Sunday, May 22, 2016

Life around here lately, 2

Spring weather is fickle in the Pacific Northwest, apparently. We have had a lot of cool, gray days the past couple of weeks!! Fortunately, it's still warm enough to go outside for a walk or a ride on the swing, but we can't play in our swimsuits regularly quite yet. 

Lately we've been visiting friends, watering our flowers, looking at snails on the tree out front, and missing Joel, who has had four track meets in the past three weeks! It's so nice that summer is almost here, with his month of vacation and shorter work hours! :) 

We had the best time with Grandmom and Granddad when they visited us! Having two extra sets of hands made me more adventurous to try some things with the kids, including a trip to Pike Place Market in Seattle and a short local hike. 

The kids are struggling with sleep and schedules lately. Charlotte still needs a nap but then she plays in her bed for 1-2 hours after we put her to bed at night. Asher has been napping poorly AND waking up a extra time at night. I'm hoping it's just a big developmental leap, and then he will be back to sleeping a bit better. In the meantime, I want to rip my hair out! :) 

It's really fun to watch Asher and Charlotte learn to play together. Sometimes I leave them in a room while I go do something, and when I come back I quietly peek around the corner to see how they interact. Asher ADORES his big sister, and most of the time, she loves him so much and is really sweet with him! Heart melting, these two! 

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Asher eats

Do you guys like Instagram as much as I do? I seriously love it! It's so fun for me to scroll back through the photos I've posted over the last year or so... My kids changing before my eyes, memories of mundane days gone by... 

Anyway, I use #ashereats on my Instagram account to document some of the things we are feeding our boy these days. It's so cute to see him eating his dinner with the family like a cool, big guy. 

BLW (baby led weaning) has been so great this time around! The gagging doesn't startle me very much because I'm confident that he will work out whatever food he can't swallow. I can't believe how nice it is to eat dinner with my hands free. 

Who am I kidding? I have a toddler-- my hands aren't really free! BUT by giving Asher bits and pieces of whatever we are eating, there's no spooning mush into his mouth. I can eat dinner with my own two hands and help Charlotte and (sometimes) chat with Joel, all while Asher happily gnaws on his own food. 

Asher currently has 1.5 teeth, so he isn't ripping things apart fully, but we find bits in his diaper so I feel confident he is getting some good nutrients. We don't have any allergies in our family so I haven't felt the need to wait in between trying foods. 

Here are some things he's been eating lately (sorry, Dad, I know you think these posts are boring with a capital B!).

Steamed broccoli, steamed green beans, steamed baby carrots, steamed zucchini (he was not interested at all!), cucumber slices, peas, raw spinach (gagged and didn't like it), Apple, mandarin slice, pear slice, avocado, roasted asparagus, roasted potatoes, baked sweet potatoes, Cheerios, rotini with meat sauce, rotini with pesto, cheddar cheese stick, bbq chicken, roasted chicken, turkey burger strip, hamburger strip, pork carnitas, jasmine rice, and baked French fries. 

When I serve him meat, I give it in a chunk about the size of my thumb. That way he can grab hold and suck the juices out; sometimes he gnaws off a piece, too. He LOVES chicken, pork, and beef. He's way more into meat than I remember Charlotte being. She was all about the fruit; Asher doesn't seem to be quite as enthused as she was. Anyway, it's fun to notice differences between the two :) 

[One thing I want to point out is that Asher is always sitting fully upright when we give him solid food. I think this is specifically important in regards to ensuring that a baby's gag reflex is activated... Sometimes high chairs recline, but that's not safe when babies are eating solids this way.]

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Asher: 7 months

My baby is huge! Seriously! I can't believe it! Not only is he very big for his age, in weight and height, he is growing and developing so quickly that I can hardly blink and he's changed before my eyes!

Asher boy, you are the sweetest babe and I love you so much.

Growth/development: as of last month, Asher weighed 18.5 pounds and was 29.5 inches long. He's bigger than that, now, of course. I would guess maybe 19.5 pounds...? In terms of percentile, he is in the 95th for weight and off the charts for height. Big boy! 

Asher wears some 9 month clothing, but 12 month clothes fit him better, especially with a cloth diaper. He is almost too big for size 3 disposable diapers, and should wear a 4 during the day soon. Crazily, Charlotte  wears size 4 diapers, too!! Two kids in the same size diaper-- my life is so bizarre. 

He mastered sitting for long periods of time this month, and can turn in circles in his belly. He also got a tooth! And started sleeping in a real crib (not a pack N play!!). 

Schedule/ sleep: Naps were good this month! He transitioned to the crib with no problems... didn't even seem to notice a difference. He consistently takes three naps, with the last one being pretty short (maybe 35-50 minutes), except on Sundays when he is so worn out after playing in the nursery at church that he sleeps for a long time and then isn't tired enough to nap again before bedtime. Ha! 

He goes to bed between 6:45 and 7:15 pm. He wakes up at least once at night, usually between 2 and 3 am. Sometimes he wakes up before that, but if I'm feeling feisty, I go in and tell him it's a rest time, and let him cry for a few minutes before he falls back to sleep. Mostly, though, I don't feel feisty at night. I feel too tired to listen to him cry, so I snuggle up in the chair in his room and close my eyes while he nurses and falls back to sleep. Then I stumble drowsily back to bed and instantly fall asleep. :) Charlotte was sleeping 12 hours straight at this age, but he isn't Charlotte. And I'm not the same momma I was two years ago. And that's fine. 

Asher likes: Charlotte. And Momma. And Dad. And strangers who smile at him in passing. And anyone who makes eye contact for a single second. :) People comment on how happy Asher is, and they are right. He is so happy!! And sweet, and snuggly, and vocal! 

Asher also likes eating real food at dinner, and playing with things that aren't toys (water bottles, spatulas, cups, keys, etc.). He puts everything in his mouth. He loves to be outside, and to swing on the swing, and to ride in the stroller. He loves nursing, though I noticed he wasn't that thrilled with it when that first tooth was popping through. 

Asher doesn't like: being alone, watching us leave the room, and drinking from a bottle (BUT!! I may have figured out something related to that issue. For some reason, I decided to taste some milk that I had pumped and stored in the fridge... It was terrible!! After a bit of research, I think my breastmilk has excess lipase activity which causes it to get a really bad taste after being stored, even though it hasn't technically gone bad or spoiled. I'm going to try a couple of things to see if I can deal with that, then try a bottle again. We shall see!).