I can’t quite believe that Annabelle is now 6 months old! I’m sure the first 8 words of that phrase are ones I’ll continue to use for the rest of my life, as all parents do I’m sure, inserting a number of months or years. Adam mentioned that Annabelle is now closer to her 1st birthday than to the day that she was born, a realisation that made me sad but excited all at the same time. It still astounds me how much she changes and develops in such a short amount of time. If I compare newborn Annabelle to 6 month Annabelle the difference is incredible! This small little human has survived on nothing but milk and sleep but has progressed more physically and mentally than I have in the last 10 years!
I think the most exciting part of motherhood for me so far has been seeing her change, experiment, develop, adapt, learn and do new things, almost daily. I love how she watches and takes things in around her. If I had a pound for every time someone has described Annabelle as ‘alert’, my maternity pay would be doubled! And it’s true. She is so inquisitive about the world around her, and about what people are doing. Her eyes dart around, taking everything in, and then she’ll fix her stare on something interesting or new and watch. From this, she’s learning all the time and is able to then experiment and see what her little body and mind is capable of doing.
Recently, she’s been watching us eat. Her eyes locked, as she follows the food from plate to fork to mouth. She’s grabbing with more presicion and strength now, things like my hair, my neck fat, my nostril, my bottom lip and my eyebrow. She’s also started the raspberry-blowing phase, and is splattering herself and anything in the vacinity with her own saliva. She’s invented a new little game where she puts her dummy in her mouth, then pops it out by blowing more raspberries and repeats this over and over until another distraction presents itself. These things are all, I’m sure, part of her cognitive and physical development and she’s very quickly trying and mastering new things.
Up until now, all of her development has happened very organically. I guess we’ve provided toys and games that may have helped certain aspects of her development, but on the whole, she’s just naturally developed and done these things of her own accord. But 6 months is a different story. At 6 months, a whole new world is opening up to her and it’ll be interesting to see what she does with it all!
Annabelle turned 6 months last week and all of a sudden, things get interesting. It is recommended that babies sleep in their parents room for the first 6 months. They are allowed to have solid food and drinking water at 6 months. They can have double the dose of Calpol. DOUBLE! A whole new world of toys are now available to them as I’ve found that approximately 90%* of all baby toys are 6 months+. A 6 month old body is likely to develop in different ways; teeth start to pop up, they can start to sit up etc. They grow out of certain items, things like Moses baskets, first cribs, poddle pods (see previous ‘Baby Best Buys’ blog post), baby slings, carry cots, bouncer chairs etc. At 6 months, they can move into the big cot, and the big pushchair, the big baby carrier, the next size up poddle pod and other similar things. I could go on!
So Adam and I are now beginning to adjust from the life we had just gotten used to with a newborn to life with a 6 month old.
Annabelle had her last night in our room just over a week ago. I relished the extra little snuggle before I turned and simply lay her down on my right handside and couldn’t help but hold her little hands as I fell asleep. She’s been so good in her own room, a few nights where we were up and down, but generally she’s settled so well and we’re getting used to a revised bedtime routine! She hasn’t yet made it into her ‘big cot’, but I’m hoping that’ll be just as good of a transition!
We started giving her water to drink out of a tippy cup which has had mixed results! She mostly just used the mouthpiece as a chew toy which she loved and wasn’t best pleased when I tipped it up a little to get some water out. After a few times, she got wise to my tricks and kept hitting it away every time I tried tipping it up! We shall persevere.
She’s got a little tooth coming through! Front bottom. It’s a sharp little thing, I first noticed it because of the scratch marks on the mouthpiece of the tippy cup. She seems to be dealing with it really well. She wears an amber anklet which apparently relieves teething pain, and so far so good! I did give her Calpol on Thursday (her 6 month birthday) as she was really grumpy with her teeth, but I didnt know whether to give her 2.5ml or 5ml! If it had been the day before, would I have given her the smaller dose? I opted for about 3ml in the end, perhaps next time I’ll treat her to a big 5ml dose.
We’ve just started trying her on solid food. Her first little nibble was on a stick of cucumber, which she seemed to enjoy, despite the faces, as she kept coming back to it. Next up was watermelon which she didn’t entertain at all. We also gave her some carrot which wasn’t too bad, but the most successful food has so far been a good old Farley’s rusk. Not entirely convinced she’s actually eaten very much yet but it’s exciting seeing her explore a new little world of tastes and textures. Plus the new faces she pulls are pretty darn cute.
We’ve got a whole new pile of toys to play with! We bought a jumperoo-type bouncer a few weeks ago which she loves. Mummy loves it too as she can get a few things done knowing Annabelle will stay in one place! Nana and Grandpa also gave her a few new toys this weekend, all of which are 6 months plus, so we’re having fun passing the time with new toys that she’s officially old enough to enjoy!
So, life really does begin at 6 months. Food, drink, own room, fun and games. Wish I could go back personally! And as always, Annabelle is living life with a cheeky, twinkly smile plastered across her face which just makes every new step all the more enjoyable. Here’s to the next 6 months!