Saturday, November 27, 2010

Growth spurt!

I am pretty sure James is going through a growth spurt today... he has been cranky while awake, which hasn't been long.... he's slept most of the day taking 1-2 hour naps (he usually takes 45 minute naps). He's also back to eating more whereas the last week or so he's barely eaten during the day (therefore keeping me up all night with feedings every 2 hours).

The major sign that he is having a growth spurt is that he slept from 2-7am this morning, which he has never, ever done. It felt glorious to get 5 hours of uninterrupted sleep... Eliot even got eight.

Love growth spurts. It's like God knew we were sleep deprived and desperate for sleep and so planned a time every few weeks/months when James would sleep more and give us a break. Maybe he'll even sleep better after this? Who knows...

Also, I wanted to mention that James has been enjoying his solid food. He's had rice cereal (tolerates but doesn't love), sweet potatoes (mildly likes), and organic bartlett pears (LOVES!). He's such a good sport about it, the only time he's really cried was tonight when he was just cranky from the growth spurt and couldn't tolerate any more feeding.

Gotta run... presents to wrap!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Sitting up!

James is starting to sit! He needs a little bit of support after a minute or so or he collapses to the side, but he sat today on my lap with my hand just on him to make sure he didn't face-plant into the floor. He was mostly supporting himself for the first time, which really surprised me. So I put him down on the floor to take a picture...



Sitting again!

Happy Thanksgiving!!

James's first Thanksgiving was a hit! We had a great time with family coming to visit, and James did very well all day, going down for naps easily and being calm and content. Since I don't have the energy to write a play-by-play, I'll just narrate with some pics:

Pumpkin dad grew and gave to us

Puree for pie and baby food that I made out of the pumpkin

James helping in the kitchen

Finished pie!

Before company on Turkey day

Pappy and Asher

Levi with his grandma and great-grandma

Table ready to go

My delicious turkey! Eliot had already gotten to it with the knife...

Eliot carving away

Everyone hanging out in the living room with James

I made sure he had some time out of the jumperoo!

Sitting down to eat


James with Aunt Lindy

From left: Nathan, Asher, Lindy, Levi, Me, James, Eliot

Family photo before half the party left to drive back home

So just Nathan, Lindy, Levi, Asher and our family was left. Levi decided to collect all the stuffed penguins in the house and cuddle with them on the couch (so cute!).

Eliot and James after the guests had departed

Bath time!!

A video to go finish out the day:

And then he went to bed and Eliot and I crashed. We watched National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation to kick off the holiday season and went to bed! It was a fantastic Thanksgiving, thanks to everyone who made the drive to be with us!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Roly poly James!

Here are a few short clips of James... the first is James playing and rolling over, the second is his feet at dinnertime. Enjoy!

Also, here is his 22-week pic...

And this one is just for fun. :-)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

James is 22 weeks old!

James turned 22 weeks old yesterday... I forgot to take a pic so I will do that tomorrow.

I almost don't want to say it because it might be cursing myself... but James has been sleeping better. Not long stretches, mind you, just not waking up except for feedings. He also has gone down by himself for almost all his naps today. That is a HUGE improvement and makes my life SOOOO much better! Of course now that I say that I see him stirring on the monitor as I put him to bed, but hopefully he will go back to sleep...

He also ate some more rice cereal tonight. I made it thicker and he is starting to get the hang of opening his mouth for the spoon and even swallowing some of it. I think on Thanksgiving I will give him some of the sweet potatoes I made and froze earlier this month... he's gotta have some Thanksgiving food, right?

Speaking of which, I did our Thanksgiving shopping today. I was planning on taking Eliot with me, but at the last minute we had to send Eliot up to Salem to get a Christmas tree from my dad (who was meeting him halfway and had to go at that time because of the bad weather). So James and I shopped for the turkey all be we twosies. And let me tell you... it wasn't easy.

I carried him in my new Ergo carrier (which is great!), but he is still a month shy of being able to be carried on my back, and at 16.5 lbs he is a lot of weight to be on my front. He can't sit yet, so I can't put him in the shopping cart. And so there I was, me and my baby leaning into the freezer trying to sift through frozen turkeys and find one that was 10 lbs. I finally gave up because James was getting cold and my back hurt and got a 12.34lb turkey (leftovers are good, right?).

I am looking forward to Thanksgiving but am feeling a bot overwhelmed getting the house ready. I know it is just my family and no one will mind if things aren't perfectly clean (ie cobwebs) but I still would like things to look nice. The menu should be pretty tasty and I am making some things ahead of time, so the turkey will be the main event that day. I haven't made a turkey since the first year we were married and living in Ireland, so we'll see how that goes...

In the meantime, I am finishing wrapping my Christmas gifts and trying not to think about the fact that we don't know where we are going to be next year that this time.

At least James fell asleep on his own while I wrote this. That's enough of a blessing for now.

Friday, November 19, 2010

James is 5 months old!

It's so hard to believe James is already 5 months old. He's getting so big and seems to do something new every day. He's creeping more and more, I think he will probably get the army crawl down in a month or so. I also tried feeding him more rice cereal today, and he didn't cry this time. He seemed not terribly interested, but he did open his mouth for it. I'm afraid most of it went down his chin an onto his bib, but I did it mostly for the learning experience of using a spoon, so that's ok. :-)

To celebrate James turning 5 months old, we put him in his new Ergo carrier (my early Christmas present from Eliot) and went to Starbucks. He kept staring at the ladies sitting behind us, which was cute and funny. :-) He did so well, peaceful and calm in the carrier, that we decided to walk around the mall as well. By the end he was pretty tired and conked out after his bath and feeding, leaving Eliot and I to savor date night in relative peace.

Sleep-wise, he still gets up 3 times per night to eat. I am hoping to wean him down to 2 feedings because I don't think he eats much in the middle one. He has been going down for naps better with less screaming and even occasionally putting himself to sleep (insert shocked face here). I am holding out hope for better sleeping on our horizon!

James has also been enjoying his new jumperoo that I got on craigslist for $35. Unfortunately, the woman didn't tell me how filthy it was until I went to pick it up. This woman had let her baby eat ALL their meals in it. YUCK. She also said they took it camping. Seriously?? So it was really, truly disgusting. I had to unscrew every part of it, scrub it with hot soapy water, sanitize it, and put it back together. I also had to re-solder the electrical part of it that makes lights and sounds because the wires came loose and there was old spaghetti sauce on the circuit board (yeah, gross).

Needless to say, that thing is now the cleanest it has ever been and James loves it. It makes music when you bounce in it, though he seems to like to swing back and forth more than anything else!

Here are some recent pics for your enjoyment:

In his rainforest jumperoo!

My new Ergo carrier

At Starbucks!


5 Months old!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Creeping and Co-sleeping

Two big events are happening in our household...

First, James started to "creep" for the first time today (propel himself forward on his tummy by kicking his legs). He only made it maybe 10 inches, but that is a LOT more than he has ever moved before! I'm feeling the need to keep a closer eye on him since he is also grabbing anything he can get his hands on and bringing it to his mouth (he tried this with my hair and head this morning... didn't work so well!).

Second, we are trying out co-sleeping. I've done lots of research on how to do it safely, and, after trying one unsuccessful night with him in the pack n play next to my bed, we are resorting to putting a twin mattress on the floor of our room for me to sleep with him on. So James gets put to bed in his own room and I let him sleep in his crib until his 11/midnight feeding when I go to bed (our nice big comfy bed with Eliot in it). Then I put him back down in his crib, but the first time after that that he wakes up, I get him and sleep with him on the baby-safe mattress on the floor that he can't fall off of and that has only light blankets and a square pillow. It is also safer because Eliot has no awareness when he is asleep (he's hit me a few times by accident).

This all came about because I am exhausted and tired of getting up every 2 hours to either feed him or put him back to sleep. When he sleeps next to me, he sleeps LOOOOONG stretches and just barely fusses to let me know he is hungry. Then I can breastfeed him without getting up. It's letting me get a lot more sleep, and James is getting better sleep as well (he sleeps in till 8:30 when he sleeps with me, but is up at 7 or so when he's by himself).

So the hope is that when he does decide to start sleeping through the night, he will be used to going to bed in his own crib and it won't be a huge transition from sleeping with me. But in the meantime, I can't keep waiting for him to sleep through the night... I have to do something NOW to keep my sanity and make me a better, more rested mommy.

Yup, co-sleeping. Never thought I would do it, but it turns out it's pretty wonderful to wake up in the morning with a smiley baby next to me (instead of flinging the covers back and grumping my way into the nursery). :-)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

James is 21 weeks old!!

My goodness, 21 weeks... James is really getting big! He's got chubby little cheeks now and is working on his double chin. :-) He also almost always rolls over from tummy to back when placed on his tummy, and he's getting slightly better at going to sleep at night (naps are still hit and miss). He still gets up twice per night to eat. Oh well...

James also has been showing preference for certain toys. He loves the little toy peacock I got him, and he loves to chew on rings. He doesn't seem to be teething yet, just likes to chew. But he does grab onto things very well... I was holding him today on the couch sitting next to a pile of laundry, and before I knew it he had a blanket in his hands!

We are getting ready for the holidays here, and I feel so much more behind than last year. I want to order our Christmas cards but can't until I have an updated picture of the three of us. Who knows when that is going to happen?? With Eliot just getting back from a conference this weekend and my trying to plan Thanksgiving for the family, there just doesn't seem to be enough time in the day.

Enough of my woes... time for some pics!

Waiting to try rice cereal for the first time

Trying out rice cereal!

Flicker in the back yard

21 weeks!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cereal is a no-go!

I have been watching James closely and he's getting pretty close to hitting a lot of the milestones for starting him on rice cereal. Given that my pediatrician said it was OK to put it in his bottle if he looks hungry still (which I'd rather not do but give it to him on a spoon instead so he eats his food instead of drinks it), I thought I'd give it a try and see if he was at all interested in rice cereal.

He's not.

I made it very very thin and mixed it with warm breastmilk... he made a face at the texture and spit it out. He tolerated 4 more tries (he was opening his mouth, I wasn't forcing it) before he started to cry and had had enough. So, we'll be waiting a few more weeks. Good to know where he is at though. :-)

Monday, November 8, 2010

James is 20 weeks old!!

I know I'm a few days late, but I've been working on some Christmas projects and haven't had much free time to post. Saturday James turned 20 weeks old! It's gone by much faster than I thought it would, and sometimes I want to stop time and have him be small forever (then he wakes up screaming for the 3rd time in an hour and I start praying for time to speed up just a little bit!).

This past week James has been progressing quite a bit in his grasping skills. He can grab things much easier than he could before, and now he is starting to reach for things (this morning it was my water glass and then my piece of turkey bacon). He's also rolling around a lot more at play time, and doesn't automatically cry right away when he's on his stomach. He also is laughing every once in awhile and it is CUTE. I doubt I can get it on camera yet because it doesn't happen all the time, but when I can I will so you can all hear it!

Today was pretty good except for James spitting up on my head (I was lifting him in the air at playtime, so it is partially my fault). He also was ALMOST asleep tonight when Eliot threw a light on in the hall and it woke him up so jarringly that he decided to cry inconsolably out of exhaustion for an hour and then wake up every 30 min to an hour after that to cry out again from being overtired. Sigh. I've heard it gets better... but when, I don't know.

And now for a few pics from this past week...
Playing with daddy


Showing off his grasping/chewing skills!

20 weeks old!!