Archive for the 'Formula feeding' Category

Semisolids are forthcoming

December 10, 2010

Andrew Hicks

Procrastination is my forte. I’ll explain more later.

Okay, fine. I’ll explain more now. Silas, who turned five months last week, has been fed cereal once and baby food zero times. He’s old enough for both, I just constantly finding myself taking forever to implement any kind of change. I’m like Barack Obama without the change you can believe in… what? Oh, make that simply, “I’m like Barack Obama.”

Silas lost his appetite when he was sick last week, but he’s back sucking down formula bottles at full tilt. And it’s time to sit his big-headed infant body up in the highchair and start getting him messy with semisolids. Sarah was a good cereal and baby food eater. I think the only baby food she didn’t like was peaches, but she was down with other Snooki-colored foods like squash and sweet potatoes.

Speaking of Sarah while we’re speaking of procrastination, I finally converted the second crib into a toddler bed today. Me vs. Any Kind Of Handyman Activity is usually a long, drawn-out battle – first, to get me to attempt to fix or assemble something, and second, to actually get it assembled correctly. I use the assembly instructions as a crutch, but I never seem to read them thoroughly enough to get it completely right on the first try.

On the other hand, I’m not one of those dudes that refuses to ask for directions. I’ll ask for directions to the same place ten times from ten different people. If I can’t immediately find something around the house, I ask Tiffany if she knows where it is before I even look in a second spot. Which drives her crazy.

Tiffany also has problems with procrastination, which makes a lot of little things take forever to get accomplished and a lot of big things just keep looming in the distance. Considering how long it takes us to do things, getting married after knowing each other for three months was probably the most out-of-character thing either of us ever did. Our wedding, by the way, cost $148 and lasted less than a half-hour. I’ve spent more getting my oil changed. Which is an entirely separate personal issue.

In the case of Sarah and the toddler bed, I likely could’ve procrastinated right up until the hypothetical day Sarah climbed out of her crib and landed on her head. A broken water main ended up coming to our rescue – Tiffany got yesterday and today off work because the main burst right under the ground floor at her job. Thousands of gallons of gushing water were let loose in the vicinity of the company’s computer servers, necessitating evacuation and cleanup. And I thought I sucked for spilling an ounce of formula into my laptop keyboard a couple months back… and then waiting a month to fix the problem.

We put Sarah down for her nap in the toddler bed about 90 minutes ago. Tucked her in with her favorite pink fleece blankie, her Lily singing frog doll and a bottle*. Kissed her goodnight. Walked out of her room and closed the door. Ten seconds later, Sarah was beating on the closed door with her palm. Went back in, laid her back down, explained to her that she had to stay in bed because it was night-night time.

Ignored her tapping on the door more and calling for daddy and mommy. Eventually heard her rustling the plastic shopping bag that was in the trash and realized we hadn’t fully baby-proofed the new room she was sleeping in. Walked in and saw Sarah had found a pen and drawn on her white sheets and grabbed and strewn a bunch of my photos. Put her back in the original crib in the original bedroom. That was 15 minutes ago, and now the familiar sounds of nap-silence are emanating from her closed bedroom door. We’ll put her in the toddler bed later.

*Sarah does still drink from a bottle when she’s lying down for her nap or for the night. Procrastination here too? Probably, but we have broken her of her once-rabid binkie habit. Now Sarah goes without a bink unless one of Silas’s binks is within her reach. Then she does an instant stealth Yoink! followed by an immediate “I’m trying to get away with something I know I shouldn’t” glance toward mom and/or dad. Sarah always seems entertained by the two-step process of me first reminding her that’s her brother’s binkie then her handing it back to me.

BABY PICTURE OF THE DAY

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Baby pee, poop and puke

October 15, 2010

Andrew Hicks

NOTE: Today’s post, while baby-related, is all about bodily functions, a subject with which every parent is very familiar. If this disgusts you, go watch a PG13-rated Mike Myers movie.

ParentingĀ is known to toss an array of bodily fluids at the nostrils, hands and clothing of moms and dads. There’s the expected and the unexpected. Poor Silas threw up all over himself a couple hours ago. That’s unusual for him, as he generally throws up all over whatever clean shirt I just put on.

Baby accidents happen, but I’ve gotten pretty lucky. Only once with each child have I had the diaper off for that crucial, “I’m still not done peeing,” burst of yellow liquid. Sarah’s was a kind of slow, pooling eruption, while Silas had the loose, haphazard spray of a spastic, one-armed-clown lawn sprinkler. Each equally messy in different ways.

Then there’s the poop. Sarah’s getting close to the potty-training stage, which will be completely foreign to me. I’m going to have to take notes from the Elmo Goes to the Potty* DVD my mom bought my toddler. “What’s that, Elmo? You sit on the toilet and then you go potty? Slow down, dude. You’re going too fast! Rewind!”

Sarah reached a personal landmark achievement a few months back. She had her first poop that was so big, it clogged the toilet. I swear, I see more and more of myself in that little princess every day.

Yeah, her poop is usually a nice, healthy turd-ball. Sometimes, Sarah grunts and makes the poop face while she’s wrestling it out of her body. Other times, she just walks up to me, my nose wrinkles, and I check her back-pocket area for that telltale lump. We’ve been doing this since her lump was the size of a chicken nugget. Now, more often, it’s that one mutant chicken finger that looks more like a chicken fist**.

We’re brand-loyal to Pampers for both babies. Diabolically enough, when Sarah’s in the store, the Pampers draw her attention because there’s a little cartoon Elmo on the bottom corner of each side of the box. It’s about a half-inch tall, like a quarter the size of the UPC, and I never would’ve noticed it on my own.

They are super-absorbent, though. Many mornings, when I’m changing Sarah out of the overnight diaper, that thing’s sagging at a bowed-down angle like a tightrope with three fat dudes in the middle. I’ve tossed some five-pound pee diapers in the trash.

A collander

I saw a five-minute report on “Nightline” about which generic equivalents of name-brand items are just as good and which are inferior. If you’ve ever had generic Ruffles***, you know what I mean. The TV report didn’t mention diapers, but I’m here to tell you, spring for the name brand. Generic diapers are like collanders. They leak from every possible angle. You’d swear you wrapped a thin layer of cheesecloth around your baby’s privates.

Now Silas, he’s on a strict diet of formula. He’s still a few weeks away from the varietal switch-up of rice cereal and, if he’s a really good little boy, oatmeal cereal. So his poop has that look of soupy guacamole that’s been exposed to a little too much air. Tiffany breastfed the first month or so, and Silas’s poop almost smelled like roses. (Well, you know, plastic roses.) Switch to formula, and that poop smell goes way downhill. Today’s batch of stale, tableside diaper guac was twice as rank as usual. Either he had an upset stomach, or it’s time to start feeding him name-brand formula. Which was also not mentioned in the “Nightline” report.

This post isn’t going to win me any Pulitzer prizes, so I might as well close with a poop story of my own. Last month, when I was in the hospital and the nurses were tossing stool softeners**** in my paper pill cups, I asked them how much warning I’d have when the SSs did their trick. Because, you know, I was bed-bound with no crutches and no bedpan. They laughed.

An upside-down Douglas fir

“Oh no, you won’t poop for days. This is just to make it softer when you actually do.” They were right. I was checked into the hospital late Saturday night. Nature didn’t finally answer the call of the stool softener until Friday. Now, normally when pass a tough bowel movement, I compare it to pooping out a pine cone. This was like pooping out an upside-down Douglas fir.

Okay, thanks for reading. You are hereby dismissed. Hope you get your appetite back before Thanksgiving.

*I don’t think that’s the actual name of the DVD. That name sounds like it could be misinterpreted by the less than pure among us. Such as, say, me for suggesting it.

**If a chicken could make a fist. It’s Friday night, my evocative, poetic imagery is spent for the week. Besides, I’m writing about crap here.

***Ruffies, right? Or are those trash bags?

****I accidentally typed “stool samples” first. Which, gross.

BABY PICTURE OF THE DAY

Sarah's hesitant look means it's time for Daddy to stop talking about yucky things.