Sunday, July 29, 2012

If sleep is for the weak, then I am one dang weak woman

     This past week I splurged and bought new bedding.  Cute stuff, too.  Sheets, a quilt, decorative pillows, the whole nine yards.  And I have been so excited to sleep on my cute new bedding, but guess what?  Sleep for this gal has been pretty non-existant lately.  And when I say lately, I mean like 3 months or more.  So I need some advice.  Here's the deal:
     A few things are making it difficult to get consistent rest during the night.  For one thing, Mike's first alarm goes off at 3:45am.  That's right folks, 3:45am.  If he sleeps through that, a second alarm goes off at 4am.  Of course, the alarms wake me up too, so that interferes with my sleep.
     Then at 4:30 on the dot, the baby wakes up.  It doesn't matter when I lay him down, or when I give him his last feeding, he wakes up at 4:30 every morning.  Almost like his body is conditioned to wake up at that time.  When he wakes up, he's pretty hysterical and it's very difficult to calm him down.  Rocking him and a pacifier do nothing.  I've tried to let him cry it out, but I can only listen to that hysterical cry for so long before I'm up trying to console him.  Even my giant fan can't drown out his cries.  The only thing that seems to work is nursing him, and that's a habit I really don't want him to get into (although it seems to me he already has.)  He is almost 9 months old and he shouldn't be waking up for a feeding in the night anymore.  In fact, between 2 and 4 months he was sleeping through the night, so I know it can be done.  He used to do it all the time.  So what's going on now?
     Anyway, I usually nurse him now because it calms him down and he'll go back to sleep afterwards.  By then it's about 5am and I'll try desperately to fall asleep again, but if it happens it is short lived.  That's because out of nowhere, Jacob has started to wake up at around 5:30 every morning.  Actually, he has been waking up multiple times in the night for the past month or so.  Usually the first time happens around 2am.  At any rate, if he doesn't wake up in the night, he's guaranteed to wake up at 5:30am.  Not sure the reasoning behind that, considering that he's never had a problem sleeping in the past.  In fact, he's been my best sleeper so far and has always slept through the night until about 7:30 each morning.  So at 5:30 I have to go reassure him that everything is okay and get him to lay back down so he doesn't wake up his brother.  Then by the time I get back to bed and fall asleep again, Vessel is up sometime between 6 and 6:30am.  If I'm lucky they will watch t.v. QUIETLY so I can sleep a little longer.  But "quietly" isn't usually the case, so I will wake up or the baby will wake up and then I will have to go get him and start the morning.  It just feels like there is always something keeping me awake.  I have gotten to the point that I subconsciously won't allow myself to drift into a deep sleep because I don't want to be jolted out of my sleep by a screaming child.  Trust me, when that happens it gives me the worst anxiety EVER.  If I am jolted out of my sleep like that, I can rarely fall back asleep again because my heart is pounding and my adrenaline is pumping.
     Some of you might say, just go to bed earlier.  And I probably should.  But after we put the kids to bed around 8 or 8:30, Mike and I need time to decompress from the days' events, talk, and spend time together.  So we're up for awhile before going to bed ourselves.  And even if I did go to bed at like 9:30pm, it doesn't make 4:30am seem bearable.  It's still too early to start the day.
     I would just like to get AT LEAST a consistent 6 hours a night.  I might get about 3 uninterrupted hours of sleep if I'm lucky.  Good, restful sleep is just not happening for me between Jacob's wakings, Mike's alarm and him getting ready for the day, the baby's waking, and my difficulty relaxing my brain after being woken up several times in the night.  By morning I am cranky and I have anxiety and I am irritable and those kinds of issues don't make for the best kind of mama to start the day.
     So give me your advice.  ANY and all advice.  Why do my children wake up in the night?  Why is my baby waking up at 4:30 every single day, and how can I stop it (without nursing him.?)  How can I allow myself to relax and fall back asleep if I do get woken up in the night by my kids?  And should I pitch a tent in another room to avoid hearing Mike's alarm?  :)  I don't wanna do that, and I know Mike would disapprove...but seriously...what is a girl to do???   

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Food Cart Fun

Portland has a variety of food carts.  Most of them are downtown, but occasionally we'll find some good ones in random parts of town.  Our latest adventure downtown took us here.  Well, technically, I am the only one who ate at Euro Trash.  Mike decided to sample some Cuban cuisine.  I got the Squid Fana, which is a calamari sandwich topped with curried coleslaw.  Mmmmmmm....

Our next stop was dessert at Scoop ice cream shop.  Check out their menu.  Besides the standard chocolate and vanilla, they've also got some awesome and unique flavors such as avocado, strawberry balsamic, lavender honey almond, and apricot almond cardamom.  

We got 4 flavors to sampleL: salted caramel, oatmeal and brown sugar, blueberry cinnamon, and buttered pecan.  The salted caramel was so heavenly I could've died a happy woman right then and there. 

Chocolate goatee

Vanilla goatees don't show up as well....

My kids love ice cream and I love my kids.  Just look at those faces.  How could you not love 'em?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Summer Fun

 The boys have loved playing out in the "yard" (if you can call that block of concrete and tiny square of grass behind our house that) catching bugs, exploring, and having picnics at their little table.