sundry updates NOT about pumping

May 8, 2018

As mentioned yesterday, I’m feeling better about . . . many things.  Don’t get me wrong — I still would like more sleep and more hours in the day, but I’m doing okay.

Some updates/clarifications:

1) Workouts:  I agree with everyone that it’s time to resume, for health but mostly for self-care purposes.  I decided to try my first Beachbody series to create a little bit of motivation and excitement.  I’m exactly 1 day into the 21 Day Fix (workouts only, not the eating plan) and I am already too sore to walk downstairs normally.  I may have underestimated how out of shape I am.  
2) Babysitting/weekend coverage:  I don’t plan on making this an every weekend thing, but I had someone ask me about this via email — I had childcare generally to make logistics work.  Example:  Saturday I took A&G to ballet (I could have taken C, but someone asked me to drive their kids home and I wouldn’t have had enough seats!); then Cameron’s friend came over for a drop-off playdate and I figured I could use a little help with 4 little ones running around at once (okay fine G isn’t running around yet but she limits my ability to keep track of the other 3).  Sunday afternoon A had a birthday party that did not include siblings (limited space) so I brought G while C stayed with our sitter.  I did do an hour walk/run with a friend (mostly walk, b/c she is not a runner sadly) but generally this baby-sitting coverage wasn’t about time to do work or hang out on my own. 
3) Cameron:  So as noted above, he spent 2 half-days of the weekend home with a sitter while I was out with A&G.  He didn’t protest much (our nanny is basically his 3rd parent, and the sitter we had on Sunday he knows very well).  Still, I feel bad about this and really don’t want him to feel left out.  He sweetly asked me to read a book in his class so I’m going to do that this week and I really am going to make a concerted effort to have more 1:1 time with him.  It seems to naturally happy with Annabel because she has so many activities that send her off with one parent or another, but C is getting lost in the shuffle and I don’t like that!
4) Summer travel.  I really need to book our vacation (planning on Portland OR in August, like flying through Seattle and seeing friends there in part because there are no nonstop flights from here to Portland).  I’m honestly having some cold feet about flying across the country (N/S and E/W!) with an 8 month old baby.  Someone talk me off a ledge.  I also came to the (obvious) realization that a meet up with my wonderful college friends WITH kids is going to a be a little challenging as I’m the only one with a brood (there will be one other baby born just 2 days before G though, so that will be very cute).  I definitely want to go but I think the anxiety/hesitation has prevented me from finalizing our flights/hotels/air B&Bs/etc.  I read Lagliv’s recent travel post with so much awe and envy — so that’s what it will be like for us in a mere 4 years?  I. Can’t.  Wait.
5) New planner.  I am slightly ashamed to admit that I am so much happier in my Erin Condren right now.  It just feels simpler.  I guess I am a little sad about not doing a whole page-a-day (I really enjoyed that ritual with the Hobonichi, which I used from 2014-2018) but . . . it just wasn’t working right now.  I can actually put all the info I need into each daily space and I love that I am always viewing the entire week at once.  
Okay . . . it’s 21 Day Fix Time.  (Which will probably be G’s cue to wake up but maybe she’ll fall back asleep.  Speaking of which maybe her sleep is slightly better?  She made it from 7:30 – 12:30 last night!  Then up at 3.  I recognize that half the babies her age seem to be sleeping 7-7, but this is way better than 10 / 1 / 4). 


  • Reply gwinne March 10, 2019 at 7:06 pm

    You sound like you’re doing better. I’m glad. Yay for a bit of self-care, child-care, and a planner that lets you see your life the way it is 🙂

    RE: the trip. This is an area where I disagree vehemently with Laura….. but I’d take the anxiety about travel seriously. Maybe it’s just not in the cards for you right now, and you could think about an alternative (more manageable) trip. While Laura and others talk about the experiencing vs. remembering self (or something), if I know my experience is going to be tempered so much by sleeplessness/anxiety/you name it, well, that’s exactly what I will remember. We had a *horrible* trip to Quebec shortly after I had a major head injury, and with a 7 mo old, and I have absolutely zero positive memories associated with that trip. Having had a baby/toddler with major sleep issues, I can say I would *never* (for my own family, not giving advice here!) go across three time zones. I’m reluctant to do it with a sleeping-better elementary schooler and haven’t yet taken that plunge. If it’s that important to see friends (and I get that), what would it mean for you to do that trip solo, and not part of a family outing? (I know, breastfeeding, but…)

  • Reply Katy March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    It was funny listening to the most recent podcast — when tired, you find it easier to meet with patients than chart, and you connected this to being an extrovert. While listening, I was thinking about how much easier it would be to chart than meet with patients, and I’m an extreme introvert.

  • Reply Nikki March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    I”m in the camp of almost always saying yes to travel! Yes it will be work, but 3 kids is work wherever you are, might as well be somewhere new and exciting. I bet G will be a great flier, she seems very laid back and I agree with the others that 8 months is a good age for flights. Sleep and time differences are a potential challenge; I try to always give us at least two days back at home to adjust to the new time zone and get caught up on sleep before the regular week starts. Also lots of outdoor time when you arrive will help the kids adjust quickly to the new time zone. And plan for some downtime, as opposed to packing the schedule. And if it gets overwhelming remember that it”s supposed to be fun and adjust as needed:)

  • Reply Dominique March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    I agree with everyone who has said it is not hard to travel with a 8/9 month old. They sit on your lap and just enjoy the ride. If you can, keep nursing her until after the trip. The nursing helps their ears and is a good distraction on the plane. For long plane trips now with my 5 and 2 year old, I always buy food in the airport and then feed them once the tray tables can come down. It really helps pass the time on the plane.

  • Reply Emma March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    I’ve traveled a lot with my kids as infants (currently 4 and 8 mo, most recently NM to PA with the 8 mo old and me) and I also feel like 8-9 months is kind of a sweet spot (at least for me) as they can’t walk yet so you don’t have to run up and down the plane, but are very entertained by the other passengers, the texture of the airline seat, the crinkly snack packages, peekaboo, clapping etc. An upside (I guess) of having kids that are not great sleepers (8 mo old wakes up every 30-60 minutes from 12-5 and 4 year old has yet to sleep through the night) is that (in my experience) jet lag doesn’t really mess with their sleep because it’s not great anyways so there’s not much to lose . . .

  • Reply sophia March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    YES! You sound so much more at ease.

    We did a 14h flight with 2 kids ages 5 and 1 and getting the 1 year old her own seat (with her own car seat) made the flight doable. She slept most of it and never would have slept that much in our arms. It was a significant extra expense but 100% worth it for us. Something to consider.

  • Reply Emily March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    I think LagLiv”s kids are extraordinarily good travelers and also she and her husband are just fralt good at rolling with things. I definitely do not feel like I”ve hit the travel sweet spot yet desire he fact that my younger kid is Cora”s age 🙂

    Re: your trip—if you”re having a lot of anxiety I definitely think you should feel fine about trying o plan a less ambitious first family-of-five vacay. Or what about a lower key fan vacation that doesn”t involve flights and time changes, and just you and G go visit your college friends?

    I did a flight from east to west coast with husband and kids at age 2.5 and 18 months and it actually turned out great. They were fine on the flights although I do second why everyone else says about jet lag messing up sleep a bit. Definitely have a plan for early morning activities like park trips!

  • Reply Gillian March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    On middle child attention. I have 4 kids and about 18 months ago (when my youngest was 6 months old) I noticed that #3 was having a hard time. I realized he was getting NO 1:1 time (it took me WAY too long to realize this). So, I instituted Starbucks dates on Friday afternoons (I finish seeing pts at 12:30). We go just the two of us and get a latte (for me) and a milk (for him) and weather permitting we sit outside and watch commuter trains go by (he also likes to sit on the high stools and watch the baristas). The first time we did this he started rhapsodizing loudly about how GOOD the milk was! People were starting to snicker a little (I felt so bad that he was so excited about a milk) then he announced at the top of his voice "And I love this new cup!" — Just a horizon tetra pak. Now we have been doing Starbucks dates every Friday afternoon and it goes such a LONG way for both of us.

    • Reply Wyla March 10, 2019 at 7:06 pm

      This is so lovely <3

  • Reply Krista March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    The trip will probably be fine. Living in Washington I traveled solo with two kids across the country a few times and the flights were generally okay (nothing out of the ordinary for flying with kids). I assume Josh will be with you, and the older two kids will probably be relatively easy to handle. One question…are your kids usually crawling by 8 months? I always found that as soon as they were mobile the whole sitting through a flight was exponentially more difficult. However take everything I say with a grain of salt because after flying to japan with 4.5 month old twins and then flying home when they were two, a cross country flight with three kids seems easy 😊

    You just can”t beat the PNW in the summer. I”m convinced everyone that lives there visited in the summer, experienced the beautiful weather (sunny! not too hot! no humidity!) and convinced themselves that the rain/general wetness for the other 3/4 of the year was worth it.

    • Reply theSHUbox March 10, 2019 at 7:07 pm

      Yeah, I’m not worried about A or C – which is a big shift since I don’t think I’ve ever felt like a long trip would be no big deal with them! (This gives me great hope for 4 years from now!!).

      Crawling – hmm, I feel like they started around that time. Yep. I totally agree once they are mobile all bets are off and sitting still becomes torture for them!! Hard to predict what G will be doing in 3 months though. Right now she’s almost 5 months and seems to be very similar to the other 2!

    • Reply theSHUbox March 10, 2019 at 7:06 pm

      AND FLIGHT TO JAPAN WITH 4.5 MONTH OLD TWINS = !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh my god you deserve a parenting medal for that.

      • Reply Krista March 10, 2019 at 7:06 pm

        Technically I wasn’t flying alone with the twins, since the whole family was going, but my husband had the two other boys and my oldest was sitting behind me with a woman and her daughter, so the twins were mine. Luckily they slept a lot and woke to feed at different times, so they weren’t too bad…I got no rest, though!

        The actual flights aside, I always found the kids adjusted well to the time difference. Going both ways actually. I wouldn’t worry about that. As far as the rest of traveling with young kids I think most of it will work itself out, including the logistics of hanging with friends. I suggest reading more of Lag Liv’s travel posts from when Cora was younger. Or even her post about having a third baby. I recall it hit on the necessity of just bringing the baby along and rolling with it if you want to continue doing the things you enjoy, like travel. Worst case scenario its a crazy trip and you have a story to tell forever about that time you took the kids across the country when G was a baby 😉

  • Reply Susan March 10, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    For trip- I actually think it will be easier with friends who don”t have kids than with everyone having them. You could help your friends out by suggesting some family friendly things that everyone could do & hopefully josh + sitter can have kids for part of the time so that you can get some alone time w your friends. Let them know that your kids will be up eeearly so factor that in for meals and activities. We had a vacation w 2.5 yo and 7 mo twins where they were up at the crack of dawn everyday but our condo was across the street from a playground so we had awesome early morning playing everyday. Factoring in things like that will hopefully make it easier for you and more fun for everyone.

    Good luck! I actually found 6-9 mo easier for flying than w a 11-15 mo but of course every kid is different. Per Gwinne”s comment – my first kiddo did not sleep when traveling at all (up 4-6 times a night) but I still have good overall memories despite the horrendous sleep.

    Now days I always try to factor in a day at home before returning to work from an extended trip. Bonus if your kids are in school that day. I really like having a built in time for laundry, grocery shopping, unpacking & catching up on sleep! Good luck – pnw is one of my fave places!!

  • Reply Laura Vanderkam March 10, 2019 at 7:02 pm

    I remember Henley’s comment from the travel episode about just knowing that the flight will likely be bad, but it won’t last forever. I think you’re taking a long vacation (10 days?) so we’re talking 12-14 hours on a plane, total, to get 10 days of cool travel opportunities. And G will be better at 8 months than she will be at 18 months, so may as well do it now!

  • Reply Nikki March 10, 2019 at 7:06 pm

    Also find ways to minimize how much you pack, as much as is possible. I find that managing all the stuff is sometimes the most stressful!

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