Introducing Alexis!

Written by Elena @The Art of Making a Baby on. Posted in BABY

The long awaited Alexis has finally arrived and in that instant became the most important, precious and beautiful person in our lives.

I’d like to introduce our brand new daughter!

Welcome to this World, Alexis!

We’re are adjusting to being parents, sleepless nights, around the clock diaper changes (the girl can poop), outfit changes, shushing, rocking, breastfeeding and most importantly snuggling. And while, I’ll be taking another week or so to just relax without any obligations including blogging, I really wanted to share this special person with many of you who have been waiting for her arrival as well. I am looking forward to taking a million beautiful pictures of her once we get our rest, but in the meantime I’ve got a million snapshots.

Some random thoughts on:

Labor/Deliver/Recovery

My birth experience was nothing and everything I thought it would be. I loved it! { I know that you want to know details and birth story will be coming, but just wanted to say to the girls who have been asking me about the hypnobabies part of it, it was a big help. It didn’t work for me as well as it might have for someone else, but it was definitely a big part of my birth experience. }

{Wearing Boob Design dress}

The horror stories of postpartum recoveries might be true for some, but definitely not everyone. My recovery has been magical. And just FYI, no need for mesh panties and huge hospital pads- I switched into my own underwear and my “tiny” Always pads the day after delivery (and man, I’m glad I brought them).

I used almost everything out of my hospital bags, especially some of the highly contested items and was glad to have bags that were prepared for any situation. So for girls packing your bags now: if you have an option of leaving some bags in the car, pack everything you think you MIGHT need, because you never know what you WILL need.

Labor isn’t scary, it truly is a great experience if you let it be. I would do it again in a heartbeat.

{Wearing Boob Design dress}

My milk had come in sooner than expected (on day 2) and we fed a lot before that, so Alexis only lost 7 oz.

I’d like to also mention the amazing L&D nurses and personnel that were there for us. They were absolutely the best!

Alexis

She is just the most precious thing we’ve ever seen. She’s got mommy’s lips, ears, eyes and hair, daddy’s perfect eyebrows and possibly nose.

She was born on January 31, 2012 at 8lbs 7 oz, 20 inches, with 9/9 apgar scores and incredibly alert. It’s funny because we didn’t even know any of her stats until we were leaving the hospital. We were so enamored and in love with her that the weight or Apgar was the last thing on our minds.

Her dark head of hair was a cute surprise. Andrew says the first thing that came out when I was pushing was this 1 curly lock of hair (lol). We were both straw blonde as kids, so the dark hair is strange. Though I hear that it tends to fall out and be replaced by different hair and my mom tells me I was born with dark hair too. I’m not sure I want that cute head of hair to go away, though :(

She has a faint red birthmark in the shape of an arrow on her forehead which will fade by toddlerhood, but in the meantime it makes her look like Romulin when she’s angry.

Alexis is an EATER and a SUCKER. From the moment she popped out into this world, she was sucking on things. The lactation consultant had Alexis suck her finger a few days later and you should have seen the face on that girl. The words that were used were “Hoover Vacuum”.

Needless to say my nipples are destroyed from that first suck she took, but I am wincing through the toe curling pain and working on her latch as well as healing the nipples, hoping for the time when breastfeeding is painless.

She adores black and white patterns (like all babies do). I have this black and white pattern pjs and she just gets mesmorized by it.

{Black and White Development Board}

And while Andrew and I dread sponge baths, because we don’t want to make her cold, she is sooo quiet when we wash her head. She’s a mommy’s daughter :)

She poops A LOT. The girl has some healthy bowel movements ( I’m hoping that me removing milk products out of my diet before she even arrived is contributing to this factor). She has a poop after almost every feeding with the all time high of 15 a day a few days ago. That’s a LOT of diaper changes for poop alone :)


Alexis is the love of our lives, she is the reason we are here and we are both soooo committed to making this newborn experience as comfortable for her as possible. It’s hard being a baby and it just breaks our heart when she starts crying.

For some reason she adores the car seat. She stops crying the second she’s in it and then quickly falls asleep. It’s kind of funny because the Facebook going home photo of her in the car seat ( that I purposely posted so that you couldn’t see her there) was one little yelp at the very second it was taken. The rest of the time she hung out peacefully in her carseat. Ha!

On our 1st pediatrician appointment, we found out that she has already gained all her weight back (which they don’t expect for two weeks) and is a super healthy newborn.

Life with a Newborn

Somehow it is better than what I imagined it to be in general, but not what I imagined it would be when it comes to details.

Alexis loves to eat. It’s day 5 and last night was the first night when she went for 2 hour stretches between feedings (counting from start of feeding to start of next one). Otherwise, she eats every 40-60 minutes all day and night every day. Since everyone and everything says newborns need to eat every 2-4 hours in the first few weeks, I expected to get at least an hour of sleep in between of each feeding. With her waking up to nurse every hour or so, we get about 30 minutes of sleep at a time. That being said, it’s funny how I would do so much more for her than that. { right as I wrote that she went to wanting to nurse every half an hour, including at night. So my last night I slept a total of 30 minutes lol}

I absolutely love breastfeeding- her naked body curled up on my chest, her open and alert eyes, her hands that open and close and those swallowing sounds are just the best. It’s really the best part of my day when she is done nursing and turns her head away from the nipple and lays it on my boob with a sigh, lips dripping with milk… Awwwww!

That being said,
I think that it’s not publicized widely enough how much work and his hard and emotionally draining the initial weeks of breastfeeding are. I’ve read many online resources, as well as 2-3 breastfeeding books (which were invaluable) and they all seem to give you an impression that it should be so easy. While it’s a good attitude to have, sometimes it sets people up to fail when things are harder than they thought. I’m very lucky I have such a supportive husband when it comes to breastfeeding and that I don’t have any milk supply issues (so far). I remember reading new blogger moms talking about how difficult breast feeding was and tried to keep an open mind to challenges, but cracked sore nipples, shallow latch, around the clock nursing and lack of sleep is beyond anything words can describe.

Andrew is a rockstar with Alexis. It took him a couple of days at the hospital to get the hang of the whole “baby handling” thing, but he’s now a pro diaper changer, explosive poop deflector, and swaddler. He’s so gentle with her.

I’m really digging this time of no routine and no predictability. I have always been the kind of person who needs to be productive to feel good and right now all that’s on my mind is Alexis and her needs which consume both of us 24/7. We are just enjoying our new baby without any regard to responsibilities. However, we can only do it because my mom is here. She has been the hugest help we could ever ask for.

Taking care of a newborn (especially one that wakes up every hour to feed and get a diaper changed) is a 2 person job. With both me and Andrew taking care of Alexis around the clock, we have ZERO time for anything else. Honestly, I have no idea how single moms handle it – they need a badge of honor.

I know it’s been said before, but…

You think you understand what having a baby feels like before having any of your own, but it’s so much more consuming and meaningful than what one can imagine. From day 1, she is to be taken care of and protected at all costs.

WE LOVE YOU, ALEXIS! THIS IS THE STORY OF YOUR LIFE!

 


I’m sure I have forgotten to mention a ton of things I wanted to include into this post, but I gotta go. I wanted to thank you all for your awesome wishes here and Facebook and I am amazed at how much love has been sent our way from you! You seriously are the best and I am so happy to have you as our readers. I simply cannot wait until I can post more photos and stories from our lives- I have so much to share.

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Comments (133)

  • rachel

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    congratulations! she’s gorgeous. that HAIR!

    Reply

  • Candi

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    Congratulations! She is gorgeous.

    Reply

  • Sarah

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    Congrats on the angel! My son was born on January 31 of 2010, so our babies share birthdays! Glad your delivery was everything that everyone told you it WOULDN’T be : )

    Reply

  • Kristina

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    awwwwwwww that picture of Andrew and Alexis sleeping is priceless :) brought tears to my eyes because it’s soooo amazing! congrats you guys :)
    lots of love from me!
    xoxox

    Reply

  • Katie

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    Welcome to the world Baby Alexis!! You are absolutely beautiful!!
    Breastfeeding is hard and does get easier. Keep it up and before you realize it, you will be doing everything one handed while nursing a baby.
    I can’t wait to read your birth story.

    Reply

  • Salena

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    Wonderful, She is GORGEOUS like her mommy! I had a super easy post partum with Carson and was in thin pads by 4 days, and totally stopped bleed after a week and a half. I’m so glad its been easy for you as well!

    Breastfeeding is really hard early on, stick with it and it is the most rewarding relationship you will ever have =)

    Hugs!!

    Reply

  • Jess Judkins

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    your daughter is beautiful, she is just a little sweet slice of heaven, I love all her dark hair

    Reply

  • 13814771222703570558

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    So glad to finally see her! Congrats mama and welcome to the world Alexis!

    Reply

  • Lauren

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    Congratulations! This is a beautiful post and Alexis is a beautiful little girl- that head of hair is to die for! I can’t wait to hear more about your birth experience, but in the meantime rest up and enjoy these precious first weeks!

    Reply

  • Lara

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    What a beautiful, beautiful baby girl Alexis is! I had a smile on my face the whole time I was reading this post. CONGRATULATIONS!

    Reply

  • Kristy

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    WOW! She really is a beautiful baby! Congratulations to you and your hubby.

    My daughter had the same v-shaped birthmark. We called it an “angel kiss” or a “stork bite”. It went away when she was about 18 months old, but would still show up when she was angry or upset…she wore her heart on her forehead! It went away completely when she was around 3 and we missed it when it was gone.

    These days are so very precious, enjoy every second and try to be as in the moment as possible. Many will tell you this, but it really does go by so fast.

    Congratulations, again! She is lovely.

    Reply

  • Heather

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    :) was looking forward to this post for the past week. congrats to you and Andrew. she is beautiful, and it’s very clear that she’s everything you could have hoped for – and more. all the best!

    Reply

  • Katina Martin

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    Congratulations Alexis is beautiful!! Children are an amazing gift! Enjoy every moment they grow up way too fast.

    Reply

  • 11397202614610624437

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    Elena, what a beautiful baby! You are a beautiful family! And such intimate, precious photos.

    I’m so glad that everything went smoothly. You have an outstandingly healthy baby girl, you look great and are recovering nicely, you’ve done everything possible to make this experience positive and wonderful and Elena, it really has all paid off, not that I’m surprised. : ) While sometimes extenuating circumstances prevent us from having the ideal situation, you are an inspiration about how to do all that is humanly possible to make this a healthy, safe, and informed process and you should be commended.

    I absolutely LOVE Alexis’ hair! She almost doesn’t look like a newborn, she’s so round, hairy(totally a compliment), and lovely. I think that extra baking time was just what she wanted.

    Here’s to you and your family of three, Elena. Congrats. :)

    Reply

  • Cherry Pie

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    Congratulations! Alexis is precious and you and your hubby look so very happy.

    Reply

  • Jamie

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    The baby is beautiful. She looks just like your husband.

    Reply

  • Anna

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    Again, Congratulations to both of you and a warm welcome to Alexis. She’s sooo cute and chubby :)) I had a similar birthmark on my forehead (it’s all gone), so now Alexis and I have something in common 😉 All the best to you. Cant’ wait for more photos!!

    Reply

  • Mary R

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    The breastfeeding WILL get better! It is so worth it. Every stage and age she will go through will be wonderful in it’s own way. Have you tried any of your cloth diapers yet?

    She’s just beautiful!

    Reply

  • Bryanna

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    She is beautiful and I’m so glad breastfeeding is going well. once your nipples heal (lanolin is amazing!) it’ll be much better.
    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do more research on using your carseat correctly. It appears in the pictures that she is not in it correctly. car-seat.org is excellent for getting help. They will make sure your baby is the safest baby in town. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do this. Make sure your carseat is installed correctly too. Carseats aren’t just for babies sleeping, they are extremely vital to saving live in the event of a collision. They need to be used correctly though.

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      Bryanna, can you help me: what looks incorrect?
      There’s really no other way to hook it up from what I can tell.

      Reply

      • elizabeth

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        it looks like the straps are too loose and the chest buckle needs to be up higher. you should only be able to fit 2 fingers under the straps and nothing else. you shouldn’t be able to pinch it.

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      • stephanie

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        I would assimilate the previous poster means she’s not fastened tight enough and the latch is in the wrong spot on Alexis.

        Reply

      • Lara

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        The big picture looks like its too upright but that may be the angle of the image. The straps do need to be tightened a but; its hard to get them right with a squishy newborn. I’d definitely get a car seat check done.

        We had massive difficulties with nursing and it wasn’t pain free until almost 10 weeks. Buy now at 7 months its a breeze and the most wonderful thing ever. Keep with it!

        I had a constant pooper too, but didn’t cut out dairy so it might just be the kid! Did you get newborn diapers or are yoh using disposables?

        Congrats and she is beautiful!

        Reply

      • JBaby

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        The straps look pretty loose and the angle looks off (unless it’s the picture– but it looks like it’s too straight up and down and not reclined enough).

        Reply

      • Chrissy

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        Elena, what a precious baby! It’s hard to tell from photographs, the car seat harness does look loose. Also, is the chest plate in line with her nipple line? I’m not a car seat expert, but I think that’s what Bryanna is referring to. Our lactation consultant helped us fix ours (the chest plate was a little too low and the harness was a little loose). I found this article helpful http://www.sharp.com/pregnancy/child-car-seat-safety.cfm.

        You can also ask your pediatrician to check and make sure you have your little one strapped in properly.

        Reply

      • Meegs

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        Yeah, needs to be tighter and the clip should be up by her collar bone, not in the middle of her chest.

        Reply

      • Rebekah

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        Ditto to what everyone else said about the car seat… I actually am a nationally certified child passenger safety technician (as well as an ED nurse) and it looks like the straps are a little loose (what everyone else said about not being able to pinch the straps at the shoulder and the harness clip being at the axilla line are right on)… check out this website it has a lot of great info and other links to resources for car seats form infant up until they are ready for a booster– most importantly that new research has shown that children should remain rear facing until age 2 (the 1yr/20lbs rule is out!)… Good luck with everything and if you have any specific questions re: your car seat I’d be happy to help :) Congrats on Alexis, she is a cutie-pie!

        bekahleighrn@gmail.com

        http://www.safekids.org/safety-basics/safety-resources-by-risk-area/car-seats-boosters-seat-belts-/

        Reply

      • 07587136107547265653

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        You can always go into the fire department and have them double check to make sure the car seat is installed correctly. Everyone else gave you the right information about how she should be snug in the seat. She is just darling!

        Reply

  • Pdx Jenn

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    So happy to hear you are rolling with the punches! She is gorgeous and you both have some amazing times ahead of you. My son had/has the same birthmark. He’s 2, and these days it only appears when he is crying or holding his breath. It’s creepy though cause it just appears out of nowhere! Give those sweet cheeks a smooch for me. They are to die for!

    Reply

  • Verna Stephenson

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    She is so beautiful! I love all her dark hair! The pictures of you with her are breathtaking. I love the one with Andrew holding her while she’s sleeping, too! Can’t wait to hear your birth story! Breastfeeding is HARD work!! While I’ve been lucky to not have any real problems, it’s been VERY painful both times. With Garrett it lasted 8 weeks and with Avery only 4. Hopefully it gets less painful soon! Congratulations again! She’s is so beautiful!

    Reply

  • Audrey

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    Congratulations, Mama! She is a beauty. I bet seeing your husband take care of her makes you fall even more in love with him. I know it will for me when my little one is born.

    I am currently 9 weeks pregnant and your blog has been a great resource for me. Thanks for sharing your experiences. For what it’s worth, I am impressed by how you handle the negative comments you have received on Facebook. Way to take the high road :)

    Congrats again. Enjoy every second with her.

    Reply

  • Galina

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    awwww Oh my goddness!
    She is adorable!!
    Thank you so much for sharing your story and pictures with us!!!
    and Congratulations again!

    I got all teary…
    ?

    Reply

  • Brittney

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    Elena, while I am normally pretty (internally) critical of your blog, I just wanted to say congratulations on your beautiful baby girl. I know the newborn days are long and hard, but they are so incredibly precious. Enjoy them. They go by faster than you could imagine. I know everyone says that, but that’s because it’s true. Soak up every moment. Again, congratulations. She’s absolutely wonderful.

    Reply

  • Dawn

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    She’s beautiful! Thank you for sharing your experience with all of us!

    Reply

  • Erica

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    She is beautiful! The three of you look very content. Looking forward to your birth story – but no rush! Take your time and concentrate on what is important – Alexis!

    Reply

  • 1stTimeGrammy

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    She is gorgeous and born on a great day..it is also my oldest daughter’s bday, who is due to give birth any day to her first child, also a girl.

    Enjoy every second!!

    Reply

  • Kristi

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    The post I have been waiting for! First of all- Alexis is so beautiful! Congratulations, mama! I loved everything about this post: your pictures are stunning, as always, and your words flow with honesty and passion. . . one of the reasons why I come to your blog and simply adore you! Enjoy this special time, there is no other time in your life quite like it. Congratulations!!!

    Reply

  • 15131305424778858448

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    Congratulations !! She’s adorable !!

    Enjoy your time with her !!!

    Reply

  • veronika

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    what a beautiful baby! congratulations :)

    Reply

  • 00502373740315635689

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    Elena!! she is so so so beautiful! I’ve been waiting for this post. I just love all of her dark hair!

    Reply

  • Ana

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    Congratulations!!! You have such a beautful baby!!!I’ve been following your blog for quite some time but this is my first comment. I really wish you all the best!!!

    Reply

  • Bee

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    How wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing your life. I’m looking forward to reading your future updates and getting to watch & hear about Alexis growing. Best wishes!
    ~Bee

    Reply

  • Peony

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    Congrats! Just as a word of hope, yes the first few weeks are rough, and I agree with you, people need to not make it out like it is all rainbows and smiles. It does hurt, for me it hurt for a few weeks until it fell into place to breastfeed. But, again, as I said before, we just hit the one year mark (today!) of breastfeeding and it is so worth it and has been really easy for a long time! I looked back into our calendar and my little guy slept through the night at something like 20 days old (for a seven hour stretch- I considered that sleeping through the night!), so some babies will get longer stretches sooner rather than later. But the first few weeks I was a little bleary eyed.

    (the only thing I could see from the car seat is that the chest slider isn’t high enough?)

    Reply

  • Melissa

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    I’m a new reader (I came across your Facebook page the day before Alexis was born) and I just wanted to send huge congrats your way. Alexis is gorgeous. I am really enjoying reading through your blog and getting to “know” you and your family. Enjoy your special time with your little one, they really do grow so fast :-)

    Reply

  • Jessica Lewis

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    Oh my goodness, she is so beautiful! Pretty sure I teared up looking at the pictures (thank you, pregnancy hormones!)…lol You guys did good:) And I’m really looking forward to reading about your birthing experience, too! No hurry, though–I can understand how you’d be otherwise preoccupied 😉

    Reply

  • Laura

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    It’s absolutely amazing isn’t it?! She’s beautiful, CONGRATS!

    Reply

  • Amy

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    Alexis is absolute perfection! Congratulations on the absolutely beautiful addition to your family!

    Reply

  • 02864163794085690076

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    Congratulations on your beautiful little angel! She is simply precious and it sounds like you guys are in complete bliss! :)

    Quick question – I notice that she is wearing disposable diapers in a couple of the photos. I was just wondering what led to your decision to stray away from your typically organic/clean/toxin free lifestyle? :) No judgement what so ever, this is a very personal decision! I’m curious and love getting mothers’ opinions on the cloth vs. disposable debate. If you do not feel like replying, no worries at all!

    Again, Alexis is so precious – thank you so much for sharing! Congratulations again!

    Reply

    • Elena @The Art of Making a Baby

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      To quickly answer you question, my cloth ones are too big and we like the pee strip for the beginning. Switching to cloth in a week or so.

      Reply

      • 05501609809498320067

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        You’re smart to use disposables until she gets a little bigger foe leak purpose too. . ..most cloth (even the expensive preemie cloth) doesn’t fit well until about the 10 pound mark. Newborns are so scrunched up and scrawny, it’s almost impossible to get a decent fit from cloth! And the pee strip with the disposables is pretty handy :)

        Reply

        • Lara

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          I do disagree with that….one size diapers don’t fit til 10-12 lbs but newborn diapers usually fit newborns just fine. We used them from the day we came home from the hospital with no issues. I don’t know anyone else that had issues with NB diapers fitting NBs either.

          Reply

      • 02864163794085690076

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        That makes sense! I thought I remembered you were doing cloth and was curious what the situation was :) Makes sense, newborns are so tiny! Once she gets some yummy leg rolls I’m sure they will fit 😀 Thank you for taking the time to answer my question!

        Reply

  • 14972501039464497512

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    Beautiful, lovely photos, especially the one of Alexis and Andrew sleeping. Breastfeeding is hard and does hurt for the first couple weeks but please hang in there, so worth it. Hoping the breastfeeding second time around goes smoother for me, I made so many mistakes, the books shouldn’t say how long you should wait between feedings. That got me so confused and I’m afraid I might have starved my girl a little bit in the beginning. Can’t wait to read more.

    Reply

    • emily

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      Elena congratulations to you and your husband! Alexis is absolutely beautiful! I can’t wait to hear more about her birth.

      I’ve been following your blog since before your gender reveal…and I’m 21 weeks myself now (also having a girl!) I’m also 5’11”, about the same size and coloring as you and of the same Russian heritage (though many generations back.) So I have been particularly interested in the way you were carrying each week since it’s kind of a speculative forecast for me:) Thanks for maintaining such an informative blog! I’m a fan.

      Reply

    • Mary R

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      It looked like from the hospital bag photo that you have one size diapers? They will be big for awhile yet! Have you looked at any types of newborn diapers?

      Reply

  • Anonymous

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    Congratulations on the beautiful daughter! I want to encourage you that if the latch is really painful, please seek out advice from your lactation consultant or pedi about whether Alexis could possibly be tongue tied. I had a lot of pain in the beginning with breastfeeding, and it turned out my son had a tongue tie. It’s an extremely quick fix procedure to have it snipped (no anesthesia and since it is not a very vascular area, not painful for the baby), and feeding will feel better immediately after. I can’t tell from the picture of her with her tongue out if it seems to be heart-shaped, but it looks like it possibly could be. If you google frenum presentation Brian Palmer DDS, there is a PowerPoint about the condition and procedure that is helpful. Just a thought. Hope things feel better soon!

    Reply

  • Adge

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    You don’t know me but I wanted to jump in here as my husband is a certified car seat instructor and has drilled car seat safety into my head. You need to pull the lap straps tighter which will then require you to pull the shoulder straps tighter. It should be tight enough so that you can’t pinch the straps between your fingers. The chest clip should be at armpit level. The pads on the shoulders may seem necessary but they’re really not. You’ll be able to get a more snug and secure fit without them.

    If you can, try to get a certified instructor to assist you with installing the car seat. You can typically find one at police and fire departments or the hospital. It may seem self explanatory (especially for a well researched smart woman like yourself) but you’d be suprised at how many people do not install their car seat properly. Your sweet new little girl’s safety is definitely worth it!

    Congratulations!

    Reply

  • 01254425281961569429

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    She’s absolutely gorgeous! Although you are in the thick of it now, one day it all changes–everything just gets easier, she’ll start sleeping more and you’ll just all find your flow together. Can’t wait to read the birth story–thanks for sharing your journey with us all!

    P.S. I also have to say that I’m sooo glad you wore the dress upon leaving the hospital. I saw so many comments from people about just wearing yoga pants and sweatshirts…well..not everyone wants to just give up because they’ve had a baby. I know I sure didn’t.

    Reply

  • 08370918660894877829

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    Congratulations! She is beautiful! And I love her forehead mark (Vivi has the same) and I LOVE your comparison to a Romulin! So funny.

    Reply

  • Meegs

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    Congratulations. Those first few weeks are a measure of extremes… happiness, love, exhaustion, feeling like you are learning about everything in life all over again! Its amazing.

    Breastfeeding does get so so so much easier. The first few weeks are the toughest, but even up to 6 weeks, you’ll be figuring it all out and perfecting it. After that it gets infinitely easier! Promise! It was so wonderful and so frustrating all at once at the beginning, but my daughter and I are just about at the 2 year mark now.

    She’s beautiful. Enjoy every second, it goes so fast!

    Reply

  • Lynn

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    She is beautiful! Congratulations.

    I wanted to say, breastfeeding is the single most difficult if having a newborn. I remember the toe curling pain at evey latch. I remember feeling helpless, and that maybe she wasn’t getting enough….my husband was my rock. He was the one that reminded me it’s OK..she is getting enough. Her stomach is the size of a walnut. He went to the breast feeding class with me and in the moment when I was frustrated, he kept me grounded. I can do this. I took it one day at a time. Very soon, I didn’t notice the pain and then it hit me, hey, this dosnt hurt anymore! I went on to nurse for over a year.

    Don’t give up! It’s magical, and I promise, the pain does go away. Just take it one day at a time. Having a supportive husband was 100% why I felt I was successful. Sounds like yours will be the same. :)

    Reply

  • 16460076296283648776

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    Wow I can’t believe how beautiful she is! I loved reading your post (twice!) and can totally relate to all the feelings you are having – the exhaustion of caring for a newborn but the sheer and utter love you feel for this little person that makes it all worth it and more! There are so many similarities between our little ones and first week experiences…the full head of hair, impressive sucking abilities (mine is dubbed “the barracuda”), regaining weight lost and then some in less than a week, Agpar scores, and yes, even the pooping. We are 4 weeks in as of this Thursday and don’t even know where the time has gone! Enjoy all of it, and take as good care of yourselves as you can (ha!). Like you said, it’s work, but the best kind. Isn’t it crazy to think you grew this little person inside of you? That thought alone has me reeling every day…CONGRATS!!! :)

    Reply

  • 05129706047463471031

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    She is so beautiful Elena! And you look amazing :) Congratulations again :)

    Reply

  • Amber

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    Congratulations on your sweet little girl! I love all her hair!

    I also wanted to offer some advice on the car seat. You’ll probably get a better fit if you take off those red shoulder pads so you can get the straps tighter. Like what was stated already, they need to pass a pinch test and be pretty snug to keep them safe. Those pads make it dificult to get tight when they are almost bigger than the baby. :) they can be added back on in a month or 2, once she grows and as long as they came with the car seat.

    Congratulations again! She is lovely!

    Reply

  • M

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    Will you post your birth story for us at some point?

    Reply

  • Lisa

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    She’s precious! My son had a similar mark on his forehead at birth (I’ve heard it called a “stork bite” :) ). At 2.5 it’s almost completely faded except when he cries really hard – then it pops up and reminds me of when he was a tiny little guy :) I think they’re cute.

    Reply

  • emily

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    Elena, the chest clip needs to be scooted up to her armpits and the straps need to be quite tight, so much so that you can’t ‘pinch’ any slack in them.

    It will probably seem too tight, but it’s because a newborn’s shoulders are so narrow that they can slip through a gap in the straps just as they slip through their mother’s pelvis. If you think of it that way, you can see exactly what’s wrong in your picture. If you were in a frontal collision she would slip right between the straps and her movement would not be controlled in the vehicle, to put it gently.

    She’s an extraordinarily pretty baby. Congratulations.

    Reply

  • anon

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    Too cute. I have been following your blog since March of last year and it is such a joy to see the fruits of your labor!

    This post is wonderful. I really like the different tone you have taken. I must say motherhood agrees with you :)

    Reply

  • egad

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    Congratulations. Alexis is beautiful! Best wishes momma!

    Reply

  • Lesley T.

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    Congratulations to your family! Alexis is beautiful.

    Reply

  • 17356995994088171289

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    Congratulations! She is gorgeous!!

    Reply

  • becky

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    I don’t have time to read all the comments so sorry if this is a repeat. I was wondering if you’ve tried stretching Alexis to closer to even the 1 1/2 hour mark for eating. I know some babies can get in a “snacking” routine, and by doing so get mostly foremilk which isn’t as high fat or as satiating as the hind milk. I’m sure she’d be upset at first, but if you could stretch her a bit, maybe she’d eat fuller meals, and everyone would be happier overall.

    Reply

  • Crystal - Prenatal Coach

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    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!! SHE’S BEAUTIFUL! I’m so happy for you and can’t wait to hear your birth story :-) Really, really looking forward to becoming a mom in June!

    Reply

  • Anna

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    Congratulations! She is BEAUTIFUL!

    Reply

  • Rockie

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    Oh my god, congrats one more time. She is so precious. And oh so cute! Looking at your pics has me anticipating my own baby arriving in a couple of months. Elena your blog has been a great resource and inspiration. Thanks and Good-luck!

    Reply

  • Shalay Peterson

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    Wow! I am completely speechless and absolutely breathless at hearing you share your experiences and finally seeing photos of your precious little girl. It’s amazing to finally see the face that we have been waiting to see as we watched you go through preconception and pregnancy! She is so beautiful Elena!! I couldn’t be happier for the two of you and I can’t wait until I finally get to experience that kind of pure love! Congratulations sweetie!! She’s perfect!

    Reply

  • 12096180958861245388

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    AMAZING! I am so happy for you guys!!!

    Reply

  • janice

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    You can go to your local fire station and they will make sure your carseat is properly installed. Also as she grows and you change cars or seast always go back and have them reinstall it and show you the ropes. This is invaluable and free!
    Blessings she is perfect!

    Reply

  • Amy Cheng

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    congrats on your new baby girl!

    i completely understand you on the pain of breastfeeding a newborn. i have a six month old little boy and breastfeeding was pretty painful at first. but it does get better and it no longer is painful. once the pain is gone, you will enjoy breastfeeding even more than you do now.

    Reply

  • 17422375128134764885

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    Congratulations on your beautiful baby girl!! I am so glad things are going well, and yes, you are so right- breastfeeding is HARD at first! The best advice you can give anyone trying to breastfeed is to give it at least three weeks and it will all work out. The nipple pain goes away (with a good latch) and you’ll get into a good rhythm. Keep up the hard work, mommy!

    Reply

  • Carmel

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    Congratulations!! She is absolutely beautiful!! The pictures are amazing as well! Best Wishes to all of you:)

    Reply

  • Tessa

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    Oh my she is beautiful! Congrats to the whole family! You look wonderful and happy! I too had a birthmark just like hers when I was born, my parents called it my ‘strawberry’. Right between the eyes. It went away after a bit but whenever I got angry for a few years I would frown my brows and get all red and it would come right back. So cute! congrats again :)

    Reply

  • Becky

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    Congrats! She is beautiful. When my daughter was born she was always falling asleep. One thing our peditrician suggested to keep her awake during feeding was to gently blow on her face or run a cool washcloth over her forehead. That seemed to work for us. Good luck and I hope you get some rest soon!

    Reply

  • Rachel

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    Oh Elena, she’s GORGEOUS! I’m so happy for you and Andrew! I’m so glad recovery is a non-issue for you, that will make these first weeks easier than they could be…though as you said, it’s HARD! Everything you wrote is exactly how Josh and I feel as well. Every second of the day/night we devote to Lillian because nothing matters except keeping her happy and safe. The emotions and feelings a new mother experience are incredible, aren’t they?!
    Josh and I were blonde toddlers too, but I was born with a full head of dark hair with frosted blonde tips, and my mom predicted that’s what Lillian would be born with too, and she WAS! Looks like Alexis has that too. Lillian’s dark hairs did fall out starting around week 6, and then came in super light blonde around week 14. Now she has golden/strawberry hair with all different shades with different angles you look at it. Sorry, here I am rambling about Lillian.
    Also, I know how tiring that is too! I was breastfeeding on demand (Still am, too) and I didn’t sleep more than half an hour at a time too. Great job on that big, important job. A supportive husband is key for sure.
    Love your post, thank you so so much for updating us and showing off this beautiful princess!! She really is stunning! Great job Mama!

    Reply

  • lawmama

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    She is so cute, congratulations! Our son had storkbites on the back of his neck, and daughter has cafe au lait marks, I think they are so interesting and make each one of them even more unique.

    Glad you guys are able to enjoy it so early on, it was hard for us to really enjoy the special time after losing so much sleep and energy during labor. I highly recommend using a baby carrier to have your hands free!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

  • lawmama

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    oh, and how could I forget! What really helped me recover from the barracuda latch my daughter had, was these gel pad things they sell in the hospital gift shop. You can store them in the fridge than put them on for an hour or so (whatever the instructions say), they are truly amazing. You’ll heal in no time. You can also pump bottles every so often to give your husband a chance to feed/bond with her and give you a break.

    Reply

  • Tara

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    You are STUNNINGLY beautiful mom! Andrew looks so amazing as a dad! And your daughter melts my heart!!! She is just soooo adorable!! seriously. No joke. I hope to be pregnant soon (do you remember me? LOL, I have been struggling with infertility and have recently gone vegetarian, and emailed you about the weight loss thing, I know its hard to keep track of everyone!) and I hope that me and you can be online besties!! Because I so admire you for everything you guys do for Alexis! And I really value your opinion and thoughts!

    Reply

  • Tara

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    I forgot to mention that this post totally made me tear up! And I honestly know that your blog made me a better mother (well you know.. when I get pregnant! Well and BEFORE too!!)

    Reply

  • Jenn

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    All that dark hair explains the heartburn, or so the old wives tale goes ;-). Congrats on your precious baby girl.

    Reply

  • Dana @ DanasPinkRibbon

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    Congratulations Elena and Andrew!! Alexis is beautiful. I love the close-up of her in your arms (9th picture down). Her little body looks so squishy and perfect!! I can’t wait to read your birth story. I’m glad to hear that your mom is there to help you guys. The first couple weeks are exhausting. Just treasure every moment of that special newborn stage!

    Reply

  • Rachel

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    Congrats on a beautiful baby girl! I am not a lactation consultant but am an in home parent educator for babies and know quite a bit about BFing. Wondering if you are making sure to empty an entire breast before offering her the next one? She needs to get some of the fatty hind milk to really fill her tummy and maker her feel satiated… if she is only getting fore milk she will be hungry more often and this could lead to colic. Especially when your milk first comes in there is such an abundance it can be hard to get to the hind milk. I had to pump off a few ounces before feeding. I know you read a lot so I’m sure you have already considered this… just a thought as it seems like she is eating so frequently. My 9.5lb starving boys ate every 2 hours at first and that was tiring enough! I envied my bottle feeding friends who’s newborns would go 4 hours between feedings. I never had breast pain or soreness, so I hope that goes away soon. Breastfeeding gets so easy soon you will be able to do it in your sleep, literally! Best Wishes!

    Reply

  • 05501609809498320067

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    This is the BEST postpartum blog post I have ever seen!! All of it, BEAUTIFUL!!! Thank you for sharing it all with us.

    Reply

  • 01267645838439968913

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    Congrats!!! She is absolutely beautiful! My daughter had a birthmark like that on her eyelid that went away before she was a year old, my grandma called it a strawberry mark. =)

    And yes, breastfeeding IS hard and no one prepares you for it. The first couple months were very challenging for me when I had my daughter but I can’t begin to tell you how REWARDING it was! She has nearly self-weaned now, at 3 years old. I can’t tell you the special bond it has given us and how great of a parenting tool it is. It’s a cure-all and whenever my daughter’s cranky or sick, I think of it as a God’s send!

    Reply

  • 15602457496601340341

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    Oh I was so waiting for this post :)
    It has brought tears to my eyes!
    I’m sooooo happy for you guys! She’s an angel :)

    Reply

  • Sarah

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    Congratulations, Elena! She is beautiful. My girls had red markings (stork bites) on the backs of their necks – I can’t remember exactly when they cleared up but they are completely gone now.

    Reply

  • Lisa

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    Congrats, she is gorgeous. I agree on all your breastfeeding statements. My milk came in on day 2 also, and I loved breastfeeding. But it was NOT EASY. I saw stars the first few weeks every time he would latch. (Try a nipple shield to help with that initial pain). But I’d say after 4 weeks it was a breeze…and I’m so glad I did it.

    Enjoy these moments with her.

    Reply

  • Kat

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    Congrats!!!

    Reply

  • Caity

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    I had the same birthmark! Mine was bright red, my dad had a blue one. Mine went away around 1 years old. And you can’t see it anymore unless I hang upside down or get super angry. She’s adroable. Congrats!

    Reply

  • Caitlin Mallery

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    She is a sweetheart! I look forward to your thoughts the first time you held her. I know for me that was one of the most amazing moments of my life when my son(now 6 mo) first laid on my chest. May you enjoy every blissful and fitful moment, every diaper, every cry and smile. She will be an absolute delight! Love, Caitlin

    Reply

  • Jessica

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    So many congratulations!!! She is BEAUTIFUL!!!! I have three girls and they are all a joy!! You are in for the time of your life!!!

    Reply

  • Lauren

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    Congrats- she is beautiful and has a wonderful birthday (mine too!). I had those red marks when I was born too— mine all faded, but when I get really upset they come back, even after 31 years :)

    Reply

  • Tanya

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    I have a birthmark over my left eye that looks similar. My mom was told it would eventually go away, but it never has (I’m 25 now. Lol.) I think birthmarks are beautiful and should be worn proudly. I think hers is so cute! I just want to kiss it!

    Reply

  • claire

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    I agree wholeheartedly – there really isn’t that much information out there, telling you just how difficult it will be! We just passed our first year of breastfeeding and, aside from giving birth to him, it’s the best thing I have ever done! But those first few weeks? Torture. But be patient. I promisepromisepromise that it will get better! Congratulations. She’s lovely.

    Reply

  • 07587136107547265653

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    She is absolutely breath taking! She is so gorgeous! Enjoy her while she is little; it goes by ENTIRELY too fast!

    Reply

  • Mindy

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    She is absolutely beautiful!! Congrats!!!

    Reply

  • Jessica

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    She’s adorable!!! Simply perfect:) My baby loved the carseat too:) that was the only way I could get her to sleep through the night:) lol. Congratulations! So glad everything worked out so well for you:)

    Reply

  • Emily

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    Thank you so much for sharing your journey! I can’t WAIT to hear about the birth story and to see all your new adventures!

    Reply

  • shandi

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    Hi Elena,

    I’ve been following your blog my entire pregnancy. You were two weeks ahead of me but I just had my baby boy two weeks early so we are about the same. I just want to ask you about engorgement. Did you not have this problem. I have been crying since I got home with this. Almost as painful as labor. If you have this problem do you mind to honestly post about it.

    All the best with your beautiful Alexis.
    xxS

    Reply

    • justanotherbaby

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      I came across your blog on January 30th (2012) and read the entire thing backwards. I am so glad to hear the baby has finally arrived! She is truly gorgeous.

      Reply

  • jennifer

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    Just have to say- this is a beautiful post and you have a BEAUTIFUL baby. Congratulations! I am looking forward to your birth story.

    Reply

  • Lauren

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    When my milk came in I became VERY painfully engorged. I had my daughters first appointment that day and I remember ice packing my boobs and being miserable throughout the whole appointment. Using a little bit of ice was a lifesaver, I also pumped and expressed a little and fed, fed, fed! It’s so painful at first but it goes away before you know it!

    Reply

  • Taryn

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    Very Beautiful!! She is so precious. I miss my little Sophia being a newborn. It was a hard time but so worth it. Enjoy your little one. It goes by so fast.

    Reply

  • Jess

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    Awww… congratulations. She is perfect!

    Reply

  • 10495683422236103386

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    congrats again, she is just adorable!

    Reply

  • Kayla

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    Thank you for such an honest account of having a newborn is like! What a beautiful baby! Congratulations!

    Reply

  • Laura

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    Yay! Congratulations!!!

    Reply

  • Pamala

    |

    My youngest has the angel kiss on her forehead along with whatever they call it when it’s on the back of the neck/head. I call it road rash because she came out quick. Anyhow she’s 20 months and it’s still there, but really faint. But you know when she gets angry. LOL! It gets bright red.

    A friend of mine her child also had it and she’s 6 now and when the child isn’t angry you can’t see it, if she gets angry it comes back.

    Anyhoot, good luck with the baby.

    Reply

  • Gina

    |

    SO thrilled for you guys!!! She is so beautiful!!!! I remember the breastfeeding issues. My first & second would not latch. However the first spent a week in the NICU so he was given a bottle right away-so I wasn’t surprised there. The third- I was determined to make it work- and I did for 2 weeks- until the soreness & bleeding was so bad + mestitis, I would sob uncontrollably every time I knew another feeding was coming. It was dreadful- so the doctor just told me to stop. However- I was still committed to breastmilk. I religiously pumped every 2-4 hours, 24 hours a day for the whole first year for all the kids. It was a commitment- but totally worth it. None of them had formula ever. I know the majority of women get past the uncomfortable part just fine & I am sure you will too. You guys are already fabulous parents! I can’t wait to see more as she grows.

    Reply

  • Jess

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    Congratulations to you and your husband on beautiful baby Alexis! I love her little blue and pink going home outfit. Where is that from?? Curious for my baby girl who is due in April.

    Reply

  • Kirsty

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    I’m glad that you have highlighted the emotional and physical challenges of breastfeeding. I think much of labour and new motherhood is sugar coated by those who have been through it. Perhaps because they have forgotten how tough it really was. For me this meant that I felt like a failure when I had a very difficult birth and subsequently a really hard time getting up and running successfully with breastfeeding. There is such terrible pressure on women to be perfect. Keep your chin up and keep persevering with the breastfeeding. Use all the lactation consultants / helplines / support groups you need – it is hard, hard, hard work, but you will get there eventually! My 9 week old daughter Emma and I are just getting the hang of painfree breastfeeding now and it’s such a relief. All the best x

    Reply

  • Karli

    |

    Oh Elena…. I’m so teary looking at these photos! She is BREATHTAKING, and you know me…. I tell it like it is. (Remember our convo about TT NOT being cute as a baby – LOL!) She is LOVELY. Really and truly. Not surprising though…I mean, look at her parents. She is just delightful, and I can’t wait to see more and MORE!

    I just realized what happened… when I switched over to my mac, I had to manually transfer all my feeds. I think only Selfie Magic transferred over, and I’ve missed so much on this blog! I just thought you were busy and not blogging – LOL! I should have known better! :-)

    A million congratulations to you and hubby…. Alexis is a stunning baby, and I can’t wait to watch her grow!!! Love and hugs!!!
    xoxo

    Reply

  • Lisa

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    ohhhhhhh…. she’s lovely!!!! congratulations to all three of you!

    Reply

  • Katie

    |

    Awww Elena! She is so beautiful, so perfect! I’m sure you are loving every single second with that sweet girl, and I hope that you are able to catch up on some sleep after her 30 minute eating periods! Life with a newborn is wonderful, but sometimes difficult running on so little sleep! These pictures melt my heart, and remind me of my little Kylie as a newborn. Makes me want another hehe 😉 Enjoy!!

    Reply

  • Anonymous

    |

    Congratulations! She is absolutely precious.

    I agree with everyone that says the straps need to be tighter and the breast clip needs to me moved up to armpit level.

    Breastfeeding is hard. Keep up the good work and from what I hear it gets easier. I made it 2 weeks. Unfortunately for me due to stress from my sons condition once I left the hospital and was told by a nurse at another hospital that I wasn’t feeding my son correctly I completely dried up and for my sanity I had to give up because I was going down a dark road.

    Reply

  • 15766551467750607721

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    Welcome Alexis and congratulations Elena to you and your husband. You’re absolutely right about the experiences are not all the same. My mum assured me too =)
    I’m so happy for you and she’s such a cutie <3

    Reply

  • Lisa

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    Congratulations – what a beautiful baby girl you have! Enjoy!

    Reply

  • 13132533885818616232

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    .Congrats on your baby girl. She is cute

    Reply

  • Bree

    |

    First of all Congratulations, she’s beautiful!

    Secondly, thank goodness I’m not the only one who’s nipples were literally DESTROYED the first few days (and I’m still working on healing, my little one is only a week old now). The books do make it sound like it should be so easy. In fact, the book I have made me feel like I was failing by the third day (I carry on though because I know its what I want for my daughter). I’m glad that everything went so well for you. I hope that your sweetness spaces out her feedings soon.

    Good luck and take your well deserved break!

    Reply

  • Angel

    |

    Thank you for posting such honest comments about the difficulty of the first few weeks! I have a 10 week old, and I was shocked at how difficult the sleep deprivation is! While he’s still not a great sleeper, it has already gotten easier. Hang in there mama!

    Reply

  • 14785998810559197591

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    Alexis is absolutely adorable!!! <3

    Reply

  • Crystal

    |

    Congratulations. I’m a new reader of your beautiful blog and I’m so happy for you and inspired by you and your hard work and determination to be a great mom. I know the vast majority of the comments have been super positive, but I just want to say that I’m truly blown away by the negative ones. You’re writing about how difficult it is to have a newborn who wont sleep and opening up to the world about all of your stress and insecurities and emotional pain, and it absolutely stuns me some people have the nerve to write snarky things to you! Please surround yourself with love and positive thoughts and don’t let anyone bring you down.

    Can’t wait to see how your journey progresses.

    Reply

  • Amber Lena

    |

    I just want to say Thank You Elena, for sharing her with us and for always being so honest and frank in your words and descriptions. Its a rare thing these days. I have almost 5 year old identical twin girls and it still seems like yesterday that I held their little heads up against my body. It was so, so hard, but so rewarding. I’m also a postpartum depression “survivor” so I have to tell you to keep an eye out for emotions and thoughts that you wouldn’t normally have. Sleep deprivation can be dangerous to your mental health. I know that you take care of yourself and you are very self-aware, but it never hurts to mention because far too many women suffer from postpartum depression. All the best to you.

    XOXO,
    Amber Lena

    Reply

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