Tag Archives: development

Help me wean!!!

Standard

Its been 752 days of breastfeeding. My Child’s pediatrician thinks I’m a real Hail Mary and while the pats on the back and fist raised in the air by other breastfeeding moms makes me feel good, I really feel defeated and used. I’ve been here before, 3 years ago with Emery. This time it’s different (isn’t it always?). With Emery if you recall or read before – she was 1 1/2 and after many failed attempts we both decided it was time to stop. She’s always been that kind of person, when she wants to do or not to something she does it.  Breastfeeding Emery I was really sick and tired literally. She would barely drink and then she would fall asleep. It was a comfort thing for her. I think it’s a comfort thing for most babies, It’s all they know their whole lives! And that’s what I struggle with, how can I take the only thing they know how to fall asleep and be comforted with away? They scream and cry and beg or milk.

Carlos’ case is different – He drinks milk and he wont let me unlatch. I don’t realize until I wake up mad from my back aching that I’ve been in the same side position for hours (did I mention he’s a co sleeper?). Now that I’m typing this all out loud for the world to read I’m starting to think I’m letting him be too attached. How can I stop this? I don’t want it to be this way!
I tried the cup of warm milk, he drank one drink to humor me and cried. I’ve tried watching a movie to fall asleep with minimal success. I’ve gotten the advice of not offering anything so he doesn’t get attached to a cup for bed or do I just give water?

Do I let him scream it out at 12 am when I have a 11-year-old who needs to go to school and a 4-year-old in the next room who is trying to sleep?

Help! I need mom advice!

 

Sincerely,

 

A mom who is lost.

Advertisements

8 months

Image

The last time I wrote about my little one, was 4 months ago. Four months later, he’s grown into a sweet, playful, little boy. It’s funny to look back at those pictures already and see his changes. He has much more hair now, 5 teeth with 3 more on the way, a little playful personality.
I always think my kids are older than they are until I get a reality check. To me, Carlos has always been a big baby. He just grew so fast and got his teeth 7 months quicker than his sister did. But, this weekend while I was holding him and walking up to our car, I caught a reflection of us. It took me off guard and I stood there looking at him and I. I didn’t realize my baby is still just a little baby. As fast as he’s been growing and learning he still needs to be held. Ever since that day he hasn’t been my big boy, he’s been my little boy again. A few months after he was born I was so bummed out, I felt like I didn’t have enough pictures of him as a little baby. Taking care of him, Emery and the house got in the way of me making time to take lots of pictures. I complained to a friend of mine on how big he was already and not a little baby anymore. She laughed, and said, “He’s only 2 months”. In that 2 months their features change so fast but she was right, he was still a little baby and I was already acting like he was about to graduate College.
Carlos is understand words and responding by smiles or grunts. I’ve been working on sign language with him for easier communication. Our main signs are, “finish”, “Sister”, “Mom”, “Dad”, “Brother”, “water” and “thank you”. He watches my hands and studies them but has yet to use one. Now that Carlos is crawling he’s determined to start walking. He stands up on everything, which means he’s falling down a lot losing his balance. He’s gotten a lot better and now he sits on his legs. A big one for me is that he now can crawl and sit and sit and crawl. This just happened. Before this he wasn’t much of a sitter! He only ever wanted to stand or to be on the ground.
And slowly but surely my husband and myself are introducing some “real” food to him. Carlos only wants table food, he’s very interested in it and I’m sure has caught on that his baby food isn’t as good tasting as ours is. We are hesitant when it comes to food because of choking. As parents, I think that’s the one thing we baby the kids on. Carlos is completely ready for it, so we have to get with the program and have started buying him the next step in baby food. He’s been doing a good job chewing it and using those teeth he has. His favorite “big kid” food is saltine crackers.
In another four months this little one will have grown more than I can imagine right now. We will be celebrating his one year birthday. Everyday I’m grateful he’s in my life. I can wait to see the ways he grow and who he becomes.

8 months old

8 months old

Learning

Image

I place a lot of emphasizes on school and homework with Emery. She may only be three but this is the age when children’s minds are sponges and soak up EVERYTHING. I never had that push, and at an early age I hated school. Without even realizing it I was pushing Emery to be something different that I was. Emery saw her older brother going to school and started saying how she went to school, and had homework. Her imagination sprouted having actual “homework” everyday. She sees her brother, Father and Grandmother all doing homework. The idea of doing homework seems (to her) like something everyone has to do.
At the age of one years old she was counting to ten in English and Spanish. She knew some sign language, her alphabet and spoke well. At two years old Emery knew colors, shapes (ones like oval and diamond) and how to count to twenty and alphabet recognition. Its been three months since she turned three and she knows the sounds each letter makes, shes doing sight cards and is learning to write letters and numbers (0-100 with some assistance), she knows days of the week and months of the year, how to spell her first name and last name. Sounds like a lot? It really couldn’t be easier! The key is to take the time and spend it wisely.
Emery isn’t allowed to watch what I like to call, “dumb shows”. Not only do I think they are dumb but they don’t teach anything (with the exception of Disney cartoons). Once in awhile I will put on Power Puff Girls on for her but other than the few random shows here and there shes on educational television. Her favorite program is, Baby First (its, its own channel if you’ve never heard of it), Leap Frog (it really helped enforce certain things while being fun), Nick J.r. (one of her fun programs ,but Dora & Diego have really helped with Spanish and the learning of animals) and what ever learning movies her Father and I have purchased for her.
Target dollar aisle is my weak spot, anytime I go in I NEED to see whats new. Maybe its scrap-book paper? Maybe stickers or cute little socks? If its school supplies I will probably walk away with something. During August and September when the children go back to school and teacher supplies are out is the best time to shop. Emery has a little box full of flash cards, crayons that are made for dry erase boards (so that she doesn’t have to use markers and get ink everywhere), and learning books. Not only will it be used for her but but also for her little brother. Michael’s also has teaching supplies (such as the alphabet or clocks) during the back to school season. I have reward stickers for her when her homework is completed and done correctly. Just a little sticker can make her feel special. I put it up on the fridge for her Father to see when he gets home and send pictures to her Grandmothers.

Dry erase boards found at Target and Michaels

Dry erase boards found at Target and Michaels


Now here’s the trick. Getting them to learn isn’t always easy. There are days when she doesn’t want to sit still for 5 minutes but I force her (err, I mean ask her) for her attention and then her homework is done. I only do 10 minutes a day. If its something like a learning movie or song she can watch or listen to it as many times as she wants. I know Pinterest has some great ideas from other people.
Learning the days of the week and months of the year was a song from the same group on Youtube. I put my laptop in her room and as we played we sang along. It took a week before she could sing the songs correctly without the music or help.  The days of the week song was a little slow for us. We learn better with things that are more up beat so I sang it with the same beat as the months of the year.
Months of the year
I put letters on a white sheet of paper and had her circle and cross out certain letters I asked her to.
Now this is the one thing I’m really geeking out on! I’ve bought Emery writing paper and dry erase boards to practice her writing. I found this website so you can put a single word, multiple word, small sentence or paragraph on a sheet. This way you can teach your child or whom ever a certain word. This site  will also help you practice your cursive! I’ve had many discussions online about the lack or cursive being taught and how its a dying art. Most of the United States have stopped the practice or cursive (this not including California ,yet). Many people believe that its a dying art form and the curriculum is to teach kids typing to keep up with the technological age. I can’t argue with that, computers are the future, however a beautiful hand written note to say, “Thank You” or to simply WRITE should not be lost with our grandparents. Cursive is also a faster way to write. I wont be teaching my three year old cursive any time soon but I’ve been worried about her not picking it up. I would have taught her anyways, but my cursive is not as elegant as the older generation. This site will help teach her the right way to write. This can also be a good homework for summer, when they arn’t in school but to keep them active and learning.

Scroll down

Scroll down

No need to down load anything.  Just scroll down and read the step by step directions and input your information

No need to down load anything. Just scroll down and read the step by step directions and input your information

This turned out crooked but I made a sheet for Emery to learn her First name.

This turned out crooked but I made a sheet for Emery to learn her First name.

Here she is practicing her name. Practice makes you better!

Here she is practicing her name. Practice makes you better!

Each day just a little practice of anything can go a long way. Teaching doesn’t have to be mundane. Singing a song on how to spell your child’s name while in the car, teaching about traffic lights or counting on the way to the grocery store. It all adds up to one smart child.

4 Months Old

Standard

Today Carlos is a whopping 4 Months Old. He can control his hands, he grabs things, rolls over from front to back and back to front. He has excellent tummy time (it’s when babies lay on their stomachs for a period of time, to gain arm strength and neck strength for head control and crawling). He laughs out loud. He’s a very good mix of his father and I. Of course he has his very own look, but we are able to see little features of ourselves in him. He has his Dad’s body type, Big legs and a long torso. He has high cheek bones from me and both my children have my feet.
He’s always so happy, he wakes up with a smile on his face. He’ll just lay in bed talking and play with his hands until someone gets him. In the morning around 8:30 a.m. his Dad will talk to him, pick him up and bring him to me in bed. Carlos is all smiles and wont really eat first thing in the morning, he just wants to be up. After an hour he’s ready for milk and to go back to sleep for his first nap. If Emery didn’t sneak into our bed during the night she’ll be waking up around the same time and come to my bed to watch her “toons” and ask for some milk.
I noticed right away, my kids tend to favor a certain side when they sleep. Carlos for the first 3 months, loved having his head turned to the right side. Now that he knows how to turn over, he’s been sleeping on his left side.
We went on a trip to the Beach. It was Carlos’ first time, he did excellent on the 2 hour car trip. I just fed him before we left and he slept most of the way.
This little one is going to have a big personality, he’s so full of life. Without being able to say a single word he makes me happy and laugh. His smile is contagious, I am blessed to have him in my life.

Carlos first beach trip 097

Different bellies

Standard

Every women carries different, carrying low for boy and high for girl is a myth. To go along with that the high heart beat doesn’t pan out either. With Emery my stomach was really high and I had a hard time breathing. She also had the typical high heart rate ranging from 150 to 160. When we would go to the Naval Hospital the Midwife told us usually if the babies heart rate is consistently high it would be a girl. It was true for Emery. Carlos started off at a heart rate from 140 – 150, I thought it was high and we thought maybe it would be another girl.

“By the beginning of the 9th week of pregnancy, the normal fetal heart rate is an average of 175 BPM. At this point it begins a rapid deceleration to the normal fetal heart rate for the middle of the pregnancy of about 120-180 BPM.”

With Carlos I started carrying low like a typical boy. I thought it was “normal” and getting higher like it was with Emery but I noticed every time I would sit down he would start kicking, he was always real low and I would have to lay down or sit back to get comfortable. I didn’t think much of it at first because he was still growing but at the 26th week (the end of my second trimester) I feel like this baby should be higher.  My pregnancy pants are uncomfortable, if they have a band it hurts. So I’ve been stuck in yoga pants and my one pair of jeans with the elastic that goes over the stomach. Then my mom would say I was carrying different than I was with Emery. Typically they say boys are lower, however it’s not necessarily true. Everyone carries different. This week a friend came over and right away said I was totally different than I was with Emery too. It was kinda funny because I just started realizing I am carrying lower. Two weeks ago I went to the Doctors for a regular check up. The Dr. asked if I had back pain, ( I always seem to remember my pains a few hours after leaving the Doctors office, after I’ve had time to really think about the question) I told her yes, but nothing I would complain about. I have had back pain since I was in middle school and occasional back pain from the pregnancy. For some reason I had forgotten the times at home my back had gone out and I couldn’t walk or how before my pregnancy I was in therapy for my back! The Dr. sent in an order anyway for a Belly Cradle. As shown in the picture in the link, it goes under my stomach, around my back and across my chest. The first night I tried it on and right after taking it off I really noticed a difference. It held my stomach up slightly more and helped my back. I only need to wear it during the day but I find it getting in the way of my already restricted wardrobe. It’s still so hot in Central California that all I want to wear is a tank top and whatever pants I have to wear if I’m not home wearing my comfy pants. Wearing the Belly Cradle, I can only wear T-shirts because of how it fits across my chest. I don’t have many maternity shirts that are short-sleeved that will cover my chest. I have plenty of long sleeve shirts but I can’t wear them now. So I find myself wearing my cradle at home when I can or if I find a shirt that fits my growing belly. It’s a small complaint for something that will save my back as this little boy grows faster and faster in weight and soon with the cooler weather it wont be an issue.

IT’S A …

Image

At first I wanted my child to be a surprise, for the Doctor to tell me what I had been carrying this whole time when they placed the baby on me. My husband wasn’t on board for that plan, he wanted to know right away what it would be. I thought of having only him know and keeping it a surprise for me but my husband can’t keep a secret and the more I thought about it and went to the stores I had to know! I wanted to buy for this baby and be prepared. Who was I kidding, it sounds like a wonderful idea but I’m one of those people who like to be prepared and know everything at least a day in advance. For the past month and some weeks I’ve counted down the weeks and days till I could find out what my little one in me was going to be. I spent sleepless nights dreaming of what the baby shower would look like for a boy or girl. Hours researching gender cakes & how I wanted to tell everyone. Many a night planning out everything for each gender.

Everyone put in their opinion of what they thought this little one would be & most said, “boy”, including the ancient and all wise Chinese calender.
I feel like finding out what your own baby will be is one of the most exciting things that can happen. The decision to create a life and take care of that person your whole life with as much love and happiness you can give that one being.  Wondering what kinda of personality my child would have, wondering if I and my husband created a son or daughter to join us in our journey in life.
After all the time I spent wondering how I wanted to tell the family & thinking I would invite them over to tell them all at once what the sex would be with a single bite of a gender cookie, I decided not to. I didn’t want the hassle of my big family over, would I have to have a dinner? Then my husband wouldn’t be there because it was a school night for him. Telling everyone through a phone call wouldn’t make it less amazing, but it would make it less of a mess for me.

Today was finally the day we would see our little baby, and how much he/she had grown since we last saw the baby when it was just a few weeks old.
Emery has gone to every appointment except for the first one. We wanted to have her with us to see the baby in my tummy and find out with us if she was going to have a baby brother or sister. She was the one that told some of the family “mommy’s having a baby” so maybe she should be the one to tell them what the baby would be.
Right away we could see the baby, as I laid in the dark with Victor and Emery sitting in a chair the lady said, “it’s a boy!”. I felt this baby would be a boy, me and my mother had dreamt of him as a boy. I would have been shocked if it was a girl. Emery was very excited to be having a baby brother.  And I couldn’t ask for anything more than a healthy baby! Now I’m about to be a mother of two children soon, a beautiful daughter and I’m sure an equally amazing son. My life is complete!
The baby seems to have the same tiny little button nose Emery has and the same facial features. I can prepare and buy all boy things now, and I’m so excited to have him in my arms.
As for his name we are going with, Carlos Martin Calderon. I called my Aunt Mary Lou to have permission to use the name Martin. It was the name of her son that passed away almost five years ago. Martin and I became close before his passing and it so happens my husband was his best friend. We have a bond with him and he was an awesome person. Full of life and love.

 

Carlos Martin Calderon

Understanding everyone is different

Standard

Emery has lots of dolls, she has one doll she got for her first Easter. From the very begining the doll wasn’t a big hit with the extended family. The doll has fluffed wild red hair, at the time it was about the same size as my daughter, and had a silly bunny outfit.

A year later that dolls hand fell off. I didn’t want to throw away a whole doll  just because her hand was gone. I had grown to love that doll even more because she wasn’t as “pretty” as the other typical baby dolls. I got her baby doll and sowed up her arm, I could have super glued her hand back to her arm onto the fabric but I didn’t have any super glue handy and her arm had already been off for awhile. She needed a quick fix so she could be loved again.

I decided this would be a good thing for her to have, a doll with a missing body part to show her we aren’t all made the same. Even though this doll had a hand to begin with sometimes other people are born with out limbs and things can always happen to us and we may lose them.
This isn’t her first experience with some one who’s “different”. Her uncle Richard has cerebral palsy, he’s loud and makes inaudible noises because he can’t speak. He pokes and grabs, so at an early age I had to explain to her to be careful around him. Later in life I’ll have to go in-depth but for now she know’s that’s her uncle, she loves him and he doesn’t mean to poke her.
While we enjoyed playing with her baby girl another misfortune happened. Suddenly her doll lost her other hand, and mommy had to do emergency surgery to stop the stuffing from coming out. In no time she was good as new! A different new, but she was loved just the same, as if she had arms. Emery doesn’t see anything different about her baby. If I ask her where her hands are she says, “there gone”. If I ask where her arms are she doesn’t question it, she points to her two stubs. Emery dances, plays and sleeps with her on occasion.
It gave me the idea, I want to start making dolls that are missing limbs. Not in a gothic kind of way but for children who are born like this or for other children to understand there’s nothing wrong or scary about it. It may be different but different isn’t bad.