Toothless No More!

I have been planning all day to write a new blog post about how J seems to be in a sleep regression. He’s always been a great sleeper, but for the past few nights, he’s had a lot of trouble falling and staying asleep… and last night, it really came to a head. I spent hours rocking and bouncing him to sleep. He was being so stubborn and simply would not close his eyes, and as soon as I put him down in the crib and left the room, he would cry. Eventually, at 5:30 a.m. (after 2 hours), he finally fell asleep — but only while I was still in the room, lying on the bed. I originally chalked it up to separation anxiety — but it’d be strange for him to have such separation anxiety when he’s in his own bed.

Well, I now know the answer.

First tooth - left incisor - at 7.5 months

After picking him up from daycare and getting home this afternoon, I fed him, and then while we sat and played, he stuck my finger in his mouth… and what’s that? A very sharp, pointy, hard object was sticking out of his gum!

His first tooth had come in — his bottom left central incisor.

I suspect the right is not far behind. We actually noticed the little white dots of the ridges of both teeth about two weeks ago.

Side note: Today also happens to be my sister’s birthday! Happy birthday, Aunt S! 🙂

Ya know, I don’t blame him for being unable to sleep last night. I’m sure it hurts to have a tooth breaking through your gums! And I’m happy to report that he went to sleep with no trouble tonight.

I’m sure going to miss that toothless grin of his, but also excited to see what his new smile will look like!

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Birthday Celebrations… Like the Old Days

Yesterday was my husband’s 28th birthday, and his first as a father. And what a wonderful father he is.

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We celebrated with his family last weekend, so we had done the whole cake/candles thing (and there was no way I could top his cousin’s delicious cakes), so this weekend we just aimed to relax and have fun.

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But rather than have a date night alone, we went out with a few friends while a sitter took care of the baby at home. We had put him to bed already (which really frees us up for the evening), so we were able to relax and enjoy ourselves.

We’ve gone out alone a few times, but it was refreshing to go out sans baby with our childless friends. The conversation steered clear of the kid, and I, for one, felt almost back to my pre-pregnancy self that night.

I say it all the time — I love being a parent! But it’s always nice to get away for just a couple of hours. Having a baby is really all-consuming, in both good ways and … inconvenient and stressful ways.

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Anyway, happy belated birthday to my husband. I love you more every day.

A Few Days Alone

D spent a few days with his parents, leaving me and J by ourselves at the house. (Well, not completely. My sister — J’s Aunt S — came to stay with us!)

Aunt S and baby J at six months

I was afraid life would be impossibly complicated without D here, but we actually managed just fine. I’m not sure I could handle single parenthood long-term, but I was pretty proud of myself for being able to keep J — and myself — fed and happy while D was gone. Grown-up meals are arguably the most difficult part of my day. I really rely on D’s help when I’m getting supper put together each night… so while he was away, I opted to either eat out or fix super simple meals.

momma and J in his bowtie

But still, we both missed him a lot. J was obviously happy (albeit a bit confused and surprised) to see his Daddy when he got home on Wednesday — and, of course, I was thrilled to have my husband back! We’re a very tight-knit couple (now family).

I really have so much to be thankful for. I was so lucky to have gotten pregnant when I did (without really even trying…), had an incredibly easy pregnancy, a super quick labor & delivery, a perfectly healthy baby boy… All with D by my side, every step of the way. I feel so lucky to be married to my very best friend (ever!) and that J has such an awesome father to play with and look up to. If J turns out to be anything like his father, I will be one proud momma!

Daddy with newborn

How I Learned to Stop Partying and Love the Bedtime

It’s been an eventful week! Glad I’m finally able to post.

I worked Monday and half of Tuesday, then I was off for the Fourth of July!

We started the celebration off with a baseball game on July 3. I was very excited about it — it would be my baby boy’s first game! Plus, after the game there would be a fireworks show — something I haven’t seen in quite some time! (Maybe not since my last trip to Disney World…?) We got J dressed up in his Braves outfit and all packed in the carseat… when it started pouring down rain. We postponed our trip to Turner Field and put J back to bed. He was exhausted — and that should have been our cue to stay in.

But we didn’t.

The rain finally let up, and on the ride to the stadium, I talked to D about how we shouldn’t use the baby as an excuse not to do things that we want to do. In this case, we already had tickets and plans to meet up with friends — and the baby will be fine. Right?

Baby’s first baseball game! (I accidentally wore Cubs blue…)

We finally got to the stadium (ugh — Atlanta traffic!), and I promptly strapped J into the Ergo. He was snuggled up and content, at least for the time being. We walked around for a long time with friends, everyone ooh-ing and ahh-ing over how adorable and well-behaved he was. He really is a pretty laid back kid for the most part. But he definitely was least happy when I took him out of the Ergo and passed him around. When he’s sleepy, he just wants his momma.

We finally made our way to our seats during the sixth inning. J continued to be well-behaved for a really long time, but he started to get fussier and fussier as the game got more heated (literally and figuratively…). And then Chipper hit his first five-hit game in a decade. The crowd went wild! And so did J. But not in a good way. (Note: I know nothing about baseball — but apparently this was a big deal.)

That was the end. Hysterical crying ensued (a rarity for this child, reserved only for his most over-tired states). We left the stadium as the game ended.

I was pretty bummed to be missing the fireworks, but I also knew that I had kept J out way past his bedtime. (And fireworks probably wouldn’t have been good for him, anyway.) At least the Braves won — 10-3! And we were able to see Chipper’s big moment.

We finally got home and put the baby to bed. He quickly fell fast asleep. He was all tuckered out. We had woken him up from his nap to leave, then he missed his 7:30 p.m. bedtime. He had been awake since about 6:30, and it was almost midnight. Quite a stretch for so little a baby!

Despite my spiel about not using the baby as an excuse, I’ve learned that we need to start considering his needs along with our own. When J was just a tiny little baby, we could take him anywhere and he would simply fall asleep. Not anymore. Now, he’s easily stimulated and distracted, and the loud noises and bright lights at the game did nothing to help him nap.

The next day was the Fourth of July, and at the last minute, my parents decided to make the trip to visit for the day. We had a great time — the girls (me, my sister, and my mom) went shopping, and then we joined the boys (my dad, husband, and son) and my sister’s roommate at their house for dinner. Homemade barbecue sauce with a slow-cooked pork shoulder, macaroni salad, baked beans, and Alton Brown’s guacamole (my favorite recipe!) with tortilla chips. And for dessert, S’s roommate made a delicious (what I like to call) Pina Colada pie (similar to this recipe). All delicious!

Playing with Aunt S

J was clearly getting tired, and despite my best efforts to get him to sleep on a blanket, he refused. Eventually, I gave up, and we all played a game. We had opted not to make the trek to see fireworks — definitely a good move considering the night before. But we were still out way past his bedtime. When I finally got J in bed, he crashed. It’s nice to have him go down so easily — but I also don’t like feeling like I’ve been depriving him of sleep.

Again, I probably should have read his signs a little better and insisted that we leave earlier. It’s just so hard to give up the chance to spend time with family and friends. I admit that I haven’t yet learned to “love” the bedtime exactly, but I’m definitely learning that it’s becoming more and more important for J’s sake that we honor it (to the best of our ability). Some day, he’ll be more flexible, but for now, we need to keep with his schedule, at least to some extent, and do what we can to make sure he’s in bed at a reasonable hour.

A rare treat — a bedtime meal from Daddy! (expressed breastmilk – still no formula!)

Tomorrow, D’s parents are coming — both sets of grandparents in one week! This is one very loved little boy.