Archive for June, 2010

A Day in the Life

Monday, June 28th, 2010

My days tend to be pretty hectic.  I thought I would document today as a typical Monday morning.  When we decide to go for #3, I should probably look back at this post and remember what having a baby is like!  And Ethan is 6 months old now.  Things have calmed down considerably since the newborn days!

The day started at 6 am when Ethan woke up and announced he was hungry.  I groggily nursed him and put him back in his crib hoping that he hadn’t noticed the light coming in under the curtains.  He hadn’t, and actually went back to sleep, as did I, until 7.

At 7am, the alarm went off.  I have started setting the alarm for 7, in an attempt to get a quiet shower before the chaos in the next room wakes up.  I was tired this morning and drifted back to sleep as Jeff hit snooze.  This sleep lasted about 5 minutes.  Then, the screaming and giggling started from the next room.  I got up and jumped in the shower.  I had no more hope of a quiet shower, but hoped to at least get clean!  As I got out of the shower, Jeff was getting the boys up.  I quickly got dressed as Ethan fussed at me.  He had gone back to sleep — that must mean he needed to eat again.  He can’t tell time and didn’t know that it had only been an hour and a half.

I nursed the baby, and then went into the boys room to get clothes.  We are currently doing a cloth diaper trial with Ethan.  Cloth diapers are really bulky.  I looked through Ethan’s drawer and couldn’t find any shorts that I thought would fit over the diaper.  I got in their closet and pulled out the box of Caleb’s 12 month clothes.  That is right, I have a 6 month old baby wearing size 12 months.  I picked out the outfit Caleb actually wore on his 1st birthday, grabbed some shorts out of Caleb’s drawer and headed back to our room.  I dressed Ethan, and the outfit barely fit!  I mean, it is almost too small, and not just because of the bulky diaper!  The elastic in the shorts was tight around his waist, and the shirt pulled at his shoulders as I did the snaps in the back.  Are they really brothers?  I then dressed Caleb, and then set Ethan up in front of the mirror so I could finish getting ready.  Caleb and I brushed our teeth (he likes to brush his whenever I brush mine), and then I combed my hair, put on a little make up, etc.

At 8am I headed downstairs with the boys while Jeff showered and got ready for work.  After the first few steps, I noticed that Ethan’s side was all wet.  Back up the stairs!  I investigated and decided I had adjusted the diaper too small.  It is a one size one.  Jeff did tell me he thought it was too small when I put it on, and he did point out that he told me this as I made it larger.  Back down the stairs.  First thing, I found the nose sucker and sucked a giant booger out of Ethan’s nose.  I had been listening to him breath it in and out all morning and it was driving me crazy.  Then I put Ethan in his high chair and Caleb in his booster seat, got Caleb a bowl of Cherrios and some milk, and started warming frozen breast milk to make Ethan’s cereal.  While the milk was warming, I quickly made a pot of coffee, working around Jeff who had come downstairs and was making his lunch.  I mixed Ethan’s cereal and attempted to feed it to him while Caleb at his cereal.  Caleb actually ate the entire (little) bowl by himself this morning, minus the ones that I found later in the bib pocket.  I don’t think that has ever happened before.  Ethan was not too interested in the cereal and started pushing it back out of his mouth and talking to me.  I gave up, cleaned up both boys and took them to the living room to play.

At 8:45, I finally made myself a bagel and a cup of coffee.  I took my breakfast into the living room (Ethan is in a stage where he cries if mama is not close enough to touch him at all times) and ate it while sitting on the floor with the kids and checking my email.

At 9, Ethan was really fussy, so I took him back up the stairs for his morning nap.  Getting him to sleep is a bit of a process.  I sang him “You are My Sunshine,” turned on his noise machine, laid him in his crib, and gave him his bear and paci.  In the next 10 minutes, I had to run up the stairs 3 more times to give him his paci again.  I just consider this part of my weight loss plan.  At 9:10 he was asleep.

I then when to the kitchen to start getting dinner in the crock pot.  We are having Moroccan lentil soup.  This involved a lot of cutting veggies mixed with getting Caleb’s milk, putting his milk back, getting his vitamin, helping him with his magnets, and whatever other requests he could come up with.  Once that was in the crock pot, I matched up Ethan’s diapers.  The diaper trial seems like a great deal.  We get to try 10 different diapers for 3 weeks.  We paid $150 up front for the diapers, but when we ship them back, they will refund us $140.  This way we can decide which we like without having to buy all different kinds.  In the mean time, we have 10 different kinds, and it is a little confusing to figure out which diaper and insert, cover, etc match up.  I packed a couple of diapers in the diaper bag, along with some snacks for Caleb and Caleb’s diapers.  About that time, I started to smell something, so I changed Caleb’s poopy.  While I had him down, I also got his shoes on.  Next, I quickly blow dried my hair before Ethan woke up at 9:45.  Apparently we are back to short naps.  Today, that was a good thing; we had places to go.

I got Ethan up, nursed him, and changed him.  One of the annoying things about the cloth diapers, is if they are poopy, you have to deal with it, as was the case here.  The company we got them from asks that you dunk them in the toilet to get the poop off.  I have read that this isn’t really necessary, but I want my $140 back.  This made the diaper change eat up a little more time than I expected.

At 10am we were out the door and on our way to the YMCA for Caleb’s mommy and me class.  The class starts at 10:15, and we were only about 5 minutes late.  That is really good these days.  The next hour was spent singing songs, marching, playing with play do, and socializing a little with other moms, all while holding an 18 lb baby in one arm.  My right arm is really strong.   After the class, I took the boys to child care in an attempt to get a work out in.  Ethan has not been doing well when Mommy leaves the last couple of weeks.  The nice ladies in the child care will try to calm him for 15 minutes before coming to get me.  I have had a couple of 15 minute work outs and 15 minute swim lessons with Caleb in the last couple of weeks.  Today I took Ethan’s favorite toy, a giraffe rattle.  It didn’t help.  Fifteen minutes into my workout, they came to tell me he wouldn’t calm down.  I gathered the boys (Caleb had been happily playing with baby dolls) and headed home.

We got home at noon.  I was worried that Ethan’s diaper might leak.  He had been in it over 2 hours, and it was a kind I hadn’t tried before.  It was fine.  After changing it, I noticed Caleb’s bottom was wet.  His disposable had leaked.  Go figure.  I changed him too, and then went to the kitchen to make lunch.  Caleb requested peanut butter and jelly.  I made him a half sandwich and some mandarin oranges.  I got him set up with lunch, and then nursed Ethan again.  Caleb spent most of the time freaking out and wiping his hands on a napkin.  Apparently he doesn’t like jelly on his hands.  As Ethan finished nursing, he started to fall asleep.  I took him up the stairs to put him to bed.  Caleb started screaming because he didn’t want to eat his lunch.  He wanted to take a nap.  That’s right — anything to get out of eating.   I put Ethan, now awake due to Caleb, down and headed back downstairs.  Caleb had eaten 2 bites of sandwich and 2 pieces of orange.  I tried to convince him that he was not going to sleep well without eating.  He said he would eat some yogurt.  I went and got the yogurt out of the fridge and opened it.  This was apparently the wrong thing to do.  Caleb threw himself to the floor and started crying.   He is not allowed to do this.  He learned this from his friend Nolan.  I put him in time out and told him to let me know when he was finished.  I then made a couple of trips back up the stairs to calm Ethan and give him his paci.  Caleb finally announced that he was ready to eat his yogurt.  While he ate it, I cleaned up the breakfast and soup making dishes.  Caleb ate about 1/2 and then said he was ready to take a nap with Ethan.  I gave up, and took him upstairs.  We read “Tall Tall Grass.”  Caleb has the book memorized, so I only ready every few words, he does the rest.  At 12:30, both boys were in bed asleep.

I headed back down the stairs.  I had used the last of the bread loaf for Caleb’s sandwich, so I took the heels, along with those from a couple of other loafs, threw them in the food processor and made bread crumbs.  This way I will have some when a recipe calls for them, and the heels don’t go to waste.  I put the crumbs in a baggy in the freezer and got a new loaf out of the freezer to defrost.  I made my lunch, which, since the bread was still frozen, consisted of rolled up lunch meat and cheese and some yogurt.  Then I sat down to eat it, and write this blog entry.  All that and it is only 12:45!

As I was writing this, Ethan woke up at 1pm.  Another long restful nap!  I then had to comfort him through a poop.  He started solids only a week ago, and thus is experiencing his first non-liquid poops.  This is apparently traumatic.  Then I changed his diaper and dealt with it while he screamed because I had abandoned him in a living room full of toys.

This afternoon, we really need to go grocery shopping.  Hopefully Caleb will be up before Ethan needs his next nap!  I also hope to get a little crochet done and read the book I got on teaching babies how to swim while the boys play a little.  This is my life — so much more hectic and simple than my computer dork days, and somehow much more rewarding.

6 Month Update

Sunday, June 20th, 2010

Yesterday Ethan turned 6 months old!  Sometimes I still think of him as my brand new baby, but then it is hard to remember life without him.

We had his 6 month check up with the doctor.  He is 18lb 3 oz and 28 inches long.  That puts him in the 95th percentile for height and 70th for weight.  He is a big boy!  And all of that is purely from breast milk!

To celebrate his 6 month birthday, we tried cereal for the first time.  For lunch Ethan got to have oatmeal!  He was a little unsure at first, and maybe a little over dramatic as well.

In the end though, he actually ate all the oatmeal we made, and seemed to enjoy it.  Or at least found the activity of eating to be interesting.

At 6 months, he sits on his own.  He also loves to scoot and roll to get around.  He moves forward mostly by pushing with his legs.  He is a happy baby most of the time.  He loves attention — playing and laughing with everyone.  He especially loves his older brother.  He will happily sit and watch Caleb, and really lights up when Caleb plays with him or talks to him.  I used to scold Caleb for being too rough, but then I realized that Ethan doesn’t mind.  He will take Caleb’s attention however he can get it!

I have decided that “Mama” is his first official word.  He says it when crying and wanting Mommy to come and hold him.  He even looked at me the other night and said it when he was happy.  I guess with time we will see if he really means it, or if I am over zealous and it is just his favorite sound of the moment.

Most nights now he wakes up only once to eat, at least when he is feeling well.  Hopefully he will drop that feeding soon now that we are starting solid foods.

We had some issues earlier with torticolis.  That seems to be pretty much cleared up, and he is right on track.  He is a happy healthy little boy!

Happy 6 months Ethan!

From the mouths of babes

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

Well, its only been a few weeks, and already I am falling a little behind.  Oh well, better late than never.  I had been planning to write a post on how much I enjoy and appreciate being a stay at home mom despite the frustration I often face.  That post will have to wait a little longer though.  We have been having a rough week, and I really want to give that post a lot of time and thought, neither of which I possess at the moment.  Ethan has been sick and very needy.  Also, Jeff is helping out with VBS this week, so I have been on my own with the boys from morning until night.  Ugh!  I am very thankful to not be a single mom!

Instead, I want to focus on simpler, daily moments that make me really appreciate being able to stay at home with my boys.  Ethan is just starting to try to communicate, and Caleb is already starting to talk like a little adult, but both said things this week that made my heart melt.

Ethan has hand, foot, and mouth disease.  It sounds really serious, but it is just a common childhood virus.  The only reason we know he is sick is that he was up all night for a couple of nights and was super fussy during the days.  I took him to the doctor.  He took one look at his throat and immediately knew what the problem was.  He hasn’t had a fever, runny nose, cough, or anything.  He is just really fussy and clingy.  Every time I put him down he starts crying, and a couple of days ago he started saying “mamamama” while crying for me to pick him up.  I am sure it was just a coincidence, but I think he has caught on that he gets much more of a reaction if he says that while fussing.  He gives me the most pitiful look while saying it too.  I think if I try to claim it as his first word though, Jeff will tell me I’m crazy ;)

Caleb is also talking more and more.  I realized the other day that he pretty much only speaks in complete sentences.  This week he has started asking “Can I . . . ?” questions.  He more or less asks permission to do anything.  ”Can I play with this toy?”  ”Can I put my phone down?”  The first time he used this sentence construction to ask permission was Sunday afternoon.  We were hanging out in the living room, and he asked “Can I go outside and play on the patio by myself?”  Jeff and I both just looked at him for a minute.  It is really funny to hear a complex sentence come out of the mouth of a toddler who just turned 2 years old!  Of course we let him go;  how could we refuse when he had asked so nicely?

Then, the other afternoon Caleb and I were making banana muffins while Ethan was taking a nap.  Caleb was helping me stir the batter, and I asked if he was my little buddy.  He said, “Ethan is my buddy.  When he gets big, he will eat dernana muffins with me.”  I love that the boys love each other so much!  I really hope they stay so close and loving as they get older.  Caleb has his 2 year old tantrums, but in general he is such a sweetie.  I am probably jinxing us by saying so, but the women in the child care rooms at Spanish River (a church where Ethan and I attend a newborn mommy and me group) and at the YMCA all tell me how sweet he is all the time.

The Problem of Naps

Monday, June 7th, 2010

One of my biggest goals since the birth of Ethan is getting both kids to nap at the same time in the afternoon so I can have some precious down time.  We have no family near by, and even if we did Ethan refuses to take any sort of bottle.  Thus I don’t really get much (or any) time away from the boys.  Really, the closest thing I get is when they are sleeping.  As far as this goal goes, I am failing miserably.  The saddest part is that I am not even failing because the boys are napping at different times.  I am failing because I have a 5 month old that I cannot get to nap.

Each afternoon, I feed Caleb lunch, read him a story, sing him a song, and put him to bed.  This routine has worked like a charm since he was a few months old.  He is usually out in a matter of minutes and, if undisturbed, will sleep 2-3 hours.  Ethan is not so easy.

About a week ago, Ethan decided he could roll over.  First he rolled from his belly to his back.  Then, about 10 minutes later, he rolled from his back to his belly.  With in a day, he could rolls both ways in either direction and scoot himself around using his legs.  So basically, in a 24 hour period he went from sitting around like a lump to being mobile.  Why would one ever lie still if they could be moving?  Ethan certainly does not know the answer!  For the first few days, he was awake most of the night moving around his crib.  That at least has passed.  Napping is a different story.  If I put him down awake, he moves around his crib playing until he remembers he is alone.  Then he screams.  Sometimes crying, but more often just making high pitched squeals in the hope that someone will come play with him.  If this goes on long enough, Caleb will wake up and play with him.  Then no one gets a nap.  This is how most of our afternoons go.

Even if I get Ethan to sleep and then put him down, he will only sleep for about 3 minutes these days.  If he does fall asleep on his own, he may sleep for 30 minutes, but that is the limit.  Then the playing and squealing starts again.  If I go and get him up, he is grumpy.  Surprise!  Thirty minutes is not enough sleep for a 5 month old.  Who would have guessed.  Then I get to start the whole process over again.  Talk about fun!

And what is more fun than dealing with a grumpy 5 month old who won’t sleepy?  Dealing with a tantrum throwing 2 year old who also did not get enough sleep thanks to his 5 month old brother.

This is how my afternoons have been going for the past few weeks.  I consider myself a smart, well educated woman, but I have no idea how to fix this!  Usually I resort to just turning off the monitor for a little while and pretending they are sleeping so that I get a little break!

Our Journal

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Every so often, maybe a few times a year, I decide to start journaling.  It only lasts for maybe 3 days.  For some reason I just cannot write things down.  The same is true of scrap booking.  I very much want my boys to have wonderful baby books documenting all their major milestones and life events.  I have about 5 pages of Caleb’s scrap book made.  I haven’t even considered starting a book for Ethan.  It seems when I sit down to do these things, I just don’t enjoy them.  Then I start procrastinating.  Finally I just abandon it all together.

I realize though, that our family is in the midst of exciting times — and usually really busy times.  At some point life will calm down, and we will want to remember all the fun, growth, and even stress of these times.  Thus, I have decided that I am going to try and keep up with our family blog.  We need to have some documentation of these early years of our growing family.   I figure the blog is the easiest way to go.  Unlike scrap booking, it doesn’t require a lot of work space — something we are very short on these days!  Also, I thought someone else may find reading about our little family interesting.  Or maybe not.  Either way, it will be available for friends, family, or even strangers.  I have recently discovered the blog reader in my email client, and have had fun keeping up with friends blogs and some interesting blogs of complete strangers — mostly on the topics of crafting and mothering.  My goal now is to write at least one blog entry a week.  Let’s hope it sticks!

A big motivation for doing this is that I realized the other day that in a few weeks, my brand new baby will be 6 months old!  How did that happen so quickly?  With Caleb, I felt we throughly experienced each little stage he went through.  We noticed (and celebrated) each milestone.  Now, with a toddler in addition to a baby, life seems to be flying by and we are just trying to keep up!  At 5 1/2 months, Ethan is over 18 lbs, and he has never eaten anything but breast milk.  In a couple of weeks we will have to start giving him solid food.  He can already sit on his own.  He grabs everything he sees and puts it directly into his mouth.  A few days ago he started rolling.  First from belly to back, then about 20 minutes later from back to belly.  He loves watching his older brother and laughing at him.  They are quickly becoming best buddies.

Speaking of his older brother, Caleb is such a little boy.  Other than wearing diapers and needing his paci to sleep, there isn’t a lot of baby left in him.  He talks in sentences, and loves to ask questions.  He needs to know what everything is, and, lately, what it eats.  He is now obsessed with knowing which animals are mammals.  This came out of wondering why baby ducks don’t drink milk.  He likes to talk to strangers and tell them details of his day.  He told a man in the elevator the other day that he had seen a man pushing a hand truck.  Apparently this seemed like an important detail of the day to him.   He also loves to encourage Mommy and Daddy.  He tells us “Good Job” when we clean up, flush the toilet, or do any other small part of our day well.

I love seeing the boys grow, and at the same time wish time could stand still every once in a while.