Thursday, July 29, 2010

Happy 6 month birthday, Cale!!

Caleb sitting up on his own at Cavendish beach

I can't believe it. Our little guy is 6 months old today. Sitting up on his own, eating solid food, rolling across the room to get a toy and smiling when we call his name as we watch in amazement at this little boy growing up right before our eyes.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Prince Edward Island

We are enjoying a wonderful vacation with Greg and Linda in Cavendish, PEI this week. Aly and Ava are also here with Angela and her family, so we are having lots of fun with all the kids. We went to the Sandspit Amusement Park this afternoon. Caleb was disappointed to find out he was too short to go on the roller coaster, but he did ride on his first merry-go-round. Arlo may be having the most fun of us all so far. He has managed to escape three times in the past three days. The first time while I was visiting Alan's family at Treva's cottage on my way to PEI. I found him two hours later at a Provincial Park down the road in the middle of a family picnic eating potato chips. Yesterday he came back on his own to our cabin after an hour an a half of running wild and this evening Alan managed to catch him after only 10 minutes and returned to a round of applause from all our neighbours!

We had an amazing lobster dinner tonight for Grandmama Linda's birthday. All you can eat mussels, chowder, rolls, salad, dessert plus a 1.5 lb lobster. What a feast. Can't wait to hit the beach tomorrow.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Solid food!!

The very first bite!

After a great 6 month check-up (he turns 6 months on the 29th!!!), the doctor gave us the go ahead to start giving Caleb solid foods. So tonight Cale ate his first real meal - iron fortified rice cereal! It was an absolute hit! I think he was so excited and surprised to try a new taste that he would have eaten 4 bowls full! It was a bit emotional for me....this is the first thing he has had in his entire life that didn't come from me. His first step toward independence from his mamma! I think I'll get over it very quickly, especially if a full tummy helps him sleep well tonight! He weighed 18lbs (75th percentile) and was 90th for height.

Getting the hang of things

Going in for every last drop!

Please, daddy, can I have some more?

A very satisfied little boy!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Sleep Log

Caleb in his crib. Sleeping? Not so much....

I'm going to write, once again about our sleep situation. Basically, since Caleb had his crazy 3 month growth spurt, he continued to wake up so frequently that I found myself utterly exhausted. I was going into his room every hour and a half to two hours to nurse him back to sleep, so the most sleep I was getting was about one hour. Not nearly enough. So one night I ended up just bringing him into bed with me...and amazingly I had a decent nights sleep. Caleb still fed frequently, but I found I could nurse him without barely waking up. Fast forward 3 months, and Caleb is still sleeping with me, waking frequently to feed and heavily addicted to being nursed to sleep. A part of me loves to co-sleeping arrangement. It feels great to have him so close and not having to get up out of bed so often is great. I find now, however, that I'm not sleeping quite as well. I end up in weird positions trying to nurse him and feel sore in the morning and not overly refreshed. Plus, Alan and I are ready to have our bed back. So, after a lot of reading and talking to friends I've decided to read the book 'No Cry Sleep Solution' and come up with a plan to 1. Help Caleb learn to sleep without nursing, 2. Decrease the number of night wakings and feedings and 3. Get Caleb back to sleeping in his own crib.

The first step of the book is to write a sleep log where you track how often your baby awakes. Here is mine from last night.

6:38 asleep (earlier than usual but he seemed really tired)
7:15 awake, nurse back to sleep
8:34 awake, nurse back to sleep
9:46 awake, nurse back to sleep
10:20 awake, nurse back to sleep...I also head to bed with him
12:33 awake, nurse back to sleep
2:59 awake, nurse back to sleep
4:34 awake, nurse back to sleep
5:50 awake, nurse back to sleep
7:00 awake and start out day

Total wake ups: 8
Longest stretch of sleep: Just over 2 hours

Wow. I didn't realize quite how often he was waking and feeding. But, the author of the book had the exact same problem, as many parents do. I've learned that we all sleep in cycles - periods of deep and light sleep - and that older children and adults (and some babies) can easily fall back into the deep sleep, but others hit the light sleep stage, wake up and don't know how to get back to sleep. Or, in Caleb's case, they look for the usual sleep association (nursing) and think they need that in order to fall back asleep. So Caleb is waking up every 1 1/2 - 2 hours when he hits a light sleep cycle. Luckily, the book has many great, gentle ways to help your baby learn to fall back asleep on their own and eventually stop waking up so frequently. Alan is reading the book now so we can come up with a plan of action, and then 10 days from now we will do another 'sleep log' to see how things have changed. It is reassuring to know many other parents have the same issues and have found the solutions in this book very helpful. I'm feel positive that our sleep situation will be greatly improved over the next few weeks. Wish us luck!

On a final note, I had my first ocean swim in over a year this week! I put on my wetsuit, jumped on the surfboard and paddled around the Cove. An excellent workout, and it felt sooo good to be back in the sweet, salt water on a hot summer day! I'm hoping to make this, and snorkeling, a regular activity.

Paddling around the Cove

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Family Photo Book

Reading the new book with dad

Yeah! The photo book I've been working on for Caleb arrived yesterday. I used the iphoto program on our Macbook to organize the layout of photos of cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents then ordered the finished book last week. I really want Caleb to get to know the faces of all his relatives so I thought this would be a great way to help him remember everyone, especially those that he doesn't get to see all the time. I'm really happy with the end result and Caleb seems to like it to. In fact, he likes it so much he wants to eat it!

Front cover

Grandparents page

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

B is for Bob

I fell in love with this onesie when I first saw it for sale last summer in Ottawa. It was the first baby outfit I had purchased for Caleb and I didn't even think to look at the size. I just held it up and thought 'this will fit a baby' and bought it. I realized when I tried to put it on him after he was born that it is actually 12-18m! Funny how little I knew about babies only 6 months ago! I'm glad to say it fits now and it makes me happy to see our little man as a proud Marley fan! My dad thinks we should get a whole set of them - J is for Jerry Garcia, T is for Tony Rice, D is for David Myles...

Our little rasta!

Two new birds for the list this week - gray jay and magnolia warbler. I saw them both in a heavily wooded area across the highway while out on a extra long dog walk. I was trying to get Cale fall asleep in the carrier instead of while nursing, but he stayed awake until the last 10 minutes of the one and a half hour walk!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

First friends

Juniper, Caleb, Daniel and Rex

Whales! We've been seeing minke whales swimming in front of our house for the past 2 weeks. There is nothing better than having a nice cup of tea on the front porch in the morning and seeing a back and dorsal fin slowly rise out of the water. This will definitely be one of my favorite memories from living in Duncans Cove. And, over the weekend I heard an unfamiliar bird calling from outside the kitchen window. I looked out to see a Northern Mockingbird perched on the telephone wire. I had to look it up in my Sibley's Guide to Birds since it is a rare sighting around here and the first one I've ever seen in the Maritimes. Nice addition to the list.

Caleb now officially has his first friends! We've been able to have a couple of play dates with Tara and her daughter Juniper and Mary and her son Daniel. It is so fun to watch Caleb interacting with other kids and I'm so happy to have some other moms to hang out with. There was a lot of discussion about sleep!

Monday, July 5, 2010


Crowds gathering for the 'Singing Stan' hour

My parents, Cale and I made the 3 1/2 hour trip to Canso, NS for our first ever Stan Rogers Folk Festival this weekend. The festival brings international songwriters together for a 3 day East Coast experience that makes the small fishing community of Canso come alive. Since Alan was playing with David and Kyle, and because going to the festival was on my father's 'bucket list', we decided there could be no better way to spend a sunny Sunday. We saw some fantastic artists - Jerry Jeff Walker, Old Man Leudecke, Kathleen Edwards, Valdy, Alex Cuba, Ron Hynes, Royal Wood - trading songs for crowds who so attentive you could hear every note and lyric.

Caleb was a trooper - squirming in my arms to the music, winning over audience members (I even saw some strangers taking his picture after he flashed them a charming smile) and looking exceptionally adorable when David introduced him to the crowd of 300+ at one of their shows. One of my favorite moments was the 'Singing Stan' hour where everyone came together around the main stage for a Stan Rogers sing-along. It was incredibly moving to hear thousands of voices singing Northwest Passage, including Stan's daughter who was up on stage. What a wonderful first music festival for Cale.

I'm with the band!
(and eating dad's festival pass)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Canada Day

Happy Canada Day, everyone!

It was a beautiful sunny day here in Halifax, perfect for Caleb's first outdoor concert. We met up with friends and took the ferry to Dartmouth to watch Alan play with David, as well as the Deep Dark Woods and a few other bands. Caleb was very content in his carrier, and I think he enjoyed the music, although he did fall asleep near the end of David's set! Next up - the Stan Rogers Festival this weekend.

Watching dad on stage for the first time!

We ran into my Little Brother Tyvonn on the ferry, and his sister Cruzshayna.