Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Sleep Part Seven: Teething

If you have been reading my blog you know that sleep does not come easily to my little munchkins.  We have tried everything short of crying it out to get these kids to sleep through the night.  Not much has worked.  Little by little, however, we get glimmers of hope.  During the daytime we notice that the boys can sometimes wake up from their naps and be content to play for a half hour stretching their time between feedins to three and a half hours.  There are some nights in which one of the boys will go four or even five (or dare I say dare not say it) hours between feedings.  I do believe that their bodies will adjust as their needs change and we are getting closer to sleeping through the night as the weeks go by.  I woke up this morning and asked Derek when Aaron was fed and it wasn't until 5:00 a.m. which means he ate about 9:00 p.m. and slept for almost 8 hours!  The boys were fed twice before bed and maybe we have to be more diligent about that. 

A few nights ago things were bad.  Jeff has been teething for some time.  He would often wake up, take his bottle, go to sleep and wake up within an hour screaming.  Poor little guy was not happy and I'd often have to rock him back to sleep in my arms praying that his cries wouldn't wake up Aaron.  Aaron is a couple weeks behind Jeff in the teething department so I'm dreading the nights in a few weeks.  We have tried teething rings, frozen washcloths, homeopathic medicine, crackers and more but the boys are just cranky these days.  Luckily pacifiers seem to keep them calm so that's our main defense. 

These next few weeks (or mont---no...I dare not say it) are going to be rough.  It seems like there are two steps forward and one step back now.  At least that's better than my previous posting of two steps back and one step forward.

And I will say that as much as I covet sleep, I now do the nighttime feeds and then hold them on my chest for 10-15 minutes when they're done and let them fall asleep on me before putting them back in their cribs.  I'm realizing the time for that is getting shorter and there is something peaceful and wonderful about letting your child dream on you while kissing the top of his head. 

Friday, October 12, 2012

Sleep Part Six: Vegetables

The twins are more than six months old and according to our doctor that means real food.  I was nervous and excited to feed them vegetables a few weels ago.  Most thrilling, however, was the anticipation that more food would fill their tummies and make them sleep better.

The verdict?  It doesn't help.

The boys are still waking up every three hours, although we do get reprieves from time to time.  Last night we got about 4 hours between feedings.  That extra hour helps a lot, but I still can't wait for 6-8 hours of full sleep again.

I also was talking with a saleswoman yesterday who has a baby around the same age.  She said her daughter wakes up about midnight, 2:00 a.m. and then 5:00 a.m.  Another couple said at nine months they finally let their daughter cry it out.  For every two or three "my-daughter-started-sleeping-14-hours-a-night-at-three-months-old" story (yes, my co-worker's daughter sleeps 7am-9pm every night) I hear other kids are up several times a night.  Seems like, even at six months, we're not alone which makes me feel better. 

So the food may not help with sleep, but at least we get some cute pictures.  We have tried avocados, squash, carrots and green beans which are pictured below.

Friday, October 5, 2012


Does anyone remember film?  No, not film like movies.  Like film...for a 35 mm camera.  Does anyone even remember 35 mm cameras?  Do you remember that you would get a roll of 12, 24 or 36 pictures and have to go to a store - like those Kodak kiosks - drop off your film and wait a couple days to see the pictures?  As a kid I would hope that my finger didn't cover half the shot or that my picture wasn't fuzzy from being out of focus.  Now we have ridiculously smart cameras that do everything for you and give instant access to your photo.  To me, it's both a blessing and a curse.  It's great because you can take as many pictures as you want until you get the right one.  It's bad because you can take as many pictures as you want until you get the right one.  I sometimes have 12 pictures of my kids doing the same thing hoping that their eyes will be at just a little more open or the smile will be just a little bit better.  After getting the perfect picture then I have to worry about cropping, red eye reduction, borders, lighting, saturation, captioning, and more.  After shooting gobs of pictures in a week does anyone actual print them???

I have photos of me from when I was a baby that are in a picture album.  Photos from old fashioned film!  As a kid I would look at them, touch them, and rearrange them.  I remember reading that kids are losing their histories and identities because we don't print photos any more.  There is nothing for them to hold.  Digital pictures and pictures printed directly on the paper don't give kids that same connection that I had growing up.  So I was determined to print actual pictures and make albums for my kids.

It's harder than I thought.

In today's digital age printed photo books are cheaper, easier and faster than printing out actual photos.  Nevertheless, I was (and still am) determined to make at least some photo albums with actual printed pictures.

Derek and I bought frames for the boys that have a space for twelve photos - one for each month of the child's first year.  I figured if we did this we would have to print some photos and I'd get my wish of having pictures the kids can touch.  The space for the photo is maybe 1" x 2".  I guess you're just supposed to take a close up of your child's face. 

Well, we don't do boring pictures in our house.  The pictures we are taking won't fit in that tiny oval because of our creative set decoration.  Yes, that's right.  We do set decoration.  There are shopping lists of props and costumes.  We scout out locations.  Yes, that's right.  We shoot on location.  So the pictures won't look great in the frame because you can't see everything.  But now I get to make an album for each kid with their monthly photos!  After six months I wanted to share these pictures with you.  I don't share a ton of pictures.  I don't yet know how I feel about posting my children's entire lives online, but these are too cute to not share with my blog fans.   

 April Showers

 May Flowers

Happy Father's Day

July 4th

Final Days of Summer

 Back to School