December 6, 2008

Four Months Old!

PK turned 4 months old today. Here are some of the highlights of her fourth month:

Language Development
PK continues making little sounds here and there, though there's nothing terribly new. The only thing that sticks out is that she squeals a bit more than she did before. She'll still laugh, though we've never gotten her to crack up the way she did in mid-November. Sometimes I'll make some random faces at her or say something and she starts giggling, but the thing that triggered the giggles the one time won't trigger any giggling the next time. I try to repeat her sounds back to her, but I don't think she's terribly interested in repeating them back.

Tummy Time
For a while there, tummy time was going superbly well. I'd put her on her tummy and she'd manage to hold herself up with her arms, and lift her head way up to gaze up at her surroundings. I had even managed to get her to roll from her tummy to her back. Unfortunately, she's gotten a little lazy. A couple of weeks ago, the laziness was a result of her teething (no teeth as yet though). I haven't seen any signs of teething over this past week, though she was definitely still in a crusty mood. I think part of it was due to gas. At any rate, more often than not, when I put her on her tummy, she stays up for like two seconds, then flails her arms outward into a starfish position on her tummy, kicks her legs around like she's trying to turn, and cries. I've managed to get a few rolls in this week and SOME extended tummy time, this week, though it was definitely not her best week for tummy time.

Favorite Side
PK seems to favor her left side over her right side, which is worrisome because all of the baby books say that she shouldn't prefer one side over the other until much much later. I mentioned this to PK's pediatrician at the 3-month appointment, and the pediatrician suggested switching the side that we change her on. I don't think we were as diligent as we should've been, because PK definitely still favors her left side over her right.

I've noticed that she grasps things a lot better with her left hand than with her right hand, and she LOVES turning to her left side. This week we've gotten very aggressive with getting her to use her right side more often, by placing all of her toys on her right-hand side. It's still pretty difficult to get her to play with stuff on her right, because that little head of hers is always turned to the left. I try to gently turn her head to the right, but man, it's a stubborn little head! My solution has been to dangle toys in front of her, and slowly move them over to the right. She usually manages to track the toy and has even started grasping at toys with her right hand. I've definitely noticed some huge improvements this week. Whereas before she'd use her right hand mostly for swatting, she is now definitely grasping things with that hand.

I think that the main reason behind her side preference is a direct result of how we hold her when she feeds. I hold her with my left arm when she feeds, and so does the hubby (even though I'm a leftie and he's a rightie). When I was breast-feeding, I was forced to change sides when I changed breasts, but when I bottle feed, I go with whatever is most comfortable. Unfortunately, this means that her right hand ends up dangling behind my back while her left hand remains more active by touching the bottle, pushing it away, and bringing it closer in. We've currently trying to rectify this by holding her on the right side when we feed her.

Hair Grasping
PK has discovered hair this week - both mine and her own. On Friday I noticed her grabbing at her hair with her right hand. That same day, I had my face very close to her and my hair was hanging down close to her face, and she grasped at my hair with both hands and started pulling at it. It was definitely cute, though I hope that she doesn't pull any of it out (both hers and mine)!

Leg Flailing
I noticed last Wednesday that PK has taken to raising her legs up vertically, and then smacking them on the bed (or floor). She has also started bringing her knees up to her chest so that she could gaze at her feet. She hasn't been able to grab her feet yet, though I think that that's not too far off. I sometimes try to push her feet closer to her so that she can touch them. She is definitely fascinated by her feet, ever since she discovered them in the bathtub in November.

Assisted Sitting
Last week I started pulling her into a sitting position from a lying down position, and already I've noticed that her back is getting a lot stronger. To get her into sitting position, I get her to grasp my middle fingers as I pull her up to sitting. Most of the time I need to grip her hands with my thumbs to keep her from toppling over, but sometimes her grip is strong enough that she can stabilize herself without my help. I still need to teach her how to use her hands to keep from falling over and smacking her head. Fortunately we practice this on a soft surface.

Standing Practice
Last week I've also started practicing standing with her. She needs quite a bit of support from me in order to do this (I hold her under her armpits), but she can support all of her weight on her feet for a few seconds, which is cool. Practice makes perfect!

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