Monthly Archives: April 2013

Dakota: One Month Old

I’ve been reading many, many baby blogs, which can be a bit intimidating in terms of seeing how much effort other moms put into taking beautiful pictures and keeping records and such. Intimidating but also inspiring. We actually managed to take some decent shots to include in a birth announcement that we sent out mostly to family. I probably wouldn’t have kicked myself into gear had I not been so enamored with the birth announcements of complete strangers on the internet. I believe she was just over a week old when we took these shots:

Dakota 1 week

Dakota 1 week 2

Dakota 1 week 3

We took these pictures on the couch with just the early morning light coming through the windows.  We somehow don’t own any plain white sheets, so I actually stole one of the window curtains to make a white backdrop. The light angle gave us some weird shadowing, since the big window is off to the left in these shots. I went to town post-processing these, but I wanted a better light solution for future glam photoshoots. And today is Dakota’s one-month birthday, so if I wanted to take monthly photos, I couldn’t delay any more in finding a solution.

Then it occurred to me that a while ago Dave had gifted me some photoshoot tripod/umbrella light thingies, when I had been complaining about how little natural light we got in the house. So I set those up and took some test shots of Loki, who happened to already be sitting in the right spot:

Loki glam

Not bad, not bad, though the poor guy still suffers from having too much black fur and me not being a great photographer. We decided to open the blinds and still let outside light in for the actual shots of Dakota, so I guess we’ll have to try to take all of the monthly photos at about the same time of day if we want them to look similar. Ah well. Here’s our  final official photo:

one month

I want them to look vaguely comparable from month to month, so I chose this one since I was able to crop out everything not covered by the blanket. I think we’ll have to position the tripod lights differently next time though, half of her face is kinda in shadow. Boo. Ah well. Here are a few more that I really liked:

one month 2

one month 3

She’s starting to smile a bit. 🙂

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The past few weeks

I’m not sure at this point when I’ll be back to blogging regularly, I’m taking this “first time mom” overkill very seriously. 🙂 For now I want to at least write a little about the whirlwind that was the last few weeks, and maybe I can go into more detail on certain parts at a later date. This post was mostly typed up on my iPhone, and the pictures are mostly ones I snapped with the phone and loaded to Instagram/Facebook, so I apologize now for any strangeness that results…

Let’s see, in my last post, just over three weeks ago, the drywall was finally going up in the bathroom and closet:

Drywall

That took pretty much all of Tuesday and Wednesday of that week. Thursday was spent with me moping around very moodily about the looming deadline of 42 weeks pregnant and probably looking at an induction.

Then that evening (right after replying to yet another text asking if the baby had arrived) my water broke. I’ll hopefully write up the birth story in detail at some point, but here’s the quick version… I was expecting a lot of time in early labor, but instead, as best as I can tell, I went straight into active labor. I’m still not quite sure what this “transition” thing is, and apparently I’m not very good at listening to my body when it’s saying, “okay, now PUSH!” But I had a great team of midwives and Dave and Julie stuck it out with me. In the end, my baby was born pretty much exactly as we were hoping: at home, in my own bed, and very very healthy.

Dakota

Unfortunately Dave really only got one day off because we still had this bathroom thing. See, we were looking at a really great refinance opportunity, but the lender understandably wouldn’t go for it while the master bathroom was completely gutted down to the studs. This was exactly the excuse my dad needed, since he wanted to see baby Dakota, but he didn’t want to fly out here unless he could actually be helpful. So we put him to work.

Dave and Dad spent a full week on very little sleep getting the bathroom to a point where it was no longer a health hazard in the lender’s eyes. I spent the week camped out in the living room with Dakota in my arms. The house would have been a mess regardless, but it was even more of a mess with the random tools and supplies lying around everywhere. But we got our refinance done! Here’s the much more intact bathroom:

Bathroom Progress

I felt pretty useless through it all, but all that sitting around meant that I healed up pretty well and Dakota and I have figured out this whole nursing thing, so I’ll still take a victory lap.

Me and Dakota

We’re still figuring out the whole baby thing, but Dakota is now three weeks old, and while she doesn’t have a check-up this week, at two weeks she was up 1.75 lbs from her birth weight. So she’s not starving, and hopefully we can figure out the rest as we go. We’ve had the good fortune to stay mostly on top of our sleep so far, which helped my recovery a good deal. I don’t know how long the sleep thing will last, but we’re taking it all in one day at a time for now.

And here’s one more picture of Dakota for funsies:

Dakota Blanket