A D.I.Y. Kid
Cheerios don’t stand a chance
How fast you have grown
A D.I.Y. Kid
Cheerios don’t stand a chance
How fast you have grown
I have to crawl dad
Get my butt straight out of here
Got so much to see
5 months old today
Son with an explorer’s mind,
and the happy feet
Crib gymnast sleeping
Cup of coffee to relax
Sunlight on my face
Carolina Day 1
Blue skies and no clouds
A warm, bright, and beautiful
Carolina Day 2
Sun filled, light blue sky
Casual white clouds drifting
Lazy hammock day
Carolina Day 3
My shoulder, nap time
Son’s gentle breath in my ear
Secure, safe, and warm
Our little one is between 4 and 5 months of age. He is now moving up to solids with squash, carrots, and green beans already being a hit. We do give him some oatmeal and rice cereal, which is also pretty popular, but he does love his vegetables. We plan to introduce fruit a little later on, once he gets a little more used to his vegetables and fortified cereals. I know sweet potatoes are like candy to babies so we plan to introduce it really late.
This is where I am having a problem. How do you introduce solids so he can still get his normal amount of formula? Do you feed him his formula first and then wait an hour to do solids? Do you do a little less formula and then try to add more solids? I know formula is still his man staple of food and that solids are more of an introduction right now, but how do you get him to eat his solids. My son seems to do better later on in the day, but he should be able to do some Oatmeal in the morning.
Anyone out there have any advice? How did you handle this situation? What are your current schedules if you have a child this age? First time parent just needing some help.
First off. I want to apologize to all my followers who are reading these entries. It was brought to my attention last night that Take 4 was hard to read.
I decided this morning to go back and check all of the Poop and Pajama entries and I did find them to be something that wasn’t representative of myself. I have since gone back and re-edited each of them. If you had any trouble getting through those entries feel free to re-visit them. When I write these journal entries for myself I write in a stream of conscious way. I basically just split out what’s in my head onto the page. That can be difficult for anyone other than myself to understand. I hope the entries from here on out get better. They aren’t meant to be polished as steel, but they should be readable. Again, I apologize for sloppy editing on my part.
December 15, 2012
You can tell how much he misses his mom when she is home on the weekends. That is tough on me to witness, but me staying home is what works for us. I’m much better at being home with my son doing the stay at home thing. My wife is better at going to work. She needs that day-to-day structure where I’m much better without it. I don’t know why that is. It just is.
Last night we took our son to Target for the first time. Of course he slept through the whole experience, but at least we ventured out with him. About the only going out we’ve done so far is to church and the church Christmas party. I guess being first time parents we are just scared of doing it. How do you change a diaper in public? How do you keep him calm? There are a lot of how dos that scare the crap out of you when you venture out the first couple of times. We will get better at it.
I guess that’s about it.
December 16, 2012
This morning, with a bang, my parental instincts were called into question. My son sometimes wakes up early and rolls around for a bit before settling and going back to sleep. When I went to check on him he was doing just that. I thought I shouldn’t pick him up because he may settle back to sleep, but for some reason I decided against my instincts. I think it was the way he was moving around. It looked different from what I have seen before. I guess I thought it might be a diaper issue. I couldn’t stand thinking he might be laying there in a wet or dirty diaper so I picked him up. He woke up, of course, and it took me over an hour to get him to go back to sleep. It took two trips upstairs to get formula and several attempts with the binky before he finally crashed out over my shoulder. I put him down to sleep and he woke up on his own about an hour past his normal wake time in the morning.
Was it worth it? For the peace of mind, sure, but there are times when it might be best just to let him wake up naturally. If something is bothering him he will certainly let you know.
I thought of another tip this morning as I was changing him. When you put a diaper on him make sure the edges are pulled out around the openings of the legs. You can do this on him or if he is kicking too hard do it before you put it on. Just lay the diaper out and open it flat. Then work the edges as it lays open. Then you can hook it over him and cover him up. It should go right into place then. Another thing you can do if you have a boy is to place a wash cloth over his area so he doesn’t pee on you.
December 14, 2012
Well, mid afternoon has arrived. I tell you what. I give my mom and women everywhere who have stayed home to raise their kids, full respect. I bow to you because this is one tough job. Taking care of not only your kid, but the house, dishes, clothes, and dinner as well. Today I managed to clean the kitchen, vacuum, dust, do several loads of laundry, dishes, and take care of my son. I tell you that at 3:15 P.M. I am wiped. Women who stay home I truly respect your job. I still have the bathrooms and the down stairs to clean, which will be on Monday. I also have to cut up the potatoes and get dinner ready while all I want to do is sit here and stare at the wall.
Anyway, that’s not me bragging about what I’ve done today. It’s just me wanting to let you know how tough it is staying at home when the roles are reversed. This morning was probably the toughest I have had all week. Around 8:30 A.M. my son decided to have a blow out (which is, he crapped so much it blew out of his diaper) which we knew was going to happen. He didn’t go at all yesterday (which is actually not a concern if you can believe it) so we knew today was going to be the day, and let me tell you, it was. While I was feeding him I kept smelling something.
I put him down on the changing pad in order to check his diaper. The poop had managed to exit out via one side of it and it was all over his left leg. When I removed the diaper I also found the poop migrating northward covering not only his back region, but his front region as well. The clean up was going to be tough, but then it hit me. My stomach decided now was the time my bowels needed to make their exit (trying not to be too graphic). Here I was all alone with a baby covered in green poop and I had to go so bad it about doubled me over. I cleaned him as fast as I could. I slapped a diaper on him, and tossed the changing pad as well as the footy pajamas into a pile, both of which had poop on them. I grabbed my son, tossed a blanket around him because all he had on now was a diaper, and I placed him in front of the bathroom door on a boppy (a thing that looks like a cushion horse shoe with a cover on it). I could now watch him while I did my thing.
When I thought I was done (not sure I was, but I had my son to think about). I decided to do something I had never done before. That’s right. Give him a bath. This also involved a lot of tactful maneuvering. You can’t just leave him alone and go and draw a bath. You have to put him somewhere safe while you get his bath tub ready. So I put him in the crib, ran the water, filled the tub, stripped him down, and with nerves not made of steel I bathed my son. I even did his hair. I was so proud of myself. My son seemed so happy after wards. Of course I still had to wash the crib sheets, the blanket that was around him, and everything else he had come in contact with when he was unclean. All in all it took me sometime to get it done, but I did it. I even called my wife to tell her because I just felt so good with myself. Since then it has been pretty easy-going. He’s napped and fed well. The diapers so far have remained yellow.
By the way, here’s a tip if you are a new dad. When you get your kid up in the morning you should go ahead and check their diaper if they will let you do it. Sometimes they are screaming and kicking so bad you can’t do anything, but feed them right away. If you can change the diaper though this will help you not to get peed on. I’m not saying you won’t get peed on if you change the diaper, but it will increase your chances of staying dry.
December 13, 2012
Well, I had my first judgment call today. It came in the afternoon. I had no one to watch my boy when I ran so I had to make a decision. What to do? I don’t know if this is a good or bad thing, but I decided to put my son in his car seat so I could hit the treadmill for about fifteen minutes. This required going out into the garage to do it so I bundled him up and went out to get some exercise. It was in the low fifties outside so I opened the garage door for him and I to get some air. He seemed happy and content as I ran so I think it was okay to do this. Something about it doesn’t feel right, like I’m putting myself over him. If I would have left him in the house crying then I think it would have been an issue or if I had just ignored him and did my thing – then we have problems. I’m pretty sure this one is okay. My boy got some fresh air (which he needs, would have been the same if I took him for a walk) and I got in some exercise. It must have worked because I put him down for his nap and he dropped off pretty quick. Before I took him out to the garage for some fresh air he was wide awake.
That was the big thing for this day. Everything else was pretty much according to plan. Now onto Day 5.
Is something like that okay? Find a safe place for him and watch him while you run on the treadmill or is it putting my needs over his?
Well, so continues my journey. I thought I would post the next couple of entries in my stay at home dad journal.
December 11, 2012
I Finally got a run in today. It wasn’t a great run, but it was a run. I’ll take what I can get. Since my son was born that has been one of the hardest things to do. I have had time to write, to read, to even watch some movies by myself and with my wife, but anything that involves leaving the house has been difficult.
Anyway, how was the day? Again, deceptively smooth. He slept at all of his naps, ate efficiently, and had great play time with me. The diapers weren’t too bad, no major blow outs, a couple of heavy ones, but nothing I couldn’t handle. Having fun with it so far.
December 12, 2012
The monitor woke me up with his noises. It is getting close to 6 A.M. so it should be another hour before he wakes up, at least. Since he’s been sleeping through the night we can usually expect him to wake up between 7 and 7:30 A.M. I have heard that baby’s don’t officially stick to sleeping through the night until after 6 months of age. That’s why he has been so uneven with it. He will go for a week sleeping through the night and then start waking up early again. Then back to sleeping through the night. He’s a baby. It’s what they do. We also think he might be teething early so that could be affecting his sleep as well.
My wife has already left for work and my boy has had two incidents.
The first incident was a wet diaper that leaked out of his diaper and onto me. So that meant not only a change of clothes for him, but a change of clothes for me – all the way down to the boxer shorts.
The second incident was when the poopy diaper hit and it required another change of clothes for him because he had pooped upwards. That’s when he poops into his diaper and instead of just going there and staying it decides to move northward. Those kinds of bowel movements usually go pretty far up his back.
The day concludes and my son has gone to bed wearing his fourth pair of footy pajamas. He had another big blowout sometime this evening while my wife was changing him. Other than that, the day went pretty well. He had a couple of fussy periods, but nothing a good bottle of formula can’t cure.
So that was the next couple of days. I hope you have enjoyed this journey so far. What do you think? Would you want to hear some more? I might start posting my entries from here on out. If I have the time. A lot on my plate as a stay at home dad.
I’ve been working on a book about being a stay at home dad. It is a journey of what it is like to be a stay at home dad for the first full year doing this wonderful and challenging job. Why chronicle just a year? Not sure, it just seemed like a good well-rounded way to do this. I might make this a series of books and just chronicle each year until he goes to school for the first time. I’m honestly not sure just yet what I want to do, but I have enjoyed chronicling my journey. It’s a nice way to have a place to release the thoughts in your head.
I thought I would post up the first entry in this book in order to gauge the interest in it. Would you be willing to read this? Would you want to read this? Does it grab your attention? That sort of thing. I’m purely a fiction writer (mostly horror based) so writing something like this is really out of my comfort zone.
Well, I’ll shut up now. I hope you enjoy it and please let me know what you think. If you want more I can easily start posting excerpts from it.
This first entry starts on the very first day my wife went back to work.
December 10, 2012
Sometime in the 3 to 4 A.M. range, I was woken up by a call for the binky. We’ve learned from others that sometimes when your baby wakes up in the morning he isn’t hungry, he just wants something to suck on. This didn’t start happening until he got closer to 3 months old and after he had started sleeping through the night. When he was younger he did need to be fed when he woke up because of his age, but now it seems he could go either way. When I get up at 3 A.M. I first check his diaper and then try the binky. I stay with him for a while to make sure it works and that he isn’t rejecting it. If he is rejecting it then by all means, I feed him. He is hungry.
My first full day of being a stay at home dad is in the books. Monday Night Football is on and I am finding it hard to sleep for some reason. My creative juices are just flowing.
How was the day? Deceptively smooth. My boy went down for all of his naps rather easily except for the one around lunch. I’m not sure why he was crying so much for that one. No major diaper issues or vomit, no pee on the walls. I managed to get the dishes done, dinner cooked, and most of my laundry done. My wife and I still do our own laundry which is the way we did it before we got married. Tomorrow is another day so onto Day 2. Let’s hope it’s just as smooth.
Newborn to Infant
Learning more and more each day
Growing up so fast
Quickly the days pass
My son, 2 months old today
Time really does fly
2 runs in 2 days
5 and a half miles covered
My legs need a break
Well folks, a long time and no post.
My son is 8 weeks old today – 2 months on the seventeenth of November.
I just can’t believe how quick he has grown, how quick he is changing, and so many other little things. It is just amazing to watch him grow. He’s already outgrown some of his clothes and he is moving up into the number 2 diapers. Growing so fast.
I have been wondering if any parents reading this have kids that were as babies, so fascinated with lights and fans. My son could lay on his back for hours and just stare at this one light. He can go from being really excited to calm in an instant once he is on the changing pad staring at the light, and it doesn’t even have to be on. I have even found him trying to talk to it. Not sure what he is saying, but it is awfully cute to witness.
In other news, TV related:
Has anyone caught an episode of See Dad Run? It is such a great family show. I can’t believe after all these years Scott Baio still has it.
Here’s an episode to watch:
My wife and I started out just recording the show weekly and then we decided just to record the whole season. We really hate to miss it.
Another show catching my eye that has some family issues going on with it this season is The Walking Dead. Granted, this is by no means family oriented and it shouldn’t be. I am surprised that they allow some of the violence they allow. It’s cable, I know, but it isn’t HBO or Showtime.
Anyway, this year they have introduced a baby into one of the groups and it is going to be interesting to see how they handle this child from week to week. My wife and I found it funny that they gave this newborn (less than a week old) a gigantic bottle of formula. Kids that age have tiny tummies so they don’t require as much to eat at one time until later on in life. It’s funny to me how they get so many things right on this show, but skip over a few obvious little things. Maybe a lot of parents don’t watch this show so the writers don’t think about minor things like this.
In baby news:
I honestly don’t know how to talk about baby wipes, but I have a little knowledge on some brands that have worked for me, as a dad, and I thought I would pass it along.
Wipes that don’t work -Pampers. They are very dry and they don’t absorb anything. You spend most of the time cleaning and re-cleaning because of them. If you get them at baby showers use them, but don’t buy any on your own.
Wipes that somewhat work – Parent’s Choice. They come in their own little containers which is very nice, but it is hard to start them when you open a new pack. Word to the wise, pull out a couple of wipes before you open the diaper and set them to the side for use once the diaper is off. They work well for clean-up, but it is a pain to work with the container.
Wipes that work the best so far – Huggies. Not only do they make great diapers, but wipes as well. I would highly recommend these. Very absorbent and you don’t need as many for clean up.
For dad’s about to have babies. A good way to wipe is to clean off the outside area. Then clean off the genital area (if you have a son, haven’t changed a girl yet). Then clean inside the butt. That should do it.
F.Y.I. : It is up to you to determine how many wipes to use. 2-3 is the number for me.
I guess that’s about it.
Okay folks, just when I think I have heard it all with this pregnancy thing and post pregnancy thing, along comes something else. That’s right – night terror, which sounds like something I get when I listen to a Bee Gees song.
Anyway, did anyone know that women in some form of postpartum can have this happen to them. It really is a pretty crazy thing to read about and witness. We went through it last night and not only is it scary for my wife, but it terrified me. We are all okay, but man that was a scary time. I hope it doesn’t happen again.
My wife decided to do some research this morning on it and she was telling me that one woman (she read about online) fell asleep with her baby on top of her. When this woman woke up she thought the baby was some kind of snake and tossed it. Lucky for this woman the baby landed on the couch and was unharmed.
You’ve gone through nine months with a child inside you and given birth. You would think the party should start, but little things keep lingering for a couple of months after. I will be glad when we all get back to some kind of normal around here.
Did anyone catch this show last night? I was really disappointed with it. The show really didn’t live up to the premise. Maybe it was the pilot episode and it will get better, but after watching it last night I don’t think I will revisit it again. It just wasn’t all that good.
I haven’t seen this one yet, but this show looks like it has promise. I might have to check it out since I am planning to stay at home once my wife goes back to work.
I have learned so much since my wife got pregnant about so many things regarding my son. The two words above are just another thing to add to my daddy dictionary.
If you don’t know what it means, here is a loose male definition of those two words. A cluster-feeding is when your baby just wants to eat and eat and eat and eat, etc. Usually this happens during a growth spurt and it can go on for hours or days. No matter how many times you put him up to his mom to be fed it never seems like he gets enough. As first time parents it can be very challenging. Your baby is crying and nothing you do will console him. It can be tough to get use to We have been lucky so far because the times we think he has been cluster feeding it has been at good times of the day – not in the darkness of deep late night.
Anybody else feel like they are hurting their child when they put them into one of these contraptions? As a first time parent this has been very challenging for dear old dad. I have been the one putting him into it and honestly I just expect something horrific to happen every time I do it. I feel like I am putting him into an Iron Maiden. I know car seats are built this way for safety, but it is going to take some time to get used to strapping him in.
This is the one area that I know where I am truly a guy. I can’t put baby clothes on my kid no matter how hard I work at it. It takes me forever to get it right. Trying to put stuff over moving arms and legs is just impossible sometimes.
I did get my first peed on experience a few days ago. I was sitting on the couch holding him when I felt this warmth that wasn’t there before. It soaked my shorts pretty good. We realized the diaper he was wearing was too big so we switched back to the newborn size. Lesson learned – I’m sure we are not the only ones who’ve made this mistake.
I guess that is about it. We are at a week since we brought him home and I tell you what – it is awesome. The greatest thing about parenting so far has been the little moments – the little things he does. A few days ago I went in to get him up and he was wide awake. He looked right at me with a set of expressive eyes that I had never seen before. Sure, I had seen him with his eyes open, but not like this. You could just see this change. There are a lot of little things like this happening every day, but I won’t bore you with them now.
Where ‘s the place you sleep?
Between the baby’s feedings
Quite, warm – Sleep Island
I’ve started to notice that in between the baby feeding that there are these little magical pockets of time. This is the time when he sleeps, usually an hour or three. I have been calling these little pockets of time sleep islands.
What a week and those three words believe me are an understatement.
I have had so many things running through my head since the birth of my son on Monday morning that I just want to write some of them down.
Let’s get started.
First off: sleep.
I honestly had no idea how bad it was going to be. I thought I could handle it since I don’t sleep that much, but I am here to tell you this, I was mistaken. The lack of sleep as I write this at 3:20 A.M. is something you just don’t know anything about until you have a newborn to take care. Feedings every two to three hours, crying and soothing, working off of his schedule, and diaper changes. It all adds up to sleeping no more than a few hours in spurts. Wednesday night my wife and I managed to get in a couple of good solid hours of sleep. I’m talking uninterrupted didn’t wake up until it was time to feed him sleep. We were staying at the local hospital birthing center and they have a nursery there. When we needed just a bit of shut-eye we would send him on down there so we could sleep. We didn’t do it that often because we couldn’t stand having him out of the room with us, but we were about to come home so we wanted to get all the sleep we could get while we had the help. I can’t believe how quick you fall into a coma when you do get to put your head down. It is also hard to wake up as well because your body just wants to stay in dream land. When you do finally get up you find yourself just nodding off at random times and your body just tries to shut down any chance it can. You also start hallucinating and seeing things that aren’t there. I even sat up the first night after I swaddled him while my wife slept and just watched him to make sure he was okay. I just couldn’t sleep while he slept. This has gotten better over the last few days, but even now as he rests in his pack and play I keep checking on him. I know he is fine and safe, but I just have to keep making sure.
Second: changing diapers.
So far so good for me. My wife had a c-section so she is recovering from that which means I have to take over on diaper patrol until she heals. It is just so much easier on her if I help out with this part of it. Right now it hasn’t been too bad, but once he starts feeding regularly the diapers are going to become a real challenge. I am glad I have the chance now to get used to it before he really challenges me.
Who knew it was like this? Who knew it was this frustrating to watch? It should be easy, right, wrong. It is supply and demand so starting out you have to work him into a feeding schedule. This will tell the body how much milk to produce. The more he feeds, the more he gets. Sounds simple enough, but let me tell you, as a man, this is hard to watch my wife go through. She just has so many little things she has to do in order to get him to latch on. I’m not going into TMI territory here because I am sure all mothers have to go through this who breast feed. Not only is it hard for her to go through, but my son as well. He is hungry and trying to get his meal, but there just isn’t that much there. He’s crying and she’s trying, but it just doesn’t work instantly. It takes time. They actually have lactation consultants that help you learn how to breast feed. It is just that complicated and difficult a task to learn. Of all the things I have seen so far breast-feeding has to be the most frustrating one of all. I just don’t like seeing my wife and son struggle in such a way.
When we were at the birthing center my son was swaddled with blankets, binding him tight like he was in the womb. It was always perfect when they brought him to us and it looked simple enough to do. You see, I had to break this swaddle in order to change his diaper. That meant I had to re-swaddle him myself and I learned quickly that I stink at swaddling. I was always worried the blankets yes there were two of them would come loose and cause him harm.
I can’t tell you how much we have been blessed with my parents and my wife’s parents being able to help us out in a moments notice. It really does take the pressure off when you just need a nap, a shower, or a bite to eat. Our Douala birthing coach has also been in our corner and her advice is greatly appreciated. I also have to give a shout out to Wake Med Cary’s Birthing Center – awesome place to give birth. They were great in their care, time, and attention.
I know some of this above may make it sound like becoming a parent is a chore to go through, but it really isn’t. Just to see him and to have him in my life makes it all worth it. I can’t tell you how I felt when I heard his first cry in the delivery room or I saw him for the first time. It is just something I will never forget and tonight as I approach what day is this? the end of this great week I know I wouldn’t change a thing. I am hooked on being a dad and I am looking forward to the challenges each day of his life brings.
Welcome to the world
My precious little baby
10 pounds 8 ounces
My son was born at 8:11 A.M. this morning.
As you can see he was a big boy.
That’s right folks my son was born this morning, September 17, 2012 at the time listed above. He weighed 10 pounds and 8 ounces and he came via a c-section.
Mom and baby are doing well after the birth this morning.
I tell you what folks. This is one of the greatest events of my entire lifetime. I couldn’t believe it when I heard his first cries and I saw him for the first time.
This is just an amazing day.
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