Arianne at 8 Months

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Since my son Gabriel was born in 2011, I’ve been posting sporadic updates about my kids and their travels over on my Parenting blog. With the new blog design at Expat Heather, I’ve decided to now post everything all in one place.

At 8 months old, Arianne is really on the move. She isn’t crawling on her hands and knees yet, but she is getting pretty fast at the sniper crawl. She also loves to crawl up and over things, and we have to belt her into the baby walker so she doesn’t dive out in an attempt to grab a favorite book.

Quite the gymnast

She has started to wave, and she smiles and laughs all the time. She particularly likes any toy that Gabriel is playing with, and she likes to steal Gabriel’s pillow and squeeze it tight. She constantly wants to touch and taste new things.

At her 8-month doctor’s visit for a vaccine, she was still in the 90th percentile for height. She has very long legs, and she likes to push up on them and try to walk with assistance. She also likes to kick with them, which was not very fun when I was recovering from my hernia operation last month.

It's fun to watch her interact with Gabriel

Giving hugs is a new thing; when I come home from work she’ll want me to pick her up, and she’ll grab on to me with both hands and give me a little baby hug if anyone tries to take her away. Gabriel loves to hug and kiss her, however sometimes she reacts by chomping into his shoulder with her two tiny teeth or trying to pull out his hair.

She eats a huge amount of pureed baby food. What would be enough for me for a soup for lunch is what she eats three times per day. The nanny makes all the baby food at home, and Arianne eats a lot of spinach, white fish, chicken, potato, sweet potato, carrots, and broccoli. She has also tried scrambled eggs and mushed up tropical fruits.

When I had hernia surgery, I wasn’t able to breastfeed her for 10 days. Before that, I had only been breastfeeding 2 or 3 times a day (morning, evening, middle of the night). In the hospital, I tried to pump, but I was so dehydrated from not being allowed to drink water, I really couldn’t pump anything after the first 24 hours. It was too exhausting to try pump for 30 minutes just to get one ounce of milk.

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After coming home, it was too painful for me to breastfeed her in any position because she was so wiggly. The nanny tried to help me, but it was just too painful. Add one sharp new baby tooth into the mix, and that made it even more difficult.

Arianne started breastfeeding again after 10 days, but by then the milk supply was so low that I could only breastfeed once per day. Now I’m only breastfeeding a tiny bit in the morning, and I’ve decided I’ll just see what happens rather the pursuing a special plan to build back up the milk supply. By now it’s been a month since the surgery, and I still sometimes feel pain in the abdomen when I’m holding her across my stomach.

So we had some struggles at 8 months due to my surgery, but Arianne is doing awesome and learning new things every day. Now she’s blowing bubbles and babbling, and she’ll shriek quite loudly if Gabriel takes something away from her that she was playing with. She seems more agile than Gabriel was at her age, probably because he was chubby as a baby and she’s more slender. I’m excited to see what she’ll be up to at 9 months!

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