Bouncing, bubbles and beakers - 18-20 weeks

Although these couple of weeks have been pretty busy, especially on BB's development front, it doesn't seem like much on paper.

A major development has been sitting up. I often let BB have time to lie on her play mat and stretch her legs, and from time to time I have been trying her in sitting up positions, particularly when she has not been too keen on tummy time. She has also been using a Bumbo seat, with a tray so that her toys can be close to hand. And bit by bit, as I have put BB in the sitting up position she managed to sit up unaided at 18 weeks for a good 30-50secs before having a little wobble (long enough for me to capture it on my camera). She is now getting stronger and stronger and can manage a good few minutes before loosing concentration. I am always with her when she is sitting up as she still have a few wobbles but the delight in her face as she starts to master yet another skill is just something else!

BB is now really enjoying her Jumperoo and all the toys attached to it and is particularly loving the bouncing (and mummy is enjoying some new tunes to listen and hum along to).

Another new game of hers is to blow raspberries and bubbles. BB will entertain herself for pretty long periods by trying out these new skills and even making herself giggle in the process – and it is quite fun to watch (and I sometimes join in too – well it would be rude not to really!).

BB has also been getting much noisier over the last few weeks. She is starting to copy some of the sounds of the words we make and Mr B was certain that he heard her say “hello” in the night, which freaked him out totally! But she is certainly making more purposeful sounds and seems to be chatting with us a lot more. BB is also reacting to her name now. When we do call her name she will turn towards us (unless she is in a grump or is really taken by something else which has caught her eye).

Various items are no longer safe if they are anywhere near BB's reach as she is a real professional at reaching out for things and grasping them very confidently now. Pulling at things, which will invariably end up in her mouth – books seem to be a particular favourite at the moment. And when we read books together she is very helpful at trying to turn the pages for me.

I had been a bit concerned that BB still seems to be pretty quick with her feeds and that she may not be feeding enough (although she has always had good level of wet nappies, which is a good indicator that all is well) but at BB's latest weigh in she was 14lb 4oz so is doing really well. I discussed the issue of weaning with the Health Visitor who advised that unless BB seems to get hungrier then to leave the weaning till at least 24 weeks, as this will give her a particularly good
period of having had breast milk. Well, as she is still pretty reluctant to take anything else at the moment there is no problem with this. I told the HV that I was considering Baby Led Weaning and she was actually quite supportive but reminded me that I had to wait until BB was 6 months before starting - babies' digestive systems find it difficult to deal with anything other than milk before this age. However, many do start weaning at around 17 weeks with various purées.

On the feeding front, BB is still very keen on the old boobage! After the success of the previous week I have been trying the cup again but most of the milk ends up down BB's front (and sometimes down her back too). So an emergency trip out to the shops and a beaker and another form of cup with a spout were purchased. The new cup has not gone down well at all but the beaker seems to be a firm new favourite. I say favourite, I am only trying it once a day and she seems to mostly chew on the spout and will take in a little bit of milk – but again it is not a full feed. I have given her a few days off of this but a bit more perseverance is needed, yet again!

The calm before the next wave? - 16-18 weeks

Not wanting to jinx myself, but, things seem to be going pretty well at the moment. Our days seem a lot calmer than just a few weeks ago and BB seems to be rather content. I am savouring every moment of this fairly tranquil time as I am sure it is just the calm before the next wave of unknown territory. BB's teething seems to be calming down a bit too, although she has a few moans now and then, which the cooling teethers frantically purchased just before Christmas help her with.

I recently took BB on her longest drive to date. We were meeting up with friends and some of their little ones for lunch where we all grew up. I was making the journey on my own with BB so I had to thing about timings as didn't want to ruin her good day-time routine of her feeds and nap times. Luckily she slept well on the way there and on the way back but she did find it hard to settle when there were other people there (mostly because she likes to be involved with whatever is going on).

BB has really taken to her tummy time now and has mastered the bottom-in-the-air-push-your-legs-away-from-the-rest-of-your-body-bury-your-head-into-the-ground-whilst-your-arms-wont-move position which she is starting to get frustrated with – time to get the house ready for a crawling baby??

I have been getting BB used to her Jumperoo which is proving to be another life, and time, saver. She will happily stand in it whilst figuring out how to make the music play with a bit more of a bounce from her. She is also becoming more adventurous with her hands and starting to reach out for toys with both of her hands. Away, from the Jumperoo, this means that most of the items which are successfully grabbed by BB end up in her mouth. BB has also mastered a new game of grabbing a toy from my hands (usually her chain of teething rings – her most favourite toy), holding on to it and then letting it go, expecting me to catch it. This game can go on for quite some time!

BB has also now had her third lot of jabs which made her particularly sleepy this week but she has recovered from them well. Mr B came along to these and I did warn him that it can be a little upsetting to see BB having these. But true to form she cried as the jabs were jabbed but after a cuddle from me she recovered very quickly and even smiled at the nurse. BB now won't need any more jabs until she is 12 months, phew!

Having taken a break from trying to get BB to take a bottle I thought I'd try her with a cup. We were given a Tommee Tippee tip it up cup by friends, so I give this a go. The first few tries are total disasters in that BB wont even let the soft spout go in her mouth. Then when she does allow it in she munches on it, sucks some milk up and lets it all dribble out down her chin and all over herself. Mr B says that she clearly doesn't like it and that I should just to carry on with the breastfeeding. However, I am determined to crack this so I give her another break and then offer the cup to her again a few days later, allowing her to play with the handles and generally getting used to it. Miraculously she allows the spout into her mouth and does seem to drink some of the milk – although there is still a fair bit of dribbling going on and she doesn't actually take the whole feed. But it is a major step forward in my book.