napping

Maddie Revises Her Napping Schedule

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Maddie’s new nap schedule taking it’s toll.

Maddie is in the process of dropping her second nap, but it’s not shaping up to be a seamless process. We are trying to let Maddie guide the process, but so far, she’s changing the rules on a day-to-day basis.

 

The napping process is up in the air for now. There are days with short naps, longs naps and even days with no naps. The days with no naps produce one cranky little muffin who is ready to snap at a moment’s notice.

 

The transition period has been bumpy, but we are hoping the end is in site. As for Maddie, you know she wants to sleep, but she is fighting it left and right.


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The Incredible Floating Toes

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Back up - I'm coming over!!
Back up – I’m coming over!!

How is the climbing stage going?

I guess it depends on who you ask.

As far as Maddie’s parents are concerned, the climbing stage isn’t too cool.

Ask Maddie and I’m sure she thinks it going GREAT!

“No crib can hold me,” exclaimed the 18-month-old girl as she prepared to vault into the great abyss.

This is to be expected when you have a toddler that can throw her legs as high as her head and has toes capable of gripping any smooth surface like a gecko lizard.

Maddie vaults on top of tables and chairs with reckless abandon now.  This high-risk behavior is on the verge of becoming a serious problem.

Watching my baby, it’s easy to understand the pure folly of human nature.

Like scientists and politicians, Maddie often decides plunges ahead with a course of action rather than pondering the aftermath of what she does. Of course she is only 18-months-old and has time to resolve this risky behavior issue.

Baby Pummels Parents for Last Night’s Bungled Bedtime

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You just might think twice before putting me to bed late again

Maddie and I were playing strong well after her bedtime last night. It was just 15 minutes before eight pm and I knew we were playing with house money. Surely just one night of staying up late wouldn’t have any serious repercussions. I had the baby in bed at eight, just one measly little hour past her bedtime.

I went to bad that night with the satisfaction of a job well done. It never occurred to me that I was setting myself up for a beating the next day. However, as soon I got to the crib this morning, I could tell little Miss Sunshine was far out of sorts. OK, so she was a little bit snippy and a tad whiny, but surely that would pass – or would it?

It turns out that Maddie had a great deal to say about not getting enough sleep the night before. Every time it seemed like Maddie had turned the corner, she was bent out of shape again. She had some jovial stretches in there, but for the most part, it was a rough day at the baby office.

During mealtime, Maddie’s patience would dry up the second she did not get something she wanted. Even our outdoor time was a bit sketchy. Naps also helped for brief periods of time, but Maddie made today’s lesson very clear. Get me in bed at a decent hour or you will pay the piper!

All That Work Comes with a Price

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I’m just resting my eyes

After 14 straight days of standing, crawling, skydiving, bull riding and nunchuck fighting demonstrations, guess who finally hit the wall? That’s right, my little Maddie, the 10-month-old dynamo was forced to call a truce with the universe this morning.

I actually never saw this coming. Maddie roared awake at around 5am and was ready to take on all comers. She seemed even more anxious than usual to express some very loud opinions and get going with some rigorous full-contact outdoor activities. Right after we dropped her mom off, Maddie made it clear that I had about 10 seconds to storm the local Dunkin Donuts and liberate a whole-wheat bagel for her to destroy.

Within moments, the helpless bagel was struggling for survival as pieces of dough exploded out of Maddie’s stroller. Horns were blowing and rescue teams poured into the area as bagel pieces rained down on helpless commuters, pelting light rail passengers and shattering windshields within a 3-block radius.

“I need more speed,” demanded Maddie as I pushed the stroller towards the waterfront.  The baby rolled her eyes with disdain and suggested that maybe it would help if she got out and pushed. She’s been dragging her feet on a decision to replace her dad with a more obedient stroller driver, but still hasn’t had the heart to pull the trigger.

As I quickened my pace to avoid any further controversy, I noticed that the stroller compartment had fallen uncharacteristically silent. I slowed my pace so that I could catch a glimpse of what Maddie was up to now. I almost tripped and fell over when I saw that she was actually sound asleep???

Maddie hasn’t fallen asleep in her stroller in months. I slipped the stroller into a lower gear and made a subtle break for home. 20 minutes later and the baby was still sawing wood. I found a quiet section of sidewalk and decided to let her sleep it out. More than a half hour later and Maddie hadn’t even budged. It appears that my force of nature has finally decided to take some time to recharge.

The calm before the storm

I’m glad to see her getting the rest, but I have to worry what she might be like once she catches up on her sleep. I know she’s contemplated running a marathon and scaling the Empire State Building, but for now I intend to enjoy this scant amount of downtime.

Mission Impossible – Don’t Wake the Baby

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Whatever you do, don’t wake the baby!
Mission: Extract paper bag without waking baby
Strategy: Snatch and grab with great stealth
Risk:  Waking up ravenous honey badger
 
Maddie just finished up a monster-sized lunch with her friends in Central Jersey. Before leaving the restaurant, Maddie’s father was tasked with bringing home lunch to the baby’s mother. As Dad packed the car, he put the salad on the floor so Maddie could not extract the contents while sitting in her baby seat.
 
At first, this seemed like a solid strategy. This way the salad would not be forgotten when it was time to extract Maddie. What Dad did not take into account was what would happen if Maddie fell asleep. But sure enough, just 15 minutes from home, the baby was down for the count. We know all too well that if you wake the baby from her nap, she won’t give you a second chance to put her down for several hours. 
 
I scan the review mirror and see the sleeping form of my little angel and realize that we have a long dark mission in front of us and someone is bound to get dirty. I place a stealth call to Maddie’s mother to warn her of our potential disaster. Mom makes her way downstairs just as I pull up with Maddie.
 
The paper bag holding the salad might as well be an M-80 quarter stick of dynamite. Maddie is never able to sleep through that wicked crinkling noise a paper bag makes. Maddie parents begin exchanging intricate hand signals trying to determine the best way to deliver lunch without waking the beast.
 
Gina made the “roll down the window” motion to see if she could reach the salad behind the passenger seat. As soon as the window crept down, some guy with a nail gun started firing away across the street. Maddie opened her eyes as Gina commando rolled onto the sidewalk and out of sight. By the time Gina hit the deck, the window was already rolled back up and somehow the baby had fallen back asleep.
 
We followed the same procedure for attempt #2. This time mom started gently lifting the bag, but was blocked by a child’s toy that would surely wake Maddie up. Maddie stirred and her mom froze in place – but this time the baby did not open her eyes. Mom delicately maneuvered the salad out of the vehicle as we simultaneously pulled into the flow of traffic. The baby was still asleep, mom had her salad and our mission was accomplished!!   –

Baby Suspends Sleep & Eating for New Teeth

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I already have two teeth - that's plenty!

Even after two major trips in a row, Maddie’s schedule at home was really coming together nicely. Full nights of sleep and a fairly regimented eating schedule had the entire household living the dream.

But things swerved a bit off kilter yesterday and today all that consistency went up in smoke. Maddie spent the day boycotting any feeding or nap attempts. This caused me great concern because my parents were coming in to babysit Maddie.

Once they arrived, I was nervous about leaving them alone with the Mad Madster who was smack dab in the middle of her simultaneous hunger and sleep strike. However, the baby was full of smiles and squeaks and showing no signs of criminal mischief. After some urging from the grandparents, I decided to let Maddie be free of me for a couple of hours.

I gave my mom the scoop on Maddie’s odd behavior and finally left with a heavy cloud of guilt over my head. At this point, I still did not know the origin of the baby’s stranger-than-normal behavior.

Finally I broke down and called my parents for the scoop. They said that Maddie had taken a decent nap and was playing on the floor with my mom. Maddie’s grandfather told me to take my time, but I know that the baby’s mood can turn on a dime. I hurried home and when I walked in, I asked my dad how things were going.

When Maddie heard my voice, she let out a powerful screech. According to my parents, she had slowly started to come undone about 15 minutes before I got home. The baby didn’t need anything in particular, she just wondered why I wasn’t waiting on her hand and foot.

My wife had arrived home about the same time I did and informed me that Maddie has a pair of top teeth that have begun to break through the gums. That’s why the happy baby has been suddenly out of sorts. Maddie is fighting the good fight against this most recent invasion of the teeth, but we will have to see how tonight goes for all us.

Curse of the Late Afternoon Nap

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I feel so refreshed, let's make it a late one!

Few things rip into a peaceful bedtime routine like the curse of the late afternoon/early evening nap. But what can do when that’s when the baby wants to nap? Apparently, not too much.

When Maddie snags a good nap in the morning or early afternoon, bedtime is a breeze. But if she is still napping around 4pm, undesirable nuggets can hit the fan with great velocity. There was a time when we foolishly believed that any nap the baby took was a good one. Maddie has been more than happy to dispel this misconception for us.

At 5pm this afternoon we could feel our anxiety mounting as Maddie slept like the angel she truly is. At this point we knew two things were in store for us.

  1. Once the baby woke up, she would be in a wonderful mood.
  2. Once it was time for bed, it would be time to pay the piper and deal with what we like to call the wild banana syndrome.

Both of these predictions soon came to pass. Maddie woke up sweet as sugar magnolias. She was fun, charming and bursting with love. We fed her pork and vegetables and she was the perfect little lady.

But once it was time for bed, a dark shadow crept over the house. That sweet disposition tuned sour and the angry bedtime antics began. First came the angry protests that quickly escalated into an-all out temper tantrum. The nerve of these idiot parents trying to put me to bed, do I look tired to you??

Letting Maddie work it out in the crib is never a big hit either. She expects full payment of these parental follies and wants it all up front. She also demonstrates great athletic prowess by flipping from one side of the crib to the other.

In the end, it just takes a little extra love and patience along with about 45 minutes of hanging out in close proximity to the crib. Eventually the queen burns herself out and is hopefully asleep for the night. All that’s left to do is go to bed early and hope tomorrow delivers an earlier naptime that doesn’t trigger another extended witching hour.