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“but the baby’s coming out!”

Posted by lynn on 08 Apr 2010 | Tagged as: melina, pregnancy

Suli's Baby Tejal (will she adore her own lil sis this much?)

I spent some time with Melina at preschool today, and Ms. L and I ended up talking to her about how the baby’s “coming out of mama’s belly soon.” A mom and a preschool teacher should know better than to use the word “soon” for anything happening after today with a 2.5-year-old, but it seemed like the right thing to do at the time.

After dinner Mina asked “Is the baby coming now?” No, not yet. “After bath?” Probably not. “Ok, after stories.” Actually, when she comes will be a surprise. “A surprise? What’s the surprise?” Oh boy.

After stories it was time to go to bed but Melina got really upset because she wanted the baby to come out first. In her tired state she started to cry, “But I want to see the baby now!” We all do, Jelly Bean, but she’s coming in her own time.

belly time

Posted by lynn on 16 Mar 2010 | Tagged as: family, kai, melina, pregnancy

Baby N BellyFamily - BedWe’re in the one month countdown to official baby time, and possibly less if she arrives early. Ready? I’m ready for maternity leave, but still have almost three weeks of work left. Prepared? More or less. We have the car seat back from friends, and the cover’s washed, it’s just not in the car yet.

Mina's Belly TalkKissWe set up the crib, but not yet the Pack ‘n Play in our room where she’ll be sleeping for the first many months. We have gear, we have clothes, and we even have one small pack of newborn diapers. I’m expecting a nine-pound baby, which would mean moving onto the next size pretty soon anyway.

Family - YardToddler KissI’m not kidding about the nine-pound baby, either. Melina was over eight, and according to my doc (and anecdotal evidence) second children are usually born larger. She also said there’s some evidence to show that birth weight follows trends of the father’s side.

LemonEaster BasketJoey was over nine pounds, his brother almost ten, and his nephew over ten at birth. I’m also close to five pounds ahead of where I was with Melina in the final month. So part of it is wishful thinking: The more weight that’s baby, the less I’ll have to lose post-partum.

Mina PiggybackKai PiggybackToday, a fellow parent at Melina’s preschool relayed this conversation between the two of them. Parent: Is the baby here yet? Mina: “Yes.” How exciting. Is it a boy or a girl? “Girl.” What’s her name? “Pink.” As the parent pointed out, to Melina being inside my belly probably means the baby is in fact “here,” which only makes me wonder how she’ll react when the baby really is “here” for the rest of us.

Family - BirdseyeNamasteWhat’s funny about the name is that she now knows – and remembers – baby’s real name. Well, she drops the “N” at the beginning but has the rest down. In fact she gave it away to Kai when we hesitated telling him last week (only because Kai has a very hard time keeping a secret). And when I asked her to tell Grandma baby’s “real” name she did. But when anyone else asks her, she says “Pink.” Does the girl really get how to keep a secret?

To celebrate the soon-arrival of our littlest family member, we had a friend of a friend take some belly (and family) photos last week. With a two-year-old in the mix, Myron pretty much just followed us around the house and yard for an hour, though did try to pose a few shots here and there. We couldn’t be happier with the results, and can’t wait for Baby N to make her screaming, squirmy debut.

She’s kicking up a storm inside my belly and Joey keeps saying “Stay inside a little longer!” But I predict she’ll follow the path of her big sis and arrive a day or two late. We’ll know in a month!

carmel getaway

Posted by lynn on 06 Feb 2010 | Tagged as: melina, pregnancy, travel

Carmel Sunset

Point Lobos

Joey and I finally had kids-free getaway weekend! It’s only the second since Melina was born, and will likely be the last for at least another year, til I’m ready to leave baby with my parents overnight. But it was fantastic.

With Baby, Point Lobos

Big Rock, Point Lobos

We dropped Melina off at my parents’ on our way down to Carmel. She was somewhat prepped for what was going to happen, having known for a few days we were going to Grandma and Grandpa’s house, and even having understood from our conversations with Kai that Mommy and Daddy were going “to the beach” and without them. (It’s always questionable how much to reveal directly to a two-year-old.)

Waves, Point Lobos

Lunch w/ iPhone, Carmel Valley

But earlier that morning she’d told me “I’m going to GrampaGrammas with Kai Kai” and I’d had to say “Ummm, noooo… Kai’s going to Jen’s. And you’re going to Grandma and Grandpa’s.” Her face dropped and she screamed “No! I don’t want to go!” Luckily, she was fine when we got there, and did great all weekend.

Sheep, Mission Ranch

Joey, Mission Ranch

For our part, Joey and I stayed at a little inn right in Carmel, dined in style for two nights and two mornings in a row, and lucked out with fantastic, sunny weather smack in the middle of weeks of rain. Besides strolling in and out of fancy village shops, we took in a few new sites. Point Lobos was the perfect spot for light trail walking along the coast, and in driving out to Carmel Valley I got to live vicariously through Joey while he did a bit of wine tasting. He claimed it wasn’t that good, but I wouldn’t have minded joining him. Something for the next getaway!

happy bday, 1/2 bday, and baby on the way!

Posted by lynn on 01 Dec 2009 | Tagged as: family, kai, melina, pregnancy

Baby R, 16 WeeksToday we celebrate my birthday, Melina’s half-birthday, and a belated YAY for our baby girl on the way. Somehow it seems fitting to post the ultrasound photo of our growing baby on this of all days. We’re all very excited about our new addition come April. Melina and Kai are comfortable in their bunk bed, there’s plenty of room for the crib on the other side of the room, and as a bonus Melina decided to potty train at 27 months. She no longer wears diapers even for nap, and would be pullup-free at night if we let her.

Both Melina and Kai love to kiss the baby and say “hi” to her in my belly. Melina has already told me she will not share her stroller with her little sister, but it’s ok if I put the baby in the Ergo and “push Mina in stroller.”

A few weeks ago Kai told me, “You guys are gonna be really busy when the baby comes.” I laughed, shook my head, and said, “That’s right. And you’ll be able to do a ton to help us out!”

re-focus, re-engage, and alas, reflect

Posted by lynn on 13 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: family, melina, pregnancy, work

It took me less than one month to come to terms with the fact that two part-time jobs, two kids, my own writing, and everything else we have going on is just too much to handle at once. I gave notice to WaMu on Monday, and feel good about restoring a tiny bit of sanity to my life by the end of the month. I’ll be able to devote more energy to Big Tent, will still have play time with Jelly Bean every Monday afternoon, and will even re-gain my writing day. Needless to say, I’ll also be able to spend more quality time with my family as a whole.

Now I have the task of cleaning out my cube and files at the job I held for my entire pregnancy, and the place I returned to work part-time when my daughter was just six months old. It feels hard, and I’m realizing that it has nothing to do with how much I enjoyed this job. (It was a fine job, but nothing special.) It has everything to do with all the associations this place holds for me, all the happy memories of a time in my life I hold incredibly dear: Walks around the block with my bulging belly; walks to visit Joey in the office with our little newborn in tow; papering my cube walls with pictures of my six-month-old because I missed her so terribly when I first returned to work; dutifully pumping in the converted shower room; doing the morning commute rounds with Joey: drop off Kai, drop off Meli, drive ourselves to our shared workplace.

But now Melina is practically running, Kai is starting kindergarten, and I have a chance to flex my brain’s strategy muscles once again. In a sense, career-wise I’ve spent the last two years recharging. Now it’s time to re-engage!

welcome home, melina!

Posted by lynn on 07 Jun 2007 | Tagged as: family, melina, pregnancy

One week(ish) update

milk_coma2.jpgMelina turns one week old tomorrow, yet somehow it feels like she’s been a part of our lives for much longer. Like all newborns, she likes to eat, sleep, poop, and be held. She’s definitely more of a sleeper and cuddler/nuzzler than an eater, though. big_eyes.jpgShe falls asleep at my breast as soon as she’s the tiniest bit satisfied, and we need to poke her gently and tickle her to remind her to keep sucking. She also hated sleeping on her back the first few nights, likes to be swaddled but with her arms free, and has HUGE flat feet (those are from Joey!). Seriously, her newborn socks are about half the size of her feet. No wonder she was constantly kicking my ribs in utero!

smiling_w_momdad.jpgEnjoy the new pics. I’m also posting Melina’s birth announcement email below. Thank you everyone for your heartfelt congrats (I’ve posted them in the Comment below!) – we’ll get back to you individually soon.

I’ll also write more about my birth experience as soon as I have some time (haha). Btw, mommy and daddy are doing fine if a bit sleep deprived :) We’re up for short visits, just call or email first.

Melina’s birth announcement email

Hi everyone,

healthysleep_baby_grandpa.jpgMy name is Melina Azul Rapoza. Mommy and daddy decided to name me this because my initials spell out MAR which means ocean or sea in Spanish, just like my big brother’s name means ocean or sea in Hawaiian.

I was born at 4:55 PM on June 1st, 2007. I was a hefty 8 pounds, 5 ounces and 21 inches long!

Grandma and Grandpa WeissI gave mommy a tough time because she was in labor for about 27 hours. Daddy says she’s doing fine though.

Mommy’s water broke at 7:30 AM on May 31st and the three of us just hung out at home until about 3:30 PM. Mommy had some cramping but no major pains.

With mommy & daddy, just after birthMommy and daddy arrived at the hospital at around 4 PM on May 31st, but I decided to wait a full day to actually come out. I was real comfy in mommy and she always ate yummy food.

Now that I’m here, the outside world doesn’t seem all that bad. I sleep a lot and make little squeaky noises every now and then.

Grandma and Grandpa Weiss were also there in the labor room when I came out so they got quite a treat. I saw big brother Kai within an hour of being born. He likes to hold me and I like to be held.

Melina & big bro Kai, around 12 hours oldDaddy is typing this for me (my fingers are still too small and all the letters look the same) so I apologize if he forgets to tell you something or forgets to include someone important on the email list.

I’m sending a few pictures so you know how to recognize me when you come and visit. Mommy and daddy will post more pictures on mommy’s blog when they get home from the hospital which will probably be during the afternoon on Sunday the 3rd.

I'm awake! A few hours oldI look forward to meeting you and being held by you.


Melina Azul Rapoza
Age: 1 day

Melina Azul Rapoza

Posted by lynn on 02 Jun 2007 | Tagged as: melina, pregnancy

Melina Azul Rapoza

Birthday: June 1st, 2007
Weight: 8 lbs, 5 ounces
Length: 21 inches
Age: about 3 minutes young

More Later…

water broke!

Posted by lynn on 31 May 2007 | Tagged as: melina, pregnancy

For those keeping tabs on Baby Rapoza’s arrival, my water broke this morning around 7:30. Baby’s on her way! Well, kinda. Alas, still no contractions. We’re hoping I go into labor on my own sometime today so the doctors don’t insist on inducing. And we’re still at home for now.

We may have a May baby after all!

“how to give baby his sun baths” + where’s mine?

Posted by lynn on 29 May 2007 | Tagged as: family, pregnancy

Baby Record Booklet, 1941, SF When visiting my parents over the weekend my mom pulled out her and my dad’s baby books. I hadn’t even known they existed, and had a great time looking at all the photos and notes from my two grandmothers. The gem, though, was a Baby Record booklet for my mom, who was born in January, 1941 at Saint Francis Memorial Hospital in San Francisco.

Any mom or soon-to-be-mom knows how hard it is to sift through various child-rearing advice and keep up with the latest rainbow of recommendations, professional and otherwise.

But my, how things have changed since 1941!

Baby Sun Bath The booklet devotes half a page to “how to give baby his sun baths,” which entails exposing the infant to increasing amounts of sun on a daily basis. Apparently my grandmother also followed the booklet’s (and doctor’s) instructions to feed her baby (my mom) orange juice starting at six weeks, and raw egg yolk mixed into her cereal at five months. Yup, all the exact opposite of what we’re told to do today, yet somehow most of these babies turned out just fine.

Egg Yolks & OJ I’ve included scans of a few pages from the booklet. Definitely read the Sun Bath entry (second image), it’s hilarious given what we know today. Another great line not shown in the scans: “Your baby is not a toy to be showed off to family and friends.” Really?

My Baby Basketball - 40 Weeks!

Back in Berkeley, we’re still waiting to meet our own baby. She’s either very stubborn or very patient, and in any case is now taking her sweet time. We celebrated her day-after-due-date (yesterday) with a trip to SF, complete with yummy brunch on Clement Street, a visit to Green Apple Books, and a walk along the coast near Sea Cliff. Good fun, but we’re soooo ready to welcome our little one!

ready and waiting…

Posted by lynn on 17 May 2007 | Tagged as: family, pregnancy

Baby's New BedAnd really trying to appreciate the peace and quiet of these last few weeks(?) days(?) before Baby arrives. Relaxing is difficult for a planner like me who is usually always on the go. Carrying around a seven-pound-plus baby (yes, the doc estimates she’s already that big!) definitely leads to easy fatigue and forced down-time.

Kai's New Bed I wish I could take some short hikes up in Tilden Park but know I wouldn’t make it more than 15 minutes without needing a break. Instead I fill my days with shorter walks, errands, reading (ah, the luxury…), and hanging out at cafes either alone or with friends. Even though my mind and energy are half-shot, it’s not a bad life!

Kids' RoomThe house is also as ready as it will be for the arrival of our little one. We painted the kids’ room two colors (light blue and yellow for the sky, moon, and sun – and cuz we like them – not for boy and girl as my mom likes to think), installed Kai’s “big brother” bed (ie, we downgraded him from a full to a twin, and he loves it!), and have the room stocked with both diapers and blankets and a huge, closed toy box full of Kai’s toys – his favorite of which are still little pieces of plastic and wooden food. Hopefully his little sister will like to cook as much as he does!

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