M has had a great month…she’s gaining weight well and thriving. I’m learning she has a system like her brother and sister closest to her–I’ve had to cut out dairy from my diet to help her reflux. She also inherited her dad’s tongue tie, for which she got hers cut last week. Every day I have to stretch her tongue 4-6 times which is so hard to do, mainly because she screams bloody murder for the 5 min. it takes to do it. She also has very sensitive skin–she’s had a diaper rash almost from day one and had some yeast infection for a couple weeks. We’re finally on the way out of the yeast infection, but she still has a slight diaper rash, despite no-diaper time, warm water/cloth instead of wipes, baths every night, using only coconut oil to heal the skin, and giving her (and me) probiotics to get her gut health healthy. Hopefully she’ll eventually heal from all her sicknesses and ailments.
She’s a good baby. She LOVES being held, which means when she is put down, she cries and cries and cries. I’ve learned she’ll eventually settle, but we have to put up with the crying for about 20 min. before she’ll either tire herself out and fall asleep, or she’ll tire herself out and just sit and stare. The kids are getting used to the crying, too. She enjoys the sound of the vacuum, so often when she starts to cry, J goes to the vacuum and turns it on. He’ll also plug his ears. E will go to her and try to calm her down by rocking her in the swing and singing to her. And Mo copes by rocking her for a little bit and then either walking away or crying. She’s the most sensitive one to M’s crying–in the car, when M cries and cries and cries, Mo is the one who will cry as well, making for a joyful car ride for the rest of us, while the older two kids put up with it quite well. It’s almost like they’ve been trained. 🙂
M is a very strong baby. She holds her head up well and has since almost day one, but in her anger and crying, she can pretty much crawl off her blankets when she’s put on her tummy on the ground. Because she has to go bare bottom for long stretches of time to heal her diaper rash, I don’t always have time to hold her, so I sometimes put her on the ground on a towel. She doesn’t like that, so she’ll scream and push herself forward with her legs. Her head is still heavy so that stays on the ground, but her legs compensate and she has, in the past, pushed herself about a foot forward in her angry cries.
She’s also been an amazing sleeper. For all the crying she does when she’s put down, I can’t complain because 1.) it gives me an “excuse” to hold her a lot and get my newborn fix in while I still can, and 2.) she may be fussy when she’s up, but she sleeps for long stretches. I’m really bad with fully waking up when feeding her at night so I don’t always know when she wakes up to eat, but she normally goes to sleep anywhere from 9-11 pm and will sleep until 8-9am, waking up only once, sometimes twice, to eat. She does cluster feed from about 7-9/11 pm at night, which I think allows her to sleep so long at night, and then sometimes she’ll wake up at 6-7 am for a quick meal before going back down until 9 am. Either way, she’s an awesome night sleeper and, after eating, will normally go right back to bed. There are nights where she doesn’t follow that pattern and I wake up like a zombie the next morning, but such is life.
I still love this newborn stage and now that 2 out of the 3 older siblings are healthy, they’re able to enjoy her more as well. When she starts staying up for longer periods of time and stops crying when put down, she’s going to be an absolute favorite with them all. They constantly ask if they can hold her or kiss her, and E is singing made-up songs to her while J pats her back to comfort her. They’re big fans of her and love being protective older siblings.
She has crazy, stick-up hair like her siblings, only she’s the only one with blond hair and a pretty decent mohawk. She has E’s hairline, which she inherited from John, so it’s pretty far back but it’s slowly getting lower–while she’s gaining hair in the front, she’s losing it on the sides. She LOVES to pull it when she’s angry, as well as scratch her face, so she’s almost constantly wearing mittens to protect herself.
In other news, the other kids are doing well. E went back to school this week and loved it, as usual. She loves to draw and comes home with sheets of artwork to give to us. This past week John told me such an endearing story. Her teacher was talking to her while she was painting and E asked her how to paint Jesus. Then she asked the teacher, “Do you believe in Jesus?” The teacher said, “Yes, I do. I go to this church (the preschool is in Dapto Anglican Church).” E said, “Good, that means you’ll go to heaven someday.” We’ve been encouraging her to tell her friends at school about Jesus because that’s the only way they can get to heaven someday. She then told me that some of her schoolmates don’t believe in Jesus, so they’re going to hell. I wonder how that went over with them when she told them. Oh, the honesty of children.
J’s vocabulary is really growing and it’s fun to see him interacting a lot more with E. They normally have quiet time together in his room, which is more like ‘play for 3 hours together but try not to wake up your other siblings.’ They’ve really gotten close to each other with those times together and I can see a friendship building between them. He’s sad when she goes to school on Tues. and Wed. but he also loves being here without her because he gets more time from me to play with him.
M is getting cuter by the day. I just took out the 18-24 month clothes from E, so she has a whole new-to-her wardrobe. One skirt that we discovered was this one…she LOVES it and asks to wear it all the time. I wanted to take it off for dinner last night so she wouldn’t get it dirty, but she started crying, so I kept it on. She also loves to dance in it, which is what she’s doing here.
We’ve started eating oatmeal for breakfast every morning, and Mo is a BIG fan. Normally either John or I will feed her, but when we’re too busy, E has taken it upon herself to do it. She loves it, Mo loves it, and we love it because it’s one less thing we have to do in the morning. THIS is why we had 4 children–they do things for each other and make our lives easier. 😉 They also are playing with each other more and more, and letting Mo be included on the fun. Here they are eating a supper of tennis balls and wooden food. Normally Mo will take their things from them, but sometimes she’ll be content with what they’ve chosen to share with her. They all sat so nicely and ate–for about 5 min.