Monday, September 7, 2015

Linnea is 2 Months Old!

Dear Linnea,
You have been here for 2 months now and some days I still can't believe I have a baby of my very own.  You are awesome!  You are laid back and just go with the flow.  You must get that from your mom ;).  The only time you get cranky is when you are hungry or tired and even those times follow a pretty predictable schedule that you put yourself on.  I wish I could take more credit for how scheduled you are but I can't.  We love you SO much and are so thankful you are part of our team.  Here is what we did during your second month!

At your almost 2 month midwife appointment you weighed 10 lbs 6 oz (4712 grams) which is in the 46th percentile and is 4 pounds more than you weighed when you were born.  When I laid you on the scale I thought they must have changed scales and put a smaller one at the midwife's office because there is no way you could be that much bigger than last time.  You were 22.8 inches (58 cm) long which is in the 76th percentile.  You seem really long to me.  You usually outgrow the footed part of pants and pajamas first and then you outgrow the length even though the waist still fits or is a little big.  Your head was 15.5 inches (39.5 cm) and in the 75th percentile.
You got your first round of shots at 8 weeks.  This was a bit early but the midwives and doctors wanted you to have your shots before flying home.  It was so sad watching you get them.  You had no idea what was about to happen and I did and I couldn't do anything about it.  It was also the first time I heard you really cry out in pain.  It broke my heart but it will hopefully protect you.  You recovered after a few minutes and didn't seem phased by it after that.

You ate every 2.5-3 hours during the first month and continued to do that up until you were about six weeks old.  While we were in the archipelago I started stretching out your feedings to every 4 hours and you didn't seem to notice.  I think I could have done it earlier.  You seemed to have a hard time latching on before six weeks but now you latch on like a champ which makes me think you weren't really hungry every 2.5 hours.  You hate it when I stop you to burp but if I don't then when you burp you spit up which isn't fun for anyone.  You also sound a little bit like a man when you burp . . . hopefully that changes over time :).  You usually eat at 7:30 am, 11:30, 3:30 and then between 7-7:30 pm before going to bed.  On a good night you wake up once to eat but on a bad night you wake up twice.

I wish I could take more credit for this one but I'm just thankful that you are such a good sleeper.  Everyone says you look like your dad but what they can't see is that you sleep like your mom.  It takes you a little while to fall asleep but then you sleep for a long time before waking up pretty slowly.  Thanks goodness!
You can sleep through us talking, running the vacuum, the dishwasher, kids playing, pretty much anything.  This wasn't an accident.  I knew I wanted to try to make sure we weren't completely silent when you slept and since our apartment is tiny we didn't have much of a choice.  It turns out though if I hit your bouncy seat with the vacuum while you are sleeping that wakes you up.  Oops ;).  You used to stay asleep in your stroller if I was out walking around and you fell asleep in it but now you like to be awake in the stroller sometimes too.  I can't wait until you are in your toddler seat so you can actually look around instead of just looking up at the sky.

During your second month the long 4-4.5 hour stretch at night that you had during your first month stretched to 5 or 6 hours by 6 weeks.  The first time you started stretching your sleep at night you went 6 hours and then 4 hours and then the next night you went 5 hours and then 5 more hours.  You were wearing new pajamas from Miss Kelli and at that point I didn't think I'd put you in anything else when you went to sleep. A "bad" night between 4-6 weeks was when you ate at 10 pm, 2, 5 and 8. A "good" night was when you would eat around 10:30-11, 4 and then 8.  You also started getting faster during your night time feedings so instead of being up for an hour or longer we are only up for 30 minutes or so which was great!
My magic sleeping pajamas.  Thanks Miss Kelli!

I've seen more sunrises in the last 8 weeks than I have in my entire life.  I woke Jake up to see this one.  It was gorgeous!
Sometimes you have a hard time falling back asleep after your 5:00 feeding so your dad and I would switch sides of the bed so he could put your pacifier back in to help you grunt less so we could all get some more sleep before you woke up for the day around 7:30 or 8.

While we were in the archipelago you would eat around 6:30 pm or 7 and then you would usually wake up when we moved to our house around 10:30 or 11 so I'd feed you again.  On our last night you didn't wake up so I let you sleep after I prepared myself that I probably won't be asleep long before you woke up and then you slept until 2 which was almost 8 hours from the last time I fed you.  I was impressed!

I'm a little worried about telling other people this part because I know not all babies are this good so let's just keep this to ourselves ;).  After we got back from the Archipelago you started sleeping even longer at night.  Now you will sleep 6-9 hours before waking up to eat again.  I usually feed you around 7:30 pm and then lay you down awake at 8 and you put yourself to sleep.  I know, I told you to keep this a secret.  Most of the time you take your pacifier to fall asleep but sometimes you don't want it and you will fall asleep without it.  The strange thing is you don't cry at night when you are falling asleep.  It is so strange.  Maybe it will change and you will but for now when we lay you down you grunt and then sometimes we have to put your paci back in if the grunting goes on for a few minutes but then the next thing we know you are asleep.
This was her grunting herself back to sleep after a 5 am feed.
We've been trying to follow a book called The Baby Sleep Solution but honestly we haven't used it much because you pretty much rock at sleeping.  We have tried to pick your twelve hour sleeping block to be from 7:30 pm to 7:30 am.  A "bad" night for us around 7-8 weeks is when you go down at 8 and wake up twice to eat at 2 and 5 and then you are up for the day at 7:30 am.  A "good" night for us is when you go down at 8 and wake up once between 3:30-5 to eat and then you go back to sleep before waking up for the day at 7:30.

On the night daddy was gone you slept from 8 to 4:30 and since I didn't know how you would do I went to bed at 9:30 and got 7 hours of sleep!  I hadn't gotten that long of a stretch since early in my pregnancy when I wasn't waking up to pee.  The longest you've gone between feedings at night is about 11 hours which was the night before you turned 2 months old!
Now that you only wake up once or twice at night and usually it only takes about 20-30 minutes to feed you and lay you back down I am not nearly as tired!  When I lay you back down in the middle of the night you usually grunt yourself back to sleep and you have never once cried.  I haven't wanted to tell people that because I'm afraid they will tell you that it isn't normal and you'll think you need to start crying in the middle of the night but I promise you don't :).

I had this post written and ready to go when you were exactly 2 months old and guess what you did the night before turning 2 months old?  You slept through the NIGHT!!!  I know.  I can't believe it.  I fed you a little late because we were watching your dad play ultimate frisbee.  You ate at 8 pm and then I laid you down around 8:30 pm, you woke up around 6:30 but we didn't take you out of your box until 6:45 am!  You fussed a couple times throughout the night but once I gave you your pacifier you went back to sleep.  I couldn't believe it!  I was hoping you were close to sleeping through the night but I didn't want to get my hopes up.  I know you probably won't sleep through the night from now on but I'm excited that it might actually happen more!
You just slept through the night!
I finally got brave enough to go out to dinner with you and you pretty much slept through the whole thing.  I don't know why I was worried.  You are such an easy going baby!

We ran into Jorge after dinner and grabbed some dessert with him in Gamla Stan before heading home.  Jake plays ultimate frisbee with him.

Here is a video of you going down the street in Gamla Stan.  It was a little bumpy.  I love the look on your face like "Where the heck are you guys taking me and why is it so bumpy?"

You outgrew some of your newborn clothes this month and that made me so sad!  You are getting so big which is great but I'm not ready.  I think part of it is that no one back home has seen you yet and I don't want you to get too big before they get to meet you.  This month you've been wearing size 56 clothes and some 0-3 month clothes from the US.  Your legs are long so you outgrew the length in some things before you outgrew the waist.  Your feet are also huge and you often outgrow the footed part of pants and pajamas before outgrowing the length.
I'm also figuring out your style . . . and this isn't it. It looked cute on the hanger but ridiculous on you.

We finally found an outfit in Sweden that wasn't pink in the girls' section.  It is cream with purple and blue flowers and I love it!  I prefer onesies that snap on the side instead of onesies that pull over your head.  Sometimes you make it through a day or two without having to change your clothes and other times you go through three outfits in one day.  Most of the time spit up is the cause but now that I figured out I could put a bib on you and save myself some laundry it is better.
You are in size two Libero diapers and we are still trying to find the perfect wipe.  I realize that sounds ridiculous but your dad and I like to find the perfect option for something and then stick with it.

In the morning you are such a happy girl.  You get that from your dad.  I actually like being up in the mornings though now because I get to see you so smiley.  You LOVE looking at your mobile that Angela gave you.

Your favorite song is All Around the Mullberry Bush.  You just smile through the whole thing.
I finally checked out some books from the library so we didn't have to just read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, Goodnight Moon, M is for Monkey and Hop on Pop all the time.  Plus now you actually look at the pictures more which is fun.

Hi grandparents!
 Yes, my mom put me in a squirrel onesie and laid me on a squirrel blanket.  Looks like I don't have much of a choice but to love squirrels! (And thank you Sweden for selling cute baby clothes with squirrels on them!)
 I sure do love my dad!

We try to do tummy time several times during the day but you aren't really a fan.  This week you tried something new during your tummy time . . .  
I think this is cheating.
Even tummy time with a friend is rough.

You found your hands this month.  The first time I heard you sucking on your hand from your box it freaked me out.  You prefer your right hand but you get mad when it doesn't fit into your mouth like your pacifier does.

I've heard the saying "the days are long but the years are short" applied to life with kids but only part of me agrees at this point.  I feel like our days are short until about 5 or 5:30 pm when we are waiting for your dad to get home and you are starting to get cranky and then it feels long.  Other than that the days are flying by!  You aren't a very fussy baby but you tend to get fussy at night.  Usually between 5-5:30 you want to be held or walked around and you want your pacifier.  It is hard because when your dad gets home you are usually upset and that makes him really sad.  We started feeding you earlier than we should for your last feeding of the day because you seem to be tired and ready for bed.
Your dad was out of town one night this month so we were on our own.  I took you on a walk during your fussy time to hopefully help it go by faster and to see if being out made you less fussy.  We stopped by a playground near our apartment and went on the swings.  You loved it.  I can't wait to take you to the playground when you are older.
I've left you with your dad a handful of times just so I can get away.  It is easy now that you eat every 4 hours and can take a bottle.  The first few times I left you it was really hard to go anywhere because you were eating every 2.5 hours and not taking a bottle yet.  I think your dad really likes hanging out with you when I'm gone because then he gets you all to himself.  I really like that he is such a great dad that I don't have to worry one bit when I'm away.

We went to a crayfish party this summer and you were fussy pretty much the whole time you were awake since it was in the evening but after you ate you fell asleep in your bassinet in the kitchen and slept through the party noise.  Then when we moved you outside while we played Kubb you didn't make a peep until we got back inside and it was time for you to eat again.

To say Miranda loves you is an understatement.  I thought she was going to kidnap you.

 Even Linnea knows she will be checked at the US Embassy.  We had an appointment to get her social security number, passport and declare her birth abroad.  Getting through security was crazy.  When we arrived the guard inside the building used an intercom to asked us why we were there.  Jake showed him our paperwork for the 9 am appointment.  He then asked us to step behind the yellow line which was about 3 feet from the building.  Then he asked one of us to step forward with both of our IDs.  Next we had to turn around and lift up our feet to show him the bottom of our shoes.  After that I went in with Linnea and had to give them my purse, empty out the bottom of the stroller, take a drink out of my water bottle and go through the metal detector.  They kept my phone, camera, extra battery and watch and then told me to go into the building and that Jake would join me when he was done.  I understand that some people want to harm others and the US Embassy could very well be a target but holy cow.  After we were finished with the appointment and out of the secured US Embassy property Jake asked me if I felt more or less safe outside the secured area.  I told him I felt more safe.  I'm not sure I'm ready to go back to the US after that visit. Sheesh.

Things I've Learned About Stockholm Now That I'm a Mom
I learned a few things about Stockholm now that I'm a Mom.  The main one that sticks out is that the elevators in metro stations smell like pee.  I often tell you to hold your nose. Ugh!  The elevators here are so stinkin' slow, they are tiny so typically only one stroller fits in at a time and there are several kinds of elevators.  They fall into three different categories: normal, almost normal but slightly annoying and super annoying.  A normal elevator is one where you push the button and the light stays on and the elevator comes whenever it is free and then the door opens on its own.  The almost normal but slightly annoying elevators are the ones where you have to push the button but if it is moving then it doesn't register that you've pushed the button so you have to keep pushing it until the elevator stops and then it will come to you.  Then when it arrives you have to quickly push the open the door button or open the door before someone else on another floor pushes the button because then the elevator will leave without you ever getting on it.  (Thankfully this has only happened once but for the love it is annoying.)  The super annoying elevators are the ones where you have to hold down the button that calls for the elevator the entire time so that it will come to your floor.  Then you open the door on your own and once you are in you have to push the button the entire time it takes to get to the floor you want.  Sweden knows how to do escalators but they need some serious help with their elevators.  #whyaretheyalldifferent #whyaretheysuperslow
Some of the elevators don't have a door that closes so you have to make sure you stand far enough away that you do't get your head squished off like in the warning picture above :).  The picture on the top right is one of the elevators where you have to hold down the number the entire time to make the elevator move.  It also has three moving walls and only one wall that moves with you so you have to be extra careful.
Stockholm has great sidewalks and ramps and getting in and out of stores is pretty easy.  Almost every store has a button you can push to have the door open for you which is nice.  Stores have elevators since they are multilevel and a lot of people have strollers.  You also get to ride the buses for free because you can't fit your stroller through the front to scan your card and they don't want to make you leave your stroller to do it after you get on so you get to get on the back of the bus.
I finally figured out how to get Swedes to make eye contact and talk to you!!! Have a baby.  I have had exponentially more people talk to me in the last 8 weeks that I did the other 104 weeks we've been here.  They talk to her or me in Swedish and typically ask me how old she is which I answer back to them in Swedish.

There are so many things I don't want to forget about this time when you are so little.  I don't want to forget the scrunchy face you make when you are waking up.  It is one of the cutest things ever!  Sometimes when you are sleeping you stick your nose in the air and cock your head back which is also really cute.

You smile in your sleep but we started seeing your first real smiles around week 5.  They are the best! Your first laugh was on August 29th.  You were laughing at your dad which I'm sure you will do for years to come.
This is the closest we got to a smile out of the 123 pictures we took while she was wearing this sticker. #littlestinker
These are better.
Such a happy girl!
When I take you out of your swaddle in the mornings you throw your arms above your head and stretch!

Your dad and I love you more and more every day.  You make us both laugh and smile so much.  We can't wait to introduce you to family and friends once we move back home.  I am so thankful that I get to be your mom and stay at home with you.  Thanks for being such a great baby and an awesome sleeper!

If you want to read about her first month click on the link.  I can't believe she will be in the United States on her 3 month birthday!  That will be here before we know it!

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