Saturday, December 19, 2009

Catch Up

It’s been awhile since I’ve written any blogs that were notes to myself about the development of my children and I have a lot of catching up to do. Here are the topics I’ll be covering in this blog: weaning, separation anxiety, naps, sleep sacks, crawling and walking.

4 weeks before Micah turned one year old I began to drop his nursing times and replaced it with a feeding of whole milk from a sippy cup. It was nice to ease him into drinking milk and using a sippy. However, at first Micah didn’t like the sippy cup (perhaps it is too much like a bottle which he protested for several months) and we discovered that he preferred a cup with a straw. Eventually he switched to a sippy cup without a one way valve. Now he drinks from a sippy with a one way valve all by himself).

At 11 months old he was down to 4 feedings a day (8am, 12pm, 4pm, 8pm). I dropped the 4pm first because he was least interested in that feeding and my milk supply seemed lowest. We also tend to be busy around that time of day so it was convenient to drop that one first. Then I dropped the following feedings in the following order – 12pm, 8pm and 8am.

The morning feeding took a little longer to drop since my milk supply was greater for that one and a couple of times I nursed him because I was uncomfortable and he was cranky. A little after his first birthday I lost my milk supply and Micah was content drinking whole milk.

It wasn’t that long ago that I weaned Micah, but my brain has already forgotten what it’s like having to nurse every 4 hours.

Separation Anxiety
Around the time I dropped the last nursing Micah began to show signs of separation anxiety. He’d cry when I’d leave the room, cry when he encountered strangers, cry when I put him down for naps and for bedtime. I’m not sure if the weaning triggered it, but it seems logical that it might have, but then again it could just be the age.

Of course this came right at the time that I needed to leave him with relatives for a couple of days. I felt bad for my sister-in-law, but was so grateful for her patience.

There wasn’t much I could do about this stage he was going through except reassure him of my presence when appropriate and ignore it when appropriate (I had to let him “cry it out” a couple of times during his naps… luckily it never dramatically affected his night time sleep).

Towards the end of our two week trip he finally began to warm up to people he didn’t know very well and the crying/separation anxiety seemed to wane. (whew)

Sleep Sacks
When I was on vacation my sister-in-law asked me when I was planning on not using a sleep sack anymore. I really like them for when my kids are younger because it keeps them warm at night and brings me peace of mind that they are not going to get tangled up in a blanket and suffocate.

I stopped using sleep sacks with Jackson just before his 1st birthday because the weather in the Midwest was getting warmer (he’s a June baby), but with Micah (an October baby) the weather was starting to get cooler. I also had the added challenge that Micah was chewing on the collar of his sleep sack to sooth himself at night and during naps when he had teething pain.

I was a little nervous that I’d have several nights of “crying it out” when I finally took the sleep sack away, so I decided to wait until we were back home to do it. I was really surprised that when I switched him from a sleep sack to a blanket (and I transitioned cold turkey) that there were no problems at all (although I’m pretty sure he still chews on the blanket to sooth himself from time to time).

Crawling, Walking & Naps
Micah started to really crawl around 11 months and then took his first steps between 12 and 13 months. He’s almost 14 months and is still not walking consistently, but I think he’s more comfortable crawling at this point and he can crawl pretty fast.

I want to note that when he learned to crawl and walk I noticed a change in his napping habits. He’d have a hard time going to sleep and then when he did finally go to sleep he’d wake up early from his nap. I thought that he might be ready to go down to one nap, but then he was a beast and wouldn’t take ANY naps and I was NOT going to let that happen.

I switched him back to two naps and some days he sleeps great and other days he fights them. He did this both when he learned to crawl and when he learned to walk and I’m wondering if it’s all connected. I read somewhere that when babies learn new skills like crawling or rolling over that sometimes it does affect their sleep habits.

It’s just a huge transitional period for Micah right now. He really is going from baby to toddler very quickly. I’m toughing out the naps right now, but he’ll probably need to go down to one nap in the near future anyway, so I’ll just have to take that battle one day at a time for now.

Well that pretty much covers it for Micah. I need a whole other blog for Jackson who has grown leaps and bounds developmentally these days. Stay tuned for that one!


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Making Memories

Saturday, December 5, 2009

On My Heart ...

According to the given statistics in the United States of America, one out of every four girls, and one out of every six boys will be sexually abused before they turn eighteen years of age.

Once again God has put this topic on my heart. My heart aches just thinking about those statistics! It seems silly (to me) to worry about swine flu and such when this statistic seems (to me) to be even more of a "national epidemic!"

As I've looked for books at the library on the topic there were a few, but most of which were out dated. We have drug awareness programs in our schools for kids (at least I think they still do D.A.R.E.), but what about abuse awareness programs??

Anyway, I say all that to let you know that I truly do pray for your little ones ... OUR little ones. That God would protect them from becoming a sexual abuse statistic.

... and as I was thinking and praying for them this poem came to my mind:

"You Are NOT the Naughty One"
by Corinne Doughan

It seems like there are lots of rules,
but it's okay to break each one.
When someone wants to touch you there,
you are NOT the naughty one.

It's okay to throw a tantrum.
Kick, scream and shout a ton!
When someone wants to touch you there,
you are NOT the naughty one.

It's okay to tell a grown up "NO!"
and turn around and run.
When someone wants to touch you there,
you are NOT the naughty one.

It's okay to be a tattle tale
(even if they say it's secret).
When someone wants to touch you there,
you are NOT the naughty one.

They'll lie and say, "You're naughty."
They'll say, "Come on it's fun!"
But you NEED to know, my precious child,
you are NOT the naughty one!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Christmas Letter

Our Dearest Friends & Family,

God has blessed us in so many ways this year, but we know that the most wonderful gift we’ll ever receive from Him is the life, death and resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ. So, without further ado, here is the Christmas story told through the eyes of a child (with a little help from his mommy)...

An angel came to Mary and Mary was afraid and the angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I have good news. You’re going to have a baby and you are going to name him Jesus.” Mary said, “Okay. Who will be the daddy?” Angel said, “God will be the daddy.”

Then an angel came to Joseph and he was afraid. The angel said, “Don’t be afraid. I have good news for you. Mary is going to have a baby and the daddy will be God. Keep Mary and the baby safe.” Joseph said, “Okay.”

Later the king wanted everyone to be counted. Mary and Joseph went to Bethlehem to be counted. When they got to Bethlehem the baby was coming out. Mary said, “The baby is coming out, I think the baby is coming out!” And they had to go to the farm to have the baby. After the baby came out they put him where the cows eat.

Then angels came to the sheep and shepherds and said, “Don’t be afraid, Mary had a baby named Jesus.” (The sheep were eating because they were really hungry.) Then the sheep walked to see Jesus and they all sang.

Then three wise men saw a star and they followed it. They found King Herod and they said, “Where is the King of the Jews?” and Herod said, “I don’t know.”

Then an angel came to the wise men and said, “Follow the star to find Jesus.” The angel threw them because she didn’t want them to talk to Herod
(just remember that he’s three). And they found baby Jesus and they gave presents to baby Jesus and worshiped him and sang songs … “Gloria in excelsis deo” …

Then Jesus grew up and died on the cross so we could go to Heaven.

May we never forget, our beloved ones, the true reason to celebrate and rejoice this season!

Merry Christmas,
The Doughans

Feeding Baby On The Go!

I really need to write some serious blogs ... Micah's birthday, Thanksgiving, weaning, sleep sacks ... just to name a few future blog topics, BUT with the holiday busyness that will have to wait.

HOWEVER, I just had to write a quick note about a product a friend of mine introduced me to (thanks Michelle) that I absolutely LOVE!

It's called Ella's Kitchen Organic Baby Food and it's baby food that comes in a pouch. There's a lid that you can screw on and off and your baby can suck the food right out of the pouch. Isn't that brilliant!?

They have all different flavors and they are SO easy and mess free. I will admit that they are a little pricey, but TOTALLY worth it when you have to feed a baby pureed food in a car and/or airplane!!! (I fed Micah one of them during church last week and I didn't even have to take him out of the service!! By the way, I'm NOT AT ALL opposed to feeding these to Jackson either ... it's WAY better than the food we'd feed him in the airport!)

Anyway, I hope you find them as ingenious as I did ... so far I've been able to purchase them at Babies-R-Us and I've heard you can get them at Costco. I hope this makes some of your holiday travels a little easier!

Happy Holidays and Happy Travels!