August 29, 2008

Baby Language

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:01 pm by bitsypieces

Have you heard of the Dunstan Baby Language?  I just discovered it, although apparently the founder was on Oprah a while back.  Anyway, check out this YouTube segment of the Oprah show.  Personally, I’ve heard a few of those distinct cries from Baby.

August 22, 2008

Baby Album

Posted in Uncategorized at 7:24 pm by bitsypieces

I had planned to use a standard “baby book” for Baby’s memories.  But I’m not one to be pigeonholed, and I hated the pre-set fill-in-the-blank type information of the book.

Then I read a tidbit in a magazine–Family Fun, I think–about using a journal to create a baby book.  Rather than having pre-set information, Mommies (and Daddies) are free to write anything they want.  Photos can be glued into the book at any place.

I loved the idea and decided to adopt it for Baby.  I purchased a plain paper journal (no lines), some acid-free pens, and some photo corners.  The first page will document her birth.  The rest of the book will highlight all the wonderful moments of her life.  I’ll be able to use a page as a “guest book” for her first birthday.  I’ll be able to glue in a program from her first piano recital.  I’ll be able to record every accomplishment that I think is important–not the ones that are important to the people who design baby books.

I’m not the artistic type, but I am a writer by trade.  So though Baby’s book may lack design, it will hopefully still contain a vivid picture of her childhood.

August 15, 2008

Any mommies with advice?

Posted in Uncategorized at 9:37 pm by bitsypieces

For some reason, Baby (now 5 weeks old) fights sleep.  I’ve tried a lot of different soothing techniques, and none are foolproof.  Most work some of the time, but nothing works all of the time.  Here’s a breakdown:

  • Playing “SexyBack” and dancing with Baby: This works about 30% of the time.
  • Giving her a binky: 40%
  • Holding her and swaying: 40%
  • Putting her in the swing: 50%
  • Swing and binky: 60%
  • Rocking her in the car seat: 30%
  • Bouncing her in arms: 50% (but only Hubby can do it right)
  • Swaddling, shushing & swinging: 5% (The “classics” just never worked for us)
  • Feeding: 60% (unless she’s full)

It’s basically a matter of trial-and-error to find out which method will get her down for a nap or the night.

Our big problem is that if she gets soothed and dozes off in her swing or carseat or our arms, she will immediately awaken as soon as I put her in the crib.  How do you keep a baby from waking when she’s placed in a crib?  Alternatively, how do I soothe her while she’s in the crib so that she falls asleep in the right place?

August 10, 2008

Is it day? Or night?

Posted in Uncategorized at 1:10 am by bitsypieces

Baby has her “days and nights mixed up.”

Sometime around midnight, Baby decides to become alert and aware.  For the next seven to twelve hours, she’ll need constant feeding and diaper changing.  She’ll also get fussy for no reason, and will only settle when I hold her.

Then, sometime between 7AM and noon (just when I think I can’t bear it anymore), she’ll fall asleep.  For the next twelve hours or so, she’ll sleep for 3-4 hour stretches (waking only to eat).

To reiterate:  Baby’s typical pattern looks something like this:

Midnight until Noon: Awake, fussy, hungry, dirty diapers

Noon until Midnight: Sleeping like a baby, waking only to eat

Now common suggestions for fixing this issue include making daytime seem “exciting” and nighttime seem boring.  But I can’t really take her outside or make noises or play with her during the day… because I’m too busy sleeping!!  Since I’m up all night, too, I have to sleep during the day while she naps.  Otherwise, I’d be a walking zombie.

August 5, 2008

New Car

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:17 pm by bitsypieces

A few days ago, Hubby drove home a new car. Up until this point, he’d been driving an 11-year-old “budget” car for his work commute. This wasn’t a problem when his commute was mostly to a local town about 10 miles from our home.

However, his new job will require a much longer commute, so a new car was a necessity.

Hubby and I have long debated the brand-new versus decent-used car. And though I believe that a decent used car is always the better financial choice, it’s absolutely vital that his car be reliable. (I do NOT want to be driving a distance to pick him up if his car breaks down, especially with Baby.)

So we compromised. We bought a brand new car, but went with a totally budget make/model (after factoring in gas mileage). It’s so budget that it has manual everything–like locks and windows. There’s actually a handle to wind down the window! I was surprised to see they still make cars like that. Also, it’s a stick shift (Hubby’s preference), which was a little cheaper and gets a little better gas mileage.

I hope we made the right choice.

August 3, 2008

Hubby’s Work

Posted in Uncategorized at 8:30 pm by bitsypieces

So I mentioned in a previous post that Hubby’s employer was going through some changes, and he had two job options… and neither seemed like a good choice.

Rather than settle for less, I encouraged him to ship out his resume to other local companies in hopes that he might find a better gig. And he did.

In a few months, he’ll be starting with a new employer. The pros: free health insurance for the whole family, decent pay (less than he’s making now, but it’s better than some of the other options), no shift work, better hours, better type of customer, off all major holidays, more vacation time. The cons: longer drive.

In the kind-of-a-pro-but-also-a-con section, the job still requires long shifts. However, this does translate into fewer days per week (he’ll average about 3-4 work days each week).

Overall, it’s a decent job and I think he’ll like it. And the free health insurance kind of offsets the lower pay (especially since our family health insurance coverage is now costing us $500 per month!). But if gas prices stay high–which they will, of course–the longer drive could turn into a budget buster.

August 1, 2008

Bad Mommy?

Posted in Uncategorized at 5:15 pm by bitsypieces

Although Baby does not (yet) have colic (knock-on-wood), she does have moments when she’s inconsolable for no reason. I accidentally discovered that dancing with her while playing Justin Timberlake’s SexyBack can soothe her to sleep.

Now, SexyBack isn’t the most PC song. And personally, I am not a fan of Timberlake or the song. But when she’s screaming and crying for no reason, I am willing to do whatever works.

So am I a bad mommy for using such a ridiculous song to lull Baby to sleep?

I wonder if the Parenting Police will come after me for this one.