Over the last year LTD has chosen to break from our tight routine on numerous occasions. Most of these acts of rebellion concern the areas of napping and bedtime. In the beginning, it was two naps a day and a tight 8pm bedtime. My friends those days are long gone. The one-day time nap is now like planning a military operation. If he has a good night sleep he may not take his nap until 12 or 1, but if he slept rough the night before he may fall asleep as early as 10 and if I am in the car at that time then he is out like a light. Let me be clear, I need his daily nap more than he does, it is when I get stuff done. I can’t tell you how nervous I am when running errands in the car during the morning; it’s like Russian roulette (yes folks it’s that serious).
As for the little guy’s bedtime, well let’s just say that our tight 8pm shuteye party is not so tight anymore. LTD has developed a casual relationship with time and occasionally he will push him and us during bedtime until he finally counts the zzz’s close to 9. We do put him in bed to read by himself and that usually works but every so often he will choose the post 8 hour to jump on the bed or kick the safety don’t-fall-off-the-bed gate. The Mommy and I try not to but sometimes eat dinner after he goes to bed and if he pushes us to almost 9 that means we eat late, which is not good for my tummy. The only bright side to LTD’s new sleep schedule is that half the time he will get in bed by himself for either a nap or a full night sleep. All he asks is a story and to be tucked in and on those days we can all get some rest.
A while ago I featured the iphone in a media review and talked mostly about how it has made my life easier. Well since that review LTD has only broken it once and only been iphone banned for life once. However, he indirectly benefits from one of the iphone’s greatest apps. I give you Pandora Internet Radio. While Pandora has basically an infinitely selection of musical tastes the channel that I use almost exclusively is Lullabye Radio. The station plays contemporary lullabies for today’s hip parent, in other words it is Raffi free. Pandora does play ads but I must say they are infrequent and a small price to pay to not have to pay a price.
I first discovered Pandora while on vacation with the little guy who thought the purpose of the vacation was to see if he could go 36 hours without sleeping. I searched Pandora and found the Lullaby channel and was soon enjoying some sweet mellow tunes. At the end of the day I’m not sure just how much the lullabies helped LTD sleep but I will say this, once those tunes started I was out like a light.
LTD was never one of those ‘need a blanket’ type of kids, I assume because for so long he never had one in the crib with him. But a little after he turned one The Mommy and I began putting a super soft blanket in his crib to cover him at bedtime. He took to it like rice to white. Early on his favorite activity was to gently rub the soft blanket corner against his cheek. Almost a year later and the blanket has taken on new significance. The good news is that we don’t have a ‘wooby’ situation on our hands and he is not co-dependant. However, his current practice is to walk around his room with his blanket wrapped around not as Superman’s cape but more in line with Elvis and James Brown. And when you think about it, it makes more sense this way since the little guy has taken to dancing whenever he hears a rockin’ beat.
Perhaps the best outcome from the addition of the blanket is that it allows The Mommy and me to ‘tuck’ him in at night. I don’t love the fact that he likes to sleep with the blanket very close to his head and unless he is in a deep sleep he will not let you move it from his cheek. In fact he puts up a pull fight, which is funny since he is half asleep. In conclusion, I think I speak for LTD when I say, soft is good.
Check out this article on baby sleep safety and products from the New York Times by Andrew Martin. Click here.
During the first year of LTD’s life not only did The Mommy and I follow the rules of the back to sleep movement we also didn’t have anything in his crib. Now that he is almost 14 months he is making up for lost time by having Pooh, Mr. Shark, and his super soft blanket in his bed. He digs his newfound luxury pad and wants to be on the literal MTV Cribs. There is only one small problem with this new arrangement. I constantly check on him when he is asleep. A year is a long time to observe one pattern of behavior and even though I know he is fine, I can’t help but check.
The stupidest part of my checking up on him, is that for the time both he and I are asleep no one is checking on him. It is what I like to call the illusion of security. However, he is our first kid and in the end I can chalk it up to anyone who asks as me not needing an excuse to see my boy.
For the past few weeks now LTD has adopted a new sleep behavior. In the past he has always moved around the crib and flipped head to toe or toe to head, but now he has does something for lack of a better word, weird. He sleeps in the corner. Ever since he started to sleep on his stomach, (the doctor said it was fine for him not to be on his back since he was strong enough to flip by himself) he drives his head into one of the crib’s corners to enjoy night-night time. The Mommy and I can only stare and laugh. Sometimes it feels like he is burrowing and other times it looks like he just ended up there from tossing and turning. Does it look comfortable? No, it does not, but he seems to really like it so we file this one under, areas where babies are different than adults.
LTD hasn’t spit up in a long time and he doesn’t wet the bed yet, but I am reminded of a product that does it’s job so well I often forget about it. Basic Comfort’s Ultimate Crib Sheet has been in LTD’s crib since day one, after The Mommy was told it was a must-have item. The crib sheet like a school crib sheet helps you cheat by not having to use a mattress pad, fitted sheet and absorbent pad. The big selling point is the water resistant top layer and an inner pad that absorbs any accident from either end of the baby.
When the time comes to wash the crib sheet you unsnap the eight elastic straps. The sheet is suppose to fit most cribs and it basically fits ours, but the straps don’t align great with the crib model we have, which isn’t really a problem. Thanks to the baby registry we have two so that we never go without coverage. I will be curious to see how well the Ultimate Crib Sheet holds up to LTD wetting the bed, however we have a while to go before things start to happen in that department and in theory he may never do it. Yeah, right.
When it comes to products if something seems to good to be true it usually is. Those ‘as seen on TV’ miracle products that make your life easier, the kind they tell you you can’t live without; well those things are no where close to being the wonder product advertised. Armed with that skepticism, I approach all transforming or dual purpose products with a serious grain of salt. However, The Mommy said we needed a Pack ‘n Play as a down stairs crib and later a pen to put LTD in baby jail. We used the Pack ‘n Play down stairs for a few months but when the time came for us to bring it to grandma’s house I had serious doubts about the pack part. You know what, the Graco silenced the critic in me. I have to say that it packed up incredibly easy and fits in the bag like a glove. So far we have taken it to hotels and grandparents without incident. It comes with a clip on sound player that I didn’t even put batteries in, I got enough stuff that plays music and it also comes with a changing table and mobile. The table rarely gets used for its stated purpose and usually carries out the mission of holding baby blankets, clothes, and various accouterment. Sadly, the Pack ‘n Play is basically a Transformer that spends its days stuck as a truck when it should be a giant robot. We don’t pack it up all that much, but I actually look forward to packing and setting it up when we do.
Ever since I started spending my days taking care of the baby I have had to re-adjust my expectations and time management ideas about what I could accomplish during the day. LTD usually takes a long nap in the morning and the afternoon; this is when I go into turbo. He is out for long enough for me to plan lunch or dinner and finish various chores and get some work done. However, something unusual occurs from time to time. He sleeps for longer than I planned. It’s like winning a small one-person lottery, but it has a weird side effect. I find myself with time on my hands and nothing to do. Living with the baby prevents me from getting into any big projects, I mean it’s not like I can paint the living room while watching him, so I do lots of little things. Yet, during the times when he sleeps longer than normal, I have a window of extra-unplanned minutes and I can’t think of what to do. The block of time is so unexpected all I can do is stare at the wall; I can’t complain it really is a good problem to have.