Tag Archives: walking

She Says… 10 Months

BOOM! It has been a huge month for you, my little buddy.

Emmett 10 Months-1

The day you turned 10 months, the very tiny tip of your very first tooth poked through your gums. Bottom left. I know, it took FOREVER for you to get it. As I’ve said before, it certainly has not slowed you down in the eating department. And you took the teething pain like a champ! A handful of fussy days and sad nights, but all in all you continue your general “go with the flow” streak. As long as Daddy and I (or your favorite teacher at school) are there to give you a cuddle when you need it, you are good to go. A few days later the second one peeked through. You’re well on your way to having the cutest little pair of pearly whites punctuating your gummy grin.

Emmett 10 Months-8

And grin you do. All day long. Especially when your big brother is goofing off.

Which is all the time.

Emmett 10 Months-3

All of a sudden, your personality exploded right in front of our eyes. You move with purpose now. You have a bubbly, giggly sense of humor. You love to be hugged and kissed, and to hug and kiss right back. You squeeze my shoulder and gently pat my back when I carry you, and sometimes you’ll divebomb my face with your open mouth, gumming and sucking my cheek/chin like a big ol’ sloppy kiss. You are shockingly persistent when you want to grab or touch something and deceptively strong once it is in your grasp. You shout your words (perhaps to get a word in edgewise in our loud family?) and bob your head around to dance whenever music comes on. You make people smile wherever you go.

Emmett 10 Months-4 Emmett 10 Months-5

Owen’s favorite thing to do at the moment is squish or poke your delicious cheeks and say, “Mr. Cheeks! Mr. Face! I love you little Face! I wanna give you a smooch! SMOOCH!”. The other day you were crying in your crib when you woke up (which is rare), and I was busily making your bottle before I came in to get you. Owen danced nervously next to me, telling me to “Hurry, please”. He grabbed the bottle out of my hand as soon as it was ready and dashed into your room. His voice went up 2 octaves and he cooed, “I’m here, my baby. Here’s your bottle. You want this bottle? Here baby. I love you.”.

Gah! The love between you boys is so strong and palpable I could cut it with a knife. You are so lucky to have Owen by your side and he is so lucky to have a sweet, adoring brother like you.

Emmett 10 Months-9

Oh! Another huge development this month is WORDS. Well, you know, baby versions of words. But you are very clearly signing and attempting to say “All done!” (“Ah duh!” while twirling your hands in the air). In fact, I think we’ll count “all done” as your first “word”. You also pointedly say, “Daw!” when Schnitzel walks in the room, and “Baw!” for ball. I may have heard the beginnings of “bottle” (“bah buh”), while your chubby hand did the fist-squeezing sign language last night at bedtime. They aren’t decipherable to anyone but us at this point, but words are definitely on the horizon, my little linguist.

Emmett 10 Months-11

And finally, one of the most momentous milestones is just about here as well. Your first steps. You’ve been cruising for a month or so now, pulling your cute little body up on anything and everything you could reach. Lately you’ve been reaching for things farther and farther away, hanging on to your support with only a finger sometimes. Yesterday at school your teachers said you let go with that finger and took one wobbly step forward before plunking onto your butt and crying because you were so surprised that you were doing it by yourself. I can’t wait to see your skills myself. Doesn’t count ’til Mommy and Daddy see!

Emmett 10 Months-13

Your early walking skills seem to be following right in your brother’s footsteps (pun intended!). A few months ago I would not have guessed that would be the case. You both took such different paths (sitting and crawling at different times, very different body types, different personalities) to end up at the same spot. Remember that, little one. The road to success does not look the same for everyone, and you never know the route someone else is taking. Do not fall into the trap of comparing yourself to others, because you are YOU. And do not judge others against your own path, because they are THEM. Just celebrate the successes (yours and others’) and enjoy the ride. The end result isn’t the goal anyway; the “getting there” is.

Emmett 10 Months-2

I love you so much, Emmett-y. Mr. Delicious. Mr. Cheeks. You bring so much joy and happiness and silliness and comfort to our little family. I can’t wait to watch your personality grow and change as the months and years pass.

We adore you.

Love,
Mommy

She Says… Happy 4th!

Happy 4th of July!

I had hoped to have adorable smiley pictures of my little red, white and blue baby for you all to see, but unfortunately our day so far has been filled with nebulizer breathing treatments and a lot of whining. I’m not sure if it’s the bug Owen has (his usual… nasal/chest congestion, asthmatic breathing, stopped up nose, cough and general sickies, possible ear infection), teething (we’re up to 6 teeth and I think he’s working on 7 and 8 right now, though they are taking awhile to pop through completely), or frustration with not being able to walk on his own very far (he can go about 5 feet and then he plops down and is getting increasingly unhappy with that progress), but he is one out of sorts kid today. Thankfully naps have been normal, and he was fine when we went on a walk to see the 4th of July parade in our town, but the playtimes in between have forced me to gather all of the patience I have within me to ignore his whining and not explode.

I HATE WHINING.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Whining is far worse to me than crying or singing offkey or even fighting. It grates on my nerves. It makes me snap. Fast.

I have a feeling I’m going to have to get used to it, given Owen’s age and the fact that the “terrible 2’s” (or 3’s, as my mom always said that was way worse) are right around the corner. We’ve already entered the realm of baby temper tantrums. If Owen is holding my hand while walking and I stop to do something or steer us a certain direction, he throws himself on the floor, folds himself in half smooshing his face on the floor and wails. It’s not usually crying, it’s more of a scream. An angry scream. Thankfully at this age he is easily distracted and placated with something else. But still, it bewilders me.

There is a big part of me that wants to leave him there, crying, until he gets ahold of himself. To teach him that tantrums don’t get him anything. I have very little patience for whining and while I would love to say I “don’t tolerate it”, I’m not really sure what the best thing is to do in that situation. Especially with a child so young that they might not really understand the purpose of such a exercise.

That said, I’m sure he ‘gets’ cause and effect. And if crying and smooshing his red little face on the floor get him what he wants, he’s going to continue doing it.

So how do you avoid these tantrums when they are over something as small as walking the wrong direction? I’m currently reading “Happiest Toddler on the Block” (sequel to “Happiest Baby on the Block“, which absolutely transformed how I comforted Owen in the early months and, I believe, REALLY DID turn him into the happiest baby on the block), and Dr. Karp’s theories about empathizing (really, truly mirroring their frustration or anger or sadness) in a toddler-friendly way and then stating your rationale about why they can’t do whatever they want to do makes a ton of sense. It’s about meeting them at their level, and then steering them in the right direction. If that’s not a metaphor for good parenting, I’m not sure what is. Leave it to Dr. Karp to make it sound that simple! I’m just having a hard time putting it into practice when these little tantrums erupt. Ahem, often, on a day like today.

When it comes down to it I think the frustrated behavior I’m seeing now is a result of being on the verge of being a steady walker. He WANTS to walk somewhere, and gets halfway there and then just CAN’T. YET. GET. THERE. Imagine how frustrating that would be.

So I’m trying to keep that in mind while I listen to his nails on the chalkboard whining. Empathy = the key, right, Dr. Karp? I’m hoping once he wakes up from this nap he’ll be a bit less whiny. Please pretty please. How do you react to these little outbursts? At what age can you start to really make these teachable moments?

I hope your holidays are filled with less whining than mine!

She Says… What Are You Pushing?

In addition to eating things all day long (per yesterday’s post), Owen’s new favorite activity is PUSHING things. His little legs were made for walking, and when he can’t find the finger or legs of an unsuspecting person to grab on to and take off running, he pushes random objects across the floor. He’s like a little bulldozer recently. Folding chairs, toys, laundry baskets, empty cardboard boxes, etc.

The other day I caught him doing this.


 

He did it for at least 15 minutes. That’s precisely 7.3 laps from our new front hall to the kitchen to the dining room and back around to the front hall.

Still going…

Not a bad workout for either one of us, really.

She Says… 11 Months

My sweet toddling little man,

Confession: We missed taking pictures last month. Alas, amidst moving boxes and going to the beach and starting your new daycare, we just couldn’t get our act together to get you in that chair and take your picture. Sorry, bud. You’ll just have to trust me that you were as cute as ever.

You are officially one month shy of your first birthday. Honestly, the time is flying by so quickly I can barely stand it. Sometimes when people ask me how old you are, I begin to say “5 months” or “6 months” and then realize that — yikes! — you keep getting older. And, I might add, more and more entertaining and fun. Not that you weren’t fun before, because you were, but now you are the full-on court jester in our house. You LOVE to be the center of attention and to show off. You smile for the camera, copy sounds on command, wander around yelling new gibberish words and blowing raspberries. You are, without a doubt, the life of the party. And quite a ham. You throw your head back and laugh and laugh at funny faces and funny sounds and pretty much anything Daddy does. You wriggle down from our laps to give the dog your patented love pats whacks and do. not. stop. moving. EVER.

I have come to realize that you are one of those “busy” babies. Like we didn’t know that before! You are a speed crawler who can get your little hands in the dog bowl before I can launch myself across the room to stop you. You open every door and drawer you can get your hands on, and inevitably get your fingers stuck, even when they are baby proofed. You’re sneaky like that.

And you’re not just crawling anymore. No, sir. We have officially entered the world of toddlerdom. You took your first little baby steps when you were 10 1/2 months old, and now you’re walking so far that we’re no longer counting in steps. You scamper up both flights of stairs in our house like they are nothing. We’re working on teaching you to go back down on your butt, but you would rather just hold our fingers and step blindly off each step, without a thought as to what is below.

You are fearless. Utterly fearless. And sometimes it scares the crap out of me. Judging by what your Daddy was like when he was a child, you get that from him. And I’m sure I have many more years of heartstopping moments ahead of me with you, my little daredevil. As if you couldn’t tell from these pictures, it’s just about impossible to get you to sit still for a picture. It’s a wonder we have any in focus at all. I think the days of monthly photos are nearing a close!

Just like when you were a tiny baby, music is just about your favorite thing ever. If you’re sad or oonchy (as we like to call it, when you’re squirmy and agitated for no apparent reason), I can always ALWAYS make you smile with a song. Recently you’ve started dancing when you hear music, whether it’s the radio or the ABC’s. It’s funny, because neither Daddy nor I bounce as soon as music comes on, but you’ve learned that dancing is just what you do when the music moves you. And so you do. You’re fascinated with your musical toys, and have become totally head over heels in love with our djembe drum. You smack the top and tap with with your fingers and push it over on its side and pat the side.

You started your new daycare and have adjusted better than even I expected. All of the teachers can’t stop fawning over your rock star hair and adorable giggle. You haven’t figured out how to nap there very well (yet), but you couldn’t be happier or more agreeable despite the lack of sleep. And you make up for it by sleeping like a rock at night.

You impress me and amaze me every day with what an easygoing little guy you are. You are flexible, yet opinionated. Sweet, yet stubborn. Scheduled, yet curious and open.

Owen, I am so proud of the person you are becoming. It makes me just about burst with happiness that you are exactly who you are. And that will always be the case. I love you so blindly, so unconditionally, so wholly that there isn’t a thing in the world you could do to change it.

I can’t wait to see what you’ll do today to make me laugh. Because it’s always something.

Love,
Mama

She Says… Busy Little Bee

Owen has been a mover and a shaker since the day he was born. Heck, since before he was born. I remember being rocked from side to side as he rolled and tumbled in my stomach in those last few weeks. He dominated tummy time even as a tiny babe, and the movement milestones haven’t stopped since. When he gets ahold of your finger or hand or leg (or leg hair, in Benjamin’s case), he will pull up to a stand and barrel forwards, head first, so quickly you don’t have much choice but to go right along with him. The second his butt touches the ground, he’s back up. Crawling, scooting, using his patented one-knee-one-foot scramble to get across the room as quickly as possible.

Nothing is safe.

NOTHING.

Even before he has finished his bottle these days, he wants to get down from my lap. He smacks the table and dances around, taking sips of his bottle in between. He clamors up the couch cushions and smacks the wall, pulls at curtains and throws himself backwards onto pillows. He can climb up on top of anything.

His favorite thing to play with right now, despite my firm “no” and moving him away from it (and it away from him)? The dog bowl. Oh, shiny silver bowl covered in doggie slime. He sneaks around and speeds across the kitchen to get even just one tiny finger in that water and splash around. He knows he’s not supposed to do it. Before he touches it he even turns around to look at me and smiles. Mischievous little imp. Then, despite my protests, he laughs and does it anyway. … It’s a good thing he’s so darn cute. I move the dog bowl up onto the counter so often that the poor dog is going to be dehydrated!

Yesterday at daycare the teach said to me, “Phew, he is one of the BUSIEST babies I have ever seen. And I’ve seen a lot of babies”. Hmmm. I guess I always thought he was just a one year old. But perhaps I have been blessed with a particularly active and curious and daring and fearless one year old.

Another mom I know mentioned that she hasn’t even babyproofed her kitchen cabinets yet, and she has a 13 month old. Ha! As soon as Owen could move across the floor he was opening and closing drawers and doors and slamming his fingers in them. Busy is right.Thank goodness our new house has baby proofing on all cabinets, drawers, doors and stairs.We need every one!

And since we’re in full on teething mode here at the This Place is Now a Home home (4 teeth pushing through at the moment… it’s not a wonder he’s been on and off Ibuprofen for the last few weeks!), my busy boy puts everything he can reach in his mouth. Especially things he’s not supposed to eat. Like nightlights. And shoes. And laundry. And dog toys. It is a full time job just keeping up with him and making sure he’s not eating something he shouldn’t be (despite my best efforts at baby proofing!). Phew, I’m exhausted.

Do you have a busy baby? Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to have a baby who would tolerate (even enjoy?) sitting with me a reading a book, or playing quietly in one place for a few minutes at a time, rather than a little explorer. But I must say, having little Christopher Columbus certainly keeps me on my toes (and has definitely helped me lose the last of my baby weight, and then some!).

She Says… First Steps

Remember when I predicted that Owen would take his first steps by 10 months? Well, I was a few weeks early, but he actually took his first step last week while we were at the beach! It was like he had planned it: He went from sitting to standing all by himself (almost levitating like a little genie on the way up), and then hovered there in place for a second before taking a teeny tiny half step with one foot, and then the other. His arms dangled in front of him, Frankenstein-style, for balance. He looked up at me in amazement and smiled before plopping to the ground. Ta da!

My whole family was there to witness it and everyone clapped and cheered.

I haven’t seen very many steps since then, but he’s tried standing a few times and is wobbly but definitely able.

While it is getting harder and harder to contain him when we’re playing, which can be exhausting, it’s also incredibly thrilling to watch my little baby become a clamoring, climbing little boy right in front of my eyes. Thank goodness for our babyproofed new house! We moved at the perfect time. He is into EVERYTHING. He opens every door, finds a way to climb up and onto just about everything, and picks up anything from specks of dirt to screwdrivers to dog toys to books. Just this morning I was trying to unload the dishwasher and I gave him a spoon to play with on the floor. I turned around from putting some plates away and he was standing on the open door of the dishwasher with a spatula in one hand and pulling the top rack towards him with his other hand. Busy, busy baby.

As they say, my life is now over :)

Just kidding. I think the [newest] fun part is just beginning.

She Says… Beep Beep!

No, not bleepity bleep (even though that’s what I feel like doing when I look at my neverending To Do list recently).

Beep beep!

Owen and his ride-on walker car have become BFFs. So much so that they even look like twins now, no?

My buddy, my buddy... my buddy and me!

His FAVORITE thing to do is walk all around our house holding my fingers (and recently he’s been testing a few steps with only one finger) and climb all over me. Who needs toys when you can climb all over Mama?

I'm blurry because I never stop moving.

Closer... closer...

I can barely get a picture because he just wants to climb right up into my face.

Gotcha, Mama!

But his 2nd favorite thing to do is toddle behind his little car buddy. Can’t wait to get this little movin’ man to our new house where he’ll have a lot more space to practice that walking. For now we have to go back and forth, back and forth in his nursery and our tiny hallway (as you can see from the video!). As soon as he gets going, he hits a wall. Poor kid.

Any bets on when he’ll be walking without assistance? I’m still thinking by 10 months we will see his first step(s), but we’ll see. He certainly does love to hold on… and who can blame him?

She Says… Catch Me If You Can

Boy, was I wrong when I thought that Owen was going to go straight to walking without crawling. He is a crawling fiend! Forget toys; all he wants to do is crawl, crawl, crawl. Oh, and walk.

The new playtime is to plop him on the floor in the middle of a room and let him go to town. He crawls to whatever the nearest piece of furniture is and pulls up to a stand. Then he cruises precariously between furniture pieces and toys, leaning and stretching until his little fingers can get a grip on the next thing so he can take a few steps and toddle around. If I am anywhere within reach, he scampers up me like a jungle gym and then scooches and squirms until he can jump out of my arms and onto something else (a table, a couch, the washer/dryer, his crib, changing table, whatever). I think I have a little acrobat on my hands.

Once in awhile he’ll lock eyes on a toy, beeline for it, sit up, and then do this adorable little bouncy dance where he flails the toy and wiggles his torso and giggles. It’s amazing what brings him such joy. And the simple pleasure is totally contagious. I laugh and laugh and laugh.

As I’ve said before, I think Owen has a special radar for things that are not his. Phones, tv remotes, water glasses, keys… they call to him like Greek sirens, luring him into dangerous positions, like with one finger on the (sharp! cornered!) coffee table and no other handhold in sight. I can see the glimmer in his eyes as he reaches and tries to walk with only one hand steadied by a piece of furniture. I have a feeling the “learning how to walk unassisted” milestone is nearly here. It’s all happening so fast. Teeth, crawling, almost-walking, all in the span of the last 2 weeks. I want to stop and drink it all in, but I’m too busy chasing after the little gingerbread man.

In Owen’s 8 month letter I said the word of the month was “sickness”. Now, without a doubt, it is “MOVEMENT”. I can barely catch the kid between his cute little butt crawling away (still mostly with one foot and one knee, though sometimes he’ll do a stretch of 2 knees) and his teetering steps while holding my fingers. My eyes constantly scan the floor for “what dangerous thing is he about to find or climb on”. Phew. Hard work!

And then, right when I think my job as a mother has been demoted to referee or thing to climb on, I get a cuddle. A sweet, quiet moment where he burrows his little head into my chest or takes my face in his hands and pats me softly or twirls my hair while I’m changing his diaper. These tender little moments are scattered throughout our days of exploring, and for those sweet, precious seconds, time stops. And I appreciate. And I drink it in.

And then it’s back to exploring! Catch him if you can…

She Says… An Accident Waiting to Happen

Since we’re moving in May, there are lots of things that we are putting off doing now by sticking them on the “after we move” bucket list. One of those things (ahem, until recently) was proper babyproofing. Since Owen still hasn’t quite figured out the intricacies of crawling, he’s still under close supervision. We don’t need to be locking up the kitchen cabinets or cordoning off the stairs just yet. He logrolls around from toy to toy, and pulls up to a stand and cruises along furniture, but since he can’t get very far without my help, I sort of considered myself safe in the babyproofing department.

WRONG!

Yesterday, with me literally an arm’s reach away and watching him every second, he we broke: 1. the glass french press that Benjamin uses to make coffee every morning, 2. a glass coaster on our coffee table (that seemed WAY too thick to break… but alas, wrong again!), 3. a piece of a plastic water bottle. As if that wasn’t enough, Owen couldn’t get enough of tugging on power cords and trying to pull up to a stand on plugs. And sticking his chubby, drool-covered hands as close as he could get to every outlet he saw. And pulling all of the CD’s and CD covers out from beside his stereo, tossing them aside once he’d slimed and tasted each one.

I think I finally understand why people say “just you wait until he’s crawling/walking/whatever”. While I don’t agree with that sort of warning (I’m pretty certain we’re going to have just as much fun with this stage as we have with all of the others so far), I totally get how exhausting it is just to keep those little fingers out of electrical sockets! And Owen’s not even really crawling or walking unassisted yet. Phew.

So I think some babyproofing is in order here. Before we move. Because I’m not sure we can make it through the next two days without more things breaking, let alone the next month and a half.

I don’t like the idea of saying “no” every step of the way as Owen explores his world. Of course I want him to be safe, and there is a time and place for teaching him what he can and cannot do, but at this very early stage, I think it’s mostly my responsibility to make sure that he can safely interact with everything he can reach. That’s easier said than done.

He definitely knows the difference between his toys and things that are not intended for him. His favorite spot to play currently? The dryer. Favorite toy? Mom’s water bottle. Favorite game? Figuring out how to climb/stand on anything that’s plugged into an electrical socket. I know he’s not doing these things to be bad, he’s exploring. He’s learning. He’s figuring out how things work. He’s testing theories. So I’d rather not put a lot of restrictions on him at this point. But it did get me thinking: When do babies learn the word “no”?

What about you? What were the first things you baby proofed? What things did you forget to babyproof that turned into accidents? How do/did you restrict your baby so you don’t have to say “no” all the time?

She Says… Strong Baby

We have a little climber on our hands. Owen is 7 months and just figured out how to pull himself from a sitting position to a standing position.

It is just about the cutest thing in the world to see his tiny body shake as he works so hard, and then ever so slowly rise up onto his feet. We always knew he was an active kid, and bound to figure out how to move early in life. Even at 8 weeks, I remember my mom group leader saying that Owen was one of those kids who just wasn’t going to be happy until he could walk. I wouldn’t exactly call him unhappy :) but he certainly is focused on figuring out how to move and climb!

He’s very close to crawling too. He has a sort of scoot/roll/stretch combo that he uses to get himself closer to toys or people. He’s definitely still figuring out the whole “movement” thing, though, and gets frustrated when he’s stretching or rocking on his stomach and not going anywhere.