Monday, 18 July 2011

A General Update

Hello everyone!  I've realised that I haven't done an update on Everything Elizabeth for a long time so here goes.


Sleeping

Elizabeth now usually sleeps for around 11 hours 45 minutes.  Sometimes it's a bit longer, sometimes it's a bit less.  For example, this morning she woke up at 8am, after having 12 ½ hours sleep!  She may even have slept for a bit longer had I not gone in to check on her and woken her up.  Most of the time she sleeps soundlessly but occassionally something will disturb her during the night.  She's very good at going back to sleep on her own and we don't usually have to go and help her.  We've been very lucky.  Strangely, having a decent night's sleep has messed ME up a bit.  I find that I'm more tired now, getting 7-8 hours sleep, than I was when I was getting up once in the night.  I'm hoping it's just my body needing a little more time to adjust.

During the day, Elizabeth has still been having four naps.  She usually has one in the morning (40 - 50 minutes), one over lunch (1hr - 1h 15m), one mid afternoon (40 - 50 minutes) and one late afternoon (40 - 50 minutes).  I know it's a lot but she really struggles to be awake for more than 2 hours.  Her first nap is usually between 1hr and 1hr 30m after she wakes from the night.  I've tried keeping her up for longer but she gets very cranky and becomes quite difficult.  After lunch she is better and I can often keep her up 2 ½ but then she really needs to sleep.  I'm sure things will change when she's ready.  Thankfully E is really good at sleeping when we're out, be it on the car journey or in the buggy, otherwise I'd never go out if I had to be home for her to sleep in her cot!


Eating

Elizabeth really loves her food.  We started weaning about 7 weeks ago and started off very slowly.  She would wolf down her food so we've gently increased the amount and introduced her to loads of different fruits and vegetables and now she's having three proper meals a day.  I'm giving her slightly more than the recommended amount for her age but she's always hungry.  She will take loads of milk after each meal, as well as having milk inbetween.  She's still tracking her weight curve though and is firmly in the 50% percentile.  That means she's of average weight and all this food doesn't seem to have affected that.

She has just started having breakfast when she wakes up, rather than milk, as she wakes up a little later now.  Until last week I was giving her milk first, then breakfast a couple of hours later.  This worked well as it fitted in nicely with our sleepy head's napping.  Now that she wakes between 7 and 7:30am, she needs to have her breakfast first but it seems to be going OK.  Lunch is usually vegetables and dinner is meat based.  So far she has only had chicken but she loves it!  She'll have a fair bit of fruit puree as well, in her porridge for breakfast and then as a dessert after dinner.  I was also giving her fruit puree after lunch but I think that's too much fruit.  I will sometimes give her a bit of banana to munch on as she really enjoys that, though she struggles to hold it herself as it slips out of her hand.  She does a fantastic job of eating it though.  Generally speaking, she's a very tidy eater, even with the pieces of banana.  She's also very fast and the food goes straight down, even the lumpier stuff.  That gets chewed a little bit then swallowed, then her mouth is open waiting for the next spoonful!  It's very cute but she does get impatient sometimes when I'm not quick enough with the food.  No idea where she gets that from....

Swimming

We've just finished the second term of swimming.  We've been doing the classes with Baby Swimming at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in the hydrotherapy pool.  It's lovely as the pool is a bit warmer than most public swimming pools, making it much more pleasant for the parents babies.

The focus in the last set of classes was to encourage the babies to turn by themselves and to hold on to the side of the pool.  Elizabeth can hold on but still needs help getting to the side of the pool, although she has now started kicking.  When under the water, she will often kick to try to get back to the surface.  She can fall jump into the pool on her own as well which is amazing!  Frans will sit her on the side of the pool (I stand behind just in case she falls backward...) and will put his arms up and encourage E to come in the water.  She leans forward and sort of shuffles, then as she starts falling, she closes her eyes and holds her breath, ready to go into the water!  The next step of course is to get her to swim after jumping in and to get her to turn by herself.  It amazes me how well she does every week and being so young hasn't hampered her at all.  She is the youngest by 10 weeks.

Elizabeth really enjoys her swimming classes and, as someone who doesn't particularly enjoy water, it's wonderful to watch.

Crawling

Elizabeth has been dragging herself around the living room for a month or so now.  She struggles to get up on her hands and knees on the slippy wooden floor but can do it occassionally.  She practices on the playmat as well as in her cot and I'm sure she'll master it evetually.  For now she's quite speedy commando crawling on her belly and so is happy continuing to do that.  She does propel herself along with her feet and one day it'll just 'click' for her and she'll properly crawl.  She definitely loves the independence of being able to go wherever she wants and get whatever she wants.  I often find her rummaging through the toys to find the one she really wants.

Measurements

Elizabeth still continues to be a ridiculously long baby.  I last measured her a week or two ago and she was 74cm.  That puts her in the 98th percentile for her age so she's a lot longer than most babies!  As for her weight, she's still average - which is good considering the amount of food she eats - and was last weighed almost four weeks ago.  Back then, E weighed 7.76kg (17.1 lbs) so she is probably a little over 8kg now.

Signing

Baby signing with TinyTalk is great fun!  Our teacher, Lisa, is amazing and all the babies are mesmerised by her.  She has a lovely, bubbly personality and is a great teacher.  We sing lots of nursery rhymes and sign as much as we can.  Elizabeth has a few favourites, especially Incy Wincy Spider.  She smiles everytime I sing and sign 'Out came the sunshine'.  She can now sign 'milk' although she doesn't always use in the right places.  She usually asks for milk when she's having some food she's not enjoying so I try and let her know she's got the 'milk' sign correctly but at the same time make it clear that we're eating food right now.  Very confusing for her, I'm sure, but she'll get the hang of it eventually.

Everything Else

Bathtime is a big thing at the moment.  A few weeks ago, E really started splashing and having fun in the bath.  She's always played with her bath toys and enjoyed being in the bath but this is something new.  She splashes with such gusto that half the water ends up on the floor!  She also likes to drop the ducks over the side of the tub (she's still in a little baby bath as we only have a shower in the flat) and she then tries to pick them back up.  At first, she couldn't reach, then she realised that she could pull herslef up on the side of the tub.  It took her a while to figure out the correct position to be in to do this correctly but she's got it now and can just about reach the duck that's on the floor.

Elizabeth has become very good at drinking on her own.  She does sometimes get too excited to put the sippy cup back on the highchair tray but she can pick it up and drink with ease.  She evens knows to tip the cup up if no water is coming out.  The other day we were at a friend's house and her son's cup was on the floor (with no lid).  On her travels, E had found it and decided she was thirsty so drank half of what was in the cup!  The rest got thrown over the floor when she decided she'd had enough.

Is there anything I've missed?  Please let me know if there's anything you'd like to know.

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