Crazy eights up in here. Truman is a whopping EIGHT months old, people. Where is the time going?
Sleep: let's just get right to it. At eight months old, one would think Truman could sleep through the night at this point, right? Wrong. HOWEVER, we have made some major progress in the sleep department this month.
You see, all of a sudden Truman went from loving our co-sleeping situation, breastfeeding in sidelying multiple times each night and thus maximizing sleep for everyone, to being completely restless, cranky, and not nursing for more than a few seconds before popping off in defiance. It was no longer working and it caused many extra hours of lost sleep.
So I decided to suck it up and try keeping him in his crib all night long. He's been going down for the night around 7:30 in his crib for many months now, but I'd always bring him into bed after the first wake up. This month I started nursing him in the rocker and placing him back into his crib instead. At first it was really rough and he pulled the 'eyes snap open the moment you lay me down into my crib' move on me. There have been times he would stay awake for more than an hour after I lay him into the crib and those are the nights that are absolutely horrible. Luckily that is happening less and less these days and for the most part, he will go right back to sleep after I nurse him which is HUGE progress, people.
I also wanted to switch up our bedtime routine a bit, to avoid Truman passing out asleep while nursing---I knew we had to break the suck-to-sleep association we had going on, so that when Truman wakes in the middle of the night, he doesn't NEED the boob to soothe himself to sleep. Baby boy must learn to put himself back to sleep without my ta-tas and I really think the method you use to put babies to sleep for the night will set the tone for the rest of the night.
So anyway, we tried giving him a 6 ounce bottle before bed instead of nursing, so that he got a lot more in quantity before falling asleep. I'd pump at 9 pm then to make up for that, but ultimately it didn't work very well and he'd still wake at about 11 or 12. We made a decision that if Truman woke up for the first time before midnight, then Nate would just give him another 6 ounce bottle to let me rest instead of nursing. It was okay, but it didn't make much of a difference in his sleep with those 1-2 bottles at night instead of nursing.
So now I will nurse him at 7pm, then we do the bath, then jammies, 2 books, and then we just put him into the crib and walk out. For the most part this works! Don't get me wrong, he will still wake up at least once if not twice in a night, usually around 1 and 4, but again---at least it's a quick nursing session and back to bed for us all. And I really do think Truman is learning to put himself to sleep these days without sucking. Perhaps by my nine month update we will be down to waking only once a night....or (dare I say it?) not at all!
Truman takes two naps a day and when he's at Lori's, they are usually 1.5-3 hours each (!). For me, on my days off, they are usually only an hour or so, but I'll take it because he does seem well-rested for the most part after those naps.
Food: Truman is totally obsessed with solid foods, you guys. I have to limit his intake to about 3-4 ounces, three times a day, but I'm certain he would down even more than that if I let him. Trouble is, if he is allowed to overindulge himself with 'real' food he gets pretty constipated. I know at this point milk should still be his primary source of nutrition, and so the solids are just a little practice bonus.
He loves all fruits and veggies we've tried, except for peas and now he hates green beans, too. I'm making pumpkin for him right now so we'll see if he likes that, and I might start some yogurt and cheese with a bit of turkey, too. I guess at 8 months you can start to get a little buck wild with new foods and I'm definitely looking forward to it. He loves puffs, too, so I'm hoping we are headed towards a day when he can eat chunkier foods and not gag on anything thicker than purees. :)
Also, he ate an entire post-it note the other day while I was typing away on the computer. Whoops! That must have tasted really good.
He is still taking two 6 ounces bottles of breastmilk at daycare, then will nurse first thing in the morning, after work, and before bed (plus about twice in the middle of the night). For awhile I was worried he was starting to get impatient with breastfeeding, preferring the bottle's fast flow, but over the last few weeks I can see this boy still digs the boob. It's our time to reconnect and bond and as soon as he sees me he gets a little fussy, ready to nurse even if he just ate. I'm pretty sure he has a touch of separation anxiety too, but it's not awful so I can deal with it.
Pumping is going well--getting three sessions in during a work day is a huge challenge for me, but I'm managing. I will also pump before bed now so I'm getting 4 times on the utter sucker which allows me to stay ahead of Truman's intake. We all know that boasting bigger numbers for output versus his intake equals one happy momma. I'm glad we're falling into a comfortable routine with my new job and his new daycare now as far as breastfeeding goes and I'm still hoping that the next four months will go as smoothly to get us to a year. But I'm not going to lie---I cannot WAIT to leave my pump at home for good. If I could just breastfeed the boy and never pump I would be delirious with joy because pumping still sucks (literally!). I had a HUGE blister on my right nipple this month and it cause toe-curling pain with every pump but luckily it's pretty much healed now. Sexy, huh?
Milestones: Truman can wave now! It's seriously the cutest thing ever because I think it's the first truly purposeful reaction he'll give us. We'll wave to him all the time just for fun and he will usually return that wave with a big grin on his face. He's definitely mobile but only through rolling across the room, not crawling yet. I've caught him pulling his knees under his gut every now and then but so far he hasn't managed all-fours yet, either. I'm totally fine with that, by the way. I think he might have a few more months before he's officially crawling anyway since he seems so content with spinning in circles and rolling all over the place.
He's wearing all 12-18 month clothes at this point and we had to buy him more footed jammies, in size 18 months from Carter. He looks like such a big boy in them, I just can't deal with it!
His sitting balance is pretty much to the point where we can leave him alone now, but every now and then he'll still topple over backwards and slam his noggin into the ground. Luckily that isn't too often and it's really only when he's trying to turn around or reach for something. He is sort of getting the hang of moving from sitting to his tummy but cannot do the reverse just yet. It's hard for me to imagine a day when baby boy can just go from lying down to sitting to standing all on his own but I guess that is just around the corner for us. Nate's baby book says he was pulling to stand alone by 9 months....yikes!
He's getting good at his pincher grasp with those puffs and can definitely feed himself the sticky little buggers like a pro. I'm amazed at what he can do with his hands, really. Pulling off Nate's glasses and inspecting them with his mouth is one of his favorite pass times:) He also enjoys picking my nose and pinching my neck just for fun.
Still has just two teeth but there are two more on top ready to bust through the gums any day now. He has only bitten me once while nursing so far and I'm pretty sure he won't do it again, since I screamed at the top of my lungs in shock. It scared us both and the look on his face said, 'Sorry ma!' Sharp little buggers...
Daily life: Truman loves seeing his friends at daycare and apparently he has one 'best friend' there named Kaiden. They are the same age and Lori says they act like brothers and love to play together all day long. Truman is really quite social and loves people watching just like his mama. He likes to put on a show when we are out and about, smiling and waving to strangers, melting their hearts along the way. He still only cries if he's tired or hungry and for the most part he is the happiest baby ever, smiling non-stop and acting very excited to see me or Nate after we've been gone (makes my heart do flips every time). He's even started to reach out for us when we go to pick him up and he'll reach for me if someone else is holding him and he's tired. Luckily, that only happens at the end of the day out of pure exhaustion, but like I said--maybe a touch of separation anxiety is starting to form, too.
We got Truman a few big boy toys because I decided his babyish rattles and play mats were totally boring for the kid. He LOVES them of course and I had to buy a toy box to keep all his stuff contained, to avoid the brightly colored plastic explosion in our living room. I think his favorite toy is probably Henry, though, since he's really started to become intrigued with our fluffy white hairball. They will be best of friends, and Henry has a new love for Truman now that he's eating puffs and throwing them on the ground for his furry friend. Can't wait for Truman to chase Henry all around our place---that's when the fun will really begin for Henry!
So much fun at 8 months old. Can't wait to see what November brings!