Mia's First Year

Jenn and I have a baby girl! Her name is Mia Magdalena Umali, and she was born Wednesday, March 28, 2001. This is our first baby. And this blog will be a daily record of my thoughts during her first year growing up with us.

This page only shows one week's entries. To see older entries, access the archives.

I also have plenty of pictures of Mia.

Rick's Ramblings BLOG is still being updated.

More Rick Umali web sites at:

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Email: rickumali@gmail.com

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Saturday, April 28, 2001

Tonight, my wife somehow got Mia to take a pacifier. I was able to repeat this later in the evening.

Jenn and I were leaning towards not introducing a pacifier to Mia when she was born. After about 24 hours of Mia crying, we began to change our minds. Mia really needed to suck on something just to soothe herself. What have we used to soothe Mia? Our pinky fingers. We found that Mia really latched on well to our fingers, and sucking on our pinkies helped calm herself down.

One nurse suggested that we use a pacifier for the first few months, and once Mia learned to hold things, we should take the pacifier away (around six months). This sounded reasonable to us. Unfortunately, we couldn't get Mia to take a pacifier the first few times.

After our recent success with bottle (ba ba) feeding, Jenn tried the pacifier (binky) again, and this time Mia took to it like a champ. We used the Mini Mam pacifier from Sassy baby products. I was able to locate a good review for this product on Epinions.com.

There's plenty of stuff to read about a baby sucking on thumbs versus baby sucking on pacifiers. In fact, you could classify parents as pro-pacifier or anti-pacifier. I know most of the things that we have to worry with thumb sucking are many years out, and they largely revolve around dental concerns.

For now, Mia knows how to use a pacifier, and Mom and Dad can have our hands back. And if we take the pacifier away at her six month birthday, she shouldn't miss it.
posted by Rick Umali 11:56 PM

Friday, April 27, 2001

I fed Mia today. Twice!

Jenn has been breast feeding Mia. After a shaky start trying to learn how to breast feed, Jenn is now quite used to this. From everything that I've read, breast feeding is the best thing for an infant. Today, we did the next best thing.

In the morning, Jenn deployed the Medela DoubleEase Breast Pump and extracted a few ounces of her breast milk. Since Mia has flat out refused pacifiers so far, I was scared that she wouldn't take to the bottle, but after a moment's hesitation, Mia suckled away, drinking the contents of the first bottle.

Jenn watched as I fed Mia the first time. Jenn then left me 2.5 oz. of breast milk for an afternoon feeding. While Jenn was napping, I was able to feed Mia. It was a wonderful feeling! I felt Mia's watchful eye as she was drinking the milk, as if she was saying "About time you started feeding me." I anticipate being part of the late night feeding schedule soon.
posted by Rick Umali 10:47 PM

Wednesday, April 25, 2001

When Mia's in her crib, and Jenn and I are still up, one of us (most likely myself) carries the baby monitor. We're using a monitor made from The First Years. I read an article about how sleeping babies should hear parental sleeping noises, so manufacturers should build monitors that are two-way. If I had one of those now, Mia would hear me typing, while I could hear her sleeping.

Instead, all I hear is Mia sleeping. Or, to put it more accurately, I hear the 'quiet' of Mia sleeping. Unlike myself, a classic snorer, Mia's sleep is largely quiet. (I have to turn the monitor all the way to nine to hear her faint breathing.) Thankfully, she punctuates her sleep with squeeks and shifting, all of which is transmitted to me via the monitor.

I do find myself sneaking in to see her whenever the monitor is too quiet. I tip-toe into the room, with my thumb over the light of a small flashlight. Then I point the flashlight to the ceiling, and slowly lift the thumb covering the light. The light on the ceiling produces enough of a glow for me to see Mia's chest rising up and down with breathing. Sometimes I'll see her twitch. All is well.
posted by Rick Umali 10:26 PM

Tuesday, April 24, 2001

Mia met my parents yesterday. My parents stayed overnight, and left this morning. My mother never stopped holding Mia. :-)

Mia is the first grand-child of my parents and my wife Jenn's parents. Mia also becomes a neice to three new uncles (my two brothers, and Jenn's older brother, Mike).
posted by Rick Umali 10:43 PM

Sunday, April 22, 2001

I took a walk with little Mia to the ice cream stand on Summer Street. I used the BabyBjörn. This was my first extended walk with her.

Mia was crying her eyes out when I strapped her into the carrier. But the moment I stepped outside, and began walking, she instantly stopped. The day was quite warm, and Jenn fitted a colorful hat on her. After reaching the ice scream stand, it was pretty clear that my walking had rocked her to sleep.

I walked to a few local open houses (a big day for selling real estate on Brand Street, in Arlington, MA). One person confirmed that the white noise from the wind, and the walking, often combine to lull an infant to sleep. I like to think the warm summer-like day had something to do with it as well.
posted by Rick Umali 11:41 PM

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