Friday, September 13, 2013

6 Months

Dearest Kinley,

For some reason 6 months seems like such a big milestone.  We have made it for a half of a year.  You are thriving and we could not be more in love with you.  I know that they say your heart grows when you have another child; I just didn't realize exactly how much it could grow.  I feel like now that we are "knock on wood" out of the trenches of the yucky sleep pattern you had been in and finally found our sleeping groove, your personality has begun to really show itself.  You are silly.  You love to grab our faces and usually attack them with your mouth.  You laugh a lot at all kinds of things.  You definitely light up when your brother talks to you.  You are definitely outgoing as long as Mommy or Daddy are holding you.  You love to cuddle and definitely are leery of strangers.  It is funny just how different you and your brother are-and how well you both fit into our family puzzle.

So speaking of sleep.  Wowza.  That last month was rough.  However, we learned a few things throughout that mess.  First, you are not a child that can veer off of schedule without messing everything up.  If your schedule has been altered, we have a very long recovery time.  So, with that, we have been choosing our activities very carefully-always deciding if the result is worth it.  So right now, you are napping right at 8:30 am, again at 12:30 pm, and a third nap at 4:00 pm.  You then are in bed around 7:30 pm and wake up around 6:30 am.  The 4:00 nap stinks, now that I am back to work full time.  I feel like I get so little time with you and your brother already.  You only nap for about an hour max, but it still eats into my time with you.  However, if you do not get all three naps, life is messy.  So, it is necessary.  I don't like being so rigid, but it is totally worth it.  I also know that it will not be forever, so we deal.  Your aunt is getting married in a couple weeks and we will have a few nights in a row of a messed up schedule...that stresses me out.  So goes the life of a parent.  As for falling asleep, you now occasionally will fall asleep on your own without nursing to sleep.  I do not mind nursing to sleep, but sometimes when I lay you down you wake up.  It is much easier when you are able to get yourself back to sleep without me completely re-doing the routine.  We also got a sound machine that plays white noise to help you with sleep-and it seems to be doing the job!  In a complete act of desperation one day I downloaded a white noise app on my phone.  When that worked I immediately searched for a store that had one I could pick up.  I found one at a baby store and picked it up the same day.  That thing has been worth it's weight in gold.

You are such a great nurser.  We are going strong with breastfeeding, and I do not see any need to do anything else in the near future.  We are going to start a meal daily for you, and have decided that bananas will be your first food.  Now that you are in daycare full time you are drinking bottles of breast milk during the day.  You do great with bottles, but I just don't know how much to send.  So I always send three bottles, just in case.  You seem to be averaging about 8-10 ounces during the day there.  You still nurse pretty often.  I usually pump for a few minutes each morning, then feed you before you head to daycare.  I pump twice during the day at work.  I then nurse you when I pick you up, once before the 4:00 nap, again when you wake up, and then once at bedtime.  On the weekends I usually nurse you 8 times during the day (at least).  It doesn't feel too bad though, because you are pretty efficient.  You do sleep through the night and have for a long time, so I feel that you need all those sessions during the day.  Plus that is our time, and I like it.  I want to have a third baby someday, but in case I don't I just want to savor every moment-including nursing.  I feel so fortunate that you and I are so successful with this and so thankful that I will not have to supplement with you at all.  I had to with your brother and felt like such a failure (stupid-I know).  So, this time I made sure that I would have enough stored up that even if my supply dropped when I began to work full time you would still get what you needed.  I have A LOT of milk stored up.  I am not sure how many ounces, but I have three rubbermaid containers full plus a two gallon bag full.

You love your toys!

First food...bananas.

you love to be outside

chewing on toys...the best time


I just love this photo of pensive

I already kind of mentioned this, but you started full time at daycare since I had to go back to work full time.  This has been going well so far.  Your dad drops you off and I pick you up.  I love to see your smiles when you see me!  There will also be another baby starting at the daycare next week.  She is one month younger than you.  I am choosing to look at the positives with this.  You will have another girl there with you and you will have someone to grow up with there.  Currently, Amy has five older boys (ranging from 3-5) and then will have the two baby girls.  Seven kids isn't too bad, and you aren't a super needy newborn anymore.  So, I am crossing my fingers that this goes well!

sleeping at the Twins game.  At home the sound of the dog walking wakes you up...hmmm.

First train ride.  Also, the most interesting place I have ever nursed you, to date.

Your motor skills are developing very fast these days, which could also be a contributor to the sleep issues we were having.  You now are rolling over and over to get to toys you want.  You can roll both ways and love to be playing on the floor.  You are also beginning to be able to sit on your own for about 20 seconds.  You still tip over, but are getting much more balanced.  You are also beginning to bear weight for a few seconds.  You love your toys and mostly mouth them.  You have begun to shake toys though, and occasionally throw or drop them.  You have your favorites for sure.  You like toys with tags and also ones that make noise.  You are also VERY interested in your brother's toys.  He is not a fan of this.  However, his toys are super motivating for you to move.  You seem to be beginning to understand cause and effect.
Folks, we have a sitter.


Standing.  Still not your favorite thing.

One of the highlights of the month was your dad's new job!  He is now home on the weekends and does not work late anymore!  Also, Grandma came to visit since your great grandpa passed away.  It was fun to see her and spend some quality time.  We did not do much, simple things, but definitely had a great time.  We also did baby and mommy yoga quite a few times.  This was fun for you and me!  You got some  We spent a lot of time together, since I took the whole month off.  I feel so fortunate (and broke) that I was able to only work 22 days in your first 6 months of life.  Going back to work is bittersweet.  I love my job and enjoy the people I work with!  I also know that there are definite social benefits to you going to daycare.  I do wish at times that I could stay home with you and your brother, however, feel content with working.  I just don't think my time is best spent longing for something that is just not a reality right now.  Always such a tug of war.  However, our glass is full little girl!  Thank you for choosing me as your mommy and making my heart grow three sizes!

Grandma (my mom)!

Unexpected, and super fun visit!

Grandma Helen (daddy's mom)!



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