Brady’s 10-month update

Well, I mean, I’m sure you know what I’m going to say: Where did these last 10 months go? In some ways, they flew by, and in other ways, I really cannot possibly imagine what life was like before Brady or what it was like when he was just a newborn — as if he’s always been here and been this way. It’s an amazing thing. I just adore this little guy …

Brady at 10 months with Ashley by A Lady Goes West

Because I love to take a minute to overshare about our personal life, and because many of you guys have said you are actually interested, we’re going to get detailed today. (And I can’t begin a post like this without sending love to any of you wonderful people who are longing to get pregnant or even longing to just get your hormones regulated. I’ve been there and come out the other side, and I’m pulling for you and sending you good thoughts and warm hugs.)

And in case you want to catch up on all things motherhood:

I figured I should get a 10-month update out there, because the next one I write will be at one full year. Oh my!

Ashley and Brady at 10 months in nursery by A Lady Goes West

Overall

I think we have the hang of things in their current state. Sort’ve. And by hang of things, I mean, Brady keeps changing and growing, but we’re on top of everything so much more now. And it’s way more fun. Perhaps that’s because we sleep more, most of the time.

Basically, I don’t feel super stressed all the time, and I’m not as overwhelmed with being his full-time care-taker as I was for the first few months, with my patience running low at least once a day. We have a good routine, and although it’s not always easy (and there are still some tests on my patience), it’s working for us. And it also helps that basketball season is over and Dave comes home most nights around 6 p.m., so I have an extra set of hands around on weekdays in the evenings to do the night-time routine. All bets are off when the season starts up again in October (or when Brady starts walking, whichever comes first).

Also, as Brady gets older, we don’t think of him as so fragile any longer. We can take him all around town, play with him and he can also entertain himself with toys for small amounts of time too — he’s a big boy, a little person, if you will. It’s as if life has returned to a better normal than it was during the newborn months with this little person in our lives. (But don’t get me wrong, there are still some tough times.)

Brady in San Diego at 9 months by A Lady Goes West

Sleep

I really don’t know how we lived through having a baby who didn’t sleep or nap well for more than seven months of his life, but we did. Last week, we had three bad nights of sleep during a teething episode, and I barely felt functional. It’s quite amazing that I was able to write this blog, have a regular life and Dave was able to go to work each day during a busy basketball season, which kept him away for long amounts of time (oh and we bought a house and moved), all the while piecing together maybe five or six hours of interrupted and segmented sleep for more than seven months. Wow.

Right now, I really can’t complain, although things aren’t perfect (clearly, like last week). Brady does not sleep through the night, but he gets up 1-2 times to have his diaper changed and nurse. And most of the time, it’s only one wake-up. I consider that a big win and so far from where we came from that it feels fine for me. I realize many other babies are officially sleeping 12 hours straight at Brady’s age, but he isn’t (yes, I wish he was!). The funny thing is, he never cries when he gets his diaper changed, except during that middle of the night waking. He screams the whole way through — so that’s fun for everyone in the house.

Brady at 10 months in Nike clothes by A Lady Goes West

As far as the nights, we have a pretty solid night-time routine, which we’ve had in place for a few months, and it seems to work. Around 6 p.m., he gets some solid foods in his high chair, then a bath, then his jammie suit, then we read a book in the glider (the best chair ever, and for those of you who are on the fence about whether you need one — I literally live in that chair!!), nurse, rock and lights out with the sound machine blaring (and I mean loud — I did the research, and loud is good when it comes to sound machines). He is usually asleep by 6:50 p.m. every night.

Then, he will wake up once in the night usually between 1 a.m. and 3 a.m., and then get up for good around 7 a.m., sometimes earlier, sometimes later. Dave goes in and gets him up and brings him to me in the bed to feed him, and he is the happiest camper in the morning. Gosh I love a groggy and smiley baby! 

Ashley and Brady at 9-month doc appt by A Lady Goes West

Naps

Naps are somewhat regular, but not completely regimented. While I have a lot of friends who have their babies’ nap-times down to an exact tee, ours are looser. Most days, Brady takes a morning nap around 9 or 10 a.m. Sometimes he sleeps for 45 minutes, sometimes for 90 minutes. It really depends. Quite honestly if I hit up a morning workout class around that time, then he takes his morning nap a bit later, and while it’s not ideal, it’s sometimes necessary for me. And thus, he adapts. 

Then, he takes an afternoon nap around 2 or 3 p.m., usually for about an hour or 90 minutes. Once again, not always the same duration or start time. 

There are days here and there where we miss one of those naps entirely, because he just doesn’t want it. And I don’t love that, but I live with it. Because as I said, the way things are right now is such an improvement from before, so it seems totally manageable. Don’t get me wrong, I’d LOVE to have a fail-safe schedule that he sticks to, but I just don’t think that’s going to happen any time soon. It all depends on what time he wakes up in the morning and how he’s feeling that day, and I’m okay with it. And quite honestly, oftentimes, the overall quality of my day is often closely correlated with Brady’s length of naps, if you know what I mean.

Both his naps and his night-time sleeping take place only in his crib in his nursery with the door closed, with us watching on the monitor. We moved him out of our room and bed officially around 7-months-old, and it was a needed change.

But both Dave and I agree, we miss those moments of having little Brady sleeping and snuggling between us in the bed. It wasn’t going to last forever, and I don’t regret that we did it that way when we needed to. (He didn’t co-sleep entirely, but would end up in our bed halfway through the night most nights between 4-7 months, after starting in his crib.)

I loved having his little warm body there … I love his little warm body everywhere, even on the beach in Florida …

Ashley and Brady at Boca Grande Beach by A Lady Goes West

Food

For some reason, I figured Brady would be an eager eater of solid foods, taking after me and my love for food. Not so much. We’ve tried peas, cauliflower, butternut squash, banana, corn, avocado, sweet potato, mango, pear, peanut butter, hummus, apple sauce and yogurt, and the only thing he gets excited to eat is goat’s milk yogurt. True story. The rest just ends up all over his face, because he won’t open his mouth much.

There are times I panic that he’s not eating more solid foods (because I’m basically still providing all of his nutrition), but then I talk myself off the ledge, because he’s happy and healthy. I also did some research and spoke to his doctor, and found that it’s okay that Brady doesn’t consume that many solids. He has one small serving a day, and it’s a bit of a chore for him to get it down. I’ve tried letting him handle the food, and he doesn’t know what to do. So we mostly spoon-feed him things. We’ve also let him suck on fruit and such in these little mesh holders, which is nice (also a good place to put ice for when he is having teething pain).

Brady at 9 months in San Diego by A Lady Goes West

The one good thing about feeding Brady now is that he LOVES to sit in his high chair (not the one shown above, as that was during a visit to San Diego). We have this one, which we got from my mom’s friends during my Florida baby shower, and it’s very convenient, and the neutral colors go with our kitchen too.

Now that Dave is home in time to help with the night-time routine, Dave usually feeds Brady his helping of solids, and they have fun with it — even when it’s a struggle. Although I wish Brady was more excited about food and was a more accepting eater, we’re continuing to introduce new things, re-offer old things and give him a lot of options.

After we hit the one-year mark, we will get more serious about giving him more regular food during multiple meals during the day. But for now, we’re doing our best. 

Breastfeeding

Yes, Brady is still nursing exclusively, with no formula supplementation, at 10 months. Because I’ve had so many questions, I’m going to do a deeper dive into this subject soon for some real TMI moments. But overall, we’re going to keep going for a while longer, while it’s still working out well for us. It’s truly a blessing that we’ve not had any issues. But to each his own!

The good news is that he takes a bottle like a champ, so I can go off for longer amounts of time when I need to, like when I attended IDEA World Fitness and BlogFest.

Ashley and Brady in Gaslamp San Diego by A Lady Goes West

Growth and development

  • Weight. At Brady’s 9-month doctor’s appointment, he weighed in at 21 pounds, which is on the higher end for his age. So clearly he is getting enough food. He’s come a long way from the little scrawny 6.5-pounder he was at 2-weeks-old.
  • Sitting up. At around nine months, Brady starting sitting up, and now it’s his favorite thing to do. Watching him go from laying down to sitting up is so cute, because it’s not quite graceful yet. And when I look over and see him sitting up so proudly, it melts my heart.
  • Moving. He also started crawling just after eight months, and he still does the army crawl. He’s very fast, but has yet to include his legs in the game. He huffs and puffs and smiles when he crawls. And we have to keep him in long sleeves, because he crawls so much with the arms that he got a little rug burn on his prime mover elbow and it won’t go away. I don’t see any signs of wanting to or being able to stand up or walk yet, because his legs are just too wobbly. Although he has begun to figure out how to use his arms on things, but can’t quite pull up yet. 
  • Play. We can finally play with this little guy a bit better now that he is sturdier, and I look forward to being able to do more and more.
  • Talking. He is so chatty. He makes the sweetest sounds, squeals and screams and is always making noise. He definitely says “mama” as of last week. Woohoo!
  • Travel. Brady has now been on six roundtrip flights as a lap child (freeee) and has visited Florida, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Michigan and Indiana. He’s a traveling pro and doesn’t mind the plane or airport at all. He’s also been on a road-trip through Colorado and isn’t as big of a fan of sitting in the backseat in his carseat for long stretches.
  • Water. Brady put his feet in the ocean in Florida when I was visiting my parents when he was about 8.5-months-old, then he got in the pool when we were visiting Dave’s parents in San Diego when he was 9-months-old. He LOVES water.
  • Teeth. Brady has shown signs of teething for months and months and months, and just last week, he had some rough nights gnawing on his little fist. Then, don’t you know, we finally saw the little whiteness of two teeth on the bottom. They haven’t fully popped through yet, but are getting close.

Ashley and Brady in San Diego at church by A Lady Goes West

Thoughts on parenting so far

I actually love to be able to call myself a mom, because I waited so long to be one. And I love to see Dave as a dad. I absolutely adore our little family (Rudy included). And I think that at this point, we’re doing things the best we can, in our own way …

Whereas during pregnancy, I followed an app to see the weekly development of the fetus and things that I would be experiencing, I haven’t done the same for baby developments. Right now, I let changes come as they come, and I do everything I can to keep him safe, happy and healthy, but I’m not obsessed with tracking everything at all or waiting to see if particular “leaps” are taking place.

We don’t go to any baby activities currently (we may in the future), but right now Brady’s stimulation is playing at gym daycare about 4-5 times a week, which gives him a chance to hang with other kids, be outside of the house and get used to other people looking after him. And going to the gym daycare so I can have my alone time to work out or teach classes, and it’s perhaps the greatest thing that has happened since Brady turned 6-months-old. It’s SO essential for me.

We’ve used babysitters quite a few times now, which always make me a tad bit nervous, but has always worked out just fine. We had a few on rotation to begin, and they had virtually no availability (which was incredibly frustrating and left me unable to go to some things), so I decided to ask some of the girls at the gym daycare and have now used one of them and had a great experience. It’s SO important to get out, and I highly recommend it to other new parents. Your baby will be fine without you for a couple hours, as long as you have a trusted sitter. And if you have family nearby, use them!

Overall, on a fairly regular basis I struggle with the loss of my independence, especially when it comes to my work as a writer and blogger and the fact that I’m pretty tied to home for much of the day with Brady’s naps and sleep schedule and my productivity is basically limited to naps. But when I really think about it, I’m truly happy. Of course, I’d love some more freedom to work on projects for the blog I want to get off the ground, but I’m managing to keep things rolling, and this time with Brady being so young is not going to last forever.

I feel so strong and proud to be raising this little boy — as though it’s so much more important than many other things that used to matter so much to me — and I love that he is already turning out to be an individual, who is entirely his own person — but one who takes a little bit of both Dave and me with him wherever he goes.

Things I want to remember about Brady at 10 months

There are so many:

Brady at 10 months with a hat and balls by A Lady Goes Wes

  • The way his curly hairs are all over the place, especially when he wakes up from a nap. His curls are crazy on the back of his head, which is my favorite.
  • The way his eyes light up when you make eye contact with him.
  • The way he latches onto my hip and shoulder when I pick him up.
  • How hard he concentrates when he is playing with his toys. And how his reflexes are so slow, but so darn adorable.
  • How I can instantly tell when he is getting tired or angry by his facial expressions. 
  • How his eyes follow whoever is in the room.
  • The way he bangs every single thing he can get his hands on against hard surfaces. Banging things is his favorite.
  • The variety of little noises he does and how he gets so excited when he finds a new noise to make.
  • How he tries to pet Rudy with a grabby stabbing motion. It’s hilarious.
  • The way he looks up at me when he is done nursing with his big blue eyes.
  • His soft skin. 
  • How he flails his arms in excitement when I’m heading down to pick him up.
  • And I could go on and on and on.

Brady’s favorite things

  • This was SUCH a smart purchase, because it keeps him contained and happy with all of his toys for good chunks of time.
  • We’re still going strong using this jumper, we borrowed from a friend and probably have a few more weeks in it.
  • His bath-tub. He LOVES bath time, and has a little bowl that he holds throughout the whole bath. he loves to splash and also enjoyed his first time in the pool this summer in San Diego too.
  • He loves sitting in his high-chair, and this thing even has a place to store wipes.
  • These jammies are the best. So soft and stretchy, we have them in a few patterns. 
  • Still going strong with our diaper and wipes delivery too.
  • This was a gift from our friends and the music/interactive part keeps Brady very busy and entertained. The songs get stuck in my head too. I would highly recommend this for babies maybe over 6-months-old.

Family on the swing in Coronado by A Lady Goes West

And that about covers it! I guess we’ll dig into Brady again at the one-year mark, ohhhh my goodness!

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Thank YOU for reading, my friends! Brady appreciates your interest.

Questions of the day

Parents — what time-frame flew by the fastest so far in your experience parenting?

What should we be excited for when we reach a full year?

15 Comments

  1. Hey Ashley, this is my favorite blog. Brady is getting more beautiful or should I say more handsome as he gets older. He has grown so much. When you were holding him on your hip he is almost half as long as you are tall. I think you are really enjoying motherhood. Can’t wait till he starts walking. Then you will have all kind of experiences to tell us about. Love all the pictures of Brady. He is getting the biggest smile.
    HAPPY 10 MONTH BIRTHDAY BRADY.

    1. Hi Richard! Ohhhh thank you so much! His smile is getting bigger as he gets bigger, and I love that. I’m not sure when walking will happen, but I guess that means we’ll need to baby-proof our house heheh! Have a great day!!!

  2. Aw, this was so sweet. Brady is really so adorable.

    I know exactly what you mean about being incredibly happy but also struggling with the loss of your independence. It’s a funny juxtaposition. It just gets better and better though. Mine is 22 months old and it’s amazing in the last year just how independent he has gotten which has given me a little bit of independence back. Also, dropping to one nap has been a game changer with time management and consistency. I guess what I’m saying is that all the changes ahead of you yield great things! LOL But it sounds like you are already doing such a great job of rolling with the punches.

    We have struggled with how to find babysitters to hire (it feels so risky, but also so NECESSARY) so thanks for the tip on gym daycare side jobs. I never even THOUGHT OF THAT!

    1. Hi Holly! I can’t take credit for asking for babysitters at the gym daycare, because a few of my friends urged me to do that — and it was a great choice. As far as the one-nap-a-day — I actually do look forward to the regularity of that for sure, but we’re definitely in the two-a-day boat right now. I really appreciate your kind words and thank YOU for weighing in and sharing your experience! 🙂 Have a great day, momma!

  3. You guys are doing so well! Brady is happy & growing fast-such a cutie! It’s exciting to feel less tethered to the house & wonderful you can get him to the gym so frequently…I did some but was always so exhausted to haul everything & it wasn’t super close to home. Quality babysitters are in short supply for sure!
    I remember the time you are in as being fun with “ a big baby “ vs tiny infant and seeing their personality really come through! Nothing magical happened at 12 mos but 13 mos was walking & big leaps—they are so proud of their new walking skills & just watching that is incredible! All fun & beautiful memories thru the difficult moments keep us going. Reminding myself of “ we have a healthy baby” kept my expectations more realistic when I needed to calm down.

    1. Hi Katie! Yes, it helps my gym is only a couple minute drive away and I don’t have to bring anything for him — they have toys and such. I’m glad you were able to make it sometimes in order to get out for some alone time and a workout. And I can’t wait to see how excited Brady is when he starts walking! Thank you so much for reading and for your thoughtful comment!! 🙂 Have a great day, friend!!

  4. Hey Ash- love your blog updates and reading about baby Brady:) Just a tip if you haven’t tried Abby & Finn diaper/wipe service. I used to use Honest and love them. A&F are also non-toxic, just cheaper but not as cute.
    Miss you guys. Hope we can meet Brady something soon!

    1. I am going to check A&F out now. Thank you for the tip, Nat! We miss you! Heading to Florida for Thanksgiving and swinging through Orlando — don’t suppose there’s any chance you are too??

  5. Ashley,

    I just want to thank you for being real! I am a new mom of a 15 week little boy, and it’s so nice to read about not only the good moments, but also the really hard ones. It is very rewarding and very difficult to be a new mom, and I want to let you know that reading your story through mommyhood has really helped me. I don’t feel so alone and am able to let some of that mommy guilt go because I know it’s normal and I’m not the only one feeling this way!
    I am looking forward to reading your post on breastfeeding. I am exclusively pumping (not by choice) and am always interested in other women’s BF journeys. You rock for breastfeeding so long and keeping up a gym routine! I am limited to walking to keep up my supply and am looking forward to the day I can hit up the gym again!

    So, thanks for sharing and know that you are appreciated!

    1. Hi Meagen! Hi Momma! Thank YOU for reading and for saying hello and for letting me know that what I share resonates with you. I will be the first to tell you that there’s a lot of TOUGH stuff about having a new baby, and when you are doing it, it’s challenging but sooo amazing at the same time, it’s just hard to explain. And when it comes to breastfeeding, I’m surprised I’ve gone this long, to be honest, and I’ll share a lot more soon. It’s NOT easy to be exclusively pumping, so props to you for that — your baby appreciates it! And I hope you keep going until it no longer works for you and your mindset. Sending you lots of love! 🙂

  6. I loved reading this. I feel like he and Emmie are on the same page witwith regards to their naps and sleeping. I wish she would take a bottle as well, though! Some else to work on… I hear you on the not obsessing over leaps and stuff like that. Knowing that she might be going through something helped me stay patient through some of the fussier times. But truly, every child is different and unique and special. Brady is adorable, and you and Dave are great parents!

    1. Susie! Thank you SO much for reading, being a good momma and sharing all of this with me. I hope Emmie learns to love the bottle, for your sanity, lady! 🙂 Hope to meet her one day!

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