Wednesday marked Maleah's four month birthday, if that's what you want to call it! It is just incredible to watch a little baby grow before your eyes. To see her day in and day out and see the nuances of change happening more quickly than I'd like is a blessing I hope I never take for granted! Here's a quick update on our growing girl:
Look at that sweet little face! :) Love her. Okay, the update:
Stats: She weighs a whopping (sarcasm) 12 pounds 12 ounces - putting her around the 15th percentile for her age. Really!? She inherited Blake's metabolism, that's for sure. Mama doesn't have a problem gaining weight. She was 24.5 inches long - she has grown 4 1/2 inches since birth! That is amazing to me! We could tell she has grown in length because her footie pajamas were getting a little snug. :)
Eating: She's still eating every 3 hours (7a/10a/1p/4p/7p/10p), but that'll probably change as we introduce solid foods. We started her on single-grain oatmeal (instead of rice cereal, at the recommendation of our pediatrician) Wednesday. Our plan is to give her about a tablespoon of oatmeal at her 7pm feeding and then a bottle. We'll do that until next weekend and start her on it for breakfast (7am) in addition to dinner, and go from there. I'm not in a huge hurry for her to move to solids, but she honestly seems ready. She took right to eating! After the oatmeal, she will take about 4 oz of formula. Then we do her bath and a story and let her have the rest of the bottle (another 1-2 oz). We still do the "dream feed" at 10/10:30 and she takes the WHOLE thing (4 oz)! It fills her up until 7am! At all of her other feeds, she takes 5 oz of formula.
Activity: Little Chick can hold her head really well and can sit up while supported. I've held a couple of newborns in the past few weeks and it really is amazing how squishy and floppy they are compared to Maleah! It's almost hard to believe she was ever like that. But, she was... and now she's a growing girl! She can roll tummy-to-back (right and left) and back-to-tummy (right only, so far). We love watching her roll around. She also started squirming a couple of weeks ago. We can put a toy in front of her and if she wants it badly enough, she's figured out how to slither (that's the only thing I can equate it to!) until she reaches it! Pretty amazing, if you ask me! Maleah also decided that she does like toys. We were a little nervous for a while because she flinched every time a toy made a sound. But now she loves to look at toys and grasp at them and, on occassion, we've caught her purposefully moving her arm to reach for one. Usually we just put them on her hands and she fumbles around with them. But we can see the intentional reaching and grabbing starting to happen. Oh - one last thing - Maleah has A LOT to say. She's always gurgling and cooing and blowing raspberries!
Sleeping: During the day, Maleah doesn't really have any set naps. At daycare she just sleeps whenever she sleeps. This makes it hard to have "set" nap times at home. But, on the weekends she usually does pretty well on the Eat-Activity-Sleep routine where she eats, stays awake for about 1.5 hours, and then naps for 1-1.5 hours. Right now she still takes 4 naps a day - yes, FOUR! - but as she stretches her feedings, I'm sure she'll drop down to three longer naps rather than four short ones. She is also now sleeping through the night and has been pretty consistently since eleven weeks. But, now we're to the point where it would surprise us if she woke up hungry during the night. She does still wake up throughout the night and we usually go in and give her a pacifier to calm her back down. I have a feeling we'll be stopping this soon because she can go back to sleep without it if we are just patient. But we're so tired that we just go and give it to her and I'm afraid we'll be trapped in this cycle for a long time if we don't put an end to it.
Personality: As far as we can tell, Maleah has a pretty calm, easy-going personality. She doesn't get too terribly excited about much but she's usually not particularly grumpy, either. I'd say she's pretty mellow. :) She adapts really well to new situations - we can take her just about anywhere and she goes with the flow as long as we stick to her normal eat/activity/sleep routine. She will nap just about anywhere but I usually have to hold her to get her to go to sleep (and she doesn't nap as long). She eats just fine on the go - we've even had to feed her in the car seat a couple of times and it doesn't seem to bother her!
We are really enjoying this new phase with her. She's much more interactive, responsive, and independent. She loves ot play on her activity mat or sit in the bouncy and watch us make dinner. She's just a happy little kid and we love her!!!