Sunday, January 31, 2010

Day to Day...

We're busy here, normal day to day stuff.

We finally hosted a poker game Saturday, and we had 3 infants here-- Elliot, Avery, and a newcomer, Diane who is 5 months old. And Nancy and Micah brought Leroi, their dog, so we all had obligations! Elliot and Leroi are quite the buds-- they love each other and play so well together. Last Tuesday, I went up to their place and both of them napped at the same time, after wearing each other out playing (Elliot laughs out loud at Leroi catching his ball). I need to get some good photos of them together.

We met Claire and Martin (parents of Diane), who are here from France at the university, during our research for day cares and hit it off quite well. They only live 2 blocks away, so I anticipate many playtimes together as the kids grow. And, we actually did get some good cards going. It felt good to socialize with friends like that.

Well, I guess our day to day will be changing-- I talked with my principal at school recently and I'll be returning to work in about 2 months. He was very supportive and the anxiety of leaving Elliot is turning into excitement about getting back into the classroom! There were many factors that led to this decision, none of which are very thrilling to read about or are able to sufficiently be detailed here. As much as I am loving being at home with Elliot, my draw to the classroom has not disappeared, and after working for about 2 1/2 months, I will be back home with him for the summer months.

Thus, the day to day here has included tons of research and interviews for day care for Elliot during those few months! Even though my motherly instinct is in overdrive knowing this is on the horizon, I feel extremely fortunate and privileged to know that I will have been home with him daily for the first 8+ months; not many moms get this option. We also figured out that he will only be in someone else's care about 9a-3p, with how we can tweak our schedules, making it much more palatable. We are lucky to have a few people left on our final list, knowing that we have more than one option that would satisfy our needs.

I guess that is a lot of news to post. It's been discussed here in this household for some time now, in so much depth, that it seems normal news to me by now.

Elliot got "big boy pjs" with monster trucks on them at Christmastime... and man, is he cute in them! Kinda sad, though, how grown up they make him look!

Just a random funny photo-- where we found our cat hanging out this morning. She started batting at the faucet, and we were dying to see if she'd turn the water on herself... but, alas, the show ended before it really began.

Friday, January 29, 2010

My reward.

A new post, coming soon... as long as I get my housecleaning done...

Monday, January 25, 2010

Sitting Up. Kinda.

Well, seeing that this video is 30+ seconds long, we know he can do it for that amount of time (while holding onto a toy...). It is amazing how much stronger he has gotten in this realm just in the last 3 days or so. (I wish the lighting had been better.)

He played so well with a toy like this at my neighbor's, that when we saw a similar one at Ikea, we brought it home. However, Pat taught the cat to flip the beads around better than Elliot, but hey, the cat has 6 years on him at least.


As you can see, he becomes more interested in the texture of the playmat than anything else...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

A Thumbsucker...

(One of those darn times where anything I do to flip the photo does not seem to stick when I import it... bleh.)

We officially have a thumbsucker. Now, he's always chewed on his hands, fingers, whatever, but this is definitely a magnetic force that automatically draws that left thumb in for deliberate sucking. All has developed in the last 2 weeks or so. At first, it was random, like, "Oh, this is new and fun," not necessarily for comfort (even jumping in the Jumperoo, this thumb finds its way to his mouth!). But today, he was crying when I put him down for a morning nap, and when I checked on him a few minutes later: eyes closed, thumb in mouth.

We're trying to casually discourage it by pulling it out when we see it happen, so I hope that helps somehow. Not a big deal, but I don't want to deal with breaking the habit later.

And today seems like a better day already than yesterday. (Yeah, that nap that finally came in the evening? All of 10 minutes. And, of course, it was a night where Pat didn't get home until after 8pm...) Alas, onward and upward!

Oh, I keep forgetting to mention that I had a great lunch at a coworker's house on Monday (they had no school). Her two teenage daughters manned the kids while a few of us enjoyed our meal. Elliot got so much loving, it was great. He loved it.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Long Day.

It's 6:20pm, and I finally got Elliot to fall asleep for an afternoon nap... he had been awake since noon, and whiny since 2pm (precisely because he needed a nap, I'm sure!). Even crying when I tried the Jumperoo, which has never happened. I am under the weather with a relatively mild migraine, along with good ol' uncomfortableness with nursing, so I'm not really in the mood to be extra animated for his entertainment today. He's not really that bad, but for Mr. Personality, it's a bad day.

This is one of those days where a countdown has started until Daddy gets home.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Some of the goofiness.

I wanted to read some writing one of my friends had sent me from a book she's writing, but Elliot needed entertaining tonight (after his going to bed super early, but not really session). No problem, I thought, I'll just read it aloud to him as I take it in for myself. Pat was working on his bike, and enjoyed hearing the reading as well. Elliot, however, decided this was the perfect situation for him to practice spurting his tongue. Over and over again. And it seemed only when I read. We were cracking up. Of course, the camera's battery went dead on us, but we charged it enough to grab the tail end of the night's performances.

Here's a taste of the goofiness he's developed when trying to avoid going to bed. Enjoy.

Major Hat Head.

There's something about Elliot...
(Major hat head, how 'bout it!?)

We watched Avery on Saturday while Dave and Jen went out for Dave's birthday. I got the look of contempt while Pat was the one who she favored, as you can see from their nap together. It was a fun time, getting the kids together. Avery has the best, full-face smile-- even her eyes turn into crescents. Elliot kept reaching for her, oblivious to any anxiety she was having with mom and dad gone.

Elliot's napping was off today after I made him stir by trying to cut his toenails while he napped. I am not a fan of this new phase where he is somewhat easily woken and then does not go back down. Definitely not a fan. We used to change his clothes, move him from here to there, run the vacuum, you name it. Not any more! The other night, I nursed him and he conked out, and then I realized that I had not changed him into his sleeper. Thinking I could swing this with a little finesse, I attempted a sleepy sleeper change, and was not successful. I spent the next 45 minutes rocking a limp, whining, exhausted little boy. Everything told me he was asleep on my shoulder, save for the tiny foot that kept rubbing against my belly, or he'd switch it to be his little fingertips brushing my arm gently. Just enough to say, Nope, you haven't won yet.

Tonight, because of him missing his morning nap due to the hygiene attempt, he was off all day. Little naps here and there, nothing great. He casually grunted and moaned in protest through most of our walk to the lake. He nursed extra (seemed like every hour?!) this evening, and at 7:10pm, he fell deep asleep on my shoulder with no burping. Really? To bed by then? Eh, not really, as that was just another power nap for the day! At 8:30, he was back up and did the whole "Let's be goofy to not fall asleep" stuff. Finally, it's about 10:30 and he's back in bed.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

6 months already.

Elliot will be 6 months old tomorrow. Really amazing. He's working hard on sitting on his own as he'll almost fall over, make a correction to hold it, but still flop eventually. He's pulling forward a lot on my lap.

This morning, Pat went to get him from his crib and he was sleeping on his tummy. First time that has happened, as of course, we had put him down on his back.

His bedtime has inched earlier, so a typical night is 9p to 8a. About once a week he'll need a feeding in the middle, if he was too distracted by playing with daddy to get a good meal in before conking. Not bad. That's too long for me to go with the nursing, though, so I'm still up at night regardless.

I seem to be getting less done during the day-- he wants to play and is into more toys, and with the babyfood, I find I have little downtime. (I look back on how well I kept up the house and such when he was 2 months, 3 months, and I did pretty well back then... he slept much more then, not anymore...) His naps are more unpredictable and he's starting to wake with things like sirens and not always go back down. His little zzzz's after nursing, which used to be a given nap, are very short lived and he quickly gets his second wind. There's just too much to take in in this big world!

The best is when Pat gets home. Elliot's little face lights up and they go into a session of cackling laughter just by looking at each other. It's a riot. As it continues into the evening, I have to play the mean mom and get everyone to settle down before going to bed. We've had a few rough nights this week of screaming when it's past bedtime, and I think it's directly due to the hyperness encouraged by the other half so late in the evening. What can I say-- it's awesome how they play.

Yesterday was refreshing, as it was so sunny, we finally made it out for a walk to the lake. Oh, how I had missed the lake. (And boy, did my legs tell me I had missed it!) I can't even remember the last time we got out there. Elliot was alert, looking around for the first half, then slept for the walk home. Looks like we may be able to get out there again today?

Monday, January 11, 2010

Last Christmas Gathering.

We always get together with our former neighbors from our time up north, and we always seem to do it pretty late. However, this usually works out best, as everyone has recovered from the "real" holidays and are excited to visit more!

Candace hosted and we all brought food. Joe was recovering from surgery in December, but he seemed his good ol' chipper self. We had such a fun time and stayed a good hour past when Elliot should have been in bed! He got a little nap in up there and ended the night flirting away with his smile and laughs.

Joe decked Elliot out in new clothes (do you see the scarlet and grey?) and Candace gave him a new friend in "Polly the Penguin" who bobbles around (and of course, has music); all were a big hit. I think Polly is going to be quite popular.

Friday, January 8, 2010


This was Elliot's way of pacifying himself when we were driving to Ohio for Christmas... he found the tail on his blue elephant and just started nursing away. I was cracking up. You can see by the end he figures out it's not gonna fill his belly (and I felt guilty for videoing instead of getting his second bottle ready!).

Not much new...

There's not much new, but I saw I hadn't posted in a while, and I'm looking for a further distraction from the housecleaning I should be doing while Elliot is napping...

We've been pretty house-bound because of the snow. When the temperature is in the teens or single digits with the whole "feels like" factor on the weather page, I don't go out unnecessarily. I figure, if my cheeks get painfully numb, his are too. I've been successful in bundling him and then covering him in the stroller with our plastic rain cover (to create a bubble of warmish air for him to breath, and it blocks the wind nicely), but he's not too keen on being under there. When we have gone out, he's been a trooper. It's just a further pain to unbundle him when we arrive at our destination, or leave him cooking while I run through a store or something.

Man, I seem whiney today!

Elliot's getting stronger and starting to show signs of sitting up on his own soon. He'll correct himself slightly, save the position for a minute or two, and then fall over.

I think he is looking so much more like a little boy versus a baby, and I'm sure I'll be saying the same thing for months to come!

His naps are getting less consistent as he seems to want to investigate more things and play longer. We're doing better at reading when he needs to go down at night, and it's backed up to 8 or 9pm usually. Pat complains that when he gets home from work and we eat dinner, then Elliot's already going to bed and he doesn't get to play with him enough. C'est la vie.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

College Football and A Picky Eater?

Yesterday was spent watching college football, non-stop.  Just to be in the spirit, even though the good ol' Flashes were never football giants, Elliot donned his Kent State attire.  Well, it lasted through the first game, before it was too messy to keep on.

And a few more shots from Zoo Lights that I meant to include-- we called this one the Dr. Seuss tree.

Recently, we got a highchair for Elliot, as I was previously feeding him in the bouncy seat on top of the table.  He's a little small, still, so we're deciding if it works yet for him; he tends to slouch a little.  (Avery has been using hers, so we figured he should be able to handle it...)  
I started eliminating the cereal in the food, and started giving him a veggie and a fruit each feeding the other day.  He did great with sweet potatoes and prunes together, but we had a miserably fussy and gassy day, so I don't know if that was a result of the food mixture or something I ate.  ??  He's definitely getting better at opening his mouth and eating consecutive bites with some efficiency (when it goes well).  So I thought I'd try him on carrots again, to really make sure he hates them... Yep.  Still does.  
And now that there's no cereal mixed in, he's rejecting green beans, too-- I am trying to get him to eat a few bites still, but he winces and gags, and then starts refusing to open his mouth.  Not productive.  Since I don't want him to relate the negative eating experiences to his new chair, I think I'll be safe and go back to some good favorites, like bananas or something.  I may have a finicky eater on my hands... I hope not.

Zoo Lights.

Pat ended up having to go to Indianapolis for work on Wednesday, so when Dave and Jen called and said they were doing the Zoo Lights at Lincoln Park Zoo, I bundled Elliot up and we headed up north.  They were very cool, but it was a bit chilly to be out very long with the little ones.  Elliot was a little fussy, too, so after about 45 minutes, we called it an evening.  Pat wants to see them too, so we may head back up tomorrow, if the temperature would just go above freezing!
Taking a break in the Lion House to warm up and give Avery a quick bottle, then back out to the cold!

I keep forgetting to mention that Elliot flipped over from his back to his stomach on Christmas morning.  I was in the shower, and Pat had put him on the dining room floor to play while he got some breakfast.  When he came back through the dining room, Elliot was hanging out on his tummy.  And to prove to us that the cats did not assist him, he did it again for us while we watched (very considerate since we missed the first showing).