Little gal is six months old, which is simultaneously blowing my mind and freaking me out. I can’t believe it. Look – I know every parent ever is like “WHERE DOES THE TIME GO?” but seriously. Where. Does. The. Time. Go?! How on earth is she already half a year old?
I am sure our experiences right now are universal – crib battles, teething meltdowns, solid food confusion. But it is so new to us, so incredibly, unfathomably new. She wakes up in the morning and instantly rocks my world until she falls asleep at night. It is the most insane thing. Little tiny person, how do you cause such upheaval? She is sitting up now, so well, and scooting around (almost crawling) and pulling herself up on to things. Y’all. I know I am a new parent and that things are different from kid to kid, but everything I’ve read never mentioned having to lower the crib to the second level at six months old because baby is pulling themselves up and almost over? Slow down, little girl. And also, hurry up. I am ready to meet who you will be, but also terrified of her. BEING A MOM IS REALLY CONFUSING.
One of my New Year’s Resolutions for 2015 is to Get Us All Healthy. And it’s not just for weight-loss (though I’m going to be honest with you — I am the heaviest now that I have ever been and I am so over it), but also for general well-being. It is really hard to be sluggish and bloated when you are chasing after and waiting on a six month old. Super insane levels of exhaustion. I would like just the regular levels of exhaustion, please. So here we go with throwing out everything in the pantry and fridge that isn’t good quality, whole foods. Bye bye Christmas chocolates, see ya later processed crap. Hello again to our old friends Really Freaking Expensive Grass Fed Super Happy Meat and eggs from chickens with time-shares in sunny Florida or whatever. Leafy greens and almond butter. I would say we’re doing a Whole30, just like everyone else on the internet, but I am still nursing so there are some not-quite-Whole30 things sneaking in. White rice, a tiny but of dairy. This is my second time doing a Whole30 and now white potatoes are “legal” and you cannot believe my level of excitement when I found out.
This Get Healthy thing isn’t just for me and James. It’s also for Cece. We have been supplementing for awhile — my production isn’t wonderful and I am just not down for all the hoops and stuff I would need to jump through to get it up to par. I am okay with the idea of supplementing — it keeps me sane and her nourished. Good old Similac, mom’s best friend, right? Nope. Nope, nope, nope. I don’t want to ruffle any feathers, and if store-bought formula is getting you by, then more power to you. But we were finding that on days when she was at Mother’s Day Out and majority formula-fed, she was ravenous. Why wasn’t she staying full? And then we started researching the ingredients in Similac and were shocked to find that they use nonfat milk (why??) and the only fats were from soy. No wonder her little tummy was grumbling within minutes, there are hardly any saturated fats in commercial baby formula! I am not a scientist and I am not really good at explaining this shit, but here is why saturated fats are super important (especially to little developing bodies and brains). Cece is getting good fats through my breast milk, but the store bought formula was falling severely short. We decided to change. In a big way.
Call me crazy, but we’re making our formula. We have just started and are using this recipe (substituting low-pasteurized dairy for raw, as we don’t have a local supply for raw milk). It’s only been a few days and so far, so good. Cece loves it — and it’s really not too time-consuming to make, if you streamline the process. I keep all of the ingredients on a kitchen shelf (and the refrigerated items on their own shelf in the fridge). I store it is mason jars in the fridge and will probably double the batch next time to have some to freeze (apparently it freezes well). Sourcing all of the materials was really satisfying for me, and it feels good to know exactly what is going into her little body. I will let y’all know how it goes.
Feeding your child is such a personal experience and one which is different for each family. I feel really lucky to be able to make these choices for our daughter due to our circumstances. I don’t think this is the path I would go down if I was a working mom — we would have to find something else that fits our life and her health. There are so many options out there — the link I gave before has a way to fortify commercial formula which is less time consuming. As for the cost, making the milk-based formula works out pretty comparable to buying the organic commercial options, and I recognize our privilege in that area too. In the end, it comes down to keeping those little bellies full and those little brains and limbs and organs developing to the best of our abilities.