The magic of a mama

On Sunday Garrity had a fever.  Nothing crazy.  I think 100.4 was the highest it got and otherwise she seemed totally normal so I just chalked it up to teething.  Later in the afternoon she started to get a rash around her mouth but again I thought teething.  We’re still waiting on that 1st tooth to come in and when she’s extra drool-y she’s been known to get a little rash.  So I put some babypowder on it, covered it with vaseline and called it good.  Chris got home from his boys weekend and we went out to dinner.  The whole time she seemed perfectly normal.  Maybe even happier than usual.  But when we put her to bed I saw a rash on her feet.  I immediately thought she had an allergic reaction.  She tried lentils for the first time and I’d just given her some steamed pears instead of pear puree.   I went to bed nervous but not too stressed out, hoping the rash would be gone by morning.

But then she had a horrible night.  Would not go down in her crib and ended up in our bed by 9:30 and then the whole night kept waking up screaming.  The only way she’d sleep was curled right up next to me, with her little hands on my face.  If she hadn’t been sick I would have thought it was the sweetest thing ever.  When she woke up the next morning the rash on her face was much worse and when I changed her diaper I saw the rash on her feed had spread  up her legs and all over her arms.  While I didn’t know exactly what this was, I knew it wasn’t good.  I took her into her room to change her diaper and started googling.  Wouldn’t you know, if you google rash on hands, feet and mouth you get the dreaded “hand, foot and mouth disease.”

This is the one I’d been dreading.  I’d read about it and heard horror stories.  We actually didn’t even go to the original daycare orientation last summer because there was an outbreak of it at the daycare and I didn’t want to chance it.  I was totally surprised she would have it because besides a fever in our class last week, I hadn’t heard of anyone having this.  But then when I clicked over to Google images and saw pictures of her rash staring back at me I knew immediately what we were dealing with.  I tried to look in her mouth since I knew that mouth sores were a big symptom (plus she hadn’t been wanting to nurse all weekend) and I thought I saw a tiny white spot.

So I called the dr and took her in at 11.  “Textbook case.”  Apparently her mouth and the back of her throat were covered in sores.  I think I managed to hold it together through the appointment but the waterworks started the minute I walked out the door of the office.  I felt horrible for my little girl.  She was sick and there was nothing I could do about it. And not just sick.  Not like a little cold sick.  She was sick with what I think might be the worst viral illness you could get (knock on wood).  And there’s really no treatment for it.  I got a prescription for “magic baby mouthwash” but the pharmacy didn’t have one of the ingredients so after 3 days of waiting I canceled it.   I’ve tried putting a little coconut oil on the blisters (which the rash turned into) and some Tylenol to help her sleep but otherwise this is just a wait it out disease.  I hate it.  My poor little girl.

Chris and I have been rotating working from home and while I hate the reason I’ve had to be here, I love that I get days with her.  And what I’ve found is that while no medicine can help her with this.  I can.  Her mama.  Right now, all she wants is her mama.  To be close to me.  To be held by me.  Sure, it’s a little tough to get work done but I’ve mastered the art of one handed emailing and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  She holds on to me like she’s an addict and I’m her fix.  She cries and reaches for me if I’m here and not picking her up.  It’s like the minute she’s in my arms, all is right with the world and all her pain is gone.

I just finally got her down for a nap.  We’re on day 5 and she’s finally taking naps in her crib again and last night she actually slept in her own room until 4am.  But I went to work today and Chris stayed home and I think the thought of me coming home and immediately putting her down in her crib was too much.  Too much time away from mama.  So I took her into our room and laid down with her and after a little fussing she once again cuddled up right next to my face.  Her little blistered hands covering my nose.  We were so close I could smell her binky.  This sweet smell that has now become intoxicating to me and I think honestly we both need the closeness of each other to feel better.

We have many more years to go and I know there will be a lot more sicknesses ahead of us but I think the one thing I’ve learned this week is that no matter what type of medicine is out there, a mother’s love can be a pretty magical thing  and that sometimes the best medicine is just holding your little girl close and feeling her breathe on your face.

sick day

Garrity’s 1st trip to the pumpkin patch

Ok, little belated posting…we actually went to the pumpkin patch on October 12th.  Our daycare class organized it which was awesome. I know Chris and I would have gone on our own but it was nice to have someone else take the initiative to plan it.  Plus it was so fun to go with our class.  Garrity will be in the same daycare class with the same 8 kids and 4 teachers for the next 3 years so I love that we’re getting to know everyone outside of school.  We also invited Chris’ parents to meet up.  They had just gotten back from a 3 week trip to Russia so it was great to see them.

We went to Lakeview Farms and it was great.  We took a little train ride out and could have taken a boat ride back but the weather got crummy.  We got there at 10 and it was pretty foggy but it eventually cleared up for a bit before getting super cold.  We took our Ergo 360 and it was perfect.  In fact, a lot of our daycare parents were commenting that they wished they had that carrier instead of the regular Ergo.  All the babies are about Garrity’s age and are all preferring to be facing out (or not carried at all).  I also loved getting her all bundled up.  I actually went out and bought her a new hat the day before.  I mean, her little hat and vest?  Adorable!  And even though I think she stayed pretty warm it did make me realized we needed to get her some winter coats (which I did last weekend at Columbia).

All in all, great 1st outing to a pumpkin patch.  We really didn’t do much besides take picutures with pumpkins.  We didn’t even take pumpkins home.  They were dirty and the thought of having to take them plus Garrity back seemed like a lot of work.  We even skipped the cute gift shop which pre-baby I would have enjoyed checking out but the line was huge and Garrity was tired.

Afterward we had an awesome lunch at Rock Creek Tavern.  They had the fireplaces going and it was so cozy.  It was such a great Sunday and a perfect way to kick off fall.

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Daylight Savings Time, Sleep tips + Pampers Giveaway

So for the most point, I think we’re doing pretty good with this sleep thing.  As long as Garrity isn’t sick she’s spending the entire night in her crib.  She will typically wake up 1-2 times a night to nurse but I’m just not ready to night wean her.  When she’s been sick it’s a whole different ball game.  On sick nights we can usually get her to go down in her own bed but she at some point ends up in bed with us.  I don’t blame her though, who doesn’t want mama cuddles when you’re sick?


I honestly didn’t follow any sort of method to get her to sleep in her room.  I read a few books, did a little online research and everything said to let her cry it out and I just couldn’t.  I think we tried a  couple times but it just killed me to hear my little girl sad so if we put her in her crib and she cried we put her back in our room until eventually she went down in her crib and stayed there.


And just when I have gotten into a good bedtime routine, daylight savings time comes around to knock me off my game.  I wish I could sit here and give you some tips to make it through the change but I don’t.  I’m just trying to learn through this 1st round.  But even though I don’t have any profound words of wisdom to share about the time change in general, I do have a few tips that helped us make bed time easier and I plan on following these tips when it’s time to roll our clocks back.

Have a consistent time:
Somewhere around the 4 month mark bedtime became between 7:30 -8 and it was less us picking the time and more Garrity determining it.  Naturally Chris and I wanted her to stay up until 8 to hang out with us but you can tell she starts to melt down around 7 and we know we need to start her routine or we’re going to have a meltdown.  There have been a couple days where we’ve been out and she’s been a trooper and stayed up a bit later but she naturally wants to go to bed right around 7:30 and we do our best to stick with that.

Follow a routine:
Every night we try to do things the same way.   Dinner (at first is was Chris and I and now that she’s eating solids she’s included), bath/jammies (we do bath every other night), book, nurse, bed.  Sometimes she’s too tired to read a book so we’ll skip that part but everything else is usually the same.  I also read that I’m not suppose to nurse her to sleep but I don’t care.  I love nursing her before bed.  Sometimes she’s asleep when I put her down and sometimes she wakes up as I lay her in the crib but she’s cool.  She knows how to put herself to sleep for the most part.

Give her a lovey/transitional object:
This was key for us.  When we first started putting her to bed I just put her in the crib with her binkie and the sleep sheep but she just couldn’t get comfy so I started leaving whatever tshirt or tank I was wearing tied to her crib.  But then I kept having to walk around shirtless (ha!) so we ended up getting her a lovey.  I think this is the stupidest name for a blankie but whatever.  We got her this one and she loves it.  When I first got it I slept with it for a few nights to get my scent on it and I swear it helps.  I even got her the same kind (but in pink zebra stripe) for daycare.

Keep her dry:
This wouldn’t be a Pampers post without talk about diapers right?  We have been firm Pampers believers since day 1.  My best friend gave us some Pampers Swaddler’s Sensitive at my baby shower and we’ve been loyal users every since.  I tried a couple other brands like Honest, Loves and Huggies but Pampers by far our are faves.  We’ve never had a pee leak and only a few blowouts (which we fixed by moving up a size).  Garrity also has super sensitive skin and I sear these diapers help her with that. She’d never had a diaper rash until she went to daycare where they use cloth diapers and sure enough, after she got it I brought my trusty Pampers in and had them use those and the diaper rash went away.  At night Garrity is a major pee machine and her diapers are soaked! But she has never leaked through Pampers.


And because Pampers wants everyone to experience their awesome diapers, they are giving one lucky ready 2 coupons for free diapers  and wipes.  They are also hosting a Twitter party where you can win even more prizes from Pampers and a variety of other awesome sponsors.

Enter here to win your Pampers coupons.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Twitter party takes place this Wednesday, October 29th at 9PM PST.  You can RSVP here

To participate, follow your hosts @DoubleDutyDivas, @BridgetteLA, @CeceliaMecca @AngieKcom @WhatMommiesNeed @RamblingChick, and our sponsor @Pampers.

Twitter Party Prizes Include:
·         Prize 1 – Twinkles Nightlight in Blue, 148 ct of Pampers diapers and a pack of wipes.
·         Prize 2 – Pottery Barn plush security blanket, $50 Barnes & Noble gift card, a pack of Pampers diapers and wipes.
·         Prize 3 – A gift card to The $125 Children’s Place for pajamas, a pack of Pampers diapers/wipes
·         Prize 4 – A Kindle Fire so parents can purchase baby bedtime books, an $100 Amazon gift card to purchase the e-books, a pack of Pampers diapers and wipes.

This review was made possible by Double Duty Divas and Pampers. I was provided the featured product free of charge to facilitate my review, but as always, all opinions are 100% mine.



A day in the life of a working mom

I did a day in the life post way back when I was on maternity leave.  Thought it would be fun to do one now to compare.

2AM: I hear Garrity crying in her crib.  Chris and I had made a deal before going to bed that he would take her between 10 and 2 and I would take her from 2 on.  Lucky me :)  I lay in bed for a few minutes seeing if she’ll go back to bed but she doesn’t so I get up.  As I pass the clock in the kitchen I see that it’s 2:10.  Go into Garrity’s room (and no matter how tired I am I’m never too tired to see her little face) and pick her up out of her crib.  She does this thing where she kicks her legs on the crib mattress.  It’s hilarious to me.  Sit down in the rocking chair and she starts eating right away.  Girlfriend was hungry!  She finishes eating and almost falls back to sleep so I lay her back down in the crib and head back to my room, passing the clock in the kitchen to see that it’s 2:18.  Get back in our room and go back to sleep.

6AM: I hear Garrity making noise.  Not crying but she’s definitely awake.  I really want to train her not to get up until 7 so I let her fuss around.  Finally Chris goes and gets her and brings her back into our room.  He gets up and showers and I lay in bed with her until 6:45 when she finally falls asleep.  Check work emails while I’m laying in bed.

6:45 – 7:15 – I shower and get ready.  Chris leaves while I’m in the shower.  I washed my hair yesterday so I put on a shower cap and just curl it a bit.  I love days I don’t have to do my hair.  Now that I’m not getting super sweaty from working out I can sometimes make it 3 days without washing it.  I go to put on the outfit I’d planned to wear for the day and realize my jeans still were wet from laundry the night before so rummage around my closet for something else.  I still have very few pants that fit me so I end up in capri pants (on a cold, rainy PNW day) but put on some long boots and call it good.

7:15-7:30 – head into the kitchen and get the crockpot dinner ready.  I also grab a handful of cashews and a big mason jar of water. Chris had already prepped the chicken.  I pull out the salsa mixture I’d made the night before and toss that in with a little water.  It’s a new recipe so we’ll see how it goes.  I also label Garrity’s solids (I’d pulled them from the freezer last night but forgot to label). I also add some probiotics to one of her bottles (which Chris had already prepped).

7:30-7:42 – I sit down to pump. Crank out a couple of work emails.  Garrity wakes up while I’m pumping so I go in and get her.

7:45 – 8 – nurse Garrity and play with her.  I love how happy she is in the morning!  I just love this little girl.

8-8:10 – Finish pumping while drinking my water.  I normally wouldn’t have pumped again but I have a long meeting and know I couldn’t get out to pump again till noon. Turn on the crockpot.

8:10 – 8:15  – pack up pump bag and my lunch bag (Chris already made my sandwich).  Put Garrity’s bottles and solids in the cooler (normally Chris would do this but he had to leave too early).  Put all the bags by the door.

8:15 – 8:30 – Get Garrity ready.  Change her diaper (distract her with diaper cream, handbands and whatever else I can) and get her dressed.

8:30 – Put Garrity in her carseat.  Give her some Vitamin D drops (I always do it before I leave so I don’t forget).  Ideally I would like to be in the car right now but that pretty much never happens.

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8:33 – Make my smoothie: Almond milk, greek yogurt, frozen berries, spinach and kale, a bit of brewers yeast (for lactation) and some new to me protein powder.  Blend it up in the vitamix.  Pour it in a to go cup and basically gag when I try it.  Gross.  This protein powder is nasty but oh well.

8:37 – Put Chance in the garage which his kong (already filled by Chris).

8:39 – Leave Garrity in the house and load up 5 bags into the car: my work bag, my pump bag, my milk cooler, my lunch bag, Garrity’s milk cooler bag.

8:41 – Go back in and get Garrity.  Turn off the lights and lock up the house.  Load Garrity into the car.

8:43 – Leave for work.  Check emails before I go.  This is the earliest I’ve left in a while.

9:11 – Get to daycare.  Traffic was crazy.  Just leaving a few minutes later means there is much less traffic.  Check Garrity in, talk to her teachers.  Tell them the plan for the day.

9:17 – Get back in my car. Check emails to make sure nothing urgent has happened in the past 20 minutes.

9:23 – Get to my office.

9:25 – 9:29 – drop my stuff off at my desk, grab my water bottle, computer, notebook, pen and mug (filled with oatmeal).  Head to the break room to fill up my water bottle and put hot water in my oatmeal.  Swing by the bathroom.  Stop at the cafe and put honey in my oatmeal.  Grab a spoon.

9:30 – walk into my meeting that starts at 9:30.

9:30 – 11: 30  In a meeting. Leave and grab my pump bag.

11:33 – 11:50 – Pump.  We have a “quiet” room at work which I now refer to as my office haha. I bring my computer and work while I’m pumping.

11:52-12:20 – Go back to my desk, eat an egg salad sandwich and some popcorn (from the morning meeting vendor) while doing some work.

12:22 – head over to daycare

12:25 – 12:50 – Play with Garrity.  Get ready to leave when she starts to try and nurse so I take her into the quiet room and nurse her for 10 min.

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1:07 – back at my desk.  Work until 2:30 while eating more popcorn and a salad.

2:35 – 255 – head to the quiet room and pump while working.  I actually feel like I’m the most productive during my pumping sessions. Today I forgot extra bottles to pump into and got really stressed out for a moment until I remembered that I had extra milk bags in my bag so I had to transfer the morning milk to the bags and then wash out the bottles to pump into.

3 – 3:55 Have a meeting (where I eat more popcorn).

4  – leave to go get Garrity.

4:05 – 4:17 Get Garrity and all her things – bottles, updates from the day.  Load her into the car. Check emails before I head out.

4:45 – Get home.  Unload all the bags while Garrity sits in the car.  Bring Garrity in, set her on the table.  Go let Chance in from the garage.

4:50 – Take Garrity into her room.  Change her and nurse her. Check/respond to work emails.

5:05 – Get Garrity’s coat on and load her into the stroller.  Put the leash on Chance.

5:10 – 5:30 – Go on a walk around the neighborhood.

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5:30 – Chris gets home

5:30 – 6 Chris plays with and feeds Garrity while I work on dinner and clean up the kitchen – unpack bags, unload bottles etc. Check/respond to work emails.

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6 – 6:20 Give Garrity a bath while Chris finishes up dinner.

6:20 – 6:40 – Eat dinner.  Garrity sits on the counter in her little chair.  I tried a new recipe – chicken burrito bowls and it was great.

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6:40 – 6:50 – Chris takes Garrity into her room and reads her a story while I clean up the kitchen and her high chair.

6:50 – I nurse her.

6:58 – I put her in her crib and walk out of her room.  This is almost an hour earlier than normal.

7 – 7:30 – Wash pump parts, bottles, food containers.  Get new food ready for the next morning.  Pack up dinner and put it away.  Pack Garrity’s swim stuff for lessons tomorrow.  Get my outfit planned out for tomorrow. Change into my workout clothes.

7:40 – 8:10 – go into our guest room/gym and do PIYO core. This is early!  Normally I don’t get to do a workout until at least 8.

8:15 – 8:30 ride the spin bike (which has been moved to our front room for a while).

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8:30 – Sit down on the couch and relax for the first time all day.

8:35 – Garrity starts crying.  We let her cry for about 5 minutes until I decide to go on there. Not a normal wakeup call for her but since she went to bed early and missed a normal feeding I’m guessing she is hungry.

8:36 – 8:46 – Nurse Garrity.  She passes out in my arms.  I look at Facebook on the extra cell phone in her room just to get a few minutes to relax.

8:50 – Go wash my face and put my jammies on.  Then head back into the front room.  Grab a Kind bar.  Sit on the couch and ice my knee.

9 – 9:45 watch Grey’s Anatomy with Chris.  Work on this post.

9:50 – 10:10 – Pump.  Drink water.  Respond to a few work emails. Pack/double check my pump bag for tomorrow.  Write in my mom’s one line a day journal.

10:15 – I’m still hungry so I eat a small bowl of cereal while washing pump parts and taking my vitamins.

10:30 – brush my teeth and crawl into bed.  Check my email one last time. Look at Garrity one last time before turning off the monitor.  Say the prayer I say every night before I close my eyes – to ask God to watch over my little girl and keep her safe.

10:40 – close my eyes and do it all over again.


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