Thursday, July 22, 2010

Baby Sway

Have I laid my family plan out to the blogosphere yet? Not sure, well here it is: Have babies, then have more babies. Repeat. Eric and I want at least 4 kids, and I would be thrilled to have up to 6. We will not be spacing.*

So Eric and I have basically been trying for Baby The Sequel ever since Milo was 3 months old. Of course I was breastfeeding full time so we knew it would be unlikely that I would get pregnant right away (but possible!). Ideally I would like my babies to all be around 18 months apart, so I best start baking one up if I want to stay on schedule. Since weaning Milo I've kicked my weight loss into high gear (I've lost 16 pounds since weaning!) and am getting as healthy as possible in anticipation of the full body assault that is being with child.

I've also jumped on the TTC (Trying To Conceive) forums on some of my favorite mommy boards and I was soon asked "Do you have a sway?" ....? ...not unless I've had a few.

Apparently that's not what they meant, they wanted to know if I was doing anything to try to conceive either a boy or a girl specifically. There is a lot to gender swaying, definitely more than I can explain in one post. In short, there are high tech methods which include a turkey baster, home microscope, and desperation. And for those who haven't quite lost all self respect and would like to conceive without the help of kitchen utensils and chemistry sets, there are diets, supplements, positions, and scheduling. Well, I'm already cloth diapering, planning on EC'ing soon, and hope to birth a basketball team naturally... I can fit a little more crazy in my life. So I decided to research how to sway for a girl.

So X & Y sperm have different characteristics (or so I've read, I haven't seen them). Y sperm were once thought to be faster than X sperm, but actually X sperm are just heavier (carrying all those extra brain cells I'm sure!) so they swim in circles (ok, maybe not brain cells) while their boy sperm brethren swim straight and therefore reach their final destination sooner. However, X sperm thrive in acidic conditions while Y sperm don't (take that boy sperm!). There are some other factors but it was enough for me to understand this much. So for a really great "girl sway" the mommy hopeful would follow a very specific diet to alter her body's pH to be as acidic as possible (as well as take supplements and do gross things with vinegar and tampons), refrain from anything that would give the Y sperm an edge (caffeine!), and choose to get it on at times and in ways that give the slow poke circle swimmers an edge. The diet goes on for weeks before hand. I was a little interested. It looked like some mothers opted for a "slight sway" meaning they were just doing some things to raise their girl or boy odds, like eliminating caffeine and lowering their sodium in take, but were choosing to steer clear of the vinegar tampons.

Another part of a girl sway was doing stuff that would mess with, and it seems would damage, the sperm. This invloves tighty whities, heating pads... stuff that are supposed to be huge conceiving don'ts! Basically, someone out there thinks that failure sperm make girls.

So... after several long nights of forum stalking and researching, I think I'm going to go ahead and loosely follow the diet (it looks pretty healthy actually, so why not) but I wont be buying Eric new underwear... OR socializing on the sway boards because some of these women are crazy obsessed with conceiving the "right" gender. I'd be happy with either a little Ash or a little Lyla, but if I can tip the scales towards having my little girl I will!

*Of course we will always reproduce responsibly and always take into account my health and our financial position.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Who's Weaning Who?

I think breastfeeding is one of the best parts of having an infant. It's such a wonderful bonding experience, even 5, 6, 7 months later it's still special and no where near a burden. Milo, however, disagrees. Breastfeeding is a slower means of getting his food so he either gets frustrated and angry, or disinterested and distracted. Also, while I love doing it, I have not been able to lose much weight while breastfeeding. I gained 40 pounds during my pregnancy and lost 30 right away. Then another 5. The next 10 pounds I've lost and has bounced back several times over the last 5 months. Very frustrating to someone both dieting and engaging in a very vigorous workout schedule.

I talked to my doctor, and explained that I wanted to lose that last 10, then hopefully another 20-30 before my next pregnancy (well within what is healthy for my body, and very attainable with my diet plan and workout schedule). My doctor said that it's not uncommon for women to be unable to lose weight while breastfeeding no matter what they do. Hormones are to blame. So I've decided to wean since Milo could care less about breastfeeding anyway.

Turns out weaning Milo was not going to be the challenging part, it was weaning myself. Everyday I told myself "this is it, last day" and then I'd give in, because the thought of being done breastfeeding was so saddening. I told myself June 28th would be it, he'd be 8 months old and that's an age I feel comfortable with weaning him at. He's a big boy, not a tiny baby anymore, and he shows no interest or attachment to breastfeeding. It's ok...

So it's been 3 weeks and I kept with my plan. I'm still lactating some which is annoying because it just reminds me of what I'm not doing anymore. But I've lost 15 pounds so far (last 5 of pregnancy weight, then another 10), so it's been rewarding in another way. It's not about my dress size at all, I'm just thrilled to be that much closer to starting my next pregnancy at a healier weight, and then onto another wonderful breastfeeding relationship.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

AmyNCori VS Kiddie Kapers Parade

So Amy Hayes and her little brood were in town just in time for us to go to the Kiddie Kapers Parade, a Salinas tradition for 80 years. We wanted to scope out the floats so when we make ours next year it's better than everyone else's. We are going to start making flowers like... now. We were both in the parade as children and our children will be too... it's tradition damnit.

Anyhow, the parade was at 6:30pm so I drove down main street at 4:00pm to see if many people had claimed spots. The length of around twelve blocks was lined with folding chairs already, so I decided to grab a spot then. Two parades were planned for the evening: the Kiddie Kapers Parade, followed by the Colmo Del Parade. We had a sweet spot to see both. Score. I gave myself a Mom Point.

Fifteen minutes before parade time, Amy calls me. I tell her where I am and soon we've joined up. Ten minutes until parade time, and I'm noticing that many of the folding chairs around us are still empty. I very faint confusion simmers in my mind. Then someone says "Yeah, the Kiddie Kapers only runs from John St. to The National Steinbeck Center." GREASE FIRE! I rush to a police officer and he confirms what I just over heard. Amy loads a third child onto her double stroller and I throw our chairs into Milo's and we RUN for John St.

We had 8 blocks crowded with childen and chairs between us and the parade. We plowed our strollers over grass, curbs and toes. I passed out sorryexcuseme's generously along the way as I knocked into people. Miraculously, WE MADE IT! We got a sweet spot and were able to begin our plotting. I gave each of us another Mom Point.

Here are some pictures I took after the chaos:

I included this last one not because Milo looks beautiful in it (he totally does though) but becuase there's a really creepy mad guy in the background. This is a kid's parade, not a guy mad about his life parade. If you know this man, tell him to stay out of parades.

Friday, July 16, 2010

There's a Method to the Madness...

While bedtime may be hell hour in some households, it's a relatively peaceful time in ours. We helped Milo to learn to soothe himself when he was 3 months old (via the Ferber method) and ever since Milo's evening routine has been bath, breast/bottle and bed with little to no resistance. Rocking and feeding Milo before bed is such a precious time, he's so sweet and still... the latest nightly chorus of ripping baby hairs has been an unwelcome addition to our evening.

Yes, with his eyes half closed and nursing slower and slower, Milo has taken to ripping out his own hair. Though Eric and I will look on in horror, Milo does it as soothingly as he sucks his thumb. My child is crazy... that's it, he'll never graduate college or get married and he'll probably end up homeless because he likes to rip out his own hair.

It's not often that Little Miss Know It All gets the opportunity to panic and consult a parenting book, but today I did. Turns out this is normal, horrifying, but normal (like so much of parenthood). The feeling is comforting to them (weird) like thumb sucking or nail biting. The advice given to the distraught mother who wrote in to the authors was to give her baby a toy with hair to pull, and/or cut off her daughters hair. I think the hair cutting is ridiculous, so I gave Milo a stuffed toy.

So now I'm rocking and feeding Milo, while being beaten about the head and shoulders with a stuffed frog. Screw this, the new bedtime routine will be bath, bottle and hogtie.