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Dear Caroline,

Today was such a special day. November 26, 2015. Today was your 2nd Thanksgiving (the first one you got to experience outside of the hospital), and it was your 1st birthday. You are ONE!

Last night, as I was putting you to bed, you reached up and put your hand on my cheek. You only ever do this when I nurse you, and since you are no longer nursing, I miss it so much. It was so sweet. It was as if you knew I needed to feel that again. It brought tears to my eyes. It was
one of the best moments that we've shared. Thank you.


Today you woke up at 7 am as you always do. I came in with your warm milk. I sang happy birthday to you as I turned off your sound machine and opened up the curtains. You rolled around in your crib and snuggled with your blanket. I came to get you and you pointed for your milk. I held you in the glider as you drank. We then got you dressed and came downstairs.

You ate breakfast and, as I was cleaning up,
Daddy came home. He got to come home nice and early today since it was Thanksgiving. We got to spend the whole day with him! The first thing we did was let you open your birthday presents. You loved everything and had fun pulling the paper off. You stood right by my side the whole time, not holding onto anything. You are getting so strong and so good at balancing.


We played for awhile, and then it was time for your nap. While you slept, we got the Thanksgiving snacks ready (and had a few ourselves). When you woke up, we had lunch. You had deviled eggs, pumpkin roll, cheese and crackers.

After lunch we went outside. Daddy and I played catch with the football as you explored in the grass and crawled up the sidewalk. You had a blast in the swing. It was in the 60's today- absolutely beautiful.

You took another long nap after Skyping with Nana Bella, Grandpa, Auntie Green, Sienna, Oliver, and your great Grandma. Daddy and I got dinner ready. When you woke up your plate was
ready to go. You devoured everything! You ate turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberries, and rolls. As I am typing this I am realizing that we never ate the yams- they are still in the oven! OOPS! I guess we'll have to make those again.

Once dinner was done, you got to FaceTime with Grandma V, Papa Rey and Auntie Maria. We talked on the phone with your Uncle Christian as well. Such a busy girl! You showed off your awesome walking skills and even did some direction changes mid walking.

You were so happy today. You were also so tired and so cranky at times. LOL You don't have any teeth yet, and we've said this before- but we really do think you are teething right now. We'll find out soon.



Tomorrow, Daddy is taking another half day, so we will get to have another family day. Your birthday party with your friends is on Saturday! You are a busy girl right now.


I love you so much. This day was nothing short of special.

We put you to bed early tonight because you seemed to be asking to sleep. Again, you held my face in your hands tonight as we said goodnight. You then looked at me and put your lips against mine. My heart melted right there. I love you more than words can say. I am so excited to see what this next year will hold.

Dream big my sweet Caroline. You can do anything your little heart desires. You are determined, focused, resilient, and so intelligent. You are sweet, kind and thoughtful. You have so many amazing qualities shining through already. I am so happy that I get the pleasure of being your mama.

Love,
Mama
Caroline is just about to have her first birthday in a couple of days. She's gotten much better at not throwing her food and her cup at the table. I wanted to take a minute to share what we are doing to be successful with this. The reality is that kids throw food and cups for entertainment, to learn, to test their boundaries, etc. So, we are far from done with this battle, but I think we've started in the right direction.

Here are the steps we take to help prevent and stop her from throwing food:

   

1. We say no
I think it is important for her to hear the word no. She may not understand it yet, but she'll catch on eventually.
   
2. We explain the desired behavior
Children need to know that we don't want them to do something, but they also need to know what we'd like them to be doing instead. It is also great to offer a choice if you can. In this case we explain that she can either:
                - Leave her food on the plate  or...
                - Eat the food

3. Remove the problem
We go through the above process of saying no and explaining about 3 times at this age (since we know she doesn't quite understand what we mean yet). If she doesn't stop, we take her plate away.

4. Wait for the child to ask for it again
If she asks for her plate again (at this age she points to it), I instead give her one bite of food and ask her to eat it if she is hungry. If she eats it and doesn't throw it, I give her a second bite, then a third. We tell her that she is doing a good job eating her food and PRAISE PRAISE PRAISE as usual! Giving good feedback is so important as well. If she eats them all successfully without throwing anything, she gets her plate back. 

5. Repeat and be consistent
This won't work fast to solve the problem. Babies are still learning. You have to do this over and over and over again. It feels like I've done it 1000 times. Just when I think I've gotten nowhere, she turns a corner and starts doing really well with it! I won't lie, it is frustrating at times and I have not always been perfectly patient. It sounds easier on paper than it is in reality. Just hang in there and it WILL pay off.

6. Reevaluate the situation
Let's say that none of the above works. She has asked for her plate back and continued to throw food. If she hasn't eaten much, I try giving her something else to eat. It is possible that she is throwing the food because she isn't enjoying it, or maybe her gums hurt and the food is too hard, etc. I try giving her one of her favorites: yogurt, banana, pancakes, string cheese, etc. If she still doesn't want to eat those items, I tell her she is all done and we get down from the table. 

7. Challenge your baby
I've seen with Caroline that she simply gets bored and likes to be challenged at times. So, now that she is approaching the 1 year mark, we started giving her a fork at mealtime. At the beginning of the meal I place food on the fork and set it down. She then picks up the fork and feeds herself. We repeat this until she tells me she wants to try herself. I let her. She makes a mess, but she is making a mess while trying to learn a valuable new skill. This is much different than throwing food. Giving her a fork has helped cut back on the food throwing considerably.

To prevent cup throwing:


Since there are distinct times that your little one is drinking during a meal, we try to be proactive with this one.

While Caroline is drinking, we tell her "on the table when you are done, please". We tap the table while we say this. Sometimes we say it several times as she drinks. If she puts it on the table, we PRAISE PRAISE PRAISE. If she throws the cup on the floor, we say no and explain what she needs to do. We either leave the cup on the floor until she asks for it later in the meal, or we pick it up and keep it out of reach on the table. At this age we give it back to her when she asks for it (as long as she continues to drink).

As with anything, you can expect your child to understand more as they get older. Therefore, the steps can evolve and the consequences can and should change. When Caroline is old enough to understand, she will not be getting her cup back if she throws it. She'll have to wait until after the meal is finished. Don't be afraid to alter things to work for your situation and your family. Make sure you reevaluate what is expected and what the consequences will be as they learn and understand more. Keep in mind what your baby currently understands, and, while you should set high expectations, keep things realistic and don't actually let it frustrate you. It truly is a phase, and it really will pass. 

Dear Caroline,

As we get closer to your first birthday, you are mastering SO. MANY. SKILLS. I am just in awe as I watch you this week.  You are growing up before my eyes.

Here are just a few of things you are doing so well just in the last couple of weeks, many just this past week:

- Taking up to 10-12 steps on your own
- Changing direction while you walk (pivot!)
- Moving your walker in different directions when you use it (even picking it up and re-positioning it)
- Using a fork and a spoon (this morning you successfully used your fork to pick up 6 bites in a row, and used the fork to "spoon" yogurt to your mouth with very little spillage)
- Can point out specific objects or pictures in a book (you can learn the name of a new picture or object in 1 day!)
- Can point to our eyebrows, chin, nose, ears, belly button, etc. when asked
- Climbed DOWN 1 stair on your own
- Ate artichoke leaves like a big girl and put the leaf in the scrap bowl
- Can motion that you are "all done" at the table
- Pooping on the potty (have even asked me by going into the bathroom on your own once)
- Drinking milk like a big girl in the mornings and afternoons, with a few sips in the evening (you like it as hot as we can make it for you)

I'm sure I am forgetting something! You are learning at light speed lately!

Oh, I did!

You also recently learned to...

- High five
- Put both hands in the air for "touchdown"
- Put up 1 finger when we ask "How old is Caroline?"

You are just amazing. When we ask you something, you sit and think. It is so obvious that you are trying so hard. And 9 times out of 10, you come up with the correct answer. I love that you take your time when answering a question. I love that you are so eager to learn, because I am so eager to teach you. Every day is fascinating around here because of you.

I can't even begin to describe the emotion that I feel leading up to your first birthday. This year has been the best year of our lives. You have brought so many smiles to my face, and so many smiles to your father's face. You've made me a better person already. Your laughter, your love, your smile, your sweetness- they are so infectious. I am the luckiest person in the world to have you as my daughter, and your daddy as my husband.

I am so excited to watch you grow. I am so excited to see what the future will hold for you; for us; for our family. What an amazing year this has been. Here's to many many many more!

I love you with all my heart. Thank you for making our world what it is. Thank you for reminding us what unconditional love looks like.

On this Thanksgiving, and on every single day, I am thankful for you. I am thankful for our amazing family.

I love you more than words can say.

Love,
Mama

Dear Caroline,

Yesterday was the first day in your life that I have not breastfed you. You are 1 week away from being 1 year old. 1 week away from being a toddler instead of an infant! Time is flying by and it is bittersweet. With each new milestone I am so excited to see what life brings to us in your new phase, but I am also saddened to let go of some things. This is one of those moments.

I knew it was coming. I knew that I was planning on breastfeeding you for 1 year. We timed it perfectly and you were weaned down to just 2 nursing sessions per day. You always nursed well, but I also knew that you wouldn't ask to be nursed if I didn't offer it one day. It was just one of those things that you enjoyed, but I knew you'd move past quickly as well.

My plan was to take the morning feeding away and let you adjust for a week or so. Then I would lessen the amount you were taking at the evening feeding, and after about a week of that, remove the final feeding. Unfortunately, these steps had to be accelerated. I needed to be on medication this week that I can't take while nursing. So, it was time. On Tuesday I removed the AM feeding. You didn't even notice as you gulped down your warmed whole milk. On Wednesday, I tried removing the evening feeding as well. I made the mistake of offering you cow's milk in the glider that I nurse you in. You were upset and didn't understand. I nursed you. Yesterday I didn't sit in the glider, and I had Daddy give you the warmed milk. While you didn't take to the milk, you also didn't ask to be nursed. You were ok. You are such a big girl.

We are now two days in, and you are handling this like a champ! You don't always drink your milk (you are still getting used to it), and I am still trying to figure out the best temperature for it and best time to give it to you, but you also aren't asking to be nursed. You are amazing.

I don't feel like I got a chance to mentally prepare for this, since we had to accelerate the timing. I think I had a sweet goodbye planned in my head or something. I'm not sure why, but I am so emotional about this change. I miss getting extra snuggles during feeding time. I miss your hand on my face, and even your tiny little fingers up my nose. We were both ready to be done nursing, but I wasn't ready to let go of you. I wasn't ready to let go of my extra time with you, or those sweet moments that only you and I share. I just wasn't quite ready.

I've shed the tears for both of us. I am not surprised at how well you are handling the change, though. You are so tough, and so strong, and have always been independent. I know we'll have new moments, and more cuddles and kisses for a lifetime. I will always remember how it felt to hold you and nurse you, though. I will always remember how, no matter what was wrong, it always comforted you, which comforted me. I'll remember it always and forever. I love you so much.

Love,
Mama
Transitioning into a booster seat was not even something that was on my radar- until my daughter started putting her feet up on the table. I realized that if she were to be in a booster seat instead of the high chair, there were going to be several benefits:

1. I could push her legs under the table and she would no longer be able to put her feet ON TOP of the table.

2. She would be able to have a proper seat at the table and be closer in with the family.

3. We would suddenly have so much more floor space!

So, I looked at our options. I wanted something very compact. I also loved the idea of getting something that was travel friendly and portable. Since all of our family is fairly far away, it would be fabulous to have a booster seat we could actually take with us when we visit. 


I found a booster seat that is soooooo amazing.

It's called the Munchkin Travel Booster Seat.

We started using this when Caroline turned 10 months old. It has 2 height settings, and on the tallest setting, Caroline is able to reach the table perfectly. She can lean over to each side, and it holds her in place very well. I have no concerns with this booster seat at all. It wipes off easily, and it even has a storage space underneath.

Caroline loves being seated at the table now. She really gets to enjoy family meals from a whole different perspective, and my husband and I love having her at the table as well.  Her Evenflo Convertible high chair (being the awesome chair that it is) is now in the basement and will be used as an arts and craft table for her! I am also so proud of our high chair find. I love that it breaks down into a table and chair for her.


s
My oh my! My plan of doing sensory activities, taking pictures, and blogging about them got so far behind on my list of topics to blog about, that I am just now writing up these sensory activities that I did with Caroline back in August and September! As a result, I figured I would put them all together in one fabulous post! ;) Sensory activities 1 and 2 (on instant mashed potatoes and outdoor exploring) can be found here. Be sure to check them out!

All 5 of these sensory activities that I have highlighted here were done around 9 and 10 months of age. I found this age to be perfect because I could hold her attention for awhile without her crawling or walking off. Now that she is almost 1 year old, she is a little turbo crawler and is wanting to practice walking all the time. We have been focusing on nature exploration as a result, but I am definitely needing to spice up our activities a bit and will be sharing what I come up with soon!

Sensory Activity #3- NOODLE PLAY




Caroline was a bit hesitant with this activity. All I did was cook some noodles and place them in a bin. I then gave her the bin and let her feel them, taste them, throw, etc. Initially, she touched the noodles and scrunched her face. She was not amused by the texture. I picked up a handful and handed it to her. She squished the noodles and smiled this time. Once I got her going, she had a great time. She fed them to the dogs, ate some herself, and made a huge mess! She really enjoyed it.


Sensory Activity #4- MESS FREE PAINTING

This activity turned into a dud in our house. I spent a decent amount of time cutting out "Caroline" in a piece of cardstock. I then placed it into a ziploc bag and squirted some paint inside. I zipped it up and let Caroline play with the paint through the bag. She really didn't seem to care about this activity. She was very interested in chewing on the bag, but other than that, she was not very excited about the colors or moving the paint around. I thought she was going to love it. There was also way too much paint to ever dry, so the cardstock with her name on it was simply thrown in the trash. LOL
 
This is definitely an activity that I am going to try again now that she is older. I think she will be more focused on the paint in the next couple of months.

Sensory Activity #5- MAKING WAVES

Caroline loved this activity! I took her outside and filled a plastic bin with water and toys. I just used what we had in the house. I gave her a few toys that would squirt water, some that would float, others that would sink, and a couple that she could fill with water and dump the water out. She ended up ignoring most of the toys, and just splashing in the water. She loved watching the water move. For the official play plan (although we deviated some), check out this great post on the Absorb Play blog!
Knowing when to make a schedule change can be tricky. It is all about following your baby's lead, and looking for signs that they might be ready. The Babywise book is a great guideline to follow, however, your baby might be ahead of the transitions that are recommended, or she might take her time and need longer with a particular schedule. The schedules that I have provided on our baby schedules page are broken down by month. All schedules shown are what worked the best for us. We seemed to always be one step ahead of the book. Remember that each baby is different, and it is so very important that you let them tell you when they are ready for a change.

Here are some things that we always look for when gearing up for a change:



  1. Naps becoming shorter
    When your baby's naps suddenly start getting shorter and shorter, this can be an indication that they are ready for more wake time, or even ready to drop a nap.
       
  2. Refusal to go down for a nap
    If your baby starts to refuse a nap all together, this can be a very clear indication that they need a schedule change, and need a nap removed.
       
  3. Refusal to drink a bottle/nurse
    Refusal to drink a bottle or nurse can be an indication that they are ready to drop a feeding. This often coincides with adding in more wake time and rearranging nap times for a complete schedule change. Remember that you want to keep the eat, play, sleep routines that you have worked so hard to set up!
       
  4. Formula/breast milk intake lessening
    If you notice that your baby is drinking less and less, this can also be an indication that it is time to drop a feeding and make a schedule change.
        
Often times, multiple signs and indications happen at the same time. Your baby might be refusing a nap and drinking less. It is also possible, however, that you only notice one "issue" arising. Your baby might be taking shorter naps, but is still drinking the same amount. It is completely ok to change the schedule and simply incorporate more ounces with fewer bottles offered. Babies that are nursing, will naturally intake more during the existing feedings (if and when you drop a feeding).

Mama, do I look like I need a nap??
Some things to keep in mind before changing the schedule:

- New skills being learned/mastered
- Teething/sickness/ear infections, etc.

If your baby is in a wonder week, or if you suspect they are in the middle of learning a big milestone (rolling, sitting, standing, walking, etc.), these can all cause sleep disruptions and cause your baby to be distracted while eating. Your baby may also need a schedule change, but it is important to not jump the gun! When I started noticing any of the above changes with my baby, I simply began by giving it time. I waited anywhere from 1-2 weeks (depending on the severity and urgency of the noticed "issue"), to see if the change was going to resolve itself. If it was simply due to new skills being learned, it was often resolved in about a week on it's own, and Caroline always went back to doing just fine on her current schedule. It was when I noticed that it didn't seem to be resolving itself, that I went ahead and made changes to her schedule. 

Teething, sickness, ear infections, and other things that might be bothering your baby can also cause sleep disruptions and changes in eating habits. Make sure to explore these options as well before making any drastic changes. 

Helpful links regarding schedules:



You won't hear me talk much about sleep regressions. I talk about sleep disruptions or disturbances. Technically, it's the same thing, but I prefer to think about these "regressions" a little bit differently. The term regression seems to imply that your baby has simply forgotten how to sleep well, which is not the case. They haven't entered a "less developed state" as the term suggests. I see moms, blogs, books, etc. all talking about sleep regressions as these dreaded moments that happen at specific times- the 6 month regression; the 12 month regression.

It is true that sleep disturbances happen at those approximate time frames, however, it is not simply due to the age of the child. These "regressions" are not age related, they are directly related to learning- and even more specific to learning the big skills- the milestones. Rolling, sitting, standing, walking, etc. These milestones tend to happen around the same relative age, and therefore, the sleep regression months came about.

We have been incredibly lucky in this house, in that when we enter one of these phases, it only impacts Caroline's naps and never her nighttime sleep. For some, it is the opposite, and for many it will disrupt both day and night sleep.

The good news is that these disturbances are typically short lived (although in the moment a week may not seem short at all), and you can help your little one to get through them.

The way to identify that you are in a "regression" is by taking note of any new skills that are being learned. If you can tell that your baby has been focusing on learning something big, that is most likely the cause, and yes, you are in a "regression" or sleep disruption phase. If you do not see that your little one is focusing on learning new skills, you might be needing a schedule change instead.
Here are some resources that focus on identifying if you may need a schedule change.

If you have identified a skill that your little one is trying to master, however, and sleep of any sort has been disrupted, you can help your baby to move through this period by doing one simple thing: give them LOTS and LOTS of practice with that skill before naps and before bed.

For us, sleep disturbances have happened when learning the following skills : sitting, standing, and currently- walking. I woke up this morning and realized that every other time this has happened, I took my own advice and gave her lots of practice. This time, for some odd reason, I had forgotten to focus ALL of our attention on her new skill. We had been practicing, but not enough.

Caroline is 11.5 months old, and she is no longer napping. She has had an awesome schedule for mooooonths! So, this is odd for her. It has been a full week of this. She takes maybe 2 catnaps, sometimes only 1, and has been going to bed super early as a result. This, of course, causes her to wake early, and the viscous cycle repeats. She isn't walking on her own yet, but is incredibly excited to get there. It is all she wants to do (once I get her going). So, today... I took her outside (her favorite place to be), and we walked. Forever. And ever. We explored. We walked again. She took her 1st tiny little step on her own today! At times, she insisted on only holding only one of my hands and walking. She used her walker and started walking ahead of it. This was when the one tiny step happened...she went around her walker, let go, and took a step. AMAZING! Guess who's now sleeping for the first time at her usual nap time in over a week!?!?! That's right, Mama! I should have remembered my own advice several days ago. She will most likely still wake a bit early since she is so focused on practicing this skill, but this is definitely going to help us move forward. Update: she's taken both of her naps today and taken steps on her own multiple times!! She took 4 steps at once! So glad I took my own advice and did a crash course training day in walking haha! Trust your instincts, mamas!

So, whether you call it a regression or a disturbance/disruption, one thing is for sure- sleep will be lacking and new skills will be learned. Help your baby master that skill, and you will be on the other side of this phase in no time.
MAMAS! I am THRILLED to announce that prAna and Stonyfield have teamed up to offer us an amazing giveaway! Before I tell you all about the giveaway, let me just tell you about why these two companies are so fabulous. PrAna and Stonyfield are two very environmentally friendly companies. Did you know that Stonyfield actually makes their multi cup yogurt packs from plants!? And prAna uses materials like organic cotton and recycled products in their sustainability efforts to make their clothing.

So the giveaway... one lucky reader is going to get your very-own choice of any organic cotton piece of clothing valued up to $99! I was also given the opportunity to choose a piece for myself, and I have to say, the clothing is so soft, such high quality, and simply fabulous! My favorite item is the Bridget Lined Shirt. It is thick, warm, and it may be the most comfortable piece of clothing I now own!

#JUSTBEYOU

I plan on wearing this shirt to keep me warm on my walks and outdoor adventures with Caroline. It is a great shirt to help me stay warm, look nice, and still be comfortable running around with my almost toddler! I might just grab my favorite flavor of Stonyfield Oh My Yog! (Quebec Blueberry) and have an quick snack after that morning walk of ours!

In addition to providing us with an amazing giveaway opportunity, prAna is also letting my readers get 15% off at prAna.com Not valid for prAna Influencers, on Gift Certificates or with any other offers. Valid Nov 1 – Dec 15, 2015 Use the following code to earn your discount: JBYF15MOC



OK, OK...the GIVEAWAY:


What the winner gets

-Your very own choice of ANY organic cotton piece of clothing from prAna valued up to $99


The deadline

-November 16th


How to enter (each worth 1 entry, and you can enter as many times as you like!)


1. Comment on my giveaway Facebook post with a topic you'd like to see discussed on our blog (example: how to switch baby to 1 nap) Please post on the FB PAGE not the discussion group, thanks!

2. Copy and share the following message on Facebook (you can add to it if you like):

@MamasOrganizedChaos is doing a #giveaway for a free piece of organic clothing up to $99 #mamasorganizedcgiveaway http://mamasorganizedchaos.blogspot.com/2015/10/prana-organic-cotton-giveaway.html

3. Copy and Tweet the following message: 

@MamasOrganizedC is doing a #giveaway for a free piece of organic clothing up to $99 #mamasorganizedcgiveaway http://mamasorganizedchaos.blogspot.com/2015/10/prana-organic-cotton-giveaway.html

4. Share ANY link to ANY of my blog posts via facebook or twitter and make sure to use #mamasorganizedchaosgiveaway so I can find it!


Enter as many times as you'd like by November 16th!

Make sure you use the hashtag #mamasorganizedcgiveaway  when you share or tweet so I can find your entry!

I will then randomly select one winner and announce the winner on November 16th!

GOOD LUCK!

Disclaimer: I am a Stonyfield YoGetter blogger, and this sponsored post is written by me in partnership with Stonyfield and prAna.All opinions are always my own.
Once you have determined that your baby needs a schedule change, it is time to figure out how you are going to go about it. You can slowly change your schedule and ease your baby into it. This takes awhile, and honestly (if baby truly needed a schedule change) this method was not needed for us. We always just dove in head first. We changed the schedule and just gave it a shot. If it didn't work out perfectly (which it never does), I simply tweaked it along the way and made adjustments until we figured out the perfect schedule.

Here is our step by step guide to making a schedule change:


1. Have a solid plan
As you are noticing that your baby is going to need a schedule change, look at the resources available to you (Babywise book, our baby schedules page, and any other example schedules you've found), watch your baby's cues and try to figure out the scheduling changes that need to be made. Since you are making a schedule change, you are most likely dropping a nap. Drop the last nap of the day, and rearrange the schedule to accommodate with longer wake times, one less nap, and one less feeding. I always referenced these average sleep charts as well to make sure we were headed in the right direction.

2. Implement the plan 
Challenge your baby to try the new schedule. Help her by keeping her distracted during longer wake times. Do the best you can to truly try the new schedule. If you are off slightly on the times, don't worry- just attempt it the best that you can.

3. Watch for cues
Is your baby handling the change well? Are her naps getting longer? Are they still short? Are they even shorter? Is she overtired? Too stimulated? Does she seem like she still needs more wake time?
Take note. This is the most important step. Look for the cues, interpret them using our frequently asked Q&A page, and trust your instincts.

4. Tweak
Make minor changes to your schedule as you see fit while you are implementing your plan. Give your plan some credit though, and just make minor tweaks.

5. Be consistent
You know what you are doing, so trust yourself and give your schedule a good 2-3 days of implementation before making any major changes. It may take a few days for your baby to get the swing of things.

6. Make adjustments
If you are noticing after 2-3 days, that things just aren't going as planned, make changes to your schedule accordingly. The schedules in the books all look so perfect... don't forget that each cycle doesn't have to be the same length. Do what works for your baby. Make the adjustments that you see fit.

7. Repeat
Repeat the above process until you feel that you have achieved a good schedule.

8. Take a break if you need to
If at any time you feel that your baby has gotten overtired and needs a break from the process, simply revert back to your old schedule and see if it can work for a day or so. This could give your baby the rest she needs to make the schedule change a bit easier. It may also not work- after all you are making a schedule change for a reason- that old schedule wasn't quite working anymore. So don't worry if this doesn't work out. If it does work out, don't be afraid to have a schedule A and a schedule B.

There were plenty of times that we rotated schedules as we were transitioning from point A to point B. In fact, we are currently in the middle of transitioning from 2 naps to 1, and for the last month we have been alternating schedules to help Caroline make the transition more easily. Often times, the old schedule starts to work if it is alternated every few days with the new schedule. 


Helpful links for making schedule changes:

I think my heart skipped a few beats when I realized what had happened.
I was transferring Caroline's cloth diapers and clothes from the washer to the dryer when I realized something was wrong. There was something all over her diapers and clothes...
Was it detergent? It could be but it didn't look quite right...
It definitely didn't feel right.
I keep transferring to find the source. It was gel beads. From a disposable diaper. Oh SH*T!
We use disposable diapers at night, and if we are going out and know that Caroline needs to poop. 

I took all of the items out of the washer. It was everywhere. My washing machine looked like it was ruined. It was also in the dryer. The worst case scenario ran through my mind... Beads that don't dissolve, that form a gel like mess all over my washing machine, dryer, Caroline's clothes and diapers. It all must be ruined. If I run the dryer, would the gel melt onto everything? Would the dryer be ok? How am I supposed to rinse gel beads out of the washer when they feel like glue?

I figured the diapers and clothes might be ok if I hand washed them, so I lugged the wet items upstairs to the bathroom. I began the process of rinsing them by hand in the tub. I knew other people must have made this mistake as well.... so I stopped and googled. I googled and I found comfort! I googled and found answers that were so simple. My heart resumed beating and I crossed my fingers and tried what seemed to be the answer:



1. Run the sanitary/cleaning cycle on the washer
I started by scooping out the big chunks of gel by hand. I also added a little bleach and then ran the sanitary/clean cycle. When it was done running, the washing machine was sparkling clean just like usual! Whew!

2. Shake the clothes off and put them in the dryer
Again, I took the big chunks off of the clothes. Then put them directly into the dryer and ran a normal cotton cycle. When they were done, the gel had disappeared and turned into a white paper like substance in the lint trap. AMAZING!

3. Rewash the clothes
Just to be safe, I then put the clothes into the washer and rewashed and dried them. They came out looking perfect.

4. Vacuum the heck out of the floor to remove any remnants of gel beads
I vacuumed up the beads off of the floor, cleaned out the lint trap, etc. All evidence is gone.

The washer and dryer, and the diapers and clothes look perfect. What looked like a disaster, turned into an easy fix. So, you can calm your nerves if you ever make the same mistake! Running a disposable diaper through the washing machine is not the end of the world.