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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Tess Summary of Month 14

This post covers Tess's 14th month of life (so she was 13 months old) from Aug 30th - Sept 30th. 

Nursing/Eating: This was our last month nursing. Whew. It was TOUGH on my emotions. I had been slowly dropping feedings since around Father's Day (mid-June) and had only the 7 pm feeding left this month. She was ready to let it go, but I held on until I was more ready :) And really, I could have probably kept on going even longer but I knew that going away for a weekend would be the best time to end it. Tess struggled a LOT with bottle feeding and it's because she didn't want anything other than milk from mama when I was around. I worried she'd struggle to go down to bed at night if I was home and not nursing her and I knew that it would make it harder for me emotionally to fully wean her if she was upset. It really did work out best that I was gone! That last feeding was very, very emotional for me and you can read more about it here. 

Our nursing relationship was so awesome and it's an experience I'm truly just so thankful for. If I never nurse another baby again, I'd be okay with that because nursing Tess was such the perfect experience.





Tess did FINE when the last feeding was dropped and this was my smoothest drying up experience by far (post to come with more details on that). It was the longest I nursed a baby, the slowest I dropped feedings, and the MOST stored milk I've ever had left. I was SHOCKED when I added it all up. I ended up having 620 oz in my freezer. I had so much that it would legit go bad (breastmilk is good for one year in a deep freezer) before I'd be able to use it all!

It was SUCH a God thing! I truly have NO CLUE how I stored up all that milk? I know using Milkies helped in the early days and I guess since she didn't like bottle feeding she drank less from the bottle than I was pumping for the missed feeding so I just ended up with a ton extra?!? My sweet friend Laura is pregnant and was still nursing her baby at the time (Irish twins!) and I was able to ship a little over 200 oz to her to help her make her breastfeeding goals for her baby while her supply started to dwindle due to her pregnancy! 

It was our first experience shipping breast milk and it's no joke. We got dry ice from a local place in town that sells it (none of our grocery stores have it) and worked with UPS to make sure it could be delivered before the dry ice melted. We shipped it overnight and when she got it the dry ice was melted but thankfully the milk was still completely frozen solid!


Tess is still a really great eater! She eats more than Britt does at most meals. Her fav food groups are carbs, dairy, and fruit for sure :) Girl can tear up some bread and yogurt or cottage cheese! She isn't too messy (at least compared to Britt ha!) but she does leave us with a good bit of clean up :)



First time eating pancakes!



She's liking things bigger now rather than cut up!



This is usually as messy as her face gets :)


Eating out she's sneaky...I had a Zalad at Zaxby's and she kept sneaking my croutons!


Sleep: Everything is great on the sleeping front! She often wakes early in the morning and talks a bit then falls back to sleep with no issues. She also will put her legs in the slats of the crib and get stuck on occasion! 


Schedule:

7:00 Breakfast with whole milk
9:00 - 11:00 Nap
12:30: Lunch with Whole Milk
1:00 - 3:00: Nap
3:30: Small snack with whole milk to drink
4:00: 35 min of independent playtime
5:30: Dinner with family (whole milk to drink)
6:15: Bath
6:45: Nurse (nursed for last time when 13 ½ months old)
When done nursing straight to bed for night

Independent Playtime: It's going MUCH better this month! She is back to happily playing! She will fuss a bit when I first put her in but then she's good to go and if I'm not carefully listening she won't even fuss if the timer goes off :)


Bible Class: With our concerns about whopping cough Tess took longer to start attending Bible Class on Sunday mornings. She also didn't have a consistent teacher when she first started going and has always been super attached to Mommy. She was also on the younger end of the kids in her class and some of the older ones were going through toddler stages with fits and such which scared her. Needless to say, it's been slow going with Bible Class for Tess. Which is just really aggravating for me. I know that sounds bad but I'm with my kids all the time. During worship services we all know how it goes: we're focusing more on our kids and their behavior than listening to the sermon. If I'm in the church building I'd like to get poured into on some level and spending every Sunday morning sitting in Tess's Bible Class with her felt frustrating for me. I know it's important for her but I got to my point after she was a year old that I was just ready to be back to an adult class! I hadn't been to my class since before she was born! Zach had been teaching the teens up until recently so he couldn't sit with Tess but when things changed he was able to start going with her. It's worked out really, really well and he is so great with a challenge like that! He has a system down and really works at getting her to be able to stay in there without us :) 



We have reached the toddler stage of being into EVERYTHING! Child is QUIET, SNEAKY, and EVERYWHERE! Luckily for her she's also super cute ;) And luckily for me she enjoys cleaning up her messes! 






From birth Tess was always very, very attached to Kye. However, Kye is at school for the majority of the day, every day. Tess has quickly become a HUGE Britt fan. She loves Britt's toys more than any others and can constantly be found in Britt's room. It's pretty adorable. Britt does a TON better with her than Kye did with Britt at this age. I think Britt being a younger sibling helps her be more patient with Tess because she knows how annoyed Kye gets with her :) 








I randomly found these from our Disney trip with Carter! This month was a big month with our big Disney trip as well as Zach and I both traveling! The kids all did great with everything and enjoyed the quality time with each parent separately. Sometimes a little spoiling is fun :)




Travel Girl!



Your Baby Can Read: Tess REALLY likes the videos! She's so easy going, I think she's like anything on the screen haha! But she sits super well for them and I will do them for her when I need to make dinner or lunch or something. It's not something I do daily but I do think it has some benefits (mostly that it teaches her to sit still). 


She not only loves the videos, but she is obsessed with the little chair she sits in! She will go sit in it all the time. It's super cute :)





The big kids are SUPER into putting on shows right now. My dad got them a karaoke machine last year and they play music constantly so they can dance. Tess joins right in! She LOVES to "sing" into the microphone :) 



I started putting her in her walker some while Britt did shows so she could "dance" too which was really fun for her! She'd get her boogie on!





With my traveling two weekends this month Tess got a LOT of Daddy time. My kids tend to really get attached to Daddy when I wean them and I think her time with him this month helped make that even a stronger attachment! She's become QUITE the Daddy's girl :)



Playground with Daddy!










Zach sent me this haha classic Daddy swing ;)


My kids are so blessed to have THE best Daddy!


Tess not only loves eating, sleeping, watching her videos, and independent playtime...the girl also loves bath. I swear she's just a HAPPY child who loves every part of life! We finally packed up the bath seat and she loves the freedom in the tub. It's a little tricky with her taking Britt's toys but they are both learning :)






This is my favorite sight...my whole heart!


I tried really hard this month to cherish the moments with Tess b/c I knew once she was fully weaned that she'd be off and running and that my quiet, calm cuddly time with her would be limited. Once she weaned I did start taking longer to tuck her in at naps and night. I try to hold her longer and sing to her longer and just get those cuddles when possible. But, as expected, she's usually over it pretty quickly. 



I had an afternoon of JUST Tess time which is very rare for me. We get time solo with the big kids but very rarely with Tess! We went to Target and she was SO cute and it was SO fun having people compliment how cute she was :) It's also funny when people assume I'm a first time mom ;)




More About Tess:

  • Tess took her first steps on Sunday 13th! I had just gotten home from my girl's beach trip and she took 4 steps directly towards me! I was shocked b/c it was SO random! She def didn't start walking or anything but it was a start!!! So thankful I didn't miss it! She was holding her little vitamin bottle that I use when nursing and she wasn't paying full attention so I think that helped. Zach ran out and she did it again for him too! She's really just not interested in walking and doesn't even stand solo for very long time periods
  • She gets some dry spots on belly and I use aquaphor on them after bath
  • She's SUPER ticklish under her thighs (she gets it from her mama!)
  • Tess LOVES to have her feet tickled and played with
  • She will hold my hand when I lay her down in the crib and if I hold her friend in my arms while tucking her in then she will be more cuddly with me
  • She really enjoys reading but wants to be the one holding the book
  • She likes to put the lid on and off of things!
  • When we tell Tess "no" she's starting to get more upset by it, just saying "no" is becoming more effective for her
  • She's awesome at cleaning up!
  • I started using my frozen stash of breast milk and mix 3-5 oz a day in her whole milk. Even with the nightly nursing session for half of the month she was probably only getting 10-12 oz of breast milk a day
  • She says "donnnnnne" when she's done eating as well as "duck" (which Zach thinks is from the your baby can read video!)
  • She has SO many clothes! She is legit wearing outfits once and then I pack them up b/c she simply doesn't have space for them all and is getting to be too big to wear them. 
  • I think she's our "allergy baby" as she gets a lot of snot more than I remember any others getting and she has always been that way. Zach is always hacking in the mornings due to allergies so it makes sense that at least one kid would have it!
  • She likes the little finger puppets we have in the tub and will put them on her fingers
  • She loves "this little light of mine" it's def her fav song and will do the motions with her finger as well as the "hide it under a bushel no!" part
  • She will sit on the fireplace and it's adorable b/c you can tell she's trying to "act big" like Kye and Britt
  • She plays with her tongue a lot
  • Waving and saying "bye bye" to things really helps her transition
  • Tess enjoys taking things out and putting them back in over and over 
  • She LOVES to kiss her brother and sister goodnight!
Videos:


Girl loves some shoes!












Sibling Comparisons: You can see Britt's 14th month here and Kye's here! Britt legit starting WALKING at this age and Kye was more like Tess and had just taken his first steps at this age. Interesting that all three of mine were later to walk. No complaints here! I continue to see more of Kye in Tess than I do Britt although their open mouth smiles are similar to me :) 







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