Meandering Thoughts

I had a rough Sunday morning because it was All Saints Sunday, where they call the names of people who have died in the last year. Andy called out my grandma’s name. I love him for that. It’s because he knew I couldn’t. And that makes me love him even more.

Graham hates the church nursery for some reason. Every time I pick him up after service, he has initiated DefCon 5 on the nursery attendants.

Graham has three teeth now and he grinds them together. I love the kid but, people! AUGH!

We bought our first tub of animal crackers on Sunday.

I think this Saturday I want to go to a movie. Time to text our babysitter.

You text babysitters now. Or you message them on Facebook. Calling is sooooo 1998.

All of the sudden the carseat totally cramps Graham’s style. Whenever I strap him in there is much weeping and gnashing of teeth. No, literally.

Pregnancy weight is starting to make its exodus again. Hallelujah, amen.

Andy and I have already been trading ideas for Graham for Christmas. It is so. much. fun.

I woke up at 4:30 this morning and never went back to sleep.

Andy is at his friend Patrick’s right now installing shocks on his own car. I hope he makes it home without his wheels falling off.

I need more friends with blogs.

I think if my Grandma had been around long enough to get into the celebrity chef thing, she would have loved Paula Deen.

I see Fisher Price commercials now, and I start to wonder exactly how much the brightly-colored plastic content of this house will increase after a first Christmas and a first birthday.

Oh my gosh, Graham’s first birthday is under three months away now.

Graham had a full-on meltdown after we got home from daycare today. Went straight to bed. I’m going to go see if he wants another bottle before I let him sleep another 12 hours. :)

Up With the Chickens

And Graham would love to tell you all about the experience.

No Wonder He’s Growing Out of Jammies

LOOK AT HOW TALL THIS KID IS GETTING!

Sidenote: Don’t worry… I moved the blanket right after I took the picture!

Sleep Training

I’m pretty sure it’s not a big secret, but Graham was not a natural born sleeper. I know this is normal for babies, but let’s just say: I know why sleep deprivation is considered an inhumane practice as a form of military torture.

Sigh..

We’ve been doing pretty good though, I’d say. I mean, Graham is sleeping in a crib. In his own room. Unswaddled. And heck, most of the time, he gives us at least a 5 or 6 hour stretch a night. What’s to complain about?

It’s the wakefulness. I’d read that, at some point, babies want to wake up and play in the middle of the night. This tends to coincide with a period of heightened cognitive development. So yeah. Graham is amazing us more and more every day. Yes? Well sure enough, a few weeks ago, we started to hear Graham ‘talking’ – instead of crying – over the monitor when he awoke. When Andy or I would walk across the hall to see if we could quiet him for our own sakes, we’d be met by huge gummy smiles, pumping arms and legs and, sometimes, a delighted squeal or two. Very easily translated to, “YAY!! You’re here!!!”

So, we’ve got the wakefulness going for us, but there’s something else impeding good sleep too: the pacifier. Graham needs the paci to sleep. It’s a horribly addicting crutch to Andy and I too, because heck… you can just walk across the hall, plug the pacifier back in his mouth, and it’s lights out before we even walk out of the room.

Problem here is: he needs somebody to pop the paci back in. That leads to extremely frustrating nights where Graham is up every hour or two fussing to have the pacifier put back in so he can fall back asleep. I can’t tell you how many times I envisioned throwing pacifiers out a speeding car window or cutting them into pieces. I hated them and needed them at the same time.

This weekend, Andy and I decided to go cold turkey. This child needed to learn to sleep without the pacifier. Tough decision to make. Tough decision to implement. We used the Ferber method, which – as it turns out – is not fictional child psychology mumbo jumbo made up for the movie, “Meet the Fockers.” No, in a nutshell, it’s leaving Graham to his own devices to figure out how to soothe himself to sleep, while we pop our head in intermittently to let him know we’re there.

First night, it took Graham an entire hour to fall asleep. An hour which, I might add, Andy and I discussed the entire time whether or not we should be doing this at all. The next day for a nap, it took 8 minutes to fall asleep. The next night, 5 minutes. The night after: 3 minutes. It’s incredible. And he’d sleep the night through. Now, last night, he got up for about an hour-and-a-half in the middle of the night. So we’re all notably more tired this morning. We’ll see how this all shakes out though, because it’s promising.

Oh, and did I mention that Graham is 5 months old as of yesterday? I need to post pics and/or video so you can see how big he’s getting. Seriously he is SO different almost every day. More soon… little man is waking up for the day!

Reflections, Smack in the Middle of Week 2

I’ll warn you now, I’m kind of manic. In a good way. Eating pudding, you know, so that’s always good. Not the cause of the mania, but it doesn’t hurt.

No, I just got done giving a tour of the R&D facility to a small group of engineers and high school kids aspiring to be engineers. Being a tour guide and the resulting call to be mildly entertaining got the old noggin firing on all four cylinders. (Yeah, I’m four cylinders on a good day.) Then I went downstairs to get lunch and one of the engineers insisted on buying my lunch (of half turkey sandwich, pudding, and Diet Wild Cherry Pepsi… what can I say – I’m a health nut). Today’s a good day.

And gosh darn it if this week hasn’t been a good week.

I took a SwaddleMe to daycare, per their request, because G kept pulling the muslin swaddling blankets up over his face as he slept. They, then, kept interrupting his sleep by pulling the blankets down off his face (Goooood, Daycare. Good.), resulting in him not really getting much quality sleep at all.

First day in the SwaddleMe = 3 hour nap and two 45 minute naps. Second day, 2hr 45 min nap and some other shorter ones. Third day, same idea. Ladies and Gentlemen, I HAVE A NAPPER. And darn if the kid isn’t happy when he gets home.

Now I’ve learned that, while naps in the SwaddleMe are good, I still have to double swaddle him by wrapping him up in the muslin blanket over the SwaddleMe at night. And even so, by 3:00 am, he’s both arms out of both wrappings. I swear, every morning in the wee hours I am hanging over his crib, bursting with pride, as I watch him smacking himself in the face with both hands, flinching, and wearing an expression that indicates he’s wondering who the heck keeps smacking him in the face. His escapes are legendary, and, I’ve decided, he will either be a genius engineer, a catburgler, or the next Kriss Angel.

Speaking of sleep, Andy decided on Tuesday night that he didn’t want to wake Graham up for his evening bottle. You see, we feed him before putting him down between 7:00 and 7:30 (his natural bedtime), and, since we’d rather not wake up before midnight, we wake him up for what we call a ‘dream feed’ at 9:30. On Tuesday night, the evening had gotten away from us, and Andy had realized that he’d be up until well past 10:30 if he woke Graham up.

Anyway, I’ll cut to the chase: Graham slept until 2:00 am. I’ll, furthermore, connect the dots for you. Graham always used to sleep until 2:00 am when we gave him a 9:30 pm bottle. So little dude is sleeping the same amount whether we wake him up to eat or not.

Last night, we tried not feeding him at 9:30 again…. and he slept until 3:00 am. Babies are weird.

In other news, I decided that fully weaning Graham from breastfeeding absolutely blows. We have now eliminated all benefits from both types of feeding, as I am still tied to the pump (albeit not as much), I’m still washing two sets of pump parts and bottles, and I still have to heat a bottle in the middle of the night with a crying baby. (That said, I believe we’ll be switching from ready-to-eat to powder formula soon, so that’ll help.) Oh, yeah, and I’m uncomfortable as all get out. I may or may not have slept with cabbage in my bra last night (TMI! TMI!). I’m desperate, people. It would be so nice if this was like flipping a switch. I sure as heck would like to not go to bed smelling like stale farts [ahem, from the cabbage], that’s for sure.

I’m starting to overshare (and my pudding is finished), so I’d probably better wrap this up. We’ve got a completely free weekend ahead of us and then we ramp up to our first plane trip with the kiddo. Dun, dun, DUN!!

Stay tuned…