Thursday, December 31, 2009

Pa Buehh and more crawling

She's starting to form "Pa Pa" sounds and has done more crawling. She's no speed carwler but she's gone from "getting the hang of it" to actually doing it a little.

Ismael is proud she's getting closer to saying "Papa". I still think it's closer to "Buah..buehhh" but I find it more interesting she started to move around in the crib and tries to get up to see where I've walked away to. It's the end of an era. Can't leave her unattended on a bed :) My big girl is about to keep me wicked busy.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ma Ma

Since arriving in Mexico last week, Carolina hasn't slept well two nights in a row. Last night while basically awake from 2-4am she said "Ma...Ma". A few times. And has since sped it up to "Mama". She's said it a few times. I'd be more excited if I wasn't so exhausted at the time. :) and she likes to use it during the wee hours when she's too worked up to go straight back to sleep after eating since we are all in the same room. I'm very much looking forward to going home if only because we get separate rooms again. Phew.

she's also working on a new word, not sure what, but it sounds like "Buhhhh..buhhhh...buhhh".

We are also working on getting her to say "Papa".

More when we get home...

PS today is her 7th month "birthday" :)
PPS she crawled 2 "steps" today when she was with Abuelo.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

It was all going surprisingly well when it changed


So we went to a friend's house last weekend and it went surprisingly well with Carolina. She napped, TWICE!, for an hour each time in a room she'd never been in before. Man that was great. She was pleasant and enjoyed being around people. I left, surprised and hopeful, that meant our flight on Friday morning would go swimmingly well. Or at least better than I had previously expected.

Then last night happened. Poor thing is really in pain from teething. Those blasted teeth just won't pop through the skin. They keep threatening. She's been basically moaning in pain (and yes, I've given her everything I can aside from a baby-sized shot of whiskey) since last night. She slept for 3 hours, then 2 then up every 90 minutes. Then about 4am and before 5am, got up twice.

Ismael tried to calm her down, I tried to boob-calm her. Yeah, not much. More pain medicine. Yeah...

So about 5.30am I stayed in her room with her on the spare bed in there. I got her to relax and fall asleep and kept popping the chupon in her mouth when it would fall out and she'd try to crawl away. Until it fell out for good and she was asleep. She woke up about 7.30am and looked worse for wear -- but as always, did her best to smile.

She was up for almost 2 hours, as usual, then an almost 2 hour nap. Had trouble with falling asleep for nap #2 and is still sleeping but for only about 20 minutes so far. She already yelled out in a bit of pain since falling asleep.

So we're nearly done packing. Weighed the suitcases and aren't in danger of exceeding the 1 checked bag of 50lbs or less. And I'll be armed with everything I can think of to help her get through the flight.

I've already had one nightmare about the TSA person telling me I can't keep the bottle of Tylenol I have. And I have some good telling off lines in my dream, of course I can't remember the snappy comebacks while awake. But I'll throw out everything we have that remotely resembles liquid as long as I keep the infant Tylenol. Because, seriously, the homeopathic stuff is helpful to a point but I'm not sure it isn't the cause of some recent bouts of "constipation" she's had. And when she's really going for it, the stuff she likes least (Tylenol and baby Orajel) are the things that make her stop hurting fastest. Or at least stop crying, screaming or moaning.

I keep thinking she's experienced the worst of it, and it'll pass soon. And then another day comes and she gets pain she hasn't had before.

At least I'm over my cold. If I was sick AND she was teething AND we were on a flight when she was at her worst, I don't think I could handle it as well as not being sick.

All that aside, I think as usual she will surprise me on how she does on the flights. It might be better or worse, but it'll certainly be different than I can imagine. It always is...

Now I just have to remember to pack the passports and we'll be all set.

But on a happier note, my little Carolina was having a wonderful time yesterday afternoon with some other babies in the neighborhood at a mom's house near us. There were about 6 of them at a playdate. She was the smallest and youngest, but she sat up for about 15 minutes (first time ever!) because the other ones were sitting and crawling and I could tell she was very calmly showing them she could do it too.

As you can see in the photo, she was really sitting in a 'good girl' pose. Super cute! Sometimes she REALLY reminds me of my sister. This photo is one of those times.

After this picture, she let me know she wanted to stand up. So I helped her. She then "walked" towards one of the other little boys who was standing on his own. He leaned towards her, she put out her hand, he put out his hand and then they held hands in mid air for a second. He started 'talking' to her and she made just one little noise. But otherwise, she was totally silent. She's really more of an observer, so I was impressed that she was making 'contact'.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

6 month checkup at the doctors... with shots

Yup, it was that time again this morning. Poor kid really let out a wail when the shots went in. The new doctor's office is nice about it, but the nurse wasn't as adept at getting the shots in quickly as the old doctor. But at least, she's got her immunizations and it didn't cost us $500. We have her on the list for the flu and H1N1 vaccines since they are doling them out in small quantities, weekly. It's likely she'll be up on the list when we're in Mexico, but I'll take my chances and leave her on the list.

Anyway, here are her 6 month checkup stats:
13lbs, 12oz (10%)
25" length (25%)
16" head circumference (25%)
and got 5 shots.

Her next appointment is in 3 months for her 9 month checkup, and no shots then. Hooray!

After only a 20 minute nap in the car ride to the office, she was surprisingly pleasant for the doctor. She only freaked out when she saw the needles since she knew what was coming next.

Then crying all the way home, and a quick feed and nap for an hour. Woke up smiling at grandpa who was nice enough not only to bring us and home, but to wait to make sure she was okay when she woke up. (Grandma wasn't feeling well with a stomach bug so she was at home. Nearly better though!)

After seeing she wasn't hungry again, I changed her diaper and we went out for a walk. She was a bit warm, so just a onesie, pants and socks -- and into the fuzzy thing in the stroller. I wasn't sure if the carrier would make her legs hurt, and she really likes the fuzzy thing for the stroller. She was quiet and content for the hour or so we were outside. I only came home because it looked like it was going to rain and I didn't bring an umbrella.

See a photo of her during the walk. As you can see, Clifford was a helpful companion during the walk.

I was grateful to see the little smile, which quickly turned into a big yawn...

Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving in NJ and the holiday weekend


We went to my parents place for Thanksgiving. It was just the 5 of us since Diana is in LA, and only dinner (well, lunch) for 4 since Carolina doesn't eat Thanksgiving food yet.

Miss Carolina wasn't really into sleeping in a bed that wasn't hers. She did nap, sort of. Then went to sleep around normal time, but after waking up twice inside of 5 hours, she decided she wanted to stay awake. So we took turns going to put the chupon back in her mouth and try to get her to fall asleep over the next hour to hour and a half. Sometime around 2am she fell asleep, for 5 hours. Phew... At least there was some decent sleep even if the three of us were totally tired the next day. But it was different, and a little better in some way, than the month before when we stayed over without Ismael over Halloween.

As Julia says, in a few months it'll be different. Not necessarily better, might be, but definitely different.

I'm completely expecting that when we get to Mexico for two weeks, it'll be different in ways I can't imagine now and then when we return it'll be different again.

At least, every month, it is different. Mostly for the better as far as I am concerned.

Today is her 6 month 'birthday'. Hooray!

Carolina has taken to sucking in her bottom lip. I think she feels the little teeth coming up. It's a little strange to see her like that since it really does change her face and she's not smiling or talking when she does it. She was pretty silent that way yesterday on the way back from Target. The entire bus ride.

Speaking of Target. We bought some diapers there. Not Target brand, I'm not ready to try store brands yet. But we bought a HUGE case of Pampers from Toys R Us, which I love (Pampers not TRU), and they smelled kind of funny. And when she peed in them they smelled almost like paint thinner or paint. It was the kind of smell that goes to the back of your throat and gives you a headache behind your eyes. Or at least did me. So I wrote to Pampers, they're looking into it. We may get our money back. I hope so, those huge boxes of diapers are kind of expensive even though they are cheaper per diaper.

In the meantime we've tried Luvs (not too much of a fan but willing to finish using the pack) and just bought Huggies without fragrance and organic cotton. I honestly was more interested in the lack of scent than anything else. Why baby diapers MUST come with some fragrance, I'm not sure. I know it's to mask the pee or poop smell, but the mix of "baby powder fresh" and pee or poop is actually headache-inducing. At least for me.

So we'll keep trying out different brands in case the Pampers saga doesn't end the way I hope.

And we're about to start introducing formula. SLOWLY...

A nighttime bottle has gone disastrously so far, but we'll keep at it. Sometimes. It's hard to hear her cry so heartily and earnestly and know that I could just feed her myself and she'd be fed and asleep inside of 6 minutes. So I need to get determined about it and just do it.

Ok, she's up again.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Held the bottle on her own, chats with herself after naps

Today, Carolina held her morning bottle all by herself and fed herself the entire 2 oz. Now for a nearly-6-mo-old that's not a lot of milk but she's not that keen on the bottle and it's also when she gets a little bowl of rice cereal.

Next step is to get her to take a bottle during the night (like when she was younger) and then move on to re-introduce formula, plus other cereals and some strained apples or carrots or something. This way she will no longer be breastfeeding sometime in the next 5-6 months. I'm a little sad at that thought now that we finally have a system between us that works so well. And I do enjoy, as much as I am exhausted, the late-night feedings. Some days much less enjoyment than others, of course ;) But that's for me to figure out with Carolina over the next months...

We are really proud of her, of course, with this bottle feeding this morning. The way you can only be as a parent, and in the same way we're proud of her when she does a good poop or burp or laughs or talks or smiles. It's the little things, which are quite big things. It's the signs of progress towards her moving through baby towards being a little girl.

I'm also glad she hasn't gotten sick yet. I still take her into the city a few times a week, and she may or may not nap if we're out for longer than 2 hours. (Just ask Jee about the adventure, or lack thereof, we had in Central Park in the rain last week.) With all that subway and bus exposure, I keep telling myself it's just a matter of time before she gets something from someone who doesn't know how to sneeze or cough in public and just lets it out everywhere. I swear some people...

Also, the past few weeks, I've noticed she talks to herself when she's just woken up from a nap. Or at night, if she's too awake to fall asleep right away (I leave her in the room), she will be in there having some grand conversation. And then at some point she usually just falls asleep. Sometimes she isn't quite ready and starts to cry, at which point I go in to put the chupon in her mouth and then she's almost immediately asleep. I'm careful about when I go back in, if I go back in at all. I don't want to start any bad habits that I'm not prepared to maintain :)

I think it's great that she can entertain herself so nicely.

She's also on the verge of figuring out how to sit up on her own and crawl. She has all the mechanics down for crawling, she just has to get the strength and coordination. But she's well on her way.

Even though she's mastered a very irritating whine, she's also started to laugh more. So as teething gets bad, she also gets more interesting. I guess it's a good balance so I don't lose my mind and she gets the attention she needs from me.

I should go start dinner, Ismael will be home soon...

Monday, November 23, 2009

And with teething, it all gets a bit weird

If you don't have a baby or yours isn't like mine, then you might think that I'm making this up... but I'm not.

She's sleeping both more and less (length of time). She's happier and more irritable. She's more whiney and more quiet. And she's making progress and behaving like when she was 2 months old.

So, she's figuring out how to sit up and crawl. Sort of. But she's whining and crying a LOT, and loudly, and what appears to be randomly. Her gums are KILLING HER today. I gave her tylenol, hylands AND orajel inside of 30 minutes because I was getting desperate. Her first nap was only an hour, I say only because it wasn't long enough for ME to relax (ha!) and that was after 30 minutes of screaming and crying and being generally unhappy and unable to relax.

She does, however, sleep for 5 hour stretches every other night and may nap for 2-3 hours during either her first or second nap of the day.

I am grateful, if not feeling a bit guilty, for TV. I plop her in front of it when all else fails for 10-15 minutes and she's quiet. It has to be something she likes, but thankfully she's got broad tastes. So far we know she likes some cooking shows, Spongebob Squarepants, Thomas the Tank Engine and The Penguins from Madagascar.

...and she's up again. *sigh* Here we go again!!

PS My friend, Julia (who is awesome), has just launched her Etsy shop: simpletruths.etsy.com and has some really great hand-made earrings on there. Check it out!

20 minutes later...
Oh thank god, she pooped! It went on EVERYTHING. I guess part of the screaming was that she hadn't pooped in over 20 hours. I think it's time for us to go for a walk outside.

One more thought. We got a pack of Pampers Swaddlers Size 2. One of those huge boxes. They smelled weird and aren't soft like they normally are. I wrote to the company and they seem like they are going to actually take this seriously. In the meantime, since I get a headache from smelling her Pampers diaper, especially if she's peed, I've bought a pack of Luvs. They aren't as nice but they were a heck of a lot less, on sale. Let's see what happens.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Milestone: 5 hours of sleep and "Hi"

Last night she went to sleep a bit early (6pm) after a long, fun day with daddy. She even took TWO BOTTLES during the day. After 3 months away from bottles, it's been a daily struggle to get her first meal of the day out of a bottle, but we persevere!

As a reward to mommy for going out and leaving daddy in charge (at least that's how I've personalized it), I got to sleep for 5 hours straight -- twice! It was crazy. I woke up with a too-much-sleep headache. Seriously. But I could get used to this!

She said "Hi" to me at the end of her 2nd wakeup of the night (there were only 2) at about 3am. Clear as day "Hi". In a voice I'd not heard before. It was a little deeper than her usual "blah blah blah" voice. She said, and I swear "Yeah" on Friday. Again, clear as day. Both times, it was the only sound she made. Yeah was during the middle of the day. But she was quiet before and after both times. It was the only sound she made and damn it sounded like the real deal.

I'm not marking it down as her first words since I really don't know that she said them in the way that I think of someone actually talking. But I heard them.

I also apologized to her... "I'm really sorry, but I guess you had no choice but to say 'Yeah' and 'Hi'. Your mom is from Jersey, this is what she says. Well, at least it wasn't 'Ok' and 'Whatever'." Ha!

She's been, unusually, sleeping for over 1.5 hours this afternoon. Usually the first nap is longer but this morning it was a quick 30 minute nap. Then she's been asleep with the occasional cry out but not waking. Her teeth are breaking through again. I can see and feel them. She's been irritable.

For Carolina that means smiling a lot and then, what appears to be randomly, yelling out or being loud with "whiny voice". I can't blame her. So I take her out for walks as often as possible. Gives her something to pay attention to instead of her teeth. She's so much like me in that way. Maybe like most people...

You can easily distract me from something that bothers me by changing my scenery, especially if it's GOING somewhere else. Hooray for mini travel!

Final thought, I'm going to use the Maclaren this week. She's too little to possibly get her fingers in between the place where it could get amputated since I hold her all the time. I had this conversation with two different people yesterday. We still haven't gotten the kit from Maclaren, but I think we can manage without it until it arrives.

Onward and upward for the occasional stroller nap. Now, I just need to get some of the accessories, like the plastic cover for when it's super windy or rains. I don't think I'm going to get the "Comfort Pack" which is essentially 3 little pillows that attach to the back and two sides of the stroller. I'm thinking some well-placed, rolled-up blankets will do the trick, and reclining the back.

Other moms, let me know if it's worth the purchase or not.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Big day in the city and then teething pain all afternoon

After her morning nap, which was gratefully almost two hours long, I put her in the carseat stroller and we headed to SoHo to visit my ex coworkers. It was an hour long subway ride as usual and she was happy to be out. I wished I could have taken the new Maclaran we bought since it's lighter and smaller but it's part of the recall so I can't use it until we get our kit to fix it.

Anyway she met everyone and was pleasant. Silent for the most part. Just watching everyone. As she does. Then when it was about two hours since she woke up she got fussy since it was nap time.

I whisked her away from the office and on to the bustling street. Put the chupon in her mouth, covered it with a blanket, put her Sleep Sheep on ocean sound and walked towards the West Village. She was surprisingly asleep inside of 10 minutes. Slept the whole way to Murray's (LOVE Murray's cheese shop) and throughout the walk to the N line at 8th St/Bwy. Woke up just as I got us to the train platform.

She was all smiles. And then about 15 minutes later I realized she was hungry. Not starving. So I hoped she could wait until we got home. she did. Then ate and then threw up. That was my first clue the teething monster was back.

There are plenty of rational and irrational arguments online about the toxicity or merit of Hylands Teething Tablets and Tylenol. I'm using them both on a day like today when she is in more pain than she can handle. I have no threshhold for babies suffering pain that can be avoided. Older children, ok, but not babies. That's just my way.

But she was still really uncomfortable. Took 40 minutes to relax for her last nap of the day and was agitated during bathtime and just before bed. Really really agitated. I think she is either going to spit up later tonight or give me another super poop like last night.

Big poops and throw up are her signals to me that she is in teething SuperDrive.

She is sleeping now and Ismael is in NJ looking at an apartment.

Oh, non sequitir... Duane Reade's DeLish cookies look awesome on the box but are basically oversized (and overpriced) Chips Ahoy cookies. $2.50 for 8 cookies. I'll just get Chips Ahoy next time. Really I should make my own. I like my own cookies. Speaking of which I think it's time for brownies made with Ghirardelli chocolate. Yea...

Thursday, November 5, 2009

better sleeping? well, it's different again

She's still up every 2-3.5 hours but at least there are a few 3 hour stints in the mix again. I sense she's slowly creeping back towards getting to at least one 4-6 hour stretch in there again. I hope it's just not the day before we move or the day before we leave for mexico and then it's all trashed again.

Although, beggers can't be choosers and I guess if I'm being honest, I'd take one 4-6 hour stretch again even if it was the only one. It gives me hope :)

Yeah, I'm really really bad when I'm tired. As everyone who knows me is well aware. Other parents with babies that sleep similar amounts of time don't seem to be as bothered by it. Sorry, Carolina, your mom was an awesome sleeper before you were born and she just misses it. Man, I really was a 'marmota' [sloth] like Gaby said.

This morning, she drank 2oz from a bottle. After 3 days of protesting that she wouldn't take the bottle again, at all. My mom gave me the suggestion of making her first feed when she wakes up a bottle. And don't give her any boob until the next feeding. I did it for two days, and today she takes the bottle. She cried a LOT and didn't just take it the whole time. But she did. And I'm very proud of her, and impressed at how smart she is. Maybe I'm projecting, probably am, but it was like she worked out that I wasn't giving her what she wanted and cereal just wasn't cutting it in the morning. So she took the bottle.

I also, today, encouraged her to hold it herself. Well at least put her little hands on it. That seemed to help. It was an idea I got from her hand movements this morning and something Kimesha said to encourage her to get comfortable with a toy that made noise. Let her hold it instead of pushing it on her. Seems to make a difference. Thanks, Kimesha!

Also, I'm hell bent on getting her to take longer naps. I read some suggestions in a new book I just picked up called "The No Cry Sleep Solution". It's much more "labor intensive" than the crying option, but leaves me feeling less crappy as a mom. It's more in line with my style of being.

http://www.pantley.com/elizabeth/

http://www.amazon.com/No-Cry-Sleep-Solution-Gentle-Through/dp/0071381392

The new "new agey" pediatrician suggested it. So far the new pediatrician has two points of "hooray" in her court vs. the other pediatricians. One is this book, and two is that she didn't worry that Carolina didn't put on a whole pound between last month and this month. I was tired of the doctor quibbling over 2-3oz, and that she is in the bottom 10%. So was I. What'd he expect, that she be a bruiser? Never going to happen. She's pretty much one pound and one inch every month. She's smaller than the other babies in the neighborhood that are around her age but she's tracking consistently. And she's healthy. So I'm very grateful (and a bit proud, strangely).

So just now, it took me 20 minutes of shushing, rubbing her back, and finally finding the pacifier. (where the hell was it? in the kitchen. argh! I steamed it and forgot to bring it with me!) The pacifier was the missing link since 10 minutes of hard sucking on her thumb didn't cut it. But she fell asleep again. Phew... Not sure for how long, but if I can break this habit of getting up after only 45 minutes -- I think my little one will sleep longer during the night.

That's the theory.

I also like the book because it's helping me set more realistic expectation and ask myself questions that I hadn't really thought to ask of myself, instead of questions I ask myself about Carolina.

Also, finding out from Julia that Isaiah still isn't a completely through the night sleeper and he's over a year old made me realize that every book I read about "what most babies at age X are like" just isn't going to apply to my kid. Ok. I just needed to know that and accept it. It was presented like if you're kid isn't doing this, you should get him/her towards it. Since it's normal.

I got your normal right here, bub. [shaking my jersey girl fist in the air]

I can't wait until she's 6 months and we can take her swimming at the YMCA. There's one here in Long Island City and one in Hoboken. So if we move to Jersey, we can take her there. I hear from Jee that baby swim classes result in long naps since the babies are tuckered out. Awesome!!!

If we move to Bay Ridge, there isn't a YMCA pool nearby. Just in Bed Stuy I think.

Anyway, this Saturday we're going to take Carolina on the subway to Chambers St in Manhattan to visit a friend and see a small pottery show. And then pick out a Maclaren stroller and go home. All on the subway. This will keep her out past her nap time but I'm desperately hoping she will nap in the stroller.

She was great when I took her to Rockefeller Center yesterday to the Gap to return some things. It was a two hour jaunt. One hour there (damn 7 train wasn't stopping at our stop again) on the bus and then N train. Then quick to see Ismael in the store, and head home. At least the 7 train was stopping at our stop on the way in to Queens. Made it a faster trip home. She then went like butter down for a nap. She only fussed a little on the streets around Rock Center. I think it was just the amount of people she was seeing or something since she was in the Baby Bjorn facing outward. Otherwise, she was quietly observing people on the train and in the store and seemed relaxed.

If I had known all of this before I got pregnant, I probably would have delayed it much longer. But I kept myself ignorant. I'm glad I did.

This is hard work. Mostly because it is challenging a lot of what I have thought about myself and my abilities. I've never been very good with patience or self-confidence. I'm learning. Oh yes...

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Today was better

Instead of holding to a rule that says she should be awake between 6 and 7am, and since it'll all change on Sunday with daylight savings, we have been letting her sleep until she is ready. Today she slept from ~5.20am until almost 8.30am. I woke up just after 8 and felt like I had gotten some sleep. It was a much better day.

She still napped for about an hour every other hour. And again refused her last nap of the day and fell asleep for the night around 5.30p. If I can figure out that last nap/awake time balance better, she could probably stay up past 6pm and I'll bet sleep longer at some point. Or at least sleep until 7am more consistently.

These are all guesses. Besides, once I figure it out the etch-A-sketch that is my daughter will reset and I get to start all over again with a new design.

Anyway with the weekend at grandma's and Halloween. I'm excited.

We visited Sang this morning and my friend Andrew came over this afternoon. It's good to visit people. Carolina enjoyed the visits and going to the Turkish store. She (and I) likes the owner. He's a very nice man and has fun food things to look at! She's getting beter at grabbing so I've had to adjust walking down the aisles so she can't touch anything. Or it just may end up on the floor. Funny kid.

Happy Halloween everyone!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

5 mo checkup

13lbs 6oz, 24", no shots needed. 25% of height and skull size, 10% for weight.

Apparently she's growing well and I'm doing a good job feeding her. That I'm very sleep deprived isn't uncommon. I have a low threshold for "lack of sleep pain". She's finally napping for more than an hour now after being awake for four hours.

Crazy!! traffic into manhattan. Was 45 minutes late for pediatrician. First visit with new dr. She's very nice. I'm too out of sorts to judge either way. So much rain.

She has good motor skills and strength for her age. And she loves her rice cereal.

Onward and upward to get yet another book about babies and sleep. We are also going to bring back the bottle once a night. (Hooray for Ismael!) I'm not sure if I will breastfeed much past six months. Not sure how you decide either way. She's recently started to push away with one arm while sucking hard at the boob. Seems counterproductive but maybe it's normal. Who knows...

Tired. Just tired.

I can not explain how tired and frustrated I am.

She won't sleep more than 3 hrs tops at night. If I leave her to cry. She will. At the top of her lungs. For upwards of an hour or more.

Her naps are sometimes 1.5-2hrs for reasons I can't figure. But mostly 45mins every other hour.

I try to "fill her up" during the day. With mill and cereal and formula. She just throws up anything "extra". And apparently zero change to extending sleep.

It's like she's two months old again. Waking up a lot, eating and being cranky more than usual.

I'm afraid to nap because they are so short. I wake myself up during the night in expectation of her frequent wakings. And she eats. Every time.

I feel lost and frustrated. And tired. Really, really tired.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

it's been tough, but not impossible

I haven't written much in the past week. It's been tiring. We make progress at night with her only waking up twice. That happened happily for 2-3 nights in a row, one night of a lot of waking up, then a few more nights of mostly 2 time waking up. Then last night she gets up four times. She is teething, and she was in a lot of pain yesterday and the day before. I'm sure that has a lot to do with the days when she gets up more frequently or at least has a harder time getting herself back to sleep.

Now, mind you I'm not running in at the first whimper. Last night we let her cry on and off for just under 30 minutes. When she started up again the following hour, I couldn't take it anymore and went in. It was about 2 hours earlier than I would have liked but there's only so much I can take when *I* am tired.

The books say to leave her in her room until 6am. Even if she cries. I folded at 5.45am, and fed her. Then promptly put her back in her crib and left her there until she woke up again at 7.15am. I'm supposed to get her up between 6am and 7am. I was tired. I let it slip. Commence world ending music montage now... :)

But then today, she's gone down for 3 naps already -- completely awake. She didn't need me to feed her and rock her to sleep. In fact, the reason I did it the first time a few days ago was because she wasn't relaxing in my arms and it seemed pointless to continue for both our sakes. So I just put her down on her belly, gingerly wrapped the blanket around her waist and legs. She found her thumb, I rubbed her back and butt for a minute or two, and she nodded off.

It might not work every day but I'm glad she's getting the idea that she can fall asleep on her own.

Am I concerned that I use the sound machine and she goes for her thumb to relax? Yeah, a little. Am I worried that she really doesn't sleep anywhere but in a darkened room, pretty much at home? As in not a stroller nap baby... It's limiting. But I'll deal with her sucking her thumb as a problem when she's 10, if she's still doing it. Just like my mom did with me. And we'll ween her off the white noise machine if we need to when it's time. And I did set up her sleep structure/process like it is. So I've no one to look to about that but me.

The next jackpot will be taking longer naps during the day and fewer of them. This getting up for an hour, then back to sleep for 45-60 minutes makes having a day a little hard for me. For her, it's perfect :) When she's up for an hour or two, down for two, up for one or two, down for two, up for a bit then off to bed. Bingo! (At least that's how I imagine winning Baby Sleep Bingo.)

I know she can stretch it out since she has taken 2 hour naps on her own. I can't figure out how or why on those days it happens. Maybe it's just up to her to work it out.

I like to think I'm having some kind of impact on raising her but, really, I get the sense that she's a little dingy boat on a river and I'm steering with the smallest paddle ever. I get to make some course corrections and change direction a little but, really, it's how and where the river takes us.

As you all know, I am not one that easily 'goes with the flow'. So this part of having a baby has been the most challenging. And that it affects my sleep, well, just the harder. I hold out for the magical 6-month milestone. It may come and go and what I hope for doesn't come to fruition. But something else will.

Every "progress" is met with a new "detractor". It's like a gentle one-two punch every month. It always changes.

Julia was right. When I asked her what she thought about us going to Mexico for two weeks when Carolina is 7 months old, she told me, "Whatever her sleeping and traveling is like now [at 3/4 months] it'll definitely be different by then. It might be better, and it might now, but it'll definitely be different."

Now if we could just sort out finding the perfect apartment for no money, we'd be golden. Hahah!

At least there's a new bakery that opened on Greenpoint Ave. Now we have a new shop as part of our hourly walk repertoire. I like to visit the local shops and sometimes buy something. Keep the local economy going and know who runs the stores. Very neighborhood-y. Plus they all remember me if I'm carrying Carolina. Otherwise, I'm just another person who walked into the store. With her, I'm "that woman with the cute baby". Seriously. It's crazy how many people respond to her like she's got some magic over them or something.

P.S. We finally have the first, basic iteration of our website done: http://www.vivadm.com
Have a visit and let us know what you think!

Monday, October 12, 2009

teething and enjoying a little walking around

So it seems that her teeth are coming up some days and then go back down into the gums on others. Today, I can't feel her two bottom teeth as well as a few days ago but she's still making groaning noises and shoving her hand in her mouth as a source of relief.

She's not very interested in the cold/gel/teething ring. I think it's a wee bit too big for her mouth. And she's not interested in her chupon being cold either. She's not interested in the chupon that is a bit more firm. And she pretty much hates, or is confused by, Orajel. It seems that the boob and her green chupon is her favorite, aside from her own hands.

She's spit up a bunch and she's got a bit of the runs. Apparently all very normal for a teething baby.

After 2 hours outside which included going to the park to meet some of the moms and babies in the Sunnyside Moms group at the park, she quickly fell asleep for a much needed nap. She woke herself up after only 30 minutes. So instead of going back outside, which she loves, I kept her indoors. Gave her some infant Tylenol, put some orajel on her gums (I was desperate for her since she was crying so much), and then she rode in her swing. Then we walked around the apartment. And finally ended up in her walker. She loves, loves feeling like she's standing up and able to move around. Of course she can't even sit up on her own, but she's pretty happy thinking she can. I'm alright pretending along with her for periods of time each day, too.

I took a video of it since it was intermittent moaning, gnashing of teeth, smiling and pushing herself forwards and backwards. http://www.youtube.com/watch_private?v=QFijyr1LCjk&sharing_token=hvZZnOZVKtHAfevJ17A7gQ==

PS We're still working on our company's website but in the meantime you can preview some of the products we're going to be selling. We're starting with cafepress until we figure out which designs are more popular than others and make some income. Then we'll be looking to produce them ourselves and brand the designs a little more. http://www.cafepress.com/honestbabies

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

she slept for 6 hours straight last night and the night before!

we started to use some of the sleep "training" methods in "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child" and she has now slept until midnight (after going to sleep between 6-6.30pm) two nights in a row! She then doesn't get up until about 4am, and then is up for the day at 7am.

Next week we're going to tackle napping. Because her taking 45 minute naps every other hour or so is really making it hard to get out of the house, and I know she can nap more. For example, this moment, she's been asleep for an hour and a half. She's only just making noises now, but see? she can do it. I just need to set up her schedule and she'll follow it. Probably with a bunch of crying the first day or two, like with the night time scheduling, but she'll do it.

Then we can go visit people and not only take short walks around the neighborhood. I mean Sunnyside is great to walk around but there's only so many times I can walk the 10 block radius before I know all the crazy people who are around during the day hours and see the same moms with strollers. It gets a little boring, even though we say hi to the people we have recognized on the street.

ok, she's up from the nap. Gotta run...

Monday, October 5, 2009

I miss food

I miss the Indian restaurant in Brighton where I was friendly with the people who owned the place and they made my favorite Chicken Madras and pilau rice. Yummy and just spicy enough to make my nose run but not burn my mouth and lips!

Another red letter day for miss carolina

Yesterday we rode in a car to Bay Ridge and spent about 4 hours there. At Paul and Maura's apartment quickly, then walking around a park by the river front, then Kimesha and Ben's (where Carolina took a quick 45 minute nap), and then out for a walk through the town's street party day thing -- and then to a restaurant.

This was the 3rd time Carolina has been to a restaurant. It is the first 'fancy' restaurant and the longest she's been in one.

She was already overtired (more on that later) so Ismael and I took turns leaving the table and walking outside with her. It was very loud outside with all the music and people mulling about, so at one time I took her into the bathroom where it was actually quiet. I fed her, even though she really didn't NEED it. And that bought us another half hour or so.

She then fell asleep in the car on the way home. Woke up shortly after we got into the apartment. Quick bath, PJs, then off to bed.

Overall, as much of a handful that she is, it went relatively well. It could have gone a LOT worse. Thank you, Bay Ridge Lobbyists for the lovely day.

About the being overtired... This kid has reverted into earlier months sleeping pattern of being up every 2-3 hours and nursing almost hourly during the day. So mommy is exhausted, to say the least. And I did what I do when I need to figure something out, I start reading. I read the baby sleep book that we have and it has a lot of great information but really it has too much. I spend a lot of time reading through it to find an example that best matches Carolina and then see what the 'solutions' are that I can use.

While reading, she wakes herself up at about 8.30pm. A mere 2 hours after initially going to sleep. She sounds like she's either terrified or hungry or something. She wasn't warming up to our friends as quickly as I thought, and we were in all new places that day -- so maybe it was a nightmare about stranger anxiety or who knows what.

But Ismael went in to calm her down, and then I went in to feed her. That did the trick. And I continued to worry that I've encouraged a bad trend. Booby time = feel better time, and not encouraging more self-soothing time.

She then wakes up at 11.21pm. I know it was 11.21pm because of the following... Ismael stops me from getting out of bed and says 'Let's try to see if she'll fall back to sleep on her own. Like the book says.'

I agree but I'm also completely stressed out. I'm sitting on the edge of the bed, desperate to calm her down and also desperate for her to just fall asleep. I'm tired. She's tired. He's tired. There's a lot of tired in our house. My anxiety swells and I start to get mad at Ismael for even suggesting such a thing and then angry at myself for allowing her to sound so sad.

It took about 45 minutes of crying with some stopping cycle, that eventually was more stop than cry. She fell asleep at 12.05am. She didn't wake up until just before 3am, and then at 6am. Fell asleep for another 45 minutes when I woke her up at 7am (like the book said). Gave her a bath, dressed her, played for a bit. She was very tired, and went back to sleep at 8.30am for another TWO HOURS.

I actually had to wake her so that we could go to a mommy's group by 10.30am. She's been napping like usual (30-45 minutes) every other hour since then.

We're going to try it again tonight. The first time she cries after we put her down to sleep, we're going to leave her there and let her cry for up to an hour. See how it goes.

If she gets the idea that we're not going to get her, she might start to sleep for longer. That's the plan. Lord knows if that's what is going to be reality...

What's more, she's rolling over. I put her to sleep on her side, when she wakes up she's usually on her belly. This afternoon, twice, I put her on her belly and she wakes up on her back. We almost have a complete roll!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

We have a real laugh!

Yesterday, Carolina went with me to ismael's office. We took the train and at the last minute I decided that she was doing well enough to try to go in to manhattan to visit Ismael. So we transferred to the N train and went into the tunnel. She started to cry a little since she could no longer see the trees outside. :) so I gave her the chupon and she was relaxed enough to continue.

Once we got there she met all of his coworkers. And while Ismael was holding her and I was talking to his coworker, Andrew, Carolina let out her first laugh. It reminded me of Diana's first laughs. Diana's were little but very hearty and expressed a real joy and were full of life. Carolina's sounded a lot like my 'hah hah' laugh but was distinctly her own. She did it twice. We were floored and impressed. We can't wait for her to do it again soon!

Of course there isn't a photo or recording of it but we heard it :)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

oh yes, the day after immunization shots and my ideal apartment

Last night she slept pretty much like she normally does. Napping yesterday was all day on me, but by nightfall she was feeling more secure and dozed off around 6.30pm. She was up a few more times than usual, but nothing extraordinary. I got at least one session of 3.5 hours, so I can't complain.

When she got up this morning at 6.20am we woke up daddy (sorry, daddy!), did her swim lesson in the bathtub, and dressed. Then cleaned her new ear piercings and removed the one that was off center. I debated this in my mind all day yesterday, all night, and this morning. Looking at it this morning I realized it is just TOO close to the part of her ear where she hears from and not enough on the lobe. It'll always be off and if I was her, I'd be annoyed.

I'm annoyed with my piercings since one was done badly. Had I known it would close up, even when I was 14 and had them first pierced, I would have let it close and did it again.

So we're going to let the one heal and close and keep the other pierced. When we go to Mexico in December we'll take her to a baby medical center kind of place where all they do is treat babies and they pierce all the baby girls' ears. They will do it correctly and (god willing/ojala) without all the unnecessary trauma like we had yesterday.

I will be the most angry I have ever been if they mess up her ear for a second time. So hopefully for everyone's sake, it goes well and peacefully :)

She still is warm but no high temperature/fever. She has noticed that the baby Tylenol taste shows up when we go to the doctor's. I'm guessing that's why she looks at me a little panicked and strangely when I put it in her mouth again this morning. The other months she didn't mind the taste, it is last month and this one when she started to make the connection. I'm guessing. I don't know how aware she is/can be, but she seems pretty whip-smart so I'm going to give her the benefit of the doubt.

Right now she's napping. I think it's time for me to nap, too.

I've started to think about burgers again. I should get back on that 'horse' and start up my burger trials.

In the meantime, I'll pose this to you all... we are going to wait to see how much our landlord raises our rent for next year's lease. If he won't lower it to $1700 or leave it at $1800 and do some repairs that we've been wanting, we're very likely going to move. Below are our criteria. Anyone know of a place that fits? (No sarcastic comments, please. I know I'm asking for the nearly impossible.)

The first 5 are requirements, the others are nice to haves...
  1. Two-bedrooms. One of the bedrooms must be at least 8' x 10'. The other bedroom similar but larger. Not a half room suitable only for a little office. We'll need to fit two kids in there one day.
  2. Has a washer and dryer in the building. In the apartment is fine, too.
  3. $1600 a month or less. $1700 max if it's totally awesome.
  4. 45-minute commute or less for Ismael to Rockefeller Plaza area, and doesn't require buying Express Bus passes. (Those are an extra $100 a month!) Although $1500 + express bus is, you know, ok.
  5. 45-minute or less car ride from my parents' place in Fort Lee, NJ. They come to visit often enough that moving to the a**-end of Brooklyn or Queens where it's a hour plus ride, would just be obnoxious.
  6. Downtown Manhattan, Brooklyn, maybe western part of Queens or Hoboken. We don't have a car and don't want to buy one. These are the places where you can get around fairly easily and do weekly food and baby stuff shopping without having a car. Hoboken may require the occasional ZipCar rental -- which is fine since then we'd stop paying NYC taxes and get to save 4%+ of our annual income.
  7. Has a park within a 10-15 minute walk
  8. Is not within 10 blocks of a major highway.
  9. Within 25 minute walk to a friend's apartment. Preferably a friend who likes Carolina and wouldn't mind her coming over to visit and possibly nap on their bed if necessary :)
  10. Does not have a "roach problem"
  11. Does not have "plumbing issues"
  12. Has a decent landlord and super
  13. Does not have neighbors who think playing music at Volume 11 is okay.
  14. Does not have mold actively growing on the bathroom walls
  15. Does not have creaky, wooden floors that wake up the baby after I JUST got her to sleep (again)
  16. Is within 10 minute walk of a decent grocery store, butcher shop, cheese shop, fish shop, and some Italian, Polish, Greek, Latino, Middle Eastern, Japanese, Chinese, Thai and Korean food. Oh and some good Jewish-run bagel and knish store could be handy, too!

Friday, September 25, 2009

4 month check up and ear piercing

We're about to go to the pediatrician... get her 4 month checkup, immunizations (4 shots like at the 2 month visit) and her ears pierced.

I'm having a minor anxiety attack about subjecting her to all this pain.

Let's see how it goes...


3 hrs later:
holy effing sh*^ that was awful. Never go to a pediatrician who isn't totally awesome about ear piercing. She was hysterical. Hysterical for almost an hour. It wasn't the actual piercing but the holding her down to do it. And he wasn't as comfortable doing it as he had made it sound. Never again. Only with a baby ear piercing specialist. And one ear is totally off. So I'm taking that one out tomorrow to heal and she can have it repierced in December while in Mexico. We should have done that from the beginning. Waited for Mexico where they do it to newborns all the time. That was traumatic. Now my poor kid is upset all day and will only nap on me. I'm so annoyed. If I didn't know her ear will close up quickly or that an ear piercing specialist said to take out the "wrong one" I would leave it in to avoid more trauma.

She was so thoroughly terrified. I had to hold down her arms and my dad her legs and the doctor her head. Utterly too much. Never again.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Vacation went surprisingly well, being home however...









One day and night at grandpa's apartment followed by three days and two nights at the beach went surprisingly well. Gratefully the hotel room had very dark curtains so Carolina was able to sleep well. And we were mostly able to keep her nap and sleep schedule. She basically slept all day on Monday at home as she recovered from being tired from the weekend.

I just hope she forgives me for her first experience with ocean water. Which was freezing. And I asked her dad to put her feet in. And she sooner than immediately screamed. Screamed!! And didn't stop for about 10 minutes. See the photo (on the left) I took thinking she'd be smiling. Stupid mommy, really. And then later that day when she's tired but not having a fit. Notice the pink sweatshirt. It's from 1976. It was mommy's. Aunt Diana found it in our old closet and Grandma Carmela brought it to the beach. Hooray! That plus socks made Carolina's cold feet much happier!

The car ride there and back was okay. She wasn't a fan of the car seat, 'natch. She fussed and we made a few, brief stops along the way to stretch, change diaper, feed and walk around outside. But 3+ hours in the car is definitely her max. The whole trip was about 4+ hours with all the stops. and the traffic we hit on the way home took am extra hour that I would have gladly paid to avoid. Let's just say we ran out of milk in a bottle and when going over the GWB, she woke up with 10-20 mins left until Queens without traffic, more traffic on the FDR and I bought us about 10 mins of not crying by giving her a bottle of cold water. This distracted her but she was still crying when we pulled up and I rushed inside to feed her.


All in all it made me VERY hopeful for our two week trip to Mexico at Christmas.

Yesterday, however, was a different matter. She hardly napped. Nursed for a few minutes every hour but it felt like constantly. I was exhausted by 3pm. I had to keep walking outside around 2pm so she would (finally) sleep a little. She slept for only 30 mins but that's better than nothing. I ended up walking for 90 minutes outside. Mostly up and down our block wher the light breeze hit her head just as she likes it. I even had to ask Ismael to come home early since I was worn out by her. She was very clingy too. Maybe just one of her 'crazy' days.

Her poop has been greenish and on the sticky side for nearly a week. I'd be more worried except mine is too. I think it's the lack of fruit and veg while on vacation. Or maybe I'm a bit sick. I ate granola last week. Found a new one without nuts. Very yummy. But sometimes oats tear up my stomach. So that could be a contributing factor.

I'd call her pediatricians office but the doctor that does the callbacks usually is glib and gives me no information I couldn't get online or figure out myself. She really irritates me. Next month we start with a new doctor who is in network. I hope it works out since paying $200-500 per visit is murder on the wallet. Especially since insurance reimburses what amounts to around 30%. So many pediatricians in the city don't take insuranace. Not sure if the Obama plan would make a difference but having a baby is bloody expensive.

I hope today is a better nap day for my shorty.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

in a room of her own

Today is the 2nd morning after she slept in her own room in her new crib, and took all her naps in the new crib. I have to say, it's a nice thing for all of us.

It took me long enough to get the crib sheets and bumper after the crib and mattress were sitting there for a few weeks. I should be honest and say it was a conscious delay. I wasn't ready to move her, even if she was.

I was apprehensive because I get up so often during the night to feed her that I thought it would be a real pain to have to go to the other room. In fact, last week and the week before I remember thinking that we were losing progress and she was starting to get up MORE often. At least it felt like it.

As it turns out, she gets up less often in her own room. In fact, the 2nd time she ever slept 5.5 hours was the first night in the crib. She's gone from waking up 4-5 times a night to 3 times a night. Eating for 4-5 minutes to eating 8-11 minutes during the night.

I feel badly when she cries after 4-5 hours of sleep since she's STARVING! So I try my best to get up as quickly as possible as soon as I hear her. We haven't bought a baby monitor. I'm still not sure we need it, but we may. We open her door when we're going to sleep and leave our door open. If we closed them both, we couldn't hear her unless she was screaming as loud as she possibly could. And no one wants her to have to do that.

There's no sense in trying to force her to eat more before she falls asleep since she eats as much as she needs/wants and won't take more. In fact, she's taken more than she needed recently and only spit it up shortly after.

I'd like to say that this means she's napping better during the day, but it's about the same. More frequently during the morning and then 2-3 hours of being awake towards the end of the day, with a bit of being 'crazy'. It all seems to sort itself out one way or another.

Her naps are now a bit longer, however. I think this has a lot to do with the fact that her new room we have blackout shades AND blackout curtains. So unlike before when she was in our room, and she'd wake US up when morning light was peeking through the curtains. I now have to go in to her room, open the shades and curtain to wake HER up.

It's a nice change.

I'm still waiting for her to be able to travel on the subway and bus more, so we keep trying. And the car...

I've been putting her in the car seat during the day when I walk around the apartment or the room to do something else. Mostly it's to get her to sit in the car seat and not cry.

Tomorrow Carolina and I are going to my parents place in the afternoon, then Ismael is going to join us that evening for dinner. The following morning we are all going to the beach for a mini vacation.

As I've heard from friends of mine with babies, this is not going to be a relaxing vacation for me BUT it'll be interesting.

I'm more curious now than anxious to see how she is during a nearly 3 hour car ride. See how many times we need to stop. How amenable she is to napping in the car. And what she'll be like sleeping somewhere that isn't her room. We're taking her pack n play and she will be, again, sleeping next to our bed.

I'm packing the white noise machine, but since we'll be in a room facing the ocean we may not need it. There will probably be a lot more light in the room, so she may get up more often. I'm willing to put up with that :) It's not terribly unusual.

In fact, when she sleeps more than 3 hours, and I'm awake (or wake myself up), I both miss her and wonder if she's breathing.

I walked in to her room this morning about 5am when she cried out and saw she was on her belly. She wasn't resting, she was struggling. She has started to do this more often. She can roll over on her belly but can't quite roll back. I know where she's landed since the crib sheet is wet where she had her mouth.

Mostly she is squirming and picking her head up and legs. Her arms don't seem to realize they can help out too. I've been trying to help her with this by putting something on the end of a string and having her track it with her eyes. I keep expecting her hands to reach up but they don't. Her arms may start to move around but it's not coordinated by any means and her hands usually stay in a light fist. She might open them but not to reach out and touch.

Her legs, however, do respond. So I guess it's a matter of time for when her hands decide they want "in" on the action.

Friday, September 11, 2009

we have sleep!


I don't think I've been this proud of another human being, ever! Okay, well, maybe pride isn't the most overwhelming feeling. Relief? Gratitude? Ok, some pride... she slept for 5.5 hours at a stretch last night. Was asleep a little before 8pm and then woke up around 1.30am. She was STARVING. Kid hasn't eaten that much, latched on that well, and then promptly went back to sleep. FOR ANOTHER THREE HOURS! Ate like a champ again, and then slept ANOTHER TWO HOURS!

Apparently once you get a five-hour stretch, you have "sleep through the night". I'm not sure whose night amounts to only five hours, but you know, whatever, it's progress!

Seriously, I could get used to this.

I'm not expecting to. I'm actually expecting it to be a cruel joke, whereby she wakes up every 2 hours tonight. But man, it was great to experience it and know it's possible.

I changed her diaper after her swim/bath at about 5.30pm last night, and then again when she woke up FULL OF POOP at about 6.30am this morning. 13 hours, one diaper. Man that diaper never worked so hard!

It wasn't as full of sleep for me as I thought it might be. I kept waking up to check the clock and see if she was still alive. Really, I did. I heard parents say this and thought, not me! I'll be so grateful for sleep and so tired, I'll sleep through it.

No way... I was waking myself up with a bit of panic, feeling like I overslept for exams or something. Then looking at her crib in the darkness to see if I could see her. I couldn't see her breathing but there was something about the way she was lying there that was reassuring she was still alive.

We also started "swimming lessons" in the bathtub last night and again this morning. We'll be doing it every morning until she can hold her breath underwater and is ready for the big pool. I can't wait for her to be a little swimmer! I'll bet she will sleep really well once she can swim and use up all that energy.

Speaking of swimming, we're going to the beach with my parents next weekend. I hope she likes it. She'll basically experience sitting, well laying (since she can't sit yet), on sand, hearing the waves, and watching things at the beach. And maybe a little ocean water drizzled/dripped on her head and belly. But no swimming. Probably just a nap.

Fingers crossed there is minimal meltdown in the car seat on the way there and back.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

More words, less sleep

So it's official. We've got ourselves a chatty baby. She's been making word sounds since about 2 weeks old but the past two weeks she's really "talking" a lot. It's cute as hell. It also seems to come with the trade off of not being interested in sleeping. In the morning and early hours of the morning are her chattiest.

It also seems to follow that there is an almost constant stream of word sounds just before, and during, a poop as well as when she has some reflux that is about to start. It's almost as if her most talkative corresponds with discomfort.

I hope I'm wrong.

This morning at about 4.30am, just after eating, she decided that unlike her usual routine of going back to sleep, she would talk to us. From the crib. In our room. For about 15 minutes. I just ignored her. And by ignore I mean listened to everything, trying nit to laugh and resisting the urge to pick her up. She eventually fell asleep. Then at a little after 6am, she decided to regale us with some tale of swashbuckling pirates and fair maidens. This is what I made up in head since I was hoping she would just go back to sleep.

Nope!

Her dad picked her up and brought her to the living room. I fell asleep for another 2 hours. I didn't even realize it until I woke up! I was enormously grateful. I was also worried she had been up for nearly 3 hours without eating or sleeping. But she hadn't cried so I knew that couldn't be true. she had napped in the living room and he made her a bottle. Hooray!

Needless to say, we are full speed ahead starting to transition her to her own room. We really think that being in our room is keeping her from sleeping more and more often. I realize that now she's gaining awareness of who I am and she likes to be social. So that discourages her from wanting to sleep, too. But her first sleep of he night is usually 3-4 hours. Then once we go to sleep, she's up every 1.5-2 hours.

She's also decided that the brief foray of sleeping longer while on her stomach is over. She only did it three times. It was great. But if I put her on her belly now, to sleep or to see if she pushes up or does any early-stage crawling, she gets really frustrated and cries.

So I very much feel like we are losing some of the progress she had made.

We are also looking for a new pediatrician. One that is in network and one that has a doctor on call on the weekends who isn't a massive butthead. Our pedi I like. But the main, female doctor in the practice gives me answers that make me feel violent towards her. So I'm calling her a butthead in lieu of the nastier name I usually use for her.

And we are still debating a move, and to where.

We had a nice walk this morning and she got hungry while several blocks from home. So I did my first bare breastfeed in public. The street wasn't that busy and she was in the baby Ergo, so no one walking by or in the houses really saw anything. But we made it work. Go team!

Ok time for a nap...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

jersey?


So on friday there wasn't any immunization shot. Just an immunization oral thingy she had to swallow. Poor kid. It's to fend off the flu. Roto virus!

I love, love her pediatrician but I think we'll be looking for a new one that is in network. Every month it's like $300-450 a visit. Shots are bloody expensive.

Speaking of money, I'm beginning to consider moving back to Hoboken. I cringe at the thought of my thinking of it, but it's true. I think it's the only way to avoid the NYC "convenience charge" (aka 4% city tax) and get a lower rent for a two-bedroom apartment. Plus then the little lady's grandparents will visit her more often. I'm still debating if this is a good thing or a bad thing.

The debate is how many people she's exposed to. I'm already realizing that just hanging out with me most of the time means she's only comfortable with me and her dad, and my parents. She's just started, the past two weeks, to really be aware of other people and if she knows them. It's funny how this is developing and I can see it happening.

I mean I know I'm terribly interesting, but she'll be the shyest kid in pre-K if I'm all she knows. So, like, I gotta get some 'mommy friends.' Again, I'm cringing.

I have friends. I like them. That's why they are my friends. They just don't all have kids. Hmmm...

You people reading this blog. Yeah you! You're my friends! Go procreate! Don't make me move back to Jersey and see you once every other month for brunch in Manhattan. With my failed attempts to get you to visit in Jersey. *sigh*

Tell your friends and family. Buy stuff from VivaDM. Maybe we'll get rich. Maybe not. Either way, it'll make my accountant happy. Seriously. He says we need to have income this year or taxes will be a difficult thing. Three years without income. *sigh*

Anyway, enough about my moaning.

She's been talking up a storm. If I could figure out a way to post the audio files, you'd get to hear her. Of course, after I figure out a way to edit them down. Damn they are big from the iPhone m4p file. And she smiles, super smiles, and laughs. She's been smiling since she was about 2 weeks old. But now it's like full on super happy big smiles. often. It's great.

I forget now why I didn't want to have more kids.

Don't tell my husband. He'll have me knocked up again in minutes if he hears this ;)

My sister is coming to visit this weekend. Hooray! Aunt Diana will get to meet Miss Carolina for the second time. Excellent...

Friday, August 28, 2009

another car ride, another afternoon of crying

Since we took Miss Carolina in a car twice this week, we have more experience with what makes her cry (and consequently delay the trip) and what we can do to calm her down. You've read similar tales before (bus ride to Central Park and car ride to Babies R Us), so I'll just cut to the chase.

We went to Brooklyn to visit Kari and Jenn's new apartment. Really we went to have lunch and ice cream and walk around the neighborhood a little. But the lady didn't like getting in the car in the first place. She was great at the Post Office when we were on line for her US Passport application, but that was the hour before we picked up the ZipCar. Ah... good. Needless to say, there was no lunch out and no walking around. There was a nice time at the apartment and a quick, but painfully full of crying, visit to the ice cream place.

The following day we took Miss thing in the car to visit her grandparents so that mommy and daddy could visit their accountant. The ride was longer, the visit was longer, and there was more napping. We even tried a few different things in the car from the day before. It was less crying-ful and yet we still will avoid car journeys as much as possible.

Here's what we learned:
  1. Feed her before you get in the car. Even if she's not interested. She'll be very interested as SOON as you start to drive forward. So, you'll spend the next 10-20 minutes with the feeding and then change the poopy diaper. Because, of course, she WILL POOP when you're in the car. She might not have for HOURS beforehand. But there will be poop while in the car.
  2. If you can, get her to relax and fall asleep IN the car seat before you get the car seat in the car. This is a tough one. It's the best and will not require you to do most of the following things, but it's hardly ever something you can time with her. It's really just a matter of luck.
  3. Bring 2 blankets. One to either wrap her or roll up to keep her sleepy head up and one, this is the more important one, to cover the car seat so she can't see all the wonderful life outside the window and less light. Keeping her focused on a smaller area, keeps her from freaking out about either not being able to see enough or, truthfully, from seeing too much and being overstimulated. She's a curious kid, so let's not overburden her by giving her too much to see when she's already unhappy about being in the car seat. I've since seen on Babies R Us website that there is some product you can zip up AROUND the entire car seat to keep it dark and, well, better than a blanket. I seriously don't need to keep track of more crap to bring in the car when we go out. The list is long enough right now thank you very much, and she's only 3 months old.
  4. Bring 2 chupons (pacifiers). If she spits one out and it makes its way to the car floor, there is little chance of getting it clean in time to pop back in her mouth to keep her quiet.
  5. Bring a little more milk than you think you need. I thought I did this, but you don't want to be, say, 1/4 ounce short and bear the wrath of still-a-little-bit-hungry baby. It kills me when it's been more than 4 hours and we have to throw away what she didn't drink, but it's better than screaming baby.
  6. Sit on the side of her car seat that makes it easier for you to rock it left-to-right for at least 20 minutes.
  7. "Car asleep" is not sleeping. Accept the fact that even when "asleep in the car" she will not really be asleep. So every pothole, bump, and construction hole that her father drives over will either surprise her (little hands go up in a kind of "I'm on a roller coaster and I don't like it" way), or wake her up completely.
  8. Keep moving. Know that if you have the option to keep driving or stop, keep driving. If it means going further out of your way, do it. Especially if she's just ABOUT to relax for a long while. Keep the car moving. The worst is when she's JUST ABOUT done and you stop at a light. Yup, the whole thing starts all over again.
  9. Nap interruptions have consequences. If you interrupt more than 2 nap periods, she will go to bed for the night much earlier than usual but it will be preceded with hours of on and off crying and not much smiling. So her usual happy self will be replaced with fussy baby. She did, however, fall asleep for the night at about 5pm and didn't wake up until about 10pm. She was about 10 minutes shy of a full 5 hour stretch of sleep. Of course that was followed by being awake every hour and a half afterwards, but I'll take the breaks when I can get 'em.
  10. Bring a Ryan. If you have the chance to have a Ryan around, do so. A Ryan is a good distract-the-baby-from-crying friend who luckily was around while we were in Brooklyn to entertain Miss Carolina for at least 20 minutes with just moving his hands around. God bless the Ryan :)
All in all, I'm not sure if it's better to drive her to bring her on the subway. I think it depends on the day and how "up" I am for having strangers stare at me while she sounds like I'm torturing her.

She was exceptionally unhappy in the subway on the way to the Mexican Consulate on Monday, and midtown Manhattan was completely overwhelming with all the sounds. I'm glad the Baby Ergo has a snap cover, so that we could cover her head and she couldn't look around as much. If you think she has big eyes normally, you should have seen how big they got when she was trying to take in all of 42nd St at 5th Avenue. Thankfully they were disorganized enough that we had to go home right away, and she slept on the subway ride home. But it was interesting.

Stay tuned for more Travel Tales with Miss Carolina....

She's going for her 3 month checkup today and there will be immunization shots involved. Hooray!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Grandparents are wonderful

I don't mean mine. Mine were totally awesome, of course, but have since been long gone.

I mean Carolina's.

Her abuelos arrived on the second week and taught us how to bathe her, use a pacifier well, change her diaper, swaddle her well... All the little things we do everyday. Thank god for that visit!!

And today, grandma and grandpa arrived with blackout shades and a crib. Put up the shades and assembled the crib. And then! Took care of her for two extra hours so I could go to my back doctor since I threw out my lower back on Wednesday afternoon.

When I got home, miss thing had only napped 40 minutes and drank 1oz of breastmilk. But she had two awesome poopy diapers. Phew!

Shortly after they left, I swaddled her and she eventually fell asleep in my arms in the living room. She was briefly awoken by fright at the sound of thunder. But then fell back to sleep a few minutes later. She is VERY cute while sleeping.

My arm might be nearly asleep but my back doesn't hurt and she is sleeping. Finally.

We will do "baby carwash" when she wakes up and then either fall asleep right away or wait for daddy to come home.

Either way. The day was MUCH easier because of grandparents.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A visit from south of the border and north of Columbus circle

Yesterday afternoon I threw out my lower back. Again. I keep trying to be the human rocking chair. And it's too much strain on my lower back. I've finally conceded that Ismael's way of rocking with the arms, not the whole body is good enough.

And we were happily visited by Nathalie and Bill. The dynamic duo who are always welcomed guests. Nath was in for a quick NYC visit and luckily had a few hours to stop by. Neither had met Carolina before and Ismael was able to come home early from work. They remind me, just by being themselves, why grad school was so intense and challenging and why I loved it. And why I was not satisfied at my last three jobs. Being competent, nay good, at project management does not equal passion or satisfactory challenge for the work.

Anyway. Blah blah blah.

So Nath and Bill visited. Nath carried her around until she cried. And Bill showed off his uncle-skills by singing to her gently when she was overtired. I knew she needed to be asleep even if she didn't and whisked her away to the bedroom. Again. Where, for the third time I'm two hours, she finally passed out. Followed by nearly three hours of asleep time.

I've begun to take for granted that I'll see her all day. Ismael only sees her in the morning since she is usually asleep when he gets home. He keeps resisting the urge (thank you) to wake her up and see her at night. Even though he's completely knackered most mornings, at least then she is more likely to be smiley and laugh. At night. She's often pleasant or cranky. Either way her best is in the morning.

So Nath is off; back to Mexico. (why are there no direct flights from NYC to Monterrey? Seems completely absurd given the size of both cities and geographic closeness. Bloody airports.) and Bill is still in the UWS with the woman who makes the bestest lychee martinis ever. Ever. Ever.

Thank you for the visit. The baby was impressed :)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

after the no sleep, there is sleep

Yesterday, we were blessed with almost 16 hours of sleep from Miss Carolina. I've continued the no-change-diaper-unless-absolutely-necessary (making up what 'necessary' means on the fly). She's had her diaper changed 2 fewer times than usual and got an extra hour of sleep in the day. She also SLEPT THROUGH THE USUAL 4AM FEED. That's right people, you hear me. She "missed" a feed. Her 3am was only a few minutes and not much of an effort at that. Maybe there is something to this magical "3 month mark" since she's going to be 12 weeks on Saturday. Hooray!

She went to sleep at about 6am, and her feeds from then until 1am were for 6-10 minutes a piece. All by herself she made the valiant effort to eat more and sleep more. And I made the effort not to disturb the peace by not changing her. There were still 4 wake up times, but I was glad to see even a shimmer of hope for sleeping more hours at night. She did, of course, wake up with an awesomely poop-filled diaper. But it was more pride than disgust. (Is she going to cower in horror and embarrassment that I speak of her this way, when she is older? Probably. Sorry, kid!)

In fact, I was waking myself up to see if she was making any noise, when she wasn't. And then I found myself being glad to see her little sleepy face when she was hungry. What the hell is wrong with me? I must have napped too much yesterday! I wanted to see her during the night? Delusional!

It must be Spike Lee talkin'

Right now, she's well into nap #2 of the morning and it's already been about 2 hours. It's still too hot and the air quality is too poor to go for a walk today. So maybe she'll sleep through it. Maybe she'll smile through it. She was being very smiley this morning again.

Funnily enough, yesterday and today, when I try to talk to my dad on the phone while she's in my arms she starts to make noise and disrupts the call. I'm wondering if this is a new trend. Complaining while I'm on the phone with her grandpa. Hmm...

This may be a good time to start asking myself this question: What will I do once she has a regular sleep schedule and I have a few hours to myself every day?

Will I work?
Will I write?
Will I become a Facebook junkie?
Will I cook burgers daily?
Will I become a professional napper?

I still think I should copy edit take out menus from the local area restaurants who have owners that write English as their second language. Some menus are awesome in their bad grammar and some are just bad. Only for the ones who are interested, I'd like to help them out by correcting them. In exchange, of course, for a quantity of food over a period of time. Say, free dinner for two adults, once-a-week for the next month? I wonder how you break into that business...

Monday, August 17, 2009

A call out to parents: nighttime poopy diaper, to change or not to change?

The most funny, but least oppotune time of smiling is at 4am after that feed and she's done a big poop... so I'm changing her diaper. Not always a poop time. Sometimes earlier at 1am or 3am but it has the same affect...

There is only a small nightlight but she can still see me. I know you're not supposed to look at them or talk to them during sleep times. So it's all I can do not to laugh.

I've just started to see if I can tolerate not changing her during the night and just feeding her. She's still at about 4-6 feeds a night and changing her after a poop seems to help wake her up. Not something I want to do. But then I feel guilty she's in her poop.

Ismael keeps reminding me that if she DID sleep through the night already I wouldn't be getting up to change her and she'd have to wait until morning anyway. And it seems that by using some Triple Paste the red from her butt goes away very quickly.

I've only done this one night. Should this be the new "way"? Or should I change her when she poops no matter what?

PS I must have slept almost enough since I had a dream! Spike Lee was directing a movie on the street I was walking across and he tells me to change her only when necessary since I'm blocking his shot. I'll do what Spike Lee says, just need to know what "necessary" means! :)

How babies r us is like ikea. Painful.

I am not a fan of shopping at Ikea. I have plenty of furniture from there and enjoy all of it. I'm a big fan of the brand and it's values. However I hate going there. It always is more crowded and hectic than I like, and we always get in a fight or at least snap at each other. Plus the car we bring (or our muscles) isn't big enough, or it starts to rain, or we can't lift the damn thing off the shelf to even checkout.

Anyway, so we went to Babies R Us yesterday. In manhattan. To get a crib mattress and maybe a glider chair.

What should have happened was we didn't go and let the baby sleep. We didn't and were punished with hours of crying/screaming and not much sleeping all day.

What should have happened was not a hasty reservation of a ZipCar and vision of a quick on and out to BRU in Union Square. It was quick. She fell asleep MOMENTS before arriving. And then going in to the store woke her. The chair was NOT on sale like I thought. I should have called before we left to be certain. But we did get the mattress. Hoo. Ray.

Also in unusual fashion I had forgotten the diaper bag. Gratefully the big poop I thought she did in the store was just an exhuberant fart. Next time we will ask ourselves: Will going to the store now make your life exceptionally better because the baby is with you? If the answer is anything other than an overwhelming YES, then don't go.

Everytime I take her out for more than an hour (yes that includes travel time), I regret it royally. She's just not ready for it and I don't have the nerves to deal with it.

She basically screamed in the store. Then in the car home. And wouldn't nap much when she did sleep. It took both of us about two hours after her bath to get her to sleep. She was exhausted. Yes. She was yawning. Yes. She would nod off. Yes. She would not stay asleep. No.

So at 7pm I also went to sleep. Blessing Ismael with a few silent hours. No crying baby. No nagging wife. Lovely.

Of course we still have a Zipcar reserved for the 25th to drive around Brooklyn neighborhoods we are possibly thinking of living in. And also to have birthday lunch with Kari who will be 29. But we no longer plan on walking around. A moving car means a happier baby. And if she's really bad. We will order lunch from kari's apartment and let Miss Sookums sleep on her bed. If we are lucky then we get to eat lunch outside like we did with Jee a few weeks ago in Sunnyside.

The following day we drive to NJ to leave her with grandma and grandpa while we have an appointment. Hopefully she sleeps there.

Sleep is so very important. Especially for someone this little.

Either that or I need better nerves or a different kid. I'm keeping her, I'm too old to change this part of me. So hello naptime and goodbye visiting stores and people as often as mommy would like. At least for another month or so. She's nearly 3 months and I hear 4 months is when magic starts to happen. Ha!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

If the kid seems crazy she's probably tired

Before we figured out her signs of tired, we spent almost two months thinking Carolina was becoming colic or some other stomach problem.

Almost every afternoon she would have a few hours, on and off, of crying loudly and what I referred to as "crazy time". She just seemed like she was a little crazy. Inconsolable. She'd move her legs up and down wildly sometimes which made us think it was gas. I totally changed my diet to help her. Almost no change. Bought a few different liquid remedies for colic. No help except we know she is no fan of the taste of anise, just like mom. And she doesn't care too much for chamomile tea, even with sugar.

She didn't nap much. Didn't eat a lot but did often, almost every hour on the dot. Didn't sleep much at night so we were convinced it was stomach problems. And we were giving her Mylicon like it was going out of fashion. It had a strangely quieting effect but didn't solve the "gas problem." Poor thing.

Wrong!

What made me realize it was one line in the book "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Baby". It basically said that all babies need to sleep after two hours of wakefulness. A gigantic lightbulb went off for me. Holy shit! Every two hours? She doesn't do that. She MUST be exhausted. Wait! She should be sleeping 15-18 hours every 24hour period?! Oh my god. She HAS to be exhausted. She doesn't sleep nearly that much.

Then the book goes on to explain that if a baby doesn't nap enough during the day, she will be overstimulated and won't sleep well at night. So keeping her up so she sleeps more at night is the exact opposite of what a baby needs. And she was awake until about 9-10pm many nights. I didn't realize how wrong that was, nor did I realize how not enough sleep could also affect her brain development. So i was on a mission now... I knew how to keep her up but no idea how to get her to relax to sleep. We thought she would just fall asleep when tired, like we do.

Wrong!

Her job was to give us the signals she was tired and we then had to provide the environment to help her sleep. We found "The Happiest Baby on the Block" techniques (thank you, Julia) to be the most helpful. So we now bring her to the room, make it as dark as possible, put on the AC and/or white noise machine, swaddle her firmly, put the chupon in her mouth and rock her if necessary. Sometimes she would still cry and fight sleeping so we put the "womb sounds" on loudly too. After about a week of being consistent in how we prepared her for bed and how nap time went, she fought less and slept more.

She might fight us the entire time but when the combination is right she will settle down right away and sometime within the next 30 minutes is usually asleep. Sometimes for just 20 minutes and sometimes for 3 hours, depending on time of day and other factors. But she sleeps.

She is far less "crazy" since we address her tiredness instead of stomach. She also looks happier when she wakes up.

I wish we had known these things earlier. Or rather how to institute them earlier for our daughter specifically. But we got it now.

And naturally she is developing a sort of schedule. Two naps in the morning after get up at 6am and a bath. And then at least two Naps in the afternoon. Some days the naps are long and sometimes short or some combo. But at least I know that by about 6pm, she will be sleeping soon and only get up to eat about 4-5 times until it's time to wake up at about 6am.

Don't get me wrong. I still long for the night when she will sleep 4+ hours. Some days I'm desperate for it. But at least she's less crazy and more smiley.

In order of checking when crying starts:
1. Outside pain? Easy since you can know immediately if you did something that was too tight or banged her.
2. Hungry? Again easy since if you shove the bottle or boob in she will usually take it. And always always get her to burp after a feed. Even if it's a tough one and takes a few minutes. The sitting up position with firm pats to her back are most efficient way to do it.
3. Tired? Go through every step to calm get down for sleep especially if there was even the smallest yawn recently.
4. Inside pain? Stomach problems. Other than burp. Maybe there's a poop a-brewing.

And that's my kid.

I hear one day she will even have a schedule of sleep I can follow so I can make plans. But I bet that's just crazy talk from parents of older babies trying to make me feel better ;)

Monday, August 10, 2009

nearly slept through a visit from our cousins

Yesterday we were given a much-needed massage as a gift from Jee. While my parents watched Carolina, Ismael and I were relaxing. It was the day after we went to Central Park for Ismael's surprise birthday afternoon.

She didn't sleep much on Saturday and apparently not much more on Sunday. Both nights were pretty typical. Getting up every 2 hours or so. But she'd wake up early, like 4 or 5am. And didn't particularly nap much. Not even when grandma and grandpa babysat on Sunday.

BUT THIS MORNING!!! After daddy left at about 8.45am, she was yawning a lot so I put her on the bed next to me after swaddling her and she wouldn't stop squirming but she was clearly tired. So I unswaddled her arms and put her on her belly, about 10 seconds later, BOOM asleep. I watched her to make sure her head was to the side enough and she was breathing and at some point I also fell asleep.

She started to squirm about 3 HOURS LATER!!! And then 5 minutes later the door bell rang.

We slept through my cousin calling a bunch of times that morning. He and his wife and two children were planning to stop by on their way back to Maryland, and they did. We had confirmed their visit on Friday and I nearly slept through it!

So quickly woke up, fed my kid and changed her diaper and we had a really nice visit.

Carolina met her cousins Rose and Sam, and after they left we went out for a walk in the Baby Ergo around the neighborhood. It's 95 degrees today and still Carolina loved being outside. She basically slept the hour we were walking around. I even had to go into a local supermarket to look around just to enjoy some air conditioning break from the heat and humidity.

The nice, Chinese lady from the laundromat on the corner came out and 'yelled' at me that it was too hot and sunny for the baby. I told her she was right. I should have brought an umbrella to keep the sun off her and really shouldn't have brought her outside. She was right.

As soon as we got back to the building, and I used my key to get into the front door her eyes shot open but she remained quiet. We walk down the hall and up the stairs, the two apartment door locks are opened and she starts to squirm and make noises. I put her down out of the carrier and she wasn't happy.

So I washed off her face to cool her down a little and then started to feed her in front of the A/C in the living room before she could get too fussy. She stayed pretty calm the rest of the afternoon. And I gave her an early bath at just before 5pm to help keep her relaxed.

Didn't nap after the walk outside, but was mostly pleasant. Just got fussy a handful of times and just went to sleep (I'm hoping for the night) about 5 minutes ago.

As soon as I can get a crib and mattress that is more firm than the pack n' play, she's totally going to be sleeping on her belly.

Three hours this morning! Hallelujah!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Testing public transportation and baby carrier

The past few weeks I've been going outside with her at least once a day in her Baby Ergo. I'm much happier as a "kangaroo mom" than stroller. And now that I know how to load her in it, she likes it too. The trees and a light breeze are her favorite. Sometimes if she hasn't gotten enough, she will hear me use my keys to get into the building and starts to make unhappy piggy noises or cry out. When she hears the keys to the apartment locks then we have full on screaming of unhappiness. I usually return too soon when it's super hot and humid and I can't handle it. Tough noogies, kid.

The past few days I've been "training" her on the bus and subway. So she takes it's smells and noises and movements as normal. The train is sometimes still too loud and the bus sometimes too cold but overall it's been successful. As long as she has her chupon, just in case, then almost all is right with the world. :)

I waited to say it as good news until she had a few more trips under her belt since I didn't want to jinx it nor have the first success be a fluke. Also I'm only taking her from home to Queensboro Plaza and then back. Round trip about 20-30 minutes. Still not in to Manhattan. I don't want to over do it.

Tomorrow we are meting up with the Allen family in Central Park. We will be taking the bus and Carolina will get to meet Lilly. Should be good. I'm getting mentally ready to do that trip again. Might bring an emergency bottle but plan to BF in public. I just need to do it and get used to it.

Wish us luck!!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Burgers by the beach in vallarta

I'm thinking of starting a burger, fries and milkshake joint by the beach in Vallarta. Maybe a full year business and maybe just part year. I'm already starting to plan the menu and business plans. I start trial and error (aka R&D) my own recipes tonight.

And yes I was greatly inspired by this month's issue of Saveur. That and my undying love of In N Out Burgers (animal style!!) and Shake Shack.

As she sleeps in my arms. Just moments ago passed out. Still with the pacifier in her mouth. I wonder if not returning to work is doing her any favors. Only or mostly being with me. Not much social interaction when she is older. Hmmm... A friend from work told me how they put their two year old girl into daycare since that's where all the kids in the neighborhood were during the day. So even though they could work from home and not need to send her, no one else's kids were in that boat. So they sent her just for the social interactions. Important. Surely.

Sigh... New York City is expensive on one salary. Nay, virtually impossible to live well if you're not single on one salary. (and no, mom, I'm not moving back to jersey.)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

We have a roll over

We really need to buy that crib now. The mattress pad thing in the pack n play has been distorted by putting on a too tight and bulky padded sheet. My mother insisted the baby would be uncomfortable with just a thin cotton sheet. Now after two months of regular, daily use the four sections of the mattress/pad are different thicknesses and don't lie flat.

Not my mother's fault but I'm tired and want someone else to bear this responsibility. Ah never mind.

So the middle two slat pad things are flatter than the ones on the sides. It's very obvious which ones we favored when we put her down.

So I put her on one of the edge ones this morning and she's rolled over on to her belly. Mostly because it's not flat/even, not that she has mastered rolling. Nope. Not yet.

But her lying with her nose so close to the sheet means that: A. I can't nap while I spend every other minute checking she is still breathing, because B. She is finally sleeping soundly. After a night of "up every hour and a half". Which was after a day of "I'm not going to tell you why I'm screaming. I'm just going to scream in what will appear to be random intervals and sound much like I'm in excruciating pain. And then I'll stop for a few moments or minutes. Then do it again. You won't have any idea why. You, too, will be overtired and cry. But there will be only two intervals of 30 minutes each when I'll sleep. I won't tell you when. It'll just happen. Then it will take you almost three hours for me to fall asleep for the night, since I'm WAY over tired by now. And when I do. I will only sleep for about two hours. But you won't know that. So you'll vainly hope it's for three or four hours. But nope! And i don't like that new formula or the other one. I don't care I've sucked you dry (well nearly dry) today. I want boob juice. (2hours later...) ok I'll take the formula from dad since he is letting mommy sleep for an hour in the other room. Good night! See you in an hour!"

yes. That was our day.

A friend of mine said that "colicky" is a bullshit term. It should be "terrorist." I don't know if this is colic or what. But I like the idea she could be another baby terrorist. Ha!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

things carolina likes and doesn't

Things she likes:

1. Feet rest: while feeding, having something to touch her feet/toes to
2. Trees: walking outside in the baby ergo to look up at the trees (This is only after she's fed, burped, changed diaper and calm, of course)... Even if she fights you while you're putting her in the Ergo and cries all the way to the front door of the building. She'll stop the moment you open the outside door and she knows it's not inside anymore. (this happens in reverse when you return to the building.)
3. Bath: a bath (of the right temperature, of course)
4. Smiling: a good laugh and smiling (after a soundly and enough-time nap/sleep)
5. Burping: a good, loud burp after a valiant struggle against the burps
6. Sleep: being swaddled and given a chupon (pacifier) by her dad en route to sleep for the night
7. Driving: Being driven in a car
8. Diapers: Pampers Swaddlers line of diapers
9. Colic Calm (she likes the taste more than Baby's Bliss but it stains everything black since it's base is a vegetable charcoal)
10. The Chair: vibrating chair with aquarium thing to watch
11. B&W video: "Wee See collection one" [http://vimeo.com/4837896] from WeeSeeWorld.com
12. The throne: Sitting up on the couch with grandma and grandpa (Actually being proped up on a blanket but she thinks she's sitting up and can see more stuff, which is always good for her.)
13. Being a big kid: Sitting up, standing up, and being able to see lots of stuff. (Curious much?)


Things she doesn't like:

1. gas, of the burp kind
2. gas, of the butt kind
3. a mostly empty boob
4. Non-Boob liquid: formula (even heavily mixed with boob milk)
5. Non-Boob liquid: water
6. Non-Boob liquid: vitamins
7. Non-Boob liquid: mylicon
8. Non-Boob liquid: infant tylenol (least offensive of the eye drop liquids)
9. Non-Boob liquid: Baby's Bliss (HATES anise flavoring I guess)
10. Cold Bath: a bath with tepid water (too cold)
11. Disturbed: being too-early awoken from her sleep (you will only do this once to her and then learn your lesson)
12. Light: bright, direct sun
13. Gas: when mommy eats ice cream (see #1 and #2 on this list)
14. Constrained: being swaddled against her will (free my hands!). Even if it does end up calming her down.
15. Heat: outside when it's too humid/hot and she gets all sweaty
16. the car seat
17. Diapers: gDiapers (although we try weekly to get her to change her mind)
18. The Chair: vibrating chair with the aquarium moving things and music.
19. Not being able to see a lot of stuff when we go outside in the stroller


I didn't put naps in the like or dislike list since I can't tell. It's mostly a necessity and so liking or not liking them really depends mostly on her level of tiredness vs. level of gassy-ness. Which ever level wins will determine if its a like or a dislike.


PS And apparently you people aren't very hopeful she'll be sleeping for 5 hours straight anytime soon. The winner was a tie between 12 weeks and 6 months. *sigh* Well, last night it was 3 hours, 3 hours, 2 hours, 2 hours, 1 hour. Then time to get up. Sweet! Not awesome but I'll take it. If only she'd stay awake enough to burp after she feeds during the night, the morning wouldn't be so scream-y sometimes. That damn gas!