Thursday, August 28, 2008

Baby Massage

I started giving Benjamin an infant massage regularly (a few times a week) since last month.
He seems to enjoy the massage quite a lot, especially an undivided attention as well as the loving touch.

Though not always, it seems to help him to sleep better too.

Here are some photos of Benjamin in his birthday suits, prior to or after the massage sessions.

  If you are interested, please check out my photo album as well. Please click here.
  (You need to enter the user name [guest] and password [shootingstar] to access to this site.)  
  *If you cannot jump to the page of "Ben 4 months old" of my photo album site, please click here and then click "Ben 4 months old" that appears on the top corner of my home page.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Benjamin is 4 months old

Benjamin turns 17th week old tomorrow, August 14th, Thursday. (His date of birth is April 17th, but if we count his age by week, he is 4 month old from tomorrow.)
His weight: 8kg (=17.6lb.) (average: 6.4kg=15.5lb.)
His height: 74cm (=29 inches) (average: 64cm=24inches)

His development in the past month
The entries with * mark are developmental landmarks which babies should be able to do
** ones are those which babies will probably be able to do
*** ones are those which babies may possibly be able to do
**** ones are may even be able to do
by the end of the third month.
 (according to the books "What To Expect: The First Year" and W. Sears' "The Baby Book")

Between his 13th week to 16th week, he started to be able to:
* on stomach, lift his head almost 90 degrees (B started it since 3 and 1/2 months old)

** follow an object in an arc about 6 inches above the face for 180 degrees
** bring his both hands together, and play with his own hands
(Michiko's note: According to another book, these two landmarks above imply that the bridge between the right-sphere and the left-sphere of his brain has been established.  How exciting!) 
** laugh out loud and squeal in delight (B does it quite often and we can't even stop him!)

*** hold head steady when held upright (B started it since 2 and 1/2 months old) 
      (Michiko's note: Benjamin has always had a very strong head!)
*** on stomach, raise his chest, supported by arms

*** grasp a rattle and hold it for a while

**** bear some weight on legs when held upright (B started it since 2 and 3/4 months old)
**** reach for an object (3 and 2/3 months old)

**** roll over from tummy to back (!)
(Michiko's note: Actually, Benjamin did it for the first time just today! He did it twice by accident --- and funnily enough, he didn't seem proud or anything at all but just confused, because he in fact wanted to go to the other side to reach for a toy when he accidentally rolled over to his right side. ^^)
**** say ah-goo or similar vowel-consonant combination
(Michiko's note: Benjamin has been saying "Ma----m!" a lot since 2 and 1/2 months old, particularly when he cries for Mom's breast. It really sounds like "Mo---m!")

Other observation:

- Benjamin started to sleep in longer stretches (3 to 4 hours) through the night. 
- The other night, he slept without waking up for feeding at all for 7.5 hours (from 11 pm to 6:30am) for the first time!  (But this happened only once so far.)
- However, he also started to wake up with a sudden shrill cry just after falling asleep in the night, and when he wakes up and starts crying like that, it is REALLY hard to sooth and help him stop crying.  He constantly wants to nurse but then he spits up so much after such a long nursing.  So we try to distract him, but he cries really hard as if the end of the world (maybe so IS it for him ^^;).  But last night and the night before, Amar took over my place and he did an amazing job to put him sleep, being so patient even with his long, intense crying.  

Michiko's note: According to a baby book written by a Japanese author, this kind of night waking/crying sometimes happen particularly with 5 and 6 months old babies, perhaps as a consequence of their gaining short memory (= ability to remember what have happened during the daytime): some scary feeling or things experienced earlier that come back to their little mind in their dream may cause their awakenings and crying.

So, Benjamin's night cry may be a result of his starting gaining some short memories... then it is not necessarily a bad thing.  (Although such cries are supposedly for 5 to 6 months old babies..)

- He loves to see himself in the mirror. I don't know if he knows it's himself, but he instantly smiles and starts cooing/talking to the other person in the mirror even when he has been crying hard.

- He started to show a lot of interest in toys, including cuddly toys such as a green frog and a teddy bear.

Dad's lap is his favorite play gym...

Monday, August 4, 2008

Playdate Dinner

Yesterday, we were invited by Hiromi and Todd, whose 9-month-old daughter Maya is Benjamin's new playdate, for a Sunday dinner. It was a good fun evening!

Please check out the photos on my photo album site (click here).