Keira’s Progress: Five Months

Newborn Keira, July 2011

Keira is nearing six months now, having turned five months on December 23. Time seems to be flying by! It seems like just yesterday that she was born at home, in our apartment in a birthing pool. Although this was my fourth completely natural home birth (Yes, with no epidural. Most women who find this out find it shocking and say they could never do this, although home births are becoming a growing trend for those who want a more personal and possibly less invasive birthing experience), this was the first time I’d tried using a birthing pool, in hopes that it would be more relaxing to chill out in. Which it was… in between the contractions, at least.

Keira was the tiniest of my babies at an even 7 lbs., and so delicate, with tiny little twig-like arms and legs, that it felt like you had to be extremely careful while dressing her.

Adrianna with her new baby sister, Keira

Now weighing 15 lbs., she’s an adorable chubby little thing, with the cutest chubby cheeks, and she seems huge compared to how she was just a few months ago.

While caring for my fourth and presumably last baby, I’m realizing more than ever how quickly they grow and change during the first year and how you really need to pay attention to every detail of each stage because it all passes so quickly. As each month passes, they’re practically a new baby, growing and changing with each development. And realizing this more clearly, I’m kind of sorry I didn’t start writing about her sooner and about each of my other babies more regularly too!

Moving around

This month, Keira has gone from pretty much always having to be held or switched between being in her swing, bouncer or play mat to loving to be on the floor and moving all over the place.

First attempts putting Keira in the bouncer at almost 4 months

She’s not crawling yet, but she still manages to get all over the floor, rolling and inching around by pushing with her legs.  This makes me wonder if she will be crawling soon because she has the motion with her legs but just doesn’t get up on her arms and knees yet.

Starting the bouncer

She has also started using the bouncer recently.  A favorite with Adrianna and Alyssandra (especially Aly, who would stay happy bouncing in it for an hour), I wondered if this was a solution to Keira constantly getting bored of the limited options of being in her swing and on her play mat. (When not being held or sleeping, that is.)  When I first put her in the bouncer, I was pushing my luck a bit because she wasn’t quite four months old.  She was a little small and needed a blanket rolled up behind her back to help prop her up in the seat.  Plus, her feet barely touched the ground.  But now she’s able to hold herself up well, her feet touch the ground better, and she likes to grab the toys connected to it.  Plus, she’s starting to bounce a little bit.  Success!

Newborn Keira with Daddy. Born on July 23, 2011, she was 7 lbs. and 21 inches

Nursing and eating

Keira has been nursing since birth, and, as with all of my kids, my goal is to nurse up to 12 months.  Jaiden nursed easily up to a year, and I had to ween him.  Adrianna actually rejected it at about seven months because she got to liking bottles too much since we mixed formula when we went out for convenience’s sake.  Alyssandra made it to almost a year, maybe stopping at

Keira at 10 weeks

about 11 months.

With Keira, as with all my kids, I do mix in formula for convenience’s sake when we go out.  She, as all my kids, accepted formula as well as nursing right away. The pickiest about formula was Aly, who for a time would only take the Similac pre-made bottles.

So Keira has about one four-ounce bottle a day, usually in the evening, which I do also give her on days that we don’t go out to keep her feedings (and my milk production) steady. The formula hasn’t seemed to affect her nursing, though, which she still likes.  I think she finds it comforting and falls asleep while nursing when it’s time for a nap or bed.

People say that babies can start solids between three and six months, but so far, she seems like she’s not ready for solids. I’ve tried feeding her baby oatmeal and even “stage one” bananas, but she doesn’t want to eat and mainly just pushes it out with her tongue. So I give it a week or so, thinking she’s not ready yet, and try again. But still the same result!

At first I was a bit concerned, since all of my other babies seemed to love solid food the moment I gave it to them, but I put an inquiry out to the other moms on Facebook, and they all said it was fine. Babies can nurse alone for the first year, one said.  Another baby, who is a few months older, couldn’t care less about baby carrots either, said his mom.

So, nothing to stress about. She’ll eat solids when she’s ready. It’s just not quite yet.

Keira in her swing at 5 weeks

Sleep habits

At this point, Keira is taking about two naps a day. I didn’t do the strict trying to have a regimen thing and just let her nap when she wanted, but she seems to have made her own schedule. She’ll usually take one long nap for a few hours after she’s been awake for an hour or two in the morning, and then she’ll take a few shorter cat naps in the afternoon/evening.

Sleeping on Mommy, 4 months

For the first few months, she would take her long morning nap in her swaying baby swing, where she would fall asleep, but by three or four months she was getting too old for that and didn’t want to fall sleep in the swing so I would feed her, she’d fall asleep in my arms, and I’d put her down in her bassinet.

At night, she falls asleep by between 10 and 11, which is pretty late. This may have something to do with the fact that she doesn’t wake up too early in the morning.  She rarely ever wakes up before 8 when Jaiden has to get up for school, and on weekends when the other kids don’t get up at 8, she might even sleep a little longer. So since I definitely need my sleep in the morning, I’d much rather have her going to bed late than waking up early.

Keira sleeping at 5 months

But this also pushes back when I go to bed, because I like to have an hour or two to myself after the kids go to bed. It is my moment of peace. So I usually don’t end up going to bed before midnight, although every single day I tell myself I’m going to go to bed earlier. But it just doesn’t happen. Which causes me to not want to wake up in the morning even more. It’s all a vicious cycle! Haha.

Even after Keira falls asleep at night, it’s not for the night. She usually wakes up between two to four times a night to nurse. Her bassinet is next to our bed so I grab get out, feed her, and she falls back to sleep.

A lot of people think waking up like this must be annoying, but to be honest, it doesn’t bother me. I’ve been doing it for years. I’m used to it. With three kids three-and-under, I’ve been waking up repeatedly during the night for over three years. All of my babies woke up to nurse at night and then fell back asleep. Even during the period where Aly was done nursing and Keira wasn’t born yet, the girls would call me into their room in the night for one reason or another. Mainly if they wanted more drink, which I let them take with them to bed.

In her car seat at 5 months, December 2011

So as long as the kids aren’t waking up and keeping me up for extended periods of time during the night, I’m good. In fact, I think I pretty much sleep through Keira’s feedings at night. Or I’m at least half asleep, and then I sense that she’s gone back to sleep and put her back in her bassinet and pass out. Within 10 seconds I’m probably sleeping again, which is probably because I don’t fully wake up in the first place.

Just started sitting up by herself (momentarily) at 5 1/2 months, January 2012

Would I be more rested in the morning if Keira slept through the night? Maybe. But since I haven’t actually slept through the night in years, at this point, I wouldn’t know!


Sitting in a restaurant high chair for the first time at 5 1/2 months, January 2012

1/10 – Keira sat up on her own for the first time! Sitting on the bed, she is able to hold herself up and sit unassisted until she tries to reach to grab something and knocks herself over.

1/12 – First time sitting in a high chair in a restaurant at Qdoba at Patriots Place in Foxboro.

1/12 – She is eating her foot. Laying down, grabbing her foot and putting it in her mouth. I’ve heard that “finding their toes” is a milestone, but this is a first for any of my kids.

2 Responses to “Keira’s Progress: Five Months”
  1. Amanda Siska says:

    Hey Jes! Not sure why I didn’t realize you had a blog until recently. It’s great to hear more about the kidlets and life and stuff! Have you tried giving Keira whole solid foods instead of purees? Isaac has shunned purees in favor of chewing on big pieces of things like apple wedges, cucumber, carrots, broccoli… toast would be good, except he’s constipated a lot so we stay away from grains. He he’s mostly just getting the flavors of things anyway, and learning to chew during this extra safe period where the gag reflex is so high in their throats. Plus, it’s lots of fun!

    There’s a website with more info on skipping purees altogether, if you’re interested:

    • spectraldove says:

      Hey Amanda, thanks for reading! Yeah, I’ve been dabbling in trying to have a blog for a little while now and not really being as successful I’d like, mostly for lack of time. But I’m trying! For that reason, this post is a little behind. Keira is actually 7 months old now and recently has started eating some oatmeal and purees — but I like the idea of giving her big things to chew on, and I like the website! I’ll have to try it! I’m sure she’ll love it since every single object she can get her hands on goes directly in her mouth. I actually gave her a pizza crust to chew on in a restaurant the other day, which is something I’d done with my other babies, but it was not as tough as some pizza crust and she started gagging on a big piece that got in her mouth. That is the one thing that concerns me about big pieces of food.. how can you be sure they won’t choke on the big pieces? On the website it said not to worry about gagging, that it’s just their way of getting the food back in the right place, but it still freaks me out a little bit! I’ll just have to start experimenting with these things more. Thanks again for reading! 🙂

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