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Baby Jae turns 6 months old!

2012 May 10
by MieVee @ MummysReviews.com

 Baby Jae 6 months old developmental milestones

Hard to believe… My precious Baby Jae is already 6 months old! It seems only recently that I announced my pregnancy, and shared his birth story. In a flash, he’s already crawling and chasing things round the room. Where did the tiny newborn baby go?!?

Here’s what we’ve been up to over the months and his first developmental update:

Learning & Communication

Being a more well-informed second-time Mummy, I’ve involved Baby Jae in learning activities since he was a newborn.

  • Eye stimulation: From the early weeks, I offered him toys with black, white and red patterns, to develop his visual focus. These include toy mobile, rattles, fabric books, etc.
  • Flashcards: He’d be enrolled in Shichida class only next term, at about 8 months old. In the meantime, I’ve started him on home practice. When he was about 2 months old, I started showing him black / white flashcards (flashed slowly), to help him get used to seeing the cards and to lengthen his concentration span.
  • At about 3+ months old, he started sitting in the Bumbo seat for a few minutes of flashcards session with Vee daily. He loves it! At 4 months old, he started batting the cards excitedly during games to choose the answer. Now he starts to get bored if I repeat the cards too often, so I need to rotate the cards more frequently.
Note about flashcards: We follow the Shichida philosophy regarding flashcards. The main purpose of flashing here is to activate the right brain through showing lots of images, neither to impart knowledge nor to teach reading.
  • Senses play, eye training, etc.: For senses play, we play some guessing games. For eye training, I’d move a toy rattle in visual patterns to stimulate his eyes to follow quickly. It’s quite amazing that his young eyes can zoom about that fast. And he listens in when I do speed reading exercises with Vee.
  • Baby sign language: After our successful experience using baby sign language with Vee, I’ve started to use basic signs with Baby Jae. First to introduce: Mummy, Daddy, baby, milk, more, sleep, and all done. It’s great that Vee and hubby still remember the signs and are using them with Jae too.
  • He babbles with “Ah ah ahhh!” and other sounds through the day. When Daddy’s back, he also stretches his hands out to be carried. And if he’s feeling needy and sees me walk past, he’d cry!

Motor Skills

  • From the second month, I started giving him regular tummy time — usually in the mini-gym or cot with toys to grab and bite. In fact, he has tonnes of tummy time and independent play because I need to homeschool Vee and settle household stuff.
  • When he sleeps, he uses a stretchy swaddle that allows his hands to move, instead of swaddled tight with hands down. This probably helped in his motor development.
  • He’s considered petite (7+kg) compared to his brother who was almost 10kg at 6 months old! Yet his motor skills are more advanced. He started rolling over by himself at 3 months 1 week old, and panicked me when he kept rolling over to sleep on his tummy.
  • At 4+ months old, he started sitting up with some support.
  • Then he started moving about in the cot to turn on the cot mobile whenever he wants to. I was bewildered at first when the cot mobile music turns on all of a sudden. Took me a while to realise that Jae could switch it on.
  • He’s pushing himself into sitting position, but often falls and bangs his head. Ouch!
  • A few days before turning 6 months old, he started crawling to get what he wants. And EVERYTHING goes into his mouth. Oh gosh, I’m in a paronia state clearing the floor of small items left around by Vee. Time to set up the big VeeBee play yard asap to create a baby-safe crawling zone.

Behaviour & Social Skills

  • From the early days, I could feel a strong connection with Jae and understand what he needs. He also understands my cues very well. For instance, as a 1+ month old baby, once my hands are on his tummy to begin tummy massage, he’d start “squeezing” out the gas! And when I say “Shh!”, he’d lay his head on the bed and try to sleep. I believe this is the wonder of doing Shichida pre-natal education with him — our connection has been built for many months way before he was born.
  • Jae is a very happy baby who smiles with his mouth wide open. He used to smile at everybody, but has recently started pouting at unfamiliar faces.
  • He has been easy-going, so we’ve been going everywhere with him — 2 trips to Singapore by car and several other local road trips. Most of the time outdoors, he’s in a baby carrier, sleeping whenever he wants to.
  • However, he has decided NOT to fall asleep in the car seat, which gives me a headache for long rides. I need to nurse him to sleep, then try to transfer him into the seat. Very challenging!

Health, Diet & Feeding

  • Baby Jae was exclusively breastfed and first tasted water at 5.5 months old. He hasn’t used the bottle teat before, and went straight to feeding through a spoon, or milk bottle without the teat.
  • He has a small appetite for breastmilk compared to chubby Vee, so the nurse suggested we introduce semi-solids at 5.5 months old. (Vee started at 6.5 months old.)
  • So far, I’ve been eating various foods, including bits of allergenic ones like soy and nuts, and his skin is fine. Hopefully he’s spared from eczema and food allergies, which runs in the family.
  • Every morning for the past 2 weeks, he has been eating 1-2 tablespoons of organic rice cereal mixed with expressed breastmilk. He has finished every bit of it. Hope he’d enjoy eating like Vee.
  • This also means I need to express 1-2oz of breastmilk every night, for the following day’s breakfast. To minimise washing, I express by hand, which takes about 15 minutes. Ha, super lazy, right?
  • He’s been teething for a while and there’re bulges at his gums, but no teeth yet. He enjoys a good teether and sometimes, the discomfort makes him grouchy at night.
  • His diaper area is very sensitive to poo, and the poor baby has gone through several episodes of yeast infection. This made cloth diapering very challenging in the early months when I’d to lather lots of strong diaper cream on him. At home, I try to use breathable fitted, prefolds and fleece diapers instead of PUL ones.

Sleep

  • Finally, I get to experience a non-high needs baby. From day 1, Baby Jae has been able to fall asleep easily or by himself when he’s tired.
  • If he has gas in the tummy, he’d fuss very often when asleep. So I need to be diligent in burping him well or do tummy massage to help him pass out all the gas.
  • His feeds are between 3 to 5.5 hours at night. I actually don’t wish for him to sleep through 12 hours a night yet because breastfeeding can help to put the menses away, and give the petite boy more nutrients to grow.

How to burp gassy babies — The Vertical Bounce: After experimenting with my 2 gassy boys, with some reading and advice by a nurse, this is the most effective way to burp a baby.

I hold baby close to my body, rub his back with some pressure, and bounce up / down.

If he doesn’t burp, I’d sit him down and rub his tummy in circles, then hold him to me and bounce vertically again.

For more “power”, I’d lay him tummy down, rub his back with my palms (in perpendicular direction to his spine) upwards / downwards along his spine. Then carry him and try burping with the vertical bounce again. Usually, this does the job.

Else, after baby rests for 1 sleep cycle (about 30-60 minutes), he’d probably fuss. I’d quickly carry him up and do the vertical bounce. After burping, he’d usually continue sleeping and can be put down.

Woo… thanks for reading through the long post! This is what happens when busy Mummy only updates once in 6 months. With Baby Jae crawling and starting on solids, I hardly have time to write. I’m still finding my momentum, so please bear with me.

And by the way, my laptop would be sent for repair and then traded in for a new one (yippee!), so that’d be a few weeks to get things settled again.

Here’s wishing Happy Mother’s Day to all you!

P.S. View more developmental milestones here

P.P.S. Our latest homeschooling updates are posted at MummysHomeschool.com HERE,

11 Responses leave one →
  1. May 10, 2012

    Hello Jae Mummy, I tried expressing by hand when my pump broke down, it was so tough I want to cry! Salute to you for doing it every night :)

    I would like to start my 4 month old on Flashcards, do you have any recommendations of what kind of flashcards I can do?

    • May 15, 2012

      Hi Gigi, haha, I need hubby to encourage me to go and express the milk. Else, I really feel very lazy, be it with hands or pump.

      Yes, it’s a good time to start flashcards. Just image cards with no words for now. E.g. 10 types of Vegetables / fruits / clothings / vehicles / colours. The possbilities are limitless. When baby is older, you can do cards that suit her interests.

      If the topic has more than 10 cards (e.g. 30 types of vegetables), then show 10 cards for up to 4 days, then change to next 10 cards.

      Start from 1 topic (of about 10 cards, can be less, not more), then increase to 10-20 topics/sets per session. If child loses focus, then stop the session and continue at a later time or the next day.

      Mummy has to be in good mood too. :) You may find flashcards downloads at figur8.net/baby under Resources.
      I encourage flashing hard copy cards (half-A4) instead of using computer screen.

      And if you read Chinese, do read the Shichida book for 0-6 years old mentioned here.

      Have fun!

  2. May 10, 2012

    Happy 6 month bb Jae

  3. Manorama permalink
    May 10, 2012

    Many congratulations on your boy turning 6 months!
    loved your writeup as always. Very detailed and thanks for the many links- I bought a tiny love playgym after reading your review. Will look for the playyard next.

    My 8 wk old baby gets nasty diaper rash as well due to frequent BM, guess it’s due to the acid? She wears prefolds during the day or just lies open to the roof on a giant prefold and wears disposables at night so that I can lather on desitin :(. Have stopped my dairy intake completely lets see if that eases her tummy! Thanks for the para on burping. But won’t that cause spit ups?

    I see that you started solids earlier with J- was it because of slow weight gain? My daughter is a slow gainer ( of course too early to say) but I have spent this entire month on reading through various blogs on breastfeeding and weight gain and have poured in my efforts to make sure she has 8 full feeds in a day. Can be draining tho’ more mentally than physically.

    Btw my baby came the day following my bday whereas my EDD was 2 weeks later. Guess I willed her to! :)

    Looking forwards to more of baby J’s developments!

    • May 15, 2012

      Thank you very much, Manorama! :)

      The burping doesn’t cause spit-ups. Baby will spit up if there’s milk on top of a bubble inside him. So the key for breastfeeding is to feed one side, burp, then feed again, to reduce spit-ups. And Jae feels so much better after a burp, even if it brings some milk out. Otherwise, he has to struggle by himself for quite some time until he burps and spits the milk out anyway.

      Baby Jae just went for 6-month check up. He’s on 50th percentile for weight, still ok. Just that very low compared to his brother, haha, I know I can’t compare a watermelon and an apple! I trust the breastfed baby knows how much milk he really needs. But this boy doesn’t often show that he’s hungry, so I need to take the initiative to offer him a feed every 1-2 hours in the day. And he’s usually done with both sides very quickly, so I just got to trust his instincts.

      We’ve started on semi-solids for a few weeks and he’s taking it well, and milk intake seems the same. Guess this is the best I can do for him. Also, I’m petite, so he might just have taken my genes.

      All the best and try to relax, yah? Happy mummy = happy baby! :)

  4. Magdeline permalink
    May 11, 2012

    Always a great pleasure receiving updates from you. Good to hear that baby Jae has crossed the 6 months milestone, well done mummy, bravo!!

    Understand that you went for the shichida prenatal classes previously, possible to shed some light on this?

    Also will be very grateful if you could share your experience about shichida classes for your older son. Not sure if you already have a review done on this, in which case, I’ll be very pleased to receive the link for it.

    Thanks so much!!

    • May 15, 2012

      Thank you for your encouragement, Magdeline! :)

      I read the Shichida Prenatal Education book in Chinese (mentioned here. I was on waiting list for the class but there wasn’t sufficient enrollment until I delivered. My friend attended it though.

      I tried my best to apply the communication techniques from the book, and I could feel a strong connection with baby, during pregnancy, delivery, and after he arrived. Many things that we encouraged baby to do happened. For instance:
      – before 12 weeks scan, I asked baby to open up his legs to show us his gender. He did so very clearly during the scan and we knew for sure, he’s a boy!
      – during a later scan, baby Jae was estimated to be on 10th percentile weight range (compared to Vee who was 90th percentile). I encouraged him to absorb lots of nutrients and grow till at least 3kg to be born. Indeed, he was delivered very near EDD and at a healthy 3.325kg, when previously his projected weight was about 2.5kg.
      There’re several other incidents of the method’s effectiveness.

      As for Shichida class, Vee has been attending since 14 months old. I haven’t written a full review yet, have been sharing bits of our home practice in his developmental updates. The Shichida Method is in fact a parenting philosophy. Everything starts with the parents’ love to the child and being able to let the child feel the love deeply. For enrolled students, the Parents Education Course will explain the method to the parents, so that they understand the rationale behind why certain activities are done.

      In class, the parent is actually the one learning the method, and supporting the child when he does activities. Regular home practice is the essence. It can be from 15 minutes to longer, as long as both the parent and child enjoy the activities.

      The Shichida book for 0-6 years old (same article link as above) explain more on the method too.

      And the objective of the method is to raise a child with high abilities so that he can contribute to the world. This is something that drew my hubby and I because we have the same belief.

      I’m very happy to be using the Shichida Method to raise my children. Just let me know if you need more info.

  5. May 11, 2012

    Hi

    I’m trying to add shichida flashcards to my home activities with baby doll. I would like to know how often do you change the cards? How many times a day do you flash? Thanks for sharing!

    • May 15, 2012

      For picture cards, I aim to retire them after 4 days. ~10 cards per set. Start from 1 set, then gradually increase to 10-20 sets a day. That’s about 100-200 cards. Flashed once a day. If baby loses focus, then just stop and continue at a later time in the day, or try again the following day.

      Flashed at 1-3 cards a seconds, usually done in a couple of minutes.

      For Shichida’s Lightning Rapid Calculation Programme, the cards need to be changed daily.

      To attract baby’s attention, can insert photos of family members between sets.

      There’s a lot of flascards resources at Figur8.net/baby/. Just note that the author’s kids are attending non-Shichida enrichment class. And if you read Chinese, do read the Shichida book mentioned here for more info on the method:

      Have fun! :)

  6. May 19, 2012

    Hey thanks for commenting on my blog! Wow your baby is growing up fast. I feel the exact same way about my girl.. sigh.. in a blink of an eye they will grow up and leave us.. oh well. Enjoy it while it lasts I guess..

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