Ella is five days old today and we’ve had a busy time getting used to our new lives together and meeting lots of special people in her life. She came home from the hospital on Monday with a clean bill of health and breast-feeding quite well. We had Will the vicar and his wife Becca drop in for a visit Monday afternoon while Sandy and Richard were waiting at the airport to pick up Katharine (Janet’s sister).
When Sandy and Richard got back there was a huge surprise with them – not just Katharine but also Janet’s Aunt Eenie. We had never expected Eenie to make it over here so it was very exciting and wonderful to have the whole Brisbane Dalzell clan over here at once. It’s a very full house now but everyone has been jumping in to help with cooking, cleaning, groceries and all the other jobs that need doing so that Janet and I have time to settle in with Ella and can grab some extra sleep.
We seem to be adapting to parenthood pretty well – Adrian hit a milestone as a Dad when he celebrated a big poo (it had been a while since the last one – and just to be clear, it was Ella doing the pooing) and Baby’s first big vomit (since it meant she was getting plenty of milk – at least temporarily). Janet is doing a fantastic job with breast-feeding and is a natural Mum. We gave Ella her first bath at home on Tuesday night which while a little awkward went well and didn’t even involve much screaming on Ella’s part (or ours).
The first couple of nights with Ella at home were fairly tough as she didn’t want to sleep in her crib and was feeding every hour or two so Adrian and Janet wound up spending a lot of time either awake feeding or awake with Ella sleeping on their chests. At one point Janet even climbed into bed with Sandy and Richard just to get some sleep while Adrian settled Ella. At another point Janet took Ella into the lounge where Katharine was sleeping so Adrian could get some rest (instead of Katharine most likely). The last couple of nights have been much better though with Ella sleeping for 3-4 hours at a time and spending most of that in the crib. Combined with an afternoon nap we’re doing quite well on the sleep front really. Here’s hoping it continues.
We’ve also had visits from Wanda and Alan (Ella’s Godparents) and their daughter Nicole and the neighbours Pat, Elizabeth and Bill. Bill even bought Ella a Lindt bunny on the basis that “she has a tongue, she can lick it”. We’ve received quite a few lovely cards and presents as well. Paul and Michelle sent over a bunch of flowers and Adrian’s new job even had some delivered which was a nice surprise.
On Wednesday we ventured out with the pram as we all took Ella for a walk up to the hotel up the road where Eenie is staying (given that every room is already full of sleeping people here). Ella seemed to enjoy the ride in the pram and quickly fell asleep. Then on Thursday we headed into the town center and tried out the baby carrier which was a great success as well. Ella loves being held on people’s chests so the baby carrier is a great fit for her and she was no trouble as we went around town.
Ella is still learning that it’s ok to lie on the floor rather than be cuddled all the time but we’ve still made good use of her lambskin rug, her big Koala (to remind her she’s an Aussie), her bouncer and today we pulled out the fancy play mat from Fran as well. She enjoys all of them for short periods at the moment but will probably become more comfortable with it over time. The weather is quite warm here at the moment so it’s good for her to be able to get away from our body heat and cool down a bit. I think the Aussie in her is making her cope with the heat much better than the mid-wife seems to expect.
If you haven’t checked the site recently we’ve found time to put up some more photos so check back occasionally since we usually don’t have a chance to add a post every time we add new photos. For those who want a copy of them, I’ve now put up a zip file of the full resolution images that we’ve posted so far as well. Sandy and Richard also manage to post quite a few photos on their site so check in there as well.
Finally, I’ve managed to piece together a few of the videos we’ve taken so you can see a bit more of Ella:
And a little bit more fun – until recently we’ve had to make sure Ella feeds at least every 5 hours (until her poo becomes bright yellow to show she’s getting enough milk) so last night we needed to wake her up from a very deep sleep for a feed: