Our first step to Kindergarten

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

This week back-to-school has been everywhere! First day of school pics and sad stories of mommy's saying goodbye to their Kindergarteners are all over the blogs. Although that is years away from us now...I had my first taste of having to "let go" last night.

In the last week or so I've barely slept. Carter has woken up at least twice each night...many more times on other nights. But my other problem is that after I'm up with him and feed him and he's back asleep, I'm laying there...thinking...for what seems like (sometimes is) hours. And just as I fall back asleep, guess who's up?!

I've read many books and blogs and articles about sleeping, and tried different things, to no avail. On Tuesday night I tried a "dream feed." He went to sleep at 7:00pm and I woke him up to feed him at 11:00 when I went to bed. According to the books, that should be the answer...he should sleep right through til 6am. So when I woke up and heard him, I prayed it was at least 4am. It was 1:09. ummmmm hmmmmm.

Then we were up at 3:45. Only to wake up again at 5:45.

So obviously, the so-called "dream feed", in my eyes was a miserable FAIL!

We had reached the point I didn't want to reach, or was afraid of:

It was time to move him to the nursery.

Our master bedroom is on the first floor and the nursery is a hallway and a full staircase away...no longer an arms reach from my pillow to him.

So yesterday I prepared the room, closed the blinds, set up the sound machine and monitor, and brought in a fan. And in the afternoon we went upstairs and read some books in the glider and then I nervously put him down for a nap just to see how it would go...and he slept for an hour and a half!

So at bedtime we did our whole routine and again I put him in the crib and his eyes popped open. What?! I gave him his pacifier and he spit it out. So now this was a true test, could I really follow through with tough love? I gave him his pacifier one more time and he spit it out. So I kissed him and said good night. And left the room. To then go right to the monitor to watch our sweet boy kick and fuss.

Christian and I decided we'd let him fuss for 5 minutes before going in...and I decided to take a shower. So apparently he fussed for 5 minutes, Christian went in to calm him down for a few minutes, put him back down, and he fell asleep. Until 2:50am!!!! Then I fed him and he woke up again at 6:45am!

Here's to hoping for another night like that!!

Just a sidenote: Although I did let him cry a little to get to sleep. There's no way I was going to sleep a whole floor away from him. So I slept in the guestroom next door to the nursery. Come on, I'm not that tough!

15 weeks...routines, single parenting, sleep, at last!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

15 weeks and I think I finally hit the point of exhaustion! Last night I went to bed right after I put Carter down, 8:00pm. I was in bed until 8:00am this morning...and would've stayed longer if I could have! Of course we were up a few times in the middle of the night (1:00am and 6:00am). But that is the most sleep I've gotten in months...probably since my second trimester!

These last few weeks have brought many changes...I single-parented 4 days in a row while Christian was traveling for work. Luckily I had help from my mom or Christian's mom most days, but I was running on pure adrenaline to get me through. We had a big family weekend at the beach and I'm finally starting to venture out on errands and to restaurants with Carter (which if you know me, I am terrified of him screaming in the middle of a store or restaurant). But we managed, unharmed and actually pretty happy, thanks to facing out in the BJorn!

Overall Carter is doing great!

Although not seamless, we do have a routine. Since we missed out on many weeks of sleep in the first 6-8 weeks of life, this new sleeping pattern is like a dream to me. From the time he wakes up he is up for about 1 & a half to 2 hours and then it's naptime again. This has been working great...by the 2 hour mark he is definitely showing signs of sleepiness: rubbing his eyes, yawning, or just staring off. I turn on the white noise, swaddle him up, close the blinds, turn on the ceiling fan, bounce for about a minute, and into the nap nanny he goes. Sometimes he fusses for a little so I hold his paci in his mouth and sometimes he just closes his eyes into dreamland. He sleeps anywhere from 45 minutes (pretty typical) to 2 & a half hours (rare, yet wonderful!) Although the length is unpredictable, the fact that he sleeps with a schedule really helps us both!

We've had great nights- 1 wake up and 6 hours of sleep between feedings, and not-so-great nights...up every 2 & a half hours. But we've figured out a bedtime routine (quiet time, bath, sleepsack, nurse with lullabies, and into bed) and the better nights are gradually becoming more frequent. He's asleep between 7:30-8:30pm and up usually around 6:00-6:30am.

It's amazing how far we've come, from the endless bouncing in the kitchen and aching backs from holding him all the time...to now.

New mommy's: it does get easier. I promise.

My Spirited Baby!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

I've been reading so much about sleeping lately...and my latest read is The Happiest Baby Guide to Great Sleep. 

So far this is my fave.  I've read some books that make me feel like I have to let him cry to teach him to sleep.  And let's face it...this momma just can't do that.

My favorite part of this book so far is in Chapter six.  He talks about your child's temperment...and how 40% of babies have an easy temperment.  Then there's Carter!  My sweet boy doesn't quite fit in that category.    Carter loves movement, hates missing any fun, and fights sleep.  Carter is what Dr. Karp calls a "Spirited Infant!" 

Oh my sweet, spirited, little tiger!!!

Photos of Carter & Me

Saturday, August 11, 2012

August 10, 2013
a few pics of us just hanging out at home

Thanks to my friend Jess for encouraging me to be in some pictures with Carter and taking these for us.  I was so nervous about how/if he would cooperate and not having a schedule and it being a disaster.  But he did well and she was right, I'm so glad that I have these.  I do wish I would've had some pictures of us together when he was a newborn.  I see so many adorable ones on pinterest but I didn't want to be in pictures after just having a baby, for my own selfish reasons...now I definitely regret that.  But now I know and I'll suck it up for baby #2 so I can have those adorable teeny baby and mommy pics together.

Month 3: Favorites

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Medela Microwave Steam Bags-  These make cleaning all the bottles, nipples, breast shields so easy and sanitized.

Lansinoh nursing pads- They are thin and absorbent.  I've tried a few brands and these are the best.  There's no need for a nursing pad to feel like a you're stuffing a overnight maxi pad in your bra!  And some of us girls definitely don't need any extra padding!

Avent pacifiers- The only kind Carter will keep in his mouth!  A life-saver for us!

Swaddle Me- We now start our little nap time ritual by swaddling him in one of these.  It can be quite a process to get him into one.  Somedays they work like a dream but other times I walk in to a completely unswaddled, smiling baby, who's saying, "Hey mom!  Thanks for the challenge!  I had fun breaking out!"

Luvs Diapers- Honestly I use any diapers, whatever is on sale, has a coupon, unexpectedly ends up in the nursery from my mom...but if I could choose, Luvs are my fav!  They have a nice powdery scent, and if you know me, i'm a little obsessed with smells!

BabyGanics Hiney Helper- From time to time Carter's little bum gets red and needs a little care.  One day I used Desitin and that day I noticed that Carter smelled like fish! YUCK!  This also coincided with the day after I ate a crabcake and calamari.  So I researched fishy-smelling baby and was about to give up seafood for good, when I read about Cod Liver Oil that is in some diaper rash cream.  Some people said the cream made their babies smell like fish.  I checked the ingredients in Desitin and there it was!  Off to the store I went and read every label of diaper cream.  Babyganics is natural, no Cod Liver Oil- so I bought it.  No more fishy smell!  And it sure helps Carter's little hiney!