07 June 2009

Blogger Playdate

Malea, with her mom Chrystal and dad (known affectionately as BD on her blog), came from Monterey, CA to visit with us Sacramento bloggers. We had so much fun, and it was great to connect in person and see Malea live and in action (and, oh yeah, talk amongst us adults)...

On the Scene:

Gabby was there with her mom Sheree, dad Nguyen, and big bro Cam. She was just waking up from a nap, so she was Little Miss Serious as first.

But after some contemplation...

she decided we were enough fun after all :)

John Michael, with mom Monica and sisters Anna and Greta. He arrived at the park with his (very brightly colored) swim suit on - unfortunately, the park's toddler wading pool hadn't opened for the summer yet (budget cut backs I'm guessing, but I'm anxious for it to open June 18th). Sheridan loved John Michael's trunks - every time they were in arms reach, Sheridan would reach out to touch the sharks.

What's that you ask? How big is John Michael? SO big! (I never get tired of that!)

At this point, nearly all of my pictures of John Michael are action shots so he truly tests my photographic abilities.

He has turned into quite the climber. Um, did I mention he likes to climb on me?

And a big thank you to his sister Anna who inspired his laughs...

Malea. Sweet, sweet Malea. She walked right up to our group and fit right in. She showed us her dance moves... and those smiles. Oh, those smiles!

She and Gabby checked each other out...

and Gabby decided she just had to hug Malea... Look at that lunge!

And John Michael climbed on me some more.

Sheridan was with me of course.

[I have to take a moment to come clean. Admit it to the whole (blogging) world... Sheridan has had some rough playdates over the last month or so. Rough. For whatever reason (and trust me, I've been trying to find a pattern to help him overcome this), when other babies want to interact with him, there is a 50-50 chance he will flip out on them. I mean just scrunch up his face and have a good cry. It's like stranger danger with babies/toddlers (and let me be clear that he does this with adults, too, but... babies?!).

About 6 weeks ago we had a great playdate lined up with Wesley and his mom Natalie (we were in the same Bradley Childbirth class and have remained friends). Within minutes of their arrival, Sheridan lost it. Little Wes made a sweet sound, a happy sound, kind of like a baby saying hello. And Sheridan went over the edge.

I tried everything. Holding him, helping him see that Wes was a nice baby, singing, taking Sheridan in the kitchen with me while Wes played in the living room, Natalie and I each held our respective babies on our laps... nothing would get Sheridan to stop crying. We decided to put the boys in our wraps and walk to the park.

Sheridan LOVES to be outside. Loves to be in the wrap. Loves to go for walks. He cried. The whole time. As soon as he might start to settle down, he would whip his head around to look for Wes, and as soon as he saw him, he'd start crying. Now why do babies do that? They know something is upsetting, yet they seek it out?!

So, all told, Sheridan cried for well over an hour. Nothing I did helped...

Back to this current playdate with Malea, Gabby, and John Michael: Sheridan still cries on occasion (especially when John Michael excitedly says "eeeeee!" or a child screams with excitement/joy/frustration). But he now recovers much more quickly than he used to (especially if I break into song - the boy LOVES music and it's the best calming tool I have in my arsenal). His crying now only lasts a few seconds, then he's back to playing. But it happens repeatedly throughout the playdate (and the poor parents have to endure my singing).

The worst of it is, I never know when it's going to strike. And I always feel bad that playdates can go downhill very quickly. I just don't know what to do.

I've been reassured that this is normal. That it's just a plain ol' baby phase. That he'll outgrow it... I hope he outgrows it soon. That's why I continue to do playdates (although sometimes I think other moms will start to cringe when they know we're coming - all that baby crying can start a chain reaction among all the kiddos!). I figure the more often he interacts with other children, the sooner he'll outgrow this phase. If you have any suggestions, I'm all ears!

Okay, enough of that. Back to the park...]

Yep, John Michael climbed on me some more. I have to admit, I enjoy being a jungle gym. Especially when this is the view:

The whole gang had a blast!

A big thank you to Chrystal and her gang for making the drive from Monterey to come visit us!

Oh yeah, and you can check out a picture of us moms who were there, too, by clicking here :)


  1. GREAT pics, Lisa!

    That rainbow blanket was the perfect backdrop ;)

    As far as Sheridan and the "stranger danger" thing...it IS totally normal! We would never in a million years cringe to hear you and sweet pea will be at a playdate! You are doing exactly the right thing by continuing to have playdates and I have seen a huge shift in how much he can tolerate since our first playdate. He is learning just like the rest of us. We ALL have our limits ;)

    OH and for what it's worth...I really like your singing :)

  2. I second that! Both the great singing and the non-cringing. Neither one of those bothered me a bit. Sheridan's new and getting used to the world.

    I love the group pic where it looks like Gabby is making sure everyone is spaced out juuuust right.

    We had such a nice time and look forward to seeing you again soon.

  3. I love all these pictures but I'm SOOOO sad I missed it. Next time for sure!!!!

  4. What a great group of new friends!!!