One of the many advantages of maternity leave is stress free weekend adventures. It’s so nice to have all day Friday to pack and all day Monday to rest and do laundry and clean up. I am getting seriously spoiled. We may never go anywhere after I start back to work.
Last weekend we went back to Garden City for the Tumbleweed Festival. I’ve been attending Tumbleweed since I was 6 years old, so it was a little surreal to bring my own daughter this year. I have such strong memories of playing for hours in the arts and crafts tent, and watching puppet shows on the children’s stage, and getting my face painted, and pleading with Mom to let me eat 5 funnel cakes a day.
This year we took it easy, hung out in the shade by the main stage, and passed Bonnie around to her many admirers. Bonnie got to meet several members of her Garden City family and spend some quality time with Poppa and her Lobmeyer cousins. The weather was gorgeous and Bonnie and I were so happy to spend several hours outside. We spend far too much of our days in our little basement apartment, I’m afraid. It’s just too easy to lounge around in our jammies all day, but Bonnie is much happier (and sleeps better) when we can get outside for an hour or two.
Though I think I might be willing to invest in a nursing cover now. This was the first time I needed to nurse outdoors, in a public place, and putting a blanket over my head while I got her situated was… not ideal. Poor Bonnie was covered in sweat by the time she finished eating. Whoops.
She continues to be an amazing traveler and slept happily in the car all the way to Garden City and back. Steven took the night shift with me on our first night in Garden City, just in case Bonnie had trouble adjusting to the new environment, so Bonnie decided to take advantage of the extra time with Dad and stayed up from 3 until 8. When it was back to just me on Saturday night, she woke up to eat and then went right back to sleep. We were both grateful.
Speaking of sleep, Bonnie slept for 7 hours last night for the very first time! I had started to wonder what the phrase “sleeping through the night” actually meant, because we’ve been stuck on a 4-5 hour sleep maximum for the past month. Turns out, Bonnie’s just not the night owl that her parents are. I’ve been feeding her pretty regularly at 8 and 11 and then putting her down for bed. In the last week, we noticed that she would be extra fussy and flustered after her 8 p.m. snack. So last night, we fed her at 9, gave her a bath, swaddled her and she was asleep before Steven even finished her story. Of course, we still didn’t go to sleep until midnight, so when she woke up at 5 to eat, it didn’t feel that different, but eventually I realized that she went 8 hours without eating and slept for a solid 7. Way to go, Bonnie! Now if I can just train myself to get in bed by 10, maybe we’ll all start to feel a little more human again.
Bonnie has been enjoying floor time more and more these days and has started to notice the toys on her swing and rocker. So last week, I got out her activity gym and so far it’s been a big hit. She can bat at the center toy with her hands, and can hit the others with her feet. On Friday, I put her down on her tummy and she grunted and grumbled for several minutes until she was able to roll over to her side. After that, she took a 2 hour nap (it’s hard work to half roll), pulled off a mitten and grabbed on to the edge of the gym to help get her moved from her side to her tummy. I’m calling it her first full roll, even if it did take 3 hours from beginning to end.
She’s getting really good at tummy time now too, and is starting to hold her head up for longer periods when you sit her up on your lap. The other morning I noticed that she had pulled off her mitten again and found her thumb and was happily sucking away. I know they’re not supposed to suck their thumbs, but my goodness it’s cute.
Back to Work – I have one more week of full maternity leave and then I’m back at work part-time from home. To prepare for the transition back to working, I’ve started getting up a couple of mornings and showering to try and get a feel for our new routine. It’s been good to see how different it will be, and I really like having the whole morning to get some more things done. It’s nice to start to feel productive again! I took Bonnie to visit my office this week and she was happy to nap with my boss for over an hour while we caught up on what had been happening. It felt oddly good to talk about things like invoicing and programs of study and course scheduling again. It made me feel much better about this whole going back to work business.
Back to School – Our schedule is starting to fill up again as Steven started his last Graduate class this week. I can’t believe he’ll graduate in December, and we’re both so thrilled that the end is in sight. Since he works full-time during the day, he’s been taking evening classes for the last couple of years. It’s always made his class days feel extra long, but now that he’s missing out on even more Bonnie time, it’s especially cruel. To make up for it, I started a Yoga class at the Douglass Community Center on Mondays and Wednesdays so that they can have special Daddy/Daughter time and I can get a full hour to myself twice a week. We’re only one week in, but so far I think it’s helping everyone feel less stir crazy.
Pump Update – Bonnie clearly reads this blog, because she decided to help me out with my pumping troubles and went through a 2-3 day stint where she only ate half as much as she normally does. By the time I got back to my pump on Monday, the whole process was much simpler. Many thanks to the Mamas I talked to as well for encouraging me and giving me tips about when to pump and how much to expect in the early days. This time last week, I was convinced it was impossible and now I have 12 oz. in my freezer. Next week – Bonnie’s first bottle!
Want a Cute Picture for your Fridge? – Now that Bonnie is 7 weeks old, I finally ordered, addressed and mailed out the first round of Bonnie’s birth announcements! Only 4 weeks later than I planned! So impressive. If you’d like an announcement for your fridge, and you don’t think I have your address (chances are I don’t have your address), send me a message/comment/text/email and I’ll put one in the mail for you.