I kept debating whether I should wait until we got back to Newcastle to write this update, but I think by the time we get back and get resettled, Eleanor will be seven months! Time is flying, but that’s nothing new!!
Eleanor spent all but one day of her sixth month in the US. In fact, the day after she turned five months old, we hopped on a big plane and made our long journey back East.
Highlights and Milestones
The first milestone of this month is Eleanor’s first across-the-ocean-flight. She has well over 10,000 flying miles under her belt at this point, and she’s about to add another 10,000 in a few days when we head back. She did so well on the flight – once we got on the flight! There were some holdups checking in because of our unique situation of having our daughter be an Australian citizen before we are! We got onto the plane just before they closed the doors (and fortunately, it looks like we’ve got everything sorted to head back this Saturday thanks to some champs back in Newie who not only found her birth certificate but quickly mailed it to us!). We had a bassinet seat on the plane, and although Eleanor didn’t end up sitting in it very much, it was great having the extra space. I am hopeful she may enjoy it a little bit more now that’s she sitting a bit better.
Speaking of sitting, she’s nearly there with sitting unassisted. A big thing that she has enjoyed since being home is an exersaucer thing both of our parents had for her to play in. When we first put her in it, it swallowed her up, she didn’t really know what to do, and she couldn’t stand/bounce in it. Now, she’s a pro and so busy while sitting it. She bounces up and down when she gets excited, works her way around and plays with all the toys. I think this has really helped develop some of her muscles. She’ll pull up now when you’re holding her, and you can tell her legs are much stronger. I think within the next month she’ll be able to sit by herself much better.
We’ve also let her try more purees. I am still taking it super slowly with solids, but she’s completely gotten the hang of it. We let her try one of the pouches as well while we were traveling, and she figured that out on the first try. So far she has tried rice cereal w/breastmilk, apples, sweet potatoes, carrots, squash, cherries and oats, bananas and pears. We also tried peas, but she got a bit of a tummy bug the next day so we are waiting awhile for that one in case there was a connection. She really enjoys sitting in a high chair at the table with everyone, too.
Obviously a huge highlight was Eleanor meeting everyone in both Robbie and my families. We started off in Indianapolis with my family. My parents had already met her in August, but they were so excited to see her again. It was fun because it seems like she grew and changed so much while we’ve been home, and they’ve all gotten to witness that. After Christmas, we headed to Tulsa, and it was such a joy to introduce Eleanor to Robbie’s mom and dad. It was a cool moment in the airport for sure! We had a great time with Robbie’s family, and it seems impossible that we are already heading back in just a few days.
Also, you can see in one of the photos below, but after losing nearly all her hair, it’s been coming back in so much in the last month! YAY!
Anything and everything that she can put into her mouth. I keep waiting for teeth to pop out because the girl is constantly putting toys, fingers, clothes, etc in her mouth and drooling at the same time. Particular toys she loves – still loving Sophie, her yellow crinkle toy, these key toys that my mom had (super noisy!), Tigger stuffed animal, anything that’s musical or lights up, her o-ball and of course all the toys on the exersaucers.
She loves playing peek-a-boo, and her entire body seems to squeal with excitement. She still loves ceiling fans. She really loves laying on beds, particularly when you play with her and tickle her. She will giggle and squeal and talk. She’s become so expressive, which I didn’t think she could get more so than she already was, but she’s so busy and animated. It’s very fun.
She LOVES FaceTime, and that is what all technology (iPads, iPhones, computers, etc.) is for in her mind. She gets fussy if she hears the FaceTime sound and no one answers. Haha. She loves watching videos of herself as well, and these have saved us when she’s getting upset in the car.
I feel like there are so many things she loves actually. The more I write, the more I could think of. She is such a happy girl and rarely gets very upset. Of course she fusses here and there, but she generally doesn’t have meltdowns unless she is in the car or doesn’t want to go to sleep.
The car loathing is still going strong. It will be amazing when she doesn’t mind the car. That being said, we were MAJORLY impressed when she did a 4-hour trip to Nashville without a meltdown. She did cry of course, but even her crying was minimal. She slept for much of the trip. I was so relieved!
For this entire month, she disliked medicine (although in the last week, she has suddenly decided she likes it?). That sounds like we give her tons of medicine, but I promise we don’t. She (and the rest of us actually) got a bit of a cold here in Tulsa, so we gave her some Tylenol when she was having a particularly hard time. We finished using our Panadol from Australia, which she really hates. However, it seems that Tylenol may be ok haha. Oh babies!
She gets frustrated if we try to put her to sleep, and she doesn’t want to or I don’t nurse her first. She’s started doing this bucking thing? I don’t really know how to explain it, but it makes us laugh. It’s not really a cry so much as a complaint. Maybe a precursor to toddler temper-tantrums – uh oh!
Other than that, I can’t really think of anything else that she strongly dislikes. She’s such a good baby!
How Am I Doing?
I am doing well. It’s been so nice being home with family. Robbie and I went on a date the other night, and she did really well while we are gone. I am still tired because jet lag has basically kicked my butt and won, but hopefully we can get into better rhythms once we are back home. I got the cold that all of us seemed to get, and that was pretty tough doing the whole mom thing in the middle of the night while being sick. Or just not getting as much sleep when trying to recover from being sick.
This month has been so fun with her learning and growing and seeing family and friends enjoy her so much. I am nervous for the trip back because it’s definitely exhausting, but it’ll be nice to be back in a rhythm and get unpacked!