March 10, 2014

i’m starting to adjust to the whole off from work with an infant routine.  in fact, i am happy that i can now use the word ‘routine’ and actually mean it, to some degree.  while cameron certainly doesn’t have his day/night cycle straight yet, i am finding myself clinging to any semblance of structure in my day.

[maybe it’s to make up for the nights, which are still quite . . . freestyle.  but that is to be expected.]

josh just went back to work today, and i am just starting to figure out what works best for me/cameron/annabel.  i am lucky [and thrilled] to have help from our nanny g. throughout the day, and this is making leave #2 less stressful than leave #1 so far.   

our daily template:
[new and improved, status post daylight savings time shift!]
[[this is in part a fantasy schedule, since with josh back at work it’s a new routine.  but this is how things are shaping up so far . . .]]

~ somewhere around 6-7a:  get up for the day.  i’d gladly sleep in later if cameron would be up for it, but his sleep tends to become quite fragmented by 3-4 am, happening only in 1-1.5 hour chunks — or less.  once i’ve tired of playing ‘pop in the paci’, i just bite the bullet and get up.

7a:  annabel up!  [it used to be 6!  i am going to try everything in my power to keep things shifted an hour later, because i much prefer it this way.]  breakfast with a.  i am into oatmeal these days, as it is a galactogogue.  g. arrives at 7:30.

8a:  hang out with annabel, feed cameron.  g. helps get annabel dressed and ready to go.  at around 8:50, g. and annabel leave for school.

9a:  I hang with c. and pump.  this is going okay, and my stash is very slowly expanding.  i’m only pumping once daily right now, because c.’s feeding are unpredictable.  eventually, i’ll do once in the AM and once in the evening — that is, if/when c. eventually chooses a ‘stable’ bedtime.

10a: morning walk with c. in stroller.  [eventually, i’ll probably run with annabel to school in lieu of walking sometimes, but my OB wants me to wait a few weeks.  i am surprisingly okay with this.]  eat breakfast #2 afterwards.

11a: hang out with c., feed c.  eventually eat lunch.  perhaps write a post like this one.

1p: annabel home from school with g.  she takes a bath, we read and hang out before her naptime.

2p:  feed c., and then annabel and i both nap.  i also might take care of some loose ends [i have a pretty easy project list to work on — things like organizing files and giving away maternity clothes, but nothing major.]

4p:  [sometimes later] annabel is up and c. needs to eat, so my nap ends too.  snacks all around followed by a trip to the playground.  or, a home project like baking scones [going to do this tomorrow!] or just some play time with a.  once it gets warmer, I am determined to make good use of the pool.

wild card:  we’re going to let annabel watch a show daily if the time/moment seems right — i figure that she’s close enough to 2 [23 months!] and . . . i’m pretty sure that even i watched some PBS at that age.  so, yeah.  so far, we’re just shown her some 1/2 episodes of sesame street and also some dora.  recs for decent toddler shows welcome.

6p:  g. goes home [or often i will send her earlier if things are under control].  I have dinner with annabel [and josh if he can make it home].  i meal plan each week, but g. has taken over the cooking since she started, usually in the AM.  she is incredibly efficient and i am extremely appreciative of her skills.  around this time, c. begins cluster feeding, usually wanting to eat at least hourly.

7:30p:  start winding things down with annabel.  read books, dim lights, etc.  attempt to keep c. relatively calm so that I can focus on a.

8p:  annabel bedtime.  tonight, josh got home right as we were finishing up and read the last 2 stories.  

9p:  bedtime for c. and me.  because a typical night = wakeups at perhaps 11, 1:30, 3, 4:30, 5:15, 6.  hopefully this will consolidate a little soon!
Scenes from the day . . .


  • Reply Erica March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    I still can’t believe you have two kids, but it looks like you are enjoying it and settling into your role well. Cameron seems like a relaxed little guy and so adorable. his face is so sweet!

    As for TV … we started letting Griffin watch about 30 minutes of TV a week back in January. Dan was out of town and I needed something to keep him safe and occupied while I got dinner together or to leave in the morning. So I started with Thomas the Train On Demand. It’s nice because it’s very quiet and the animation is actually soothing, and each episode is only 8-10 minutes, which is honestly all the attention span he has at this point. We’ve tried Sesame Street but he loses interest after about 15 minutes. Once when I turned netflix on he saw that there was an episode of Mickey Mouse clubhouse on and he requested it! I guess he recognized Mickey from a book at day care because we don’t have anything at home with it. Anyway, cue the next three Friday evenings of us watching Mickey Mouse ClubHouse Road Rally at his insistence. I’m glad the weather is turning around for us up here because we were really stuck inside due to snow, ice, chilly temps and dark skies. Thank goodness for spring and the time change!

    I looked at some other kids shows, like Yo Gabba Gabba, Chuggington, and Curious George. And I did not like them, and I figure I have to like what he is watching because I have to hear it too and we talk about what he’s watching to make sure it’s active and not just passively watching TV. I’m interested what others suggest because to be honest I do not like a lot of kids programming.

  • Reply Lee Becknell March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    Cameron is an exact mix of you and Josh! And umm, I watch a lot more tv on my maternity leave than you do.

  • Reply SusannahEarlyBd March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    You are doing great, and both babies (how is Annabel nearly two?!?!) seem like they are, too. That first picture of the two of them just gets me right there, you know? It’s so fleeting!

    Eamonn will watch something here and there if Finn is, but he is MUCH less interested in TV than Finn was at this age ( we let Finn start watching 15-20 minutes around 20 months). Finn would have been glued to it if we’d allowed it; Eamonn is cool to wander off after a few minutes. I showed him a 3 minute clip of Elmo on YouTube the other day and it was CRAZY how he connected to it immediately…what is it about Elmo???

  • Reply Lesley March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    We downloaded the PBS Kid app on the iPad when our 2nd daughter was born and I needed something for our 2 year old to do at times that was semi quiet… she loves to watch Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood and I like the fact that the episodes are short.

    • Reply theSHUbox March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

      Definitely going to look into Daniel tiger. Thank you!!

  • Reply Brittnie March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    I think Cameron looks like A did as a baby. . . cute kids! Glad you are feeling somewhat in a routine. That is great! I am slowly getting there. . . slowly being the key word. 🙂

  • Reply Cecily March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is a big hit with my 2.5 year old!

  • Reply Melanie March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    I only allow PBS kids right now – sesame street & dinosaur train mostly. You are doing great! Congrats!!

  • Reply Linda March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    My daughter is three and she likes Daniel Tiger (this is based off of the show Mr. Rogers from when we were kids) – it has great lessons and is a really "nice" show. She also likes Curious George and Peppa Pig. We watch one show a day usually while I’m getting dinner together or after bath before story time, etc.

  • Reply Laura Vanderkam March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    I laugh about the 2-year-old on TV recommendations. It’s as if the child in this recommendation doesn’t have older brothers and sisters! Exactly how are you supposed to have them not watch if the older kids can operate the remote by themselves? It’s kind of like trying to have an infant nap in her crib at certain times. Fine if the infant is the only one. Not so fine if the infant has siblings who don’t want to stay in the house all day.

    My 2-year-old likes Peter Rabbit on Nick Jr. It’s a little dark (Mr. Tod the fox is trying to eat Peter and friends) but she’s weirdly into that sort of thing. She also likes Sofia the First and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. All of the kids will watch Mickey, Sofia and Sid the Science Kid. The older kids aren’t so into Peter Rabbit and complain if she gets to choose.

    Elmo is also good. We have Elmo DVDs that we put on the computer if the older kids (or adults) want to watch non-Elmo based television.

    • Reply theSHUbox March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

      Yesssss so true. Cameron is never going to make it until 2 or even close! I wonder if they have done studies looking at screen time differentials btw kids in addition to birth order and the effects 🙂

  • Reply Nan March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    Check out Daniel Tiger on PBS. Its the only show I let my son watch and it is very sweet with good "lessons" and definitely not too overstimulating. It is based on the work of Mr. Rogers!

  • Reply Ana March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    Our kids don’t want to watch TV—because my husband introduced them to MOVIES about a year ago (B never watched a thing until 3.5, and L started watching movies when he was almost 2). So if we mention Sesame Street or Curious George, they assume they’ll watch for 90 minutes like they do with their weekly "Toy Story" or "Nemo" and it becomes a battle to turn it off. I kind of wish we’d done some 20 minute shows earlier so they were used to that amount of screen time, once a day, instead of getting it all in one go on Sunday afternoon (though it helps us get our chores or reading/wine drinking in on Sundays!)
    I’ve heard that Daniel Tiger is good, but can’t find full episodes on line. My kids do like Curious George and that whiny little Calliou that my MIL bought DVDs for them. I much prefer Sesame Street, and you can find full episodes on youtube. There is a ton of stuff on Netflix, including some Winnie the Pooh stories that are very calming and cute.
    Your days sound pretty nice! (not so much the nights…don’t miss that at all!!!)

  • Reply Claire March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    My Will 25 months likes Kipper. It is very simple and slow moving, ex kipper jumps in puddles, kipper builds a sand castle, a cat is stuck in a tree. We don’t have cable, so I let him watch 3 7 minute episodes on you tube a day. it’s just enough time to get dinner going!

    Does Cameron’s name have a nod to duke’s Cameron?

  • Reply Jennifer March 10, 2019 at 7:15 pm

    I confess we introduced my daughter to TV before a year, because I was desperate for something to distract her during a) nebulizer treatments and b) nail trimming. Not that it worked, she wasn’t nearly as interested in TV as in stopping us from bothering her face or hands.
    At nearly two, she’s mostly a Sesame Street fan, though we almost never watch a whole episode (occasionally when she’s sick she’ll watch the whole thing, and she was always willing to watch the hour-long Elmo Xmas special we recorded). If we’re watching Sesame Street, it’s generally that I’ll start it playing while I get her dinner/my snack started, and then after 15-20 minutes we finish watching whichever segment is on (I often skip forward to the Elmo segment at the end if she doesn’t seem interested in the "stuff happening on Sesame Street" segment at the beginning) and have dinner.

    I also have a youtube playlist set up for her of Sesame Street videos, mostly songs, that I can stream onto the TV, so sometimes we do that instead and throw a little ABC dance party into the mix. And recently, she’s become as fond of Bert and Ernie as Elmo, and more interested in mimicking activities, so the other main option is Play With Me Sesame, which I’m not sure is even on PBS anymore but is available on demand through our cable. It’s geared a little younger than the main Sesame Street, is half as long, and features more faux-interaction, with Ernie doing Simon Says-time games, or segments where the muppets take turns making silly noises and encouraging the viewer to try each one.

    I’ve tried introducing other shows for a little more variety, but she only likes the opening theme songs and then wants them "off off off, Elmo please!" so it’s not really worth it.

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