Wednesday 26 November 2008

not so grouchy anymore!

so on sunday night i was perusing the internet for christmas gift ideas and found myself in the wonderfullness that is ink & spindle. i'm sure 99.9% of you are familiar with them but for the .1% who aren't, three melbourne girls, each super talented fabric designers, combined forces to open their own screenprinting studio to offer their handprinted wares. i've been reading lara's blog for years, before she even printed her first piece of fabric, and it's been wonderful to watch her designs evolve and grow so popular. i've coveted so many of them and, for one reason or another, haven't let myself buy any so i jumped at the "excuse" to snap up some of her acacia design in grey for holiday sewing (being a bit vague about what i'm making and for who as i'm never too sure which family members read this and how often).

goodies from lara cameron of ink & spindle

the fabric is truly gorgeous, the ink colour and the basecloth are both perfect. i'm making sure there will be a nice hunk leftover for some personal use, let me tell you. so to top off my excitement about finally ordering from lara, she was ridiculously kind and also sent along...

bonus "scraps"!!

a bunch of what she calls "scraps"! these, my friends, are NOT scraps, the raindrop one (my favourite EVER lara cameron design) is bloody huge and destined to be a cushion for our couch if i can ever stop grinning like an idiot when i look at it! they are all so, so lovely and definitely snapped me out of any residual grouchiness i may have been experiencing yesterday. thank you again, lara, you rule!

mae isn't as grouchy anymore, either, thankfully. she's still getting me up 5 or 6 times a night, which sucks, but at least she's pretty good during the day and having lots of naps (she's probably as exhausted as i am after getting up so many times). she's been having some pretty crazy meltdowns at bedtime the past few nights though, uncontrollable scream crying that starts as she gets put into her pjs after her bath and takes about 30 to 45 minutes to calm down. she gets so worked up that she won't even eat, the one thing that used bring relief when she'd go off. we've tried bumping her bedtime forward to 6:30ish (she usually goes to bed between 7:00 and 7:30) but that just resulted in her waking up after 40 minutes thinking she'd just had a nap and then we had the same big meltdown. apparently this is a common thing around four months? anyone have any tips? she used to be so good with bedtime and only waking up twice a night... still pretty cute though : )

official note to grandma
note we sent to my mom last week


  1. Anonymous12:04 pm

    gorgeous fabric!!!! i'll have to check them out:)

  2. Oh Leslie you're too kind. Thanks so much for this lovely post, glad it brightened your week.

    And Mae is looking sooooo cute, I looked at all your facebook pics hehe :)

  3. It sounds like she's overtired, which might be the cause of the meltdown at bedtime. I would try and get longer sleeps in the day by resettling in the cot (patting is good) and maybe a catnap in the afternoon to get her through to bedtime. Feeding to sleep is ok if you want to keep doing it, but if you use it now as a sleep association, no one else will ever be able to put her to bed! I would wrap, put in the cot and sit and pat until she is calm and relaxed, and then leave her to fall asleep on her own. Believe me, starting now at this, even a few times practice a day, may save your sanity later!

  4. thanks bec! i was going to email you but thought i'd write it here in case anyone else wants some help, bear with me if it's long : )

    i think the overtired thing is right, although she seems to nap a lot throughout the day, they are usually pretty short, an hour max. she had a three hour nap (the first in ages) this afternoon and went to bed normally tonight. i just wanted to clarify the sleep/feeding thing though - am i not supposed to feed her before bed at night? everything i've read has said a good nighttime routine is a bath and a feed and it seems logical if you want them to sleep for longer periods of time. it usually works out that her bedtime is 2 hours or more from her last feed so i'd worry that she'd wake up starving soon after we put her to bed, after a big struggle to get her to settle down. she's awake but sleepy when i put her to bed after feeding and then takes a dummy to get to sleep. during the day i feed her roughly every three hours and she doesn't nap right after eating. she'll play for awhile and when she starts rubbing her eyes and grizzling a little bit, i swaddle her, give her a dummy and either put her in her swing or her cot for a nap. i AM a bit worried about her reliance on the swing for naps so i'm trying to use the cot more. one other thing i'm worried about is the swaddling - when does that stop? how do we transition from not swaddling? she won't fall asleep without it now. thanks again, i appreciate any advice you can share!

  5. Anonymous9:07 pm

    Hi! I just stumbled onto your great blog. I have a 9 month old boy, and I would highly, highly recommend a book that someone put me onto when I was pregnant called Save our Sleep by Tizzie Hall (see The technique is really just about getting your little one to learn how to self settle, but explains all about sleep cycles (which are 40 minutes long - no coincidence there!) etc. Even though my little guy suffered from horrible reflux for the first 6 months we persevered with the technique and he now puts himself to sleep, sleeps through the night, and naps during the day (but of course he still has his moments - they're babies after all!). Anyway, this worked for me and I've been so grateful to the work colleague who put me onto it. Good luck. A mum needs her sleep. Lyn M

  6. No, that sounds great, hope it can help others too. This is just one way of thinking, though, so if anyone has a different view, that's fine too. Mae's daytime sounds great, actually, they are pretty long sleeps, even an hour is good. Usually they catnap for 40 mins and that's makes them really overtired, so if you get an hour, great. You're bedtime routine sounds right ,too, it's the only feed where you put them down groggy after a feed, but hopefully not asleep. Sounds like today was a good one and you've seen it in action, so hey, if it's working, don't fix it haha. Bad days are inevitable, unfortuntaly.
    I believe SIDS guidelines recommend swaddling until 4 to 6 months, when rolling makes it dangerous for swaddled babies. You can either wait and tackle it a bit later, or in the meantime start loosening it a bit and occasionally let a hand out, just give her lots of chances to practise getting used to it. It only takes a few times to make a habit, so I would alternate the swing and the cot. Email with me anyway if you want books or references, as I don't like coming across too one sided as well.
    she's too cute with that card, too!

  7. I really hesitate to give advice, as grace was a pretty easy going baby - however we got lots of advice when we were in the mother/baby unit at about this age, so here goes. They generally recommended a routine of feed/play/sleep during the day so what you're doing there sounds spot on. As does the observation about overtiredness. Perversely it seems harder for most children and babies to go to sleep when they are too tired. (Grace at 8.30m is a nightmare, at 7.30pm bedtime is a delight). When she was little, we always gave Grace a feed before going to bed at night and middle of the night time feeds were to be in low light and straight back to bed. They also emphasised trying to get a good rythym of naps during the day. Even if you had to delay naptime a bit. I think Grace had three and then transitioned to two longish daytime ones at about five months. We swaddled until it stopped working, at about three months - she just stopped liking it, but all babies would be different there. We tended to put Grace to bed and let her have a bit of a grizzle, return and reassure etc. But as I said, she's always been a pretty good sleeper. Unlike my niece, poor betty (my sister) expected ruby to sleep like grace. never mind, grace throws a mighty impressive tantrum and is still half in nappies at three and a half.

    I'm sure you're doing the right thing. Just got to trust your own sense of what is right for you and mae.

  8. Hi, I have been reading your blog for a while now and I love it. My boys are 3 1/2 and 18 months and it sounds like you are doing it all perfectly to me. The sleep thing is not easy!

  9. Leslie,
    I have trouble remembering what to do (I do have a 10 month old!) Just go with what works for you and have a flexible routine. I would keep swaddling if Mae likes it. My second one is still highly attached to her muslins, and my little boy worked his arms out himself, but has only recently swapped to a sleeping bag with his muslin lighly on the top. I guess everyone is different!
    You sound like you're doing really well, just remember, each little stage only lasts so long and then they change!
    Cute cute sign to Grandma!

  10. Anonymous4:42 pm

    I have been reading your blog for ages but I don't have one of my own. I have a 6month old son and a 2.5yr old daughter so I learnt from my mistakes with my first child. She was very placid and he has given me more trouble! It seems you and I are going through similar things with our babies and I am a few months ahead. I had the same issue with him waking in the night. I changed the feeds to 4 hourly - 6am, 10am, 2pm, 6pm, 10pm, 2am. For a week. Then I cut the 2am out. This involved one night of crying ALL night. I slept on the floor by his cot and stuck the dummy in each time. It was horrid but it works. (With my daughter I didn't do this and she continued to wake in the night until she was 2yrs old! It was hard and tiring). My son sometimes wakes after 45mins and this is the natural sleep cycle for babies. Just stick the dummy in and walk out again. Try not to make eye contact. I replaced swaddling with a little teddy head/ruggy thing. It has a nice rattle sound and is soft. I am sure you could make one!! He has this only when he is going to sleep so it is a signal for him that it is bedtime. And also it is not my hand or my cuddles he needs to get to sleep. Uuuum... sorry I could go on and on about it all. If you want to chat more then we could talk over email. Let me know - claireDOTwhiteATmailDOTcom
    PS. Love all your sewing. Just beautiful!


I love to hear your thoughts, thanks so much for taking the time to comment! If you have a question to ask, I will answer it here (and by email as well, if I can track down your email address). I would love to reply to every single comment but until Blogger makes it easier to reply by email, please know that I am so happy you stopped by : )


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