Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lydia Update

Lydia is 5 1/2 months old now, and is doing well!  She is cooing, smiling and gurgling all the time, and everybody in the family loves to be on the recieving end of her "talking."  She hasn't started babbling with vowel-consonant combos yet, but she does say "Ma-ma-ma-ma-ma" sometimes when she is crying.  Her gross motor skills are staying about a month behind where the boys' were, but she is still within the normal range.  She is sitting up well now, and no longer needs a boppy pillow or any other support.  This is my favorite baby stage: she can sit on the floor with some toys and watch everything that is going on, but can't yet crawl and get into it any trouble.

I know the movement is coming, though.  I was hoping she would be one of those chill babies who is content to sit and watch for a really long time, but she is not.  The boys both started crawling between 6 and 7-months-old, but she is getting around better than they were at 5-months because she is so good at rolling.  If I put her down on the floor, she'll play with toys (sitting up) for twenty minutes or so.  When she is bored with those toys, she will lunge forward from sitting and get onto her belly.  Next, she will look around a bit from her tummy, and then roll in the direction that she wants to go.  She's pretty good at getting where she wants to be, and the only trouble she gets into is rolling over onto a hard toy.  Thankfully, there are usually three or four big people around who are happy to rescue her.

I'm happy to report that Lydia and I made a full recovery from our breastfeeding setback in July.  She is back to being 100% breastfed, and I haven't even had to pump in over a month.  All her chubby rolls and happy disposition assure me that she is getting plenty to eat.  She doesn't seem interested in eating solids yet, and I'm not in any hurry to start that hassle until she's ready.  It is wonderful to be back to normal and have feeding be easy & no stress again, just as it has been in the past.  The one residual negative from the whole experience is that Lydia doesn't sleep through the night like she did before the setback.  I nursed her every time she made a peep while I was trying to rebuild my milk supply, and she got in the habit of nursing every time she woke up at night.  She's getting up 3-4 times a night right now, and though I'm handling it okay, I am planning to take steps to wean her at night in the near future.

Lydia is a very happy baby most of the time.  She is in a Mommy stage, and if she is tired or uncomfortable, no one else will do.  As long as she is fed and rested, she is perfectly willing for others to hold her, and doesn't (yet) have any separation anxiety when left in the church nursery or gym childcare.  Her smiles come easily, especially when she first wakes up, and they are CUTE!  She is our little princess, and we are loving watching her personality express itself a little bit more each day.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Caleb is Reading!

This post is way overdue, but I feel like we have been in a whirlwind since school started five weeks ago.  Since I last posted, we spent several days in the dark, thanks to the tropical storm that blew through here earlier this month.  We went from Monday evening (Labor Day) to Thursday around noon without power.  A friend helped us put a positive spin on it by labeling our adventure as "camping in our house."  The kids bought that for the first day, but after that, they were pretty tired of being in a house with no lights, no refrigerator, no microwave and no AC.  When the power came back on, Caleb was so excited, he ran up the stairs calling, "Now I can go to the bathroom with the light on!!!"

Anyway, on to the purpose of this post: Caleb is reading!  He learned how to sound out words that follow the basic phonetic rules more than a year ago, but he has just recently taken that leap from sounding out each word to seeing the group of letters as a word and recognizing "sight words."  With about 25 sight words in his reportoire, he is now able to read many of the early reader books that Mimi left us on her last trip.  And boy is he excited!  He even picks up chapter books and eagerly chooses words that he recognizes.  He's been reading for a couple of weeks now, and he is enjoying it so much that our roles have switched from me asking him to practice reading to him asking me to read with him.

I know this is opening up a whole new world for him, and I'm so happy to be enjoying it with him!