My precious little pickle is 6 months old!
Last week, my precious pickle turned 6 months old. She celebrated by rolling for the first time at a baby group that encourages plenty of ‘tummy time’ and by falling asleep in her Jumperoo! The months have gone by so quickly, I cannot believe that half the year has gone by already and this once super sleepy beauty is making moves, eating just what I eat, becoming more and more alert and active each day.
I’ve mentioned before that when you meet other parents, you instantly share a bond, which develops quickly in a flurry of standard FAQ’s. I was at the most gorgeous garden party on Saturday where a mix of parents at different stages (newborns to teens) connected over sleepless nights, teething tales, advice and information. The same questions tend to get asked when you meet for the first time, and here they are..
Baby G’s FAQ’s:
Bottle or breast fed?
Aside from her name and age, how I fed Miss Gray as a newborn was definitely the number one FAQ. Food is such a huge part of human life, it keeps us alive, so I guess it’s no wonder we’re all curious. I exclusively breast fed for five months, before introducing solids, on recommendation of a paediatrician (post reflux), and after attending a weaning course. The paediatrician suggested weaning her at 4 months, when she could sit up and hold her head up, but I held off as it just felt too soon, reflux or not. She has probably had 3 full bottles of formula in that time, only when away from me- when plans were too last minute to express breast milk. I hope to carry on at least for another couple of months, it’s good for her and the calories burned are unreal!
Does she still have reflux?
Nooooo! Thank goodness! Her symptoms disappeared somewhere between her 2nd and 3rd months and with weaning in full swing, they aren’t likely to return.
Do you use a dummy/pacifier?
No. In the early weeks baby G didn’t cry enough to warrant one. I had one that came free in a set of bottles, but by the time she became a bit more vocal (3 months old mainly due to teething) she wouldn’t take it and now several weeks later, I’ve been told by another mum that’ll be almost impossible for her to take it, because I offered it too late (like it’s a bad thing)- do I mind? Not at all! It’s a personal choice and you have to go with your gut and do what’s right for you! I think they can be a God send but 1.)She’s not difficult to pacify 2.) People who ask me why I don’t use one, always then proceed to tell me how difficult it is to wean them off a dummy once you give them one. 3. The one time she did have one in her mouth for more than five seconds she looked like Bane from Batman.
What were her first solids/ Baby led or parent led weaning?
Aptamil Baby rice was the first ‘solid’ I introduced Baby G to, followed by mashed up avocado, sweet potato, banana and a variety of single fruit purees. She has shown no allergies to anything we’ve tried, so as recommended on the weaning course, I have continued to give a mixture of finger foods (strips of cucumber that was perfect to soothe sore gums) and smaller chopped up versions of my own food, including cheese, toast, fish, chicken, eggs, rice and plenty of vegetables. She can feed herself, and although it takes time and is extremely messy- it’s important to let her do it to develop that skill. Weaning definitely makes you more conscious of your own food choices.I also quote like the Ella’s kitchen range- handy to see what flavours baby likes, before batch cooking and wasting food! I was surprised at the amount of foods you CAN give babies (their gums at this stage are as hard as teeth (she’s eaten biscotti!) I definitely recommend attending a local weaning course if you can.
What do you put in her hair?
Actually the most asked question at first was how do you DRY her hair? Other mums I have met use low settings on hairdryers, so although I told one elderly gentleman that I put her in a wind tunnel once a week, I still only towel dry it.
For the first five months, I put absolutely nothing in her hair at all. I still use Earth friendly baby products by Lansinoh. I washed it, towel dried it (took about 10 mins) and that was it. I have only JUST started to put a tiny bit of Olive Oil in it as response to Baby G’s favourite game ‘Let’s see how much food I can get in my hair’. By the end of each meal, I’ve found caked in food comes out a lot easier with a little Olive oil on a soft brush if not washing it that night. So far it’s curly but soft and tangle-free.
Where do you get her headbands from?
Olive Headbands! See previous post and check out our latest purchase:
What do you do all day?
Mummy and baby mani-pedi’s..
All day.. everyday..
Normally asked by people without babies or children, but days with babies are pretty full on- even if you’re ‘not particularly doing anything.’ They are sponges, need stimulation and each day and each activity, even the mundane comes with an opportunity for them to learn about the world around them. I tend to attend various baby groups Mon-Wed, leaving the end of the week to see other friends with young babies, I still meet with my ante natal group regularly, and I go to soft play or go on nice long walks. We still try to get out every day, and normally things work out well, but babies do what they want- and every now and again we have to stay in because she has fallen asleep or go to a group out of Borough once she has woken up. It’s definitely good to keep a list of activities happening at various times each day, so you’re never stuck-and I have a friend who is brilliant at finding and informing her fellow mummy friends of new things that pop up for under 1’s. Other than we’ve been to the farm a few times, swimming – we always find something to do.
What’s your favourite group?
Baby sensory is our favourite group by far! The mix of baby sign language, songs and sensory stimulation not only knocks Baby G out after the group. We have a good group of friends that she is excited to see every week. At first I was sceptical but every week is completely different and the sheer effort, that goes into making each session as creative as possible is amazing.
Is she sleeping through the night?
She WAS until she started teething. I swore she started teething at 3 months, and I was right, just a couple of weeks later, the tell-tale white tooth buds appeared with two teeth appearing just before she reached 5 months. Now they are here, some of the pressure has been relieved, meaning less crying, less pain and longer stretches of sleep again. Some night waking, accompanied with furious chomping of her hands turned into hourly night waking during the worst of that period. A combination of teething gels, Bickie pegs and brushing her gums seems to be working at the moment, but whilst I’m not working I don’t mind as much. I still get some good naps in whist she’s asleep, have tried my own version of sleep training and have had some rest whilst she’s been at her Nana’s.
How are you finding it?
It’s awful, I rue the day she was born- and wish I could go back to my pre baby days!
One day I will just say that and see what happens, but in all honestly it’s actually nice when people ask how I am. I have met so many wonderful people along the way, new mums, experienced mums who have been in the same boat, and it’s amazing.
Functioning on limited sleep is hard- but you just get on with it. It’s amazing what you can get done with one eye open. As difficult as the sleep deprivation has been at times, I am blessed that I am not on my own and you really do just find the strength to get out and get things done. I haven’t missed any of the groups I’ve paid for, and that cost alone is a huge motivation to work things out so that we do go. Plus, I don’t think I’ve experienced my greatest challenge yet! With just three weeks until she experiences her first trip abroad, dealing with a teething, jet-lagged baby who loves to feed herself on a 6 hour flight; I’m sure will be very interesting!
Never have I been so proud or so exhausted. Never have I laughed so much, felt purposeless, helpless and purposeful all at the same time, it’s only been 6 months but I wouldn’t change it for anything.