View Full Version : The Princess, Rice cereal, and one tired Mommy...

December 9th, 2007, 11:56 PM
Scarlet will be 4 months soon.

I am tired of waking up twice a night to feed her... She goes to sleep around 11pm.. wakes up at 3am for a feeding... then at 5am... then around 7am, sometimes even 6:30am... Then she may or may not go to sleep for another 2 hours...

So we bought rice cereal today, in hopes she will eat that for dinner, and start sleeping through the nights... It's been almost 4 months since I slept through the night (kinda, if you consider the 9 months of pregnancy where I was running to the bathroom 4 times a night every night...). I am ready for her to sleep through the night!

She did not enjoy her first try at the cereal... We tried the spoon.. The results were not pretty... Moreover, I think she is going through a MAJOR growth spurt -- All she did today was sleep and eat (a lot).

So hubby is buying those nipples for her bottles where you can feed cereal mixed with formula through.

I would like some advice as to how to approach solids, or shall I say rice cereal.

I know she shouldn't start BEFORE 4 months, but I am at my wits ends! We just moved to a new house, lots of work and unpacking to do, I teach and may take a full time job, I volunteer at our Temple on a board position level, I just ran 2 events for Hannukah there, I am taking on another volunteer position, AND I have my Passion Parties business to expand, promote and work on. Not to mention the daily household stuff going on, and just some time to myself along with family time.

I could use 6-7 hours of sleep straight through the night.
I feel slightly guilty, but I need the sleep to be productive...

Heh, and my hormones are signaling me to go on and get pregnant again NOW... HAHAHA, logic is really winning this battle! Or shall I say, the concept of SLEEP..

So how do I approach cereal? Do's? Don'ts?


(Attached is a shot of her from tonight's attempt at cereal feeding...).

December 10th, 2007, 12:09 AM
Oh,hun, that is so normal! The cereal feels so weird to the babies the first few times! My kids and grandkids we used the cereal mixed into the formula for the first several times. I never used special nipples, I just used something sharp and cut an "X" or +, in it. Not too big, or the cereal will come out too fast. That really pisses off the baby. Many parents can't wait for the actual age, parents need sleep too. If you don't take care of mommy, mommy cannot take care of the family.
I hope this makes some sense, I was headed out of here when I saw it and no one had posted a reply, I couldn't let that happen to a sort of new mommy!!!:lol: I am half asleep, I have spent more time correcting my typing than actually getting words on here. Don't feel bad, you won't break her by giving her solids a little early, she might like to sleep through the night too! She will make lots of funny faces, but will eventually scream when you aren't shoveling it in fast enough.:fpraise:

December 10th, 2007, 12:16 AM
When I first started Dayna on cereal, I ditched the spoon. It felt strange to her, and just didn't work. I'd get some on my finger and give it to her that way. This did mean that it couldn't be as runny as some might start out with though. It was about the consistancy of cheap applesauce.

But it still took a few weeks before she'd actually eat enough of it for me to call it a "meal." And I'm not convinced it helped her sleep any better.

What did help, was a schedule. And the book "Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect and Communicate with your Baby" (http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Baby-Whisperer-Connect-Communicate/dp/0345479092/ref=pd_bbs_sr_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1197259717&sr=8-3) by Tracy Hogg which was given to me by Brigid Rowan. Even though I didn't agree with everything she wrote, it was really good for ideas and I wish I had it when Dayna was much younger -- It may have saved me months of sleeplessness. If nothing else, this book is great for telling you what KIND of baby you have and what to expect from them temperment-wise.

Basically... sleep begets sleep. If she naps well, she'll sleep better at night. Dayna didn't like naps. She refused to sleep. Even when she was first born she just wouldn't sleep. Anyway... the book gives you the E.A.S.Y. system: Eat, Activity, Sleep, You Time. I don't have the energy to detail it all, but it's fairly self-explainatory. After she wakes up, feed her. Then is activity time. Then she sleeps again and it's your time to do stuff for you. Rinse and Repeat. Most valuable advice from Brigid Rowan: She needs a nap AT LEAST every three hours and it should be at least an hour long. If you're lucky and got a good baby, she's already doing that (mine wasn't!).

And like I said... if she's on a good schedule during the day... then the night will follow.

I'm sure you've already read about establishing night time routines... signaling bedtime, etc.

Other that... I can only say... that I know how you feel! Hang in there! (Oh, and... I make daddy pretty much handle night time now since he's more of a night owl that me. LOL.)

Amethyst Rose
December 10th, 2007, 01:16 AM
I started rice cereal just shy of 4 months hoping it would make Cam sleep better. He took to it very quickly, and I knew he was ready because of how longingly he looked at what we were eating. He also opened his mouth for the spoon without prompting and swallowed rather than pushing the cereal back out of his mouth.

Anyway, he slept well that first night and that was it. He's still up twice a night, and he gets three solid feedings a day.

I personally don't advocate cereal in a bottle, because I've heard it can cause choking, but I haven't tried it so don't have personal experience to relate.

Anyway, I hope it works out better for you.... just go with your instincts, your baby will let you know when she's ready.

December 10th, 2007, 10:27 AM
Just be prepared...introduction of solids can actually make nighttime wakings worse, as your daughter learns to digest it. You prob don't wanna hear this, but if it's being too much it's prob better that YOU slow down. Learn to say "I just can't right now" when asked to volunteer for something. Look at all your activities and decide which are really important to you, and which can be put on a back burner for now. Otherwise you're just gonna burn yourself out. Hopefully she'll decide on her own that she's ready to sleep through the night soon. If she's still not sleeping through by 6 months, then you can start just not going to her when she cries right away. You wait a little longer each time. Eventually she will learn to soothe herself back to sleep. But I think right now she probably still needs those extra feedings for whatever reason.

December 10th, 2007, 11:21 AM
I'm with Ariste! Slow down babe! No mother ever has said she wished she had less time with her tiny babies! The more Erica looks like a toddler instead of my baby the more I get misty eyed...treasure these times they are priceless and quick fading away!

If she's still pushing cereal out with her tongue you may want to wait another week or so. same if the results are the opposite of what you expected. You could also try a dose of simethecone before the cereal if it seems to make her gassy. If you find she'll take it via the bottle don't leave her unattended, it's inattention that tends to lead to choking.

Finally not all babies sleep through the night, ask your mom when you and your siblings slept through the night and find out when Semi started sleeping through, if it was much later than 4 months you may not have results with the rice cereal.

ETA: I looked at the picture and it looks like she's trying to say "Sheesh Mommie WHAT are you trying to do to me?"

December 10th, 2007, 11:49 AM
we just cut x's into some of the nipples, and mixed it very thin, she loved it! But all babies are different, so just mix a little bit very thin into it, and slowly increase it as she get's a little older. I can't believe it, she's getting so big! cliche to say but it does seem like only yesterday she was born.

December 10th, 2007, 12:11 PM
I want to make it clear that I love spending time with my daughter, and enjoy her very much.

I just could use a straight night of sleep, that is all.

She wakes up only to eat, then goes right back to sleep. It's just, well, I like sleep, and the sleeping through the night thing would be GREAT.

With the two events with Hannukah done, I am relaxing a bit. I took the month off of teaching on Monday evenings (I now teach only Tuesday and Wedensday afternoons till January). I enjoy volunteering, but am done with any new poisitions for the time being, so I only have the board position, and the program I'm directing (once every 2 months). And of course my business. Don't yet about a job, but hoping to find something at least part time. We would like to start living comfortably at this point, where we have enough for bills, and a little for splurging and/or savings.

So its tricky.

I love being a SAHM. I just want a night of sleeping through for 6 hours...
That is all.

December 10th, 2007, 05:53 PM
Yep, no doubt, I am sure we can all identify with you on that :) :lol:

Thing is when they start sleeping through the night is really variable. I hear "6 months" thrown around a lot as the average age, but it really depends on who you talk to. Then they're so busy with growth spurts, teething, learning new things, that they stop sleeping regularly even after they'd started. I can't offer any better ideas about the cereal then these lovely ladies already have, so wondering, have you tried checking out books, like The No Cry Sleep Solution or other options? These are often available to borrow from the library. They offer ideas for routines, regular naps, helping baby soothe herself back to sleep when she does wake up, etc.

Mine is almost 10 months old and still has the odd night, so I still find myself taking a nap when he does sometimes. Like last night - I was up sick at 3 and he wouldn't go back to sleep till 4!

Oh and I had some good babycenter articles bookmarked on the subject. The book I mentioned earlier (No Cry Sleep Solution) lies in between "cry it out" and "no tears".


Brigid Rowan
December 10th, 2007, 06:09 PM
So, sleep, every mom craves it. Since Scarlet is a bottle fed baby, why not have you or hubby go to bed around 9pm, and that person sleep through the 11pm and 3am feed, and do the 6am feed..that way you can get 9 full hours of sleep. Switch off every other night, or if you feel hubby needs his sleep, you go to bed at 9, let him do the 11pm feed, and that way, you get 9pm to 3am of straight sleeping. Problem solved. It isnt conventional, but welcome to motherhood, ya work with what ya got.

I dont think cereal makes a bit of differance in their schedules. Honestly, I think Scarlet is doing GREAT for her age, schedule wise. Some kids get up and stay up still at that age, the fact she returns to sleep is a HUGE bonus. I think she needs the feeds at night, her body is hungry. And ounce per ounce, she will get more calories via the formula than she will from the cereal, because she will take in more formula, and it is more nutrionally dense.

When I have an infant (age 1 or less) in the home, I dont do ANYTHING for anyone volunteer-wise. I cut way back in a lot of areas, because I really feel my only priority is me/DH and baby and family. I am not going to be on the PTA, or be room mom, or do craft fairs...because I just know I need to focus and conserve energy. This means I only do stuff like date nights with hubby, special performances/projects from the big kids,etc. I dont host parties or holidays unless its just me and my immediate family there. I just let it all slide...and Ive found out that the world keeps on spinnin' just fine.

December 10th, 2007, 07:37 PM
:hugz: I know what your going through as I had to deal with vinny being up 2-3 times a night. He sometimes wakes up around 12-1 am, but is sleeping now through the night for the most part. (he's been teething)
We had to give him alittle rice cereal in his bottle too. I think he was about 4 1/2 to 5 months old when he had his first cereal feeding. (soupy to start out with)

I hope your able to get some sleep soon! :) :hugz:

Ravenna Angellin
December 10th, 2007, 09:38 PM
Both Aiden and Finn didn't "sleep through the night" till they were well over a year old. More like 2 years old, lol.

You need to make sure that Scarlet is ready for solid foods. I'm sure her doctor has told you what to watch for, but just in case, these are the big ones:

* Opens her mouth for the spoon
* Is still hungry after a "normal" feeding
* Shows interest in your food and when the family sits down to eat

Do you guys include her in your mealtimes together? If not, make it a family event. Make a big deal over eating together, and sharing your days with each other (that will help her understand that mealtime is also bonding time as a family unit).

I used to mix the boys' cereals with formula, and sometimes with baby applesauce, but I wouldn't recommend using the applesauce until you've gone and tested her tolerance for single ingredient foods. Remember the key is 1 new food per week. That way if she has an allergy, you will be able to pinpoint which food is the likely culprit.

Also, sometimes solid food has nothing to do with sleeping through the night. Especially if she is an "on-demand" baby. Which is why I haven't had a full nights sleep in nearly 7 years. It just could be that she is used to Momma getting up and spending time with her in the wee hours. Babies are funny like that.

Good luck!!

~ Ravenna

December 11th, 2007, 01:39 AM
If she didn't take to the cereal on the spoon, chances are she's telling you she's not ready for it. Her not liking the cereal would be another sign that she's not ready.

I agree with the others, slow down, enjoy her being a baby. It doesn't last for long.

Hubby and I were up last night until 2am with Lilia, just because we could. Neither of us wanted to sleep, because we finally have her home.

At 10am today I slept for an hour while hubby watched the kids. I feel a little sluggish, but other wise okay.

How much are you feeding Scarlet in her bottle ...? Maybe try increasing that a little as some babies need more or less than the formula guidelines tell you.

Sleeplessness is normal when you have an infant ... if your tired ... maybe cut back on your workload.

When I returned to work part time after my son was born, I regretted it immensely.

December 11th, 2007, 11:44 PM
Sage turned 2 in october and she is finally sleeping through the night. if she doesn't its because she didn't get enough food before going down for the night (we finally figured that out). She was on rice/formula early just because she was sick but it never did anything for sleep. She was teething by 5 months and i swear she was teething to her 2nd birthday, which makes it hard for them to sleep. I was greatful when sage decided that she was ok with just getting something to eat/drink and passing back out quickly after that. the hr long wake ups sucked. hang in there, get some sleep in between your activities. i had to accept that late nights were no longer in existance for me after sage was born, 9 or 10pm bedtimes are not unusual around here. I also second having semi help you out. maybe alternate nights of responsibility, or feedings. that helped us early on so that we could each get 4 hrs straight since we alternated.

December 12th, 2007, 07:23 AM
One of the hardest things for new mother to face is the hard fact that they will never sleep like they did before they had kids EVER AGAIN. Once you accept that, its much easier. :lol:

Between night wakings, night mares, fevers, vomitting, bedwetting, and your own worries about getting everyone out of a burning house, how the kid is adjusting in school or socially, where you will get the money for college, then where your teen is, what they are doing and with whom......a full night's sleep is simply not ever going to happen in any kind of consistant fashion again, so stop fighting it. Have a cuppa, sister. You didnt really think all these wrinkles and gray hairs were my own fault, did you?

Eternal Night
December 12th, 2007, 07:55 AM
I want to make it clear that I love spending time with my daughter, and enjoy her very much.

I just could use a straight night of sleep, that is all.

She wakes up only to eat, then goes right back to sleep. It's just, well, I like sleep, and the sleeping through the night thing would be GREAT.

With the two events with Hannukah done, I am relaxing a bit. I took the month off of teaching on Monday evenings (I now teach only Tuesday and Wedensday afternoons till January). I enjoy volunteering, but am done with any new poisitions for the time being, so I only have the board position, and the program I'm directing (once every 2 months). And of course my business. Don't yet about a job, but hoping to find something at least part time. We would like to start living comfortably at this point, where we have enough for bills, and a little for splurging and/or savings.

So its tricky.

I love being a SAHM. I just want a night of sleeping through for 6 hours...
That is all.

I know the feeling hon.
When Logan was born he was such a hungry baby.
He used to wake up 4-5 times every night for a feed
I ended up putting him on baby rice before he was 4 months as well.
It took a fair few attempts and in the end i did as my mum said and put a tiny little bit of rice in his bottle and as a few have said here cut a cross in the teat.
Kinda tricked him into eating it!:lol:
But sadly for me it still didn't get me a full nights sleep......he's 7 now and i reckon it's only been the last year he's started sleeping through.
My sympathy to you I know how horrid it can be, you want to do the best you can for them, but that sometimes means doing what is best for you.
I say stick at the baby rice she'll get there soon and hopefully she won't be like my boy and will actually let you have a full nights sleep!

December 12th, 2007, 08:41 AM
Thanks for your advice.

My husband helps a lot. But I am not going to make him get up at night, when he goes to bed between 10-12am (depends on when Scarlet goes down), and wakes up at 6am to go work an 8 hour shift, while I am home most of the day, or at least can catch a nap here and there, or relax in front of the TV while feeding Scarlet during the day.

I love teaching my kids at the Temple. I won't stop teaching (plus they pay me $28 an hour, and I teach 5 hours a week, which is NICE). I am looking for a part time job because we want and need the extra $. I need to do what is right for my family. I love my own business, and I love working in it, I can set my own hours, so it is flexible. A lot of work and dedication go into it, but I enjoy it, so I am never giving that one up. And as for my volunteer positions, I feel fortunate (even though we are not super rich or somethin) to have what we have, and feeding the homeless is not something I am going to stop doing and organizing. I also enjoy helping our Sisterhood function, I like the responsibility and the work.

Just because I had a baby younger than 1, doesn't mean I should or CAN drop everything, like some out there can. If we had a lot of money, maybe I'd drop the part time job and Hebrew teaching. But I can't.

Again, just because I have a life outside of mommy-hood, doesn't mean I am not dedicated to my daughter, her happiness and health. I wish some people would understand that.

I AM super mom.

Anyways... I started putting some rice cereal in her dinner bottle. She took it well. She fell asleep at 10:30pm, woke up at 3:30am for a feeding, and went back to sleep till 6:30am (right as her dad and I were just starting to snuggle for a few moments before he had to get up and get ready to leave... Thanks Scarlet...).

I fed her, changed her, and she is downstairs in her bouncer out cold, again.
I thought she was up for the day so I took her downstairs after feeding her. She was wide awake (to my disappointment, and her father's amusement). Then I changed her, and played a bit with her, put her in her bouncy to go get a couple of quick things done in the kitchen, walked back into the livingroom 5 mins later and she was out.

Which brings me to the conclusion that I should end this post and go nap on the couch...

Thanks again.
It's good to know I'm not alone.

Eternal Night
December 12th, 2007, 08:46 AM
I agree with not stopping everything because you have a child.
It's good to still be your own person and it's good to show them as they grow up that mummy isn't just a robot that is purely put on the earth to serve them.
At the end of the day regardless of what any one whether it be family, health workers whatever you are Scarlet's mum and you know what is right and what isn't.
By the sounds of it i think you're doing a grand job :hugz: