Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Toddler Bed Transition Part 2

     I went through a whole Supernanny stage a while back while I was pregnant with Abigail, super fascinating show that. I learned a lot, but still felt that I had so long before I was ever going to need to use any of her techniques. Well, 'so long' sure came a lot faster than I was anticipating it to. I didn't really have much time to decide how I was going to handle transitioning Abigail into a toddler bed since it happened so fast. I asked around to other mommy friends, but didn't seem to get the suggestions I was looking for, quite frankly, I don't really think I even knew what I was looking for. [I know now that I was really looking for advice on how ensure that she would actually get some sleep while in this new bed since she could climb out. I was afraid that she would get so overwhelmed and excited about the freedom that she'd just be up playing that she wouldn't get enough rest. Also, I don't want her to climb out of bed and visit us in our bedroom each night either, I'd rather do all I can to avoid that habit from forming in the future.]
     So the idea to try the Supernanny approach just came so randomly and instantly as I was laying her down in the toddler bed for the first time. Talk about timing! I really had no idea what to expect, but gave it a shot since I had no other ideas what to do. For those of you that don't know what her method is on how to keep children in their bed at bedtime (I'm also implementing this approach at nap-time), here it goes*:
     Do your bedtime routine, and lay the child in their bed. You sit down near the crib where your child can see you, and keep your head down and do not make eye contact with the child no matter what. Keep an eye out, and each time the child tries to climb out or get out of bed, get up and put the child back in bed. And, whatever you do, do not talk to the child throughout the process, they will learn that you mean business through your actions, not by arguing with them (I also found this to keep me calm; if I had been talking to her during this time trying to reason with her, I would have been saying the same things over and over and getting quickly irritated and I would have given into defeat). Leave when the child falls asleep.
     Watching the show, I saw some mothers go through this technique with their children for hours the first time they implemented it. I watched one mother sit by her sons crib and listen to him cry and scream for 2 hours while she performed the technique. So, needless to say, I knew I was in for a huge undertaking when the idea popped in my head, but knowing that my only other option was to worry each night if she would fall and break her neck, I was so super charged and ready to try this technique. [I know that my other option probably was to just close the door, and let her have at the room until she tired herself out and crawled back into her bed, but I was just not ready to deal with her sleepless nights the next day, nor the crankiness from probably taking no naps either. I was determined that she be a child that knew how to actually sleep when it was nap or bedtime.]

*I will say that while one might exist, I have not seen an episode of this technique used on a child with a toddler bed, just a crib; but I decided to go for it anyway.

Day One:
Nap: Put her to bed and sat at her door. Eventually I just stood at the door because I was getting up so frequently my knees were hurting. She sat there, talked to herself, to me; jumped around; and tried to climb out many a time. She learned pretty quickly that I wanted her to be in her bed though, because each time I got up to get her, she would run back and lunge into the bed, giggling. Gah! She had moments of calmness and laying down, but she'd get right back up and check to see if I was still there so she could get out of bed I'm sure. Eventually she did give up completely, and laid down and napped. The technique took roughly 20-25 minutes (From the time I put her down to her falling asleep).

Bedtime: We visited family in Bakersfield so she fell asleep in the car on the way home. No technique used.

Day Two:
Nap: Put her to bed and sat at her door. She bounced around and talked to herself, and to me. She was being so cute it was hard not to engage in her conversation. She pulled on the blinds on the window within reach of her (mental note: move bed away from window). But, not once did she try to get out of bed! Technique lasted roughly 20-25 minutes.

Bedtime: Same experience as her nap time, minus the blind pulling. She didn't try to get out of her bed once. Technique lasted roughly 20-25 minutes.

Day Three: 
Nap: Sick baby, she napped on the sofa in the living room.

Bedtime: Put her to bed and sat at her door. Several minutes later, I decided I would get my book to read since she was being so good and not trying to get out of bed. I went to get my nightlight from my room, and when I returned she was standing by the door, nervously peering out. Upon seeing me, I didn't even have to say anything to her, she rushed back to her bed and laid down. I laid down at her door with half of my body out the door to read my book, but she could still see that I was there. Again, besides the one attempt, she stayed in her bed the whole time and fell asleep shortly thereafter. Technique lasted roughly 20 minutes.

Day Four:
Nap: Put her to bed, laid at her door and read my book. She stayed in bed and mumbled to herself before nodding off. Technique lasted roughly 15-20 minutes.

Bedtime: Same experience as her nap time. Technique lasted roughly 15-20 minutes.

Day Five:
Nap: Put her to bed, laid at her door and read my book. She didn't even stand up once I laid her down, she just laid there until she fell asleep. Technique lasted roughly 10-15 minutes.

Bedtime: Same experience as her nap time. Technique lasted roughly 5 minutes. I didn't even have time to open my book.

    While I was prepared for a very painful few days or weeks of implementing this Supernanny approach with Abigail, so far it has been wonderfully easy.  Let's hope that this is a wonderful sign of things to come, like say, smooth potty training experience!

Toddler Bed Transition Part 1

     When Abby turned one back in June, she figured out how to crawl out of her crib. Once Grant and I were able to pick up our jaws from the floor, we lowered her crib to the lowest setting possible, and prayed that she wouldn't figure out how to climb out of it for a really long time to come. That long time lasted only 7 months. oh boy!

     Last month Abby figured it out. I had put her in her crib for a time out (side note: YES a time out! Judge all you want, but I did the one minute time out with her several times and it really helped her to stop doing the things that sent here there), and when I went back after the one minute time period to talk to her, she was having a blast running about her room! I was so shocked and baffled that I just laughed and not much time-out discussion took place after that. I think part of that laugh was fearful since I knew that we were in serious trouble at that point. The lowest setting, and she can still crawl out?!

     For several days we just hoped and prayed and I tried not to pull my hair out from anxiety that she wouldn't climb out of her crib and fall at a bad angle and hurt herself (of course as a mother I immediately think of worst case scenario, broken neck). Then she began to wake up earlier and earlier each day, and instead of turning over to fall asleep, she crawled out of her crib and came to join us. Thankfully I randomly woke up as she greeted me at our bedroom door. And then came the midnight greeting. I didn't realize it was midnight at the time so I just picked her up and brought her to bed with us, thinking it was around 5am. It was not, and an endless night of feet kicking me and pushing me ensued. Grant and I were fighting for space on the king size bed all night. I knew that could not continue! Nope!

     That night, we decided to just put her mattress on the ground to see how that held up. After two days, she figured out how to climb out of that. From the mattress on the ground! She's insanely smart! I hooked her monitor back up, laid some blankets and pillows on the ground, and closed the door in case she got out, and put her in her pack n play thinking she might have a harder time since there weren't any slats to help her momentum. That didn't work either. She still woke up at 3am-ish every night crying and screaming.

     So, with much trepidation, we turned to our last resort. The toddler bed. Not only was I not ready for Abigail to be in a toddler bed (besides the whole, she's growing up, and it's too much to handle aspect), I wasn't sure if she was ready (obviously her crawling out of the crib was one sign that she was ready). I mean, she still just does her baby babbling sounds, and while they're increasing tremendously recently, she still doesn't really say any real words yet. She's starting to understand more and more of what we are saying and taking direction from us, which is a great sign. But I can't really explain to an 18 month old that she needs to stay in her bed all night long, yes I know that you can now freely get out without any difficulty or pull-ups involved, but still view it as a crib, and pretend you're locked in tight, and stay there all night. Also, potty train yourself while you're at it! I just felt it was such a difficult thing to expect her to understand at this stage.

     But with no real safe options left, and my blood pressure rising each evening as I stared at the monitor all night long, I knew we had to do it...

     Our toddler bed transition experience to follow.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Month Ten

This was one of the most wonderful months! Let's get right to it!

     You are so becoming such a big girl now! You've been crawling, but this month was your first time crawling around outside, like on the grass! Daddy took you out for the first time on Easter and you seemed to find it weird at first, but then totally enjoyed it! Miss Jackie took you outside one day and took sequential pictures of you one the blanket, then starting to crawl off the blanket, then many feet away; you were on the move girl!

Crawling away from baby Peyton

     You have TWO teeth now! Chomp chomp!

     You had your first Family Girls Night. Both Grandmas and aunts were there. We all went to the Noodle Bar (Awesome btw, if you haven't been, DO IT!). You had a great time b/c grandmas enjoyed feeding you big girl food from their plates.

     You had your first big boo-boo. Daddy brought his Kettlebells in to work out, and left them around the living room. One night while he was at Uke club, mom was cooking dinner and you were playing in the living room, and I watched you crawl right into the kettlebell trying to make your way to me. Oh, it was pretty sad. You had a big bruise immediately!

     You also endured enjoyed your first Sunrise Easter service. I was really worried about how you'd handle it. But you seemed to handle it like a pro. It's like you know that your PK (pastor's kid) life is going to require lots of energy, stamina, and events and you're preparing yourself already. We got up super early and went to the sunrise service at 6:30am. You hung out in the little pouch on me while mommy and daddy led worship for those that came. Then we went home and prepared lunch for the potluck @ Aunt Jan's. Then we went straight to church to prepare for the first service. You were such a star throughout both services and then the potluck! This is when daddy took you outside to crawl around for the first time. And you wore such a cute little eyelet dress that mommy's friend Heather gave to you, which was perfect, b/c mommy had just gotten you an eyelet sunhat. You looked adorable!

And b/c we need a picture of you with Mommy too!

     Then we did something totally fun. You went with mommy and daddy to the Catalyst conference*  for a few days and spent the night in your first hotel room. We were a little nervous about how you might do, and you did such a great job. We were worried that since we'd be sleeping in the same room together, you might be distracted and have a hard time sleeping, but nope,  you slept wonderfully. Throughout the whole conference though, you found it a little hard. There was a lot of sitting quietly and listening to speakers and that was kinda hard for you. Mommy took you out several times to let you crawl around a bit. But, of course, everyone there was totally taken with you and thought you were just adorable! 
     On our way down south, we stopped at Downtown Disney for your first time and had some grub at the wonderful White Water cafe. You had such a great time. Hopefully some day we'll be able to take you to Disneyland for real, cause we were kinda depressed after we left, knowing that we never actually got to go inside the park. 

*I would just like to add as a side note, that I thoroughly enjoyed the gourmet lunch trucks that they brought every day. That was so super awesome. The first day we ate at a pizza place. We got some pork sliders and meat pizza. The pizza was okay, Grant thought the sliders were too fatty (I tried to warn him). We were mostly disappointed though since they were out of sweet potato fries. The second day we went to the Bacon Lovers truck... holy crap! super yum! We got some fresh crunchy fries with shredded bbq pork with beans atop. It had a topping of delicious coleslaw with spicy cream sauce and tangy bbq sauce all over it... and of course some bacon. This was so outrageous! I loved it more than Grant did. He got more of a chili cheese fries dish. 

     This month we started enjoying something new! Daddy started juicing and we tried some out on you to see how you'd like it, and you loved it! Flashback: A few weeks prior, we were walking in Target with Aunt Beeb and you wanted to hold my Bucks drink, I turned back around a second later and you were drinking through the straw! I was so shocked! You wanted that Bucks!** Flash-forward: since you had mastered drinking through a straw, we started giving you cups of the juice with a straw and you just devoured it! You slurped that stuff up like crazy!
     On that note, you are starting to eat more solid food, like, not liquid foods. You are VERY interested in mommy and daddy's food! You love to drink whatever we have, and mommy has given daddy several dirty looks for giving you a sip of soda.

Can you see my green mustache?
**BTW, best Bucks drink ever: Passion tea Lemonade with Raspberry flavor!

You ate your first cookie, had a few lemons, and also checked the table out
     Drum roll please!!!!!!
     You are sleeping through the night now! Here's the story:
     Mommy was starting to get uber frustrated getting up every 3 hours in the middle of the night. I was no longer feeding you at these times, but rather going in and trying to calm you. I'd lay you back down and give you your paci.  Or I'd try and rock you back to sleep, but of course, the second I laid you down, you'd wake back up and scream hysterically. I just didn't know what to do. If I didn't get up quick enough, your daddy would get up and try his turn at it. I just didn't see any end in site!
     I started researching and asking other moms for advice. The general consensus? Let her cry.*** Now, I was totally fine with this. I had done this a few times during the day a few months before and you cried for less than 30 minutes and then fell asleep. I just knew it would work. Your daddy on the other hand, not so convinced about this method. Every time I tried to talk to him about it, he was just nervous because we had always been told that if you were crying, something was wrong. However, you were NOT a baby anymore. You were 9 months old, and we needed a change. Daddy suggested that we get you on a schedule, but I tried explaining that you already were on a schedule, and this method was our last shot. Finally, he caved.
     I knew it would be really hard for your daddy, and it was. The next few days were not fun for him. Every time we put you down and you cried, he was just cringing and very restless. It was especially hard in the middle of the night. We were obviously woken up when you cried, and wanted to go back to sleep, and the easiest thing to do would have been to go sooth  you, but we knew that that would hinder the method. Those few days saw me sleeping with a pillow over my head.
     But, there was light at the end of the tunnel. It only took about 3 days and you were sleeping through the night! Every once in a while you would wake up and cry in the middle of the night, but within minutes you were fast asleep again. And your parents were eternally grateful for solid rest! And you got better rest at night as well.
     This had wonderful benefits! Not only were you sleeping roughly ten hours a night, but you were also taking longer naps. No more 30 minute naps, but rather 90 min. to 2 hour naps! It was so great! You were so much happier when you woke up in the morning, and from naps! And mommy had much more energy to play with you during the day! Thank you Lord!
     Oh, and when all was said and done, your daddy came and acknowledged that I was right. Which, to any women, is some of the best news to hear!

***I would just like to note that I know that the method of Letting-them-cry-it-out is VERY controversy. I understand that. But at nine months, I had tried everything that I'd researched, and every bit of advice I'd been given by others and nothing was working. This was my last hope. I know that this method doesn't and won't necessarily work for every infant, but for us, it worked like a charm. I would never do this at one or two months just to train them, but nine months is definitely past time for them to be sleeping through the night.

Month Nine

     Well, this was one eventful month, that's for sure! Let's see, where to start?

     For one, we had a bit of a scare right at the start of the month. You were on the table sleeping in your car seat while the rest of us were decorating the church fellowship hall for our fun dinner. You apparently woke up, and no one noticed, so you decided to climb out of the car seat on your own, and you fell off the table, face first onto the floor. I ran to you and was so thankful to hear your screaming! That was very scary. While checking to make sure you were okay, I discovered that you were cutting your first tooth! Such a big girl!

You can kinda see if there on the bottom
     You have begun climbing... on everything. Jackie sent me a picture of you at daycare, you had climbed up onto the children's picnic table! You are fearless child! One day we were cooking in the kitchen and I guess the refrigerator was left open for a second and you squeezed your way in and climbed up into the fridge. Needless to say, I was pretty shocked! Any chance you can get to climb into the fridge you take!

You like to stand up in your bouncer and jump and make it bounce yourself!
Here you are climbing onto the Cornhole platform
     This month you also stayed with a babysitter for the first time! You've been to daycare before, and stayed with family and close friends for a few hours, but this was the first actual babysitter we had over to watch you while mommy and daddy went out to see The Hunger Games with friends. Miss Sam, from the high school, came over to watch you, and you had a blast! You were so good. I don't remember if you cried or not, and if you did, it didn't last very long. You were too busy checking Sam out. 

     You went on your first hike this month! We went with Tim and Marsha Lassen and their big poodle dog, Charlie. You enjoyed it when Charlie would come sniff you out. He is the biggest poodle ever, but you weren't phased by him in the least. This was our first time really getting some use out of the special jogging stroller. You seemed to have a great time. At one point, you even fell asleep, even though the trail was very bumpy at times due to the serious rocks in the way. We brought of sippy cup for you, but it fell along the way, so we let you drink from our water bottles, and you loved it! You don't like wasting time with those sippy cups at all! Afterwards, we went to Cheryl's for breakfast, and you enjoyed your first orange!

Ps. the dog in the first pic is not Charlie, it's another dog we met on the hike

     You LOVE listening to daddy practicing his Uke. You take notice right away and start bouncing up and down to the music. It's pretty cute to watch! Daddy's favorite song to sing you is Five Foot Two, except we change it to Two Foot Two since we're singing for you little munchkin! We also enjoy singing you Hello Dolly, but as you can probably guess, we change the lyrics to Hello Abby! 

Here's daddy singing/whistling you Don't Worry, Be Happy!
     You pretty much like to put everything in your mouth at this stage. Now that you've begun eating big girl food and not just oatmeal anymore, you are ready to explore the world of food! The low of this month was when I decided to start giving you some nakey time. You loved it! You occasionally pee... right after I take the diaper off of course. But, you were getting used to nakey time and so you're not so used to knowing that when you don't have a diaper, you don't go to the bathroom... like poop. which you did. several times. and picked it up. and put it in your mouth. CRAP! You also found Anya's food. You kinda made a face at it, so I'm hoping that deters you from it in the future. Of course, I'm sure it won't.
     I decided to just post pictures of all the things that you've put in your mouth this month. One of the pictures, you have this glob of dark stuff on your chin. You were crawling around and came up to me and I freaked out when I saw your face! Then I realized that it was just car hair. Since you've been teething, you've super slobbering from drooling, and then you put your face everywhere when you crawl, and apparently you found a patch of Anya hair and... I guess tried to eat it? 

     Your sleeping habits still stink! You still wake up every 3 hours. Eesh! But, here's a really cute picture of you falling asleep on your daddy's shoulder!
I just love that squished little face!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Month Eight

    Last month you were a scootin' machine, and now this month, you started crawling for real! Everyone thought that your scooting should be classified as crawling, but I refused to believe it to be a crawl. I would consider you crawling when you were on your knees for several crawls rather than just one crawl and then scoots. You had to stay on your knees for a while. And you started doing that this month! Right at the beginning of the month you started takin' off! You were crawling everywhere. You were so happy to be free and started checking out your surroundings. You were so happy that your legs were taking you faster than your arms could carry you. Sometimes your crawl would consist of you keeping your legs kinda straight with your butt in the air and walk/crawling on your hands and feet. You were like a walking tent.
     You stood up on your own for the first time this month! On a box...

We tried making a barricade by the door so that you couldn't crawl onto the tile and pick up all the little rocks, that had been trailed in by our shoes, and eat them. You quickly showed us that our measly barricade of a box, and a bag of toilet paper rolls was no match for you! Big girl!

     When we went to the doctor for our checkup, you had fun playing on the paper, and you made quite a little mess too!

     You tried several new foods out this month! Some were:

Yummy Butternut Squash

Bananas were super tasty!
We even started incorporating yogurt to make our food creamier and more filling. You really like it!

     A couple days I tried letting you cry, one day, when you got quiet all if the sudden....

I went into your room...
and his is how I found you taking a nap!
And the next day...
Sleeping still isn't that great. We're still waking up every few hours. Not much more to say about that, we all know how I feel about it! :)

Some other fun things that happened this month:
You love to bounce around while daddy plays his Uke for you!
You discovered the water bottle, and you LOVE to drink from it! And you get soaked too!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Month Seven


     So much for trying to get these posts done on time. Golly gracious! I wish I could just get them done on time and then I could post every few days about fun little things that happen throughout the month, rather than trying to shove it all into one month post. But, when Abby finally lays her head down for a nap, I'm too exhausted to think about blogging and would rather veg out in front of the t.v. or read my book.

     This was a pretty big month for you little girl! Let's get right to it!

     This month little girl, pretty much the beginning of your seventh month, you started the beginnings of a crawl! First you bend your knees and do one little crawl and then you'd straighten out your legs again and kinda scoot for a bit. You'd repeat that for a while until you got where you wanted to go.

You can't keep me on that blanket anymore, I'm free!

     You are definitely making razz sounds all the time! And letting spit fly everywhere.
     You have been able to put weight on your legs when held up for several months now, I guess you were ahead on that bit, as well as reaching for a toy out of reach. Except now you can go get it!
     You can pass objects between your hands, again, you've already been doing that.
     You turn when we say your name, or start talking, or singing, or whenever there is any noise.
     You have started to say little noises like "ba" and towards the end of the month, the long awaited "da." You string it all together so you're saying "da-da-da-da-da-da," so you're not really saying it referring to your dad, but obviously getting closer! No "ma" in sight of course.
     We play peekaboo and you love it. You dad likes to put a blanket over your head or his head and then throw it up and you giggle so hard. You are entertained with that for quite a long time.
     We also got you a sippy cup this month, and you've been enjoying trying to figure out how that works. You tend to just turn it around in your hands and suck/gnaw on every part of it besides the spout. Aw, well, you'll learn!

Big girl sippy cup!

     You are definitely a healthy eater! I breastfeed you every 3-4 hours still, and then I try to feed you oatmeal twice a day. But this month, we got to start eating actual food. So, of course, I was super excited to start making food for you myself. We started out with...

Green Beans, which weren't your favorite. I had to mix them with oatmeal.

Then Pears, which you enjoyed much more! They were so sweet!

Then, Sweet Potatoes, which you learned to like...eventually!

Then, Apples, which you also enjoyed!

     Well, all the wonderful strides we made last month in your sleeping habits have gone down the drain this month. You're back to your awful sleeping habits. Waking up every 3 hours or so to feed. Every once in a while you go 4 hours, which is really nice. But usually you're getting up every 3 hours. I'm not getting much sleep. I feel super exhausted most of the time. It's really hard waking up in the morning with you. You're so chipper and I'm just trying not to hit a wall while carrying you out to the living room. We hope this gets better! 

Wednesday, February 8, 2012


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