Tuesday, June 30, 2009

6.5 Months!

Somehow we flew right by the 6 month post - I guess it was all that frustration over solids. ;)

Actually, not a ton has changed except 4 major things:

1. We started solids.
2. Kenna has two teeth as of last week!
3. Nathan is probably seconds away from crawling.
4. A trip to the emergency room for Nathan.

Solids...

We are doing MUCH better with solids now. We started rice cereal about a week and a half before they turned 6 months because I could tell that they were ready - well, that Nathan was ready. He was always hungry after emptying his bottles and never seemed satisfied, even with more milk. The cereal wasn't a big hit, they both spit it out. They still aren't big fans of it, but when I mix something in it goes better. We have since tried bananas, applesauce, carrots, pears, peas, green beans, squash and oatmeal. The only one they outright try to reject is peas. But I keep giving it to them because I want to give them the chance to like everything. It's getting better and they do pretty much eat them now. Victory! I definitely don't want picky eaters. Kenna LOVES applesauce. Nathan reacts pretty much the same to everything. I'd say Kenna has more of an affinity for her veggies than Nathan but he still eats them fine so I'm happy.

So, the recipe for our success after the frustrations of my last post was as follows:

1) Give them 3/4 of their bottles before solids. This was about 70% of the success. I had tried 1/2 of a bottle before and it wasn't enough to make them stop crying because they were still really hungry. I had tried the whole bottle but that was too much and they no longer cared about the solids. Well, Nathan would still have cared but I always try to find something that works for BOTH of them if possible because I like to keep it simple! So, giving them 3/4 worked well because it was right in the middle. If they aren't screaming, I'm not frustrated. So that was huge.

2) I made them pay attention to what we are doing and open their mouths before I would give them anything. Before when they were crying so much I was just trying to shovel it in fast so they wouldn't cry. But I realized they didn't know what was going on and I don't think they realized it was even food, so they were crying for their bottles. Now I make sure they are looking at the spoon, move slowly toward their mouths and wait for them to open. They have learned quickly since then. Nathan is a total pro already. He basically sits with his mouth open the whole time. Kenna is still a bit difficult sometimes - it's off and on with her. Sometimes she tries to play by blowing raspberries with the food rather than swallowing. I stopped laughing at it and she has done it much less. I now shake my head and say, "No, we don't play with our food." We've had a couple of choking incidents with her and I realized that she wasn't swallowing everything sometimes, just building it up in her throat and opening again. Now I wait a lot longer between bites for her and it hasn't happened again. It was super scary though!

3) They have a serving of solids with breakfast (7:30), lunch (10:30) and dinner (5:30). They have bottles at 2:30 without solids. I really felt that they would learn more quickly by praciticing more frequently so I kept at it with 3 meals per day and that's worked out. I also make sure to feed them bottles AND solids in their high chairs so they know it's feeding time. The only time I don't is the 2:30 bottle-only feed. I do that on the boppies. I figured out that they weren't crying BECAUSE of the high chairs, but because they were hungry by the time I put them in. Now they sit in the high chairs for a bit before we eat and a bit after. I make them wait for me to clean their faces, clean their bibs and their trays before they get down. I explain to them each time that we must do each of these things before they get down (and wait for one another). They intently watch what I do. It's really cute. :) They have become really patient! I'm so happy to see how they have changed that way. I don't give them toys or anything while they eat or wait because I want them to focus on mealtime, and then get used to waiting patiently. I'm amazed, to be honest, that it's working with them being so young. They used to scream to get down right after but now they understand that doesn't work and wait nicely. I am a proud mommy!

Kenna has two teeth...

Kenna beat Nathan to something...she has two teeth that broke through last week! A couple of months ago I could have sworn she was teething but nothing happened. I didn't notice any teething symptoms lately and then all of a sudden there they were! There was a little blood spot on the gum one morning and the tooth broke through the next day. By Wednesday last week, the other one popped through too, literally a day or two apart! It's so cute! They are far enough out that you notice when she laughs and smiles and it's adorable - she seems like a big girl now! I'll post pictures in my next post. No sign yet of Nathan's teeth, just a bumpy gum.

Nathan is probably seconds away from crawling...

For the last month I would have sworn Nathan was like a day or two away from crawling. He is SO strong. He has done every position possible without actually crawling. I thought for sure around his six month birthday he was really close. He pushes up on his arms really high, scrunches his knees under him, then buries his head in the floor to push forward. He also has been doing something I call the backwards crab. He lies on his back, arches it way up with his head arched behind him (so his neck is sticking up) and scooches backward. He rolls all over the room. Basically, he can get wherever he wants with some combination of these things but hasn't actually crawled. If he has been days or hours from crawling earlier in the month, he must be seconds away the last couple of days. He has his stomach off the ground now and is in a perfect crawling position - up on arms and knees. This morning he managed to bring both knees up at the same time and moved forward. I thought for sure this was going to be it but not quite. :) It will be very, very soon. Kenna, ever since she learned to roll over both ways that week of my last post, has become so much stronger. It was like an overnight transition. She now pushes way off the ground just like Nathan. But she hasn't bunched her knees up yet so I think crawling is a while off for her.

A trip to the emergency room for Nathan...

This was much less eventful than it sounds. Nathan is fine. I will spare you the boring details, but basically he started "panting" heavily off and on at 5 pm last Thursday. It got more and more frequent and the Dr's office was closed so we took him to the emergency room. I didn't know what was going on; he had never done it before and I didn't want to just put him to bed panting. What if he couldn't breathe during the night? I took a video of it to show the doctor since I knew with my luck he wouldn't do it when we got there. Sure enough, he was sleeping and wasn't doing it. I showed them the video and they were totally amused I had taken a video. The triage guy said in 16 years no one had taken a video to show him. I couldn't believe it. It seemed totally obvious to me. The doctors checked him out and said he was fine. They saw the video and concluded he must have just "learned" something new.

What hasn't happened...

No sitting! I seriously think Nathan may walk before he sits. He is completely solid on his feet. In fact, this morning I was holding his hands and he started lifting one foot at a time to walk toward me! I was amazed. I have tried that before with him and he didn't want to lift his feet. He can sit with his hands between his legs for a few seconds but always wants to "get down" to roll/pseudo crawl instead. Kenna actually does better trying to sit. She can do it for a few seconds and has a better "posture". I think they are both strong enough now, they just haven't seen a reason to want to learn it. :)

I will post new pictures in a bit!

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

I have heard that in other cultures where the moms wear their babies on their backs a lot (kind of in a standing postition), many babies learn to stand before they learn to sit! Great post, thanks for the update!