Monday, September 23, 2013

Aaand again

Don't let this happy smile in the photo below fool you. At church this week, IT happened again. Yep, another blowout. Only this time, B was with me. That said, im sure youre thinking "it couldn't have been that bad". Well you'd be wrong. It happened while she was in the Moby Wrap. On my body.

Believe it or not, this photo was taken after it happened.
She was showing signs of tiredness so I put her in the wrap during greeting time. All was well during the remainder of worship time and as our pastor was saying a prayer before starting the service, it happened. She was sound asleep and I felt and heard her poop. I knew instantly it was a blowout, and instantly knew she had pooped on me. I leaned over after the prayer was over and told B what had happened and he asked if I was sure. Well, technically I wasn't, so I reached into the wrap and sure enough, came out with fingers covered in poop. He looked at me horrified, and asked what I was going to do. Given I that was wearing a dress, and that i didnt have any alternate clothes, my options were to pray she stayed asleep and just wear her until service was over, or we could leave church and go home. I opted for the first option and settled in for what felt like the longest 45min of life. 
After service was over, we headed to the Mommy's room to evaluate the damage.  As i started to pull the wrap off us, i realized more of the yuck was on the wrap than on me (thank goodness!)
She was clearly unfased by the whole incident. 
But as always, happy as a clam afterwards. 
I swear our life could be a reality tv show. =/ 

Saturday, September 21, 2013


Emerson has started to "talk" more and more with each passing day. This week though, she has started to make more noise than ever and we LOVE it. She honestly thinks she is talking to us and it is too cute.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

15/16 weeks

The weeks keep flying by and little E is already 3 1/2 months old! (Yes really, even in spite of my math deficiencies, she is actually is that age :) ) Her sleep habits continue to get better, she smiles at us broader than ever and has started making a wide variety of noises in ever increasing volume levels. 

Since she loves to grasp toys, her clothes, my hair anything, she gives herself fits at night by pulling her pacifier out of her mouth as she's falling asleep, we have started putting her to sleep (at nap time and at bedtime) by putting a corner of her lovie in her hand. Now, I know she is still too young to start an attachment to her lovie, but I figure introducing it now can't hurt. She holds into one of the corners while eating and I lay it across her stomach when she is in her crib but remove it once she is asleep, and this helps her not yank the paci out :) 

Her eyes are rapidly changing colors. They aren't blue anymore, but are definitely not green/brown/hazel/any other normal eye color. They look more grey than anything, but in the sunlight there are hints of brown.. She definitely takes after daddy on this one :) I'm excited to see what color they end up.
And look! she has eyebrows!  Normally all you can see in photos are the little muscles underneath, but this proves she does have them! and her hair looks brownish.. we will see what it ends up as well.
As a result of sleeping with her arms unswaddled, we have more face owies. Her nails arent even that long! 
Since she sleeps longer stretches at a time, meal times are even more important. She gorges herself and then often sits in a milk coma for a few minutes after eating. 

Another upside of her sleeping better at night, she is in fabulous moods in the morning :)
Developing a taste for coffee early on! (Totally kidding, she didnt get to drink anything, she just tried to bite the side of the cup and quickly lost interest) 
Now that she is able to reach and grab things, her pacifier falls to the wayside more frequently.  Granted, the wayside is usually her chest, but still!
This picture showcases many things.
1) despite our best efforts, she still notices the LED light on teh video monitor. (not nearly as much since we covered it with a piece of tape, but still.)
2) she is getting better at being a self soother.  Granted, it is usually two fingers, her whole hand or her wrist, but hey, whatever works!
3) we had just laid her down for her nap when i took this photo.  Thats right, folks, we lay her down wide awake and she can put herself to sleep!! SOOO much progress on the sleep front :)
(also, it really isn't 78 degrees in her room, the monitor is near the window so its gage is off)
No matter how we position her on her playmat, she is mobile enough to wriggle around so she can see the tv.  Thus far she is a great fan of football (mainly because of the brightly colored field and jersies.)  This game was clearly a real nailbiter.
Uncle Tyrel got her this adorable camo hat that says 'I hunt for hugs'. LOVE it! 
Daddy and E have regular conversations about his Fantasy Football league.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Adventures in sleep training

If you read our blog regularly, you’ll remember this post from last week about our adventures in the land of no sleep. Well, I guess that’s not really fair. Little E would go down great for the first sleep cycle (usually from 7:30-11:30ish), wake to eat and then back to sleep. For about an hour. and then she’d wake up for no reason (not hungry, dry diaper, etc.) I’d go in and rock her back to sleep and we’d be in the same boat an hour or so later until she woke for her next feeding (usually around 3:30am) and then fall asleep again until around 5:30am.  I’ve read a decent amount about habitual night wakings, and it seemed that we were firmly planted here. Since B and I are both working full time, this "schedule" she had worked herself into wasn’t working for mom & dad so we set about trying different methods.
First adventure: the dream feed. For those that don’t know what that is, you put the baby down at their normal bedtime and then feed her before you go to bed, in the hopes that they sleep through their normal wake up time of needing to eat. You quietly pick them up, feed in silence and as soon as they are finished, lay them back down to sleep. In theory this is great, but when you have a hyper-aware wide eyed child, trying to keep her asleep proved to be a challenge. Esp. for B since he had to feed her a bottle. She’s always eaten well from a bottle, but with these awake dream feeds, the milk would come out of the bottle so fast that it would wake her up and the whole process was for nothing. We did this song and dance for 5 days and B told me one morning that we weren’t doing it anymore.  and that was the end of that adventure! (to be honest, it wasn't working so this was the right call!)
Second adventure: un-swaddling. Since she was born, E has been swaddled into a tight burrito every night. Only recently has she started to protest, and a few times a week she’d work one or both arms out of the swaddle. I had done a decent amount of reading, and everything said that once they started to break out of the swaddle on a regular basis, it was time to transition out of it. The thought of this made me nervous though, because instead of being in control of her arms, she flails them around like a human windmill, often hitting herself in the face. We had tried to unswaddle one arm when she was 9 weeks old and after multiple hits to the face and waking herself up, we gave up and made her into a full burrito again.  Our most recent attempt at un-swaddling one of her arms was this past Friday and we were surprised with what happened- she did great! However, on Saturday night, she still broke her other arm free, so I (with GREAT trepidation) unswaddled both arms for the rest of the night. Again, she did great! I wrapped the swaddle around her bottom half (see photo) and she slept like this for most of the night.  
To continue with the transition out of her swaddle, we decided to give the sleep sack that we got from Aunt Stephanie a try.  I was nervous bc it looked so big, but after the velcro on the swaddle wouldn't stay put on her tiny mid-section, i didnt have a choice. We used it for naps on Sunday, and she did great through all of them and into the night, and we haven't looked back!
Third adventure: moderate CIO (cry it out). This whole CIO method is a heated debate for a lot of people, but i think that in the right situations, it can work well.  I know in the grand scheme of things, E is way to little to let her cry for any extended period of time.  Again, i had read that letting them cry a few minutes and then going to check/soothe quickly and then trying again was beneficial in some cases.  Given her age, B and I talked about it, and decided that 5 minutes was long enough to let her cry and then go and soothe her.  We prepared ourselves for the heartache of watching our precious baby cry (and watching through the video monitor) but it was soo hard!  the first night she cried for 45 minutes (in 5 minute incriments) and then fell asleep. (yes i cried the majority of the time as well)  Each night wake that she had (not food related) we did the same process, and with both wakings, she needed to be soothed twice and then fell asleep.  Saturday night, she fell asleep with little protest and her night wakings each required two soothing times.  on Sunday, her naps had begun to follow the same suit, but only required one soothing. She fusses/cries for 5 minutes and then falls asleep with little issues.  Last night, was drowsy after eating and then fell right to sleep when i laid her in the crib!
I have heard of babies who like to fall asleep on their own, and it seems E is rapidly becoming one of these.  When she is done eating, she wants nothing to do with me (and makes it known. loudly.).  when i put her in the crib, she may fuss for a few minutes but puts herself to sleep easier each night. 
As hard as these changes have been for us to make, we know they are necessary steps to take for E to develop good sleeping habits, and for us to regain our sanity. While we have made great strides in the sleep department, we know we still have a ways to go.  But believe me, I say thankful prayers each night that things have gone smoothly thus far, and that things will continue to get better.
As a result of her better sleeping at night, we are greeted with a happier baby in the morning.  And really, lets be honest, who doesn't love a large grin from an adorable baby? ;)

our adventures in sleep training haven't been as painful as i anticipated, and i know that we can still have sleep regressions, but I am so thankful for the progress that we've made so far.  And as a mommy, I'm so proud that E is growing up and starting to develop habits on her own!
I'll update again soon :)


Thursday, September 5, 2013

14 weeks

Emerson is 14 weeks old tomorrow and gets more fun each passing day. Yes, the sleep woes I wrote about last time are still a very real part of our everyday life, but the huge grin we get from her every time we peer over her crib helps lessen the blow.  Yes, they can be maddening when she smiles like a toothless joker at 3am, but its impossible to stay mad when you see her.

On the whole she is a great baby, crying only when she is hungry, tired or has a yucky diaper. She smiles constantly, at her daddy and me, any extended family, and with a bit of prodding- at any stranger. She plays contentedly in her crib in the mornings for 15 minutes at a time; talking to herself and discovering new noises.

At 14 weeks she:
- Loves to stand. Granted, you have to be holding her up, but she loves the new view and throws the occasional mini fit when you sit or lay her down.
- is still getting chubbier and chubbier with each passing day. We love it!

- develops new facial expressions frequently. The video I uploaded shows a face we call ‘puffy cheeks’. We aren’t sure where she learned it from, but it is too funny not to share.

- her grip is getting stronger. She will closer her hand around just about any item you press into her palm and hold on for quite a while.
- LOVES to be outside. Even as a newborn she would love to look around, but this has only increased with age. She is incredibly happy on our nightly walks and loves to look at the trees. The video below shows her on our walk last night. (and gives a glimpse of the toothless grins we get)
- knows 100% who we are, and saves her biggest smiles for me and her daddy J   

We used our jogging stroller for its' intended purchase/purpose for the first time recently and she did great!  Most everything says to wait until they are 6 months old before going running with them, but at our 2 month appointment we asked our pediatrician and she gave us the ok to try it out.  She has had great neck strength for quite a while now and did so well on our jog.  Mommy on the other hand.. Not running for 9+ months takes its tole on you, and combine that with a heavy stroller to push, good grief it was a workout.
Has taken to sucking on her bottom lip with a vengence.  We aren't sure why she does it, but if she is sitting quietly for any length of time, she is sucking on her bottom lip.   
Ever since she was born, she has a look of constant surprise on her face.  No, we dont intentionally scare her or play peek-a-boo before taking photos, her eyes really are this wide nearly all.the.time.  I guess thats one feature she got from mommy :) 
We still have blowouts on a regular basis.  I've checked and her diapers fit properly, so i'm not quite sure where they come from..  The most recent time, we were out shopping with a friend and she started to fuss so i went to pick her up out of the stroller and as I did so, she pooped and got it on my shirt =/
She is always happy as a clam afterwards though.  I swear she thinks it is funny and does it on purpose sometimes..
One of my best friends, Joni, came to town to visit family and we were able to have lunch!  Here she is with baby Eme, prior to the poopsplosion.
Another of my favorite pictures of my favorite people :)  B loves reading to her, and these Skippy Jon Jones books we got from a baby shower seem to be a favorite of both of theirs'.  This was the first time she was actively invested in the reading though, she would make sounds throughout and was looking at each page as B turned it. 
 In light of her love of standing, we have been looking into exersaucers and walkers lately. Yes, she is still a little small for them, but given how much she enjoys the view, we thought it best to invest in one sooner rather than later. After much hunting on Craigslist i found a good exersaucer for a great price so i picked it up and we put her in it for the first time yesterday.  Granted, she had to have some help from the Snuggie blanket under her feet so she could touch the bottom, and we had a blanket behind her to help push her towards the toys, but she did great!  She actively reached for the toys and played for a few minutes.  I can tell many hours are going to be spent in this new toy :)  
She is so fun to be around and watching her discover new things is so great. 
Until next time.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Let's be honest

This blog has been a great outlet to share the HIGHS of Emerson's life so far, but to be honest, we have been struggling with a low on and off since i went back to work and this past week it is really starting to wear on both B and I.  Since a lot of you are parents, I'm coming to you for advice in the hopes that things will get better.
Emerson isn't the best sleeper.  There, I said it out loud.  She naps like a champ for both grandmas, and sometimes for her daddy, but when it comes to napping for mommy, i win the award for absolute crap.  The bad nap times i could handle when she was doing well at night, but she is recently starting to struggle at night.  We have recently implemented doing a dream feed at night and have had mild success 2 of the nights and absolute poo the other 3.  We have a solid bed time routine ands he goes to bed great at night and usually sleeps until 10 for her dream feed and then has an interesting night afterwards.  I'm pretty sure the issues we are having now are out of habit, but she wakes herself up frequently throughout the night and i have to shuffle into her room, turn her on her side (she's not a huge fan of sleeping on her back sometimes) pop the paci back in her mouth and pat her butt for a few minutes until she drifts off to sleep.  We do this song and dance a few times per night (last night was by far the worst, i swear i was up at least 7 times to do this) and with me working 10 hour days and B getting up at the buttcrack of dawn 5am for work, we are nearing the edge of exhaustion.  I know she is too young to let her cry it out, but short of turning off the video monitor or one of us sleeping on the nursery floor, we are at a loss of what to do.
Anyone with kids who now sleep through the night have advice for us?  She isn't hungry each time she wakes up, and usually falls back to sleep fairly easily, but she can't/won't stay asleep. 
If you offer advice, thank you.  if you can remember to send a prayer for us, thank you x2.
hopefully we will have a positive update in the near future or B will likely start sleeping in his truck to regain some sanity =/