Monday, April 20, 2009

Points for trying

Isaac giving me Elijah's bottle. Isaac thought the hotel room was the greatest toy ever. Pads of paper, windows, air conditioners, ironing boards . . . so many new things to run back and forth in between.

I wanted to get a picture of this cute onesie -- by the time I got around to it, we had already done some burping damage! The cloth under his head is my feeble attempt to get him to face left instead of right in order to help with his uneven head shape. You can see how well it worked.

The hotel had a crib and we bought a pack-n-play. We moved them into different parts of the room for the night but it still didn't help generate sleep much.

Elijah pouting on the bed.

The pictures above are about all I took during our weekend away.

Scratch that. Instead of "weekend' I should say "night."

We left on Sunday morning and planned to return to our house on Tuesday morning. However, one night in the hotel was plenty for us and for the boys. By Monday at 3:00pm, we were back on Base, anxious for everyone to sleep in their own beds.

Our practice run for the wedding in New York City went well during daylight hours. We managed to get Isaac to take a nap with us in the room, we went to two nice restaurants (Carabbas and P.F. Changs) and both boys were on their best behavior, we did some shopping at the outlets, played on the beach, ran some errands . . .

But the night time was another story. Isaac still wasn't feeling great. That meant that from about 9pm until 6am, room #406 was going something like this:

Isaac: Starts coughing in his sleep.
Elijah: Wakes up due to big brother's coughing.
Isaac: Stops coughing.
Elijah: Starts crying.
Isaac: Wakes up.
Daddy: Goes to get Isaac to calm him down.
Mommy: Goes to get Elijah to feed him.
Daddy: Puts Isaac back in his crib.
Mommy: Finishes feeding Elijah. Puts him back in his bed.
Isaac: Starts coughing in his sleep.

And . . . repeat. Over and over again. Neither JB nor myself slept for more than about 30-60 minutes at a time before the coughing began, little brother awoke, and things started spiraling out of control.

I honestly resorted to begging and making deals with God. "Please God, just let Elijah sleep through the coughing. If he does, I promise I'll . . ."

Needless to say it was a very long night for everyone involved. If we were in New York for the wedding, we would have just had to deal with it. However, we weren't. We were forty-five minutes from our house, and we knew it. Neither of us had to convince the other come daylight that we shouldn't try to do two nights in a row.

JB rolled over at about 6:15am and pulled his head out from under a pillow and said, "So, I don't really want to stay another night!"

Wendi couldn't agree fast enough.

I remember Joia telling me that on one of their trips with Keenan they got a handicapped room so they could put his pack-n-play in the bathroom. I thought this was a great idea. Only problem for me is that I use the bathroom a lot during the night -- usually 2-3 times. Not sure that would work for us.

Just wondering if anyone has any other ideas about how to put two tykes in one room together for our trip. Hopefully, there won't be any coughing spells and things will go more smoothly. But in the end, any noise from one baby will send the other one into a fit of crying. How do we avoid that? At home, both our boys sleep through the night almost every night without getting up. However, they are still in separate rooms. Isaac is in the nursery and we have a little pack-n-play set-up for Elijah in the guest room that we can pull into our room when guests are here. Eventually I'd like both boys to sleep in the same room, but I recognize that may take a long time.

We felt like we did a good job packing for the weekend away -- keeping "things" to a minimum, only taking the necessities, etc. However, we aren't sure what our strategy will be to visit New York City without staying awake for three days. We are open to anyone and every one's advice. So bring it on!

P.S. Scrubs is still down at the little "doggy daycare" kennel in Santa Rosa Beach. I called the lady who runs it and she said Scrubs was having a fantastic time. "Although, I'll have to give him a bath before you pick him up," she said. No surprise there. Scrubs loves to roll when playing with other dogs. We decided to let him stay until tomorrow morning and pick him up then.


Joia said...

Oh, Wendi! I feel your pain! Hotel rooms and little kids just don't work super great, huh?

I think you could make our "baby in the bathroom strategy" work too, (I also have to go to the bathroom multiple times in the night), you just use some sort of white noise machine in there, and "pee quietly" (and wait until the morning to flush) =) too much info? =)

Mary O'Hannigan said...

Hi Wendi,

See if you can get a "suite"~where the bedroom and living room area are separated by a (french) door, usually. That way, we are able put the children down in one room and can enjoy the space/peace and quiet in the other part of the room. It's worth the extra money!

We've also requested for rooms away and other guests,if possible. The pressure of keeping everyone quiet is too much!

Anonymous said...

I was going to suggest the Suite room too. They are wonderful and spacious for kids. It may be more expensive but well worth it when you want to sleep. Then you have a fridge and microwave and all that fun stuff too.

Wendi Kitsteiner said...

Joia, NOooo, not TMI at all ... very important info.

Unfortunately, the hotel in NY does not have any suites available and we are staying at the hotel that everyone in the wedding is staying at. (JB is ushering.)

However, I do like requesting a room away from other guests. I did feel terribly bad for anyone sharing a wall with us!

denise said...

Here are my two cents worth, not sure what you'd think about it :) ...
1. Request an outside room so that only one wall is shared with someone else. Then you don't have to worry about the other people so much.
2. Baby in the bathroom if you can.
3. White noise machine (A MUST for us). We use an air purifier.
4. Separate them as far apart as possible.
5. Keep them up 1/2 hr later (if possible) then they are DEAD tired when they hit the sack. (this also works well if naps are a little shorter than normal, so they are more tired at bed time.
6. Clorox wipes to wipe down all the yucky things that they might get a hold of (remote, phone, etc). This makes for less germ stress.
7. Duct tape. This works if you have a little one that is used to plugs being covered, and wants to test the hotel room's outlets. Just tape up the outlet (and you can also tape and secure any cords you need to get out of the way).


EARPLUGS! I get mine in a box at Walgreens. At first you wonder about it. But they are the BEST. If you are used to your kids being in the next room and hearing them from that distance, this will do that for you. It puts their noises a room away. You still hear them when they need you, but not every little movement and sigh.
you and DH take "shifts" of wearing them so that both of you are not exhausted by morning.

Sorry it's so long, hope it helps!

Anonymous said...

If you have grandparents at the wedding maybe they would be willing to take Issac in their room for the night.

Jess said...

Oh man, yeah.

Hotel rooms. Not possible. Really. Unless you get two.

We did have enough luck with hotel rooms last year because the kids were both still rockable and then would reliably sleep through the night. We weren't MUCH in hotel rooms, though, as we almost always get condos. We'd either put Ava or Ethan in the bathroom (Master bath in condos, always enough room, and sometimes enough to put the PNP in the tub even) or in the livingroom. It works that way. I agree with can pee quieter than you think you can!!!

I know you said that you can only get hotel rooms, but can you get TWO that are connected? That might help! Heck, if not, I'd almost say get two that don't and split up. Sleep is important.

Anonymous said...

lol I wasn't sure what Denise was going to say to do with the duct tape!!

Wendi Kitsteiner said...

Unfortunately the rooms are EXPENSIVE. This is New York. No financial way we could get two.

No family at this wedding. It's our friend Ajit ...

Love the white noise idea. We do that at home.

rachel said...

How about getting a room with a balcony and putting one of the boys out there?

JUST Kidding! I am anxiously awaiting how Hans does this "sleeping with a baby" thing. He can't sleep with any sort of noise! :-)

Anonymous said...

I used a white noise machine for both kids - at home & on the road. They were used to the noise & it drowned out the odd noises in the hotel or at Grandma's house. It is a miracle worker for them...and us! I even traveled professionally with one just so I could sleep without my mommy ear tuned to the odd noises of the room/house/hotel. White noise works better than running creek or crickets because the noise is consistently white. I found the interspursed noises of the other sounds would perk us all up now & then. You can buy a reasonably priced, smaller one at Bed Bath & Beyond with your 20% off coupons! Good luck!

Judy Woodford said...

What about a folding partition plus the white noise???

Joy Z said...

You also must remember that Isaac will probably be feeling better and won't be coughing, so won't be waking Elijah up! At least that's what we will pray! :-)

Ebby Ray said...

Our family travled alot when the kids were little. That is four kids and two adults in one hotel room. Lots of car trips and airplane rides. Our kids were great travelers so unfortunately I don't have any helpful hints.

I did like the ones about putting one child in the bathroom (preferably the cougher). That sounds like a great idea. And definately don't flush until the morning. You could easily make the bathtub into a "crib". I used a dresser drawer one time so I think that a tub would work, too.

Drew and Emily said...

Sound machines with the white noise sound work wonders. Kole uses one every night in his room turned to a low-medium volume. When we travel and all sleep in the same room then we crank that thing up high.

I wonder if you could ask how big the closet in the hotel is and maybe put the smaller crib/pack n play in there with the less active baby (Elijah) in it. We have put Kole in a closet and a bathroom in the past, he doesn't seem to have suffered any from it.

Anonymous said...

we use a 3-speed box fan for white noise so it can be as loud as needed. They are usually inexpensive enough the we can buy one when we get there(if we can't bring it with)and leave behind with friends or for housekeping. We usually need it more for when the a/c cycles than the kids (or for hubby's snoring). Make sure that the boys are as far apart as possible in the room too.
Another option is 2 beds with Issac sleeping with one of you...I find that sometimes if one of the kids sleeps in bed with me (in a different environment) it helps calm him/her and gives a more peaceful night's sleep.

Jessica said...

The white noise machine is an investment! I use an air filter by Hamilton Beach that I got at Target that we have had for over 4 years now. It has run every single night for those 4 years as well as every single nap and is still going strong. We do not leave the house without it. When I go to grandma's for the day, I bring it along to put in whatever room my boys are taking their naps. Takes away the stress of trying to keep other people quiet when you are not at home. Your trip will be great!! Love, Jessica (J's SIL)

Jessica said...

my mind was going faster than my fingers. I meant to say the white noise machine is a "great" investment! :)