Sometimes I can’t keep up with myself.

It’s been a wild few weeks.

Taking on a new job so soon after returning to work was something I was feeling great about and I really am still happy that I did it but I’m exhausted.  I love using skills that have been lying dormant in my toolbox of competencies for so long.  I love all the reading and I love that people are interested in what I have to say.  I am however, exhausted.  I think about work a lot and I spend time after I get Carter tucked into bed trying to get ahead before the next day (or really, trying to catch up).  My time for blogging has been so minimal, but so much has happened.  I guess this will just have to be my recap.

Carter’s First Halloween:

Carter celebrated his first halloween with his favourite girl.  Daniela and I had intentions of having him as a raccoon and we would be a green (compost) bin and a garbage bag.  In the end, we had a raccoon with two regular human moms.  Good enough.  Violet was a mouse which was most appropriate.  We tortured them through a photo shoot earlier in the month when it was a little warmer and the leaves were beautiful.  Carter was not really interested in participating and complained to Violet about the whole deal.

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Looking like two little old women.

After a few hundred photos we gave them a bit of a chance to just hang out and stand up, which is all they really wanted to do and despite being placed further apart Carter moved closer to Violet and she turned into him to create the worlds cutest picture.

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Just a moment to themselves.

Potty

I had no interest elimination communication.  I thought it was ridiculous and a waste of time.  Our neighbour who has a three year old son has been overly generous in giving us all the hand-me-downs.  When her son finished potty training this summer he told her they should give Carter his potties because he is a baby.  My neighbour was a little embarrassed to pass them along but asked if I would mind if they could do it symbolically if we didn’t want them.  Well that was just silly, of course we took them.  I am all about hand-me-downs on most things!  Well, Carter was showing that he understood what “tinkle” was each night when I was telling him to tinkle as he was getting out of the tub.  I thought I would bring up a potty just for him to get used to and the first time I put him on it I told him to tinkle and sure enough he did.  A couple days of that and he poo’d as well.  He goes almost immediately when we put him on and it’s nice to have just a few less dirty diapers to deal with.  I have no interest in him being potty trained this early but when it’s easy, it’s great to let him figure it out.

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Light reading.

Teeth

This was by far the worst weekend we’ve had in a while although when I look back on it it was really just some tough periods of it.  We had some really great moments too.  His molars are working their way through and he goes through episodes where he can’t stop screaming.  He clutches at his face.  He wiggles and yells while we hold him and shrieks when we put him down.  He won’t let anything near his mouth and it’s just terrible.  He couldn’t sleep Saturday night and was up until almost 1am.  I had been very concerned about day-lights saving but that was apparently a naive worry.  Yesterday afternoon there was just nothing we could do to make him feel better.

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I should clarify that he is covered in beet juice here.

Eating

Carter loves food.  He eats more than I do.  He has decided he is pretty much over bottles.  He has one before bed and occasionally he has one during the day.  I was a little concerned about it but the doctor and the naturopath both said that as long as we are giving him a balanced diet it’s okay.  It’s a lot of fun to see him enjoy food and I find that I’m doing a much better job of meal planning for Daniela and I when I also have to make sure that I have food for him.  I love giving him new things and seeing him choose what he would like to eat from the options on his tray.  His favourite snack is roasted seaweed and he will never turn down oranges.

Baths

In September Carter got fifth disease which is a pretty boring virus with a fever for a few days and a rash that he didn’t seem bothered by but looked pretty gross.  The rash has been sticking around and he’s had dry scaly red cheeks that wouldn’t go away.  I asked the doctor the other day at his 9 month appointment and she said I need to stop bathing him everyday (She said I should only do once a week for now).  This was heartbreaking.  There is nothing better than bath time.  I stuck to it and we are seeing a lot of improvement but I miss the time that he is so happy.   I miss splashing with him while he giggles.  Last night after the brutal teething afternoon (and beet juice) I decided he deserved a bath.  It was the most peaceful part of the day.  He babbled on and played with his toys and laughed as I poured water over his head.  I’ll try to continue to cut back but I think they are necessary on the hard days.

photo (8)Me Time

I went out on Saturday night to a friend’s house party.  I haven’t been out for an event without Daniela or Carter since he was born.  I wasn’t all that excited about going and kind of just wanted to relax but I knew I should go.  It proved itself to be a good choice both because Carter screamed the whole time and because I had a really good time with some coworkers.  It was nice to be myself in a social situation and not have any distractions.  I think we all need a little time to regroup.

 

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Baby Led Weaning on the Go

We are going away this weekend for a wedding and this is our first bout of travelling where we don’t have laundry readily available for the cloth diapers and we don’t have a kitchen to cook our own food.

I didn’t think about any of this until today and now I realize I need to be prepared for feeding Carter.  My first thought was that I would just pick up some cans/pouches of baby food and that would be that.  That thought was quickly discarded when I remembered that there is no way Carter would eat any of that.  He has been pretty much been eating whatever we eat for over a month now and that’s what he loves but being on the road, I don’t know what will be available and I’m not going to feed him McDonalds.  

For diapers I think we will be using our gDiaper flushable inserts.  We are only gone for a few days but I think my wife would be pretty against an 8 hour car trip with a wetbag filled with dirty diapers.

I have snacks that I can pack him but does anyone have any tips/ideas for meals that we can have for him so he’s getting a balanced diet?

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I survived.

I survived my first week of work.  I was spoiled with pictures sent to me all day and even a drop by visit during one of my lunch breaks.  Carter was all down hill after the first day.  He really gave Sarah a hard time the vast majority of the time.  He seems to be teething but I don’t know for sure.  He absolutely has a cold though.  Poor guy is all stuffed up.

Squeezing out a smile for Sarah

Squeezing out a smile for Sarah

It’s really not as bad as I thought it would be.  I miss him terribly but I’m able to focus on work.  I’m able to listen to CBC radio and I feel like I’m finally hearing the news for the first time in 9 months.  I have conversations with people that aren’t either all about my baby or constantly interrupted by said baby.  It’s actually kind of nice.  I can’t believe I’m saying that.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  If I could be home, I’d be home in a second but I have to make the best of it.

Putting in some hours at the office

Putting in some hours at the office

I’ve enjoyed making dinner for Carter and sitting down to watch him eat followed by bath time.  These are two of my favourite things.  Watching him enjoy food is really exciting and bath time has been his favourite since he was born.  On the days of constant fuss, I have given him multiple baths just for a break from it.

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Hanging out in the tub!

He’s getting more and more interested in foods.  I can put piles of different things on his tray and he will try each one of them before he mixes them all together.  He stuffs his little mouth like a hamster sometimes and this week the result has been a big mess when he sneezes.  He cooperates with the spoon if I’m feeding him something that requires a spoon (yogurt, oatmeal, chopped spinach).

Working the spoon in the least efficient way possible.

Working the spoon in the least efficient way possible.

Bed times have been hard.  He has decided that 6:30 is a reasonable time to hit the hay the past few nights.  This means I get very little time with him.  After his bath I rub him down in coconut oil and sing to him and then read a few books.  He loves playing with the blinds next to the bed that is in his room.  While I know I should just put him in the crib and let him get to sleep, I’ve been lying there with him and letting him play himself to sleep and then I lie there a little longer as he’s tucked into my arm.  It’s just not enough time.

Night night!

Night night!

This week has been huge for me.  I’ve accepted that I can do this, and so can he.  Even though it was a tough week for him, I know he can survive without me.  He’s a champ.

Excitement

Starting solids was disappointing for us.  As we edged up to the 6 month mark we were discussing what foods we would start with and what our plan would be.  We had a Baby Bullet ready to go and a book all about healthy foods for babies.  Around 5 months Carter started watching us with envy as we ate and then he started reaching out trying to grab it.  I guess it was par for the course.  He would chew on celery stalks and cucumber when he was teething and loved it so we thought for sure food was going to be a big hit!  We were visiting my family in Connecticut when he turned 6 months so we had decided we would hold off until we returned home before we introduced solids but he was getting so worked up about it we gave in and ran out for a butternut squash.  It was a major flop.

We tried tons of pureed food and there was not a single thing he liked but if i handed him a chunk he’d be content for a while.  And so we entered unintentional baby led weaning.  We still haven’t progressed much in the last 2 months except with bread.  He hasn’t shown a great love or excitement for any particular food except bread which he shrieks about when we take it away from him.

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Baby led weaning with a super clumsy baby is pretty difficult and very, very messy.  In the interest of actually getting some food into his mouth I’ve been trying to spoon feed him a bit of chopped up food and he’s done alright with lentils and bananas but everything else hasn’t amounted to much.  Tonight, I was making a dish with black beans and decided to try giving him some beans without much hope.  Much to my amazement, my little boy loves black beans.  He had seconds and then thirds and was so excited about them!  Carter has some really great qualities; he is really cute (I’m biased) and he has really strong legs and he’s a big healthy boy.  Other than that he is a little behind from what I can tell and personality-wise, he’s pretty unimpressed with everything.  He’s never shown extreme happiness unless I am directly playing with him but tonight, a giggle came out while eating.  He smiled and squealed while eating his silly black beans.  I never would’ve guess that.

One of the cutest parts was when a bean fell on his tray and he couldn’t pick it up without a pincer grasp (which he lacks) so he just bent over with his lips pursed trying to suck it up.

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After a trying day with a very clingy son, I’m so happy to have tucked an adorably content, well fed child into bed.