I knew that blogging was going to be something that became extremely difficult to find time to do once Nellie was born, but I didn’t think I’d be THIS BAD. I’m forcing myself to sit down right now to record what our life looks like because I know myself too well. My memory is terrible and if I don’t take the time to write down this exact moment in time, in 6 months, or a year, or a handful of years later it will all be a blur.
So here’s where we are.
My-oh-my has my daughter arrived. Let us count the ways she is a joy to be around. At nearly 8 months of age she is crawling, pulling up and standing on all the things. She has 3.25 teeth as of today, and laughs big loud giggles when you tickle her or blow kisses on her belly. When she’s in her stroller she sits quietly with full attention. Be it crawling, standing, or sitting she MUST be holding something in each hand. Preference if they’re her Fisher Price stacking rings. My god how this baby loves those plastic rings.
She has graduated from the sink bath to the big girl bath which has been amazing and terrifying to witness. Where before bath was a 5 minute ordeal, now it’s minimum 15 minutes of tub time where I look down at this tiny little baby in this huge tub and I can already fast forward and see the girl she’ll be in a blink of an eye. Her first bath in the big tub she sat tentatively and my hand was there constantly to grab her. Now she crawls and splashes, chatters and squawk as she flops around like a fish. Where she once let us wash her hair and body with zero protest, now she LOUDLY lets us know that being told to stop playing for silly things like cleanliness will NOT be tolerated. I can’t help but laugh as she freaks out. The minute the washcloth is removed she’s back to all smiles and splashes. The drama with this one.
Nellie’s favorite past time was once rolling. Rolling rolling rolling around every inch of the living room. Then one day she took her first real crawling steps, and four days after that she’d turned into a speed machine. Now she will be contained by no one and is offended when we dare try. She sees the dog bowls, kitchen cabinets, chair legs and she wants them. She wants them now. Baby gates are in our future, but as long as we can we contain the beast with what we have around (toys, pillows, dogs) since we’re holding off gating our entire world.
The amount of standing we’re already dealing with blows my mind daily. Her face lights up with sheer pride and I find myself shocked to see that look on the face of someone so small. She often surprises me by being so much more than the “baby” I constantly believe her to be. I often think she can’t possibly think and feel things that “big kids” feel, and then I’ll watch her pull herself up to standing and smile the biggest smile in the world and I realize that although she’s not even 8 months old yet she is already experiencing complex emotions like pride. She’s not just a “baby”, she’s a tiny person and her personality with all its quirks and complexities is right here for us to see.
You guys, she’s already trying to walk. I can see it. Yesterday she was holding onto the coffee table happily banging her toy on the surface and she stopped. She started looking at me, then her feet, leaning and moving her hands towards me and I could see her mind working. She saw there was a distance between her and I and she wanted to close it, but she wasn’t quite sure how to make her limbs do what she needed. She could tell her legs were what was holding her back and she focused so hard to make them move. And she did it. She reached out for me with one hand and slowly took a step in my direction. Then she quickly lost her balance and tumbled into my arms, but she’s trying. She’s trying so hard to put those pieces together that will make her fully mobile. We’ll have a walker here before we know it.
Can we talk about the smiles? They never stop. A baby that was soooooooo angry to be in this world from 0-3 months has morphed into this child that is ready for anything and a pleasure to be around. She smiles at the dogs, at Adam and I, at the wall, at strangers, at her toys. She smiles and chats and ‘da-da-da-da-da-da’s’ on and on and on and its infectious to be around. Even when she’s sleep deprived, teething or sick she keeps her spirits up. I don’t know where it came from but its one of her sweetest qualities. People who meet her remark about how happy she is and I just smile and nod. She really is!
Food has been our biggest new adventure lately. She started off being so against anything except the thinnest of puree foods, but after my mom visited and let her just try a bunch of things we realized our kid was much more adventurous with food than we had given her credit for. Sitting at lunch while my mom fed Nellie little bites of this and that off our plates and watching her gobble it up like a baby bird was so exciting. I’ve had to adjust my thinking with food after seeing how receptive she was with my mom to try new things. My mental note now is to just keep offering. There’s so much interesting food out there for Nellie to try and I can’t get bogged down with plans and schedules and nonsense. It’s food! Eat some. The end.
She loves water, can’t take longer than a 30 minute nap if she’s in a car seat or carrier, has stared “dancing” while standing if music plays, is addicted to her baby piano and tries to play it by putting her head on it, has graduated to size 3 diapers, wears 9 month pjs and is almost too long for them already, and loves quiet swings in the hammock. Her favorite toy to hold while in her car seat is Sophie the giraffe, she drools like crazy while she’s cutting teeth, and enjoying pinching me or snapping my bra strap while nursing. My favorite activity with her every day is nursing her to sleep, especially if she falls fully asleep in my arms, and she puts herself to sleep for all naps and bedtime without much fanfare these days. Her bedtime routine is we start getting ready for bed at 6:30 p.m. every single night, she’s asleep by 7 p.m. whereby she will sleep through the night until her internal Swiss clock wakes her promptly at 6:30 the next morning. She sleeps with her butt in the air and her arms tucked under her, puts her feet in her mouth as if they’re toys while lounging in her car seat, and happily wears a sun hat without protest.
She’s amazing and weird and never stops moving and I can’t even believe she’s almost 8 months old already.