Pictures from my NEW camera

This is John David, officially 2 weeks old!!  
  These days when I talk to people they ask me two very valid questions:
1.  How are you?  2.  How is J.D.?
  So let me answer those 2 questions honestly:
1.  I attempt sleep 12 hours/night, but when you add up all the hours I spend during those 12 hours feeding and changing the baby, I sleep 7 hours/night.  Seriously.  I did the math.  My gut is bloated and achy.  I usually don’t get to eat breakfast until 12 or 1pm.  I ache.
   I keep googling c-section recovery, and everything keeps saying that it really does take 6 weeks to feel better.  Well, boo fun.  I really thought last time I felt better more quickly than this, but I suppose I must have patience.  Who ever wants to have patience?
   So really, I’m good.  Everything I am griping about is normal, and I will live.
   Thankfully, my mom returns tonight to help me.
2.  The baby is literally doing great.  He finally dropped his cord this morning.  He has a few awake periods during the day now, and so far we haven’t had any crying fits to deal with.  (Thank you, Lord, thank you, Lord, thank you, Lord).
   We still fall asleep every time I feed him.  I have to work really hard to keep him awake long enough for a full feeding.  Did you know that technically 5 minutes counts as a full feeding?  This baby usually feeds around 15 minutes on one side and 5-10 on the other.
********************Pictures************************
DaddyO and Nonna sent us a few pictures of the boys, having a good time, in Alabama.
 Man, I miss them!
 Check it out.  Glamour Magazine says red hair is in.  Was it ever out?
 serious business

 So many different caption possibilities here….
 from my front yard  : )

 the postpartum face:  bags both under and over the eyes….
 He actually sleeps all day, so no bags here…

Alan bought me these to brighten my days.

 When Margret gave me these newborn clothes, I doubted that I’d ever get to use them, but this little fella’ has been able to wear all the clothes everyone has given him, even the newborns.

 A few days ago, still not digging tummy time, but he has improved.
These last 2 were taken with my old camera, and even with these I can see a difference.

This is the camera we got.  This is a VAST improvement over the ~$120 Nikon Coolpix from 2009 that we were using before!  The zoom lens on it is amazing, and my favorite thing is that when you mash the button to take a picture….it actually takes the picture right away.  Plus, the photos aren’t all yellow.  Hallelujah!  

DeTox Day

Apparently being J.D. is just exhausting.  This is what he usually looks like.
  My recovery has not been all peaches and cream the last few days, so I’m pretty excited that John David’s best hobby is sleeping.  Hopefully, by the time he comes out of the newborn sleep phase and is ready to join the family (remember we did jolt him from his womb before he asked…), I will be more fully functioning and able to handle a new baby!
   The last few days I have been unable to get rid of a headache for long (first time that’s ever happened), unable to sleep much (which is weird, shouldn’t I be sleepy?), along with other unpleasant symptoms I will spare you the details of.
   I decided it has been 10 days anyway, so it’s time for me to kiss the heavy pain meds goodbye.  I have switched to regular tylenol and motrin 400.
  So far…..headache still comes and goes, and I can barely wake up. I am SO UNBELIEVABLY sleepy.  My back hurts now, but only if I’m up and moving.
   I have literally slept all day, and it’s 5:40pm.
   Granted, I didn’t go to sleep last night until 3:30am.
  This sleep problem can’t even be blamed on the baby.  The baby does not sleep all night, but he’s not awful either.  He sleeps around the clock, but he typically wakes up to be fed at 12am and 3:30am.  I guess two times/night isn’t too bad for a 1 week old.  Once fed, he always goes right back to sleep.
  That’s what finally put me to sleep last night, holding that precious baby in his rocker.  He is the best part of our day!
  We miss the rest of the boys SO MUCH.  I can’t even explain how much we miss them.  Thank you so much, Nonna and DaddyO, for the pictures of them.  Thank you, Mom and Dad, for doing so much for them.  I know they miss us less when they are having all this fun in Alabama.
 Got the package, Amber!  Thank you!!
*******
   Alan, as most of you know, is super handy. Alan’s idea of a week of rest doesn’t include a lot of sitting in the living room watching t.v. (But yes, we have watched at least 1 movie/day).
  The man is a machine.  Here’s a little of what he’s accomplished this week:
1.  Rearranged furniture to better suit the children as they keep growing:
Daniel’s changing table is gone.  (Now please learn to potty, Dan).  In it’s place:  these shelves for toys and books.

Dan’s sports themed room.  He insisted on keeping the Pooh Bear painting though, which we thought was too sweet.  Seriously, Nonna, we think you are the greatest artist.  You can paint for us anytime you want.  ; )

 Goal:  Fill the brothers frame with a photo this week…
 Joshua’s side
I took down the art to the left of the big poster to make room for new art.  The old art, pictured here, got destroyed when they put Angry Bird stickers all over it.  Those boys can’t really be trusted with stickers.
Alan’s accomplishments continued:
2.  Fixed the flat tire on Joshua’s bicycle
3.  Fixed the chain on his own bicycle
4.  Returned both his mountain and his road bike to rideable condition.  (He and Joshua have been doing some bike riding this summer, which Alan is pretty excited about).  School aged children can do some fun stuff!
5.  Kept me well fed and medicated
6.  Quieted John David anytime I need him to do so.  Seriously, Alan could teach Father’s Ed to new dads.  He’s amazing.
7.  Acquired a new desk for the family
8…….drum roll please………..
AND BOUGHT ME A NEW CAMERA, A CANNON, RECOMMENDED BY AUNT JANET, THAT WILL BE ARRIVING SOON!!!!!
Can you feel the excitement??
I’m so excited!
Now, hopefully tomorrow I will be completely “de-toxed” and will not have to sleep all day.  : )

Newborn Time

John David, 8 days old

   I am now 9 days out from my c-section.  I’m feeling better, but not great.  C-sections are a literal pain, but of course it is worth it to have my precious new little man.
  
   Drugs have become a very important part of my life.  (Sounds like a wonderful mommy thing to say, huh?)  When they first sent me home, I tried to keep up with my own medication schedule.  After twice taking the wrong medication (It would be time for percoset, and I would be so confused that I’d give myself Motrin 800…way before I was due for it).  I handed Alan all the medications and told him he’d have to keep up with it for me.
   I so panicked when I realized that I had 1600mg of ibuprofen in my system!  I called the hospital and asked them if I could still feed the baby, etc.   They assured me I could.  Phew…
   
  I’ve had headaches ever since the surgery.  I had sinus problems too, but I finally realized 2 things:
1.  I’m allergic to “my chair”.  (Dust mites live all over upholstered furniture, carpet, and such.  I’ve had two allergy tests over the years, and dust mites were always a big problem for me.  Dust mites and grass.)
2.  I’m taking zyrtec daily again, and I’m still sitting in my chair.  : )
 As for the headaches, the only cure I have found is coffee.  The other night I had to drink coffee to be able to go to sleep.  So weird.
I think the headaches are caused by the drugs.  ugh.  I’m weaning myself off the Motrin today, but I still need the percoset.
  I can totally see why people get addicted to that.  It really helps!  But don’t worry, I’m not addicted to percoset.  I’m simply recovering from a painful surgery.

How funny is J.D. in this picture?
And yes, I know I look rough.  See paragraph a.  Also, I feel like I get a pass on make-up wearing and hair straightening until the 2 week mark, at least.  ; )
Newborn Life
John David, a few days ago, wearing one of his newborn outfits, which he is starting to grow out of already!
  We are full on doing the newborn thing.  With the kids gone, it feels like a very quiet stay-cation…kind of like we’ve stepped back in time.  Not only are J.D.’s days and nights mixed up, but ours are too.  We stay up until 1am watching movies and playing Ticket to Ride against each other online.  (We are literally playing a board game against each other online….so we don’t have to sit at the table or set up and clean up the game.  Did I mention this is the first time we’ve played a board game in YEARS?)
   Then John David and I sleep until around 11:30 am.  Alan gets up some time earlier than that.  He seems to require a fraction of the amount of sleep that I require!
     
    I spend a lot of time just feeding the baby.  There is this wonderful thing that no one tells you about breastfeeding:  When you breastfeed, your body releases a hormone that makes you feel all happy, cozy, and sleepy….It seems to have the same effect on the baby b/c when we breastfeed it is typical for both of us to fall asleep.  ….Unfortunately, that hormone kicks in well after the latch-on pain.  In the beginning, breastfeeding hurts.  Yow.  But it only lasts a minute, and it’s worth it.
    John David is one of those delightful easy-going babies.  You can bet that if he is crying he’s either hungry or he’s peed all over himself.  This one is so much like Joshua was.  We are so thankful.  Caleb and Daniel had more gas issues, and Caleb seemed to never nap.  All fourth babies should be this easy!
 My friend Lauren, holding John David.  And thank you for the yummy cookies, Lauren!
 Lauren’s adorable little girl
 Maelle meets J.D.
 J.D., home from the office.  : )

 I <3 summer flowers!  I didn't plant these day lillies and hydrangeas, but that's the fantastic thing about planting.  It's a work that lasts for years and years and blesses people long after you are gone.
 Check out what Alan bought for the boys.  Apparently when you add our 4 boys + Daddy, we actually have our own basketball team right here.

 Look how tiny he is in his rocker!

 Yes, I’m aware Joshua sometimes still writes his letters backwards….but how cute is what he wrote!
“The chicken tenders are delicious.  You can’t skip tenders.  They are so delicious.”

 our new desk…already looking cluttered up
 I finally finished Caleb’s baby book!  Yay!!!!

The Boys’ Vacation
  Joshua, Caleb, and Daniel are having a great time in Alabama.  Today they switch from my parents to Alan’s parents.  Yesterday my mom took the three of them to Water World all by herself.  Way to go, Mom!!  I’m impressed.
   Caleb, our fearless one, went down the biggest water slide they have (see photo above).  I did that one once, and I was pretty scared of it myself.  Caleb came down so happy and excited, wanting to do it again, so JOSHUA decided to do it with him!!  What!  Joshua did that water slide!?  I couldn’t believe it, but it’s true.  I bet that took a lot of bravery on his part, since he’s naturally more cautious.  Way to go, Joshua!!!
  
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