Thursday, June 26, 2008

Second Tooth

Elie's second tooth came through today. It's his bottom right one.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

First Tooth / Pulling Up / Suzuki

Elie's first tooth popped through today! It's his bottom left tooth. You can just barely feel a little sharp tooth when you rub the gum. The bottom right one looks like it'll be out in the next day or two. Not that it's a good thing, really - I think teeth tend to be stronger the later they come out. And, of course, nursing a sharp-toothed baby isn't always as fun as nursing a toothless one :)

Elie also pulled up to standing today for the first time. I was unpacking the FreshDirect boxes and looked over and saw Elie standing with his hands on the top of a box. I moved over to be close to him and he fell backward :( Not sure if I scared him or if he was ready to fall anyway. It's definitely always been hard for me to avoid reacting to a potentially dangerous situation.

Yoav had his Suzuki interview today. He said he wants to learn to play the cello. I'm not sure that we'll do it, though, based on our concerns about positive reinforcement, which is what the Suzuki method is based on. Naomi Aldort says she can talk to us about how to raise a musical child - I think we'll probably do that to help us with our decision.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Cleaning Up

First, we had a horrible night. Yoav woke up around 1AM and I tried the usual nursing him for a few seconds and popping him off to fall asleep on his own, but it didn't work and we nursed some more and I started getting frustrated and then Yoav got frustrated and Elie woke up and it took a really long time to get them both back to sleep :( I wish nursing Yoav didn't bother me during the night. I need more meditation practice...

Anyway, we had a decent day. I was really tired but the day was smooth. Yoav played a lot with blocks and cars again and we read for a while while Elie was napping on me in the afternoon.

At one point, while Yoav was waiting for me to nurse, he cleaned up his pattern blocks. He also did a really funny cleaning thing a few days ago - he found Scrabble in my closet and played with it in the bedroom for about half an hour - I heard him yapping about numbers and at one point, he ran into the kitchen (where I was) to show me a blank one and speculate as to why there was a blank one. When I was getting ready to go to sleep, I realized it wasn't out anymore and I couldn't find it anywhere. Finally I found it in a drawer of his dresser all cleaned up in the box - this was the drawer that we used for puzzles and games in our old apartment, but it was empty until the Scrabble game went in.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


I have never asked Yoav to say Please or Thank You (see this Aldort article for explanation) and he is now saying please consistently - "Can I have a fork, please?" etc. Sounds so odd coming from him after hearing demands for so long ("Mommy, FORK!!!" or "Get me a fork!")

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Great Day!

We really had a great day today following my Aldort coaching session. The whole week has been pretty smooth, but today was at a different level. I thought the energy of our days was mostly positive and relaxed before, but today was really so close to pure zen :) Yoav was so busy all day; nothing bothered me - if he squished or sat on Elie (as he enjoys doing), I just picked Elie up and we both moved along. Yoav played blocks for most of the day and was too busy to go outside. He spent a long time making parking garages out of his Cuisenaire Rods and then driving cars/trucks in one by one with his transporter. Then he built a structure with the 1"x1" cube blocks and then made a line-up of all the cars and trucks and moved them all close to the structure and they all took part somehow in knocking it down. Then he spent some time building with his regular blocks and built a City-like structure that was more detailed than I've ever seen in his buildings. We did some building together - Yoav would ask me if I wanted a specific block and I'd say yes or no and if I said no, he'd use it. He found a use for everything, which doesn't sound so interesting, but I was saying no to all the triangle-shaped pieces because it was too much effort for me to find a way to use them without them falling down (once I had a few already in use).

A cute comment he made - I was putting away my mixer that I use only once a year at best and was complaining that I couldn't get it to fit where I wanted it and I don't even ever use it. Yoav said, "You don't have to worry, Mommy. You'll use it soon. You will." He's so cute when he tells me I don't have to worry. Sometimes he says that as we're getting ready to go somewhere and I say I'm feeling stressed and he says I don't have to worry because we're almost ready to leave (but usually I'm stressed because we're almost ready but we're going to be late already LOL).

Another funny thing to mention about him is that he loves to give Jeremy and me choices, but he doesn't necessarily give us the freedom to choose that he first says he's offering. For instance, today he asked me if I wanted him to put Rapadura or Cinnamon in his oatmeal. I said whichever he wanted. He said he wanted me to choose. I said I wanted him to be happy and I didn't know which he preferred. He said, "But, I'll be happy with whichever you choose." So I chose one (I forget which, let's just say Rapadura) and he said, "If you want, I could use the cinnamon." He does things like that a lot :) I guess he wants to give me choices, but he also has preferences...

Friday, June 20, 2008

Coaching Session with Naomi Aldort

I had a coaching session with Naomi Aldort tonight. First, it was really strange to be actually talking to her after listening to her voice for so many hours on CD. But, it was amazing! She had specific ideas about what to do about all of my issues. We talked about the tandem nursing - she actually is now against tandem nursing because of all the complications that arise out of it post birth of the second baby (as long as the older child is at least 3 years old, since she recommends nursing for 3-4 years). Anyway, given that Elie's already here and Yoav is nursing a zillion times a day, she gave ideas about how to reduce his nursing and eventually wean. She suggested first letting him nurse as much as he wants for a while because if he senses any attempt by me to limit, he will actually want to nurse more. Another major issue we discussed is what to do if Yoav (or anyone) hurts or bothers someone else. She said the key is to come to the aid of the person being hurt or bothered. That way, both people learn that everyone has power over his/her own body and they learn ways to protect themselves. Plus, she said, "A world without victims is a world without bullies." So if Yoav stands on Elie (a favorite activity), I can just pick up Elie. That way, there's no game, and Elie and Yoav both learn that someone being bothered can simply move away.

The session was really helpful. Even though it's expensive, I'll probably start doing somewhat regular sessions as parenting boosters :)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Move / Update

I've been so bad about posting since our move (May 31). I've been so busy organizing and shopping for the apartment. We needed/wanted so many things right away to make it comfortable for us and it's been especially daunting to work on gardening stuff with summer almost here. We're making a square foot garden (2 actually) in the back yard and have had a really tough time acquiring all the wood and dirt (we need coarse vermiculite, a few types of compost and peat moss).

Anyway, Park Slope is a fantasy compared to Manhattan for me. It's so amazing here. First off, I love the apartment - we have a big open kitchen that overlooks the playroom and the living room is in the back of the apartment in what should be the second bedroom. Much better layout! I can cook and clean while Yoav and Elie play. Plus, the playroom floor and kitchen floor are on the same level and the same flooring, so there's much more play area. Having a backyard is a huge help and we don't even have it organized yet. Just to go back there for a bit to rake (the people who were here before never raked and left a lot of leaves), search through the compost pile for worms and bugs, play ball, scoot, bike, etc. It's so great to have!! When I'm feeling stressed, I just head back there. And the best thing is that Yoav can come out naked, so we don't have to get dressed to go outside, which, if I'm already feeling stressed, can be next to impossible. Then, beyond the apartment:
* We're a block away from Prospect Park with lots of space for digging, relaxing, picnicing, a playground just at our entrance, Botanic Garden, Zoo, etc.
* My friend, Jackie, also an unschooler (her son is Phoenix, who was born just a few days after Yoav) lives only 5 blocks away!!!!!! * There are two main avenues in Park Slope with stores and the others are quiet, so we can walk along a quiet avenue and then cut over to the busy street when we're at the block with the store I want to go to. Much easier to cover more distance!!!
* There's three mostly organic grocery stores within two blocks of us!
* It's quiet, friendly people, lots of kids, beautiful gardens.
Etc., etc., etc. It's great!

I also wanted to write that I've had a great week with Yoav. We seem to be connecting really well and having mostly smooth days. Yoav had an intense emotional meltdown yesterday after the Babywearing Meeting - I had carried him and Elie in a double carrier over to the meeting with Yoav in front, but Elie was asleep when we were ready to go home. Yoav wanted to ride in front. I tried playful parenting to no avail - saying things like, "Oh, you want me to just throw Elie back there? Or maybe I'll roll him there." and Yoav got into that but stuck to his desire. I tried holding Yoav and saying I put an invisible wrap on so he and Elie were both in front, but that also didn't help. He cried so hard I got worried he'd hyperventilate or throw up. His eyes were all red and he was so out of sorts. I stayed pretty connected with him, except for a few times when he got wild and was flailing around and I had to move away a little to protect Elie, but I maintained eye contact and kept my cool. Luckily, it finally started raining and he immediately said he wanted to leave and would go on my back. Once we were bundled up, he calmed down very quickly and was even concerned that he and Elie had hats but I didn't. Jeremy said Yoav also told him later that I didn't have a hat.

On Elie, he's army crawling pretty well and is working on crawling with his tummy off the ground - he gets up his hands and knees a lot and rocks or tries to move an arm forward, but I don't think he has yet.

Gotta finish cleaning and get to sleep - Jeremy's traveling, so I'm on wake-up duty, which is usually around 5:30 lately.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Double Carry

I did my first Double Carry today! Yoav was desperate for Rapadura for his oatmeal and was tired and wanted me to carry him and said he wanted to go on my back and Elie on front, so I thought I'd give it a try since he's never wanted to try before...


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Elie's 6-month appointment

Elie had his 6mos appt today. He was 90-95% for height (I forget the number, but I do have it written down and will add it later) and was 17 lbs (50%) and head circ was 50%. Everything looked fine.