Levi: Week 24 Summary

This is a summary of last week, Levi’s 24th week of life! It was a great week and he was all-around extremely happy. We continued with BLW and we also had some visitors!

FEEDING
Nursing was pretty much the same as last week. Levi is still eating every 3 hours (although, a handful of times this week, he did extend that to 3.5 hours). He is still extremely distracted–to the point where Brian and I can’t even talk while he is eating and the TV can’t be on! That’s frustrating.

We continued with BLW and some pureed solids this week. Here is what Levi ate:
Day 6 – 1/2 banana and 1 large strawberry
Day 7 – 1/2 avocado
Day 8 – 1 strawberry and 1 slice of avocado
Day 9 – 1.25 oz pureed pears and BLW with 1/2 banana
Day 10 – 1 oz pureed pears and BLW with 1 kiwi and 2 steamed baby carrots
Day 11 – 1/2 banana, 1 slice of cucumber, 1 steamed carrot, 1 wedge of cheese (he got to choose)
Day 12 – 1 oz pureed prunes and BLW with 2 steamed carrots and 1/2 banana

We found out this week that Levi LOVES prunes. Crazy man could not get enough! He also seems to really enjoy all of the finger foods he has tried as well. He tends to like the flavors of strawberries and carrots the best so far! He hasn’t quite figured out how to pick up the carrots yet (especially because I gave him some short baby carrots that I had on hand), so he learned to sweep the carrot to the side of his tray and bend down to suck on it (see picture above). It’s quite funny!

NAPS
This was probably the best napping week for Levi ever. I started putting him down for his naps exactly 1 hour and 20 minutes from the time he last woke and he barely cried at all each time! He started really sucking his thumb more this week, so when I would put him down, he would roll to his side, stick his left thumb in his mouth and put his blanket near/over his face. I stayed in his room to watch a few times (without him knowing) and he would literally fall asleep within 3 minutes. This is a huge improvement considering he would cry for at least 10-15 minutes before every nap of his life! He also rarely woke during his naps this week as well. Usually he had been waking right at the 45 minutes mark. I feel bad, because now I realize I had been putting him down to sleep when he was already overtired (crazy what that extra 10 minutes can do!), so he had never been a great napper. I’m super glad things are changing for the better!

WAKE TIME 
Same old, same old for wake time. Levi is still loving his floor gym, Bumbo, and especially his Jumperoo! He started really getting active in that thing–he’ll “run” and “jump” and twirl and lunge himself all over the place in that thing. We think it’s hilarious.

I noticed this past week that Levi is much more conscious of where his Sophie the Giraffe toy is. If he is playing with her and then accidentally drops her on the floor, he’ll either start whining for someone to give it to him or he’ll stretch as far as he can to try to get her. This is the first week that he has done that.

NIGHTTIME
3-4 nights this past week, Levi slept from his bedtime (around 8 PM) to at least 6 AM–so that is definitely better than last week! Toward the end of the week, Brian’s parents were in town, so he was not on his usual schedule because we were out with them for most of the day. This really affected him, to the point where he woke twice one night. He also really started rolling over a lot in his sleep! I think he’s done that about 6 times now and it really scares him–he wakes up screaming. It’s really hard to hear him so scared, but I’m really trying to give him some time once he wakes up to get used to the idea of being on his stomach. Hopefully, if he gets used to it a bit more, it won’t totally disrupt his sleeping all the time.

OUTINGS/EVENTS
Levi’s grandma and grandpa visited from Pensacola toward the end of this past week! He had a really fun time with them and was all smiles while they were here! They were here for the three days at the end of the week, so I kept Levi in a lot during the beginning of the week so that he got good rest in before they arrived.

Levi: Week 23 Summary

It’s hard to believe this big boy is 5.5 months old! He is growing up way too fast. Here is a review of his 23rd week!


FEEDING
Oh boy, this week sure was interesting when it came to feeding Levi! He was still as distracted as last week with nursing and he still hated my nursing cover just as much. Toward the end of the week, he would not eat for more than 20 minutes at a time. But most of the time, he made it at least 2.5 hours until his next feeding, so I guess this is just his new thing? I’m not sure if my milk just started miraculously flowing faster this week or if he just learned to suck more efficiently or if he was just more full than usual because he started solids, but he absolutely refused to eat any longer than that.

We also started baby-wed leaning this week and boy, was that fun! The first and second days, I gave Levi half of a banana; the third day I gave him 1/3 of an avocado; the fourth day, half a banana and a large strawberry; and the fifth day, another 1/3 of an avocado. It was extremely fun and extremely messy!! I learned the hard way on day one to just strip him down to his diaper so that I could just stick him straight in the tub afterwards. I could definitely see slight improvement day after day with him being able to pick up the food and bring it to his mouth. Sometimes, I would need to help him out by putting the piece of food in his mouth and showing his hands how to hold it there…but I think he started making the connection.

NAPS
Levi napped about the same as last week–which is a good thing! I kept his first wake time about an hour long and all his wake times after that were about one hour and fifteen minutes. He did have occasional trouble falling asleep, but he didn’t cry too much all week. Usually, at most, he would lay there and talk for about 30 minutes or so, but that still gave him a good hour to nap, so I wasn’t too worried about it.

He is doing well without being swaddled at nap time and is still loving his thumb!

WAKE TIME
Nothing much has changed in the area of wake time this week! He seemed to really enjoy his floor gym this week (more than ever). A friend also gave us a jumper that hangs from the door frame for free, so he tried that for the first time! He kind of just twirled all around in it, which was funny, and it keeps him occupied while I do laundry, which is super nice 🙂

NIGHTTIME
Oh man, I’m not sure what happened this week regarding Levi’s sleeping at night. So many things changed this week for him, so I think that really impacted him sleeping through the night. I finally dropped his swaddle at night (he just kept breaking through it anyway), he is working on rolling over, and he also started solids, so 5 of the 7 nights he woke anywhere between 1:30 and 3:30 AM. I thought he might have been constipated for a few days and he might have been cold without a blanket in his crib–but even once he finally pooped and I bought him a SleepSack to keep him warm, he still woke in the night. So I’m not sure what’s up! Here’s to a new week ahead!

OUTINGS/EVENTS
Mother’s Day was this past Sunday and it was so wonderful to spend it with Brian and Levi! It was a very relaxing and enjoyable day.

Levi and I also walked down to our garden a few times this week to water. He really seems to enjoy that–just walking around outside. One day, the weather was so nice, that I thought he might like to lay on a blanket outside to look up at the trees and the sky. Nope. He hated that. As soon as I laid him down, he started screaming! I think it was just too unfamiliar to him. Maybe we’ll try it again this week!

That’s all for this week! I’ve added some fun pictures of Levi below trying out his new foods.

 

Levi: Week 22 Summary

 

This is a recap of Levi’s 22nd week of sweet life. Just a couple of days late, but things have been a little busy around here. I’ll cut to the chase…

FEEDING
Levi was one distracted boy this week when it came to nursing! He just wanted to play. All. The. Time. He would eat for about 15-20 minutes and then just stop, look up at me with his big brown eyes and give me a huge grin. Seriously, every time I fed him. It was adorable, but frustrating! I felt like I had to force him to eat. Finally, toward the end of the week, if he had eaten for at least 30 minutes, I wouldn’t force him to eat anymore. And he didn’t need to eat any sooner than 3 hours later, so I assume he was getting enough!

One new development this week related to feeding was Levi’s hatred for my nursing cover. He never seemed to mind it or notice it until this week. There were a handful of times when we were out this past week and I needed to use my cover and Levi threw such a fit. He would throw his arms up and down so that the cover, well, wouldn’t cover. It was such a pain. I made sure to bring a bottle with me wherever we went just in case! I’m hoping he gets over that…real soon.

We officially decided this past week that Levi seems ready for solids. His motor skills are greatly improving to where he can hold things now, which is needed for baby led weaning. He is also seeming a bit disinterested in milk and more curious about the food that we are eating–so I think its time! I’m nervous about constipation issues, but I know there is no avoiding that, regardless of his age. New food means new digestive issues. I’ll write about how it goes in next week’s post.

NAPS
Ahh…last week finally started improving in the nap area. It wasn’t fantastic, but I was satisfied with how he slept. After a reminder of watching for his optimal wake time from my friend Anna’s sister, I started putting him down 15 minutes earlier than I usually do. I had been pushing him to the 1.5 hour mark for every wake time, with the hope that he would then sleep for 1.5 hours. This week, I dropped his first wake time down to about 1 hour and the rest of the day’s wake times to 1 hour and  15 minutes. That seemed to really help! Towards the end of the week, he was going down with little crying/talking and if he woke at the 45 minute mark, it was only for a minute or so with some light whining. I was slightly sad about reducing his wake time, just because he already eats for 45 minutes at a time, so that doesn’t leave much time afterwards for playing–but I see now that it is for the better.

I also dropped his swaddle for naps later in the week. He did surprisingly well and didn’t seem phased by it at all. I handed him his blanket, so that he still had it in his crib to hold and rub against his face (he likes that). Levi also started sucking his thumb A LOT this week. Two weeks ago (week 21), it seemed as if he had just discovered it. And this past week, he put that thing to use! He definitely uses thumb-sucking to soothe himself to sleep.

WAKE TIME 
Not too much in the area of wake time this past week, besides the reduction in it that I mentioned earlier. Levi did discover himself in the mirror connected to his floor gym, which was so cute! He just stared at himself and smiled the whole time. I’m pretty sure he has looked into it before, but I could tell this time, he knew he was looking at himself. He is slowly but surely figuring out how to roll from back to tummy now. I’m just trying to give him tummy time everyday to reinforce that.

NIGHTTIME
Levi slept so wonderful through the night this past week! He only woke before 6 AM (from whatever time I put him to bed) two times all week and those were both due to him (1) rolling over in his sleep or (2) getting his leg stuck in the slat of his crib! Both scared him, poor guy! I ended up feeding him for 10-15 minutes both times, since I was up anyway and to calm him down, but he didn’t really seem hungry to begin with. I’m so proud of his progress. His average is to wake between 6:30 and 7 every morning–which I am totally fine with since he goes to bed between 8 and 9 PM on any given night. He definitely is a baby to rise with the sun! As soon as the light pokes through his window, he is awake 🙂

PERSONALITY
Have I mentioned how much Levi loves Brian? Yea, its true. And he definitely showed it more and more this past week. They have this amazingly cute “buddy” bond. Levi almost always laughs when Brian tickles him or blows on his belly–he usually just smiles for me. It’s so fun to watch the two of them play together!

Besides the whole nursing cover development, Levi really is such a relaxed boy. He is content with just laying on his back or sitting in his Bumbo chewing on Sophie. He has a really happy disposition! Of course, he does have his stubborn moments too 🙂

OUTINGS/EVENTS
We planted a garden this week with my friend Anna! I’m looking forward to seeing if we can actually grow any veggies from it…

Some of our Tampa friends–Briana, Julia, Dan and Albert–also came to visit us this week, which was a lot of fun! They were in Nashville for the week and made the two hour trip north to come visit us! We hung out at our apartment for a bit, went to Quills for coffee, walked around the art gallery at the 21C Hotel in Downtown Louisville, and then got some pizza at the New Albanian Brewing Company Pizzeria. Julia, Dan, and Albert (we just met Albert for the first time that day!) got to meet Levi for the first time and seemed to really enjoy spending a few hours with him.

That’s all for this week!

10 Things I’ve Learned Since Becoming a Mommy…

Yesterday was my first Mother’s Day! Technically, last year I was a mom. Levi was just a 9 week old fetus the size of an olive and we were in France. So needless to say, without a baby in arms and with being in a different country, I didn’t feel very “motherly”. This year was much different!

Our day started out like any other. I brought Levi to our room around 7 AM to feed him. This might just be one of my favorite times of the day with him. Once he eats, we cuddle and play together. And when Brian is home from work in the mornings, its even better! I couldn’t help but reflect yesterday as I watched my little baby sleeping next to me, how blessed I truly am to be his mama. I think that often, but yesterday–as I lay there thinking about women who are unable to have children or who have suffered miscarriages, and how hard the day must be for those women–it was very evident to me how much grace God has shown Brian and I in providing us with a beautiful, healthy son.

Our day continued with heading to church, where all the mother’s were given white roses. Then, we went to lunch at Mimi’s Cafe. The wait time was an hour when we got there, so we put our name on the list and went next door to Barnes and Noble to walk around for 30 or so minutes. Brian made sure that we stopped in the cookbook section–my favorite 🙂 Lunch at Mimi’s was delicious and so fun! Our wait ended up running into Levi’s feeding time, which I thought was going to be a horror. But he stayed so happy the entire time! Even when we got to our table, he was laughing and looking around and didn’t even show any interest in eating. So that made for a nice lunch for me!

We then headed home and watched a movie, took a walk around Village Manor and then to the seminary to visit with some friends. It was a very nice day, overall!

So, the point of this post was to share some of the things I’ve learned about being a mom these past 5.5 months. The good, the bad and the ugly. It’s been a long road and a big learning curve, but entirely rewarding. Here we go:

  1. There are good days and there are bad days…and each depend on how well-fed and well-rested both Levi and I are. I knew that a fed and rested baby was typically a happy baby, but I didn’t realize how much my patience and nurture depended on those things as well. I have learned to make sure I eat three meals and a snack each day. And I’m also not ashamed to sleep a little longer in the morning when Levi does–I, personally, have found that I need that.
  2. A spiritually-fed mommy makes a world of difference! When I make sure to set aside time during Levi’s morning nap to read the Word and reflect on God’s goodness for a bit, it completely changes my disposition for the day.
  3. Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize time with Brian. This is harder than I thought it would be. My natural inclination as a mother is to care for my baby–but I cannot let my care for my husband be overlooked. For us, this means putting Levi to bed around 8 every night (when possible), so that we can drink some coffee together, watch a show, talk, do homework, whatever. We just need that baby-free time to show love and attention to one another instead of just focusing on Levi.
  4. Poop, pee, spit up, boogers, earwax and any other bodily fluids become the norm. I’ve grown accustomed to such things. Plus, when its your own kid, it doesn’t end up being as weird or gross as it seems.
  5. I try not to compare Levi with other babies or myself with other moms. I have found that it’s helpful to ask how other people do things (schedules, solids, play time, etc.), but I have also found that I need to do what works best for me and for Levi. Each baby is different!
  6. I need to get out at least once a day. The transition from working full-time to staying at home full-time was much more difficult than I had imagined. I, personally, just need contact with other adults outside of my home everyday. Sometimes, this involves going grocery shopping, running errands, sitting at a coffee shop with Levi, taking a walk around our apartment complex, etc.
  7. If he sleeps through the night once, it doesn’t mean he’ll automatically do it again the next night. I found myself getting very frustrated with this issue early on. Finally, I just adopted the mindset of going to bed with low expectations for the number of hours he would sleep. If he woke in the night, I wouldn’t be upset because I was already expecting it. If he slept longer, it was a pleasant surprise and I would be proud of him.
  8. Being a mom is a never-ending job of service. When I’m exhausted, when I’m sick, when I’m hungry…I’m still a mom and I still have a duty to care for my son. Luckily, I have my husband who graciously helps and serves me in those times and on a daily basis. Couldn’t do it without him!
  9. Breastfeeding is not the easiest route, but it is super rewarding. I find it easy now, but when we were first starting out, breastfeeding was harder than I expected. I had to work very hard to establish my milk supply (nursing regularly with pumping in between–so exhausting!), the ever-present question: “Is he getting enough?”, and Levi just being a pokey eater in general. But now that I’ve gotten the hang of it, not only is it easy, but also very rewarding. There is an inexplicable bond that comes from breastfeeding.
  10. Lastly, becoming a mom has shown me, even more so, my need for God’s grace. I am a self-centered sinner that needs God’s love and redemption on a daily basis. This parenthood thing is by no means easy, but it certainly helps to reveal our relationship to the Father.
I love you, Levi! Thanks to God for making me your mommy.

Levi: Week 21 Summary

 

My baby is 5 months old? Please tell me this isn’t so! Yes, on Wednesday of this past week, Levi hit the 5 month milestone. Crazy how fast that went by! I feel as if each week and month that passes just becomes more and more fun. Levi is rambunctious, and cheerful, and stubborn, and sweet, and adorable–all wrapped up into one 15 pound bundle of soft baby. Gosh, I love him. And his hair is finally growing! That was random, I know…but it’s been a long time comin’. Here is the 21st week for Levi in a nutshell:


FEEDING 
Nursing continued on as usual. He was pretty distracted again this week and he ate at 3 hour intervals (no 4 hour intervals like last week). All in all, it was a pretty normal week.

NAPS
Oh man, Levi had trouble with his naps this week! The first two days of the week, he did not sleep for his first two naps of the days. I put him down at his normal time and he simply laid in his crib and talked to himself for an hour straight each time. At the one hour mark, I took him from his crib and put him in his swing–to see if he would possibly sleep there. Nope. The dude would not sleep. Luckily, the rest of the week he did take his normal naps, but even those were not very long. Most days, he would talk in his crib for at least 30 minutes and then finally fall asleep for 45 minutes or so. I’m a bit confused what to do with this guy! He clearly is able to stay up longer now (for almost 2 hours at a time), which tells me he may be ready to move to a 4-hour schedule, but he still needs to eat every 3 hours. He is anxious to eat at every feeding. So I’m hoping to just wait it out for another week and see what ends up happening.

WAKE TIME
Levi is still loving his Bumbo. Some days he enjoys his floor gym–but I have to catch him at the right time. Yesterday, he played on his floor gym for at least 30 minutes and literally rotated his body around the entire thing! He just squirms around to get where he wants to go! Still no rolling–but I’ve been trying to give him more tummy time everyday to encourage that. He still isn’t a big fan of tummy time.

Levi started laughing more this week, which is so fun! He also squeals now, which is pretty hilarious. Sometimes he’ll make a crazy noise and then completely pause whatever he is doing–as if to say, “wow, did that noise just come from me?!” He really is a happy boy (as long as he is well-fed, well-rested and not constipated, haha) and we feel so blessed by him everyday.

NIGHTTIME
Well, remember that great progress Levi made last week. Yea, it wasn’t as great this week. He did well, but there were several nights that he woke multiple times. I think some of that was due to the fact that he hadn’t pooped for 3 days–he was a little gassy and uncomfortable by day 3, so I think that woke him. He also hit himself in his face one night, which woke him up. I know because he had a huge bloody scratch under his eye when I got him from his crib (and I just cut his fingernails the day before!) This past week definitely wasn’t terrible as far as him sleeping through the night was concerned, but maybe this week will be slightly better!

OUTINGS/EVENTS
We didn’t really have too much going on this week apart from our usual activities! The weather the beginning of the week was gorgeous (70 degrees and sunny), so Levi and I were able to go for walks during the day. He really enjoys being outside–I think its very calming for him. Plus, he just loves to look around and take everything in. One day this week, I was meeting with a friend close to where my work office is, so I decided to take Levi into the office to visit everyone. There are many Hispanics where I work(ed), so they love to dote over “Le-bi”…they pronounce the “V” as a “B” in Spanish.

The Kentucky Derby was also this week! We did nothing in terms of celebrating it, since we don’t have cable TV and it was the weekend before finals at SBTS–but still, it happened during this 21st week of Levi’s life.

On a side note, I’ve been trying to hone my photography skills a bit. I really would like a fancy-pants camera (that’s been my dream gift since I was like 12), but they’re expensive. So I figure, I have a nice point-and-shoot now…plus I have Photoshop…so might as well improve my skills a bit and make sure a nice camera is something we should invest in. Here are some photos below from this week. The first two are just fun ones from Levi’s 5 month photoshoot and the last ones are ones I edited a bit (I’ve been playing around with a more vintage look). Enjoy!

 

I mean, really? This face.
Oh, he’s silly.

 

 

 

Oh, and happy Cinco de Mayo. Love, Le-bi.