Nursery Tour

Does anyone else have experience with big babies?  What back-strengthening regimen do you recommend?

Mr. William may have been about average size at birth, but at last check {4 weeks} he was 90th percentile in weight, and 98th percentile in length.

At 6 weeks, he's now somewhere over 12 pounds {we don't have a really sensitive scale here, so we derived that figure by subtracting self + baby weight from self-only weight; highly technical}.  Suffice it to say the newborn clothes fit for about 3 weeks, max.  And this is on a Mama-Milk-only diet.  Check out his delicious double-chin:

Compare the car seat photos below - on the left, we have his first car ride when he came home from the hospital.  On the right, 6 weeks later.  Just look at the relative size-of-baby to seat-buckles in each.

So while I contemplate how I could have birthed such a big boy when there are hardly any tall men in my family {and none on Hubs' side, either}, how about we take a tour of the Hulk's nursery?

It's somewhat space-exploration themed, but mostly I wanted a calm, safe environment.  With silk blackout curtains.  And lots of my favorite color: WHITE.

The crib is very simple - 100% wood, no bad chemicals, USA-made.  From Land of Nod. And no bumper. PSA: the American Academy of Pediatrics specifically advises against use of bumpers because they increase the risk of SIDS.  I'm all for valuing aesthetics, but not at the risk of smothering babies. 

Above the crib are some space-themed prints I found on Etsy.  I'm pretty sure I paid some wanker $10 a pop to print them from a jet-printer on not so great paper, but I'm over it.  I love the way they look!  That being said, it would definitely be worth it for me to work on my photoshop skills and get a photo printer.

I was looking for something to put above the changing table/dresser {also from Land of Nod} and found this fun decal on Etsy {this was actually a top-quality Etsy purchase, unlike the prints}:

That little giraffe plays white noise, and has a handy velcro strap so you can attach it to the crib without putting it IN the crib.  There's a Dohm sound machine on the changing table/dresser that works great, too.  Babies are so touchy about their sleeping conditions.

There are a lot of ugly gliders out there.  This one - from Rosenberry Rooms - was the least offensive one I could find, and is actually superbly comfortable!  The slipcover is washable - crucial for white furniture!  BUT I do have to mention that it took FOREVER to arrive.  I ordered it in April and it arrived while I was in the hospital with the bebe {late July}.  Really.  So if you order custom furniture from Rosenberry Rooms, be prepared to wait ... and wait ... and give birth ... and wait some more.

There are three floating bookshelves in the nursery, and they are FULL of books.  I know TV can be a great babysitter, but it does practically eviscerate baby brains.  Except for broadcasts of Red Sox games, of course.  Those help moral fiber develop.

William is already sleeping in his crib full time - we moved him in there when he turned 1 month old.  I'd read in several places that moving babies to their own rooms early is Very Important in the quest to establish good sleep habits and routines. Don't think I'm cold-hearted - I also bought a video baby monitor with night vision and pan/zoom abilities.  Basically, I spy on him like a Navy SEAL. 

So that's the nursery!  While I'm loving every pudgy, coo-y moment of his infancy, I can't wait until he's a little older and can spend quality time in there playing with his toys and reading.  As fast as time is flying {how did he get so big?}, that will be happening tomorrow.  Upon having a baby, you're immediately thrust into a time warp.  Consider yourselves warned, parents-to-be!  

July: Welcome Baby William!

July at Chez Curieuse can be summed up aptly in exactly one photograph:

That's right, y'all: I had that baby.

Much later than anticipated, I should note.  In early July, my doctor swore I'd never make my due date {July 21}.  After that conversation, my Mum was on the next flight from Boston.  I made sure my hospital bags were packed.  With only the essentials, of course.

And we waited.  And waited.  AND WAITED.  No baby.  Not a sign of labor.

We were relatively house-bound because I was in full-on Waddle Mode and it was over 100 degrees every day.  Hello, summer in Texas.  So we did what came naturally: a lot of online shopping.  And I tried all of the Old Wives' tricks: spicy foods, eggplant, pineapple, walking for miles, hanky-panky... you name it, I tried it. To no avail.  At least my belly was good for holding beverages.

Happily, I really like spicy food, and we visited one of my favorite restaurants in Austin so far: a Thai place called Sway.  Mum, Mr. Curieuse, and I popped in for an early-ish dinner and it was divine. We sat at the bar and watched the cooks assembling everything - so much fun!  I had a beef dish that burned half of my taste buds off.  Those that remained were blissfully happy.

Not to get all "birth story" on you all, but here is the short and sweet version of events:

4 days after my due date, I had a scheduled induction.  We were all excited and I was a little giddy.  I mean, I was getting a lot of attention AND got to wear my own fancy gown with a satin sash instead of those terrible hospital-issue gowns.  Things were looking good.

But, it turns out that the medicine used for inductions, Pitocin, does not jive with my body.  Rather than giving me regular contractions, it made me have HOUR-LONG CONTRACTIONS.  As in: no break between contractions.  Zero.  They would probably have been longer had I continued taking the medication.  I have a pretty high pain threshold and would classify my experience as "uncomfortable" {I didn't have pain meds for this part}, and not at all ideal. So it was off to the OR for a c-section.

I see why women like sections - they are easy peasy! One hour later, I was back in my room with a sweet little baby.  And my awesome OB glued my incision rather than suturing it, meaning my {unbelievably small} scar looks amazing.  She was pretty much a rock star in scrubs.

But the real rock star was Mr. William - he did great throughout, and was cute to boot, all 7 lbs, 14 oz, 20 inches of him.  A perfect baby. 

Mr. Curieuse was instantly besotted, and has been beyond all help ever since.

Not to be gauche, but I was relieved to discover that not only was he the picture of health, but he was seriously CUTE.  I'd have loved him regardless, but it's been fun reveling in his handsomeness. 

Before he was born I'd arranged for a newborn shoot, and am so glad I did.  He's been growing like a weed and it's fun to look back on those photos.  This is probably my favorite, since he has such a sweet smile:

So that was July.  Tickling William, feeding William, changing William, kissing William, staring at William.

I'm getting a little less sleep than I'd prefer, but things really have been pretty close to perfect.  Turns out a truck-load of hormones and sweet baby smiles are a pretty good substitute for a full night's sleep.

Well, This is Awkward...

It's September.  My last post was in May.

*taps microphone*

Is this thing on??

How is it SEPTEMBER?  I guess learning my way around a new city, setting up a new house and having a baby will make a summer flash by.  Shocking, I know.

I could run on about how blogging wasn't my priority and life happens, yada yada.  But let's be real: plenty of people manage to churn out great blog posts while leading very busy lives. I'm just a tad lazy with my little blog. It's a hobby rather than a habit, and purely for fun, so there you have it.

So, what's happened since May? Let's start with June.

June was all about getting Chez Curieuse whipped into shape. There was always one contractor or another around the place. I think the previous owners never spent any time looking out their windows, since essentially almost every tree, bush, and plant in the yard needed MAJOR trimming.  Those which didn't need a good hacking-back needed to be removed entirely.  There was a lot of chainsaw racket coming from our property for a few days.

The house came with a pool, but not one that you'd voluntarily swim in.  It got a much-needed facelift, including new plaster, new tile, and lots of white limestone to replace the old concrete and brownstone coping.



And here is what it looks like now!  We're planning to re-do the wooden decking next year, but the pool was a "we need to do this ASAP" project.

The rest of June involved the following:

The bump grew and I took shameless selfies to document the progress.

I tackled the remaining boxes from our move. The only downside to having professionals pack your things is that they use loads and loads of paper to reduce the chances of anything breaking {and having to pay for it}.  There were small mountains of the stuff all over the place.

I ordered and assembled more pieces of furniture than I could count.  These are Adirondack-ish chairs for the upper porch, which is terrific for sunset-watching when it's not an oven outside.  So maybe we'll finally be able to use them in October?

I had a stair runner installed {this I gladly outsourced} to make trips up and down safer for baby-carrying, sleep-deprived parents.  The material is a natural fiber called sisal. It's less slippery than seagrass or jute and is taking Pinterest by storm, so I followed the herd.  I think it looks heaps better than boring old carpet.  We'll see how long it holds up.

My sister-in-law visited, and we tested out strollers.  She was so helpful - Mr. Curieuse had yet to join me from California and while I could get plenty done by myself, sometimes a pregnant girl just needs an extra set of hands!  Some preggos are complainers {some rightfully so, but I think most just like to be dramatic}, but I'm not.  Yes, it's a little awkward and yes you gain weight and yes you can't sleep like you used to, but generally speaking life is still pretty darn good and you can do whatever you put your mind to.

We got an UppaBaby Vista and I can honestly say it took barely 10 minutes to assemble, including unwrapping, reading the manual, and taking it for a test run around the living room. SO easy.  Mr. Curieuse finally left California for good and took it for a practice run himself {with the infant car seat attached - also an amazingly easy process}.  His goofy "Texas Dad" t-shirt was a gag gift.  Is it me, or does "Texas Dad" conjure up images of a guy on the sidelines of a pee-wee football game, arguing a bit too seriously with the ref?  Our little man will not be allowed to play football. The latest data on head injuries and brain trauma is downright scary. My uppity Yankee self finds crew or lacrosse more viable options.

The bump grew even more.  More profile selfies were required.

Also required: pedicures.  One of the best places I've ever had a pedi, Embellish, is just 4 minutes away from our house.  They should have a lifetime membership option.  If you're in Austin you must make a visit.

I think July and August will need their own posts, so we'll pick up with July in the next post. I am still amazed at how much time has flown by.  Who knew that babies were such time machines!
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