This has been a big month for Elsa filled with all sorts of doctors, Christmas parties, and developmental achievements! Settle in because this is going to be a hearty update.
Elsa now cries when we leave the room and smiles and coos when we return. She experienced her first obvious bout of stranger danger at our Christmas party with a good friend of ours. Apparently the black beard was a dead giveaway this was not her usual holder and she made the cutest most enraged face I have ever seen every time she looked up at him.
Elsa reached an amazing milestone right around the 7 month mark: sitting up. Having Down Syndrome, Elsa has lower muscle tone in her upper body, which made sitting up more difficult for her than the typical kid. When we discussed her physical therapy goals with the Birth through Three group, sitting up by herself was suggested as her goal for 1 year old, so we are very proud of this determined pumpkin.
The trick that made this happen was a simple game of patty cake. I sat Elsa down in front of me fully expecting her to tip over immediately like she usually does, but when she saw my clapping hands she was mesmerized and essentially forgot to tip herself over. She’s been able to sit up by herself for about 4 minutes at a time now, then realizes what’s going on and tips herself backwards.
Elsa has taken to babbling but only when she has a fully belly and there is nothing else interesting going on. Right now it is clearly a dadadada.
Elsa has also been sampling all sorts of new foods this month including cottage cheese, watermelon, strawberry, and bits of French fries and ice cream!
Elsa went under general anesthesia this past month to have some ear tags removed and she came through splendidly for which I am so very grateful.
Elsa also saw an ophthalmologist this month who after some mysterious sleight of hand determined that Elsa is farsighted with an astigmatism. If her vision doesn’t improve in a few months, she might need to wear baby glasses.
Right after the new year, Elsa got sick for the first time. Her labored breathing was so loud, it woke me up just past midnight that night and when she couldn’t eat I knew something was very wrong. I rushed her over to our local hospital and we were there for 4 or 5 hours before they insisted that we transfer her to the regional Children’s Hospital via ambulance. Not looking forward to that bill, but at least it is over with and she is doing much better after a steroid and a series of breathing treatments she was given that day.
Elsa now weighs 18 pounds and is around 26.5 inches tall. She is wearing size 9-12 months in clothes. I’ve also decided that she has a super long torso.
WHAT WE ARE LOVING THIS MONTH
BABY MUFFINS :: I made these simple, freezable mini muffins for my son when he started eating solid foods and I’ve just introduced them to Elsa now too. Recipe coming soon (as long as I can get my act together).
LOVEVERY PLAY GYM :: This play gym is everything! Every detail was so well thought-out and really focuses on the stages of development and engaging her senses. The materials are good quality too. Sensory toys made from organic cotton and wood hang from smooth wooden arches for babies to bat at while on their backs and grab while learning to sit. The mat itself has several flaps that open to reveal more sensory games like a rainbow of color tabs, textured ribbons to grab at, a game that hides a teething ring in a pocket, and a noisy crinkle panel with squeaky things hidden in it. It even comes with a baby-resistant activity guide to suggest play time activities for each stage of development.
LL BEAN FLEECE COVERALLS :: Don’t put this fluffy fleece suit on your infant unless you are fully prepared for your heart to explode with joy. Yes, this fuzzy fleece keeps my baby warm on brisk stroller rides but I also encourage her to nap in it because she looks like a baby lamb with it on.