Everybody told us that we had to have a Pack 'n Play. I got one for my baby shower. It turned out to be a lifesaver when Jacob was first born because it ended up becoming our downstairs changing area. (It has the reversible napper/changer attachment.) We stash all of our diapers, wipes, lotion, burp cloths, and bibs there so that everything is kind of neatly contained in one area.
But now we kind of have a problem with the Pack 'n Play. Jacob's getting to be too long for the changing pad. I believe the weight limit for the changer and bassinet is 15 pounds - and he's 16!
So... if we can no longer use the Pack 'n Play as a changing area, I'm kind of not sure what to do with it for the moment. I mean, I know that he can go in there... but he can't sit up on his own yet. I could put him in there to play, I guess, but I can also just have him roll around on his mat or on the floor. I suppose he could go in there for naps, but I don't know how well he'd sleep because he'd probably roll all over the place. If he ends up on his stomach, he gets mad. (He can roll from back to stomach but not stomach to back yet!) At least in his papasan chair, he's strapped in. And in his crib, we have blankets rolled up under the sheets to keep him from rolling around.
So... when and how often do you use your Pack 'n Play?
So, I've mentioned that Jacob has the hardest time burping. We try every different position and we're lucky if we maybe get 1 burp a day. Most of the time, we get burps accidentally - like when we change positions or pick him up. Every once in awhile, he'll burp if he's on his belly on his mat. Of course, the one time I tried to burp him on his belly, he burped - and then spit up (for like the first time ever) on the couch. Sometimes the burps come two hours after a bottle.
We mentioned it to the doctor when we took him the other day. We told her that we've tried different brands of Gripe Water and gas drops and they don't really seem to help. And lately, it seems like the little guy has been really cranky if he can't get a burp (or fart!) out. He's already on Enfamil Gentlease, which she said is a really good formula, so she suggested Colief, a form of probiotic drops that you put right in the bottle.
We started using the Colief in Jacob's formula by itself (no Gripe Water or gas drops) to see if we could notice a difference. The first time we used it, we got a couple burps. Once, I even got 6 or 7 burps after a bottle. I couldn't believe it. We've been using it for a week now, and it seems like it's helping! Jacob still gets some gas stuck from time to time and then we use the Gripe Water to try to ease his discomfort, but he's doing a lot better.
So, I've seen these on Amazon and I've had a few people suggest them to me. I'll be honest, when I first heard of them, I thought it was for the kid to wear so that he could chew on it, and that didn't seem safe to me. (Duh.)
I guess they work by being worn against the skin. The baby's body temperature helps release an oil into the skin which is supposed to ease inflammation, and therefore, help reduce pain and fussiness in teething babies. A couple friends have sworn by these and even said they helped cut down on the drooling tremendously.
Since our little guy doesn't have any teeth yet (and probably won't for awhile since it's already been a month and this feels like forever!) I decided to give it a try and see if these things worked. I got him a necklace and ankle bracelet set. The necklace is just a little bit too big for this worrywart mama - it could probably get pushed up over his chin and get stuck. So I doubled it and put it around his ankle. Still loose. The ankle bracelet is a little too big, too - if he's not wearing socks or footie PJs,they both just come flying right off.
Within a few hours of wearing them, the drool dried up. It dawned on me while I was playing with Jacob that his chin was completely dry. That's great and all, but the drool was the least of my concerns. He's been wearing the amber now for about two weeks, and I'm not sure if I see any dramatic results. Some days are better than others, but I imagine that's just how it goes.
So, we decided to take Jacob to the doctor to see what the deal is with his teething. He's been grabbing at the side of his head a lot the past few days - different from when he plays with his hair or ears when he's tired. We didn't know if that was a sign of an ear infection or what. Plus he's been increasingly cranky! So, I figured it was better to be safe than sorry and made a sick visit appointment. Plus, we had a couple other questions to ask the doctor (like WHY DOESN'T OUR KID BURP?) while we were there.
Of course... We took the kid to the doctor and there's absolutely nothing wrong. Ears look good. Weight looks good. No teeth yet (we were wrong, wrong, wrong!) but he's definitely teething.
The doctor suggested some probiotic drops to help with the gas issues and not burping.
Other than that... Jacob is absolutely fine, which probably made us look like paranoid first-time parents, but OH WELL... and I guess we just have to weather the storm!
Sometime a couple months ago, when we moved Jacob from the bassinet to his crib, we made a weird discovery.
First, Jacob seemed like he was sleeping a whole lot better. I think because he had more room to stretch out, he was probably more comfortable. So, yay for that!
But one morning, when we went in to check on him, congratulating him and cheering because he'd slept through the night, my husband said, "You know we have a problem, right?"
I was like, "What problem could we possibly have?! The kid slept great!"
It turns out that when my husband put Jacob to bed the night before, his head was at the top side of the crib. When we went in to get him the next morning, his head was at the bottom of the crib.
He had somehow managed to rotate 180 degrees on his back!!!!
We never actually saw him do it, but for the next several nights, I would peek at the monitor a couple times a night and would see that he'd rotated 90 degrees... 180 degrees... Some nights even all the way around!
Once he started rolling over in the crib, I put some rolled up blankets under the sheet to stop him. They worked great for awhile, but now it seems like he's scooting again... Not rotating, but scrunching himself down to the bottom of the crib. Don't know how he does it.
After completing a vacation to the Outer Banks with Jacob last week, I decided that road tripping with a baby is easy. It only takes 29 simple steps.
And we're off!
After you've decided on your destination and either made your reservations or coordinated where you're staying with friends or family, it's time to prepare for your first road trip with baby!
1. First, pack baby's clothes, obviously. Think one or two onesies per day, just in case you need to make some changes. You never know when you're going to have a diaper blowout or wardrobe malfunction. Don't forget things like pajamas, socks, and coats or sunglasses and hats, depending on where you're headed.
2. Then pack a whole bunch of extra clothes. Because you just never know. I packed a pair of brand new 6 month footie pajamas for our 3 month old son only to find out on vacation that they were too short.
3. Diapers. Take however many diapers you think you'll need, and then take extra.
Or you'll end up running out and looking for your brand/size in an unfamiliar store. Don't forget wipes, creams, lotions, etc
4. Same thing with formula. Figure out how much you'll need to last you for the whole trip so you don't have to go looking for it.
5. Don't forget bottles, bottle parts and nipples, a bottle warmer if you use one, bibs and burp cloths, and any gas drops or gripe water you might need. And then stuff to clean those bottles with. Brush? Dishwasher basket? Sterilizer or sterilizing steam bags?
6. You should also probably take baby medicine... Just in case. Tylenol, saline drops, teething tablets. Oh, and then things like those Boogie Wipes that you bought but haven't actually opened yet? Pacifier wipes? You haven't used any of this crap yet, but you're going on a big trip and you want to be prepared, so take it all.
7. Your kid's gonna need a bath at some point, so don't forget their bath stuff. Soap or shampoo. Tub thermometer. Baby washcloths? Their towels. It sounds crazy but you might want to consider taking baby's bath tub or bath chair, too, in case you end up staying in a place that only has a massive jacuzzi tub for two that is impossible to reach into to bathe baby. If that happens, the easiest way to give baby his bath is by getting in the tub with him, and I don't know about you but I'm not a fan of rapidly cooling 97.3 degree bath water.
8. Depending on where your kid is sleeping, you'll probably need crib sheets and stuff. Maybe even mattress pads. And if your kid is a crazy roller (like mine is) you might want some kind of bumper (we use a rolled up blanket under the sheet to stop him from rolling onto his belly since he's not a fan.)
9. Or maybe your kid will sleep on their pack and play, which means you have to figure out how to fit the pack and play in the car. You already have a whole lot of baby stuff... Plus the stroller... And now the pack and play.
10. Oh, stuff to play with. You can't forget toys. Pacifiers and teethers and stuff.
11. Now that you think you have everything, and you see what a massive amount of stuff it all adds up to, PULL IT ALL BACK OUT and try to figure out what you can leave at home...
12. Then add whatever things you forgot.
13. And pack for yourself. But make that bag small because by now, you're running out of room in the car.
14. Consider buying a rooftop car carrier for extra stuff. Amazon can get one to your door in a day or two.
15. Map out your route. Plan in advance for rush hour, holiday traffic, bottle breaks and diaper changes, and fuel and bathroom stops for you.
16. When it's time to leave, don't forget to have diapers and formula ready for the trip. Make sure you have snacks and drinks for yourself!
17. Head out! Hope the baby sleeps part of the way to your destination.
18. High-five your partner. Five minutes on the highway and your baby has fallen asleep.
19. Enjoy a couple hours of satellite radio and adult conversation.
20. Repeatedly crane your neck trying to peer at (still!) sleeping baby in rear-facing car seat.
21. Marvel at what a long nap the baby is taking. Wonder how far you can make it before baby wakes up and needs a bottle and diaper change.
22. Finally give in. You have to stop because you need gas and/or coffee and/or you need to pee. Feel guilty for waking up sleeping baby.
23. Check baby's diaper. Totally dry. Baby falls back to sleep. Sweet! On the road again!
24. Five minutes later: previously sleeping baby is now suddenly wide awake, hungry, wet, and pissed off. Pull into random, middle of nowhere strip mall to do diaper change and feed baby.
Back seat bottle and burping!
25. You've finally arrived at your destination. You're frazzled, the baby hasn't settled down yet, and you now have a car full of crap to unload.
26. Unpack and realize that you've inevitably forgotten something. Tear apart the multiple bags of baby stuff looking for whatever it is, cursing yourself for not remembering to pack it.
27. Admit defeat, load baby back into car, and head to the nearest store to begrudgingly pick up whatever item(s) you need, knowing that you already have one (or more) at home, but you really need one for this trip.
28. When your trip is over, you will have to repeat most of these steps to return home. Good luck getting everything to fit back into your bags and suitcases. Oh, and have fun trying to pack the car the way you had it set up when you departed.
29. Think really, really, really hard about planning your next road trip with baby. Consider inviting family to your house for the holidays so you don't have to do the traveling.
Still no teeth. Little man's been at it for almost a month now.
We thought we'd actually SEEN something awhile back, but there's nothing in there now! A friend suggested that we might have seen some kind of cyst (inclusion cysts or Epstein's pearls?) and since there's nothing there now, I'm guessing she was right. Somebody else said that they're called "milk teeth" and that, yeah, they're there, they look like teeth, and then they fall out. WHAT THE HECK?!
Jacob's symptoms (still) include:
drool (so much drool)
sucking on/eating hands
putting more stuff in his mouth/trying out more teethers
pulling on his ear/rubbing side of head (he does that when he's tired, too)
being inexplicably fussy or cranky, especially right when he wakes up from naps - he's usually so chill when he wakes up
being fussy at the bottle - sometimes he finishes, sometimes he doesn't
He doesn't have any fever or diarrhea - some people disagree on whether or not those are teething symptoms.
We've been using Hyland's Teething tablets (which seem to help a little) and Tylenol before bed.
I was hoping that since he started kind of early that he'd get the first couple teeth over with fast... No such luck, I guess!
I read a lot of blog posts about what to take to the beach with baby. We bought an umbrella and a clamshell tent. We even bought this bath chair on Amazon because a blogger recommended it and a couple of the reviews even said that people bought it specifically to take their baby to the beach. They said it worked great, so I thought it would be a better alternative to taking Jacob to the beach in his car seat or his papasan chair.
Side note - why are all car seats like black or dark gray? I feel like whenever Jacob is in there, he gets all hot and sweaty. I'm sure they're dark colors to help keep them from looking dirty, but wouldn't something lighter be cooler?
The bath/beach chair didn't work for us. Jacob just slouched down to the bottom of the chair. It wasn't very hammock-y and it didn't recline all that far. Plus, the sides weren't very high so I felt like Jacob could topple over at any minute. We ended up just bringing his papasan down to the beach anyway, and he did okay.
At Jacob's 2 month checkup, I asked the doctor about using sunscreen. I know you're not supposed to use it on little babies, but I was worried about him being at the beach. The doctor said she'd rather have me use it than not. So I bought and used Babyganics mineral sunscreen on Jacob. It was white and creamy and kind of hard to rub in. I made sure to slick some over any exposed body parts and even slathered some on Jacob's Buddha belly because his shirt always rides up over it. I put some on Jacob's head, too, even though he had a hat - better to be safe than sorry! But holy cow - did it leave his scalp a mess. I had to rub and rub in the bath tub to get his head clean. It looks like it might have dried his scalp out because he got pretty flaky, too. I ended up just leaving his hat on and didn't do sunscreen on his head again after that.
Jacob seemed to like the beach. He hung out in his tent, played with toys, and took naps in the shade. We took him down to the water's edge and he got to stick his toes in the sand and water. He seemed to like the beach way more than the pool! I think the pool was a little too cold for him. We'll see what happens next summer!
We just went on vacation to the Outer Banks, and when I was packing Jacob's bag, I made sure to include a pair of footie PJs and a PJ top and bottom set just in case the room was really cold. So far, Jacob's never worn anything but a romper or a onesie to bed because he gets so hot and sweaty, but I wanted to be prepared.
Good thing I did. Sort of.
Since Jacob is in all 6 month clothes, I packed 6 month PJs. The night I tried to put him in his footie PJs, I thought he looked so dang cute. And then he tried to stretch his legs in them.... and he hardly had any room! He couldn't stretch out all the way. Same thing with the pants on the PJ top and bottom set. WHOOPS.
He ended up sleeping in the long sleeved PJ shirt and a pair of sweatpants and socks every night. Glad I had those!
When we got home from the beach, it cooled off quite a bit and we slept with the windows in our bedroom cracked a little. I put Jacob in PJs again... SIZE 9 MONTHS!!!!!!!! (These ones are AWESOME! There are NO snaps or zippers - the pajamas close by magnets! The downside? They only seem to go up to 9 months!) They're a little baggy when his legs are bent but when he stretches out he almost fills them up. His feet take up the whole foot part!
He got his big feet from me, but I don't know where he got the height (length) from. His daddy and I are both short.
Before Jacob came along, we even bought this sign for the door.
Which is great, except that the UPS and FEDEX DELIVERY DRIVERS DON'T READ IT.
We've had friends come by that see the sign and leave notes and gifts on the doorstep and text us later, telling us that they stopped by. The people that we wouldn't mind coming by to see us actually do what the sign says.
But somebody delivering a package... Man. They bang on the glass door, (loud!) which rattles the sign (louder!) which is why we have all the tape trying to hold the sign still.Or they ring the doorbell, which echoes throughout the whole house. And they always manage to do this right when Jacob goes down for a nap. It never fails.Then he startles awake and we have to settle him down again.
What's ridiculous is that my husband or I will run to the door and catch the delivery people. We'll ask them if they read the sign, and everyone always says, "Oh, no... Sorry. I didn't even see it."
So I made this obnoxious sign with a giant Post-It note.
Of course, we're not expecting any packages for a couple days now, but when our next package is supposed to arrive, I'll be ready!
You know what our next package is going to be? A doorbell cover called The Knock Nanny. It comes with stickers that you can put on it to let people know why the doorbell is covered up. I hope there's a sticker that says "READ THE *BLEEP*ING SIGN ON THE DOOR!"