Thursday, July 24, 2014

Comparisons: Ella and Me

Here's a comparison of Ella and me. Ella is older than I was but even though I take a million pictures of her on her tummy they are always from angles.
Here is one more similar in age but not quite the right angle and she's not looking up enough.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Sleep Training

6/30
Ella has been sleeping through the night and sleeping for 2 hours at naps but she doesn't fall asleep on her own. She would fall asleep eating all the time. So we decided to do some sleep training. Also, going to sleep only works if she's nursing. So if I was gone for any reason then Ella refuses to sleep and cries a lot.

We did Ferber's Sleep Training or sort of did it. You check in on the baby at intervals. There's a book and a million blogs to help with this. My favorite were random blogs I found of real people. I was addicted to reading them. (There were more but I'm lazy at linking them up again since it was weeks ago.)  Most were completely awful before the training. I didn't actually read the book though. I probably should have. Also most people only did this method when their kids wouldn't sleep through the night and were having difficulty falling asleep.
Above is a summary of when we put her down and when she fell asleep. Below are specific details.  (Dave said I should add a column when we started the bedtime routine because sometimes she eats for longer than others but I did not do that yet. I also don't have specific times for bedtime routine. I do know when she started eating but that's it.)

I always want to change just one thing at a time but it never seemed to work out. Also I hear if a baby does a new milestone then sleep is worse and she learned to crawl and go from lying to sitting during this time.

I almost didn't post this because of all the negative associations with sleep training. Even since we started doing it multiple people have shared links on facebook saying how awful it is. Then I decided to do it because I enjoyed reading other blogs so much. I'm afraid the anti-sleep trainers will thing this is awful. Then I'm also afraid the people who read a lot of books will think it's awful for not doing enough background research.  I also don't know how much it helped.  Some days she falls asleep. I feel like I have so much more time in the evening.  She's way more pleasant in the morning or when she wakes up from naps. This could be a coincidence since she's getting older. Sometimes she just plays in her crib and squeals in delight for a half hour without yelling loud enough to trigger the baby monitor. Since Ella has been sleeping through the night for months now, if she wakes up in the night, I do go to her because there is a reason for it.

I noticed a lot of other bloggers would post after less than a week and mention all the improvement. I think she bounces around.  I didn't see some magic improvement like so many bloggers showed.

Did you do any form of sleep training? What worked best for you/your baby? I know every baby is different and I am curious what worked for you. I'm even curious if something specifically didn't work.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

7.12


We didn't do much. We were going to go to the grocery store in the morning but Ella's nap messed that up. The landlord was here for about 4 hours fixing the toilet. That wasn't enough time to fix it.
We were trying to help Ella practice crawling but she didn't want to do that and just wanted to stand.
I fed Ella new baby food. She ate the entire pouch. She loved it. That must be because it's from her kitchen. This was her first pouch since she could suck from a straw. She was able to suck it out. Much less mess.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Ella 7 Month Update

Stats:
  • Weight: 16 lb 14.5 oz  - 52nd percentile 
  • Height: 28.75" - 99.3rd percentile  (This is only .25 taller than last month but sometimes I measure her and get an inch shorter. She's difficult to measure)
  • Head Circumference: 16.7 inches - 38rd percentile
  • Diapers: Size 2 and Size 3 (We use size 3 during the day since I like the stripe and the rest of our size 2s don't have a stripe indicator so we use those at night)
  • Clothing: Disney 6-9 month (3-6 mo still fit over size 2 diapers but aren't long enough over the size 3 diapers), Spasilk 9 months, Steelers 6-9 month, (Leveret 6-12 month onesie is too short but I never tried the 12-18 mo ones yet).  Carter's 9 month dresses. I've put her in a few 12 mo things just because I have them. They are a bit wide though. Sometimes the neckline is far too large on the tank top type dresses. 
She's barely gained this month. Actually most stats are pretty much the same. Maybe she'll level off and not seem like a giant anymore. Moms at mom group continuously tell me how she's the tallest baby they have seen.
Sleep
Ella has been sleeping through the night again. She only had a couple nights where she woke up in the middle. She napped better until Dave went back to work after 2 weeks off and then started refusing to nap and only taking short naps again. When she naps well, she's taking 2-3 naps a day. Glance at but don't analyze the picture above. All the gray is when she slept. Notice how inconsistent during the day.

Eating
She is now nursing between 1 and 3 hours a day. She continues to have pumped milk a few times a week.  Mostly when we leave the house but sometimes at home when she's just refusing to nurse.  This reduced time is not reduced time for feedings though since I'm giving her baby food 1-2 times a day. She eats half of the 3.5 oz or half of the 4 oz foods at a time except once when she ate all 3.5 oz. Sometimes she has puffs or those lil' crunchies after she had her puree. At restaurants we give her a lot of the puffs and lil' crunchies to keep her occupied. When Ella's arm is not swaddled and she's nursing, she's flailing it around the entire time. It's quite annoying. She sticks her hand in my mouth a lot. I try to 1 arm swaddle her just so the upper arm is swaddled. It's really hard to nurse with an arm moving the way it does. 
Sample Schedule:
She still doesn't have a specific nap time or food time yet. It is so hard to plan anything. She might stay up consistently for 2-3 hours between naps but her wake-up  time varies by 2 hours so then every shifts by that much.  Also naps can range from 1-3 hours long.  
Basically she sleeps for a long period of time starting at close to 9:00 PM. She sleeps until about 6:30 (but it also ranges from 5:30-7:30.  Then she says awake for 1-2 hours playing and chilling with Dave. Then she goes to sleep for maybe an hour.
She then will be awake and play for about two hours. This time has been getting longer throughout the month. She eats after she wakes up most of the time and before she goes to sleep again. Throughout the day her naps range from 40 minutes to 3 hours but are probably closer to an hour and a half.  She is up for more than 2 hours at a time pretty much every time she is awake. But a lot of the time she's awake for 3 hours. Sometimes for 4 or 5. Sometimes she plays and is pleasant when awake. Other times she's so fussy and won't let me put her down to play. She might also seem tired but she sure won't go to sleep.  At 8:00 at the latest, I start feeding her to get her to eat then go to sleep. (This shifted from 8:30 partway through the month.)  Her bedtime routine involves Dave swaddling her and then taking her around the room/house to try to find me to nurse. She sees me and gets all excited when she sees me. If I swaddle her and walk her to the chair it's just not the same. I used to always be in the chair and she'd look over at the first spot Dave would stop to ask her if I was (in the closet).  So now I go to the bedroom or bathroom or office just to let their game keep going. 

Special Moments:
On June 23, I tried to teach Ella to drink from a straw. I think she learned but I didn't have a specific straw cup for her to keep using.
On June 28, we started to try to get her to fall asleep on her own.
On June 29, Ella sat in her first high chair at a restaurant and did so well.
On July 2, she drank from an adult plastic cup with a straw. She loved it even though she'd choke on the water here or there.
On July 3, she had her first real banana. On July 4, she had her first mango and avocado.
On July 5, she started to learn to go from lying to sitting on me (on the boppy) so she kept doing it over and over and continued this throughout the month.
On July 6, she had her first restaurant booster seat (with a strap).
On July 10, she started crawling (or maybe it was earlier but I first noted it on the 10th).
On July 12, Dave and I sat on the floor to get her to practice crawling and help her. Ever since then she sure moves around a lot. She just needed some guidance.  Dave also started to teach her to pull her arms out when undressing her and she does it and continued to do it for the most part.
On July 15, she said "dada" to Dave 3 times while I was in the other room. I heard her say it a few times since. We ran out of size 2 diapers with the stripe indicator so we started using the size 3 diapers.  She was seated and I had my leg blocking her off so she couldn't get to Poly and she stood up using my leg.  About a half hour later she was lying down and  I was trying to fix her cup and next thing I know, she's sitting up and untying my shoe. I still have not seen her do this.
On July 18, she thought Dave was home (and so did I) and she rotated on the floor to face her bedroom door and said "dada" but Dave was still at work!

I really thought Ella would have a tooth poking through because it is so close. The gums looked a little white but I don't think it's a tooth.

Development:
When Dave holds Ella, he will just hold her so she sits on his arm and then she holds on. He can lean forward and she holds on. I find it pretty impressive.
Ella has started pinching with her fingers to pick things up instead of just using her palm to pick things up but she doesn't always pinch. It's a work in progress.
Ella does an army crawl this month and gets around pretty good.  Sometimes she gets her butt up and moves but her chest is still on the ground.
She discovered Poly and likes to "chase" her. I will hold her by the armpits or hands and she will run after Poly. She has had many kinds of baby food now. She has also had banana, cucumber, avocado, mango, and toast.
She sits and plays for over a half hour at a time this month. She can even reach for toys and not fall over (unless they are really far away)/
She still rolls multiple times in a row and changes her angle to get to something.
She puts everything in her mouth. 
She grabs everything instead of just touching it. 
She waved bye a few times but really it was rare. She has started lifting her arm up a lot more so she's close
She kisses and hugs me all the time.
She started helping us dress or undress her. We tell her to help get her arm out and she does. She has some trouble helping get her arm in her long sleeve night gown though. Her thumb catches sometimes.  We also ask her to help get her arms in the car seat and strollers and she does. 
Ella finally turns when you say her name consistently. Before she might do it here or there but mainly ignored us. Now she's much better.
She enjoys peek-a-boo a lot more. She sort of did some last month but this month she's loving it. She also throws blankets over her own head then gets excited when she gets out. (I say peek-a-boo when she gets out too.)
Other Tidbits:
Likes
She still likes to play a lot! 
She loves to army crawl around. She likes being more mobile. (I sort of got a video.)
She especially likes if she crosses a barrier like getting into the hallway. Then she giggles like she knows something is up.
She loves it when she's swaddled (even if it is the 1 arm swaddle or 0 arm swaddle).
She gets so excited when she's on her changing table about to be swaddled. She knows food is next and she's super excited. 
She likes to stand with support.
She likes to sit by herself.
She likes to be held when she wants to.
She likes to talk and smile at us. 
She likes to watch TV.
She likes to play AND watch TV.
She likes to look at her mobile. She just loves those planets. She likes to reach and touch them if we are holding her.
She likes when Dave makes her fly. (She doesn't love it as much when I do it.)
She loves to roll over to get from point a to point b. She rolls 10 ft across a room.
She loves to squeal with delight. These squeals have been getting louder too.
She likes to kick those feet when she's lying on the ground.
She loves to grab everything including my face. 
She likes to put everything in her mouth.
She loves to pull my hair. 
She likes the page in The Very Hungry Caterpillar that shows all the different food he ate.
She likes to scoot around to get close to Poly to pull at her feet or pull her fur.
She loves when you get out tylenol. She tries to help get that syringe in her mouth. 
She likes to laugh.
She likes to eat actual food.
She likes to swing. She likes to be thrown around. I think she likes all things that are like a dare devil.
Dislikes
She doesn't like to nurse if I'm talking or if anything is going on. 
She doesn't want to nurse during the day without being swaddled if she wants to fall asleep next.
She doesn't want to fall asleep in the car and she protests and cries for a bit. e.
She doesn't like to be anywhere she doesn't want to be. She could be happy on the floor playing then change her mind and you better pick her up or she's crying.
She now hates staying still on the changing table. She rolls over. She squirms about.
She hates to be left alone without a warning that I'm just going to the other room quickly for something. (With a warning she is fine.)
She hates to wake-up to a person that is not me.
She won't go to sleep without nursing first if we are home. (Ask Dave how pleasant this was when I had surgery.)


Fun Facts
Longest time sleeping: 11 hours 30 minutes  
Days with a sleep greater than 5 hours: 28 
Diapers used (from July 1-19): 8.6 per day (decrease from last month by 3!)
Time spent nursing (from July 1-19): 96 minutes (1:36) per day (decrease from last month)
Feeding average per day (from July 1-19): 1.5 oz (decrease from last month)
Time spent sleeping (from July 1-19): 13.8 hours per day  (increase from last month)

Favorite Toys
Blocks
Walker
Dragonfly
Sophia the Giraffe (teether)
Books (I count them as toys)
Exersaucer

Favorite Songs
All of Me
Happy
Dave was getting Ella to smile and apparently that made me make weird faces!
My Update
I made it to my pre-pregnancy weight this month. A few more pairs of old pants and old shorts fit again, but many still do not. I had neck surgery so exercise was restricted again for half the month and even though I wasn't restricted, it still held me back the rest of the month. My weight also pops a little above pre-pregnancy weight.

I feel like there is so much more. She's always changing but I just can't think of it now sitting here. I need to learn to write these as the month goes on.

7.11

 Ella woke up at 7. I fed her and we played with Dave and she went down for her first nap at 8:45. I went back to sleep at this time too. I didn't fall asleep right away. Hearing her on the monitor woke me up  at 10:25. I looked at the app and she had been up since around 10 just chilling in her crib.  I enjoyed my nap.
I fed her then put her to play on the floor where Dave would play with her/play his video games. I loaded up the car with recycling and broke down the boxes. At 11:25, I was done with that. I can't believe it took so long.  I tried to feed Ella quickly then we left. We went to recycling and with a car full of bottles we got $25 for it. I hate the CRV.  It's so much effort for so little. It's been over 6 months since we took bottles to recycling.
 Then we went to Chick-Fil-A. Something was going on there. I didn't quite figure it out. There was a person in a huge cow costume. The cow never came near our row so I don't know how Ella would have reacted. Ella enjoyed her little veggie sticks and puffs. She had fun while we were eating. She made a mess though.
 We went to Target next. It was in the same plaza so Dave walked over with her and I drove. Dave beat me!  We had Ella sitting in the stroller but after a few minutes she was fussy. She was overdue for a nap so I went and got her stroller.  She made it in the stroller until we were almost done and we were browsing and looking at all kinds of stuff. I took her to the car to nurse while Dave shopped in the last couple rows then paid. She was done nursing about 30 seconds before Dave got to the car.  She fell asleep on the way home.

After we were home, I emptied every garbage in the house and swiffered the floors. Cleaning sure took longer than I thought and it always done. Then it was 3:20 and I decided to play on my computer a little.  Shortly after Dave and I decided to watch TV. We get a minute into the show and I realize she's awake.  She watched it with us. She played on the floor the entire time.

I fed her baby food puree. She was messy so I figured we might as well give her a bath right after. She's such a big girl now. She has been using the bigger size of the tub for a few weeks now but she really sat well herself this time. She also splashed and played more than she had been.  Right after the bath, Dave was trimming her nails. On her last nail, he got some of her skin again. She didn't even cry but it bled a little. I kept pressure on it and Dave sang to her (while he played Minecraft).  Then it was close to 7 so I thought she might want to eat and take her normal 10 min 7 PM nap. She did! She actually napped about 20 minutes.  Then we ate dinner and watched a TV show. We just hung out.  She sat on my lap for most of dinner since she was unhappy alone on the floor.  I gave her some finger foods, veggie munchies, for her to pick up and eat. She did eat a bunch but also dropped a lot on the floor.
I thought she was tired but she didn't really want to eat. She didn't eat nearly enough so I couldn't put her to sleep.  After some hanging out time and playing her song for her she ate here or there enough to go to sleep near 10 PM.  Then Dave and I watched TV in the Living Room before going into bed where I blogged and he watched some Bacon Donut on Twitch TV.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

5.27


Ella wanted my shoe. I was about to put it on.
I put Ella in the bouncer while I did some laundry.
 Ella likes to touch the baby in the mirror.
Ella was signing my mom's Mother's Day card. She then wrinkled it up and tried to eat it. I glued it in the card anyway.
I'm getting a kiss.

Friday, July 18, 2014

7.17

It was such a challenging day. I was so tired. Ella had shorter naps than normal so I didn't get things done. She was fussy the second half of the day probably from her lack of sleep. She woke up early initially and I think it was from Dave's power supply making a high pitched squeal from the office. It was in the office closet which is a wall and about 2 ft from her head.  I wonder how long that thing was squealing though. I did manage to do 2 loads of laundry which isn't that easy when the dryer takes about 2 hour so it takes up so much of the day.

I went and bought an exersaucer. It wasn't the exact one I wanted but it was close enough and was still available so I got it. It was over a 30 minute drive to get it though. Ella was good in the car. She slept on the way there for part of it but when I was putting the exersaucer in the car, she woke up. She was still super pleasant on the way home. Too bad I just didn't keep driving.  Ella ended up making us miss going to google for dinner. She was just too fussy that I wouldn't risk it.

I donated some frozen pumped breast milk to a mom from mom group. I got out 2 containers of packages I had in the freezer. Of course I couldn't just give it away before documenting the ounces. I didn't have time to add it before giving it away but at least wrote it down. Ella cried sitting on the floor in the minute I took writing it. She just wasn't happen by this point.  So most bags were labeled to the whole ounce but might have had slightly more. One bag said 5+ oz. A couple were to the .25 or .5 or .4. So after I added up all the numbers it came to 99.9 which was so weird.  I still have a ton in the freezer.  I think I gave her half. I didn't want it getting old or to have to dump it because of that. I tend to dump an oz here or there from unfinished sippy cups and I don't even like to do that. I looked into donating it but you have to have an interview and blood work and I thought some might get old in that time. I'm glad I found someone to use it. Now I have some freezer space again.  Initially bags might have only had 2-3 oz in them. Now bags have 6 or so oz to them.

We tried to start Ella's bed time early but that didn't work. She was just beyond tired.  It was an exhausting day. I don't know how Dave tricked me into staying up past midnight.
 I told Ella to play in her play area while I was pumping. She got the bright idea to make a break for it since I didn't close off the opening. It's easier to walk in without stepping over. Poly kept an eye on her.


Here's when I say Poly is begging to just have her fur or tail pulled.
I called Poly away but Ella noticed her anyway.

Ella loves drinking. Sometimes she gets confused and lies on her back and tries to drink from the straw. Or she's on her stomach trying to get the sippy cup to work.
Ella sure gets around



Thursday, July 17, 2014

Citrus Lane July 2014

We got our third Citrus Lane box. You can also read about the other boxes. The June box was way better.  I even think the May box was better. I will update this if I end up liking the July box. I feel like Ella is more advanced than this box. If she was younger it might be better. I didn't already own anything from this box though. I don't really think this is much of a review as it is just showing you what's in the box. Maybe I should wait a few weeks to post in the future to see how Ella likes everything. (For reference, we got this box 4 days before Ella turns 7 months old.)

Here's the descriptions of everything and pricing if buying each item.
Issie Security Blanket from Aden + Anais - $9.98 (but you would buy a 2 pack for 19.95)
Pack N Go Mini Mobile from Tiny Love - $12.95
Feeding Spoon from Oogaa - $6.99 + 1.99 shipping  (5.99 on oogaa + $5.00 shipping)
Pur-Protect SPF 30 from PurLisse (.5 oz) - $6.33 ($21.54 for 1.7 oz or $55 from purlisse site and I can't find the sample size price)
coupon code for free shipping

The total is $38.24

As a reminder the box cost me $17.76.

Everything in the box seems so expensive to me. Perhaps it seems that way because I didn't like it. Ella has a ton of spoons already but she might like these. I'm not sure we'll even use the mobile but I will try to figure it out. I do wear sunscreen and have to wear it practically all the time for the next 6 months because of my neck but I tend to wear a higher SPF. I also have a small travel size of sunscreen already in the diaper bag. I will put this one in my purse. Sometimes I just put 1 diaper and wipes in my purse so having sunscreen there might be good. Ella might like the hold the little blanket in the car but I'm not even really sure. I think that blanket might end up being the best thing in the box but I'm not sure.

I notice I buy Ella toys a little before she is ready for them since you don't know when you will get to the store and you don't know when she will start liking it. I wonder if I would have said Ella's birthday was a month or two earlier if we'd end up with the same things. I tried to google but since the July box only came to us yesterday and some people's haven't even arrived yet, there are on posts about it yet.

What do you think of services like Citrus Lane? I feel like they are popping up for everything. I have been debating Stitch Fix for me but haven't fully decided.

After thinking about this box and the previous boxes, I logged into citrus lane and changed her birthday to 1 month earlier. Maybe the box will seem more age appropriate. I'd rather have things a month early versus too late.

Photo of the Day: 6.13.13 Expanding

I always tell people that I expand when I eat. I used to talk about it more and haven't lately. Well today I found a collage I made last year. I was almost 12 weeks pregnant here. I laughed when I opened the picture.

I had forced Dave to take my picture before and after eating.

Dave's comment on google+ is funny. It just keeps making me laugh.
I think you ate too much, tubby.
I've reread it a few times over the past hour and it cracks me up each time. Also I can't get over this picture. Proof I really do expand.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

5.30

Again these pictures are slightly out of order. I can't ever get them in the right order because I can't decipher camera times. This is really bothering me.

Mike was always working from the recliner and Ella was often helping.


Ella loved this Exersaucer. It had so many fun toys.




Ella is wearing my shoe!
just chilling

Ella liked Mike. She liked when he held her. He held her a lot but usually he did that when I was doing something else so there won't be that many pictures from the week.

We went to Brick House for lunch. It was more of a late lunch.  Ella didn't like her carrier. I also was not a fan of the high chair up-side-down. Ella got cranky so my dad walked her around. A table of ladies even called him over to talk to Ella. It was a nice diet for my dad. Instead of eating more pizza he walked around with Ella.

I got a pepperoni roll. I wasn't a big fan. It was very greasy and really cheesy.

My dad held Ella like he used to hold us. He also moved his arms so her head was close to the ground. My mom got mad about it. We all remember him doing that to us but I don't know if she got mad back then.

I tried to hold Ella like this and move her all around but my arms were so weak.

Ella not only loved the Exersaucer with how it should be used but she loved to stand on the outside of it.
I discovered she would stand herself. She played and stood. I was so impressed. I made Mike take this picture for proof. (As the week went on she did it more and more that it didn't even seem impressive by the end. I really wish we had an Exersaucer at home. The jumperoo doesn't accommodate her standing like this.)

My dad enjoyed feeding Ella and it sure looks looks like Ella enjoyed it too.
Ella spent a lot of time chilling out all over the floor. Usually someone was chilling with her. She enjoyed all the attention.

We did a hangout with Dave.

I know I slept horribly until about 6 AM. My schedule was off. It was also challenging to sleep in the same room as Ella. Ella was up a few times in the night. To be fair she's not used to the time zone.  There was probably a lot more too. For example in the morning I was holding Ella at the kitchen table and she pooped all over me. Also in the evening we tried to go to JCP and they closed 2 minutes earlier. Then we tried to go to Sam's Club and they were closed.  Then we went to Kohl's. Then we tried to go to the Bradley's to crash a yard party but after about 2 hours in a car Ella started crying so we drove right past their house and didn't crash. Ella just wanted some food and to go to sleep. I'm shocked she even lasted that long in the car.  (When we went to Kohl's, my mom stayed in the car with Ella.)