Monday, December 20, 2010

So I've been a little bit M.I.A. around these parts. Things are busy, and the truth is that aside from sharing pics of Nora, I don't feel like I have much to blog about these days. We are doing the normal Christmas season stuff--family gatherings, shopping, baking. The holidays are busy anyway, but add a baby into the mix and they seem even busier.

The last time I really updated you on how we're doing, we were in my first week back at work, which was rough on many levels. But during our second full week, I dare say we hit a groove.

First off, and most importantly, Nora started sleeping better at daycare. She has fallen into a routine there that seems to be working for us. It's still way different than the routine she was in at home, of course, but I suppose change is to be expected.

On a normal day, Nora takes a morning nap and an afternoon nap. The sitter says that these last around 1.5 hours each. In an ideal world, these naps would be a bit longer, but there's not much I can do about it. Our only "problem" with this situation is that by the time we pick her up, Nora is ready for a third nap. She almost always falls asleep on the car ride home, and then we let her nap for 30-45 minutes to "hold her over" until bed. I'll wake her up by about 6:15, then she'll hang out with us while we eat dinner, we'll play, then we do bath (if it's a bath night) and bedtime. She's usually in bed around 7:30 p.m.

The cons of this routine are kind of obvious... we get less time with her than I'd like. If I could change things, I'd love for her naps at daycare to be a little longer so that she could cut out the after-work nap and we could have a bit more awake time with her before she goes to bed.

I will admit, however, that this routine has its pros as well. Her little naptime allows us to unpack everything from the day, like dirty bottles, dirty diapers, pump parts, lunch dishes, etc. We can change our clothes and get comfortable for the evening. One of us starts dinner while the other washes bottles and pump parts, and straightens up a bit. Since we plan easy meals during the week these days, dinner is usually done by the time we wake Nora, at which point we all sit down together to eat and relax. Most of the time, the little nap refreshes Nora enough so that she's in a great mood, so although shorter than we might like, the time we have with her is fun and happy.

Then, later, once Nora's in bed, we finish whatever we didn't get done before dinner--diaper laundry, regular laundry, more straightening up. I prepare the next day's bottles and freeze the milk I pumped during the day.

See? The groove: we've got it.

By the time Friday rolls around, I'm SO.READY. for the weekend so I can spend more time with my baby girl. But aside from that, things really haven't been too bad. Being back at work has its pros, too. My vocabulary is working its way back up from being reduced to "How big is Nora? Soooo big!" and the lyrics to "The Wheels on the Bus" and "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" while I was on my maternity leave. Of course, I would love to be at home with Nora, but this working mom gig, while challenging, hasn't been as horrible as I was expecting.

At daycare, the sitter says Nora is super happy and smiley all day. And although it makes me sad to hear that I'm missing all of those smiles, I'm just glad to know that she's happy. The other little girls who are at daycare with her LOVE Nora; they all come running to do the door exclaiming "BABY NORA!" when I come in each morning. Nora will smile at them, and apparently spends all day observing their play, fascinated by everything that they do. So, all in all, we have a great thing going.

A happy baby equals a happy mama. And that's really all there is to it.


E @ Oh! Apostrophe December 20, 2010 at 9:57 PM  

She's getting more and more adorable every day! Good for you for adapting so well to the working mom thing... I'm planning on doing the same and am worried about it already!

Erin December 20, 2010 at 10:09 PM  

This sounds so similar to how I felt when I went back to work, and Nora's schedule is almost identical to what Annie's was at first. We dealt with many cranky evenings when she started refusing her after daycare nap, but now she's on just one nap a day and does fine - but is in bed by 7 - it's tough to not see her much, but I do love the adult time every night!

Anonymous,  December 21, 2010 at 2:46 AM  

Your little girl is ADORABLE and very photogenic. Such a sweet girl!

Crystal December 22, 2010 at 12:51 PM  

Lily has the same snowflake tutu cute!

Dana December 24, 2010 at 4:15 PM  

I thank you for sharing your experience. It puts me more at ease since my hubby and I are going to start our family journey at the beginning of the year. It lets me know what I need to expect. The picutes are adorable.

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