Author Archives: Speck

Eight Months!!

june-29

Day in the Life with an Eight Month Old

1.30am Baby starts babbling to herself. I go in and nurse her back to sleep.

4.30-5.15am Baby starts babbling to herself. I get up and pump lefty, waiting to see if she’ll go back to sleep. 80% of the time, she rolls around for 20 minutes and then goes back to sleep. If she’s still awake when I’m done pumping, I go in and nurse her back to sleep.

5.30am-6.30am I write/edit, keeping one eye on the monitor. If Lady Jr wakes up before 6, I let her talk to herself for a little while – unless she starts crying.

6.30am-7.30am I make breakfast and prep bottles while Lady Jr hangs out with me in the kitchen. Usually I have to find something for her to eat while I’m still making her breakfast. She friggin loves sweet potato and soft egg yolks. She’ll eat almost any kind of protein, but fruit? Bah.

7.30am-8am The last hectic push to get Lady Jr and Dr Lady out the door by 8. We have a pretty flexible schedule, but life is easier if we get Lady Jr to daycare before 8.30. This push involves everybody getting dressed, nursing Lady Jr, changing her into a disposable for daycare, and Dr Lady packing up. We’ve been getting better at it with practice.

8.10am-9am With Lady Jr and Dr Lady gone for the day, I finish cleaning up the kitchen and get some exercise in. T-F, I alternate runs and lifting.

8.50am Shower.

9am-6pm Work at home. On Tuesdays, I write, so my day is a bit more free form and interspersed with chores for breaks. W-F, I work for my day job and spend 90% of my time chained to my desk for meetings (okay maybe not quite 90%).

5.30pm Dr Lady picks up Lady Jr and brings her home. I pretty much stop working whenever Lady Jr gets home, but some days Dr Lady takes her into the kitchen and starts dinner time while I finish something up.

6pm – 7pm Winner winner chicken dinner! We try to give Lady Jr whatever we’re eating that night, but she’s been getting pickier, so we have some backup veggie purees in case she refuses everything. After dinner, we clean her up and start bedtime, which is some version of boob-bath-book, not always in that order. Then we put her in her crib, kiss her forehead, and tell her good night.

7pm-9pm 90% of the time, Lady Jr rolls around for 10-20min talking to herself before falling asleep. We usually return to the kitchen to do dishes and clean up. If she’s not asleep by the time we’re done – or gets upset – we go in and check on her. After dishes are done, we sit together on the couch and – you guessed it – work. I write/edit, Dr Lady runs generations and/or annotates genomes. I’m in bed by 9, if not sooner.

11pm-12am Lady Jr wakes up and I go in and nurse her.

 

New Things I’ve Noticed:

– Lady Jr has developed Intent. She does things with focus and purpose now and has invented a method of rolling and rotating to get to things she wants.

Crawling is still in the proto leg kicking stage. Lady Jr appears to have 0 motivation to learn how to crawl since she can already get wherever she wants to go by the aforementioned roll & rotate method.

– She’s making more and varied sounds, although I don’t hear any consonants yet.

– No teeth.

Sleep is pretty darn good. She goes down really easy and usually only wakes me up twice. Once a week, she only wakes me up once.

– Her core strength is pretty awesome. She loves being flown around the room.

– She is so friggin happy. She smiles and laughs and sticks her tongue out all the time.

– She also flips to breathless sobs without any warning. Most of the time she just doesn’t want to be put down.

– I didn’t know I could love her more than I already did, but I do, and I continue to love her more each day.

 

My life right now in a nutshell: work work work. But there’s an end in sight: July 1st is a major deadline for both my day job and my writing. Once that’s passed – and I turn my book in – I’ll be able to breathe again. Just don’t remind me that July is right around the corner. I might just hyperventilate instead.

 

And now, for some baby pics:

5 Comments

Filed under gaybies, Lady Jr

Diary of a Strong Mom: Days 10 & 11 & 12

There’s an 8 month post coming soon, but that requires more thought. So strong mom diary first.

Omg: sleep. It makes everything so much easier. Now that baby only wakes me up twice a night, I feel like a new woman. And being able to add regular exercise back into my life has me almost feeling like my old self.

Even though I haven’t lost any weight since January, just being able to move my body and feel my heart beating hard and breathing deep makes me feel so much better about myself. When I’m able to exercise, apparently I don’t give a fig about what I look like. I’m passing skinny girls on my runs and giving them thumb’s up and grinning like a maniac and only after do I briefly have a flash of do-they-assume-I’m-only-doing-this-to-lose-weight? But then it’s gone almost as soon as it arrives.

Versus just a few weeks ago, where even walking around in public I felt self conscious. Now I just feel badass.

Fingers crossed no one comes down with any awful illnesses and/or goes through any sleep regressions soon. I just need a few more weeks of this and then I feel like I’ll be able to handle anything thrown my way.

I ran on Tuesday. Since that’s my self-employed free-form day, I decided to indulge in a long run. So I ran my first 5k since easily last January (2016). It was slow, but not as slow as I’d expected. I just wanted to complete three miles, and I did. Not gonna lie, felt pretty awesome/sore after.

 

On Wednesday, I lifted. I didn’t have as much time because W-F are my strict 9am-6pm workdays, but I squeezed in a 5×3 heavy deadlift and a 5×5 set of ring rows. I wanted to throw in a quick crossfit-style workout, but alas. Besides, it’s okay to just keep chiseling at this instead of throwing myself in and getting too sore/too overwhelmed.

 

Another run this morning, this one shorter and faster. Also holy humidity, batman. Michigan has really ratcheted up its SUMMER levels this last week. Makes me (almost) wish I was in AZ. Then I see that it’s going to 115 there all next week and I’m okay with the humidity.

Leave a comment

Filed under defiant, fitness

Diary of a Strong Mom: Day 9

ow ow ow ow ow ow ow ow owwwwwww

Leave a comment

Filed under defiant, fitness

Diary of a Strong Mom: Days 6 & 7 & 8

Oof. I got started and almost immediately fell off the wagon again, didn’t I? I had… something, because I was exhausted most of last week despite getting sleep. On top of that, Dr Lady had hand, foot, and mouth disease, which not only stole her energy, but her ability to walk or use her hands for a few days. On top of that Lady Jr was going through some sort of leap, because she was super clingy and not okay with anything but being held. And she kept getting up at 5.30am. So like. Yeah.

On top of that, I have to finish edits on my novel so I can turn it in on July 1st and holy shit we’re a week into June already, so every available minute not holding baby (or otherwise interacting with her) has been spent working.

BUT THAT IS NO EXCUSE

I did manage to run twice in the last week (woo). And today I (finally!) lifted.

First:

Holy wow! Two of those times are under 11min, the first time I’ve managed that since before I gave birth. Progress, yass. And I could even tell while running that it was feeling easier. Those first two miles felt like a breeze.

Second:

Even better. I mostly look at the first two miles, because mile three is a half mile and I’m pretty much tuckered out and slowing down at that point in general. So I’ll take two more under 11/min miles.

And then today I lifted. No pics because I wanted to get in and get done and have time leftover to pump and drink water before getting back to work. But I did a crossfit-inspired workout. In fact, I modified it from a WOD posted by my old box (here).

For strength:
5 sets of 3 push press, working up to a 3 rep max. I topped out at 85#. I suspect I could have gone heavier, but since I’m just getting back into this I’m okay with 85#.

For completion (untimed):
5 rounds of
10 empty bar thrusters (45#)
6 ring-rows

Aaand now my arms are noodles.

Tomorrow I plan on going for another run. What can I say? I’m addicted to Zombies, Run!

I’m still trying to figure out how to make a schedule. Stay tuned while I experiment with morning runs soon.

Leave a comment

Filed under defiant, fitness

10 Things on a Friday

May DITL

I’ve been more quiet than usual lately, even with my Strong Mom posts. While once a week seemed like too often to post about Lady Jr, once a month doesn’t feel like enough. But I’m also not sure how to group things, because she (and we) change in fits and bursts. So I’ll just randomly jot down my musings for now.

1) I think we’ve entered a leap. Someone is super fussy and only wants to be held and has started crying when we do diaper changes / clothing changes again. Which is unfortunate, because the whole eating solid foods thing has necessitated more clothing changes than usual. She reaches her hands towards us when we swoop in to pick her up, though, and it’s just… ah. My heart.

2) Eating! Literally, from one day to another she went from kinda sucking on things to actually eating. Lady mentioned that she’d devoured most of a beet slice one day and I was, mmm, doubtful, but then Lady Jr chomped off a piece of avocado and *ate it*. Then she devoured most of a piece of chicken. And slurped down some apple sauce. And the next day ate two big pieces of chicken and wanted nothing to do with anything on her spoon. So she went from occasionally eating a teeny piece here or rather to devouring most of what we give her, then poking around her plate for more.

3) Oh, but her poops though. Man, we were warned, but solid-food poop is rank. It’s also so much more, well, solid and obviously difficult for her. I hope she gets used to it / it gets better soon. We’re trying to make sure she gets some veggies and fats along with all that chicken (geez girl), but I imagine her microbiome also must adjust with her intake.

4) She can sit up for a full 3-5 seconds unsupported now. Soon. Soon.

5) Sleep! Twice now, somebody has slept 6ish hours in a row. She’s reliably doing only 2 wakings a night and I think she may be dropping one of those. I actually slept 6 hours one of those stretches – the longest I’ve slept since, well, probably June or May of last year. It was amazing.

6) Somebody also sometimes likes to wake up at 2am and start running her pacifier along the bars of her crib like she’s in jail. >>

7) I am really loving 7 months.

8) Not baby-related, but life-related: I finished the latest draft of my WIP last week and it’s going out to betas soon. If they don’t hate it, then it’ll just need some light edits before I turn it in to my editor. Translation: omfg I’m going to make my deadline! YAaaaaass. I’m still not entirely sure how I actually wrote a novel with a newborn, but it happened and hopefully it is never that hard again.

Ahaha, who am I kidding, it will be.

9) There is no 9.

10) Life is actually really good right now. I miss having friends in town, but it’s not been as bad as I’d expected, especially since I’m really effing busy between baby, wife, day job, writing, cleaning, cooking, and, well, occasionally exercising. I count my blessings every single day, because I am so so lucky to be able to work from home, to have the job I do, to have the wife I do, to have all of this. I am content, but I also have things to strive for, and that is the best place for me to be.

 

One more pic for good luck:

May DITL

2 Comments

Filed under gaybies, happy things

Diary of a Strong Mom: Days 4 & 5

On Friday (day 4) I finally lifted. For weight training, I’m going back to the basics, which means the Starting Strength program. This is a quick, simple program that is as basic as you can get with a natural progression built in. Basically, you switch between two workouts with three lifts each and just do three sets of five for each lift. With a warm up, it never takes me more than 30min to complete.

This week I did:
3×5 squats @ 100#
3×5 strict press @ 60#
and 3×3 power cleans @ 70#

The picture above (aka my evidence) is mid-clean.

The squats felt pretty heavy, especially by the last set. The presses were very hard. But the cleans were easy – I probably should have started heavier. Technically, this is not my first workout of the program. I’ve been off and on trying to get started with this since February. If it were, my squats and press would be substantially lighter. Since the goal with this program is to add weight every single workout, you’re supposed to start out super light. And I did – my first squats were at 65# and my press were 45# (aka empty bar). So it’s okay that they’re heavier now.

I talked already about my goals for running, but I haven’t touched on my goals for lifting. I could just say I want to get strong, but what does that mean? Well, first I would like to get back to my old strength. For me that means being comfortable with 5×5 135# squats and being able to squat 165# x3. This also means getting back to 175# x5 and 200# x3 deadlifts. I was cleaning 115# x3 before I got pregnant, so that’s a good number to aim for.

After I hit those numbers and feel like I’m back to my old strength, I’ll reassess and set new goals. But I think it’s simpler to focus on just getting my strength back first.

And then this morning I went for another run. Almost 3 miles! What! It felt great and I got to watch some folks paddling around the nearby lake in funny, viking-esque boats while I ran.

Looks like I’ll be able to hit 5k much sooner than I thought. Not on the next run – I want to run with baby next, and so that’ll be a shorter run by necessity – but the one after that I will see if I can hit 3.1 miles.

My, what a difference sleep makes, huh?

Leave a comment

Filed under defiant, fitness

Diary of a Strong Mom: Days 2 & 3

It’s been a rough week. I initially ran a second time over a week ago (looks like Tuesday). I wanted to plot while I ran, so I only listened to music and used the Runkeeper app to track my run. Somehow I ran for almost 30min – huh! Didn’t feel like it. That’s always lovely.

And then I got sick. 😦 And Lady Jr got sick. So neither of us slept well and my lunch breaks became nap breaks instead. I lifted once with Dr Lady on Wednesday but didn’t get any further than that.

We did go for a walk on Saturday, which was lovely with all the leafs and green, but less lovely with all the mosquitoes. Seriously – wth Michigan?? It’s freezing for 6 months straight and as soon as it warms up past 50, there’s mosquitoes??? Ayyye.

Tips for keeping the nasty buggers off of baby would be appreciated. 😦

Last night Night before last I got 7-8 hours of sleep (interrupted, but I’ll take it). I took Lady Jr to baby school a little earlier than usual because she’d woken up earlier than usual and was left with almost an hour before work. Knowing that I might need to nap again on my lunch break (eff this cold), but feeling pretty good at that moment, I decided to go for a run.

screenshot_2017-05-18-08-51-31

This time, I ran with my trusted (and favorite) Zombies, Run! It was fun and exhilarating and of course after every Zombies, Run! episode I desperately want to listen to the next one, which is added motivation to run again. Seriously, if you have a smart phone and you want to get into running, you should check out that app. It’s so good.

And there we have it. I actually wrote this Thursday (yesterday), but never finished it up. Last night Lady Jr only woke up once (!!), so I have high hopes for a day 4 update soon.

1 Comment

Filed under defiant, fitness