Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Reece's Milestones: Week 2

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We had a dinner with several newly married couples with no kids on Friday, so our kids got a lot of attention. "Uncle" Ross rocked Reece to sleep, patiently waiting out the crying. Later, he and the other "uncles" wound up the older two in a squirt gun and silly string fight. On Saturday, we had Thanksgiving with several other families, so there were ten kids running around a little, tiny apartment filled with people and food. It was crazy, but lots of fun! Reece is a month old and has celebrated his first Thanksgiving as I'm writing this, but I want to make sure that I've recorded the milestones from his first weeks, too.

These days, he's a little fussier than he was in the first couple of weeks. About every other night, we get a five or six hour stretch out of him between feedings. Much of the time, he sleeps that whole stretch, too. Of course, I don't usually sleep that whole time, but most nights I manage to get about four consecutive hours, and I'm thankful for that. I know it could be much worse...and trust me, we have tougher nights, too!

The following Saturday, when Reece was just over a week old, Eric decided he needed to play in his baseball game. Knowing that it would mean a long day for me with all three kids alone for the first time, he arranged a play date for the older kids for a couple of hours. The only challenge was that we all had to get into the car to drop them off, and we had to be on time because we were meeting them on the street corner near their house. Though Reece cried the entire time, we all got out and we were even on time! Eric picked the kids up on the way home from his game.

That night, Reece finally lost his umbilical cord, which was exciting. It's always such a relief to not have that hanging on anymore (even more so here because the stump was considerably longer). Reece also had his first bottle that afternoon. He has been a fussy eater on and off since the very first week. Sometimes when he nurses, he seems absolutely convinced that there's no milk, and sometimes I have more patience than others. So, on this day, I pumped while he took his first bottle. He didn't have another bottle for a week, but now he is taking a bottle at 11 pm, so that I can pump and go to bed earlier.

The next day was Sunday, and we all stayed home and tried to relax and get caught up on chores. At one point, Cade was looking at him and asked, "What are those little bumps on his cheeks?" I told him that it was called baby acne (poor baby got it really bad, but it's looking much better now!). A moment later, Reece sneezed and Cade asked, "What's a baby sneeze called, Mom?" It's a sneeze, Cade. Just a sneeze. Cracked me up!

Monday was our biggest day since Reece's birth because we had to go to the Embassy to get his passport. The list of items that we needed to have with us was pretty intimidating since we had to try to prove that Reece (and his parents) should be an American citizen. It turned out to be much easier than we thought, although there was a lot of waiting involved. To be expected, I suppose. In celebration of our success (and since we still had some time before the older kids needed to be picked up), we headed to the Starbucks right next to our bus stop. For some reason, I had thought this would be a good place to feed Reece, as well, but of course, after checking all three floors, there was only one table and two chairs available in the entire Starbucks and it was right in the middle of the room. It's a good thing I'm not too shy about nursing in public!

In addition to Reece's passport, we also had to apply for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad, which essentially operates as Reece's birth certificate in the States. This is an important document, obviously. Unfortunately, the man who helped us at the Embassy neglected to inform us that the CRBA would be mailed to us in the same envelope as the passport. So, in his excitement that Reece's passport had arrived, Eric threw away the envelope, as well as the CRBA. When he brought the passport to one of our HR people at school to work on Reece's Alien Registration Card (seriously...so much paperwork to make this kid official!), she asked where the CRBA was and he had no idea. We have had to go through a mad dash to request another one in order to get Reece's ARC. It's been a little stressful, to say the least! Yesterday, in 30 degree weather, wind, and snow, Reece and I had to trek back to the Embassy to have a letter notarized in order to request another CRBA. Hopefully, it will be here soon!

The remainder of Reece's second week was a little less eventful. Eric returned to school on Tuesday, so the two of us spent our days adjusting to just the two of us. I barely moved from my chair for 3 days, as I'd resigned myself to not accomplishing any household chores, and I was fine with it! On Friday, I decided it was time to leave the house again, so Reece made his debut at Friday morning Bible study at church. The ladies were all excited to meet him and my arms were excited for the rest!

I take at least one picture of this boy every day with my phone but haven't been very good about using the real camera. If you follow me on Instagram, you get a lot of #babyspam, and if you don't, well, then you haven't seen all of these pictures already!

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