It should be known that I had no plans of purchasing a costume for the babe, but I happened to find this one at Children's Place for $2.99. No joke. I had been looking at a black t-shirt that had glow-in-the-dark bones (rib cage, etc...) that was $6 on sale from $10.95 and I griped to the sales person about the price and she said, 'There may be some things on the rack over there; everything's under $3.' So, I did it. For $2.99.
He was born in the year of the dragon so it's perfect!
As a breast only baby, we decided to wait until around nine months to start solids. The older Oliver got though, the more interested in food he became. It didn't help that I would give him tastes of things with a finger dip. What can I say? I'm so used to sharing pieces with Nola, it just seemed natural. Oops. We chatted about it and decided that when his teeth started coming in and when he could reasonably feed himself, then we'd give him food, yet I still felt like it would be eight or nine months. There are too many benefits of breast milk only in the first year and we wanted him to get as much as he could. (Especially since it's apparently frowned upon by Chandler to cook with breast milk. Yes I did. No you couldn't tell. Yes we can chat about it further if you'd like.)
Seven months is when we took the plunge. There were so many reasons not to, mainly selfish ones: change in poop, the need to diversify food options, and honestly- just plain laziness. I loved being able to do anything and go anywhere and not have to worry about what to bring because I knew I could just whip it out.
Anyway.... he became increasingly interested in food and I knew it was time. His first foods were avocado and pear. He loved both. We didn't go the recommended route though. I think you're supposed to start with cereal. We didn't. We also didn't do the one new food each week thing. Nor did we start with puree. His first foods were chunks. We'd read about baby-led weaning, which is the idea that you give your child pieces of food large enough to hold in their hand and chew the tops and their gag reflex keeps them from choking. We were slightly nervous about that, but he hasn't choked yet. Now that he has a good pincer grip, I give him small bits instead of larger pieces, but we don't really do purees. I did buy some rice cereal and sweet potato cereal and sometimes I'll mix in a puree, but for the most part, he eats whatever we are eating. To be completely open and honest, the cereal and purees are really for me, because it's kind of fun to feed him. He much prefers to feed himself though and will often shriek at the spoon to get more regular food. Can't blame him. I've tasted all of his baby mush and it's not great.
As with his nursing, I can't tell you how much he eats. I've never really measured it out or thought much about it. Sometimes it's a lot, sometimes not so much. I probably should pay more attention to how much he eats, but he nurses the same amount as before solids so I'm not really worried about it for now. I understand some people are concerned with iron intake as breast milk doesn't have as much iron after six months, but our pediatrician is not worried about that for now.
He is still eating just one meal of solids each day - dinner. A typical dinner for him may consist of whole grain macaroni tossed with a tiny bit of butter and breast milk, green beans, and peaches or veggie hot dogs, peas, carrots, and pears. Bananas, avocado, and sweet potatoes are high on his list as well. I would imagine that by nine months we'll probably be feeding him another meal of solids at breakfast.
If you're holding him and eating something, you better have something to share or all heck will break loose. He likes Gerber Graduates puff snacks in all the flavors and I try to keep some around just in case we're out and need a snack. Only this week has he started to show interest in a sippy cup. He never took to a bottle and I'm determined to get him to take a sippy cup. I had a little milk in the freezer that I was using but it was getting wasted and I like to have it on reserve (you know, in case I'm making muffins and realize we're out of milk or something...) so now we just use water. There's a neat sippy that you can squeeze and the liquid goes into their mouth so they know something is inside - it's amazing. He also likes a soft Nuk one.
So that's solids. He thinks he's big stuff sitting in his high chair feeding himself. He's really good at it too and isn't near as messy as I'd anticipated.
It's been a while since I've done a review of Thomas Nelson books... I've had one for a while, Read and Share Stories about Jesus. I'm pretty sure I've had this since before Oliver was born, but it could have possibly arrived shortly after just as well. This is a large board book that has a short parable with a cartoon-style picture on each page. There isn't a ton to write about this book since it is just short Bible stories accompanied by a picture, but I will say that it's for an older child. I would say more of a 3-6 year old. A two-year old might sit still if you could point out things in the picture for them to find or look for as you read, but it isn't as engaging as other books like this I've seen.
-He still wears size 3-6m in Gymboree (If anyone's counting, yes that is now six months of this size!) and Gap and 6m and 9m in Carter's. His winter clothes are all 9m with a few 12m sprinkled in for the later months.
-He takes a short morning nap (an hour max) and a nice, long afternoon nap (2 hours). He wakes up anywhere between 6:30 and 8:00am and is asleep by 7:30 or 8:00pm. Our evening routine is dinner at 5:30 followed by clean-up/playtime, bath around 7:00 and stories, rock to sleep around 8:00. He continues to sleep with us and that means I go to bed early as well. I actually love being in bed that early. I love snuggling with him and having lots of quiet time at night.
-We're still going strong with cloth diapers. When we first started solids, I liked bGs and GroVia, now I'm back to FuzziBunz. We still use disposable at night and after some snafus with 7th Generation and not being able to find Earth's Best while traveling, we discovered Huggies Pure & Natural. Now, they're my favorites. They are super soft and feel like cotton inside. He's in a size 3 with lots of room. We could probably swing a 2 in Huggies, but I fear we'd be stuck with extras so 3s it is.
-It's also worth mentioning that sometimes, I cheat and use disposable because of his clothes... 3-6m still fits as long as he's in disposable. In cloth, they start to pull just enough to look not so fitting. I also use disposable when we leave the house just because I have a very sensitive sense of smell am lazy and... did I mention he eats solids now?
-He has two bottom teeth that took a good three weeks to finally come through and he has two top teeth that are just below the gum. At 8 months exactly (yesterday) I noticed his gum had opened beneath one tooth so we'll probably have four teeth soon.
-Nola is Oliver's bestest friend. He loves to watch her and she is surprisingly tolerant of him.
-At 7 months he started to 'inch worm' on his belly to move around, now he's figured out how to actually crawl without his belly touching the floor. He just started this a day or so ago (basically right at the 8 month mark) so he's still somewhat easy and in one place. I fear that will all change by the end of the week. Note to self: use the jumper. Do not place baby on the floor just in case he practices crawling. :P
-He has been standing for months upon months. Since he was born really. So it was no surprise to us that he'd figure out how to pull himself up sooner than later. He did this before he figured out crawling. For a while I thought he might not even crawl, but he has zero balance so I'm no longer in that camp.
-He continues to nurse well. We introduced solids last month (more on that later) and he nurses the same amount as before. His schedule is, wake up-nurse, 11a nurse, early-afternoon-before-nap nurse, wake-up-from-nap nurse, quick nurse before dinner, 5:30 solids, stories-rock-to-sleep-before-bed nurse. He's up a couple times at night some, but doesn't nurse long if you can even consider it nursing. So far, the teeth have been okay. I fear the worst with the top two, but I remain positive. He recently became interested in what nursing was all about and decided to investigate with his hands, HILARIOUS. Especially when he squirts himself in the face. Enter lots of laughing from both of us (see silly boy below).
(This picture is for those of you who think he's always smiling, ha!)
-Solids are going well. He pretty much eats just about anything now. I'll write another post just on solids because I've had a lot of people ask me about that. He loves to feed himself and it's become a challenge for us to eat healthier so we're all eating the same thing. I refuse to make multiple dinners, it's just not my style.
-Did I mention he is silly? Really silly. I can make him laugh simply by laughing and he giggles before breaking out a full on belly laugh. It's the cutest thing I've ever seen!
-He's saying 'ma ma ma ma ma' and 'da da da da da.' He also says something that sounds like 'byebyebye' and 'ba ba ba ba.' At least, those are the latest. A lot of times it sounds like he says 'mom' very clearly. Same for 'dad.' Even though it's not the case, we still find it enjoyable.
-Over the weekend we moved the crib down. Mr. TopHeavy(BigBrain) was pulling up and leaning. Sigh. Not that he spends a lot of time in the crib, but I didn't want to feel like I couldn't use it if I wanted to, so we took it apart and lowered the mattress. It was delightful.
-At 8 months, I've finally accepted that he's not a tiny baby anymore. I was sad to see his teeth; sad to see him crawl. I mourned the loss of my newborn. Despite that, I've loved each new month and his personality, it was just sad that he was growing so fast. I'm over the newborn thing now. I still miss it - I miss him being new, and tiny, and floppy... but I love who he is and have so much fun with him! He's big enough that we can take him running and not worry about his neck; big enough to sit in the shopping cart; big enough to toss in the air and catch as we hear giant belly laughs... he plays games, he finds humor, he has likes and dislikes, and best of all, he loves. Oh how he loves. (Shout out! David Crowder Band lyric ;)) He is so affectionate and I love how he loves us. So here's to growing up and finding fun in the journey. I almost wrote 'bring on month 9' but I don't want to get too ahead of myself...it will basically be here tomorrow so for now, we will enjoy every bit of month eight.
We have had the busiest weekend! It started at 3:01 AM Friday when I got up to order a new phone. Later that morning, we had Nola's a fence installed and headed to Home Depot where I scored a chandelier for $17.25. Exciting stuff. As we were leaving Home Depot, there was a huge pile of pumpkins and I decided we had to get some pictures. By 'we' I mean me and Oliver because apparently Chandler is too cool to take pictures in front of Home Depot. A sweet older couple stopped to dote on Rover and told me about a farm that wasn't far from our house. Saturday morning we went and had so much fun!
It was mainly a pumpkin patch with hayrides and a produce stand, but there were also a couple of goats, peacocks, a pen full of chickens (and one rooster named Henry who was an oopsie in their chicken order!) and a very loud, but entertaining goose.
Rover was more interested in the hay bale than anything else and I got zero good pictures after he discovered them.
This will definitely be an annual place to go if we're still here. We left with a 51 cent pumpkin and a handful of pictures. :)