Friday, December 20, 2013

It's been a rough week

Earlier this week, Sally and Walter started competing to see who could get the least amount of sleep.

Sally blinked. Or rather, slept.  Her worst night was Tuesday and it has been steadily getting better since then, though not back to the ridiculously wonderful 9-11 hours straight she was sleeping last week. She likes to kick Daddy out of bed in the morning and sleep for an hour or so in bed with Mama, taking up the majority of the queen-size bed for her little princess self.

So, Walter was like: "You lightweight! Greenhorn! Newbie! I could not-sleep you under the table. See? I've gotten so little sleep, I'm SICK. Take that! Ha ha ha haaaaacck cough vomit whimper sneeze cough cough."

Walter seems to have entered the eternal feedback loop of lousy sleeping (lousy sleep leads to sickness leads to more lousy sleep.) We're trying to get him to bed earlier (he is successfully resisting this) and taking him into the bathroom for steam treatments as needed.  But it looks like it might be a very goopy Christmas.

Sally turns four months old tomorrow; Walter 26 months the day after.  I don't know if she's really an easy baby or if being 4 months old is just that much easier than being 26 months old.  She gives us beautiful smiles and, very rarely, the hints of a funny little laugh.  While she's still finding her laughing voice, her yelling at us voice is quite developed, as is her pleasant chatting and her espresso machine imitation.  She is strong enough to ride front-facing in the baby bjorn and she's been using the exersaucer at daycare (spoiler alert: we're breaking out the exersaucer for her for Christmas.)  She's been doing pretty well at daycare. At first she wouldn't take a bottle, but now she does, though she still doesn't drink from the bottle as much or as well as Walter did at this age.  But she's growing: she's wearing 6 month clothes and I think she probably needs to move up to size two diapers.  Her face is filling out and she has a pleasant, solid heft to her that is very satisfying.  One of the highlights of my work days is going into Room 1 to nurse her at lunchtime.  

Sally seems to have gotten over her very strong aversion to hats. She likes touching our faces (as gently and lovingly as she is able with her developing muscle control.) She likes gnawing on our fingers, and we're pretty sure the first teeth are on their way in.  She likes books and toys and anything new ... most of all she likes watching and, more and more, directly interacting with Walter.  We're letting him play with her a little more, now, and she loves it.  Everything he does, she watches with great interest.

Walter "feeding" Sally. They love playing together! 
I expected that Sally would adore Walter.  Babies love older kids; they're fascinating.  What I didn't expect and what constantly takes me by surprise is how much Walter loves Sally.  It doesn't make any sense to me.  I mean, sure, she's completely wonderful and adorable and cute and cuddly, but I figured a two year old would be largely immune to that, especially since he doesn't really get to snuggle her as much as Sean and I do. And I would have thought the crying and the fussing and the taking Mama's attention would have been major strikes against her. (Walter did confide in Sean that Baby Sally's crying hurts his ears sometimes. Or, as Walt likes to put it these days, "Just a little bit.")  I guess I expect a toddler's love to be mostly conditional and entirely self-centered: love based on what others do for him.  But it's not.  Walter loves Sally just for being Sally, just for being part of the family.  I love the way he always includes her (and Hank) in his list of family members. "Walter and Mama and Dada and Baby Sally and Hankie!"

On a related note, tonight Sean offered to take Walter to the store to go Christmas shopping.  At first, Walter was excited, but then the tired sickies started to get him down.  "You and Mama and Baby Sally go to the store," he told Sean.  "Walter stay home. With Hankie."  Heh.

Walter loves to bake with me; we've made cookies twice this past week, it being Christmastime and all, and he's absolutely brilliant at it.  He can do everything: stir, mix, beat, crack eggs, measure, dump, fold, portion ... pretty much everything except put it in and take it out of the oven.  I am proud beyond words.  These days Walter also enjoys watching and reading Curious George (the same videos over and over and over ... gahhhhhhh) and building really awesome elaborate structures with blocks. He plays with my old Fisher Price doctor kit and does this great singing doctor routine: "This is gonna hurt a little bit ... You gonna feel betteerrrrrrr!" He loves to sing and play his ukulele, or any other instrument he can get ahold of.  Tonight he played the bongos using his maracas as drumsticks.

Walter kind of vacillates between being astoundingly mature for his age and genuinely fun to be with and being really typically difficult for his age and exhausting to be with.  The difficult days tend to coincide with lack of sleep. Recent studies show that consistent bedtime is the key to better behavior. In other news: duh. Breaking headline: Bite me, researchers. You get my kids to bed.

It's possible that I, too, would be better behaved with a consistent bedtime and more sleep.

Also, this happened. Least accurate depiction of the Holy Family, ever. But pretty fun, nonetheless.


1 comment:

3d8th said...

4 month sleep regression is a killer. Hopefully it will pass soon. Until then, take full advantage of grandparent sponsored naps during Christmas vacation!