Friday, July 22, 2011

Heat induced delirium

I have think we have really gone insane. And I blame it completely on this heat.

In case you haven't heard, Maine is suffering through a heat wave (along with the rest of the country).

We have no AC. Really, here in Maine, there is no need, and living in Maine on the water, there haven't been many times where we wished we had AC. We usually have a great sea breeze and our home is usually very comfortable.

Except for today.

The highs hit at least 88 degrees.

Inside of our house.

It hasn't been fun. We've been dripping with sweat all day. I feel bad for Callum because he's like a heat box, and putting him near me makes me sweat even more. It's tough. I've taken two showers, soon to be three, and a few dips in the kiddie pool!

Tonight, we went lobstering out in Casco Bay with some friends. When we arrived to Portland, it was a balmy 102 degrees. HOT. Thankfully, there was a nice breeze out on the water which made our trip tolerable and a lot of fun! The beer made it more tolerable, too. After dinner, we headed out to dinner with friends and suffered through some more beers!

As we were driving home, we were dreading walking into our house.

We walk in. Look at the thermometer and once again.....86 degrees. It was hot.

I told the girls to take their clothes off and head outside to take a dip in the waterslide pool. They stripped so fast and before we knew it, we had three n aked girls swimming in the pool. They thought it was the coolest to be swimming in the dark.

I went outside to dip my feet and before I knew it, the delirium set in.

I look up and there is my husband coming outside. N aked. 

Don't worry, our backyard is secluded by trees. So no one was scared.

Then before I knew it....

I was n aked.

And then finally, Callum was n aked. 

Yep, you read that right, all six of us were sitting in a kiddie pool n aked. 

And it felt ohhhhh so good! And I blame it all on the heat!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Would you like some iron with your breastmilk?

Today, Callum had his 4 month check up at 3.5 months. Since we are moving next week, I wanted to get Callum's well visit in now so I wouldn't have to find a pediatrician right away - I'd prefer to have time to find a pediatrician that fits our parenting style.

Anywho, we had to see a different doctor (ended up to be a pediatric nurse practitioner), since ours was on maternity leave :( She was very pleased with Callum's growth and development. He is now weighing in at a whopping 12lbs (10%) and 22'' long. It's hard to believe he has DOUBLED his weight since coming home from the NICU. For being 3.5 months and being 4 weeks early and having such a rough start, he is developing normally - smiling, cooing, starting to laugh, starting to grasp at things, etc. It was like music to my ears. Of course, I still worry about what is in store for Callum down the road, but for now, we will rejoice in the things he is doing normally and only hope things continue this way!

We talked about his demeanor and his home-life, etc, and then I got the big question....

"So, have you thought about starting solid foods?" 

The question caught me off guard because our regular pediatrician knows I don't feed our children solids at such a young age and has always been 100% on board with this. I told her with the girls we did not start solids regularly until about seven months. She then started to tell me about the research done and how infants should be given food at an earlier age, particularly breastfed babies, because of iron stores. I was cringing because there was no way in hell that I would be giving my infant - who can barely hold his head up, or grab at a toy, or know what solid food is - something other than breastmilk. She then said, well you can give him an iron supplement (hmmmm, a possibility, I thought), and then......the kicker!

"Well, a side effect of iron could be hard poops for the baby to pass. So, you may want to give him some juice, or water. 

Great, thanks. So, tonight, I'll just puree some fish or chicken or beef, and give it to him by spoon, then I'll follow his big meal with a bottle of apple juice. Yep.

I also tend to follow the lead of Dr. Sears, and this is what he has to say about babies and iron. Now, maybe there is some other, more cutting edge research than what he says, but to me, if our bodies were meant to make breastmilk, and meant for our babies to receive breastmilk, then there should be plenty of iron in our milk to support our babies and need for sufficient iron. Don't get me wrong, there are reasons some babies should receive supplemental iron, but I don't think our children qualify for any of those reasons.

None of our girls have ever had food any earlier than 6 months. I tend to follow the baby led approach with our children. Meaning, they don't get pureed foods, other than yogurt, and start pretty much with table food. I was a bit peeved at the appointment and thankful we have had such an awesome pediatrician for our family, who has been 100% supportive of our parenting decisions thus far. Our girls are happy, healthy and normally developed children, and I won't change anything for Callum - unless of course, something different presents itself.

I tend to think about first time mothers who don't have the education on breastfeeding and think about why they may choose not to breastfeed, or wean early, or give their young babies solid foods (which puts your milk supply at risk, too!) or other things. Giving my young infant juice or water or anything other than breastmilk at this stage is just not needed - no way, no how. Yeah, maybe an iron supplement may benefit, but for now, we will not be giving my 12lb infant chicken or beef. That will come, but for now, he will continue to receive breastmilk and breastmilk only. Obviously, he is having no problems growing and thriving on just that, and I intend to keep it that way until he is developmentally ready for something else.

Monday, July 18, 2011


I hate gum. I will chew a piece of gum every now and then, but overall, I hate gum. I hate that it sticks to everything. And it makes me cringe that my lovely husband introduced our oldest girls to gum. Thank you, honey.

To  me:
kids + gum = disaster.

Tonight, Kevin and I took the kids out for ice cream. He is finished with work until we move to Washington DC (which is in less than two weeks - cringe!). So, until we move to DC next week, we are enjoying our last days here in Maine by doing the things we love to do!

On our way home, Mairead starts crying and yelling at Lilah. After ignoring it for a few minutes, praying they will work it out themselves, it was clear that was not happening. Kevin finally asked what was going on...

"Lilah threw gum at me and it landed in my hair" says Mairead.

"HUH???" (how the *@$! did she get gym?) "LILAH where did you get gum???" thinking she had saved it from a time she's had gum...

"I picked it up off the ground" says Lilah

"At the ice cream place???" I ask

"YES" (lilah)

"Did you chew it???" I ask, praying she would say no.


Can I also mention that I had the honor of pulling the already chewed gum by some stranger out of my daughters hair???? GROSS.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

She may be rough and tough...

...but, she's still a baby.

And she still loves to nurse.

I don't talk about tandem nursing our children nearly enough. It's been a huge part of my life, and our children's life. I never thought I'd turn into this earthy crunchy mamma who breastfeeds her children until  they are over two, cloth diapers, tandem nurses, homeschools and all the fun little things that go with it - though, I admit, I will always like a little glamour with my crunch. Always. 

It's hard to look at Clara and think of her as a baby. I don't know what it is, but the moment you give a child a sibling, it seems like they grow up instantly. I remember seeing Clara after I had Callum, and she looked so grown up, but yet, she was barely 19 months old. A baby. She is a baby, and I try to remind myself of this daily.

I don't nurse Clara that often in a 24 hour period, she is too busy for that, but come bed time, she will grab her lovey and her blanket, say "rock" and we'll snuggle together. I'll cradle her in my arms and then she'll say "Moot...moot", meaning milk. I'll let her nurse, and while she enjoys rocking and nursing with her mamma, I will sing her favorite song, 'The A,B,C's' , she will come off of my breast, and say "C,D" asking me to repeat the song. I will sing again, and maybe again, but almost always, I will finish the night off with 'You are My Sunshine". We will talk about our day, and enjoy some quiet time together.

I usually do not nurse Clara and Callum together. For some reason, I have never enjoyed nursing my children together. I feel like it is their own special time with me, so whenever possible, they nurse separately. On occasion, Callum will be fussy while I am putting Clara to bed, so I will nurse both of my babies together while I rock and sing to them. It's special because I really think Clara enjoys rocking and nursing with her baby brother. She will hold his hand, touch his head, and be really, really sweet. I love seeing her love on her brother so gently because usually, she is so excited about Callum, that she can be quite rough with him.

Sometimes Clara will ask to nurse at nap time, and sometimes I will let her, and sometimes I will say "not today", and she's okay with it. When she's sick, she can nurse whenever she wants. I love that I still nurse her, she is still a baby, and it is still a very important part of her life. I feel so lucky that I have been able to nurse all of our children together.......Mairead and Lilah....Lilah and Clara and now Clara and Callum. It's something I never thought I would ever consider, but now, I couldn't imagine doing it any other way. It is something they can share together right from the very start.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Mammas just wanna have fun!

Tonight we ordered pizzas and roasted s'mores at our house with friends.

The kids had lemonade.

The adults had strawberry mojitos.

Kristen had this grandiose idea of jumping into the marsh up the street from our house. At first, it sounded crazy. After some mojitos, it sounded fun!

Me and Kristen threw our bathing suits on, and our hubby's and all of the kids walked down to the water.

The kids were crying because they wanted to go swimming, too. was time for the mammas to have some fun and for the kids to watch for a change!!!

This is what we looked like:

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Just another night...

With four small children 5 and under, there generally is never a dull moment.

On Friday afternoon, we set out for an evening in downtown Portland. We had to make a stop at a local children's boutique as they carried pediped shoes for the girls. Clara was in desperate need for another pair of shoes, and being the shoe connoisseur she is and only wanting to wear pedipeds, we had to make a stop!

Of course, as the six of us enter this little boutique, the silence ends. We are instantly noticed and recognized by the owner. Clara, almost immediately, notices these pair of shoes. Kevin lets her put them on, and as soon as she gets up to prance around the store we hear something....

"Squeak! Squeak"

What the ............... Kevin says.

The shoes squeak. LOUD. 

Of course, the shoes were on sale, and thank God for that as I am pretty sure there was no way Clara was going to take the damn shoes off. Thankfully, the owner told us the squeaks can be removed from the shoe. So, on they went, and Clara was a happy girl!

After our mission was completed, we met friends for dinner at Flatbread awesome pizza place! Nothing like fresh, organic flatbread pizza and beer, of course!

Clara would run around, and the squeaks from her shoes were quite obnoxious. Everyone noticed them, and laughed. It was hysterical, but I am sure everyone thought it was even funnier because it wasn't their child.

At the end of dinner, we all left and gathered outside. Clara came to me telling me she had had an accident. I took her to the bathroom, removed her pants and underwear (she's been in underwear for a few weeks now!) and took her back outside. Pant-less. Yeah, I surely am not getting mother of the year award for forgetting an extra pair of clothes.....but whatever.

So, we said our good-byes to our friends and make our trek back to our car. Poor Clara had to walk back to the car with her bare bottom and squeaky shoes. A perfect combination for lots of attention from others walking in downtown Portland! It was hilarious! I am sure people were thinking "what the hell????"

Friday, July 8, 2011

Three months.

Happy three months to the sweetest baby boy we know.

Three months seems like it was so long ago. I find it hard to believe that three months has gone by since our sweet baby boy came into our lives. While the first 11 days of his life hit us like a ton of bricks, and brought emotions that we prayed we'd never have to deal with in our lifetime, he showed us what is important in life, and just how strong a newborn can actually be.

I can barely remember what our life was without Callum. I look at my belly and am still in awe that he was inside of me just three months ago. It just seems so long ago. Callum is the sweetest baby. He is so good and we are so lucky to have him in our life. He is the easiest baby, so content and lovable. He is an awesome sleeper. He still sleeps a lot of the day, with times of wakefulness for about an hour or so. Those hours are generally full of smiles and him starting to really come into himself. He's starting to make those sweet baby sounds and recognizing familiar faces. His sisters light up when he looks at them and smiles. It truly makes their day. He is starting to enjoy time under the play mat, that is, when none of his sisters are around to sit on him, smother him, and interrupt his time to just play quietly!

As far as sleeping goes, he generally goes down for the night between 10-11pm and will wake up anywhere between 4-6am, generally more towards the 6am time. There are times, like today, that I will wake him up at 6am to nurse because my boobs feel like they are going to burst open! I will bring him into bed when he first awakes, we will snuggle, he will nurse, and we'll go back to sleep. Most mornings I am up before he is, and he'll stay asleep in our bed until 9-930am. It's like a gift! As it gives me time to give the girls breakfast, prepare for the beach or whatever it is that needs to be done.

As a mother to four children, 5 and under, I have to say having a baby who is so easy is like a gift from God. He makes my life easy. All those days I was worried sick about how I would handle four small children, little did I know, it would be like this. We are so unbelievably lucky. But, I am sure once he is mobile, payback will surely be a bitch! That's okay, I'd rather him be easy now :)

So, as I sit here and he is snuggled tightly into boppy against my skin, nursing, I will enjoy every precious moment I have. He is such an easy baby, loves to nurse, and is starting to show signs of "excitement" as he begins to nurse. I love it.

What joy he has brought to our family. I cannot wait to see what this little prince brings to our house full of princesses. We love you, Callum John.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


You've probably heard me mention how much I love summer, especially New England summers a million times. Well, you're about to hear about how much I love summer even more.

The last few weeks have been filled with so much outdoor time, beach time, family time, fun time that I can hardly keep up with myself. The girls have been dead tired by the end of the days, but each day, wake up ready for more fun. I guess it's the fact that we are about to leave Maine in a few weeks that has me on overdrive trying to enjoy Maine as much as we possibly can while we are here.

The 4th of July weekend was no different. The weather was beautiful. On Friday night, we grilled pizzas and had a fire with S'Mores with some good friends of ours. The kids were up until 1030pm and having a blast together. Saturday we spent the day at Scarborough beach playing in the sand and catching up with some friends. We had a nice dinner outside as a family and enjoyed the evening together! Sunday was a bit cloudy with some showers, so we headed to LL Bean for some shopping and fun. The girls got their faces painted and we did some shopping! Monday was the 4th, my friend from high school and her family came for a visit. She has three girls pretty much the same ages as our girls, so it was an instant hit. We headed to the beach, along with my parents, for a beautiful start to the 4th of July. The kids had so much fun and the ocean was a HOT 63 degrees! Unheard of in July! Mairead body surfed, rode the waves with me and had a blast! It was awesome catching up with my girlfriend and getting to know her husband and family. We all grilled out and headed downtown Portland for the fireworks. All the kids (there were 11 kids in all - a few friends of ours joined us) had a blast, running around, eating, waving sparklers all around and eventually watching the fireworks. It was a perfect end to the perfect weekend!

Me & Molly with our 7 beautiful children! Times sure have changed :)

Today, we were invited to a friends camp for the day. They were spending the week on Long Lake here in Maine for the week. So, I thought it would be fun to take everyone there for the day. I got everything ready last night in preparation to leave here by 9am. I couldn't believe we were actually out of the house, on our way, at 910am! It took us over an hour to get there, but, it was totally worth it. The girls had an absolute blast! They swam. They fished. We went for a few boat rides. They went on a canoe. Jumped off the dock. And absolutely wore themselves out! It was so much fun for everyone, including myself. The ride home was great, too. Clara passed out in minutes, so me and the big girls stopped for an ice cream treat. It really was one of the best days yet this summer, except Kevin wasn't there with us. I wish he could have been there to see how much fun the girls had on the boat. It makes me so excited for the future when we can do things like this all the time!

I have so many things I still want to do with the girls before we leave Maine that I am not so sure we will be able to fit it all in! And these aren't new things, just all the things we love to do together in the summer.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Toddler $trip Tease

Clara wouldn't be a "Fairy" girl if she didn't like to prance around n aked. Any chance our girls get, they $trip. We are constantly telling our girls to "put underwear on" or "get dressed" or "leave your clothes on".

Saturday at the beach was no different.

One minute Clara was walking down to the water. The next minute, she was walking away from the water...

Thankfully, she stopped there...