< 5 months
< 6 months on Valentine’s day – I mustache you to be mine
< 6 months
I’ve been so busy lately, I somehow put off posting about Elliott’s 5th month until it was time to post about his 6th month! So I decided to combine them.
Elliott has changed SO much in the past two months and he has been tough to figure out during this time. I’ve felt disheartened sometimes because what works one day, won’t work the next day. It’s been important for me to remind myself and hear other people say that every baby is different and some just take more time to develop a napping schedule.
But no matter what, I count myself so lucky, because Elliott is so incredibly sweet. He’s animated, talkative, very loving, incredibly bright, and his smile just lights up a room.
He went from napping pretty well once I put him on a schedule around 3 months to not napping at all once he hit 17 months. At one point he was only waking up once a night (around 3 am). But then he gradually woke up more and more, so that after 2-3 hours of sleeping, he would get up every hour or so all throughout the night. It was rough, let me tell ya. Some babies just naturally sleep through the night at some point. Not my baby. I had to teach him. And even now, he’s only sleeping through the night according to the technical definition (5-6 hours).
Two good friends, one of which doesn’t even live on this coast, coached me through the trials and tribulations of teaching my baby to sleep. God bless them. Every mother needs someone to help them through this. I needed someone to console me, coach me, and talk me down from ledges. And thank goodness, I have a wonderful support system that helped me through this.
Brad and I ended up sleep training Elliott both at night and napping. I had him napping pretty well and then when we started sleep training at night, his naps got all screwed up. Now, he’s doing pretty well. Although I’m completely superstitious to say that because I feel like every time I feel like I’ve got things figured out, Elliott changes the game on me.
He isn’t sleeping through the night. I told myself that I would continue to feed him once a night, so if he wakes up 3 am or later, I nurse him back to sleep. He still wakes up sometimes before then (like as I’m writing this post at night), but he falls back to sleep in 5 minutes or less. And usually it’s much much less. He fell back to sleep before I could finish this paragraph.
Elliott flipped over back to front a week before he turned 4 months, then flipped over back to front the day he turned 5 months. In the past few weeks he has been flipping over to his belly to play with toys and in the past month he actually has started sleeping on his belly. I’ve even caught him on his tip toes, butt in the air, in somewhat of a downward dog position, which I’ve never seen him do, but that once instance. He was very mad because I had put him down for a nap that he didn’t want to take. Otherwise, he flips over to play, and then five minutes later, he either flips back to his back or whines until I flip him over.
Everyone always remarks how happy and talkative he is. He jibber jabbers all the time and giggles with the cutest little laugh, especially if you kiss and blow on his belly. I swear he said “daddy” the other day, but we’re calling Brad “papa” so it was definitely a coincidence. Now, if I could only get him to say “mama”…
Elliott stays in the sitting up position, for short periods of time and especially if his focus is on something in front of him. But we’re not quite there yet. I can’t leave him sitting up without some type of support like the Boppy. I like to sit him up against the ottoman in his nursery on the floor but I have to keep an eye on him and my hands ready to grab him, or he’ll fall over when I least expect it.
And boy is my baby busy! Notice that for his six month photo, the “6 Months” is all but rubbed off the chalk board? Someone had a little trouble keeping his hands to himself. You should try eating with him on your lap.
Around the time Elliott turned 5 months, we put him in his walker. That was the first time he was able to reach the ground with his feet when the walker was on the lowest setting. It only took a little coaxing from me for him to figure out that he could propel himself forward by kicking his feet back and forth. He’s doing so much better today! He can turn and even get himself around barriers. His steering is much improved.
Besides actually birthing Elliott, I’m secondly most proud of getting him off of formula completely. I attribute this to four things:
1) As Elliott has gotten stronger, he’s been able to stimulate my milk supply more and more, increasing my supply,
2) the week where I pumped after every single feeding during the day
3) he’s eating real food twice a day now, and
4) sleep training means I don’t need to feed him all throughout the night, so I get up every night at 1 am and pump, so now I have a freezer stash
Now about the real food…
I started Elliott on homemade baby food at four months. That definitely was not my original plan, but when it came down to real food versus formula, I would just rather give him real food. So I replaced supplemental formula feedings with real food, which at that time was only once a day. I completely skipped the rice cereal, opting instead for sweet potatoes, avocados, peas, apples, and bananas during months four and five.
Now that’s he’s 6 months, we’re doing more foods, some of which include oatmeal (baby cereal), brown rice, green beans, peaches, butternut squash, yogurt, blueberries, apples (all pureed). I’m going to introduce meat very soon as well.
At first he ate really well, As long as I put a little fruit on the spoon (or sweet potato) along with the vegetable, he would eat very well. But in the past week or so, he only wants to eat bananas, which I always blend with avocado. So I’ve been blending banana or pairing banana with everything. I hope this is just a phase.
Just as I suspected, Elliott is teething early (Brad and I both teethed early). The week before he turned 6 months, he got his first tooth. He wasn’t super fussy and didn’t run a fever so we didn’t even notice it until low and behold, it was there. But the second tooth has been a doozy. Three days ago, he was super fussy and ran a low grade temperature, which we treated with Baby Motrin, Baby Orajel, extra nursing, teething rings, and lots of love. Yesterday was pretty much the same.
Today he was much happier, I can feel his second tooth about to break through, but who knows when it’s going to actually come in. Teething sucks, ya’ll. And I’m kind of (actually really) afraid of his upper teeth. In my experience, teething on the bottom doesn’t really affect breastfeeding since his tongue goes over his teeth when he latches and sucks. But I’ve heard upper teeth are a different story. Ouch.
Challenging as it is sometimes, I absolutely love being a mother. Nothing makes me smile bigger, laugh more, or feel so grateful to be me than my sweet little man. He’s my heart and soul.