Month: July 2019

The Second Baby – One Month In

It’s been over a month since Allegra was born and though we’re in the middle of planning to move and all that, we’ve gotten into our routine, a pretty decent one I think. I posted on Instagram and Facebook, asking if anyone of you had any questions and the response was overwhelming….ly small 😉 None the less, I will address the questions here as well.

First of all, and this was the biggest surprise… it’s incredible how different two kids can be right from birth. I mean, everything! Ean liked to be held, Allegra wants to be left alone mostly. He didn’t like to sleep, she loves it. He liked to sleep on his back, she loves to hang like a monkey on my forearm belly down. He was very interactive, she’s pensive and reserved. He loved to be naked and free, she wants pillows piled ontop of her when she sleeps. I can go on and on and they are not similar in any way, they even have different colored eyes!

Ana’s recovery went very quick this time. With the experience from the first delivery, the added confidence and more confident defiance of doctors recommendations she was out of the hospital and picking up Ean from school the very next day. The baby weight is off, not that I give a what about that but I hear that’s a big subject among the ladies. One advice I can give you, breastfeed! It is insane how many calories are burned to churn that gold out.

Anyway, back to Allegra. The girl sleeps, and sleeeeeeps. At birth she was sleeping around 20 hours per day, now it’s maybe a bit less, but yeah she sleeps long and hard so sleep deprivation hasn’t really been as much of an issue this time around. Timewise, since Ana loves to sleep and I hate it (I only want the required minimum and then I want to do stuff) we split the day. Ana has her afternoon siesta together with her and takes the night shift, thankfully she just wakes up to feed and goes right back to sleep. At 6 or 7 am I take over, which usually just means holding and cozying with her a bit until she falls asleep again and the new day starts. Once she’s a little bit older she’s definitely coming out for the morning jogs with Ean!

One of the questions I got, and honestly it was the thing I was the most curious about. Is it twice as hard to have two kids? The simple answer is, NO. Obviously it depends on the kids in question, how they are raised, how they are and how YOU and your partner are. Having the first one is definitely the biggest challenge. Everything is the first time and it’s scary as hell. I was so afraid to make mistakes that I was reading and studying like it was the most important test of my life (isn’t it though???). With Allegra I already knew my skills and limitations and those of Ana.…

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Reaching New Heights With Your Kids

Parenting is rarely about big gestures. It probably has more to do with your every day interactions and how you handle individuals and situations. Today I experienced one of those situations where it was 3 PM, Ean was tired and hungry and therefore of course grumpy and sad.

As tears started to run down his cheeks and he was expressing his despair I had two choices either to speak to him like a person who is experiencing overwhelming emotions or reduce him to a nuisance that I need to get control of as soon as possible. I think you know where I’m going with this.

First I asked him to regain control of himself, this is something we have been practicing since he was a baby. I’ve taught him breathing techniques to calm him down when he’s bordering on a tantrum or emotions running over. I made a video about it when he was smaller. Eye contact, focus on breathing and tons of patience. Here´s that video:

 

So I repeated a few times: regain control, calm yourself and take a deep breath. Good, one more time. Now, please listen for a moment.

I understand what you are experiencing right now and I think you do too. It’s 3 o’clock, you’re hungry and it’s getting close to your siesta time. You know what that means right? Your emotions get really big and you get grumpy and sad. I hear you and I understand that you want to do what do you want to do but that’s not how it works in a family. I can only listen to you if you listen to me and we can only do things that you want if you do things that we want. A little bit for you, and a little bit for me so that everyone is happy.

We went to the shop that you wanted and we’ve been playing in here for 30 minutes and before that you were waiting patiently while I was working. That’s a little bit for you and a little bit for ne. Now it’s getting late, you need to eat and we need to go to sleep. So can we agree that this is best for everyone? Are you listening to me? Yes? Thank you. To show you that I’m listening to you, I know you want my phone and you can have it during the drive home to watch Netflix. Does that sound fair? Yes? Great! Now, a big hug and let’s go home. I love you and thank you for understanding.

Believe me, not every interaction goes this well and I have lost my temper more times than I can count but we have to keep trying right? We have to keep getting better and be the best parents we possibly can, learn from our shortcomings and improve, always. This is just an example of how something negative can turn into something very positive. We were all tired, it was hot and humid and nobody was really in the mood for a conversation but having the mental agility to make that extra effort not only defused a potential powder-keg about to go off but also brought us closer together.…

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Pregnancy And Delivery Video + 1 Month Update

Allegra is about 1 month old now and we are kind of settling into our routines at this point. I’m still working on the house renovation so I’m not as present as I would like to be with the kids, but I do my best. Thankfully the house is close to where we live so it’s a quick 10 minute drive if I need to assist with any situation.

Baby is gaining weight at an amazing rate, adding almost 1 kg and 2 cm in only the first 3 weeks! She’s independent, calm, very quiet and literally sleeps about 20 hours per day. In many ways she’s already a contrast to Ean. He loved to be held and wanted to interact from birth. Allegra is fine on her own, it seems she prefers just to chill on her own in the crib or the swing and even goes to sleep on her own. Ean was the exact opposite, it’s cool to see such big differences from birth! Like Ean though, Allegra is 100% breastfed and this time around, with Ana having learned all the postures and tricks to feeding as well as having breastfed actively to some extent for 3 years, apart from a bit of soreness the first week, it’s gone without a hitch.

Ana is doing great too, apart from the lack of sleep I guess. The baby weight is already off, one of the many… MANY benefits of breastfeeding. Now she just complains sometimes about pain in her bones and joints from the body adjusting back to normal after having pushed out a watermelon and losing 10+kg with all the changes in posture and pressure that comes with that. Other than that, she’s one haircut away from being back to her old self, ha ha! (her words, not mine!)

So I finally managed to put together my ambitious video from the pregnancy and delivery. Initially I was planning to vlog more and make longer episodes leading up to birth but neither the interest of others, nor the time on my part was there (I know, due to the new house, or finding a house to buy rather) so I decided to condense it into one pregnancy/delivery video. Here it is, don’t forget to give it the usual thumbs, comments and shares if you like it!

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