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Infant - Week #33

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A 33-Week-Old At A Glance

By Amy Salatino, edHelperBaby

  Pulling Up!
           Your little one is getting ready to reach another important developmental milestone: pulling himself up.  This is exciting and should be encouraged, but it also means that once he is up, he has a really good chance at this point of falling down.  Be aware of where your baby is playing and things that he could hit his head on when he falls down because trust me...there will be plenty of falling down!


  Imitating with Toys!
           Your baby has been watching you intently for months now.  It's hard to believe but besides being soothed by your voice and comforted by your physical proximity, your baby has been learning by watching your actions and by how you interact with objects.  Your little one has probably seen you use the telephone countless times; don't be surprised when he gets hold of a toy phone and holds it up to his ear.  He now has the ability to transfer information into application!  Go out of your way to point out how things work and to provide your baby with toys to encourage this growth!


  First Words!
           Your baby has been babbling and "talking" for months now.  In the weeks to come, if it hasn't happened already, he will start putting words with associations.  Mama may REALLY mean Mama, and Dada may REALLY mean Dada, so get that cassette player ready and record the real first words!  Don't be upset if your baby refers to more than one person as Mama or Dada. While he can make the associations, his differentiation skills aren't all in place yet!


  Diaper Changing Disasters
           Remember when your sweet docile baby just lay there and cooed as you changed his diaper?  Those days are probably gone for a long time.  Save yourself diaper changing battles by stocking your changing table or diaper changing area with objects of interest for your baby to entertain himself while you change his diaper.  This could save you from a two-minute diaper change turning into a five-minute battle and a disgusting mess as well!


  Holding His Own!
           Developmentally your baby's motor skills have progressed to a point where he very well could be holding his own bottle.  It's great to encourage this skill and to allow your baby this small piece of independence.  Don't be upset if your baby isn't holding his own bottle.  This doesn't necessarily mean that he can't- simply that he enjoys being fed and isn't WILLING to!


  Do Try This At Home - Reading And Pointing
           We've all been reading to our children since birth, wondering all along if they are following along or simply basking in the attention and the lull of our voices.  Now's the time to start questioning your baby as you read and show him how to answer as well.  It's a great time to get out those "my first words" or "my first animal books" that are all over the bookstores.  Cuddle up with your baby and point out a few of the pictures.  Point to the dog and loudly and clearly say dog.  Then ask your baby where the dog is and physically take his fingers and point to the dog.  Do this with a few different animals and make it part of your nightly routine.  After a few weeks of this, your baby will first begin to understand that you want him to point, and then he will start pointing to the correct objects.  It's not too soon to start teaching the sounds the animals make as well.  Have fun with this  Reading is such a special bonding time with your baby and seeing him really get something out of it makes it even more exciting!


Reading And Pointing With Max!
           As an elementary school teacher and a mother of four little kids, my house is OVERFLOWING with books.  The family room has a shelf that is always jammed to overflowing (trust me- it's not pretty to look at) and each of the kid's bedrooms have jam-packed bookshelves as well.  You can't go to a bathroom in my house without tripping over a few books on the way in!  So to find a book to sit down and look at with Max was an incredibly easy task.  I chose a "my first animal" book.  I chose it because it didn't have cluttered pages, the lettering was simple, the colors were bright, and the pictures were clear and obvious.  I sat down on the couch with Max in my lap and started reading the book to him.  Of course, like all of your babies probably did, he grabbed the book and tried to shove it in his mouth.  I knew this was going to happen, so I traded him the book for a baby toy that I brought.  Then I started again and pointed to the dog on the first page and told him, "Look, Max, dog!" and I made barking sounds and the whole bit.  He smiled and drooled and looked at the picture.  I did it again and this time took his pointer finger and pointed to the dog.  Then I took his finger again and verbally told him, "Point to the dog, Max!" and pointed his finger to the dog.  Little goofball that he is, he giggled and allowed me to manipulate him.  We did this with four other animals, and he giggled at all of them.  All in all, it took less than a few minutes and, of course, he wasn't pointing to animals by the end of it, but he will in time.  We spent the next fifteen minutes snuggled up reading other books and just being together!  What a special bonding time this is. Do try this at home!


  That's Questionable
           Q - What kind of table foods have you tried?       

       A better question for me at this point is what kind of table food have I NOT tried.  As I've mentioned before, being the fourth kid in four years has its upsides and its downsides.  For Max I think the eating thing is definitely an upside.  Which would you rather have - strained baby food or what everyone else is eating?       

       A typical day of eating for Max looks something like this.       

       Breakfast:  Some kind of real fruit - a mashed banana, plums, peaches, nectarines, melons, strawberries...whatever I happen to have.  Then he has some kind of grain to keep him busy for a while- little pieces of toast or bits of buttered bagel, and on days when the older kids are eating cereal, he usually has the leftover cereals that they leave floating in their bowls.  They are soggy from the milk, so he gets spoonfuls at a time!  He loves eggs of all kind...scrambled are easy to feed to him!       

       Lunch is usually what the other kids are having, all cut small: chicken nuggets, grilled cheese, noodles (sauce, cheese, butter, or plain), cheese, or bread. I usually make sure he gets some kind of fruit or vegetable as well (often times a canned vegetable) and sometimes yogurt or pudding.  Again, the poor kid gets a lot of leftovers although I haven't heard him complain yet!       

       Dinner is more of the same always accompanied by at least a fruit or a vegetable, usually some kind of dairy (cheese, yogurt), and some grain as well, like rice, noodles or bread.   He's done very well with everything.  He has had turkey, ham, cheeseburgers, chicken breast, and even pork.  Like I said, pretty much whatever we are having.  The first texture that I really saw him struggle with was refried beans.  I'm not sure if it felt funny in his mouth or if he truly didn't like it, but he wasn't crazy about that one.       

       Snacks are a little of this a little of that as well: graham crackers, puffs, saltines, and he loves Salerno butter cookies.       

       I HAVE NOT and will not do peanut butter or any kinds of nuts until he is two.  I have heard too many horror stories, and this is a chance I am not willing to take.  Many people are awed that I stopped buying baby food at 6 months.  Others are appalled.  It all boils down to what works for you and your baby and what you are comfortable with!  Have fun and happy eating!


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