Welcome to the world, Belle!


Our little pumpkin is here! She's already a week old today! How did that happen?! 
It truly seems like I was in labor and meeting our sweet girl for the first time just yesterday! 
Yikes.... I can tell time is going to fly by a lot quicker than I had even anticipated!

I had so much fun sharing the pregnancy with my readers through my "Bumpdates" that I've decided to share weekly updates on our munchkin each Monday (or somewhere close to the start of the week)! I've never had a newborn before, so who knows if I'll be able to accomplish this feat or not, but I'm sure going to try! I think it'll be really cool to have the first year of her life documented this way!
 So without further ado'... 

 Belle Anne MacDonald
March 17th, 2014
11:38AM
6lbs 2oz    ///   19 1/2 inches
Our Little Miracle

Perfect little munchkin!





Her first day here was full of snuggles and kisses... she was a little worn out from the trip she took in getting to the world and admittedly after 16 hours of labor so was Barry and I so we didn't mind just staring at her sleep all day. My dad arrived about 30 minutes after she was delivered (perfect timing) and we had friends arrive shortly after bringing us lunch. The rest of the day is kind of a blur - lots of people asking questions, a few close friends/family coming to greet little Belle and like I said, lots of snuggles. So that we could catch up on the mass amount of lost sleep, we decided to let her join the other munchkins down at the nursery each night and have her rolled in every couple hours to nurse (which she took to like a champ that first day!). She quickly became known as the baby with the hair and every one of her nurses could say nothing but how sweet of a baby she was.

Morning Moments

From the moment she entered the world, she has had the most calm, sweet little spirit. She rarely cries and when she does, it's usually because she's royally upset with me for taking too long to get her bottle or my boobs ready for a feeding. Otherwise she only makes soft whimpers to let you know she needs taken care of. Her whimper is so cute you can't help but giggle a little whenever she does it.


Look at those two.... gah. I'm SO lucky.

Honestly, I can hardly stand how cute of a little human she is!


Grandpa was completely smitten with his new granddaughter!

Our second day in the hospital started off great, with a perfect report from our pediatrician and nurses. We also had lots of friends stop in with food and lots of doctors & nurses wheel her in and out for tests all day. 
She passed all of them perfectly by the way :) 
As the day went on though, baby Belle decided eating just wasn't for her and getting her to nurse for longer than 5 minutes was a huge struggle. All she did was sleep - getting her to wake up for any length of time was near impossible. By mid afternoon, Barry and I called for a lactation consultant and though all the tips were super helpful and we got her to latch again, she still wasn't eating much at all. 

So no surprise when the next morning our pediatrician came in and told us that Belle was a little jaundiced. Due to her being early & being so small (she was 5lbs 10oz at that point), she really didn't have the energy to be awake enough to eat which just added to the problem of not being able to flush the jaundice out. So in rolled a medical grade breastpump and special feeding bottle. The hope being that once she had more food in her, her energy levels would go up and she'd be more open to breastfeeding. The rest of the morning was spent pumping breastmilk and planning things out with our lactation consultant for a pump schedule and a feeding schedule until Belle ups her weight closer to 7lbs. Whew. It was a little overwhelming that morning but now after nearly a week of it, I think we have it down and she's doing really well! 
After figuring all of that out we were discharged and got to head home to show Belle her new digs!

Sweetest baby angel in the world!


Poor Belle is too modest for her own good.... she hates diaper changes.



 Grandma & Aunt Helen got to the house a few hours after we did and got to spend the rest of the week with us! It was so nice to have them around while we figured things out :)


I have to confess that the first night was rough... I cried. I hadn't thought of it until it needed to happen - but it's a really scary thing laying your baby down at night and hoping you hear them through your own sleep and praying that come morning nothing will have happened to them.... like seriously - scariest thing ever. My mom stayed up with Belle the first night so I wouldn't have to worry. Belle has slept in our room ever since, but it's still a really scary thing for me every night come her bedtime.



This is just the funniest face ever.

*On less of a serious note*
Belle sure loves her "tummy time". We have this cute little mat designated just for that and we put her on it pretty often (especially to relieve her daily case of the hiccups). She just goes to town trying to lift her neck and move her little legs. It's super cute to watch!
Speaking of her moving about... she is one strong little girl. 
When we feed her with her "special" bottle, she has to sit upright and by the second or third day of using it she actually sat up on her own and kept her neck up for a minute or two (holy cow!). At five days old she actually rolled over from her tummy all the way on to her back, completely out of the blue and all by herself! It was crazy! She can also "scooch" across the tummy time mat by moving her legs in & out. She amazes us every single day with how strong she is already!

She really likes to hold her hands when she eats.... it may be the cutest thing you'll ever see!

Big ol' flipper feet.

Sleeping Beauty.

Holding on to Aunt Sara's finger while taking a little snooze.

I think she's already tired of how many pictures I take of her... oops.
 


We went to see the pediatrician a couple days after being discharged from the hospital. The jaundice was already a lot better and she had gained 2oz in just two days (hooray!). Our pediatrician is kindly referred to as the "breastfeeding nazi", so she helped us identify what exactly was going on with Belle and her aversion to the whole concept of staying on the boob.... turns out her mouth is just a little too small to get the job done so we needed to get her a little guard to help her out. Now we're bottle feeding during the day and breastfeeding at night to keep her practicing and it's really helping.

Also.... let me just brag on Belle for a minute and say that she is the BEST baby in that she actually allows us to get some sleep at night. She goes to bed around 9/10pm and then only wakes up to eat about every three hours until about 9/10am. It's incredible and we feel so lucky. We're just praying it stays that way once the jaundice is completely gone and she has all the energy she is supposed to have... haha.


Belle is already the biggest Daddy's girl you'll ever meet & Barry is wrapped around her finger for sure!
Watching Barry interact with her all this week has been so much fun! They do "exercises" each day to strengthen her skinny little legs and he can't get enough of holding her and playing with her hair. I'm so thankful I have such a loving husband... who's now an amazing daddy to our little girl. Paternity leave is definitely a game changer and I think it should be a law that all jobs must offer it. There is just so much that happens that first week of life that dads should get to experience!


Can't get enough of this little girl! It's safe to say she's got me wrapped around her finger too.
It's strange to think that so much of my world is wrapped up in something so small... but it is.

Her "yawny" face is one of our favorites!


We couldn't be more obsessed or in love with this beautiful girl of ours!


These are the looks I got when I tried taking her week old photos today. Ha!


 So there you have it.... her first week of life in a post! She's a busy little bee, even with her constant sleeping!

Our goal for this week is to keep her gaining about 1oz a day and have her over 6lbs by the time we see the pediatrician again on Friday. Honestly, with the way she's been eating, I don't see that being a problem -she really likes to eat! Once we get her to 7lbs we'll transition back to strictly breastfeeding and hopefully be able to do away with the pump & bottle.

Besides the craziness of the feeding situation, she is truly just a happy healthy baby and that's what we prayed for! She's also the sweetest, most beautiful baby in the world, in mine and Barry's opinion. 
We never stop marveling at how perfect she is!

Now to transition into our first week at home with Bear back at work!
Should be fun!

3 comments:

  1. She is precious, and your family is beautiful!! Adara had a hard time breastfeeding in the beginning-we ended up needing nipple shields until she was bigger and got the hang of things. I hear a lot of moms say the beginning is tough! Y'all are doing great!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Congratulations! I've been reading all your bumpdates each week and they have made me smile. But seeing your sweet little gal is ten times better. :)

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  3. Wow! Belle is so beautiful! She's so stinkin' cute too!!!! Thanks for posting about how things are going. I'm so thankful she's doing better and that you two are so in love with her. What an amazing blessing! I love you guys!

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