Monday, June 30, 2008

Now I have to listen to the bitching.

Note bindi dot.  This is how we know Z is super duper mad.

Julie's afternoon snack:  most of a pint of cookie dough ice cream and a glass of Clos du Bois.  Can you blame me?

Visiting the folks


Great Grandma

Great Grandpa

Sunday, June 29, 2008



Here's a picture of Daddy working his first solo mission. Well, I actually take the captain's chair each night while Julie sleeps, but this is the first time she wasn't a room away.

I did pretty good right up until the end, when I decided to go ahead and let the boy drink that last two ounces of milk he was clamoring for. You can't tell by his face, but right there he's contemplating spewing up a new geyser in about 90 seconds' time. Just when I was thinking I'd probably take a better picture without that pacifier in my mouth. (You'd think I would've noticed while looking in the mirror, but somehow I didn't.)

Zack did one of his typical mood swings while Jules was arriving home. He got wound up and annoyed right as she was walking past the window, but by the time she got in the door he had the pacifier in his mouth and was starting the slow countdown to nap time.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Julie's first solo outing

at The Grill--verrrrry fancy

Last year I won an award at UCLA called the Dini Ostrov Reel Women in Spirit award. Since it came with a cash value, it helped to keep me in school. Unfortunately, I never met Dini Ostrov, who passed away this year. But her husband decided to keep alive the tradition of taking the scholarship winners out to lunch. What an awesome, generous guy. I'm really sorry I never met his wife, who apparently kept up with all the winners of her award over the years.

Les took us to The Grill on Rodeo Drive. Okay, I've lived in LA for ten years and never been to Rodeo Drive. Um, I am lame, in a way. Les had hurt his foot somehow--you can see he's wearing a boot cast thingy. Weirdly enough, my incision really started hurting. I guess it takes a while to recover. Didn't realize that I was still a bit under the weather.

Then again, my incision might have hurt because I ate like a pig.

Les also got us all graduation presents--fancy pens for us to sign contracts. And he even got a little something for Zack. Look how cute! If I get rich, I hope to be the kind of person who gives scholarships like this. How great is this guy?

Even though it was fun getting out of the house, I was very excited to get home to our sweet little boy. When I pulled in, I could hear him yelling his weird little animal pissed off cry, and apparently he had doused Jeff with a good vomit while I was out.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Z sacks out. Julie "works."

Wow, kid asleep and computer on my lap. I guess I could actually write that treatment I'm supposed to get around to.

Blog first, work later.

Kind of a tough day yesterday!

I need to take a picture of Z crying and freaking out, so family members and friends can see his weird little red bindi dot.  He gets this little red spot between his eyebrows when he's super pissed.

But it just seems a little mean to stop and take pictures at those moments rather than picking him up and figuring out what's wrong.

I had to go to the doctor yesterday, which meant taking Z in the car solo for the first time, with no one in the back seat to calm him.  On the way home from the hospital, I was with him.  On the way to the pediatrician, my mom hung out with him in the back seat.  But yesterday, he was on his own.

He hated it.  It was my first experience with just having to let him cry and cry.  Okay, it's only three miles to my doctor's office.  But it was a long three miles.  It was like the whole way there, he was yelling, "Mom!  Mom! Mo-o-o-o-m!"  Very difficult.  It was the first time in his short little life that no one has responded to his cries for that long.  But he'll have to get used to being in a car seat if he's going to live in LA.  So we'll see how he does next time.

One thing that didn't really help:  it seems that it was retarded people driving school day in the parking garage at the doctor's office.  No one could manage to get in and out of spaces or negotiate the treacherous turns going up one level.  At least no one in front of me and my screaming baby.

He was actually very good at the doctor's office, even though it was, as usual, a zoo over there and I didn't even see my doctor, who was running an hour late.  I used my little nursing cover up for the first time and fed Z in the waiting room.  I'm so glad all this breast feeding stuff I spent so much money on is actually necessary.  Z was very interested in the many florescent lights and so easily entertained by staring at the ceiling.  The Nurse Midwife totally loved him and said he was very handsome.  She spent some time playing with him, and he totally dug her.  I didn't take any pics.  It wasn't really Z's appointment.  Nurse checked my incision, which looks already almost invisible.  And she told me not to exercise.  Um, noooooo problem.

Then we had another geyser later in the day and Z completely splashed the back of our incredibly impractical, unwashable glider chair.  Oh well.  That's what I get for registering for a glider from Target.  I can see what led up to this one and I missed the moment I should have given Z the pacifier.  He just really needs that oral fixation and we have to interpret when he's not actually hungry.  So this one was on me.  Literally.  All over me.  My clothes were soaked again.

Z spent a lot of time after the geyser nipping and napping, which meant I couldn't really complete any task at all while he was asleep for a mere fifteen minutes.  I have to say, most of the time, I've been pretty philosophical about days like that, because heck, he's only a tiny baby once!  But yesterday I actually ended up swearing a couple times.  Then by the time Jeff came home, Z was peacefully asleep and I'd actually gotten stuff done.  So a tough day, but we survived it.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

First stroll in the Snap and Go

This afternoon, Zack seemed bored.  So I thought it was time we finally left the house.

Much better.

I walked to our local park and back.  Longest walk I've taken since before Z was born.


Jennie (made cookies and quiche--awesomeness)


Jeff (Jeff & Wendy brought food and wine--
first wine for Julie in over ten months!)

Julie, Zack, and Geneva

Geneva and Tekla (and the seahorse light)

Jessie (Zack is almost as tall as Jessie....)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Two Weeks Old Today!

I popped off this picture right before taking off for work this morning and kept looking at it all day. It's a bit underlit, but I like it because I feel like it's got a hint of what Zack will look like when he's older. And it seems he's going to look very pleased with himself.

Finally, I figured out the sling!

Only took me four days.

Had Z in this for a while today and it was just great!  I still am not a pro.  People make this look easy somehow.

Monday, June 23, 2008

24 hours with no spew. Heat wave over.

Here is Z, sleeping peacefully, in his freshly laundered Swaddle Me, after a full day of not Linda Blairing out on us!  What a relief.  The key seems to be knowing when he's full and just wants the pacifier.  What was I ever thinking to believe babies don't need pacifiers?

The heat is supposed to break today, and between that news and no projectile spitup, things may be less hellish all around here today.  I love living in the Valley, because it's convenient to everything, there's parking, and it's just less hectic than over the hills in LA.  But on days like we had this weekend, I remember that we actually live in a desert that is naturally inhospitable to human life.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Carly and Isabelle

Carly made us cookies.  We have almost eaten them all.  I was actually thinking, "If only there were cookies in the house!" And then they arrived, along with some clothes from Jules.  Now whenever we get Z down for a nap without a spew, I have to reward myself with cookies.  The chocolate mint ones are the best.

Nice sleeping pictures.

Love this picture.

Z asleep in between my legs.  The vibrating bassinet was out of batteries, and he won't sleep in in it without the vibration on.  He needs to fall asleep being held by a human, and only then can we put him down and only with the vibration on.  So I figured the vibrations were just fake mommy, and he got to sleep on real mommy that night.  This position also made it more convenient for me to obsessively check his breathing all night long.  Jeff and I both do this--it's true that it sounds like a stereotype, until you become a parent and just cannot help checking all the time.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

More of this.

Yesterday Z had another episode of projectile vomiting, all over the new playmat Burt and Trish sent.  The playmat survived, and so did Z.  He seems none the worse for wear.

But Z had two major geyser episodes today, the second one completely soaking my clothes.  The vomit was at first white and then yellow.  He's been fussy since yesterday.

We know we're getting some food in him, because he is still making a whole lot of poop.  (I just emptied the Diaper Genie--um...impressive is what I'd call that there bag o' diapers.)  But it's really worrying me to see all this crazy vomit.

I called the doctors' exchange three times, and I finally got a call back from the on call doctor, Dr. Bloom.  It looks like overfeeding could be the cause.  Turns out I may have the opposite problem of some women:  super boobs that let out too much milk and totally overwhelm poor Little Z.  So I'm going to either see a lactation consultant or go to this open house at Saint Joseph's Wednesday.  I did not see a lactation consultant in the hospital, because everything was going along just swimmingly.  But apparently I have overachieving breasts, and that could be its own problem.

The fact that we did get a meal into Z today is a good sign, so the doctor thinks the overfeeding is probably what's going on and not pyloric stenosis, which was what I was afraid of.  Google diagnosing is not the best idea, really.  The internet sort of sucks with all its handy information.  It can just freak you out.

Jeff got Z down for a nap, and I am so glad Jeff is home today.  Thursday and Friday were very tough on me, and I was just counting the minutes until Jeff came home.  I hate seeing Z so fussy and unhappy, and I just can't stand watching him eject a forceful stream of vomit all over the place.  So the last two days have been a bit emotionally draining.  And I guess they've been literally physically draining for Z.

We have to slow down his feedings, keep him upright for about 30 minutes after each one (and this means holding our adorable little boy--what torture), and just keep an eye on him, in case the vomiting starts happening after every meal, which could mean it's something more serious--like this awful pyloric stenosis thing.  Fortunately, all things more serious seem correctible.  Still, I'm hoping super boobs are the culprit, as I don't even want to think something serious could ever be wrong with Little Z.

So I'm overfeeding him.  I swear--Jewish mother.  It doesn't matter that I've sworn off my own heritage.  I'm still destined to force food on my kids.  It's in my blood.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Oh, precious little bottle of sleep!

I pumped four and a half ounces after our 4:00 a.m. feeding! Since Z is a multi-talented eater and can go from the breast to the bottle, I am looking at a lot of sleep here. Jeff does a night feeding for me so I can catch some much needed sleep. It's the best thing ever. Last night, I slept about seven hours. I think this might piss a few new parents off. What can I say? For some reason, Z has slept through the night two nights in a row! I mean, we woke him up at midnight and 4:00 a.m. to eat, but that was it.  I feel, oddly enough, like saying, "Thank you, Jesus!"

Days, however, are a different story. Dr. Whang told me Z would hit a growth spurt and want to eat a LOT at ten days old. Well, here we are at ten days, and I've been at it with him from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., and now I feel like this:

Dramatic reenactment of Julie's morning

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Giving a shout out to my hardware

I thought it was worth mentioning that all the pictures you're been seeing are courtesy of my new Canon PowerShot SD1100 IS camera that Julie and her mom went in on as an early Father's Day/birthday present for me. They reckoned it was better to get it early so it was around for Z's arrival, and I believe I've proved them right. It rocks. Jules has a good digital camera but it's quite bulky in comparison. This one fits in my pocket.

I've been meaning to post about this for a while, since before the kid got here actually. Julie thought it was pretty weird that my first act with the new device was to take a picture of it, but look how cute and thin it is! And blue! Can I Vanna White or what?

Of course, you don't tune in to see my mug, so here's a couple pics of Zack from Father's Day.

I think this pose is sort of... regal. Except maybe for the pacifier.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Zack's first doctor visit

Today Zack visited the doctor for the first time and it was all good news.  He weighs 9 pounds 8 ounces, so he's regained his birthweight and then some.  The doctor was pretty impressed with this.  I am so impressed with my own breasts for getting Zack past this milestone.  Let's see if they can keep up with him as he grows even bigger.

I was incredibly relieved to find out he was okay, because we had a little incident as we were leaving.  Zack was fussy and not feeling great, so I swaddled him to calm him down.  He calmed instantly, and then as I was just about to put him in his carseat, he suddenly spit up so much milk, all over the place, that it was really astounding.

Dramatic reenactment of Z's projectile spit up

The sight of so much liquid coming out of his little head, while the rest of his body was somewhat immobilized by his Swaddle Me, was really strange looking. I had to change him, change myself, and clean the kitchen floor.

Then when we got to the doctor's office, he was all red.  I was getting really worried.  But two easy explanations.  The spitup?  Well, I fed him a bit too much in my hurry to get out of the house.  He kept crying that he was hungry, so I topped him off with a bottle of expressed milk, just about a half an ounce.  And that overloaded him, and then I jostled him a bit, I guess.  So up it all came.  The redness?  It's hot.  By the time the doctor showed up, he was back to his usual rosy glow and she said his color looked great.

Dramatic reenactment of Dr. Whang's examination.
(She actually did pose for this picture, because I forgot
to take one during the actual exam.  Dr. Whang is cool!)

Our fabulous doctor, Dr. Whang, pronounced Zack "perfect."  She said he can now sleep four hours between feedings.  She also said to keep him away from crowded areas until he gets his first shots.  Naturally, we're taking him on a plane trip to Rhode Island before those shots.  I had no idea this was a thing to be wary of!  I just hope no one on the plane has polio.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

And future visitors!

A message from the East Coast cousins! Zack is number four in the Baby Tsunami that swept over Jeff's family from March to June.


Kathy C. insisted on bringing us food, and well, how could we turn that down? She brought over some ziti and chicken with rice, and she got to hold our completely adorable son as compensation for her services. I have to say, I will always, always bring food to people with new babies. Wow, that rocked.

So I mentioned it to Marion, and not to be outdone, she brought over enough pasta salad to feed us for about a week! Again, this is the best thing that could ever happen to new parents! Food, people. Bring food! It will be appreciated! Especially by us poor, invalid c-section new moms. Marion is so pregnant in this picture, but Zack is covering that up.

Harold isn't exactly a visitor. In fact, I think he sort of sees Zack as a visitor and wonders when Zack is going home. The cats have been amazingly non reactive to this whole situation. They don't register Zack as a person. They're just a little peeved that I was gone for a bit and then came home incredibly distracted by whatever it is I keep carrying around and taking off my shirt for all the time.

I mean, seriously, what the hell is that thing?

Monday, June 16, 2008

Zack comes home

On Saturday we brought Zack to his new house and showed him around. Here he is in his rocket shirt given to us by Kathy and Sarah. Zack's least favorite things are having his shirt or diaper changed, so he started out the trip pretty honked off.

And then he got more honked off while Tara the helpful nurse showed us how to buckle him into his car seat. Yeah, he hated that.

This pic is a bit gratuitous but I was all excited about my perfect level of preparation. Car parked, door open, seat forward, car seat ready, picture taken...onward!

With all the commotion enough time had passed that Zack was hungry again, and Jules had to fake him out with a finger. If he was thrilled to be outside for the very first time he didn't tell us.

But he did let us know that he likes driving in the car by promptly conking out. I drove about 15 mph the whole way home.

Here we are crossing the threshold...

...and here we are seconds later in Zack's room, parked in the glider chair Julie's grandmother got us. All that work going into his room and it wasn't nearly complete until this moment. Shortly after this I took a nap and Zack further completed the moment by peeing and spitting up on all kinds of stuff, including his rocket shirt, the crib we got from Tekla and Bruce, and the new Boppy we got from my sister Casey.

Feeding completed, we wrapped the sleepy traveller in his monkey blanket. (Monkey blanket courtesy of Grandma.)