Fig Banana Corny Oatcakes

Fig Banana Corny Oatcakes

FIG BANANA CORNY OATCAKES

Since I give my baby, Todd, a pancake with his green smoothie each morning, I’m experimenting with different pancake recipes these days.  My goal is no added sugar and using different kinds of grains for the flour.

Todd loves sucking on dried black mission figs, however, all but the largest ones in the package do present an obvious choking risk.  So– in this recipe, my goal was to add some of that yummy and healthy fig to some pancakes in the form of a blended puree.

I cook my pancakes in a large skillet.  The sloped sides make flipping them a challenge.  I do need a proper pancake griddle, or a new electric frypan!  (Any recommendations?)  But, I digress…

These naturally sweet pancakes are thick, moist and fluffy.  I like the texture with the added cornmeal.  Try making muffins out of the batter, too!  If you prefer a thinner pancake, simply increase the non-dairy milk.

Bananas & Soaked Black Mission Figs

Bananas & Soaked Black Mission Figs

INGREDIENTS:

10 dried organic black mission figs
1/2 C water

2 ripe bananas
2 T olive oil
1 C non-dairy milk (*add 1/4 C more if you prefer a thinner pancake)

1 C All-purpose flour
1/2 C oat flour
1/2 C organic fine cornmeal
1 T baking powder
1 t cinnamon
1/4 t salt

Oil for frying (I use coconut)

Pureed banana fig mixture

Pureed banana fig mixture

ASSEMBLY:

  1. Soak the figs in the water overnight or for several hours (use warm/hot water if you want to shorten the soaking time).
  2. Blend the figs plus the soaking water, bananas, olive oil and non-dairy milk until smooth.
  3. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.
  4. Stir the fruit puree into the dry ingredients but don’t over mix.
  5. Put some oil in a large sauté pan (i.e. pan with straight sides) and heat on medium to medium-high heat.  (When I used to have a electric frypan, I set the temperature for 400 degrees for pancakes.)
  6. Drop spoonfuls of batter in the heated oil.  Flip when edges start to set and bubbles appear on top.
  7. To make mini muffins, bake at 350 degrees for 15-18 minutes.  (Or bake full-size muffins for 23 minutes).

Makes…a whole plateful!

Enjoy!

Charming the ladies at The Shire Cafe - March 28, 2015

Charming the ladies at The Shire Cafe – March 28, 2015

EIGHTH MONTH
(MARCH 21 – APRIL 21)

WEEK 31 (PARTIAL WEEK)

Todd got to play with my sister’s family on his 7th month “birthday” (March 21st).  They stopped by our house for lunch and a visit on their way from Oregon to Canada, for a ski vacation.  We hadn’t been together since Christmas, and Todd has really changed since then!

My sister's family visiting - March 21, 2015

My sister’s family visiting – March 21, 2015

Poor Todd had a couple **rough nights of sleep this week, and crying in the night didn’t seem to indicate he was simply hungry.  Sure– he’d take some formula and it helped settle him, but something else was upsetting him.  He cried, “ma ma ma” and I’m pretty sure it meant he wanted me.

When I tried putting him back in his crib, he tended to cry more and it took several attempts with rocking him in my glider chair to essentially get him asleep before I could put him in bed and then quietly slip away.  I have to admit, it feels wonderful to be wanted!  It’s precious the way he stands at his crib rails and pulls on my shirt, as if pleading me to pick him up.

**Fortunately, a “rough” night for Todd means waking up either more than once, or else waking up just once but taking a long time (i.e. up to 2 hrs) to go back to sleep.  Believe me– I know I’m lucky that most nights Todd sleeps through the night without a peep!!

Sleepy Todd, ready for bed - March 24, 2015

Sleepy Todd, ready for bed – March 24, 2015

Since Todd started really crawling last week, I’m now in “baby-proof” mode!

Getting into everything! - March 23, 2015

Getting into everything! – March 23, 2015

Developmental highlights:

  • he does what I call the “Bruce Lee shriek,” especially when he’s concentrating or excited
  • tries to put a toy in my mouth, offers me food, gives “kisses”
  • lots of drool and blowing large drool bubbles
  • has a ticklish neck
  • sits and turns around in place on his butt by “walking” his legs
  • standing up in his crib when we open the door to his room in the mornings
  • looking down at his penis while on the toilet…or is he watching where the “pee-pee” goes?
Pulling-to-stand everywhere he can! - March 26, 2015

Pulling-to-stand everywhere he can! – March 26, 2015

Other highlights:

  • we got a Little Tikes Push & Ride Racer car for seated rides and assisted walking
  • evening catnaps on mama and dada before it’s actually bed time
  • “baby-proofing” in process!

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • refried beans
  • tofu
  • mashed avocado

WEEK 32

This week I have to mention how much I love Todd’s kisses!  He does seem to know what he’s doing when I ask for a kiss by bringing him near my face and pursing my lips.  He “kisses” by first holding still (instead of offering a head butt!), then he opens his mouth wide and leans in.  It’s so darn sweet!  If I’m lucky, he’ll give me up to 5 of those sloppy, wet kisses in a row!

In addition, Todd sometimes brings a toy to his mouth and then he brings it to my mouth, as if he is sharing his toy with me.  I tell him, “Thank you! You are such a nice boy!”

Still using the swing for naps but getting so big! - March 27, 2015

Still using the swing for naps but getting so big! – March 27, 2015

On the food front–  In addition to handling finger foods, Todd is quite receptive to being spoon fed various purees.  I offer the spoon near his mouth and he helps pull it in with one hand.  He might first use an index finger to feel the food, sweep it off, then suck his finger.  I have 2 spoons available for the process because he doesn’t always let me have the spoon back.

If I put the pinch bowl containing green smoothie up to his mouth, he insists on dipping his fingers in the bowl before he’ll slurp it down.  Finger painting with food is a given!

Green smoothie face paint - March 31, 2015

Green smoothie face paint – March 31, 2015

Developmental highlights:

  • able to crawl up 1 “step” (we don’t have stairs but we made a 6″ step out of an upside down storage container)
  • jumps on the couch while holding on
  • repeatedly throws and retrieves a toy ring
  • can crawl quickly and goes from room to room
  • seems to want more hugs and gives lots of kisses
  • 1st time turning on his own Baby Einstein Sea Dreams Soother (it might have been an accident, who knows? – 3/31)
Enjoying the fresh air, the sights and sounds - March 27, 2015

Enjoying the fresh air, the sights and sounds – March 27, 2015

Other highlights:

  • standing at the window to look outside and feel the breeze
  • loves to splash in his baby tub
  • loves feeling dried moss out the sliding glass door
  • smiles big when waking up in the morning and after naps
  • stroller walk on the trail by the Arlington airport and lunch at The Shire Cafe (3/28)
  • we lowered the crib 1 increment (3/29)
  • stroller walks at Jennings Park (3/29, 4/1)
Jennings Park - March 29, 2015

Jennings Park – March 29, 2015

New (vegan) foods this week:

Jennings Park - April 1, 2015

Jennings Park – April 1, 2015

WEEK 33

Developmental highlights:

  • he gave kisses to his stuffed frog, Wilbur, and his bird rattle friends
  • 1st time standing up with just leg strength (video below) (4/5)
  • 1st crawl across the kitchen floor (sort of a crab walk – 4/8)
  • doesn’t like to stay just where his toys are, so explores the house

Other highlights:

  • having an issue with some diaper rash
  • eczema has been much better but he continues to scratch above his left ear
  • 1st time swinging at a park and sliding down a slide (4/5)
1st time in a swing - April 5, 2015

1st time in a swing – April 5, 2015

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • flour tortilla
  • Gardein Beefless Tips
  • black olive
April 5, 2015

April 5, 2015

WEEK 34

This week we drove to Bend, OR to visit family for a 4-day weekend.  Todd hadn’t done a car ride of that duration since Christmas.  He did sleep quite a bit during the drive, but when he was awake, he’d practice his ear-piercing shrieks.  I made a mental note to pack earplugs next time!!

My sister’s house has 2 stories, so during the weekend I was able to confirm my suspicion– that Todd is capable of crawling up stairs.  Sure enough, he tackled a flight with ease.  Of course, the only problem (as expected), is that he’ll stop to sit up mid-step which would topple him backward if someone wasn’t ready to catch him.

Another first during the weekend:  Todd said “da da” and “ga ga”/”gee ga.”  Of course, that was extra exciting for dada and mama to hear.

At a park in Bend, OR - April 9, 2015

At a park in Bend, OR – April 9, 2015

Developmental highlights:

  • 1st nap in the Pack ‘n Play travel bed (25 minutes – 4/11)
  • 1st time crawling up flight of stairs (Bend, OR – 4/11)
  • new sounds: “da da” (4/11), “ga ga,” “gee ga”
  • scoots backward while sitting to slide across the kitchen floor
  • follows me through the house/prefers to be where I am
  • attempts to take one step but he sits down at the same time
  • touches his penis while sitting on the toilet
  • he likes to knock over stacked toys
Ashley, Todd & Eric at Old Mill - April 10, 2015

Ashley, Todd & Eric at Old Mill – April 10, 2015

Other highlights:

  • 4-day weekend in Bend, OR to visit family (4/9-4/12)
  • stroller walks in Bend
  • dining out in Bend (Spork (4/9), La Rosa (4/10), Bonta (4/10)
  • one poop in the diaper (4/13)
  • laughing when Eric snuck up on him at the couch (4/13)
Eric & Todd enjoying some live music after dinner at La Rosa and vegan gelato at Bonta - April 10, 2015

Eric & Todd enjoying some live music after dinner at La Rosa and vegan gelato at Bonta – April 10, 2015

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • licks of gelato at Bontà in Bend, OR
  • homemade tamale with lentil/veggie fillings
  • roasted baked potato stick
Homemade vegan tamales by my parents - April 11, 2015

Homemade vegan tamales by my parents – April 11, 2015

WEEK 35 (PARTIAL WEEK)

Developmental highlights:

  • able to take a step with one hand support instead of two
  • crawls and pulls to stand very fast!
  • launches forward from sitting onto outstretched arms
  • emerging object permanence
  • making a new, musical “motorcycle mouth” sound
  • he seems to need to “get out of the house” most days now
1st time on grass - April 17, 2015

1st time on grass – April 17, 2015

Other highlights:

  • 1st time sitting in the grass (4/17)
  • rollerblade with stroller on the Centennial Trail (4/18)
  • birthday party for a friend’s 3 year old (Jennings Park, 4/19)
  • likes picking flowers in the yard (4/20)
  • interested in the sound of his pee splashing in the toilet and watching the toilet flush
  • he bonks his forehead too often!
Rollerblading on the Centennial Trail - April 18, 2015

Rollerblading on the Centennial Trail – April 18, 2015

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • pancake containing pumpkin
  • avocado slice in the peel
  • ground veggie taco meat
  • cantaloupe wedge
  • watermelon wedge
  • pear slice
  • Cabbage Roll Casserole filling
1st taste of watermelon - April 19, 2015

1st taste of watermelon – April 19, 2015

EIGHTH MONTH WRAP-UP

Food–>

Right now, Todd is finishing his 46th can of “formula milk.”  He’s just starting to be able to tip his own bottle back from an upright position.  When reclined, he can hold his own bottle with just one hand.  Often, distraction gets the best of him when he’s left to feed himself (he flips over and sits up before he’s done), so I prefer holding him while he eats.  I like that bonding time with him, anyway!  Even when I hold him, he starts and stops.  Mr. Curious About Everything!

Todd eats solid food about twice per day, consisting of a combo of purees and finger foods.  Every morning he gets a green smoothie and a pancake.  Every afternoon or evening he gets other foods based on what we’re having.  I typically feed him the pureed food first and then offer the finger foods.  Todd will try pretty much anything he can get into his mouth…and more is getting down the hatch all the time!  He’s a good eater.

Todd eats the same foods that Eric and I eat, but I do open a jar of Earth’s Best organic baby food a couple times per week.  It’s definitely convenient and Todd really likes the sweet potatoes and the carrots.  (We first tried the jarred food when Eric’s mom gave us a small assortment.)

Sleep–>

Todd still takes a very consistent and long morning nap in his swing (2-3+ hours).  He may or may not take an afternoon nap.  Sometimes he doesn’t take one simply because I don’t offer one (it depends on the length of the morning nap and our afternoon activities).  An afternoon nap in the swing does still happen, but more often Todd catches a few Zs in the car, in the stroller, or on a warm body (usually on Eric in the late evening if he’s lucky!).

I started out this post mentioning that Todd had some rough nights of sleep in that first week (week 31).  I thought maybe a tooth would show up this month, but there’s still no sign of that yet.

After that week, he more or less continued his pattern of sleeping through the night 10-ish hours per night on 4-5 nights per week.  2-3 nights per week he woke up once in the night.

Over the past week, though– that pattern seems to be reversed.  Presently, he’s waking up once per night most nights and only sleeping straight through the night a couple nights per week…

For example, last night (April 20 to 21), Todd went to bed at 8 PM and he was asleep when I put him in bed.  He woke up crying at 11:15 PM.  I fed him 1 1/2 oz formula, but then he didn’t want anymore.  He just seemed ready to go back to sleep.  I was able to get him back in his crib by 11:30 PM, then he slept soundly until 6:45 AM.

A rare daytime catnap on me - April 19, 2015

A rare daytime catnap on me – April 19, 2015

Toileting–>

Things are going great, here!  The only poop that didn’t make it directly into the toilet this month happened because I failed to immediately react to an obvious sign that Todd had to go.  I actually said something to Eric before it happened.  It was totally my fault.

I have a running tally of the number of poopy diapers since we started taking Todd to the toilet (starting 12/03/14).  We’re only up to 16 poopy diapers, which seems pretty awesome to me!!

Todd’s definitely more aware of himself when he’s on the toilet now.  When he starts to pee, he immediately looks down between his legs as if watching where the pee is going.  He’s definitely aware of the sensation of peeing and pooping.  He still smiles big when I praise him for going in the toilet.  Afterward, he likes to look in the toilet and watch it flush.

Well– I guess that’s all for now!

It’s been a busy month and I predict it’s only going to get busier.  It’s all good, though…Happy Spring!

Enjoying some fresh air with Eric after he got home from work - April 20, 2015

Enjoying some fresh air with Eric after he got home from work – April 20, 2015

 

Cabbage Roll Casserole with Vegan Sour Cream on Toast

Cabbage Roll Casserole with Vegan Sour Cream on Toast

CABBAGE ROLL CASSEROLE

I call this recipe Cabbage Roll Casserole because I don’t make actual cabbage rolls.  I think it’s simpler this way, and I’m all about making things as simple as possible!

Please note that this recipe is designed to give you a freezer supply of Cabbage Roll Casserole fixings for several meals (i.e. 5+).  The idea is that you make the Cabbage Roll Sauce and the Cabbage Roll Filling ahead of time, then freeze portions until you’re ready to buy some cabbage and put it all together.

Don’t let the initial work scare you off because this is super yummy and it makes a lot!

Once you have your first batch of sauce and filling made, you’ll find that you won’t run out of both at the same time.  That’s because the sauce recipe makes enough for 8 portions and the filling recipe makes enough for 5 portions.  So, in the future, you’ll only have to make one or the other to keep your freezer stocked.  (Each portion serves 2 adults in my house.)

I do recommend that you have a basic coffee grinder for grinding the fennel.  My Mr. Coffee grinder is dedicated to grinding spices.  To clean the grinder, I use a dry brush to clean the base/around the blade and I wash the lid with soap and dish detergent.

I combine all the spices in the grinder, not just the fennel (for the filling).  I think it helps the uniformity of the grind when you have more volume.  The aroma of the fennel-sage-oregano-thyme combination is incredible!

Ok, let’s make this recipe happen!

Cabbage Roll Sauce portions in the freezer

Cabbage Roll Sauce portions in the freezer

STEP 1 – CABBAGE ROLL SAUCE

INGREDIENTS:

1 T oil (olive or coconut)
28 oz can crushed tomato with basil
15 oz can tomato sauce (no salt added)
2 tomatoes, chopped
6 T lemon juice
1/2 C brown sugar (or 1 T agave + 1 T molasses)
1/2 C non-dairy milk
1/2 t salt
1/2 t black pepper
1 t dill weed
1 t garlic powder
1 t onion powder
2 t chili powder

ASSEMBLY:

  1. Simmer all ingredients in a large saucepan for about 30 minutes.
  2. Portion into 1/2 pint freezer jars.
  3. Freeze until needed.

Makes about 8 portions.  (This sauce is good over pasta as a basic sauce recipe).

Cabbage Roll Filling (this batch made with tempeh)

Cabbage Roll Filling (this batch made with tempeh)

STEP 2 – CABBAGE ROLL FILLING

INGREDIENTS:

1 batch cooked long or medium grain brown rice (about 2 3/4 cups)
(1 batch = 1 cup dry rice & 1 1/4 C water in a rice cooker for 55 minutes)

2 T fennel seeds (measure, then grind as noted above)
1 T dried sage
1 t oregano
1 t thyme
1/4 t salt
1/4 t black pepper

1 pkg (12 oz) Yves Meatless Ground Round OR 1 block crumbled tempeh OR 2 cups cooked lentils

2 T oil (I use coconut oil)
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
18-20 small or 10 large white or crimini mushrooms, chopped

14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
2 T organic soy sauce or tamari
2 T vegan Worcestershire sauce
3 T water

ASSEMBLY:

  1. Cook the batch of rice while you work on the rest of the filling.
  2. Grind the spices and set aside.
  3. Use a soup pot.  Heat the oil on medium.  Add the onion, green pepper, and garlic to the pot.  Saute for a few minutes.
  4. Add the mushrooms and spices and saute for a few more minutes.
  5. Add the diced tomatoes, soy sauce/tamari, Worcestershire sauce, water, and the meatless ground/tempeh/lentils and continue to cook on medium for ~10-15 minutes.
  6. Turn off the heat and stir in the rice.
  7. Portion into 1-pint freezer jars.
  8. Freeze until needed.

Makes about 5 portions.

Yves Meatless Ground

Yves Meatless Ground

STEP 3 – CABBAGE ROLL CASSEROLE

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 to 1/3 of a green cabbage (depends on size)
1/2 pint portion of Cabbage Roll Sauce (above)
1 pint portion of Cabbage Roll Filling (above)

Vegan sour cream (optional, as a topping)

ASSEMBLY:

  1. Cut up the cabbage into ~1 inch size pieces.  (I remove the thick stems first.)
  2. Thaw and warm the sauce and the filling (I use the microwave).
  3. Coat the bottom of a square (8-9″) glass pan with a little bit of sauce.
  4. Layer cabbage and filling in the pan.
  5. Evenly distribute the rest of the sauce on top.
  6. Bake covered at 400 degrees for 40-45 minutes (until bubbly and the cabbage is soft).
  7. Top with vegan sour cream or have a side of sour cream on toast (optional but good!).

ENJOY!!

Breaded Marinated Tofu Sticks

Breaded Marinated Tofu Sticks

This recipe can be made lots of different ways!  I encourage you to experiment with different spice, vinegar, flour, nut/seed and/or oil combinations.

Here are some possibilities that come to mind:

  • Mexican– cumin, chili powder, oregano, chipotle, cayenne, hot sauce, salsa
  • Italian– garlic, Italian spice blend, basil, crushed fennel, nutritional yeast, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, vinegar from a Kalamata olive jar
  • Curry– turmeric, cumin, coriander, curry powder/curry paste, garam masala, powdered ginger/ginger juice, fine shredded coconut, toasted sesame oil (for the marinade, not frying).
  • Vegan seafood (fish/crab) style– Old Bay Seasoning, dill weed, malt vinegar, dill pickle vinegar, beer for marinade, lemon juice, nori flakes
  • Savory– thyme, sage, powdered rosemary, parsley, celery salt, black pepper, paprika

Tonight, I made these tofu sticks for tacos, so that’s why the recipe below includes cumin and chili powder.  I made this batch “non-spicy'” so that I could offer them to my 7 month old baby.

Also– I used ground raw cashews only because I happen to buy cashews by the 5-pound bag (from nuts.com), and I have a jar of ground cashews ready to go in my fridge. Of course, you can omit the nuts or substitute another kind.

BREADED MARINATED TOFU STICKS

INGREDIENTS:

Coconut or olive oil

1- 14 oz block organic extra firm tofu

2 T tamari or organic soy sauce
2 T rice wine vinegar
1/2 t liquid smoke
1/2 t cumin
1/2 t chili powder
dash oregano

1/4 C all-purpose flour
1/4 C organic cornmeal
2 T organic cornstarch
2 T ground raw cashews

ASSEMBLY:

  1. Drain and press the tofu for a couple hours.  Discard the extra liquid, then cut the tofu into sticks.
  2. Combine the marinade ingredients:  soy sauce, vinegar, liquid smoke and spices.
  3. Marinate the tofu sticks in a single layer for a couple hours.
  4. Combine the breading ingredients in a gallon size plastic bag:  flour, cornmeal, cornstarch, and nuts.
  5. Before frying, toss the sticks in the breading mixture.  Add any excess liquid to the frying pan.
  6. Put some oil in a large fry/saute pan and heat on medium.
  7. Cook the sticks until golden, flipping every few minutes so that all sides are browned.

Enjoy!  I guarantee these will disappear fast!

Tofu Tacos

Tofu Tacos

6.5 months old - March 4, 2015

6.5 months old – March 4, 2015

SEVENTH MONTH (FEBRUARY 21 – MARCH 21)

WEEK 27 (PARTIAL WEEK)

Isn’t this an interesting way to start a blog post…

On February 25th, Todd started his morning by pooping in the toilet for the 41st consecutive day.  He went a lot so I figured he was done.  After I put him on the incontinent bed pad that I use for his “diaper free” time, I walked away briefly to start some laundry.  When I came back, I discovered that he’d pooped on the mat.  More?!  Yikes!!  Fortunately, he hadn’t yet rolled in it.  Phew…crisis averted!

Later that day, I gave Todd his first taste of (organic) 100% peanut butter by letting him suck a thin smear off my finger.  So far, so good re: food allergies.  Check out this article…

Study finds peanut consumption in infancy prevents peanut allergy (NIH clinical trial)

February 25, 2015

February 25, 2015

Here’s a BIG milestone!  This week Todd sat himself up for the first time!  For a few days prior, he’d gotten so close.  On February 26th, he did it for Eric, but I was in another room.  I missed the first instance, but then Todd repeated his new skill 3 more times within about 10 minutes.  He showed that he could do it with a bulky diaper on, too.

To sit up from his belly, he starts on all fours, then he gets himself into something like a “pigeon” yoga pose (with one leg drawn way up so that his foot is right under his butt), then he manages to bring the other leg under/around, and finally pushes up with his arms.

Highlights:

  • 1st sit-to-stand without help – by pulling up with the wooden rods of a chair (at Mission Ridge, 2/22)
  • took one arm out of his long sleeve shirt (2/22)
  • doing “down dog” and “pigeon” yoga poses to attempt sitting up or crawling
  • record sleep, 11.75 hrs (2/24 to 2/25)
  • using fingertip to deliberately feel the corner of a book (2/25)
  • 1st time sitting up from belly (2/26)

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • minestrone soup
  • chickpea fritter & Romesco sauce (made with pistachio, roasted red pepper, kidney beans & more)
  • lick of peanut butter
  • chocolate “shake” (made with frozen bananas, coconut milk, soy milk & cocoa powder)
  • peach oatmeal banana jarred organic baby food
  • angel hair & pasta sauce with Field Roast Italian Sausage
"Green" (brown) smoothie aftermath - February 26, 2015

“Green” (brown) smoothie aftermath – February 26, 2015

WEEK 28

Geez, Louise!  Now that Todd learned how to sit up, he will NOT stay on his back for dressing and diaper changes.  He whips over to his belly and launches himself up to sitting in literally less than 5 seconds.  I had to break out the larger (size medium) cloth diaper covers to give myself more room for error, as I fasten his diaper while attempting to restrain Todd in a sitting position.  It’s not always easy!

In the last week, I noticed that Todd’s ability to weight shift when standing has gotten to where he now purposefully adjusts his feet after he’s up, to seek better traction and balance.  Before, his feet would remain where initially planted.

He's a little boy, not a baby - February 28, 2015

He’s a little boy, not a baby – February 28, 2015

Developmental Highlights:

  • 1st time sitting up in his bed (2/27)
  • 1st time (briefly) sitting with legs extended instead of flexed (3/1)
  • 1st unsupported standing of ~10 seconds (after assist to be “placed,” 3/3)
  • sit-to-stands with close supervision but no assist, using dresser drawers, couch, and stacked couch cushions. Todd lets go with one hand, then both.
  • from standing, when he “plops” down, it’s more often straight down on his butt rather than doing the “Nestea Plunge.”
Sitting up in bed - March 3, 2015

Sitting up in bed – March 3, 2015

Other Highlights:

  • during his bath, Todd kept wanting to drink the water (3/1)
  • repeatedly flicking the nipple of his bottle with his left index finger
  • started using size medium cloth diaper covers (3/2)
  • started using #4 (Fast Flow) Philips Avent bottle nipples (3/3)
  • tapping toys together to make noises
  • moving mouth like he’s chewing gum
  • loves his daily green smoothies
Bath time - March 1, 2015

Bath time – March 1, 2015

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • dried fig (loved it!)
  • cucumber stick

WEEK 29

Scary moment!  On March 5th, I was going to brush my teeth, so I put Todd in the middle of my queen-sized bed, completely surrounded by 2 body pillows and 2 regular pillows.  He was playing with a toy when I took my eyes off him for just a minute to step into the bathroom. When I came out, I saw him frog-leaping so fast toward the corner of the bed.  He was nearly over a pillow and he would have certainly gone over the edge next, if I hadn’t launched through the air and grabbed him.

It used to be that pillows were an easy way to put up a “barrier” or to “cushion” hard surfaces while he sat.  Now– we have to be very careful because the pillows are acting as an invitation for Todd to leap-frog and scramble over them…or he does a seated lurch toward them…or he tries to use them to stand up.

This video is from Week 30 but it shows what he does…

Eric took a vacation day on Friday March 6th, so we stopped for lunch in Leavenworth, at the Munchen Haus Bavarian Grill & Beer Garden, on the way to our condo in Wenatchee.  Eric and I enjoyed the Vegetarian Wurst (made with Field Roast) and a porter.  Todd enjoyed the bun!

Munchen Haus Bavarian Grill & Beer Garden - March 6, 2015

Munchen Haus Bavarian Grill & Beer Garden – March 6, 2015

Exploring the condo grounds - March 6, 2015

Exploring the condo grounds – March 6, 2015

March 10th was the day that Todd “finally” pooped in his diaper.  It was just a little bit, and I was able to get him to the toilet to finish a lot more.  Then it happened again that evening.  So, for the record, he officially went 52 days without pooping in his diaper.  Not too shabby, eh?

March 9, 2015

March 9, 2015

Developmental Highlights:

  • 1st time “butt walking” from sitting (he kind of bounced himself forward) (3/6)
  • from sitting, he started lurching forward with a lot of momentum– toward a toy or something that he wanted to use for standing himself up
  • gets in and out of a half-kneeling position frequently
  • 1st full kneeling, in crib– to reach up for his musical aquarium (3/9)
  • rapid inhales/exhales so that his lower lip moves in and out, often done when concentrating
Kneeling in crib - March 9, 2015

Kneeling in crib – March 9, 2015

Other Highlights:

  • lots of smiles and laughs daily
  • gets very excited about various things:  mouth agape and arms wave
  • shaking toys
  • does not like to stay put for diaper changes and often cries in protest
  • loves to help play the guitar with Eric
  • 1st time using the portable high chair for eating at a restaurant (Cafe Rio, 3/7)
  • visitors at home:  Eric’s parents and brothers (Jeff and Darren, 3/11)
  • 1st time meeting Uncle Darren (3/11)
Todd meets his Uncle Darren - March 11, 2015

Todd meets his Uncle Darren – March 11, 2015

New (vegan) foods this week:

  • homemade corn muffin
  • corn tortilla
  • spicy BBQ sauce with broccoli
Eating broccoli - March 9, 2015

Eating broccoli – March 9, 2015

WEEK 30 (AND PART OF 31)

On March 12th, we had a nice family gathering because Eric’s brother, Darren, was in town visiting from Wyoming.   We went out to eat at Jimmy’s Pizza & Pasta, in Stanwood, where you can get a superb vegan pizza.  Todd loved being the center of attention and he enjoyed tearing apart tomato slices!

Todd with his Grammie, Cousin Kylie, Uncle Darren, Uncle Jeff, mama & dada - March 12, 2015

Todd with his Grammie, Cousin Kylie, Uncle Darren, Uncle Jeff, mama & dada – March 12, 2015

Todd with Cousin Kylie & Grand dad - March 12, 2015

Todd with Cousin Kylie & Grand dad – March 12, 2015

Cousin love! - March 12, 2015

Cousin love! – March 12, 2015

Jimmy's Pizza & Pasta - March 12, 2015

Jimmy’s Pizza & Pasta – March 12, 2015

On March 14th one year ago, we found out that our 18 week old fetus was going to be Todd Patrick…a boy…instead of Emmy Todd…a girl.  This outfit was one of 3 that I purchased for Eric back then, to tell him the news.  Little Dude, Big Plans!  (See this “20 Week Ultrasound” post for the picture of Eric holding up this onesie one year ago.)

Little Dude, Big Plans -  March 14, 2015

Little Dude, Big Plans –
March 14, 2015

On March 16th, I decided it was time to stop writing down the amount of every bottle fed to Todd during the day and night.  It’s a not a bad idea after almost 7 months, huh?

Standing alone - March 12, 2015

Standing alone – March 12, 2015

Developmental Highlights:

  • sometimes able to sit down in control (instead of always “plopping” down)
  • more receptive to spoon feeding and helps pull spoon to mouth
  • improving ability to move food in his mouth:  “chewing,” tongue lateralization, managing particles (to swallow or bring forward and out)
  • 1st time “kissing” me and trying to “feed” me some of his dinner (3/13)
  • 1st 20-second unsupported standing and without assist for placement (3/18)
  • 1st coordinated crawl across living room (3/18)
  • 1st stand up in crib (3/19)
  • beginning “couch cruising” after standing himself up with couch (3/19)
  • able to pick up and drop green peas

Other highlights:

  • loves frog-leaping on my bed into pillows surrounding him, like a pinball machine
  • sitting at the keyboard in his booster seat to play piano
  • no more changing table…too unsafe!
  • noticeable preference for rubbing items (including bottle nipple) against his left upper “molars”
  • sucks his lips in so he looks like an old man without his dentures in
  • likes touching our faces with index finger during bottle feedings
  • says “ma ma ma” and “a ba ba” frequently
  • making clicking sounds with his mouth
  • Out to eat at Jimmy’s Pizza & Pasta with Eric’s parents, Eric’s 2 brothers, and our niece (3/12)
  • Visit to a friend’s house (Sebastian & family, 3/12)
  • appeared very scared by me folding some tissue paper (3/13)
Playing the keyboard - March 14, 2015

Playing the keyboard – March 14, 2015

New foods this week:

  • dark chocolate
  • tomato slices
  • steamed cauliflower
  • homemade tempeh bacon
  • homemade tempeh Rueben with sauerkraut
  • Gardein Fishless Filet & Crispy Tenders
  • coleslaw & cabbage leaf
  • homemade peanut butter and banana muffin
  • pears and mango jarred organic baby food
  • sweet potato jarred organic baby food
Eating Tempeh Rueben - March 16, 2015

Eating Tempeh Rueben – March 16, 2015

SEVENTH MONTH WRAP-UP

Food–>  Todd seems to be an adventurous eater and his fine motor skills are improving rapidly.  I try to feed him solids about twice per day.  In the morning, I consistently give him green smoothie and maybe a pancake/mini muffin.  In the evening, I give him bits of whatever dinner we’re having.

As of the end of this month, he’s down to the bottom of his 39th can of organic soy formula.  Every time we open a new can, I record the number!  How many cans do you think we’ll go through before he’s all done with “formula milk?”

Sleep–>  Todd continues to sleep ~10-ish hours per night, and he might wake up once in the night ~1-3x per week.  One thing that’s changed in the last week is that he’s back to being basically asleep when I put him in his crib at night.  He literally wears himself out all day and he’s ready to crash after his last bottle feeding.  I’ve been enjoying extra cuddle time rocking him in my glider chair before I put him in bed.

Snuggles before bed - March 17, 2015

Snuggles before bed – March 17, 2015

Toileting–>  After his “off day” on March 10th, Todd’s been back to doing all poops in the toilet ever since!

Well, I guess this post started and ended on the topic of poop.  I swear I didn’t plan it that way, haha!

See you next month!

"There are those who are appalled because I am so vocal about injustice, yet I am equally appalled by their silence." Lujene Clark

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