May 27, 2011

Life of Wilder: Week Twenty-Six

How is it possible that my sweet Wilder turned half a year old yesterday?? Time, I hereby command you to stop moving so fast! We had his six-month checkup on Tuesday and my bouncy baby boy weighs 17 lbs 6 oz and is 27 1/4 inches long. I was so proud of how well he did. He sat on the table so nicely while the doctor and I talked about him and then smiled and talked to the doctor while she examined him. She said he looked perfect and that she couldn't think of one thing to say that we needed to do or work on. That made me feel so good :) Then came the dreaded vaccines. In the past he hasn't been too fond of the oral one (much less the shots) but this time he held the nurse's hand to his mouth and gulped it down, haha. The shots this time weren't bad either. He cried for approximately 5 seconds afterwards and then was fine. I'm so thankful for such an easy-going, good-natured baby!

As of Saturday, he has now officially eaten his first solid food. I wanted to exclusively breastfeed until he was six months old but I went ahead and started him a few days early because for the last two weeks he has still been waking up totally famished at 5:30 am or earlier every morning (one night it was 3:45, ugh!). Plus for the last month he could think of nothing but putting things in his mouth and he also acted very interested in us eating, which I read are both signs that he was ready for real food. I was hoping to put it off until after our trip to Tennessee for the sake of convenience, but this past weekend I thought about it and just couldn't see putting it off for another almost two weeks. This boy was ready for food and there was no getting around it. 

I wanted to try making my own purees so on Saturday Wilder and I went to the grocery and picked out some avocados and a sweet potato. I read that both were a great first food and since we're living in California I thought it only proper that his first would be avocado. They are soooo good for you! What I read said that with avocados you could just mash them so that's what I did, but he was totally not feeling it. I think from now on I'll puree it and thin it out with some water. But anyway, as you can see from the pictures below, the avocado didn't go over too well. In fact, I'm not even sure he actually swallowed any of it. He kept spitting it out and then he gagged and threw up everywhere. Poor little guy! It wasn't a pleasant experience for anyone involved, let me tell you. 

"I'm not sure what's going on, 
but I'm excited about it!"
 "You want me to do what with that?!"
 "What have you put in my mouth??!
Get it out! Get it out!"
 Me hoping the next bite will go better...
 Nope... This was about 2 
seconds before the vomiting.

I know you are supposed to introduce one food every 3 or 4 days to make sure they aren't allergic but since he hadn't actually ingested any of the avocado, and I knew he wouldn't want it again, I went ahead the next day and pureed the sweet potato for him so I could keep the ball rolling with the solids. The sweet potato was a huge hit. It took him a few minutes to come around since he was still suspicious from the avocado incident, but by the end of the first meal he was leaning forward and opening his mouth for another bite. We did sweet potato through Tuesday and it is the cutest thing ever watching him eat. He is so proud of himself afterwards. 

"Sweet potato! Sweet potato! Yaaayyy sweet potato!"
 So proud of himself :)

Instead of starting him on rice cereal first, I've been mixing it in with his veggies. The only nutritional value in rice cereal is the iron and, since he's already 6-months-old, I wanted to go ahead and get him started with real food. On Wednesday we switched from sweet potatoes to peas. The peas didn't go over too well at first, but he's coming around to them. Mixing the rice cereal in with them actually seems to make them more palatable. I know I went out of order with the veggies but after the avocado I didn't want to turn him off to food completely with something he wouldn't naturally take to. I know I'm doing things differently, but I'm thinking things through and doing my research and what I'm discovering is that, when it comes to babies, each one is different and there is no hard and fast rule as to what will work. As parents we just have to use our common sense and be flexible. 

Speaking of doing things differently, when I was researching solids I ran across some information about Baby-Led Weaning that I thought was really interesting. It's a method popularized in England where "weaning" doesn't mean weaning off of breastmilk/formula, it means gradually introducing solids in addition to breastmilk/formula. With this method the baby is given slices/strips/chunks of soft food like avocado slices, pieces of potato, etc. -- pretty much just pieces of whatever you're eating -- and allowed to feed it to themselves. It teaches them to chew and to decide when they are full instead of being encouraged to take "just one more bite." It's an interesting concept that people have been doing for years and it seems to have a lot of good benefits so I'm thinking about giving it a try in another month. 

We had a fun short visit with Paul's dad last Saturday. We played with Wilder at our house and then walked down the street to Urban Solace for lunch. I know no one probably cares but I had the most delicious sandwich called the Monte Diego -- smoked ham, grilled pears, marinated onions, and Fontina cheese on custard-dipped egg bread. Oh. My. Word. Soooo good! Anyway, also during Paul's dad's visit we discovered that Wilder may have a slight case of stranger anxiety. Not that his granddad is a stranger but Wilder hasn't seen him in 3 months so as soon as I handed him over to him he started crying and reaching for me. I read that this can start happening at around this age and, since Wilder is only ever held by Paul and me (not by choice but because we don't have family out here and none of our friends ever ask to hold him because they either have babies of their own or are college dudes haha), he's definitely more susceptible to it. So just a word of warning to anyone we might see in Tennessee this weekend... approach calmly and you're welcome to hold him but don't be offended if he starts to cry. He's normally a pretty laid-back little guy so I think it will just take him a little while to get used to everyone. 

Three generations :)

We got into Tennessee last night. We had a bridal luncheon this morning for the beautiful bride and tonight we had the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. We're totally pooped and the big day is tomorrow so all the details of the flight and the wedding will have to wait till next week. Y'all have a great weekend!

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