Each and everyday when we pick up Miss Caroline from school we get a nice little worksheet that tracks all the important things in her day; diaper changes (including said diaper contents, lovely I know), meals, and naps. I usually scan it quickly to see how much she ate and when she slept. When Steve dropped her off yesterday morning Teacher Sarah told him what a great eater she is for a baby her age. I always think it is funny to see that they note ALL next to all her meals because we know that she is an "aggressive" eater. Do some babies really not finish their bottles??

Soooo, Steve dropped her off and in the afternoon he got an email for an urgent conference call from 4:30 - 6:00, which would prevent him from picking her up at 5. Being supportive spouses and parents I quickly arranged to leave work exactly ontime, swing by his office to pick up the carseat, and then pick her up down the road. When I walked in she was out cold in a vibrating infant seat and looked oh so comfy. I got to meet Eric (the sole male teacher in the joint who was very nice!) and before I woke her I scanned the sheet and saw that she slept from 9:15 - 1:15! Thinking it was a typo, I asked Eric who assured me that while he had not been there, she did indeed sleep that amount of time because Sarah was talking about how unbelievable it was that she was able to nap that long. She has NEVER slept that long during the day, even when she was a newborn!

Sarah filled Steve in on the details of her marathon napping session this morning at drop-off. Come to find out, little Caroline is having a much better week than last when she "slept, ate, and cried" most of the time. =( I am glad they didn't share it quite that way with us last week. This week has been better and she is actually starting to play with the other children a bit and show some interest in toys, whereas last week she wanted nothing to do with the kids or the toys. She is becoming more animated too! Finally they are getting to know the REAL Caro! Sarah explained to Steve that yesterday they had her in a swing on a low setting for a couple hours and then turned it off and she stayed asleep. After three hours they moved her from the swing to her pack n play thinking she would wake herself in a few minutes, but instead she stayed asleep for another HOUR, all while children screamed and threw toys all around her... what a champ.

So what effect did this nap have on her time with us last night? She was amazing! From the moment we picked her up until she went to sleep she was an almost perfect baby; smiling, squealing in delight, playing. It did take a bit longer to get her to sleep, but it was not a fight like it can be sometimes, she just wasn't all that sleepy. Mom and a very calm Caroline spent some time in the rocking chair singing soft songs and before too long she was out ----

UNTIL 5:45!

What an amazing night of sleep! By the time she finished breakfast (and I finished pumping) it was after 6:00 and there was no way she was getting in another cat nap before the usual wake up call at 6:45. She played and smiled and cuddled instead, which was just fine by me. She LOVED her cereal this morning and was in such a good mood...

The big news for tommorrow is that we might be starting solids!

I have done all my reading and research and though she still has two weeks until she is officially six months, we have taken our time with the cereal and based on our observations of her at the dinner table she is ready to eat!

Here is a checklist about readiness to eat.

At least 4 months (check!)
Twice as much as birth weight, or at least 13-15 pounds (Based on our primitive bathroom scale she is 14 pounds, which means she is probably in the 13 and change range)
Sit with support (check! she is sometimes sitting unsupported)
Control over head and neck muscles (yup!)
Stopped the extrusion reflux (spitting food back out) (kindof)
Eating all meals and still wanting more (she can ALWAYS eat)
Time between feedings becomes shorter and shorter (not sure about this one?)
Can bring an object in her hand directly to her mouth (she puts the spoon in with assistance!)
Shows interest in others eating around her (reaches for food we are eating and gets excited when she sees us eating)
Fussy in the middle of night, whereas before slept through no problem (this was the case, but she has been sleeping through again)

So I think we are going to bite the bullet and go for it! Life as we know it will never be the same with the addition of a mid-day meal, but I am excited for her. Seeing how much she enjoys her boring old rice cereal makes me think that she will be interested in sampling a variety of foods. We are starting with Sweet Potatoes! Then if all goes well in 4 days we might move on to avocado or a fruit like pears or peaches (for you Auntie K!). Why 4 days? Well, that is because all the so-called baby food experts recommend waiting that long between foods to assure that there is no allergic reaction and then move on quickly to something new before an allergy develops. So we are embarking on a whole new exciting and sure to be messy adventure this weekend.

Speaking of the weekend - off we go on Friday night to MA for Grandpa's 91st Birthday Celebration!

AND tonight we are FINALLY getting together with our young couple with a dog neighbors for drinks and snacks.

Let's use the fun poll tool again -

YOU can control Caroline's first foods!

We are starting with Sweet Potatoes, but where do we go from there???? Only you know for sure!


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