I've been working on experimenting with various slings and carriers as it (at least theoretically) allows for hands-free baby operating. My sister-in-law lent me a couple of carriers, but Elizabeth is still too little for them. I think they are intended for babies with stable necks, and while Elizabeth can hold her head up pretty well, she is prone to clunking her head down or to the side periodically when the weight is a bit much. So it is still important to hold her head just in case! She'd also slip right out through one of the legs.
So I was very happy when my friend Janet gave me a ring sling as a gift, and with instructions from Slingtastic and Mayawrap.com, as well as a lot of trial and error I think Elizabeth and I have started to get the hang of this!
The sharp eyed may have noticed that Elizabeth pictures recently have featured a lot of sleeping or closed eyed poses.
Why is this, you might wonder? It's pretty simple - when she's awake, she's been channelling Captain Cranky-Pants. Captain Cranky-Pants is slightly less fun to photograph, but still awfully cute!
We made it out of the house today for Elizabeth's first official walk! (We figured that going to visit the midwives doesn't really count, although the distances involved weren't terribly different...) She seems rather overwhelmed by the big world - screwing her eyes up tightly, and then opening them just a crack at a time to peek at all the new sights and sounds.
So far it seems that venturing outside is a good way to quiet her down, so if you happen to venture into our part of the Glebe at 2am some morning don't be too surprised to see a tall skinny guy with a baby walking down the street. Mom of course will be sensibly snoozing in bed.
After the walk Elizabeth snuggled with her many bears. We swear she's actually awake in those photos - not that you can tell...
Time has slowed to a crawl as we learn how to synchronize our lives to the rhythm of a newborn. And yet time is also accelerating at a furious pace - we blinked and somehow Elizabeth is already more than two weeks old!
While her newborn clothing is still mostly too big, she has grown four centimeters since coming home from the hospital and now weighs a solid three kilograms.
Her nails have grown long enough to need clipping twice, which we did with great trepidation after midwife Kim warned us not to worry if we accidentally drew blood since the nail quick grows higher for babies. We forgot to ask for specific advice on how to clip baby nails though. Extensive Internet research to determine proper newborn nail clipping strategy revealed only that some parents are very strange (I cannot imagine biting my child's nails for them, but this is often recommended...), so we borrowed baby nail scissors from Brendan's folks, and armed with parental advice Brendan clipped while I held her steady. We're happy to report that Elizabeth still has all ten fingers.
Aside from a pesky cough that can't quite make up its mind to either go away or settle deeper into my bronchioles, I'm feeling better every day. I'm now steri-strip free and I even fit into my pre-maternity pants! (Well, more or less...)
I am also relieved to find that the leaking issue has subsided somewhat. For those of you wondering, I am collecting at least some of the milk and freezing it for later. I did try both disposable and cotton pads, but even with a lower volume of leakage I'm not a huge fan of either as they need to be changed very frequently and the wet feeling against my skin drives me slightly nuts. What is working for me is the LilyPadz product, which is especially useful overnight. I've also ordered a breathable nursing cup from the States which are similar to a product my mother-in-law used and really liked back in the 70s. The benefit of this product is that it allows your skin to breathe and also collects the milk for storage. I'm hoping that it works well for me too!
John, Clementine and the kids came over to see Elizabeth for the first time yesterday. She does a great imitation of a model baby for visitors so we've decided that we obviously need to invite people over for her "fussy" time between midnight and 3am. After passing the sleeping Elizabeth around for the requisite "oohing" and "ahhing", we settled down for some Big Brain Academy action on the Wii. Elizabeth slept and slept despite lots of noise and laughter as the players received advice on what options to select.
Deborah didn't seem to quite know what to make of Elizabeth, although she definitely wanted to take the adorable princess dress back home with her - it's hard to believe that she is going to be three soon. We're so used to Deborah and Erika being the "babies"!
Dave, Karen, Janice and various grandparents all dropped by as well for some baby therapy time.