Tuesday, October 27, 2009

6 month update

So little one is 6 months old now. He is 21.6 lbs, 27 inches long, & head is 17 inch circumference.

He has outgrown his carrier car seat. We installed the free car seat I had gotten when I took a car seat safety class, but it was really unsafe & scaring both of us. So we went & bought one & we absolutely LOVE it (& Joseph likes it better than the other one--honestly!). This one has this amazing secure latch system that makes it soooo easy & fast to install in the car. And it converts to a booster seat when he reaches that stage. A real bargain & we are really thrilled with it.

He really loves eating & trying new things. He REALLY loves his fruit (just like dad!), but he likes most food. I introduced lentils this month. And he still continues with his veggies & fruits.

He has given up his morning nap most days, which has it's pros & cons. Allow me to explain. Pro: if I have errands to run I like to run them early & get them over with. So I normally have to wait for him to finish his nap before I can go & it always ends up being way later than I would like. Con: while I'm showering & drying my hair he isn't napping, won't stay in the swing, wants to play in the living room, but I can't keep an eye on him well (especially when the hair dryer is going) so that part of it is a little challenging. But he still takes his afternoon nap & evening nap & goes to bed around 9 pm most days. He is still sleeping through the night well too. Occasionally he'll wake & not be able to fall back to sleep & I"ll just put him in the swing & off to sleep he goes.

He is still working on crawling. Still hasn't mastered it completely. And he sits up really well if we put him there, but isn't getting there yet by himself. I am told he has to master that before he can crawl. So it should be pretty soon I think....but I'm in no rush, I can't imagine chasing after him all day, LOL. He still loves his walker & his jumper.

We were going to take a 6 month photo this past weekend, but were nonstop busy & didn't get to it, so hopefully this weekend we will get one. My stepdaughter turned 22 on the day Joseph turned 6 months. For the past few years she has chosen to have a small dinner with just us (as opposed to getting together with the WHOLE family) & that's what we chose to do once again & took her out to dinner at a great restaurant. It was a wonderful & memorable night for all of us.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

"Your Baby Can Read" update

A lot of people asked me to keep them posted on this program. First let me explain how it works.

It's a set of 5 DVDs & each DVD has a book & set of flashcards that go with it. You are supposed to show the DVD twice daily for the time specified in the schedule (some are for one month & some are for two months) & review the book & flashcards daily. Each time you move to the next DVD you are still supposed to show the previous ones at least once or twice each week. The current one is always shown twice daily.

The program is designed to be started at 3 months of age (or when they start tracking objects with their eyes). I started it 2 days prior to turning 5 months. Dr. Titzer (the guy who created this) states that with young infants usually 5-6 months will go by with NO indication of learning at all. And then you will suddenly start to see signs that the baby is actually learning. He also says that the first 50 words learned take the longest. Once they learn 50 words or so things really start speeding up in the learning.

Before I actually bought the program I went online looking for negative stuff about it. Mostly I found people arguing about "whole word" learning vs. "phonics" learning. People who favor phonics language learning didn't like this program. (Although Dr. Titzer states it does incorporate some phonics in the program) BUT I must add that "I" personally learned via the whole world method & I always excelled in reading & writing. So I made the choice to disregard those folks' opinions & go with this program.

I usually show him the DVD while he's drinking a bottle. It's a good time for him to sit & be calm & actually watch it. And he does enjoy watching it. This weekend will be one month since we started & we will be able to move to the next DVD.

Having said all that I can say that in the beginning Joseph wasn't very interested & his interest in it (both DVD & book/flashcard) has grown tremendously over the past few weeks.

I can also say that when I tell him "arms up" (one of the things on the DVD) he does put his arms up. (I tell him this when I'm going to pick him up). And when I go through the book with him the last word is "wave" & every time I say it he puts his right hand up as if he was going to wave good bye, but he doesn't actually wave it yet.

I know that's not much of a report, but considering I was expecting to not see ANY signs of learning for 6 months I am really encouraged by this.

I will definitely be posting more updates later on. Stay tuned.

Friday, October 9, 2009

5.5 month update

So little one is about 5 & 1/2 months old now.

He is now eating 3 meals each day. He's been through tons of fruits now (after a lot of veggies) & seems to love them all. I make about 95% of his meals myself & keep a couple of jars around for making life easier if I have to feed him outside the home or just to give myself an occasional break. If I had more freezer space it would be a much easier task to make a lot of food at a time, but I have very little freezer space to store the food, so I am making food quite often. I do enjoy it though & love giving him so much variety & knowing that I'm giving him healthy foods. So far the only jarred food I've bought is "earth's best" brand & they are organic. He's had bananas & pears from them & liked them both. I was surprised to find that it's cheaper at Mother's market than it is at WalMart. There are a couple of other organic brands, though, I'm gonna check them out too. They all have no additives, which is good. The varieties of food get much more interesting at the 6 month mark.

So little one has been a big boy since very early on. He is still wearing size 9 month clothes for now, but some of them are already starting to show signs of almost not fitting (the snaps in the crotch & the length of legs in the pjs)--so I don't think he'll be in this size too much longer, maybe one more month at best.

So most of his stuff he has has a max weight of 20-25 lbs on it. He is now over 21 pounds, might be 22. His bouncy seat has a max of 20 lbs, but I still use this seat for feeding him bottles. It doesn't appear unsafe to me, but I am watching closely. His jumper has a max weight of 25 lbs, but it still appears safe for now, I am watching closely.

His car seat has a max weight of 22 lbs & his legs are sticking way out of it & his head is to the top. Now this is one product that I'm not gonna push my luck on because it is involving car safety & his safety if we get into a car accident. So my dilemma is that if we move him to the next car seat (which doesn't have a carry handle, stays in the vehicle, & fits him up to age 4) is that he needs to sit in grocery carts. Hubby doesn't think he can do it, but I do. This weekend we're gonna give it a try & see how he does & swap out the car seats. I do have a cover to put in the cart to protect from all the germs & it also goes in restaurant highchairs too.

My other big issue has been the swing. It had a max weight of 25 lbs on it. In the past months I kept asking hubby what we were gonna do when he maxed out the weight on the swing. We still use the swing quite often. For naps & if he wakes during the night & can't fall back to sleep easily. So even though he's not 25 lbs YET (close, but not quite) the swing was barely swinging now, it's just too much weight for the little motor on it.

Sooooo when we went to buy him a walker (& we got one that goes up to 30 lbs, it was the highest weight we could find) we also took a look at the swings. Some went up to 20 lbs, most went up to 25 lbs. There were a few that went up to 30 lbs. And then we found ONE (only one) that goes up to 40 lbs. Not only did it go up to 40 lbs, but it was the cheapest swing they had & the seat comes out & can be either an infant seat (great for feeding) or a toddler rocker. We couldn't believe what a great deal this was so we grabbed it & the next day we returned the old one (that was soooo noisey & only had one speed & was barely swinging now). Also a plus: the old one would auto shut off after 2 hours (to save on battery I guess)--which was a real pain at night when we were asleep, we had to remember to wake up & restart it. This one doesn't turn off ever, until you turn it off. And the batteries haven't died yet! Really great product IMO. I still don't know why they can't make a swing that gives you the option of plugging in or using battery though.

So he loves the new swing (even the position of the seat looks so much more comfy than the old one & this one plays music too) & the walker. So far he only walks backwards (& turns) in the walker.

I usually start his day with breakfast, then a bath, then a bottle. Then I put him in the swing for a nap. When he wakes he goes in the rainforest gym & crawls around. Once he's worn himself out there he goes in the jumper. Somewhere in there he'll have a bottle & then continue with one of those activities. Then hell take a nap. Then he'll wake for lunch. Then he'll have a bottle & then go in the walker. Later on dinner, another bottle & later bedtime. And sometimes I squeeze a walk in there or another outdoor activity too. That's just an average day. But without all three of those (gym, jumper, walker) he tends to get bored. The walker has been a great help & I love that he can go outside in it too!! He soooo loves the outdoors.