Baby Shower En Blanc for the Andersons

About a month ago, we were honored to throw the Andersons a baby shower for their little one Austin {who joined the world on just a few weeks ago}! I offered to throw Jess a shower last fall, not totally realizing how much more work it would be to host a party with a brand-new baby, but I did all of the planning before Daphne was born and it worked out pretty well!

Jess had requested an “En Blanc” party, so the theme was super easy: white. I pinned lots of different things, but wanted to keep things simple, both décor and food. Most of the décor I got from Etsy, but everything is linked below for those who have asked. There were tons of babies and it was so wonderful to see so many friends.

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{Popcorn favors}

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{Guess how many candies in the jar & the winner gets the entire thing!}

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{Wishes for Baby Austin}

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{The dessert bar!}

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{Thanks to Cale, the father-to-be, for helping get this donut cake together!}

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{Eloise, Daphne, and Jaz before the party!}

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{These two girls had the BEST time!}

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{All of the MAMAS! Such an amazing group of women.}

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{All of the “new” Papas!}

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{Oh brother, those papas…}

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{The Andersons!}

{photos by Jess // Ready to Pop favor stickers: Kaspi Party Etsy Shop // small white picture frames: Michael’s // white clipboard frame: Target // art: Soeurette, my mama // lidded glass vase: Michael’s // small flower bouquets: Michael’s // Oh Boy banner: Ur Invited Too Etsy Shop // LOVE sign: Target (old) // Wishes for Baby cards: DIY // white balloons: Display and Costume // tissue tassels: DIY // menu card: DIY // Oh Boy cake topper: Foiled Prints // mini cupcakes: Trophy (vanilla-vanilla)}

Congratulations Jess, Cale, and big sister Jazmyne!

M

daphne {week 8}

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{letterboard: Letter Folk (Poet) // overalls: babyGap (similar) // onesie: crewcuts // booties: June and January}

{week 8} Holy cow, 8 weeks already?!

Daphne is such a sweet little spirit and has been showing us so many smiles as of late, including during this week’s photoshoot. She definitely has her unhappy moments (and the cutest sad face!) but she is generally very happy.

We are still nursing six times per day for about 40 minutes (20 on each side) and she is the noisiest! Except for her first and last feeding, she is “talking” most of the time that she nurses. She is also pretty noisy when she is sleeping too – groaning and moaning in the wee morning hours!

While she is still giving us a nice long stretch of sleep at night (at least 7 hours), she has started to fuss between about 4 and 6 am. Almost always she has lost her pacifier and as soon as it is back in her mouth, she is good. Once she is really sleeping, her paci drops out and she doesn’t (generally) need it to stay asleep. But, since my guess is that she is a pretty  light sleeper during this short morning stretch, she very frequently needs help with her paci, so the hours right before I get up with her for our first feeding aren’t very restful (for me at least!). I have been trying to take a nap at least a couple of days a week in the afternoon if I can get both girls down at the same time which helps, especially since I “need” 9+ hours of sleep! Maybe someday…

Daphne is also really gassy, as compared to Eloise at this age, which our ped told us is super common for babies this age so we aren’t worried at all, but she definitely fusses over it sometimes until she can let it out. I also wonder whether her morning fussiness is due to gas?

This girl loves (loves) her hands. She is still in newborn-mode with her hands though and they are almost always tight in a fist. But if she can, she will attempt to stick her entire fist in her mouth. Usually that’s a sign that she wants a paci, but sometimes I let her suck on her hands since that is the way she is naturally self-soothing. Not sure if we want to encourage hand (or eventually fingers or thumb) sucking, but I hate to prevent her from soothing in that way. And speaking of her hands, she always has lint and fuzz in her hands! I don’t know where she gets so much of it, but every feeding I open her hands (or wait for them to open towards the end of her feeding which is a sign of being full) and pick the lint out. We call her The Lint Smuggler.

And finally, Daphne is finally not crying thru diaper or clothes changes. She still doesn’t love having a shirt or a onesie put over her head, but she won’t cry much anymore, whereas before, every single diaper or clothing change was accompanied with tears. The saddest.

Daphne has her 8 week check-up (and first set of shots) this morning so I will share all that info for her two month update next week!

See Eloise in this same outfit here. Babies in overalls are the BEST!

Happy 8 weeks Daphne!

M

This post contains affiliate links.

daphne {newborn and family photos}

Happy Friday! I will at some point get back to my standard Friday I’m in Love posts but today I wanted to share Daphne’s newborn photoshoot! {I wanted to wait until I knew which photos we were using for Daphne’s birth announcement before sharing here. Our good (and very talented) friend Brenda designed the announcements – she did Eloise’s too! – and I just sent them to the printer so I hope to have them in the mail by the end of the month or sooner!}

Daphne was almost a week old when these photos were taken, and in lieu of doing a traditional newborn one (like I did with Eloise), I opted for a family shoot that was at our house so that we could get professional photos of our new family of four and I wouldn’t have to leave the house (HUGE bonus since with Eloise I trekked way down south to Tacoma!). And while I do love the look of Eloise’s posed newborn shots, I really am loving the more relaxed (non-staged) feel of our shoot this time around.

A few random notes: Daphne looks so different in some of the pictures here, almost like an entirely different baby (which is totally true with all newborns!); even though the last thing you want to do is drag yourself and your brand-new baby to a photoshoot, you should do it, even if it isn’t a professional and just someone with a nice (not a phone) camera take a few pictures (you will cherish them later!); and (related) if you are ever on the fence about getting professional photos taken (we usually get ours done for Christmas cards each year), do it (it’s expensive, but I have never, ever regretted it!).

If you are in the Seattle area and are looking for a professional photographer (for babies, weddings, etc.) I highly recommend Meg! She was so sweet, and amazingly talented, and I am so IN LOVE with these photos.

{Prepare for photo overload since I definitely could not choose just a few to share! Deciding which ones to have printed is agonizing…}

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Wearing: {Eloise: jeans: Gap Kids // bow: A Little Lady Shop} {Daphne: grey swaddle blanket: Lou Lou & Co // silver swaddle blanket: Aden & Anais} {Misha: chambray dress: Madewell (similar)} {Aaron: shirt: J.Crew (old) // jeans: Bonobos}

Have a great weekend!

M

This post contains affiliate links.

 

daphne {week 7}

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{letterboard: Letter Folk (Poet) // tee: Carter’s (old) // leggings: babyGap (old) // bunny ears: Target}

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{And this week’s outtake! Their faces are hilarious!}

{week 7} This past weekend was Daphne’s first Easter and as you can see from the photos, she was pretty happy about it! Because of her March birthday (barely!) I think of her as a spring baby, but she really is a winter one. That said, spring is on the way here in Seattle and I am excited to not have to bundle her up so much when we go out!

Daphne’s eyebrows are finally coming in and the color changes based on the lighting. They generally look blonde, but when she is in the sun, they look red! Aaron and I both have red undertones in our hair and Eloise has red in her hair (in the sun), so it isn’t a surprise that Daphne would have red, but I am just so surprised about it being in her eyebrows! She is the cutest person to ever have dark hair and light eyebrows!

Since I mentioned it a few weeks ago, Daphne’s skin is much less dry and flaky which is nice because she was shedding everywhere (which kind of freaked me out). It is super normal for newborns, but I just wasn’t expecting it. And while there are no signs of cradle cap (I think it was just dry skin on her scalp) Daphne does have a bit of baby acne. It is mostly on her cheeks and not horrible. I think it is just hormones and not a reaction to what she is getting thru my breastmilk; if it becomes worse though I may try to cut out dairy to see if that helps since dairy sensitivity is pretty common in newborns.

We are getting a lot of smiles these days from Daphne and not just gassy ones. She will respond to voices and faces and likes to be tickled. That sweet little smile is the best! And she has a dimple in her right cheek.

I mentioned also last week that Daphne is up for about 30 minutes during her “wake” time, but that wasn’t really right. She has been awake for the past few weeks for closer to an hour which has been a good change. While I love, love having a sleepy little newborn, it is also fun to have her awake and starting to interact with us and her world. I have been introducing tummy time slowly on her play mat or across my lap (she already can push up off of my chest when I hold her upright) and shake a toy or rattle to get her to look up and rotate her head. She is also liking her play mat for laying on her back and staring at the toys and even batting them with her hands.

Finally, Daphne is starting to fill out and fits into her 0 to 3 month clothes now! And actually her 0 to 3 month tops and onesies are almost looking too small, especially if I pair a onesie with a cloth diaper since they add so much bulk. But with bottoms, she still fits into her newborn pants, including the tiny newborn ones that are “up to 7 pounds.” She still has a pretty small waist and little, scrawny legs and arms, but filling in in her belly.

Happy 7 weeks Daphne!

M

daphne {week 6}

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{letterboard: Letter Folk (Poet) // onesie: Etsy // pants: babyGap // booties: June & January}

{week 6} This past week has sort of been a blur where all of the days start feeling the same. I guess that is what happens with routines, each day is basically the same, which is great for kids who need consistency (Eloise!) but not so great for Mamas who start to feel like it’s Groundhog’s Day! Luckily I have started to get my act together enough to feel like I can leave the house without it being a major, chaotic thing. The most helpful thing for me is that I have lowered my expectations about how “ready” I will be before we leave the house… concealer, mascara, maybe a quick shower, and clean clothes! (Plus, Aaron and I always joke that the secret to being a good parent is low expectations. Ha!)

Daphne, while still going thru the night without a middle of the night feeding, has been much more fussy during the night. I usually just have to get her paci in her mouth and maybe rock her for a second, and she is back down. But I am finding that I am doing this multiple times per night which wasn’t the case even a week or so ago. But in reading back on Eloise’s week 6 update, I was reminded of the dreaded week 6 sleep regression! Since I was in a PEPS group with Eloise at this point in her life, meaning I met weekly with a mama’s group to chat all about our new babies, I was totally up-to-speed on all of these types of things, like regressions, milestones, or developments. But since having Daphne I haven’t had a chance to catch up on my reading! All of this is to say that I think Daphne may be in her 6 week sleep regression and will go back to snoozing more normally soon!

She is still sleeping at night in her rock n’ play right next to our bed. At this point I had transitioned Eloise into her crib, but am not feeling quite as antsy to do that this time around. At least yet. I may try putting Daphne down for naps in her crib, especially to get her used to lying flat during sleeping time, but nighttime seems like a completely different story and the reason is two-fold; one is that because Daphne just needs her paci stuck back in her mouth to get back to sleep, it is so, so much easier for me to just roll over in bed and lean over to give her a paci (rather than have to get up out of bed and go next door), and two is that Eloise is next door to the nursery and I am trying to prevent having both kids up at night if Daphne is crying! I know it’s not realistic to think that Daphne’s crying will never effect Eloise because she definitely cries in the early mornings before her first feeding, during naptime in the afternoon, and in the evenings after Eloise is asleep. But I am much more anxious about it in the middle of the night! I think I will get thru this regression and then re-evaluate!

We are still offering Daphne a bottle of pumped milk after her last feeding of the day which she almost always takes. It is mostly to ensure she will continue to take a bottle (which can sometimes be an issue for (mostly) exclusively breastfed babies) and is only about an ounce and a half. I have dropped down to just one pumping session per day, right after Daphne’s first feeding around 6:30 or 7 am. Although it was nice to get extra pumped milk and feel like I was “fully drained” right before bedtime, having a pumping session after her last feeding was pushing my bedtime so late! Generally milk supplies are higher in the morning (which seems to be mostly true with me) and then I can get pumping out of the way before Eloise is up for the day. And nothing is more stressful than having a toddler (and an infant) to watch while you are pumping… I had Eloise in the nursery with me once while I tried to pump and it was terrible. It cut my output at least in half!

Daphne is super into her hands these days and constantly has them (or tries to have them) in her mouth. Aaron has been able to keep her fingernails trimmed down, though they still grow like weeds, so we haven’t had to keep mittens on her. She can’t self-soothe enough with just her hands, so she is still using a paci, but we will see if she becomes a hand sucker.

You can also see from this picture that Daphne’s hair is changing a bit. It is becoming lighter on the sides, most notably in the sun, and is developing into a faux-hawk on the top just like Eloise’s at this age. I think these girls are going to have the same hair!

Daphne is much more alert during her “wake time” this past week as well. She sometimes falls asleep during the end of her feeding or immediately after, but a diaper change always jazzes her up. She still doesn’t love a diaper or clothes change, but she is starting to tolerate both much better. After a fresh diaper, Daphne is generally up for 30ish minutes before she starts to show signs of wanting a nap. She will sometimes go to sleep on her own, but generally needs/wants a swaddle and a paci. Her naps are all over the place during the day depending on what we are doing: in the car seat, in the Ergo or Solly wrap, on the Boppy lounger, in her swing (we have a version of this one that I found on consignment*), on my chest or arms.

Finally, I compared Daphne’s 4 week stats with Eloise’s and they are basically identical in weight and length but Eloise’s head was bigger!

Happy 6 weeks Daphne!

M

This post contains affiliate links.

* I am not a huge consignment store shopper unless it comes to baby gear. We never had a swing with Eloise, but since Daphne was fussy in the evenings for the first few weeks we thought one might be helpful. Our philosophy about most baby/kids’ gear is to wait to get it until you need it. And consignment stores are a great place to find a really good deal on gently used gear (that you will use for a couple of months, max!). You can spend so. much. money on baby gear and it feels like such a waste! If you are local to Seattle, my favorite consignment shop is Childish Things.

project baby #2 {daphne’s birth story}

{warning: this is likely an overly long post for a lot of readers, but I wanted to share details for those who have asked & also to have a record to share with daphne one day. feel free to skip down to the pictures, or skip this post completely!}

As most of you know, I pretty much fell off the map as I neared my due date. In fact, I only blogged up to week 37!  Once I hit 38 and 39 weeks, I kept telling Aaron that I should do my weekly photo, but by 40 weeks I was over it! This is actually the final picture I took of me and the bump, on February 24th, 4 days before I went into labor. You can see I stopped wearing pants (dresses were a godsend even though it was still really cold outside!) and my toiletries and make-up were all packed up and ready to be tossed into the hospital bag (well bags, plural, because I just kept adding things!).

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Physically, those last three weeks, I felt great! I was tired, but I was actually sleeping really well, my heartburn had subsided, the baby was not into my ribs, I had zero swelling, and I didn’t have any (noticeable) early labor symptoms. BUT, mentally and emotionally I was so drained and so ready to be done. I felt like I might go into labor at any moment from February 15th on (that’s the day I had my mani/pedi so I was sure that would do it!) and so I was completely exhausted and anxious by the time my parents came into town on February 20th. We were all worried that they wouldn’t make it in time, but alas, we waited. And waited. And my dad actually extended his trip a few days, but ended up getting on a plane about 5 hours before I had my first labor contraction!

That last week was difficult for me because I felt like I couldn’t plan anything. So we would wake up in the morning and since there wasn’t a baby, we would maybe plan a short outing, just in case I went into labor. My due date was definitely the most difficult day for me, and after that, I felt like I could better handle not being in control (which I very obviously wasn’t at that point!) and try to enjoy these last days with my family and with Eloise before Baby Foot arrived. I also stopped all social media at that point, including responding to any and all texts and emails, so sorry if I was ignoring you!

On February 28th I had my 40 week (well, 39 weeks + 6) appointment with my midwife. I remember checking into the front desk and seeing the on-call board: Sarah was the on-call midwife (my favorite one since she also helped delivery Eloise) and Dr. Foltz was the on-call OB (also my favorite since she was my original OB years and years ago); I made a mental note that it would be a great day to have this baby since those are exactly the providers I would have wanted if I had my choice! It wasn’t until after Daphne was born that I actually made that connection… I think that is what I needed to get things started!

Anyways, my check-up went well with my weight and blood pressure, and baby’s heartbeat. At that point Sarah went ahead and checked to see if and how much I was dilated and I was almost 4 cm! I was really surprised since it didn’t feel like I was having early laboring at all, but clearly all that tightening in my belly (like Braxton Hicks) was having an impact. Since I my body was already dilating on it’s own, it made sense to have my membranes swept (which only is effective if you are already close to baby time, like within 48 hours!). It was so, so uncomfortable (and borderline painful!) and I was honestly uncomfortable for the remainder of the day (cramping mostly). Since I was at 41 weeks, my midwife also had me schedule an ultrasound for the end of the week as well as a non-stress test (to monitor baby’s heartbeat) which are both standard for post-due date cases. Apparently after 42 weeks the placenta stops working as efficiently so close monitoring of mama and baby are required as well as discussion about intervention.

We took it easy for the rest of the day and said good-bye to my dad. By that evening I was really feeling crampy, so I called it a night early to try to get some rest. I got ready for bed and was lying down for just a bit when I had my first (real) labor contraction. I noted the time – it was 9 pm – and tried to go to sleep. Well, that was wishful thinking because the contractions kept coming and seemed to be fairly regular. At 9:42 I called Aaron, who was upstairs watching TV with my mom, to tell him to come down and time my contractions. Within 30 minutes, my contractions were becoming regular (4 to 5 minutes apart and a minute long) and Aaron called our doula, Jennie, to give her a head’s up and have her start making her way to our house. Then Aaron called the doctor’s office to give Sarah, the midwife, an update and they agreed that we would wait for Jennie to get to the house before making any further decisions.

At 10:50 pm, Jennie arrived at our house and I was still downstairs in our bed laboring on my side (with my pregnancy pillow, thank goodness!). My contractions were still consistent, and, spoiler alert, never stopped. Jennie talked me thru my next few contractions, and I decided I was ready to head to the hospital. At that point, the last thing I wanted to do was get in the car because having contractions in the car is the worst, but I also knew that I didn’t want to have a homebirth, so there really wasn’t any choice. Aaron called Sarah back to let her know we were headed to the hospital and that we would meet her there.

We pack up our last-minute stuff (and by we I mean Aaron), and say good-bye to my mom, and get in the car around 11:30. I had a number (like 4 or 5) of contractions in the car, but luckily since it was so late, there was no traffic (even on I-5) so we made it to the hospital pretty quickly! Aaron pulled into the hospital’s parking garage at 11:40 pm. After parking, I had a few contractions on the way into the hospital, but luckily we had Jennie with us and she was able to help me as Aaron navigated us up the elevator, thru the security desk (you don’t need to show ID if you are in labor!), and up to L&D triage. My contractions were getting stronger and much more intense. At 11:50 I was checked in and at 11:55, the nurse checked and I was 7 cm dilated. I remember looking at Jennie and telling her that I needed a break. I also remember making a reference to wanting something to help with the intensity (an epidural), but no one even acknowledged it! Not because they didn’t care, but it was WAY too late by then! And really, I wanted an un-medicated labor, but I probably would have given anything to have just a minute of rest at that point! The nurses wheeled the triage bed directly to the L&D suite.

At midnight my labor was strong and from the time I got onto the triage bed, I kept my eyes closed. That was the only way I could handle the intensity of my labor. The nurses wanted me to move from the triage bed (stretcher) to the actual hospital bed, but I refused. I remember them telling me I would be way more comfortable and then I wouldn’t have to move after the baby was born, but there was seriously no way that was going to happen. I also remember seeing Sarah at this point with her scrub cap on and ready to deliver. And almost immediately upon entering our hospital room, I felt like I needed to push.

At 12:05 am, Sarah checks and I am fully dilated. She gave me the green light to start pushing even though my bag of waters was still fully intact. Once the baby started crowning, everyone could see that baby’s hair floating in the amniotic sac, which was apparently really cool. (Rarely babies are born completely in the amniotic sac, called in the caul, and it is seen as a sign of good luck!) After the baby’s head is born (and the amniotic sack breaks on it’s own), her shoulder gets stuck below my pubic bone (shoulder dystocia). I was too focused on pushing (and the pain/intensity) to really realize the severity of the situation, but Aaron has told me he was terrified. I remember hearing someone (it was Sarah) call “SHOULDER!” and then being turned onto my back by the L&D nurse (as I was pushing on my right side at the time) which was horribly, horribly painful! Apparently this was to get back-up in case the baby couldn’t turn and pass under the bone, and a physician and NICU team arrived immediately. There is a series of maneuvers that are used in this (rare) situation, and luckily, Sarah was able to get the baby turned and I was able to continue with a safe and healthy delivery in about 90 seconds. Baby Foot Lower was born at 12:19 am on March 1st!*

Despite the slight complication at the end, Baby’s APGAR scores were high (7s I think) and no visit to the NICU was necessary. And while technically the Baby’s gender was a surprise, I wasn’t at all surprised to hear it was a girl! Baby remained unnamed for at least a few hours (we were already in the post-partum room) as Aaron and I weren’t decided on a name.** We each had a name that we liked; mine was Margot and Aaron’s was Daphne. I will let you guess who won!

We were able to skin-to-skin almost right away (me and Aaron both) and by 12:50 am Baby was nursing for the first time. I remember the moment I first held Daphne that it felt so strange, like I was cheating on Eloise. It was such a weird feeling because when Eloise was born, at that moment, I was holding the little one that made me a mama, but with this second baby, I was already a mama… she felt like a stranger for just a moment! (I have heard other second-time mamas have felt the same way!)

So even though she made us wait (and wait) until March to be born, once she decided, she was here in a hurry: just over 3 hours in all.

Welcome to the world Daphne Lucille! I wouldn’t have been able to have done any of this without Aaron, Jennie, Sarah, and all of the L&D staff, and my mom who stayed with Eloise. Plus, we had so much support from friends and family. We really are so blessed!

M

And here’s Eloise’s birth story if you are interested!

*March 1st is also Aaron’s dad’s birthday, so Daphne shares the day with her Papaw.
**Many of you have asked what our boy’s name would have been, and since the likelihood of us having a third child is basically nil at this point, we have been sharing it (though we reserve the right to it if we ever do have a boy!): Fitzgerald Benjamin. Fitz as a nickname. Benjamin is a family name on both sides: Aaron’s oldest brother, and the middle name of my dad, brother, and grandfather.
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daphne {week 5}

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{letterboard: Letter Folk (Poet) // top: crewcuts (old) // pants: June & January}

{week 5} Just a few things to update on this week following Daphne’s first monthly update. We just went to the doctor’s office for her 4 week check-up and here are her stats:

Weight: 9 lbs 12 oz (50th percentile)

Length: 22 in (75th percentile)

Head: 37.6 cm (50th percentile)

In comparison to Eloise, these girls are basically the same size in terms of weight after the first month which is sort of surprising given the fact that Eloise was significantly smaller when she was born! I remember E hitting the growth curve fast and hard from the get-go and it doesn’t feel like Daphne has been that way. Much more slow and steady for this little one! I haven’t done a true comparison of the girls’ stats, but will dig out Eloise’s old records to see – I am so curious!

I mentioned a few weeks ago that it looked like Daphne may be getting some baby acne. She has a few spots here and there, but mostly her skin has stayed clear. She does still have really dry and flaky skin though, and may have a tiny bit of cradle cap (not an actual diagnosis but just my own hunch) on her scalp near her hairline. I am hoping she doesn’t get cradle cap (for real) since I have heard it is such a pain to manage, even though it is completely harmless and really common.

Daphne’s eyebrows are starting to come in and get darker. She is definitely sporting the light brows and dark hair, though it is still adorable! There is still a lot of fine hair all over Daphne’s back, forehead, arms, and tops of her ears which I know will go away over time. We keep teasing her that she is the hairiest person in our family, since both Aaron and I have very little body hair!

We are still happy with our diapering situation, though we may be moving to just disposables for a while. We were using the g-diapers with disposable inserts (which we really like and fit Daphne really well) but continuing to use the disposable inserts doesn’t feel like we are really doing anything different than using a regular disposable. We have the option of using a cloth insert instead, but since we didn’t use this system with Eloise, we would have to buy the inserts, and since these particular g diapers only go up to 12 pounds, it doesn’t seem worth it. At least for now. If Daphne is slow on the growth curve, maybe we will re-think the decision, but I feel like we blinked and Eloise was 10+ pounds! And we also have the Lil Joeys all-in-one cloth diapers which I absolutely love, but Daphne’s little chicken legs are too small and she just leaks all the time… I hope she can chunk out in her legs before her waist is too big for these diapers. That is sort of the way it goes with cloth, some diapers work well and others don’t depending on the kid. I am keeping my fingers crossed that Daphne will fit well into the BumGenius diapers that we used with Eloise!

And just as a sidenote mostly for historical value, Daphne’s Nubbawub pacifier (which is a penguin) has officially been named Graham. I asked Eloise what we should call it when we first got it (she LOVES to name things and I wanted to make sure she felt included) and she said “Grammie!” Well, that might be confusing since we call my mom Grammie (or Mimi), so we shortened it to Graham.

Happy 5 weeks Daphne!

M

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