Porter | Seven Months

Wait, didn't I just write Porter's six month post last week? No? He is now seven months which is sort of incredible, right?

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What to say about Porter-P in this update....he's ridiculously happy and content and just THE BEST baby in the entire world. The end.

Just kidding, I can manage to type out a few more details about this kid in the name of memory preservation. Also because I have a lot of pictures of Sir Handsome that need to grace the blog, and I truly die over him daily.

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So, this past month brought two bouts with winter sicknesses to my sweet baby. The first time around it was a cold that kind of progressed into weird wheezing/breathing and one day of a fever. The doctor said it was 'just a virus' and to watch and wait, and sure enough---Porter eventually kicked that bug on his own. He had a full week of normalcy and then he and CC and I all caught another cold so the snots were back with authority. No odd breathing noises this time though, thank goodness, but enough boogers to last a season of three kids in a Wisconsin winter. (A lot of boogers).

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But besides worrying his mama about becoming even sicker, those two colds also screwed up our already wavering sleep issues around here. Actually Porter *did* boast eleven consecutive hours of sleep on two separate occasions this month, plus he had a handful of stretches that lasted until 4 or 5 am as a 'one and only' wake up. I suppose his usual is still waking once a night but in the past week he's decided that he requires two six ounce bottles in the middle of the night. I mean, NO. No, Porter, you do not need to drink so frequently, right? It seems like his internal hunger meter is set to go off around 12:30 am and again at 4 or 5 am because he's almost always squawking at those two times. Last night I attempted to change his (soaking wet) diaper before giving him the bottle at 4 am and you would have thought I was torturing the poor kid with his protests. Literally this boy cannot wait to chug his bottles and gathering the patience for me to proceed with the diaper change was apparently quite painful for him. His cries even woke Nate which is saying a LOT.

Heaven help me with this new face.
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Growing some lashes.
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I am serious this time, we really need to dig deep and become a sleep training family ASAP. Or more accurately, I need to toughen up and refuse to feed him at night. I have tried to simply go in there, make sure he isn't stuck against the crib or hasn't pooped himself awake, without actually feeding him. Sometimes this works but almost always he is still awake and ticked off for at least an hour at a time. It's hard to convince myself to refuse him a bottle when I know that will get him to sleep again within 10 minutes. But duh, I could totally be bold and politely tell him that he needs to return to his slumber without eating. I can only imagine the response. (Cringing).

See? This face.
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Easy there, buddy.
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Oh, sleep. Oh, the mecca of STTN. I still think it's the least he can do for me since he weaned earlier than my liking, and I know he is old enough to sleep through the night without eating. But oh, when my happy baby is upset it just kills me and I want to fix it immediately (i.e. place the bottle in his mouth and observe the happiness take hold). I'm not sure I have hit rock bottom with exhaustion just yet, as I *know* what rock bottom feels like after the previous two children, but I really really really want to start sleeping more than 4 hour stretches. Without getting into a giant debate, did any of you sleep train your children with fantastic success and little emotional trauma? I've always been a 'ride the wave of sleeplessness' mom but I'm teetering on the edge of change. Do you hear that, Porter? Stop laughing. I'm serious.

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Oh, and naps are also not so wonderful. I vividly remember one day last week when he napped twice, around 9 am and 1 pm, both times for at least 1.5 hours. And it was beautiful but not our norm. At Lori's he naps once for over 3 hours (what?!?!?!) but at home he frequently prefers 30 minute intervals scattered throughout the day. He actually is getting better about soothing himself back to bed both at night and for naps, which is why I'm kind of surprised he hasn't agreed to STTN consistently. Most of the time I can lay him down drowsy but awake after just a few snuggles in the rocker and he might talk a bit, but falls asleep on his own. Let's just focus on this big accomplishment and hope that the self-soothing improves even more this month.

The ears. I cannot.
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The other heavy hitter of baby updates: eating. Well obviously Porter has no shame in his formula bottle game, still taking 6 ounces every three hours during the day (and every 4-5 at night, yawn). And initially he loved purees and would consume 4 ounces at a time, but after that first cold he pretty much despises anything by spoon. Porter will cry if I try to feed him purees but yet he will eat them just fine for Lori. Huh. I've tried all sorts of foods in the liquid form and nope, not his thing for me. But he does love finger foods like avocado, baked sweet potatoes, and bananas. Mostly he will just smash them up and shove a few morsels into his mouth but he does get pretty angry when he drops this finger food, so the mesh teether is usually better. He's also tried gnawing on green beans, frozen blueberries, pear slices, a whole wheat bagel (loved it, somehow downed three halves in one sitting), french bread, and his newest love is my favorite deli turkey meat. Porter also loves his Baby Mum Mum crackers and when in doubt I can always let him gum those down for a snack. I suppose his love for finger foods means he's moving towards the Baby Led Weaning movement and even if he only ingests a few bits of the food, I should be happy to plunk down a bunch of options and let him go to town. Which is fine, yes, but he also gets really angry when he can't man handle his own food---heaven forbid I help him eat! Also it's just so messy. So.Freaking.Messy. How did I forget this about feeding a baby?

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Anyway, he is eating solids and although he doesn't have a single tooth yet (?!?!?!?! HOW?!?!?!) he somehow manages to do pretty well with non-purees. I'll just keep trying different options, and our Pediatrician just advises us to avoid eggs, honey, shellfish, and peanut butter for the first year. Everything else is up for grabs, I suppose. I'm hoping if he starts to tank up on food he won't be so obsessed with middle-of-the-night-bottles. We shall see.

So yeah, no teeth yet although I swear the bottom two are *right*there*. I bet he pops both at once, and VERY SOON, mark my words. His siblings both had their first teeth by now, so Porter is a dental slacker;)

Another aspect where Porter is lacking compared to his siblings (although I shouldn't compare but can't help it): motor skills. P-man will sit unsupported but still leans over into more of a tripod sit, and he doesn't last too long in that position either. He also doesn't care to stand up in our laps although he can bear weight in the jumparoo for a solid stretch of time without issue. I noted in Truman and Cecelia's updates that both liked to stand up with assistance. Not so much for our last baby, and I'm certainly not leaving him to sit up alone just yet---even with the Boppy behind him he will probably face plant or smoke his head after a few minutes.

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Porter is finally rolling though (again, what a slow poke!), preferring to go from back to tummy towards his left. He can also go to his right but doesn't seem to show us that skill as often. He will roll from tummy to back, but sometimes it seems like he gets mad when he's 'stuck' on his tummy and he can't remember how to free himself. Silly baby boy, I know you can do it! He's doing the Superman with all arms and legs pulling off the floor when on his tummy and it seems like he's considering pushing into all fours. 'Considering' being the operative word. Porter is scooting and spinning and it's anyone's guess what kind of position he'll discover when we walk out of the room. But it seems like he might not actually crawl for a REALLY long time, and I think he will be our latest walker by far. If my memory serves me Truman walked around 14 months and CC was just after a year, so I'm guessing Porter could be closer to 16 months. But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves, right?

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The Pediatrician wasn't concerned with Porter being so slow to move since he is definitely not 'low tone' and *has* the abilities....he just isn't too interested in mobility yet, which drives his Physical Therapist parents a little bonkers. We won't call him 'lazy' but just 'content.' And yet, I'm not in too much of a hurry to have him enter the extremely mobile phase, either. Plus, he is my last baby and therefore I probably hold him a lot more than I 'should'. But the baby snuggles are absolutely worth it, my friends!

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One of Porter's favorite things in life is to stick his feet in the air, gnaw on his socks a bit, then he'll realize that THERE ARE SOCKS ON MY FEET, so he will pull each of them off with authority. Then he'll continue to eat the socks until they are soaking wet and truly disgusting. Not sure why socks are so tasty at this age but I found a picture of Truman chewing on a sock so maybe it's genetic. Again, Porter prefers chunky finger foods instead of purees, and I bet he wishes socks had more nutritional value.

'Just practicing my rolling....oh wait....scrumptious socks.'
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Vocally Porter is super loud and he goes through phases with his babbles, moving from Da-Da-Da to Ma-Ma-Ma and Ba-Ba-Ba like it's nothing. Recently he has learned how to do this really throaty, raspy squeal that sounds like an old man smoker. Truly hilarious. He will still scream and squeak and tell us about his feelings even if we aren't listening. But my favorite sound he makes is his friggin adorable laugh. Ah, the best.

Porter really is incredibly happy, too. He honestly only cries if he is hungry or tired and he'll still flash you his gummy smile if you make eye-contact---after he inspects you and sizes you up as being trust worthy or totally sketchy. He's starting to show a little preference for me, though, which I obviously don't hate too much. Especially in the evenings when the day seems to be about two hours too long for our boy, Porter just wants mommy to hold or wear him. Evenings are also the time when he cannot be bothered with food at all and it seem like he just needs to go to bed at 4:00 some days. I feel you, buddy!!

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The baby of the family is madly in love with his big brother and sister. If he hears their voices he will perk up and hunt for them, will lock eyes with them and then he will either smile or chuckle to himself. Seriously, one of the best things in my life as a mom is watching my children interact and I'm constantly blown away by how loving Truman and Cecelia both are with Porter. OH, and Henry, too---Porter also loves Henry. Mostly I think he feels lucky to be a part of such a wild and fun (?) family. He doesn't seem to mind the noise and chaos and all that comes with a house with three small children inside. I think he'll fit in just fine around here.

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Superficially, Porter is simply the cutest, most edible baby I've ever encountered (biased, yes). I mean first you have his gigantic Dumbo ears, then you add in his baldish head, big blue eyes, and sweet little dimpled chin? Can't handle it all combined. He is growing more hair lately though and a few have claimed it's reddish like his sister's. I kind of can't believe we have another blue eyed baby---how does one brown eyed and another hazel eyed parent created two out of three blue eyed kids? Genetics are so freaking cool. Also cool? The fact that all three kids look pretty much like clones sometimes. Definitely related!

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And finally, things I learned from reading posts about the siblings: I could probably dig out the 12 month clothes for Porter since his siblings were both wearing The Big Dogs by now. Porter weighed 17lbs 10oz at 6 months, Truman was over 19 pounds, CC was 15-ish, and all three are about the same height at 27-28". I suppose his nine month outfits have gotten a bit snug but I just keep stretching the snaps on onesies in denial. I think Porter isn't sitting up as well as his siblings did, but all three were slow rollers and just getting to be mobile. They all sort of suck at sleeping at this point but at least T and C had nursing as an excuse. Also, Porter is the only one who hates purees as the others were downing the thin stuff twice daily. Summary: every baby is different but similar, too. So fun to compare. {Truman at 7 months and Cecelia at 7 months}

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Sweet Porter, we all go nuts over you, buddy. I am so thankful to be your mommy, to have the privilege of watching you grow up, to call you mine. You are simply the best.

Bring on month eight!

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Gimme that sucker, yo.
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5 comments:

  1. Porter is just so adorable, and you take amazing photos!!

    On the sleep issue: in my experience, the fact that you've gotten where you are WITHOUT sleep training is pretty amazing! I did sleep training with both my kids around the 5-6 month mark when the every-2-hour wakings were driving me bonkers. They responded well to it within a day or two, honestly. Especially my 2nd child, she was a breeze. That said, they both followed a similar pattern when it came to night feedings: 2 night feedings until about 9 months, then they dropped to one on their own without my prompting and both of them held on to that last pesky 4-5am feeding until just after turning 13 months. I did nothing to force them to drop it, as I didn't really mind too much (had it gone on longer than that though, I would have minded ;) ).

    If you want a simple plan to follow, I highly recommend The Sleep Easy Solution book. It was fantastic and covers all the "what ifs", and even the emotional part too.

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  2. Oh, these third babies of ours. The most scrumptious little things to ever grace this planet!! He's to die for.

    You already know obviously that we had to sleep train those boys of ours! It was harder with Ben than with Henry, and when I think about doing it with Ellie I'm honestly not sure I could, as much of an advocate as I've always been!! But I guess I might feel differently if she were waking me up every few hours like her bros did. ;) (sorry.) Tough decision!! But totally worth it and won't scar him for life, or even for a few days, I'm sure.

    Other notes - noticed your necklace the other day, so pretty! And cool that you're taking over DITL duties!

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  3. No judgement from this momma either way, but I stand firmly in the sleep training camp. Worked like a dream for Lily and never (not even for one minute!) worked on Mr. Benjamin. I plan to start implementing CIO at night in the next few weeks because I genuinely feel like Hugh is ready. I went through the motions with Ben but it probably failed because I was constantly doubting if it was right for him. This time around I really don't think I will have those nagging feelings. Hugh goes down for naps and bed awake and puts himself to sleep with a paci...pretty sure that is called proof of concept, haha. I am totally with you in hoping that solid food will eliminate nighttime feedings. Third time me says you can always try it and if it doesn't quite feel right after a few attempts, fold! Fold like the big old softies we have become!

    He is delicious and I could eat him whole. <3

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  4. Sleep training worked much better for my second baby Norah, then it did with my first. I did do sleep training with Ashton, but he was a premie, so I was always a little more careful with him. I totally recommend trying it, it helps so much. I do not let her go longer than 15 minutes, but after a couple days, she was able to put herself to bed. Naps are a different story, she does much better at her daycare than at home, just like your little man.

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