Take baby steps towards a schedule

It finally dawned on me a couple days ago, while taking to a friend with three children of her own, that naps are a feature in a child’s life.

I’d been so focussed on food and NIGHT SLEEPING that I forgot the day.

So, my friend mentioned something about how her 18 month old hadn’t had a good nap and was therefore fussy. It took me a day to get the light bulb:

Babies take naps. Of course, I had noticed that my child sleeps during the day. But I realized I should try to make that a more regular thing, and in fact have it happen in her crib. Not in my arms, and not slouched in a baby chair in the living room where I still feel like I have to keep on eye on her.

So, this is day three of trying the afternoon nap.

I just put her down in her crib. Her eyes were very tired but not shut. However, I left and shut the door. I wanted to see if she would put herself to sleep without further holdings or intervention.

That was 20 minutes ago.

By the sound of the monitor (or lack thereof) I think she did it!

…it may be small in the history of the universe, but it is very big in my life…A self-sleeping child is a very handy thing.

UPDATE: It’s been and hour and a half! still going…

6 weeks old

So this marks the anniversary…the longest 6 weeks of both our lives.

And I am back to trying to establish a schedule.

She’s SO MATURE now.

We have successfully gone from feedings every 3 hours to feeding every four hours.  The difference seems small until you’ve lived it.

My next plan is to establish a regular afternoon nap. That would be good. Children thrive on structure right? and it would be lovely to plan on a regular alone time every day.

I have learned, though, not to get too attached to a schedule. It will happen when it happens, as long as I keep trying and not get too frustrated.

good point from a kenyan journalist’s perspective

Was listening to  a podcast this week that interviewed BInyavanga Wainaina. He’s a journalist and critic in Kenya, and he was talking about how western aid (money, projects, etc.) is destroying his country.

I’ve written about this before. I have long been looking at the situation in Africa and trying to get a handle on what’s going on. Mr. B.W. says that these swoop-down-and-save-them projects usually are not working with the infrastructure that is there, and end up as broken-down slums after the project runs out of funding from the Westerners who started it.

It’s a particular problem…That the western ‘compassionate’ eyes do not see how to work WITH the people and resources that are there…There is a lot of preconcieved notions and prejudiced ideas.

I thought I would share this article he wrote…it seems dead on the money. I’d call it satire, but it rings too true:

how to write about africa

It takes a little time sometimes

It’s been a little tough the last few days, trying to figure out what this child wants from me. She’s been moderately fussy, and when she cries for what seem to be long jags at a time, I really had nothing.

Like I told my friend, “She doesn’t know how to do very many things. She can grab your finger. She can look at her mobile. She can suck her pacifier. Other than that, it’s eat sleep and fill her diapers.”

I knew that at some point, babies were supposed to be able to imitate faces that we make at them. So i tried it. I stuck my tongue out at her. It took her a few times, but

SHE STUCK HERS OUT AT ME!

it wasn’t just an accident either. Once she figured out it was our game she smiled and laughed when I put my tongue out.

It’s a whole new world.
veronica 3-2-09 004

Referent confusion

A couple days ago, Chris was in the living room holding Veronica and talking to her.

“You’re a good girl!” and such.

The cat was in the living room. He was hearing Chris and when Chris said these encouraging thing, he flicked his tail in the way he always does when being praised. I guess he knows that tone of voice. It’s for animals and small children.

We have had animals for a long time. Now we have a small child.

Couples usually have some sort of endearment they use for each other. “Honey” “Darling” “Sweetheart”

you know what I mean

Chris and I usually refer to each other as “baby” or “babe”

“Baby, thanks for making dinner”

“How was your day, Babe?”

So, when I say “Hi baby… how are you?” lately

Chris says “Fine.”

But I’m not talking to him.