Sunday, August 12, 2012

The warrior princess diaries - VII

So I finally met bar bewdi Bubblegum who is now in Singapore. She told me about a journal that her mom had kept documenting her childhood and how much she enjoys reading it. Talking to her inspired me all over again to record Xena's antics with more regularity so she can grow up and read all that she did as a baby. I also realised that the last princess diaries update had been in March - five months ago! Thanks to Facebook, I do have the records which I just need to compile for the blog.

  • As usual, let's get the hospital stuff out of the way first. Xena is still rejecting solids, and not gaining weight at all. She's probably at the 1st percentile and is going to slip off the charts if she doesn't start eating and gaining weight. We have been meeting her doctor and dietitian, but their plans will only work if the baby opens her mouth, isn't it? She's also started to reject milk, perhaps due to her molars which are sprouting like crazy. In fact, she's even lost a bit of weight. I keep trying out new things, and some days she eats 2 spoons and other days nothing at all. I have tried everything in the book and more. I can't even begin to describe the frustration that comes with trying all kinds of food and all kinds of strategies only to have your baby turn away her face the instance she sees any food approaching her. And yet, she puts all non-food into her mouth instantly. How she knows what is food and what is not is anyone's guess. I guess I just have to keep trying. For now, I think she's thriving purely on photosynthesis. 
  • Thankfully, she's doing all right with her milestones. She started walking at the expected time and babbles a lot. She can identify quite a few things - car, bus, ball, duck, dog, iPad, penguin, lion, snake, parrot, etc. No, I don't actually have snakes and penguins walking around in my house; these are her soft toys. Earlier, she'd point and say "Tah!" for 'car'. Also for 'cat'. And 'tree'. And 'sky'. And 'fan'. Yep, they were ALL "Tah!" She can't say the full words yet, but now she says 'baw' for 'ball', 'duh' for 'duck', and 'dodo' for 'dog'.
  • Viv comes home around 8 pm, and she's either sleeping or sleepy by then. However, the moment she hears the click of the main door unlocking, she immediately sits up and says, "Papa!" I am jealous. I never get that. She only uses "Mama" as a distress call. When Viv was in Papua New Guinea, she looked for him all the time and everywhere. She thought he was playing a prolonged game of hide-and-seek with her. One day, she even tried to look for him inside the fridge!
  • I took her to Hokey Pokey, an indoor playground for babies and kids, and she absolutely loved it. Here's a picture of her in the ball pool.

  • Viv has found a brilliant way to make her brush her teeth. He lets her brush his teeth, while he brushes hers. The first time I woke up to see that scene, I couldn't stop laughing.

  • She's super duper active and I have a tough time catching up with her. This video was taken just before she started walking. Within 2 minutes, she gets her toy car into two accidents, reads a book, crawls, cruises, claps, walks, babbles, tries to snatch away mamarazzi's camera, and oh, also indicates how tall her papa is.

  • She absolutely loves playing peek-a-boo with me using the curtain.

  • I'm now using all sorts of funny tactics to get her to eat. Since Viv and I are following the no-TV rule very strictly, I use other distractors. Once I got her to eat breakfast by showing her the same picture of Imran Khan in a Filmfare issue over and over again, and saying, "Look Xena, a baby! Oh look, another baby! Hey, yet another baby!" My apologies to Imran Khan and his family. Then there was this time I literally bribed her into having dinner. I gave her my wallet and with each note she pulled out, she ate a spoonful. But I soon ran out of cash, and asked her if she accepted credit cards, and she didn't. :/
  • Why do babies throw everything? Food, toys, everything. To give her credit, I must say that she has established that she is not TOTALLY heartless. Agreed, she is brutal and merciless with her toys, but she does say "Bye!" to their mutilated carcasses before flinging them out of her play yard.
  • Xena loves to mimic anything and everything. Here she is, mimicking my mom's fake coughing.

  • Xena thinks I'm a cool/hot (delete as appropriate) chick. I asked her "Where is the bird?" and she immediately pointed at me. But then she took her 'When in doubt, point at Mama' tactic too far. I didn't mind being a bird the first time, but I did draw the line at "Where is the cow?" :/
  • Xena loves to turn on switches, whether it's the one to summon the lift or the one that controls a light or a fan. She will insist that I lift her up to the level of the switchboard, and she will turn the switches on and off, all the while looking at the lights and fans to see what has changed because of her actions.
  • Here's a collage I made to showcase Xena's teeth - from zero to 7 (clockwise from top left).


Kanan said...


Have you tried having her sit in a highchair at the dining table with you guys while you eat and she eats too? That seems to work for some kids. All the best with getting Xena to eat.

Kanan said...

Btw, love the pics and Xena updates too. :) And the blogmother post by German kid was really cute. You truly are really cool.

Arun said...

Eat, baby, eat!

How do we know said...

i love these diaries! and on food. here is what some of us unhygienic mothers do in india. after cleaning the floor throughly and making sure that all is ok (shoes/feet barred and all that), put a BIIIG plate on the floor with her toys and some cut fruits (apple, which is a very good teether, papays, which melts in the mouth et al), and some butter op corn (Good teether again). needless to add, the toys have to be cleaned like your dishes (yes, before and after every meal).

the kiddo picks up random stuff and puts in mouth. hopefully they will also put some edible stuff there.
we were devious, so we went one step ahead:
when they pick up a food item, say NOOOOO in your most forbidding voice. that ensures that they dont put it out of their mouth at all.
like all gud things, this ploy came to an end soon enough.

Bubblegum.... said...

And she loves sugar cane juice :D :D Dint she? :)

Arun said...

Have you tried letting baby feed you?

Porkodi (பொற்கொடி) said...

She does look less chubby in the 7th pic in the collage than the 1st.. please do some kinda tapas and make her chubby again! Doesnt she like even fruits? How about hiding everything in fruit pulp? :(

Alice said...

Hmmm... given that she seems to put nonfood objects in her mouth, you may want to disguise food as nonfood.. how? dont ask me, you are very resourceful I am sure!

And you may want to extend Viv's trick.... let her feed u while u feed her ;)

On an unrelated note, I was planning a trip to Singapore this month.. was hoping to be granted the princess's audience while there ;) The trip hasn't worked out though :(

Thisisme said...

absolutely lovely post! and yeah do try out the tricks which ppl have mentioned in comments above. For my niece/nephew..putting then in a highchair and making them eat alongwith us at food time made sure they do have food! m sure something or the other will work out :)
and the brushing trick is AWESOME! :))

humblog said...

i am going to break the cardinal rule as well and give some parental advice -
try different flavor - kids started on sweet stuff do'nt take well to other flavors.

do u own a copy of the book super foods by ruth yaron?

Kanan said...

The comment from humblog reminded me - you should check out weelicious dot com. Go to link called "First Foods". Some of Catherine's ideas are really awesome and not just for kids, for grown ups too. <3

jayashri said...

I love your updates, keep them coming and i love Xena, after my babies she is my fav baby in the entire world :-)

Coming to food, have you tried giving her your iphone and give it to her, my daughter will eat anything the moment i give her the iphone while she toggles between diff apps.
BTW--Hokey Pokey is run by a former co-workers wife :-)

Sayesha said...

Yes, tried it all - in high chair, on regular chair, on floor, while walking around. :)
PS: Thanks for the compliment. :)


How do we know,
Hahaha yes, I read about the 'snack plate' concept and tried it too. One whoosh from her and the plate and all its contents went flying. :) I have started what I called the bird feeding strategy. I clean the floor and literally throw the food on the floor like how you feed birds (think "aao aao" in DDLJ). Whenever she goes by, she picks up something. Sometimes she nibbles and sometimes she flings it away, but it's a good start. I still need her to 'eat' eat, for weight gain though...

Ah yes, she drank at the beach. :)

I don't even know what she likes and what she doesn't. The problem is not preference, the problem is universal reluctance to open her mouth.

I've tried the disguise method, and so far my bird feeding strategy (see above) is the only one with some results.
Let me know when you'll be here!!! :)

Thanks. :)
Yeah we have tried the family meal strategy with no results. :( She just squirmed and wanted to get out of there.

The problem is not preference. The problem is that she refuses to open her mouth for anything. Only if she tastes it will she (and I) know if she likes it or not...

Thanks for the link. Once she starts opening her mouth to taste new stuff, I can try out some recipes. :)

Thanks. :)
The iPhone doesn't work with her. It's in her 'Throw at once' list. :)
Yeah I heard that Hokey Pokey was started by two mothers. :) It's a really nice place, wish it was bigger though!

Sudeep said...

It is really that tough? Well best wishes then, and hoping that she starts eating soon.

Btw, to view the pic (by clicking on it) it goes to a new page but says that the id doesn't have access.

Shanky Jindal said...

Loved the blog…