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January 20, 2011

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Katie

There is no "normal" when you start adding children into the mix. :) I'd rather play than clean, do laundry or wash dishes. My goals are simple: sweep, Swiffer, 1 load of laundry, 1 dishwasher run, every day. Clayton and I pick up when he gets home in the evenings, after the boys are in bed. I try to do things as we destroy them: wipe the table as the boys are finishing their lunch, wipe down counters, etc, while they're eating, wipe out the sink/hardware in the bathroom during bathtime, etc.

But the newborn stage? Fuhgeddaboudit. You run on basic survival skills for a while. If everyone's somewhat clean, somewhat clothed, and fed, you're golden. Nursing takes up a solid 6-8 weeks anyway and you need that time to heal.

My big fat huge major awesome suggestion?

Hire a postpartum doula. At least for the first week or two. TOTALLY priceless (especially if you're looking at your 2nd c/s). Rockin' breastfeeding support, great ideas and they help Momma weather the rocky postpartum stuff that comes along with having a baby. There are some GREAT PPdoulas in Louisville that I can hook you up with!

Sherri

hmmmm. two children advice? I should have some. I really should... Here's my thoughts - I agree with your friend Katie that the first 6 weeks or so, you are really on survival mode - with Warren and with Walker. The good news is this - you KNOW the sleeplessness won't last forever. With Jacob, I couldn't see past the sleepyness to know it would end. Well, not end, but improve. So, for the first 6 weeks or so, let us help u!!!! I will come get Walker as often as you'd like for a little break. You can sleep/bond with Warren.

Second, take them both somewhere really small for the first time. Like to your mom's or to Philly's or better yet, to our house. Just loading them up will be a challenge, but once you conquer the little trips, then you can brave up and go to Walmart for short shopping trips.

Have a couple of diapers for both and some wipes in the glove box of your car (just in case you for some reason walk out of the house without the diaper bag).

I don't recommend "Big" grocery shopping for a while. But little grocery trips will be fine - as soon as you are cleared to drive after your c-section. Warren's carseat will take up the entire big part of the cart and Walker will be sitting in the front, so you won't have too much room for groceries. But you CAN do it. I promise!!! Make sure that you don't have any time pressures though. Get Warren out of the car first and then get Walker (you can sit her carseat on the ground beside you a lot easier than trying to make him hold your hand while you get sissy out of the car). Same thing in reverse. When you are done - ALWAYS strap walker in first. Warren won't be going anywhere. :-) Also, one of my favorite tips for grocery shopping? Park right beside the buggy holder thingy. You can grab one and put your kids in immediately AND you can put it back in its proper place when you are done. For some strange reason, I always feel guilty leaving the carts in the middle of the parking lot. I'm such a rule follower.

Oh - and you know this already, but plan around nap times, snack times and nursing times. Avoid going anywhere during those times.

It gets easier sister. I promise. You'll get into a groove and be saying "this two kid thing is a snap." :-)

Having two challenges you in more than just the physical practical ways like going places and that kind of stuff. Feeling like you can't possibly divide your time equally and give each the love and attention they need is the most difficult. But, Walker will always know his momma loves him, even when sweet Warren demands your attention. Soon, they won't even know life without each other and it will be "just like it's supposed to be."

I love you girl and you know I'm already praying for your transition as a momma of two. Fun times ahead. Fun times. Oh and in case I haven't told you a hundred times already, Warren is so lucky! Walker too!!!! And make sure Warren knows that her future hubby is at 581 Hawthorne. She won't mind an older man. She can have her pick - a slightly older Jonathan or a much more mature Jacob.

Melissa B.

I hear ya girl, loud and clear. I wish I had some advice for ya but I'm just reading your comments to get some advice for myself! Nesting makes me feel better in the meantime too though.

Jennifer H.

To be honest, it was a LOT easier for me in the beginning when Owen was between 1-4 months old. He slept a lot so it was like I still had only 1 child for a lot of the day and Austin still took a 3 hour nap every afternoon so I was able to get a lot done in the overlap. Even when Owen was awake, he wasn't mobile so if I put him down, he would stay there long enough for me to load the dishwasher or fold some clothes.

Now, however, Owen is completely mobile and all over the place. I can't leave both boys in the room alone for any amount of time b/c Owen is in that danger stage where he wants to pull up and climb on everything and put anything he sees in his mouth....and with a 2 year old leaving his toys and snacks all over the house I just have to watch them like a hawk!!

Owen takes 2 naps a day now and you would think I could use that time to get some stuff done while Austin played on his own, but it is more important for me to spend that time playing one on one with Austin since his baby brother takes up a lot of my attention when he's awake. On rare occasions I get them to nap together and maybe have enough time to get a load of dishes done.

Honestly, I have to wait until they are both asleep at night to get any cleaning done or on the weekends when my husband is actually home (he works out of state during the week). Of course, then I'm exhausted and need some unwinding time so I'm just not very productive come 9pm.

My solution? Hire a maid service! It has saved my sanity and I feel like it's totally worth the money to be able to spend that extra time with my family. Now if I could only find someone to do my laundry.... :)

Sherri

whew - I didn't realize mine was so long. Sorry for the rambling. :-)

Jeanne

I don't remember the exact moment, but yes, it does get easier. Maybe around 2-3 month mark?? The best thing for me? Was hands down my amazing husband. Since you have one too, you will be fine!

In the beginning, when people bring you food and Grandmas come over alot helps sooo much--so let them. But when all that dies down and its just you and your husband and two little ones is when the amazing husband kicks in! I agree with Sherry, I almost always park by the buggie holder. I like to get baby out first. Walker will learn to wait, it won't kill him. Then when Baby naps, you give Walker some undivided attention.

I guess once we got into more of a routine with the feeding and napping with baby was I able to figure out when I could do a little household chores. But before then, I either let the house go or Bernie did the work.

I remember feeling overwhelmed and nervous before Maddox, but it really wasn't as bad/scary/stressful as I thought. I don't mean we don't have crazy moments, but really overall it's not too bad. You will be fine! Won't take long to find your 'new normal'!!

d

I suggest trying to incorporate your boy into your cleaning routine. He can play with bubbles in the sink while you load the dishwasher, wipe the counters and sweep the floor. Teach him to sort your silverware into the drawer (take out the odd items and sharp things first!). Give him a Magic Eraser to clean cupboards and bathtubs and use natural cleaners when cleaning with him around so he can help too. He can pass you clothes from the laundry basket for you to put in the washer (work on colors by asking him to hand you the green socks first), and he can push the button to turn on the dryer. His help won't actually accomplish much at first, but he'll be learning, occupied, and spending time with you, and when you're done for the day take time to play!

Or, do a little cleaning while he goes somewhere with daddy or grandparents. Then take that much-needed nap.

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