Your baby is now more active, rolling over, and trying to
sit for short times. They are playing with their hands and feet, smiling a
lot and adorable! They cry when the parent leaves the room by 4 months old.
The next stage is afraid of strangers. They are afraid of doctors, Santa
Clause, and other strangers between 1 & 2 years old. They like us again by 2-3
years old. This is a normal stage of stranger anxiety and this "mama's baby"
is not spoiled. The next three months they will sit well, get to sitting on
their own, crawl up on hands and knees, pull to stand, walk holding on, and
some even walk by themselves (most do not walk till 1 year old). It does not
matter what shoes you put them in because high tops did not prevent flat feet
or weak ankles. If your baby needs special shoes, the Doctor will tell you.
Don’t let the shoe salesperson sell you expensive shoes they do not have to
wear. It is OK to put them in those high tops, but it just is not necessary.
Also you need to "baby proof" the house and make it safe. When they pull up
and crawl, they will get into stuff. Look around the house and say: "If I
slipped and hit my head and was knocked unconscious, the baby would still be
safe." If the baby had all day he could not get into trouble because things
are so put up and locked up. If you find yourself saying with a gasp: "Get
away from that!"; then you need to fix it because next time you might not see
them getting into it.
Do not punish them yet. Get them away from stuff and say
No. By nine months if you want you may lightly tap their hand or bottom and
say No. They should know what the word NO means by one year old. They now have
a temper and will throw a temper tantrum by 9 months old. Just do not give
in to temper tantrums but do not punish them. They can learn to manipulate
your behavior even now. When you take the remote control away from them and
they scream, if you give it back to them then you are teaching them to control
you. Once you do something then do it and do not let them change your mind.
You may now feed the baby all the foods. However, we want
to hold back the feedings of milk. You should see the baby not as interested
in the bottle but want the food over there on the plate. The formula should
be between 16 and 30 Oz. a day, and if breast feeding, it will be 3 to 6
feedings per day. If you give them more formula, they get over weight and not
eat food, and if you give them more breast, it is "slim fast" drink and
satisfies them but not have the calories. Their weight gain will slow down.
So keep the milk in those ranges and feed them as much food as they want. It
can be 1 to 15 jars a day. If they are opening up their mouths like a baby
bird, then keep shoveling. You are not overfeeding them if it is them eating
it. They like to eat this 6 months so enjoy it. By 1 year old they are
difficult to feed. One year olds bat the spoon away and want to feed
themselves. Then they throw it on the floor, or feed it to the dog. School
age children don’t eat their vegetables, and teens eat nothing but pizza. So
enjoy feeding at this time. Start one new food at a time and give it two days
for vomiting, diarrhea, or rash. It does not matter which food you start first
or next, as long as it is 2 days apart so if they react, you know which one
did it. So it does not have to be yellow before green or veg before meats.
Just start one new one at a time, plus give them all the foods they have
already had been given. It does not matter what time of the day you give the
veg or fruit, or meats, as long as by the end of the day they get a balanced
diet of all food groups, in a roughly equal proportion. The only thing they
cannot have is honey until one year old. You may give the white and yellow
part of eggs, mashed potatoes with salt and butter on it, and you could even
grind up table food like pizza into a fine slush. Put spices on the food and
in the baby jars so it tastes good. They need a little salt in their diet.
Just keep it small amounts. You need some sunlight but too much is bad. All
these things that are bad for you are only bad in excess. There have been
babies who were damaged because they did not get enough salt. So it is OK to
give them a little bit of caffeine, salt, cholesterol, and Blue Bell Ice
cream. Flavor up the food with barbecue sauce and ketchup. If they spit it
out, you try tasting it. Yuck! So flavor it up. Use second foods, not the
first foods because they are more costly and it is the same thing but
different size jar. You go to the third stage foods and finger foods when
their gag reflex lets them swallow it. It is not when they have teeth cause at
1 year old you will not trust them to chew up their food. You will cut it up
into small pieces that they cannot choke on. Now it is not a matter of what
you feed them but it is a concern of safety. Do not give them the teething
biscuits and toast cause they can bite off a small chunk and choke to death.
Don’t let them chew on the pizza crust in the restaurant. Give them teething
rings they cannot choke to death on … and dip them into the pizza sauce so it
tastes good! Also, do not put them in bed with the bottle to sleep. You may
put them down with the pacifier in their mouth. The first six months you
should get up in the night and feed them if they cry for food. Past 6 months
of age they are capable of making the night and you have permission to let
them "cry it out". Some parents can do that and some do not want their kids
to cry. It won't matter in the long run which you do so just be consistent
with your daily routines.
Talk a lot to your baby. They are learning the language
now and will say Dada (it comes out usually before Mama) to many people. Then
later they will know who Mama and Dada are and call them by name. Enjoy these
six months; it is great.