Thursday, October 20

Seven Months

Brock is now 7 months old. The little guy is growing so quickly and changing so much. No doctor appointment this month, but from what I could tell he's somewhere between 28 and 29 inches (which would put him at about the 80th percentile), and he's about 20 pounds or so (about the 75th percentile). It's been a pretty good month other than a second cold, teething, and shortened nap times. He's getting a lot more curious and active and is no longer really content to just sit and watch people, which makes him a little more fun but also a little more of a handful. And though he's mostly an easygoing, happy baby, he's really starting to show some determination and stubbornness when he doesn't get what he wants and when he wants it. I try not to let him play with things that aren't toys, like my cell phone or the television remote, mostly because I don't want baby drool all over them or to have to worry about them getting broken but also because those things are not toys and I'm setting boundaries. But he clearly has that human nature we're all born with where we want what we can't have, and if he catches sight of these off-limits items he'll lunge for them and whine or pitch a fit to get his way. It's extremely annoying that you can't have a rational conversation with a baby and explain to him why he cannot have something and that everything is going to be ok even if he doesn't get what he wants. Then again, I'm an adult and it's hard to have that conversation with myself sometimes so maybe I'll give him a break.

These are some of Brock's patterns and accomplishments for the time between the sixth and seventh months:
  • At 26 weeks, he started eating a whole jar of vegetables and fruits in the Stage 1 size and about a half of the Stage 2 size (which he started at 27 weeks). He eats three meals a day now and nurses 4 to 5 times a day.
  • At the beginning of the month we had moved toward a four-hour schedule and he was having longer awake times and sleeping well for naps, but then he got another cold and that messed everything up because he would wake early from naps and not want to stay awake as long. So he's somewhere between a three- and four-hour schedule.
  • His awake times are extending. He can usually stay up between an hour and a half to three hours. He wants to go back to sleep sooner in the mornings and can stay awake longer as the day goes on. His naps usually last anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours.
  • At 26 weeks he could do a little sitting without support but only for a minute or so before he toppled over. He's still wobbly at 30 weeks and can only sit up for a few minutes at a time, but he's getting better. I think his large head makes it difficult for him to accomplish these gross motor skills.
  • At some point this month he started sucking his thumb when going to sleep. It's strange because he doesn't suck it any other time, but as soon as we start to get ready for a nap and I give him his little blanket, the thumb goes right in the mouth and the other hand plays with the blanket. Hopefully he'll keep this habit restricted to sleeptime only.
  • At 28 weeks, he started occasionally reaching for people. He did it to Blaine first and then later Blaine was holding him and he reached for me. It was a very validating feeling for some reason, like he was choosing who he wanted to hold him, but really I think he probably just reaches for whoever the new face in the room is.
  • He likes the ABC's in sign language. Since Brock was first born, any time I have sung the ABC song, I sign the letters (my dad took a sign language course and taught me the alphabet and a few signs when I was younger). In the past month I've noticed as soon as I start to sing the song, he'll stop whatever he's doing and turn to look for my hand and then give a big smile. It's interesting to see how he is picking up on patterns and cause and effect.
  • He outgrew 3-6 month clothes this month because he's gotten too long for them. Now he's wearing 6-9 month clothes and still in size 3 diapers.
  • Bananas and apples seem to make him constipated so I limit how much of those he eats. A jar of prunes always does the trick though if we're having issues.
  • He started having some sleeping  problems at 28 weeks, like waking early from naps and waking a few times at night, but the night waking only lasted about a week. He's still not quite back on track for naps, but hopefully we'll figure it out. He usually sleeps about 12 hours at night, from about 7:00 pm to 7:00 am.
  • A big milestone for me more than Brock this month was that we stopped using the movement sensor on his monitor. The Angelcare monitor that we got has a motion sensor to detect if the baby stops breathing, and it gave me a lot of peace of mind when Brock was first born because I worried about SIDS and because he's always liked to sleep with his face buried in the crib bumper. He's gotten so active and mobile though that he will start out on one end of the crib and somehow end up in the very top corner on the opposite end. The movement sensor pad is kind of small so when he would roll out of its range, the alarm would start going off. So we just did away with that feature and now only use the sound monitor.
  • Brock is really figuring out how to use his hands. He grabs everything in sight and likes to feel everything. He bangs his toys on the tray of his high chair or puts a toy in each hand and claps them together to make loud noises. It's just weird seeing him do all these little unimportant things because for so long he didn't do anything at all.
  • He is learning how to give kisses. Granted, they are wet, sloppy, open mouthed kisses but they're pretty cute. He does it most often when I'm rocking him before he goes to sleep. He'll grab my face and pull it to his mouth and plant one right on my cheek or whatever part of my face he can get to. He doesn't really know what to do afterward so sometimes he just leaves his open mouth there on my cheek until I start laughing.
  • He's not trying to crawl yet but he can roll to pretty much anywhere he wants to be. He'll roll around on his blanket to get to the toys he wants, and he can scoot himself around in a circle, but he hasn't figured out how to use the legs yet.
  • He's not eating any finger foods yet because he hasn't figured out how to chew. I'm trying to give him things that help him practice that skill, like the mesh feeders and those fast-dissolving Gerber puffs, but he just wants to immediately swallow whatever goes into his mouth so we're waiting on the Cheerios and table food for a little bit.
I think those are the main changes I've noticed this month. He hasn't had as many significant developments as in some of the past months, but I'm enjoying where he is right now. I'm not so much looking forward to the crawling/walking stages because I don't want to have to sweep and mop my hardwood floors constantly, but I guess I better just get ready.

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