Look closely. There's a baby in there:
See him now?
I have gotten more use out of this little bassinet, bought when I was pregnant with my oldest, than I ever did with the others. This guy? He is a napper. I have almost forgotten that babies can do that, after #3 (who gave up her nap entirely at age eight months) and #4 (who readily fell asleep but was such a light sleeper that despite lots of tiptoeing we could never count on the nap lasting long).
This little person takes a solid morning nap and a solid afternoon nap and usually a few little catnaps in between. A sudden loud noise, like a shouted "Moooooooooom!" or the blender turning on, or my husband talking loudly into the phone to someone's voice mail, will wake him; but ordinary conversation doesn't, and neither does picking him up (carefully) and moving him from one place to another.
Which is good, because a few days ago he rolled out of bed ("Was it the old THUMP........'WAHHH?'" asked my FB friend. Yep) and though he was not, of course, hurt, I resolved not to just leave him up there anymore.
Hence, the little bassinet in the living room.
+ + +
For this upcoming school year, I have finally purchased an item that I swore for four babies I didn't need.
(I choose not to remember ever swearing that I "would never need" such a thing. Let's hope I didn't.)
That item is a B.F.P. (big effin' playpen) like what they used to make:
I am particularly amused by the brand name:
I need a BFP like what they used to make -- one that measures a square meter inside and thus takes up a lot of valuable real estate -- because of H's twins of course. We haven't yet stuck all three babies in there yet, in part because they're all still so young that at least one of them is nursing nearly all the time and also in part because we aren't teaching intensively, it being summer. In the fall, though -- when they're eight and nine months old -- Well, let's just say that I expect them all to be very good friends.
Since the newbornhood of our babies coincided with the wild popularity of The LEGO Movie and its assorted product tie-ins, I think I am going to be glad to have another option besides the old blanket-on-the-floor trick when I need to set someone down with a toy for a minute.
Never say never. Some learn it after one child, some after two. I am a slow learner, I guess.
I don't use the sling as much as I did with my first two babies. I have three kids who are old enough to carry the baby themselves. My back isn't as young as it used to be (although switching to a two-shouldered carrier, when that's convenient, has relieved the discomfort enormously). And, well, I am out of practice. The habit of putting a baby down instead of taking him with you reinforces itself. He naps. I get used to walking around and doing things with both hands and all my balance. Once I was really good at, for example, one-handed onion-chopping. Now I feel helpless unless I give him to someone else so I can use both hands. This bothers me, not so much because I feel that I must carry him all the time (he is usually being held by someone, after all), but because I don't like feeling helpless. I had a skill once; it's annoying to discover it has atrophied.
A couple of weeks ago, when I realized I was losing my ability to type accurately -- a skill I have had for 25 years -- I turned off the autocorrect on my iPad. Crutches have their place, but there are drawbacks to relying on them. There doesn't seem to be a good solution to the decline of my babywearing skills, though, because I am pretty sure that the "crutches" of handing the baby off to an eager sibling or letting him nap in a nearby bassinet are here to stay.
I will just have to force myself to carry him more often than I need to if I want to stay capable enough to carry him whenever I want to.