Friday, February 17, 2012


I'm just so proud of Rachael right now.
Sleep-wise, three nights ago, I decided that she was responding quite well to the night routine that I'd move it onto the next phase of getting her to go to sleep in her own cot after her feed.
First night, she was drowsy after the feed, and after 15 minutes was asleep in the cot after being patted to sleep.
Night two, she was super tired, and was asleep by the end of the feed anyway, so not much to read into that.
Tonight, Rachael was still fully awake after her feed, but did not object to being put into the cot. She tossed and turned for quite a while, and I eventually gave up trying to pat her to sleep, as it didn't seem to be working. But she eventually was able to calm down and go to sleep, only holding my hand.

It's so wonderful on several fronts
1) She might actually sleep well eventually
2)She seems to be responding to the gradual changes
2) And a lot more important, the gentle approach seems to be working- she is not afraid of sleep, she is not afraid of her cot. It is rather vindicating that she's starting to do what "experts" who don't agree with our parenting approach claim that she'll never do if you don't take rather more severe measures

All at once she seems to be ready to eat solid foods and settle down with her sleep. No, I don't think the sleep is a result of the food intake, but a general maturing.

We'll see how it goes from here.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

17 months

At 17 months, we're definately into Toddler territory. There's so much in the world that she wants and isn't allowed. There's also so much in the world she wants, is allowed, but she has diffuculty communicating what it is she's after. The first one won't change in a hurry, but we're hoping for some improvements for the second as we go along. Rachael's vocabulary is still pretty limited in relation to her opinions. Some more "functional" word (like those relating to food, drink and sleep) would hopefully reduce some of her fustration. So we're just have to wait for them to arrive. Her actual solid food consumtion has gone up in the last few days, like she's eating for sustenance, not just to play. We haven't been worrying about her small food intake up until now though, as she has really very good fork, spoon and bowl skills, it's jsut that she has chosen to only consume small portions. An increase in food consumption does lead to a concern though; reading the ingredients listing on "toddler" snack foods is rather quite disconcerting how much sugar is added into items marketed as"healthy".

I think I like each age a little more as we go (not overly hardfrom where I started though). This early toddler stage has Rachael swapping between being completely adorable and more challenging. And the adorable really is gorgeous. We have found however, the challenging is often assisted by a snack. It seems she is prone to the same blood sugar dips as her mother.

Sleep wise, we started adding a bedtime book into her routine, and settling her in her room at night at a regular time of 8:30. Sometimes she's asleep by 9, other times she's still wriggling around by 9:30. My aim is to hopefully have her settling in a decent timeframe regularly once she gets the hang of it. Overall, the hope is to gradually get her to the point where she will be able to actually go to sleep in her own bed. Then, if she can do that, mayby we can hope on her being more receptive to staying in the bed, and more likely to actually sleep overnight. Pretty lofty goal really. But at least I feel like we're actually trying something. That just mayby we'll get a full night sleep in the next 2 years.

Current obsession is how things work. Clips are of particular interest. Some days she doesn't want to come in out of the car, instead working on trying to figure out how to do up her carseat buckle. After much investigation, she's figured out how to do up the clip on her backpack harness. She'll spend ages to do it up, and as soon as it's together, she's rather impatient for a parent to undo it, so she can start again. Pram harness has a similar appeal. She's also very much into her pram. Not sitting in it, but she wants to push it. She's also rather keen on trying to plug my power cord into my computer, and the USB into the port (my poor computer) .

Rachael is also a bit of an accessoriser. I don't know where she got it from, definately not me. But she's into shoes, handbags and headbands. And she wants to wear her one pair of red socks every day. Red is definately the colour favourite. I managed to find some more red socks at country kids this week, haven't tried them with her yet, but I'm on a hunt for red socks. But at the same time it seems red socks are rather hard to find at the moment.

Another red item is Murray and Captian Feathersword from the Wiggles. She's just recently discovered the Wiggles, and they're her favourite characters. She was rather chuffed to discover Dorothy the Dinosaur on her pajama top though. The Wiggles have recently chucked out Sam to reinstate Greg. I listened to CDs of both yellow wiggles today. I have to say I think Sam is better.

School term starts back this week, and so does Rachael's swimming classes. It's rather sad to see that after not going to the pool for about 3 weeks over Christmas, Rachael has lost a lot of her pool confidence. But I guess three weeks is a long time when you're 17 months. She is getting back into the swing of it, so I hope she'll be back to where she was soon enough.

Rachael had her first play date in the last month. Didn't really go that well, but it's a start. I'm thinking of not going to playgroup for the next few months, as it's rather intimidating to have so many kids, and start setting up some one-on-one playdates instead.

Rachael is also trying to perfect her "cute" look (and it is SO cute). We've caught her practising it in the reflection of the oven door.