Summer Dreaming: Three months of Baby Love

The hot days of summer found our little Zlaten clan settling into more of a regular routine. As Asa grew out of the “fourth trimester” and into the baby phase, life has become a little more predictable. Asa’s sweet spirit brings us all such joy, and for me personally, his companionship has been anchoring me through some stressful times in other realms of our family life. We are in upheaval again; grad school starting up for the fall, job changes, etc. I am learning more and more to lean into the grounding of my family, and finding peace here at home and wonder in seeing my kids thrive.

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We took Asa on his first road trip to the western slope at the beginning of August. Yep, the road trip part was a little torturous. For our first leg of the trip, we decided to break the time up by going to Buena Vista first and spending a night there at the Cottonwood Hot Springs. Literally 10 minutes outside of Buena Vista…with the towering gorgeous mountains in sight… we were stopped for 1.5 hours of road construction waiting. There was no way I was going to keep the kids in their car seats for all of that time at a standstill, so we got out with all of the other temporary parking lot travelers to chat and pick roadside flowers. We were ever so thankful to climb into the hot springs after that incident! Asa took to the water immediately, leaning into our chests and kicking as much as possible. Needless to say, the kids slept very well that night; hot relaxing water will work miracles. Actually, the kids rocked sleeping the whole trip! At our second stop, a hotel in Delta, Elleanna actually tried sleeping like a big girl in the second queen bed in the room. It was one of those moments where I was intensely aware of how much she is growing up. And, at the end of it all, I am very thankful for kids who sleep well in hotels, even if the car rides can be rough. On the way home we stopped for an hour each in Glenwood, Avon, Idaho Springs and Boulder before we rolled home… Asa likes to stress eat I suppose.

The day after we came home from our trip, I came down with Strep. On Elle’s first day of preschool. So I lost a week in there somewhere. It is amazing how the kids keep growing and life keeps moving on through my states of sickness.

Asa keeps chatting more and more, and he is getting very wiggly, and any day now I expect him to roll over.

Life is sweet, and moving fast, full of hard times, mundane work and moments that stop me in my tracks, filling me with wonder. Like a few nights ago: I was hustling to get a few things done before Asa needed me to put him to sleep. Matt placed him in his bouncer chair, and I heard Elleanna come over to bring him toys. Then she opened a book and started telling her brother how much God loves him. These are the moments I keep living for, the times that balance out the whirlwind of raising two little lovies.

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Asa Everett Robert: The Two-Month He-Man

When week 6 happened… Asa became all smiles!

He started sleeping 5-7 hour chunks at the beginning of the night, followed by more sleep (and in his bassinet!!!). And week 8, a beautiful thing happened… my milk supply increased. Matt and Elle have been praying on their daily walks for my milk. For those of you who know my story, with Elle, I had a horrible time with breastfeeding and I was only able to give her about 1/3 of what she needed, and it devastated me. Not because I am against formula by any means, but I had really set my heart on breastfeeding, and for it to be such a frustration and a struggle was difficult for my heart. This time around, I prepared myself; possibly, the same issues could happen again. And when we had to start supplementing for Asa at two weeks, I thought we would walk the same road. But this time, I wasn’t as hard on myself. Sure, I mourned and had some anxious days about how we would handle it all.

But I also knew I couldn’t be a slave to the breast pump. I knew that letting anxiety eat up my day and rob me of being able to really take care of my children was not worth it. So, I continued taking my placenta encapsulation, taking some herbs recommended by my acupuncturist and my chiropractor, and I continued acupuncture and chiropractic work consistently. I also rested, and let Asa demand feed. Around week 6, Asa’s latch also became noticeably stronger… and by week 8, we’ve been able to go down to only 2-3 supplemental bottles a day (about 2 oz each), usually given after he eats the late afternoon and early evening feedings. And he is thriving and gaining weight just like he needs to; he is content. I have felt a lot of joy and peace and thankfulness. Again, this account is written not as a condemnation, but as a hope; I walked down the extremely low milk supply road last time, and I have to say that either way, my babies are healthy and thriving. But I am attesting to the wonder I have felt that God answered a desire of my heart (one that in the grand scheme of life is seemingly insignificant). I have been blown away by the truth that he takes care of even the little things we long for, not just big gigantic cares.

Also around 6-weeks, Asa started taking swing naps 2-3 times a day (God bless you, nap swing!). I don’t remember how to transition a baby from swing naps to real naps… but, I suppose we will figure that out eventually. He is also perfecting his one eye brow raise of curiosity.

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July also found us traveling up to Estes Park a few times with both kids. Asa actually slept most of the time. When my friend Rachel was here, he even slept the whole way through a put-put golf game in the carrier. Oh what sweet delicious days.

P.s. Asa still has a really deep man cry when he gets really upset. It is so cute. And it makes me sad at the same time until we can fix whatever ails him.