Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Nap Trapped {Sleep tip of the month}

Around the time that your little one graduates from being a ‘newborn’ to a ‘baby’ you will notice that their daytime sleep habits change.  Once able to snooze in the car-seat, Ergo, or stroller in loud, bright places, they now start to fight napping in exchange for people watching…  

This is your cue that the time has come for a quiet, dark, peaceful space for your baby to take their naps.  Unfortunately for Mom & Dad this means being stuck inside the house for what feels like forever.

"You think you're trapped at home! Do you have any idea how many hours I spend in this crib?"
This is even harder when you have other children that don’t find sitting at home ‘being quiet’ very much fun!

I don’t have a one-size-fits-all solution to this, and I strongly believe naps should be taken at home in order to establish a good nap routine, but here are some tips on making it more manageable:

  • Try to keep the morning nap(s) at home, and the afternoon nap(s)s can be on the go.  The morning naps are always the easiest for babies to master, so give them the opportunity to get into a good routine at home.  Some babies really struggle with the last nap of the day, and if this is the case, let them sleep in the car/Ergo/stroller while you’re out.  Don’t expect these naps to be very long, but they will at least carry them over until bedtime.
  • Invite friends over to your house for play dates so that you and your older child(ren) can still have a social life, and you and keep up with the nap training.  Win win!
  •  Know that it won’t last forever.  If you have other children, you will remember that sleep patterns change pretty quickly in the grand scheme of things, so enjoy the down time.

Thanks Lauren! This is soooo my life right now! Our once busy mornings have turned into too much TV time and not enough active play for my almost three year old. I keep reminding myself, "This too shall pass."  

Lauren is a certified sleep coach and DONA trained postpartum doula.  Her passion for helping tired parents began when her own newborn daughter's constant crying and terrible sleep habits finally got the best of her. Visit her blog and Facebook page for more information.

Check out Lauren's other featured posts on Leilaland:

Monday, July 29, 2013

Obsessed much?

Peter, Peter Pan, Never Land, Tinker Bell, Tiger Lilly, Mermaid Lagoon, Captain Hook, The Jolly Roger...

I hear these names day after day, after day.

Leila is OBSESSED with everything Peter Pan.

He is her best friend, she's married to him, he flies, he runs, he pees and poops, he eats lunch, he holds her hand, I hold his hand, he's imaginary, he's a stuffed friend, he's EVERYWHERE. (No joke, the other night I heard her talking in her sleep about Captain Hook's ship, the Jolly Roger.) 

Someone asked Leila what her name was and she replied, "Tinker Bell." If her Tinker Bell t-shirts are clean you better bet that's what she's wearing.
Needless to say, we'll be having a Peter Pan themed third birthday party for little Miss Leila Tinker Bell! And could it be more fitting that the the re-release of the Peter Pan DVD will be August 20th?! Let's hope Disney goes big on this one...it's not easy to find a Peter Pan t-shirt in a size 3T.

What is your child obsessed with these days?

Friday, July 26, 2013

The Great List {07.26.13}

It's been way too long since I shared my Great List. Just because we've been crazy busy doesn't mean I haven't taken time to appreciate the little things that make me smile. I make a point to practice positive thinking almost daily. Got to find the good in life when you haven't slept more than fours hours in a row in over four months, right?

Leila (34 months) and Charlie (3 years old!!)
1. We helped Charlie celebrate her third birthday this week! I can't believe these girls aren't babies anymore. What's even crazier is that they have known each other for half of their life! We lived it up at her petting zoo themed birthday party, then on her actual birthday we went to dinner at a very kid friendly restaurant. Leila had so much fun she said she wants to go back for her birthday. It's a deal, Leila!

2. Carson rolled from back to belly this week. This is HUGE for him putting himself to sleep. He's a belly sleeper but rolls to his back and then gets "stuck" there with his arms flailing and legs kicking. In due time he'll be rolling all over the place.

3. I treated myself to an early birthday present! I purchased sixteen new pairs of underwear at Nordstrom's anniversary sale. Time for an underwear drawer overhaul after two pregnancies in three years.

4. It's been just gorgeous here in San Diego. Clouds in the morning and sun in the afternoon keeps the temperature at the beach in the low 70s. Just my kind of summer weather...you can't beat this beach breeze.

5. I am blogging again! It felt nice to take a break, even though it seemed to be a forced one. I blog to capture the moments and archive the memories we are making as a family. It started to worry me that this crazy time in our lives would be forgotten when we passed into the next stage. Making time to do what I love (writing, exercising, seeing friends) helps me enjoy these seemingly long days.

Happy Friday! Enjoy your fun summer weekends while they last.

Come back each week for my newest list and don't forget to check out Betsy's list each week too.  Warning...positive thinking is addicting!

Want to write your own list?  

Just grab the button, add it to your post, and come back to tell us about it.

Share some joy...


<a href="http://betsylife.com/category/the-great-list/"><img src="http://i1024.photobucket.com/albums/y301/jenpekar/Button%20pics/49b0fe2f.jpg"/>

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Breastfast Club: My first experience

Six weeks before the birth of my first child, Leila, I clearly remember my friend Bridget talking candidly with me about breastfeeding. Her words stuck with me and have become my go-to words to newly breastfeeding mothers. She said, "...For something "natural", it doesn't seem natural at first."

For my first experience, those words couldn't have been more true.

Breastfeeding was something I always planned on doing. When I was pregnant with my daughter Leila I read breastfeeding books, researched online, and talked to friends and family members about their experiences. I thought I was fully prepared for our breastfeeding journey...then I had a baby.

Read my full story over on Sarah's blog, Nurse Loves Farmer. While you're there you can read other mothers' stories about breastfeeding. The Breastfast Club has featured many bloggers and has turned into a valuable breastfeeding resource for new and seasoned moms.

The Breastfast Club - Nurse Loves Farmer

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Carson's fourth month

Guess who's no longer a newborn...

...this guy!
Carson turned four months old on July 14th. The four month mark brought a lot of changes. He's growing out of his 0-3 month clothing, especially the footed pajamas and onesies. His four month doctor appointment isn't until July 29th so I will know his official growth stats at the end of the month. Although he is bigger than Leila was at this age, he's still a little peanut. 

I think he's starting to look more like me, and less like his Uncle Jay, but still looks like a boy. (Isn't that strange how that works?!) 

Eating: Carson nurses every 3 1/2 to four hours around the clock, with one slightly longer stretch between feedings at night. He'll take a bottle, but doesn't need to very often anymore since I am home with him full time. We are not planning to start solids with him until he's closer to six months old. Hopefully the timing will work out perfectly with my return to work in September.

Activities and Milestones:  Carson is the happiest little guy. Besides being overtired and having some bad gas, nothing really makes him cry. His newest tricks include laughing, rolling from belly to back, eating his toes, drooling buckets, and grasping lightweight toys. He still slumps over in the Bumbo seat but likes the different view nonetheless.

Sleeping: Between months three and four things got a little rough in the nap department. I could no longer rock Carson to sleep and gently place him in the Rock and Play (or anywhere for that matter). This prompted earlier than usual nap sleep training, just three days before he turned four months old. Now he naps 2-3 times a day. His first two naps are at home in either his crib or in the Pack and Play in our room and (hopefully) last anywhere from 1.5-2.5 hours). Nap #3 happens where ever it may...the swing, Ergo carrier, car seat, etc.  

Days after we began sleep training we ditched the swaddle at night. He had busted out of the Miracle Blanket one too many times and has found his fingers soothing. He loves sleeping on his belly and the swaddle blanket just doesn't allow that safely.

I am so excited to say he's finally sleeping in his crib at night too! I was waking up with his every move, so after a very sleepless night I decided it was time to move him downstairs with Leila. So far so good...

Each new stage brings new joys and challenges. I am enjoying his longer awake periods in the afternoons and some quiet time while he naps. Next on the agenda, rolling from back to belly so he can easily choose his favorite sleeping position.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Our family of four

It seems like a really long time ago that Natalie Chiles, a local San Diego Newborn Photographer, took these amazing photos of our family of four. 

It's been FOUR months since we welcomed Carson into our family.

We have all changed and grown so much since March.  Leila has been showing more interest in her little brother. She no longer needs to sit on top of me while he nurses and loves to make him laugh.

I don't feel crazy anymore, but am quickly remembering with the passing of one challenging stage comes another. Jeff is feeling more adjusted too! He is a self-proclaimed baby-hater (Okay, that may be too harsh...but true nonetheless.) and is looking forward to a stage when Carson is more interactive.


Looking back at these photos reminds me how happy I am that we got them taken. Natalie made us feel so comfortable during this shoot. She took time before Carson was born to check out my sister's apartment to make sure the lighting would work and sent me countless emails with questions and ideas to ensure we'd be thrilled with our photos.

The photo shoot lasted a couple hours, with a nursing break, lunch break, and clothing change for some of us. We hung out and chatted as a family on the couch while she took some candid shots, then she patiently waited for Carson to fall asleep for the shots of just him.  I know Natalie was as excited as I was to get this photo (and many others) of Carson smiling.

I love that when you Google "Natalie Chiles", this is one of the images that comes up.

To top off our experience, Natalie came over and shared the newborn photos with us personally. She wanted to see our reactions in person! That really proved to Jeff and I that she was proud of her beautiful work. As you can tell by the pictures, she should be! My only regret...not having her take photos of Leila as a newborn.

He still curls his long toes like this!

Natalie recently took newborn photos for a friend of mine and I can't wait to see how they turned out. 

Check out Natalie's blog here for more photos, craft ideas, and recipes. You can be sure I'll be begging her to do a family shoot for us in the future.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

I don't feel crazy anymore.

Well, that's not entirely true.

I still have my moments when I am too tired to see straight, my to-do list is so long I refuse to write it down, and I could use 5 seconds of alone time.

But overall...life with two kids is starting to feel normal.

A LOT has happened in the past six weeks.  It's been a very wild ride! 

  • My job ended, hopefully just for the summer.
  • We went to Chicago to spend time with my family. Twice. 
  • Carson is no longer a newborn and he's on somewhat of a schedule since I've sleep trained him for naps. (Which is why I actually can write again!)
  • Leila became obsessed with Peter Pan, sleeps in her big girl bed with no issues (phew), and is showing more interest in her brother.
  • I am less than 5 lbs away from my pre-Carson weight.
  • The kids met their first "real" cousin, Jaxon, and I got to see my youngest sister embracing and enjoying motherhood.

  • I started drinking white wine. (Wait..what?! Who am I?)
Cheers to catching up and finally getting the hang of things again!
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