about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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    EmilyBMalone@gmail.com

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    A Look Back.



Four Months.

Cullen is four months old today.  And perhaps for the first time since this whole journey started, I actually believe it.  Even though it wasn’t all that long ago, I don’t really remember what life was without this little face smiling up at me each morning.

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He has totally lost that newborn newness, and he feels like a real mini person these days.  I look at his newborn photos and find it hard to believe he was ever that small.  And while I thought I wanted him to stay teeny tiny forever, I’m finding that with each new age and stage, I love him a little bit more.  His personality is huge, and he cracks me (and himself!) up all day long.

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Even though he is doing all the things that I read he is “supposed” to do, I’m still amazed when they actually happen.  I’ve watched his little arms go from flailing out of control, to discovering his hands, to now reaching out and grabbing for things, and pulling everything straight toward his mouth. 

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And I laugh now when I think about how worried I was about our lack of tummy time in those first early weeks.  Baby websites and books sure do know how to freak out new moms, huh?  They had me convinced that if we didn’t get him on his stomach for at least ten minutes a day, he’d end up never learning to crawl or walk or some other such nonsense.  But the boy who used to scream on his tummy, now refuses to lay on his back.  At four months, it’s all tummy all the time. 

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And perhaps our biggest surprise this month – the first tooth!  Just a few weeks ago I wrote how Cullen was showing all the major signs of teething, but was assured that these signs tend to pop up early and last for months before teeth actually arrive.  So imagine my surprise when we were sitting in the Honolulu airport and I looked down and saw a pearly white tooth popping through his gums!

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He chews on e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. now, and I usually take teething beads with me anywhere we go just to make sure he has something to make him more comfortable.  I feel bad that his little gums seem to bother him so much on certain days.  Yesterday we pretty much rocked and snuggled all afternoon – it seemed to be what he needed. 

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His favorite toys now are all things he can wrap his little fingers around and stuff in his mouth – key rings, teething rings, a stuffed carrot, and anything else in his reach.  I have to be careful now if I’m trying to eat and hold him, as he reaches out for everything that passes in front of him. 

Even though it’s been a gradual change, the other big thing I’ve noticed this month is how much his appearance has changed!  When Cullen was first born, I was shocked at how dark his features were.  I know that babies change a lot in the first few months, but I still think it’s crazy that he’s gone from this…

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To THIS!  He looks like a totally different kid!

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His hair is much lighter and is reddening slightly – just like daddy.  Casey and I both have very light eyes, so I’m not surprised to see that his have lightened quite a bit as well.

Sleeping is going a bit better these days.  We seemed to have survived the sleep regression we went through last month,  and now were usually only up once each night – around 3am.  He doesn’t sleep through loud noises anymore and is easily woken by dogs barking and alarms beeping.  He sleeps face down with his head to the side, and squirms all over his crib at night.   

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It’s so true that all the normal mom feelings come and go in phases, and work themselves out eventually as they should.  When he was just a few weeks old, I couldn’t imagine him ever sleeping anywhere other than right by my side.  And yet having to sleep next to him for a week in Hawaii, I found it really hard to sleep through all his shuffling and noises now that he moves around so much more.  I guess we’ve both naturally found that a little space can be good for us.  As he gets bigger and bigger, I continue to savor each and every nap he takes on my chest.  I know these days are numbered…

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Four Month Rundown:

  • Bumbo:  Barely fits in it – legs are too chubby!
  • Exersaucer:  Thinking about getting one – not sure he’s old enough?
  • Swing:  Pretty much over it.
  • Boppy Lounger Pillow:  Packed it up over a month ago.
  • Highchair:  Need one.
  • Solid Food:  Waiting a while.  In no hurry!
  • Stroller:  Finally using (and love) it.
  • Car Seat:  Still hates it.
  • Bottles:  Still not taking them
  • Diapers:  Cloth and loving it.  (Size 2 disposables on vacation.)
  • Traveling:  Vacation to Hawaii!
  • Teeth:  The beginning of one!
  • Weight:  TBD at next week’s appointment, but I’m guessing close to 17lbs!

Overall, life with Cullen continues to be a surprising, exhausting, and exciting adventure.  For four months, our days (and nights!) have been a non-stop rollercoaster, but so they are so much brighter because of it.

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Looking forward to everything this next month will bring!

For previous updates and more parenting posts, please visit the parenting page!  You can also check out my recent posts on Babble

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85 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Jessica     at 10:27 pm

Cutest baby ever. Your posts with pictures of him always make me smile (and food too, made your vegan black bean burgers today, holy yum). If he can sit without his head flopping all over, he could probably tolerate the exersaucer, you can just prop him in it with a blanket. Enjoy every nap with him, my youngest is 9 months and I would do anything to have her nap on my chest, I miss it :(
He is SO cute!!

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Amber K     at 11:23 pm

He is the cutest! I had to show my husband since I showed him the pics from when you first had him. Neither one of us can believe just how fast kids can grow! It is so cool to see the progress.

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Blog is the New Black     at 2:11 am

SOOOOO handsome!!!

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noelle     at 3:32 am

LOved your post! I could write this similar part myself.My baby girl will be 4 monts in 2 Weeks but I can see her changes already.

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Lauren     at 3:51 am

I will NEVER get tired of seeing this little guy. :)

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Brittnie (A Joy Renewed)     at 4:05 am

Adorable baby. Love reading the updates you post here. :)

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Erica     at 4:14 am

I love this post! I appreciate the rundown on what ‘equipment’ he still uses. We fortunately inherited a swing and some other ‘newborn’ essentials so I’m glad to see that we didn’t spend a lot of money on them when they won’t be in use by the time our little guy is 4 months old, haha!

Cullen is such a cutie!

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Simply Life     at 4:23 am

I LOVE all these photos- he has the greatest expressions and you can see his personality shining through without even knowing him!

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Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen)     at 4:39 am

I think he looks more like Casey now! I can’t believe how big he’s getting! My youngest refused to take a bottle too. I was home with him all day, so he only wanted milk straight from the tap (as we used to say). My oldest was home with my husband so he did well with bottles except if I was giving it to him and then he didn’t want it. I pumped for a little over a year with him while I was at work. Even though I’m far away from this period in my life, I do take a stroll down memory lane when I read about you and Cullen. Sounds like you have settled into motherhood quite well Emily!

He’s absolutely adorable too!

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Shari     at 4:48 am

What a vibrant personality he has – it comes shining right through!!

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Heather (Heather's Dish)     at 5:05 am

i love reading these posts about your sweet boy…as if i wasn’t excited enough about our little dude making his debut in the next 2 weeks, i can hardly stand it now!

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Lee     at 5:14 am

You’re right; he definitely looks like a baby and not a newborn now. I think he has your eyes but in that first picture of him on his stomach, he looks just like Casey.

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katie@newmamamac.blogspot.com     at 5:15 am

he looks awesome!!!! teething sucks!!! atleast you got it out of the way and maybe youll have a little break? you should get an exersaucer and you can wrap a blanket around him so he fits better. but youll only need it for a few months, he probably wont like it anymore once he starts crawling. maybe look into a 2nd hand store. we borrowed ours and im glad i didnt shell out the money. good luck with everything!!!

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modernworkinggirl     at 5:17 am

So cute – I love that crooked grin. Thanks for all the informative, entertaining and cute-baby-sigh-worthy posts :)

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Stephanie @ On the Road to RD     at 5:18 am

Oh! Such a happy baby. He is precious.

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sallymae     at 5:23 am

Get an exersaucer!!!!!

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Emilie @ Emilie's Enjoyables     at 5:33 am

I love these monthly updates. Amazing how much his appearance as changed in four months!

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Alex @ Raw Recovery     at 5:52 am

Ah he just keeps getting cuter! Glad to see he’s happy and healthy!

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Haley S     at 5:56 am

He is seriously the cutest little man. You captured some great smiling photos…love it!

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Linda     at 5:57 am

We started the exersaucer around 5 – 6 months. We found that rolling up a towel and placing it in front of the baby made her more stable until she was big enough to fill the seat out more.

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Angela @ Happy Fit Mama     at 5:57 am

What a cutie pie! My kids LOVED their exersaucer and jumper. We started around 4 months. They were still a little to small but we rolled up a hand towel to put behind them for back support and folded a blanket underneath their feet so they could reach the floor.

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Beth     at 6:04 am

He is such a cute boy and getting so big! Get the exersaucer he will love it! We picked one up this past weekend for our little one who is just about 3.5 months and she is so into it!

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Avery @ YoungAspirations     at 6:05 am

Cullen has to be THE most adorable baby I’ve ever seen. Seriously.. he looks like a “Gerber” baby. I can’t get over his cuteness!! I love Cullen posts! :)

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Michelle     at 6:08 am

Your pictures are adorable! My favourites are the first two – the cheeky grin and the infectious laugh. I can’t believe he is in size 2 diapers and about 17 pounds. My 9 month old daughter is less than 17 pounds and in size 2 diapers … but then she takes after her daddy’s lean figure. We are envious of the first tooth. We have had 6.5 months of teething and nothing to show for it! She has been too busy crawling, learning to stand and attempting to walk. We never used an exersaucer and knowing my daughter’s personality, she would not have liked the trapped feeling. She wants the freedom of the floor. And I’m sure you get lots of suggestions, but here is another teether option: Sophie the Giraffe (both the original and small size) have been a hit with our little girl. Enjoy your time with your little man!

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Joss     at 6:23 am

Awww happy four months to the cutest baby ever! Such a strong, healthy lil man!

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Barbara Younger     at 6:25 am

Cullen is darling!! Kath and I have been discussing what personality he has.

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Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers     at 6:26 am

Ahhhh, happy 4 month birthday! He’s is so cute and getting so big!!

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Kathy     at 6:30 am

Hey you might want to try a fan when Cullen is sleeping. My grandson uses one (as do I) and it is a lifesaver. Its just loud enough that minor noises are muffled, such as voices or a tv, but not enough that it would interfere with the monitor. Once I started using a fan I found I slept much better also. Since having kids I’m a very light sleeper and its just enough of a hum to keep you sleeping soundly without hearing minor outside noises. Mine is like a small space heater/fan.

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Katie KS     at 6:31 am

We started exersaucer and jumperoo right around 4 months and Matthew loves them. (Eva always did too.) Cullen’s a bit of a chunk like M so we have never adapted the exersaucer with any kind of towel etc. When they are the average size of a 6 mo old at 4 mo … not so needed :) We are sending the swing and bouncer out to the new cousin asap – a bit sad but time to move on. We started cereal between 4 and 5 months and he loves to eat his “food.” It’s nice to have him in the highchair at dinner – I think he feels more a part of things.

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Dorsa @ Running Thoughts     at 6:32 am

I think you have the cutest baby in the whole world!

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Michelle     at 6:33 am

Love your writing style and what better topic than Cullen!

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Adrianne     at 6:40 am

I know it’s true that “all babies are different” but usually when I read your posts, I come away feeling like all babies are very similar too! Maybe it’s just Cullen and my Annabel, but I feel most of the time like I could have written your posts (only two months ago as our girl is almost 6 months). Love these updates!
Watch out for the teeth though. Annabel got her first just before 5 months and within a week had her second and now we think she’s already getting her first up top. It seems like she’ll be teething for months:(

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Tanya     at 6:50 am

Cullen is sooo cute and I love love love your blog. I just found out I am 5 weeks pregnant. I am scared of a miscarriage, but also thinking ahead to life with a baby.

You mentioned Cullen is sleeping quite well already….did you read/follow any particular “method” of baby care (ie. Happiest baby on the block, Baby wise etc.) or did your current schedule and routine with Cullen evolve naturally? I already feel overwhelmed with how to go about preparing for this new life!

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Blain     at 6:51 am

He is 100% precious! Such a handsome little man!

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Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie     at 6:54 am

He’s getting so big!! I love all his smiles. You have a Gerber baby on your hands, that boy is seriously photogenic!

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Melissa @ HerGreenLife     at 6:56 am

Fun that Cullen’s getting interested in what you’re eating.

We were also in no hurry to start solids, but I read the book “Baby-Led Weaning,” and we started offering some foods around the 6-month point. Our little guy is 7 months now, and we’re still going slowly, but it’s fun to watch him figure out and experiment with the food.

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Elizabeth     at 7:06 am

I also notice the change in my 5 month old from newborn to now…amazing!! I think the exersaucer is the best invention ever. My little one loves it (we started him at 4 months with a pillow to wedge him). It’s like his little office, he plays, uses motor skills, reaches for the toys. I definitely recommend it.

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Kelli H (Made in Sonoma)     at 7:07 am

I love these updates. It’s so fun watching Cullen’s progress. He is just so darn cute!!

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Colleen     at 7:09 am

So adorable! It is amazing how the smallest things wake you up after awhile. I had to turn down the baby monitor at night in order to sleep.

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Annie     at 7:16 am

such a cutie little guy! amen to what you said about baby books! i quit reading them after my kids were 3 months because they had me SO freaked out and paranoid that i had already “ruined” my children! and, i noticed that you have the same carseat as we had, and our kids hated it to! we actually sold our carseats after our boys grew out of them just because everytime i looked at the carseats i could just hear the screaming :-) happy 4 months cullen!

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Hallie V.     at 7:20 am

Wow…what a totally different baby from newborn to now! And he is so cute and looks so happy. Our Molly (3 1/2 months) is still really tiny so she doesn’t look very different from when she was a newborn. Waiting for her growth spurt to kick in. And congrats on the first tooth…what a great milestone!

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Emiy C     at 7:22 am

I tend not to offer advice to new mom’s unless it is solicited because I remember how much I got as a first time mom that was not always the most helpful. That being said, the one tip I got that I was and still am so thankful for was about our high chair… The Fisher-Price Healthy Care Deluxe Booster Seat is such a wonderful option that we use full time from the time our kids were 6 mo until even now our almost 3 year old still sits in it as a booster seat up to the table. It is compact, inexpensive (~$25), portable!, doesn’t have many nooks and crannies for food to get trapped in, and it’s all plastic – no cloth to get absolutely disgusting. Our dog enjoys licking it clean after every meal (slightly disgusting, but very convenient :) ). Just wanted to past on one of the best product recommendations I received when shopping for a high chair.

I can’t believe that we (I have newly turned 4 mo old as well) are almost to solid foods. Yikes! You’ll have to start “daily baby garnish” ;)

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Emily C     at 7:23 am

And apparently I can’t even spell my own name… that should be Emily C above

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Katie @ Healthy Heddleston     at 7:32 am

He is sooo cute!! I just love his personality and how much he smiles and laughs!

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alison     at 7:44 am

Exersaucers are good but a jumparoo would be better. My five month old goes to town in his, its his favorite thing to do. My son loved his too :-)

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krugthethinker     at 7:56 am

I just love reading these updates of your sweet little guy! Thanks for sharing!

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Sara     at 7:59 am

We got out exersaucer for our daughter around 4 months and she loved it. We just propped her up with some blankets for stability. Get it now, because by 8 or 9 months he probably won’t want anything to do with it because he’ll want to move and crawl around. Around 6 months we also moved from the infant car seat to convertable car seat that is rear and forward facing and our daughter is much happier riding in the car. Our daughter HATED her car seat from the get go, so I know how you feel! You’re right, enjoy the snuggles and chest naps while you can–it’s amazing how independent my 9 month old is now…snuggle, snuggle, snuggle! :)

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Cate     at 8:10 am

WOW, he’s already gotten his first tooth! He is so adorable :)

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Miriam @ Bellaspire     at 8:12 am

I am in love with Cullen’s smile and laugh!! Seeing these pictures literally make me laugh out loud. Congrats on the first tooth :) !!

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Ally     at 8:18 am

Can you give us an update on how the dogs are doing? I think many soon to be parents with very spoiled pups, like myself, are a little nervous. I would love to hear some tips on how you’ve helped them with the transition. Thanks!!

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Kelly     at 8:19 am

Hey Emily,

Cullen is SO cute! Total definition of Gerber Baby! It sounds like yall are doing fabulous!
I just wanted to pass along one quick suggestion regarding the “Four Month Rundown” list. This is about highchairs. Now, I am a mom of twins, but this goes for anyone I think (and this is just my opinion for sure!): highchairs are SO bulky, take up a lot of space,you cannot take them anywhere, and there are a lot of parts to clean. We went with “portable feeding chairs.” These are chairs that strap onto your dining room table chairs, kitchen chairs, you can take them with you when you travel to a friends house for dinner. They come with a tray, so when the baby is little they can sit right at the table with you, using their own tray. Then when they get a little taller, you just take their tray off and they can sit right at the table. As I said, easy to clean (every part can go into the dishwasher), safe, and much less expensive than a highchair. Just thought I would pass along a suggestion!
Kelly
This is just an example of one (the one my parents bought to have at teir house actually):
http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=4282469

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Kristen @ Change of Pace     at 8:27 am

Teething is so frustrating both for baby and mom. It seemed like nothing worked for my little ones. Just motrin when they seemed uncomfortable. I love watching him grow but I think I say that every time you do these posts :)

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Jennifer     at 8:50 am

Cullen is quite the looker! :) You really seem to have adapted well to motherhood, and take things in stride.

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Stellina @ My Yogurt Addiction     at 9:22 am

Awww! He is growing to be such a handsome little man :)

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Sarah     at 9:34 am

Your Cullen posts make me so excited to have a baby someday!

And I think he looks a lot like you now. Adorable.

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Ella     at 10:07 am

Love this post, Emily! I got a little teary-eyed looking at Cullen as a tiny baby, because my son is 5 weeks today and I can’t imagine him at 4 months!! I understand that “wanting them to stay tiny forever” sentiment.

PS I have asked you a couple random baby questions over the months, and I want to say THANKS for answering them! The wisdom of moms a few months ahead of you in the baby game is SO invaluable.

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Diana @ frontyardfoodie     at 10:37 am

Aww he’s so precious! I love his big smiling and giggling face.

I’m ready ready for a baby these days. You’re not helping me get through the next few months patiently. haha

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Courtney     at 12:14 pm

He’s adorable!! We keep a fan in our room and our kid’s rooms for some white noise. If not, they would wake up at every little bump too! I find it really does help to block out all the extra noises!

I LOVED my boy’s bouncy exersaucer. And all of my babies loved it too. They would spend so much time in there just bouncing around playing with the toys on it. For me it was definitely worth the investment!!

Oh and also, I nursed exclusively for 6 months with both my boys. I wasn’t in any hurry to introduce solids with them. And they were both very healthy babies!! :)

[Reply]

Nicole     at 12:18 pm

How is he already 4 months!?!?! I feel like I was just reading about Cullen’s first day.

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hannah alehandra     at 12:46 pm

Wow, I can’t believe how much Cullen has changed either! Looks so different, still adorably cute. I love hearing about how he is growing up, your family is very blessed. All the best, from England.

Hannah Alehandra

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Anna     at 12:57 pm

You are so lucky to have such a gorgeous and sweet little boy. I have loved looking at all the pictures of the past four months. He`s so adorable.
Love the rundown list.
Wish you and the family all the best!

[Reply]

Amanda     at 2:26 pm

Gosh, he’s just the sweetest little guy ever. And hey, congrats on hitting the 10,000th visitor today!

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Laura (Blogging Over Thyme)     at 2:59 pm

It’s so funny how babies sleep–it seems so uncomfortable and awkward! Haha

Don’t get too upset about the teething, after all, we all probably went through it ourselves and don’t remember it at all :) That’s so cute that he already has a tooth!

PS. I had to google almost all of those baby items just to figure out what they were, haha

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Heidi from BundlesofHugs     at 3:12 pm

ADORABLE! Time really seems to go by so much faster when you have a little one.

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Sharon     at 5:45 pm

I don’t normally comment but I have to say it’s not fair to other babies your boy is so cute. Makes my day seeing your posts.

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Anne Marie     at 6:18 pm

What a doll :) such a happy baby must have rockstar parents!

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Lauren @ Fun, Fit and Fabulous!     at 6:31 pm

Happy 4 month birthday Cullen!! I love visiting your blog and seeing his precious smiling face! :)

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Elisabeth     at 7:37 pm

I can’t believe how much his coloring has lightened up! What a sweetie :)

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Katie @ Talk Less, Say More     at 7:42 pm

He is really such an adorable baby!! LOVE that picture of him laughing! :)

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Kristen     at 12:13 am

Eek look at those cheeks! What a cutie…can’t believe its already been four months!

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Angela     at 5:47 am

I just can’t get over how adorable he is! He has sooo much personality, esp. for just 4 months old. Those expressions!

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Sara     at 5:55 am

He is SO handsome! I love seeing how he’s changed over the months. Your posts about Cullen always make me teary!

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Leatitia @ The Sweetest Year     at 7:02 am

He’s so cute! Happy Month-versary Cullen! :)

Nurses told me to wait until the baby is 6 months to introduce solid foods. I tried giving him cereal at 5 months old and he didn’t like it at all, didn’t want to eat. Even at 6 months, he didn’t like eating much. He turned his head with his lips closed and cried. I didn’t force him and we went to play. But at 6.5 months, BOOM! He started eating very well and a lot each day! Really, we shouldn’t force nature, it will come eventually!

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jamie @ balancedpalate     at 7:32 am

our birthdays are tomorrow :)

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allpointswhole     at 10:02 am

Sweet Cullen…could he be any cuter???

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Catalina @ Cake with Love     at 11:50 am

Love the baby, so cute!! p.s. your blog header rocks!

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Jamie     at 8:15 pm

This is such a sweet post:)
My little munchkin is breast fed and despises the bottle as well. We bought a sippee cup. And he took it like it was his new best friend. The Nuby’s are his favorite. Just wanted to give you another option if you haven’t tried it!

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Monica     at 3:34 am

Oh my goodness, I can’t believe a tooth broke through!

Sorry to hear that the little guy still isn’t taking a bottle. But it sounds like you three are doing great!

Love these posts, Wrigley is three weeks behind Cullen and it is fun to get excited for what lies ahead.

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Stephanie @My Freckled Life     at 11:37 am

I would just be VERY careful about the bouncers/jumpers/walkers. I work in early intervention, and we have a HUGE number of kids who come to us as tup-toe walkers (or not walking at all) because they spent so much time in jumpers and bouncers. While they are extremely handy, they actually can encourage kids to become used to positions or muscles that are counter-productive to walking. Our physical therapists are always begging parents to get rid of their jumpers and walkers. Just a different perspective to think about.

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Maria @ Beautiful Busy Bee     at 4:10 pm

Congrats on the first tooth! What a total cutie. :) And happy 4-month B-day to him.

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RLR at Mom's Magic     at 6:34 pm

I skimmed through and noticed that two other commenters recommended a booster seat instead of a high chair. That’s what we did, too, and we never regretted it or wished we’d made a different choice. We used the Healthy Care from Fisher Price – the tray fit in the dishwasher and if the seat ever got really dirty I jut gave it a hose-down in the tub. Used it for two kids, and I would definitely make the same choice again!

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Emily (Edible Psychology)     at 3:50 am

He really does look different! I thought he was absolutely adorable in all of the early photos, but I think he gets cuter all the time!

~Emily~

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Robyn (GirlonRaw)     at 11:51 am

Sorry I’m a bit late on this one but here are some things I wish I had known sooner that might help you:

Manus hated the car seat till we were able to face him forward. Loved travelling in the car following that.
Solids – wish I had started with Baby Led Weaning rather than listening to the doctor that said to start at 4months and have a fight with him to get it down. BLW at 7 months was the best decision I made. Messy, but now i have an almost 1 year old who feeds himself even with a spoon and loves it.
Amber teething necklace – best idea ever.

Hope this helps!

[Reply]

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[Reply]

Grow taller     at 2:28 am

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[Reply]

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