Amelia Grace: Nine Months Old

At nine months, Amelia is turning into quite the little person — she’s sweet, sensitive, super stubborn, and constantly keeping me on my toes!

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Length: 27.75 inches (56%ile) Weight: 17 lbs. (31%ile) Head: 17 inches (55%ile)

She’s wearing size 2 diapers, and a mix of 3-6 month and 6-9 month clothing.

Likes:

  • Being outside
  • Going for walks in the stroller
  • Playing with other babies and kids
  • Animals
  • Story time
  • Chewing on everything
  • “Popsicles” (aka a mesh feeder filled with ice cubes)
  • Crawling around the house
  • Reading books
  • Climbing on the furniture
  • Swinging in the baby swing outside

Dislikes:

  • Getting ready for/going to bed
  • Getting dressed
  • Having her diaper changed
  • Loud noises (the blow dryer, vacuum, blender, etc.)
  • Being held by unfamiliar people
  • When Mommy or Daddy leave the room
  • The feeling of grass (evidence below)

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What a month it has been. The biggest challenge has been sleep. Our sweet baby, who previously slept through the night, suddenly refused to sleep at nighttime. I feel like I need to apologize to any bed-sharing parent I’ve ever questioned, because this month we threw safety out the window and tried it all. The nighttime wake-ups are due to multiple things — teething, a new nap schedule and a lot of separation anxiety — and we’ve finally gotten to a point where it’s getting better. She was screaming as we put her down to sleep and screaming every hour or two after that, which left me feeling sad and defeated. So, she’d usually end up sleeping on my chest in my bed. She’d fall asleep immediately that way, and we were all tired, so it worked. We tried putting the pack n’ play in our room also, to see if having us closer would help, but it didn’t help enough to make it a habit. This week, we’ve resorted to letting her cry it out a little bit. After two nights of that, she’s sleeping in her crib again (not without a few cuddles with mama in the rocking chair if/when she does wake up, though — I can’t stand the CIO method), but we’re still taking it one night at a time. It’s just a phase, and I know I’ll look back and miss all of the cuddles! 

Funny enough, despite the nighttime troubles, naps have been great. She’s now taking two long naps, usually around 1.5 to 2.5 hours each. We made this switch as soon as she turned 8 months old, kind of by accident because she missed her second nap one day and I realized she didn’t need it anymore. She’s drinking four bottles, and eating two “meals” a day, in the form of purees. We’ve tried giving her finger foods, but she has little interest and would rather be spoon fed.  This is what a typical day for Amelia looks like:

6:30 am: Wake-up/cuddles

7 am: Bottle/play time

8 am: Breakfast (usually a fruit and healthy fat)/listen to music/read books and get ready for a nap

8:30 am: First nap

10:30 am: Bottle

10:45 am: Run errands/go for a walk/play 

1 pm: Bottle/read books and get ready for a nap

1:30 pm: Second nap

3:30 pm: “Dinner” (usually a vegetable or two)/listen to music

4 pm: Go for a walk/play outside/playtime with Daddy

5  pm: Bottle/get ready for bed/read books

6 pm: Bedtime

Amelia can say two words/phrases now — “mama” and “I love you.” I know that sounds crazy, but both my mom and sister have witnessed it. She also likes mimicking us when we make the blowing bubbles sound with our lips. She is crawling up a storm and standing up on all of the furniture. I can’t leave the room or turn my back when she’s awake, and I no longer have the privilege of going to the bathroom by myself (ha!). She is my little shadow, and as tiring as it can be some days, I love it. 

Mommy/Daddy Update

It’s funny for me to look back and think about how nervous I used to get taking Amelia places, because now she’s my little sidekick. From a bridal shower to a funeral, to getting my eyebrows waxed, she joins me. Going down to two naps has given us a lot of freedom, because I know I’ll have a good three hour chunk of time to run errands and get out of the house. It also helps that she doesn’t mind the car now and can entertain herself with her pacis and teethers.

Early this month, I joined a Strollfit class through Baby Boot Camp, which has been great for us. I really missed taking classes at the gym, and it’s been a good way for me to get out of the house and work out without having to worry about childcare. Amelia likes it too, and has fun chasing around the other babies after class. We also go to story time at the library, and were recently invited to join a local playgroup. Having that circle of stay (or work)-at-home moms is beneficial, even if we only see them once a week at classes. 

As far as Jordan goes, he’s starting to create a little routine with Amelia that allows him to see her for more than a few minutes a day. She cuddles with him in the morning and “helps” him in the kitchen while he makes his coffee, and then after work he usually feeds her a bottle and plays with her while I get dinner ready. He’s been able to get home earlier from work also, which has been great since she goes to bed so early. 

I’m really excited to enjoy the summer with Amelia, and see how she continues to grow. I can’t believe that I’m already thinking about her first birthday!

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Two Days a Week

quiet morning at home

Baby bump flashback

It’s almost been a month since I’ve blogged! I have a goal for myself: blog two days a week in the month of June. I just wrote up Amelia’s nine month update (it’ll be up tomorrow), and it made me realize how much I miss blogging for fun. I’m still debating whether or not to end my blog, and I think having this goal will help me decide if I should or not. So…I will see you in June (and tomorrow too)! 

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Where Do I Go from Here?

mama and baby_6 months old

 

Yesterday, I got an email saying that my domain name expires in 59 days. I have some decisions to make.

I have been blogging for 5 1/2 years now. 5 1/2 years. I’ve written in this space through college, graduation, career changes, my engagement, marriage, pregnancy, childbirth, and now parenthood. Along the way my readers have experienced so much with me — surgeries, deaths, celebrations, ups, downs and everything in between.  

Some of the the things that I have posted in this space make me cringe. I used this space as a journal for a long time, and wrote about a lot of nothing. But I’ve also shared things very, very close to my heart — like when I found out I was pregnant, and the birth of my baby girl.

I’m not sure where to go from here. I’m not sure where this blog fits into my life anymore.

I have a part-time job, I’m a full-time mom, and of course, I need to give attention to my husband and house too. Sometimes, the last thing I want to do at the end of the day is open my computer. I have all of these ideas swirling around in my head, and most of the time, I end up sharing them on Instagram instead — because, well, I can do it in an instant.

And then there’s the issue of privacy. Do I want my child’s future employee to google their name and come up with my blog? Do they really need to see what she was doing during infancy and childhood? Or worse, do they need to see what her mom was doing during college and her first years of marriage? 

I’m not sure that I’m ready to cut the ties just yet. I think that it will be sad, no matter when I choose to do it.

Until then, I’ll be here.

Sometimes.

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Amelia Grace: Eight Months Old

How do I describe how quickly time is flying? I feel like I’m on a treadmill that is going too fast and I can’t keep up, yet there are no buttons to slow it down or stop it!

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Amelia’s next doctor’s appointment is a month away, so I’m not sure of her measurements, but she’s mainly wearing 6-9 month clothing, some 3-6 month clothing, and size 2 diapers. 

Likes:

  • Being outside
  • Crawling everywhere
  • Swinging in the hammock swing with Mommy
  • When Daddy gets home from work
  • Jumping in the Jumperoo
  • Going for walks
  • Story time
  • Chewing on everything
  • Reading books

Dislikes:

  • Being tired
  • Getting ready for/going to bed
  • Sitting still
  • Loud noises
  • Unfamiliar people
  • Getting dressed/having her diaper changed

Places she visited:

  • Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and Florida
  • Disney World!
  • Costco
  • The park
  • Michael’s
  • The usuals (Target, church, the library)

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Amelia does not sit still. We completely skipped the “sitting up nicely and playing with toys” stage that so many people told me about, and went straight to crawling. She’s been crawling for a month and a half now, and I have a feeling that she’s not too far from walking. She’s pulled herself up to a standing position one time, and has been trying so hard to do it again. We have baby proofed a good portion of our house, but I can’t leave her alone in a room — she goes straight to the outlet covers, laptop cords, TV stand, etc. Basically, anything that’s not a toy or book ;).

Sleep is hit or miss right now. If you’d asked me three days ago how it was going, I’d say great. For the past few months (once her bottom teeth were through), she’s been sleeping 12 hours at night consistently, going down around 6 pm and waking up around 6 am. But the past two nights have been interesting. She’s waking up in sad, sad tears every couple of hours, and only wants to sleep on me or near me. She’s going through the 6th leap (according to the The Wonder Weeks app) and teething, so I’m guessing it’s a combination of pain and nighttime separation anxiety? She sleeps perfectly fine once she’s on my chest, so even though it’s not ideal, we’ve slept like that off and on the past two nights. Thankfully, she sleeps fine in her crib during naps. She’s still taking three naps a day, with 2 – 3 hours of awake time between each one. 

Food-wise, Amelia’s drinking four bottles a day, and has now graduated to two “meals” a day, at breakfast and at dinner. We’re still doing purees. I’ve tried giving her finger foods (avocado and banana) a couple of times, and all she does is squish it in her hand, look at it, and throw it on the floor or put it in the pocket of her bib, ha! She’s not a big eater, and I’ve thrown away quite a bit of her leftover purees. But food before one is just for fun, right? That’s what I tell myself! 

She can now get herself into a seated position on her own, babbles and squeals frequently, and is less apprehensive with new people who hold her, unless she’s overly tired. 

Mommy/Daddy Update

We threw our first party for Amelia over the weekend and I think it was the first time I’ve really felt like a parent. She was baptized on Sunday, and we hosted a brunch at our house afterwards. I did have help with the food (thanks to my mom, mother-in-law and sister!), but it felt like such an adult thing to do, to throw a party for our daughter. Is it funny that I feel that way at 27?  

At eight months postpartum, I’ve been thinking more and more about my birth experience. It was such a special time for me, but there are a couple of things that really bothered me. I used to feel guilty for being bothered, since the baby and I are both healthy, but after watching ‘The Business of Being Born’ on Netflix and listening to ‘The Birth Hour’ podcast, I feel like my concerns are justified. It just makes me think about what I’d like in the future! 

This next month will bring Mother’s Day, and hopefully more beautiful weather and time spent outside!

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I Tried Orangetheory Fitness

About a month ago, on our way to Florida, Jordan, Amelia and I made a stop in Nashville to visit my sister. When we were planning our stop, I asked Molly if she’d want to take a class together at the gym. I knew I’d be sitting in the car for two days, and I also knew that doing something active would be good for me (mentally, mostly!). She suggested that instead of going to her gym, we take a class at Orangetheory Fitness. The first class is free for everyone who tries it, and neither of us had done it before. So, we signed up ahead of time, and after dropping Jordan and Amelia off at the hotel, Molly and I headed to our class.

I didn’t know much about the class, other than that it involves treadmills and rowing machines. We arrived at the studio 30 minutes early, where we signed a waiver, were fitted heart rate monitors, and got a tour of the facility. Every participant wears a heart rate monitor during the class, because the basis of the class is this (from the website):

The idea of Orangetheory is this: a 60-minute workout designed to push you into the Orange Zone. This creates “Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption,” or EPOC. It’s what burns calories after your workout and gives you noticeable, lasting results with Orangetheory Fitness.”

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After our tour, they opened the doors to the studio and we picked out our machines. I learned that they switch up workouts regularly, but on this particular day, half of us started out on rowing machines and the other half started on the treadmills for a quick warm up. Then, those of us on the rowing machines moved over into the weight room area for strength training. This was a good surprise to me, as I didn’t know the class also included strength training. We did about 25 minutes of various body weight exercises and exercises with 8-15 pound weights. This portion was interval-style, led by the trainer. 

orangetheory fitness gym

Source

When the 25 minutes was over, we switched groups and it was my turn to go to the treadmill. For 25 more minutes, we did intervals on the treadmill and rowing machine. This portion was led by me, with the help of instructions taped to the treadmill. I learned that not all classes are like this, but on this particular day, it was participant led. At the end of the class, we all did a cool down together, and then the trainer pulled Molly and I aside to discuss the results from our heart rate monitors (the results were also emailed to me, which was nice).

orangetheory fitness

The goal of the class is to stay in the “orange zone” for at least 12 minutes in order to continue burning calories for the following 36 hours, and I stayed in it for about 10 minutes. However, the trainer told both my sister and I that we have low resting heart rates, so the same theory might not apply for us. Basically, if you’re already used to working out and pushing hard, the same heart rate zone theory might not apply. I will say that I was sprinting on all of my treadmill intervals, and I hadn’t run since I was 15 weeks pregnant, so I was definitely pushing myself!

So, would I take a class again? Possibly, if it wasn’t so expensive. I can’t find the pricing information online, but I believe that just for a basic membership (only four classes a month), it’s close to $100. I was also disappointed when the trainer told me that the same “orange zone” philosophy might not apply for me since I have a low resting heart rate. It’s not that I didn’t burn a lot of calories — I did, and I was sore for a couple of days after! — but I wouldn’t be reading my heart rate monitor results in the same way after each class.

If you have the opportunity to try a class, I’d say try it for fun! But if you’re the type of person who enjoys working out and has access to a treadmill and some weights, I think that you could save some money and easily achieve these results at home. If they do ever lower their prices, I’ll go try a class again!

Have you tried Orangetheory Fitness? Would you?

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