Pip’s First Bottle

Pip is a lucky baby – his mother produces lots of milk, so he has been exclusively breastfed since he was born. In fact, D produces so much milk she frequently expresses. 100 mil in 10 minutes is not unusual.

We decided, as part of our ongoing efforts to preserve D’s sleep, that I should feed him breast milk from a bottle, say, late at night. First, we thought we’d do a test run. Which went fine, I got the milk to a good temperature, Pip took to it heartily… And D stood over us both with an expression on her face that said “what are you doing with my baby!”

She had a seriously intense reaction. On a rational level she could see that it was working fine and Pip was feeding well, but on an intense maternal level she felt that her role was being usurped. Feeding the baby is this mummy’s job!

D calmed down eventually, but I’ve only fed Pip once since then… Which didn’t really work because he was sound asleep and couldn’t be roused. Which, you know, is a good thing in a baby…

My last few days have been consumed by air

Pip Crying

Pip Crying

Specifically, the air in Pip’s stomach. Our little baby has colic. That is, assuming there is such a think as colic – there doesn’t seem to be an actual agreed definition. Come on people, some proper research please!

So I will use it in the sense that Pip has a lot of air in his stomach and belly, which either needs to come out as burps or as farts. The former being preferable, the latter means it’s made it’s way through his entire system. Which means lots of burping, lots of crying and lots of keeping him upright for hours.

But we seem to have finally gotten on top of it. D’s very wise GP diagnosed the root cause. D produces lots of milk (see can express 100 mills in one session), and Pip drinks a lot of milk very fast. Fast eating means also ingesting lots of air.

We’ve therefore developed a protocol. During feeds, D stops every five minutes and works out any burps Pip might have. Feeds him some more, then more burps, then more feeding, repeat until he’s full. Then he needs to be kept upright for anything up to half an hour. We have a Baby Bjorn Baby Carrier we pop him into, which frees up my hands for importing things like operating the remote control! We’ve also been using colic relief, which is some kind of herbal soothing thing. Which works, up to a point, but is not designed to release wind.

And we seem to have solved it. Twice in the last 24 hours, Pip has slept for a block of five hours. This is unprecedented, the longest he’s slept since he was born. Hopefully soon he’ll stretch it out to six or seven hours and we can get some nice normal sleep. Fingers crossed, be a good baby Pip.

Doing the night shift

It’s 1.27AM. I’ve been awake since about 6.45AM this morning. Went to work, went to the gym. And now I’m watching Pip sleep while he listens to James Brown.

Certain babies have been restless and colicky the last couple of days. Although last night he was good, slept in two blocks of three and a half hours. The only thing that makes him comfortable is being a bit upright and having a good burp.

D has gone to bed. I partly see my job these days as preserving her sanity, which is certainly much more secure when she’s had lots of sleep.

Pip seems to be finally sleeping… like a baby. I feel a bit like Bart Simpson and his science experiment, watching a potato grown. Yep, still just a baby. Let me check again… Yep, he’s still a sleeping baby…

Pip has Fantastic Musical Taste already

The other night, Pip was fretting a bit in my arms. I’ve heard that babies like continuous noises, like static and rain, so I went looking through my iPhone for some appropriate tracks. Yes, I actually listen to stuff like that of my own free will – even Lou Reed’s infamous Metal Machine Music – four vinyl album sides of pure feedback. Open that link at your peril!

Luckily for everyone’s ears, I didn’t have a copy of that particular musical masterpiece on my phone. So I thought I’d go for something instrumental and funky. And what could me more funky than original funk band The Meters? I played him this track:

And he was asleep before it even finished! My kid likes the Funk!

Immediately I made him a funk mix CD – actually just a mix of James Brown and Meters tracks – and popped it in our shitty CD play. It works! We lie him in his crib, and if he’s fretting we just put on Soul Brother Number One and off he goes.

Now, which musical artists can I introduce him to in his second week? Led Zeppelin? Is it too early for Black Flag?

Lenny the Car and Neck Trauma Giraffe

I’ve noticed I’ve been posting lots of wordy posts. So here are some pictures.

Everything in our place gets a name. Not just my bewildering number of computers, but everything – toys, washing machines, everything.

Lenny the white Forester

Lenny the white Forester

This is Lenny my car. He’s named for my grandfather who delighted in the name good solid Dutch name of Leendert! Of course once he migrated here be became Lenny or Len. Not only did he build cars for decades, his inheritance helped me buy this car.

Ingrid the Washing Machine

Ingrid the Washing Machine

Ingrid the washing machine. My sister helped us buy it, Ingrid is her middle name. And sterling service this machine is giving us… Pip, did you have to pee on ANOTHER NAPPY???

So, now it starts getting a bit odd.

Vuvuzela the breast pump

Vuvuzela the breast pump

This is our Avent breast pump. It has some ridiculous model name like “Genius IQ”. We decided it looked like an airhorn, or possibly a Vuvuzela. So now I hear “My breasts are full, bring the Vuvuzela!”

Mr Snuffleupagus the air-conditioner.

Mr Snuffleupagus the air-conditioner.

Mr Snuffleupagus our portable air-conditioner. Enough said!

Hedge Turtle

Hedge Turtle

We were given this toy a few days back. He (she? it?) is either a Turtle or a Hedgehog, although he has some Seal-like features and his shell looks like a Giraffe. So we’ve decided to call him Hedge Turtle. Great toy, easy to hold, nice and fluffy.

And finally I present:

Neck Trauma Giraffe

Neck Trauma Giraffe – Noise making Giraffe who suffered a bit in transit!

It’s Neck Trauma Giraffe! This is a Cloud B Gentle Giraffe which I picked up on eBay for cheap, because it had a damaged box. Said box had partly throttled him in transit and his neck is not quite right! Still, he makes the happy noises he was designed to make.

So now I’m going to go clean the Vuvuzela, put a load of washing in Ingrid, cuddle Hedge-Turtle, then take a trip in Lenny out to the chemist.

Yes, I will accept your offer of Sleep

Here’s a useful rule of thumb: when the baby sleeps, you sleep! So what am I doing up blogging? Hmmm…

Here’s another useful rule of thumb: if you find a flat comfortable surface, make use of it. Case in point: we popped into the hospital on Monday night to get Pip’s jaundice looked at. There was an (adult) examination bed there in the room they popped us into. So without hesitation I lay myself down on it and took a rest! Pip was asleep in his car seat, and D was comfortable in a chair. Medical types wandered in and out, they’ve seen tired daddy’s before and didn’t bat an eyelid. I answered questions as required from the bed.

BTW, Pip’s jaundice turned out to be “perfectly normal” and we just had to keep feeding him and get him some indirect sunlight.