Thursday, January 16, 2014

Myles Monthly: 6

As you may know, I didn't decide to start my blog until my son Myles was about 8 months old. And well... now he is 17 months old! So I am focusing on getting caught up with monthly updates and monthly favorites, so I can get, and hopefully stay, up to date with current times.
 

Six Months Old
  January 15th- February 14th, 2013

Statistics
Born: 7 lbs 6 oz and 19.5 inches
Six Months: 18 pounds and 27 inches
Wiggle Worm :)
  Health
Nothing major happened in this department at month 6! Thanks goodness for finally getting a break. Having an infant can be so stressful when something is wrong with them (or even when nothing is wrong, but you can't help but think so). I always have this major fear that something is wrong with Myles, but because he can't tell me, I have no idea it's going on. The longer I am his mother and the more I get to know him though, I have began to learn when he is acting different or something seems off. Still it is so nerve-racking to be responsible for the well-being of another life when they can't fully communicate with you yet. Not knowing what's going on inside his little body really tests my anxiety!

Anywho, we only had one issue this month and that was with dry skin. Since we started taking him swimming once a week, he was getting a couple spots of rough, dry skin. It was mostly on his stomach and never got really bad. I used his regular lotion for a while, but it didn't seem to help, so I went looking for something a little better. I am a big fan of the BabyGanics brand so when I found out they had this BabyGanics Bye Bye Dry Moisturizing Eczema Care Cream,I was all over it. It's kind of pricey, but it works so well and has lasted a long time. I only use it sparingly on the really dry skin, so I still have the same bottle now that I bought then (over a year old). If you are ever in need of some over-the-counter eczema treatment for you little one, I HIGHLY recommend the BabyGanics.   

Myles also got his 6 months shots at his well-check this month. Per usual, I did not attend that part of the check-up (I hide in the waiting room), but Mark said he was pretty tough. I was expecting the worse since his 2 and 4 month shots did not go well, but nothing major happened this time. He was a little more clingy and had a very slight fever, but no puking or screaming for 2 hours straight, so I'd call it a success this time.

Eating
I had plans to wait until 6 months to start Myles on solids. However, I jumped the gun a little and started him at about 5 months and 1 week. I was still desperate to get him to sleep and since nothing I tried thus far made any difference (in fact it was still somehow getting worse), I thought I would give solids a try as my last shot at a miracle sleep solution. Before this, I hadn't done too much research on feeding babies. I just went with what I always knew was a first food: cereal. I bought a box of Gerber Organic baby cereal to start him off with. I mixed it with breast milk to make it into a very thin consistency. I tried giving him a couple of bites. He seemed interested but wasn't really eating any of it. The next day I continued my reading about first foods and because of many articles and studies I read, I decided to not give him cereal anymore. Just the thought of not knowing what is in the box (even if it is organic) was enough for me to nix that idea. 
So over the next week, I started giving him other things to try out. The first thing we tried was avocado mixed with some breast milk. He didn't really eat any of that one either, but I could tell he was understanding the process more and more every time. I did the one new food every 3 days rule, so that I could tell if he was allergic to anything. 
The second fruit he tried was pears. They worked well because I could mash them up very fine to where it was almost just liquid. He ate those fairly well and seemed to like them.

I didn't want to give him anything out of the jar (mostly because again I have no idea what is in there and I am always hearing about recalls and such for canned baby food). I looked up what are good first fruits and vegetables and decided to make my own baby food. 
I just used a normal food chopper to make the food into the right consistency and then I poured each one into these Fresh Baby So Easy Baby Food and Breast Milk Trays. I put them in the freezer and when they were frozen, I popped the cubes out and put them in freezer bags. Each different food went into a different bag labeled with the name and date. I read that most of the fruits and vegetables last 3 months in the freezer.
I made peaches, nectarines, pears, plums, carrots, and sweet potatoes. My only tip is to make sure you don't mix it too long. I did that with the plums and it just became frothy and kind of evaporated (ish).

He also tried baby yogurt towards the end of the month! He really liked it at first, but after a couple of days, he was over it.

Of course our eating experience would not be complete without strong-willed Myles refusing to go about the process in a normal manner. It really only took him about 3 weeks and he was completely over pureed baby foods. Even though I made all his food myself, he began to want nothing to do with it. I continued to put him in his seat and try to feed him a couple times a day, but as the days went on, the less and less he was interested in eating. I didn't want to turn the whole eating process in to something negative and not enjoyable to him, so I stopped pushing him to eat and let him take the lead. 
He really loved chewing on things still so I starting giving him hard fruits and veggies to just chew on. He liked sliced cucumber and potatoes (with a hole in the middle so he could hold on to them), raw carrots, apple and mango slices, and sucking on plums and peaches. Eventually, we just let him do his own thing and I gave up on the baby food for the time being.

Sleeping
Ahh the wonderful sleep category... Not too much to say here. Still not sleeping through the night or with any sort of consistency. He would randomly sleep a 4 hour stretch here and there, but for the most part it was every 2-3 hours in the beginning of the night and then 1-2 or less starting around 5am until he woke up for the day. He was still sleeping in his crib until about 7am. At that time, I was usually so tired of getting up with him that I would bring him in bed with me and let him nurse/sleep until he was ready to fully wake up, usually between 8:30-9:30. 
I was still doing some sleep training with him at night. Whenever he woke up in the beginning part of the night, I would let him cry for about 5 minutes. If he didn't go back to sleep within the 5 minutes, I would get him and nurse him back to sleep. It did seem like he was getting better at staying asleep when I put him back in his crib after nursing him to sleep. I had given up on the miracle sleep solution, so even that small progress was something to be encouraged by! We still had a lot of hard nights, especially when they came after a good night. I would get so frustrated because it seemed like it always happened that he would have 3 good sleeping nights, then he would regress for 4-5 days. It made the bad nights worse, because I knew that it was possible that he could have good nights where he was only waking 3 times and not 13! When I finally learned that I could in no way predict or help his sleep, I was able to manage my stress and anxiety a little better. I had to be consistent in my training, but also come to accept the kind of sleeper he was genetically predisposed to be. It didn't change the fact that I was 6 months into complete exhaustion, but it did change my attitude towards him and the situation (most of the time). 

He was still napping frequently throughout the day. He would nap for about 30 minutes every 1 1/2-2 hours. This usually amounted to 3 naps a day. For how inconsistent his night time sleep was, his naps were pretty predictable. It was nice to know I would have that break, although 30 minutes never went by so fast in my life ;) 

I also completely stopped swaddling this month. I hadn't swaddled for naps since last month, but we were still half swaddling at night time. Around the middle of the month, we went cold turkey and switched to the Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit. I read about it on an internet forum and decided to give it a try as a post-swaddling transition. I can't say it worked as well as the website claims, but it did work really well as a blanket substitution in the winter months. I would dress Myles in a onesie, sleep pants, and socks, and then put him in the sleepsuit. I was not comfortable using a blanket in his crib yet, so this worked perfectly to keep him warm and provide some comfort. 

We also starting using a sound machine every night. I found the myBaby Soundspa Lullaby Sound Machine and Projector at Target and I am so happy with this purchase (more of a review on my monthly favorites post coming up). We still use it now at 17 months. I would put it on the heartbeat sound and let it run all night. I honestly don't think that specific sound helped him sleep, but it is a good white noise to help cover up/drown out other sounds that could wake him up (which sometimes was a lot, because if anyone knows Mark, they know he isn't exactly quiet....)

Crying
Besides the usual reasons (hungry, tired, waking up in the middle of the night, etc), he started getting really frustrated when he couldn't stay sitting up by himself. He couldn't sit up by himself for more than a couple seconds yet, so when he fell over, he would get mad until you helped him sit up again. He also started doing this 'sit-up' thing. Once he was laying on his back, he would try really hard to sit up, but it would only end up being a crunchy. My step-dad would count when he did it and sometimes he would get up to 60+ seconds. He does it in this video (with a bunch of other moving around) towards the end.

Outings
  •  Swim classes continued this month. Mark went in with him and I was a little 'mamarazzi' capturing all the cute moments. After only a month, I could already see his progression in and out of the water. I think the swimming definitely helped with his motor skills outside of the pool as well. He was an awesome kicker and started doing the kicking motion while swimming almost immediately.
  • We celebrated Myles' Half Birthday at Chuck E Cheese. I know that may sound a little crazy and I did get a lot of flack for this, but 6 months is a big deal to me. I only plan on celebrating his half birthday one more time at 18 months. I just think in the first two years, so much changes monthly and even weekly that every 6 months is more like a year. And the half birthday celebration is just a little outing to some place Myles can have fun for a couple hours.  
       Although he was still too little to do much, he was in awe of everything. He went on some rides, played a little basketball, and chewing on cucumbers. 




He was really into Chuck E... like "Who is this guy riding with me?"
Milestones
First Food (cereal): As I talked about above, Myles had his first taste of food this month. He tried cereal once and then I decided to forgo the grains and start with fruits and veggies. The below picture is his first cereal tasting on January 17, 2013. I don't think he actually ate any, but it was fun trying it all out for the first time.

First Fruits and Veggies: The next food he tried was avocado mixed with breast milk. I think he ate a little of that, but probably not too much. Next was pears, then plums, peaches, sweet potatoes, and yogurt. Because I was doing the 3 days rule, these lasted us the couple weeks before he decided not to eat purees anymore.
 Sorry for the overkill, but here are the many faces of Myles as he tries his first fruits:

Starting to Crawling: In the earlier video, you can see Myles getting on all fours and rocking. This was the start of crawling for him. He officially became a crawler a week after 6 months, so I will be writing about that in month 7. But this month, he started getting the motions down and working up his strength. He was also working really hard on his abs with all his crunches (a little clip in that video as well.)

Says Momma and Mom: Myles' official first word was mom!!! 
Saying DaDa: A couple weeks after 'momma',  Myles' started saying 'dada'.


First time sitting in high chair at a restaurant: We tried the restaurant high chair out for the first time this month. He still wasn't very stable, so putting a blanket around him helped keep him upright. He really liked feeling like a big boy though :)
First time standing on his own: This only happened for a split second, but I had to mention it. While I showering, my parents decided to see if Myles would stand on his own. Below are a couple of the action shots they got. In the top two pictures he is actually standing on his own, but it only lasted a couple seconds.

Big Boy Tub: We finally upgraded to a better bath tub. I hated the one we had and Myles was getting too big for it. He wasn't ready to be in the normal bath yet, so we bought one that was bigger and more appropriate for him. It had one side for him to lay down still, but then the other side was made for him to be able to sit up. It helped bath time a little, but he was going through a phase this month of not liking taking a bath. He would get mad because he didn't want to lay down in the tub, but he still wasn't quite able to sit up on his own. It was hard to wash him and let him play, while holding him in a sitting position, so baths were short this month.

Likes
Sitting up to play, sitting in a high chair, jumperoo, swimming, chewing, and breastfeeding

Dislikes
Bath time, not being able to stay sitting up, when mommy leaves or doesn't feed him the instant he is ready :)


 
Come back to check out my favorites from months five & six!

13 comments :

  1. Desiree @ Macke MonologuesJanuary 16, 2014 at 1:56 PM

    That collage of him eating is great. Love each facial expression!
    Marcus was kind of the same way, after about three weeks we were totally over pureed foods.
    WOOHOO for swim classes!! Look at that little fish. :)

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  2. Wow! You have a great memory, I don't think I would be able to remember half of what you wrote written it down at the time. That eczema cream is the exact thing I use for Dylan, who has full fledged eczema every day of the week. It is the only thing that works! I love how determined you were to feed your son so early! A lot of moms don't want to try to give them food out of fear of choking or whatever. Myles was so small!!!!! Awwww...so sorry he's not being a good sleeper. But glad to know I'm not the only mom that still swaddled this far into the game (11 months). He loves being wrapped up, so why deny him the burrito he wants to be? But at least he naps during the day, my terrorist takes 1 nap for 45 minutes-1 hour, so basically I get nothing done. lol

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  3. He really loved those swim classes. I wish I could get him back in it, but we are doing gym classes now and both would be too expensive. Hopefully in the summer I can get him in the pool again!
    It's funny how strong-willed they can be at such a young age! What did you do after he didn't want purees anymore?

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  4. I definitely have a pretty good memory when it comes to Myles; I remember the details of eating and sleeping the best because both of those were quite exhausting and trying. Also I don't want to forget about the hard time I had and suddenly think I want to have another one! Good to know that cream works so well on real eczema as well. That brand is just awesome. My mom freaked out all the time when I would give him any sort of food. She always thought he was going to choke and there were a couple times that he gagged, but nothing ever too bad. I think kids are capable of doing more than what we think they can :) Myles surprises me everyday!
    He is still small! He is 17 months now and I keep trying to put him in 18 month pants and they are huge on him! I think he is going to be like his dad: short but muscular. I am so happy that he naps better now.. but truth be told, I usually just nap with him... so it's not like I get anything done lol

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  5. Desiree @ Macke MonologuesJanuary 19, 2014 at 6:43 PM

    After Marcus *refused* pureed foods we started in with "real" food. We took soft foods and cut them up into tiny pieces so Marcus could eat those. It worked really well for quite awhile!

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  6. April @ 100lbcountdownJanuary 19, 2014 at 6:53 PM

    They grow so fast. He's so adorable. Thanks for sharing and linking up with Countdown in Style! Don't forget to come back on Friday to see if you were featured!


    ~~April~~
    100lbCountdown.com

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  7. Did he feed himself then? I think that was part of the reason Myles stopped purees: he wanted to do it himself. So I would give him things he could hold and chew himself. Then eventually he starting eating more and more real food too. How is he as an eater now? Myles is so tiny and such a finicky eater.

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  8. He looks so cute! I had a similar chair for my son when he was a baby. How the time flies. And they grow so fast. He's nine already, almost ten. Visiting here from the This Momma's Meandering Mondays and enjoying your blog!

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  9. Desiree @ Macke MonologuesJanuary 20, 2014 at 8:06 PM

    I think that was about the time Marcus started putting foods to his mouth on his own.
    Marcus is a snacker. The kid could snack on things all day long if I let him. When it comes to meals he is pretty picky. There are only a few things he will eat constantly. And, I have no idea how he maintains his height and weight (95th % for both) with such a selective diet.

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  10. I know.. I never believed people when they said time flies with children. I had a hard first 6 months, so it seemed like it went on forever, but now that things are better, time is going soo fast. He is going to be 18 soon and I swear he just celebrated his first birthday. Thanks for stopping by :)

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  11. Brittnei WashingtonJanuary 21, 2014 at 9:28 PM

    Why did I miss that you had an older son close to my son's age? Weird! The thing is about you keep this good of a record, your son's wife or maybe he might ask you what did I do around this time or that age and you will be able to pull it out and see. I've often asked my mom these questions and all of it or most of it, I should say, is right in my baby book. She actually gave it to me which was nice. I go through it sometimes to see what I was doing my first 5 years :) Thanks for sharing with us at Countdown in Style! Don't forget to stop by to see if you are featured! xo

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  12. That is awesome that you have a baby book! Now with all the social media, our lives are recoded forever. It will be cool to be able to show him all the stuff he did that he won't remember.. after he gets over the "embarrassed of when I was little" stage!
    My son is 17 months now. I have just been doing the update late..way late because i didn't start them until he was already 13 months! I didn't know if I wanted to do them, but I decided that I would rather do them online then write it down in a book, so I am behind. I always have intentions of just doing them all at once, but then I get bored and want to write about something else, so I am not sure when they will ever get done!

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  13. I also use my blog as a baby book! His water classes looked like so much fun!

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