Tuesday, June 2, 2009

McKenna Newborn Summary: Week Nine

This post may contain affiliate links.

This is a summary for McKenna for week 8-9, or the ninth week. McKenna also turned two months old during this week. This was a week of disruptions! McKenna finished her growth spurt the first day of this week, but she was unable to get back on track for naps due to several days of major disruptions. Here we go:

Gas remains the same so far as I can tell. I have not tried weaning her from her gas drops and gripe water, nor do I intend to for quite some time. Many of you have commented about cutting food out of my diet--thank you! I appreciate every one's tips. I have, however, tried cutting foods out of my diet with no luck. Gas is rarely a disruption to her, and I think it is just a fact of life for being a newborn. From what I have read, many newborns have gas. It goes away as the digestive system matures and also as the baby is able to be more active.

I have also done a lot of reading on Kellymom.com and according to the site, the food mom eats rarely is a culprit for gas in a baby. There are cases, but for most babies it is just a fact of life. For more on baby gas, see this post.

Nursing remains the same. She eats well. I have no infections at all, so that is nice :)

Waketime is very elusive for me right now. I have been working on trying to figure out what is optimal for her. She has started taking about 20-30 minutes to fall asleep. She isn't crying about it, just taking that long. If I didn't have a video monitor, I would assume she is asleep because she doesn't make a peep most of the time. I am not even sure if this is a real problem. The Baby Whisperer (Hogg) says that it takes the average baby 20 minutes to fall asleep, with some being faster and some taking longer. So according to that, McKenna is right on track.

The reason I am testing things to see is because McKenna used to fall right asleep and I am not always seeing sleep cues from her. It is possible that McKenna is just more awake now and is taking longer to settle down. But it is also possible that she needs a different waketime length, so I am testing things just to be sure. Her waketime this week ranged from 45-60 minutes, with 50 minutes being the average. Results varied. My husband pointed out that I might be trying to hit a moving target; in other words, for some times of day perhaps 60 is optimal while others it needs to be more like 45. Very true. It is all about trial and error, and the funny thing is that "optimal" changes all the time. I am guessing time and age will fix things :)

The funny thing is that if I didn't have a video monitor, I wouldn't even suspect a problem. I would think everything was fine, and so maybe it is? I have never had a video monitor before, so it is a whole new world.

You can purchase the logs I designed and use here.

Naps varied. They were often shorter as we were trying to get back down to a solid, consistent routine. As a note, that is kind of a bad time to try to figure out optimal waketime and expect sound results. But it must be done.

McKenna had some evenings with a witching hour, and some when she didn't. And for her, she is only upset if she is not being held. If she is held, she is happy. If she is in her bed or her swing, she is unhappy. I can really sense if she is having a witching hour or not. Some nights I think, "Ahh. It is my McKenna, the girl I know." Other nights I know she is not herself. When I can tell she isn't herself, I will put her in her swing where she will often fuss (though not always) and then fall asleep. I then wake her up to cluster feed. It is only a problem after the 6 PM feeding. Here is more information on this witching hour.

Her nighttime sleep continued to improve. When she ate her one time in the night, she often would only eat from one side and then make it to her morning waketime, so I could tell she was moving closer to being able to sleep through the night.

One day I started to wonder at what age I left one arm out of Kaitlyn's swaddle. I turned to my blog and was shocked to find out that she was 6 weeks old! That seems so young to me now. I also tried weaning Kaitlyn from the swaddle all together at 9 weeks, which she was not ready for. I wouldn't even consider it right now. Either I am more aware of the signs of being ready, or I am suffering even more from "youngest child syndrome" where you think your youngest child is incapable of things you thought older children were capable of. My guess is a bit of both. I plan to try one arm out soon...but I am not sure exactly when. I guess right now it doesn't seem to be an issue, so I will continue the full swaddle for a while more. It is a first step in weaning, and I did wean Kaitlyn between 3-4 months, so I will try it soon. I definitely didn't want to start it this week while we were dealing with and recovering from so many disruptions.

We started the week off with a birthday party for Brayden. It was a busy day with grandparents and great grandparents, so she was disrupted that late afternoon/early evening. That alone would not have been a big deal. The big deal came the next day.

It was her blessing day (slightly similar to a christening or baptism). It was a full day of disruption starting with church and ending with lots of family and friends at our home. She had a rough time--she was so tired! She was good; she got lots of comments on what a good, sweet baby she is. But you know as a mom when your baby is being overstimulated and such. She was a bit frantic by evening. But she slept well that night to help make up for it.

We then had a day to try to get stabilized. But the next day was her two month appointment and her shots. Another day thrown off. The next day we had a birthday party to go to in the evening. The next day was the last day of her week. There were just a lot of disruptions for her to work through. It can take several days up to a couple of weeks for a baby this young to bounce back after disruptions. She hasn't had three days of consistency yet, so hopefully in the future she can get it just so things can normalize for her again.

My list of helpful books for the newborn period. I added one that I haven't yet read but have heard good things about (The Wonder Weeks):



Meg said...

Valerie, it seems like things are going so well with McKenna!! I've seen you mention gripe water a number of times, and when my daughter was small I had a terrible time trying to find it. It wasn't in any stores I looked in and no-one seemed to know what it was. So I was wondering if you would mind sharing where did you found gripe water?
Thanks xo

Kami said...

I'm so excited I just found your blog and my little one is just a week behind McKenna so it's perfect because I have been having questions about all this baby wise stuff! Keep me posted how she is doing with all this because I like to compare it to my baby girl Charli's progress!

Angela said...

This sounds bad but I'm relieved to hear McKenna has had a 'witching hour' period. My daughter had the same thing (happy when held and not in bed) for a few weeks starting basically at birth until she was about a month old. I kept trying to 'fix' it but I think it was something to 'get through' instead. Thankfully she now does all her napping happily in her crib :) It is so nice to have our evenings back!

Sarah said...

I have found gripe water at Babies R Us and have seen it in two brands: Little Tummy's and Babies' Bliss. I haven't looked for it anywhere else though.

The Spanns said...

Ah, the video monitor! A blessing and a curse. I have one and have often thought the same thing as you - that if I didnt have it, I wouldnt know he wasnt asleep/what he was really doing! When you mentioned you were getting one I was curious to see if you would have the same experience. I think I would give a word of caution to babywise mom's that they are a GREAT thing with a lot of benefits, but can also be frustrating since they reveal so much. :) Happy watching!

Meg said...

Thanks Sarah!!

Cindy said...

My daughter also had alot of gas, the drops seemed to work best for us; she outgrew that around 3 months so there's light at the end of the tunnel :)
We also have a video monitor and I was thinking the same thing this morning about it being a blessing and a curse. I heard a little 'peep' around 6:20am which is an hour early for waketime. Then it was quiet; I got up at 6:45am for a shower and my daughter was sitting up in her crib playing. If I couldn't "see" her I would've thought she went back to sleep. Now I'm trying to problem solve about why she's been waking up an hour early (and going to bed at the same time every night). Good and bad :)
I love reading the updates Valerie, thanks for posting!

Jessica Molepske said...

about gripe water - i've also found it at Walgreens in the little tummies brand.

I am so happy to have found your blog! My son is 14 months old and we have done babywise from the start and just swear by it! I love that someone loves it so much that they made a blog! what a great resourse for us moms who need a quick reminder about some things now and then! thank you so much!

Joni said...

Hi,I have been reading your blog since having my second child, now 9 months! Both kids were/are Babywise, but I wanted to recommend another book to you - Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child - by Marc Weissbluth! I love this book, even more than Babywise, because it is a little more realistic and flexible, and has many more acceptable options as all babies are different! However, he still highly recommends ignoring (CIO) after a certain age and overall I think you could get a lot out of this book! Maybe you could review it? I was a lot more at ease and less anal and stressed out with #2 and this book helped me a lot! Check it out!

Plowmanators said...


I have ended up just buying the gripe water from Amazon.com. I can special order it from Shopko. I have also found it in Smith's Marketplace, but it is Little Tummys brand and I don't think it is quite as good as the Baby Bliss. I also know that Babies R Us has it.

Plowmanators said...

Kami, I am glad it is helpful!

Plowmanators said...

Angela, lol. We are still getting through this period. I am finally starting to figure out which hour it starts. It is so weird because McKenna is just pleasant as can be until that hour. She isn't terrible, but not her usual self. I think you are right that it is something to get through.

Plowmanators said...

Spanns, it is true. It also adds a whole new demention into problem solving that I haven't experienced before. Blessing and a curse is right!

Plowmanators said...

Meg, FYI, it looks like I am not getting notified of your comments, so if you have commented other places, I am not getting it.

Plowmanators said...

Cindy, it is so funny. You could be blissfully ignorant :)

I am glad you like the updates!

Plowmanators said...

Jessica, you are welcome and thanks for the thanks!

Plowmanators said...

Joni, thanks for your recommendation. I have had a lot of readers recommend it, so I bought it and am almost done with it. Reviews to come soon :)

Kristy Shreve Powers said...

Meg, I'm pretty sure this is too late to be helpful, but I found gripe water in my local grocery store, Winn Dixie. It was in the baby needs section. The gas drops, on the other hand, are in the medicine section with the adult digestive aids. Hope you found some. I don't use gripe water regularly but, thanks to Valerie, I have discovered a small dose takes away the hiccups that bother my son.

LindsayJay said...

Hey Val-

My daughter Jordyn is quite a ways behind McKenna as were now just in her 9th week, so exciting!

A comment on Baby's Bliss---Amazon is a great place to get it, but also ladies check any local natural motherhood store--mine in town carries a vast supply!

Val, my question is regarding naps. My daughter is still having a very tough time going down for naps and staying down for anything over 50 mins or so. On a side note, she is an amazing night sleeper. She started going 4 hours, than 5.5, then 6.5 then 7 and is now sleeping 8 hours a night consistently, which is a blessing! However, I hate to see her at the end of the evening before bed looking tired! I put her down at her scheduled times but she just doesn't like it! I have to think that part of it is due to the fact for her first 3 weeks of life (I had a c-section) she was held A LOT and rocked to sleep and even held for the entire 2 hour nap (thanks Grandmas!) :) I will rock her till sleepy but she really hates being laid down awake, I tell you! Is it time for CIO, and how would you go about this? She doesn't need it for bedtime, but just for daytime naps. Should I let her CIO both when I put her down intially and when she wakes early? Thanks so much, your blog and information is such a BLESSING!

Plowmanators said...

Thanks Kristy! I have found Gripe Water at my locally owned grocery store, also.

Plowmanators said...


I don't do CIO mid-nap until baby is at least older than 3 months, but I actually just haven't ever done a hard-core CIO mid-nap. I think it is fine to wait about 10 minutes or so to see if baby will go back to sleep. But in those early months, baby has so many growth spurts that I think you can get into danger if you have baby CIO mid-nap.

There is a chance your LO is experiencing normal 45 minute intruder disruptions. But it is also possible that she just can't fall asleep on her own due to the early weeks of life. You can train with CIO if you are ready. Be sure to see the blog label "CIO" before you do.

Plowmanators said...

Mommy to Isabella, sorry! I never saw your question!

to you and JR,

No, 10 months is not a normal time for baby to go to one nap, though there are a handful of babies that seem to give clues that they want it (or mom thinks they want it). It is too early and a sleep deficit will build up over time.

Shorten the morning nap if needed, but also look into other possible culprits, such as new skills baby wants to work on.

ashleywheatley said...

Hi! I had the same situation with the video monitor and wanted to see what you ended up figuring out.
My little one is not crying
but will be wide awake during his naps. He will have fallen asleep, but then will wake and make little baby noises, but not cry. I wouldn't even know he was wide awake if I didn't have the video monitor! I feel like I may need to play around with wake time length too, or is this normal, and only a problem b/c I have a video monitor? He is waking early from naps a good bit too, at about the 1hour mark, he has reflux so he may be uncomfortable. Do you recommend letting him CIO if he doesn't seem to be hungry? Thank you for your help!

ashleywheatley said...

PS -I noticed above you mentioned you do not let them CIO mid nap, so what do you do? Go on and feed them, or move to swing? I am trying to figure out what to do when he wakes with an hour of the nap left. (3 hour feeding schedule)
IF I move him to the swing, he usually falls right to sleep, so I am assuming it is not a hunger issue. But not sure If I should let him CIO. HE is 9 weeks old. Thank you SO much for your help!!

Plowmanators said...

I think it might have been related to a wonder week issue (See "wonder week" blog label)

When McKenna woke early, I would sometimes try to rock her back to sleep, but she usually only woke early out of hunger.

Kaitlyn had reflux, and with her, I moved her to the swing if she wasn't hungry. With your little one having reflux, my guess is he is uncomfortable. See "waking early from naps/won't fall asleep for naps" as well as the reflux blog label for more on this.

Grant's mommy said...

Question...I joined the google group to get a quicker response and a couple of people suggested the Witching Hour could be my problem, but I'm not sure...

I'm an experienced BW mom (20 mo. old son was perfect @ BW). 3wk. old daughter is perfect during the day, then beginning @ the 10pm feed she WILL NOT go to sleep. We're on the 3 hr. day sched., starting @ 7am. After 10pm, we try to get her right back down...not happening. We've been consistent for over a week and last night was the worst yet...cried from 10:40pm until after midnight...basically cried until next feeding. It's very frustrating because if you pick her up, she stops instantly...she wants to be held. My 1st child was so easy...just swaddle and pop in the paci and he was back to sleep. She will not take a paci and protests the swaddle (but we stick to it). Please help with ANY suggestions. I want what I had w/ my 1st...sleep through the night @ 8-9 weeks!!!

Kelly said...

DD2 is 9 weeks and sounds very similar to McKenna. Feeding 7, 10, 1, 4 and she goes down very easily for naps, sometimes taking 20 minutes to fall asleep. She takes a catnap after the 4:00 feeding. She also has the witching hour in the evening. I've tried a couple different approaches and am not sure I like either one. I'm curious about a couple things regarding cluster feeding. I'm assuming you fed at 6, 8, 10. Did you take her out of the swaddle for the 8 and 10 feedings? Did you change her diaper after each? I'm noticing that if I leave her in the swaddle she has a hard time taking a full feeding but if I take her out and do a diaper change going back to sleep is more difficult.

Plowmanators said...

Grant's Mommy,

It could be witching hour, but that wouldn't be my first guess.

I would first look closely at your daytime. It sounds like she is having day/night confusion. To fix that, I would work waketime into the day.

Also, we did a trick with Kaitlyn. She was a great day sleeper but would be super awake after the DF. One night, my husband and I both had the thought to leave the lights on bright. We did and she went right to sleep instead of staying up. Your daughter might be too old for that now, though.

Also, try taking her out at noon every day--just for a few minutes. That helps set the circadian rhythm. Finally, be sure to start each morning at the same time.

Plowmanators said...


I honestly can't remember for sure. There is a chance that I didn't change the diaper at 8, but I know for sure I always did at 10. I would change the diaper between sides. So I would unswaddle, feed one side. Then change diaper, swaddle up, feed the second side and essentially let her fall asleep on me, then put her in bed.

Lindsay said...

First of all, thank you so much for this blog! I am a second-time BW mom. My son, who is 2 is a successful product of BW and I now have a 9 week old daughter who is learning! My main question is about her naps. When she was born she slept...all the time. I had to wake her to feed her. She has napped great, with some crying but not strong and not lasting more than 15 - 20 minutes, and not continual either. She had been sleeping in 4 hr. 45 min chunks at night. We have recently uped our outings (church, library for toddler story time, grocery store, lunch with Daddy etc.) and the past few days she has had trouble napping. She cries off and on throughout the whole nap with the longest period of quiet being about 40 minutes. It is not a distressful cry, more of a tired cry and most of the time the cries only last about 5 or 10 minutes, then about 10 or 15 minutes of silence after that. A few times, when she actually continues to cry and I check on her she has been dirty or wet or unswaddled. The main issue is that when we do go out, she sleeps without a peep in her carseat; often times past the 3 hour point for feeding. I am thinking maybe all the outings have caused her to become dependent on the motion (I saw a reference to this in another post of yours), but she does sleep well at night. I, probably mistakingly, began three nights ago letting her CIO durring her middle of the night feeding since she turned 9 weeks. Maybe this was not a good time since she is experiencing trouble napping? She is in a pleasant mood during awake times, laughing, cooing etc. I've tried adjusting wake times, amounts of stimulation and I've tried feeding her closer together and not seen any difference. Could this be a "phase" or do you think it is more related to the carseat issue? I guess it is difficult for me since my son was totally different. He would cry and cry for about 25 minutes uninterrupted then go to sleep, and stay asleep until the next scheduled feeding. I know each child is different, but I am trying to figure out what she needs.

Plowmanators said...


I would say she is likely overstimilated from all of the new activities, and possibly getting used to carseat sleeping.

If she was falling asleep fine and waking early, I would guess she was hungry or possibly a phase thing, but from what is going on, I would say it is the outings that are disrupting somehow.

Lindsay said...

Thanks! The next few days, I stayed home and naps got much better! She even slept through the night for the first night the next day! That was the only time, but some progress! She usually sleeps longest after her last scheduled feeding (usually around 6:30 or 7 pm). I was waking her to do a dream feeding but it seemed to cause her to wake more frequently which meant less solid sleep for me too. She will sleep 5-6 hours straight (i.e. 7:30 - 1:00)if I let her, but then she is still waking 3-4 hours after that which ends up being in the middle of the night. Do you think I should try dream feeding again to work her towards sttn? I hate disrupting her during the time that she sleeps most.

Plowmanators said...

If the dreamfeed causes problems, don't do it.

I am glad things are improving!

Abby Rogers said...

I need some help with the middle of the night feed. My 8.5 week old feeds every 3-3.5hours during the day. She gets a dreamfeed at 10pm and is done immediately, she will then wake up at 2-3am. I have tried to help her cut this feed out by reducing the amount she eats(she does not mind, will usually just fall asleep anyway). For the past couple of nights, I will offer her a pacifier when she wakes for the feed and she will immediately fall back asleep. However, anywhere from 15-45 minutes later she will wake up and the pacifier routine will start again. I know she is not that hungry because she eats plenty during the day (at least 4-4.5 ounces, 6 in the morning). It is very frustrating because I am only getting sleep from 10-2 or 3am. Any help would be great, I am desperate for her to sttn!

Plowmanators said...


I would say that since she is waking up so soon afterwards that she is actually hungry. Try feeding her instead and see how she sleeps after that. If she sleeps several hours, I think that tells you she is hungry.

Another possibility is that she is cold and being fed means she is held longer to warm up and she is getting warm liquid inside, so be sure she is warm enough also.


Related Posts with Thumbnails