Abraham, Rachel, Soren and Liam. Our life together in Smalltown, Idaho.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Sleeping Handsome

So. I have vascillated wildly on the cry-it-out issue. I've listened to Soren's doctor's lectures about how it's something I must do; I've read Dr. Sears' indictment of the whole idea. Some moms have told me that letting their baby cry it out was the best thing they did; other moms have said that it absolutely didn't work for them and was, in fact, a rather traumatizing event for the whole family. I finally decided to go with Elizabeth Pantley's gentle sleep-through-the-night program and began her regimen.

Then Soren had a night in which he awakened TEN times. Simply waking would have been OK, but the little guy was also crying his I'm-feeling-whiny-and-mad-not-hungry-or-in-pain cry. And I decided perhaps Dr. Baker was right. Maybe it was time Soren learned he isn't entitled to anything he wants anytime he wants it. I finally decided that it was time to let him cry it out. For reals this time.

And I braced myself for horror.

Thursday night we went through our usual bedtime routine. Then I put Soren in his crib, handed him his stuffed monkey, put a plug in his mouth, kissed him, and left. He cried. After five minutes I went in and patted him, gave him back his binky, readjusted his blanket, told him I loved him, and left. He cried for two more minutes and went to sleep. I fairly danced around the house. That was MUCH better than I'd been expecting. But I braced myself for the nighttime, expecting that perhaps horror would ensue then. And he did wake up a lot. But each time he'd cry for no more than five minutes and go back to sleep. It was a miracle! And that's how it's been ever since. He'll wake up once or twice in the night, cry for a minute or two, and then go right back to sleep. That I can deal with. My only complaint now is that his new morning wake-up time is 5 am.

Well, maybe that's not my only complaint. I do have another one. I actually miss getting up with my wee one at night. He was always so sweet and limp and heavy and warm. He would reach up with his sweet little hand and play with my hair while he nursed and we rocked. When he was done eating, he would cuddle against my shoulder and sigh so sweetly and I would smell his hair. I miss that. A lot. During the day he's just so much more active and playful. He doesn't have time for cuddles.

I guess there's just no making me happy. But, you know, I might get accustomed to this whole eight-hour block of sleep thing.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Haven't posted in a while, so...

I mentioned to a friend earlier this weekend that I kept waiting for a big story to happen for me to post on my blog, but no big stories are happening. So I'll just give you what I've got.

First, here is a picture of a manta-ray like pancake that I made when Abe's siblings Quentin and Merritt were here for the 4th. That batch of pancakes was just one disaster after another.

Also, Quentin came up to stay for a few days while the BYU-I people cleaned his carpets or something. He and Abraham were kind enough to take a couple of hours out of their busy schedule of playing Counterstrike to install a brand new air conditioning unit at Uncle Dewey's . Here is a picture of him enjoying the cool breeze. (Actually, this picture was taken at our house, which is still hotter than salsa, but I thought it was cute, so we'll pretend...)

Soren and I have developed a morning routine that consists of waking, nursing, bathing, then coming upstairs to find Grandma, who says she can't function without her morning smile from Soren. On the particular morning documented above, we were lucky enough to find Grandma AND Grandpa, who were more than happy to partake of Soren's morning sunshine.

On Collette's day off this week, Dad and Abe took the Smith kids up to the Blacktail portion of the Ririe Reservoir. Abraham, ever the pied piper, persuaded all the children to play in a gigantic mudhole. A good time was had by all.

In other as-yet-unphotographed news, Soren has been on a wild developmental spree as of late. During the past couple of weeks, he's mastered the art of rolling from his back to his belly (he's been going the other way since he was 9 days old) and started seriously working on crawling. Right now he kind of creeps around, mostly backwards, and rolls to the places he wants to go. Every now and again, though, he'll shift up onto his hands and feet (we call it "the stinkbug position") and lurch forward. So he might end up being a stinkbug crawler. Also, he's developed a mad passion for his doorway jumper, in which he can hop for hours. Really. Hours. I'll load him up in the jumper, lie down on the floor in front of him, and take a good nap.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Because of Uncle Sue

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He'll probably cry 'imself to sleep on his 'uge pillo'.

Soren had his 6 month checkup today. He weighs 20 lbs, 12 ounces (90th percentile); measures 28 inches tall (95th percentile); and has a head so big (18 1/2 inches) it doesn't even have a percentile. He's perfectly healthy, though I did receive a rather stern lecture from the doctor about how I need to let him cry it out at night. (No, I haven't worked up the guts to do this yet, but I will. We've got Girls Camp this week, but after that, by gum, he's going to be sleep trained come heck or high water!)

Other news posts:

The case of the black squiggly diaper: solved.
On Sunday, Soren woke up with a very strange diaper indeed. Swimming in his usual slew of peanut-buttery substance were a herd of black squigglies. It looked like he had a serious worm problem. I saved the diaper. That morning over breakfast I asked Mom about it. She glared suspiciously at Soren's "Bert" doll and said, "Maybe he's been eating Bert's hair." When Abe got up, I made him take a look. "I don't think it's worms," he said. "But I'm not sure what it is." When my sister, Collette, came over for dinner that afternoon, I had her take a look. "Banana diaper," she declared authoritatively. I mentioned it to the doctor today and he agreed with her prognosis.

Many new purchases made by the Skousen family.
We've gone kind of hogwild crazy in the money spending arena lately. It started a few weeks ago when we ordered Soren a doorway jumper and a food grinder from Toys-R-Us. These both proved to be good investments. Soren's happily bouncing and squealing in his doorway jumper as I write this. The food grinder has made it possible for me to share all manner of grown-up food with him at meal times, something he finds most satisfying.

Then Abe and I went shopping on one of his days off and ended up purchasing an umbrella stroller (for occasions when we don't want to haul around the hulking travel system stroller) for Soren, a couple of shirts for Abe, and two pairs of shoes for me.

On Saturday I was connived into a garage sale-ing expedition with my sister, where I ended up acquired a few new toys for the little guy (3 good toys for a total of 45 cents); an 18-volume "Childcraft" set, which I've been wanting for years; a never-worn size 2T snowsuit for $1.00; and a complete potty training set (including unused potty chair and Potty Training Elmo doll) for $5.00. I also bought some shoes for $5.00, a purchase I have come to regret, as $5.00 now seems exorbitant to me for a pair of used shoes. But you know.

So anyway, I've been feeling rich in things and poor in money, so I'm going to try and take a bit of a purchasing sabbatical for a while.

Two women attacked by gigantic horseflies on Sunday stroll.
Collette and I have a weekly Sabbath-day tradition of taking what we refer to as a "Giggawalk," a three mile stroll in which we gossip, vent, chat, and otherwise share some giggles. This week we encountered an enormous herd of mean biting flies that cut our walk short. We must have looked very bizarre to anyone watching from afar: two grown women running several yards, arms flailing wildly around heads and bodies, who would periodically stop and take turns whacking each other's heads, backs, and legs, only to resume running again.

There were other things I was going to write about, namely, our Fourth of July celebration, but it was mostly unmemorable and I'm ready to go zonk out now. After all, it is nearly 7:30 pm.


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