Hayden and Layla's Place

Early Riser April 30, 2013

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 5:44 pm

We are really pretty lucky when it comes to our kids and sleep, but lately Layla has been getting up a bit too early and refusing to go back to bed.

She has been in a big girl bed for 4 months or so, so we are really at her mercy to stay in bed.  We never had any trouble whatsoever with Hayden when he went in his big boy bed all those years ago.  We told him he couldn’t get out of it, and he listened.  Layla on the other hand has no trouble making her own rules and coming into our room an hour or more before wake up time.  Last night, in fact, in the middle of the night I woke to her climbing into bed in between me and John.  I had to physically pick her up and carry her back to her bed.

So my friend Anita has lent me this clock that is supposed to show her when it is ok to get up.  You set it to a specific time, and once that time comes it lights up and has a picture of the sun on it.  All through the night it stays dark and has a picture of a star on it, to show it’s time for sleep.  Last night was the first night we tried it.  She was really excited about it at first (as was Hayden, who wanted one in his room), then as it got closer to bedtime she started to act a little scared of it.  She asked me to take it out of the room, but I was able to talk her out of that.  We tried to set it to an early enough time that she wouldn’t have to wait too long before she saw the sun light up.  We figured we’d get her used to it and as she got the hang of it we’d start setting the time a little later each day.  She woke up before it lit up though.  John took her back into her room and stayed with her until it lit up.  So, hopefully she will know for tomorrow what will happen.  It would be good to be able to get an extra 30 minutes or so in the morning – particularly on the weekend!


Why do we have to sleep? August 16, 2012

Filed under: Dad Blogs on Hayden — JDG @ 12:25 am

Hayden likes to procrastinate at bed time. Sometimes he will try anything to stay up longer. It will start with complaining he can’t find one of his bed toys, then his owl blanket won’t be on properly, then abbey be in his room and purring too loud, and then he will want a drink and then need the toilet, then need some help to wash his hands, then he needs owl blanket or car quilt back on after getting out of bed. I am a complete sucker so I just run ups nd down the stairs until he finally goes to sleep!

One of his favourite discussions to keep bedtime alive is to ask me why do we have to sleep? I will make something up about how you have to sleep to get enough energy. He will not buy it and ask what if I don’t sleep? I will tell him that you get too tired to play toys if you don’t sleep. What if I forget how to sleep? Or I won’t sleep and so on :). Despite all this he is actually a really good sleeper.



Abbey “Nightwatch Cat” July 25, 2011

Filed under: Mommy — karagoodwin @ 5:02 pm
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The kids are now to an age where if they cry out in the middle of the night we don’t feel like we have to rush right in.  We don’t want them to get into a habit of waking up and then getting attention, because that is not a fun game for the adults who also need sleep.  They also usually don’t wake each other up even if one is crying out (USUALLY).  However, our beloved cat, Abbey, has taken to becoming a backup alarm for the kids’ cries.  If one of them cries out and we don’t respond (often, intentionally) she will sit in between their rooms and meow at the top of her lungs – and meow, and meow, and meow.  We usually end up getting up more to keep her from waking the sleeping child than out of concern for whoever caused the kitty alarm.  It’s no fun getting up in the middle of the night, but having a nightwatch cat does provide a little comic relief when it does happen.


Happy 1st birthday, Lay! June 1, 2011

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 7:27 pm
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Layla turned one!  The year really flew by – it’s hard to believe it was already a year ago that she was born.  We had a nice party for her, and it got to be on her actual birthday since it happened to be on a Saturday.  We had all her local family here – grandmas, grandpas, great-grandpa, aunts, uncles, and cousins.  Even a special guest from London, Nanny, was here to celebrate!  We also had our neighbors over.  We had great weather so we were able to be comfortably outside for most of the party (which was noteworthy because of all the rain we have had, and it did rain when the party was over).   Layla got some fun presents including a few dolls which she gets excited over and likes to kiss, and plenty of food-related gifts to go with her big present from Mommy and Daddy of a play kitchen.  It has been fun watching her and big brother play with that.  Hayden has been good about the fact that the new toys are her presents and trying to get her to play with them when he wants play so they are sharing.

It’s been a great year.  Layla is a really sweet baby.  She has never been much of a crier.  We know something really is wrong when we hear her cry.  She is getting more and more communicative.  She still only says Mama, but she jabbers a lot and seems to really be wanting to be heard when she does that.  The other day it was so funny because John came home and she just started jabbering so loudly!  She seemed very excited to be seeing him and had all sorts of things to tell him! I am pretty sure she won’t crawl.  She’s got her scooting down pat and she can get everywhere that way, so why make the lateral move to crawling?  She pulls herself up onto her knees, but hasn’t worked up to a standing position yet.  We are working on that with her.  She loves the animals.  She will often be seen leaning over to give the dogs or cat kisses.  She has six teeth now; two on the bottom and four up top.   She is a great eater.  I call her my bottomless pit at least once a day.  Before she goes to sleep I will stand by her crib and bounce her a little, and she will lay her head on my shoulder and it melts my bones.  She is a very special little person; I couldn’t be happier!


Sleeping and New Schedule March 23, 2011

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 8:14 pm
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So Layla has a couple of new things going on.  First, I finally scrapped the “dream feed,” where I would go feed her before I went to sleep.  I would also change her diaper at that time, with the hopes that she wouldn’t wake up in the middle of the night due to a leak or hunger.  I bought her some overnight diapers so she could go longer between changes at night and gave not feeding her a go.  It worked instantly!  She woke up at the same time in the morning and didn’t wake up in the middle of the night.  I even wonder if she is sleeping a little bit better as a result of not being woken up after 3-4 hours of sleep, because every once in a while before she would wake up for a little bit in the middle of the night, and she’s not done that at all since I dropped the dream feed a week ago.

The other thing that has changed with her is she is going to day care a couple of days a week.  We tried putting her in for a couple of full days, and since she isn’t taking a bottle that didn’t go very well since she was adjusting to a new place, new people, not getting her milk, and couldn’t seem to settle for her naps.  So she is now going 2 days per week for about 3 hours.  Since the day care center is so close, I am able to take her in after her morning nap and pick her up before her afternoon nap, and she doesn’t need any milk during that time.  She still had a bit of trouble adjusting in the beginning, but every time I pick her up now it sounds as though she is doing better and better.  I’m so glad I’m able to ease her into this, because I know soon enough she is going to have to go the whole day and I really think this “trial time” we’ve concocted will make that transition easier (for both of us, really).


A Whole Different Baby February 3, 2011

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 7:52 pm
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Layla has reached the age where she is very active, interactive, taking everything in, and learning every minute.  It seems like she was just born, so it’s funny to me to see what she is like now and think that she’s totally different now to the little baby who pretty much just used to sleep all the time.  Let me count the ways that she is “new”:

1. Her hair is coming in thick and fast.  It was just a few weeks ago that the sides and back of her hair had fallen out and most of her hair that was left was just on top.  Every day I can see she is getting more and more hair and it seems to be getting longer quickly.  When Hayden was her age his hair had fallen out but was coming back in very light blonde.  This does not seem to be happening to her; I don’t think she will ever be blonde.  I don’t think it will be long before she starts getting some baby curls. 🙂

2.  She is an eating pro.  She gets three meals a day, and she’s an eager eater.  My stepdad said it best: “She eats with her whole body!”  Her little hands and feet move in excited circles as she eats.  Cutest. Thing. Ever.  I guess I will have to qualify this by saying that she is a very eager eater as long as I have added some yogurt to whatever I’m giving her.  She will open her mouth like a little birdie when there’s yogurt mixed in, but otherwise she’s not as keen.  The last couple of meals I have forgone the yogurt and she has still eaten it, but in the past she wouldn’t even open her mouth if it didn’t have the good stuff in there!

3.  She is finally taking naps in her crib.  This has been a looooong time coming.  I only have myself to blame for her nearly hitting the 8 month mark before she would sleep in her bed during the day.  I didn’t push it because 1) when I work it was easier to let her fall asleep on her nursing pillow while I worked than try to get her to nap upstairs and then have to manage going up and down the stairs continuously with the real possibility of her never falling asleep.  I knew if I kept her with me she would definitely fall asleep and it would be, well, easy!  And 2) the times I did try to let her “cry it out” in her bed she would start getting in a habit of crying whenever I put her in her crib, even at night.  If I didn’t bother with it during the day, then the nighttime routine wasn’t negatively impacted.  Obviously this approach wouldn’t work for most families, but it was fine for us.  But now that she is taking naps in her bed it just feels like she is so grown up!

4.  She has been sitting up very steadily for a while now.  She’s not crawling, but she does kind of wiggle herself in the right direction when she is lying on her belly and wants something.  But no scooting or crawling or anything like that.

5.  She LOVES laughing at Hayden.  She is very interested in him.  He loves making her laugh, too.  He will shake his head back and forth which usually gets her laughing.  In fact, he was doing that this morning when we were taking him to preschool, but she hasn’t been feeling well and she was watching him but not laughing.  He was telling me that she needed to be laughing because he was doing that.  lol!  When she and I have been home on a workday and Hayden’s been at preschool, she gets visibly excited when I put her in her carseat when it’s time to go get him (and she doesn’t get excited when put in her carseat any other time).


Back to Work! and the Sleeping Situation October 27, 2010

Filed under: Mommy — karagoodwin @ 7:36 pm
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Well, I’m back to work!  I had intended on having an extended maternity through Thanskgiving, but I asked my manager to keep me posted on opportunities as they came in so I could reevaluate as needed if the right thing came along.  I don’t think I’m allowed to say in a forum like this who my new client is, but it’s a large multimedia corporation, which is different from all the pharma companies I’ve worked for/with in my career.  Then again, with the nature of my work it doesn’t really make a huge difference what kind of work the company does since I work on Human Resources systems.

Anyway, the right thing came along and I went back to work 3 1/2 weeks ago.  When I went back to work after having Hayden I put him in day care because I was starting with a new department and I didn’t know what it was going to be like (likewise I’d never had a baby before so didn’t know if it would be too much to have him home while I tried to work, etc).  Having now been through it with him I decided to try keeping Layla home with me while she is a little baby.  She really is a pretty good baby, so I don’t spend a lot of time soothing her.  Also, when Hayden was a baby I would go in once a day to breastfeed him, and through that I got to see how the infant room operates at the day care center.  When they aren’t at full capacity they have time to do a lot of fun interaction with the babies, but when they are busy it is all “maintenance” – whoever’s turn it is to eat gets fed, changed gets changed, slept gets slept, and if a baby is fussing who doesn’t need any of that and there is another baby who does, they have to wait their turn.  I can understand that – they have to do what they have to do to make sure things get done for all the babies.  However, it’s not more than what I can do with Layla even when I get busy.  Also, she sleeps a good amount of time during the day, and she sleeps better at home than she would there since it’s dark and quiet in her room and they have to keep the lights on at day care and it’s not quiet.  Although, for a long time I was not able to master the sleeping situation the way I wanted to.  I couldn’t get her to sleep in her crib for naps, so I was just letting her fall asleep on the boppy pillow which was around me.  This allowed me to still be able to type.  I just didn’t have time to keep going upstairs to try to sooth her.  I hoped that once she got good at going to sleep on her own at nighttime that would transfer over to naps, too.  So, I tried it today at naptime and she did take two naps in her crib today!  The afternoon one was way too short but it’s a start.  I didn’t expect it to be perfect right away.

So, I am very happy with my work situation right now.  I know when she gets more mobile she will need to go to day care because I won’t be able to chase her around all day (and who knows how far off that is – she has really mastered her belly to back roll today!), but until then it’s working.  It’s much more demanding having her home than it would be with her at day care, but it’s so much more rewarding.


Was it my imagination, or…. September 14, 2010

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 11:59 pm

…did you used to sleep through the night?

Who, me?

I feel certain that she did, but the last two or three weeks there has been some regression in the sleep department.  She has been getting up in the middle of the night at least once, if not twice.  Two nights in a row recently her motion sensor went off twice in the night.  It detects motion in the bed associated with breathing, and if it doesn’t sense the baby is breathing the alarm goes off.  After the second night I looked under the mattress and found the sensor had come off its base which was probably causing the problem, and I upped the sensitivity level.  Last night I actually turned the sensor off because I had found that after having to go to her 3 or 4 times throughout the evening after I put her down that she responded well to being laid right up against her crib railing so she could be propped up a little on her side.  However, that keeps her too far from the sensor and it went off before we went to bed so I decided to turn it off as I couldn’t take a third night in a row of it waking me up unnecessarily.  She slept like a champ until 5!  I remember a few weeks ago she was “sleeping in” until about 8 or so, but I found out a couple of weeks ago that the monitor had been turned down (by Hayden, apparently) so there was a week or so where she may have been waking up a little in the night but not crying properly to where we could hear her without the monitor.  She makes little cooing noises in the night when she wakes up as opposed to loud cries, and I try to get to her as fast as I can so as not to wake John up (which works less than half the time).  I’m going to be optimistic that her not waking until 5 is marking the end of the sleep regression! 🙂


Sleeping update August 21, 2010

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 8:24 pm

Layla has properly moved into her crib now. I should take her pack n play bassinet out of my and john’s room but I haven’t had the heart yet. I am mostly happy that she is in her crib because it means that she is sleeping so well, but there is still a little bit of sadness that she is just that little bit older already.

She is sleeping in her crib during naps (when we are at home and she’s not sleeping on the go, anyway) and at nighttime. I tried introducing an earlier bedtime (7-8) because she was sleeping so late in the mornings I thought she might need to be put down earlier, but that didn’t work. One thing that was hard for me to appreciate until I was a parent is that just like you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink, it is hard to make a baby (or toddler, or anyone I suppose) sleep if they don’t want to. I can put her in her crib at 7 but even if I think she is tired she will cry. She is too young (in my book) to cry it out at this point, so the two times I have tried putting her down early I have ended up getting her as soon as she cries and bringing her back down to be with me and John until she falls asleep properly.

This morning when I went to get her she was 180 degrees turned around from how I had put her down. I was scratching my head in confusion because I hadn’t heard her rustling around overnight or in the morning and she was swaddled for goodness sake! I don’t know how she turned herself so much that her head was where her feet were when I laid her down, and vise versa. I would understand if she had been screaming her head off at some point (and thus wriggling her body around) or something but she never gave any indication of what she was up to! It did make us laugh, though.


Sleeping in Her Big Crib August 10, 2010

Filed under: Mommy on Layla — karagoodwin @ 7:44 pm

Layla is sleeping in her crib for the first time as I type this. She has been sleeping in our room at night in her pack n play basinett since she came home from the hospital. During the day she’s just been sleeping as we go – in the car, in her baby carrier, in my arms, etc. I hadn’t raised the crib mattress from when Hayden slept in there and wasn’t planning to get the mattress pad and sheets on it until then, so it wasn’t ready for her to go in it yet. Then yesterday I finally raised the mattress and washed the pad and sheets. I figured at the very least I would have a good place to lay her down when I was upstairs once I did that! Then a couple of hours ago the three of us were upstairs and she fell asleep while I was feeding her. I thought I would try out the crib and see how she got on. I swaddled her up, closed the shutters, and she’s been out like a light for 1 1/2 hours! I don’t think I am going to move her in there at night yet. She is still sleeping through the night, but it’s sooo nice to just take two steps to pick her up and feed her instead of walking down the hall, so I’m happy to give her a little longer in there. 

I couldn’t resist taking a cheeky picture of her when I went in to check on her. 🙂