Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Baby Ball: 1 Year

It pains me to write the title of today's post. One year. One whole year since our sweet little girl entered the world. One whole year has passed since I caught the first glimpse of her tiny little arm flailing back and forth. One whole year has come and gone. And, oh, how quickly it went.

I tried so hard to soak up each moment. To savor the time with her. I have tried to frequently pause and say to myself, Remember this moment. But, still, it flew by like everyone warned me!

Thankfully, I have kept a good record of Maleah's life on a regular basis. This blog, a calendar in her room, my journal - little scribbles of memories here and there so that I could remember this time with her. It is because of those writings that I can even remember what she was like as a tiny 7 pound 2 ounce newborn.

But, today, she is no longer that teeny tiny little baby. She is an independent, walkin', talkin', almost-toddler. She has become quite the "ham" over the past few months - craving attention much like her mother (admittance is the first step, right?). Little curls are forming at the nape of her neck. Teeth are poppin' through left and right. And when we sit down to play, I get the sense that she actually understands what we're doing. She watches for cues, for responses, for recognition - and she communicates. It's amazing!

So, the time has come to do a twelve month update on my cutie pie. Here we go... no tears, no tears!

Stats: She weighs 19 pounds 5 ounces and is 29 inches tall. She has six teeth, technically. Two of them are still making their way in but I say they count because you can see white! She wears a size 3 diaper, 12-18 month clothes (mostly), and a size 4 shoe.

Lately it has been a little all over the place. She is transitioning into taking a mid-day nap, apparently, so that has been a little confusing. This is an average of what the past few weeks have been like:

5:45-6:30 - Wake up, 6 ounces milk*
7:15 - Breakfast (waffle, yogurt, banana, fruit, Cheerio's, eggs, etc.)
9:15 - Snack (fruit, crackers, cheese, etc) and offer a cup of milk
11:15-12 (somewhere in there) - Lunch (meat, vegetable, fruit, pasta, etc.)
11:30-3:30 - a 2-3 hour nap in there somewhere
3:30 (or upon waking) - 6 oz milk
4:30 - snack (again fruit, crackers, cheese, etc.)
6 - dinner
7:15 - bath, 6 oz milk, bedtime

*She is now drinking whole milk. See "eating"!

Again... this hasn't really worked perfectly each day. We're not really sure where she's headed with this mid-day nap. I noted on Facebook that she has been waking up really ill and hungry, so she'll get up, drink some milk and sometimes even eat breakfast, and then want to go back to sleep before 9am. Not really sure what to do about all that... hopefully next month we'll have most of the kinks worked out!

     Moving to all-table foods has been an interesting transition. In some ways, it is MUCH easier. In other ways, it is MUCH harder. Easier in the sense that we no longer have to prep foods ahead of time, puree things, etc. Harder in the sense that we are having to learn how much she wants/needs and how often. And we've finally learned to feed her in stages - give her the fruit/veggies and protein first, followed with the grains... otherwise she'll eat only teh grain. She's a very good eater - she likes just about anything we give her... except green beans (which is weird... who doesn't like green beans!?). I am also a little neurotic about what she is eating. I am so concerned that she's going to become a junk food baby that I am hestitant to give her lots of bread or crackers or sweets. But, I am realizing she needs more grains than what I have been giving her so that's a goal for the next few weeks.
     We also decided to start transitioning to whole milk because we were running out of formula. MY plan was to SLOWLY transition her. My husband's plan was different. After a whole 24 hours of being down to 3oz formula/3oz whole milk, he decided to just give her some straight whole milk and she took right to it. So we haven't been making any more formula. We're still trying to make it about room temperature, but will work on the drinking it cold thing when we get to it. There have been way too many transitions in the past few weeks for my liking!
     Her daycare teachers also suggested we try eliminating the bottle. That went quicker than I expected, too. The first few times we gave her milk from her sippy (straw) cup, she shook her head "no," thinking it was water. Once I showed her there was milk inside, she was game. Now I think she knows that there will be milk in it when she wants milk (usually after she wakes up in the morning and from her nap and just before bed) and water in it at meal times.

     We have a walker! She started by taking just a step at a time and now she is a little teeter-tottering baby girl! She usually can take about 8-10 steps before stumbling, but she's getting better everyday. She will also walk with you holding just one hand instead of two, so we've been trying this to help her get a sense of balance. It's so fun to see her walking around!
     Maleah also really likes to talk. I'm amazed at how much a one-year-old can actually communicate. She can say all sorts of words, but even more interesting, is that I can tell she actually understand what I'm saying at times. Mostly she just likes to say animal sounds, though. "Baa!!!" for sheep is currently her favorite!
    One other interesting change is that she now will play with you. She is learning how to do something together rather than just on her own. She likes to play with cups and plates, hair brushes and balls with us. We might have also played with a dollhouse a time or two together! :) I love playing with her!

    Has anyone else witnessed their child suddenly turning into a whiney little brat!? Yes? Good! I'm not alone. It started Christmas morning... Maleah was opening her presents and we noticed she was pooping. When it seemed like she was finished, Blake picked her up to change her diaper. She IMMEDIATELY made a horrid face and started to cry! He took her back to change her and realized she had not used the bathroom, so I thought she must be a little constipated and maybe we didn't just see a mini temper tantrum. We gave her some juice to sip on as she opened presents and she "went" again. So, Blake picked her up again when she was finished and AGAIN she made this horrible face and started to cry! Since then, she has pitched a few of these little fits. Nothing outrageous - no head banging or fist pumping or screaming... but just enough to let us know that even the happiest, sweetest, most loving babies have their moments!
     When Maleah seems to be throwing one of these fits, we try to talk calmly to her and redirect her attention and usually that works. We try not to give in to whatever it is she is wanting just to show her that this is not how we get what we want. We try to give her what it is she is wanting once she calms down. There haven't been too many of these instances, but hopefully we can handle each one with calmness and understanding, while also trying to teach her self-control in the process.

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