Thursday, February 15, 2018

One month old (and giveaway winner announced)

Baby Peter is one month old today. He is a very mellow, easy baby, and already on a very predictable eating/sleeping/awake pattern. One of his nap times coincides with that of the other little kids, which is very considerate and sweet of him. :) His favorite sibling so far seems to be Becca - she can keep him happy when nobody else can on those occasions when I am tied up and cannot tend to him right away.

Peter was born at 8 lbs 1 oz. At his lowest, he got down to 7 lbs 5.5 oz, which was still above the acceptable threshold of 10% of body weight lost in breastfed newborns. He weighed in at 9 lbs 1 oz yesterday, which is an excellent rate of weight gain. My milk supply with him is really good, thanks to him not having a tongue tie like most his siblings had.

Peter and I were off to a bit of a rough start after his easy birth. When Peter was just one week old, he caught the cold that had been going around the family. My husband had it right around the time Peter was born, then my mother-in-law, Sue (who had come out to help after the birth) caught it and she had to go home after just a couple of days here. Peter and several of the younger kids got it next. The kids all had it pretty mild, but for Peter even a slightly stuffy nose made nursing almost impossible, especially since he was still so little and had not yet had enough time to develop a good latch. Being sick, he was also not very interested in eating, and tired to boot.

We consulted with his pediatrician, my midwife, as well as a lactation consultant. For an entire week, I pumped and finger-fed him. The finger-feeding was to help him develop a good latch, but it took him about an hour to eat the 1.5 to 2 ounces he was to eat every three hours. I pretty much spent that entire second week of his life pumping and fingerfeeding around the clock. I did give him a couple of bottles of pumped milk every day, too, just to make it easier on us both. 

In his third week, with his nose less stuffy and his latch getting better, I was able to transition from finger/bottle feeding to nursing him with a nipple shield, which helped him get a better latch. And not a minute too soon, since my husband and Isaac were going on a missions trip that week. They had booked their tickets long before Peter was born, when we were planning on Sue being here to help me. Even though she had to go home because she got sick and didn't want to spread it to the kids, I did not want the guys to miss out on their trip. Isaac had used his own, hard-earned money to go on this trip - no way was I going to mess it up for him so I could have more help from my husband at home. With the help of the other kids, I knew we'd muddle through somehow - and we did. It really helps that Solomon has a license now.

Starting last week, Peter was all better, had a great latch, and rejected the nipple shield. He has been nursing exclusively for the last week. SO much faster and easier!!! He was doing so well I was able to attend a 2-day seminar earlier this week that I had signed up for months ago, that I had all but given up on attending when he was sick having trouble eating. It all went very well as he pretty much slept through the whole thing. Thankfully for my husband, his mom was back in town and helping him with the other nine kids at home. 

At the same time as Peter was sick with the cold, I myself had a minor though painful afterbirth complication from a ruptured blood vessel on my perineum. It probably ruptured during birth from the strenuous pushing because Peter was so high up for so long. By 4 or 5 days postpartum, my perineum started to feel sore. The swelling from the ruptured vein continued to get larger and more painful. Right around the time Peter caught the cold, I had to go to the OB for multiple visits to diagnose, treat, and follow up on the problem. When the doctor lanced the large hematoma and started cleaning out the mass of old, coagulated blood, two veins going into that area started bleeding considerably, requiring some time and effort on her part to stop the stubborn bleeding. I was numb while she did all this, but the next few days felt like I had a painful episiotomy. This while I was sitting down pretty much 24/7, pumping and finger feeding. Ack! Thankfully, after a few days, the pain was completely gone and the recovery has been rapid and uncomplicated since.

Most of the other kids either were spared the cold, or had it fairly mildly. This is also the time of year that Isaac and Becca struggle with seasonal allergies and subsequent asthma. I have had a few rough nights doing breathing treatments and taking care of Becca, but they are both well on the road to recovery now. We have been getting rain this week, which helps their allergies tremendously.

One thing that was a huge help during all this, that I am thankful to have had on hand, were frozen meals. We are STILL eating the meals I pre-cooked and froze before Peter was born. I had made 30 breakfasts and 30 dinners (with enough of the latter to have leftovers for lunches), which I expected to last us about 6 weeks. 

If you have not yet discovered freezer cooking, I encourage you to check out Once a Month Meals. They have far too many great menu options to list them all here, but they are a true sanity and time saver. Their menus are super user friendly. (affiliate link)

Once A Month Meals

And now for the giveaway winner of the ring sling: I printed all the comments/entries and let Becca draw one randomly.

The winner is: 

Please leave me a comment with your address below (will not be published). 

I have a couple more giveaways coming up just as soon as I get a chance to write more blog posts, so don't forget to check back here. 


  1. Wow you have been through so much!! I’m really glad to hear things are going well now for you & baby. Becca is so sweet. What a great big sister! :)

  2. Thank you for the opportunity, your an inspiration to me! Congrats to the lucky winner! I wished I had figured out the freezer meal plan, regretting it now. Hopefully next time!

  3. Wow, you have had a complicated postpartum! Hematomas and nursing problems and cold bugs, oh, my! :) You are amazing!!

    Pumping and feeding a newborn who has feeding problems is SO HARD. I did it for two months with one of ours, and am still surprised I lived through it.

    You look wonderful, and baby Peter is gorgeous!!! Thanks for the update!

  4. YAY!!! THANK YOU!!! :) My daughters are so excited to win!

    1. I shipped it today. Expected delivery date 2/24. Congrats! Thanks for entering!

  5. Thank you for sharing this update. What a lovely baby.

  6. I just wanted to thank you because if it wasn't for your blog warning us on flame retarded chemicals on furniture my roommate and I would be hospitalized by now. She ordered a bar and it smelled so strong it made us both very ill and I thought Mrs Anderson said flame stuff is poison sure enough that was it. Thank you Mrs Anderson for the heads up and glad you all are Ok now from your colds and pregnancy. Peter is beautiful.

  7. Mrs. Anderson, how did you ever manage to sleep with toddlers and infants? Did you ever have children who were up all night, and others who wanted to be up all day? I'm losing my mind. Any advice would be treasured.

  8. I know this is off topic a bit, but I was hoping for some advice. I have a picky eater who is 2 1/2. I can't get him to try new foods. I'm currently giving him green food powder in his drinks and anything else I can sneak it in. He eats cucumbers, bananas, apples, eggs, pancakes, bread, and a few other foods. If I try to make him eat something he doesn't want he throws up. Any tips? Is he too young? I'm at a loss. Thanks

  9. Have you purchased an Instant Pot for your family? I love mine and was wondering what you thought!
    If you don't have one I'd look into it. They are WONDERFUL!

  10. Hello Zsuzsanna, I just wanted to let you know that I follow your blog, and have watched your Q&A's and I have great respect for you. You are a great inspiration and role model! I have an issue and I come to you for advice, could you please advise or make a blog post or video addressing this issue? The problem I face is with my husband, we have just had a baby about 4 months ago, he is our 3rd and i have been asking him to have another baby for 4 years and he finally agreed to have another baby. We have both become believers about a year and a half ago, and before I had the baby after we became believers I did not face this problem. My issue is he does not want to do "it" (you know what I mean) without a "blockage" (I am trying not to go into too much detail) and I feel so guilty, because I feel like what we are doing is wrong and God does not want that. I am not breastfeeding, due to a bad lach and I was very sick and was put on heavy meds, so i would have to have stopped breastfeeding anyway, but I feel like I am doing something wrong when we do "that" with that "blockage" I know and understand that I have to submit to my own husband, but do I submit to him knowing that this is against God's will? I ask that you please help me with this issue, I understand if you do not post this comment, but I decided to place a comment, because I know you will read it. Sorry for the long comment, but I didnt want to leave anything out. Thank you for taking the time to read this!

  11. I’ve been following your blog for years now, congrats on baby Peter! I saw this on the morning news and knew you’d share my feelings on it so I thought I’d share it.

    If I was in such a position I would have seen this as my calling to adopt, as their are so many children without families in need around the world, but obviously they have not. Now after 13 years she’s going so far as to even beg people on the street to help pay for her IVF treatments. It’s just so upsetting, many don’t fully understand what IVF entails and therefor don’t understand what horrible act they’re helping her commit.


  12. Wow!!! You are a true example of a Godly wife and mother. May God richly bless you as you serve Him, your family and others.

  13. I’m just poking my head in to see who this family is about. You got time for 9 kids, husband, and write a blog, I commend you !!!

  14. So glad Baby Peter is doing better! I have a 5month old with a terrible cough and occasional fevers. I’ve been breast feeding and doing skin to skin, what else would you recommend?
    My pediatrician is pro-vaccine and would medicate in a heart beat, so she’s really not the first person I want to contact.

  15. Hi Zsuzsanna :). I enjoy your blog and you are an encouragement to me! I am wondering what your thoughts are on a couple situations I am having difficulty with. My husbands parents are divorced and his dad and girlfriend visit, but should I allow an unmarried couple to spend the night? ( I have three young children)? Also-- my mother in law wants to help homeschool now the she is retired. (She was a former public school teacher). She was never supportive of us homeschooling but wants included now? Both of his parents aren't believers. I am trying to be unbiased. My parents aren't perfect but they are very respectful of boundaries. How would you handle these situations? Thank you,

  16. Hello there! Congratulations on your new little sweetie! I am so glad that I happened upon your site. You are doing great things! Being a wife and mom of as many children as God gives you and writing about it to inspire and encourage other moms out there is so wonderful! Thank you! Your home birth stories have encouraged me to opt out of the medical model of childbirth and to find a midwife and have this baby at home. This is my second blessing, and I am so excited that home birth is something we can do. Thank you so much for bravely posting these personal stories. They made all the difference in our decision. We pray God continues to bless you and your family.

  17. God bless you, your husband and 9 children. Your husband is truely blessed by the holy spirit and has truely touched many lives through his youtube videos and church preachings.

    Peter Petrou

  18. God bless you and your family and all the Godly work your husband is doing which he is truely blessed by the holy spirit for.


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