Happy Mother’s Day to all of the moms out there. After becoming a mom myself, I definitely appreciate my parents a lot more. Not that I was an ungrateful child or anything, but it only takes a couple of sleepless nights with a newborn to really understand what this parenting thing is all about.
And now, my mom helps out with taking care of my son. It’s so funny how resourceful she is. For example, in lieu of a high chair for WZW, she took an old pair of shorts and sewed it to a piece of cloth that can be draped over the back of a chair. Now, he can stay put while she feeds him.
My dad helps out as well, but less so with direct baby care. He’ll warm up milk for the little guy, or help cook dinner while my mom is taking care of him. WZW starts looking longingly at my dad when he’s getting hungry- his way of saying he’s looking for milk.
WZW turned 8 months old this week. A couple of weeks ago, he started crawling for the first time. For me, I feel like that’s the biggest milestone so far, since now we have to suddenly keep an eye on him so he doesn’t get into trouble. And we had to start babyproofing. It’s amazing how it literally happened overnight. Or rather, within the same day. For a few days, he had been starting to move just inches. He was mostly reaching for things, but would move himself a tiny bit to get to something just out of reach. He was still doing that in the morning, then in the evening we put him down on the floor, and instead of inches he starting moving feet.
The other thing that’s interesting is that as he learned to crawl, he also improved his other motor skills. When we’d put him down to sleep on his back, he’d flip himself right over, which he did more slowly and infrequently before. He also quickly learned to sit himself up. Previously, when he couldn’t fall asleep, we’d go back in to find him on his back crying. But now, he’ll be sitting up crying. And during his sleep, he ends up all over the place.
Which brings me to his sleeping quarters- sadly, we never used the crib that we got as a hand-me-down. He went from the Rock ‘n Play to sleeping on the king bed. At this point, now that he can roll and move around, the bed is no longer safe. But he can also pull himself up to standing if he’s in the crib. I’m sure it’s fine, but we were worried that he’d pull himself up, then fall and hit his head on the rails. Or eventually learn to pull himself out of the crib altogether.
So being paranoid, we decided to get this Lotus travel crib:
It’s nice because we needed it for travel anyway, and it folds up and is easily carried in the bag it comes with. But we have been using it for daily sleeping instead of the traditional crib. We figure it’s safe because he’s on the ground, so even in the chance that he eventually learned to escape from it, there wouldn’t be as much distance to fall. And the sides are soft, so if he falls he won’t have any hard surfaces where he can hit his head. And my back appreciates the little zippered opening on the side, so I don’t have to reach down into it to get him out like I do with his playpen. So far it’s been working well for us.
Our little guy loves standing and walking with help. It’s so funny how when you help him up, he gets this happy look on his face. Supposedly my husband started walking when he was 8 months, which sounds ridiculously early. I guess we’ll see about WZW. My chiropractor says it’s best if they crawl as long as possible, because it helps with their lumbar spine curvature. And then once they start walking, they get the final sacral curvature at the bottom of the spine. So according to her, it’s best not to walk too early. Honestly, I don’t think there’s much one can do either way. Your baby is gonna do what he wants to do when it comes to development.
With regards to food, we have been keeping it pretty Paleo for WZW. We started with the baby food jars that we got from a friend. They had various vegetables, fruit, and meat. Some are mixed with brown rice- like peas & brown rice, or chicken & brown rice. We’ve bought baby food in the pouches as well. One had an interesting combo of spinach, black beans, yogurt, and pumpkin. Other than some corn, beans, and rice mixed in with other ingredients, we haven’t been giving him non-Paleo foods regularly.
We went to a restaurant recently, and I decided to give him a piece of bread to nibble on. I realized that was the first time I’d given him any gluten. I do think he should be exposed to a variety of foods early on, but we don’t feel the need to feed him carbs regularly. We’re not doing the baby cereals or puffs. We are also not hippie enough to make our own baby food. We don’t have that kind of time.
So far we’ve been spoon-feeding him, but he has been showing more interest in feeding himself. I guess eventually we’ll move towards trying to have him feed himself pieces of food, but it’s a messy proposition. Not to mention the amount of food that actually gets consumed as opposed to ending up all over him is minimal. So we haven’t been doing it regularly yet.
He’s still getting both formula and breast milk. Every day, I wonder how much longer I can keep up the breastfeeding and pumping. My supply is pretty pitiful, and WZW’s feeding schedule rarely matches with my work/sleep schedule, but I figure there’s still benefit to him getting some. So I’ll keep trying for at least another couple of months.
One last thing in relation to the Paleo lifestyle- our little guy loves being outdoors. Lately my husband has been going running and taking him in the jogging stroller, and stopping midway to play in the grass. It makes him so happy, and I like him being exposed to nature.