What worked for us: 2 months old giraffe hunter
Our baby celebrated his two months birthday by catching a giraffe! No, I am not completely crazy (just a little). No, not a real one. A cute staffed giraffe in his baby-gym happened to be on the way of a little cute chubby hand that was flying somewhere in the vicinity of curious little mouth. Adorable little hand grabbed the giraffe and both of them ended up very-very wet and slobbered all over! We could hardly believe this at first – everything a little baby is doing seems like a miracle or at least a Guiness World Record. Yet, the giraffe, parrot and other toys were getting into our baby’s mouth with such consistency, that we had to believe it wasn’t just a coincidence.
Materials that we are using
- “How Smart is Your Baby?” by Doman – see our book review.
- “What Babies Say Before They Can Talk : The Nine Signals Infants Use to Express Their Feelings” by Paul Holinger, Kalia Doner
- Newborn Baby Swimming
- Elimination Communication method
We still are in sleepless oblivion and still didn’t realize we should be rereading our copy of…
- The No-Cry Sleep Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night by Elizabeth Pantley
What are we doing:
“How Smart is Your Baby”
This month there was no evaluation. Since no torturing of the baby was prescribed by the all-wise Mr. Doman, no torturing of our consciousness that we are skipping it again has taken place. We just continued with the same exercises as we did last months. See our progress!
We are still enjoying the Balance Activities – all of them (there are just 15 exercises that usually include moving baby in different ways – from side to side, over the head, on the floor on the mat, rocking in the chair, etc.). Mat exercises are now daddy’s responsibility: Mommy doesn’t have the strength or height to move you as fast as Dad can. The baby really enjoys tricking us: rolling off the mat during exercise, or slowly working his way to crawl off the mat, or smiling so sweetly, that we forget why did we get him there and just start cooing back.
Infant Crawling Track: (board with two walls, open on the opposite ends. The walls help baby push, and to avoid flipping himself over all the time – to learn forward movement instead of being stuck at the “rolling from one side to another” stage.) What? 150 feet a day? No way. But we are very proud if on a good day we can get the baby in a track 3 times! And if the baby can crawl the entire track without getting upset – that’s a real celebration! I would hardly believe it myself, but we actually started to have a lot of such wonderful “track” days!
Manual Competence program: baby is hanging from our fingers! He can support his full body weight for 3-5 seconds? Isn’t this remarkable? It is getting harder and harder for both of us – the baby is gaining weight quite well…
Dad’s fingers are still uncomfortable to our little gymnast. My fingers are the only ones getting a workout. And, of course, the baby’s.
Auditory Competence program (blowing air horn): as I said, no blowing air horns for us.
Tactile Competence program: Very rarely I have a chance to get an ice pack from the fridge to get baby familiar with the cold sensation. Occasionally, I just use a cold spoon or something similar. But usually I prefer to offer a warm hand massage or hot kisses! We are still ignoring the uncomfortable sensations: pinching, hot towel, etc.
Visual Competence program: this month it involves contrasting environment – large checkerboard of 12 white/black squares; spotting a penlight 10 times a day; outline of bits of intelligence cards. We are very faithful with the cards, the baby actually likes them. Contrasting squares poster is also a hit, as well as the little pages of squares that I did just by cutting, pasting, laminating for placing in stroller, crib, around baby gym, etc. The baby intently looks at the squares, looks interested.
Flashlight exercises are skipped again: I like the idea of moving the light on my hand to let the baby follow it, but he is going to bed for the night much earlier now, so we’ve got no “dark hour” available for this.
Language (regular conversations with the baby, leaving lengthy opportunities for him to respond; reading poems together and eventually skipping some words for the baby to fill in): what a terrific idea to leave portions of the poems out! All of us enjoy this interaction and exchange!
I finally did the choice boards: yes, no, maybe, other. Surprisingly, they seem to work! Wow, may be they CAN help take the guess work out? I am not completely sure, if the baby is upset, he has no patience for the choice board – he just want his milk, sleep or toy. Yet, whenever the baby is not really upset yet, he would point to the answer that apparently is correct!
Swimming: We continue with the water exercises right in our own bathtub. Though, our amount of exercises gradually declining. Besides, this month baby was trying to communicate to us (without any choice boards) that he wants an earlier bedtime. He was doing it in the least ambiguous way: by falling asleep BEFORE we had a chance to dunk him in a big tub full of cold water! We are quite persistent, but even I eventually realized that I need to move our night time routine to an earlier hour. These changes resulted in not as frequent bathing, besides, as baby is getting bigger, he outgrows the exercises that we have, and we lack the equipment to proceed further. So we keep up with water massage/exercises that we still can do and impatiently wait for the summer pool.
Elimination Communication: Absolutely incredible – the baby is potty training US! He TELLS us whenever he needs to go! We usually have accidents only when the baby is too busy playing in the gym and can’t be distracted. I got so relaxed, that I am usually putting a oncie on a baby, stick a cloth diaper inside (still no cover!) and… and up with many cloth changes a day. I still need to figure out a better way to handle this – I really don’t have time to do laundry this often. Yet, finding time to figure out the solution seems even harder…
Hot question for all the parents: sleep!
We finally realized that we need a schedule to help our baby sleep at night better. Sometimes the baby is sleeping soundly fo 4, 5 even 6 hours before the next feeding, but sometimes he wakes up every 3 hours. It is still better then my first one, but I notice another issue that is new to me: catnapping! I need my “No Cry Sleep Solution” book by Elizabeth Pantley, and I just lent it to a friend! I need my book!…
: at the end of the month the baby started enjoying trying to walk, while Dad or Mom are holding him. Legs are still wobbly, they constantly entangle, but this new idea seems so fascinating to the baby, that he doesn’t mind trying again and again!
By the end of the month the baby was recognizing fascial detail very well – could easily tell when someone was smiling to him, or just serious. By three months the baby learned all kinds of new “baby sounds” – “agus”, “abguys”, etc. Reading poems together is, probably the most beloved activity: the amount of smiles and laughter that we get there can be bitten only by a mere presence of an older brother, who, apparently, is the best candidate for the baby’s smiles and admiration.
The baby still doesn’t like tummy time, rolls on his back right away. As soon as he is on his back, twists on his side, tries rolling on his tummy, but that milestone is still far away. Crawling is still not baby’s favorite way to spend time, but he is getting better and better at it and can crawl the entire inclined track in 1-2 minutes!
Third month is coming up with really exciting programs! Read on: Hang on there! Three months old hanging for 12 seconds!