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6 months

Happy half-birthday to you,

Happy half-birthday to youuuuuuu,

Happy half-birthday, little love of my life…..

6 months 2

I can’t even believe it’s been 6 months already. Watching her change and grow, learn, start to move, eat solid foods,

6 months 5

 

it’s been absolutely amazing.

Here’s what’s new this month:

-Moving and shaking! Little Miss will probably start crawling at any time now. She can get on all fours and rock forward and backwards, but can’t quite move her knees yet. She’ll move her hands forward, slide onto her belly and then lift up into a “Superman” position. It’s so much fun watching her try to figure it out. With that will be the fun of baby-proofing. We’re going to get started this week by mounting the TV to the wall (and hiding the cords through the wall), mounting furniture, locking the cleaning cabinet and picking up some baby gates. Our little cousins are staying with us next week, so it will definitely be good practice for what’s to come.

6 months 7

-Talking like crazy. Her little babbles and opera star trills have turned into full-on conversations in baby language. When Tom took her over to her BFFs house for a pool date the other day, the second the babies saw each other, they smiled, reached for one another and proceeded to have at least a 10-minute “conversation,” babbling back and forth. So stinking cute- I was bummed that I missed it.

-Favorite things: right now, she’s still crazy about books (I hope she always loves reading), plush toys, Elmo and pulling Bella’s fur. I try to tell her “gentle hands” but for now, that means grab a chunk and pull. Poor Bell, but she quickly forgives Liv when she has sweet potatoes for dinner and Bella gets the leftovers. 

She loves this cup

Protein pancakes 2

This table (a gift from a family friend)

IMG 3667

Singing! Current faves are songs that are made up, including the Livi song and B-E-L-L-A (“There was a Livi had a dog and Bella was her name-o”)

+ anything that makes crinkly noises, like the wipes bag.

We’re also having a blast taking classes at MyGym. Lots of playtime and songs for Liv, time to talk and catch up with some fellow mom friends for me 🙂 

-Food. I love watching Liv try and experience different foods and have been making her food at home (usually steamed and blending in the food processor). She loves the mesh feeder, too. I was really big on Baby Led Weaning, and Tom was fiercely against it, and then we had our first and only incident when she bit off a larger piece of cantaloupe and scared the hell out of us. She’s only eating purees and food through the mesh thing since then, at least until she gets a couple of teeth and can chew. It’s nice to have feeding time be fun time, instead trying to breastfeed, likely being denied, giving Liv a bottle while pumping, and spending hours pumping in addition to that each day. Instead, she’ll drink a bottle, I’ll make myself something to eat and a plate of food + water for Liv, so we have a little “meal date” together.

I wanted to breastfeed for at least a year, but despite everything I did, it didn’t work out that way. I made it almost 6 months, which is a huge victory for me, considering I was working with one side and exclusively pumping for the past few months. Towards the end, I saved everything I pumped and froze for her to drink after her 6 month shots. It might help, it might not do anything, but I feel better knowing she’ll get some breastmilk on shots day.

While I’m sad that this part of my life is over for now (it feels like something died, which is dramatic, but it’s pretty heartbreaking), I’m proud of myself for sticking it out as long as I did. At the same time, one of the major stresses in my life (pumping like crazy, damaging the tissue of my right side from the hours I spent pumping it when nothing would come out, 19 pills a day) is gone, and that’s more energy and time that I can devote to taking care of Livi. I’m hoping that with our second child I’ll be able to successfully breastfeed with one side, but if it doesn’t work out that way, I’m not going to be as hard on myself as I was in the very beginning. Still, I can’t help the twinge of jealousy I feel to see moms breastfeed their babies.

-When Liv was teeny tiny, it was hard for me to imagine her smiling and talking- she seemed like she’d just be a cuddly little baby forever. Her personality has developed so quickly and becomes more vivid and apparent everyday. She’s clear about what she likes and dislikes (she’ll blow raspberries if she doesn’t want something), and loves being a part of the action. She’s easygoing, spirited and curious, and I’m so excited to be able to show her things for the first time. While we were in La Jolla, I could watch her face walking the birds, seals and staring at the ocean all day.

Seal watching

Lately with Livi around, we’ve been getting asked for advice from parents-to-be. I always tell them congratulations and that it’s the most amazing thing ever, and just to remember that it gets better and easier everyday. People told us that in the beginning, and it’s so true. Every day is easier, every day is more fun, and every age seems like the best age. (I may revise that when she’s a teenager, haha)

6 months 3

 Thank you, little Livi, for an incredible 6 months <3

Some fun reads:
More Awkward TTC Moments 

Breastfeeding Flashmob

 10 Things I Want My Daughter to Know (LOVE this)

More re-caps:

5 Months

4 Months

3 Months

2 Months

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64 Comments

  1. Claire @ Live and Love to Eat on July 9, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Watching her develop into her own person must be so much fun! Adorable photos today. 🙂

  2. Stephanie @ Legally Blinde on July 9, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    Wow, it’s really hard to believe that Livi is already 6 months old! Happy half-birthday to her 🙂 She is so precious and I always love your updates about her. And way to go for being so dedicated to breastfeeding – you did (and are still doing!) such a great job!

  3. Danielle@cleanfoodcreativefitness on July 9, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    Livi is so big now!!!! and so adorable! You must be such proud parents that you have raised such an incredible little baby 🙂

  4. Shannon York on July 9, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    That is one beautiful little baby. Enjoy every moment.

  5. Caitlin on July 9, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    I’m sorry that you are no longer able to breastfeed at all, but good for you looking at the positives, or at least trying to! It’s good that you have the shots frozen for her! You have done your best as a mama 🙂 that’s what counts. That baby babble conversation that Tom witnessed sounds so adorable! He should’ve recorded it so you could YouTube it haha! She’s a treasure for sure. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Amanda on July 9, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    When you’re struggling trying to BF it IS so stressful. I lasted three weeks with my first and with the help of pills lasted almost three months with my second. It was SO stressful both times, especially reading comments from other BF-ing Moms or prior ones who just kept on stating to keep trying, never supplement, it was just so hard. It makes me feel better knowing someone else tried just as hard as I did and it didn’t work out. My first has literally never been sick and is advanced on all her milestones, and it is looking like my second is doing even better, so for us, I know I made the right choice 🙂

    Is Olivia chewing on her harness in that one pic btw? Both mine did that, it was so nasty wet if we walked around too long but it kept her quiet so I never stopped her.

  7. Lauren on July 9, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    Such a beautiful girl, love the pictures! Happy half-birthday Livi!

  8. kaila@ healthy helper blog! on July 9, 2012 at 4:48 pm

    She is so precious! I am so happy for you and Tom. I am sure these 6 months have been wonderful and that the best is yet to come 🙂

  9. Jules on July 9, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    Pretty much all of these posts give me baby fever. Too cute.

  10. Rebecca on July 9, 2012 at 4:52 pm

    Happy 6 months Livi!!

    Countdown to crawling! Max can move his legs only when he puts his head down…it is the weirdest thing ever!

  11. Amanda Lee on July 9, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    I love her little headband. Tom better watch out all the boys are gonna be after her! She’s gorgeous!
    Way to go with the mommy hood stuff. It’s easy to see you and Tom are doing a great job and you three will get through any obstacles! 🙂

  12. Andrea on July 9, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    She is such a seriously gorgeous girl!

  13. Kailey on July 9, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    It has been such a joy to be able to watch her grow, and to feel the love you have for her through just a computer screen! Livi is so incredibly beautiful and fortunate to have such a loving family! GAHHH Gina, you’re the only person who makes me think I want to have a baby someday– haha! Not even joking. I just love reading all about your lovely family!

  14. Laura @ LauraLikesDesign on July 9, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Aw, happy half birthday, little Livi!

  15. Brittany on July 9, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    Locking the cleaning cabinet is a great idea. When I was a baby (2.5 years old) I got into the cleaning cabinet and drank a whole bottle of lemon lime flavored dishwashing liquid. Luckily we had friends coming over that night and the guy was a doctor so we were ok. I turned out fine but it’s a good story to tell!

  16. Purely Twins on July 9, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    Happy 6 months Livi!!! She just gets cuter and adorable every picture!!!
    So happy for you and Tom 🙂
    Hope you have a wonderful day!
    hugs
    Lori and Michelle

  17. Heather (Heather's Dish) on July 9, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    i can’t believe she’s 6 months already; my baby boy just turned 4 months yesterday and i’m still in shock! it’s so true how it gets easier though – it really truly does, and is more fun every day.

    and i think you should be super proud of how long you were able to give Livi breast milk. breastfeeding is hard work! i’m very blessed to be able to nurse Wes but there are definitely times that i look forward to having my boobs back. at the same time I can’t imagine giving up the snuggles and closeness that come with it.

    oh, and happy 1/2 year birthday to you too Mama – i think you deserve some birthday wishes too 🙂

  18. Averie @ Averie Cooks on July 9, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    What an awesome post and I just got all teary-eyed thinking back to when my baby was this small. Now she’ll be turning 6 soon and she has her own friends, her own life, her own likes and dislikes and personality and she just seems so old when I look at her! She’s also super tall which throws me off even on some days 🙂 But yes, cuddle your sweet “baby” as long as you can 🙂

  19. Helene @healthyfrenchie on July 9, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    I can’t believe she s already 6 months. They grow up so fast!
    She is such a cutie as well, she’s got gorgeous eyes and such a cute smile 🙂
    It’s great that you are blogging about it as well. Not only you give us all baby fever but you will also have something amazing to show her when she grows up.
    As far as the breastfeeding is concerned, you did your best and that’s all you can do 🙂

  20. Maria on July 9, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    Wow! I can’t believe it’s been 6 months already, that flew by! I just want to say thanks for sharing all your advice and stories about Livi, it’s been fun following along and watching her grow 🙂 Also, your family posts have been soooo helpful for this new mom-to-be 🙂

  21. Meg on July 9, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    Gina, this is the most beautiful post ever. I cannot wait until Liv can read this on her own <3 I got chills reading it! I STILL HAVE CHILLS

  22. Irene on July 9, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    What a sweet post. I’m sure every day that Livi grows to be healthier and more beautiful will help you be more at ease with the decisions you’ve made. Such a lovely little girl!

  23. Stefanie on July 9, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    Awwww congrats! 🙂 My niece has the same name and she is 2 months old! 🙂 Happy 6month bday to your Livi

  24. Abby on July 9, 2012 at 6:13 pm

    She’s so beautiful! You should be proud that you nursed her as long as you could!

  25. Abby on July 9, 2012 at 6:17 pm

    I’ve never seen a cup like that before, I think I’m going to order one as I’m trying to transition my daughter off of sippy cups. Does Olivia seem to drink pretty easily out of it without choking?

  26. Lara on July 9, 2012 at 6:41 pm

    Happy Birthday, sweet baby girl!

  27. Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie on July 9, 2012 at 7:23 pm

    Happy half birthday Livi! She is SO beautiful!! What an amazing family you have! <3

  28. Lesley on July 9, 2012 at 7:34 pm

    Breastfeeding can definitely be stressful. Lactation consultants were on speed dial during the first couple months of breastfeeding my daughter- mastitis x2, plugged ducts, bottle preference over breast after pumping a lot due to pain, and a tongue tie. Some helpful/info tips they provided while I was pumping more were: 1) the amount of milk that you pump is not a measure of your milk supply 2) they can weigh your baby before you nurse, and after each side the baby nurses on to see how much milk your baby is taking in to help alleviate concern over your milk supply 3) if a baby isn’t nursing, it can be helpful to rent a hospital grade pump.

    • Fitnessista on July 9, 2012 at 8:02 pm

      yeah we had lactation consultant visits at the house a few times, and i called them often. it wasn’t that i didn’t have the tools or support, it’s just that with exclusive pumping (after livi got used to the bottle she would very rarely nurse without shrieking and it wasn’t worth it to me to have her be screaming while trying to eat) your supply runs out. it’s supposed to dry up within 5 weeks, and somehow i lasted 5 1/2 months.

      • Lesley on July 10, 2012 at 1:16 pm

        Lactation consultants are amazing! I had never heard of them until I took a breastfeeding class at the hospital. One of my lactation consultants directed me to this website when I was looking at pumping due to the pain I was experiencing with nursing (http://kellymom.com/bf/pumpingmoms/pumping/exclusive-pumping/#HowOften). It sounded like you could get a supply established with exclusive pumping. Kudos to you for doing it 5 1/2 months!

  29. Marla on July 9, 2012 at 7:43 pm

    She is beautiful! I love reading your posts about Liv. You should be proud for breast feeding as long as you could. You always put your baby’s needs first – that clearly comes through from your actions. Quick question though I was wondering what formula you use?

  30. Mari on July 9, 2012 at 7:59 pm

    she is so adorable!! I love reading your posts when you write about Olivia. the posts are always so heartfelt and beautiful to read.

  31. Kristen on July 9, 2012 at 8:00 pm

    Half way birthday! Hooray!!
    I’m so happy that you decided to do a family page on the blog and share a glimpse of your mommy hood experiences with us. You’ll never know how much this page has encouraged me ( and others) in my own parenting journey. Livi is just a couple of months older than my little one so it’s fun to see what’s next for us! Plus I love reading other moms’ comments on things. I’ve learned so much. Thank you for sharing this part of your life!

  32. Ramani on July 9, 2012 at 8:12 pm

    Ginaaaaaa! Every pic you post of Livi kills me. Kills me! She is such a beautiful child and I’ve realized it’s her huge eyes and the shape of her mouth that I love so much.

    Thanks also for the amazing link to the 10 things I want my daughter to know. It’s so good that I’m sharing it on FB. I’m not a parent but still LOVED it! Thanks for sharing and happy half birthday to the munchkin!!

  33. Suzanne on July 9, 2012 at 8:19 pm

    Happy 6 months to Little Miss Liv.
    Those photos make my heart melt. <3

  34. Erin on July 9, 2012 at 8:30 pm

    Happy half birthday to your beautiful angel! And congrats momma for breastfeeding as long as you did. What an accomplishment!

  35. Sara on July 9, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    Making up songs is the most fun. Most my mine featured choruses that went something like ‘Aunty Sara, Aunty Sara, she’s the best, she’s the best’ You know… catchy and educational tunes that she can now teach her little brother.. 😀

  36. Kat on July 9, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    she is so stinkin’ cute! Happy half birthday

  37. britt on July 9, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    awww, happy half birthday precious livi.

  38. Cassie on July 9, 2012 at 10:31 pm

    Just have to say that Livi has to be the cutest thing ever! Her smile and big eyes just make me melt!

  39. JennP on July 10, 2012 at 12:15 am

    Gosh. This year is flying by. I didn’t even know I was pregnant when Liv was born and now I’m 32 weeks!! Life with a toddler and a newborn will be interesting… panic mode!

  40. @pluvk on July 10, 2012 at 12:26 am

    Happy, happy birthday to Olivia! She is the most beautiful baby… all babies are sweet and lovely, but she’s got that little extra special something that shines through in your photos! What a blessing. 🙂

  41. Sam @ Better With Sprinkles on July 10, 2012 at 12:32 am

    Happy half birthday to Olivia! Can’t believe she’s 6 months old already – I feel like I read the birth post a few weeks ago.

  42. Melissa (Better Fit) on July 10, 2012 at 7:08 am

    Happy 6 months to Olivia!!

    She’s so sweet, and getting so big! What a whole different life it will be when she starts crawling around.

    I’m so sorry that the breastfeeding didn’t work out the way you wanted it to, but well done for pumping for so long and for accepting it without being hard on yourself. You’re obviously both wonderful parents, and have a happy, healthy baby, which I know is the most important thing for you! I hope that doesn’t sound pretentious- I guess I’m just trying to say well done 🙂

  43. Kanoelani on July 10, 2012 at 8:41 am

    Awww!!! She is sooo BEAUTIFUL Gina!! Congrats on the 6 mos mark!! She seems like such a happy baby which is awesome :-D.

  44. Janiek @ A non-perfect girl on July 10, 2012 at 9:26 am

    So cute! Congrats 🙂 can’t believe it’s been six months already!

  45. lisag on July 10, 2012 at 10:09 am

    Aaw she’s such a cutie pie. I can tell how curious and observant she is of everything. Look just like you!

  46. bree on July 10, 2012 at 1:21 pm

    She is absolutely adorable! I check out the family tab to get tips/advice/just general knowledge about other babies around the same age as mine (5 month old twin boys!) and was wondering if you would be willing to post a general “a day in the life of a 6 month old”? I love to see what other mothers do for their daily routines and now that you are incorporating solid foods into her life, it would be really helpful to see how you fit it in since we are about to start!!

  47. Sarah on July 10, 2012 at 1:44 pm

    please, please, please make sure to tether the tv to the wall! i’ve heard too many stories recently of tv’s falling on kids.

    • Fitnessista on July 10, 2012 at 2:17 pm

      We’re mounting all TVs and wall furniture

  48. Brigid on July 10, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    Livi is *gorgeous*! That is all. 🙂

  49. Marci on July 10, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    Love reading your monthly updates since you’re just 2 months ahead of us. Still seems so far away for us! You are right that the energy you spend not breastfeeding and pumping, etc. is better spent directly on her. But I understand the sadness of stopping.

  50. Laura on July 10, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    Happy six-month birthday, Livi!! What a wonderful time for your family. I can empathize with you on the breastfeeding thing; I, too, envisioned myself breastfeeding our baby Ada the first year of her life despite working full-time. I knew that I would be well acquainted with the pump to do this so when my daughter was born 3 1/2 weeks early and wouldn’t latch I took to the pump with gusto. Every day I kept thinking, “Today’s the day she’ll latch and then I can be like every other mother that breastfeeds her child.” Well, the day never came. Every day we would sit there, boppy in position, nursing tank unlatched, and every time she would wail for ten minutes as I told her, “I’m here for you, baby girl.” I of course felt rejected and cried as I gave her a bottle of pumped milk. For three months I pumped eight times a day, missing out on the little sleep I could get (she had to be fed every two hours), and then finally I could not do it anymore. The emotional, mental, and physical toll was so overwhelming, especially as I doubted my ability to feed my child. I was absolutely devastated that I had failed at breastfeeding and at pumping, too. I cried every time I thought about my baby on formula, and I, too, was jealous of mothers who breastfed their children with ease.

    My daughter is now four months old, and it’s been a month since I last pumped. I can honestly say I’m not entirely over it, I still get emotional thinking about it, but I have my sanity back. I enjoy time with my daughter so much more now, and I know that she only has 8 more months on formula, and the food that I give her after that, and the nutritional values I instill in her are so much more important than one year of breast milk. I also froze some milk and will give it to her after her four-month appointment (and subsequent ones) on Thursday. Despite these disappointments, I think we should celebrate all we did to feed our baby girls and to take comfort in the wonderful, healthy, and curious daughters that we have. Motherhood certainly comes with challenges, and I think you are doing pretty damn fantastic. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

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