Snow Play

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We survived winter storm Jonas! Though we saw a couple of feet of snow, we were lucky not to lose power, and welcomed the sunny day today. After Ted helped the other guys in the neighborhood shovel our sidewalks and a path between our houses, we bundled up and headed out for a walk around the block. The snow was almost up to my knees, and Tad’s snowsuit was a tad too big, but we had fun anyway. (Hint to new mamas shopping for a snowsuit…Ralph Lauren sizes run quite large. This was a 3 month size, the smallest I could find, but it was still very large.) Hope everyone is staying safe and warm!

My jacket: Laundry by Shelli Segal

Boots: Hunter. If you live in Old Town, The Shoe Hive is offering a 30% discount on Hunter products tomorrow!

 

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Owlet: up all night so I don’t have to be

Before having Tad, I never imagined how anxious I would be about falling asleep at night. I had read about SIDS and felt comfortable that by creating a safe sleep environment and following other guidelines to minimize the risk that I would be able to sleep soundly knowing we had done all the right things. I saw an ad for the Owlet monitor a week or so before my due date and went ahead an ordered one thinking maybe we’ll use it, maybe we won’t and if not, at least I can return it. Unlike other sleep monitors that detect movement, the Owlet measures blood oxygen saturation and heart rate. Those are metrics that my data minded self liked the sound of, and sounded much more sensible than trying to use movement or lack thereof to tell you anything about your baby’s breathing. Why wouldn’t you just monitor that they are getting the oxygen they need and that their little hearts are beating…especially when the price tag is on par with all of the other monitors out there that are notorious for false alarms, or not working through double-sided mattresses?

Our first night home, I was so glad I had ordered it. Ted immediately took it out of the box and got the app set up on our phones as soon as I showed it to him. The monitoring system includes a base station and a monitor that is inserted into one of several different sized socks that the baby wears during the night. You can turn the monitor on and off from your phone, and see real-time data. An alarm also sounds if the heart rate or blood oxygen saturation falls out of range, or if the sock is too far from the base station. The alarms sound different so you know immediately what is happening – a nursery rhyme for too far away, and a typical alarm sound for worrisome data. The base station works without the app as well. You won’t see the actual numerical data, but the alarms will still sound and the green glow light will turn red.

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One of the main criticisms is that if the baby is moving too much, the sensor can’t get a read. I’m okay with this because if my baby is moving, he is alive and at least trying to breathe, and the alarm will sound if he’s not getting enough oxygen. It also does not have a camera (as that is not the purpose), but it’s quite possible that a camera could be integrated on later models. Overall, I am so glad I bought the Owlet. It not only gives me peace of mind, but I have also learned Tad’s typical heart rate when he is awake, just nodding off, or in deep sleep so I know how soundly he is sleeping. If this all makes me a paranoid new mom, I’m okay with that. I’d rather be extra cautious than wish I had taken advantage of the technology available to me.

New (and seasoned) moms – what monitors are you using? Is anyone else using the Owlet?

 

 

Maternity Leave So Far

I thought maternity leave would mean lots of time to blog and take pictures. While Tad’s room has become my new home office, I haven’t been paying attention to blogging like I thought I would. We are taking plenty of pictures of the little man, but like most parents, aren’t keen on openly sharing all of our family moments, especially given all of the fears that come along with putting your whole life online.

We were very fortunate that everything went well with his birth for both of us, and that all four grandparents were anxiously waiting just outside the door to meet him. I don’t have a dramatic rush-to-the-hospital story as we ended up scheduling the delivery, which was the perfect choice for me. I wasn’t going to go into details here, but this seems to be what all of my friends are asking about! I went into the hospital around 6am and they started Pitocin to induce contractions a couple of hours later. Since Pitocin (a synthetic form of the hormone oxytocin) can cause pretty intense contractions that come on quickly, they gradually increased the dosage in my IV every 20-30 minutes. I didn’t feel a thing until around noon, but by 3pm, when the maximum dosage was being delivered, I definitely felt the contractions. I wasn’t set on having an epidural, but was open to it, and Ted strongly encouraged me to go for it at that point, especially since the anesthesiologist was only two doors down. I literally felt no pain for the rest of the day, and was still excited and somewhat rested when Tad finally made his appearance. The combination of a scheduled delivery and epidural makes for a pretty boring story, but I’m glad I got to  watch Gossip Girl on Netflix all day and relax.

Once we got home, I was excited to find that my clothes fit again, but quickly realized that wool/cashmere dry clean only sweaters are not newborn friendly and pretty quickly regressed to wearing mostly workout wear and cuddly fabrics. My new mom “uniform” is mostly Lululemon crops, a cotton nursing tank, and a cuddly sweater or soft jacket that won’t scratch or irritate Tad’s little face. I have to admit that I have more fun getting him dressed these days than getting dressed myself, though we both usually have an outfit change or two during the day! Days are filled with lots of cuddles, and nights are less anxiety provoking now (partially due to Tad’s Owlet monitor).