Friday, 31 August 2012

Small Victories

Today's post is to celebrate just a few of Zac's small stuff: the day-to-day things that are often overlooked or taken for granted, but which count for so, so much.

1. Zac's Growth & Development
This week Zac graduated to size 2 nappies, meaning he's becoming a big(ger) boy. He also went for his 10 week vaccinations on Monday, and demonstrated his remarkable strength, constantly kicking his leg free from the knee-lock position I was holding it in. He is healthy, and weighs 5.4kg and is 58cm long. While Andel's still hoping for a rugby player, Zac is currently in the backline.

As I write this, Zac is displaying another talent: he is watching Adele Live in Concert, and is singing along - no jokes!

2. Mommy's Naptime Methodology
It seems my middle-of-the-night reading is paying off. This week, I discovered (and it seems so obvious now) that if I catch Zac's sleep signals before he actually starts screaming, I can put him down to nap more easily. And what do you know: it works. Zac has had a morning nap every day this week. I simply swaddle him, give his dummy and hold him close, and as soon as he's asleep, set him in his crib.

3. Bedtime
Just when I was getting used to my unpredictable child, he (and I) set into a routine of a 21h00 bedtime, followed by 6 hours of sleep, a quick feed and then another good 4 hours sleep. Until last night. Last night Zac went to bed, and after 6 hours, stirred but didn't wake. I woke. Then. And 2 hours after that. And again at 06h00 when Zac finally opened his eyes. My boy slept right through the night, yay!

Now Yaya says it doesn't really count until he sleeps through twice more, and his 'routine' lasts 2 weeks. But for us, for now, we're just celebrating small victories.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Photo Update: Bellana

Bright and early on Thursday 9th August we left on what is now an annual family holiday. Usually we rough it out in a mountain cottage on the Bainskloof Pass. This year, however, with two new(ish) babies, we thought it best to go somewhere a little more kitted out, so to speak - and what a good spot Papu found: a beautiful house in Betty's Bay, warm, cosy and overlooking the ocean. Even though it was still pretty cold, we all had a pretty good time - as I'm sure you'll be able to see in the pics below.

(these are only some of the 200+ photographs that were taken!)

Packed and ready to go
No chance of us fitting in one car anymore!

Jorja doing the rounds, all cosy and warm

Ethan decided to nap while waiting for Yaya

Bellana: the beautiful view on the balcony

Zac loves his Daddy's singing
Jorja trying out any and every hiding spot
An added service: the babysitters club
Jorja's precious playtime with her Mama

One half of the breakfast table

No outing with Papu would be complete without a braai!

Natasha in babysitting training
I'm not sure there are many tables we can all fit comfortably around anymore

Can you imagine what each grandchild must be thinking?

Papu and Yaya couldn't have known what they were starting when they first sang 'Jersulam' to Zac - he loves it so much, they now constantly have to sing it to him! :)

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

All The Things They Say...

I know it has been absolute ages since I last posted. This blogpost was written three weeks ago, but we have had problems connecting our computer to the internet, and so all my blogposts have been stored out of reach for a while... Let's hope it's the last of that!

You know, when you find out that you’re pregnant, it’s naturally a time of great excitement. Everyone is wondering whether it’s a girl or a boy, and who s/he’s going to look like. Every person you bump into has an opinion on whether your bump is too big or too small, and women who’ve been pregnant before you (or not even) are giving advice and warnings at every opportunity: what birth plan to go for, whether to take meds or not, how much maternity leave is enough… It becomes quite a lot to deal with. And it really doesn’t ease up after the birth: should you sleep train or comfort, co-sleep or not, demand feed or schedule? My experience has typified this; I had really heard it all!

Except how overwhelmed I would feel that first week: how my lack of knowledge and experience would far outweigh the ‘inconvenience’ of lack of sleep, how I’d have night-sweats and bleeding, how my baby would chew away at my aching breasts, and how his belly stump would ooze gunk even after it’d fallen off – they seemed to have left those parts out.

They also didn’t mention how my heart would explode with love, and spill over and out into my arms. They didn’t tell me how natural it would feel to be covered in wee and spit-up milk, and to wake at the first sound of my boy stirring. They forgot to say how quickly I would fall in love with his scent and his face, and how I would voluntarily watch him sleep for hours just to gaze upon the miracle of his creation, and adoringly wonder how this beautiful boy could possibly be my child.

And maybe that’s not all bad. To have discovered this over the last 5 weeks has been a journey I wouldn’t trade for the world. As I write this Zac is sleeping in his crib next to me. He’s been ill with bronchiolitis this week so far, and although his bad cough and tight chest have been really scary at times, he’s been smiling through it all. If I wasn’t sure how much I loved him, this week has shown me. And what’s more: it’s taught me about the love our Daddy God has for us. That He could love me even more than this blows my mind.

"What marvelous love the Father has extended to us!
Just look at it - we are called children of God!"
1 John 3:1a ~ The Message

Ps. In case you weren’t certain God loves me: I received my academic results, and despite being pregnant throughout my year of studying, I have passed cum laude! I also got a wonderful surprise from work: I am getting 6 weeks paid maternity leave, and got a 1st semester bonus, meaning that all my maternity leave is covered financially. Praise God!
...I told you He loves me!