Sunday, September 25, 2011

It's wildflower season

Western Australia has an amazing array of wildflowers (see my 2009 blog post for more photos and information: Its wildflower time), here are a couple of shots taken this weekend at Kings Park:
The everlastings are amazing!
This kangaroo paw was so vibrant against the rest of the bush.
I loved the contrast of the pink against the twisted and broken bush!

Jazz in the park

The Kings Park Festival is a celebration of spring with floral displays, live music, exhibitions, workshops, interpretive artworks, guided walks and family activities during the entire month of September.

This weekend just been Jason, Ethan and I headed out to enjoy the jazz in the park! It was great, the only thing missing was a great picnic! Next time I'll be more organised.
Check out the boys enjoying the music!

The good, the bad and the ugly of the last couple of weeks...

Well in the case of this blog its going to be the ugly, the bad and the good!! I thought I'd get the tough stuff done first and then finish on a high note! So here goes...

The Ugly

So over the last week I had been feeling really exhausted, irritable and generally off. I assumed it was to do with trying to lose weight, exercising more and coping with minimal sleep... I also had been experiencing a fair bit of pain while feeding Ethan (and in between feeds as well).

On Friday night my joints were aching and my skin was incredibly sensitive, I thought I had a fever but when I took my temperature it was normal even though I was alternating between shivering and being really hot... So off to bed I went at 7.30pm.

Ethan was kind to me that night, with just one night time wakeup (at 3am) but unfortunately I woke up feeling worse on Saturday morning. So I found an after hours clinic and off we went... My blood pressure was pretty low at 90 over 70 and my temperature was high at 38.9 degrees! The doctor confirmed that I had mastitis and prescribed a huge amount of anti biotics for me- 12 a day for a week!!! He did say that I would start to feel better after the first few doses and he was right.

The Bad

Sleep - or lack of it (and the associated side effects of limited sleep)!

For the last 6 or so weeks Ethan's sleeping has been unpredictable to say the least... for a while there he would wake at 3am every night and then sleep through to around 7am. Well now I have no idea at all when he will wake, he is very unpredictable... some nights (few and very far between) he will wake just once but generally I am up 2 - 4 times a night at the moment (the worst night had wake ups at 11pm, 1.30am, 3.30am, 5am and 7am up for good). He has also become a little harder to settle during the nights now... one night Jason and I tag-teamed for 3 hours trying to get him to sleep. On top of this his daytime sleeps are short and sometimes non existant! This has contributed to very tired (and sometimes very cranky) parents.

But no matter how tired we get, we can't stay cranky for long given this darling sweet boy of ours!
We thought that introducing solids may help with Ethan's sleeping... we started with baby rice cereal (Ethan wasn't a fan) and moved to carrot which Ethan prefers. There has been no discernable difference in Ethan's sleep (positive or negative) and really all we have is more mess from the solids right now hahaha.As Ethan doesn't sleep much during the day at all there is a lot of time to fill in. He has recently become bored with his regular toys and very clingy, which was making it really hard for me to get anything done at all. I was getting all worked up about not getting anything done during the day... so we got an exersaucer and it has transformed my days... I can put Ethan in this and it gives me back around 45 minutes to do some chores around the house. Ethan LOVES it!

Vomit and teething drool (and associated washing piles)

Over the past couple of weeks Ethan has become a very vomity (is that a word) baby. It has caught me by surprise sooooo many times and I had been changing my outfits just as often as changing Ethan's outfits! Must remember the muslin! One day I was vomited on aroud 5 times and I rang Jason crying about it.... I was just so tired and just couldn't cope with it at the time!

As well as the increased incidence of vomit, Ethan has been teething (his first two teeth popped out about a week before he turned 4 months old!!), with the teething has come a massive amount of drool. So much so that I have been going through 4 - 5 bibs a day and sometimes 2 outfits!

The good

Now onto some of the good stuff (there is so much of it I can't list it all!!!).

Weather - Lately we have had some wonderful weather and Ethan enjoys the outdoors as much as I do so we have been spending a lot time outside enjoying the garden. Recently Jason set up this little outdoor activity centre for Ethan!
Smiles and giggles - Ethan has really started to smile and giggle a lot lately. It brings such joy to our hearts to see and hear this. It starts with a shy smile when he first wakes up, followed by a big grin when we take him from his wrap me up and he has his first morning stretch. Ethan loves raspberries on his neck and tummy and also giggles like crazy when we dance!
Ethan has also started to respond to peek a boo, check out this video:


Its amazing watching a baby develop, things change each and every day! Ethan now reaches for toys and holds them in both hands, he has found his feet (and his voice), and is really close to rolling - he twists himself almost to the point of rolling but is not quite there yet.

Health and wellbeing

Apart from the mastitis my health and wellbeing kick has been going really well. I have lost over 5kg and can now run over 10km (with the pram) in a single session. I have been going to a Thai Kickboxing gym twice a week with a group of mums (we can take our babies with us). The instructor takes us through a bootcamp style session for over an hour and I feel shattered at the end of it. I have also been running regularly with a mum from my Mothers Group. Its great to be out and active again!

Jason has also been losing weight as he is following my eating plan! A new favourite meal is chargrilled beef served with an avocado, corn and capsicum salsa! Yummo!

So all in all the good far outweighs the bad and the ugly!!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Happy Fathers Day... by Ethan

My Dad is the best dad, he plays with me when he gets home from work, makes me laugh, tickles me, cuddles me to sleep when I can't get to sleep myself, gives me the best baths and not only that he has a cool car too!

On the weekend just been I got to tell him how great a Dad he was. It started with a wake-up cuddle!Mum and I spent all week making cards for Dad, hoping to get it perfect, but I kept moving my feet and playing around making it tough for her... it was funny and we got paint everywhere but Dad didn't suspect a thing!! I also made cards for my Poppy, Grandad and Great-Grandad!
I found this real awesome book that was all about my "SuperDad", I was so impressed, my Daddy must be so amazing to have a book written just about him!
Some of my favourite parts in the book are:

Meet SuperDad. He's the absolute best!
He's simply amazing, as you might have guessed.
Even when things are crazy and life is a zoo,
There is nothing my SuperDad cannot do.

My SuperDad's hugs are the absolute best.
They start when I rise and don't end til I rest.
They are hugs mixed with giggles and its not over-zealous
To say that they'd make a grizzly bear jealous.

On Sunday Dad and I just mucked round fixing his car (did I tell you he has a cool car?). Here we are making switches, gauges and bright lights for the dashboard!
My Dad is a SuperDad and I LOVE him to pieces! Happy first Fathers Day Dad!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Spring is in the air...

Just a quick update at the moment, I just wanted to post this picture of the first of our roses to bloom! Spring is in the air and it really is beautiful in Perth at the moment! We are experiencing blue skies and temperatures ranging from 20 - 26 degrees during the day! Its lovely!Ethan enjoys playing in the sun as well, here is the cheeky little boy with his tongue out in every photo!
I hope you are all enjoying spring as well!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Time to get fit and healthy...

Ok... its time to get fit and healthy. Yesterday was the first day of spring and I've been carrying the baby weight for long enough now. I happen to be one of the unlucky people whose weight does not automatically drop off with breastfeeding so I have to take matters into my own hands and get tough on myself. To start I need to:

  • Say it out loud;
  • Get rid of the excuses; and
  • Set my goals.
Say it out loud
So this is the hardest bit for me... I usually keep things to myself. This is all about making a commitment to myself, my family and my friends.

So here it is... I want to lose weight and get fit again (my specific goals are outlined below).

First up I need to get rid of all my excuses for still carrying the baby weight... here I go.
  1. I am too tired to think about eating well
  2. I am too tired to exercise
  3. I am too busy to fit exercise in
  4. I can't lose weight while breastfeeding
  5. I can't start on a Thursday, Friday, Saturday... I'll start Monday
  6. I'll never be as fit and as strong as I once was
These are all just silly excuses which are holding me back. I am sure there are more, but these thoughts need to be banished!

So my specific goals for the next three months are to lose 10kg and get fit enough to be able to run 20-25km easily in a session!

So please support me in my quest to get fit and healthy again!

To help achieve these goals I:

  1. Joined weightwatchers
  2. Do a weekly post natal yoga class (my core strength is severly impaired right now)
  3. Am joining a fellow mothers group friend and will go to a boxing for mums fitness class twice a week (we can take our babies along as well)
  4. Have started running with Ethan in the pram (boy that is hard work)
  5. Have started tracking everything I eat