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Archive for July, 2013

“Could be his molars coming in.”

With that simple sentence, I lost a bit of love for our pediatrician, which is okay because I have enough love for him that losing a bit is tolerable.

The baby had been waking up for a few nights running, and since he had an ear infection the last time that happened, we were there to rule out that possibility. With it ruled out, I was left with no simple answer to this maddening new trend in my baby’s behavior.

As the days went on, he did it over and over, waking between 2 and 4:30, upset but easily calmed, sometimes soaked through, sometimes dry. One night, for extra fun, he woke up an hour after the first time, just as I was drifting back to sleep.

Naturally I turned to the Internet and books for possible reasons. None of them seemed fun:

– Molars. Two-year molars coming in seven months early, could take a few months to fully erupt. Neato.

– Separation anxiety. Really? I’m with him ALL THE TIME.

– Overtiredness. The more tired you are, the worse you sleep. The worse you sleep, the more tired you are. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

– Night terrors. He’s a little young for this, but one of the hallmarks of this lovely phenomenon is a freaked-out kid who suddenly calms down and passes out again, which is pretty much what he was doing. He also paused during a crying jag to chirp, “hi!”

– 18-month sleep regression. This is where the kid starts waking up at night for no apparent reason, and you get to decide how to deal with it. Regardless of your course of action, you still end up with a tired baby and shredded sleep.

– Just a fun new limit-testing behavior. Because making Mommy get out of bed is fun!

– Full moon.

Go ahead and laugh at that last one. He stopped his wee-hours wakings the night after the full moon.

Apparently I’m raising a werewolf.

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You are 17 months old.

You have a new toy:

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You somehow know that the sound of an almost-empty ketchup bottle “farting” is funny.

You say “brr” when something is cold.

You had your first skinned knee last week.

You will sometimes put your hands on your hips and stick your belly out and look at Mama and start laughing.

You dip one index finger ever so daintily in something you want to taste and then bring it slowly up to your mouth. Your Grammie taught you this.

You’ve been doing this for a while, but: You will take someone’s hand and move it to indicate what you want them to do.

You’ve been introduced to a baby pool, and you’re getting along famously. But so far you mostly like to play with the hose (and drink from it).

You shake your head “no” to book after book when it’s time to read before a nap or bedtime. This is why there are messy stacks of books on the ottoman in your room, and a few on the floor.

You have absolutely zero fear of the garbage truck.

Your favorite kitchen toys at the moment are a tiny Tupperware container and a springform pan, but you still have great affection for the strainers.

You speed to the dishwasher to help Mama unload it, and you’re tall enough to reach things on the top rack.

You find the vacuum cleaner to be highly amusing and are desperate to touch it when it’s on.

You are more of a parrot every day, and this is why your next word may be “sugar.”

You spent 20 minutes playing with an empty 2-liter soda bottle the other day.

You’ve tried to go to sleep standing up a couple of times, once when Grammie was taking care of you. Boy, was she confused!

You can go down the stairs by sliding on your belly (feet first).

You have discovered slides, and giggle the best possible giggle when going down them. Then you try to climb back up them.

You can step up a small step if you’re holding Mama’s hand.

You still have no interest in ice cream or cake.

You are all about graham crackers.

You are not all about using a spoon, preferring instead to dip the wrong end in your yogurt.

You are 17 months old, and you seem to be teething again which is just ridiculous but whatever, we’ll work with it…

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The Overnight

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We had an overnight.

We said low-key goodbyes to Baboo as my mom took him for a walk, and then we drove away.

We arrived at a hotel less than ten minutes later.

We ordered room service within five minutes of walking through the door of our suite (we were upgraded, thank you very much Robert!). Later we figured out that we hadn’t had room service in over two years.

We loafed about and watched TV.

We made a dinner reservation.

I put on a dress that mostly still fits (someone rearranged my body, dangit!).

I put on mascara. Mascara!

We ate and chatted about life in general and our fellow diners. We also theorized about our server’s jumpy manner.

We had dessert.

We returned to the room tired but so full that we thought going to bed would be a bad idea. So naturally we headed back downstairs for a nightcap.

I was sure I heard the baby crying at 3:30 in the morning.

We woke without alarms (For me this was 5:30. I’m programmed, it seems.).

We ordered room service for breakfast.

I had one of the best pedicures of my life.

We checked out and headed home, excited to see the baby after 19 hours away from him.

We had an overnight for the first time since the baby was born, and we understand we need to do it again sooner than 17 months from now.

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Once I started writing a list of baby gear must-haves (here and here) I started thinking about all the stuff we didn’t use and lo, another blog post was conceived.

– Burp cloths. They’re not big enough if your kid is a serious spitter like ours was. Dish towels and cloth diapers were far more useful. Get about a dozen if your baby shows signs of being a puker.

– Receiving blankets. I still don’t understand what they’re for. They’re not really big enough to swaddle with, and you’ll have tons of cute blankets to drape over the kid. Get a 3-pack if you must, and then let me know if you used them, and what for.

– Bath thermometer. That’s what your hand is for. Though those ducks that say “hot” on the bottom if the water is scalding are awfully cute.

– Noisy toys. You know the ones. Lots of screechy songs and buttons and whatnot. Old-school teachers call them “busy boxes.” We have a coulple, and I suppose you can argue that they teach the kid cause and effect and build fine motor skills. But for the most part the way the baby plays with them is pretty mindless, as far as I can tell. Also, they are invariably loud, which pisses me off, because I kind of like the fact that my baby can hear, thanks. Caveat: A handheld “educational” toy can be great for keeping a baby happy in the car. This is why an Elmo counting and colors monstrosity lives in the backseat of my car.

– Microwave sterilizer. While we did use this for a while, our pediatrician told us it wasn’t necessary unless we were using well water or had a preemie.

– Baby grooming set. The comb was sharp, the bulb syringe was useless (they give you a good one in the hospital anyway) and everything else was poor quality. Just get a good pair of baby nail clippers (or scissors) and an adult comb that’s not pokey.

– Pacifiers. They give you the best ones in the hospital (Soothies — ask for extras), and many (including me) say you’re better off ditching them by the 6-month mark.

– Baby journal. We have a really beautiful one with a sweet little bunny on the front. Every two or three months I pull it out, marvel that I’m supposed to print photos to go in it, and put it back in the closet. Disclaimer: If you’re a Project Person, you will love it.

– Wipe warmer. Seriously? Warm them in your hands or armpits if you think the baby can’t deal with a split second of chilliness.

– Footie PJs with snaps. Trust me: At 3 a.m., in the semi-dark (because you don’t want to wake the baby any more than necessary), snap-closure PJs become a Rubik’s Cube made out of fabric With a greased weasel inside. Zippers, my friends. Zippers.

I’m sure there are more I’ll think of as soon as I post this…

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Dear Lady I Met at the Schnucks Deli Counter the Other Day:

You delighted me by telling me you follow my blog. That’s the first time I’ve had the pleasure of hearing that from a stranger. You further delighted me by saying you recognized me by my glasses. (I assumed my hair was my trademark — guess I need to rethink that.)

Here’s the thing: I was so fuzzed up with stunned happiness that I think I forgot to say thank you. And now I’m mortified by my lapse of manners.

So thanks, Deli Counter Lady! Thank you for following and reading my blog when you must be very busy with your sweet baby girl. Thank you for speaking up. Thank you for making me feel great and causing my husband to give me a high-five.

And one question, since I’m terribly curious: How did you find my blog?

Thanks again,

H

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Friends! Does your baby wake up wet and sad every morning? Are his formerly silky haunches covered in a nasty rash because of it? Are you at your wit’s end trying to think of ways to fix the problem after going up a diaper size, which has never failed to stop leaks in the past?

Well fear no more, because help is here in the form of an old friend:

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That’s right, your old pal the bulky, nasty maxi-pad is here to save the day! Just cut off the wings, slit the back so the pee can get through to the diaper, and voilĂ ! The baby may wake up slightly damp, but your days of flooding will be over!

By the way, they’re also great if your dog has had knee surgery. Super-absorbent and much cheaper than bandaging supplies.

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I'm over 40. I'm at home with a preschooler. Hear me roar.

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