Monthly Archives: April 2013

Crazy 8’s Week Four

4:19

April 19

I never want to forget the way he holds on to my lips when he’s content.

4:20

April 20

Someone was wide awake at 6:30am. Someone else was only slightly awake.

4:21

April 21

I will never tire of taking this picture. Because one day, he won’t nap on me anymore.

4:22

April 22

Seriously, this is how he wakes up. Every time.

4:23

April 23

A pose with Mum.

4:24

April 24

Reading about planes before nap time (AKA making his room less upsetting).

4:25

April 25

Three of us snuggled on one chair. Calvin loves his baby.

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Things I don’t want to forget

R.Simple Life

+ The way your hair gets all fuzzy and matted in the back. It tickles my arm when I’m feeding you.

+ The squawking. Like a dinosaur. Seriously, like a dinosaur. Is it singing? You do it to Justin Timberlake. Is it talking? You did it at 6am this morning. Whatever it is, it’s the greatest.

+ The way your little hand holds on to my arm when you’re eating. And my shirt.

+ How soft your skin is. It blows my mind how soft your skin is.

+ How much you love to see yourself in the mirror.

+ The kisses. Oh, the kisses. Mouth wide open. In it to win it. The best is when you request them.

+ Your determination to stand. Just because you arch your entire body, little buddy, doesn’t mean you’ll automatically stand. But until you learn that, I’ll be there to help.

+ That sweet, gummy smile that greets Papa and me whenever you haven’t seen us for a while.

+ Your patience with reading. Sure, you have opinions about which books you want to read, but when we’re reading the right ones, you could sit there for hours.

+ Your little open mouth stare when the TV is on. Just like your Papa’s.

+ The way you kick and punch and rock your head side to side before you’re fully awake.

+ Your hair. Just, your hair.

+ Those first few seconds in the tub where your tongue comes out. What are you licking?

+ The way your little scratchy fingernails feel on my skin.

+ How you hold my lips in your hand when you’re tired. I think it’s a way to show me your affection.

+ The way you fall asleep in an instant as soon as I lie you down next to me.

+ The way your whole body tenses up as we walk down the stairs.

I love you Harry Bear.

xoxo, Mum

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One More Thing…

R.Simple Life

So with yesterday’s talk about beginning sleep training, I didn’t point out one key factor. I’m jumping, no wading, into this very slowly. Right now, Harry still wakes up twice a night to eat (on average… sometimes it’s much more) and I know for a fact that he is not ready to drop both of those feedings. And I have no problem with that. (confession: I love those night time feedings. call me crazy.)

From the very beginning, Harry’s led the parade in our house. Feeding on demand, sleeping when he’s ready… it’s all led by him. And I plan on sleep training going the same way. He’ll let me know when he’s ready.

Right now the biggest goal with sleep training is training Harry to put himself back to sleep. He’s actually really good at this at night, and has been from a very early age. It’s naps that are the toughie. He fights naps so, so hard. Then wakes up after the minimal amount of sleep, and is happy as can be to get up. But he is exhausted. So he needs to learn to go back to sleep after that first REM cycle. And that’s what we’re working on now.

Just wanted to clarify.

xoxo, Mallory

PS Thank you to all the momma’s with the encouragement. You guys are so great. XO

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On Sleep Training.

Thoughts about sleep training a three month old

So yesterday I made a decision that was altogether big and small and important and sad and happy. We’re sleep training. I feel like Harry is finally ready. He’s no longer the little infant who only cries when he needs something to sustain his life and contentment. He’s (dare I say it without choking up) growing up. Don’t ask me how I’m sleep training, because I don’t know. I can’t stand to hear that little boy cry, so it’s not going to be all Ferberizing up in here. But I’m not about to let him run the show, requiring a good rocking to sleep until he’s nine and embarrassed by it. So we’re somewhere in between and making it up as we go.

Yesterday started the process by letting him put himself to sleep. Getting him to third base, but putting it on him to bring it home. I know, I know. Some of you have been doing this since the beginning. But I liked to rock my baby to sleep. So sue me. It worked decently for naps (I only had to go up there two or three times to help him get back to sleepy state before he passed out) but then came bed time.

We have a bed time routine. We’ve had it since Day 3, our first day home from the hospital. It goes something like this: bath time, snuggles, bedtime nurse/Harry Potter reading, rocking, bed. It’s my favorite time of most days. All three of us love it. Well, I realized last night that if indeed it is true that consistency is the name of the game when it comes to parenting (and I’m a firm believer that it is) the rocking part of the bed time routine was going to be cut short. No more sleeping baby in my arms, sneaking him into his crib. Now I have a big boy. A drowsy baby in my arms, laying him in his crib, giving him a kiss and watching intently on the monitor to make sure he doesn’t need one or two more kisses.

Call me crazy, but I miss it. I miss him needing his Mum’s rocking. My songs. My warm body. He is doing outstandly well at this sleep training thing (knock on wood). It’s me whose having a rough time with it. I accidentally blinked my eyes and now he’s almost 15 weeks old. From here on out, he’s just going to get bigger, more independent. I don’t think it’s so crazy to mourn the loss of sleep rocking.

And I’ll tell you this. Once we get this sleep training thing down, we might just enjoy a night or two of sleep rocking for old time sake. So sue me.

xoxo, Mallory

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Crazy 8’s Week Three

Here we go with another week of the Crazy 8’s! This was supposed to go up Friday, but with everything happening in Boston, I didn’t post. So enjoy with your Monday Morning coffee.

4:12

April 12

This situation resulted in a two and a half hour nap. For two boys and a cat. Not for Mum.

4:13

April 13

I mean seriously, how cute is he when he wakes up?

4:14

April 14

Family portrait the MySpace way. Also, Harry has the cutest outfit in the bunch.

4:15

April 15

Someone woke up from his nap and would not let go of George.

4:16

April 16

Post Run for Boston sweaty Mum, but super cute Harry.

4:17

April 17

Again with this boy and his monkey. Slays me.

4:18

April 18

I was working, he was hanging out with Papa. But keeping an eye on me too.

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Thoughts About Beauty

How do you see yourself? Do you see beauty? Laughter and light? Do you see the way your eyes sparkle when you laugh? Or do you see a crooked nose? A weak chin? Crows feet around those eyes? Dove recently conducted a compelling social experiment which I found super interesting.

I’ll let you watch the video, but the gist of it is this: women were asked to describe themselves to a FBI trained portrait artist. You know the guy. He draws suspects from people’s descriptions of them. They were then asked to describe another woman they had met earlier in the day. The comparisons were shockingly different.

We are so harsh on ourselves. Our body image, our idea of beauty, it’s never quite right (just ask Jonathan how many times I’ve broken down in angry tears over something only I could see about my appearance). Why? Why are we our worst critics?

Day in and day out I see myself in the mirror. I see the pimple hiding under my chin or the circles forming under my eyes. I see a little extra bloat one day and sunken cheeks another day. I see my hair on it’s best days and on it’s worst days. And I am critical. But why?

Is it because I see myself every day so I see the little differences? Is it my perfectionism that points out all the crazy new growth at the crown of my head? Is it the way I was raised? The role models in my life never being content with their outside?

Whatever it is, it’s crazy. We need to stop being our worst enemies. We need to start seeing the sparkle in our laughing eyes, not the crows feet in the corners. We need to believe it when people tell us how beautiful we are. And sincerely thank them. We need to stop this self doubt, self distaste now. We need to stop comparing. Why? We need to stop robbing ourselves of our happiness and love. For us. For our self esteem. We need to love us.

And if you can’t do that for you, think about the next generation. Think about your daughters and sons when you complain about that extra fat on the inside of your leg that is stubbornly sticking around. Think about the example we are setting. There is nothing better than the pride, the happiness, the excitement consuming Harry’s entire body when he sees himself in the mirror. His face breaks into a grin. His whole body shakes. I never want him to stop seeing himself like that. I never want my son to think he is inadequate. To think he is not the beautiful human he is. I think that would just break my heart.

Let’s start right now. Tell me something beautiful about you. About your outside. I’ll go first. I have a big, bright smile that reaches to my eyes every time. And I love that smile because it can make Harry break out into his own stunning grin. And it can make my husband fall in love just a little more every time.

Your turn.

xoxo, Mallory

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For Boston

Yesterday, as I walked up the stairs in my house to greet my happy, smiley baby (who had just woken up from a nap), I got a text message simply stating “Two explosions at the Boston Marathon.” Instantly, my heart sank. What had happened? Was it an accident? What do you mean “explosions”? As I fed my sweet little boy, I listened to the radio coverage of the monstrosity that had happened in Boston. And wept.

My heart is heavy. I like to keep this blog a happy, safe spot, but I just can’t help but mention this tragedy today. This hit close to home. As a runner, and a marathoner at that, I have gone to races, bright and early in the morning, running shoes tied tightly around my tracker. Anticipation bubbling in my stomach. Excitement pulsing through my veins. And I’ve said goodbyes to loved ones at the starting line, cheerfully stating “I’ll see you at the finish line!”

I can’t even imagine how it would feel to get to the finish line and see this happen. To know my loved ones might have been standing right there. Cheering me on. Yesterday was filled with lots of tears. Lots of hugging my sweet little boy who hasn’t seen Mumma race yet, but will be there cheering me on one day. Kissing my handsome husband who has the ┬ádangerous job. The job that makes me nervous anytime he walks out that door. And a fast, hard run. Running for Boston. Running for the families of the victims. Running for the victims. Running for the entire running community, because I know this has hit a lot of us hard.

It’s always been a personal goal of mine to one day qualify and run Boston. And it still is. Running is my passion, my escape. And all I can say is, how dare someone take that away from so many people?

But if I know anything about my community, it is that we are tough. We are resilient. We won’t let the fear paralyze us, as it obviously was supposed to do.

Running will be with a heavy heart today. But it’s for Boston. Boston, you are in my heart.

xoxo, Mallory

 

PS | Just came across this. Some really heartwarming pictures + tweets about people taking care of each other after this tragedy. As Ellen says: Be kind to one another.

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A Day With Harry

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I’ve had a few requests about Harry’s schedule, so I thought I’d put together a little “Day in the life” feature this weekend. I followed this cutie little boy around for a whole day (and believe me, so exhausting, since I usually just let him do his thing (kidding.)) with my camera. This is a pretty typical Sunday for us, but here’s my disclaimer: Harry is 3 months old, in a growth spurt, in the middle of a sleep regression, and, oh yeah, since he’s an infant, his schedule changes daily. But this is the gist of it:

7am: Harry wakes up smiling and punching. Yes, he punches us. Kicks his feet, punches those little hands, all the while thrashing his head around with his eyes closed. You’d think he was a tormented sleeper, but that’s just how he wakes up. As soon as his eyes are open, those lips are smiling. I feed him his breakfast in bed and then commences the morning snuggles. It’s one of my favorite times of the day… the three of us cuddling, laughing, and playing in bed for as long as we can before we have to start the day.

8am: After morning snuggles, and after Harry is changed and dressed, we all head downstairs for breakfast. Harry usually plays on his baby gym, or takes in a little tummy time, or reads a book or two while we’re cooking. Then he hangs out in a Bumbo or his Bouncer while we eat.

8:45ish: Nap time. A round or two of “What A Wonderful Life/Somewhere Over the Rainbow” along with some head rubs, and he’s out. For about 30-45 minutes. Really, it’s 38 minutes. Every day.

9:20: Up & eating, then of course, a diaper change. Today was a particularly rainy, gray day, so we sat on the couch with Dad after second breakfast and watched a little CBS Sunday Morning. Then it was time to play, read, sing, and dance while Dad went to help a friend move. Harry also helped me fold the laundry (he holds the socks).

10:50: Nap number 2. Still about 45 minutes. Sometimes this one stretches an extra 10 minutes, but it usually doesn’t hit an hour. I let him hang out in his crib for 5 minutes or so when he wakes up, since he’s nice and happy and sometimes we all just need a little quiet time to ourselves (Harry is like his Mum in that way).

11:45: Eating on the couch, new diaper, a bit of tummy time. Dad is still not home, so Harry plays while I finish up my mopping. When Dad get’s home, we all hang out. Lots of reading and tummy time. A few rolls (on the thighs, as well as from the stomach to the back).

1:15: Harry is getting tired, but we need to go grocery shopping, so I load him up in the car seat hoping he’ll nap through the shopping. This works 50% of the time. The other 50% of the time (like today) he sleeps for about 25-30 minutes and then wakes up and looks around like he has no idea where we are. Poor chap. We finish our grocery shopping then have a little melt down on the drive home. Either because he ‘s hot or because he’s hungry. Jury’s still out on that one.

2:30pm: Lunch time for Mr. Grumpy, then he’s much happier. After he eats, he hangs out in his Bumbo with Dad as he prepares lunch for us. I finish up some laundry. When Dad & I eat, Harry hangs out in his bouncer, happy as can be playing with his crinkle paper (our new favorite toy).

3:45ish: Down for nap number 4. This nap could go one of two ways. Sometimes he naps for 20 minutes and then simply cannot nap any longer. Other days, this is the longest nap of the day. This usually happens when I hold him through this nap. Which means I’m stuck on my bed for an hour or more. So I get a lot of reading done during this nap. Today, he naps for about an hour. Not bad, but not great. It hasn’t been a particularly great day for naps, though our days are not good for naps lately in general.

5pm: Harry eats, gets a fresh diaper, and helps us juice some fruits and veggies. Which really just means, he reads with me while Dad juices. He’s still a little sleepy, so it’s a lot of cuddling. This time of the night is traditionally the grumpiest part of the day. Lots of fussing, can’t find a comfortable position, doesn’t want to do anything. So…

5:30: We get out of the house on a walk around the neighborhood. It feels great to get outside, and Harry likes the change of venue. Plus the fresh air in his hair. Plus the stroller is pretty dang relaxing, or at least that’s what I infer from his almost instant half closed eyes. He catches a quick (5 minute) cat nap while we’re out.

7pm: It’s bath time! Our favorite time of the day. Harry loves it. We love it. It’s the best part of our day. Unwinding together in that tiny upstairs bathroom, splashing in the tub, cuddling with our warm, clean baby. We can happily extend bath time to 30+ minutes.

7:30: Last snack and snuggle before bed. Dad reads a chapter from Harry Potter while Harry Recor eats and dozes off. Most nights he’s down sometime between 7:45 and 8pm. We put him in his crib (then bring him into our room when we go to bed a few hours later) and send him off into dreamland. Throughout the night, Harry usually wakes up twice to eat… usually once around 1am and again at 4am.

Obviously this changes day to day, and our week day schedule is a little different with work and other responsibilities (like my gym time… at 4:30am). But this is a typical day lately. Four, somewhat short naps, sometimes a fifth even shorter nap. Lots of playing and reading and getting outside. So many baby cuddles and kisses. And sleeping about 11 hours at night… with two (super fast) wakings to eat. Our simple life.

xoxo, Mallory

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