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 36 weeks old - April 30, 2015

36 weeks old – April 30, 2015

NINTH MONTH
(APRIL 21 – MAY 21)

WEEK 35 (PARTIAL WEEK)

Oh, boy a “worst sleep” night kicked off Todd’s 9th month!  On April 21st he woke up crying at 10:30 PM.  He wasn’t hungry but it took until 12:45 AM before he fell back asleep.  Nothing was working until I turned on his Sea Dreams Crib Soother.  On the following night, he had another restless period, requiring 1.5 hours to get back to sleep.  Fortunately, Todd only wakes up once when he has one of his “bad” nights.

Developmental and other highlights:

  • he can lower himself off the couch if we turn him feet first
  • he can walk pushing his Little Tikes car without assist over carpet and smooth floors (the car doesn’t get going too fast)
  • I removed the folded towels that were padding Todd’s crib (4/21)

Food notes and new (vegan) foods this week :

Todd isn’t satisfied if I only offer a pureed food. He wants to have finger foods, and he’ll look around for something “better” than what I’m offering via spoon. When he’s done, he spits dramatically, which is pretty funny.

  • bites of quinoa mixed with jarred organic carrot puree
  • strip of bread
  • quartered banana slice
April 24, 2015

April 24, 2015

WEEK 36

I don’t think I’ve mentioned this before, but every week we go on stroller walks in the neighborhood, and this includes a walk to the library about once a week.  We do our walks (or shopping) in the afternoon, a little while after Todd wakes up from his long morning nap.  It’s really nice to be walking distance from our library.  Every day, I read library books to Todd.

Developmental highlights:

  • controlled crawl off a 5″ tall storage bin
  • he repeatedly lifts a leg up while standing (attempting to step/climb up)
  • he does deep knee bends…down, up, down, up
  • 1st brief thumb sucking (in the past he’s always sucked on his fingers but not thumb)
  • shows frustration (i.e. when he walks with his car and it meets an obstacle and stops…but he wants it to keep going)
  • he climbed onto a 9″ tall Rubbermaid storage container
He loves to look out the window - April 24, 2015

He loves to look out the window – April 24, 2015

Other highlights:

  • he likes to walk his Push & Ride Racer car
  • he likes getting rides on his car
  • likes to be “chased” crawling in the house– crawls away quickly, then stops and looks back, laughs excitedly
  • if Eric doesn’t wear a shirt Todd wants to scratch at his nipple
  • 1st time at a play group (Kaleidoscope Play & Learn, Jennings Park (4/29))
1st play group - Kaleidoscope Play & Learn - April 29, 2015

1st play group – Kaleidoscope Play & Learn – April 29, 2015

Food notes and new (vegan) foods this week:

It seems like Todd really started swallowing a lot more food this week, and he lets me feed him small bits with my fingers after he does what he can with his limited fine motor skills.  He was able to slurp/suck down strands of angel hair pasta this week (instead of just playing).

  • green pepper
  • Fig Banana Corny Oatcakes
  • ripe mango slice
  • roasted cauliflower
  • split pea soup
  • spaghetti with angel hair pasta
  • drinking a little water from a pinch cup
Slurping angel hair pasta - April 27, 2015

Slurping angel hair pasta – April 27, 2015

WEEK 37

This was an action-packed week!  On May 1st, Todd had his allergic reaction to his lunch.  Over the weekend, we partied and we did some rollerblading.  Todd got to visit with his Grammie on May 5th.  We saw the allergy doctor on May 6th, resulting in Todd getting diagnosed with a peanut allergy.  The week wrapped up with Todd’s first day in underwear.

I used a $10 off coupon at Kohls and scored this toy for less than three bucks! - May 1, 2015

I used a $10 off coupon at Kohls and scored this toy for less than three bucks! – May 1, 2015

This week, Todd’s sleep was more “normal” for him, i.e. sleeping a solid ~9-11 hour night for 5 days per week and waking up once about 2 days per week (and he didn’t take very long to get back to sleep).

He loves ripe mango! - May 4, 2015

He loves ripe mango! – May 4, 2015

Developmental highlights:

  • he stuck his tongue out and touched tip to upper lip a lot (5/30)
  • chatting to himself at 3:30 AM two mornings in a row (then fell back to sleep)
  • he possibly did the hand sign for “formula milk” (make a fist and squeeze)
  • he likes to slap my hands while sitting on the toilet
  • he vibrates his 2 fists or a toy against his mouth to make a noise that sounds like “lada lada lada”
  • he sucks on his thumb and rubs thumb against upper gums
  • he seems a little more attentive when I read books to him (less focus on putting the book in his mouth)
  • he started waving his left wrist (not sure if he’s just exploring hand movements, trying to wave, or doing the “all done” sign)
  • he can crawl up and down on/off a 5″ tall storage bin repeatedly, without close supervision
  • he can step up onto the storage bin while holding the windowsill
Looking outside my bedroom window - May 5, 2015

Looking outside my bedroom window – May 5, 2015

Other highlights:

  • new sound:  “na na”
  • we lowered his crib to the lowest setting (5/3)
  • food reaction during lunch, multiple hives on both arms, chest/neck (5/1)
  • house visit from Grammie and Todd gave her a kiss (5/5)
  • allergy doctor appointment and diagnosis of peanut allergy (5/6)
  • weight at 8.5 months (with clothes/diaper on) = 17 lb, 8 oz = just under the 23rd percentile
  • first full day starting to wear underwear, in addition to diapers (5/7)
  • I made up hand signs for “smoothie” and “pancake” because he eats those foods every day
Party smiles at Dan's house - May 2, 2015

Party smiles at Dan’s house – May 2, 2015

Weekend Activities:

  • Party at Dan’s house in Monroe (5/2)
  • Rollerblade with stroller on the Centennial Trail (5/3)
Swinging at the party - May 2, 2015

Swinging at the party – May 2, 2015

WEEK 38

What do you call your baby?  We all have cute names, right?  I haven’t mentioned this before, so I’ll mention it here.  I like to greet Todd first thing in the morning with “Sunshine Boy” and I usually call him “Little One” and “Little Sweetheart” all day long (or a variation, “Sweet Little Heart”).  Eric likes to greet Todd in the morning with “Señor,” and he calls him his “Little Buddy.”  There’s also “Mr. Todd” and “Toad.”

Do you remember so long ago, when he made cute frog noises?  “Ribbit” was his earliest nickname that Eric used while Todd was still in the NICU.  I used to call him “Little Mister,” but now I tend to call him “Little Sir” or “Little Son.”  On the internet, his “hashtag nicknames” are #minivegan, and #tatertodd.

Elisa & Todd - May 11, 2015

Elisa & Todd – May 11, 2015

Developmental highlights:

  • very interested in small particles on the floor, tries to put them in his mouth
  • he’s initiating more unsupported standing again (in addition to “cruising” with support all the time)
  • able to stand unsupported for 30 fast counts
  • can walk with a one-hand hold a little bit, and a two-hand hold a lot
  • tries to climb up on anything he possibly can, to reach things he wants
  • he climbs over our legs/waist all the time when we’re on the floor
  • he imitated me doing the “all done” sign and before that he did it himself (I don’t know if he knows what it means yet, though)
Lock Up Your Daughters - May 11, 2015

Lock Up Your Daughters – May 11, 2015

Other highlights:

  • he likes to “take a break” from playing and prop himself up with his back leaning on the couch (or even a wall)
  • he loves when Eric throws him (face down or face up) into pillows on my bed
  • he still loves lurching from pillow to pillow on my bed, then he quickly spins onto his back
  • he likes to throw his toys out the window
  • he loves various kitchen noises (i.e. blender, salad spinner, coffee grinder, etc).  He races over (crawling) to see what’s going on, and stands up at the cabinets to try to get a better look
  • he likes to stand and shake the bottom rack of the dishwasher
No teeth yet - May 11, 2015

No teeth yet – May 11, 2015

Outings:

  • Rollerblading on the Centennial Trail (5/9 & 5/10)
  • Out to eat at The Shire Cafe (5/9)
  • Kaleidoscope Play & Learn group at Jennings Park (5/13)

At the play group this week, Todd was much more interested in the story reading and songs than he was 2 weeks ago.  He was also more interested in little bits of things on the floor.  He likes going over to other kids, and he smiles at everyone.  I don’t see any stranger anxiety yet!  One little girl that was there 2 weeks ago (who doesn’t like him touching her jeans) commented several times, “He grew up.”  I thought it was pretty observant, because he did seem different to me, too.

Rollerblading on the Centennial Trail - May 9, 2015

Rollerblading on the Centennial Trail – May 9, 2015

Food notes and new (vegan) foods this week:

He likes to dip one fingertip in his pureed food to taste it, and then takes several more “bites” that way.  He loves eating black olive slices by sticking his finger in the hole to pick each piece up.  Other small bits of food he can pick up by working them onto his index finger.

  • little bit of Field Roast sausage
  • homemade black bean burger with ground cashews and quinoa flour
  • raspberries (I fed him little bits at a time)
  • vegan taco soup and pita bread at The Shire Cafe
  • winter squash jarred organic baby food
  • black olives (now he’s eating them)
Black olive technique - May 12, 2015

Black olive technique – May 12, 2015

WEEK 39

This was an exciting week for a few reasons.

First, we got ourselves set up for bike riding with Todd!   On May 16th, we got a hitch installed on our Subaru Outback that we bought last Fall.  On the way home from the hitch installation, we had lunch in Renton, at Blossom Vegetarian (our 2nd time there).  Todd liked being fed garbanzo beans from Eric’s chopsticks.

Dining at Blossom Vegetarian - May 16, 2015

Dining at Blossom Vegetarian – May 16, 2015

The next day, we went to Costco to pick up an Everyday Traveler Bike Trailer.  Such a great deal for only $199!  We expect our bike rack for the car to be delivered on May 22nd.  Eric ordered the 1 up USA Double Bicycle Quik Rack.

Of course, we wasted no time taking Todd’s new wheels for a ride in the neighborhood.  It was also my first time back on my bike since before I was pregnant.  Ah…it was about time!   I’m looking forward to many more rides to come!

Todd's 1st bike ride - May 17, 2015

Todd’s 1st bike ride – May 17, 2015

Developmental and other highlights:

  • 1st steps!  He took 4 steps, stepping toward Eric (several times) (5/18)
  • he climbed into the 9″ tall Rubbermaid storage bin (5/19)
  • he took 4, 6, and then 11 linked steps (5/19)
  • he climbed both feet up the wall simultaneously while holding onto the windowsill (5/20)

Other highlights:

  • he got excited looking at himself in his little mirror and kissed himself several times (5/16)
  • 1st & 2nd bike rides with the new trailer (5/17, 5/18)
  • he loves to stand and bang on the washing machine
He climbed in the bin - May 19, 2015

He climbed in the bin – May 19, 2015

Food notes and new (vegan) foods this week:

On May 21st, I noticed that Todd did a pincer grasp to pick up a garbanzo bean.  That was the first time I noticed him doing that.

  • roasted curried garbanzo beans
  • orange slice
  • peach mango fruit pouch (Earth’s Best Organic)
  • red lentil dal
  • raisin
  • Tofurky sausage (little bits)
  • pickled beet
May 19, 2015

May 19, 2015

9TH MONTH WRAP-UP

Sleep–

Right now, Todd continues his “normal” sleep pattern of sleeping through the night ~5 days per week and waking up once ~2 days per week.  If he wakes up crying, it’s always within 3 hours of his bedtime (which is typically ~8:30 PM).  He gets back to sleep without difficulty.

These days, Todd is asleep when I put him in his crib at night.  He falls asleep in my arms after I give him his bottle, then I rock him in my glider chair for at least another 15 minutes before I put him in bed.  I cherish that “snuggle time” with him.

The one thing that’s different lately is that Todd is becoming more of an “early bird.”  Before, his typical wake up time was definitely after 6 AM and frequently closer to 7 AM.  Now, he’s waking up chatting and turning on his crib soother music before 6 AM more often than I’d like!  Of course, since Eric leaves for work around 6:30 AM, he’s always happy when Todd wakes up before he has to go.  That makes all of us happy!

Regarding naps– Todd is essentially taking one nap per day.  It starts about 3-4 hours after he wakes up in the morning.  He’s still using the swing and his naps still last 2-3 hours (and even longer).  He’ll take catnaps in the car or the stroller sometimes in the afternoons.  Occasionally I offer an afternoon swing nap, but usually not.

I think Todd gets enough sleep because when he’s asleep, he’s OUT.  That goes for daytime and nighttime.  It seems like he gets really good quality sleep.

Before bed - May 20, 2015

Before bed – May 20, 2015

Food–

Todd is wonderful eater!  I’m feeding him solids at least twice per day, and sometimes three.  Green smoothie and a pancake (of various flavors/ingredients) is breakfast.  Organic applesauce is a regular offering if I give him a lunch.  Dinner includes any smoothie that he didn’t eat at breakfast and then a wide assortment of whatever we’re having.

At the moment, Todd is finishing up his 52nd can of “formula milk.”

Red lentil dal - May 18, 2015

Red lentil dal – May 18, 2015

Toileting–

This month Todd had 3 poop “misses,” which means that at least some part of a poo-poo ended up in the diaper instead of the toilet.  On 2 out of those 3 times, it amounted to just a “nugget,” which was followed by a large poop in the toilet.

Ever since Todd’s first day in underwear (May 7th), we’ve been using his underwear daily.  I only put Todd in diapers for mealtime, naps/bedtime, and when we leave the house.  Sure– Todd goes through a lot of wet “trainers” each day, but we have a stash of 12 and haven’t run out yet.  I just round up all of our laundry every evening and run a load of whatever size it happens to be.  With Todd in underwear, I know exactly how often he goes.  It’s helpful information to have!

Todd pees in the toilet throughout the day.  The number of times depends on how often I take him.  He can pee a lot within the hour after drinking his formula (4-5+ times).  It’s not unreasonable for me to take him to the toilet every 15 minutes.  It might sound like a lot of work, but I do think it’s worth it!  There’s no doubt that Todd is gradually learning about his body and learning about toilet use by establishing this regular habit.

May 18, 2015

May 18, 2015

What else can I say except Todd is a real sweetheart!  He’s such a joy to be around.

 

Todd at 1 week old - August 28, 2014

Todd at 1 week old – August 28, 2014

Well– I started writing the post called “Baby Todd’s Second Month,” but then I realized that I was spending an awful long time writing just about Todd’s toileting.  It made sense to dedicate a post to the topic.  So here is everything related to Todd’s elimination in his first 3 months.

Let’s start with the set-up.  I didn’t waste my money on a specific changing table with specific changing table pads and covers.  First of all, I don’t have the space for extra furniture.  Second of all, I wanted to use things that would be useful beyond Todd’s diaper days.  I purchased a set of 4 washable bed pads for about $25.

I used a desk in my bedroom as the night time changing area and my sewing machine cabinet in my living room as the day time changing area.

  • First layer:  non-slip shelf liner
  • Second layer:  folded up towel (for padding)
  • Third layer:  folded waterproof bed pad
  • Fourth layer:  cloth diapers
  • “Side wall” layer:  folded cloth diapers
Night time diaper station

Night time diaper station

Day time diaper station

Day time diaper station

I purchased cloth diaper supplies from Green Mountain Diapers while I was still pregnant. I bought 2 dozen newborn and 2 dozen small Cloth-eez Unbleached Organic Prefolds. I also bought a large Blueberry Diaper Pail Liner Laundry Bag, 2 smaller zippered Blueberry Wet Bags, 3 different kinds of cloth wipes (a dozen each), a pack of Snappi Fasteners, and a couple diaper pins.

Green Mountain Diapers order

Green Mountain Diapers order

Note: If you use new cloth prefolds, be sure to wash them multiple times in order to get them ready for use. I had mine ready to go before Todd was born. The Green Mountain Diapers website has lots of instructional content.

Cloth-eez Prefolds, Blueberry Diaper Bags & Baby Bjorn Potty

Cloth-eez Prefolds, Blueberry Diaper Bags & Baby Bjorn Potty

I didn’t have to purchase any diaper covers because I got them used or as gifts.  My initial stash included:  2 Bummis Super Whisper Wraps (size newborn), 2 Thirsties Duo Wraps (size one), 1 Bummis Super Whisper Wrap (size small), and 3 other similar covers (Green Earth, ProWrap).

Cloth Diaper Covers

Cloth Diaper Covers

I recently received another size one Thirsties and 2 g diapers.  My cloth prefolds fit well inside the g diaper liner.  I also have some size medium covers for when Todd gets bigger.

g diaper with newborn prefold inside

g diaper with newborn prefold inside

For Todd’s first 5 weeks, I used only disposable newborn diapers. I’d originally planned to start using cloth diapers right after his cord stump fell off. It fell off when he was 2.5 weeks old (9/9/14), but I waited a little longer because I was still too overwhelmed at the time to start something new.

On September 28th, I put him in cloth for the first time. Once I started cloth diapering, I found out that it’s really easy.

Todd started out in the size newborn cloth covers…his frog covers. Ribbit! I didn’t need to use a Snappi or diaper pin (and I still don’t today). I just fold the prefold, line the cover with it, and put it on Todd.  Voila!

1st time in a cloth diaper (Newborn Bummis Super Whisper) - September 28, 2014

1st time in a cloth diaper (Newborn Bummis Super Whisper) – September 28, 2014

The large laundry bag is actually a lot bigger than I need. I wash the prefolds and the diaper bag(s) every other day. I do a warm/warm rinse-only, no detergent cycle, followed by a hot/cold + extra rinse wash cycle. Since I have 3 laundry/wet bags I always have a bag to put dirty diapers in while I’m doing laundry. The smaller wet bags are a nice travel size for when you leave the house.

With rare exception, I use the same diaper cover all day. I just change out the prefolds. I’m glad that I didn’t purchase more covers, because I definitely have enough. At the end of the day, I put the cover in our regular dirty laundry basket. (warm/cold wash cycle + air dry).

Since we started cloth diapering, Todd’s bowel movement frequency has been about once per day. His soy formula poops are soft but well formed, appear greenish and they don’t really stick to the cloth because they have a slightly oily sheen. Clean up is easy! I conserve on baby wipes by wiping first with toilet paper, then I use 1 wipe to finish the job.

Soy formula poop in a newborn cotton prefold.

Soy formula poop in a newborn cotton prefold.

Since we’re on the topic of poop, I should mention that it’s always really obvious when Todd is going.  First, he gets a certain faraway look on his face.  Then, he emits a series of forceful groans and his face turns all red.  It’s hilarious!  (Sorry, baby…)

We haven’t had any problem with diaper rash. Only briefly in his first month did he have a mild problem, but that’s when he pooped several times a day. At the time, we used The Honest Company’s Diaper Rash Cream (from Target) and it cleared right up.

Todd in his Thirsties diaper at 10.5 weeks old - November 2, 2014

Todd in his Thirsties diaper at 10.5 weeks old – November 2, 2014

For night time, I do use disposable diapers.  Especially now that Todd is sleeping up to 8.5 hours in a stretch, I appreciate the super absorbancy of the disposables.  (Thank you, Costco!)

I haven’t tried using my cloth wipes yet. I still have lots of disposable wipes (Seventh Generation, $2.99 at Target) and they’re really lasting a long time since I only use ~1 per day. Once I run out, I plan to try out the cloth wipes.

(Note that one package of the cloth wipes I bought has really been handy for Todd’s feedings. I call them Todd’s “face wipers.” He doesn’t spit up much, but he can be messy at times, dribbling formula while he eats.)

The latest thing we’re delving into is Elimination Communication (EC).  So far, Todd has peed in his potty three times.  The first time, I thought he was starting to make his “poopy face,” so I quickly moved him onto his potty.  He didn’t poop, but he peed.  That was on November 6th (11 weeks old).  Since then, I’ve put him on his potty occasionally during diaper changes, but he hasn’t produced.  Usually he fights it and tries to stand up.  I don’t push it.  Eric’s had better luck.  Todd peed in his potty two days in a row this week (11/19 & 11/20).

1st pee in the potty - November 6, 2014

1st pee in the potty – November 6, 2014

Usually Todd prefers to take opportunities to pee on the changing table.  We have some Pee-pee Teepees for the sprinkling wee-wee, but to be honest, you need a third hand for them to be effective, and it’s kind of a moving target!  It’s a cute idea, but not very practical.  (Thank you, aunt Ginny- for the gift, though!)

Pee-pee Teepees

Pee-pee Teepees

Here’s Todd today, at 3 months old, showing off his muscular upper back and his g diaper.  A few days ago, he weighed 11 pounds, 12 ounces.

Tummy time in the g diaper - 3 months old - November 21, 2014

Tummy time in the g diaper – 3 months old – November 21, 2014

Todd's g diaper

Todd’s g diaper

"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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