Thursday, June 28, 2007

Baby Shrink?

I am not sure if we should keep saving for Henry's college or just start saving for his therapy. My crazy little baby has the most severe case of separation anxiety that I have ever heard of. The babysitter that worked out so well during the trial run has come by twice since, with near disastrous results.

He was OK when he saw her the second time, but wouldn't play with her, let her feed him, and if I moved even an inch away, he cried. When he realized we were leaving, he screamed his head off. She got him to bed in about 20 minutes, but he cried until that point. She said she had never heard a baby cry like that, and that she felt like she was torturing him just being there. She was very close to telling us she wouldn't watch him.

The third time she came, we needed to leave for a wedding. The minute he saw her, he let out the most blood curdling scream. He screamed and screamed and screamed. He only stopped screaming when I took him from Adam and patted her arm in a very exaggerated manner. The screaming commenced again when we walked out the door. She got him to bed in about 15 minutes, and he slept until midnight. She fed him a bottle, and then he realized who it was. She said he cried again, and she just put him in his crib so that he didn't get even more worked up. She stood by the door and he cried "Mama" for about five minutes before falling asleep. Forget Henry, I think I need the shrink too after hearing that!

If he didn't treat his grandparents this way too, I would be worried about her. I am just thankful that she can get him to sleep quickly, and that we don't have daytime engagements! He has gotten so bad that even his Grandpa, whom he sees every week without fail, is not allowed to hold him. Even if I am in the same room. Forget about me actually leaving the room to do something. You would think he was being murdered. He cries so hard that snot comes out of his nose and he is shaking. The only way I can get any break is if Adam is home. Thank God that he will go to him.

The conventional wisdom is that I just need to leave him so that he gets used to it. However, as easy as this sounds, if you heard him crying you would not be able to do it. It is not a normal sounding cry, it is heart piercing. It practically brings me to tears. The funny part is that he is actually very friendly. If I am holding him, he will smile, wave and talk to everyone he sees. We joke that he is the Mayor of Washington Heights.

Anyway, that is my current and ongoing drama. It is a little bit funny, but really quite upsetting. I would love for him to go to people more easily, so that others can enjoy him like I do. I know everyone tries to pinpoint what I have done "wrong" to make him this way. Even if I did do something to cause this, I don't think I would do something different next time. I don't want to change my parenting philososphy that covers 99% of the time to make the other 1% of the time easier. I really think it is his personality, and treating him differently wouldn't change things. I hate to see him in distress and am glad that he won't remember it. I just keep hoping that this passes soon!

I wanted to document this so that when Henry won't kiss me goodbye in front of his friends, he can read this and know that it was not always the case!

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

I missed my calling!

As a baby food chef of course! Henry officially eats better than I do. I make the majority of his baby food, and now that I am in the swing of it, it is really fun.

Periodically, I cook up a few organic vegetables and freeze them in ice cube trays. Most fruit I just keep frozen and defrost and puree it as needed. He gets custom flavored yogurt almost every morning. My personal favorite is mango blueberry.

We have recently added meat to the mix, and he has had chop meat and chicken so far. I made a big pot of stock yesterday with a whole, organic chicken, some carrots, celery, scallions and fresh thyme. I shredded the chicken and froze in little portions. I put the stock in ice cube trays and use it to moisten and flavor his little mixed dinners. He had chicken, potato and carrot today and we were both eating it, it was so good! He seems to be a very adventurous eater, he even likes tofu! Crazy little baby, I need to take advantage of this while I can.

We have a crawler!

Henry started crawling on Monday. Very exciting stuff. Luckily he is not that motivated to move or do it that often so I don't have to babyproof! Just kidding folks, we are getting on it this weekend. Could someone please send him a helmet, chin guard and mouthpiece? He keeps taking very painful looking faceplants into the floor.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Notes From the Field


Henry and I just returned from a trip to Florida. He was such a good boy on both flights; he slept for part of the time, hopped around on my lap and pulled my hair for the rest.

He was very busy during his trip to Grandma's house. He started clapping his hands, sleeping on his stomach and pulling up to a standing position. The clapping is so cute, he breaks it out for any and all occasions. He was even clapping in his sleep last night. He is also talking a lot more. He was on the phone with Adam this morning, and smiling as he listened to him. As soon as I took the phone away from him, he said Dada. It is really incredible how much he understands now.

Monday, June 04, 2007

First Trip to the Zoo

We went to Central Park yesterday with our friends Carter and Aly, and their two kids Jackson and Sophia. We had a picnic first, then hit the carousel and then visited the zoo. The first two activities were so exciting for Henry that he slept through the zoo, but oh well!

Talking Update

In addition to mamamamama, Henry now can say gaga, baba and dada. He also loves to say "Ah-boo." We aren't sure what it means, but he collapses into a giggling fit whenever you say it back to him.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

My Kind of Farming

As regular blog readers know, I lived on a pseudo-farm for a few years growing up. Not a real farm, but enough for a kid that grew up on Long Island. Our current living situation is about as far away as you can get from an agricultural lifestyle. Something about breathing in those fumes everyday from the George Washington Bridge keeps things from growing.

Although our neighborhood is predominately occupied by people from the Dominican Republic, we have a large pocket of artists, actors, screenwriters and other assorted Yuppies that don't have much money. Not to generalize, but these people are generally very interested in saving the environment and living a healthy lifestyle. Because we are isolated from the rest of Manhattan (I like to call it marooned), it is very "neighborhoody" and there are lots of activities and family things to do.

One of the more interesting things to get involved in is the CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. The basic premise is that you buy a "share" of the produce from an organic farm for a season. You pre-pay to help the farmer stay in business. If there are good conditions, you get lots of locally grown, organic vegetables. If there is a drought or some other blight, you are back where you started buying your veggies from the sidewalk market and are a little poorer.

Since I am making most of Henry's babyfood,(Hold your laughter please. I think my mother's comment was "That will get old quickly.") I thought this was a good thing to get involved with. He can eat vegetables that are in season and not get pumped up full of pesticides. I figure he is already behind the eight ball with the poor air quality and bad schools and that this was the least that I could do. In a buying frenzy I also signed us up for a fruit and flower share as well. The flowers are obviously for me.

Once per week, the farmer drives into NYC and drops off the produce. All of the hippies, I mean members trek to a centralized location with their own bags (reusable of course) to pick up their loot. To add to the commune like appeal, there is a work requirement. Each family has to put in four hours working at the drop off site.

Sounds fun, doesn't it? I'll keep you posted.

Just another career option

Henry has been sucking his thumb lately, which is adorable. Hopefully he doesn't keep it up as long as his Uncle Barry did. This morning he was lying in his crib in the "Happy Baby" yoga pose and he stuck his big toe in his mouth and started to suck on it. Maybe he has a future as a contortionist?

Somebody, hold me!

Henry met his first "stranger" babysitter today. The time has come for us to find someone to watch Henry periodically. As much as I would like to stay home with him, I must venture out into the world for social engagements, lest people start talking about me and my mental stability.

We found Anna through a reference from one of our neighbors. She has been a full time nanny for them for 4 years. She came this morning with a book full of her references and credentials. She went to nanny school (who knew there was such a thing) and is a certified baby nurse. She was very good with Henry and he seemed to like her very much. She is coming for one more trial run before we need to leave him alone with her. I was happy he took to her, but frankly makes me so sad to leave my baby!