23 Things: The Newborn Edition

Here is Calvin's first official numbered-list-of-things-about-you-based-on-the-day-of-the-month-you-were-born blog post. Whew. Here goes:

1) Your skin should be in a Dove commercial. While I could try to describe the softness, it's just impossible to put words to the feeling I get when I kiss your cheeks. Same goes for that new baby smell. Well, most of the time.

2) You are a noisy sleeper. Dad and I call them squirrel, goat and gremlin noises, but whatever they are they make it hard for anyone but you to get rest.

3) Speaking of sleep, what is that? Since you were born at 10:45 at night, I haven't slept more than 2.5 hours in a row. And since you prefer chest to chest naps, I think it may be awhile before that changes.

4) You are my best eater yet. Faith was lazy and sleepy. Gabby was much better but struggled to gain weight. You are always up for a meal and have gained weight steadily. At your 2 week checkup, you weighed 8 pounds almost 10 ounces. No Lindquist baby has ever been in the 40th percentile at their two-week checkup. Congrats on breaking ground.

5) They say to watch out for boys as they'll pee on you. They don't tell you to make sure you don't let your baby pee on himself! This has happened to many times to count, unfortunately, so sorry if you have permanent ear damage, but at least you're hydrated, right?

6) You have some luck on the Irish with your red hair. While I would love for it to stick around, I'm thinking you'll be a blondie, maybe with some curl. And I sure hope those eyes stay blue!

7) Also, no pressure, but we kind of need you to be left-handed to carry on the family tradition. Maternal great-grandfather, grandmother, mother, and you're our last hope. Sounds like a potential Star Wars movie. The Last Lefty.

8) I could hold you all day. Whenever you've cried, there hasn't been one time that a snuggle and, let's be honest, some breastmilk from the tap haven't calmed you down.

9) I wasn't sure what it would be like to be home alone during maternity leave as your dad has been with me in the past. That said, I am enjoying hogging you all to myself, going on walks where I constantly worry if you're too hot or too cold, getting 6 inches from your face and doing everything I can to get you to smile, and just staring at you -- wow, I sound like a stalker.

10) While I'm in love with your name and feel like it was the right fit for you, we have struggled to call you by it. Maybe it's the sleep deprivation, but Dad has called you Charlie, grandma has called you Gavin, I seem to think your middle name should be James, Gabby wanted you to be called Leo, and we received a card recently that said, "Welcome baby Clayton." I wouldn't take it personally. No one remembers the second child's name, and the third...well, get ready for a whole lot of hey you.

11) Now that you can take baths in the tub, it's nice to know you hate them. P.S. I'm moving as fast as I can!

12) Everyone is smitten with you, but especially your oldest sister. She always wants to see "Calvin eyes" and has cried twice because she either couldn't hold you before school or you weren't there when she was picked up from school. Considering you have taken a great deal of attention away from her, this is impressive. I am so grateful for her willingness to help keep you company while I shower, eat, or leave the room for .2 seconds.

13) Gabby is also quite a helper. She wants to make sure you have your binky in your mouth at all times and hold your hand whenever possible. She's in charge of telling us if you're awake or asleep in the car and takes her job very seriously. She's also proud to share the day of her birth -- the 23rd -- with you as 2nd born kids are known to do.

14) It is amazing to me how you can sleep through the girls playing a very rowdy game of hide and seek, yet when I use my ninja-like moves in the middle of the night to leave your bedroom and end up stepping on a creaky floorboard it wakes you up.

15) You are such a little MAN! I swear you burp while you're eating and have more gas than our entire family combined. Somehow it's still super cute, though that may change as you get older!

16) So far, I haven't gotten a smile out of you, but don't think I'm not working on my material. I read it typically happens around 5-7 weeks so get ready for corny mom jokes. Update! You've smiled. It's as gratifying as I thought it would be!

17) You were born with a tongue tie, but thankfully it hasn't affected your ability to nurse or gain weight. I am happy about that as I didn't want you to undergo another procedure, especially after being poked three times to check for jaundice.

18) Current nicknames include: CalCal (Faith) CalPal (me) and Calvy (which really makes no sense, grandma). I like the idea of just calling you Cal, but we'll see what nickname sticks.

19) You don't spit up much, but you have thrown up a couple times, which is so sad for me, and I'm sure you. You saved one of your power pukes for your great grandma. Hopefully she's not afraid to hold you in the future.

20) Since you have a wet diaper every other minute, we don't even bother taking you to the changing table. Instead, Howie has claimed it as his new bed.

21) So so soooooo happy that you take a binky. We are using the Tommee Tippee kind. And the best part is Howie hasn't even tried to chew them up!

22) I was nervous you wouldn't take a bottle since all we've done is breastfeed and just as I was telling your dad that you might not take one right away, you began guzzling it down. Like I said, you're a man who never turns down food.

23) I've been told going from 2 to 3 kids is harder than 0 to 1 or 1 to 2, but I have to disagree, though it's probably too early to tell. Going from any number of kids to having a newborn is a shock to the system, but the benefits far outweigh the sleep deprivation. Just looking at you brings me immense happiness. I'm so grateful you're finally here. Welcome to the family!


To my sweetie belle,

(I'm not usually the type to call anyone "sweetie belle." After all, I am from Iowa, not Texas, but you bring out the softy in me. That's what a baby girl will do.)

Happy 4th Birthday!
On the morning of May 23rd, as we were driving to preschool with chocolate chip mini muffins for all of your friends, out of the blue from the backseat you said, "I don't feel like I'm four."

Now if that isn't the cutest thing to say I don't know what is, but you don't like to be called cute so I couldn't say that. However I could tell you'd been waiting to feel different from the moment you woke up and when it didn't happen, you were disappointed and confused. Well, sweetheart, I don't feel like I'm 34 either. I know what you're going through waiting for your birthday to make you feel older, but it usually never does. It's in the little moments that you really, truly grow up. We've experienced many of them this year...from you reading a billboard that says "zoo," making besties in Penelope, Maisie and Decker at preschool, your legs hanging over the carseat longer than I remember the day before...they all add up. And it's those snapshots that remind me you are getting older, so don't worry, it's happening. Far faster than I'd like.

But back to your birthday. At home you had a princess-themed party.

And at school your teachers and friends sang to you at exactly 9:43 a.m., the time you were born, which made me smile to know that you were showered with love by them. Your teachers Miss Jamie and Miss Justice care about you so much, and for good reason.

(Sidenote: while this blog seems like I am bragging to others since you can't quite read...and we haven't shared the wi-fi password with you yet this letter is truly for you so I'm not holding back on how wonderful you are, with a few "truths" sprinkled in.)

Your teachers like you because you're a good listener. You have an incredibly long attention span and general curiosity about life. Just try sitting next to you on movie night. 20 questions...just in the first five minutes. I've been accused of asking too many questions too, so I find it endearing and think you may end up a journalist, though you are firm in that you simply want to be "a mom." You'll make a great one, and your children will appreciate your sense of humor, though hopefully by then you've moved on from the three knock-knock jokes you know currently. #Interruptingcow

With more time to yourselves since Calvin came along, you and your sister fight constantly, and because she's bigger and stronger than you, you fight back with high-pitched screams, yelling her name and middle initial (FAITHY J!), and phrases such as "I don't like you anymore, "or "I'm telling, mom." However, big sis is also the only one who can make you belly laugh the hardest. Can't live with her, can't live without her.

Another thing I love about you is your love for music. Now that we have Sirius XM in the car, we listen to the top 40 hits on repeat. You can name most songs in approximately three notes and Imagine Dragons "Believer" is your favorite, followed closely by Ed Sheeran's "Castle on the Hill." When I see you singing the words in the review mirror while you gaze out the window, it stops me cold. You're beautiful.

With Calvin being a newborn and you turning four all at once, I find I have more patience with his sleeplessness and need to nurse constantly, all because it seems as though we were just there with you.

One more year and you're going off to Kindergarten. While Faith never looked back, I think you and me will have a harder time. You are my mommy's girl, though watching you ride on your dad's shoulders while you pet his head would say otherwise. I feel like I baby you sometimes, and maybe take your side more often than not during those sibling rivalries because you'll always be my baby girl. (By the way, don't let Faith read this lest she be vindicated.)

We were shopping at K-Mart the other day when you asked if you could have some candy out of the machine. I of course said no, since you didn't need it and I had no change, but then I looked at the floor and there was a shiny quarter just waiting to be found. I told you it was your lucky day and then let you purchase some likely-expired, rock hard Skittles. You were so excited and told everyone who would listen about your "lucky day." It's the little things that kids seem to remember most. Remember that when you're a mom.

I've never met anyone who loves the water more than you. At the splash pad, you run with abandon. Even when the water is frigid and you're shivering, you won't admit to being cold because it would mean having to sit on your towel. My hope is that your zest for the water is every indication of your zest for life. Though I wish you had a zest for mornings, you are more of a night owl. You proved that when you stayed up until 11 o'clock on Memorial Day weekend and had more energy than the rest of the family combined.

And I'm not sure which you love more: cake pops or screen time. I wish I could say you like to read the encyclopedia or something, but you prefer a good episode of PJ Masks (this cartoon is terrible by the way -- really, go back and watch it when you're older). You constantly ask to play on my phone and have Snapchatted more of my friends than I have simply because I still haven't fully figured out how to use the app. I have more pictures and 4-second videos taken by you on my phone than there's room for on the cloud, but that's for another post.

Though you're small in stature, you have one big personality. And it's mom and dad's pleasure to watch you grow. Happy birthday, babe! Here's to never feeling, or acting, your age.