Saturday, May 30, 2009

Simple Toys & Giggles

Six and a half months old now and things are flying by!

She's taking some sort of food everyday now. We've fed her sweet potato, hard boiled egg yolk, pear, apple,peas, liver (leigh's idea, not mine) and of course rice cereal. So far it seems her favorites are sweet potato, apple and rice cereal. Our next big purchase will be a high chair so she can eat at the table with us.

She is mere days away from crawling. She can go from her belly to sitting back to hands and knees. She can periodically put one hand in front of her and then move her other hand with a sort of hopping/scooting in between. She gets the concept I think, it's a matter of practice, balance and confidence now. Just yesterday, she was able to "crawl" about three feet to me!

Her babbling has increased dramatically. And our understanding of her has increased too. We can definitely tell her "pick me up" from her "I'm hungry" fusses. Her content and happy coos and sighs are just heart warming. Her giggle/laugh is precious and she has this really cute, almost meditative "tired song" she sings as she falls asleep in our arms or the car seat. This week she has started doing the wet razz.

She's somewhere around 20 pounds and 26-27 inches long now. She's upgraded to the next level of car seats (thanks mom!). We also had to go through her drawers and do some major rotating of 6-9 month old clothing, while outing the 3-6 month old stuff (just doesn't fit her gorgeous little chub anymore!).

The last few weeks have been dedicated (or obsessed) with her sleeping schedule. We are trying to get her to sleep through the night (which technically only means 5-6 hours at a time). Previous to now, she's been bed sharing with us. She would wake every 3-4 hours to nurse, but was basically pretty restless and kept both of us up. Recently, we have tried to move her to the co-sleeper next to the bed with sporadic and minimal success. I think there was once where she slept 5 hours. And most of the time it was pretty dreadful - waking every 10 minutes sometimes!

Basically, Ayla doesn't yet know how to fall asleep by herself, or without some parental intervention (rocking, nursing, bouncing, singing). And she doesn't know how to go back to sleep when she does wake in the night. So we are pretty sleep deprived and frustrated (me more so than Leigh). We are trying to work with Ayla and find something that is not too traumatic or abrupt, something other than "crying it out". It's a struggle right now, but we're working on it.

Outside of Ayla, Leigh and I are doing alright. School is good for me. I've got Public Health this summer and I'll be working with a Head Start program with Hispanic children. I can't believe that a year from now, I'll have graduated! We also came up with a daily/weekly schedule so that Leigh can get more time for her work as well.

Summer has finally hit here. It's been in the upper 70's, low 80's for the last several days with blue skies and bright sun. The nights are still chilly (in the low 50's), but makes for great sleeping. Our garden is booming. Potatoes, peas, squash, watermelon, raspberries, strawberries, broccoli, kale, collards, spinach, carrots, onions, peppers, tomatoes, herbs and lots of lettuce! I've been enjoying a lettuce smoothie (has lots of fruit too - it's yum!) everyday for the last two weeks.

I'm also off of coffee! After realizing that 32 oz a day and crashing a couple times a day was getting out of hand. So after spring semester, during the break, I stopped drinking it...and for 4-5 days I felt like crap. But it's done, I haven't had any coffee/espresso in over 2 weeks now. I have a cup of Earl Gray tea, but just one. I went from 300 mg of caffeine a day to now maybe 15mg. I feel much better too!

Enjoy the movie of Ayla playing with one of her favorite toys - paper. The laugh at the end is worth the wait!

Much love to all,
Jason (and Leigh & Ayla)