I am trusting all the parents out there who assure me “it just gets better” because I am loving this baby phase more than I anticipated. Truthfully, when I was pregnant, I told Ryan I wanted to skip the baby phase and jump right into the toddler phase when I could have a little buddy to interact with on a daily basis. I’ve told you guys before that I never really considered myself a baby person, but oh my gosh did that ever change when I had a baby of my own to cuddle, love and nurture. For someone who thought you couldn’t really play or interact with babies, I’m glad I found out that I was very wrong. Chase is so playful and interactive and I really enjoy goofing around with him, showing him new things and watching him learn and grow every day.
I’m constantly impressed by how much he already knows and absorbs on a daily basis. He understands a handful of command words now and will clap (so much clapping happens in our house) or click his tongue (this amuses him so much) when I ask him to and we’re working on dancing and waving which he almost has down.
Chase is a very observant baby and also very social. He’ll smile at just about anyone who looks at him (and start smiling and craning his neck to engage people when they aren’t looking his way which makes us laugh) and chatters up a storm with lots of high-pitched screeches and guttural noises that amuse me to no end.
The water is quickly becoming one of Chase’s favorite places to be, whether it be splashing around during swim class or in the lake or playing washcloth tug-of-war with Ryan during bath time.
Chase now has six teeth which blows my mind! For a while there he didn’t have any and then it felt like a new tooth was coming through every week. Our vampire fang baby now has two upper middle teeth in between his fang teeth and two teeth on the bottom of his mouth.
He is an expert inchworm crawler and can quickly get to anything he wants to but still isn’t doing the traditional alternating hand/leg baby crawl just yet. This seems to frustrate him a lot but the fact that he can roll or inchworm crawl to everything he has his eye on helps!
Sleeping + Dropping the Dream Feed
Last month we were going through some sleep challenges thanks, in large part, to Chase’s first earache, travel, teething and more, but everything got SO much better this month. HOORAY! We went through one or two nights of sleep training to get him back on track (we followed pretty much exactly what we did at six months) and Chase made the adjustment with relative ease, with the exception of some fussing and on-and-off whimpering around 4 a.m. which was to be expected but not horrific at all.
The big milestone that happened this month (for me!) was that we officially dropped the dream feed! WOO!
Up until a week or so ago, I would feed Chase around 10 p.m. while he was basically asleep to both help keep my milk supply flowing and also get him a little extra nourishment to last through the night. I tried skipping the dream feed a month ago and it backfired because Chase woke up hungry around 4 a.m., but a few weeks later he went to bed later than usual (closer to 8 p.m. than his usual 6:30/7 p.m.) and when I went in to feed him, he refused to eat and made it through until 6 a.m. The following night we put him to bed at his usual time and I intentionally skipped his dream feed. He woke up around 5:30 a.m. to nurse (thank goodness because my boobs were FULL) but he went back to sleep until around 7:30 a.m.! After that, I eliminated the dream feed altogether and it’s been amazing! I didn’t realize how much waiting for that last feeding was weighing on me since I couldn’t go to bed early or enjoy a glass of wine or two before bed knowing I had another nursing session waiting for me. Chase basically eased me into dropping the dream feed which was such a blessing since I really wasn’t sure how to go about it myself. Thanks, bud!
Though things can obviously change day-to-day, Chase generally goes to bed close to 7 p.m. and wakes to nurse around 5:30 or 6 a.m. but will almost always go back to sleep until 7:30 a.m.-ish. It’s a big change for us and a welcomed one, as his extra sleep time in the morning allows me to sneak in some work first thing in the morning which is fantastic.
Chase is still really good about getting himself to sleep (thank goodness) and does well when I put him in his crib and walk out the door. He’ll typically babble, play with his Wubbanubs, bang on the sides of the crib and roll around for a while before falling asleep.
As far as naps are concerned, I feel very lucky that Chase seems to take two two-hour naps a day because that is the only way I am able to work from home with a 10-month-old at the moment. (I have no idea what I’m going to do when he drops a nap…) Chase’s morning nap is still his best nap. It usually occurs right around 9:30 a.m. and it’s the one I count on most to get anything work-related done. His afternoon nap is slightly more unpredictable (both the time and the length), but often happens around 2 p.m.
Oh the stress of eating!
At Chase’s 9-month pediatric visit, our doctor told us he was in the 1.5 percentile for weight (he was only 15 pounds, 10 ounces) which didn’t concern our doctor since Chase is following the same curve he’s been on all along since he was a smaller baby at birth (5 pounds, 10 ounces), but I’d be lying if I said his smaller size didn’t concern me. (It is SO easy to worry about everything when it comes to our babies, right!?)
I’m trying to remember our doctor’s positive words (he said Chase looked very healthy and truly wasn’t worried about his weight at all) and remember that Ryan was a 6-pound baby who was quite slim (up until college!) but it’s hard not to get in my head. I am currently following some of our doctor’s advice for increasing Chase’s calories and while I feel fortunate to never have had any issues with my milk supply, I’m continuing to breastfeed Chase regularly but also adding additional calories to his “real” food by increasing the oils and fats in his diet. Our pediatrician encouraged us to add more olive oil to his vegetables, meats and purees and give Chase whole milk yogurt with olive oil stirred in. Chase would still MUCH rather play than eat which is very frustrating (especially when it’s a battle we have to wage three times a day…), but we’ve already seen him put on weight faster since adding more oil to his diet which makes me feel much better!
Truth be told, for a while there the thought of no longer breastfeeding seemed impossible because Chase wasn’t eating nearly enough “real food” but I’m beginning to see his appetite change as he eats more real food and requires a little less breastmilk. For everyone who encouraged me to trust that it will all eventually work out and understand that babies will eat when they’re ready, I’m beginning to realize this is so, so true. It’s hard not to feel stressed out when I feel like I hear about so many babies who loooove meal time and cry when food is taken away and Chase is the exact opposite. He’d still be totally fine if we skipped meal times all together and kept nursing as his only form of nourishment, but I am finally seeing a small improvement in his eating and that’s a relief. It’s not dramatic, but even a tiny improvement feels like a victory over here, so I’ll take it!
Oh and as a follow up to last month’s feeding check-in, Chase is still all about the breast over the bottle when it comes to nursing. I have a few friends who are in the same boat with babies who all of the sudden refuse breastmilk from a bottle at this stage. What’s the deal!?
I’m also struggling a bit to get Chase to understand how to drink water out of a sippy cup. Any suggestions? He will occasionally get a sip or two out of the Lollacup or Munchkin 360 cup but can’t seem to understand how to really drink from a cup himself, so his water consumption at the moment is mostly limited to what he’ll drink out of a real cup that I hold up to his lips for him.
How Am I Doing?
I had a few of you request a “me” update since I haven’t really talked much about how I’m doing in Chase’s monthly updates in a while. I’m doing well! Better sleep for Chase means better sleep for me which is HUGE. I absolutely love being Chase’s mom and have so much fun with him every day.
I have to laugh because when I was pregnant, I thought for sure I’d have childcare arranged after a few months to help out a couple of days a week so I could get some solid work done but now, even at 10 months old, I am just not ready. Since Chase’s naps are still pretty solid, I can juggle working from home, though I feel like all I really have time to do it churn out a blog post every day which means a lot of the things I really want to do for the blog fall on the backburner, as do my emails (my inbox is truly horrifying) and other behind-the-scenes tasks like tracking expenses (the worst), etc. But it’s all worth it a thousand times over because I am so incredibly grateful to be able to juggle both working from home and staying at home with Chase.
One of the keys to my overall happiness with staying at home with Chase has been connecting with other moms in a similar stage of life and planning regular activities for Chase when he is awake. Not only is it great for Chase – he is now in a phase where he seems to get bored if we’re at home for too long – but it’s wonderful for me to have that social network of mom friends, too. For the most part, I try to get out of the house and and do something interactive with Chase every day, whether it be a play date with friends at a local park, swim lessons, Gymboree, etc.
Body After Baby
As you guys know, I never planned to do monthly “body after baby” recaps, mainly because it just wasn’t an interest of mine or a huge priority for me and I didn’t want to feel any pressure to lose weight or inches quickly. I wanted to let my body do what it wanted to do and focus on recovering and trying my best to live a healthy lifestyle while finding my way as a new mom. That seemed like enough for me!
All that being said, I stepped on the scale for the first time in a while this week and saw that I am back to my pre-baby weight. I gave myself plenty of time to get there and it seemed to happen naturally. The whole “nine months on, nine months off” thing rang true for me. I didn’t really put a huge emphasis on “losing the baby weight” and tried to keep my focus on working out for ME (it’s truly a release for me and something I love) and eating mostly healthy food as much as possible.
Breastfeeding didn’t dramatically zap my weight off (maybe a bit in the very beginning… but then it stalled for a few months) and, to be honest, I think it makes me eat more than I usually would because I can absolutely tell a difference in my appetite when Chase is going through a growth spurt. (It feels like I am going through a growth spurt, too!)
Ten months after baby, I am happy with where I am but know there’s always room for improvement. I’d love to focus on overall toning and taming the sugar beast (my sweet tooth is somethin’ fierce), so those are some goals I have in the back of my mind.
Physically I feel great in the gym again, which is wonderful and I hope to continue to work on my strength and get stronger in my workouts. When I’m able to make it to a boot camp class and utilize their childcare, the 45 minutes I spend sweating up a storm are often the only 45 minutes of the day where I feel like I am focusing on me and only me and that absolutely helps with my consistency. I love my boot camp and at home workouts and feel good about the fitness aspect of my life which has always been easier for me than keeping my diet (mostly) clean. Meal planning and meal prep are key for me for eating healthy throughout the week and I just need to continue to keep up with it!
- Clapping his hands
- Clicking his tongue
- Banging his hands on everything
- Activity (He needs constant stimulation and gets bored if we stay in one place/do one thing for too long)
- Gymboree classes
- Swim class
- Splashing in the bathtub or lake
- Watching Sadie
- Any kind of meat
- Being outside
- Rolling around
- When you take something away from him
- Having his nose wiped
- Staying still for diaper changes
- Low voices
- Basically anything that lasts longer than 20 minutes
10 Month Baby Favorites
We’ve had some new discoveries this month that Chase seems to love and I’ve added them to this list that also includes some of our tried and true favorites that continue to be go-to items for Chase at ten months old. (I also removed some past favorites that Chase decided he was no longer into this month like his previously beloved activity jumper. Maybe they’ll make a comeback next month!?)
- Tuffo Outdoor Water-Resistent Blanket
- Fisher Price Rock-A-Stack Ring Toy
- SpringWays Swim Float with Canopy
- Fisher Price Kick N Play Piano
- Fisher Price Rattle and Rock Maracas
- Baby Einstein Bendy Ball
- Jelly Strands Baby Teething Necklace
- Sesame Street Silly Sounds Remote
- Baby Einstein Take Along Musical Toy
- Protective Floor Mat
- Chicco 360 Hook On High Chair
- NUK Mash and Serve Bowl
- Munchkin White Hot Infant Safety Spoons
- Munchkin 360 Cup
Past Baby Updates
- Nine Months
- What I Wish I Knew Before My Baby Was Born
- Eight Months
- Seven Months
- Six Months
- Our First Sleep Training Experience
- Traveling With A Baby For The First Time
- Five Months
- Four Months
- Three Months
- Two Months
- And Then He Smiled
- Three Weeks
- The First 12 Days
- Q&A: All About Birth & Life With A New Baby
- Chase’s Birth Story: Part I, Part II