Wednesday, 31 December 2008

17 Weeks, 1 Day

Callum will be 4 months old in 2 days time. He already looks like a proper little boy to me :o)

We had a lovely Christmas. Callum got lots of presents.  It didn't start too well though. We were driving down to my parents on Christmas morning, trying to get there in time for smoked salmon, scrambled egg and champagne breakfast. Unfortunately, after about 30 miles, Stuart saw smoke coming out the back of our car. We pulled into the service station and saw that we had a big oil leak! We had to call AA out. Thankfully, they came super quick after telling them we had a hungry 4 month old in the car. He towed us to our garage and then we spent the rest of Christmas morning waiting for my dad to come and pick us up. This didn't dampen our Christmas spirit though, as we sang along to "Simply...having...a wonderful Christmas time!". We got to my mum and dad's too late for breakfast but quickly got onto the champagne and opening our presents. We all got spoilt.

I was determined, while there, to try to stick to Callum's routine as much as possible. It worked really well on the first day and night. He went down to bed after bath around 7pm and we dreamfed him at 11pm and he slept until about 4am. He was staying in mum and dad's room and mum did the 4am feed :o). Then we heard him wake up about 7.15am so we brought him down to us so we could get him up and mum and dad could have a lie in. The next day didn't go quite to plan. We went for a walk along the sea-front and Callum fell asleep in the car about 11am. He woke up when we put him in the pram and then fell asleep about 12.30pm. He then didn't wake again until 3.30pm. Normally, we would be grateful he had such a great sleep but this was too much. He then was tired about 5pm and I was really trying to keep him awake until his bath but he fell asleep in mum's arms and then he took a while to go down after his bath. Crying loads and got himself in quite a state. He did eventually go down though after about 45 minutes. He didn't last until 11pm for his dreamfeed, he woke up about 10.15pm. Mum was going to bed and Stuart was worried about feeding him and settling him when mum was trying to sleep so we brought the travel cot downstairs so we could see to him. Because that meant bringing Callum down where the TV was on and lights were on, it took us ages to get him back down to sleep.  His sleep was then messed up again the next day when travelling back home as he slept in the car. He hasn't really been the same since. 

Stuart and I have been trying hard to get him back into his routine but don't seem to be having much luck. He used to get up at 8am, have a nap at 10ish for around 45 minutes then he would go to sleep around 12 when he needed a two hour sleep. He then would go to sleep about 4pm for another 45 minutes and then I would bath him about 6.30pm and put him to bed. Now he wakes at around 7.15am and it has thrown us out for when he should have his next nap. We have been looking for the first signs of tiredness, the first yawn etc. but I think we might be putting him down too early as he then throws a huge tantrum and screams and screams and is inconsolable, even if you pick him up to comfort him. It could just be because it could be either Stuart or I putting him down and, even though we try to do exactly the same thing, we can't rule out inconsistencies. But to be honest, he should be able to go down to sleep regardless of who puts him to bed. Also,  because he is now waking earlier, he gets tired earlier in the evening which results in bringing his bath forward earlier and earlier. It could also just be a 4 month blip. It appears that they have a blip at every month, according to the forum I'm a member of!

God, this being a parent lark is difficult!!!!! Where is the manual, that's what I want to know? The mark 1 Callum, 4 months old! If you have one, send it this way :o)

Monday, 22 December 2008

15 weeks, 6 days

Merry Christmas everyone!

I'm starting to get excited about Christmas now - and am really looking forward to spending it at my parents this year - not done that for about 4/5 years :o).

I have started a couple of traditions already with Callum, even if he isn't aware of what is going on. They are as follows:

  1. Continuing my mum's tradition, I have bought him a new babygrow to wear Christmas eve. Obviously, my mum didn't buy as a babygrow every year - might've looked a bit weird, a teenager in a babygrow!!! The tradition is a new pair of pyjamas but as Callum is still wearing babygrows, that is his pyjamas. 
  2. Every year, he will create a decoration for the Christmas tree. This year, I painted his feet and pressed them on card to make them look like holly and I painted my finger red to make the berries (he still wont uncurl his hand to do them himself!). I then cut it out to make the holly shape and have hung it on the tree.
  3. I'm thinking of continuing on another tradition of my mum's of taking a picture of Callum in front of the Christmas tree (and any other children I might decide to have in the future :-o). My mum did Christmas eve and Christmas morning but I might just choose the morning! 
A few more might develop over the year too but these are the only ones worth doing now. We haven't bothered to do a stocking for him this year as he wont appreciate it....and to be honest, we can do with saving the money. We have bought him presents but they are just things we were getting him anyway and have just wrapped them up as presents. I'll ask my mum to open them though as she wont know what he has. Seems pointless wrapping them up otherwise.

We are still battling with Callum at feed times but now we are feeding him more often - every 3 hours instead of 4 - I am worrying less that he isn't taking as much milk. I do re-offer it to him after he has burped but if he continues to throw a fit, I give in. As long as he has done around 4oz or more. It does get really stressful though when he gets really worked up and tries everything to get away from the bottle. Don't think the Gaviscon is doing much now. Distracting him with a toy does sometimes help but you really need someone else to wave the toy as it doesn't work if the person feeding does it.

Still going well with putting him down awake. I put him down, put his blanket on him,
 put his dummy in while stroking a muslin against his face and then put his lightshow/lullaby thing on. I really didn't want him to have a muslin as a comforter/soother but it is the only thing that works.  He can be crying and not looking in the slightest bit tired, then I put that next to his face and he likes to grip it in his hands too and as soon as it is there, his eyes droop! The only worry is, I worry he will suffocate himself with it as he likes to cover his mouth and nose with it. I try and position it though so he can't do that, or if he does, he can easily turn his head to breath again. Quite frightening though. 

Our only problem at the moment is that he only sleeps for 45 minutes over lunchtime when he needs about 2 hours. Babys have a sleep cycle of approximately 45 minutes and often wake up or come near to waking after that time but they should be able to then drop back into deep sleep after about 15 minutes of light sleep. However, Callum can't do this. I do try to go in and do the same thing as what gets him to sleep in the first place but he just can't get back off to sleep. You can see he needs to as his eyes are really droopy but he just tosses and turns. If 
I get him up though, he just whinges and cries the whole time until his next sleep. It is very draining. He can do longer as he has done a few times but it is the exception rather than the rule! One step at a time though I guess. We do need to get a blackout blind. Perhaps that will be all he needs!

We have finally got our evenings back too. I was making sure that once he had gone down to sleep at bedtime, he didn't come out of his nursery again until morning. After only two evenings he stayed asleep longer than an hour and has remained asleep until 10pm or, if longer, we have given him a dreamfeed about 11 before we go to bed. Am trying to bring this forward though. Tried 10pm last night but think that was too early as he woke up at about 12.45am. So, I'm going to try 10.30pm tonight. He fed at that time the night before last and slept until 3.30-4am. 

The next post will probably be in the new year so:

Have a great Christmas and New Year everyone. I hope you all have prosperous 2009s (despite the recession!).

Thursday, 18 December 2008

15 weeks, 2 days

OK, I've given up on the weight until new year!

Callum is coming on leaps and bounds, as they say. He weighed 12lb 12oz 2 days ago and measured 51cm in length. This was the first time his length was measured and he is bang on average - taking after his parents as Mr and Mrs Average ;o)

We have been having a few issues with his feeding though. A few weeks ago, he started drinking a couple of ounces then breaking for wind and then would scream and cry if the bottle went near him again. We thought he was getting frustrated because he needed to go up to the next level teat. Therefore, we kept persevering with feeding him, rocking him and trying him with it again and again until he drunk 5.5 ounces plus. However, this has been getting worse and worse. We finally managed to change the teats after a couple of weeks (we couldn't get hold of them) and when we changed them it didn't make the blindest bit of difference. I raised it with the Health Visitor and she thought it might be acid reflux and prescribed us Infant Gaviscon. Not really sure if it is helping yet. He still stops after a couple of ounces and screams and cries when you try to get him to feed again but if you get him to take the bottle again, he continues with relative ease. It does get really distressing as I feel like I'm force-feeding him a bit and I'm not sure if he is in lots of pain. I think the dose of the Gaviscon is lower than he needs though. I need to check with the Health Visitor.

He has started to try to roll. The other day he was pushing his leg back to try to push himself over. Then today he was swing both legs in the air. Not sure what he'd do though if he did get himself over as he hates being on his front still. 

Also, this week, he has started to laugh. It is really lovely and very cute. 

I am trying to get Callum to go to sleep in his cot without the need to rock him to sleep every time. It takes some work but I think it is working and it will be worth it. 

He really enjoys his bath time now. He has started to kick and splash about and smiles and coos all the way through.

I seem to be a lot more relaxed and less emotional recently. Scared to say that as when I've thought this before, it is usually followed by a stressful and emotional breakdown. Fingers crossed those days are mostly gone now though.