How Old is Hallie?

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Friday, September 5, 2008

A is for Asleep, B is for Bawling ...and T is for Teething and Tantrums and the Terrible Twos

Hallie no longer takes morning naps...just one more or less decent-sized one in the mid to late afternoon. She's usually up for the day around 9-ish (as early as 8:30 on some mornings, as late as 9:30 on others); naps after lunch (so around 2:30 or 3:00pm) for an hour to two and a half hours, and is ready for bed at 9:30pm and asleep by 10 (in Sharon's arms, with a bottle...please refrain from comments about falling asleep with bottles. It's the only way we can get sufficient food into her).

Not your normal 2 year old's schedule, but it works for her (and us); it allows us to get her meds into her, food into her, and still have enough time for her to play and hang out with two working moms.

Anyway, that's how it was until recently. Sure, she'd have a random day here or there where she'd wake up at 3am or 5am, and most of the time it's a pain in the butt to get her back down again, and a random day here or there where she'd refuse to nap (this is generally VERY rare), and she'd get whiny and tired and want to go down earlier, but most of the time she stayed roughly within her schedule. Her schedule is a thing of glory to us: Hallie, when on her schedule, is a very happy little girl who cries rarely (usually when she hits her head or we take away some sort of dangerous object she's managed somehow to get a hold of) and whose whining was minimal.

Not the case anymore. We're not sure what's up, really, but we think it's some combination of the terrible twos, teething, and me going back to teaching (also the main reason why there have been no blog posts of late). Hallie's been sleeping horribly lately, and waking a lot during the middle of the night (sometimes for as long as a two hour stretch) AND getting up either very early (a quarter to seven today; that's why she's down for a nap right now and I'm able to blog) or very late (10:30am yesterday, and had to be awoken at that). The whining is almost non stop, even when our girl is not tired, and she is now doing that classic two-year old thing where she throws herself on the ground and bawls uncontrollably at the drop of a hat...

We miss our sweet, well adjusted not quite two year old. Where did they hide her? And more importantly, exactly how long is this going to continue?

We're now adopting an 'ignore all whining' policy (though we still try to intervene to prevent it to turn into major crying which leads to major vomiting, which is our least favorite thing to clean up). Maybe that will help. Regular tylenol is helping a bit, but if her earlier bouts of teething are any indication, this teething thing tends to go on a long time for Hallie and is very painful. Poor kid! We wish there was something we could do that would help, but ibuprofen and baby orajel make her vomit, and so the only real option we have is tylenol (and a stiff drink--or at least a glass of wine--for me....Sharon, sadly, doesn't have that option, and last time I checked, mint iced tea wasn't known to take the edge off of anything).

That said, Hallie is still her terribly cute self and we do know that this phase will pass. Even though she wakes up in the middle of the night, she's not whiny then (just during the day, really). Indeed, she's super smiley: she sits up in bed, starts waving frantically (think beauty pageant winners on a parade float) and saying "HIIIII! Mama! Mommy! HIIIII!!!!! Elmo!!!!).

The other thing she's been doing lately is saying the alphabet spontaneously (she seems to know all of the letters in order, unprompted) and trying to sign it, too. She knows how to sign about half of the alphabet accurately and she sort of just makes up the rest. Getting her to focus on the alphabet when she's tantruming has turned out to be a pretty good way of breaking the tantrum.

In terms of the alphabet, she's also trying to write letters. Sharon and our substitute baby sitter and I have all been teaching her how to make her letters and this is sort of working. She's been drawing fluid "O"s and even attempted an "A" on the wall the other day.

Thank goodness for washable crayons! (FYI: blue and green washable markers are harder to get off of yellow paint than reds and oranges and browns. And crayons are definitely easier to erase than markers. Most of the markers, and especially the blue and green ones, have gone missing of late. I can't imagine who took them. Can you?)

Finally, on the more-annoying-than-cute front, Hallie is in a major disrobing phase.

We don't mind shirt and shorts removal too much, but handing her diaper to us on a regular basis needs to end immediately. It's back to onesies for her, I'm afraid. And she's definitely not ready for potty training, either: she needed to poop in the bathroom after her bath last night and I tried to put her on the potty. She, however, preferred the floor. So unless we're thinking about moving to the turkish toilet model around here, which we're not, we'll be supporting the Pampers folks for quite a bit longer, I'm afraid.

On the daily vomit count: teething isn't helping our cause, but we are up to 107 days....

Anyway, here's some really cute recent pictures of Hallie that don't quite fit into the narrative above:

Aunt Laura dressed up Hallie in some of Hannah's princess-wear when they were down there for the weekend. This is our favorite shot of Princess Hallie Bippety Bop. Notice the red cheeks; she was running a low grade teething fever. At all other points in time, Hallie is the whitest kid imaginable.

And these are from her second year pictures, which the annoying Picture People finally managed to upload for us:


Judith and Jason said...

hmmmm I was wondering if Nina was starting the terrible 2's at 18 months. She too is throwing herself on the ground and crying...She is also sticking her fingers/hand down her throat and vomit yet, but I am sure it will follow...We too are trying to ignore this awful behavior. The Picture People did a great job on the photos even though they were annoying to you! Hope you and Sharon are well. Where did the summer go????

23wktwinsmommy said...

She is sooo cute! Ugh the art of throwing themselves onto the floor and crying...Serena is a master and thankfully Edwin is still my sweet baby boy...his time will come!

I love the flower pic!
Will there be any preggo updates??

BenC said...

Have you tried Magic Erasers for the walls? They are amazing!

Non-sleeping children are the worst. I really hope Hallie gets back into her routine soon!


Sara Cohen said...

She looks so cute in her pictures! I remember when Charlie started throwing himself on the floor, I thought it was cute, now as he's bigger and louder, it's not as cute. But I hear it gets better eventually! Hope the sleeping improves...mine stopped taking naps altogether and I am still in mourning!

Emily said...

Abby she's so stinkin' smart, even for a non-preemie!That's unbelievable that she's starting to write her letters. How awesome! Her pictures look great.

Sarah said...

Can she handle teething tabs? They were the ONLY thing that saved us during the 2-year molars. Like you, we went from shinyhappykid to this ( almost overnight.

Hope she feels better soon!

Jennifer said...

You totally have my sympathy... I'm sort of glad I'm not the only one going through it.

Maybe the aliens got her too?

The Microblogologist said...

So cute, and such a pretty princess! Poor girl having to have all those issues with teething and of course especially poor mommies! My niece went through a naked phase that lasted several years. Tape helped with the diaper stripping issue, it generally has to go all the way around.

Glad you finally got your pictures, they are adorable =)


LeeAnn said...

I have noticed that Signing Time is listed as Hallie's Favorite, so I would like to send you the screener for our upcoming Baby Signing Time 3 & 4 DVDs that will be released in October. We also wanted to know if you would be interested in reviewing the new DVDs and writing something about it on your blog.

If you are interested in receiving the screeners, please contact with the subject line: Blog review. In the body, please include your full name, complete address, blog URL and phone number.

If you review the product, you also have the opportunity to be entered into our Blog contest, where you could win the Baby Signing Time Gift Set that includes Baby Signing Time 1,2,3,4 and accompanying music CDs. For more information about the blog contest, please visit:

Good Luck with the Terrible 2's!

Two Little Hands Productions