Week two of my trip was spent in Carlsbad with Abby & Brian, and Mark and Bridgette (and O). The schedule didn't contain much, just as I predicted, nothing scattered with a little of nothing. We sat around, talked, ate, ate some more, and laughed until we cried. It was lovely. And as always, we were planning our next trip before we even left.
So thrilled to be working on the way to the beach...
We tried again anyway. He was pretty much done after that, he gripped onto Caleb's shirt as if his life depended on it. So we wrapped him up and sat on a blanket for the afternoon. It was pretty perfect.
At least until the mastitis kicked in.
Because I hate to be behind, I hate to be late, I hate to feel like there's something I've got to do, I'm going to post pictures. With few words. Just to, you know, get them out of my system. I've got probably nine or ten different posts swirling around in my head that need to get out, but I've got to update before I do so. Or else. Something will happen.
I'm not sure what.
First off, Utah. I took the camera, hauled it through the airport with my diaper bag and the stroller and ya know, the baby, but took few pictures. I got busy with the baby and the kiddies and the eating-of-all-my-parents-junk-food. And being sick.
I did get several of Wyatt watching TV with various people. Wyatt is absolutely in love with the TV, something I'm trying to reign in. I don't want my baby addicted to the television before he can even roll over, so we don't let him watch it unless I'm trying to clip his finger nails. It sucks him in, he'll crane his neck all the way around to try and get a peek of it, and go into a trance watching all the colors and movements. I let him watch it while we were home though, mostly because it was so dang cute to see.
Here he is, watching the Jazz game with my lovely cousin, Terra.
And again, with my Dad. Same chair, different Jazz game.
Here is my babysitting charge.
She's pretty silly, but was a good help with Wy.
He quite enjoyed all the laying around on the carpet. We don't have any at our house...
It was a lovely trip. Full of family, a few friends, and gallons and gallons of water from my parent's fridge. I don't know what it is about it, but I swear there's an addictive chemical in it. It's amazing. Caleb and I have discussed the water that comes out of that fridge at length, and have concluded that some day we WILL own that fridge. Or the filtration system. Or whatever it is that makes that water so delicious.
Before we left for the airport I grabbed a glass, filled it with ice, and gulped it down. Desperate to get my fill.
Man, I love that water.
Itis of the Mast. On my vacation. For the first time ever. Woo!!
I had a feeling I should have looked up the closest instacare facility near us before coming, but I didn't think it would be for me.
I'm so glad it was me. Even with the 103 degree fever.
Caleb is folding some last minute clothes that have come out of the dryer as we get into bed. He looks up at me and says, "Maybe we can go shopping this week..."
We survived the first leg of our two week trip extravaganza, though just barely. Caleb managed to infect both of us with a cold before Wyatt and I left, and he and I both got sick on the same day last week. It wasn't terrible, but I'll just say, it's a lot worse when you can't take anything for your symptoms because SOMEONE IN DIAPERS needs your boobs.
That's all I'm sayin'.
We're both feeling better now, and I'm just waiting for Wyatt to get sick. So far he isn't, and I'm thinkin' it'll hit, what, tomorrow when we drive down to Carlsbad? That sounds about right.
It was fun to be home, though I didn't get to see many people, not nearly what I hoped for, but that's sort of how it goes, especially when you have a nap schedule and school schedule (dance schedule, soccer schedule...) to deal with. It was fun to be with my family and to have them see Wyatt. I so enjoyed watching them play with him, and found myself day dreaming a lot about when we'd finally be able to move home. Soon...I hope...
The flight home. What can I say about the flight home? I had Wyatt in the sling and everything ready in buckets, the stroller up on the line, waiting to go through security when one of the personnel dudes informed us that the "Family Line" was the next one over. So, could you just move all ninety pounds of your crap to THAT belt? If it weren't for the help of a nice man, a man already having to deal with his own kid, I would never have made it.
But I did, and proceeded to my gate where I was met with one million people. Why does Delta do that? There were 4 flights leaving within five minutes of each other and it was pure chaos. I'm pushing a stroller that's stuffed with my huge diaper bag and camera bag, and holding Wyatt in the sling hoping he'd fall asleep and not miss his entire morning nap, and I swear I hit thirty different people in the process.
And then? I was standing there, trying to make myself as small as possible, lovingly patting Wyatt's cute bum, when I feel and hear the oh-so-familiar rumbly gassiness. Then it gets warm...and warmer...and warmer...and yup! That'd be poop seeping through all three layers of his clothes.
Clock check? 10 minutes prior to boarding time. Of course.
The rest of the flight went fairly smooth, despite the craziness beforehand, our flight wasn't full and I was able to snag a row to myself. Wyatt slept a bit even, and was the happiest baby afterward, laughing and giggling and making all sorts of noises.
I got home with just enough time to do laundry, re-pack, and collapse onto the bed for a two hour nap (thank you, Wyatt). I'm absolutely exhausted, and hoping that this next week will be a little better on his nap schedule. We don't have much planned besides doing nothing and maybe a little bit of nothing on the beach, so I'm optimistic.
Except that, as the odds would have it, at least one person from each of the three families we're going with is sick, or is starting to become sick. So my hopes of Wyatt not catching something appears slim.
This is when my OCD germaphobic tendencies serve a purpose, besides driving Caleb crazy. I'm holding back a huge urge to quarantine us for the week....
I signed up to take this class and I am absolutely ridiculously excited about it. Over the moon, if you will. I'm even attempting to come up with my own design for my "calling cards".
Caleb has a slight issue with the calling cards. When I told him about the class and what we'd be making and bringing home, his only question (besides how much...) was what in the world I'd do with 250 calling cards.
"I don't know, Cabe, I'll think of something, but that's not THE POINT..."
So I'm trying to focus on the fact that I have this wonderful opportunity to learn about something I've been interested in for some time now, instead of the fact that it means I'll have to leave Wyatt for close to 6 hours.
At least the breast pump is getting some use.
It is sad that it's taken me 4 months to figure out when to do these updates. Not that I should be surprised, I was, again, never good at math and couple that with the Mommy Brain and you've got yerself one screwed up sense of time. And place. And direction.
It's fun to go back and see where he was a month ago (or, a month and a week ago...) and to see again how much he's changed. It's really true, they do change every single day, and to see an entire month of change is staggering. Last month he'd just started to bat at objects, and now he's grabbing anything within reach and shoving it in his mouth. Since I'm still playing "mommy" to my sisters here in Utah, Caleb and I have been Skyping a lot during the day so that he can see Wyatt. Yesterday we were laughing as he tried his very best to get at the cup of water I was holding. I can see I will no longer be able to get anything done while holding him. Not unless I want his "help".
Looking back at the last month I can only remember the sleep issues. Everything seems to be a fog of little to no sleep, and while I definitely went a little crazy, a little must-get-sleep-overboard, that seems to be what this is all about. Documenting. I don't know if anything we tried did anything, or if it could have done anything, or if he just needed time.
Either way, his 4 month gift to me has been more sleep. He seems to be settling into a good routine, finally falling asleep for the night around 10ish (which means 9ish at home..) and getting up once before morning, usually between 3 - 4. It's absolutely amazing, especially after the month we just had. Thank you, Wy. Mommy loves it.
His morning nap seems to be settling in as well, a good solid 2 1/2 hours, which is great when I'm at home as it leaves me with enough time to get ready and get a few things done. Being in Utah though, it leaves me with a ridiculous amount of time to sit around and try to keep myself busy. What used to be a good afternoon nap has turned into a couple short, 45 minute ones. These babies - always keeping you on your toes.
As evidenced, he's started to laugh. It's still a little elusive, what was funny yesterday isn't funny today, but it's been fun to see what does get him going, it's never anything that I would expect. I can tell you though, there isn't a better sound in the world.
In just the last week or so, he's become more independent on the ground, and I'm not sure if it's due to age, or the fact that we're currently in a home with central heat. And carpet. While he still prefers being held, (as long as the holding involves ample standing time) I've been able to leave him on the floor here while I'm working in the kitchen, and he'll entertain himself with whatever is in reach. He's recently become fascinated with the wipes while I'm changing his diaper, and will happily bat at the sack (genius, Costco) until I'm done.
One thing that did amaze me happened before we left for Utah. I was running around the house doing some last minute packing, and put him in his cradle so I could get a few things done. I'd already packed his lamb that hangs to the side of it, but when I set him down he immediately looked to where it used to hang and started wildy batting at nothing. I was so surprised that he remembered, and felt kinda bad that it wasn't there, and so I replaced it much to his delight.
(image via Caleb on a Sunday walk in the sling)
He's turning into such a cute little boy.
When he's sleepy he loves to hold onto and play with anything soft, likes to open and close his fists around it, a burp cloth, a blanket, this lamb.
And I'm trying to decide if it's time to unswaddle him while he sleeps. I've attempted it, and if he eventually does fall asleep, it's not for long. The only way he would though, was to hold onto something and he's not quite old enough for me to leave him alone with it. I tried it once, and spent the entire hour he was asleep checking on him every two minutes. Drove me insane.
Another sign that he's getting older is that the amount of lint I'm pulling from between his fingers has diminished significantly. I'm not kidding, if I had saved all the lint from his fingers and toes (oh, don't even get me started on the toes) I could have made several pairs of socks for him. Which would be nice, because socks are hard to come by, and ones that stay on are even harder to find.
Honestly, will someone come up with some socks that stay on their feet? Please? You'd make millions.
He has also decided that a binki, or fingers, is not enough. No, Wyatt must have both.
Nothing but the best for my baby, right?
"If a chicken offers an egg, that's a gift. If a pig offers a ham, well, that's commitment."
My family is taking up a small row in the darkened theatre of my high school, cheering on my little sister as she dances in her first ballet.
My dad leans over and whispers, "Where's the Beast?"
Liz whispers back, "Dad, this is Sleeping Beauty..."
We made it. Surprisingly, it was not security that was the problem, the airport was so dead that I was the only one in line. So like, three employees helped me through, each one telling me about their kid and his / her respective milestones. "Mine's walking!", "My little girl just said her first word!"
It's kind of endearing. And also slightly odd, because what do you say besides "Good!", or, "How fun!" when you don't know them?
The problem was the rest of the day, and how it entirely threw off his Groove. Sleep groove, eating groove, he basically went on a sleep / eat strike the entire time. His last good meal and nap were before we left, and his next good one was around 10 pm, when we both crashed. I was a little anxious about it all, trying not to appear to0 first-time-mother-freakish, but I was. I was a total mess. Mah baby isn't sleeping / eating!
Can we discuss the fact that airplanes are SO not conducive to breastfeeding? Imagine this, tiny space, surrounded by men, and a little boy who is suddenly very interested in everything but eating. Seatbelt sign, pattern on the chairs, pattern on the nursing cover, ANYTHING...
Despite being careful, I'm sure I flashed just about everyone on that plane.
After two or three unsuccessful attempts, I thought I'd give the bathroom a go. Without going into all the gory details, I'll just say that no, it was not a good choice.
Neither was inside the theatre while watching my sister's ballet.
Neither was a random room in the high school. My apologies to the lighting crew...
He was really good all day, despite it all, only finally crashing when we got him home and in his pajamas. It was like he suddenly realized how tired and hungry he was, and the tears just welled up. Poor little monkey.
Poor little adorable monkey.
Tomorrow I am embarking on a two week long travel extravaganza. First I am flying to Utah to spend a week as "mommy" to my little sister(s), while my parents go to DC for convention. Drive the carpools, make dinner, make sure the kiddies are in bed on time. The like. Wyatt will go from first born, first priority, to youngest child, the one who spends 2/3 of their youth in the car.
I'm very excited to see my family again and to have them see how much Wy has grown. Cause it's a lot.
This does come with one little minor problem though.
I'm flying alone tomorrow. My mind is spinning with all the things I'm going to be bringing and how exactly I'm going to get them all there. And through security. And stuff. Wish me luck.
I get back next Saturday and then we leave the following day for a week in Southern California with some friends, leaving me just enough time to do laundry and re-pack.
Two weeks. Just as we were starting to get somewhere with Wyatt's sleep schedule. Would you like to hear about last night? I bet you would. Even if you don't I'm going to tell you, because it was so amazing. Wyatt slept from 9:30 until 3:30. I woke up a few minutes before he did (seriously, what is up with that? It's a mommy curse) and lay there blinking at the time. Seriously? 3:30?! I added up the hours and flipped. FLIPPED. And then I went and checked on him.
Because. You know. I'm a freak.
After I fed him he immediately went back to sleep and I was so excited about all the sleep I'd just got, all those hours in a row, that I could hardly fall back asleep. Which was okay, because he slept until 7:30, leaving me with even MORE consecutive sleep hours.
It is amazing what sleep does for you. I felt like a could have run a marathon today. (Reality? I could probably barely run a mile at this point...I seriously need to get back into that...)
Here's to hoping these next two weeks don't screw it up too much. Though none of this matters if I can't make it through security tomorrow.
Let's hope for that, first.
People do this all the time. I WILL eventually get to the plane. I'm already checked in. It can't take off without me.
(not going to mention sleep issues tonight, but he slept 5 hours straight last night and i felt so amazing i could hardly go back to sleep and it was so lovely and wonderful and fabulous but then he wouldn't nap today and then i unbundled him and he did great but didn't sleep for long and now i'm researching silent reflux because holy crap that sounds like my baby...)
Let's discuss Tummy Time, shall we? A wonderful lovely little workout that helps babies strengthen their neck and upper body, and starts them on the path to rolling.
Wyatt does not like tummy time. This is what he looks like for the first, oh, 20 seconds, unless there is something fun! and flashy! and Baby Einsteiny! in front of him. Then he lasts for maybe 45 seconds.
This is his I shall entertain this idea, for a moment face.
This is his Momma makes funny faces face.
This is his Your 20 seconds are up face.
This is his I'm so frustrated, and I can't even get my fingers in my mouth properly face.
He loves his binki, but I don't know what he'd do without his fingers. It is a rare moment when he doesn't have one of them rooting around in there. It's pretty dang cute, but now every single shirt I own has drool marks on my left shoulder.
The mark of a mother. If it isn't drool, it's spit up. Or poop.
Speaking of poop, is every mother as flippant about their baby's poop as I am? The other day Caleb pointed at my finger and asked me what was on it. I peered at it and said, "Hmm. Wyatt poop. Don't know how that got there." and continued typing my email.
He was mortified, but I was quick to point out the fact that he lets the dog routinely lick his MOUTH, and I don't think I need to remind anyone where that tongue has been.
I was all set to do a 4 month post for Wyatt, but uh, started counting. And then re-counted. And then spent like, 20 minutes trying to figure out why my dates were off. I was counting weeks, every Tuesday since the Tuesday I had him, and it was off by a month, putting his first birthday in October.
I was baffled. I counted. 4 weeks at a time, put his 12 month mark in October.
I knew I had to be doing something wrong, despite the number of times I counted. It took until Caleb came home and explained some crazy phenomenon, about so many weeks in a year...
And then I realized, 4 weeks, 7 days, that's 28 days. HUH. All those extra little 29th, 30th, and a few 31st's actually add up!
It's the Mommy Brain, that's what it is. First it's the Pregnancy Brain, and then you go straight to Mommy Brain.
Like this morning, for example. I'm taking a nice hot shower, skin-turning-pink hot to thwart the 65 degree house, and I'm standing there, thinking to myself, trying to figure out this whole Sleep Situation, and reach for the conditioner. Rub it all in my hands, thinking about Wyatt's sleep, and then immediately start slathering it under my arms.
And the brain is funny you know, because it takes a second for it to process the Hmm, this is nice. Much smoother and sleeker than the soap normally is, to Woah, Girl. Not where that stuff goes.
(odd transition into Sleep Zone 2009)
So. The Cry It Out. It was terrible. Wyatt crying in his room, me crying in my room, checking on him every 3 minutes, and then 5 minutes.
It lasted exactly 1 hour and 16 minutes.
And let me tell you, the silence that follows over an hour of crying is beautiful. Lovely. Delightful. Insanely guilt-ridden.
I don't know whether it made a difference, he still woke up a few other times other than to eat, and again, I'm just not so sure about all of this. At least this early. So I again spent almost the entire day Googling and searching and reading and thinking, and hemming and hawing, and going back and forth on the issue.
Sigh. I don't think I'm going to continue until he's older. He's not yet 4 months old, he's still swaddled, he still prefers to be cuddled in the carseat, so he can't technically "soothe" himself, he's still exclusively breastfed, which is a huge factor. In a nutshell, for all ya'll who don't eat, sleep, and breathe all things baby, breastmilk is, as they say, the ultimate food for babies in that it's the most easily digestable, less calorie-laden than formula, therefore exclusively breastfed babies eat more often, and tend to not "sleep through the night" as early. I know this, have known this, and am not expecting him to go down until 7:30 in the morning. I just would love to go back to his previous schedule, two feedings before morning. Sleep in between.
(And here's where I document this more for me, than you...)
Today I let him sleep as long as he wanted for his naps. Sleep begets sleep, right? He took a 3 hour nap an hour after he woke up for the day, another hour and a half nap two hours after the first, and then another 45 minute nap two hours after that. And we put him "down for the night" (meaning bath, book, boob, bed) when he started acting tired next, which was an hour and a half after the last nap, at 7:30.
So. Attempt 4,485, take one!
Here's what really baffles me. After a night of waking and fussing and fragmented sleep, he immediately goes down for his first nap of the day and conks. Fast asleep, and I have to actually wake him up after it's been 2 hours. And then he does it again later in the afternoon. I'm sure he could have gone for longer both times, but I'm trying to keep his naps to 2 hours.
He is clearly a day sleeper. Crazy little boy.
We're trying a new method tonight (a bit late, since he had a short 30 min nap after 6, in which we hoped he'd gone down for the night), a very loose cry it out, checking on him at 3 and 5 minute intervals. It's going to be...interesting.
I am very much looking forward to the time when I'm not totally and completely consumed with searching and wracking my brain for solutions. I've recently read about the 4 Month Sleep Regression, and apparently Wy got a head start.
Such an over-achiever...
I am TOTALLY going to do this little project for Wy, what a perfect first birthday present.
Sigh. I heart the internet...
(Caleb leans over, reads my post and says, "...and my husband. Say it! Say it Kim! Do it or I'll pick your nose!" )
Wyatt is asleep (yeah! 30 minutes and counting! No fuss!) and it's 9:22 on a Friday night. We are just a little crazy...
Caleb is the youngest child in his family. This is made clear on several accounts, one of them being not knowing the words or tune to any of the popular kids songs.
Take tonight, for example. Caleb is sitting on the couch holding Wyatt and singing "Popcorn Popping", a primary song that I had to teach him last week. Then he starts in with "The Eensy Weensy Spider", which again, I taught him.
Wanting to try something new, he asked, "How does that B-I-N-G-O song go?"
I said nothing, grinning.
He tried a little tentatively, "Old MacDonald had a farm....."
I started laughing, and giving up on Bingo, he continued with Old MacDonald.
"Old MacDonald had a duck..", sung to the tune of "Ring Around the Rosies".
He tried again, this time to the tune of London Bridges.
I can see we've clearly got some work to do. I won't even get started on the number of classic Disney movies he's never seen.
We're still in the woes of sleep issues over here. I spent my entire day trying to find The Magical Thing that will help Wyatt get to sleep and STAY asleep. He does so well during the day, but as soon as bedtime hits the switch is flipped and suddenly nothing works.
Today I tried swaddling him in the crib. I tried unswaddling his arms in the crib.
I tried swaddling him with a folded blanket under his head. I tried unswaddling his arms with a folded blanket under his head.
I tried swaddling him and helping to lay him on his side in the sleep positioner. I tried unswaddling his arms and laying him on his side in the sleep positioner.
I tried turning him to lay perpendicular in the crib.
I tried setting up a mirror to the side for him to look at.
And in the end? Swaddling him in his carseat is the only one that sticks for longer than 30 minutes.
At night nothing works for longer than a few minutes, and for a couple of hours we go in and out, in and out, until he eventually falls asleep for "good". Meaning at least a couple of hours, and then it's anyone's guess as to how the rest of the night will go. One night he'll sleep a good 4 or 5 hour stretch, and then at least 3 after that, and the next he's up every hour, or every two hours. We've tried keeping him up longer, we've tried putting him down sooner.
(And by now I've lost nearly everyone but a few sympathetic mothers...)
The frustrating part of all of this is that for the most part I am assured that this isn't going to last forever. He'll eventually sleep through the night, and someday, one glorious day, he'll be on a real live predictable schedule. Despite knowing this, I still spend huge amounts of time Googling things like, Help, My 3 1/2 Month Old Won't Stay Asleep at Night, and I'm Afraid I Might Be Turning Into A Zombie. I read countless forems and articles, consult my sleep book, and manically ask every mother I run into for their baby's schedule, and what helped them.
Basically, I'm searching in vain for some kind of full-proof formula. A + B = Angelically Sleeping Baby.
And I know I'm not going to find it.
This too shall pass...
And stuff. Siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh.
I love this little monkey. Even though he is hell bent on ruining my sleep.
On Sunday we dressed Wy up in the sweet vest my sister sent to him, and after church (and his nap...) we took a few photos to send to her as a thank you.
Pretty cute, no? A bit big, but he'll grow into it eventually. I'm still waiting for a squishy Buddha-belly. So far he's just growing up, not out.
First though, Caleb decided to put his pants on his head. For reasons I can't explain, because I am not male.
Caleb says he looks like this guy, who always wears those funny hats.
Thanks Aunt Liz, I look adorable. Even with my folded ear...
I am not a crafty person by nature. No, I have had to nurture what little craftiness I have, and by nurture I mean immerse myself in crafty magazines, crafty people, and crafty websites. Mostly, I fake the craft and copy like crazy.
Which is partly why I agreed to a challenge recently given by my friend Lauren, a crafty pay- it-forward kind of deal. By being one of the first 5 people to comment on her post I become the lucky recipient of something handmade, something just for me. But I also agreed to, yes, you guessed it, pay it forward and offer the same service to you lovely people.
So. The rules.
The first five people to comment on this post will receive something made by me, especially for you.
And the fine print:
Since I choose what I make for you, there is no guarantee you will like
what I make. (But I promise to try my hardest...)
2- There are no returns/exchanges. (You break it, you bought it kind of deal...)
3- It will be for you and only you.
4- It'll be done sometime this year.
5- You will have no idea what it's going to be. It could be a scrapbook entirely of the mutt (I would never do that to you...), a book of my favorite fruits (wow, that's exciting!), or a lock of my hair (I can't spare any right now, thank you very much). Whatever it is, it'll be something great.
And the catch - because there is always a catch...you have to post this on your blog and offer the same deal to 5 of your own readers.
Ready, get set....go.