Monday, August 31, 2009

Out for a stroll

Kaylani's been on a roll lately. In the past month she's learned to pull herself up to a standing position, crawl on all fours, and eat new and exciting people food. Lately though, she's been on a real roll, in the form of her activity walking that she got from Mayte, Alan, Nolan, and Kayleb. At first we thought it was just an accident waiting to happen, but now it looks like she finally got the hang of it.

The Vtech Sit to Stand Activity Walker is the perfect height for her to pop herself up and get moving. It's still a little dangerous at times (hence the accident waiting to happen part) since it'll roll forward when she tries to stand up if we don't have the break on, but once she's up, she's up. A few weeks ago, she would first fall over or pull the toy over on top of herself while trying to stand up, but now she's fine with that part. The next step (get it?) was to take a few steps by herself, and she would topple over doing that too. The problem was she would lean forward, which of course caused the toy to roll out in front of her, and she would fall forward since she didn't move her feet.

Now though, she pushes it and walks along with it. Sometimes she'll push it a little further and have to catch up to it while looking like she's going to crash, but for the most part, she's good to go. The only problem is she can only go straight. And once she gets to the end, that's the end. Oh well, walking is step 1, turning is step 2, and I'm pretty sure driving a car is step 3.

Anyways, check out this video of Kaylani's 2nd day of walking without Mommy or Daddy holding her by the side. As an added bonus, Kaylani threw in a few extra tricks of hers at the end, like saying bye and giving a kiss. Enjoy!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

What a mess!

Finding out she was pregnant? Scary. Realizing that we were going to be parents any day now? Frightening. Bringing Kaylani home for the first time? Nervewracking. Hearing her cry? Heartbreaking. Her first sickness or injury? Terrifying. Looking back, we were ready for all of that to happen. But none of that compares to what we're going through now. In fact, it's the stage of Kaylani's life that Mommy has been dreading for years. She's been through it with our nieces and nephews, and only barely survived those times. Now, it's time to just go for it. Time to just rip off the band-aid. It's time to...let Kaylani feed herself!

I'm not just talking about giving her Puffs or Cheerios (which she doesn't eat unless you feed it to her anyways). Those are easy to clean up when she throws them on the floor instead of her mouth. I'm talking about real food, laid out in front of her, waiting to be eaten. But instead of being eaten, it's being crushed, torn apart, squished, spread around, and then thrown onto the floor. Even worse, it's being used to coat Kaylani's little hands right before she rubs her face, pulls on her ear, or Mommy's absolute worst nightmere, play with her own hair.

The mess is just something that has to be dealt with. Unlike teething, or a cold, or a growth spurt, this mess is hear to stay for quite a long time. Optimistically, it'll be over a year from now, or when Kaylani turns 2 (or later) that she'll be able to feed herself cleanly. Until then, we'll have to keep Mommy's heart in check when Kaylani throws a pancake over her head, or dumps a bowl of eggs out onto her try (or the floor), or tosses a bowl of pureed something or other onto the floor.

Kaylani's doctor told us to not show any emotion (positive or negative) when Kaylani does anything with her food besides eat it because it will teach her that she can get a reaction out of us. While it's easy enough for Daddy to just keep smiling at Kaylani when she puts yogurt in her hair and on the floor, it's downright painful for Mommy. Every time it happens, Mommy mumbles something under her breath about the mess through her gritted teeth smile. For Daddy, it just adds to the excitement of Kaylani entering this new stage.

So we'll keep on giving Kaylani food to play with as part of Operation: Fat Baby, or what might be renamed as Operation: Mommy's Heart Attack. No matter what Mommy says, she loves it and it's all good. If you wanna see some of the mess, check out these pictures of Kaylani's feeding area. Be careful's not for the weak hearted!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Operation: Fat Baby

So baby weight percentiles aren't something we should live by. In fact, I think they're similar to BMI for adults. They both provide good measures, but is 5th percentile for Kaylani really bad? And is a BMI of 28 really bad? I don't really know the answer, but I do know that when my BMI was 25, I lost 18 lbs in a month (and 30 lbs overall) so I could have a BMI of 24 because my doctor told me to. And since I listened to the doctor for my own health, you bet I'm going to listen to the doctor for Kaylani's.

Even though Kaylani is completely being in the 5th percentile, we've embarked on Operation Fat Baby. Today, Mommy hit the grocery store for a 6 pack of YoBaby yogurt and cottage cheese. Mommy was also motivated enough to start making Kaylani's food again, which meant we got to dust off the Baby Beaba for the first time in 3 months. So for dinner, Kaylani had plain boiled white rice and chicken, blended to some gross looking gooey substance, and then mixed with 2 oz of Gerber carrots. End result? Kaylani LOVED it. She wolfed down approximately 4 oz of the mixture with no problems.

Now the other thing Kaylani's doctor told us was to keep feeding her until she gave us clear signs that she was full. To make sure, we put an empty spoon near Kaylani to see if she would open up, and sure enough, she ate a spoonful of air. That meant it was YoBaby time. Apple YoBaby to be exact. For once, we were both thrilled to try her food since we've done so with everything else she ate. We were surprised when it tasted delicious, like apple pie! It also made us wonder when was the last time we had regular yogurt instead of some fat free or 99% fat free diet yogurt thing.

Anyways, Kaylani loved her apple yogurt. She loved it so much that she wanted more. Mommy was a little afraid to be stuffing her this much, but when Kaylani opened up for her 2nd spoonful of air, Daddy cracked open the 2nd 4 oz container of Apple YoBaby Yogurt. This time, Kaylani ate about 3 oz of it before she finally pushed me away. 11 oz of food tonight is what Kaylani ate. In addition, she also had a little bit of water, a Earths Best teething cracker, and a taste of my beer (which she grabbed forcefully from my hand before I had a chance to stop her...kinda).

Tomorrow, we'll try it again. We're not exactly sure if she'll eat regular baby food any more since she turned down breakfast and lunch after tasting yogurt for the first time yesterday, but we'll see. If not, I guess we'll have to stock up on more fatty foods and start to cook her real people food from now on. Operation: Fat Baby may just turn into Operation: Empty Wallet, but at least it will be for a good cause.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Just like Mama

Today was Kaylani's 9 month checkup. It's almost 3 weeks after her actual 9 month birthday, but due to vacation schedules (ours and Kaylani's doctors), we had it now. We were actually okay with the delay since we though we could fatten Kaylani up a little bit more before her official weigh in. We were wrong.

At Kaylani's 6 month check in, she was 35th percentile in height, 21st percentile in weight. While that's not terrible (and percentiles are likely adjusted for bigger babies), we wanted her to be more closer to average. Well this month, Kaylani was way above height. She measured in at 28.5" tall, or in the 76th percentile in height which is great. That means she'll be tall like her Mommy. On the other hand, she only weighs 15lbs 15oz, which is in the 5th percentile, or not even close to average. While percentiles don't mean anything really and Kaylani is perfectly healthy, she's still a skinny little girl, just like her Mommy.

Her doctor gave us strict orders to fatten her up (okay, they weren't so strict but she suggested we stuff her silly to put some meat on her bones). In addition to the 20-24oz of baby food she gets now, we're supposed to give her yogurts, cheese, cottage cheese, things with cheese melted on them, cottage cheese with melted cheese and yogurt drizzled on top, and pretty much any food that we're eating as long as it's not honey, chocolate, nuts, dairy, or a few other things that I can't think of right now. Sounds great! The question is whether or not she'll eat any of it.

Tonight we tried yogurt for the first time and she seemed to enjoy it (banana sweet potato yogurt from Sonia). She also had 4oz of her own baby food, and a piece of bread that she ripped into little pieces, smushed into balls, and threw on the floor while occasionally eating a bite here or there. Tomorrow we'll try yogurt again, maybe some cheese, and probably some cottage cheese too (gross). The best way to fatten her up would be to get her on formula, but since she's still not good friends with her bottle, I guess we'll just stuff her full of any food we can. And if that doesn't work, then I guess she'll just stay tall and skinny...just like her mama!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Sad Ending

We were ecstatic when Kaylani learned to go from belly to back. Overjoyed when she went from back to belly. Thrilled when she went from down to sit. And happy (ran out of fancy synonyms) when she could go from sit to stand. But now, all of that just makes us sad.

Being back from vacation means Kaylani finally was in the comforts of her own room and her own crib again. It also meant that bedtime routine was back on, and we didn't have to worry about her crying at night, or putting her down in the pack and play. Instead, we could lay her down in her crib after we both said goodnight, and she would drift away into dreamland for 12 hours (hopefully). But the past 2 nights, Kaylani's been the saddest little baby in the world before bedtime, and she knows it. She almost got through us yesterday too.

After Mommy finished nursing, I went back into Kaylani's room to say goodnight. After 2 kisses from us, she gets put in her crib for the night. Usually she'll either stay asleep, or ideally she'll open her eyes, look at us, and then go back to sleep when we put our hand on her for a brief second. Last night, she looked at us, rolled over, and tried to climb out. Being firm sleep training parents, we put her back down, kissed her good night again (no easy task with the crib lowered all the way down), and left the room. This is when things get sad.

For the next 5 minutes, Kaylani cried. While that's sad, it's something we're used to at bedtime. But now, she just looks sad (through the video monitor). She rolls over onto her belly, crawls to the corner of the crib, and tries to stand up. 2 nights ago she tried to stand up and toppled over pretty badly. We of course went in to make sure she was okay, which she was except for a small red bump on her chin. Nothing too bad for 2 nights ago, but there were lasting effects. Instead of trying to stand up last night, she just sat there, in the corner of her crib, looking out at the door, and crying. Not wailing, but more like a whimpering, sad, cry, for 5 minutes.

When I went in after those 5 minutes, she still cried, but tried to stand up to see me. And when she would stand up, I would lay her back down, rub her belly (or her back when she rolled over), and try to get her to sleep. Each time, she would crawl back to her corner and try and stand up to get me to pick her up. Again, being the strict sleep training parents that we are, I would lay her back down and try again. After 2 minutes, I laid her down, said good night again, blew her a kiss, and walked out the door as she crawled back to her corner.

The next 5 minutes was more of the same. Kaylani sat in her corner, holding the crib, looking at the door, crying, with a slouched over defeated look to her. At the 9 minute mark, Mommy called me from downstairs (where she was watching the other monitor) to beg me to pick Kaylani up for a little bit. She thought "Kaylani just needed a little love and wants to be with her Daddy." As if Kaylani wasn't tugging on my heart strings enough, there was Mommy guilt tripping me into picking her up. And then, Mommy goes "See?? She fell down again!"

Kaylani didn't fall down again. What she did was lie down and fall asleep, in her corner. It happened right at the 10 minute mark, and before Daddy could give in and pick her up to give her a big hug and let her know she shouldn't be the saddest little monkey in her crib. It's about that time now tonight again, so here's to hoping she stays asleep, or closes her eyes after she sees us when we put her in her crib. I'm not sure I can handle 15 minutes of the saddest baby ever waiting for her Daddy to come rescue her from her crib.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Aaaaand we're back!

And we're back. Finally home. Done with vacation. Thankfully. Don't get me wrong, I actually loved vacation. A week away from thinking about work (most of the time), drinks starting around noon, endless amounts of meat and seafood, and 8 full days to spend with my 2 girls and the rest of my family. What's not to love about vacation? Before I get into that, let me give you a recap of what there was to love about vacation.

During our 7 days in Cape May, we went to the pool for 2 days, the beach for 2 days, mini golf for 1 day, a lighthouse for 1 day, downtown for 2 days, grilled 5 days, out to dinner 2 days, the liquor store 3 days (to restock), out for ice cream 2 days, and played games at home every day and night. All of that happened between the hours of 6am and 1am. That was the good part. The other 5 hours of the day were bad enough to make us want to cut that 3 days short.

Almost every night we would put Kaylani to bed between 7pm and 8pm, just like we would at home. And every night she would be fast asleep and stay that way for hours at a time, so we would stay up and play games, drink, or just hang out with the fam. The problem was that when we would go to sleep (around 12am or 1am), Kaylani would wake up shortly after, like 2am. Then she'd be so awake that she'd be up and crawling all over us in bed or crying until 5am. It got so bad that we almost left on Thursday. Looking back, I'm glad we didn't, but man, we were really close.

We got home Saturday afternoon and finally took the time to unwind. It was a little mini-vacation from our vacation, but it was much needed, mainly because I caught a cold at some point along the way. Apparently no sleep, lots of alcohol and food, and a bit of sun is enough to make me catch a cold in the middle of summer. Luckily I was the only one who got sick, and even luckier, Kaylani played along with our mini-post-vacation vacation. Saturday night, she slept 8 hours then another 3 hours right away. Last night she slept 12 hours. Looks like we're not the only ones glad to be home.

Anyways, that about wraps up our vacation. I should be back to our regularly scheduled postings soon enough. And as an apology for all of you faithful readers, or to Kaylani's photo stalkers, here are pictures from our vacation in Cape May. Enjoy, and see you tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Room for Desert?

Growing up I was taught to spell dessert the proper way by remembering that it has 2 S's because you want more of it. That implies that you don't want a desert because it only has 1 S. If you think about it, a desert is kinda like a beach, but only because of the vast amounts of sand. And judging by Kaylani and cousin Zoe's time at the beach yesterday, I'm thinking that the trick to spelling desert or dessert won't necessarily work.

Babies love sand. They love everything about it. Sitting in it, touching it, watching it fall through their fingers, and throwing it. More specifically, babies love eating sand. I'm not entirely sure if they should eat sand, but when we're at the beach, there's really not much you can do about it. When we put a blanket on the grass, Kaylani will stay within her 5'x7' play area since she's deathly afraid of grass. When we put her on the same blanket on the sand, no such luck. She headed straight off the mat, onto the sand, and then it was play time.

Luckily Kaylani's not in love with eating sand. She'll put her hand in her mouth, and she'll eat some sand while she eats her shovel, but it's not like she's purposely eating sand. Cousin Zoe on the other hand, actually eats sand handfulls at a time. And it was actually kinda cute, except when she started eating wet sand/mud out of the bucket. Then after Yea Yea cleaned her face with water right before she fell over into the sand, causing all types of sand to stick to her, she wasn't very happy anymore (but still wanted to eat the sand).

I'm sure we're headed back to the beach at least 1 (or 5) more times this week, so we'll see if Kaylani learns to eat sand like her cousin. If she does, I can't complain since she has learned how to crawl on her knees instead of her army crawl from Zoe. It's great to see Kaylani learning from her cousins, even if it means she learns to eat sand.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Pack and Sleep

Today is officially my first day of vacation. We actually got down to Cape May on Saturday afternoon (after sitting in an hours worth of traffic), but today is the first vacation day I had to burn, so that means vacation has officially started. If vacation started Saturday, we would have kicked it off in grand style. But since it started this morning, we're off to a rough start.

Saturday night Kaylani slept for 10.5 hours in her pack and play in our room. Then, on Sunday, she took two 45 minute naps in her pack and play (which is unheard of since she only sleeps in her carseat or her swing at home) and played all day with the family. We went to the pool, for a walk by the beach, to the grocery store, and even grilled up lunch and dinner. And when bedtime came around, Kaylani passed out at 7:30pm, just in time for Mommy to come join the rest of the family for a nice, home cooked rib dinner.

The rest of the night was spent drinking and playing a dice game called Farkle until we were all spent at 11pm (man we're old). That's when the real vacation started. Instead of slipping quietly into our room and into bed without Kaylani even noticing, Kaylani woke up and greeted us with a cry. It may or may not have been Daddy brushing his teeth that woke her up, but either way, she was up. After a few minutes of trying to "shhh" her to sleep, Mommy tried nursing. 20 minutes later, still not asleep. Next it was Daddy's turn to rock her to sleep and put her down. 20 mintues later, no luck getting her to stay down. Then it was Mommy's turn to rock her to sleep. No luck again. The next hour was spent rotating between Daddy rocking her, Mommy rocking her, and Mommy nursing her, all with the same results. Kaylani wanted absolutely nothing to do with the pack and play.

With no options left, we tried something we've only done twice before, both with limited success. We put Kaylani in bed with us. Tucked safely between the two of us with her holding onto one of each of our fingers, she fell asleep. The problem is that we're both really uncomfortable sleeping in the same bed as Kaylani. Not that we think we'll roll over her, but more that we think she'll crawl away and fall off. Mommy's problem is actually that she doesn't like people sleeping real close to her, so the fact that Kaylani likes to cuddle and breathe on her doesn't bode well for Mommy getting some sleep. Daddy would love it if she would cuddle with him (Mommy or Kaylani), but that wasn't in the cards.

At 5:30am, Kaylani was up again and crawling all over us. After nursing and screaming some more, Mommy tried to rock her back to sleep and put her down. 15 minutes later and Kaylani was back in her pack and play, but she wasn't planning on sleeping, even though Mommy was. So after Mommy laid down, and Daddy was lying down, Kaylani scratched on the sides of her pack and play. 5 minutes of silence later, we thought we were in the clear, until we looked up. Looking back at us was Kaylani, standing in her pack and play, staring back at us with a look that said "you really think I was going to sleep with you lying right there?"

And that was it. We were up for good at 6:30am and it was time for breakfast. In total, Kaylani probably got 6-7 hours of sleep last night. Mommy and Daddy were lucky if we got 2 hours combined since we kept waking up to make sure Kaylani didn't crawl away. Thankfully Kaylani is down for a nap right now, in her pack and play, and Mommy is taking a quick nap too. I'm kinda scared to see what tonight brings. We're planning a long day at the beach, at the pool, and outside, so maybe we'll tire Kaylani completely out. I'm not sure what we expected since it is called a pack and play. Maybe I'll add in a trip to the store to find a pack and sleep. Anyone know where I can find one?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Packing for the shore

Let's get this vacation starteddddddddddddddd!!!! As of 5pm today, I am officially on vacation for 9 days, and I ain't going back until Monday morning on August 24. Woo hoo! We're all headed down to Cape May (about 2 hours from here) with Yin Yin, Yea Yea, Bat Bat, Auntie Shannon, and Cousins Connor and Zoe for an extended family trip down the shore. We've got a nice house rented near the beach (with a pool) and just gonna kick back and relax. Now all we gotta do is pack.

We technically started packing on Thursday, which is when we made the official packing list. We've been on trips with Kaylani before, and they were much further away than 2 hour drive to Cape May, but for some reason this trip has brought out the worst in us. We're going a little bit crazy with the packing, and while I haven't even loaded the car yet, I get the feeling that our car is gonna be awfully packed tomorrow. Here's a snapshot of her list:

Pack and play
Box of diapers
Box of wipes
Carton of toys (for eating, for playing, for bath time, and for the beach)
Floaty for swimming
First aid kit - thermometer, alcohol swabs, tylenol, motrin, cotton balls, etc
Baby monitor
Beach blanket
Portable 10'x10' shade
10 outfits
3 pajamas
Sun hat
Outdoor buggy

That's not even close to everything, but then there's the food. Kaylani's eating 4 oz, or 2 jars, of food for lunch and dinner, as well as 1/2 cup of oatmeal for breakfast, and 2 oz of food for lunch. Since we'll be gone for 8 days, that means we needed to pack at least 32 big jars of food, 8 small jars of food, and a box of oatmeal (and spoons, bibs, bowls, etc).

We thought that this local trip would be easier on all of us considering there were 7 adults, and 3 kids under 3 years of age, but I'm starting to think we're out of control. Apparently the fact that we have our own car means we can bring whatever we can fit. If we were flying somewhere, we would have limited what we brought to 2 suitcases. Now we've got 2 suitcases, plus 10 random containers/bags of stuff for Kaylani.

Well we're almost done packing and Kaylani is down for the night, so I think it's time to turn in. Tomorrow morning officially officially starts vacation, and I can't wait! I'm looking forward to getting to Cape May. I just hope all of our stuff fits in the car and makes it there with us! And don't worry, I'll be blogging from down there so stay tuned because I plan on doing another "live" post from Cape May. Until later...from the beach!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Not so safe-ty gate

Fatherhood Friday at Dad Blogs

Picture a newlywed couple just four months after their blessed and beautiful wedding. Picture this same happy couple closing on their first house together in a peaceful town. Picture the couple finding out that they were going to have a baby at the same time they closed on the house. And finally, picture the couple with 2 and 3 year old nieces and nephews coming to visit their brand new house any day now.

Those pictures are what caused us to install a safety gate at the top of our stairs over 1.5 years ago, or 6 months before Kaylani would need one. Before now, we all had zero need for a safety gate, other than the 3 or 4 times our nieces and nephews came to stay with us. It came in handy to lock the kids upstairs prevent any of the kids from playing on the stairs, but when it came to Kaylani, it was just decoration for 9 months. Now, we're glad we have it. Well, we were.

For the past 3 weeks, Kaylani has been mobile, and oddly enough, the hallway is the safest place for her to be. If we close the gate and all the bedroom doors, there's not much trouble she can get herself into. All the outlets are covered, the air condition vents are untouchable, and the gate is immovable. No trouble to be had. And just to be clear, it's not like we just put her in the hallway, shut the gates and doors, and leave her be. I'm just saying that it's a fairly safe place to be were she to spend her time there.

Anyways, this morning, the three of us were hanging out in the hallway before Daddy had to leave for work. Kaylani was crawling all around, and Mommy was sitting on the floor getting climbed on every now and then. When it was time to go, Daddy opened the gate and sat on the top step. Kaylani, who clearly wanted to come give Daddy a big hug and a kiss before he left, starting crawling towards him. That's when she got distracted by the gate. Turns out that swinging the gate into Daddy's back and watching it bounce back towards and past her was much more fun.

This went on for about 5 minutes. Throw gate at Daddy, watch it bounce back, laugh, repeat (and listen to Mommy saying "gates are not a toy"). But then, things went bad. Kaylani, who was still in her full footy pajamas, tried to crawl towards the gate some more. She tried to go from sit to crawl, which she had already done 5 or 6 times to get closer to the gate or out of its way. But this time, she didn't make it. This time, she got tripped up in her footy pajamas and fell. Onto the gate. Onto the little metal knob of the gate that goes into the latch to make it lock in place. Right on her eye. Her eye. Metal knob of gate. Ouch.

Of course she screamed right away. After we finally got her to calm down, we decided it wasn't TOO bad. It wasn't call the doctor and have them call social services bad. It was a little red, a little swollen, and upon closer inspection, a little scraped. Poor little baby. Damn footy pajamas. Stupid gate. Those 3 thoughts were what went through my head immediately. The next one was how injury prone babies/kids are. I mean, both Mommy and Daddy were RIGHT THERE (Daddy was closer) and we still couldn't prevent her from getting hurt. Sure some may say that letting her play with the gate in the first place is probably the problem, but who can say no to a baby having so much fun!

Anyways, Kaylani's alright. She still has a little scape above her eye (it wasn't her actual eye thankfully) but she's fine. No swelling, no bruising, no more crying (well other then her unusual fussiness today). She's asleep for the night and hopefully for the rest of the night. Tomorrow morning we'll get up and hopefully not do it all again. Stupid gate. From now on, you're staying completely open or completely closed. Gate's are not a toy, but you'll notice that I never called it a "safety" gate because in my experience, that's just not true.

So before you go out and buy yourself an all plastic safety gate, don't forget to check out Dad-Blogs for the latest installment of Fatherhood Fridays! I missed out on last week, so make sure you don't miss out this week!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Standing Room Only

It finally happened. We knew this moment was coming and thankfully we were prepared. Nothing bad happened, unless you count an hour of lost sleep as bad. Wait, that IS bad! Well, nothing REALLY bad happened.

Around 5:30am, Kaylani started crying. Its not unusual for that to happen so we kinda thought nothing of it. Sometimes, if we're lucky, she'll cry for a few minutes then fall back alseep. After a few minutes, it was pretty clear that she wasn't going to go back down easily. We had no idea how true that statement was.

Mommy looked at the video monitor first. She blinked a few times, then scrambled to get up. "She's standing in the crib! She's standing" she yelled as she tried to put on her robe. I looked up briefly and didn't see Kaylani standing. Looked like a normal crib to me. But then I put on my glasses, and yep, wouldn't you know it, Kaylani was at the front of her crib, standing. From the looks of it, she used the bumpers to pull herself up. Luckily we just put in mesh bumpers that don't provide much support or leverage, but apparently it was enough to get her standing.

So after taking a look at her standing in her crib for the very first time, I went in. Foolishly I tried to lay her down and see if she'd fall asleep (she didn't). That meant morning was here. 20 minutes before my alarm went off, or an hour before I had planned on getting up. Whoever said Standing Room only tickets are cheaper is wrong because it sure looks like standing in her room is gonna cost us.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ever dress a fish?

I'm not a big fisherman. In fact, I'm not any type of fisherman. I went deep sea fishing once on a boat with my Dad when I was probably around 10 and I ended up getting seasick and throwing up off the side of the boat the entire trip. Then, to make matters worse, we got fined $50 a fish for the 2 measly fish that my cousin caught because they were too small. Then, on top of all of that, the cop took the fish for us. What a terrible trip.

So while I didn't take Kaylani fishing, and probably never will, I've decided that getting Kaylani ready for bed is like trying to hold a fish. Not a frozen fish or a dead fish, but an actual live fish. Kaylani squirms so much when we try and get her into her pajamas that if she was a fish and we were on a boat, she'd be back in the water and I'd be standing there looking over. Then, to top it all off, I'd probably get fined for letting a fish go.

Okay, maybe I'm stretching this whole fish thing a bit far, but she really is squirmy. She's so squirmy that I've given up on the changing table and I now change her exclusively on the floor while she's pinned down with my left leg. Sure she's crying most of the time because she hates when "the man" holds her down, but it's the only way to keep her still. The problem is that I can't get her pajamas on when my fat leg is over her. That means I've gotta let her loose.

Kaylani sleeps in full, long sleeve, footie pajamas that button all the way up (or down) through both legs. I can usually get her sleeves on just fine, but the rest is a challenge. Getting her to stay on her back doesn't work. Getting her to stay still and not flip over doesn't work. Trying to button 12 buttons between both legs and all the way up top while she's on her belly doesn't work. Trying to button her up while she's crawling away from me doesn't work. After about 10 minutes of flipping her over, buttoning a button, pulling her back to me, buttoning a button, holding her in a bear hug, buttoning a button, and so on, it's finally done. Finally she's ready for bed and released into the wild for a few minutes before the routine continues on.

Thankfully tonight's routine is over with and she's asleep peacefully in her crib. Tomorrow night we'll do it all over again. Maybe I'll head downstairs and turn on the Animal Channel or Discovery Channel to see if I can find a good fisherman's show. Or maybe I'll just keep trying to dress the cutest little fish I know.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Ups and Downs

There are lots of ups and downs in life. If you live life long enough, you're bound to experience your fair share of ups and downs. Luckily for Kaylani she's only experienced ups in her life so far. Unfortunately for her, she's gotta get her fair share of downs too. Right now, I think she'd welcome a lesson in downs.

Kaylani, the crawling monster, has turned into Kaylani, the climbing monster. The problem is that Kaylani doesn't know how to get down, and I'm not talking about 70's style dancing (although she probably doesn't know how to "get down" like that either). So far, she hasn't run into anything that she hasn't tried to climb. Our bed, her dresser, my hamper, the couch, her pack and play, a kitchen counter, a wall that we sprayed grease on, anything. You name it, she's tried to climb it. Most of the time she's successful too (except for that wall we sprayed grease on). But that's not the hard part.

The hard part is learning how to fall gracefully, or "falling like a lady" as Mommy puts it. I'm not sure what "falling like a lady" is, but it doesn't really matter because Kaylani only knows how to fall one way...hard. The problem is that Kaylani doesn't fall backwards onto her butt. That would be okay since she has a nice cushy diaper on. Instead, Kaylani chooses to fall sideways, which means that when she falls, it's gonna hurt.

There are 2 schools of thought to this. The first is to let her fall sideways and bump herself, as long as it's not against a wall, or a corner, or anything hard or sharp. Of course there's a chance she gets hurt, but there's also a chance that she learns that it hurts and stops falling sideways. The other thought is to catch her every time she falls so that she actually doesn't fall. This way she never gets hurt (or is less likely to get hurt), but she may never learn how to fall gracefully (or "like a lady").

If you haven't guessed, Daddy is much more likely to let her fall on her own while Mommy is pretty adamant on catching her every time. I'm not sure which one is better, but I do know that Kaylani better learn to get down on her own pretty soon. It sure would make our lives less stressful, and possibly less painful. And as soon as she can get up and down on her own, then we'll celebrate and we'll all "get down."

And if you're down with all of that, then click on over to Sports IllustraDad at Dad-Blogs and read my latest column on how kids could change the way you watch baseball games at the stadium. I'm not sure what we'll do in the future, but it's sure worth a thought now!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Weekend Presents

We had such a busy weekend that this is the first chance I'm finally getting to sit down and write a post. While I don't normally like to just write recap posts, there's really no way around it since this weekend was full of things to recap. It all started Friday night when Daddy thought he was getting the first present of the weekend.

I was at Yankee Stadium on Friday night for another game in the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry. I thought that Rob and I could watch the game and get home in decent time so we could wake up early the next day to take our girls to swim class. Of course I also hoped that we would leave the game celebrating a victory (which we did). I just didn't think it would take so long! After 15 innings of baseball, or 5 and a half hours of baseball, the Yankees won giving me the best present of the night. Meanwhile, Kaylani and Mommy were getting their own presents at home.

Madrina Maria, Lulu, and Carmen all came down for the weekend which was the perfect present for both Mommy and Kaylani. While Daddy was "stuck" at The Stadium, the 5 girls were at home (with Jen and Sofie too) hanging out and having a great time. Kaylani went to bed early, but the party kept on going, and ended around 2am, right before Daddy finally made it home from the game.

Bright and early on Saturday morning Kaylani was up. And besides the fact that she had 3 new people in the house with her, it was also her 9 month birthday! Can't believe it's been 9 months already, but we had the best celebration with Kaylani getting all types of presents. It's quite possible that she's getting a little spoiled since she got a handful of presents during a "month birthday", but I'm sure she's okay with it (and so are we)! Then, to top it off, Vanessa and Tom came over too and we partied on for the rest of the night (after Kaylani went to bed again at 8pm).

Sunday meant it was time for a real birthday celebration...Connor's! Connor turned 3 yesterday and today was his big 3 year old birthday party. It was Kaylani's 2nd ever birthday party and she had a great time. Not only did she get to see her cousins Connor and Zoe, and Yin Yin, Yea Yea, Bat Bat, and Auntie Shannon, but she also got her first goodie bag and a present from a friend too! She may have gotten just a little bit cranky towards the end, but when all was said and done, she did great. She took a nice nap on the way home, and now is quietly asleep in her crib, hopefully for another 10 hours like last night.

Overall the weekend was busy, tiring, but great. I hope this week is just the same, especially if you add "quick" to that list. Next weekend we'll be headed to Cape May for a week for vacation. That'll be a great time too, just like everything else we do with Kaylani. And to cap off this weekend, here are some great pictures from the last few days. As for me, I'm headed downstairs to watch the Yankees-Red Sox series finale and get some work done for the week. Happy belated 9 month birthday Kaylani, and 3 year birthday Connor!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Out of the army

All that army training has finally paid off. After weeks of army crawling around the place, Kaylani finally realized that she can pop herself up on her forearms and knees and move just a little bit better. To be fair, she was pretty darn quick with the army crawl (and still is), but I'm thinking she's going to be a lot quicker now.

She actually still does the army crawl most of the time now. But every now and then she'll pop herself up and take a few awkward crawls from her knees. She hasn't quite figured out that she can just move one knee and the opposite arm, and then repeat that. Instead, she's decided that she'll still do the one leg push, just from her knees. So now her crawling looks more like a normal crawl with a straight leg limp. HI-larious!

The good thing about Kaylani mastering the art of crawling (whether it be army crawling or normal crawling with a straight leg limp) is that she is developing nicely and on pace (as far as I know). The problem with this is that she's getting herself into all types of trouble. Sure she's always been able to grab at an electrical socket (which has been covered up), and sure she could always make her way over to the humidifier and try and pull it over. She could even get herself to a drawer or a door and open it into herself. But now she does it so much faster, and that's not even the scary part yet.

Tonight while she was exploring the house, she made her way past the coffee table, into the hallway, to the doormat, even to the A/C vent on the floor, before she finally found what she was looking for...the stairs. Now, the top of our stairs has been gated off for over a year already (and not because we thought Kaylani would fall down the stairs while she was still in the womb, but more that we thought her cousins would). The bottom of our stairs is currently open access, not that Kaylani would have cared if it was or not anyways.

I finally realized why babies like playing on stairs. Stairs are the perfect height to use to stand up. She can reach the first stair and still be in crawling like position. Then she can even scoot a little closer and reach the second stair to stand up. Once she's standing up, and leaning over the first stair, that's when she gets stuck. Today, she plopped back down on her little butt, but soon enough she'll be putting one leg up on that first stair, and bam, we've got ourselves a climber.

So now we can add the bottom of the stairs to the list of things to babyproof in the house. I think we'll move it to the top of the list too, right in front of the entertainment stand with glass, the bar with exposed wine bottles, and the door stopper without the rubber padding. I'm sure there are a few other things, but those are the ones at the top right now. Ahh the joys of a mobile baby. Seriously though, wouldn't trade it for anything in the world! Well, maybe a mobile baby who stayed out of trouble.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Learning from the past

Something about Kaylani was a little off last night and today. Last night, she nursed for a real long time before bed, slept for 7 straight hours, but then woke up and fell back asleep twice between the hours of 4am and 6am. Then, she was up at 7:30am for good, and didn't nap until around 4pm, no matter how hard Mommy tried. She didn't nap in the swing, in her arms, or even in the car. And when she finally did nap, it was only for 20 minutes.

Normally we'd think Kaylani was just being a pain, but she actually wasn't a pain today according to Mommy. She wasn't whining or crying, and wasn't overly attached to Mommy, but it was just a long day. There were no signs of new teeth coming out, and no fever to think she was getting sick. It wasn't until she ate up 6oz of food at dinner without a problem that we figured it out. Growth spurt. A quick Google search on growth spurts confirmed our suspicions. There is a 9 month growth spurt. And wouldn't you know it, Kaylani's 3 days away from her 9 month birthday.

They say the best way to make it through a growth spurt is to feed her more. That explains why Kaylani nursed for so long last night. It also explains why she polished off 8oz of food tonight (green bean casserole and apples), still had room to take in about 10 puffs, and drank an ounce or so of water all during dinner. It also explains why she woke up randomly through the night, and why she didn't want to nap during the day.

We were waiting for something like this to happen. Unlike the 3 month and 6 month growth spurts that snuck up on us, we knew this day would come at 9 months just based on the fact that things were going a little too well. She was starting to sleep for 10 hours at a time again and she was eating her food without fussing too much. Before we were the extremely experienced parents that we are now, we would think that she would last like that forever. Now, we're just enjoying it before it goes away. And all signs point to it going away soon.

Hopefully this growth spurt goes by quickly and we can get her back to her normal schedule. Some growth spurts only last a few days. Some last a week. Either way, I just hope it's gone in the next 10 days because that's when Daddy's 1 week vacation from work begins, and vacation with a growth spurt baby isn't what I'm looking forward to. So bring it on growth spurt! Now please?

Monday, August 3, 2009

B vs B

I've heard that when you have 2 or more kids that you're not supposed to pick a favorite. You're supposed to love each kid equally. But what about parents? Are kids with 2 (or more?) parents supposed to pick a favorite? Tonight, we thought we'd try and find out.

After dinner we went to the playroom to squeeze out the last bit of energy Kaylani had in her so she would sleep easier better. At one point while Kaylani was crawling around, she started saying "mamamamama," which she's done countless times before. Mommy of course took this to mean that Kaylani loved her more. However, Kaylani's first sounds were "dadadada" and "papapapa," and she's repeated those frequently, so of course that means that Daddy is her favorite. Clearly, neither of us were going to give in on this one. That meant there was only one way to settle it: we both called Kaylani to see who she would go to.

Mommy won round 1, but to be honest, she cheated. I mean, Kaylani was practically next to her already so of course when Mommy called out to her, she just went straight into her arms. Daddy, on the other hand, was about 5 feet away. In round 2, Kaylani was put in the middle of the room with Mommy and Daddy on opposite sides. After everything was set, we both started calling Kaylani. Initially, she was headed towards Mommy, but then, all of a sudden when Daddy took out his Blackberry she came to her senses and headed towards Daddy. That's when Mommy cheated even more.

Daddy was just calling out "Kaylani Kaylani" repeatedly. Mommy, however, changed it up. Instead of just calling "Kaylani Kaylani", she started saying "Nurse nurse!" That's when Kaylani stopped in her tracks. She turned around and started to head towards Mommy. Daddy, not giving up, started waving his Blackberry around more calling her even louder and she started to come back. Then, Mommy cheated EVEN MORE. She pulled out the big guns...literally. In essence, Mommy flashed Kaylani to get her attention while saying "nurse nurse!" and that was the end of that. Kaylani sped over to Mommy and Daddy was left holding his Blackberry alone.

I just can't compete with that. In fact, no one can compete with that. Someday Kaylani will grow out of that phase, but for now, the boob wins it. Then again, most people would choose boob over Blackberry right?

Anyways, enough boob talk. Check out these pictures from the weekend! Most of them are from Gymboree on Friday since I had some camera issues this weekend. And just for clarification, the pictures have absolutely nothing to do with tonight's post. Just saying.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

What the?!?

There are certain things that just come out of your mouth instinctively. For example, if someone punches you, you say "ow." If someone is about to run across the street into traffic, you might yell "stop!" If you drive by a cow (or a horse or a goat), you'll say "mooooo" (no? just me?). If you see a bale of hay, you say "hey!" to get people to look (no? just me again?). Or if you look into your baby's diaper and see a lot of light brown that looks to be liquidy, you say "what the?!?!?"

Tonight, Kaylani's diaper gave us a "what the?!?!?" moment. We were getting Kaylani ready for bed when Mommy asked Daddy to look at something. Daddy, being as innocent as he is, went over to Mommy to take a look. That's when Mommy pulled the back of Kaylani's diaper away from her so Daddy could look down into the abyss. "What the?!?!?" was the first thing that came out of my mouth. Stepping back a step was the first movement I did. Of course Mommy didn't have a good answer to "what the?!?!?" and frankly, neither did Daddy. The more concerning part was that it was light brown, looked extremely liquidy, and there was a lot of it. The "there was a lot of it" part was definitely the most concerning.

According to Mommy, Kaylani made a short farting noise and then "that" happened. We tried to think of what could have been the cause. She did have Country Chicken Apple Compote (or something like this), and it sure did look like it was some sort of compote in her diaper, but that didn't make sense since this was Day 2 and her poop was normal before this. Maybe it was the Gerber Corn Puffs we gave her at Babies R' Us today, but that didn't make sense either because one puff (or 20) shouldn't have come out looking like 300 puffs mashed together. So we had no real cause, and just figured it was because she hadn't pooped in a good 24 hours and has been stuffed full of food since then.

Thinking back some more, it explained why she randomly started crying after dinner and before bedtime while she was playing with her bucket of blocks. At the time, it didn't make sense for her to make a really sad face and start crying when Mommy and Daddy clapped after she put a piece back in the bucket. Thinking she just didn't want us to clap, we let her keep playing on her own, but she kept making sad faces and crying. Turns out she didn't care if we clapped, except for the fact that it forced her to poop her own weight out at that very moment.

Anyways, after changing Kaylani on the floor with one leg over her chest to prevent her from moving (thanks for the advice WeaselMomma!), we examined her poop a little bit closer (one of the joys of parenting). Turns out it wasn't liquidy at all. It was just a lot of light brown poop that was smushed real flat (which I guess happens when she poops out a beer cans worth of poop and then sits on it and rolls on it for 10 minutes). Now she's nursing and just about ready for bed. I think Mommy put it best when she said "let's hope she doesn't poop like that while she's sleeping." Let's hope so indeed because frankly, I'm not sure the crib can support that amount of added weight.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Relaxing in the Pool

I had a feeling that swim class was going to be different today even before we got there. Alan, Mayte, Nolan, and Kayleb came to visit us this weekend so we were up late hanging out and catching up with them. On top of that, Kaylani decided to wake up around midnight which meant that Mommy had to nurse her back to sleep (we don't let her cry it out when we have guests over). Thankfully she went back to sleep easily, but it also meant she slept until 6:30am instead of waking up sometime before 6. That meant our morning plans were out the window.

We thought we had it all figured out last week. Up before 6, breakfast before 7, in the car at 7, napping by 7:30, up by 8:30, nurse until 8:45, then swim class at 9. Today, it was up at 6:30, breakfast at 7:30, nursing at 8:30, out the door at 8:45, swim class at 9. The key thing missing there was the nap. Mommy's experience during the week with Kaylani has been that she could make it through morning events without a nap. Daddy's experience is kinda different.

We had a different instructor at class today (I didn't even catch her name), so we were more off of our normal Saturday routine. From the get go, Kaylani was a little sluggish in the water. She had her death grip on me and wasn't a big fan of anything that didn't involve her clinging directly to me. You'd think that I wouldn't have dunked her, but I did (she didn't cry which was good). The really odd part of the class came when we were practicing floating on our backs.

Normally, Kaylani would freak out and squirm a lot. Today, she just laid there with her ears and her hair in the water. All of a sudden, she started to close her eyes. I looked at her unbelievably and said "are you going to fall asleep??" She looked at me one last time, closed her eyes, and she was out. Sleeping. On her back. IN the water. I couldn't believe it.

She stayed that way for the next 20 minutes. We did ring around the rosie, and the hokey pokey, and more float on our back time, and the whole time, Kaylani slept floating on her back. At one point, the instructor said we should have them lay on their back and be as still as possible so they learn to relax. The key was to teach them to balance a toy on their belly or their forehead. Kaylani aced that one. She didn't even move when I put a crab toy on her head.

I guess it's a good thing that she felt relaxed enough to sleep in the water. Next week, we're going to take a nap BEFORE class though. Otherwise, it's just no fun (for me that is)!