1.25.2012

Sleep & Growth Spurt

Charlie, and by extension Mommy and Daddy, have had a rough couple of weeks in the sleep department.  I mentioned two weeks ago that he was battling his first cold, and that's what started this nonsense.  The first few nights he slept either on one of us or in his swing but woke up several times throughout the night coughing, which would require us to give him his pacifier again.  Then we tried moving him to his crib with a pillow under one end of the mattress to keep him on an incline, only to find him sideways with his head banging against the side of the crib or one time even totally flipped around with feet on the upward slope.  SO, we went back to normal flat crib sleeping last week, when he seemed to be finally kicking the cold.  Phew was it a rough week!! I am not exaggerating when I say he was waking up no less than 5 times, but usually closer to 8 times EVERY NIGHT!  Luckily, all it took was a quick trip to his room to give him his pacifier, but that is not good sleep for any of us!!  My breaking point was Saturday night - I literally went in his room 10 times between 11:00pm and 6:00am.  Yikes!  Daddy heard the desperation in my voice when I climbed back in bed after feeding him at 6:00am only to hear Jack start stirring, so he let me sleep in until 9:30am while he got up with the boys.  I needed that!

I also needed a solution to our sleep issues!  I read up a little and determined that he needs to get used to putting himself to sleep at bedtime, which will help him in the middle of the night too.  Previously our bedtime routine ended with me nursing him with the lights out then placing him in bed, usually asleep or very close to it.  Starting Sunday I'm now nursing him with the lights on, then reading him a book or two before swaddling him and putting him in bed.  The first two nights of this worked like a charm.  He went right to sleep and didn't wake up once until morning!!  Last night leaving the lights on didn't help and he zonked out while eating anyway, but he still slept through the night.  I'm not sure how much of this is that he's finally feeling back to normal (he seems to be back to almost 100% after his cold, other than the lingering cough that just won't go away) and how much is the new bedtime routine, but I'll take it!!

I've also been experimenting with swaddling vs sleep sack.  In hindsight, beginning this experiment during the week of his cold was not the most brilliant mommy decision I've made, but for now we are back to swaddling. He doesn't fight me when I put him in the swaddle, so I think he still likes the comfort.  Fine by me.  If he's sleeping, I'm happy!!
The little guy is also apparently going through a bit of a growth spurt.  Day care told me last week they thought I should bump up his bottles a bit, so this week I've been making three 7 oz bottles instead of 6.5 oz.  Monday and Tuesday he ate all three 7 oz bottles with no problem.  Today I got a call from Ms Mary and as of 1:30pm Charlie had already guzzled ALL THREE 7 oz bottles!!!  Little piggy!  They used the frozen milk I brought in to give him a 4th bottle at the end of the day, which he also took just fine.  I'm hoping this is in fact a growth spurt because I'm sure I can't keep up with producing four bottles each day.  I think it is also a sign that it's time to start adding cereal to his diet.  So, Saturday it is!

Other Charlie updates: he is still LOVING his exersaucer and has figured out how to spin himself around so he can play with each of the toys.  He's sitting in the Bumbo some, but doesn't stay in it for very long.  He loves to roll over - as soon as we lay him on his back he rolls to his tummy.  I've only seen him roll from his tummy to his back once and it was the momentum from rolling back to tummy that kept him going so he did a full roll and ended up on his back.  Other than that one time, he just stays put on his tummy until he's had enough.

He's also drooling like crazy (see below) and gnawing on his hands and fingers.  I would be shocked if he didn't get a tooth in the next few weeks, but you just never know!
He's still loving his big brother as this video demonstrates.  I was actually trying to capture him playing and spinning in the exersaucer, but he was too focused on watching Jack!
video

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