Naps: For the first half of this month Henry was taking 3 naps per day. His first nap was around 8:30, the second around 12:15, and the third around 4:00.
At about the same time as the holidays arrived, and we started traveling and having more erratic schedules, Henry’s naps took a turn for the worst. His naps shortened to be 45 minutes at the most, but more often they were only 35 minutes. I don’t yet know if all of the craziness from the holidays is to blame, or if there is something else going on. My gut says there is something else. Henry’s acting a lot like he was when we had the nap issues before with being sound asleep one moment and wide-awake or screaming the next. We’re trying a few things once again to see what is going on.
Feeding: Henry is breastfed throughout the day with a bottle of breast milk in the evening. He typically has milk at 6:45am, 11:00am, 3:00pm, and 6:30pm.
Clothing: 9 months, but nearly ready to size up to 12 months for onesies. His legs are still too short for most of his 9-month pants, but thanks to his fluffy cloth diapered bottom, he just squeezes into them.
Eating: Henry has gotten really excited about eating solids and seems to be starting to shift his interest away from breastfeeding. This month we introduced some more new foods. In addition to avocado and butternut squash, Henry also eats peas, green beans, pears, bananas, and brown rice cereal. His favorites are certainly butternut squash, peas, and cereal. It takes him awhile to warm up to fruits while veggies seem to be instant hits.
Lately when he’s been having avocado, he makes a lot of funny faces and tries to spit it out. The same is true if his foods are too chunky for his liking. Sometimes he’ll even suck the breast milk out that has been mixed in with his veggies and spit the rest out.
We typically give Henry solids halfway between his milk feedings. Henry gets solids around 9:30am, 1:30pm, and 5:30pm.
Sleeping: We are so thankful to have a kiddo who is a great night-time sleeper. Despite all of this craziness with napping, Henry still has little to no issues with sleeping at night. Since this napping episode began, Henry gets a little restless 45-90 minutes after he goes to bed. After a few moments of soothing, he falls back asleep.
On the days that we were away from home over the holidays, Henry’s bedtime got pushed too late so he had a lot of trouble falling asleep and staying asleep for the first 2 hours on these nights.
We were really hoping to be at the point where Henry could sleep with both arms unwrapped all the time by now. He takes most of his naps with his arms unwrapped unless he’s really crabby. He can fall asleep at night without his arms wrapped, but he wakes a lot and gets upset about it. We haven’t been pushing him too hard to sleep like this lately due his napping issues. We don’t want him to form negative associations with sleeping and his crib.
Development: Henry learned to sit on his own this month. We were surprised with how quickly it happened. Henry went from “melting” into the floor when we tried to get him to sit to balancing for a fraction of a second to sitting for minutes with no problem in the span of a few days.
Henry has gotten so much more “grabby” than he used to be. Before he would take something if you handed it to him. Now he’s much more eager to reach for something and try to tell you that he wants something. He does this mostly when he is sitting up, less so when he is lying on his back or tummy.
For the most part, Henry is content to sit and observe the world rather than trying to move towards something clearly out of reach. He will lean to reach towards things he wants, but he is not yet interested in rolling or scooting to get somewhere. To solve this problem, I’ve caught Henry on several occasions using something close to him as a tool to help him reach the thing that is out of reach. For example, if he wants a toy that’s on blanket, he’ll pull the blanket towards him until he can reach the toy.
Likes and Dislikes: Henry really likes his toys, like his gym and exersaucer, that play a short song when he pushes a certain button or pulls on something. It’s really interesting to watch him wait until the song is over to pull or push again. Other toys that are big hits right now are stuffed toys and a bead maze.
Henry loves ribbons and strings, especially the ones on our hoodies. He loves to bend and flex the string, pull it through his hands, and (of course) chew on the ends.
Henry gets the biggest smile and acts to proud when we let him sit in the rocking chair or on the couch by himself. He can’t stop smiling and telling us how much a big kid he is.
We’ve started doing some more rough-housing with Henry. He seems to enjoy being tossed up in the air, spun around, and held upside down.
This has been the case for a while but Henry definitely prefers deep voices. He’s all ears when Adam’s talking, or even Adam’s dad or brother. He’ll search the room for where the deep voice is coming from and devote all of his attention to that person.
Henry has gotten a little more clingy, especially when he is groggy or tired. He does not like to be set down when he has just been picked up from his nap. It takes him a few minutes to fully wake up and be ready to not be held.
New This Month: Henry now has two teeth. His first tooth (front bottom left) arrived the day after Christmas, and his second tooth (front bottom right) came three days after that. Although we could feel some changes happening in his mouth, we were not expecting Henry to get teeth quite yet. He wasn’t showing many of the “classic” signs either.
Henry celebrated his first Christmas this month. We traveled back to Wisconsin for 4 celebrations with extended family, and then celebrated as a family once we got back. We were very thankful that Henry didn’t receive a lot of toys for Christmas since his toy box is already filled to the brim with toys he’s never played with. It took Henry a few tries to understand the wrapping paper, but after some practice he seemed to get it down.
We started using baby sign with Henry more regularly. Right now we’re keeping it to four signs–milk, eat, all gone, and more.
We just started swimming lessons with Henry at the YMCA. He was very concerned at his first lesson. He had to watch everyone in the pool area and figure out what we were doing in the pool. He had fun for the first half of class, but once we went underwater, he stopped having so much fun. By the end, he was tired, a little chilly, and ready to be done.
Other Notes: At Henry’s 6-month check-up, he got his first round of the flu vaccine. The next morning, Henry was whiny and would rapidly change from happy to sad and crying. Later that morning he threw up but seemed to be fine for the rest of the day, just a little sleepier than normal. I’m not sure if something wasn’t settling with him, or if it was a reaction to the vaccine.
Henry got another stomach bug in the middle of December. He woke up crabby and whiny, like he was the day after his vaccine. He threw up twice while nursing that morning and had a fever of 101.2. I spent the rest of the day syringe-feeding him Pedialyte to keep him hydrated. He spent most of the day napping. It was scary to see him so pale and tired. It took about 2 1/2 days for Henry to get back to being able to have breast milk again. I felt so bad for him because he was so hungry but couldn’t keep it down. It took a couple more days after that for him to be back to his normal self.
Our travels over the holidays meant that Henry did not get as much floor time. There were a couple of days where he acted like he had forgotten how to roll again so we had to build in some practice time for him.
Adam was able to take a week and a half off over Christmas and New Year’s. It was great to be able to have some quality family time together. It was one of the most refreshing breaks that we’ve ever had.
Mama and Papa Update: It has been a lot of fun to start teaching Henry new skills, watch him problem solve, and show you what he knows. It’s amazing to see how quickly he changes in his understanding and capabilities. If anything, it’s reminded us of the importance of challenging him. We’re excited to see Henry start using his baby signs although it will probably be a couple of months still.