted if it weren't for my mom being here.  I think Avery gets bored of me too, because sometimes when I have her and she starts getting frustrated, Mom will take her and she'll be all smiles again.

As much fun as we are having with her, it is still hard for me to fathom how people have multiple children.  I mean, just logistically, how do you handle taking care of a baby when another child also needs to be fed, bathed, dressed, put to bed, etc.???  All of my energy and attention is going to Avery and I can't imagine having to also care for another kid.  I've heard tons of people say second babies are easier...  There are moments when I think I might be in the one and done club!

Finally, I made an important decision this week.  It sounds like my office is not going to let me work part time.  I told them if that is the case I'm going to stop working altogether.  I'm not even sure I want to work part time, but I'm willing to give it a try if they are going to let me do it for more than a few weeks.  I haven't gotten a response from them on it yet.  As much work as it is to take care of Avery, I honestly can't imagine being away from her for 50+ hours per week.  At this point, I don't think I could leave her at all since she won't take a bottle.  Some babies never do!  I think I might have one of those.  But it's not just that.  I just don't want to be away from her.  I mean, yes, I do want space sometimes, and I can't wait until she is able to entertain herself for a spell while mommy eats breakfast or takes a shower, but I don't want to be at work and now knowing what she's up to or able to kiss her chubby little cheeks or see her smile.  I'm addicted!