Friday, August 29, 2008

Alex's First Solids

So I fed Alex his first meal of solid food yesterday. Both Aaron and I felt he was ready. He'd been watching us intently whenever we ate and seemed to copy the motions. So I bought some rice cereal, since I hear that is the easiest to start out with (easily digestible) and you can easily make the cereal thinner and then thicken it up with subsequent feedings.

For the first feeding, I followed the instructions on the box, but it seemed awfully thin--mostly breast milk really (which is what I mixed with rice cereal). As expected, he got most of it on his front, but he caught on to how the spoon worked really well. Soon he was opening his mouth wider to allow the spoon to enter his mouth. It was pretty exciting giving Alex his first meal of solid food.

Swaddle Frustrations Continued

So Alex is officially out of his swaddle, but I don't know if that's a good thing or not. Sometimes it seems fine, like yesterday when he took a 2.5 hour nap, and then there is today, where he slept for an hour the first nap and 45 minutes for his second. I don't know if it's because he wasn't in his swaddle or if it was something else. I think, though, that I'm going to make sure he's in a sleeper or a long-sleeved onesie when I put him down from now on, just in case that was part of the reason why.

Additionally, Alex doesn't go down easily for his naps and at night like he used. When he was in the swaddle, he would fall asleep either sucking on the bottle or being rocked in our arms. Then we would put him down. He would sometimes open his eyes as we put him in his crib, but he would go right back to sleep. Now, as I put him his crib, I can't hold both arms to his side and so at least one falls. This wakes him up and then when I put him down, he usually moves both arms and legs about, waking him further. I also wonder if the matress is cold while my arms are warm. Sometimes he falls back asleep within a minute or two. Sometimes he falls asleep 10 minutes later. Sometimes he just keeps crying until we get him.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Trip to Washington

I'm so dead tired right now. I'm pretty much ready to pass out, but there are some things I need to do before going to bed, but first I needed a break to relax and to rejuvenate some before attacking those things, I thought I'd post.

So on Aug. 8, Aaron, Alex, and I headed out to Washington/Oregon to see family. My sister, whom I haven't seen in 5 years, was coming from North Carolina with her husband and four kids (two of whom I've never even met), so I took the opportunity to go as well so I could see her. My other sister and my brother were both there as well (the former lives in California and the latter lives in China). It was really great to see everyone and to see my nieces and nephews.

To take advantage of the rates, we decided to leave on a Friday morning and return on a Tuesday, a week and a half later, so it was a long trip, but with all who we had to see, it really needed to be that long. There was very little time where I had nothing to see or anyone to visit.

On the first day, we flew into Portland, and my sister Krissa (the one with kids) picked us up from the airport and took us to her mother-in-law's house to hang out till my mom picked us up. We were able to spend time with her and her four kids Jesse (8), Larissa (5), Mitchell (3), and Noah (8 months). And of course she had fun meeting and playing with Alex. In the afternoon, Mom picked us up and we went to my Grandma's in Salem, Oregon. We spent the night there (kind of crammed with six adults and a baby: us plus Mom; Roy, my step-dad; Jeremy, my brother, and Grandma). My sister Marcie flew in the same day with her boyfriend and his son. They came by for dinner and to hang out, but stayed in a hotel that night.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Swaddle Frustrations

When we discovered swaddling, and especially when we discovered the SwaddleMe blankets, it helped Alex fall asleep and stay asleep longer. In fact, he was sleeping through the night (10 hours) by 3 months. It was heaven.

Then he got bigger.

Well, let me explain. Most babies are ready to not sleep in a swaddle by 3 months, but some continue to like it until 6 months, 9 months, or even longer. You just have to watch your kid for clues on when they're ready to get out of the swaddle. Well, as I mentioned, I use the SwaddleMe blankets. They have velcro that really helps the baby stay in the swaddle and unlike the Miracle Blanket, don't cost $30+ (around $10 each), so you can afford to buy more than one (you don't want to need the blanket and find out it's in the wash; it's good to have backups).