Whew! We’ve made it to 6 months as a family of four, and I think we all deserve a high five (or rather, Mommy & Daddy deserve a night of uninterrupted sleep, or maybe just a 10 minute lie-in, or wait, maybe just a hot cup of tea, I’d settle for that!). The past 6 months have been crazy, filled with nappies…and more nappies and then a few more nappies on top of that. And even though it feels like the days dragged ooooonnnnn and ooooonnnn this time has really flown past. Everyone said that it would be hard, and to be honest, I didn’t really believe them
Or rather, I didn’t really understand what hard would look like.
My first born, Everly, was (and still is) a unicorn baby…you know the ones that sleep like the book says they should (and then some!) who eat anything and everything, who play independently for hours at a time…the ones you don’t believe really exist. And so I really thought I had it all down pat when it came to having another baby. I just assumed that Everly turned out the was she did because of how we had parented. And while I think part of this is true, a whole lot of it has to do with her being a girl, being our first baby, and of course the things we have no control over, her nature and personality.
Life since Aaron has been hard. It’s been hard for lots of reasons, not just because he has been a colicky baby, but also because of things like the small age gap between him and his sister (17 months) which means effectively I have two babies to care for. Also, with your second baby, you have far less time to sit and coo over them, and I was able to rest more when I had Everly (I spent the first 6 weeks REALLY taking it easy after her birth) and with Aaron, I was basically up and about and picking up a busy toddler after barely a week. It’s also been REALLY hard trying to co-ordinate two little schedules. I am very routine orientated, and somewhere over the past couple of months, Everly has needed to drop from two to one naps (I know, I should be thanking my lucky stars that she has made it this long on two naps) but that transition was quite tricky. Anyway, we made it and she has now settled nicely into her new one nap a day schedule, and thankfully still sleeps through the night (even through Aaron’s bad nights…long may that last!).
I really don’t believe that my little boy is a very difficult baby, he has just been really different to Everly. A big component has been that I actually have forgotten what Everly was like in the early months. But, in saying this, Aaron is a whole lot busier than Everly was, he has already got 2 teeth (and two more are breaking through and he HAS not been a happy chappy for days on end before and after those pearly whites broke through…unlike Evs who only got her first tooth at nearly 8 months and ever since then barely makes a peep when they do) and from what I can tell from my friend’s with boy babies, he is a typical boy. He just wants to be close to his mommy, and he likes intense one on one interaction about 90% of the time. It’s not always easy for me to mentally sit down on the floor and play with him, when I feel torn between work on my computer and then the things that I love doing (photography, blogging and sharing our behind the scenes farm life on Instagram…but gosh writing that out here really does sound terrible…I’m basically saying playing with and talking to my baby is taking me away from doing the things I love doing…and that pretty much sums up parenthood haha). But I do think all of these thoughts are normal (please tell me I’m not alone!) and while the first 4 months for us were the hardest, the last 6 weeks have had way more happy & sunnier days.
Aaron is giggling and laughing, and developing his own sense of humor (typical boy style, the fist full on laugh was over ‘fart’ noises) and he LOVES being thrown up into the air. He is getting really good at sitting, and his slow-to-smile nature means that every smile you do get hits you with ALL THE FEELS.
Here is our new #TwoUnderTwo schedule, for anyone who might like to know how we (try!) to do things most days:
06:30 - 7am both kiddos wake up (generally at the same time, which is chaos, but some days Evs wakes up before Aaron and then I get to spend a bit of quality time with just her while I get her changed for the day). I feed Aaron & change his nappy, and then pop some music on for him while I change Evs nappy and get her dressed.
8am Everly has breakfast while Aaron sits in his bouncy chair (he gives me about 10 - 15 mins before he starts getting bored).
08:30 - 10am Aaron has his nap. Everly and I go an play in the garden, read books, potter around the house.
10:00 Aaron wakes up, I feed him, change his nappy and then geenrally pop him in the pram and take him and Everly for a walk.
10:45 Everly has a filling snack (usually homemade yoghurt with nut butter/blueberries)
11:00 - 13:00/14:00 Everly has her nap (which can be anywhere from 2 - 3 hours long).
11:00 Aaron has his solids (we just started about a week ago)
11:30 Aaron goes down for his nap, which can be anywhere from 1 - 2 hours long.
From 11:30 - 13:00 is generally when I get to have my only break from both kiddos. I don’t usually get longer than 45 mins, but there have been a few days when I’ve had 2 hours to myself. It’s wonderful! But it did take 6 months to get here, as usually Aaron would wake up as I was putting Everly down, or vice versa.
13:00/14:00 Everly has lunch when she wakes up from her nap, and then the three of us play together until Aaron’s next nap.
15:00/16:00 Aaron will have some sort of nap at this time, some days he has a short 30 minute nap, other day an hour. Other days, my wonderful Nanny will put him on her back while she does the ironing and I’ll take Everly out into the garden to play.
17:00 Everly has supper
17:30 I start running the bath, getting the kids pj’s and nappies laid out (this may sound strange, but as we use cloth nappies, the night time nappy is always a bigger one that has lots of layers, and so I go and fold them/get them ready.
18:00 Bath time. I bath Everly while hubby get’s Aaron undressed and baths him. Then I take Aaron to his room to change and feed him, and then pop him down for the night. Everly gets changed and has story time and what she calls ‘talk time….soooo cute’ with Daddy, and I usually get to pop my head in to say goodnight.
3:00-4:00am Aaron wakes up for a feed, and then goes right back to sleep till the morning.
It’s taken us a while to get to this point, and I’m so proud of my family! We had about a month recently of Aaron waking up multiple times a night, me feeding him often, us leaving him to cry and eventually settle himself to sleep (again, this has only been doable because Everly sleeps through the noise) and just general rough nights, but with lots of perseverance and consistency, we are back to a good nighttime routine again. I have no doubt this is going to change again, and I’m okay with that, because I know we will get back to our ‘normal’ again.
In other news, I’ve been quite busy again lately with branding shoots & website design, which always pulls me in two directions. I also am in charge of our farm’s BEE certification, and we have our audit coming up in the next 2 weeks which has been crazy stressful, and really, really, really hard to juggle with two little ones. It’s the kind of work that needs uninterrupted focus time (haha yes I hear the moms in the back laughing along with me at the though of uninterrupted focus time when you have kids) but I’m getting there, and once this audit is done, hopefully it will be a while until I need to work on it again.
So all in all, we are getting into our groove and the latest fun milestone has been giving Aaron solids and starting his weaning journey. I’ll be doing more blog posts on that soon, but if you’ve got a little one and will be starting solids with them soon, here are all my blog posts on what we did with Everly:
Some goals we have now for our little family are to go on a hike, and when the weather warms up, to go camping. Are we crazy or is it doable? Do you have any tips for doing any of the above with two little ones? I’d love to hear from you!