Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Don't know what's worse!

Here is the update on sleep training our kids.

Taylor: He is a horrible daytime napper. He usually naps anywhere from 20-30 minutes and would cry for an hour after waking up. The first few times, he vomitted and I'd have to clean up all the time and put him back to sleep. Now, it's been poop! Every time I've picked him up, he's had a poopie diaper. So what's worse? Vomit or poop? However, he has been sleeping through the night for about 12 hours straight. We've had three great nights so far. I guess the exhaustion from crying during the day catches up to him in the evening. I'm following the author's recommended nap times to help avoid overtiredness, which causes him to toss and and turn during night time sleep (he was an expert on this before sleep training leaving me with less than 4 hours of sleep a night!) Anyhow, he usually wakes up between 6-7 am (so hard for me), first nap starts between 9-10am, second nap starts between 12-1pm. Then, he goes to bed between 6-7 pm. Sometimes we hear him whimpering or whining at night, but he would soothe himself to sleep.

Jacob: He needs lots of love and hugs! Jacob naps once a day between 11-12 noon. We try to follow his preschool naptime schedule and he has been so cooperative at home. I usually give him a hug and kiss and turn on the music for him to soothe himself to sleep. At night, Jacob goes to bed right after we put Taylor down. It takes anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours for him to fall asleep. Routine starts with using the bathroom and brushing his teeth. Then, he gets to choose three books to read, which are usually Laura Numeroff's books. She's his favorite author right now. Then, it's another request to use the potty before the meltdown. He cries for me to sit in the "brown chair," which is a chair in his room. He frequently turns around to make sure I'm still there as he is trying to fall asleep. Now, with my growing belly and body, it is so hard to do especially when it takes him longer than an hour to fall asleep. I'm supposed to move the chair each time closer to the door until he finally falls asleep on his own, but it's been hard to do. I think it will get easier when I don't have a protruding belly. Anyhow, he earns a sticker for every night that he falls asleep in his bed. Right now, he can trade in his stickers for prizes. We are starting with five and increasing it slowly. He has requested to go to the Railroad Museum in Galveston for his first prize.

Emma: She moves whenever she wants...typically when the boys are giving me a hard time. She's doing well. Last week, she weighed 7 lbs. so the doctor has decided to induce me. Doctor said she is "definitely chunky" and "quite large."

Soooooooooooo....by the time the kids are both asleep, I am completely DRAINED! I look forward to some quiet time with Jeremiah, but most of the time, he has fallen asleep on the couch! :( Hopefully, things will get better...but with Emma joining the family in a few weeks, my hopes will have to be put on hold. Bottomline, I want my family to develop better sleeping habits. I'm last on that list though...life of a mommy, right? Hehehe.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Sleep Training

Jeremiah and I recently had some "alone" time in the evening after putting both boys to bed in THEIR beds and we were kinda sad. The kids are definitely busy, loud, and demanding, but the quietness was new and we weren't used to it. So, what did we do? Yep, candlelight dinner, snuggled up against each other, kissed, danced, laughed...NOT...all we did was talk about the kids!! Hahaha...we're currently sleep training both boys and there were LOTS of crying. It was a hard night, but we WON at the end. Both boys finally soothed themselves to sleep. It's going to be tough for the next few weeks, but we are determined to help our kids develop good sleeping habits before Emma comes. This came with some help with a friend of mine, Mary, who is also sleep training her daughter. I've battled this for so long and am so happy to have found someone who can share ideas, give advice, and relate to what I'm going through. Mary was sweet and shared a book that she's reading to help set up a program for her daughter. It's, Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child, by Marc Weissbluth, M.D. I have to say that I am enjoying the book. It has eliminated a lot of my fears of the emotional, physical, and psychological effects of letting kids cry themselves to sleep. We'll keep you updated.

Below are some random pictures taken throughout the week. During our conversation, we realized how much Taylor has adapted to Jacob and vice versa. It is fun seeing them play with each other. Taylor definitely admires his older brother and wants to do everything that he does and wants everything that he has. The first picture shows Taylor with Jacob's lunch bag. Jacob was taking a bath and when Taylor spotted the bag, he dashed for it and carried it everywhere. He's so adorable.

Here, Jacob is baking cookies with me while Taylor is napping. HEB had these Valentine sugar cookies on sale for $0.25 and we bought two. It was fun. Between the both of us, we finished probably two-thirds of it.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Look "whoo's" turning ONE!!

Happy first birthday little Taylor! Aunt Monica and Uncle Daniel came down to celebrate before heading out for their cruise! She is so creative! We didn't take lots of pictures...I wish we did of Taylor!!
Look at the cake. Monica is so awesome. I kept having to tell Jake to move from the table. Half of the cupcakes were scraped before the party started.

Our friends came, but we didn't get a picture of Mary or Emily. =( That's Greg and baby Madison.She is so cute!!!

He didn't even want his cake! =( Weird kid..Jake was eyeing the entire time!!!

Family Update: We have moved to a new apartment in Katy in the Cinco Ranch area. We love it here and feel very safe.

Jacob: Jacob loves preschool and doesn't cry anymore ever since they've started their new reward program. He loves earning stickers and choosing a prize from the prize box. It is something that we are working on at home as well. It's amazing what progress he has made. He now takes naps in his own bed. However, he still sleeps in our bed at night. He gets scared easily and refuses to sleep in his own room. We are currently working on ways to eliminate those fears. Slowly, but surely, it will happen. He's becoming a big boy and wants to do big boy things. He continues to excel in school. His teacher told us that he was one of the top exceling students.

Taylor: Taylor has a strong personality. He definitely knows what he wants and expresses it daily. He walks and doesn't like the stroller anymore. He sits in a big boy carseat and loves his sippy cup. He fights over the ipad, computer, etc. He can understand requests and is beginning to sign. I didn't want to teach sign language as I felt it delayed Jacob's speech development, but Jeremiah insisted. Taylor enjoys the Baby Can Read video and cards and learned rather quickly. He is currently working on sleep training. Hopefully, we can get him into his crib before baby #3 comes. I am sure that it will happen. He is doing good right now.

Jeremiah: Jeremiah is a workaholic. Shhh...don't let him hear me say that out loud. He works a lot. I think more than when we were in California...something that I feared when moving out here. He has a lot of responsibilities and being a perfectionist himself, I am sure he is much needed at work. Some days are hard for him because he is so exhausted and the kids, including myself, are so needy for his attention when he gets home. He's a hardworker and on his days off, we take advantage of every single second of him being home.

Sopha: Sopha is almost due! Yep, that's me! I'm almost due and I have been having lots of anxiety about labor and delivery. I do not look forward to it. Sometimes, I would cry just thinking about it. I am 35-36 weeks and I am totally NOT enjoying these last few weeks. My body is so sore head down. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father has sent me another child and so excited to finally have her and see her and hold her. I just wished that I had more energy for my two kids who are so demanding and the energy to clean the house. I can pretty much do everything, except TOILETS. I throw up just thinking about it. I was okay until month 7. Oh well, I'm happy Jeremiah hired someone to do the cleaning. =)

Overall, we are healthy and grateful for the things we have and do not have. The gospel has enriched our lives in so many ways and we see it through the bonds that we have with our family and the faith we develop as we experience the trials and tribulations that are upon us on a daily basis. LOVE, PATIENCE, SERVICE, and COMPASSION helps us get through some of those hard things coupled with our testimonies of our Savior, Jesus Christ. We are fortunate to live in these times and hope we are given opportunities to continue to learn.

Valentine's Day party at school

I am so incredibly grateful that I can be apart of Jacob's school functions. It was so much fun! Jacob had a blast passing out V day goodies to his friends...though he didn't like the fact that I made him write his name on all 28 cards when in fact there are only 15 kids in his class. Hey...practice makes perfect!
Our surprise...

He doesn't like to color as much, but orange, yellow, and red are some of his favorite colors.

Walking and our new place

Taylor is walking! He began walking right after Christmas. This picture is blurry because I couldn't get him to stay still...figures. Anyway, on top of reaching this milestone, we also moved apartments. We are now on the second floor, which makes it hard going up and down, but we definitely feel safer.

Christmas in Texas

Merry Christmas!! (I accidentally post some pictures in the previous post!) In this picture, Jacob had already opened all his presents and now Taylor was opening his! He was so happy. He loves to make sounds and music and this toy had tons of buttons for him to push. On top of that, he loves riding toys. Taylor had started taking baby steps right after Thanksgiving, so his new toy from Santa would help him start walking!
Not camera shy today.

Snacks from Santa was icing on the cake!

Of course, Jacob loved the baby's toy as well.

Aww, look how cute the boys are!

Jacob's new ride. What a wink! lol

Christmas Performance at Preschool

We were so excited for Jacob's first school performance! I don't think I slept the night before. I was anxious to see the program, especially because he had been singing Christmas songs at home with all sorts of facial expressions and gestures. Here we are, of course, the FIRST in the classroom, waiting for everyone's arrival. Daddy and Taylor reserved our spot (front row of course!) in the multi-purpose room.
Adorable!! Their class was the last to perform! The "reindeers" walked down the aisle before getting on the stage and you can hear the room went from silent to "Awwwwwww!" The kids were so cute. Jacob was so excited! So excited that he blurted out (everyone was getting situated and crowd was quiet), "Mom, where is my surprise?!?!" I turn beet red. Where did that come from? Well, before I left his room, he was beginning to cry, so I told him we had a surprise for him if he followed directions and made good choices. I had to discretely point to the diaper bag that the present was in the bag, which it was, but a parent behind us asked us if he was our child and I said, embarassingly, "umm...yes." She thought he was cute. Anyway, HE kept us entertained the entire program. Not only trying to discipline his younger brother from the stage, but doing random dance moves, etc. The program is starting! His friend, Gabriel, is standing right next to him. During one of the songs, he had a little altercation with the girl next to him. She didn't like that he kept throwing his scarf into her dress.

We wish you a Merry Christmas "tree" (Jacob's version).

Oopsie. This was for another post. THis is Jacob waking up on Christmas morning. He was so happy. Santa Claus had finally stopped by our house to deliver some well deserved gifts. Jacob ran in circles until we asked him to sit down.

Umm...how could he have possibly guess what he was getting without opening the presents first? He probably guessed 90% of his presents correctly before getting them opened. We were shocked!!

Yep, he knew what this was before he opened up.

Fun days before Christmas

Jacob enjoys creating projects. I found tons of preschool activities online that we could do together and it was a blast!! When his projects were done, he'd ask if he could tape it to his bedroom door so he could surprise his dad when he got home fromwork. He was so proud of his gingerbread man!!
Here, we are making a gingerbread house. The activity was planned earlier in the day, but because Jacob refused to eat his lunch, even after giving him an additional 15 minutes to eat, he was sent to bed without any projects! After he woke up, I caved after he said sorry and was searching for all the goodies we laid out earlier. Again, he was so proud of his accomplishment and even asked to save it for his dad. When dad came home, half of the roof was gone. Hehehe...

Taylor entertained us with music while we were putting the gingerbread house together.