Saturday, November 29, 2008

The Best Laid Plans

On a weekend when the surf is up, it's a given that my husband is gonna want to go take advantage of the waves.

But because its the weekend, its a given that I'm gonna want to go ride my bike.*

This poses a little issue when there's a newborn that needs a parent to take care of her. Since I did 100% of the 'taking care of' while she was growing in my uterus, my awesome husband has agreed to give me the priority on the weekend fun stuff, at least for a while. I expect this is his way of providing some sort of repayment for my baby growing services.

I always think that its good to keep both parents happy... my firm belief is that having the opportunity to do the things that make you whole as a person allow you to be a better parent. So I wouldn't want Scott to not be able to surf on a weekend when its big. But I'm not going to give up my ride either. So we came up with a plan.

Since the beach that he likes to surf at is about 35 miles from our house, the plan was for me to ride there while he drives up with the baby. Pack the jogger in the back of the X-Terra along with my running stuff, throw the surfboard on the roof rack, and everybody wins! I get to ride 35 miles, then run a few while my husband gets to surf... Moana is taken care of all day and gets to hang at the beach... we'll have lunch together as a family on the north shore before driving home... a perfect plan for a Saturday.

Except that we live in Hawaii and its winter, which means that at any given moment it can start raining. A lot. Very wet. And cold. And windy. Really windy. I toughed it out and rode my 35 miles, even while leaves were blowing across the road and getting stuck in my spokes. I stopped twice to remove said leaves.

Scott toughed it out and packed up all the gear in/on the X-Terra (sweet- now he knows how much work it is to get the baby out of the house!) and drove up to Haleiwa. It was raining as we each arrived, but we figured the front might pass as quickly as it arrived, so we met at Starbucks to wait it out. I figured that after those wet windy miles I deserved my once yearly $5 and 500 calorie peppermint mocha soy latte. Call it a Holiday Treat.

Too bad the storm was of the 'all day variety'. All that wind made the waves quite unappealing to Scott. They tried to hold the Roxy Pro surf competition at Sunset Beach today, and while the place was packed with folks trying to watch the pro women rip it up, not much surfing was going on since the waves were so blown out. Bummer.

So Scott drove all the way up there with all of that gear and didn't even get to surf. He was a good sport about it though. I was appreciative that he was there with the car to drive me home because riding back today would have been a nightmare.

In return for his sherpa services today, he'll go by himself tomorrow in the early morning since the winds are supposed to calm down and switch direction, which will likely mean perfect waves.

I'll spend tomorrow cleaning my bike.

*Photo credit goes to my friend Kristen who is so good on her bike that she can take a picture over her shoulder while cruising along at 20 mph!

Friday, November 28, 2008

StreetFighter Mo

Lately Moana has stopped giving us much warning when she decides its time to eat. She used to give cute little signals... she'd move her tongue and open her mouth, then start chewing on her fist, and then, if the signs weren't noticed, she'd start to cry.

Now, meal times are more like a dire emergency in her book. We don't get any warning anymore. Lately she transforms from a peacefully sleeping precious baby to an all out frantic wailer in a split second or less. Then its our job to rush around and get her fed ASAP... before she starts scratching her eyes out. Seriously, she's got all these scratches on her face from the frantic nature of each eating emergency. Scott looked at her today and said we should start calling her Mo, since she looks like she's been in a bar fight.

I've ventured into the task of cutting her nails, which is always a challenge because her little fingers are so small. And I have to wait until after she's done with a good eating (when she goes limp) to even attempt it. I have this huge fear that I'm going to draw blood with those infant clippers.

We had a tough night last night. She was a little angel during our Thanksgiving dinner, which was great since we were at our friend's house and she was the only child there. In true Simmons Thanksgiving Dinner fashion, she over-engorged herself on milk while we were at Bobs... then after we got home she went for a repeat performance which lead us to coin her new nickname, Chow-Hound. You'd think all that milk would have knocked her out, but it somehow had the opposite effect and she just decided not to go to sleep. Lots of wailing heard around our neighborhood last night. She must have just been so uncomfortably full? Who knows. But nobody got much sleep around here last night.

So anyone who has a baby knows what my morning was like this morning. After all that milk last night, we had poopy diaper after poopy diaper this morning. 4, to be exact, before noon. It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "holy crap!"

Tonight we've initiated Operation Stay Awake, which stays in effect until 8:00 PM. The goal is to keep her up and awake until then so she'll actually fall asleep. Previously her habit has been to sleep all evening and then be awake after the 7:00 or 8:00 feeding. We've stripped her naked, swung her around, tickled her feet, washed her face with water, you name it... yet currently at 7:00 PM, she's sound asleep on her dad's lap. Apparently the baby is still the boss around here.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Things I'm Thankful For... by Moana

My mom is always writing on this blog, but today I thought I'd take a turn and write about the things I'm thankful for! In no particular order...

My first month of life! Yep, I'm one month old today. I'm still just a little peanut at less than 9 lbs, but I eat as much as my little tummy can hold! The month has gone by pretty fast, but maybe that's because I've slept through much of it.

Bath Time! I just love the warm water being splashed all over me. Even on my face! In fact, some of my biggest protests come when mama takes me out of the tub.

BOB. He's my boyfriend. And mama always seems so happy when we're out in it together. I especially like it when we go fast! Although we really haven't gone that fast yet. I hope mama starts going faster soon.

Tummy Time! I'm learning to lift my head. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, you know, so as I get older I really like to be in motion a lot... being on my belly I get to move my arms and legs and try to scoot. I'm good at scooting.

My swing. Again, it's a movement thing. But it's also the music that plays when I'm swinging back and forth. Love that music even though I can't really see the mobile yet.

Clean diapers. This one is kind of a no-brainer, don't ya think? I will add, though, that I love love love my changing table. It's so relaxing to lay there and look around.

Breast milk. Part of my happiness here comes from being close to my mama. And it's so easy to fall asleep as soon as I'm done eating.

My mama. She smells good to me and I really like being close to her.

My dad. He kisses me and holds me each morning and evening, even when I'm having my fussy times. I like sleeping on his chest.

My grammy. She makes all sorts of interesting faces and noises at me, and holds me all the time too.

I've got a pretty good life!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Last Chance Workout

I am feeling like an athlete again.

This is the conversation I had with my husband while doing laundry this morning...

Me: Look how cool this is! The whole drying rack is full of my running/cycling clothes! I love it that so much of the laundry is once again my workout clothes!

Husband: Whatever floats your tippy boat.

Today I did what felt like a Last Chance Workout... partly because last night I was eating mint chocolate chip ice cream while watching The Biggest Loser, but mostly because my mom leaves tomorrow so my built-in-babysitting service is ending :( No more noon swims for this Mama. My tan back and shoulders? They've hit their peak. From here on out my swims will have be done while Scott can watch Moana, which means AM or PM. I know. Poor me.

I went for the LONG swim today. I've been swimming often, but not more than 3000meters at a time. The ocean swim race I signed up for (next weekend!) is LONG (more like 7000 meters) so I figured I better get in at least one long swim prior to that. So after a 3200M continuous steady-state swim, my friend Bob showed up to challenge me through 2000M worth of intervals, of course getting faster as we went. I was pleased with the whole swim. I don't have much strength or power these days, but I'm like an aerobic machine.

Running home from the pool (I live 1 mile from the pool so most of the time I run back and forth) I had that post-workout tired feeling that I've missed over the last 10 months. And tomorrow I get to ride for a few hours with my friend Kristen so that's gonna feel great as well. I feel like an athlete again. YEA!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Hill Running With Ironman BOB

I feel great. Moana had a good night last night which meant that everyone in the house got more sleep... which means we all feel more cheery... which means she is just so much cuter. After a good nights sleep she can pee all over herself and the changing table and we all just get a good laugh while we coo at her and her silly fountain of pee flowing all over the place.

And we tackled that hilly 4.5 mile run together in the BOB this morning.

I really didn't think I'd be able to push the jogger up all the steep hills on this route, but to my very pleasant surprise, I did! While we were out there, I thought about some strategies that are useful when running with the baby jogger.

First off, make sure that baby is well fed... but not so overly full that she'll vomit on herself when the jogger starts moving. It's also important to wait until after the morning diaper blow-out, for obvious reasons.

Do not, under any circumstances, start your watch.*

When running up a shallow hill, you can gently push the jogger ahead and let go of the handles. Run free for a few seconds, and then catch up as the jogger slows due to the pull of gravity.** Warning! Do not employ this technique on downhills. Doing so may result in a look of terror on your infant's face. You will likely also experience some unintended interval training.

When the hill is steeper and it is impossible to push the jogger ahead, go ahead and sacrifice your running form completely. Do this by leaning forward at a 45 degree angle and push, gripping the jogger handles lightly with both hands (arms almost straight). It may be helpful at this time to imagine the great workout you are getting on your hamstrings and glutes.

Hill running with the jogger is a great way to start your day with baby. We may make this a daily ritual. The first phrase Moana will know will be "Wanna go for a run?"

*I make the rules, I don't follow them. So if you're like me, be sure to add 45-60 sec/mile to your normal pace and then just be happy that you're running.

**This is against manufacturer's labeling. However, it may be an area where the Ironman model out-performs the Revolution due to the fixed wheel on the front.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

It Takes A Village

Moana makes up for her night last night by being cute as a button today... although I'm hoping she didn't sleep so much today that she'll have a repeat tonight because that wouldn't be so cute.

There's a reason why babies need two parents. And grandparents. I can't imagine doing all this on my own.

Four In the Morning...

Stay up 'til four in the morning and the tears are pouring and I wanna make it worth the fight...

I think Gwen Stefani said that first... she must have been singing about new moms.

Moana had one of those nights last night where she just wanted to be awake all night and wiggle and squirm and scream and eat and poop and pee then pee again all over herself and the changing table while you're changing her poopy diaper (again) and then eat some more before squirming and kicking until I was at my wits end and I woke Scott up and performed the hand-off at 5:00 AM.


I'm looking forward to when she's old enough to learn how to self-soothe herself to sleep. I swear I would have tried it last night but then everyone in the house would have been awake and as frustrated as I was. She's still little and sometimes (ok, most of the time) just needs to be held.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Rainy Saturday

Brrrr. I know I shouldn't complain about how cold it is here since it's like negative 15 degrees and snowing excessively all over the mainland, but you know what? I'm going to. At least a little. Because we don't have heat here so when it gets cold, all we can do is put on more clothes. It's like a crime... I'm wearing socks around the house. And Moana has been in her long sleeved fleece pjs (with bunny feet) all day.

It's been raining all over the state all day. It's a major weather pattern that hasn't let up and is supposed to last a few more days.

It meant no bike ride today, and no ocean swim either. Actually, the real reason for no ocean swimming (besides that its cold and the water would be very murky from all the rain) is that 2000+ box jellyfish descended upon the south shore today and I decided not to risk it.

Instead it's been a good day to lounge around the house. Lots of sleeping going on around here today.

And it was a good day for hot chocolate. I was totally craving hot chocolate (it was just that kind of day) so I sent Scott out to the store to get some.

YUM! I drank a cup while feeding Moana tonight and I swear she must have been getting chocolate milk out of me because she ate quite eagerly for almost an hour.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Running Progress

So I wasn't going to be concerned about my running so much for the next few months... the plan was (and still is) to just try to put some miles in over the next few months and get my legs used to the pounding on the road again. To that end, I've been running between 2 and 4.5 miles several times per week and feeling a bit better each day.

On Tuesday I did my first post-partum 4.5 mile run. It's a route I used to do all the time as a brick after my Saturday rides. Very hilly. I wasn't sure if I'd be able to run all the hills on Tuesday, but set out on a mellow pace and was plesantly surprised at my ability to run the whole thing. Even the steepest hills. And technically, it was running, although just barely getting my feet off the ground at times.

I would have been happy with this run (since I ran the whole thing!), except that I started my watch at the beginning and stopped it at the end. Proof of how slow I am. Ugh. I couldn't remember exactly how fast I used to do this route, but I was thinking it was like 5 minutes slow. Ugh. That's over a minute per mile. Ugh.

Then I made the second mistake of, just for giggles, checking my log book from last February. I saw that I wasn't 5 minutes slow. I was 8 minutes slow. On a 4.5 mile run. And the run I was looking at from February was after a really hard 62 mile bike.

My logbok was also proof that I am not 5 lbs away from my pre-preggo weight, I am 8 lbs away. I guess I was thinner than I remember when I got knocked up.

So I've got further to go than I thought I did.

Today I went on that same 4.5 mile run again. Frustrated by my look at my logbook, I picked out a more upbeat playlist on my iPod, put on my Ironman Finisher's Hat, and stopped treating myself like a china doll. I finished that run today 3 minutes faster than I did on Tuesday. So now I'm only 5 minutes off. I'll cut myself some slack since I'm carrying 8 extra pounds and not even a month post childbirth...

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Spending my days caring for a newborn causes a lot of random thoughts to cross my brain. For example:

Moana is So.Much.Cuter. when I've had adequate sleep. Yesterday I didn't have enough sleep. I walked around like a zombie all day and had thoughts like, "You're not as cute as you think you are." Then this morning I woke up (after a much better night) and now I once again believe that even with her baby acne she's the most precious thing on the planet.

Speaking of baby acne, I'm having instinctual urges to pop her little zits. They pretty much cover her cheeks now. It's a good thing I don't have longer nails.

What if we all acted like newborns and just screamed bloody murder until we got what we wanted? Seriously. Imagine, if, from the moment you felt your first hunger pangs, you just screamed out from the top of your lungs until someone brought you food. What would the world be like??

How bored would you be eating the same thing all the time? Babies are champs for not rebelling from the monotony of their meals.

Although I guess the monotony is broken up when Mama eats something like spicy curry with broccoli for dinner. It's like all hell breaks loose when that happens. Sorry Moana. I won't do that again until we're done breast feeding.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Half A Year

Scott and I have been married for a half of a year now.

I know wedding anniversaries are typically measured in years, not months... but I think there's an exception in the first year when every month is a milestone. Except in our situation, where months seem to fly by so fast that we have missed every one so far... save for the 6 month... regardless, we finally remembered one and celebrated it!

They say that the first year of marriage is the hardest. Except for the first year of having a new baby. Nice that we are just killing two birds with one stone over here by combining the two hardest times into one, for simplicity sake (?). But if this is as hard as it gets, we're gonna be just fine. Because other than a bit of recent sleep-deprived-lack-of-patience (on my part more than my dear husband's), marriage has been nothing but awesome.

And clearly Scott is anticipating us making it through the next six months as well, because he brought me not six but twelve perfect red roses.

Nice that grammy is here to babysit Moana so Scott and I could go out to dinner. We returned the to scene of the crime... if you could call it that... or maybe just call it the restaurant where we had our first real date. I remember being so nervous for that date, though clearly it went well... so well in fact that a year and a half later we have a couple of wedding bands and a baby to prove it.

And further proof that my husband is always looking out for my comfort at 3:00 AM while our infant is demanding food, he brought home this to make it a little more bearable for me.

I think I'm addicted to my new massage padded rocking chair. It's an awesome shiatsu massage and I can add the 'heat' option to warm it up and get a deeper dig. I've used it so much in the last few days that my back muscles are actually sore. So now Moana thinks that I sit in the rocking chair feeding her at all hours of the night for her pleasure, when really it's my own selfish desires...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Back In The Saddle

Woohoo! Went for my first bike ride post-partum this afternoon. It's actually maybe only my 3rd ride since I found out I was pregnant... for some reason I just completely stopped riding the day I saw the little plus sign on the stick, save for maybe one or two little rides here and there. Looking back, that really wasn't necessary (to just stop riding) but for whatever reason that was my choice at the time.

A few days ago I was at the gym and ventured onto an exercise bike to warm up before my weight routine. Actually, the only reason I attempted to sit on the bike seat was because all the treadmills and ellipticals were in use, so the bike was really my only option. With some trepidation, I gingerly mounted the exercise bike and was pleasantly surprised at the lack of pain I felt. It made me think that I may be able to get out on my road bike this weekend...

And today was the day! I was so happy to bbe out there... felt so free... for the first 45 minutes. Then it started to hurt. Mostly my back and neck. Crazy how my little 22 mile 'recovery ride' (that I used to do on Tuesdays when I was training for Ironman) became a massive endurance event today that left me feeling like I'd been hit by a truck. And who turned all the little hills into mountains over the last few months anyway? This mama has a lot of work to do before regaining my cycling fitness. Luckily I feel sure that it will come back, but it'll just take some time in the saddle before that happens. I'm gonna have to get a bike trainer so I can ride inside during the week... I think weekday rides outside are going to be nearly impossible now that I have a baby to care for full time. Saturday mornings will, however, once again become my riding days and I'm really looking forward to regaining that routine.

In other good news, I ran about 4 miles today with the jogger. It's quite hilly around my house though and I did have to walk some of the uphills. It was hot and the stroller is heavy and the hills are big and what other excuses can I come up with? I gave birth three weeks ago... maybe that counts for something.

So although it feels great to be running and riding a bit again, for the next several weeks I'm going to continue to concentrate on swimming and make sure I get 5 swims in per week. After the Double RoughWater (Dec 7) I'll put swimming on a back-burner and start to run/ride more. I'm conjuring up some semblance of a 'training plan' in my head and I like it.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Like A Box Of Chocolates

Ocean swimming is like a box of chocolates.. you never know what you're gonna get...

I did the ocean swim with my friend Kathryn again this morning. We've got a different weather pattern right now that involves south winds, which transformed the south shore of Oahu from the more typical wind chop to perfect and glassy lake-like water.

Before getting in, Kathryn and I mused about what it might be like once we get out to the deep water where we do the majority of the swim. Looks calm. Not as clear today. Might we have a head-current?

It got me thinking about all the possibilities of the ocean conditions, and it occurred to me that we never really know what to expect. In 3+ years of (almost) weekly swims out there, we've experienced a lot... although luckily no sharks yet!*

~It could be perfect and glassy.
~We could have massive wind-chop.
~There might be a really strong current pushing us along. Or maybe that's a head-current that makes us feel like gerbils on an exercise wheel. And it's possible that the current will change on us half way through when the ocean floor drops and the water gets really deep.
~Sometimes it feels really warm. Other times my hands go numb because I get so cold.
~Sometimes we get to count how many turtles we see while swimming. Today was a 'One Turtle Swim'.
~Most of the time we do a good job finding the sand channel on our way in. But occasionally there's a current that sweeps us away from it and we end up 300 meters down from where we want to be in 18 inches of water and sharp reef. My swim partners can verify how much I love it when that happens.
~Sometimes its really just a nice mellow social swim. Other times it turns into a race. Depends on who shows up and what kind of mood everyone is in.
~Most of the time we finish the swim without being stung by anything. But sometimes we get caught in jellyfish, or man-o-war, or some sort of crazy 'sea lice' that sting like crazy all over. That sucks.
~Depending on the season, we may have some decent waves to negotiate on our way out or the way back in... duck diving through white water crashing waves can make the swim fun and adventurous!
~A couple times we've ended up swimming with a pod of dolphins out there. Chasing them actually.
~Once we swam up to a boat full of strangers who were drinking beer during their Sunday afternoon sail. We climbed onto the boat and drank a beer with them before swimming the mile back to shore. I'm gonna have to find my pictures of that!

So even though we didnt get dolphins or beer today, Kathryn and I felt lucky that it was such a perfect swim. We commented about how its days like this that make us love ocean swimming. Of course its not always like that, so we take the good with the bad. It made me think a lot about how raising Moana has been similar so far. You never know what you're going to get with your infant. And you can't really control it. Sometimes she's hungry. Sometimes she sleeps. Sometimes she's awake and sometimes she gets really fussy. But it's the same thing- there are times that are so awesome that you're totally willing to take the challenging conditions because the perfect conditions are so perfect.

*I've never seen it, but apparently this tiger shark was sighted in the same waters about a year ago**...

**And for the record, we all stayed out of the water for several weeks after this photo circulated...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Sweet Baby Moana

Grunts, Groans and Moans

Moana has started into a grunting stage. It happens mostly at night when she's sleeping. The grunts are so loud that it easy to mistake them for signs of wake time unease... they usually have me jumping out of bed (hence, the moaning) in the middle of the night to check and see what's wrong... until I get to her side and see that she's sleeping soundly. It's actually quite amazing that such loud noises can come out of such a small little person and that she can squirm as much as she does while still in dreamland.

I have found a little pattern to the grunts and groans. They generally start 45 minutes to an hour prior to her waking up to feed. Which is especially fun for me because that means if she eats from, say, 3-4 AM, the grunting will start again at 5 and then she's ready to eat again at 6. So that's a whole hour of sound sleep for Mama Simmons before I'm listening for the sounds of real hunger vs the fake hunger of the grunts. It's reminiscent of the fake BH contractions I had toward the end of my pregnancy... how to tell the difference between the real thing and the fake outs? For Moana, real hunger is indicated by the frantic nature of the squirming and urgency of the cry. Sometimes her hand goes in her mouth, and her feet are generally flexed when it's real. Her eyes may or may not be open.

I think part of this problem will be solved when she moves full time into her own crib/room to sleep at night. She's there part of the time now, but since grammy is still here visiting, we switch her bassinette in the middle of the night so grammy gets the late nighttime grunts and I get the early morning ones. When we get up in the morning, we compare notes on how the night went and try to piece together the puzzle that is Moana.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Lunch At The Beach

Another big swell hit the north shore today so mom and I decided to take Moana up and check out the surfers at Sunset Beach.

I love the road that goes up to the North Shore from my house. It's been my staple Saturday ride for the past several years since I've lived here. While driving up and back today I had all sorts of flashbacks and visions of training on these roads with some of my friends. It gave me butterflies in my stomach because I know I'm pretty darn close to reliving those days here shortly!

It was indeed a big day for waves, and super fun to watch for a while. There are a bunch of pro surfers in town because the surfing competitions are starting. This gal didn't have such good luck today.

It felt good to get out of the house. Taking care of a baby who eats like she has a tapeworm, sleeps like she's addicted to ambien, and poops with the best of them can get monotonous, so days at the beach here and there seem like a good way to break it up.

We hung out under a shade tree and had lunch. It was a tough day.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Like A Wet Noodle

For the past nine months all my exercise has been totally aerobic in nature. But I've been waiting for the day when I could to push myself hard enough to be out of breath. I've wanted to work hard in a workout.

Tonight I got to do just that. I attended my first masters swim workout since February. It was awesome. I was giddy while driving there and so happy to see my old teammates and coach. So fun to be social in my workouts again rather than being in isloation.

And once again, I pleasantly surprised myself with my swim fitness. I worked hard. And my heart rate went up high. And I was out of breath. And I loved it.

Now I feel like a wet noodle. My arms are as limp as Moana's when she's all done eating. Speaking of which, I'm just waiting for her to wake up so I can feed her again before putting her down for the night. Or at least a few hours...

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Duke's On Saturday

At almost 2 weeks old now, Moana got to go to the beach today!

I don't think she knew she was there because she didn't really open her eyes at all (that car seat in the BOB stroller is like a sleeping pill), but it was fun anyway. She was a totaly angel the whole day!

I actually met a couple of my friends/training partners down at the beach for a swim today... the old standby 'Duke's Swim' that I used to do religiously every Sunday with the gang (I missed you, Ellen! And Dana!). We start at Kaimana beach, swim out about a 1/2 mile, then head over toward Dukes on a one way route. Not sure exactly how long the swim is, and it varies depending on how far out we go and how the currents are treating us. Typically 55-65 minutes... I hadn't done this swim since... I can't remember? Maybe April? I missed it SO MUCH and couldn't wait to do it again. It was pure bliss today! Even though it was windy and kind of choppy, I felt awesome and was just thrilled to be out there. The water was warm if it wasn't crystal clear, and I continue to be pleasantly surprised at my fitness level. I'm not nearly as slow as I expected to be. :)

We end the one-way swim at Duke's, which is a popular hotel/restuarant/bar in Waikiki. We sit in the hot tub there and catch up on all the latest happenings in each other's lives... lots of interesting news today! Holy moly I've been out of the scene for quite some time and it felt good to hang with my pals again and be social.

My mom kept Moana while we were swimming and walked her down to Dukes where we all sat and had lunch and a beer. Life doesn't get much better than that, folks. ;)

And now that I have some confidence in my post-partum swimming ability, I'll be sending in my entry this week for the Waikiki Double Roughwater Swim on Dec 7. It's basically the swim we did today, but rather than stopping, we'll turn around and swim back. I think the race is like 4.5 miles or something like that. So I've got 4 more weeks to work up my mileage so I won't drown on the way back! :)

Any local friends out there wanna volunteer to babysit an angel baby for a few hours on a Sunday morning at the beach on December 7? ;)

Friday, November 7, 2008

Cumulative Fatigue

The fatigue is catching up to me. I. Am. Really. Tired.

I think I got through the first 10 days on 1) Adrenaline and those happy I'm-Not-Pregnant-Anymore Hormones, 2) the fact that I have a very mellow and easy baby, and 3) my mom is here to do everything from grocery shopping to preparing dinner, cleaning the house, laundry, etc.

10 days later, the adrenaline is wearing off and this mama needs some sleep. The days all run together in a blur and I have a hard time remembering anything. A few months ago I remember Kate writing a blog about little things she did to help herself when Alice was a newborn... she mentioned having a ring that she would switch from hand to hand depending on which breast was up for feeding next. At the time, I remember thinking, "How hard could it be to remember that?"... HA! Now I know. Good thing I have a ring that fits both hands.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


All is right in the world.

Mama got to go for a swim today. :)

It was a long night last night. Moana is increasingly finding 'wake time' to be preferential to sleep, and unfortunately last night she thought that 2:00-4:30 AM was a good time to be awake and check out her new world. Mama thinks a better time would be during daylight hours but that's hard to enforce on a 9 day old infant.

Good thing my mom is still here. After our 7 AM feeding, she took over and I got to sleep until 10. And in between the morning and lunchtime feedings, I snuck off to the pool.

The lifeguards were shocked to see me. What are you doing here? Duh... Regaining my sanity. 2000 blissful longcourse meters where I could do flipturns and feel streamlined off the wall. Ahhhh....

I can envision making the late morning swim a habit while my mom is here to watch Moana. One thing I'll have to be more conscientious about is getting a better shower after getting out of the water. We found out today that chlorinated breasts are not Moana's first choice for lunch. Fair enough. I probably wouldn't like that either.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Moana Meets Her New Boyfriend, BOB

BOB has been waiting anxiously for quite some time now to meet his new little girlfriend.

I'm sure he thought he got a raw deal, being sold to a household where he just sat in the corner, week after week, with no outdoor activity. He must have thought that I was full of it when I promised that he's gonna some action one of these days...

But today I made good on my word, and introduced him to Moana.

The first date should always be short, I think. Just a little taste to check the interest level... Moana and BOB spent about 25 minutes together today, and I think that although the first impression was a bit stressful for Moana (mostly her mom's fault for not preparing the straps properly ahead of time), after just a minute or so I think I saw some of the first hints of a smile cross my little daughter's face.

The short outing was good for me too! I gave myself the green light to go after watching my BP stabilize over the last couple of days... it was down to 130/84 yesterday, 124/82 today before the walk/jog... And afterward? 117/80. Exercise is truly my cure-all.

Monday, November 3, 2008

One Week Later

Wow I can't believe its only been a week. I've heard other people say it... now I get it... I can't even remember or imagine my life without Moana! I'm totally in love.

She's the most mellow and easygoing baby ever. She sleeps like a champ (even the ear-piercingly loud jackhammer right outside my condo door this morning just made her squirm a bit before falling back into her slumber). She is eating really well, and always gives me a signal when she's starting to feel hungry (she sucks on her fist) so I can get her some food before she has a meltdown. Frantically hungry babies are so much harder to feed! We're not on a 'schedule' per say, but she's pretty predictable- wanting to eat every 3-4 hours. Last night she woke for feeding at midnight, 3ish, and 6ish. Now it's 9:45 AM and she's still sound asleep, although I expect her to wake up soon for some chow. I don't know about that advice about waking a sleeping baby to eat. I tried that once at the end of a particularly long nap, and it resulted in a particularly fussy baby who took forever to latch on. Lesson learned.

The key to this whole parenting thing for me has been to trust Moana to tell me what she needs. Since she's such a healthy baby, she has great instincts that are easy for me to follow. For example: Fist in mouth = feed her. Lips pierced tightly = stop feeding her. Eyes closed in a drunken and very relaxed state = let her sleep. It's really not rocket science. And when I pay attention to those little things, I'm able to meet her needs as soon as she has them so I think she feels really safe/secure and we rarely have meltdowns.

And I'm feeling good! My blood pressure is coming down slowly but steadily (130/82 this AM) so I'm feeling good about that. Hopefully by the end of the week I'll really be back to my normal self. It's Monday so I've started my weekly weigh-ins. I'm down 20 lbs from last Monday. Probably the biggest single week weight loss I'll ever see! (For those Biggest Loser fans out there, that's a 12.6% weight loss this week! Woohoo!) Now I just hope to be on the 1 lb/week plan so I can be back at pre-peggo weight by Christmas or so. My belly is still like jelly, but it's shrinking every day so I'm ok with it. It's good that others told me about the jelly belly or else I'd be a bit distressed about the softness of it all. Like what the heck happened to my abs? And how long until they get hard again? In other good news, I fit into my old shorts already! I didn't expect to yet, but it was really great to button them up this morning. And just because I could, I put on a belt too. It's the little things.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Grammy Is Here!

My mom flew in from Ohio yesterday to meet her first granddaughter... and she brought lots of pink clothes so Moana really looks like a girl now!

I'm starting to feel like my BP is normalizing some, so we thought we'd try out the Baby Bjorn for a very short walk outside. I think it went over pretty well, although I'll have to pay attention to the time of day that she and I normally go out because it's pretty hot out there, and even hotter behind this black fabric! But overall Moana did fine. In fact, I think she fell asleep within a minute of being put in it.

And now she'll be asleep for the rest of the afternoon. She doesn't quite have the same endurance as her mom (not yet anyway!)

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween... Past and Present

Last Halloween I was dating this guy.

Now he's the father of my baby.

And we're cruel parents. This is what we did to her last night.

I couldn't stop laughing.