Saturday, January 24, 2015

4 months

I'm starting to confuse myself here.  I feel like this should actually he his 3 month post since everything I'm writing about happened during his third month, leading up to his 4 month birthday.  Guess I'll just go with it.

It's so hard to believe Holden turned 4 months old today.  Time is flying by so fast that I feel like tomorrow I'm going to be watching him graduate high school. I love watching him grow, I just wish time would slow down a wee bit.

Oh boy, it seemed like we took one step forward, two steps back in this category for the first part of the month.  Holden started to stretch out sleep between bottles at night, then all of a sudden he was waking up three times a night.  We hit the mecca on January 14, when he slept 11 hours from 7 pm to 6 am.  He hasn't pulled off another night like that, but he is consistently sleeping until at least 4:30 am now, which is so much better than where we were for awhile there.

We had a very scary episode on the night of January 1st.  For whatever reason, I woke up and noticed that Holden was in distress.  He was completely silent but his little arms were flailing around like crazy.  I scooped him up quick and gave him a couple quick whacks on his back. He started gagging really hard and then started to breathe regularly again.  My best guess is that he was basically drowning in his spit-up.  I definitely feel like we had a guardian angel watching over us that night because if I wouldn't have woken up right then, I hate to think what would have happened.  After that night, we bought a Levana monitor for him to wear at night.  It will alert us if he does not have any movement for 15 seconds.  I have slept much better since he started wearing it and thankfully we have not had any more scares.

This is another area that things were a little wonky in this month.  When he was having his worst sleep, he was also wanting to eat 5 ounces every 2 hours during the day.  We decided to give rice cereal a try, as he was obviously not staying full enough, especially at night.  On January 14 (3 months, 3 weeks old), we tired rice cereal for the first time.  He did really well, but he wasn't quite sure what to think of what he getting.

We also tried a couple different formulas this month.  Early in the month, we tried soy formula to see if it would help clear up some of his stuffiness.  Holden was only on it for about a week though, as it seemed to give him acid reflux.  He would fuss every time just before he spit up so we put him back on his regular formula.  Just this past week we tried a formula that is made to reduce spit up.  He had been spitting up so much that we gave up on burp rags and just started using dish towels.  This formula didn't really help either, so Holden's doctor recommended that we try adding rice cereal to his formula to thicken it up a bit with the hopes he could keep it down.  So, tomorrow we'll be going back to his regular formula and start adding rice formula.

We tried putting bigger nipples on his bottle too to help the spit up (Dave read that this could help) and it helped for a day or two and then he was right back at it.

We were lucky with all the formula changes as Holden handled all of them like a champ.  We didn't have to do any mixing of old and new, he would just take a whole bottle of the new stuff without any trouble.

I've already had to pack away some of Holden's 3-6 month outfits.  He has a lot of 6-9 month outfits that he's been wearing.  He has received several 12 month winter outfits as gifts that I'm hoping he'll be able to wear yet this winter because he's not going to fit into them next winter at this rate.  He's still wearing a size 2 diaper.

Last summer I went to some rummage sales to stock up on baby clothes.  I didn't buy much past 6-9 months thinking that that would get me through until garage sales started again the following summer,  He's definitely going to outgrow everything I have before the garage sales start again though so I guess he's going to have a brand new wardrobe to wear for 9-12 month clothing.  He's happiest when he's naked though so maybe I won't have to buy too much.  ;o)

Well, other than having a stuffy nose most of the time, Holden has been very healthy (knock on wood).  I'm terrified he's going to get the flu or the measles now that they are going around our area.

He did develop a bit of a rash on the trunk of his body early this month.  We narrowed that down to a new sleep sack we'd been using (that was 100% polyester) and as soon as we quit using it the rash went away.

We went in for Holden's 4 month check up yesterday (January 23).  He weighed 17 lbs 12 oz (95th percentile), was 26 inches long (86th percentile), and his head was 17 inches around [76th percentile, which the nurse told us means he's so very smart ;o)].  He got another round of an oral vaccine and 3 shots.  He sure chewed us out when the shots were over but he's handled them much better than last time.  It took about 48 hours after his 2 month shots to get over being crabby but this time he's hardly been crabby at all in the first 24 hours after.

-Holden likes to suck on his thumb.  He's always been a little bit of a thumb sucker but he's been doing it even more over the past month.  Sometimes he sucks on his thumb, pointer finger, and middle finger all at the same time.

-He loves to splash in the bathtub.  We removed the sling from his tub this month and he has been so excited to sit in the water and splash around.
Yes, someday he will probably ask us why he had a hot pink bathtub.  The simple answer is that it was $10 cheaper than the blue one and I wasn't going to pay that big of a difference for a color. :o)
-Holden is finally interested in books.  I had tried to read to him several times prior to this month and he never had the patience to sit and look at/listen to the book.  This month he has taken quite an interest in books and his favorite book is Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss.

-He is so vocal now and likes to shriek and squeal when he's happy or really getting into telling us a story.  He also makes a funny noise that we call his elephant noise when he's getting into his stories - he takes a big breath and then blows it through his nose.
-Holden also likes to stick his tongue out and play with it by moving it around in all directions.  He likes to suck on his lips too; mostly his bottom lip but he will sometimes suck on the top too.
-Holden really likes to lie on his changing pad and tell stories, kick his legs, and squeal. This isn't new this month but I don't think I've written about it before.
-He likes to hang onto the dish towels that we use as burp clothes.  He whips them around and buries his face into them and squeals.  He likes them so much that we call them his friends. ;o)
-Holden has really taken an interest in toys this month too.  He loves his playmat and grabbing onto the various toys that dangle down.  He really likes to play with the activity cube we got him for Christmas, the huge stuffed puppy my brother gave him for Christmas, and his Sophie teether.

-Holden doesn't like to sit in his car seat for more than an hour.  This make trips to my parent's house not so fun as it's a two hour drive from our place to theirs.
- He doesn't like waking up from a nap in someone's arms.  He's usually pretty cranky if he wakes up and hasn't been put in his cradle.

-Holden hit another big milestone just two days before his 4 month birthday.  He figured out how to roll from his back to his tummy.  Last month he started rolling from his tummy to his back, and exactly a month later he started rolling the other way.  I was pretty excited when I saw him roll to his tummy.  As I cheered him on, he just looked at me like "What? I do this everyday." ;o)
-He got control of his head early on this month.  He's just so darn cute sitting in his Bumbo.

-He is starting to get ticklish in his thigh crease, armpits, and neck.  Sometimes you barely have to touch the area before he starts to squirm and laugh and other times he looks at you're crazy and is wondering what the heck you're doing to him.
-His first little dimples started to show this month.  He has a little dimple in his left cheek and one near his chin on the left side.  Oh, how I love his dimples!
-Holden has his first Christmases this month.  He got to celebrate with his Smith relatives on the 25th, Lannings on the 26, and we had our Christmas on the 27th.
gosh, I love his eyebrows :o)

Saturday, January 3, 2015

3 months

Holden had a slight improvement in this category over last month.  A few times we only had one wake up per night but most nights we still get up twice.  He still likes to be rocked to sleep at home (yay!) but he doesn't night like it at daycare.  Joy (our daycare provider) said that when she tries to rock him, he just arches his back and gets fussy.  So, she swaddles him and lays him down in the Rock N Play and he puts himself to sleep.  I was worried that he might start pulling this at home too but thankfully he still lets me rock him.
(a little blurry but I actually captured a smile!)

Holden eats 5 ounces every 2 1/2 to 3 hours.  We tried to cut back to 4 ounces to see if that would improve his spitting up (which started to get pretty yucky this month) but he wasn't having any of that.  So, we stuck with 5 ounces.

Well, I put the 0-3 month clothing away this month and pulled out the 3-6.  I think I may have waited a little too long to move up a size as several of the 3-6 month outfits are a little snug.  It was a little sad to put all those clothes away!  Holden also started wearing size 2 diapers this month.
(so happy at daycare)

This may be the last month that this is a category here.  Holden pretty much only cries when he's hungry and/or tired.

Well, that cold that we thought he had last month wasn't really a cold.  He's been congested ever since.  We went to see the doctor on December 12 and he said that sometimes babies are just congested.  Since it's not affecting his sleep or weight gain (had gained 2 pounds - 15 lbs 12 oz - since his check-up two weeks prior), he said it's nothing to worry about.  Otherwise, he's been healthy (knock on wood).

-Holden likes to lie on the ottoman and push with his feet until his head hangs off the end.  He's already becoming a little daredevil.
-He likes to blow raspberries and spit bubbles with his mouth.
-He really likes to watch the ceiling fan and looks for it when we are sitting in the rocking chair.
-He like to experiment with his voice and is making louder sounds.

-He doesn't like to smile when the camera is on him.  He'd, for the most part, just rather stare at it.  He's the same way when he's around more than just a couple people.

-Well the big milestone this month was rolling from his tummy to his back just two days before his 3 month birthday (December 22).
-The big "first" this month was his first time at daycare.  He spent two hours at daycare on December 1st, and then spent his first whole day there on December 8th.  He has transitioned to daycare very well, which has made it a lot easier on me.  Don't get me wrong...walking away from that daycare without him that first day tore my heart out.  I asked my co-workers why they didn't tell me that the first days at daycare were harder than labor & delivery. ;o)
-First Thanksgiving was spent at my parent's house

-Holden's first visit with Santa was December 5th.
-Holden attended his first church service on his 3 month birthday.  We attended the Christmas Eve candlelight service at the church in my hometown. He did such a good job of hanging out during the service, and actually slept through most of it.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

2 months

Holden started pulling out five hour sleep stretches after his six week growth spurt.  Then they started to drop down to four hours and then back to three.  He likes to be rocked to sleep.  I'm sure I've started a bad habit by rocking him all the time, but he's only going to be little once so I'm pretty ok with it.  He also lets out the best little belly laughs while he's sleeping and I'm so glad I don't miss those.

Holden maintained his good appetite this month.  He moved from 3 ounces bottles to 5 ounce bottles and continues to eat every 2 1/2 to 3 hours.  During his growth spurt from 6-7 weeks, it seemed like he was always hungry and would eat about every two hours.

By the time Holden reached his two month birthday, he had already outgrown a few 0-3 month outfits.  He outgrew one of his swaddles by about 6 weeks, and his little legs were scrunched up in his Halo swaddle by the end of his 8th week.

The crying improved so much this last month!  He did cry quite a bit during his growth spurt, but that's to be expected I suppose.  Otherwise, he pretty much only cried when hungry or tired. Hallelujah!!

At six weeks, Holden started the new trick of sticking out his lower lip to let us know when he wasn't happy.

Holden got his first cold this month.  He didn't have a runny nose but he sounded really congested.  He sounded the worst in the morning after getting up for the day.  He'd even cough a few times and learned how to clear his throat.

At his two month check-up, Holden weighed in at 13 lbs. 12 oz, (92nd percentile), was 23 1/4 inches long (66th percentile), and his head circumference was 16 1/4 inches (84th percentile).  Poor guy cried quite a bit during and after his three shots.  He did a good job of swallowing the oral vaccination though.

He's a strong little guy,  He gained quite a bit of head control over the month and rocks his tummy time.  This (blurry)picture was taken at seven weeks.

By the end of six weeks, Holden finally started to like his swing - when it's not swinging anyway.  He really prefers to sit it with just the seat vibration on.

He also likes to blow spit bubbles when he's just hanging out, so much so that he earned a new nickname of Bubbles from both David and me.

Some other likes include stretching out on the ottoman, listening to music, being naked, taking baths, putting his face in your armpit or crook of your arm while falling asleep/sleeping, and riding in the car.

He also likes to hang out with his daddy. :o)

Holden doesn't like having his coat put on, wearing hats, or being held like a baby when he's just hanging out (he thinks he's a big boy now and likes to sit up to look around).

- 1st Halloween

- 1st road trip on November 1st to meet his Great-Grandma Smith (25 days before her 102nd birthday)

- found his tongue around six weeks and loves to stick it out
- lots of cooing started around week seven
- some social smiles started in week four but they were much easier to come by starting in week five {unless the camera is on him....then most of the time he just likes to start at it ;o)}

Monthly Comparisons

Sunday, October 26, 2014

1 month

It's so hard to believe that a whole month has already past since Holden's birth day!  It seems like just yesterday he was born but it also feels like he's always been with us.

Holden was really pretty good to me his first month in this area with nighttime sleeping.  He would wake up every 2 1/2 to 3 hours to eat and fall back asleep pretty much as soon as he was finished eating, sometimes he'd be asleep before he was finished as he would drink the last of his bottle with eyes closed.  During the end of week 1 and into week 2 we were back in bed about 20 minutes after we got up.  I realized that he was refluxing after some bottles though so I started sitting up with him a half hour after he was finished to keep him in an upright position.  Even with that time factored in, the longest we're out of bed is an hour.

Daytime naps have ranged to little cat naps to five hours.  I wish he could pull off one of those five hour naps at night but so far we haven't been that lucky.

Well, this has been a frustrating area for me.  We went from trying to exclusively breastfeed to exclusively formula feeding in the span of Holden's first month.  As I learned, I just wasn't making enough milk to keep Holden full during his first week.  I tried to pump, and even with my best pumping sessions, I was only able to give Holden 1 one and a half ounce bottle per day.  As the days went on, I was only able to pump drops out during each session, so I gave up pumping altogether during week 4.  This is definitely not what I had planned/hoped for but I'm trying to see the positives (like not having to drag around a breast pump all the time) and am so thankful that there is an alternative like formula to keep him fed.

Trying to figure out formula has also been a little tricky.  He had been drinking Similac liquid supplement but his pediatrician told us to go ahead and pick a powder formula for him to start on.  He told us not to worry about mixing the old with the new as he was too little to have developed a taste preference.  Well, once we started on the new formula, things took a little turn.  He didn't tolerate the new formula very well.  He would scream after he ate and he went from not spitting up at all to huge spit ups every time he was burped.  The morning of day 2 of this, I called the doctor and we decided to mix the new formula with the old until his little tummy could handle the new stuff.  This made a huge difference and we're still doing this into month two.

During month one, Holden went from drinking one ounce at a feeding to three and a half ounces.

As mentioned in his four week post, Holden moved into 0-3 month clothing at the end of his first month.  A lot of things are still a little baggy or too long, but he does have a few outfits that fit just right.

This has been the hardest part of his first month.  Somewhere in the end of week 2, Holden started bouts of crying that we can't figure out a reason for.  I realize that babies just cry for no reason sometimes, but when it's lasting into hour just breaks my heart to listen to him scream and not be able to help him.  This always results in tears on my part too and feeling like I'm a crappy mom and have no idea what I'm doing.

At Holden's first doctor appointment, he was almost back up to his birth weight and got a good report from the doctor.  I would really like to know what his weight is at now but unfortunately we don't go back to see the doctor until month 2.  He has had a bit of a stuffy nose that I've been keeping an eye on but luckily it hasn't seemed to developed into a cold.

Holden really likes to lie on the ottoman or couch and stretch out, look around, and bicycle his legs (by himself, he's not a fan of me trying to help him).  He can spend about a half hour doing this until he's had enough.  He also likes to go for car rides with dad to calm down, going for walks (so thankful for a nice October!), and having his bottom patted while going to sleep.

So far, he's not really a big fan of the swing.  There's been a couple times where he's stayed in it longer than 10 minutes but otherwise he pretty much just yells at us when we put him in there.

Friday, October 24, 2014

4 weeks

-moved from newborn clothes to 0-3 (I know I put this for last week but I had it wrong)
-more vocal this week- he's starting to coo and has let out a couple little laughs while sleeping
-finally had his first real bath this week - his umbilical cord stump fell off around day 6-7 but it took quite awhile for his belly button to heal
-his baby acne really came out this week - hoping it doesn't stick around long

Friday, October 17, 2014

weeks 2 and 3

Well, the past couple weeks have flown by (hence the late post).  Here are a few things that have been happening.  

*Holden has his first check-up with Dr. Bien.  He was back up to 9 lbs.
*Went from drinking 1 oz. at each feeding to 2.5 oz. in one week.

*Went from drinking 2.5 oz. at each feeding to 3 oz.
*Started staying awake in longer stretches during the day.
*Moved into size 1 diapers this week.

And this is the problem with waiting to do the posts.....I can't remember much.  We're still having some ups and downs and days where I feel like I have no idea what the heck I'm doing. But, we're making it through and we're just as in love with him as ever.

A few nicknames he has "earned" in the first few weeks from me: Bubby, Bubs, Sweet Cheeks, Chubbers, Baby, and Baby Boy.  Dave pretty much just calls him Holden or Son.

mama update

I just wanted to write a few things down to help me remember what my first few weeks were like.

*I've realized that the one thing I would change from our hospital stay is that I wouldn't allow any visitors.  It's very hard to bond with your baby when you don't really get to hold him or spend one-on-one time with him his first day.  I think this is why it wasn't until the second night that all the emotions hit me....that's when I finally got to spend uninterrupted time with him.

*Recovery got remarkably easier as each week passed.  I could tell at the one week point that things weren't quite so sore, at two weeks I finally felt ready to take short walks, and by three weeks things were feeling pretty normal again.

*Hormones are a b*tch.  Holy cow.  I've cried more in the past three weeks than I think I've cried in the past three years combined.  Add in the sleep loss and I can pretty much cry about anything ....happy, sad, worried, etc.

*Lots of women told me that you forget about the pain of birth and I thought there was no way.  But, you really do forget about all the pain.  I told Dave that first night that Holden would definitely be our only child.  Now, I'm already talking about when we have our next one.

*Sleep loss does suck but there's really nothing like sitting in the middle of the night with your little one as he falls asleep in your arms (and cue hormones, getting teary eyed now).

*I lost all of my pregnancy weight plus another 14 pounds (total of 35 pounds) in the first two weeks after giving birth.  My thyroid medicine made my level drop way down after birth and I guess that makes the weight just fall right off.  I went in to have my level checked on October 10, and found out it was at 0.42.  At the beginning of my pregnancy, my level was at 3.2 and we worked to keep it around 2.5 during the rest of my pregnancy.

*Pumping has been a struggle for me.  My doctor prescribed me a medication that is suppose to help with milk supply but it gave me such bad diarrhea that sometimes I'd barely walk out of the bathroom before I'd have to go right back in.  So, no help there since I quit taking it after two days.  I'm now only able to pump about ten drops of milk out in a session so I'm about to the end of this journey.

*Almost all the swelling was gone around the three week mark.  I still have a little swelling left in my feet but I can get my regular shoes on again.

*David has been super amazing through all of this.  He's been my shoulder to cry on, added almost all my responsibilities to his own the first couple weeks, worked hard to take care of Holden and me, and been my voice of reason when I start to over analyze things.