Friday, December 31, 2010

...And They Lived Happily Ever After

Well, I guess it's not that simple. But 2010 was a big year for the B household, and I'm looking forward to a pretty sweet 2011. I just printed my work calendar for next year and circled all the company holidays, planned vacations, and Jackson's birthday. Let's rumble.

What New Year's Eve post would be complete without resolutions?
  • Live -- really live -- in the moment. As in, not think ahead two steps and plan for the worst case scenario all the time. I owe it to Jackson, KB, and not least of all myself to enjoy the company and love of/for my husband and watching my son grow up each and every day, and to just be.
  • Get back into fighting shape. This will involve a personal trainer, some sweat, a fair amount of excruciating pain, and a whole lot of ass-kicking. Eye of the tiger, bitches.
  • Stay positive at work. I wish I could conjure up some magical unicorn farts that, when huffed in a paper bag, would make me lurve my job or make me a more competent stay-at-home mom. Alas. I duz not haz unicorn. So, I am committed to making the most of work, trying hard to achieve job satisfaction by speaking up and being assertive about my work-life balance, and staving off the guilt of being at home, working, while my little boy is away, in daycare. At least he's in a kickass daycare. He gets to learn espaƱol.
  • Continue and permanently extend my lifetime boycott on Ed Hardy everything. Also, avoid Ralph Lauren because the new logo is supersized douche. And no Chico's. So much bedazzled leopard print, so little time.
  • Stop. playing. angry. birds. Addicted. Need help.
Happy New Year to everyone is Bloggyland, O Interweb Friends!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

With Teeth

I suspect that Jackson has begun teething at 3.5 months of age. Yay. I mean, yay! I'm trying to be excited about this milestone except that I have read (thank you, O! Interwebs!) that teething can last for months before the tooth actually cuts through. Oh dearsweetbabyjesusno. I'm just not sure if he is, but I present to you, Great Citizens of Blogland, the evidence, Your Honors:
  1. Exhibit A: buckets o'drool. We call him Droolio (or Droolie Andrews or Droolia Droolie Dreyfuss) because in the past several weeks, he has produced enough drool to to generate hydropower. This, of course, leads to lots of chin-wiping which leads to irritated and dry skin which leads to lotioning which leads to anger which leads to hate which leads to suffering. And then he becomes Darth Vader, the end.
  2. Exhibit B: biting. Mainly his own mighty FIST! and fingers. (Side note: up until last week he only believed he had one FIST! but he now recognizes the existence of two FISTS! and brings them together, or punches one with the other, marveling at their feats of strength. Just in time for Festivus.) He bites and sucks and noshes his hands not only when he's hungry, but in between feedings. This effectively spreads the aforementioned drool everywhere. Often focused with laser-like intensity on my sleeves and shoulder.
  3. Exhibit C: the return of nighttime fussiness. We thought the end of The Colic by 3 months meant easy-going nights ahead...and there were several. Now we have seen the resurgence of pre-bedtime fussiness that, according to the worldwide Series of Tubes, may be due to increased awareness of gum pain when the distractions of the day are over. Or, maybe he's just being an asshole. Could be a little of Column A and a little of Column B.
  4. Exhibit D: agitation when eating. One thing this boy has never concerned himself with is being finicky about getting some food into his milkhole. Once our nursing struggles were more or less over after the first few weeks, it was pretty smooth sailing all the way (as long as we don't count my periodic re-engorgement when he goes through a growth spurt and coincident feeding frenzy, sore nipples, a recent bout of mastitis accompanied or perhaps caused by a milk blister, and total empathy for cooped up dairy cattle every time I pump). We've even had great success with the bottle since around 1 month (he would sometimes fight it at first, and we sorted out that I needed to be out of the room so that the feedbags weren't within his sphere of want, 'cause boobie>bottle). Once or twice in the past week, he has gotten upset while taking a bottle and tried to stick a fist (excuse me, FIST!) in his mouth instead of the bottle (despite being hungry), and has even been a little fussy while nursing a couple of times (my aching nipples -- hey, what a great name for a band -- My Aching Nipples suggest he's nom-noming on me while nursing.) Again, the sage internets say this could all be due to gum soreness.
My question to you, Blogmistresses and mamas, is when and how did your kiddos start teething? As in, what signs did you notice and when, how long did it last, and how did you cope with the agony of it all? I'm not looking for stories about outer fringe limits of normal, as in, "my cousin's friend's daughter's babysitter's niece was born with a full set of teeth" or, "I saw this article on the interwebs about a kid who grew, like, four sets of teeth like a shark." I'm pretty sure my son, despite being created by evil mad scientists in a petrie dish, is all human, so only within-normal-range stories about human babies, please. Because, and I hope I'm not being insulting here, those tales of dramaz are not helpful and only believable/applicable to inbred hill people. Who have no teeth, anyway.

P.S. I should add that for the past 1.5 weeks, the little man and I have been battling a head cold, so it's entirely possible that the bulk of these symptoms are attributable to that. But, the drooling and FIST! noming started several weeks ago, before any cold symptoms had appeared. Methinks they are independent.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Dear Abby

Oh, the things I wish I'd known. Well, wonder no more...
  • Sleep: white noise, man. We leave it on all night (not on a timer) so if he wakes he can put himself back to sleep (babies need consistent conditions to do this). Music might work, too, but the musical stylings of Fisher Price through the monitor all night might get old. We try to put Jackson down for bedtime and naps while he's still a little awake so he gets used to putting himself to sleep. So far, it's been successful. Also, we chose a bedtime we liked (early enough to have adult time) but that coincides with his sleepy/hungry patterns. We picked 8PM and usually get him in the bedtime routine between 7-8PM without any shenanigans. We had 2-3 hour wakings like clockwork until recently, when we worked very hard to "sleep train" him to skip a nighttime feeding. It wasn't easy, but it wasn't a cry-it-out experience (that I am leery of) and he picked it up quickly. So, the first stretch is 5-8 hours (variable) and then he usually sleeps 2-3 hour stretches until morning. Not bad. I'm still getting up at least once, and sometimes as many as 4 times, each night, but he's not hard to put back down after feeding and changing. Yay for that.
  • Food: you won't scar your child for life if you refuse to wait until he's, like, 10 years old to introduce a bottle. We had to supplement with formula his first week to treat jaundice and weight loss, and he's had no problems with nipple confusion. He seems to correctly identify mine as the ones attached to me, every time! If you pump and bottle feed once or twice a day, you also get a much-needed break. We include a bottle from Daddy in our bedtime routine, which was a good starter for transitioning to more bottles (as full-time daycare looms).
  • Bathing: I love, love, love the Puj tub. It has no bells or whistles, but fits perfectly in the kitchen sink and hangs flat to dry. We don't bathe more often than once per week, since it's bone dry in the winter here in Michigan and the little man has delicate skin. If you have to deal with dry skin or rashes, I have seen miracles performed before my very eyes by using calendula cream (sold under the brand name California Baby) -- the heat rash rearranged to form the image of the blessed Virgin Mary on his chest. It cleared up his infant acne, dry patches on elbows and in creases, and any signs of heat rash from sweating. Miracle cream. Amen.
  • Medicine: no matter what benign medical terms you enter into the search field, Dr. Google will return the following results -- "your behbeh is on fire and dying and ohmahgawd go to the ER." It's hard coming away from years of infertility searches on The Google (which always returned the result -- "your uterus is a feral cave of doom and on fire and ohmahgawd you are barren") and going cold turkey with the pediatric concerns. But seriously, just call your pediatrician instead or find a single, solitary trusted site to consult for minor stuff. I searched for info on infant colds (because my little man and me, we haz it) and started to wonder if we should both be put in an iron lung to treat our raging consumption. Turns out, only time and Kleenex will heal.
  • Clothing: people love to gift "outfits," and you'll be tempted to buy some yourself, but there's no practical reason to dress the baby in anything besides footie onesies for at least the first 7 years of life. I plan to send Jackson off to college with them. Pants and socks are stupid, and baby sweatshirts and sweaters (with all those tiny stupid buttons) are crazy. Zip-up footie pajamas (also called sleep-and-plays) are handy for frequent diaper changes, but I actually prefer snap-ups for nighttime. If you swaddle, I have found that the velcro cheater-swaddles, as we call them (from Kidopotamus), allow for diaper changes without unraveling most of the swaddle -- just slip his feet out of the middle "pocket" to unsnap/change/re-snap, and leave his arms velcroed together like an asylum patient. A groggy, freshly diapered asylum patient. I don't know if that description adequately distinguishes a baby from an actual asylum patient.
  • Diapering: this may fall into the "Pure Coincidence" bucket, but I use sensitive skin versions of everything for laundering, lotioning, and diapering and we have not had any episodes of diaper rash to date. I also use diaper ointment (Aquaphor, Desitin, etc.; nothing special) with every dirty diaper change. Oh, and as your sweet sugar-scented baby gets older, his poops will become more ripe and foul, so consider abandoning all hope of using the diaper pail for those diapers and instead remove them from the living spaces of your home tout de suite. We take the shitbombs to the garbage in the garage and use the diaper pail for wet diapers only. (The poop rate seems to slow down as the digestive tract and the baby it lives in matures, so you won't necessarily be making a dozen daily pilgrimages to the garage.)
  • Assvice: notwithstanding my own here, I just hum a little tune in my head as relatives, neighbors, random strangers, and grocery store clerks tell me how to raise my behbeh. Yankee Doodle Dandy is a fine song.
Naturally, I am speaking from personal experience only with a three-month-old, so as for what comes after this, shit, search me. Also, I will concede that I have a relatively (not always, but usually) easy baby and so -- despite the standard issue struggles with breastfeeding, napping, nighttime feedings, and now our first cold -- well, my greatest assvice is to experiment and do whatever seems to work. That's what I credit for our good fortune with Jackson thus far. Also, if you try any of this and your baby is still an asshole, it's because my baby is just that much more super awesome. Heh.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Santa Baby


To Have My Cake and Eat it, Too

Okay, so I've said repeatedly that I don't think I would survive as a stay-at-home mom. But I didn't think sending my little boy off to daycare would be so hard, either. Shit, shit, shit.

We're transitioning him in this week, adding a few more hours each day. This morning was supposed to be a trial run of the "usual" morning drop-off time, with me picking him up around 1PM (so, a half-day). Well, he decided to sleep for 8 consecutive hours last night (!) after his 8PM bedtime, which I refuse to complain about (because, awesome) but it threw off his early morning schedule a little and then I slept in too late...and we didn't get to daycare until almost 9AM. My target had been 7:45AM. Hahahahahahaha. Hahaha. Ha. How dopey am I for thinking I could pull it off? So after feeding and cleaning and changing and spewing and cleaning again and getting in the car, we made it with him in a great mood (which makes me feel tremendously better, dropping him off and seeing him happy and playful). And by the time I got home, I just wanted to cry. My house is quiet. Still. Sure, I can do leisurely things like the laundry without rushing to feed a waking baby. Right, I have the glorious luxury of going to the bathroom whenever I want (wheee!!!! look at me, having a carefree pee!). Yeah, I can spend a little more quality time with the poor neglected dog. But I miss my baby. I don't want to drop him off with someone else all day, regardless of what I can get done when he's gone. I don't want to go back to work. I don't want to be a full-time stay-at-home mom. I want to live in a universe where this is reconciled nicely.

If I insisted, we could be a one-income family. I am not insisting. I (mostly) like having a job and the second income, and we couldn't economically justify (or afford) the expense of daycare or a nanny if I'm not working. And if work is beastly and doesn't get better within a few months of my return (and when you work for a shitty manager, who knows?), I can leave and freelance instead of or until finding another job, if I feel compelled. I am watching and waiting to see how this shapes up. I just wish I was returning to a job I loved and missed terribly, so that leaving my son in the care of others every weekday felt like a necessity worth having, but...I dunno. It does get tiring to care for him all day, every day, with only a few hours of reprieve while KB puts him to bed and he sleeps until his nighttime feedings begin, but when he's not with me I just miss him. Does. not. compute.

I am going to have to Ferberize myself.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Odds and Ends

Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time: We hosted the annual family Christmas party again this year. It was kind of a lot of work, to drag extra tables and chairs and decorations and food from the basement or wherever to accommodate around 30 people (with a baby in tow), but we did it. I even made time to make these:
That's right. Gourmet cupcakes (homemade! fondant!) and cake pops (thank you, bakerella). I mean -- cake pops, bitches. My sister made the fondant and decorated my cupcakes, and I made the cake pops and decorated with her help. I had to make them in stages, step by step, around Jackson's schedule. Step 1: bake cupcakes (in between 8AM feeding and pumping). Step 2: make cake balls and stash in fridge (during swing nap). Step 3: coat cake balls in white or chocolate candy and let dry (pausing to shush awake, crying baby after every 2-3 cake pops are coated). Step 4: add decorations to cake pops (this part takes an eternity, so my sister and I alternated between decorating and entertaining the boy who was wide awake at this point and uninterested in taking any sort of nap). Step 5: EAT. Nom. They're pretty tasty and not that hard once you get the hang of it. I can't wait for the next excuse to make them -- I have plans that'll BLOW YOUR MINDS. You'll see.

The party was a hit, although one branch of the family tree has total monsters for children who are hard to manage (they LOOK sweet but they are hideous inside). They're mean, don't share, have never been told "no" in their tender young lives (7 and 4 years old, girl and boy) and are utterly impossible to leave unattended for 10 seconds lest your house get burnt to the ground. Except their parents totally leave them unattended at all times. I had to pull the 4-year-old out of our baby swing, off of the baby playmat, etc., etc. repeatedly (like, many, many times) because I would tell him so very nicely -- in my twee mommy voice -- to please not play with those things because they are for a tiny baby and he is such a big boy, and he would just stare at me with dead eyes and keep working with all his might to break whatever was in his cold, destructive little fists. Just, dude. It's not just a "kid thing" because the other kids at the party, whose parents apparently do believe in boundaries and respect for others, were pretty well-behaved and when told "no" would stop what they were doing without question and find something more productive to do. So, yeah, next year we have to process-improve and a) remove all things we don't want touched by little Damien out of the main floor of the house and completely out of sight and b) designate an attentive, responsible parent (so, not one of theirs) to be the Kid Wrangler and keep them busy with appropriate activities. I mean, the rest of the kids sat in the living room and colored on the coffee table (even Beelzebub's sister sat with the other kids and colored, although she was nasty to the other kids and generally annoyed the snot out of everyone). Our house will be kid-proofed by next Christmas because Jackson will be over a year old (!) and crawling or walking, so that may help minimize temptation. I can't make Thing One and Thing Two into better children just because they're in my house, and I doubt they'll improve with age. *le sigh* I guess it's useful for me to observe little Voldemort's behavior so I build up my arsenal of what-not-to-dos. Oh, and there was also an endless parade of assvice from the elders (we're spoooiiiillling him by holding him so much!) but generally everyone was in love with our little monkey and just wanted to hold him themselves. He slept through most of the party, pausing only for his usual 2PM and 5PM feedings and a couple of britches changes. I did have to change his cute party sweater in favor of footie pajamas after he failed the smell test from a bout of milk-spew. Or, he's just a diva and needs wardrobe changes during his special events. (For this appearance, he got paid in boob juice. But you should have seen his rider.)

Back-to-Work Blues: I start work in 2 weeks. We start the daycare transition this week. *sob* My boss apparently told one of my coworkers, "I can't wait until Jen is back from maternity leave, so I can load her up with tons of projects!" Fuck. I carried more projects than my colleagues when I was pregnant and sick as a dog, and I constantly requested and was denied appropriate support. Not because my employer, as an institution, is inattentive to its employees; just my manager. In fact, everyone uniformly dislikes him and thinks he's a total douchenozzle, except (inexplicably) his own boss. Part of the problem is that he has a team of talented writers who cover for his terrible management (or lack thereof), so senior management only sees the work getting done with him taking all the credit. But performance review time is upon us, so I hope that either he gets his ass handed to him for being a total twatwaffle (thank you, 360 reviews) and/or I get transferred to another team. Because, oh yeah, I got reassigned to a different type of work than I was hired to do without my consent while on leave, and the new designation forces me to take regulatory writing projects that are chaotic, urgent, scope-shifting, and generally a pain in my asshole. Uh, not cool. I wrote my manager an email reminding him of my return to work and spelling out my reasons for rejecting this new designation and the shitball assignments that come with it. No response. No surprise. The slippery slope started happening last March, when I was put on his team and agreed to pick up a few random projects, and I fought it unsuccessfully during pregnancy (I didn't want to rock the boat when I was about to be out on an extended leave)...but I'm baaaa-aaaack and I'm kicking ass and taking names. I like this job, but I am not so in lurve with it that I will do literally anything to keep it. And this problem can pretty much all be chalked up to a totally out-to-lunch manager. My best bet is to get transferred to another team where I can go back to writing manuscripts for a living, which is what I signed up to do.

I'm just in the midst of a priority shift that feels right to me -- I want and need to work, but I'm not okay with work taking over my life and at any point being more important to me than my son. I don't want to be the mom who's always running late to get him from daycare, or who can't go on the fieldtrip with his class because I have a deadline, etc. I grew up as a latchkey kid with no parental guidance (under totally different circumstances, but still...) and I want for Jackson to know that he comes first, always. So, I'm being as deliberate as I can, asserting myself at work so they know that if they value me, they need to meet me halfway. I want the original job back that I interviewed for and accepted, not this hot mess they're asking me to do now. I want to flex my schedule to get work done by Thursday evening or Friday morning, so I can pick my son up early (or keep him home) on Fridays and have special time with him. (I maintained this schedule for the past year and a half, as do a lot of folks who work from home, but it depends upon me getting assigned a reasonable amount of work -- that's in question right now with my current manager). I want to determine the right set-point for work-life balance and have that honored. Or else. Just because I am capable of working like a slave doesn't mean I am willing. I have made the mistake in the past (well, it made sense at the time), agreeing to pick up extra projects -- particularly difficult projects and urgent projects -- but I am not *that* girl anymore.

Holla Back!: Some birth announcements happening our there in blogland...so happy for you girls! Nothing better than new babies.

Random, Gratuitous Cuteness: My monkey!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Why SAHM is a Four-Letter Word

I would like to stay home for three, maybe even six or nine, more months. I would, however, not love to. I want to be the primary caregiver to Jackson for as long as possible, to be there for every milestone and every smile and every tear, but there are reasons why it just won't work. Why I am not actively trying to make it work.

First of all, but not most importantly because after the past two years we know the meaning of sacrifice, we are set up as a two-income home. It is possible for us to function with KB's income alone, but it would require a lot of financial juggling and plate-spinning and probably create plenty of stress along the way. After the economic mindfuck that infertility treatment was -- we just received another adjusted insurance claim/soon-to-be-bill this week; will we ever be done with the RE clinic? Or, more to the point, will they ever be done with us? -- we do not need any more money woes. Together, we make a very comfortable living that affords a nice vacation or two every year, and the ability to provide for our family and take care of our home without worrying about giving up necessities for the niceties. And we like it that way. Money isn't everything, but it does buy a lot of important things. Things we need, things we enjoy, and things that help make a happy home.

It's sort of a moot point from a job perspective, because my position cannot be reduced to part-time and cannot be held for even a few more months of unpaid leave. I'd have to develop a seizure disorder or lop off a limb to stay out of work on disability any longer than the 14 weeks I've had (a combo of FMLA and short-term disability plus the remainder of paid time off that I banked for the holidays). I am not so enamored of my current job that I couldn't bear the thought of quitting (indeed, I ponder it often and with zeal), but it wouldn't be waiting for me when I wanted to return. And though I am very marketable with my particular skillset and experience, the economy is still on life support and I can't trust that I'd be able to find a job when the time comes. Freelancing is always an option (contract medical writers are often in demand for one-off jobs or short-term pharmaceutical industry support to develop manuscripts, advisory board presentations, or get caught up on clinical study reports) but it's not guaranteed steady work. I also know from friends who do it that it can be stressful to find an equilibrium between accepting enough freelance work to make a living, but not saying "yes" (in order to keep the clients) to the point that you're basically working full-time or worse. It's an option I keep in my back pocket in case my career goes nuclear for one reason or another.

All logistics aside, the most compelling reason for me to go back to work rather than stay home is that being a full-time stay-at-home mom is hard fucking work. Grueling. Sometimes discouraging. At times, even depressing. I love being with my son. I love him to pieces. But my days at home with him can be very, very stressful. Don't get me wrong -- some days are better than others. Some days he naps well, eats well, fusses a little but settles down, and lets me put him down long enough to go the bathroom or eat lunch or finish the laundry. If every day was one of those days, I would be writing a very different post about how KB and I are going to make it work with one working parent for the next year or so. But not every day is like that. In fact, those kind of days are in the clear minority right now, although things are looking up all the time. As Jackson gets older and develops, he grows more independent and creates eating and sleeping patterns I can work with. But I still spend my days, even the good ones, on pins on needles, rushing to complete whatever menial tasks I can as fast as I can, counting down the minutes until the next feeding or watching for signs that he's about to wake up. If I take him with me to run errands, I rush in fear of him screaming in a public place or having to nurse him somewhere terribly inconvenient. And if I'm not working, we can't really justify the added expense of hired help, even part-time. And that leaves me...alone. I'm not cut out for that, no matter how hard I try. The Mommy and Me groups aren't for me, either, since I'm basically a social outcast with a carefully selected inner circle who does not mingle well or desire to make new Mommy friends (the few I already have are enough -- plus, I like my non-parent friends, too).

I also think I need to work for my own intellectual satisfaction and the adult interaction. It's funny to add that last part, because I work remotely from a home office, but I do meet up with nearby coworkers and friends for lunch every now and again while working, and I have telephone or web meetings almost every day with colleagues and clients. Basically, I don't think I'm ready to trade The New England Journal of Medicine for Mother Goose.

I roll this over and over in my mind, because part of me feels like I should want to stay home, after everything we had to do and how hard we fought to bring Jackson into our lives. But then I remind myself: I am not held to a higher standard of motherhood just because we're infertile and Jackson is an IVF baby.

I wish being a working mom was an easy, clean choice. But it's not, so I am choosing what seems to be, on balance, best for our family. In my head, I give returning to work around 3-6 months, tops. If I hate it, I can quit and start freelancing, and keep Jackson home with me a couple of days each week. And if I don't hate it, I'll just feel good about my original choice. Here's hoping it's a win-win.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Thursday, December 2, 2010

No! Sleep! Til Brooklyn!

So, sleep training. Yikes, y'all. It sort of works. Mostly. The pediatrician gave me some pointers and suggestions at the 2-month check-up, advised that sleep habits become ingrained around 2 months, and so we started over the Thanksgiving holiday. First, we had to get him to eat a little more during the day and skip a feeding at night. Oh, that was fun. He did not respond to our logic and pleas and shushes and made-up silly songs and just wound up passing out from exhaustion after an hour or two. Fun times, for all. But it worked! He went for almost 6 hours without a feeding that first night, although only about two-thirds of that time was comprised of sleep. The second night, he slept from 8PM until about 2AM, which gave me my first major oh-mah-gawd-what-time-is-it-why-didn't-the-baby-wake-me-yet-is-he-still-alive-in-there moment. He's also stretching his second waking/feeding of the night out to around 3-4 hours after the first, so I am effectively getting up once a night (around 2AM) and then again around 5-5:30AM, ostensibly for the day. Although, in my sleep-deprived and poor-decision-making state, I usually try to cram another hour of poor-quality sleep in after the 5AM-ish feeding and that typically just leaves me feeling groggy and mildly annoyed that I didn't use the time to pump, finish laundry, make coffee, read the interwebs, or shower. Whatevs. I'm tired, yo.

We've had our share of setbacks even in the past week, and I'm confident there are more to come. I have to be careful to ensure Jackson nurses enough during the day so he won't be hungry when he goes to bed. Skipping that nighttime feeding means we have to work it in somewhere else. We've had a FAIL on this once already, when he woke up at midnight and I held a pacifier in his mouth for almost an hour, watching him suck on it greedily and wide awake, before concluding that feeding him off-schedule would be preferable to holding the binky in place for another hour to stay on schedule, ferchristsakes. And we've had a couple of mornings that began at 4AM-ish, which makes for a long day. But so far, KB and I declare the sleep training a preliminary success AND without any cry-it-out kind of torture. I'm not prepared to hang a banner on a battleship or anything, but we're feeling good about our progress.

So here's the problem: daytime naps, location of. The only place I can get Jackson to fall asleep and STAY asleep for a decent length of time (say, between half an hour to an hour and a half, ideally) is in a swing. That is, other than laying on me, which is his absolute preference any day, tiny hands down. My dilemma is this: he starts daycare at a Montessori school in a few weeks and they don't use swings and bouncers and whatnot. It's part of their philosophy of teaching, that kids should interact with and learn from each other, including older kids and adults, rather than be placed in confining/stationary "toys." (The principal actually told me that she thinks "positive peer pressure" may encourage Jackson to sleep in a crib -- serious? I hope my 3-month-old doesn't end up smoking behind the bleachers from all this infantile peer pressure that apparently influences babies.) Personally, I'm fine with the swing (he also has a musical playmat, a musical mobile, a jumperoo, etc., etc. that we'll use at home). But I like the gestalt of the Montessori classroom, so here we are. Must. teach. boy. to. nap. in. crib.

To all of you with baby-sleep experience of any kind (including babysitting, reading books, consulting Dr. Google, etc.) -- how can I encourage Jackson to sleep in his crib (or a bassinet, I'm not picky) for daytime naps instead of the swing? It seems obvious he doesn't require being held to sleep, although the swinging probably helps a lot, but when he's groggy or even fast asleep and I lay him down in the bassinet or the crib, he wails. And will NOT go back to sleep (or stop raging) until I pick him up. And I doubt this routine will work well in daycare, and frankly is not that awesome at home.

O, People of the Internets, Dear Bloggy Friends -- help?!?