The beginning of April saw a bit of a change in Emmy’s behaviour! While her first month was really quite placid, as we entered April, she got fussier. I had a bit of a shock of a day where she refused to nap at all from waking up just before 7am until 4.30pm in the afternoon. Considering that small babies are generally only awake for 45 minutes to around an hour and a half, this was a long time for her to be awake! She kept dropping off but waking up after only a few minutes, very agitated to be awake again, and none of my usual tricks were working. I was concerned because she might get overtired and not sleep well that night – sounds counterintuitive, but apparently it’s true! Luckily, she slept as well as normal that night, so crisis averted, and we had a much better day the next day, although she was very hungry and I ended up feeding her sat on the floor of the nursery one day as she needed feeding RIGHT NOW according to her! But this day was the start of a new phase of much more wakefulness during the day and needing to be entertained a lot more during these waking hours – I imagine this meant she was going through a growth spurt during the fussy days that preceded it.
I mentioned at the end of last month that I swear I’d had a smile out of her, and during the first week of this month, about half way through being 4 weeks old, she proved that it really was a smile and showed us plenty of them!
After this, she’s barely stopped smiling! 5 weeks even saw Emmy start to laugh, which I captured on video – just a couple of squeaks and coos, but it’s been so exciting to hear her find her voice and start to use it more this month. We ended the month with her making all manner of new sounds that we hadn’t heard before – she’s a chatterbox as well as being extremely wriggly!
We noticed throughout the month a change in her coordination and what she was noticing – her focus seemed to move further out so that she wasn’t just watching us, she was looking around the room and noticing everything. By the end of the month, I had a very nosy baby on my hands! Interestingly she’s always had pretty good focus though – even in the hospital, Ben was swinging my bracelet in front of her face and she was watching it go back and forth. Now it’s much easier for her though.
About mid-month, she started to reach out for toys, like those hanging above her playmat and some of the cuddly toys we’d been given. Her favourite to start with was Jojo – Ben’s pink childhood bunny!
We also started April with a couple of stretches of sleep during the night that were nearly 5 hours long. The only problem was that I started waking up after 3.5 hours, wondering why she didn’t want feeding! At 6 weeks, she surprised us with a 10.30pm to 6.30am stretch of sleep after some cluster feeding in the afternoon and two big evening feeds. By the time we reached the end of the month, we’d settled into something of a night time sleep routine of 10.30pm to around 5.30am without wake ups – at least for Emmy! – and a few more sleeping-through nights from 10.30pm until our 7am alarm.
At the very end of the month, we started implementing a night time routine that we kind of fell into by accident. Since she’d started to enjoy bath times, being super calm and chilled as soon as she went into the water, one night when she wouldn’t settle anywhere, we decided to try her in the bath to calm her. I then fed her and popped her into her Moses basket in the living room with us…and that was it until our bedtime at around 10pm where she barely woke up for her feed and carried on sleeping. We decided to try this again the next night, and it worked! So since then, we’ve had an accidental routine of doing this around 7pm and having wonderful nights!
As you can probably tell, that cranky few days meant a big leap in development for Emmy – smiles, laughs, starting to coordinate her movements. These all happened in her first couple of weeks of being a month old, and by the time she turned 2 months old at the beginning of May, it was like having a totally different baby to the start of April! I think this could have been the 6 week growth spurt and “peak of fussiness”, as it’s often referred to, but just a week or so early!
It wasn’t all smiles and laughs though – Emmy developed a rash around her neck and face so that meant her first visit to the nurse to get it checked out. Fortunately, even though it didn’t look all that nice, she said it was just a milk rash and that it would clear up on its own. It did do so…eventually! Now at 10 weeks, she’s still got the dry skin left from it, but the redness and bumps are gone at least.
One day around mid-month, Ben went to Tesco and asked if I needed anything – told him to buy new clothes for Emmy! At 4-5 weeks, she was starting to outgrow newborn clothes but was still too small for 0-3 months, so we were looking for “up to 1 month” clothes now that are more “outfits”. around this time, I’d started to dress her in outfits like dungarees and dresses for day time and sleepsuits were now mainly reserved for night time to try to differentiate between the different times of day. He came back with some very cute T shirts, and as a result, we were able to dress her as Minnie Mouse – accidentally, I swear! The bow, however, (which my mum hates!) is too big for her so far, but there’s plenty of growing to be done yet!
So while Emmy was a tiny newborn, she quite liked being wrapped up in blankets – I’d swaddle her in one at bedtime, but she’d normally wriggle out of it by our first wake up. So we decided to try a proper swaddle – I’d bought a pack of 3 fairly cheap ones when I was pregnant in the hopes that they would work for soothing her…yeh, not so much – she hated it!! When she was having those few very fussy days, I tried it and she screamed like she never had before! Swaddling is now off the cards, but luckily she’s generally quite happy being soothed in other ways! We think it’s mostly because she prefers to sleep like a starfish.
Emmy also met a few more friends and relatives during her second month, including her great Aunty Lynn and Uncle James (who just became grandparents last year too) and “the great and fantastic uncle Peter” (as he so titled himself!) and Aunty Christine, who are technically not related but might as well be! At the very end of the month, she met my god daughter, Evelyn – she’d met her mum, Helen, and her little boy, Frankie, last month but Evelyn was at school, so we went to feed the ducks together at the end of April. Sarah came to visit again and we went out for lunch at another local cafe (I swear, I spent half my life out for lunch at the moment!). She also met her great great Aunty Mair and Uncle Allan from Canada who came over to visit – the people who’ve travelled the furthest to meet her! They came over to our house to meet her, and Emmy and I (sadly not Ben as he was working) joined the rest of the family for a meal at a local pub – there ended up being 13 of us there, I believe!
Speaking of pubs, that trip was actually her third one to the pub! Emmy’s second trip to the pub was for her second cousins’ birthdays, William and Lydia. Again, this is a big group of 14 of us and we had a lovely meal, then back to Ben’s Aunty Sue’s house for the “after party” where we all cram into the living room. I was very proud of myself as I fed Emmy in the pub during dessert (I was eating sticky toffee sundae, which is just as amazing as it sounds, while feeding her!) and in the middle of the whole family in the living room.
We had another couple of shopping trips with grandma during Emmy’s second month. One time I was supposed to be finding a dress for my friend’s upcoming wedding, but instead I found a dress for Emmy – and not even for the wedding, just a cute one! I fed her in basically the window of Cafe Nero too during this trip – getting to be a pro at feeding in public!
Emmy and I also had our first solo supermarket shopping trip to Aldi when she was around 6 weeks old and it was successful! I’d been worried about managing a baby with all the shopping, but I popped her into the carrier and the man on the checkout even helped me load up the belt, so it wasn’t bad at all. We used the carrier a LOT this month – Emmy loves being close to me in it, and I love being able to do stuff with both hands!
During this month, Emmy fell in love with baths. She didn’t really enjoy her first few baths and cried a little bit during them, then she started to figure out that they weren’t that bad, and now she’s a total water baby. She even came in the bath with me for the first time, where I fed her while Ben was at hand to grab her just in case, but she absolutely loved it.
We spent a lot of the month trialling various bottles as Emmy’s totally forgotten how to use one! We tried Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature, MAM, NUK, Tesco, Wilko’s and Phillips Avent before we hit on one that she didn’t totally scream at – the Munchkin Latch. We had a few successful feeds from it, but we really had to persist through her pushing it away time and time again and crying quite a lot. Mostly she would only have it from me, but Ben managed to get her to take it, my mum got her on after me one day, and my sister was successful once. I needed her to take one as I had a dentist appointment at 7 weeks where I needed my mum to take her for a little while, followed by our meal at the Black Swan. Luckily that dentist appointment was quick enough that she didn’t need the bottle – in fact, she was, luckily, just starting to ask for food as I met my mum at my grandparents’ house when I was finished. Then when we went to the Black Swan, she was hungry but refused it then fell asleep, so I fed her on our return!
Speaking of which, that was a slightly nervewracking day for me! The day I left Emmy while I went to the dentist wasn’t too bad as I knew it would be maximum around an hour and my mum was walking distance away if she needed me. In fact, she was totally chill, laughed at my grandma and fell fast asleep on my grandad! But the day at the Black Swan, we were a drive away (15 minutes, so not too far, but still!) and I knew they wouldn’t want to disturb us unless they really had to. Ben and I tried not to talk baby things while we were out, instead focusing on the food, but it was tricky!
At 7 weeks, we also went to visit Daddy at work one day! He was having a fairly quite day and we were passing at lunchtime, so we popped in to say hello and had lunch there. He works in the home cinema industry and they have a demo room in the shop, so I managed to feed Emmy in there while we watched some TV on the big screen!
At 6 weeks, Emmy did something very exciting: slept through the night!! On 14th April, she went from 10.30pm to 6.30am without a feed – and I could definitely feel that when I woke up! She then did 5 days in a row of similar timings a few days later, and the rest were only one wake up between 10pm and 7.30am – feeling very lucky about this! We’ve now established something of a bedtime and night time routine, but for the rest of her second month, this was pretty much how she slept at night. I remember during the first few weeks thinking how wonderful it would be to get more than 2-3 hours sleep at a time, and I’m so very grateful that we reached that stage quickly! I’m just keeping my fingers very very tightly crossed that it stays this way!
The problem now is day time nap – Emmy’s not a huge fan of them but is in a much better mood when she gets a proper nap. To encourage her to be happier in her Moses basket, we took some of the extra wall stickers that we used to decorate her changing station and stuck them on the walls of the Moses basket, and she kind of loves this! I’ve actually caught her stroking Mr Wolf to sleep a few times – what can I say, some people’s children have comfort blankets or toys, mine has a wolf sticker…
It was my mum’s birthday during Emmy’s 7th week, but my dad was taking her away to Disneyland Paris for it over Easter weekend (I know, I was very jealous!), so we popped over the day before to give her some presents, which were a little bit Disney and travel themed! Since this was when the weather was starting to turn lovely, I decided to join them walking the dog, and Emmy experienced her first countryside walk! We also ended up doing the same the next day when I went over to check on the dog while my sister was at work – we had another walk when she was home.
7 weeks was also Emmy’s first Easter weekend! On Good Friday, since we had beautiful sunny weather, we played in the garden, emptied garage, went to garden centre and planted veg. It was a busy day! It was this weekend where she started wearing 0-3 month clothes for the first time too! Saturday meant some random shopping and more playing in the garden, then on Easter Sunday, we had Ben’s family plus my sister over for a meal. We’d planned roast lamb with all the trimmings, but ended up cooking it differently with veg grilled on the BBQ and serving it in wraps with dips in the garden – much more appropriate for the weather we had! Speaking of which, how do you dress babies for warm weather?! I’m going with layers and taking them on and off as is necessary, but it’s tricky to know when they’re too hot or too cold! On Easter Monday, I met Fran and Charley for lunch at the Walled Garden in Helmsley (where we were almost crushed by parasols!) then went over to my parents’ house for a BBQ as they’d returned for Disneyland Paris.
7 weeks was clearly a busy time for Emmy – not only did we do all the above, but we think she also started teething, boo! She started aggressively chewing her own and other people’s hands (mainly mine) and dribbling more – she wasn’t really a dribbly baby before. Now at 10 weeks, we’re pretty certain it is teething as she’s chewing everything (see photo above!) often looked in pain from it too – sad! We bought her some teething toys but technically they’re supposed to be from 3 months or 4 months old – we’re supervising when she has them!
On the day that Emmy turned 8 weeks, we took our first Baby Massage class and loved it! This is run by our local County Council and runs for a term, then we do a series of Baby Yoga classes afterwards. Our class is really small, with just Emmy, another baby girl just a few days old than Emmy, and a little boy who is a month or so older but was born very premature. This means that we’re all getting to know each other really well thanks to the small size! Emmy was super nosy at this class and spent the whole thing staring at the baby girl next to her – she’s making friends already! Each massage class focuses on a different section of the body, and this first one was chest and arms. Emmy was really good and just stared around while I massaged her, earning her the title of star pupil for this class – I think it was more a matter of good luck in that she’d had a good nap and feed before we arrived!
I was very nervous about baby groups and classes before our first one, but so far I’m actually really enjoying them! There are a couple of mums with slightly older babies that I see at the Weigh, Stay and Play group that I’ve been to a few times, then I also see them as they leave the Baby Yoga class that runs before our massage class. I’ve met a few more mums now too at some more classes, but that’s to come in next month’s round up!
And a couple of final notes, as Emmy turned 2 months old, we bought pushchair for our holiday next year that’s already been booked: Florida! She’ll be around 14 months when we go, eek!
And I also spent a morning emptying Emmy’s drawers of all the clothes that don’t fit anymore – this was very sad! I’ve boxed them up, am passing some on to a friend and am keeping some, but I think eventually I’ll have to decide which ones I actually want to keep as we’ll end up with a lot hanging around otherwise!
And finally, I’ve filmed another video! I’m getting very into vlogging lately! It’s actually from Emmy’s third month (she’s 9 weeks when I filmed it) but I’ve just uploaded it, so make sure to take a look at that if you’re interested in hearing more about my favourite mummy hacks, my labour story (again!), baby names and more!