Good morning all! How are you doing today? Can you believe we are already pretty well into June?
In this post, I want to make sure to document the details of my first couple weeks with my girl before they escape me. It’s interesting how simultaneously the weeks and days feel like a blur, and yet I have never felt more present in every moment of them. The first two weeks were spent with so much skin to skin, cuddles, tummy time and introducing Quinn to friends and family. I worked hard to make sure that when she arrived, she would get all my attention during maternity leave. Prior to her birth, I pretty much lived and breathed my to-do list every day, so it’s been a bit odd not having one. I love it though, it’s a great change of pace and gives me so much freedom to be present in every moment with her. I thought I was going to do things much more on a schedule/be more regimented, but I have really opted to go with the flow. I just do what feels right for her/listen to her cues.
The first couple weeks, we went to bed around 10 pm. Putting her to sleep was the most anxiety-inducing thing we encountered the first two weeks. Writing this a few weeks in, we have invested in a sleep monitor and feel much more at ease.
During this time, she had some good nights where she slept soundly between feedings and other more challenging nights that we seemed to get no sleep at all. Staying awake during breastfeeding at night is hard too, but I’ve found some sugar free suckers help keep me awake. If I really can’t keep my eyes open, I’ll have DJ supervise us.
DJ took the entire first week off of work and the second he worked from home. This setup worked great and was such a nice way for our family to get adjusted to a new groove. He has helped a ton with Moose and will do absolutely anything I need help with from refilling my water bottle while nursing countless times (breastfeeding makes me so thirsty!!) to jumping out of bed to help soothe her at night. She responds well to his “shushing”.
Overall, having a newborn is what I expected in some ways and different than what I expected in other ways. I thought I would be overwhelmed and in a state of anxiety/panic all the time- but it hasn’t been that way. I have an unexpected sense of peace even in the stressful moments. It’s still hard at times and has not been without its challenges, but caring for her just feels so natural and wow, do I love it. I have never been more sleep deprived in my life which I expected (blaming any typing or grammar errors on that 🤣), but it’s pretty amazing how much you can function on so little sleep when you have to. I also recognize the awesome support I have had in DJ and our family which makes a tremendous difference, and I’m so grateful for them.
I will say Moose as a very young puppy was possibly more overwhelming on the day to day 😅 (although the sleep was a litttle better… which is saying something lol!).
Putting the rambles on hold for a second, I’ll start back to the first couple days home. We went to her first peds appt, also her first outing, on May 10th.
It was a great first appointment! She’d lost weight, which I know is expected at that first appointment, and my milk hadn’t quite come in yet. However, that afternoon my milk came in, and when we returned to the next appt, she had gained so much the staff almost didn’t believe it and reweighed her at the end of the visit, ha! Sitting here at 3 weeks, she went from 6 lb. 7 oz. at birth to 8 lb. 12 oz. Girl LOVES to eat like her momma. And she also gets hangry like her momma 😅.
Speaking of, that afternoon I finally got the Jimmy John’s I was craving through my whole pregnancy!! Load up the deli meat- woot woot! (Meat cravings are still in full effect).
On May 9th, my MIL, Quinn’s Gigi, stopped by with a laundry basket (a literal laundry basket) of AMAZING eats her and Gordie cooked up! We were set for the week with delicious teriyaki salmon, grilled sausages among tons of delicious sides. They spoil us!
We went on her first walk that day. The day was heating up fast, so we only went a very short distance. Plus physically, I couldn’t go far anyway. I absolutely LOVE the travel system stroller we got. I agonized over the stroller decision more than probably anything, and am very happy with our choice. It’s smooth as can be and after the learning curve, has become second nature with the set up.
I want to talk about the physical aspect of postpartum for a second. Is it me, or do people not talk enough about how hard the physical recovery is?! That first week hurt, badly 😅. I actually would take going through labor all over again over the recovery period. At about two weeks I’d say I really turned the corner.
On May 11th, I trimmed Quinn’s nails for the first time. Shocking how long and jagged they were at birth! She did great with it. I thought she’d possibly hate it, but she just let me file away. I can’t believe how quickly they grow back though! I feel like I’m constantly needing to file them.
Oh and of course, one of the most common questions we get is ‘how is Moose adjusting?’. So, the first week, he was certainly unsure of her and just kept his distance. But over the last couple weeks he has really warmed up and now will sniff her a lot/tries to give her kisses and sits all cozied up to her on the couch 🥰. He even dropped a ball in her lap one time as if she could play catch with him, lol.
He’s also sooo gentle with her. DJ and I both feel like the minute we brought her home he matured suddenly. It’s like he all of a sudden knew he was the big brother of the house and no longer the baby. He does get jealous sometimes though, but when we notice that we do try to make sure to give him the attention he’s looking for. The most mom guilt I’ve felt is toward Moose man and worrying he will feel second fiddle, so I’ve tried to be intentional about giving him lots of cuddles and love.
We also have a great set-up for Moose to go to Marie’s on M, W, F during the day to play with his friends and then he’s here with me and the babes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I miss him so much when he’s not here, but this has been really helpful during these early days, and he absolutely LOVES going to Marie’s.
The afternoon of May 10th one of my high school teachers dropped by with Daisy Cake Pops (the best cake pops in existence), candy and an adorable Alumni onesie!
That day Rach also got to meet our sweet pea!
P.S. I realize I started using this Snuggle Me to take her outfit of the day pictures 🙃. We rarely actually keep her in it though because she has some reflux going on.
Having Halston here was extremely helpful- she came at such a perfect time, especially with me not feeling physically 100% yet! We also had a few random things come up that week and she really stepped in to make things flow more smoothly. She even afforded me some extra sleep by taking some early morning shifts between feeds. It made all the difference! Oh, and she made us some homemade jambalaya before she left. All this right before taking her final law school exams. We would never expect her to do all this, but she is one amazing, selfless sister and Aunt. She also soaked up lots and lots of cuddles with Quinn.
That evening we ordered from Piada, our latest go-to.
May 13th we got out for a walk on a beautiful day.
Quinn also got a delivery of gorgeous flowers from her Gigi for her one week birthday 💞
That Saturday, May 14th, we had her newborn shoot done in our home. It was a lifestyle family shoot. I had no idea what to wear given it’s hard to know what even fits right now and since the shoot was all about Quinn I really hadn’t given it any thought – so last minute I ordered a bunch from Target. Hal graciously picked it all up for me and thankfully one of the items fit! I’ve never done the same day outfit buy, but I guess that’s how it goes now, hah!
That evening, Quinn met her Uncle CJ, Aunt Maura and cousins Kate, Jack and Will. Kate was biting at the bit to hold her cousin Quinn as soon as she walked through the door. It was so sweet!!
We put her in the special onesie my sister and Kevin got her for meeting the fam 💕.
Chris and Maura spoiled us with Crumble Cookies- oh. my. goodness. these were good!!!
Sadly Halston left that evening. It was a hard goodbye, but we had lots of wonderful memories and moments just hanging with Quinn and chatting from the time she was here.
May 15th we went for another short walk out on the trail on a gorgeous day.
That afternoon, Quinn met her Grandpa Gordie for the first time and spent some quality time with her Gigi too 🥰.
May 16th, I got out one of her black and white contrast books. Newborns/infants are attracted to contrast, but I was amazed just how mesmerized she was by it!!! I had never seen her focus on anything until this book.
Random- but something I have learned fairly quickly is just how much you can do with only one hand free. I have never used my feet as an extra hand so much before either. I am still working on the making/eating food one handed- I’m already a messy eater and now it’s much worse 🥴. DJ even found a cashew in her diaper one time 🤣. I did start using a carrier when she weighed 8 lbs, around week 3, and it has made a huge difference!
May 17th, Gigi and I took Moose and Quinn out on the trail for a walk. It was the longest walk I had been able to do at that point (about 3 miles!), and the weather was perfection! It was so enjoyable as we just chatted away.
Later that day, Clair came by to meet our sweet pea 🥰
May 19th, I took Quinn on a walk by myself for the first time since I was able to drive again! Leaving the house, I had to leave Moose behind :(. Seeing him sitting at the top of the stairs watching me leave to go on “our” walk without him made me want to cry. I was determined to find a solution to be able to walk them both at the same time, and thankfully I have figured something out! Stay tuned!!
Some other little things about her I just love from these early weeks- she makes these little dinosaur sounding noises when trying to get comfortable or repositioning. It cracks us up- we call them her “dino noises”.
She also makes the cutest little facial expressions – my favorite is where she turns her head to side, raises her eyebrows and puts her mouth in a circle. I’m pretty sure she does it when passing gas 😂. I have to try to get a picture of it.
We call her Houdini because somehow she can get out of basically any swaddle except the Dreamland one.
I love dancing with her too to some quiet music, even though she sleeps through most of our dance parties.
Quinn is also a cuddle bug. She loves nothing more than nuzzling into us. She spends hours just laying on our chests.
And that wraps up week 2! Writing this at the end of week 3, weeks 1-2 were easy relative to #3. I’ll get into that in my next post.
I’m just so stinkin’ grateful every day, and I still can’t believe she’s ours 🥺💕. I’ll treasure these moments, every single one, forever.