Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Summer 2011

Here it is nearing the end of July and we still haven't seen more than a couple hot summer days. I can't say I'm completely disappointed but I am surprised that by this point we haven't at least started getting warmer. At least warm enough to hear one or two people complain about how hot it is. The real summer is supposed to kick in next week. We'll see.

First hot day of Summer 2011 @ the lake
I've been back at work for a few weeks now. Getting back into the swing of things has been surprisingly easy and seamless for me in terms of my actual tasks at work. I'm surprised that I was able to jump right back into some complex projects and actually use parts of my brain that I haven't used for some time. While I'm enjoying it (I have always loved what I do), I'm still not where I want to be. But if I do have to work at least I'm doing something I love. S has been home with Baby and seems to be enjoying her time off. They get up to all sorts of fun activities and projects and it's fun for me to hear about them at the end of my day. Baby is struggling somewhat with napping without me there but it's slowing coming together and she had an hour and a half yesterday with no problems.

Summer is really flying by and I have a couple of crafty projects in the hopper that I'd like to have done before the end of the year. I figured if I blogged about them then someone could remind me what I committed to when I forget all about it.

  1. A fabric, stuffed alphabet. I'm going to use up all my fabric scraps to create the alphabet for baby. I'm super excited about this project and have given myself a deadline of Dec. 1 for completing the whole alphabet.
  2. A treasure bean bag. I'd like to make a couple of these before we go on vacation in October. They basically consist of a small fabric bag filled with beans (or whatever you choose to use) and small treasures. There is a clear window on one side of the bag and by shaking, moving, squishing the bag you have to try and find the treasures. I'm really looking forward to creating these. I'm not sure what I'll use to stuff them. I'd like to use a natural material but I also would like something that is ok to get wet. Suggestions are welcome if you have any.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

(Real) Sleep

I have debated whether to write what I'm about to write. I'm afraid it will cause everything to unravel again. But I know you are all anxiously waiting to hear how Baby's sleep has been lately and how my lack of sleep has affected my return to work recently.

Photo by: Mike Cohen
But, I'm throwing caution to the wind so here I go.

You'll remember that months ago Baby and I went on a very strict elimination diet. We had some good results quite quickly. Sleep was off/on in terms of the 30-90 minute wake ups. However, we never did get back to anything longer than a 3 hour stretch though...and even those became few and far between.

Then one day, I decided to give up caffeine again. Every night since then, Baby has slept well. And by well I mean she was only waking every 4ish hours EVERY night for 2 weeks. What the...? Really? Caffeine? REALLY? Are you kidding me (I thought to myself)?

This 'good' sleep continued for another couple of weeks or so and I decided now was a good time to try and night wean since Baby was sleeping so well. For us, night weaning was going to mean cutting out one nursing session so we would both hopefully get a 6-8 hour stretch of sleeping. I have to preface this by saying that Baby hasn't been nursing for more than maybe 1-2 minutes when waking up in the middle of the night for many months. So, anyway, Baby is 18 1/2 months old now and her language comprehension is quite good. I was able to tell her that the "milkies" were going to sleep at night and that we could nurse when it was light outside. The first two nights she tossed and turned a little bit when I told her milkies were sleeping when she woke up. No real crying but there was a little bit of fussing vocally. By the third night she was still waking up but not fussing at all to nurse. It's been 3 weeks now and Baby does not nurse between about 10:30pm and 5 or 6am. She usually only wakes once and just cuddles up. Between 8ish and 10ish she nurses a couple of times and she likes to nurse in the morning. She's still sleeping in until 8am and her behaviour hasn't changed during the day. I feel confident that she was really ready for this. I know I was. I did feel guilty when I first started thinking about night weaning but I was so desperate for sleep that I knew I'd have to try something before I went back to work. I don't think night weaning is the answer for everyone. Nor is it the answer for any time. Luckily for us though, I was ready, Baby was ready and our timing was perfect.

It is amazing to be sleeping again. Really sleeping. Sleeping and dreaming. Sleeping and feeling refreshed in the morning.

Sleep makes things feel better.

Disclaimer: I have NO idea if caffeine was actually the culprit or maybe Baby was just ready developmentally to have more sleep. Who knows. I'm taking what I can get and enjoying it.