Holiday Cheer, sorta

We attempted to cart the small one along to his first Christmas party last night, and the biggest lesson we learned is know when to walk off stage.

The hosts are very dear friends of ours, the small one’s godparents as a matter of fact, and many a party at our house has involved their setting up a pack n play in our bedroom so they could stay up past bedtime. We attempted to do the same, arriving 30 minutes early so we could lug in all the requisite baby gear (the aforementioned pack n play, plus the car seat, diaper bag, and the wine and food we brought), set everything up in their guest room and have the little guy happily in the sling on my front before the first guests arrived. And on the arrival part we totally get an A (nothing was forgotten, we left the house on time, we remembered how to set up the damn pack n play and we even managed to mostly  stay out of the hosts’ way while they got ready for the party).

And then the party began. The small one was moderately content in his sling (as long as I kept moving and bopping around, much to the entertainment of the other guests) and even managed to fall asleep on me for a good 30 minutes – the first time he has ever fallen asleep in the sling (heck, the first time the sling didn’t melt into a full blown tantrum after a mere 20 minutes, but I digress). Everyone got to see him, and I even managed to snack on the sweedish meatballs, as they were the one food item that was neither crumbly (cheese board with croustini) nor messy (ribs) nor dangerously drippy (homemade hot wings), and therefore posed the least risk of my blanketing the small one with food droppings.

And then, precisely when he should have been ready for the finally feeding of the night, he awoke. I headed up to the guest room, changed his diaper, nursed him and when I looked at him as I went to put him down, I realized the child was completely and totally awake. And that I had no baby monitor. And that I could never hear him cry from within the depths of the now spirited party. And that I would be subjecting our hosts’ twin 3 year olds and 6 year old to a screaming baby if he didn’t go down, resulting in four unwieldy children. Oh, and he wouldn’t even take his binky.  In short, I was totally screwed.

So I brought him downstairs to see if we could tire him out, but my husband was a little far on the spirited side himself, so the gentle and quite lets get you to bed rocking he’s so good at quickly transitioned into the rocking that is normally used when he’s fussy, which resulted in an even more awake, albeit happy baby.  At this point, we were an hour past bedtime and the hostess, recognizing my look of ditress, fished out one of her old baby monitors from the closet and it was onto attempt number two.

So I put him in the pack n play, got him to take his binky, and headed downstairs with monitor in hand.  And every ten minutes or so he’d spit out the binky, work himself into a tissy, and off I’d run upstairs to re-binky him.  I tried to nurse him again (now that we were 2 hours past bedtime), but he had no interest in it, so I gave up and instead went the route of least resistance – I convinced my husband it was time to leave.  The pack up went relatively smoothly (or as smoothly as it could go when a drunk guy tries to close up a pack n play for the third time ever) and I drove home, hoping the car ride would put the small one right to sleep.

And it did.  Until I put him in his crib when we got home (now 10 PM – three hours past bedtime).  And then the great binky shuffle restarted, with my sticking it in his mouth, his sucking until he nearly falls asleep and then spitting it out such that it lands right next to his head, which he then proceeds to move such that his cheek is smashed up against the binky, waking himself up and starting the whole process over again.  I tried nursing – no interest.  I changed his diaper three more times.  I walked with him.  I tried to get him to lay down with me.  I tried letting him crying it out.  All to no avail, and all while my husband was cuddled up with the dog, passed out on the couch.

And finally, at 11:30, he went down.  He even sleep until 7 AM (although I awoke at 5 PM in desperate need of pumping, as the girls assumed they would still need to be at the ready for a middle of the night feeding).  And the next day he was a-okay fine, as if nothing had changed.

I think the pack n play will only be broken out when we are actually spending the night somewhere – otherwise we’ll be leaving earlier or having people at our house.


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