Friday, November 16, 2007

Get well message for Kim

Olivia wants to send out a big, hearty get well message to her friend Kim Meyer. Although Olivia hasn't met Kim yet (she was still in the womb at Kim's last holiday party), she has enjoyed Kim's awesome gingerbread cookies and is looking forward to drooling on some more cookies next year. Get well Kim!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Below is a picture of a little butterfly that was on our front porch. We caught her and decided to keep her. But she sure does eat a lot for a butterfly.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


Olivia has a toy aquarium attached to her crib that lights up and makes bubble noises while plastic fish swim in front of her eyes. She loves this aquarium and we turn it on for her every night. Occasionaly she would accidentally kick the power button with her feet but she hadn't put 2 + 2 together and figured that kicking the button makes the aquarium turn on or off. In the mornings Chris and I would listen for her to wake up; usually we heard babbling or sometimes crying. But twice this week we have heard her aquarium's bubble noises through the baby monitor. Is she intentionally turning it on or is it still a happy accident?

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Olivia said "da" last night but she hasn't repeated it yet. Chris wants her to say "mama" before "dada" but I think "dada" will be first.

And, by the way, she thinks the llamas and goats are very funny and she's not afraid of the honking geese anymore. Take that, geese!

Thursday, October 04, 2007


We gave Olivia a taste (don't worry - we just touched the items to her tongue) of some fruit to give her something to look forward to. After all, four months of stinky formula can't be very exciting. Strawberries and oranges resulted in unpleasant expressions and attempts to get the offending taste off her tongue. Apples were well-received, but Bananas, well Bananas were a Big Hit! After one taste, Olivia extended both of her dimply-knuckled hands, latched onto my hand which was holding the banana and lunged with mouth wide open onto the morsel. I showed Chris her reaction and in no time he had her licking the banana like an insect, with her tongue extending beyond her lips and onto the drool-covered tidbit.

Her four-month check-up is tomorrow and hopefully the doctor will give her the go-ahead to start on rice and then pureed bananas!
Roly Poly, Sucking Toes and Mmm Mmm Love that Thumb

There are so many things to report about Olivia that I have to break it into sections!
Roly Poly
Olivia had a burst of energy last night and stayed awake and in a good mood until 10:00. At that time I was ready to crash, so we moved to our bed to see if laying down with Olivia would get her to calm down and fall asleep. She's been rolling onto her side since her first week of life but hadn't quite made it all the way over to her tummy until last night. And when she did end up on her tummy she was "mad as a hornet" as our pediatrician would say. She hates being on her stomach and immediately started a mini meltdown so we put her on her back again. We'll try the stomach to back rollover another day!

Sucking Toes
Olivia finally managed to get her foot to her face and her toes into her mouth. It's hard work for a baby! Half the time her toes end up in her nose or she gets her heel to her mouth. And then when she gets the toes in she gets tired from wrestling her leg and it escapes from her. This leads to...

Mmm Mmm Love that Thumb
When her feet escape her grasp and she doesn't have the patience or strength to get her toes back into her mouth she settles for her thumb. A friend told me that babies will "discover" their thumb at about 4 months. Olivia turned 4 mos on Saturday and discovered her thumb last night. She had sucked on it briefly in the past but last night she left it in her mouth for several minutes and made plently of smacking noises. She hasn't quite got the technique down; she keeps her palm open and her fingers spread across her nose and eyes which is really adorable! I'm sure she'll get the technique figured out soon!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Dogs are FUNNY!

Many people have asked how the dogs and Olivia are getting along. The dogs and Olivia have a great relationship that has been limited to long baby face to dog face stares with no expression on the baby face to indicate what she thought. Or the occasional "drive-by-licking" by Aspen that causes Olivia to make a sour face.

Well, this Sunday Olivia decided that the dogs are FUNNY! She watched all 3 dogs run in and out the back door and she laughed, laughed, laughed. Furthermore we noticed that she started getting very excited whenever Chris called Aspen's name. So we tested the theory that she knows to expect Aspen when Chris says her name and yep, Olivia is one smart girl!

I think she will be a dog person like Mommy and Daddy.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Llamas, and goats and geese, oh my! Oh, how they made Livy cry.

We took Olivia to her personal petting zoo down the street. Yes, we have a llama, many goats, peacocks and geese as neighbors. You would think we live in the country, but no, that's just eclectic south Austin. So anyway, we went on our evening walk around the 'hood and for the first time, Olivia was awake as we passed the petting zoo. Chris and I stood (I had Olivia in the front pack carrier) patiently waiting for the animals to make their way over to the fence from their dinner. The goats and the llama were nice and quiet but the geese honked as they got closer. They were very loud and Olivia got very excited and started to cry. It was a different cry than I had ever heard her make before. So her first trip to the zoo wasn't a success; hopefully next time the geese won't upset her too much.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Olivia laughed last night and it was a memorable event because it was the first time we could get her to do it repeatedly. She has laughed in the past but we couldn't get her to do it on a regular basis.

She was laying on our bed while Chris was getting ready for a walk around the lake and I was tickling her tummy when she started to laugh. Chris came out of the bathroom with a toothbrush in his mouth and we looked at each other to say "Did she just laugh?". I tickled her again and she laughed again. Of course we laughed with her and continued to tickle her. We had so much fun tickling and laughing for at least 5 minutes. But it must have worn her out because she slept through the whole walk that evening.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Things Livy used to do:
pump her fists when she stretched her arms above her head
coo like a pigeon (agoo was a popular word)
gag like she was choking when we fed her milk
scream during tummy time
take every opportunity to watch the t.v.

Things Livy does now:
squats while standing, using mom or dad to balance her and provide the slightest lift
yells and squeels to express herself
screams during tummy time
takes every opportunity to watch the t.v. (which we try very hard to keep her from doing)

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Poor little Olivia has been suffering from allergies the past week. Chris says that her breathing sounds like coffee percolating and when she babbles it sounds like an espresso machine. That's a pretty accurate description.

Despite her breathing problems and regular sneezing she is a joy to be around. She still greets us with her crooked smile in the mornings. She just gets tired more easily.

Chris talked with a nurse this morning and she recommended that we let Olivia sit in the bathroom while run hot water, use saline drops in her nose and get a cool mist vaporizer. We only need to take her into the office for a visit if she gets a fever or if she loses her appetite. I can't imagine how hard it would be to suck on a bottle and try to breathe through a clogged nose. Poor thing!

On another note, Olivia has been sitting up with a little support from mom and dad. If we get her in the right position, she will use her back strength to stay upright for several seconds. And this gives her the opportunity to play with those ever popular toys, the toes. Also, if we put her stuffed toys in front of her, she reaches out her arms, grabs them and pulls them closer to her for some taste tests.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Olivia went to the dog park for the first time today. We took all three pooches and Olivia enjoyed watching Delta in the car on the way there. I don't think she saw many dogs once we got out of the car though; she slept in her front pack carrier most of the time.

While we were there we met a couple from our birth class. They had their son early in May. We exchanged email addresses and planned to meet soon. The other mom has organized a group of parents who's babies were all born in May.

Now Livy is listening to college football games and the US Open with her daddy. I say 'listen' because we don't let her watch t.v. since the AAP has recommended no television watching for children under two years of age.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Olivia is 3 months old now and she loves to hear her daddy sing and watch him make funny faces. Her latest trick is to act shy by turning her head and burying it into my shoulder when someone new talks to her.
And we've discovered how important her schedule is to her. When she gets out of the routine (usually on the weekend) she gets very fussy. Walks and laying on her changing table are about the only things that will calm her down.
Tonight was unusual; we had to play music, sing to her and bounce on the ball while holding her to get her to calm down and fall asleep. But almost all other nights she is asleep by 9. We usually put her in her crib without fuss and she sleeps until 7 in the morning.
We've discovered some great children's CDs. Two of our favorites are by Putumayo: Sing Along with Putumayo (Old MacDonald, Bushel and a Peck, You Are My Sunshine, Don't Push Me Down) and Dreamland: World Lullabies and Soothing Sounds. Dreamland has some of the most beautiful music I've heard in a long time. And the Sing Along CD is a ton of fun. Olivia will get into the act by cooing and making crazy noises while we hum and sing. I promise to get it on video soon because it is just too cute to miss.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Oliva goes to the beach

Olivia went to Matagorda beach.
The wind overwhelmed her
So she slept.
Supported at the edge of the water,
The "big" waves sloshed up her back
So she fussed (but only a little).
Sand was in her toes, diaper and belly button.
So she slept some more.
Then Olivia went home.
She won't sleep next summer.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Big Smiles and Big Sleep

Olivia started giving us the occasional intentional smile a few weeks ago and now we can get her to smile a lot. She's happiest when she wakes up in the morning. She lies on her changing table and coos and smiles at us while we talk with her and change her diaper. I'm going to try to get this on video because it is just too cute for words.

She's also "talking" a lot more. She will respond to our words with babble and coos. The most common thing she says now is "agu". We still haven't figured out what that means but she usually says it when she is happy.

And the best news is...she's sleeping through the night (well, most nights anyway). I'd say she sleeps anywhere from 7 to 10 hours at night. The first 3-4 nights she did this, Chris and I didn't take advantage of it because we didn't believe it was happening. Now we can pretty much count on it and are able to go to bed earlier. Her "big sleep" is happening just in time for me to go back to work in about 1 1/2 weeks. Yay!!

Olivia is also starting to use her arms and hands a little bit. Several times when Chris and I were putting the bottle to her mouth, she put her hands and arms on the bottle and moved it towards her mouth. But she doesn't do this consistently yet.

Olivia has a voracious appetite now and if we don't catch her early hunger signals she will erupt in cries a few minutes later. She definitely keeps us on our toes.

Also, Olivia attended her first party this weekend. My office had a party and Chris and I took her because everyone was anxious to meet her. Well, of course she was a big hit. Several people held her and played with her and she didn't fuss a bit. My boss said that if he stopped moving up and down and didn't make eye contact with her every 30 seconds that she would squawk to get his attention. She definitely had him wrapped around her little finger!

On a mommy note: Unfortunately I've had to give up breast feeding. I didn't have a choice really. It was due in part to two things, repeated breast infections and low milk supply.

About 5% of breast feeding women will get a breast infection and it usually clears up pretty quickly with antibiotics. These women will usually get the infection in one breast only. Well, I got two breast infections each in both breasts. And I had to take two different antibiotics because the infections just lingered on and on.

If I had a good milk supply, I probably could have made it through the infections without much of a problem, but my milk dried up very quickly after the second infection because there just wasn't much to begin with. This was hard on me emotionally because I felt that I couldn't provide for my baby the way I had always planned to do. Of course Olivia's thriving on formula and she's received the benefits of breastmilk for 7 weeks so I am happy about that. But it just breaks my heart when she moves her head toward my breast and roots around and all I can do is wait for the bottle to warm up.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Wow! I can't believe it's been 5 weeks already. Olivia is more alert now. Just last week she started looking at the mobile attached to her swing for long periods of time. She really enjoys the Winnie the Pooh mobile in her crib and will watch it for ten minutes at least. And now we get occasional smiles when she sees someone and gets excited. She gave her Grammy a big smile when she saw her last weekend. She also has become a lot more vocal and will coo at her mobile and try to join in on me and Chris' conversations.

I've been reading books to her and playing lots of classical music. Her dad has been giving her lots of play and snuggle time as well as taking at least one night feeding every night (and many more during the day). We have to take shifts and it usually takes us 12 hours to get 8 hours of sleep.

Olivia had a doctor appointment on Tuesday and is in perfect health. She weighed in at 10 lbs and 11 ozs. Yep, she's a big girl. She had to get her first shot for hepatitis B and of course cried, but only for a few minutes. The nurse put a cute little yellow band aid on her thigh.

Olivia's great-grandmother Ginny and cousins Lisa and Jeff came to visit her this week. Lisa held Olivia a lot and Olivia thought it was great. She just loves new people and will stare into their faces for long periods of time.

She's now sleeping in her crib at night; sometimes she will sleep up to 5 or 6 hours. Unfortunately we can't get her to sleep there during the day. She wakes up within minutes of us laying her down. After trying for half the day we usually give in and carry her around in a sling. Then she will sleep a long time.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Olivia is now 2 weeks old. It's been a challenging two weeks! First we were told that she had a "tight frenulum." That's the flap of skin underneath the tongue. It kept her from being able to breast feed efficiently, so her weight went from 8lbs, 10oz to 7 lbs, 3 ozs. We took her to the doctor to get the frenulum clipped, and now the feeding is going well.

A few days later, we noticed that Olivia was inconsolable for 2-4 hours at a time, and nothing seemed to help. After doing research, and talking to the doctor, it was determined that she had a "flaming" case of acid reflux. An antacid was prescribed and that has helped quite a bit. Now, her weight is up to 8 lbs, 8 ozs and the doctor said she's just perfect. We agree. She couldn't be better.

Olivia is 2 weeks old in the photo included. We have more pictures of her: just click on the link "Our photos" on the right.

What an incredible experience! You can have countless numbers of friends and family describe just how much having a child will change your life, but you're never prepared. We got to the hospital at 6:00 am and 12 hours later, we had Olivia Lauren Kirk. The labor was difficult, especially before the epidural. Trace had to push for 2 hours because Olivia was not in the proper position. Finally at 6:04 pm, she was born, 8 lbs, 10 oz and 20 1/2 inches.
Olivia was great in the hospital. She could sleep for 5 to 6 hours at a time during the night. She's one day old in the picture included.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Olivia Lauren was born on May 29, 2007 at 6:04 p.m.; weight: 8 lbs 10 oz; length: 20.5 inches. Mommy and baby are doing fine.

Olivia Lauren Kirk

(posted by guest blogger Stan Taylor)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Olivia's cat is still waiting...okay, right, he's a cat. He's probably already thinking of new hiding places.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

My doctor's office and the hospital both called to say that we will be safe to check into the hospital and deliver Olivia early Tuesday morning. No other health care providers at the hospital have symptoms and they have been given vaccines and antibiotics as a precautionary measure.

Chris and I went for a long walk through our neighborhood tonight but no contractions. It was nice cool weather and it sprinkled just a little. We enjoyed thinking about strolling Olivia through the neighborhood this time next week.
A nurse at our hospital tested positive for whooping cough. She worked in the Labor and Delivery unit and possibly exposed newborns to the disease from May 5th to May 25th. Needless to say Chris and I are now both thankful that Olivia was not born on time (or even a few days late). Probably half of our birth class-mates delivered during this time frame. Whooping cough is not fatal in adults but it is potentially fatal for infants.

Chris has already called the hospital hotline and our doctor's office hotline to find out if the other nurses and doctors have been tested and what measures the hospital staff has taken to ensure future newborns' safety. We will update the blog with any information we get.

Olivia's babydoll and teddy bear are still waiting...

Friday, May 25, 2007

On Wednesday, I was very frustrated to hear that my chances for being induced on Thursday were very small. Even more frustrating was the news from the nurse that I couldn't get in to see my doctor until the following Thursday. I couldn't stand the thought of waiting over a week to get induced. I begged the nurse to get me in to the doctor's office earlier but she said the holiday was making that impossible. I just couldn't believe that my doctor would allow me to go that long considering how miserable I am.
Luckily I got an early phone call from the doctor yesterday morning saying that she had scheduled me for induction on Tuesday. I was so relieved! I just knew she wouldn't make me wait until the end of next week. So 5:30 am on Tuesday the 29th, Chris and I will be driving to the hospital (assuming that I won't go into labor before then).