The quest for the perfect diaper

As with any product, the search for the perfect brand requires extensive testing.  This is especially true for diapers.  Tomoe is now at about 6 kg, which means she can now move up to the medium size diapers (6-11 kg) from the small size (4-8 kg).  The small diapers have been getting quite tight on her, as well as being somewhat too small to hold in all her poop.  Yes, she’s leaked quite often lately.

We’ve tried a few brands, including Pampers, Merries, Moony and Goo.n.  We’ve been using mostly Pampers for the small size, though we’ve been using Goo.n recently.  The small size Moony diapers leaked a bit more than others, though Pampers and Goo.n have been leaking a lot lately.

Now, we’ve moved on to medium.  We just bought Pampers and Moony today, so we’ll see how they work.  One thing’s for certain, the medium fits much better than the small.  Pampers fits extremely well, and my wife said that she’s probably a Pampers baby, meaning she’s the right shape for them.  The Moony diapers have an advantage, though.  They have an elastic waste band.  We’ll see how both brands hold up to leaks, and if they hold enough volume of poop.

So, from now on, we are conducting the poop test.



A quarter year old!

Tomoe is 3 months old!  She just had her 3 month “birthday” and she’s still going strong.  It’s been incredible to watch her change over the past 3 months.  She went from a newborn baby who couldn’t see very far, showed very little in the way of awareness, and couldn’t hold her head up to a baby who is very vocal, smiles a lot, and has a very strong neck.  She’s showing a lot of personality now.  I have plenty of conversations with her these days.  She makes a sound with her voice, and I just answer her.  Then she responds.  She’s responding to our voices a lot, and is often searching the room for us.  When I come home from work, she has a big smile as soon as she looks at me.  She’s also been trying to turn herself over.  She gets about 40% of the way, but can’t quite roll.  She’s also starting to push herself up with her arms while she’s on her stomach.

We often play with her.  She seems to really enjoy being held up above our heads, like she’s flying.  She absolutely loves that.  She loves bouncing, too.  I’m looking forward to seeing what kind of activities and toys she likes.

3 month old babies are at a very important point in their lives.  Their brains are developing quickly, and language is beginning to get its foundation.  She may not be able to understand any words, but she’s learning conversational sounds.  She constantly watches while we talk.  This is the time we should be talking to her a lot, saying as many different things as possible to aid her in learning new words.  We should be pointing things out and saying what they are.  As she’ll be raised bilingually, she has to learn words for 2 languages, which means her first 4 or 5 years will show somewhat slow language development.  However, that’s normal and nothing to worry about.

Golden Week is coming up, and she’s going to have a busy week.  On Sunday, we’re going to a beach barbecue, where she’ll meet a lot of people.  Then on Monday, she’s going to her grandparents’ house and finally meeting her grandpa.  It’ll be an exciting week for her!

Even while sleeping, she's showing she's strong.

12 week old Tomoe and a baby smile overload

Tomoe is 12 weeks old.  Almost 3 months now.  A lot has been happening in her life lately.  One of the biggest things is that she’s been drooling a lot and hasn’t been drinking as much as usual.  She’s teething!  She’s now 60 cm from head to foot. Also, she’s been getting stronger, and seems to love sitting up, as well as trying to stand up.  She gets a big smile if she’s held up in a standing position.  Lots of smiles.  So, for those of you who love smiling baby pictures, here you go!

Uh-oh. That's not a smile.

I guess she doesn't smile all the time.

Tomoe went to Kamakura

For the second week in a row, Tomoe went to the beach.  It was a bit different this time, as we walked from Kamakura to Enoshima, all of the time along the coast.  Before we got to the beach, we stopped at Kua’aina, a Hawaiian hamburger restaurant that serves the best burgers in Japan, most likely.

Tomoe wants a hamburger, not her formula.

On the beach, she wasn’t very interested in the waves this time.  She just wanted to sleep.  She did get to touch the water this time, though there was no reaction from her at all.  Just sleep.

Looking out at the ocean? No, she's actually asleep.

We walked along the coastline, mostly on a sidewalk, but on occasion, we stopped at a park or convenience store.  At Inamuragasaki Park, Tomoe was a bit hungry.

She was so hungry, she tried to eat the baby carriage.

One thing we noticed is that her eyes are starting to change colour.  It looks like they may become hazel.  They’re still mostly blue-grey, but hazel is becoming visible.  I didn’t think she’d keep her blue eyes.

Tomoe’s also become quite the talker.  Of course, she doesn’t say any words, but she makes plenty of sounds while we talk to her.  It’s pretty cute.  But when it’s late at night, she sometimes likes to make lots of noise.  She’s not hungry, she just wants to talk.  Right now, my wife is trying to sleep, I’m trying to blog, and Tomoe just won’t stop talking.

Tomoe’s day at the beach

Last Friday, my wife and I walked down to the beach from our apartment with Tomoe.  It was nearly 10 km.  It was also Tomoe’s first time at the beach.  Our walk to the beach was filled with cherry blossoms and brief rain showers.  But when we arrived at the beach, there was no more rain.  It was cloudy, though.  Thankfully, the clouds cleared near the western horizon and Mt Fuji.  You can see the pictures on my Japan blog.

Tomoe’s first visit to the beach was quite the experience.  At first, she didn’t seem very excited.

Tomoe's at the beach!

We stopped a while to take some pictures of the sunset and Enoshima and an elderly man started talking to us.  I have no idea what he was saying, though.  After a bit, we went down to the beach, took Tomoe out of her baby carriage and I carried her to the water.  That’s where the magic began.  I crouched down and put Tomoe on my knee so she could be close to the water.  She was mesmerized by the waves coming in.  She couldn’t take her eyes off of them.  She started breathing quickly and her body would not keep still.  She was shaking with excitement.  She wasn’t afraid at all.  She was incredibly excited by these waves coming in.  It’s something she’s never seen before.  I have a feeling she’s going to love he beach.

My wife was holding Tomoe for this picture. She was pretty excited, so she wouldn't stay still.

I'm holding her on the beach with the sun setting behind us.

After the sun set behind Mt Fuji, we made our way back to Kugenuma Kaigan Station and back home.  It was an exciting day for Tomoe, and we’ll be seeing the beach again this Friday.

Later at home, she gave me a big smile.

That night, Tomoe seemed very happy.  She smiled a lot.  She’s been doing that a lot lately.  Today, she was even laughing.  She’s finally started laughing.

Moody baby discovers her hands!

Lately, Tomoe hasn’t been taking naps well at all during the day.  She’s been spending her day awake and crying.  She’s full, but keeps crying.  Her diaper’s been changed, but keeps crying.  She drools a lot, but she doesn’t seem to be teething.  Still a little early for that.  She just doesn’t settle down.  She only seems to settle down if she’s being held or if she’s outside.  I’ve been finding it difficult to do any blogging or writing.

Tomoe’s definitely developing at a fast pace mentally.  She’s extremely aware of her surroundings now.  She watches everything.  She focuses on us when we speak, and she’s very attentive about how we speak.  If I talk to her, she’ll stare at me and follow my mouth movements.  She often smiles when I talk to her.  She’s beginning to make sounds that are almost laughs.  Can’t to wait to hear her laugh.

She’s also found out that those hands that are waving around in front of her are actually hers.  She’s gaining control of them, and now directs them to her mouth to suck on.  Whenever I hear a kissing sound from her, I know she’s sucking on her hand.  She’s also grasping at things, usually a finger, her blanket or my wife’s lip or hair.

She sleeps quite well at night these days, probably because she’s awake all day.  I think the longest was more than 8 hours in one stretch.

Now that she’s looking around a lot and she’s probably restless while laying down alone, we need to consider getting her a toy that hangs above her so she can be occupied and stimulated.  We saw something at Akachan Honpo that looks good.

In other news, a couple other Japan bloggers have just had babies of their own, David of Ogijima and Salaryman of Foreign Salaryman in Tokyo. Congrats!

And now, a picture.

Oh no! What did I just do??? (Actually, she's asleep and her mom put her hands like this)