Daycare Troubles

I’ve had enough.

I’ve mentioned before that I wasn’t happy with Henry’s daycare.  Well, now that he’s back after his summer break, my opinion hasn’t changed.  Let me tell you about what happened yesterday.

I dropped Henry off in the morning.  As I was putting his things away – milk and lunch in the fridge, diaper bag in the cubby, wet bag hanging by the diaper station, the administrator came in to tell me that Henry’s teacher was out that day and that I needed to take Henry to the infant room.  So, I took him down to the infant room and dropped off a crying and unhappy baby (breaks my heart every time).  I didn’t think too much of Henry being watched by someone else, because it’s happened before.

When I picked him up he seemed happy.  He was crawling and babbling.  The woman in his room said that his bottom was a little red.  I said ok, and grabbed his sheet and his stuff and we headed home.  Once home I looked at his sheet a little more closely.  I noticed that he only had 1 nap and that it’s duration was only 5 minutes.  That sent my blood boiling.  I know that sometimes children just refuse to nap, and Henry’s no different, but it still irks me every time I see that because Henry turns into a little monster during dinner. He gets too tired to eat and too tired to sit contentedly in his high chair while J and I eat.  So, he cries and shrieks and screams, and generally just makes it impossible for us to talk and/or eat dinner.  And that’s exactly what happened last night.

After I was done putting Henry to bed, I was rinsing out his diapers and noticed that there were only 3 in the wet bag (we send 6 diapers everyday).  His diaper was only changed 3 times in a 10 hour period.  And, what’s more, is that they were all poop diapers!  Meaning that my son was sitting in shit ALL DAMN DAY!!  No fucking wonder his bottom was red!  But, wait, there’s more!!  On Henry’s daily sheet, it showed that they’d changed his diaper 6 times!  But, I only had 3 diapers in the wet bag.  So, either they put him in disposables, which they didn’t have permission to do, or they lied (just to be clear – they didn’t have permission to lie either).  I was livid last night.  I still am.  I snooped this morning when I dropped him off and found the 3 missing diapers from yesterday that never made it home last night (they were all clean and under the diaper changing station).

What’s even more, is that they didn’t give Henry the breast milk that was in the fridge that he’s supposed to have after his nap.
I went in this morning amped up to talk to them about and try and clear it up, but they must have seen me coming because there was not a single administrator to be found.  I had no one to complain about it to, or even inform them that it happened.
I am done with this daycare.  They suck at communication.  They have no protocol for when teachers are out.  Any routine that a child is used to goes out the window when this happens – which is why I think Henry refused to nap.  I’m tired of the substandard care that my son is receiving because people are too lazy to pick up a phone or to write routines down.
I was on the phone all morning looking for different daycares to interview and look into.  I’m touring one tonight and one tomorrow and hopefully one of those will work out.  They’re slightly more expensive than what we’re paying now, but I’ll gladly pay more if it means my son is receiving optimal care.

Month 13

Dear Henry –

I wasn’t sure if I was going to keep writing these letters to you once you passed the first year, but I decided to keep writing them.  There’s too much going on in your development and life for me to stop.  I would feel remiss if I didn’t keep an accurate record for you to one day read.  I’ve been thinking about when I’ll give these letters to you, and I haven’t quite decided, but I’m thinking that I’ll save all of them until you have children of your own.  I think that will be a nice surprise for you, and that they’ll mean more to you during that stage of your life.

At 13 months you’re just going, going, going.  You’re crawling all over the place, and actually crawling too!  The army crawl that you were doing is happening less and less, and you’re spending more and more time up on your hands and knees.  You’re getting pretty fast too, and you’re also getting into everything!  We have baby gates set up in our house to help wrangle you.  We have one blocking off the kitchen because you LOVE playing in the dog water bowl.  You’ll splash your hand in it, drink from it and eventually up end of the whole thing – so naturally that became off limits to you.  We also blocked off the hallway to the back of the house because we have book shelves in it and you were starting to pull everything off of the shelves on all of the lower levels and trying to pull up on them, which made us nervous.  With all of that blocked off you now only have free range of the living room, dining room and entry way.  And, for now, you seem to be content with that.

Hanging with Dad at the Zoo

Hanging with Dad at the Zoo

Over the past 6 weeks you have become quite the daddy’s boy.  You want your Dad to hold you, and to be in the room with you, to pay attention to you.  And, I am apparently not a good enough substitute for your father…sigh…There have been quite a few times where your Dad has handed you over to me, and you scream and squirm and cry and reach out for your Dad.  You are quite the self esteem builder my little man.  I know that you still love me, you’ve just been really enjoying your time with your Dad.  While he’s been on summer break for the past 6 weeks, you’ve been home with him.  I know that you’ve enjoyed your time off with him, and he has too.  Today was your first day back at daycare and you weren’t so happy to be dropped off, and you’re Dad looked miserable as we were walking out to our cars together.  He has so enjoyed this time with you, and his love for your is so apparent. I know that I will miss our daily Factimes and all of the pictures that I was sent during the day.

Napping with your Dad

Napping with your Dad

You’re now pulling up and cruising!  You make loops around the living room by hanging onto the sofas and coffee table.  I love watching you explore and move.  You love to take things apart and inspect them.  You’ll turn toys upside down and it really looks like you’re trying to figure out how they work.  You can almost see those wheels turning in your head.  You’re starting to climb on things too.  Your Dad has found you climbing on the fire place to get to your toys, and he’s seen you stand on other toys to lift yourself higher up.  You’re one smart cookie figuring all of this out.  You love sitting and rocking in my sister’s and my old rocking chair from when we were your age.

climbing where you shouldn't be!

climbing where you shouldn’t be!

Your physical therapy is going beautifully.  We’ve knocked it down to just once every two weeks because you’re learning everything so quickly and moving so well.  I’m so proud of you and hard you’ve been working to get to where you are.  You sometimes get really frustrated with me and your Dad when me make you do this the “right” way instead of how you want to do it, but you catch on quickly.  And, overall you have a really good attitude about it all.

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You’re babbling all the time now.  You “talk” to us nonstop.  You’re trying to copy sounds that we make.  You can say “hello,” “all done,” “up,” and “no,” and I think that you’re starting to try and say “down.”  You think sneezing is absolutely hilarious.  Anytime that someone sneezes you then copy the sound and saying “azthu” and laugh and giggle.  I have no much fun fake sneezing with you – it sounds ridiculous but it always causes us to bust out laughing and I love it.

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You got a year long pass to the zoo for your birthday, and we’ve already made use of that, and have plans to keep going, in fact, I’ll be taking you this weekend!  You like watching the animals that you can get close to and easily see.  If they’re not moving, or too far away, you don’t seem very interested.  So far, you love the puffins, seals and otters the most, but, you also just like being outside and in your stroller.  You had your first taste of ice cream while at this past trip to the zoo and you LOVED it!  In fact you didn’t seem to want to share with me or your Dad.

I have so much fun with you.  I don’t think I can emphasis that enough.  You’re a true joy.  You make me laugh everyday, and you fill me with a love that I never knew could exist.  I love you so so much.  I always will.

-Mom

boycotting nap time

boycotting nap time

Turning the Tap Off

I’ve stopped pumping. Pumping in my car just got to be too much. I didn’t pump at all on Friday, but I still nursed Henry like normal this past weekend. This week will be the big change for us.

We bought Henry some whole milk, and we’ll start to give him that during the day. I haven’t figured it out exactly, but I’m guessing that Henry will start going through my freezer stash of milk. We’ll probably give him 4 ounces once a day when he wakes up from his morning nap, and once that runs out, then we’ll be done with daytime nursing….

I felt so conflicted about this. It breaks my heart to really start the weaning process. I have no idea how Henry will do with it, or how I will handle it. I’m extremely emotional about it all, and have almost started crying about it several times today. But, it seems like the only real option available to us. One of the many reasons that this is so hard is that I don’t think that Henry is anywhere ready to wean. He asks to nurse several times throughout the day. It might be 3 seconds of nursing, or 30 minutes. I have no idea how he’ll handle it when I give him a cup of cow’s milk instead of letting him nurse, and it worries me a lot. I just keep envisioning him throwing the cup and crying.

I’m still going to nurse him once in the morning when we wakes up, once in the afternoon/ early evening when I get home from work (this will be the next one to go), and once at night before he goes to bed, so it’s not totally stopping, but slowing way down from the 5 to 6 nursing sessions that we were doing.

Nursing Henry has been one of the best experiences of my life. I feel wonderful and proud that I was/am able to do it for as long as we have. Making it to 13 months of full on breastfeeding is fantastic. Now, if only I could convince my tear ducts that this is a happy occasion I would be set. =)

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Being a Homeowner

Being a homeowner is hard.  J and I are trying to make improvements and to our home as well as just maintaining it – you know, being responsible and shit.  What was on the docket this year was to paint the house, next year was to have 2 trees removed that are dead and dying, and then the year after that was to actually start beautifying the yard and inside.

When we bought our house a few years ago we knew that it needed to be painted.  We saved up the money to do it, and since March I’ve been calling painter after painter after painter.  A lot of them never returned my calls.  The ones that I got to call me back and schedule a time to come out and give ma quote, would never show up.  I finally was able to have 3 painters make it to my house to give me quotes.  And, after some negotiation and making sure that everything is in writing, it looks like we found the right painter to come out and paint our house.  We are about 2 steps away from officially hiring them and starting the process.

Now, simultaneously we were kinda starting to shop around for tree removal services.  Our neighborhood is older, and it’s covered in mature trees.  Our house was built in ’52 and we have about 5 oak tress in our back yard, and three in the front.  We had a friend of a friend stop by today to give us a quote to see how much it would be to cut down at least 1, but hopefully 2 trees.  The guy showed up this morning took one look at our dead tree and said he wouldn’t touch it.  It’s too dead for him to feel comfortable cutting it down.  He said that the people he would recommend to cut it down would charge $4000 baseline to get it down safely…., and that’s not even including the other tree that needs to be removed.  We were told that our dead tree cannot wait another year to be removed.  He even suggested we sleep in our living room during storms because it’s so precarious

Now I’m trying to figure out how to remove 2 trees (one very very dead tree) and paint our house all in the same year so that our house doesn’t start rotting or worse(?) have a tree fall on it.

We did contact our insurance company to see if they’d help with the cost of the tree removal.  We do have a tree removal clause in our home insurance, but they’re checking to see if it covers preventative or just fallen trees.

I’m feeling very much like an adult right now.  I’m freaking out about money, and I’m about to have a panic attack because of all of this.

Being a homeowner is hard…

Baby Sign Language

Baby Sign Language is awesome.

J and I started using a few signs since Henry was about 10 months old.  We’d use them when we remembered, but I guess we thought that either Henry wasn’t watching or that he just didn’t care that we were making hand gestures at him.

However, as soon as Henry turned 1 he started doing them back.  It really seemed like someone flipped a switch in his head and he’s been communicating so well since then!!  Henry doesn’t repeat the hand gestures perfectly, but his intent in clear.  He can sign for milkwater, more, and all done.  He’s also started to try to say “water,” and “all done” when he signs them.

We’ve been trying to add in other signs as well.  Dogcatplease and thank youmamadad and grandmother, but he hasn’t used any of those yet.

So far the signs that Henry uses the most are milk and water.

Right now, J is on summer vacation from school and he’s been working from home to get ready for the coming school year.  But, to save some money over the summer J is watching Henry during the day instead of paying for daycare.  Because the option is available to us we Facetime while I’m at work a couple times a day so that I can see them both and see how their day is going.  We were Facetiming yesterday, and J had the camera turned so that Henry could see me and I could see him, and Henry looked at me and signed for milk.  He didn’t ask J for milk then, he was looking at me and asking me.  I wanted to cry when he did that.  I felt horrible that I wasn’t able to be there to nurse my baby when he was asking for it.  It was a very bittersweet moment for sure.  I soon as I got home Henry crawled into my lap to nurse, which definitely seemed to make both of us happier.

I really do think that Baby Sign Language is awesome, and we’ll definitely keep doing it and adding more and more signs.