Whew – I am behind! I’m telling you, life as a working mom of a 4 month old is anything but boring. We are 90 to nothing all . the . time. We wake up, Whitlee eats, I put her back to sleep, get ready for work, get her stuff ready for daycare or grandparent’s house, do drop off twice a week (daddy has the other two days a week), go to work, pick Whitlee up after work, try to squeeze in some laundry, some dinner, a workout sometimes, LOTS of playtime, bath time, and do it all over again. And just in the week of her 4 month birthday, we had a birthday party for Nolan’s pawpaw, (the oldest Hillin to date, I think is what they said), a first birthday party for our friend’s little boy, working on house plans for hopefully building later this year, Whitlee’s 4 month appointment, opening ceremonies of T-Ball (had to go watch our best friends little girl and our nephew) and unfortunately a funeral. (One of Nolan’s close friends died in a car accident. So so sad.) Needless to say, we have been stretched very thin. If it weren’t for Instagram, people would probably wonder if we’re alive sometimes! Nolan and I both ended up with whatever landed Whitlee in the hospital, so trying to get all three of us well and not coughing our heads off has delayed this post even more! I think we are finally all on the mend, though.
So on to the 4 month post. Whitlee turned 4 months old on Wednesday, March 25th. I did manage to take her 4 month pictures on the correct day and we had her 4 month appointment the day after, so at least this information is accurate, even if it’s a couple of weeks late!
Our girl weighed 11 lbs 15 oz (I’ll call it 12 lbs) and is 24” long. The pediatrician said she is AMAZED at her growth and skills. Her growth chart goes at a nice little angle from birth to 2 months and then from 2 months to 4 months, it’s like a STEEP incline. Yay for growing!! She’s now in the 10th percentile for her weight and 40th percentile for her length. (remember those long legs that were always kicking me!)
Whitlee is still eating 4 oz every 4 hours during the day now and has one bigger bottle of 5/6 oz before bed about 9/10 PM . We’re still going strong on Enfamil Gentlease and she seems to like it pretty well. We’re still mixing to 22 calories. She’s never been a spitter but recently started spitting up a little and we also went through a little spell where she was refusing to eat very much at a time. The pediatrician said she’s caught up enough now that we don’t have to force feed her – she’ll eat when she’s hungry. We’re still on a “schedule” of 4 ounces every 4 hours, but it’s a little less severe now. Sometimes she’ll eat the whole bottle, sometimes she’ll only eat 3. We don’t push it too hard anymore. She said about the spitting up that if she’s not fussing when she does it, then nothing to worry about. It’s an odd feeling to go from the NICU environment where they absolutely H A V E to eat everything or they put it down their feeding tube, to being able to relax a little about it.
Also we’ve decided that we’re going to do something called Baby Led Weaning at 6 months (loosely 6 months, maybe older; we’re watching for the correct signs of readiness). You can read more about it here. The basic concept is pureed baby food teaches babies to swallow before they learn to chew. With baby led weaning, you give them bite sized solid food that they can pick up on their own and allow them to feed themselves, and they learn to chew before they ever think about swallowing. You skip right over the weird flavored baby food (I mean, the “turkey and dressing” is the furthest thing from turkey and dressing ever) and allow them to experience different taste and textures, as well as independence right from the beginning. We’ll probably start with avocado, sweet potatoes, steamed carrots, and steamed apples, all cut into French fry shapes. Once she’s mastered chewing and then swallowing, we’ll move onto more advanced food. When she fully gets the hang of it, she’ll pretty much eat some form of what we’re eating. They say you’d be surprised how well a 6 month old can gum food well enough to be perfectly safe to eat. We will continue her normal bottles at 22 calories as well. We’ve also decided against rice cereal at any point unless the spitting up gets out of control. I’ve done enough research (and talked to her pediatrician) and there just isn’t enough nutritional value for me to see the purpose. Sure, if she needed the extra thickness to help keep formula down, that is a 100% legitimate reason, but she’s getting PLENTY of nutrition and calories from formula alone. Sorry, that’s the end of my “know it all momma” spiel. I think everyone’s situations and babies are different and you should do what you feel is right for your family and your babies. Nolan and I are definitely on board with BLW.
Whitlee normally goes to bed about 9:00/9:30 and she sleeps in her crib at that point. We’re still swaddling, but I’m getting more and more anxious about it. I feel like we need to wean her, but every time we try, she’s insanely upset and wont sleep at all. She sleeps in her crib until about 2/3 AM, sometimes earlier, sometimes longer, then she comes to bed with me. She’s slept through the night once or twice in her bed, so we know she’s capable of it. We get up at 5 AM for her to eat, then she gets a pretty decent nap in. It’s more like a continuation of her night, though. She sleeps until about 9AM, which is when she eats again. From 9AM to 1PM, she’ll catch a cat nap here and there and then gets another solid nap around 2PM to 5PM. She’ll also cat nap here and there between 5PM and 9PM. She does most of her playing in the middle of the day and later in the evening.
Well since I waited to post this, we actually squeezed one more milestone in! She laughed out loud for the first time yesterday. It was the best sound ever! I seriously kept making her laugh over and over and had tears in my eyes the whole time. I’ve been so stressed out thinking I was going to miss so many of her “firsts”, but I’ve witnessed her first cries, her first smiles, her first rollover, and now her first laughs. I will definitely be the one to give her food for the first time (grandparents better slow their roll!) and I’m praying I get to see her crawl and walk for the first time.
Some other non major firsts and milestones:
· Played in the dirt and felt grass on her bare feet
· She’s also thrown up for the first time – SO sad.
· Slept through the night
· Went to her first birthday party
· First day of daycare
· First time to spend the day with Ya Ya and PawPaw
· Rolled belly to back a few more times
· First blowout on someone other than mom or dad
· First T-Ball game
She’s still trying to sit up on her own sometimes but she’s still a little unstable. Ya Ya calls her a Weeble Wobble.
She’s also scooting and wiggling all over the place. We lay her down in one spot and before we know it she’s 2 foot from where she started. When she does tummy time, she works her legs like a frog and raises up her head and chest. Looks like some serious groundwork for crawling!
She’s wearing mostly 0-3 months, 3 months in Carters, and some 3-6 months in certain brands. She has several 0-3 and 3 month outfits that are already too small. We’re still in size 1 diapers and we did finally go swap all of the Huggies we had for Pampers. I really just prefer the way they fit her.
-Still loves bath time. Seriously.
-The TV (yup..already)
-Snuggling with momma
-Playing outside with daddy
-Playing in the sand
-Looking at the trees
-Looking at herself in the mirror
-Being dried off after a bath
-Sitting where she can’t see what’s going on around her
-Getting boogers out of her nose… oh man, the w o r s t
-Her head being rubbed
She is so so much fun. We look at her on a regular basis and can’t believe how perfect she is. Time is flying but we’re enjoying every single second of it!
We love you, Whitlee Alyzabeth!