Friday, September 27, 2013

Food and Legos and BLW

I know. She looks so old, doesn't she? She's almost 5 months and she nurses every hour (even at night right now! Yay!) She is really big for her age.

What face is Grandma making right now, Trixie?

Spacefem wrote about the 4-5 month Baby Sequestration on her blog the other day. Yes. Exactly. All that nursing, feeling trapped....The pediatricians we see have very recently changed their recommendations regarding starting solids from 6 to 5 months based on this study that looked at Type 1 diabetes. We're not a high risk group, but I might go ahead and give Trixie a banana a little earlier with new, scientific-sounding reasoning.

I'm a big fan of the strangely named method of solids introduction known as Baby Led Weaning. It should really be named Baby Led Self Feeding. My German friend Diana introduced me to it when Noah was born and we were still living in Munich. I think it's more popular in Europe than here in the States. I also think it may be a method that works well with stay-at-home-parents, but it would be a lot less successful if a baby was in daycare.

The basic premise is to go with a baby's developmental stages in letting them explore/eat food. No mushy spoon feeding. You can, for example, give the 6 month old baby a full, peeled apple and let him or her suck on it. It's too big too swallow. And it's pretty hard to get a piece off the apple without teeth to bite. But the kid gets a good taste and gets used to the idea of feeding herself. She gets to use her new-found manipulative powers on her tasty toys. I like this methodology because I think it gives the baby more control over what she eats and sets her up for better eating habits as an adult.  (For example: Stop eating when I'm full. / Eat the foods with nutrients my body needs.) What I like most about it is that I've found it teaches babies NOT to swallow when something feels "wrong" in their mouth. At least, this has truly been my experience with Noah and Mattias.

The not swallowing is going to be pretty important in our house, because, dear internet, the legos are going to be really hard to manage.  The boys play with the legos ALLLLLL the time. For my own sanity, I'm not sure I can really pack them up and put them away. So we are trying, TRYING, to confine them to the boys' bedroom. BUT. I have to a realist here, keeping the legos confined to the bedroom will require no less than CONSTANT VIGILANCE on my part.

Best to approach the problem from two directions: constance vigilance with the legos AND teaching Trixie to spit "it" out when "it" feels wrong.

Monday, September 9, 2013


Life clicked into a good place last week. This school year, the days are pretty much perfectly divided for the distribution of attention/needs for each kid (and me) – at least that's the way it feels. I think it feels that way for the kids, too, because everyone seems to be in very good spirits.

Noah is in school all day. He got a very high-energy, super-organized teacher who is the perfect complement for him. He comes home happy and excited about his class and what he's learning everyday. This year he gets to take the bus in the morning; he was unbelievably enthusiastic about this. I was unbelievably nervous. But so far, so good. Oh, the bus. I think taking the bus versus being dropped off/picked up at school could have it's own special post.

Mattias is in a half day preschool program. Last year, he did a twice/once a week program. I must say, it didn't go very well. Partially he was too young. Partially the program wasn't as great as I hoped. I remember, way back at the beginning of our experiences with child-in-preschool, I felt really lost about what to look for in a program. I googled information about recognizing good preschool programs, I tried to sort instinct from learned knowledge from hype when I visited. Now, 4 years later, I finally feel like I've got some sort of fundamental wisdom on the whole preschool scene. That took a long time. But there's definitely a difference among programs and teachers. And (I've concluded that) I'm super-picky. Mattias's program this year was largely chosen for convenience. By a twist in fortune, it also happens to be a great program. I'm thrilled with his teacher and I feel lucky; especially after all the hand-wringing last year. I guess I didn't realize how much the less-than-ideal situation was weighing on me.

Trixie is four months old now. I think four months is when life with a baby starts to get fun. She's still big; repeatedly in the 97th percentile for all those measurements that they do. Honestly, I'd be okay if she was a little smaller and NOT outgrowing all her clothes so fast.

I'm working on several different projects, all of which I'd like to share. I'm finding that time to sit at the computer and type is really at a premium lately. Well, you know how it is.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Chief World Explorer (with kids?!?)

Ah, to be twenty-one and obligation free!

My cousin Ryan is competing for his dream job, traveling around the world as a "Chief World Explorer" with Jauntaroo. He sent me a link to his funny application video here.

Presumably, Ryan thought I would vote for him, and not offer myself up as competition. How about a Chief World Explorer with three little kids in tow? Yes? Don't you think trying to navigate exotic, beautiful vacation destinations for a year with kids would make for much more interesting stories? Hmmm. I'm still trying to decide if the pay would be sufficient compensation.

Actually, I don't think I'll challenge Ryan on this one. But you should watch his video. Because it's funny and campy and you'll learn some words in foreign languages. And then you should "Like" him, because WTH, it's Sunday; blogs are slow! And it only took, like, two minutes of your time.

Thank you!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Still Planning

Last week was suppose to be the week that I finally started getting stuff done around here. Nope, didn't happen. First there were all those half days of school for testing purposes. Then there was our reliable, dependable car with less than 50K, which, lately, is not at all reliable-dependable. Also, Trixie is out-of-sorts with our schedule that requires no less than 3 excursions each day.

So maybe this week will be the week I start getting stuff done?

Then again, I'm already down one day because of the holiday.

I'm not quite sure why I have such an overwhelming drive to be productive. This part of me certainly conflicts with the job aspect of motherhood. Life goes the best around here when I stop trying to do anything (planned). As soon as I start planning, I am bound to be thwarted and frustrated. Life is best when I just sit back and go with the kids' natural rhythms and fill in the spaces with, you know, laundry and dishes and simple food prep.

Ugh. I don't know how many times I have to relearn this lesson. Or maybe this lesson is specific to having a baby in tow? For the short period of time when I had two kids over the age of two, it really seemed like things were happening around here. But I don't know if that was a fluke or what. Someday I will get to feel productive again. I just hope I don't have to wait a full 18 years.