Thursday, October 6, 2016

Louisa Maria | Four month update

You guys. I blinked and suddenly Louisa is 4.5 months old. Seriously. I know parents say that all the time, that they grow up so fast and blah blah blah. And honestly, it didn't bother me so much when Max was a baby. I loved exploring motherhood at each new stage, and I relished his milestones and new skills. I loved watching him grow up and rarely willed time to slow down; all of his changes were exhilarating to me. #weirdo

This time? This time I've loved having a little, easy-going, portable baby, and it's become evident that I've taken it for granted. I've struggled adjusting to being a mother to two kids ages two and under. Max is everywhere all at once...and he's so loud...and he's so smart...and he's so mischievous...and he's oh-so sweet (when he wants to be). Meanwhile little Louisa just sits on the sidelines, smiling, cooing, sleeping, eating, pooping...she's so content pretty much all the time. She makes this mommy thing easy (except when she requires a trip to the ER). 

I was perfectly content coasting through this stage of life, simply observing Louisa growing a bit and moving up into the next size of clothing, noting the change in her features and mastery of new skills. Max loves to love on his baby sister, but he is a little too handsy and rough with her right now. Part of me looks forward to a day when she's a little bigger and can fend for herself and properly play with her big brother, whom she adores. But right now, I'm enjoying her smallness and innocence in everything.

As she approached 4 months old, it really started to hit me that time was flying by: she was already one-third of the way to 1 year old. And then yesterday we were finally able to have her 4-month well-visit with her pediatrician (2 weeks late due to our beach trip and her hospitalization). Everything went well, she's growing and developing right on track, etc. But when the doctor told me that I could start her on solids in the next couple of weeks, I had to pick my jaw up off the floor.

We're already talking solids??? HOW is she old enough for that already?!?! 

I was such a well-read parent when Max was a baby. I was so well-informed and knew when every new milestone or rite of passage was imminent. I often felt like I was reciting the pediatrician's advice and tips in my head as he was saying them out loud; Duh, I already know that, I read about that last week. The second baby is so different. I don't read anything anymore; I just sort of expect it all to come back to me. I'm not as obsessive over everything as I was when I was a first-time parent, so this news about starting solids totally came out of left field. I wasn't expecting it. I wasn't ready for it. I just figured she'd be a baby forever, I guess.

Victor and I are still not sure if we want to have a third baby (I go back and forth all day, every day), but when you really realize that your current baby doesn't have much baby-ness left to her, your ovaries definitely start wailing. 

Since I'm feeling now more than ever that I need to cherish these baby days, I thought I'd give a little 4-month update on my sweet baby girl. She is such a lovely addition to our family, and we can't imagine life without her. We're all so grateful for her sweet disposition, her gummy smiles, and her ability to sleep through pretty much anything, including dog barks, brother squeals, and other ambient noise.

Louisa Maria | 4 months (September 19, 2016)

Blur-sula but adorable

Weight: 16 lb, 6.5 oz (89th percentile)
birth: 7 lb, 2.8 oz

Length: 25.25 inches (72nd percentile)
birth: 19 inches

Head circumference: 16 inches (28th percentile) (a bitty noggin, but she has cheeks for days!)
birth: 13 inches

Eating: Louisa nurses during the day about every 3-4 hours. Overnight, she will wake to nurse every 3-4 hours, as well, some nights stretching as long as 6-7 hours between feedings. I pump once per day to create a stockpile of frozen milk for her, but she doesn't really have bottles much unless we go out for a date night or I need to be away from her for a prolonged period of time.

Sleeping: Louisa is a great daytime sleeper. She's typically tired about 1.5-2 hours after she wakes up, and she'll sleep anywhere from 1-2 hours in her crib for naps. I put her down awake and she falls asleep on her own, sometimes with the help of her binkie. She will also fall asleep in her swing if she's left there long enough, and she also loves sleeping in her car seat or in the Sollybaby wrap (a fave of ours). She takes a morning nap, early afternoon nap, and a late afternoon/early evening nap. At night, she goes to bed between 8:30 and 9 PM and wakes up every 4 hours to nurse (occasionally she'll let mommy sleep 6 or 7 hours straight), and she's usually up for the day around 8 or 9 AM.

- Mama and big brother (she loves Dada and the dog, too, but Ma and Bro are her faves)
- bath time
- nursing
- standing
- sitting on someone's lap and watching the family eat
- swinging
- sleeping
- her exersaucer
- her new white noise machine (we were using a small fan but it made her room too cold!)

- laughing in response to silly faces/voices or tickles
- sleeps at bedtime and naptime in her crib in her room
- smiling socially
- cooing/squawking
- reaching out/grabbing things
- putting hands and toys in her mouth
- tracking objects with eyes and entire head
- playing in exersaucer
- trying to roll from back to belly
- teething: drooling, chewing on fingers/toys
- wearing 6-9 month clothing
- wearing size 2 Pampers Swaddlers

So far in her short 4 months, Louisa:
- vacationed at the beach twice (July and September)
- visited Ohio twice (June and August)
- helped Mommy and Daddy celebrate 3 years of marriage
- went to her first bachelorette party
- attended a going-away party, a graduation party, and a baptism
- experienced her first major league baseball game
- visited the emergency room
- went swimming for the first time
- started Kindermusik class
- got her first sunburn

Louisa is the happiest little thing on the planet. She rarely cries or fusses, and when she does, it's because something needs to be fixed (i.e. her diaper needs to be changed, she needs to burp/barf, she needs to be fed, or she needs to go to sleep). Her hair is still strawberry blonde and she has beautiful blue eyes. She's such a joy!

See how much Louisa has grown and changed!

We love our Sissy Lou!

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