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Baby on the Move!

Yesterday, Henry decided that he wanted to play with a toy that he couldn’t reach. And then he realised that he could just move forward. Of course, when he realised that, he decided that he didn’t want that particular toy anymore. He wanted to crawl over to the wires behind the television and put them in his mouth. He wanted to see what was under the sofa, and on the window sill. And he wanted to investigate everything.

I really need to baby proof properly. We spent a while going round, decluttering and removing dangerous objects from the reach of little hands. However, that isn’t enough now. We need to get those little hook things for our kitchen cupboards, the clips to put the tv on the wall, and a packet of plug socket protectors.

He’s still going relatively slowly at the moment, which I know won’t last long. He’s still wobbling about and unsteady, but I’m thankful for this, because it’s been two days and I’m already pooped.

It’s crazy how quickly this has come along. I say it all the time, but it didn’t seem that long ago that we were thinking about what cot we wanted to chose for him and what name he was going to have.

And now he’s crawling. My little boy, he’s growing up.

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Chatty Baby

Henry’s started being such a chatty little baby recently. This morning, he almost said ‘dada’, so I spent the whole morning trying to get him to copy me saying it. It didn’t work, but he is very close to his first word! The gaga and goo-goos are getting so easy for him, and he’s talking pretty much the whole day now.

I could sit and listen to him forever. I never knew a little voice could be so adorable. It’s better than any music I’ve ever heard, and it makes me smile when I hear his little babbling.

Clever little baby, it won’t be long before I’m teaching him about the world.

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Petits Filous and Foodie Foodie

Henry had his first Petits Filous today. It was strawberry, and he just couldn’t get enough. His little mouth stayed open, and he was even diving for the spoon. You wouldn’t know he had just had breakfast an hour ago.

He’s firmly on three meals a day now too. Hungry little baby.

I’ve also bought a variety of fruit an vegetables to prepare for him to try. He’s had a lot already, but this time will be mango, avocado, papaya, butternut squash and sweetcorn on top of his already long list of foods.

I wish I had been less stressed about weaning. Before the whole process, I really didn’t know what on earth I was supposed to do, or when to do it, or how much. But I’m happy, and more importantly Henry is happy, with how it is progressing. So now I can stop stressing and just be comfortable in the knowledge that it will happen, and whether I feed him carrot or parsnip first really isn’t important…

It’s hard not to get a little anal about the details though. The amount of conflicting advice out there can really make you doubt yourself and your instincts. I end up following charts and other people’s schedules instead of thinking what is right for me and my baby, which is really quite dangerous. I just need to remember that the advice in books and on the internet is always quite generalised, and doesn’t necessarily apply to me.

A really good guide for weaning though, as I’ve found has a good structure to begin with, is the Cow & Gate 5 step weaning plan. I got it sent to me in the post, as I’ve been signed up to their baby club ever since I found out I was pregnant and went crazy signing up to everything.

It clearly sets out a guideline of what to feed (and what not to feed), and is a reminder of what you are actually aiming for. The whole point of the exercise can easily be forgotten when you are up to your eyes in sterilising fluid and bibs. You eventually want your baby to be eating three meals a day, progressing from milk to simple purees to lumps to solid food. And there was me worrying about whether or not he’s too young for this and that.

I’m very happy now, though, and I wouldn’t think twice about doing it all again! It has to be easier second time around, right? Apart from the fact you have two, of course…

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Swimming Success

We took Henry swimming again this morning, and with a friend joining us too. Henry adores other children and babies. He finds them fascinating and stares at them, attempting to copy their actions. He’s a baby with an inquisitive nature, and he learns so well in these situations. I really relax around other mums too. It’s nice to be with someone who knows exactly what it’s like.

And this time, unlike the less successful swimming session we had pre-wetsuit, Henry had so much fun! It was by far the happiest he’s been in the water so far, and the most animated he’s been. We held him on his back, floating in the water, and he splashed his little, podgy arms and kicked his chubby legs making massive splashes and laughing and smiling all the while. He loved it. He splashed himself with water then laughed about it. He’s never been like this before. It makes it so much nicer that he’s clearly getting a lot of enjoyment out of it, and it makes it far more rewarding for me. My persistance is finally paying off!

I don’t even dread going back next week. I want to go, I’m actually looking forward to it. Wow, I never thought I would say that.

And Henry didn’t even cry when we were getting him changed. A few little grumbles as he was being manouvered back into his clothes, but what baby doesn’t prefer being naked and free as nature intended? And nature obviously intended for Henry to be a little water baby… eventually.

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There’s Something About Mozart

Henry’s nanny bought him over a new toy to play with. It’s a caterpillar that plays classical music; Mozart, Beethoven, Vivaldi and Bach are all included.

Now I’ve heard all the stories about playing classical music to a developing baby in the womb, and that it is said to increase the baby’s IQ (I don’t know how much truth there is in that) but I know one thing for sure, my baby loves it.

He sits and listens, transfixed until the music stops. The concentration on his face is amazing for a boy of five months. I’m sure it can’t hurt to expose him to the wonderful, cultured world that is classical music. And even if it doesn’t make him more intelligent, it certainly helps with development and his enjoyment! Music is good for the soul!

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Weigh In and Baby-Proofing

Henry was weighed again today, for the first time in five weeks, and his weight has jumped from 14lbs 10oz to 16lbs 4oz. He’s still following the 50th centile line exactly. He’s been so quick to pick up everything though, and I’m sure it won’t be long before he’s crawling. He can already roll over from his back to his front, and now from front to back. He does it repeatedly in one direction so he can pretty much move from one side of the rug to the other now. It’s scary how quickly he’s growing up. He not only holds his head up now, but supports his weight on his arms, in a cute ‘baby press up’.

We really have to start (and finish rather rapidly) baby-proofing our apartment. Just looking around now I can see hazards everywhere. An enormous amount of candles and ornaments, glassware and art supplies that need to moved and made safe. The kitchen cupboards need to be secured (curse open-plan living) and the clutter needs to disappear.

Now if I could just find the housework fairy then it would all be okay. I think I lost her in amongst the junk…

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Benefits of Blogging; Reading the Archives

I started this blog thinking that it would be quite a nice record of my son’s development and a documentation of our life. I knew that I would enjoy writing it, but I never thought that the archives of my blog would be a source of comfort for me. I was reading the blogs I wrote when we first brought Henry home and how much I struggled in those early days. I’m not saying it’s easy now, it will never be easy again, but it isn’t a struggle anymore and I have really learnt so much. If I could give any advice to new parents that are worried about their ability to parent, it would be this; don’t stress about every little thing, and don’t think it will be like that forever. Babies, like adults, have good and bad days, and even one bad week doesn’t mean the next week you won’t be walking around town in the sunshine with your baby cooing gently, playing with his hands and making you smile. It doesn’t get easier, but it gets better. And far more rewarding.

I wish I could tell the me of five months ago these things. I wouldn’t have felt so guilty for asking for help when I needed it, and I would have enjoyed it a lot more! And my little bundle of gorgeousness is thriving, and I’m sure he still would be, whether I worried so much or not.

There is a lesson to be learnt here. One of many I’ve discovered since undertaking the most eventful, exciting and beautiful journey of my life.

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Happy Easter!

Henry’s first easter, but far too young for any of the chocolate treats we are enjoying (yes, chocolate for breakfast)! His nanny bought him a lovely, little teddy with long arms that are perfect for Henry to hold onto, instead of an easter egg. Very thoughtful! He likes it a lot, and it’s nice and soft and fluffy, so Henry rubs his fingers on its fur and cuddles it. He’s grown up so fast, and does all these things that make me think he’s quickly becoming more a little boy and less a little baby.

He’s still my little chick though, and always will be! Even when he’s all grown up I will see him as he is now; all cuddly and snuggly and falling asleep in my arms like he did yesterday in a coffee shop. He makes me so proud, the little cutie.

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First Trip to the Zoo

For my birthday, my other half decided he would treat me and the little man to a day at the zoo. It was so lovely, doing something as a family, and Henry loved it. He was so interested in all the little animals, his favourite by far being the monkeys. They came right up to the glass, and Henry and the monkey were just staring at each other. It was so interesting for him, and he fell straight asleep after we left. He had worn himself out with all the new things to take in.

He got to see all sorts of animals; penguins, flamingos, beavers, otters, porcupines, mice, meerkats and lizards among other things. He also loves to watch other children running around and playing. It must be interesting for him, and important for him to know the world isn’t only full of adults!

There was also a sign on one of the enclosures saying ‘New Baby’ and it had details of a new baby monkey that was just four and a half months old. By coincidence, it was born on the same day as Henry. I had to take a picture.

I was thoroughly spoilt, with such nice gifts (including a huge Me To You bear from Henry) and lovely cards. We also went wedding ring shopping, and ordered our rings which is very exciting. I love doing things like that. And my partner cooked a delicious meal in the evening and a couple of friends came round. It was a very nice day indeed.

I never thought that I would be taking my son to the zoo for my 20th birthday, but it was so nice to do something we all enjoyed, and I’m sure Henry loved it, even if it was a little cold. I am rather lucky really. It makes me appreciate how much I have in my life!

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Addicted to the Boob

Henry’s been really good today, but tempting him with formula milk has been harder than I expected. I naively thought that the big hurdle would be getting him to drink from a beaker, as he refused the bottle from a very early age. After successfully drinking cooled boiled water from a beaker, I moved onto trying him with formula milk in the sterilised beaker. Yesterday, he started drinking it, frowned and then cried until I gave in and continued to breastfeed him. Today though, he has done better. He drunk just over three fluid ounces, which is a big difference, even though he frowned at me as if he didn’t like the taste. I’m sure he will get used to it though. It will make things so much easier for when I return to work.

I know that continuing to breastfeed while returning to work can be done, but it requires dedication to the cause, and I have been wanting to get him onto formula milk soon anyway.

I think it is a comfort thing as well as the taste, but I still plan to carry on first thing in the morning and last thing at night.

And he has been doing really well with his weaning. He had apple for breakfast this morning, and sweet potato for lunch. He’s learnt so quickly how to eat off a spoon and swallow solid foods. I’m really impressed at how easy that was, especially with all the advice floating around about needing to persist even when the baby doesn’t like a certain food, or pushes it all out of his mouth again. We didn’t really have any of that.

Clever Henry, I’m just so proud.