Relaxing Doesn't Make Babies

16 Months

September 30, 2013 — 11:20 pm

We have had a huge transition in sleep with Ember! I felt like she just wasn’t able to settle in the crib with me sleeping right there so we made the leap and moved her into Kate’s room. We waited until after our vacation, assuming that being away would mess up any progress anyways, and then prepared ourselves for a few really rough nights. I was so nervous, thinking about how Ember wakes up crying frequently and how Kate would wake up Ember or Ember would wake up Kate. How would they go to sleep if they were both in the room? I decided to put them to sleep at the same time (8:00), which is basically what I was doing anyways. We get PJs and diapers on, bring them both into the bedroom, read one story, turn off the lights, sing Morningtown Ride, then give hugs and kisses all the way around. Then I put Ember in the crib and leave. Now I had been putting her down and walking out in my bedroom – once she got to a point where she didn’t need me to do anything except lay there I started walking out and she’d cry briefly and go to sleep. So that’s what I did in Kate’s room. I swear there was one cry, Kate said, “Shhh Ember! I’m right here!” and then there was silence. Den and I just turned and looked at each other with shocked expressions!

Ember does wake up but it sounds like she’s crying a couple times, looking around, and laying back down to sleep. If she keeps crying I go and get her and sing to her, hold her, then put her back in the crib again – and that seems to work quite well, at least until around 1:00am. She still expects to nurse 2-3 times a night and I’m trying to dissuade her from that gently. She was starting to wake to nurse just twice (1:00 and 5:00) but then this week we are back in teething hell so it’s all messed up again. But still, so much progress! We are giddy to have our own room back so we can read, talk (quietly), and I don’t have to hold my breath every time I roll over. It is just going really well and I’m shocked how well the girls have taken to room-sharing! There have been a couple bumps, like when Kate is wired at bedtime she does tend to wake Ember up a couple times.

Now if only I could get Ember night weaned so I could actually get a full night’s sleep! I wouldn’t know what to do with myself. (Actually I tend to lay awake after midnight, just waiting for her to wake up and cry. Not so helpful!)

Ember really is turning into such an awesome little person, I can’t even describe it. The funny thing is that I was reading back in my journal about Kate at this age and so many of the little mannerisms and sounds and personalities are the same, even things like putting her arms behind her as she leans forward and walks, looking like superman. She’s so sweet, she loves to lean forward and give little lip-smacking kisses to the cats, her friends, her sister, me.

She’s climbing everything now. The girls have been having this shrieking, bouncing playtimes where they climb up and somersault onto the couch, over and over, sometimes landing on each other, sometimes sliding off onto the floor. It’s quite nerve-wracking to watch and I thought I had a couple more years before they did stuff like that in concert! She’s also climbing up onto the little kid-sized chairs and the step-stool in the bathroom – but then she gets stuck and can’t get down so she stands there whining until I rescue her.

Her favorite toys are the dragon ball-drop, play food, drawing pads, xylophone, trains, and just yesterday she figured out how to use the cash register (drop coins in, push the button to make them go down into the tray). She loves closing doors over and over again. The girls also like to use objects like pool noodles and long paper tubes to make noises into, as if they are playing the obo. Ember picked that up from her sister. It’s quite cute! The girls also run up and down the house giggling and laughing, and they like to hold onto the ends of the jump rope and shake it. Oh and she LOVES to color with crayons, she’s a big scribbler. (But she also eats the crayons so she has to be supervised, though she keeps getting ahold of Kate’s crayons, grr.) This week at a playgroup a older girl had a coloring book and crayons and Ember gave a little shriek of joy and ran straight over to help, ha. She seems to have a favorite TV show on Netflix: Color Crew. It’s this silly Baby First animated segment where different color crayons color pictures. Every time it comes on she gives a scream and claps with “Day!!” and then she bounce-dances to the music. She also freaks out with excitement over a lullabye on YouTube (Sweet Dreams – Goodnight Song); something about the bears makes her squeal at them every time.

Words are coming slowly. She say “day!” (yay) while clapping. She may have said “bye-bye” and “hi” a couple of times, but it’s hard to discern. She is definitely increasing fast on the receptive language, though, and she’s picking up new signs really quickly, like milk and bath. If I ask if she needs a diaper she bends forward to look at her diaper and pats it. When I am changing her diaper she grabs a wipe and reaches down to wipe her bum. She can point to her nose. She brushed her hair when she gets ahold of a brush. I love how at this age you can just see all these new ideas forming and connections being made. She’s figured out that she can point to or tap things that she wants, so she runs over to the highchair and pats it with an “eehhh!” if she’s hungry, she has started not-so-gently patted my chest saying “Ehhh! Ehh!” when she wants to nurse. Yesterday she ran over to the closed bathroom door and started banging on it while she bounced up and down and said “eehhh!” and when I asked her what she wanted she leaned over and rubbed her legs, which I assume was her attempt at the newly-learned sign for “bath”.

On the other side her new grasp of asking for things is leading to her being Very Upset if she does not get what she wants. She does a lot of crying in frustration, some flopping on the floor when it’s something she really wants but can’t have.

She is eating a lot lately, always seems to be hungry. She’s pickier than Kate was at this age – she likes some fruits and a couple of veggies but she is just as likely to drop them on the ground. She likes crackers (duh, what child doesn’t) and she, like her sister, love meats! I’ve recently started getting her some of the little Chobani yogurts and she likes that, and she loves cheese… which is good because she still won’t drink milk, it’s just water and nursing. I wonder if that will change when she weans, whenever that may be. I am trying to get her night-weaned so she and I can actually get some full nights of sleep but she’s still waking twice to eat (around 12:30 and 5) and I think this eating less often at night is what’s leading to her eating all day long. That’s fine, I just try to make sure she gets enough (healthy stuff) so she’ll sleep well!

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Of course after I wrote this a couple weeks ago we have had Teething come back for another visit – more front incisors and the lovely molars! So sleep has gone to hell again. Though she goes to sleep really well and easily in her crib, not a peep, will actually stand and watch me give kisses and hugs to Kate, turn on the music, I say “Good night girls, I love you!” and then she lays down and goes to sleep. I know this because I frequently have to go back in multiple times to answer Kate’s ongoing stall tactics and Ember will either stay laying down or sit up to watch and then lay down when I leave. This may sound like a small thing months down the road or to other people who have kids who sleep regularly in their crib but to go from a month ago barely being able to get her to sleep in the crib at all to this… it’s pretty amazing!

The teeth are also messing up her eating – she’s throwing more things on the floor than she is putting in her mouth – and is back to nursing frequently. And it hurts too, because she is doing weird things with her teeth. I’d like to just skip this teething bit. Or, since clearly it is going to happen whether or not I want it to, I would like to just have all her teeth pop out at once so we are done with it.

5 Responses to “16 Months”

  1. Deborah says:

    I was actually just thinking about you, since you hadn’t posted in do long, and wondering if everything was okay. I am so jealous of you having a room to yourself now!

  2. betttina says:

    I am so glad you mentioned the teething! I always knew when my kid was teething because she STOPS EATING. I try to tell her that chewing on some apple or carrot or even crunchy crackers will make her teeth feel better but NO. She got three of her 2 year molars last January and stopped eating. I knew she was getting the last molar in August because she stopped eating. Crazy girl. At least she’s still nursing so I know she’s getting *some* nutrition.

    • Natalie says:

      It’s driving me batty!! She barely eats any of what I give her, she throws it on the ground and then yells and signs more. Grrrr! She seems to be constantly cranky and hungry but just won’t eat.

  3. betttina says:

    http://alphamom.com/parenting/toddler-food-wars-dinnertime-hunger-strike-edition/

    This website is really into Satter-izing kids. Cook one family meal, everyone eats at the table, the parents’ job is to provide nutrious, appropriate food and the kids’ job is to eat it (or not).

    I tend to agree – we eat together, I only make one meal, but I’m with you – my kid doesn’t really eat much. She likes most crackers and any junk food that her dad eats but not food. She’s never eaten a sandwich or pasta or noodles or meat or most cooked food actually. I joke that she’s a vegetarian except for Chick-fil-A! Temerity-Jane.com put up a photo of her daughter (exactly two weeks older than mine) eating a hamburger and I was shocked! My 2.5 year old won’t eat that! Auuuuggggghhhhhh.

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