Saturday, December 05, 2009

Connor and the cereal

Doesn't that sound like the title of a children's book?

When we had our 4-month check-up, the paed said we could start Connor with cereal.

Some people are horrified that my 4-month-old baby is eating cereal so let me tell you what the paed and BabySense say.

Babies automatically fall into a routine where they have a long first stretch of sleep in the evenings. This was happening for Kendra as she would sleep from about 6pm to midnight or just after, but Connor still had the same old 4, 4 and a half hour stints.

If they're not showing that stretch despite drinking enough milk (he was), then the milk is not enough for them.

Hence the cereal.

So we started with 1 tablespoon on Sunday 8th November. Can you see this was momentous for us?

And I have never been more proud of my boy.

He took to it beautifully - first mouthful he chewed slowly like "mmm, what's this new thing?" and then it was "oh YES, this is what I've been waiting for"

Just like that, he took to it and we've never looked back.

I sit on the floor, Connor in the feeding pillow and I hold his hands with my left hand while feeding him with the right hand.

Then I read in Babysense that babies really only FULLY experience things when they touch and put them in their mouths so one day I was brave and I let him at the cereal.

BIG mess but he loved it. Cereal in his nose, all over his face because those hands get busy!

So did it work?

Hmm, well, not exactly.

That Sunday he slept for 9 and a half hours in the first stretch and I was BEAMING. I thought this is IT - finally the answer to all my problems.

But alas, the next night he slept 5 and a half hours, and then the next night 5 hours so the cereal wasn't magic like I thought.

After about two weeks of this I decided to increase to TWO tablespoons (yes, I'm slow) and then I had 6 and a half hours.

So we've stayed on the 2 tablespoons. We average around 6 hours but he's slept for 7 and a half hours too. Only thing is they go to bed quite early, about 5 - 5:30, so we never wait longer than 1 am.

I've tried to make the bed time later but he turns into Crabby Connor and it's just not worth it. I'd rather have the peace of a quick bedtime and a 1 am wake-up than a two-hour screaming fest (no jokes) and then have him sleep an hour or two later.

Then when the night time stretch was sorted, I continued reading Babysense and they said if the baby doesn't stretch 4 hours between the first and second morning feeds, then it's probably time for morning cereal.

He didn't stretch so we started morning cereal.

The boy LOVES his cereal.

Again we started with 1 tablespoon but most days we now have 2. If I see he's not drinking enough milk, I put him on 1 Tsp as the book says the cereal is a supplement to, not instead of, the milk.

According to the book, we should have already started him on veggies and whatnot but I'm too scared to mess with a good thing. I love those precious 6 - 7 hours too much.

Kendra is still doing her 6 hour stints although just the last few days I have noticed that she's been waking after 4,5 - 5 hours, so is probably needing more food again.

I've increased her feeds from today so we'll see if that improves it. The paed did say we can start her in a month's time which is Monday as the children will be 5 months old.

I can hardly believe it.

P.S. Have only 3 weekdays left before I start work.

P.P.S. Must also tell you about my weight and work clothes!


  1. Wow, the babies are growing up - and you start back at work in a blink (with those fab-o hours!). It's time to post a video of C eating, me thinks. I've got mixed feelings about introducing solids - in one way it'll be momentous, but it'll also be sad to say goodbye to the very early days.

    I love the kids in the knitting - too cute. I bet they won't get many chances to wear them in your neck of the woods :)

  2. That whole sleep schedule thing sounds very complicated. Kinda scary, even!

  3. Yay...real food! Isn't it so exciting!? It's such a nice change from the routine! Ours are eating 3TBS of cereal in the morning and then a whole container of baby food at 4...don't be nervous to try the fruits and veggies...they will like it even more than the cereal!
    As far as sleeping goes...have you let them cry it out yet? I don't rememeber. We had to do it 3 times and then it was done. They sleep 7-7 now. I read babywise and Happy Baby Healthy Sleep Habits (I think that's what it's called).
    Well, congrats on getting to do something different :-)

  4. Congrats on cereal!!!! I haven't read any other baby books other than Dr. Spock that I got before we had Phoebe 9 years ago. Hang in there on the sleeping thing. The boys got better around 5 months of age and now by 6 months it's awesome!


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