Lucas has settled into a pretty pleasant daytime disposition. He loves watching ceiling fans and mobiles and playing under his toy bars. He's pretty vocal and an expert at whale noises. He holds his head steady when he is sitting up on a lap and he picks it up when he is reclining and from tummy time. He loves to push with his legs, I can't believe how strong he is!
He is still doing well with Napping in the Crib. He always demands to have his left arm out now and likes to suck that hand when he finds it. Taking after his big brother already! To accommodate lunch time for me, my toddler, and his wonderful nanny, we've been letting Lucas fall asleep and nap in the swing at mid-day. He will nap from 1-3 hours in the swing, I find he is more agreeable to falling back asleep if he wakes up when he is swinging. It's a great situation for the moment, but I know he will be outgrowing the swing in a couple of months.
I'm very happy to say Lucas has moved on from Witching Hour Madness. His disposition in the evenings is greatly improved! But lately I've nicknamed him "the evening napper..."
After some effort, I usually get Lucas down to sleep around 7-8 p.m. I either use the pacifier or the "baby jiggle" which we used nightly with my first son. The jiggle is just pacing around the room with baby until he falls asleep, then sneaking him into the crib. On the plus side, the jiggle is nice exercise for mommy.
Unfortunately, 30-45 minutes after what I think should be Lucas' bedtime, he wakes up as if he has just had the most refreshing nap. So we play for another hour, then feed again, and then it's bedtime for the second time around. Especially if he is hard to get down (despite being so obviously exhausted) the first time, knowing that I will have to do the whole process again in 2 hours is a little disheartening to me.
On the up side, if he goes to sleep at 10 p.m., he'll often sleep until 3 or 4. Then he'll wake for a second feeding around 7 but that is already morning to me and I feel fairly well rested. Other times he is up at 1 and 3 and 5 and...oh my! I'm currently trying some tips from What to Expect the First Year regarding reducing nighttime feedings for when he gets up every 2 hours. I'll update my successes and failures in another post after I see how things go!
Here's Lucas catching a little extra shut eye after a 7 a.m. feeding in my bed...
Things I am loving lately...
Dimmer Switch - I use these on both my bedside lamp and the lamp next to the rocker in Lucas' nursery. They are great for keeping a very dim room during bedtime rituals and nighttime feedings!
Little Critters Musical Piano - A hand-me-down from his brother, I put up this piano up in Lucas' crib. I love that it has a lot of different options for sounds and music!
My 12-weeks of maternity leave ended on June 5th. Lucas didn't turn 3 months until June 12 due to March and May being long months.
Here's Lucas on my last day of maternity leave!
I was pretty sad about returning to work, but I've had a very positive experience so far. I work from home full-time and we employ a nanny we found on www.care.com. I still mostly breastfed during my working hours (quicker and much more enjoyable than pumping for me).
After returning to work, I've found I still enjoy my professional job. The stimulation of my work plus reconnecting with my coworkers has really helped me keep a personal identity separate from just being "mama."
I did make a few changes to my daily routine so everything would run more smoothly. I do meal prep every evening - salads for my husband and I (he makes them a lot of the time too) and food for my toddler so he has breakfast and lunch mostly ready to serve.
I also pulled out my Planner which has been collecting dust these past 3 months. I sadly skipped the blank pages and started anew with June. My goals for this month include: exercising on my spinning bike followed by some yoga at least 2 days per week and getting out with my family to do one fun thing each weekend. I find with a toddler and baby the weekends just fly by and if we don't plan ahead to do something, we just sit at home. Since Henry naps in the afternoon we really have to get out in the morning and that requires pre-planning for me. Our first weekend of this new resolve, we went to the swimming pool and Henry just loved it!
Things I am loving lately...
Trader Joe's Matcha White Chocolate Bar! The Matcha flavor is pleasant, the chocolate not overly sweet, and the filling is like caramel in texture. I was also pleased to see the bar is only considered 2 servings (220 cal, 12 gram fat each). Even though a "serving" is an ambiguous term, it still makes me feel better. I enjoyed my one serving and saved the other for the next day.
My new Tieks! I was inspired to buy a pair after reading a review on the blog: Crazy Together. I haven't had much luck with flats in the past...they tend to always hurt the back of my heel and also either side of my large toe joints. I don't much care for heels either. For years I wore platforms, but they have decreased in popularity in the fashion world and also my husband and I are the same height and I don't like towering over him (I can't say he minds it, he's a confident guy). Lately, with two kids, I find myself always in my running shoes or in flip flops. I wanted something more stylish which would be just as comfortable. I ordered the Olive Green Classic style (image from their website) and they did not disappoint! They were comfortable from the moment I first put them on. I also love that they fold up to fit in a purse or stash in the car.
Henry turns 2-years old next week! My mom will be in town for a visit. Last year, we vacationed with my in-laws for his first birthday so she is excited to be here for her oldest grandson's birthday this year. I'm on the fence about making a cake or making my Double Chocolate Banana Muffins. I want to do something more exciting than his Frosted Banana Muffin from last year. I'm going to try this recipe for Coconut Cream Chocolate Frosting because my lactose-intolerant husband can't eat the cream cheese kind.
Henry has some great gifts coming including a sandbox, which I think he is going to absolutely love digging around in, a train set, and some new Lego Duplos.
Henry is mostly his happy-go-lucky typical self with an occasional toddler moment. He has most recently refused to eat chunks of watermelon but will happily eat a slice. Luckily my husband had only chopped up 1/2 of it before we realized this little quirk. The joys of toddlerhood!