I can’t believe that it is already time to write you another monthly letter. You are eight months old now. Month seven came and went and I never could find the time I needed to sit and reflect on the month before so I’m going to try to cram both months into this one. I hate doing that because if I don’t get it written down right away I forget some of the details and I’m afraid I’ve already lost some of the memories I wanted to hold on to. Some day when you are a sleep-deprived mom you’ll understand how the time and details can slip away.
You have been a very busy little girl over the last two months. Your weight gain has slowed down a little bit now, but at your six month check-up you were 19 pounds, 1 ounce and 28 1/4 inches tall. The last time you were weighed (just shy of 8 months) you were 20 pounds, 2 ounces. You have pretty much caught up with Caitlin and you are almost exactly the same size as Mikayla, who are both several months older than you.
Just after you turned six months old you started sleeping through the night. You made it about five nights straight and then you started waking up again. I’m not sure what happened, but I was very grateful for those five nights of sleep. Anytime you want to resume that sleeping thing would be just fine with me. I’m hoping that the night waking is due to teething and all of the rapid developments you’ve been going through recently but if it isn’t, we need to have a little talk. Mama needs her sleep – preferably before she loses her mind.
Speaking of rapid developments, you can now sit up by yourself, crawl (although you still prefer the army crawl most of the time), stand up on your own, and you love to clap (especially when you hear music). We had to set baby gates up in the living room because you kept getting away from us when we weren’t watching. You are starting to pull yourself up on everything and get really mad when I make you lay down to change your diaper. You grab and my shirt the whole time I’m changing you and try to stand up. Apparently I need to start practicing the standing diaper change again. I haven’t had to do that one for a while.
Your official first word(s) were spoken clearly on October 10th and just like your brother you chose “dada” over “mama”. You actually combined it with “hi” and we’ve been hearing “hi dada!” ever since. I think I’ve caught “bubba” a few times and you’ve also started saying “mama”. The first time I heard a clear “mama” you were in the floor crying. You wanted me to pick you up but I was trying to finish up something. Once you screamed out “MAMA!” I could no longer resist and scooped you up right away.
Over the last week or so you have decided that you don’t want baby food anymore. Anything that you can pick up with your hands and put in your mouth yourself is just fine, but if you see a spoon headed your way you turn away from it. I assume it is because you have finally mastered the pincer grasp, but this does complicate things just a bit. Even though you have four teeth now, you still can’t do a whole lot of chewing which greatly limits what I can feed you. Your favorite things to eat are the Gerber fruit puffs and cheese puffs (that look like mini cheetos!) but somehow I think you need a little more nutrition that what those can offer you. You did seem to like your brother’s Spagettios that I let you try though, so I guess that’s a start.
I’ve started trying to get you to drink out of a sippy cup for a while now but you aren’t really taking to it like I thought you would. You will drink out of it now and then, but most of the time you just prefer to chew on it. I was really hoping you would like it because you have started refusing to take a bottle from anyone other than Miss Paula. Since I do have to leave you with someone else on occasion, it would be nice if you would drink something when I’m not around. I know you would rather have me around to breastfeed you whenever you get a little thirsty but that isn’t always an option. I have a feeling we won’t be weaning anytime soon though.
Along with all of the other developments, your personality has really popped out over the last couple of months. You don’t hesitate to let us know when you don’t like something. You laugh like crazy when your brother does something silly – and he’ll do nearly anything to make you laugh. You also have figured out a couple of ways to make us laugh. You scrunch your face up into the cutest smile I’ve ever seen and you love to make funny noises with your tongue.
Over the last couple of weeks I’ve started calling you my “little monkey” because of the way you latch onto me when you want to cuddle. You wrap your arms and legs around me and squeeze tight like you are giving me a hug. It is nearly impossible to put you down when you’re in one of these moods and if I do you’ll scream until I pick you back up. You have also started giving kisses which is the cutest thing ever. You turn your head toward the targeted person and then push your whole face up against them. I love it when I am the lucky recipient.
You have had a lot of first experiences over the last couple of months too. You had your very first ride in a park swing, which you loved. Then we celebrated your very first Halloween. You were absolutely adorable dressed up as Tinkerbell. We took you out trick-or-treating with the boys (Zach and your cousins) but you were much more interested in the flashlight I was trying to carry. For the next two days you carried that thing around and it was the only thing that would make you stop crying.
About two weeks ago you got sick for the first time. At first I thought you had Strep, but after two doctor’s visits we figured out it was Roseola instead. I missed almost an entire week of work and spent most of that time holding you and trying to keep your fever down so you weren’t so uncomfortable. I hated it that you were so sick, but at the same time realized just how lucky you were to make it 7 1/2 months without really being sick at all.
You recovered from you ill
ness just in time for us to pack up and make a second trip to Texas. You got to meet several family members that you didn’t meet the last time around, including your Uncle Tut, Aunt Luli, and cousin Mikayla. I loved finally getting to see you and Mikayla together. Even though the two of you are nearly the same size, she has an age advantage of four months and it was very evident. It reminded me of just how fast things change and what I have to look forward to in the next few months (no rush though!).
As usual, I feel like I have left so much out of this. Just as there is truly no way to tell you how much I love you, there is no way to recap an entire two months of your life in one letter. I can’t capture all of the smiles and snuggles and warmth that you have brought into my life in words. I only hope that some day when you read these words that they will bring the smiles and warmth back to you and you will know just how much you are loved.