The Exploits of a Nanny

Any advice welcome April 18, 2007

Filed under: baby behavior,discipline,tools of the trade — S @ 6:23 pm

The girls seem to enjoy being read to, and I try to read to them every day, but it’s starting to become a frustrating experience for all of us.  Both girls, but Rose particularly, love to get their hands on one (or two) of the books, and of course what’s in the hand ends up in the mouth.  There are a couple books that are either plastic or cloth, and in the past having those has been enough to pacify them.  No longer.  So I’ve started giving each of them a cardboard book during story time, but attempt to not let them chew on them.  A paci in the mouth is a temporary fix, but they are often spit out in order to obtain the more enjoyable book corners.  I tell the girls no (with sign) and gently pull the book away from their mouths often re-insert the pacifier, but I’m not sure they’re old enough to process what’s happening.  Will repetition be enough to teach them not to chew on the books?  I’d like to eventually be able to take them to the library for story time, and the sooner the better, but I want to wait until I know that they can be trusted with at least a cardboard book.  It’s also hard to read a book and monitor both girls with their books at the same time.  What have other’s experiences been with teaching babies how to treat books?  I’m not just concerned with teaching them how to treat books either.  When they chew/suck on the cardboard the dye and other chemicals in it leach out and end up in the girl’s mouths.  Not good.

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Back to blogging April 13, 2007

I tend to bounce back and forth between my blogs, so to catch up on the other side of my life, and to hear some fantastic news, go here.

So there’s alot to catch up on, and so many things I’ve thought of to blog about and then didn’t, so I think I’ll list some stuff, forget some stuff, and slowly catch up as things come to me.

Rose clapped and waved for the first time last week. It was very exciting. There have been a couple of times where all three of us have had clappingfests. Sitting in a circle all clapping our hands. It never lasts long, but it’s so cool to see the excitement on their faces.

Another moment I love is when the girls look up from their little circle of toys and realize there’s another baby sitting across from them. If they time it right, and both become aware of each other at the same time, they start talking to each other. Their little babble conversations are one of the cutest things I’ve ever seen.

Liz is becoming much more mobile, but not actually crawling yet. She mostly rolls where she wants to go and then sits up. She just started sitting up on her own this week.

Two things need to happen soon, or I’m going to need to say something.  I’ve been told both things are going to happen repeatedly in the last month, but I come back the next day or after the weekend, and they’re still undone. Liz’s crib needs to be lowered, which right now isn’t really a problem while I’m here because she’s still not using it during the day, but that’s hopefully going to change soon, and I think her parents use it sometimes in the evenings.  She has the strength to pull herself up and now that she can sit up on her own, she could potentially fall out.  The second is a more immediate concern of mine because I’ve started getting really nervous every time I leave the girls alone upstairs to make a bottle or use the restroom.  Liz’s mobile enough that she could find her way over to the stairs and fall down them.  A very, very scary thought indeed.  I’ve started putting her in the exersauser or putting a really fat pillow in front of the entrance when I leave, but really, a gate should be put up.I get to try out the double stroller for the first time today! Yay for sun!

 

Raffi March 28, 2007

Filed under: my roommates,tools of the trade — S @ 7:12 pm

I’ve been rediscovering a childhood favorite. Raffi is children’s music legend and mixes messages of peace, understanding, and environmental stewardship into his kid friendly repertoire. I just bought these albums. I’m excited that I get to share something I loved as a child with my girls.

Bananaphone

The Corner Grocery Store

Evergreen, Everblue

In honor of my roommate Becca, here are the lyrics to his song C-A-N-A-D-A 😀

C-A-N-A-D-A,
Tell me what’s a Douglas Fir
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Betcha never heard a bobcat purr
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Have you ever seen a lobster crawl?
In Canada, we get to see them all.

chorus:
We get to see the maple trees, maple sugar and the maple leaves,
We got the biggest wheat fields growing tall
In C-A-N-A-D-A, where we see the reversing falls -or- In C-A-N-A-D-A, where adventure ever calls,
In Canada, we get to see them all.

C-A-N-A-D-A,
Tell me, what’s a tidal bore,
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Have you ever heard the ocean roar?
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Just listen to that wild goose call.
In Canada, we get to see them all

C-A-N-A-D-A,
Have you ever heard a maple creak?
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Betcha never seen a mountain peak.
C-A-N-A-D-A,
In the land of the big snowball.
In Canada, we get to see them all.

C-A-N-A-D-A,
Have you ever seen a magnetic hill?
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Or a lady on a dollar bill?
C-A-N-A-D-A,
Betcha never seen the autumn fall.
In Canada, we get to see them all.

 

Signing and sitting up March 13, 2007

Music: Hey Jude by the Beatles

I had tentatively started using signs with the girls in the past month or so, but wasn’t sure about the timing. Was it too soon for it to be of any use? But I recently discovered a community of nanny bloggers (yippee!) Several of them talk about signing with their kids, and I asked Shel when she started and her response was 6 months. So I’m a little behind with Liz, but I don’t think it’s going to be much a problem. Today I started using the signs for hungry, tired, water, sleep, eat, no, finished, calm, and ILU. Getting them to make eye contact can be a challenge, and I’ve been more successful with finding times to use them with Liz, but it’s exciting. I do have some reservations, but they have nothing to do with childcare, maybe I’ll go into that another time.
Rose’s sitting up on her own! I still have to sit behind her in case she loses her balance, but it’s exciting. We’ve been working toward this for about a month now. She’s doing pretty well at correcting when she starts to lose her balance, but there are still times when she topples over.
Yesterday I was told for the first time that one of the girls looks like my child. On our walk a woman who was probably about 4-6 months pregnant told me that Rose looks like me. The was even after I had told her that I was only the nanny. My roommates thought it was because of the eyes; Rose and I both have big eyes with long lashes that sort of dominate the face. But hers are brilliant blue and mine are just plain brown.
It’s glorious today! Can’t wait for our walk.

 

Baby Monitor March 12, 2007

Filed under: the good,tools of the trade — S @ 6:54 pm

Music: Whatever Lola Wants from the Kinky Boots soundtrack

The other day I finally asked Liz’s mom if I could use the baby monitor that’s looks into Liz’s crib. Liz doesn’t actually sleep in her crib, during the day she sleeps in her swing, and at night she sleeps with her parents. Rose on the other hand has slept in a crib since almost day one, and she uses Liz’s crib during the day. Now this baby monitor is pretty sweet. It not only lets me heard Rose, but I can also watch her. This has done tremendous things to my nervous system. I used to be on edge all the time if Rose was sleeping, especially if I closed the door so outside noises wouldn’t disturb her. The house creaking, or a bird singing outside would make me sit up and listen, convinced that I heard Rose waking up. Rose is known to play quietly in crib for long periods of time before heralding the fact that she is awake. Thank goodness for technology and calmer nerves.