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Entries in she's write (31)

Wednesday
Jan192011

She'sWrite: Getting Help After the Baby Is Born

My last week has been filled with feedings every two hours, diapers, tiny cries, lots of snuggles, diapers, tantrums from the 3 year old, diapers and more diapers. It can be hard work, but it’s easily manageable largely because I’ve got great help.

Photo by bgottsab on Flickr.As I’ve said before, my mother-in-law is in town from Norway to help us with life after baby. She’s here for a glorious three weeks, then my parents come for a week and my sister says she’ll stay for a few days after that. That means for at least the first month, I’ve got extra hands around the house.

When Logan was born, we also had help. My mom was there for his birth and stayed for a couple weeks, my dad also came for a few days and then my mother-in-law was here for a couple weeks.

Before Logan, everyone told me to make sure that when someone came over after the baby, take advantage and put them to work. I was advised to set up clear expectations before my guests arrived that people were not to be my guests and catered to, they were to help me. After having a baby, the last thing you feel like is being a hostess with the mostess.

For me that help meant doing our laundry, planning and preparing dinner, general pickup around the house and looking after the newborn so I could catch up on sleep lost the night before. The hard part was setting up those boundaries because it can be an uncomfortable conversation, but I figured I owed it to myself and my newly growing family to look out for what’s best for us.

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Wednesday
Jan122011

She'sWrite: Introducing Ethan Matthew

Our regular guest columnist She’sWrite posted this to her own blog last week, but I thought I’d share it with you all – for many of you, it likely will bring back some memories of when you became a mom, either for the first or the second or the third time. I love how she describes the moment when there were five people in the room and then voilà! There were six! -- Tara

It's official I'm a mom of two. I'm actually still in the hospital as I type, but it's just me and the little one and he's passed out while I'm too wired to sleep.  I'd forgotten how much they snooze at this age.

Welcome to the world, Ethan Matthew!After my last post, I was admitted into the hospital. No doctor in their right mind would let me leave with blood pressure of 177/115. They decided to induce me and around 4:30 a.m. started my pitocin, a medication that makes you have contractions.

The contractions were pretty light at first and I started practicing some hypnobirthing techniques that I finally had time to research a week ago since I was no longer working. I’m not against having epidurals, I had one with Logan, but I have scoliosis, making it very difficult to give an epidural and getting it in was the worst part of Logan’s birth. So I thought I’d try the unmedicated route if I could.

I made it fairly far, especially considering I hadn’t slept in more than 24 hours when the labor really started rolling. (I had a long day on Monday, left for the hospital shortly after midnight that night.) So was I exhausted, had lost my focus and couldn’t get it back.

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Wednesday
Jan052011

She'sWrite: Making a Chicago-centric bucket list

We want to issue a very warm congratulations to our guest contributor She’sWrite. She gave birth to a darling, healthy baby boy named Ethan earlier this week who joins 3-year-old brother Logan at home. But before she gave birth, She’sWrite came up with this list of Chicago-centric experience she’d like to have in 2011 – in addition to, you know, becoming a mom for the second time. Hey, she always admits to being “Type A with a twist.” 

Each year I make a New Year’s resolution and as I’ve said before, I take it quite seriously and pride myself on not breaking it. For 2010 I did Christine Kane’s exercise of picking a word that’s your theme for the entire year. Mine was reclaim and I loved it.

Spending a warm afternoon in Millennium Park is on the list. Photo by Ed Yourdon on Flickr.I figure I’ve got too many life-changing adjustments to make in 2011 with the new baby, six months of maternity leave and other things to adequately pick a theme for the entire year. So I chose to make a bucket list of Chicago sites that I want to visit this year.

For the record, I’m not dying or anything like that, I just think living in such a fantastic city, it’s easy to take for granted all the great experiences at our fingertips. I want to make a focused effort on hitting up some Chicago favorites.

My list consists of some personal favorites and other ideas were gleaned from my friends who told me about what they love to do in the city.

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Thursday
Dec302010

Holiday Baking: Peanut Clusters, Sugar Cookies & Mint Chocolate Oreos

For the final week in our “Holiday Baking” series, we have three recipes for you. The first two are from our regular guest columnist She’sWrite and the third is from devoted Go West reader Maureen Slaughter. If you don't have time to try them this weekend, there is no reason to save them until next year. Remember, Valentine’s Day is just around the corner!

Peanut Clusters

INGREDIENTS:

1 (12 ounce) package Nestle Toll House semi-sweet chocolate morsels

2 (12 ounce) packages of  Nestle Toll House butterscotch morsels

1 (6 ounce) can salted peanuts (1 - 1 1/2 cups)

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Wednesday
Dec292010

She'sWrite: Basking in the Christmas Afterglow

Looks like we made it through another Christmas. Another season of long shopping lines, ugly sweaters and stuffing stockings and our tummies with holiday cheer. I’m a bit sad to see it end because I gotta say this was one of the best ever.

Baking Christmas cookies.Yes, that’s Tiny Tim’s voice you hear in the background. (God bless us, everyone.) But allow me to be a little cheesy in my Christmas afterglow.

Since my family lives in Kansas and my husband’s is in Norway, we’re usually traveling for the holidays and being pregnant, that wasn’t possible. Meaning, this was our first Christmas at home, no luggage, no airports, no rental cars, just us and our cozy home.

I admittedly hadn’t prepared much for Christmas because between work, Logan, keeping the house afloat and many visits to the doctor, there wasn’t much time. I was lucky to get a bit of breathing room to get gifts for Logan and our extended family. That meant Christmas Eve morning, I had to jet to Macy’s in the morning to pick up some sweaters for Hubby. He made the same trip that afternoon. We are indeed soul mates.

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