Tag Archives: nutrition

Sprout at six months!

Dear Sprout,

What a month! Half of the first year is over and I just can’t believe it went by so fast. In many ways I am thankful for this since it was something I was pretty terrified of while pregnant. So here we are at six months.

We spent Father’s Day in Bakersfield with both of your grandpas:

There was a lot of teething, which, for the most part, you did not handle as joyfully as you did in the past months:

The teething has produced six teeth:

We hung out with cousin Avory quite a bit:


(Avory is teething too, so us mamas had our hands full while your Papa was away on a camping trip)

A few weeks ago I decided to ignore my intuition and go with the crowd. Everyone I knew that had a baby about the same time as you were born had been trying food. I knew you were not ready, but ignored my own advice given just a few weeks prior to my sister and decided that you “needed” to be starting to try food. Over a two day period I forced you to try oatmeal that your sister was having, rice we were having with dinner one night and avocado. You hated it. Gagged on it. Your tongue thrust reflex was still clearly in place. You weren’t even sitting up yet. I knew you weren’t ready and yet I did not listen to what I knew and went with what everyone else was doing. I felt so dumb afterwards.

I talked to our pediatrician about it at your appointment this week. She said food wasn’t a big deal and that clearly you are thriving on just my milk alone. (Have I mentioned how much I love your pediatrician?)

I’ve also been doing some reading on the subject. It seems grains aren’t that great a first food in some circles. A friend (one of the ones already feeding solids) mentioned this to me a few weeks ago and I was honestly shocked that she gave egg yolks as a first food to her baby.

Then I read Real Food for Mother and Baby by Nina Planck (I read her first book a few months ago) and it all made sense. Since their true first food is milk, baby’s digestive systems are designed to mostly break down protein and fat. So meat, eggs, and yogurt are better first foods according to this theory. I think I am understandably still very wary of the eggs and cow milk products though.

Planck also advocates a baby lead transition to eating solid foods where you basically put the food in front of them and let them feed themselves. No mashing. No spoon feeding. I have to say I pretty much was already on board with this idea. After all the eating troubles I’ve had with your sister, I am just so far beyond trying to shove mashed up food into your mouth with one of those teeny baby spoons. Your pediatrician likes this idea too.

Whatever we’re having, you have a little. If you put it in your mouth, no big deal. If you don’t put it in your mouth, no big deal. When you are ready, you will be ready.

This morning I decided to try again. For breakfast I made an open faced egg sandwich and grilled sausages for your papa and I and oatmeal for your sister. I put a spoonful of her oatmeal on your tray and a slice of sausage.

At first you were not too sure about the sausage you managed to stick in your mouth:

But then you warmed up to the idea:

You also threw quite a bit of it on the floor and your sister stole some bites.

So anyway, that about sums this month up. We love you little boy, you are such a joy and make our family so complete. I can’t imagine our lives without you.

Love,
Mama

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Filed under Family, Natural Living, Parenting

A proper update

So I realized that I have been great about documenting all my knitting adventures lately, but not so great about documenting Bean and this pregnancy. The last time I did anything close to a real update was about a month ago when I talked about the learning adventures of Bean. So I’m well overdue, I’d say.

I guess I will start off back at the learning adventures, as it seems like as good a place as any. We’re still trying to make learning a daily part of our lives in a natural way.


Reading with her Papa just before heading out to a Halloween party we attended.

However, I’ve completely cut the DVD portion of the Your Baby Can Read! system out. When all the stuff about the Baby Einsteins videos came out I decided that Bean did not need to be watching TV, even TV specifically designed for babies, yet. Actually, the DVD part of the system is what bugged me the most anyway and that is what I was talking about when I said I was not willing to follow his strict plan for learning.

His suggestion is that you watch the DVD for the unit you are on twice a day. You are also supposed to move on to the next unit once a month and once you move on to a new unit you are still supposed to watch the DVDs from the previous units three times a week. So you figure that by the time you get to the end of the five or six DVD system your kid is basically going to be watching TV a majority of the day. I think this is ridiculous.

Besides, Bean is a very inquisitive and alert little girl. She wants to learn about the world around her. She is constantly asking what stuff is. She loves music and particularly likes it when we sing songs with hand motions in them like The Itsy Bitsy Spider. I really don’t think I have anything to worry about as far as her ability to learn. And besides, she’s ONE.

Bean has become a full-time walker. It has been so nice because now I don’t have to carry her everywhere anymore which is admittedly getting harder and harder to do as the pregnancy wears on. She can climb the stairs and will follow me around the house or walk somewhere holding my hand.

I completely weaned her on November 1. It wasn’t something I was really planning on. Actually, the biting issues had completely stopped (finally!) and I was pretty much fine with continuing to nurse her before naps and at bedtime. Plus, everytime that I thought I was going to do it she’d get a cold or had a reaction to vaccines or something and I felt like I needed to continue so she could get antibodies and stuff.

About a week or so before I weaned her I had started getting really uncomfortable Braxton Hicks during every nursing session that would last for several hours afterwards. So I started to think that I really should reconsider weaning her because I didn’t want nursing to send me into premature labor or something. I was still feeling really torn about the whole thing though because I knew she just wasn’t ready to stop. She was always coming up to me and tugging on my shirt. I guess my philosophy is more along the lines of child-led weaning in some ways.

Well, on the afternoon of November 1 I nursed Bean as usual before her nap and she basically treated me like a jungle gym the entire time. She was even upside down at one point. It was pretty ridiculous. That combined with some contractions afterwards had me frustrated. I came downstairs and told Stephen that I was done. However, in the back of my mind I wasn’t sure if this was really going to be the case. I’ve said that many times and then not actually quit. Well anyway, the rest of the day she didn’t ask to nurse. I gave her some regular milk before bed that night and she didn’t ask to nurse again. The next day came and she didn’t ask to nurse at all. It’s been like that ever since. So I guess she was just done like me. I’m really glad that this is the way it went and I didn’t have to make it happen because I’m not sure I would have been up for it.

On a related note, we’ve been having some food issues around here. Today Bean once again proved that she’s willing to eat pretty much anything so long as it is in a restaurant. She shared chicken nachos from Baja Fresh with me and ate quite a huge portion of them. If I try to make the same thing at home, she picks at it. Same goes for anything from orange chicken to broccoli to pasta, etc. At home she’s just incredibly picky and I can hardly get her to eat. It is very frustrating. Some days I/we go out to eat for lunch or dinner just so I know that she’ll get something to eat besides grains (cereal, bread, oatmeal, or crackers), dairy (yogurt or milk mostly and cheese only in the form of a quesadilla) and fruit. I thought I had solved this problem by eliminating Cheerios from her diet and while that did seem to make things a little better and get her to try a few new items, the problem still seems to persist. I’ve tried the “toddler boat” idea (an ice cube tray or muffin tin filled with various items for them to graze on all day) from Dr. Sears, spoon feeding jar food (works sometimes), and a whole host of other things. At her last doctor’s appointment Bean was anemic and her pediatrician said I need her to eat leafy greens and red meat. I have not been successful at all in this. Any suggestions from parents of other picky eaters would be welcome.

She’s also teething yet again. A couple of bottom teeth are coming in. She’s been a bit of a bear to deal with some days. She is also chewing on everything. I’ve actually had to take her books and other cardboard type toys (some blocks and a couple other items) out of the toy box only to be looked at and read with our active supervision because she was eating them so much. I feel like a bit of a bad mom because of this since she loves her books so much, but the amount of cardboard consumption was getting ridiculous.


Chewing on her crib to alleviate the teething pain.


You can see the damage from her chewing just above her hand on the right side of the picture.

As far as pregnancy, depending on which due date calculation you use I am somewhere between 32w and 33w3d along. In the last week or so I’ve had a resurgence of some of my first trimester woes, particularly heartburn and morning sickness. The morning sickness is fairly easily taken care of by Zofran and Unisom, but both make me really drowsy and so can only be taken just prior to Bean’s nap or bedtime. The heartburn, on the other hand, really doesn’t seem to have any cure. Sometimes it is so bad that it makes me cough and gag.

Even without nursing anymore I am still experiencing a lot of uncomfortable Braxton Hicks contractions. They usually occur when I have busy days or when I have to climb the stairs a lot. Sometimes they make me have panic attacks. I think this is because my uterus gets so hard that my lungs and other organs are even more squashed than usual. I start to feel like I can’t get a good breath and then I panic. I know this is not good. I’m really trying to figure out ways not to panic and calm down. Sometimes just drinking some really cold water seems to help. I really want to figure this out before it comes time for real labor though or I might be in some serious trouble.

Anyway, that just about sums everything up around here. Hopefully I’ll be more prompt with my updates in the future. 🙂

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Filed under Family, Homeschooling, Natural Living, Parenting, Pregnancy and Birth, Ramblings

Obesity in America

This weekend when we got our box of AH produce, I was once again intrigued by the newsletter that accompanied it. This happens to me almost every week even though I will admit to not agreeing 100 percent with everything he has to say. In light of this headline I saw this morning on my iGoogle page, I think the following excerpt from the newsletter is really interesting:

We talked a few weeks back about the necessity of soil microbes to digest and make available to crop roots the various natural minerals our bodies need for proper functioning and how 60lbs of synthetic fertilizer (most growers would use 80-120lbs at a time) is a lethal dose to most of the more efficient microbes. Well, this sterilizing of the soil with commercial “N” (nitrogen) is responsible for the major reduction in nutritional value in conventionally grown whole fruits and vegetables over the past 60 years. When soil ceases to be a thriving, living organism, it ceases to give us the nurtrition we need to thrive! Some would say conventional produce has lost 40-60% of its nutritional value, but for arguments sake, what if we took a really safe number like 20%. Now stay with me here. If our body needs just 20% more food until it’s nutritionally satisfied and turns off the “feed me” switch; that all by itself explains the obesity problem we’re “suddenly” confronted with as a nation. Okay, so we buy energy from people who don’t much like us. Not sustainable! We turn it into synthetic fertilizer to feed us and our livestock nutritionally inferior crops. NOT SUSTAINABLE!! Then we overload the medical folks with all kinds of nutritionally preventable maladies. REALLY NOT SUSTAINABLE!!! The solution is so simple and so sustainable that man’s employed it throughout history. Biological fertility gives us everything we need to produce delicious, nutritious exciting food. We’re not elitists or snobs and we wouldn’t force others to do it our way, we’re just sustainably healthy and happy and anyone who’d like to quit being sick and grumpy is welcome to join us.

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Filed under Natural Living