Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I love my children. . . when they're sleeping.

Let me clarify. I love them when they're awake too. But right now, right this very minute, Quincy is screaming out her lungs in her crib and breaking my heart. We are sleep training her and I have to keep telling myself that it is for her own good. We actually have made serious headway with her, but WOW babies should just come knowing how to sleep. What's so hard about that? Seriously.
Once I was holding Avery as a young sleeping baby in my arms as I talked to a bank teller and I commented that there is nothing better than a sleeping baby. That young teller gave me the dirtiest look, as if thinking that I am so put out by my children that I only like them lying in slumber. But I think any mother can understand my sentiment. It can be a long process to get a baby to sleep. It can involve crying and rocking and nursing and so on. You know when your baby is tired, but they need convincing. So there is definitely a moment of "phew" when your child falls asleep. And then there's that whole surreal transformation when all of the sudden he or she is an angel. I'm not talking 'a cute, serene child'. I'm talking an out of this world celestial little being. There is such a pureness and peace to that sleeping baby that I have seen no where else.
Oh, by the way, 40 eternal minutes later, Quincy is asleep.
As I said, we are trying to sleep train Quincy. She went from waking about 6 times a night to sleeping through 3 full nights. Considering that Avery is still not sleep trained, I didn't know babies really could do that! I mean, I've heard... You see, I have a threshold. Any attempts we made with Avery were bailed on because he far exceeded my threshold. It felt like we were torturing him with no results. And I'm not stupid. I know it takes consistency and determination, but I swear Avery is one of a kind. I need to read a book on strong willed children. He was born that way. If I told him to eat candy, he'd eat vegetables. When I tell him to go to time out, he yells back, "No, you go time out!" Sometimes he pushes Quincy and then runs straight to time out himself. I'm pretty sure it's a calculated decision that time out is worth the prize. Very rarely I threaten a swat on the butt as a last resort. He yells, "No, I spank myself." And in hilarious fashion, he proceeds to do just that. Good times. And most recently, I was holding Avery in my arms telling him how wonderful he is: "Avery, you are my favorite little boy. You are kind and smart and handsome. You love your Mommy and your Daddy. You love Quincy and you love Jesus." His response to this was, "I don't WANT to follow Jesus!" That came from the mouth of my incredibly defiant two year old! HILARIOUS... I think. Back to the sleep subject, when I do get Quincy to sleep, I hold my breath that Avery doesn't bang on the door or jump in her crib in both inadvertent and blatant attempts to wake her. Wow, nothing frustrates me more. But in his cuteness, Avery says, "Look! Baby's awake now!" Anyway, such frequent frequent frequent antics are yet another reason that sleep is so very welcome in our house!
By the way, she's awake now.


Danielle said...

Oh geez, Avery and Parker sound like too peas in a pod! Let me know when you find the book on training defiant children. Parker just developed this new defiant personality since Drew was born....and yet I do look at him when he's asleep and think he's the best little boy in the world!

The Aspirant said...

Hmmm, I wonder where Avery got the strong will from? I'm still thinking....:)

Amy S. said...

Stick with it girl! It's so dang worth it. It's better to have a baby that sleeps well and a toddler that doesn't, than to have a baby and a toddler that both don't. How's that for profound? :-)

Madsen Family said...

Summer--I love, love love your blog! You make me laugh and I can actually picture your cute, freckled face saying all these things. You are a crack-up of a mother. Joshy and I just had our first and I am starting sleep training even though he is just 3 months old, but my little boy REFUSES to fall asleep in any way shape or form. Thus, he gets to cry it out. Most nights it's like 5 minutes, but once a week it's 40 minutes of hard crying and I sit outside his door and cry with him, but I know it's better b/c before this it would take us 3+ hours of rocking, walking, cuddling, nursing to get him to go down and then he wouldn't stay and he was BEYOND overtired. And last night, he slept from 7:15-5:45! Happy day! Anyway, to make a long story short: I AGREE, I LOVE A SLEEPING BABY. And I sure wish babies came out knowing how to sleep on their own. As a first time parent, I thought babies did know how. Some babies do. Mine sure doesn't. Ahh...good luck with everything--nursing, sleep training, motherhood! (This is Jessy by the way).

Brittany Osborn said...

Malachi was like that too. In Dec. we did the walk back to bed thing. Whenever he woke up we let him cry til he came to get us. Then we walked him back to bed. It was horrible! But it finally worked after three nights and now he sleeps pretty great. It was really worth it. When he was younger we tried the cry to sleep thing. He cried for hours and I couldn't take it. We tried for three nights (with no improvement) and I finally gave up. There were a ton of people who said their kids cried for twenty min. That's bearable. Hours and hours was not.

David said...

summer--I love reading what you say because I can hear your voice and it is hilarious!

RitterB's said...

I feel your pain! I am thinking that Noah will be the only child of mine that will be able to take a nap in the afternoon with out being awakened by a older brother or sister... well at least he will after school starts next fall... For now he will be yanked from his basket to be kissed by his older and wiser brother Ammon... If he could just wait a bit longer to kiss him...

Mindy B said...

Congratulations! I'm so happy that the sleep training is working well with Quincy! Yeah, just keep going.....Oh, there are two great books out there for little Avery and Coralee's :)- they're both great! wished I'd read them sooner... Parenting the Strong-Willed Child: The Clinically Proven Five-Week Program for Parents of Two- to Six-Year-Olds [Revised and Updated Edition]
The New Strong-Willed Child by James C. Dobson

The Mackleys said...

There really is nothing like a sleeping baby! Hey, I put some pics of our house on my blog too, so if you want to check it out, you can. Hopefully I'll see you at the cooking club this week?

About Me

My photo
Logan, UT
So I used to think... I used to think it was my world. Maybe Michael thought it was his. But we have been re-educated. By a 4 year old and a 2 year old. It's their world. We live in it.

A peek into our window

Birth of Child #1

Birth of Child #1
He looked like a blue alien. Luckily it didn't stick. And thank goodness we didn't go with Michael's idea to name him based on what he looked like.

Birth of Child #2

Birth of Child #2
Much less eventful, thank goodness! She was born with red hair and 2 teeth... and skin colored skin!


  • Quincy says "Where's Avy? I dunno." She talks sooo much and she's so small (5th percentile) that is seems like she shouldn't be talking at all.
  • She roams wildly during church and has become quite the scavenger approaching anyone with food. Its embarrasingly adorable!
  • Quincy's vocab has exploded to include the words, "please, thank you, outside, sucker, candy, Avery, Grandpa, slide, ride, hold you, ni-night, water, bird, doggie, airplane, etc.....! She seems so little!
  • One of the most "wow" things she has done is climb one of those HUGE blow-up slides and slide down REPEATEDLY, ALL BY HERSELF!!!
  • Quincy (with great effort) threw the upper couch cushions on the floor and then proceeded to dive off couch, climb back up, repeat.
  • She says"I want: cookie, go, this, that, drink, wa-wa, play." She also says no, baby, hello, bye-bye, and peek-a-boo. And of course she says "Mom and Da."
  • Quincy talks a lot now. But first thing in the day and then 100 more times: "I want coo-kie." Very telling about her love affair with food.


  • A day after being educated, Avery pulled down his pants and touched his boyhood saying, "Hey Grandma, these are my private parts." HA-larious!
  • (After using the bathroom) "I made a waterfall. Then I made it stop."
  • "Hey Dad. This is my [invisible] friend Caillou. Will you be a monster and scare us?"
  • "Grandpa, what's in your belly?" says Avery. Mom says, "What do you think is in there?" "A baby?" guesses Avery. "Nope. Just lots of cherries," says Grandpa Schaefer. HAH!
  • Quincy was crying in the middle of the night and Avery said, "Take a deep breath, Quincy." It was sweet.
  • Quincy was screaming like a pterodactyl for Avery's food, so he snapped "Chill Out Quincy!"
  • In Avery's first attempt at being a smart-a, he was playing with his friend Jaden Knight and we were asking the boys their full names. Avery responded that his name was Avery James Day. Might have had to be there.
  • Avery still tries to stick his hand down my shirt. When I won't let him, he occasionally asks if he can stick his foot down my shirt instead.
  • I told Avery that Heavenly Father lived in heaven. He thought I said he lived 'with Kevin', so in alarm he asked, "With Kevin and Melissa?!!!"
  • Avery was out cold and we had to go. It was odd how I couldn't wake him, so I threw him over my shoulder and started heading out. All of the sudden with startling gusto, he yelled "I see Jesus." I thought he was a visionary, but turns out he woke up just as I walked past a picture of Christ.