Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A sleep question

I was going to post this as a status on Facebook for my tribe there to chime in, but it would've been way too long. I hope they/you will still comment here or there so everyone can get the benefit of my awesome readers' collective wisdom.

First, before my question, a little about Ayla's sleep habits.

She's typically a good sleeper. I put her down awake, but sleepy and she goes to sleep on her own. She doesn't need any type of swing, vibration, blanky, stuffed animal, just her pacifier. She sleeps for about 10-11 hours at night (I'm working with her to get it to 12, but I'm happy with 11!), and takes three naps a day, usually for an hour or longer. So, pretty easy as that goes.

Lately, though, it takes her no less than 40 minutes to actually go to sleep from when I put her down. She plays (throws her pacifier around and crawls around to get it, pulls up, rolls/crawls around, does yoga, whatever), talks and just minimally fusses for that time, and when she finally falls asleep it's like she's just run out of batteries. The only time I go in to intervene is when her distressed cry tells me she's thrown the pacifier outside of the crib and I go replace it with no interaction. If she sees me, she thinks it's time to get up and play.

I thought I could read her signs of sleepiness to even start putting her down; yawning, rubbing eyes, getting still and quiet, and so on. I've started a pre-nap ritual to signal it's time to sleep, not play. It doesn't matter if she nurses or not.  I can't find any factors to change anymore than I have. It's pretty consistently 40 minutes.

So, what do you think?
-Is this 40 minutes excessive, normal, just a phase?
-Am I putting her down too soon or too late in the sleepiness window?
-Is this one of those things where every baby is different and I should just roll with it?

Before you answer, please consider:
-I don't need recommendations for a book to read, just your experience-based advice! (thanks!)
-I've read and am reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Healthy Child and basically agree with the philosophies therein.
-She does not sleep in my arms as a general rule. I wish she would. Very rarely she'll fall asleep after nursing, but only for a few minutes, then it still takes 40 minutes to go to sleep.

This is her right now. Run right out of steam!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Every Day Ayla - Month 8 (a few days late)

As I was going through the pictures for this month's every day collage, I noticed that too many of them were blurry. It wasn't intentional, but it does represent our month of traveling through 11 cities in three states and that she never stops moving because now

She's crawling!!

There, that's about it for this month's update. (Ha ha!) (But seriously..)

While we were in Tulsa last month, my sister-in-law, Victoria (Solo's mom), showed Ayla how to get from rocking on all fours to sitting position. The day after that she was doing it like a pro, and the day after that she was crawling. Like it was no big deal. She likes being mobile, and is already starting to try to pull up! 

She's doing great with self-feeding, having expanded her repertoire to seasoned or flavored food (veggies pulled out of curry, lo mein, sandwiches, whatever I'm eating). To my absolute delight, she LOVES hummus and guacamole. It's a little hard for her to eat since she wants to feed herself and doesn't know how to use a spoon yet, but we get it in there! 

I got her a sippy cup, but she pushed it out of the way in preference for my water bottle, so we went straight to using a straw. She has her own "water bottle" now.

Last month, we started using cloth diapers, G Diapers, to be exact. I really like them. I'm not sure what Ayla thinks of them, just that she thinks every time she's getting her diaper changed is a chance to twist herself into unimaginable contortions and test mommy's patience!

As babies tend to do, she changes and develops new and better skills every day. I'm sure she's changed even while I've been typing this!

Here are her every day pictures for her eighth month:

PS. Have you seen Solo's video yet? Want to watch it again?

Monday, September 5, 2011

Even a hero needs help sometimes

First, hello!

How have you all been?

I know it's been a little quiet around here, but that's mostly because I haven't been in much of a quiet setting lately. Ayla and I have been on a whirlwind tour of Texas, Oklahoma and now California. So far, we've been with all of her grandparents, cousins, uncles and all but one of her aunts.

(I know, I owe you tons of pictures.)

It's actually one of those cousins I'm thinking about today. If you've been here a while, you know all about Solomon. He's my brother's current youngest son and is turning 4 next week. 

You know what? Written words aren't going to suffice here. Would you take a few minutes and watch this video?

Just a little bit about his special school. The Little Light House provides him and his friends a completely specialized education worth about $30,000 a year for exactly no cost to their families. They are able to do this because of generous donors, since they receive no funding from the government.

Their big fundraiser of the year is coming up on Sept 24, and we all get to participate! Exciting, right?

So, here's what you do:
1) Watch the video (again)
2) Go to Solomon's page and sponsor him
3) Share the video

Last year's video got more than 5,500 views and we blew their fundraising goal out of the water.

Are you ready to do it again? If you don't have any money, that's ok. You can still help by forwarding this blog or just the video on to everyone you know. Thanks!

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