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Nearly half a million babies (1 in 10) are born premature in the US each year which is higher than that of most other developed nations. This is the journeys of our first born son, Finnegan, who was born 14 weeks early and weighed only 1 pound 15 ounces at birth. Of our daugher, Korrigan, who was born a healthy 7 pounds, 7 ounces at 37 weeks. And of our second son, MacKeegan, who was also born at 37 weeks at a whopping 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Our continued adventures reminds us daily how good God is.

Sunday, January 18

Significantly Six

Half a year. Twenty-six weeks and two days. One hundred and eighty-four days (yes, I counted). SIX months! Anyway you say it, it is crazy to me that Mac is six months old as of yesterday. He is such a happy boy, but also lets you know very quickly and loudly when he isn't pleased with something.

What most babies do at by the end of 6 months:

Social and Emotional
Knows familiar faces and begins to know if someone is a stranger (definitely knows familiar faces and sometimes gets scared of strangers, but not all the time)
Likes to play with others, especially parents (Yes, but his siblings most)
Responds to other people’s emotions and often seems happy (yes, if somebody is crying, he pouts or starts crying, he is happy to sit and play for quite a while most days)
Likes to look at self in a mirror (He loves to look at the cute baby in the mirror and then at mommy and the mommy in the mirror)

Responds to sounds by making sounds (yes, he loves to try to make noises, and gets quite loud)
Strings vowels together when babbling (“ah,” “eh,” “oh”) and likes taking turns with parent while making sounds (I just noticed this week that he is starting to "talk" with more variety of noises. I heard "da da da" and "ya ya ya" for the first time this week.)
Responds to own name (I think so, but we don't use his given name a lot)
Makes sounds to show joy and displeasure (No doubt about that!)
Begins to say consonant sounds (jabbering with “m,” “b”) (he uses "m" not sure about other ones)

Cognitive (learning, thinking, problem-solving)
Looks around at things nearby (of course)
Brings things to mouth (some things, like his fingers, pacifier and MAYBE a toy)
Shows curiosity about things and tries to get things that are out of reach (curiosity, yes; getting things out of reach, no)
Begins to pass things from one hand to the other (not sure, I haven't noticed it)

Movement/Physical Development
Rolls over in both directions (front to back, back to front) (He CAN roll from tummy to back but doesn't like to; I haven't seen him roll from back to tummy yet and shows NO interest in doing so)
Begins to sit without support (not yet, but I think he is getting there)
When standing, supports weight on legs and might bounce (LOVES doing this)
Rocks back and forth, sometimes crawling backward before moving forward (not sure what this is, but I don't think he is doing it)

Mac loves being in his jumper and intently plays with the toys on it. He reaches for toys when playing on his floor mat, but only if they are within his reach or above him. He has shown NO interest in rolling from back to front. He will roll from front to back if we put him on his tummy, but I think that is because he doesn't like being on his tummy for long. He can sit if slightly propped up but otherwise pretty much just tips over. He can stand with some steadiness (with support), which I think is from his time in the jumper.

He "signs" milk when he is hungry, but he signs it when he is upset, too. So I'm not 100% convinced he knows what he's doing, but clearly it is starting to take hold. We also sign "eat" but that is still a new one for him. Speaking of eating, he has eaten carrots and broccoli so far. We have been slow on introducing solids. Mainly because it is just another thing to have to remember and incorporate into our busy day/evenings. But slowly, we are. But he does NOT liking eating solids from me. I think he knows he can get "better" stuff from me so why are we wasting time with this other junk? Speaking of, he is still breast feeding about 6 to 7 times per day. And takes medicine for reflux.

Mac went through a period this month were sleeping was not so good. He was staying awake late and waking up often (thankfully, Jim is a night owl, so he took care of a lot of those awake times). I feel that is getting better and he is back to around 7 hours straight at night. He seems to be sleeping a little better during the day and doing actual naps instead of just cat napping all day. Oh, and I've started putting him to bed without rocking him to sleep every time...and it works a lot of the time! Of course, I usually wait until he is exhausted and sometimes he cries for a bit but I've only had to go in to calm him down a handful of times. He is sleeping back in his swing because during his bout of not sleeping, he would NOT stay asleep in the crib but would in the swing. Hey, whatever works. I'd like to get him back in the crib, so maybe I'll work on that this month.

He LOVES his big brother and sister, especially when they compete with each other for his attention, smiles and laughs. Finn has developed a kind of physical routine that involves jumping, falling or anything similar that Mac just thinks is the funniest thing ever. Finn has just started wanting to hold him this week...of course, Mac isn't as easy to hold now but it works. My favorite is when they snuggle in bed together while watching cartoons.

I've gotten to go out without baby a couple times this month. I think I forgot how nice it is to not have to think about taking care of another human being 100% of the time. I feel like watching all three kids is a lot to ask anybody right now, but I know it will get easier as they all get older. There will come a time when Jim and I can go out (hopefully regularly) again.

We have his 6 month well child later this week, so I'll be updating his stats then.

Here are his monthly pictures:

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