Thursday, July 24, 2014

New baby, new decisions

They may look like twins, but their personalities are totally different!

With Hunter, parenting was new (duh!).  There were so many decisions to make!  Bottle feed/breast feed, vaccinate/not (wasn't a hard decision given all the peer reviewed, scientific studies), make baby food/buy commercial baby food, etc.  We started with breast feeding, and went to formula.  We vaccinate.  We bought commercial baby food.  We did rice cereal first.  We used disposable diapers.

With Gavin, parenting is still new (what?!).  Different baby, different personality, different decisions.  I breast fed for a less amount of time with him, we vaccinate, I'm making baby food, we cloth diaper, and I'm skipping rice cereal.

My choice to use formula was more of a selfish, guilty mom to my first born, choice.  Please don't read into that as I think formula feeding is a bad thing or that other mother's can't balance nursing with other kids.  I know other moms can.  I struggled.  Gavin wanted to eat, on each side, for 20 minutes each side, every 3 hours, plus colic.  Most of the time, only mommy could get Gavin to calm down.  Meanwhile, Hunter is in front of me asking me to play, asking me to put him to bed, asking me to read to him.  Most of the time I was telling him, "I'm sorry baby.  Right now I can't.  I'm feeding Gavin/trying to get him to calm down."  Fast forward like 2 or 3 weeks, I'm standing in front of the formula at the grocery store, in tears.  Guilt that I, who am producing huge amounts of milk, am not going to give my new baby "liquid gold", but also feeling a little relief because I will be able to spend more time with Hunter and daddy can help with Gavin.

I won't go into the vaccine debate.  If you're against it, you're against it and published, peer reviewed studies aren't going to convince you.  We choose to vaccinate.

We decided to cloth diaper Gavin.  With Hunter, I knew very little about cloth diapers.  Actually, I'm not sure the thought to cloth ever crossed my mind.  It wasn't until Ashley had sweet Charlie that I had even seen someone cloth diaper their child.  She made it look soooo easy!  And Charlie had the cutest little fluff butt!  When we got pregnant with Gavin, I looked into it.  You can buy used (sanitize them) or new and spend less than you ever would on disposable diapers.  Unless you become addicted and buy way more than you need, or pay way more than retail for a used diaper because it's a "hard to find" print.  I just can't justify spending a lot on something that a) my child is going to poop in, or b) I'm buying used and your child pooped in it, but that's me.  You can also resell them and get some of that money back.  We did it for the savings.  Added bonus is no chemicals on his sensitive little butt (we also use cloth wipes... really just newborn washcloths that I spray water on... for that same reason) and less of a carbon footprint from our house.

We are skipping rice cereal. It has no taste- they will never consume anything like that ever again.  Grains can be difficult for their digestion.  Given Gavin's milk protein allergy and possible soy protein allergy, I'm not upsetting his little system any more than it already is.  Hunter had a really difficult time digesting rice cereal.  He was a very miserable child while eating cereal.  I do not want to put Gavin through that.

I have started making Gavin's food, thanks to our kind friend, Jessica, who let us borrow her Magic Bullet.  I've made avocado, sweet potato, and banana.  Up next is green beans.  They are sitting in frozen squares in a baggie.  With Hunter, I just picked up a bunch of the commercial baby food that was available at the stores.  It was quick and easy and we paid lots of money.  As I read this, I feel like I sound like a snob.  Please don't think I'm turning up my nose at people who buy baby food.  I am definitely not!  We fed our older child commercial baby food.  I want Gavin to experience that real taste of the foods we give him in puree form and slowly introduce them as actual solids.

Hunter enjoying store bought baby food

Every parent has choices to make for their child(ren).  Only they can know what is best for their family and their child(ren)'s needs.  What we chose for Hunter was the best thing for us at that time and what we choose for Gavin is what is best for us now.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Gavin's 5 months old... a few days late

Time is flying by, while at the same time, standing still.  Anyone else know what I mean?!

Gavin is 17 pounds, 14 ounces as of last Thursday.  We had to go for a weight check to adjust his reflux medicine.  Such a chunky monkey!  That's why I've nicknamed him chunkamunk.

When placed in the sitting position, he can hold himself up for at least 5 seconds, and the most being about 30 seconds.  He really wants to be sitting up and doesn't like you to lay him down on your lap when so much is going on around him.

He will continue to roll side-to-side, but will not roll over.  He has done it (both belly to back and back to belly), so I know he can do it.  Apparently his side and his back are perfectly good positions for him.  He is now sleeping (knock on wood) flat on his back in his crib.  He was having some tummy issues tonight, so I'm hoping he will continue to be fine tonight on his back.  Reflux is so tricky!

His first tooth came through this month!  It is a sharp little thing!  It feels like the other lower, central incisor his about to come through.  He was a very fussy teether, so I broke down and purchased an amber necklace.  I never believed that it actually did anything, but figured it couldn't hurt!  I don't know if it actually does, or if he just isn't in pain with his teeth, but he really hasn't been fussy.  I take it off at night (his ankles are too chunky to wrap it around them), then put it back on in the morning.
You can see his little tooth (bottom right of the picture)

He continues to love The Little Gym class.  He loves watching the other kids and listening to Miss Sarah talk.  As she does opening circle, he just smiles at her!  It is so super cute.  My boys have always loved their Miss Sarah.

Hunter continues to be Gavin's favorite person by far!  Hunter can just look at him and Gavin giggles.  Carl is second and I'm third.  Unless it is snuggle time, then I'm the favorite.
He started in the middle of the play mat

His eczema continues to be pretty bad.  I've made an appointment with a dermatologist, but it isn't until the end of August.  I've now started putting Vaseline mixed with Cerave lotion on him.  The mixture doesn't seem to burn him like plain lotion, and it has improved his skin some.  I just want to find the root of the cause.  I'd prefer to avoid medicines or creams since those can break down his skin (and it is all over his body).

I started making a little bit of baby food to have him play with and taste.  So far, he is not a fan.  I'm in no rush, so I'm not going to push it.  I really just did it to introduce the taste and to see if he was ready.  The positive is he has minimal tongue thrusting.  So once he is really ready, he will be good to go.