Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Life With Lauren, 4 months

Here she is at four months old. About a week ago, Dan and I were eating our dinner while Lauren played in her stim gym on the floor. She managed to grasp two of the toys in her hands and was earnestly pulling them towards her mouth. We laughed to see the look of determination in her eyes, and asked each other if she could get any cuter. Apparently, she will, but oh my. I can hardly imagine.

At her four month doctor's visit, Lauren weighed in at 11 lbs 9.5 oz. We were thrilled. It was nearly a two pound weight gain this month, which puts her back on the chart at the 8th percentile. We've settled into a rhythm for her feeding cycles for now at least. After every time she nurses during the day, she gets 2 oz of formula. The last feeding of the night normally knocks her out and no bottles in the middle of the night. I finally came to peace about using formula during the middle of the month. For a while there I was still obsessing about milk supply, but seeing how she was growing and blossoming, I realized that this is what we needed to do. Fortunately, Lauren didn't have any major reactions to adding formula in to our routine. (From certain books, I picked up the belief that she was going to be fussy, sick, and miserable the second the formula touched her lips.) So to any moms out there who are struggling with their baby's failure to thrive and yet are hesitant to follow the doctor's advice by adding formula, take heart. It'll be okay.

Apparently, Lauren shrank between visits to the doctor, but I think her most accurate length is 24.25", although I think that is even on the short side of her actual length (I might just have to measure her myself). I'm not sure what the percentile is on that, and her head circumference is 15". She's outgrowing her 3 month clothes and is transitioning to her 3-6 and 6 month outfits. A whole new wardrobe, already!

Sleeping continues to have its up and down moments for our girl. After Christmas, she transitioned to her crib (yippee!) and she's been pretty happy there. For almost two weeks, she would sleep for really long chunks of time, sleeping either the entire night through or waking up once in the early morning. She fooled us for a while because halfway through the month, I was so disappointed when she started waking up every two to three hours. Darn growth spurt! Then she slept through the night for a couple of night when my parents were here, probably because she did not sleep a minute during the day, afraid to miss something fun. Now we're settling in on waking up twice per night. She's loved being swaddled up until now, but she's starting to break free from it, so we might be in for another not so fun transition from being swaddled to being free. (She's so jumpy when I lay her down without being swaddled that she will almost immediately wake herself up.) As for day time naps -- as unpredictable as the emotions of a pregnant lady.

Fun moments from this month:
  • Lauren will mimic Dan when she is feeling talkative. If he says "hello," she'll do her best to sing the vowels back to him, even with the same intonation. 
  • A visit from my parents and my aunt and uncle. Lauren loved the commotion, except for being fussy because she was exhausted. 
  • A little giggle! She did this early in the month, but has only repeated it a couple of times following. I was so tickled that I teared up while smiling oh-so-big. 
  • Play time is more exciting now that Lauren grabs things to stick in her mouth. At first I thought it was just a coincidence that she managed to grab on to the toys, but it has happened too many times. 
  • Lauren looooves the Moby wrap a friend loaned me. Thank goodness for some extra mobility. She likes to snooze in it as opposed to taking a nap in her crib.
  • About half way through the month, Lauren also decided that she does NOT like being carried like a baby. She wants to sit UP, thank you very much, and will do these little crunches to attempt to pull herself up to sitting in your arms. She likes facing out in the Moby wrap, too, so she can see the great wide world, both in our house and outside. 
  • A dimple! My dad noticed it when they were visiting and has christened it the granddad dimple.

Each new day has something different, from sleep to new discoveries to emerging mannerisms, and we are doing our best to enjoy each day as it comes. I wonder what will show up this month!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Life With Lauren, 3 Months

Lauren Elizabeth has been growing and changing all month! She is blossoming into a smiley, happy baby, which is a wonderful development from the fussiness of the first few months.

First, her stats, as we know them:

Weight: 9 lbs, 10 oz, as of a week before she hit three months
Length: 23.25"
Cuteness: Off the charts

When I last posted, Lauren was scheduled to see a GI specialist because of her slow weight gain. We visited him in December, and after lots of questions, he suggested supplementing with formula. (He also ordered some tests, the results of which we'll hear about next week.) I was really upset about needing to supplement. Everything I've read about breastfeeding has said that your body should respond to the demand, but for some reason, Lauren was not getting enough milk from me. So we started her on a couple ounces of formula after nursing, and she has been thrilled. She gobbles it down and is finally filling out. In fact, her 3 month clothes now (mostly!) fit. Her pants still have a tendency to fall off, but we're working on that. (Also, her acid reflux seems to have vanished. Praise the Lord for that!)

We had a great time visiting family at Christmas, traveling all around, smiling at cousins and enjoying life to the full. She was blessed with tons of cute gifts and was thrilled to be held by her grandmas. She started being very interested in everything going on around her, and held many coo-ing conversations with her family members. She also mastered the transition to the regular old pack-n-play -- no snuggly insert! It was a bit of a trial for all of us, but it worked.

Since this post is almost 2 weeks late, I'm going to leave it at that info, plus this picture of our Christmas elf.