My Little Picasso's

My Little Picasso's

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

So ... about that big boy bed ...

My darling sweet toddler, Max, is very lucky he is so gosh darn cute.  So far, he has ...

turned on the radio, Jennifer Lopez it was, VERY LOUDLY, just after 6 am.
unloaded his laundry basket.
unloaded his dresser drawers.
put all the dirty laundry in his dresser drawers.
replugged in the radio I unplugged to play me some Def Leopard.
turned all the channels on the monitor.
unplugged the monitor.
undressed himself.

and the best of all ...

pulled off a poopy diaper in the bed, dragged it over the floor, stepped in it, need I go on?

I had two glasses of wine last night.

July 27th, 2011

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Big Boy Bed ...

I have not heard a peep yet!

We are slowly making our way to Max's new room, Charlie's nursery, and my husband and I getting our room back!

I am knocking on the wooden desk as I type ...

July 23rd, 2011

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Look out, he bites.

Very cute 22 month old; loves balls, dogs, blueberries, and his mummy and daddy; can take every book off his shelves in 6.2 seconds; tries to dress himself; and he bites.
Every parent's nightmare, being told their child bit someone at daycare that day.  Even worse, being told that your child was bit at daycare that day.  I am one of those who has heard the second choice.  Max spent a year in daycare when I went back to teaching.  He was bit twice, once on the arm(by a repeat offender), and once on the back of his head(by a first timer).  I was so angry. But in a very small degree of compassion, I also understood the other child's parent's pain.  How they must have felt?  What were they going to do?  My child will not have friends because he will be known as the one on the playground that bites.  Rumors will fly, he will be an outcast, therapy bills will mount up ... Ok, so I am getting ahead of myself.  My child was bit, not the biter.
My husband had an absolute conniption.  Why are we paying all this money and he is being bit?  I had no answer, but caused a bit of a stink at daycare.  All they could do was apologize and guarantee me the child would be monitored and shadowed from now on.

Then yesterday as I tried to stop my very cute 22 month old; loves balls, dogs, blueberries, etc. from throwing my neatly folded laundry, he bit me.  It hurt.  I yelped.  I got on his level and I told him it was not nice and tried a time out(how do you make a 22 month old sit still when he thinks it is fun and playtime ... stay tuned).  I hoped this was a one-time occurrence.  Of course not.
Today as I nursed his little brother, he thrust books at my face narrowly missing the baby.  As I reached my arm out to protect us, he bit my arm.
MAX.  You are not a biter.  You are my very cute 22 month old who loves balls, dogs, blueberries, etc.  So now the adventures of time outs begin, while I have an 8 week old.  This should be fun.

So what did I do?  I called my sister, nanny extraordinaire, and my mum, because who wouldn't call their mum.  Mum said for me to supply him with distractions in a room, make it something we must do so he understands,  keep those toys just for those times, etc.  So we went to his bedroom with a block building train and I sat in the rocking chair ... not bad.  My sister explained the ins and outs of         time-outs; how to, what not to do, theories, suggestions.  Tomorrow we will start again.

Take every day in turn, plan for anything and everything to happen, do not assume you will have the ability to get anything done, pray, drink wine at the end of the day.

July 20th, 2011

Monday, July 18, 2011

Long nights and waling babies

Before your baby is born, decide which shift each of you will take at night.  This is not something you decide at 11pm when you are both about to lose it this is something you decide before.  Your decision to nurse or bottle feed will have some influence obviously.

The first three months are likely the toughest you will have, especially if your baby develops “witching hours” or signs of colic.  Of course Max had his hours each night that usually began around seven and went until about ten.  My husband and I said he had colic and listened to others who said he had colic, but that was us just being hasty.  I now believe it was simply gas.  The stories of colic are much more extreme than our few hours of inconsolable crying each evening.  The crying was unbearable.  I cried many times myself.  The worst feeling is seeing your child in pain and whatever you do will not help them.  Unfortunately now, Charlie begins in the afternoon and does not stop until after Max is asleep.  Needless to say, I am exhausted by the time my exhausted husband gets home from work.  I will gladly clean up the kitchen if my husband will hold Charlie.  I am trying a change in my diet and hopefully will see some improvement.
The confusing part is that you would think they would wear themselves out and fall asleep for a while, but that is not the case.  Max was up quite a bit at night and he would stay awake after being nursed.  I prepared my chair in the living room every evening with glasses of water, burp cloths, and remotes.  Since I was nursing and I could not successfully pump an extra supply for a nightly bottle, the nights were mine.  With Charlie it is almost the same ... he generally goes back to sleep after nursing.
After a few weeks with Max, I begged my husband for some relief, so after nursing in the evening, I would try to sleep while my husband held and consoled.  For a while I could not sleep through the crying, but it got better and I had a few hours before taking over at 11pm.  I remember the nights of never touching the bed.  My black chair had a permanent dent from my bum.  After what would seem forever of fussing and crying, my little one would fall asleep and I would too, because next thing I knew we were waking up and I would have to nurse him again.  Watch TV, watch bad TV, catch up on the news, rent a TV series ... but sleep first and foremost if you can while you are up at night.
Yes, it is tiring, but you quickly get over it.  I advise you put your baby down as much as you can in his or her bassinet during the day and night so he or she is used to it.  Everyone wants to hold a newborn as much as possible, but you must put them down a little each day and more and more each day so they learn to sleep on their own.
Get some kind of heartbeat bear, vibrating soother toy, white noise machine, fan, SOMETHING.  You soon learn to drain the sound out yourself, sleep through it, attach it to your hip everywhere you go!  Both of my boys have their own and it is part of the nightly routine with Max.  He asks for "Thumper."  There are many out there to choose from - make sure to register for one!
You will get through the back pain, just always have ibuprofen on hand.  
Invest in a heat pad if you did not while you were pregnant.
If your little one continues to be fussy and you are nursing, talk to your pediatrician about changing your diet perhaps ... I have found cutting out dairy has helped.  I miss yogurt and cheese and ice cream ... but to have a happier baby I will sacrifice.  It might be caffeine as well.
Always accept help ... it does not make you a bad mum.  It took me a while to realize this one with Max, but with Charlie now I know I must or I will do myself in.  You will always be their mum!
Hang in there ... it will get easier.

PS – ALWAYS go to the bathroom before nursing! 

July 18th, 2011

PSS - By the way, that nap never happened yesterday.  Charlie woke up a few minutes after I laid down.  But hey, the bills got paid!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Dual naps!

This never happens ... I might just join them ... after I go to the bathroom without someone following me in.

July 17th, 2011

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Vacationing ... at the in-laws

I feel as though I am taking advantage of my mother-in-law but I am out at a coffee shop having coffee while she is watching my two boys.  I must admit it is wonderful to know I will be able to drink my coffee, the entire coffee, while it is still hot.  I never really did this with Max; I let nursing keep me by my son’s side all the time, but now I am much more efficient and it is amazing what you can get done on your own in the span of 2-3 hours.  Remember to do this for yourself … YOU MUST!

July 14th, 2011

Saturday, July 9, 2011

How is your hearing?

The witching hours have now spread into the witching afternoon. Really?  A few hours in the evening were expected with Max, yet all afternoon into the evening is almost unbearable with Charlie.  I have no idea what to do for him anymore - all I can do is hold him, shhhhhh til I am hoarse, bare the back pain, and pray for a better afternoon the next day.
I am trying those drop things for gas in babies.  I am not sure what I am supposed to see - I am guessing less crying and more farting?  Anyone know?
Pray for me!

July 9th, 2011

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Living with your boobs out

Before I even begin to tell all you avid readers and followers about my adventures and give advice on this very talkable subject, I strongly advise you and your significant other to discuss this topic.  You might find out you feel completely different or similar.  In the end, the decision is what is best for the mother and her baby. Nursing is not easy.  I am not even going to pretend and say it is.  Is it wonderful for the mother and her baby for bonding and alone time, yes.  Does it help you lose weight, yes.  Is it what is best for the baby’s health and development, yes.  Does it hurt like hell, yes.  Can your baby refuse you, yes.  Is it a commitment, YES.
I tell all my pregnant friends that this decision, to nurse or not to nurse MUST be made before you give birth.  It is not something you say you are going to try and give up on after two times.  It is a commitment.  I truly believe you must give it one hundred and ten percent.  I had no idea it was so difficult.  My major issues were pain and production. 
First of all, while in the hospital, if you have decided to nurse your baby, get all the help you can get.  Nurses, doctors, lactation consultants, volunteers, etc.  First of all, lactation consultants are wonderful, but they are quite opinionated, “Breast milk all the way!”  It is as though they are cheerleaders and have those little bootie shorts on their butts that say "boobies" across their butt cheeks.  They believe in that option only and will advise in such a way as well.  They can help you analyze how your baby is latching on and if it is correct for optimum nursing time, give you schedules to follow, help you with any pain or production issues, etc.
Personally nursing was very painful for me to begin.  Definitely begin using the Lamisol cream on your nipples about a month before you intend to give birth to prepare yourself and your breasts for their important purpose.  My son latched on very well and no one could fault him.  He often tucked his bottom lip which should not be tucked, but he had a very forceful suck.  It was painful and I ended up with cracked and bleeding nipples.  There is nothing like your baby pulling off you with your blood running down their little face.  It is quite barbaric looking.  The pain got worse and worse.  I cried through feedings which were lasting almost an hour.  Within a week I was quite engorged and the pain was so great, I had to go back to the hospital. 
I sat in the hospital I had just come home from, bare-chested, nursing my son while the consultants watched and I cried.  He nursed for some time and I still had no relief.  My son took an ounce and a half and then they pumped almost another four ounces out of me.  During this time, I nursed, I sat with hot towels on my boobs, I used silicone nipple coverings for protection, I sat with ice on my boobs, I drank water, everything.  Luckily it helped and I could get back to nursing, but my boobs were already damaged and it took some time for the pain and injuries to go away.
During this time I used silicone nipples for protection which luckily my son adjusted to and then unadjusted to.  The next issue was production.  I was never engorged again.  I never leaked.  I could get into a burning hot shower and nothing happened.  I could never pump again besides the one time in the hospital.  I nursed until he was done and was soft as anything.  Then I would be back at it almost an hour and a half later.  Newborns should be fed every 2-3 hours, yet Max(that's my first son, by the way) was taking almost an hour to eat, so I did not have much time between feedings to produce more. I felt like I should just walk around topless.  When Max wasn’t gaining weight, I had to start supplementing with formula. 
Many times through the pain and lack of production, my husband hinted for me to stop nursing, but I wouldn’t.  This was what I wanted to do and I did it.  One of the reasons I took off the year was to nurse.   I know I would have to stop before going back to work, but that wasn’t any time soon so I kept going and it got much much easier.  As your child eats more, they will nurse less.  I would give Max one bottle a day just to give me a break and get him used to a bottle with formula since I could not pump. 
Besides, I liked my guaranteed alone time.  
Now with number two, Charlie, it is only slightly different, but not much.  Charlie barely nurses for 15 minutes at a time.  I must say this has been nice compared to sitting for almost an hour, especially now that Max is 20 months his older brother and everywhere.  The hard part is that I am now feeding on demand and not so much a schedule during the day.  Charlie is still working it out and I am living in my nursing bras again.  It must be working though - he is already 3 pounds heavier than at birth, grown 3 inches, and in 3 month clothes.  Yikes.
And I cannot pump again ... grrr.

July 7th, 2011