I am over the moon lately because I feel like The Chub's oral defensiveness is starting to improve quite a bit. I feel like she is finally to a point where she isn't as scared or apprehensive about new things coming near her mouth, which makes life easier on all of us. Although texture continues to be an issue when she eats, it is becoming less of an issue for her to merely HAVE texture in her mouth. Before she would not let anything texturized into her mouth no matter what it was. She is now starting to accept:
Teething biscuits (sometimes will even hold them in her hand and chew on them without my assistance)
Washcloths (chewing and sucking on)
Texturized Spoons & other texturized utensils
Cheetos & Veggie Straws (Licking and taking small bites)
When I bring something close to her mouth, she tends to be open to the idea of exploring it. Her exploration isn't without some sort of trepidation, but I wouldn't expect her to jump in feet first with anything. Everything we've accomplished has taken lots of exposure and repeated tries to get to where we are.
I think she's getting bored of her bottle, but I haven't successfully transitioned her to any sort of cup. Liquids are not her favorite thing, so I think it will just take a lot of persistence and more exposure to get her comfortable to drink out of a new object and do it on her own. We're in the awkward place where she's kind of done with the bottle, but there isn't another alternative quite yet so we just have to push through.
On another note, although self feeding sounds freeing in theory, I'm terrified about it. I don't know that I trust her to eat or drink enough on her own, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there!
She's doing much better on her hands and knees now. She rocks on her own and seems to enjoy it for a period of time. She's doing well with weight shifting from arm to arm. We still need to use a thin cushion under her hands, because she's not quite ready to put her hands flat on the ground, but in a week or so, I'll pull the cushion and go from there. We started with two cushions, so we're getting there. At first she wasn't able to get back up on her knees from the one cushion, but can do that now, so I think she just needs time to build the muscles more. She's also improving quite a bit pulling herself up from sit to stand.
And since I haven't posted a picture of her in awhile, I figured one was in order: