6 Months and Growing Strong!

Our little man had his 6 month check up today. 17 lb even and growing strong. He is 26.5 inches long and in the 38th percentile for weight and 50th for height. He fits perfectly in 9 month clothes (Carters & Osh Kosh brand, 6-12 month in Gap & Old Navy) and has been wearing them for about a month now. We are also in size 3 diapers. He sits supported in a high chair or leaning forward on his hands and rolls around like crazy to travel from place to place. We are getting close to sitting up completely on our own. He still doesn’t like solids but we are getting there.. we’ve also introduced a sippy cup with water and he is doing great with that! So proud of our strong and growing boy!!!

Here we are before and after shots.. sweet boy!

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Fall Family Photos

It’s officially fall! Which means hot Peppermint Mochas from Starbucks, tall boots, warm coats and fall family photos for our annual Christmas card! I had to take this opportunity to give a shout out to our long time friend and photographer Alea Moore. Kyle and I met Alea when we met each other – back on a mission trip to Haiti in 2010. Alea and her sweet husband A.P. were on that trip and that was the beginning of my friendship with Kyle and the eventual start to our relationship! So fun to think back on those sweet moments! Alea is incredibly talented! She captured our engagement pictures as well as our wedding back in 2011 and so it was about time we checked back in with her to get some updated photos for our growing family. Thanks Alea for continuing to capture the sweet moments and memories of our family through the years! We are so thankful for you! For a peek at our fall family photo shoot click here.

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Wonder

41x89JgXx4LI just finished the book Wonder by R.J. Palacio and loved it! Wonder is the story of a 5th grade boy with a facial deformity who after years of being homeschooled, starts at a regular school, Beecher Prep, for the first time. The book is told from the perspective of August, the main character, as well as several other people in his life. At first it was somewhat accidental that our book club decided to read this book, not realizing it was technically a 7th grade reading level book but WOW – I think the last few pages under the “Julian” chapter make this whole book well worth it. A tie in at the end that is completely unexpected. So if you want a quick read that is good for the soul I definitely recommend checking out Wonder.

Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Bites

dcssA chocoholic’s dream – dark chocolate with sea salt and a touch of whip cream in one (or two) amazing, little bites. Perfect for a party or just a light evening dessert. These things are amazing!

 

 

Ingredients:

  • 15 mini phyllo shells (1 package), thawed if frozen
  • 1/4 cup low fat milk
  • 1 tsp salted butter
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • a sprinkle of sea salt (per bite)
  • fat free whip cream

Instructions:

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  • Place phyllo shells on a sheet pan and bake until lightly crisp, about 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over high heat, heat milk and butter, stirring occasionally, until milk boils and butter melts. Reduce heat to low; stir in chocolate and vanilla extract until combined.
  • Let chocolate mixture cool slightly, about 2 to 3 minutes; evenly divide among cooked phyllo shells. Sprinkle tarts with sea salt; chill until filling sets, about 10 minutes. Top each tart with whipped cream before serving.

Original recipe available here.

The Order of Solids

There are so many different thoughts on which solids you should introduce to your baby first.. rice first because its non allergenic or oatmeal first because rice has no nutritional value. Fruits first so they like the taste, veggies first so they don’t get spoiled by the sweetness of fruit, both first and alternate between fruits and veggies.. but then you still have to decide which to start with. It’s a bit exhausting! Ultimately you just have to decide what you want to do and go with it. Give each food 5 days to make sure there are no allergies and then move on to the next, no matter what your little one will be just fine..

I eventually decided to start with oatmeal (our little one was a week away from his 6 month birthday when we gave him his first taste) and then alternate between fruits and veggies (orange and yellow veggies before green veggies.. last comes meat). For simplicity I also decided to try each for 1 week so I started the new food on the same day and wouldn’t lose track (I’ve got enough to keep up with these days).  If you decide to make your own baby food I found the book Sage Spoonfuls to be a helpful guide to teach you how to buy, prepare and store baby food.

So here’s our baby food list so far:

  1. Organic Oatmeal mixed with breastmilk served warm
  2. Banana – yellow, ripe with some brown spots – mashed and warmed
  3. Sweet Potato- firm – steamed & mixed with breast milk or formula served warm
  4. Apple- fresh red – steamed and pureed
  5. Avocado- even green color and give a little when squeezed – pureed
  6. Carrot – organic, orange, without cracks- steamed and pureed (The Favorite so far!)
  7. Peas – frozen- steamed and pureed
  8. Zucchini – organic, medium sized and even green in color  – steamed and pureed
  9. Pears – Bartlett or Anjou, slight soft – steamed and pureed (A Favorite!)
  10. Butternut squash – firm to touch and heavy for their size – roasted in oven for 45 min
  11. Blueberries – fresh, organic – steamed and pureed
  12. Broccoli- fresh -steamed and pureed

*Last updated January 21, 2015

Introducing Solids

Introducing solids has been a bit of a mini research project.. what to do first, second, third, for how long, how much, at what age. It’s a bit stressful. Here’s my recap on how we started solids..

Who: Our sweet boy and mom or dad. Our plan is to wait as long as we can before asking his teachers at daycare to start feeding him solids. I want to see what he eats, how long it takes him and how much. I’m not ready to turn over the process yet.

What: Starting with organic oatmeal before adding fruits and veggies. From what I can tell it doesn’t matter what order however there are recommended fruits and veggies for each age. We skipped rice because of the zero nutritional value associated with rice and honestly we are just ready to get this party started.

When: After he takes a full bottle we are giving him first solids after his first morning feeding (7 am). Once we need to add feedings (goal is 2-3 per day) we will probably try a mid evening feeding (5:30?) or I’ll send his food with him to daycare for after his 11am and 3pm feedings. He is way too sleepy at his 7pm feeding for anything but his bottle. Also we decided to wait until he was only 6 months old at the recommendation of our pediatrician.

Where: In his high chair in the kitchen- consistency matters.

Why: Cuz he needs to start learning textures and how to eat something other than milk! 🙂 (otherwise I think i’d prefer to skip the whole process!)

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So here we go..

  • Day 1: 1 tablespoon of oatmeal mixed with about 3 oz milk
    • This amount was based on the recommendation of the baby oatmeal box
    • This made WAY to much food- especially for his first meal which hardly any of it made it into his mouth because he cried the whole time (as noted by the picture to the right.)
    • Regroup and get ready for day 2.
  • Day 2: 1 teaspoon of oatmeal with enough milk to make it liquidy
    • Much more successful – no tears- still trying to figure things out!
    • Rewarding him with a little more from his bottle after the oatmeal
  • Day 3-6: 1 teaspoon of oatmeal with enough milk to make it liquidy
    • Still getting used to it… and still doesn’t really like it..and he still cries most of the time. Maybe he will like fruits and veggies better.. we can only hope!

* Pediatrician recommends 2-3 TBS cereal twice a day in addition to breastmilk or formula (up to 36 oz). Introduce one thing at a day every 5 days. Cereal first, fruits, yellow and orange veggies, green veggies then meats. At 6 months can increase to half to one jar which translates to 2-4 oz per day.

** Our boy continued to cry and refuse solids until day 9.. so 6 days of oatmeal and then 3 days of bananas and then he finally ate the bananas, without crying.. wow. What an accomplishment! We gave him 3oz of his bottle followed by bananas and then the remaining 3 oz of his bottle. So don’t worry if they don’t LOVE solids right away, if they scream and cry and act like you are doing the worst thing ever to them by feeing them solids- eventually, they will get it, and it will be worth it!

4 Hr Feeding Schedule

Our boy is growing up so fast! We’ve been on a 4 hour feeding schedule the last 3 weeks (22-25 weeks) and we are about to add solids tomorrow (I still can’t believe it!) As soon as I get used to one schedule its time to change it again. He’s such a growing boy.. I can’t wait for this first reaction to solids though.. should be pretty fun 🙂

So here is the 4 hr feeding schedule we did to bridge the transition and get ready for solids..

4 Hour Schedule (22-25 weeks)

  • 7:00 Wake him up and Eat – nurse about 12 minutes
    • usually a cat nap in the car on the way to work for about 20 minutes
    • 9:30- down for a nap, on his back, in a sleep sack with his paci
  • 11:00 Eat – 8 oz bottle*
    • 1:00 – he is usually ready for a nap earlier at this point (less wake time)
    • On his back, in a sleep sack with his paci – even at daycare
  • 3:00 Eat – 8 oz bottle
    • 4:45-5:15 – occasional nap in the car on the way home
    • 5:45 down for a nap regardless if he napped earlier in the car or not
  • 6:45 Bath, Bottle, Bed – usually another 8 oz bottle

Couple of notes:

  • We only send 8 oz bottles to daycare but he can usually eat more at that 11am feeding. At home I usually give him 9 oz. Recommended oz at his age is 32 oz (8oz 4x a day so that’s why I don’t send 9 oz every day- just a little too much milk).
  • Goal is 2 hours of wake time followed by 2 hours of nap time. Doesn’t always happen- especially driving to and from working and other things that happen during the day but its a good goal.
  • At 5.5 months (around 24 weeks) our little man started rolling over on his tummy and is sometimes choosing to sleep that way instead. However his favorite position is still on his back with his hands behind his head! hilarious!

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