Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Ismaelito's first steps

He took his first two steps yesterday and then later last night stood up by himself. Then this morning, he did this:

Friday, March 22, 2013

Third tooth, better sleep -- happier days

The baby's third tooth broke through today. It's the top, right side lateral incisor. I was expecting one of the front two to come next but his teeth had other ideas.

He's been sleeping MUCH better and longer since he is in his own room. Carolina is still in our room while the antibiotics take effect and until the baby stops getting up before 6am and cries until we go get him. His two naps are still working themselves out. They're happening regularly but the length isn't consistent, so there are days (like today) when he'll wake up well before 2pm and so getting to 6pm is very trying. He is NOT interested in a nap between, so I just do the best we can to keep him entertained, fed and rolling along until it's bedtime.

Ismael has been good about putting the baby into the crib shortly after feeding him his night bottle, and that has made it easier for me to do during nap time. So I don't have to wait, for what feels like forever, until he's totally, completely asleep before putting him down.

Carolina has been having some trying days, too, with being so sick. She really isn't trying to be difficult, so I've been as patient as I can. I feel really badly for her. This ear infection really knocked her out. I think she really likes sleeping in our room but I keep reminding her of her bed and her room and that's where she's going to go back. I'll let her know that her brother needs her and she can sleep with him. She seems to really enjoy the idea of sleeping in a room with other people. I didn't realize until about Christmastime that she would prefer that to being on her own.

Anyway, she finally went to school today (Friday) after a week of being home. SHE WAS READY. And since it was Children's Day, they let the kids wear whatever they wanted (no uniform) and did some special activities. She had a good time. I was glad the day she went back was a special day. She would have been crazy this weekend if she hadn't returned at least one day. I know my monkey; she needs her routine.

Ok, back to the whining parade!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Musical rooms (instead of musical chairs)

Saturday we took apart and put back together the crib so it could be moved into the kids' room. We got a blow-up bed for Carolina so she could sleep in our room until the baby adjusted to being in her room.

That afternoon, she came down with croup. That night, it was really bad. But, luckily, the kids were sleeping in separate rooms so they don't both get sick. It was good she was already in our room so I could check on her.

AND EVEN BETTER HE ONLY WOKE UP TWICE.  Papa has been going in to give him bottles and now they're best friends. He woke up last night at 12.30am, like the night before, killed the bottle and then not a peep (again) until 5.30am. We let him cry on/off until 6am. That's the rub. Getting him to stay quiet until 6am. We're not doing anything earlier anymore. Once that's more settled, Carolina can go back to her room. I'm hoping he relents by this weekend. But he's not going to win this one. Not this time.

And naps are going better, too. I'm relieved. As usual, I wish I'd allowed the change to happen sooner and glad that I got out of the way. Keep baby out of mommy's room and EVERYONE sleeps better.


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Red letter day, sleep progress

Last night, mostly out of exhaustion I continued with the "give bottle, hold until sleepy, put down" tactic and then let him cry until he fell asleep. Gratefully it was only about 10 minutes of crying and then he'd sleep. He got up 3 times, and one of those times we both had to leave the room so that he was alone to cry until he fell asleep, but he did it. We had to wake him up at 6.45am otherwise we were going to all be late getting out of the apartment this morning.

He did take the bottle each time. For him, he was drinking a lot -- 4 ounces each time. So, hopefully he gets that at night it's just bottle and not much mommy/daddy time and drinks up during the day. I really can't force him to drink any more or eat any more while he's awake. I mean, actually, he is eating every 1-2 hours. I would like to feed him less frequently but he's definitely more of a snacker than a meal-er. That's my doing since when he was much younger and we found out he had reflux, they told me to feed him smaller amounts more frequently. So I encouraged him to nurse more frequently, and consequently he'd take less. He's still on the meds for another week before we start weening him off that, but, look, whatever. It's going to work itself out.

He'll learn how to sleep on his own and eat when it's time. He'll go to school and dress himself and learn to use the potty.

But right now, right this minute, I'm totally and completely satisfied with what's going on.

All morning I've had the tune of "I'm So Pretty" (Sound of Music) in my head but with the words:

I'm so happy,
I'm so happy,
I'm as happy as happy can beeeee!
And I pity, any girl who isn't me to day.

Also, I told this (below) to a close friend, who is also a mom, and it's the truth. It's not something that my kids will enjoy reading but for any other mom out there, here you go:

I forgot about what happens to your boobs when you are weening a baby. I remembered the being very full and pain, but I forgot the stage between when you're full and when you get your "regular" boobs back. I remembered they are, ultimately, more droopy and look really small for a few days. But in the meantime, it goes something like this:

One boob is all like, "We're done? Later!" The other one is all like, "Are you sure we're done? Are you really sure? I mean, you can still change your mind. I got some milk here. I can make more!"

(Glad I have my sage tea to help with the boob that just isn't getting the hint. And in case anyone reading this is interested, this is the No More Milk tea: It works great. I don't get any benefit from sharing except in case someone uses it and it is helpful.)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Sleep, not sleep, sicknesses and bottles

The baby is now fully weened. He doesn't exactly realize that yesterday was his last night being nursed to sleep. I've been drinking sage tea, and surprisingly it's working. I was in much more pain and more full when I weened Carolina. I wish I had known about that tea then, it would have saved me 3 days of major discomfort. He's still looking for me to feed him sometimes, but he's adjusted to a bottle with formula better than I expected. I didn't expect much after the first few months of trying. He doesn't take more than 4oz a time, but whatever. It's progress.

Our plan, since he's not sick anymore, is to get him into Carolina's room this weekend. I have been putting him for his first nap, since Carolina is at school, in her room in the pack n' play. It gets him used to both sleeping in her room and the pack n' play. It's a bit hit or miss. He takes forever to stay down in his crib if he's not completely asleep. It's a bad habit, that I'm desperate to break.

He's started to only get up 2x a night BUT he can be up for an hour during that time. It is completely dark and quiet and still, he will be awake. Even if we hold him. He might just lay in our arms or try to get up, but either way, he's awake. If we put him in the crib to be by himself, he will usually do one of the following (for up to 30 minutes as that's the limit we can tolerate): cry, talk/play, call out Maaa-maa, or Pa-paa.

During this time, it is really cute to hear him call out our names regularly.

He seems to think it's his job to wake up at 11.30pm and 4am and get up at 5am. He might also believe that he gets bonus points for waking up sometime in between midnight and 4am. He also, clearly, thinks that he will "win the day" if he stays awake.

This morning is the first time I let him 'cry it out' for a nap. I waited the recommended 20 minutes and, literally, on the 20th minute he stopped crying. He is now in his sister's room in the pack and play and asleep, he did it himself! For the first time since he was only a few months old! God, I hope this is the first of many times he does it himself and hopefully without much crying. (I know this will eventually happen, it's just getting to that point.) If I know this kid, the next time I make him do this, he will resist more. He is pretty stubborn. But, one time is better than never!!

In the meantime, we're getting Carolina ready to welcome her brother into her room. She will help us re-organize where the furniture goes in her room. In fact, we are going to borrow my parent's blow-up bed in case she needs to sleep in our room while we work out what's going on at night with the baby.  JUST IN CASE she gets too tired from him being up and crying. She, cutely, insists she can sleep through it and wants to stay in the room with him, but I know with the way he's been the past month that she may not be able to do that.

Speaking of the past month, Carolina has REALLY enjoyed her ballet class.  She also seems to enjoy that it's just us going to her class, without her brother. The baby doesn't enjoy it as he cries endlessly the last 30 minutes he's with my mom, every week. The class is 45 minutes long and we are gone for just over an hour. My poor mom. She's still willing to do it every week. I have started to look for a baby sitter but I think it'll be worse. My husband disagrees. He wants the baby out of the bedroom and fully adjusted to a non-family babysitter RIGHT NOW. Ha. Yeah.

PS that nap lasted 30 minutes. and he was crying his eyes out.  short but not bad.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Ear infection gone, so are some naps

Well, it looks like the ear infection is gone and the new cold I thought the baby was developing is turning into more of allergies. (Mommy needs to dust more often!)

He seems to be giving up his early morning nap (the 7am one) and getting up a wee bit later (5.30 or 5.45am instead of 5am. Thank you!). And his fourth nap, the 4pm one, seems to be going away too. He gets wicked tired about 4.30/5pm but there's just no putting him down. So he powers through and I get him in bed by 6/6.30pm at the latest. Seems to be working as the last two nights, although he cried out a few times between 7 and 10pm, but wasn't really awake, he only got up to feed around midnight and some 3/4am time.

I realize that this isn't a great situation for a 9 month old in many families, but after the last 4 weeks we've had, this is a blessed relief and I'll take it.

In other news, his big sister is doing very well in school. I went to the parent/teacher conference tonight. She's doing about the same as she was in fall, and has made some improvements. So we'll keep working on her holding her pencil, dealing with her when she's feeling moody, and helping her with her letters and numbers and sounds. Really, though, I'm truly impressed with what she's accomplished in a short amount of time.  She can write pretty well and knows 95% of all the numbers and letters ALL THE TIME. She forgets some when she's feeling tired or stressed sometimes, but mostly she's on top of it.

She's a cutie pie and I'm really proud of her!!

Also, she's really, really enjoying her ballet class. I'm so glad that it's close by and she likes it so much.