Harry turned 4 weeks old yesterday! So I thought it appropriate to chart the day, and let others answer the question that I ask constantly… is this normal?  

6am-8am Woke up at 6:25 and had half a feed.  A few cuddles from Dad while Mum has a shower but still demanding more so had another feed around 7:30…
8am-10am …and then some more at 8:05, which was really just a top up to make sure Harry was nice and content for an outing. In the car at 8:25 and heading to do some gift and grocery shopping.  Was a bit squawky in the pram initially, but a quick cuddle from Dad settled things down before sleeping for most of the time.
10am- 12noon Harry calls the shopping expedition to an abrupt end at around 10am.  Dad reads the paper in the front of the car while Mum administers an emergency feed.
12noon – 2pm Was pretty grizzly up until 1pm when finally Harry gets some solid sleep.
2pm – 4pm Sleeping
4pm-6m Started to stir around 4.  Had a bath – great fun! and then another feed and some cuddles from Mum before going to bed around 6pm.
6pm-8pm Gets some on and off sleep with grunts and groans in between.  Won’t settle without some more milk – supplied just after 7pm
8pm-10pm Sleeping
10pm-12am Woke Harry up for a feed just on 11pm.  Back to sleep at 11:50pm
12am-2am Sleeping
2am-4am Harry awake and squawking at 2:20am.  Fed and back to sleep by 3:30am
4am-6am Sleeping until 5:50am.  It’s a new day…

So… Are we playing with him enough? How do you work out what they want?  Is he feeding to little? too often?

He’s definitely got a few different types of cries / grunts / squawks, but apart from the one where we thought he might have Islamic tendencies (rapid fire, high pitched: “Alah, Alah, Alah…”) which we know generally means I’m hungry…NOW! – the others are still a mystery.

As you can see from the above he doesn’t do much that’s, well… exciting yet.  Found some good information at Children, Youth and Women’s Health Service on things to look forward to.  (Are there better web sites out there? Leave a comment –  I’ve updated things so logging in is optional.  Anyone can leave a comment now – just make sure you include you’re name and preferably e- mail so we know who you are)

So what should he be doing?  Well, Grandma Hardywas expecting a smile before 3 weeks – and she allegedly got one. Mary claims to have conducted a scientific experiment where a kiss from Mary elicited a smile from Harry on 5 consecutive occasions.  Grandma was able to confirm the findings but unfortunately this experiment has had poor repeatability and the rest of the scientific community researching this topic (ie me) is disputing the findings.  Nonetheless the CYW site is pretty clear that we should expect Harry to begin to smile at a familiar face by around 4-6 weeks.  So anytime now Harry… remember me? I’m your Dad!

He spends a bit of time cross-eyed.  But apparently their eye muscles are pretty immature – expect the eyes to move “in unison most of the time by 6 weeks” the web site says.  He certainly isn’t watching my face when being talked to (“looik at moy Harry, looik at moy”), that is unless I put my face where he’s looking – I do that a lot.  According to CYW they start to look at your face somewhere between 4-8 weeks, the average being 6.  We printed out some enlarged photos of family and friends and stuck them around the cot to give him a helping hand with this.

On the visual front it also says he should be following a moving light with his eyes for a couple of seconds by 1 month.  I haven’t tried this one yet, but I think he’s almost there.  During playtime this morning he did seem to be following a moving ball, so long as the ball was moving slowly.  Also not a very repeatable experiment at the moment.

Another fact? “infants in the first eight weeks have no control over their movements and all their physical activity is involuntary or reflex.  No arguments from Harry on this one, apart from a couple of hand movements where he’s potentially looked to hold the dummy in his mouth, there’s been nothing like a purposeful movement yet, and it looks like we’ll have to wait at least another 4 weeks.  Sigh… I was optimistic with his first soccer ball.

The eight week mark actually looks like it should be a bit of a milestone.  So much so that CYW identifies it as a potential wonder week, I like the sound of wonder weeks but when the reality strikes I’m sure to look forward to the sunny days that follow.  Other things we’ll be looking for in week 8 are:

o              lifting his head when lying on his tummy

o              making cooing noises and vowel sounds

o              listening to what we’re saying and make noises as he ‘talks’ back

We’ve also been charting his growth.  In the womb he was generally ahead of the game, well up above the 50th percentile.  Late in the pregnancy his growth slowed which alarmed us a little at the time, and then after he was born he promptly lost 600g taking him down to the 25th percentile.  But since then he’s been making some steady ground up through the pack and has regained his birth weight and then some.  Last week was probably a bit of a growth spurt.  So he’s now somewhere in the middle of the pack again.  Does any of this make any difference in the long run… I’m pretty sure it doesn’t mean a thing, but it’s fun to watch, at least until he starts to do some more stuff!