Showing posts with label sleep. Show all posts
Showing posts with label sleep. Show all posts

Sunday, January 12, 2014

night terrors

Since we welcomed Ainsleigh home Bennett has had horrible night terrors. Every night he wakes up crying and nothing we say or do calms him down. I don't know if what he is having are actual night terrors because he does wake up, but whatever he is going through is awful to witness.

Bennett used to wake up every night and come upstairs to us. That was our routine, we were all used to it. But since Ainsleigh's birth his coming upstairs routine involves a lot of drama and wakes the house up. I have no idea if this is just an adjustment period, but I want it to stop. It makes me sad that he is upset but won't let us comfort him. We use Calms Forte before bed some nights, but he refuses to take it when he's really upset in the middle of the night.

We've been struggling with naps too. If Bennett naps the night time routine is a nightmare. We switched over to rest time, which was really going well, but now he's refusing to be alone in his room. I leave the door open with the baby gate up and the light on, but he still cries and yells, "Save me!"

It's so frustrating when I want to get in a 20 minute workout during quiet time, but all I can focus on is his screams of, "The dog scared me! Save me!" Do I think the dog barking outside really scared him? No. Do I think he needs saving? No. But if I think there is a slight chance B is scared or upset I go to him. That's reason # 500 why cry it out sleep training methods never worked for our family.

Some nights Bennett is so upset I just stand and pray over him because I have no idea what else to do. Other nights a pat on the back is all he needs. He goes right back to sleep, no crying or screaming. Every night at some point he wakes up and has a hard time settling. J is good with him. He can usually get him calm and back to sleep upstairs with us in a few minutes. So I guess we're dealing with it but I want it to stop altogether.

B doesn't sleep very long before waking anymore. He used to make it to 3 am or so, now he's with us by 10 or 11 most nights. At least the going to bed routine is fairly easy - so long as we skip his nap. The two hour (or more!) bedtime routine we were going through before we moved him to the toddler bed was brutal.

I have no idea why B struggles so much with sleep. Well, I have a bit of an idea. I think his allergies make it difficult. He is always itchy to some degree, even with the very limited diet we have him on. And before we knew what he was allergic to his sleep was always disrupted because he was miserable. Bennett spent the first months of his life too itchy and uncomfortable to sleep well and I think that's really affected his sleep patterns.

Last night was particularly bad. I was at a total loss. J was understandably frustrated. Both kids were awake, it was late and I had no idea what to do. Then I remembered how I used to calm Bennett down when I would find him crying in pain in the middle of the night, his face bloody from where he had been scratching: music videos. So I found a video of Billy Joel singing Lullabye and we sat on the bed in the dark and watched until Bennett was calm enough to go back to sleep.

As I sat next to Bennett last night I patted his leg - which made him scream, of course - and reminded myself that this will not last forever. It's difficult, some nights are very long, but most nights as soon as he is with us he settles. And J is the one who deals with it night after night. I don't know what I would do without him.  I think Bennett will grow out of sleeping with us by the time he is three or four. And by the time he's six or seven I'm really going to miss it. 

Monday, May 27, 2013

toddler bed saga (part two)

Phase one is complete! Dance and sing with me! Okay, maybe not that, still feeling a little nauseous. Let's sit really still and eat chocolate instead.

B understands that the toddler bed is where he must sleep. He doesn't try to come with us, or climb in my arms or wail "mama!!" when he wakes at night.

Brave boy preparing for what's to come (he's not crying, he had an allergic reaction after eating toast from the trash (see last post) and his face is smeared with cream)

B does not understand how to sleep through the night. That's phase two. And it is going to be a rough one. Oh mercy, tonight is night one and I already feel like crying even though he has yet to wake.

After trying the two/three method I wrote about in the last toddler sleep post for a few days we realized it was 

a) stupid
b) totally not working for us 
c) absolutely not right for B

J came up with the brilliant idea to put B in bed, then step outside the door, but leave the door open so he can still see us. It's working really well! B loves sleeping in his toddler bed, he climbs right in at night, and after we do the usual bedtime routine he usually falls asleep within 10-15 minutes. This is a vast improvement over our previous time (1-2 hours!!!!). He has also started staying in bed at night when he wakes up. There are far fewer wailing trips to the door to wait for one of us to stumble downstairs and urge him back to bed.

However, we are still stumbling downstairs multiple times a night to settle him. 

SO - phase two: teaching him how to go back to sleep without any assistance at all. We're going to start slow, let him fuss a bit before we open the door and let him know we're there, then work our way up until he sleeps through the night. Sounds simple, but I don't know if it will work. I'm so tired from phase one (and I had a lot of help from J!) I'm not sure I'll survive phase two. B is tired as well, but we are making progress so we're going to push on.

We're having a little fun too: a couple nights ago it was 4:45 in the morning and I could not get B to settle. I'd been up 40 minutes and just wanted to sleep so I left his door open a crack and went back to bed. I woke up at 7:15 to toddler feet racing through the downstairs of the house. As B called out, "Hi, Iz!!" from the living room I kicked J awake and said, "Baby's on the loose! Go get him!"

I have no idea if these posts are helpful, or useful, but this is how we are gently sleep training our toddler. I'm not saying waiting until 20 months is ideal, but it seems to be working. I'll follow up with another post or two, perhaps do one on how we set B's room up now that he's a free agent at night.

One other bit of news that has nothing at all to do with toddler beds: I figured out how to tweak the Blogger settings so I can directly reply to comments via email. I think it's working ... ?? and I really look forward to using the feature!

Monday, May 20, 2013

toddler bed saga

We are on night four of Operation Bennett Sleep Through the Night for the Love of All That is Holy Please. There is a plan, provided by our naturopath before we decided to take a break from that doctor, but the plan does not seem to be working.

The basics: night one we spent two minutes in the room with B using comforting words, then stepped out for three minutes, then put him down as we normally do (sitting next to his bed). On night two we went in for two, out for three, in for two, out for three, then settled him as we normally do. Bet you can guess what we did the following night.

Every time B wakes up during the night we do the same routine. Our doctor said, "it works because kids get bored." Well, B is far from bored. He's mad, and maybe even a little anxious, but he is not bored. As soon as we step out of the room he flies out of his bed and beats feet to the door where he wails until we come back in. And at the end of the in and out time it takes us FOREVER to settle him down (I'm talking 45 minutes to 1.5 HOURS).

After three nights of 3-5 hours sleep broken into chunks I'm feeling a little crazy. Pregnancy fatigue is not helping, of course. J has been stepping in as much as he can, but I try to preserve his sleep since he works every day. Also, naps are super hard to come by so I don't get to rest during the day. We're going to try this for a week, but by the time we reach that goal I might be certifiable.

And if this doesn't work we don't know what to try next.

Sleep has always been a major issue for us. I think some of it can be chalked up to B's allergies (he was itchy for a good chunk of his early months, which meant a lot of interrupted sleep). Another bit of it can be blamed on me, I think. I've always believed that if B needs me he should have me, which means if he wakes at night he expects to come in to our bed. And there have been times when I need him; when I need to know he is alive and breathing through the night. He's never attached to a toy or blanket. He's never learned how to self soothe. And all of our attempts to teach him have failed miserably.

I feel like I've completely failed in this area of parenting. B is 20 months old and I can count on one hand the number of times he has slept through the night. I really hope this plan kicks in and works in the next couple days. I have no idea what to do if it doesn't.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

you're going to miss this someday

I'm probably jinxing things up one side and down the other, but B is sleeping ever so slightly better. We've found the perfect balance and I can only hope it stays this way. He sleeps in his crib for a good long stretch - sometimes til 3, sometimes midnight, I prefer the 3 am hour - then comes in with us. It's perfect because if he were to stay in his crib all night I would miss him. A lot.

I need a few solid hours of sleep without B right up next to me, but after that I like having him close. When he wakes I go down and lift him from his crib. B clamps his arms and legs around me so tightly I couldn't put him down if I wanted to. I say, "There, there, come in with Mama and Daddy," carry him upstairs and settle him next to me. B likes to share my pillow. He likes to sleep nose to nose with one little hand tucked behind my head, nestled tight behind my ear.

It's amazing how comfort is perceived by little ones. Children don't need much. They're quite simple really. I tend to make parenting all about what I'm doing right and where I'm failing, but what really matters is that B knows I'll be his comfort; I will pick him up and cuddle him night after night after night. Even when I'm so exhausted I cry I hold him close because someday, years from now, I'll miss that tiny hand furled behind my ear.


I'm in one of those moods where I want to know you. So if you feel like it, leave a comment, send an email, tell me your story.


Saturday, January 5, 2013

on sleep

I can barely move this morning. My neck hurts. My back aches. I'm tired. I'm grumpy. I have a headache. Lately sleep has been fractured, split into pieces, disturbed. J is still sleeping downstairs. He came up one night, but B was so restless he couldn't get any sleep. B was doing so well for a little while. He would go down in his crib, sleep until 2 or 3, then come in with us. It felt like a good compromise. It was working for everyone. Then we all got sick and he needed us all night every night. Now he starts in his crib, but only goes down for a couple hours before wanting to come in with me.

B loves his people. B loves mama and daddy and he loves to have us nearby. He doesn't just like sleeping in our bed, he likes sleeping on me. Which is why my neck and back hurt all of the time. Which is why I don't sleep well. Having B tucked up under my chin is cozy and sweet, but it's not very comfortable.

We are, once again, in a place of needing to do something, but we have no idea what to do. Our plan is to wait until we get home from Hawaii, because that is going to disrupt schedules something awful, but we don't have a clue of what to do.

I've written about sleep so many times. And I've been told to try this or that book, or this or that method, but nothing seems to work. We get B on a good schedule, everyone's happy, but it only lasts a little while. The rashes are definitely part of our problem. He has had rashes on and off his entire life. Being itchy is a common state of being for B, which I hate. We've definitely developed skills to deal with his rashes, and we've been able to control them better now that we understand his allergies, but he still rashes. Sometimes it seems like he is allergic to the air. Seriously.

I am hesitant to write about sleep (again) because it feels like I'm putting a foot across that do not complain line all baby loss mamas draw. I admire the ones who can stick to it, because I just can't. I have to vent a little. I have to say, this is hard, I'm tired and unsure of what to do. And my counselor told me it's okay to complain a little because it's impossible to feel grateful for Bennett every hour of every day.

Sometimes I just want to be a normal mom. One who can say, "My kid won't sleep" without adding, "but I'm so lucky!", "I don't mind!", "I'm just glad he's healthy!" I think one can complain without wishing their child away, but it's hard to do so without feeling guilty. Truth is, I would be absolutely fine with Charlotte tucked up under my chin. I would take that over her being gone. Of course I would. But she's not here, and I have to find a way to comfortably parent with this altered mama self she left behind. And this mama wishes her little would sleep through the night in his crib.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

desperate measures

This morning J and I went out to breakfast at a super popular place in town. J was so tired I don't know if he even remembers going. He'd been up since 3am with Bennett. Yep, that's right. Our nearly one-year-old would not settle so J held him from 3-7am and made him sleep.

It's not supposed to be like this, right?

After breakfast Bennett and I went to Target - oh lovely place - to buy a crib soother. J was throwing around reintroducing pacifier threats and I was eager to avoid that since we weaned him once and having to do it twice just seems to be inviting trouble.

You know what that $45.00 crib soother did? NOTHING. Which is what I expected, but I had to try something. This evening I nursed Bennett, turned on the crib soother (lights, music, little fish that swim about) and left the room. I thought he would be interested in it and wouldn't be too upset that I had left.

He screamed (and screamed and screamed and screamed) while I sat on the couch inhaling chocolate chips and J played a video game. After a chunk of time had passed (not revealing how much lest you hate me) I went in and realized he needed his diaper changed. I changed his diaper, held him for a few minutes and then put him back in his crib. And he screamed a while longer. We dug out a pacifier. He refused it. We let him cry a bit longer and then J settled him by sitting next to the crib and gentling him to sleep.

It's quite flattering that he prefers me over lights, noise and simulated swimming fish, but I really wish he didn't. Bennett craves human interaction. He loves people and socializing and hanging out. I've really struggled with his need for me during the night. A small part of me thinks he needs to learn how to hang by himself at night. A larger part of me thinks he's a baby and if he needs his mama he should get his mama no matter the hour. But now that we're transitioning into his second year of life (sigh) something's gotta give.

Guys, we're exhausted. We're short tempered (me, mostly) and worn down and J is just getting over a bout of sickness and we can barely hold our heads up anymore. I feel like we're doing something wrong, or like there is something wrong with Bennett; like he came to us with his sleep wiring all confused.

I feel so selfish for writing this out but I want to put him to bed at night and then be done with parenting for a little while. If he needs milk in the middle of the night, fine, but waking up at 10:20 every night and then every two hours after that is just too much. I've been working on settling him down without milk when he first wakes. Sometimes that works until midnight or 2am, but he's back up at 5 wanting milk and he is up for the day at 6. I'm averaging 4-5 hours of sleep - not all in one go mind you - every night. It's just not enough. A LOT of my IRL friends don't struggle with this issue, which makes me feel more inadequate

Crying it out doesn't work. 

Rocking him to sleep nets three-five hours sleep though a five hour stretch is a rarity. 

Giving milk once a night doesn't work.

Bringing him to bed with us only works half the time, and I would rather not bed share.

Offering comfort items doesn't work.

I don't think it's a diet thing. He's dairy, wheat, egg and nut free.

We're trying the chiropractor next. We just don't know what else to do.

We are so tired. And I'm worried I've unintentionally set him up for a lifetime of sleep problems.

I'm just really overwhelmed right now. Tired, frustrated, a bit sad too.


I'm still eating chocolate chips. I should probably go to bed.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

2:30 am

Please tell me your child does this too.

When Bennett learned how to crawl he pulled this stunt one night. I hope the trend continues for this milestone. I can't take another night like last night. J and I were both so frustrated with him by the time 2:30 rolled around.

I guess running around the park for two hours yesterday morning wasn't enough exercise. We took the plunge on the community center membership. It will be so nice to have somewhere to go this fall and winter. I have to get Bennett out of the house at least three times a week or we start to annoy each other.

And I am going to get in shape! I am at a very healthy weight, and I think I look quite good all things considered (two back to back pregnancies and lots of stress eating) but I want to be in shape as well as a healthy weight. We took a bit of a gamble when we purchased the membership. Our goal is to work out together, but if Bennett won't tolerate the on site child care we will have to go it alone and that will be much more difficult.

My goals are to maintain my current weight (within a couple pounds. I have a bit of wiggle room right now. Thank goodness, I love sweets) tone things up a bit and be able to keep up with Bennett.

How did I start with Bennett's night waking and end up at fitness goals? Extreme sleep deprivation makes the brain an incoherent mess. When Bennett sleeps through the night we are having a party. You're invited. Bring cake.

*I don't know why my blog background isn't working. I hope to have it fixed soon.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

so we're trying this now

morning nap

This is also known as the "get out of our bed, kid" maneuver.

Parenting is a constant dance from one adventure to the next.
I love it.
And I love him.

evening rest

I hope he doesn't fall off.

Friday, July 6, 2012

this baby!

slept in his crib all night on the fourth.  Bennett was like, "Oh, mom, you're not enjoying this?  Why didn't you say so?"  I wrapped him in one of my knee length cardigans and he slept.  All night.  Even with fireworks booming overhead.  He slept.  In his crib.  With only two feeds.

And then last night he stuck to the two feeds routine as well, but didn't want to stay in his crib after 3, so I brought him in with us.  But 3 am is so much better than 10 pm.  I just don't sleep as well with him in our bed.

I think he was going through a two month long growth spurt - is that even possible?  I think he needed to be close to his food source while he was packing on some pounds.  Sweet boy is solid now, he even has a couple fat rolls on his thighs.  Solids + mama milk is working wonders.

Two good nights, hopefully more to come.  Bennett decided he was ready to go back in his crib, and despite my wishing and hoping and pushing it wasn't going to happen before he was ready.  Lesson learned.  Maybe.

Those two curls ... too much cuteness

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

we need a sleep intervention

Yes we do.

And yes we are going to talk about sleep again.  I think this falls under the category of it's my blog and I'll cry if I want to.  And I want to.  A lot.

I put Bennett down late last night so he would sleep late.  Then I woke up at 5:30 to nurse him and just had to go to the bathroom, which means he woke up too and would not go back to sleep.

Yeah, that's right, he's back in our bed.

He goes in his crib initially, but after his first nursing he screams his head off if we try to put him back in his crib.  After nights of rocking him for hours we finally gave up in the name of sanity and he now sleeps most of the night with us.

Which works, at least we're all sleeping, but he isn't really a good bed sharer.  He wants to nurse more and he wakes up early, which is just not working for me.

I really want him to drop one feed.  I think nursing three times at night at ten months old is a little excessive, but maybe he needs it??

See, that's where I go wrong, every darn time.

I keep coming back to needs and how he's a baby and if he needs his mama and if he needs to be close and if he needs milk then he should get it.  It's only fair.

Which is why the little bit of cry it out we attempted did not work.

I buy more into the attachment parenting school of thought I guess, but why does my school of thought require so much sleep deprivation?

It's so frustrating because we were really getting somewhere with his sleep until his first tooth came in.  He was nursing less, sleeping more, napping well.  Everyone was happy.  And now he's on the go all the time and if I'm to have a hope of keeping up with him I need more sleep at night.

Bennett is getting into everything he's not supposed to, which is why I usually write when he's napping, but I just had to vent this out so I can mother with some competence and calm today.

Thanks for reading about my sleep complaints for the thousandth time.  Leave no book recommendations or method suggestions, please.  I have lots of friends whose babies sleep through the night and I don't want to hear any more success stories.  I will take horror stories, however.  Misery loves company after all.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


This is how it's been lately.  Little man is unhappy.  He is not sleeping well, he is breaking out in hives from the vaccine he received yesterday, he is tired and miserable and spent.

I'm unhappy because he's unhappy.  I was talking to a friend on the phone this morning about his sleep issues and she said, "Whatever you do, be consistent."


That is so exactly where I've been struggling - and failing.

I need to be consistent so he can sleep, so J and I can sleep, so there isn't a baby crawling around the living room laughing at midnight.


I was never going to be "that mom," until I had a baby and realized every mom is "that mom" at some point.

So I am going to work on being more consistent, and if you could pray for me - or think of us - as we do our best to raise this sweet boy I would really appreciate it.

We've had a few hard days (Isabel is an outside dog now, enough said) and many sleepless nights, but there is homemade bread fresh from the oven cooling on the stove and even if I don't know a thing about parenting I do know this: warm bread with butter cures most anything.

And if you want to come over for warm bread and a cup of tea I wouldn't say no.  The baby is napping, but I would love the company so long as you don't mind my unkempt hair and pajama pants.

Friday, May 25, 2012

wits' end

I just don't know what to do about B's sleep problems.  I know things just seem bleak because I'm exhausted and in the middle of trying to get him to nap - AGAIN, the morning one was a battle too - but goodness it's frustrating.

We finally had him on a good routine and now he's back to waking constantly.  I think he might be teething, but every time I've thought that before I've been wrong.  Most days I get to the point where my efforts are not working so I give up and put him in his crib where he sobs and screams.  But most of the time that works, and within a few minutes.

Rocking is not wanted, and lately nursing to sleep isn't wanted either.  Standing over the crib was working - and sometimes that still works at night - but most of the time it just makes him try to scale the crib to get to me.

And my saving grace - bringing him to bed with me in the middle of the night, or napping with him - no longer works.  He will not settle anywhere but his crib, and he does not tolerate anyone sleeping next to him.

The problem is that he doesn't want to nap, he wants to stay up and play, but he must nap for his health, and my sanity, so I have to ensure he does.

I've tried everything, I've even strewn toys about his crib so he can play if he doesn't want to sleep right away.  It's like he has to cry some to fall asleep, and when I hold him while he does so it's a harder, more angry cry.

Honestly, I don't know if this is best.  I have no idea if we're doing the right thing. We're trying,  we've read a few articles and books, but what those sleep and parenting books don't tell you is that every baby is different, and what's right for one may not be right for another. (I despise parenting books, but that's another topic for a different day.)

B is sleeping now.  When I went in the third time to soothe him he let me rock him to sleep.  Not in a cradle hold, mind you, but tummy to tummy, his head pushed up against my neck, which he used to hate.

This too shall pass, right?


I'll take "been there," "know your pain," "shoot, I'm sorry," but I would rather not hear, "do this, "try this," "you're going about it all wrong."  This is one of those times I need to vent a bit without receiving advice in return.

Monday, April 16, 2012

sleep plan

I had a meltdown the other night.  It was a bad one, we'll just leave it at that, so we decided to come up with a better sleep plan for Bennett.  We've only done it two nights, but it's worked extremely well.

J discovered this website which gave us the base for our plan.

The Plan

No pacifier.  That little bink is making our lives miserable, so it's gone.  B still gets it for his naps, but I want to wean him off it entirely soon.

White noise. J downloaded an MP3, we hooked the MP3 player to a small portable stereo and set it up in his room.  The first night we didn't have a good system set up.  Poor B woke up screaming when his white noise switched to Casting Crowns. Oops.  Now it plays continuously all night long.  We use it for naps too.

Put down awake.  I rock B until he is mostly asleep then set him down in his crib.  The website suggests using a swing, but B was having none of that.  The first night he slept soundly until the music woke him up.  Putting him to sleep after that was a struggle.  I went upstairs while J stood outside the nursery listening to him cry.  He was crying in a cyclical fashion (fuss, calm down, doze off, fuss, calm down, doze off) so we let him fuss.  After fifteen or so minutes he settled and slept well.

Last night he cried for a few minutes after being set down.  J tried to calm him without success, then I walked with him for a few minutes while singing his favorite calm down song, set him down, and he went to sleep.

He slept from 7:15 to 3:45.

After nursing at 3:45 I couldn't get him to settle in his crib without screaming.  I brought him upstairs with me and he slept in our bed until 8:45.  That's the best night we've had in a long, long time, and that's the longest he's gone between feeds at night.  I woke up before he did this morning, refreshed and headache free for the first time in weeks.

Comfort item.  I give B whatever shirt I've been wearing for the day to sleep with. It was amazing to watch him the first night.  I set him down in his crib, he fussed once, pulled my shirt to his cheek, rolled over, and slept.

There is an element of sleep training to our plan, but I feel like it's a gentler method than straight crying it out, which is where we were headed.  I was so frustrated with B, and tired, I wasn't as good of a mom during the day.  I was so done with every nap a struggle, every night spent rocking, soothing, nursing with a few scattered hours of sleep.

I think the best part of the plan is that Bennett will go down awake and fall asleep with minimal to no fussing.  There's no way I could handle him screaming for an hour, but I can handle a few minutes of fussing.  In two days we've learned when he's settling himself to sleep and when he's crying because he needs something.

B is napping right now without needing to be held.  I'm writing this then heading into the kitchen to work on my homemade rolls and chicken noodle soup for dinner.  We had a good day, B and I.  I was more patient with him, kinder, calmer. And he was well rested, less fussy than he has been in a while.  We had a great time shopping this morning.  When he wakes from his nap we'll play until bedtime and for the first time in a while I won't dread the process.

Bennett chats with the baby in the mirror while I try on jeans

Thursday, March 15, 2012

blueberry muffins and eight hours sleep

B finally settled down and slept well last night.  The previous three nights were absolute misery.  Night before last he screamed in my arms for a solid hour.  I eventually put him in his crib and sat in the hall for a few moments to compose myself.  We thought it was his teeth so we gave him Tylenol, but even that didn't help.  Last night he slept all night in his crib, woke to nurse at 10:30, 3:30, and then slept until 8:30.  I really needed the sleep, I'm so glad he had a good night.

The month of homemaking continues.  This morning I popped B in the Ergo and made a batch of blueberry muffins.  It was my first attempt, they turned out pretty well.  I used this recipe.  I've been craving them and planned to buy a mix at the store yesterday, but after looking at the ingredients list I decided to bake from scratch.

So this morning I've had half a bagel and two blueberry muffins.  I think I want B to nurse forever so I can continue eating like this without gaining weight.

When J saw me looking up blueberry muffin recipes on Pinterest he said, "You know, I would eat bran muffins for breakfast ..."  I guess that's next on my list to make.

I've cooked nearly every day this month.  J and I went to a movie at the theater pub one night and had dinner out one other night, but other than that I've cooked every meal.  I think J likes coming home to dinner instead of me in the kitchen searching through cupboards and eventually saying, "Hmm, how about pancakes or grilled cheese?"  I've also tried a few new recipes: chicken parmesan, pulled pork, chicken taquitos.  I can't believe I haven't had a fail yet.  When I checked the calendar last night I sighed with relief to see spaghetti written down. Something easy that I know how to make, wonderful!

After dinner last night B reached for my water glass and tried to drink.  We got down on the floor and I helped him get down the last of the water.  We got soaked in the process, but it was amazing to watch him figure it out.  It was a tall water glass too, not the easiest cup to start out with.  It's so exciting when he learns something new.

After he downed the rest of the water

We've been having a series of Northwest storms.  Wind and rain, power outages, lots of thunder.  It's pouring outside this morning.  I'm going to curl up, have a mug of tea and another muffin, or ten.

B says hello.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

sleep talking and dress finding

B is a sleep talker, yeller, mutterer, whiner, crier.  Goodness it's been crazy around here at night.  Before we go to bed we strain to hear if he is awake or asleep.  Time and again we start to struggle out of the depths of the couch, abandon shows, movies, video games and books only to realize B is making all that noise in his sleep.

He is SO loud.

Last night I woke up from a deep, deep sleep.  I was in the middle of what would be a four hour stretch and I was having a hard time waking up.  I glanced at the clock, two hours since his last feed, but he was whimpering, on the way to a cry.  I dashed downstairs - in a slow, sleepy manner - hoping he wouldn't wake J.  I try to preserve J' sleep as much as possible on the weekdays.  On the weekends I'm head under the covers, you go get him, give me two more hours mama.

I pushed open the door to B's nursery, which cracked as it always does, and peered into his crib.  Sound asleep.  How can a baby make that much noise and stay asleep??  Flat on his back, hands up by his head, gone to the world of dreams and stars.

These night noises have developed recently, like in the past two weeks.  I don't know if it's part of his sleep cycle, or if he's just a noisy sleeper.  Maybe that's how he settles himself down after waking or entering a lighter sleep stage?  He's so loud, and I'm hearing it over the monitor, which is halfway across the bedroom.

When he's right up in your ear it's downright deafening.  He likes to sleep with his head under mine when he is in our bed.  He pushes and pulls himself until he's next to me then burrows down until his head is under mine.  The other night I woke up to a whole lot of babbling and sighing.  It was him, mouth against my cheek, talking away.

B is growing and changing so much.  Six months tomorrow, can't bear the thought of it.

On a completely unrelated topic ... I am taking a risk sharing this, but I just have to.  It's too fabulous and secret keeping is not my thing. (J if you are reading STOP. You say you rarely do, I'm believing you).

I found the most amazing dress for that weekend in April (you know the one) while shopping with my mom today.  We went to our local Fred Meyer for groceries, but I wanted to look at the dresses.  It's like some part of me knew the perfect one was there even though I never buy clothes at Fred Meyer.

It was on clearance too!  And I needed a smaller size than I expected!  It's super short, I need tights for decency and comfort, but it's comfortable, it fits, IT HAS POCKETS! and for the first time ever I am excited and in love with a dress.  Wait, I take that back.  I loved my wedding dress.

Here's a blurry dressing room phone picture for ya:

Amazing, yes?  I will probably wear a nice cardigan, I just don't show that much skin ever, and like I said above, super short, needs tights, but it's cute, right?  I think I did a fabulous job with this one.  If you tell me otherwise it will break my heart.  I may even break out that sparkly headband ...

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

sleep training lite

We're sleep training - I guess?  We enforce naps and bedtimes, make B stick to a schedule.  It keeps him happy, which in turn keeps us happy.  Kid needs at least two naps a day to be civilized, three is ideal.  I admit, some days I don't want to go anywhere or do anything because it's easier to stay home and keep him on schedule.

B nurses three times a night.  I would love to say goodbye to the 10:00 feed, just do 3:00 (or 4 or 5) and 7.  Wait, maybe that's twice a night, 7 is usually his wake up time.  He does well at night, but from the time he goes to sleep at 7 until his first feed is usually rough.  Most nights he will settle until 8:00 or so, but then he goes through his witching hour(s) which consists of taking out his pacifier, fussing, crying because he doesn't want to be awake, one of us fetching his pacifier, soothing, and a few minutes of sleep before it starts all over again.

I would love to break him of this habit, but don't know how.  I've kind-of, sort-of, not really attempted letting him cry.  It does not work.  At all.  B goes from babbling to mad to hysterical to hyperventilating in about five minutes.  We let him fuss for a while last night (fifteen minutes).  By the time I went down he was beside himself.  I was lifting him out of the crib when he arched his back and threw his head back screaming all the while.  I was reaching for his pacifier at the same time and I dropped him.  Scared me half to death.  He didn't fall very far, and he only hit his mattress, but what if he had done that over the floor??  His mini baby tantrums have me dreading his full on toddler fits.

Once B settles in after his 10:00 feed he's good to go.  He doesn't fuss too much, he settles right in after nursing, I don't have to work with him very much. Most of the time.  Last night at 11:00 I gave up and let him sleep in our bed.  I have to say, I don't think how well he sleeps has to do with us.  I think it's more about him and his personality.  Some babies sleep well, some don't.  I feel lucky that he sleeps as well as he does.

I think he's struggling to sleep (naps have been a nightmare today) because the new, stronger probiotics are hurting his tummy and he has a fresh eczema outbreak on his face.  And maybe his not yet poked through teeth are bothering him??

Speaking of eczema I've been doing a lot of research.  Here's what I've learned:

* diet may affect it
* diet does not affect it, no way, no how
* bathe baby every day
* bathe baby every seven days
* probiotics work wonders
* probiotcs do not help, in fact they may be harmful
* parents have to deal with it, learn to cope, most of the time it goes away in two-four years
* if you don't do something about it your child may develop a more serious problem, like asthma.

Lovely, lots of contradictory information to ponder.  I find it interesting that the American Academy of Pediatrics is the most laid back about it all.  The information from their site can be summed up as follows: deal with it, parents, it will likely go away when they're two or older.

This post has been started and stopped so many times I'm just going to publish it.  Sorry it's a bit jumbled.  J is giving B a bath in sea salt and lukewarm water in an attempt to control his itching.  I'm cutting back on dairy even more, once again working my way towards eliminating it.  It didn't help before, maybe this time it will because of the additional support he's receiving through the supplements I'm taking and his probiotics.  B has been so fussy today.  I have a feeling we're in for another long night.


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