Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Rice Cereal!

At her 4 month checkup, the doctor told us that we should wait until she was six months old to give Judith any solid food. And that he'd give us guidelines for doing so at her 6 month checkup. That's only 10 days away, but lately Judith has been SO hungry (eating as often as I'll let her, and waking up twice in the middle of the night because she's so hungry) that I called this morning and asked if I could feed her solids a little early. They said yes! So today Judith and I went out and bought some organic brown rice cereal, and we fed it to her at dinner time.

The cereal itself was different than I expected, because I was equating rice cereal with grits, in my mind, and so I was expecting it to be quite thick. But it wasn't - it's really runny, which makes sense when I think about it! I was also expecting that Judith would eat a few bites and be done with it, but she kept wanting more...and wanting to hold the spoon for herself. It took her a little while to figure out how to actually eat it - mostly she sucked it off the spoon - but toward the end we were both getting a little more coordinated. She ended up eating about 3/4 of the bowl, and I think she'd have finished it if she hadn't got sick of being "held down" on Lance's lap.

So we're off to a good start, and we'll see if this helps the hunger problem!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Trip to Michigan

On January 7, 2009, we flew to Grand Rapids, MI, for a week to visit my family. Judith got to meet her aunts and uncles (and cousin Jada!) for the first time, and she got to spend some more time with her grandparents. Here's how it went:

Wednesday: I had day-mares about how the flights would go for at least a week ahead of time. On the trip out we had three flights (and two layovers) to get to, and a total travel day of about 14 hours or so. And it started out well, even though we left the house at 4:30 a.m. Judith was happy on the first flight and content to be entertained by us in the seat. And the five hour layover in Atlanta was ok too. We put her down on a blanket on the floor for a while and she and Lance played. The flight to Cincinnati wasn't so good. It was much shorter, but it also was the worst pressure-change flight I've ever experienced. Our ears were popping for a good 45 minutes before we landed (and the flight was only 1 1/2 hours) and Judith really felt that. She was eating for the first part of it, so that wasn't so bad, but she fussed until we landed after that. And we got off the plane to discover that our flight to Grand Rapids (the last hour of our day!) was cancelled due to weather! So we had to stay overnight in Cincinnati without our luggage and without a crib for Judith. We got a room with two queen beds, thinking that we'd put Judith in one bed and sleep in the other. But it was so cold in the room that I put her between us in our bed for the first few hours. (Which of course meant that I didn't get any sleep and I moved to the other bed in the middle of the night.)

Thursday: The next morning we got our flight to Grand Rapids. It was a tiny plane, but Judith did just fine. Judith got to meet her cousin Jada (she's 3) - which was way more fun for Jada than for Judith. Jada had a great time showing Judith how all the toys worked! Judith also got to see snow for the first time!

Friday: Judith got to meet her great grandparents (my dad's parents) when we went to their house to celebrate Great Grandpa Sjoerdsma's 80th birthday.

Saturday: We really just hung out at home all day, which was great. Judith got to play with everyone (and I got a break from having to entertain her!).

Sunday: We visited my parents church in the morning and showed Judith off to their friends. In the afternoon we spent some time playing in the snow! (Ok, we spent like five minutes playing and just took pictures.) Judith used a snowsuit that Jada had worn. She looks adorable sitting in the snow, and she certainly was fascinated by the stuff falling on her face.

Monday: We had lunch with Kim Verbrugge Groenenboom (a high school and college friend of mine) and her family, which was a lot of fun for me, and somewhat less fun for Judith and Lance. We said goodbye to Auntie Jen and Cousin Jada :-(.

Tuesday: We had originally planned to head up to Cadillac on this day, but winter weather (and our own colds) prevented us from going. So we hung out at home again. That night we said goodbye to Auntie Lis and Uncle C. J :-(.

Wednesday: Judith started the day by starting another growth spurt. She ate every two hours the whole way back to Sacramento! We said goodbye to Grandma and Grandpa :-(. (Grand Rapids was setting records for low temperatures - our plane left Grand Rapids at noon, and the temperature was 7! We were very glad to be going home to Sacramento where they were setting records for high temperatures.) I was anticipating that the travel home would be better than the travel out to G.R. (especially after our flight was cancelled). At the same time, we did have a two hour flight followed by a 5 1/2 hour layover, followed by a 5 hour flight. And it wasn't so nice. Judith did fine on the first flight. And the layover in Atlanta, while long, wasn't too bad either. But by the time we got on the plane to Sacramento, it was almost Judith's bedtime. But I'd estimate that she didn't even sleep half of the time on the plane. She slept through takeoff, and then was awake for at least two hours. The latter part of the two hours she was pretty fussy - wanting to sleep but finding it difficult with all the distractions. I finally stood up and "rocked" her a little bit, and she drifted off. She slept the rest of the way home, which meant that both Lance and I had sore arms by the time we debarked! Judith woke up as we landed. Uncle Tim drove us home from the airport, and Judith fell asleep, but when we reached home she woke up and wanted to be awake and playing! After a good 45 minutes of fighting with her, I decided to feed her again, which calmed her down enough that she could drift off. Unfortunately she was awake every hour crying for her pacifier!

Today she seems a little jet lagged - out of sorts, and is still eating every two hours. I'm really hoping that she'll sleep better tonight because I need it as much she does!

Sleeping Update (day unknown!)

Right after I blogged the last sleeping update (like two weeks ago) Judith went through a growth spurt. And since I knew that would just throw everything off, I completely stopped any effort at getting her to take longer naps. Two days later she slept almost the whole day because she caught Lance's cold and was sick. And then we flew to MI (see next update) for a week, and her sleeping "schedule" went completely down the tubes. Last night (our first night home) she was awake every hour crying for her pacifier! And today she's going through a growth spurt again (how that's possible after just two weeks since the last one I don't know), so everything's off.

I'm kind of thinking that I'll wait to try any sort of "schedule" until after her six month checkup (I need to call and schedule that) since she gets to start solid food then, and it's my understanding that will also impact her sleeping. Right now I just take it day by day, and am trying to really follow her tiredness cues closely.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

sleeping update - starting day four

So, the sleeping thing is not going so well. In the three days that we've been doing this, Judith as only actually slept for the second 45 minutes twice (I think...might be once). (I've also discovered that I can't rely on my memory for how she did each nap all day, and I'm starting a sleep journal again.) Her general pattern is to sleep for exactly45 minutes (you could set a watch!) and then to want to get up. She will make noise in her crib until I get her up. She is absolutely excited to see me every time I walk in to give her the pacifier back, and if I get her up and rock with her a little she will quite down and almost go back to sleep. But she doesn't sleep (the longest she's slept during that second cycle so far is about 15 minutes). Yesterday I know she didn't sleep any of the "extra" time, and it further proved the underlying theory (that she'll sleep better at night if she sleeps better during the day) because she only slept 8 1/2 hours last night (9-5:30). At 5:30 it took me half an hour to get her to go back to sleep...and then I woke her at about 7:00 to eat.

So I'm not really sure what I think about all this now. She gets SO upset now, if we leave the room when she's in her crib. Am I traumatizing her? (I'm sure I'm traumatizing me!) yet I really really want her to get enough sleep! I don't know what the answer is, and it's driving me crazy.

To top it all off, we leave for MI in less than a week, and I know none of this will hold up then!