Kristen & Benton Brown

An Unexpected Start

An Unexpected Start
Parker Trimble Brown was born April 9, 2010.

I'm One Year Old

I'm One Year Old
Parker will be 14 months old on June 9th.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Staring down the brilliant dream...

Quote from the Indigo Girls concert tonight. May become an annual event for me and my mom!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

7 Weeks Old!

Parker is 7 weeks old today and he slept 8 hours straight! I don't think it will last, but we'll see. I have been trying to feed him 5oz every feeding instead of 4oz. He is willing to eat, but we've had more spit ups and fussiness while his tummy adjusts. Last night after I fed him at 8:30pm, he fell asleep in my arms in the living room. Around 9pm he proceeded to projectile spit up in my face, hair, and on my shoulder. It was so gross and almost got in my mouth! Stinker slept through the whole thing and was as peaceful as an angel. Here are some pictures from this morning (more pictures will be posted now that I have the Blog Press app and can upload pics from my iPhone).

This is one of my new favorite outfits - it's a surfer outfit that won't fit him in another couple of weeks. His Mimi bought it thinking it would fit in July or August.

Some day he likes a pacifier, other days not so much.

Tummy time bribe works again!

This is Jack's way of helping me with Parker's laundry.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Baby Bribes

So far, Parker is NOT a fan of tummy time. Today I bribed him to stay on his tummy by patting, then scratching, and finally rubbing his back until he fell asleep.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

6.5 Weeks and Counting!

Parker will be seven weeks old on Friday, but I didn't get a six weeks post in, so here goes. Our new accomplishment lately has been smiling and almost giggling. He is also a super night sleeper for only hitting the six weeks mark. I feed him at 8pm, and then he usually sleeps from 9pm until 4am! After feeding him from 4 - 4:30am, then he sleeps until 8am. I am a new woman now that we've been on this schedule for the last two weeks. He eats 4oz. at each feeding, and I'm starting to try 5oz. this week. Stupid Dr. Brown's doesn't make 6 oz. bottles, only 4oz. and 8oz. so moving up to an 8oz. bottle makes a big difference and I hate to waste even an ounce of precious milk!

Parker loves to sit in his vibrating chair on the kitchen table so he can look out all of the windows.

If we're lucky, he begins to yawn and will fall asleep while vibrating his little tootsies off!

At night, Parker is swaddled in a miracle blanket that keeps his strong arms and fists sunder wraps. He also sleeps on his Nap Nanny inside of his crib. This is a new invention found at Stork Land in Wichita Falls. Its designed for babies that may have acid reflux, but I think its good to keep him semi-upright in case he spits up during the night. Plus, its made of foam and easy to throw in the car when we go to Wichita Falls or the lake. For now, he sleeps on this on the floor at the lake and we don't have to drag out the pack-n-play.

Here's some of that cute grinnin' and gigglin'. His Mimi and Daddy B (Benton's parents, Nancy and Mark) got him some cute Polo outfits when they were in Las Vegas. I've heard Polo runs small, but he's already wearing 6 month outfits from Polo.

Parker still has blue eyes, but I swear they change colors each day. On Monday, before Benton left for London for a business trip, we swore they were turning hazel or brown. Today, they're as blue as ever!

This was taken on my iPhone, so its not great quality, but this is a picture of us in Austin last weekend. One of our best friends from Wichita Falls got married at the Four Seasons under the stars. We had a great adult weekend while my parents watched Parker at our house. We ate dinner Friday night at Eddie V's (our favorite restaurant in Austin), I had a massage Saturday morning while Benton played golf at the UT Golf Club, I got sunburned by the pool Saturday afternoon, and we danced like maniacs at the reception. Anytime you have more than 10 Wichita friends gathered together, you know its going to be a good party! Thanks to Emily and Rand Winfrey for a great weekend and wedding reception!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Mathematically Challenged

For those of you who know me well, you know that math has never been my strong suit. For those of you who don't know this about me, let me assure you that you would not want me to teach your children any level of math. Math was fine through sixth grade, but when I got to jr. high, there was a new teaching philosophy that said you shouldn't grade math homework - just give 100's if students attempted the work. I was a good child, but if someone says they're not going to look at your homework, I quickly decided not to do it. I made it through 7th and 8th grade math, but decided not to like the subject.

Why is this important you may ask? Last week I posted an entry that Parker was six weeks old. I wrote the post in the car while Benton drove us to the lake. I later received a call from my best friend asking if Parker knew yet that his mother was mathematically challenged. I wasn't sure why I needed to tell him this at such a young age, but she told me it was because I had already miscalculated his age. She checked my math and counted the weeks on the calendar. Parker was really only five weeks old last Friday, not six weeks.

In baby terms, this makes a huge difference! It also affects my decision on breastfeeding. For me, there is a big difference in breastfeeding seven weeks and making it to eight weeks. Now that my infection is better, I also have renewed patience with breastfeeding and I am okay with going longer. I was so proud of myself for saving up 64 - 4oz. baggies of breastmilk in our deep freezer that would allow me to give Parker for a week after I quit breastfeeding. On Tuesday, my confidence was shaken when I realized our freezer had gone out and I lost all that milk! I had a mini-meltdown and called Benton in Nashville freaking out because all of the milk was defrosted and I lost all the yummy food my mother-in-law had made for me to eat when Benton was traveling. Benton's personality is always, well you can't do anything about it now, so don't get upset. After I calmed down, I knew he was right, but it was so darn frustrating!!!

I'll post Parker's real six weeks update tomorrow and I'll try to include some pictures. Call it lazy, but I really need to get one of those new cameras that will wirelessly download pictures to your computer. I don't know why getting the cord out and connecting the camera to the computer seems like such a pain, but its an extra 10 minutes I don't have right now. It would also help if I could load pictures to my blog from my iPhone - apple and eblogger can you get on that? Thanks!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Six Week Old Munchkin

Parker is six weeks old today and I have no idea where the last week went. I feel like I have been in a self-absorbed time warp during the past few weeks. I know that the world has been moving along without me and I really don't care! I'm perfectly content to be a hermit at home and go to Target a couple of times each week (I could go more often but Benton would take my credit card away). I haven't been great about returning phone calls or emails, but I promise it's not because I'm buried in a post-partum hole. Actually, it's quite the opposite. It sounds dumb, but I feel like I have a bigger purpose now and so much stuff that filled my days before seems pointless now.

With all that said, the hardest part of post-partum has definetly been breastfeeding. I'll keep the details simple in case boys happen to read this, but I can tell you that infections in your breasts are more miserable than you can imagine! I had my first infection two weeks after Parker was born and had to take 10 days of antibiotics every six hours (you do the math, lots of pills). Plus I had chills, fever, body aches, and had to feed or pump every two hours. Not what you want to focus on when you bring your newborn home. Now, three weeks later, the infection is back again and I'm in constant pain. I started antibiotics again today and will go back to the doctor next week. Luckily, Parker is unaffected, but I may be reaching the end of my breastfeeding rope.

Breastfeeding is such a personal decison that everyone has an opinion on (see "Attack of the Lactoids" post). I've struggled a lot with whether it's selfish of me to stop breastfeeding so soon because it makes me feel so miserable. I've found myself wishing my doctor will give me a medical reason to stop so it's more socially acceptable when others ask why I quit. We'll see how my appointment goes next week and I plan to call the pediatrician to get her plan for switching to formula. Since I have a week's worth of milk frozen, I should be able to make it 8 weeks. I'm slightly anal and would like to make it to an even month mark.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Hurry - He's Asleep

This seems to be our motto lately - when Parker is asleep, he pretty much stays asleep. The problem occurs when he doesn't want to fall asleep. Correction - he will fall asleep on your shoulder, but try to put him in his Nap Nanny and he's wide awake again. During the day when its just the two of us, there is less of an issue. But when daddy comes home (I assure Benton that it is nothing personal), Parker decides to be a fuss bucket and refuse to sleep. I personally think he's just developed a pretty smart trick for getting some extra time in with dad. Benton's tricks are to take Parker outside on the patio to calm him down and to lay down on the bed with him. Its great to have help after being on my own all day!

Parker also likes to take his evening naps in his vibrating chair - it really is a life saver even though it can induce hiccups and spitups! Parker is still a little big for it, so after sleeping in it a while he tends to scoot down in the seat sideways...

This picture makes me think he was dreaming of Journey and doing legs kicks in honor of his Uncle Skip Winfrey!

Finally, our discovery this week has been mirrors and looking at himself in the mirror. We tried a new tummy mat yesterday and he almost fell asleep staring at himself. He also liked getting hit with the blowdryer on our bathroom counter while looking in the mirror.

Friday, May 7, 2010

On "Vacation" Since April 1st

I'm not sure if I'm supposed to still go by weeks and say that Parker is four months old, or wait until Sunday to say that's he's one month old, but in any case, the time has flown by. Its hard to believe that my last day of work was April 1st. Benton has asked me several times if I miss working, and the answer is that is hard to miss something when you're totally consumed doing something else all day and all night. I did have a dream about trying to go back to work this spring and even woke up thinking maybe I could work some in June after the kids are out of school. THEN I really woke up and thought what the hell was I thinking???

I thought life as an assistant principal went by quickly. I was up at 6am everyday, at work by 7:30am, and usually left work sometime between 5:30 and 6pm everyday. A couple of nights each week we'd stay late for a meeting and usually there was a weekend event once each month. I loved my job, but it was a lot of hours. Benton travels two or three nights most weeks, so at least I wasn't neglecting him at home. We knew that once Parker came, it would be impossible for Benton to continue to travel and for me to work the hours I had been.

It was a really hard decision to leave my school as assistant principal. I never planned to be a stay at home mom and hadn't really thought I'd want to be one. I have all of these degrees and my career is in a great place considering I'm not even 30 yet (coming really soon though!). There are some who think staying home is the only way to go, and others who say they can't imagine being home all the time. I'm still not sure I fall completely into one category or the other.

For now, I have the best of both worlds. Starting in August I'll be working 10 - 19 hours each week writing science projects for high school teachers in my district. I can set my own hours and days each week, I don't have to grade papers, and I won't report to a particular campus. In short, its a dream job for a new mom! I have several people interested in looking after Parker while I work, but its something I don't want to think about for now. Technically, I'm on maternity leave until the end of June so I want to enjoy it while it lasts.

My days now fly by. I'm up around 7am for Parker's first feeding, I go to bed after 11pm, and then I get up sometime around 3am for his middle of the night feeding. I don't hardly have time to shower each day, much less run an errand, take a nap, or go for a walk. I'm not really sure where the time goes, but the days go by very quickly and I'm loving every minute of it. For now its a blessing to be home with my precious munchkin!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Bath Time

Parker had his first bath last night since he finally lost his cord on Thursday and he is all healed from being circumsized. Surprisingly, he didn't mind laying in the warm water and was quite patient while we washed him and took some pics.

Benton's mom said she used to blow dry his hair when he was little, so we thought we'd give it a try. He really liked the warm air on his cold head, so daddy ran the blow dryer all over him to keep him calm while I put on some lotion.

Daddy needs some help with his blow drying skills - Parker ended up with some flat bangs in the front and a spiky party do in the back!