Archive for the ‘Solids’ Category

Calvin can Speak

May 15, 2011

He knows quite a few words now though his pronunciation still needs work.

Ball (‘Boh’)
Bus (‘Bah’)
Car
Eat/ food (‘Mum mum’)
Bubble (‘ba buh’)
Mama
Papa
Puff

He also understands words like ‘Give’, ‘Sit’. More importantly, he knows how to use gestures, pointing, grunting and words to express what he wants. He’s been badgering me for his bubbles every day! He’ll give us the tupperware with puffs so we’ll open it for him. He says ‘car car’ when he wants to go on his stroller to go out/ go somewhere else.

Recently, it seemed like he didn’t want to be fed anymore so we decided to let him self feed everything from his own Ikea bowl and viola! he actually ate much more than I expected and was also able to sit for quite a while during meals.

Today, we brought him out to Changi Airport T3 and he had a great time. For once, I was also able to eat a meal with him in my lap. He was happily fiddling with the spare set of spoon and eating the chunks of apple, carrots and tomato that I brought along. He played at the little playground as well and went looking at his latest favorite – Chuggintons! It was a good outing, we haven’t been able to bring him out easily for a while especially since he’s been sick. Granted he’s coughing and having a drippy nose now but it sure beats the lethargic stomach flu he’s had in the past.

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My Tottering Penguin

March 16, 2011

031211_02He’s still not walking yet but I’m sure he’s now seeing walking as a good tool of transportation (after being carried and rushed around of course). Over the weekend, he started to pull himself up on his little wooden wagon and can walk around all by himself. He was giggling to himself the first time he showed me as he charged towards me on his wagon. Previously when he walked with it, we were always right behind him and trying to slow the pace in case he slips and fall flat on his face or worse… The funny thing is watching him waddle around like a penguin and grinning from ear to ear at the same time (him, not us)

He’s been talking a lot and using his own baby words consistently. Now if only we can figure out what he’s trying to say. Sometimes I vacillate between worrying about him and feeling reassured. I guess this is the point where I feel a little relieved. I’m having a bet with his dad about when he’s finally going to start walking. I’m betting o end May while J is saying second half of April. We’ll see how that goes. At least now, he doesn’t mind his little Pediped shoes anymore. And it seems like he’ll outgrow them soon. Ouch, baby shoes are definitely painful to the pocket, especially considering how often they have to change them. The leather ones easily cost a cool $60 from retail stores though I bought the current ones from overseas for a good discount.

With the likelihood of going overseas, I’m starting to seriously think about how to cut our expenses especially when we are there. His stipend will likely only cover rent and our health insurance so the rest of the living expenses will have to come out of our savings. At least we’re not going into debt over this. Anyway, we’ll know for sure in one month’s time but it looks like we’ll be having our little adventure soon.

The KKH Effect

February 27, 2011

We have this theory that is probably more myth than fact – Every time he comes back from a checkup, he will ‘power up’ and show significant leaps in terms of milestones. This kinda started when he went for an eye examination to make sure he does not have ROP (Retinopathy of Prematurity). The procedure sounds pretty disturbing to us but they basically prop his eyelids open with some device and examine it. Prior to that checkup, I was actually worried that he doesn’t really cry and well, guess it was a traumatizing trip to the hospital for him coz he cried badly while they held him down for the examination and seemed to have found his voice thereafter.

This time round, he was extra vocal and chatty from the day we came back from his checkup. Maybe he was outraged that the doctor prodded his genital area (checking for hernia) coz he certainly refused to stay in the doctor’s room after that.

Today also saw quite a few firsts for him. He finally figured out how to play with his Tiny Love Musical Stack and Play. He can put the balls into the tube, which triggers the music to play. He is also able to stack the rings onto the cone (in whichever order I hand him the rings). He also found out how the Mozart Magic Cube works and was happily pressing the buttons to start and stop the music.

And lastly, he knows how to pass an item in his hand and give it to his daddy when requested. Of course when I asked  him to give it to me, he just threw the tube of diaper cream at my ankle. Owww…… double standards!

On the doctor’s advice, I’ve been giving him cheese as snack more frequently now. We bought a nice chunk of Monterey Jack which I grated. He seems to really like it. Maybe because he sees us enjoying it too 🙂 He is getting to the age where he likes to imitate us. I’m also trying to give him beef porridge to literally beef him up. He’s still not eating the school’s porridge so I’m cooking all his meals. Man, so much work, so little time!

He also really enjoys playing with the little steering wheels at the playground. We bought him to one of the playgrounds at T3 but he was fussy after a while. We suspect it was because he’s most like teething some little molars which are supposed to be more painful than the others.

*The post turned out a bit eclectic but that’s coz my mind is kinda shutting down. Really need to go sleep now before I turn into a zombie tomorrow.

 

Happy Baby

January 22, 2011

Calvin woke up at 5:30am today, all chirpy and ready to start the day. In fact, he has been pretty chipper for the past few days. When we pick him up from day care, he will give a distress cry when he first sees us, as if saying “I missed you guys!” and when we carry him out of the daycare, he’ll grin happily. He seems to be adapting well to the daycare environment – he’s eating well, sleeping decently and probably playing hard. (He gets to play with bubbles, walk around lots, join the Kindermusic classes…) Perhaps the detailed cheat sheet that I gave them earlier this week helped. He still doesn’t eat the school’s porridge though so I’m preparing his food to bring to school every day.

He’s a really giggly baby now. He will imitate us when we smack our lips together and giggle hard when I come after him smacking my lips. He loves it when we pounce on him or play peekaboo.

I can see his inquisitive mind at work as well when he experiments with shaking his rattle in a certain way to make the sound, drop things to see what sound they make and generally turning everything new around for a thorough inspection.

He’s eating solids well now. His meals are now soft porridge with carrots, sweet potato/pumpkin and some protein like yoghurt (I know it sounds strange….but he likes it) or tofu. Haven’t really given him meat yet, except what’s in those Heinz jar foods that he was eating previously. Now that I’ve gotten the knack of feeding him, this weekend’s feeding was a breeze. His preference it seems is to eat some of the food from my fingers. Maybe he likes to see the mess I make… We’ve also been giving him random food stuff that we are eating because he will look eagerly at us for a share. So today, he had scrambled eggs with butter and small chunks of orange. No oily, salty unhealthy food of course though given our own eating habits it seems like it’s a matter of time before he learns of the ‘magic’ known as McDs. Haven’t been able to take many pictures of him nor have the time to upload pictures… Life at work is kinda hectic as I’m still adjusting to the routine work as well as preparing for a paper submission.

 

22 Jan: I'm at the Playground

 

Another Great Fall :(

November 30, 2010

Calvin had a big fall this morning from his cot. He’s become really adept at pulling himself to stand everywhere, including his cot. So when his papa was getting his milk ready in the other room, he stood up and climbed over and fell off. The poor guy was wailing. This is one of greatest heights he has fallen off. So far, he seems to be ok. Still active and chatty, though a bit whiny today. So we’ve lowered his cot to the lowest setting now but it’s hard to put him to sleep though since he’s reverted back to needing to be carried before falling asleep. Now, we’re trying to let him sleep on the mattress on the floor instead.

He’s been diligently practicing his pull-to-stand skills so I’m kept busy the whole day just trying to keep an eye on him so he won’t fall and hurt himself. It’s getting really tiring and I’m afraid I’ll go insane. I have no time to even prepare his food/milk or go to the loo, not to mention have some breathing space for myself. When I’m pumping and have to leave him inside his exersaucer (the only truly safe place), he gets really upset to be stuck inside. I’ve been so busy running after him that I haven’t had the time or energy to update this blog.

Not to mention, he’s been difficult to feed as well coz his upper teeth are coming out so his appetite has been pretty bad lately.  Sometimes I get frustrated and raise my voice at him, railing, ranting and sometimes even crying. I instantly feel a pang of regret though he doesn’t seem to realize what’s going on. He’s just a little baby after all. At those times, I feel like I’m the worst mummy in the world. Being a parent is just really tough. Being all isolated and having no one to talk to isn’t really helping either.

Running Out of Ideas

November 7, 2010

Man, it’s tough to think up new things for him to eat these days. I tried brown rice porridge today but he made a very confused and upset face. I guess firstly because he has only really eaten chilled food (not my choice, he just refuse to have anything to do with warm or room temperature food…) and secondly, it’s much lumpier than what I usually feed him. He’s been quite receptive to small bits of lumpy food recently (rice, puffs, small chunks of mango, chunks of watermelon, baby biscotti) that I was getting optimistic about him accepting porridge.  Alas, despite him surprising me at how good he is at feeding himself finger food, porridge was still a no go. I guess I’ll try it again, maybe with a more watery texture next time.

Maybe I’m just tired but I find it hard to think of ways to entertain him sometimes. Especially since he is now up for longer periods. Sometimes, I feel that he is bored with being at home so we’ve been bringing him out the past few days to let him look around. His stranger anxiety seems to have improved slightly. He’s now ok with the maid carrying him for a while, granted it’s still not something she does on a regular basis. She’s busy enough with household chores anyway. Plus I’m a possessive mum. Though I have to say I’m somewhat looking forward to going back to work and taking a break from being a stay at home mum for a while.

 

Random Update at 5am

November 3, 2010

Phew, after giving him lots of fluids, he seemed to have shaken off the cold after one day.

Peekaboo
We brought him to the playground at Kallang again. This time there were very few kids around, so we could safely put him down to crawl around without risking him getting trampled. Most of the time, he was still just chilling out and taking in the new environment. While I went off to Cold Storage to pick up some things, apparently a little girl came over and ‘flirted’ with him – touching her nose to his and giving him a hug (though it ended up as a head squeeze coz he was that much smaller than her). Apparently, he didn’t seem to have really minded. So either he was just totally stunned to speechlessness or his stranger anxiety doesn’t apply to kids (or at least little girls)

Cruising

He’s now a little amateur cruiser. He still has a bad habit of leaning his upper body over to wherever he wants to go before his feet will follow. So I hover around him anxiously, trying to catch him in case he falls and hits his head. This guy obviously knows no fear. The other day he tried to crawl off the bed without even hesitating when he reached the edge. He just continued crawling into space. His papa was right there to catch him of course. He’s still not quite skilled at pulling himself to stand though. Most of the time, he can probably just get on his knees.

Solids

Looks like he’s finally opening up to taking more solids. Now I can manage to feed him about 2/3 of a jar of baby food before he’s had enough. He seems to really enjoy the taste of beef stock. He’s one strange baby…well, whatever rocks his boat. As long as he’s eating, I’m happy. Yesterday, I tried to give him some rice grains from my finger while I was having lunch. To my surprise, he actually ate it and was keen to try more. He’s still fussy about the texture of food that I feed him though. Maybe it was because the rice was in very small quantities. Or maybe he just enjoyed being a big boy, eating from the same plate as his mummy. Looks like I have something else to occupy him while we have our meals. Whee!

Misc

It’s been a real joy taking care of him now that he’s more mobile. He’s a lot more contented though still quite clingy and needs lots of attention. At least it’s not as mind numbing and tiring as having to carry him around aimlessly.

I’ve been supplementing him with some formula milk recently even though my supply is still sufficient to satisfy his daily needs. I’m thinking of dragging the time between pumps again. Especially the one in the wee hours. When I start work, I’ll really need the extra hours of sleep since I can’t nap during the day. Currently, I’m still pumping 6 times daily so hopefully I can drop the middle of the night pump and eventually move on to 4 times when I start work. Not sure when I’ll totally quit my cow-ing career, guess I’ll just keep going until I can’t take it any more 🙂

11 month old (Part II)

October 25, 2010

It’s funny how parents talk in a totally different language. It’s quite stunning how my life now revolves around him, milestones, poo, milk intake… words that have no meaning to me as a non-parent and things that I found to be so mundane and boring. Thank goodness I’m still staying far, far away from the dreaded word called ‘enrichment’.  He’s definitely not going for any structured classes any time soon. I just wouldn’t touch that with a 10-foot pole. I won’t mind bringing him to a baby gym or something where he can tumble around safely though.

Anyway, I just remembered a few more things he’s been doing recently.

Pincer Grasp

I’ve been giving him Happy Baby Puffs during meal times to keep him occupied and also to try and train his pincer grasp. I thought seeing us eat would inspire him to chew as well. So far he’s still eating only puree-d food. Anything with lumps is auto-rejected or worse, he will gag and throw everything up. So far, he’s had some success putting in the little puffs into his mouth though it’s still more or less by trail and error. Most of the time he still grabs the little puffs with his fists. But hey, practice makes perfect. At least he managed to chew on them a little too.

Pull-to-Stand

He’s been practicing how to pull to a standing position from a sitting position…. while he’s in the bath. He’s getting quite good at putting his foot under him but definitely still needs a bit of work.

Miscellaneous

He really does take a while to warm up to his toys. Finally after so long, he’s playing with all the little toys on his exersaucer. He started with being interested only with the sunflower teether. Then gradually moving on to the others like the spinning girl, and peekaboo dog house and now the little see saw that makes sounds when he pushes on it. I’ve been buying him more new toys recently coz I think he’s getting bored with his old ones. Maybe I’m going a bit overboard. Shucks, I’ll never be a minimalist! Both me and him are definitely pack rats by nature. At least I did manage to declutter a bit by selling off some of his old stuff that he no longer uses. More funds for more toys!

Here’s a picture of the cheeky monkey

13 Oct: I'm a Cool Boy

 

Some Like It Cold

October 4, 2010

I’ve been having some trouble feeding him some types of food. He wouldn’t eat any of the rice or oat cereals that I bought. And he’s been rejecting the purees that I made. Even his previous favorite – pumpkin. I couldn’t quite tell if there’s a pattern to it, but I suspect that he likes his food to be slightly chilled. For example, when I gave him the beef, potato and pumpkin jar the first time, it was luke warm and he fussed over it. So I kept the remainder in the fridge and viola, the same evening, he ate about half the jar… The temperature of the food aside, I was surprised that he really liked it coz from what I read on the net, babies are suppose to prefer bland food, which makes it harder to introduce stronger tasting food like beef. He continually surprises me by liking things I thought he wouldn’t like.

Over the weekend, I also cooked up some oxtail broth. I basically just dumped the oxtail, carrot, potato and onion into the slow cooker overnight. It’s so easy that I wish I thought of getting a slow cooker in college instead of using the stovetop. Broth made from boney bits is supposed to be very nutritious. Some sites are touting it as some sort of miracle food that can cure many ailments. I don’t really buy that. I sounds almost as ridiculous as those signs that we saw in Chinatown New York (or was it Hong Kong) saying acupuncture can cure aids/ cancer. I mean I agree that it is nutritious and I can believe that it is easily absorbed by the body in this form, but to say it actually heals the body takes a big leap in reasoning.

Actually, I just wanted to use the broth as a base to cook his cereal or porridge with since he seemed to hate the taste of it alone. I have to admit that even for a person who likes oats, the Bellamy oat cereal in plain water tastes pretty disgusting. Then I figured we could all drink this frequently anyway since it’s totally yummilicious and we both love this soup. If it’s full of nutritious goodness, then all the better. Plus I defat the broth, so this makes a much healthier snack than those random cookies and snacks that I stuff in my mouth every so often.

This morning I tried mixing the broth with the Happy Bellies rice cereal and he was pretty happy with it. Yay me!

Yoghurt Power!

September 25, 2010

Baby Calvin didn’t seem to be putting on much weight according to our scales. A measly 250g in 2 months. We wanted to try and reschedule our appointment at KK but the earliest available date was at end Dec. Wanting to at least make sure he’s ok, we decided to bring him to another PD at East Coast road. His jabs were previously done at the Kidslink clinic at Bedok but we found the PD’s attitude to be quite blase and not thorough at all with her examination. The last time we told her about him being on milk strike, she just offhandedly told us to give him solids. At our insistence, she did a cursory check to make sure he didn’t have an ear infection which might have made him reject milk. I would think this should be a standard check because babies are very prone to ear infection.

Well, I read that this other PD is pretty old and experienced so off we went. Not sure if his scale is not calibrated properly or our digital weighing machine is not sensitive enough, but it turned out that he’s now 8kg?? So it turns out that he is fine. Developmentally, he’s somewhat on track except that he’s not really crawling yet. He can creep forward a little when he want to reach out for his toys but he’s a bit of a lazy bugger when it comes to creeping more than a little.

Weaning

The PD also said I’d need to transition him to solids in order for him to get enough calories. On the other hand, I’ve read conflicting advice from the web saying that babies should be getting most of his nutrition from milk up to 1 year old and not to let solids replace milk. Or maybe it’s because he’s not being breastfed so he can’t constantly nibble and get his fill. Afterall, with a 3 hourly feed, there’s a limit to how much his tummy can hold. Plus his tummy capacity seems to be really small. I really marvel at those babies who can drink 200++ ml in one sitting.

Anyway, I came away with renewed zest to let him try more new foods. On a whim, I bought a small tub of Paul’s Natural Yoghurt. The baby Yoplait that a lot of other mummies buy is just too elusive, plus I think it’s expensive? Not sure about the price since I have never found it before. The good thing about buying plain yoghurt is that I can flavour it with any of the fruit/ veg purees.

I was a little skeptical about how receptive baby Calvin would be though since plain yoghurt is naturally sour. I remember eating the low fat ones from Marigold before and they really really taste bad. I was very pleasantly surprised to find that he loved the yoghurt. ❤ ❤ I tried a little of the leftovers and it’s actually much better than I expected. I didn’t realize that the difference can be so stark though I should have suspected that since I dislike the taste of the Marigold fresh milk as well, that the yoghurt wouldn’t suit my palate. So at least I found a good source of protein for him. He didn’t like the texture of tofu that much and I haven’t tried meats yet.

Next on my list are different grains – quinoa, oat, barley – since he seems to be sick of brown rice. I have to admit I’ve never tried quinoa myself. This whole cooking for baby business is definitely making me more domestic. Or at least it’s motivating me to try cooking different things. The main beneficiary is probably Johnny. Or maybe not. Baby food is way too healthy for his liking 🙂