Sunday, August 30, 2009

Welcome Back Elizabeth!

Remember Zander's friend Elizabeth who went to Australia for a year? Well, she's back. Zander was thrilled.

In the photo above, he is wearing the Australian-themed t-shirt that she sent him while she was abroad.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

My Crazy Cassandra Sleep Rant

Don't say I didn't warn you. This *is* a crazy sleep rant.

It’s 3:50am and I’m awake. So was Cassandra. You might think this is uncharacteristic for an 8-month-old baby. And it probably is. Truth is, it’s not her fault.

We sleep trained her months ago and it worked. The sad truth is though, she doesn’t nap well (if at all) at daycare. And all of the sleep science shows that sleep begets sleep in babies and children. That is, if they are napping well they’ll sleep better at night. This has proved true for Cassandra over and over. Each weekend I do my best to get her back on track. I stay home and put her down for her nap within two hours of her morning wake-up (as this book and this book and even this book all say to do). And each weekend (and night really) I’ve tried to establish a routine. I’ve stayed home and missed attending countless events to get her on track. I’ve put off trips. The end goal was always worth it to me – that she (and US) would get a full night’s sleep.

But every Monday she goes back to school and every Monday she comes home with a sheet of paper that reports how she didn’t nap. See, it’s louder and lighter there and she’s very sound sensitive and there’s not a lot we (or they) can do about that. We provided a portable sound machine and that helped (a bit). We’ve talked over and over with her caregiver (who tries to accommodate, but there is only so much she can do).

After yet another weekend of great sleep and yet another few weekdays of poor napping which in turn results in nighttime wake-ups, I decided to give up. I am tired of listening to her cry at night when she is waking up because of the poor napping at school. I am tried of trying to re-train her. It’s not fair to her and to us. I said I’m not letting her cry anymore. Since then, each day we’ve regressed a little bit more. She’s back to sleeping in the baby swing, nursing to sleep, waking up twice a night, etc. Her sleep is totally unpredictable (which also means -- in my opinion -- that we can’t leave her with a babysitter.) I’m sure by the weekend, we’ll be co-sleeping. (I’m kind of kidding there, but I seriously don’t see things moving any other way and I’m no longer sure that would be a bad thing for us.)

I just don’t see a lot of options here. Brad and I have talked about it ad nauseum and I mean ad nauseum. I can’t quit my job. We can’t hire a nanny and keep her home. We can't keep re-training her every weekend.

Sigh. Luckily, despite the lack of sleep during the weekdays, she is still a pretty happy baby. I, as you can tell, am not a happy mommy.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Does your car have an Obameter?

Last night Zander was telling me how "the Obameter on daddy's car" was soon going to read 1-2-3-4-5-6." Get it? 'Obameter' instead of 'Odometer.' It's a mistake that no child would have made before, say, August of 2009.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Taking Blood

I feel like I should post happy things -- a lot of them -- to move Sunday's post down. Alas, this is not necessarily a happy thing, but it does satisfy the latter goal....

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Zander woke up with a strange rash on his arms yesterday and a low-grade fever, so we decided to take him to the doctor. He had been feeling a little "grumpy" (his term) lately, so we figured better safe than sorry. It ended up being an odd and long day because the doctor wanted us to get some blood taken.

I very quickly I learned to not to call the procedure "taking" blood, but rather a blood "draw." The word "taking" really rubbed Zander the wrong way. He was oh-so-concerned about how *much* blood they would "take" and "WHEN would they be giving it back?!" Good questions, in my opinion! Overall, he was surprisingly patient and brave including when the technician who took the blood didn't say ONE WORD to him. What kind of person doesn't talk to a child at all before taking drawing his or her blood?

Anyway, my favorite (and also least favorite) moment was after they put the needle in, Zander screamed, "WHY IS HE BREAKING MY SKIN?" Even the curmudgeon technician taking drawing his blood smiled.

P.S. And Mom, if you're out there and reading this, don't worry -- it's probably nothing to worry about.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sunday 'Fail'

I spend a lot of time here telling cute stories about cute children. Well, today was just a bad day. Zander whined his way through the entire day, but somehow managed to get two different types of ice cream nonetheless and is at the main computer now clicking away. (Can you say over-indulged?) Cassandra was up at 5:00am screaming and did not go back to sleep until her morning nap, which was cut short. She then fell asleep in the car later and did not take an afternoon nap. Brad and I fought ferociously about one thing or another throughout the day. Maybe this is "airing our dirty laundry." Maybe it's being honest. Who knows. But, I'm actually looking forward to Monday!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Prepare for cuteness, but turn DOWN your volume

Let me just say that this is a very cute video of Cassandra learning to crawl, taken yesterday. (I'm not partial or anything) She is *almost* there. (This clip actually makes it look like she is already crawling, but it's misleading.)

Let me also say that if I could edit out the sound of my voice I most certainly would. But, our movie maker software is having some issues and keeps freezing up. So, you're stuck with me annoyingly (and uncontrollably) urging her on. Sorry about that. Like I said, consider turning your volume down.

P.S. The video from the Styrofoam post is now working. No magic on my part -- just blogger being finicky.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Styrofoam (in slow motion)

Hmmm. How to explain this one? Brad says it has something to do with male-dom, about building things up and knocking them down -- some defending the caveman gibberish. All I know is that I was upstairs doing bedtime routine and nursing Cassandra when I heard crash after crash after crash.

But, let me back up.

Last week I brought home some random Styrofoam packing from my office. This was uncharacteristic of me, as usually I am trying to get rid of all the junk in my house not *add* to it. But something about the recent spaceship project called to me.

And now, here is what became of the Styrofoam (in slow motion):

Monday, August 10, 2009

Tiring, but fun

Seems like awhile since I've updated the world on little Cassandra. She's getting six teeth at once (to add to her bottom two). They're actually almost all in now, so stock in Tylenol is likely to drop.

She has discovered how to get up on all fours as well as how to sit herself up. Unfortunately, she does this in the crib at night and has NOT learned how to lay herself back down. We go to respond to her wake-ups, but it's dark and we can't easily locate her in the crib. Last night at about 2:00am (or was it 4:00am?) she was sitting up, stuck in the corner of her crib facing the wall. It's tiring, but equally fun to watch.

The other night after I first went in to lay her back down, I reported to Brad and Zander that I had found Cassandra "on all fours!" Zander looked at me quite worried and said, "You found her ON THE FLOOR?!" I assured him that no, she was not on the floor.

Finally, we had a parent-meeting with her primary caregiver at the child development center (aka daycare). I don't think I've mentioned that -- overall -- we are pleased with the level of care she is getting at the center. They love her and she loves them. She doesn't nap much while she's there and those around me always get an earful of complaints about it. Other than that, we feel confident about her care.

But, as I've mentioned here before (and as those around me also get an earful about), I have a preference that we don't immerse Cassandra in the princess culture. Granted that, by having this preference, it pretty much guarantees that she'll be obsessed with princesses and I'll be out buying her them so she will poop in the potty, just like we bribed Zander with Thomas trains. But I digress. It is ironic though, that the wonderful developmental milestone binder that her caregiver has been maintaining has this as its cover...

...a Disney princess just mocking me.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Serves Me Right

Every now and then when I'm reading to my son at night I 'accidentally' turn more than one page at once, hoping he won't notice. I know it sounds terrible, but who knew that Dr. Seuss was so darn prolific and that the books are so long? Sure. Fine. I'm good with One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish and The Cat in the Hat. Even Green Eggs and Ham. But, Brad and Zander raided the Dr. Seuss section at our local library and every night for the past week it's been all If I Ran the Zoo, Hunches in Bunches, and And to Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street.

Tonight, Brad was out at a baseball game and I was on the final leg of the 2nd bedtime routine (Cassandra was already asleep) after a long day of work. I skipped just a page or two, I swear. They are brilliant books, but I wanted to be finished for the night. Should have known that Zander would notice my 'mistake.' Alas, we then had to go through every single page again to find the one I missed.

Serves me right.

LOL in the grocery store

Saw this card:

"They say it takes a whole village to raise a child, but no one ever says WHERE it is or how to get there!"

Monday, August 3, 2009

Tubing on the South River in Annapolis and a Jellyfish Sting

Back in my day, going "tubing" meant lazily meandering through a small creek. Hmmph. See photos below of Zander with his Annapolis cousins "tubing." Kids today.

Before:

During:

More during:

After the jellyfish sting: