Mister Big Stuff. You, young man, are getting way too big for your britches. Literally. We had to put away all the nine months sized pants weeks ago and get out the twelve month size. I try not to cry every time I pack away another tiny onesie and replace it with a larger one, but sometimes I can’t stop the tears that choke me up.
You are the most adorable, hilarious, happy baby I have ever had the privilege of spending time with. You have so much personality already, Alden, and you LOVE to make people laugh. Yesterday, you were crying and to cheer you up I strummed my lips with a finger and then strummed yours. Your tears immediately stopped and your eyes grew so wide. I strummed your lips again, briefly, and then you started to follow my hand with your wide-open mouth, wanting me to do it again. I couldn’t help laughing! Minutes later, as you were standing in my lap, you did a funny little bounce/dance and I laughed. You paused, taking in my reaction, and then repeated the move just to make me laugh again. You kept that up for as long as I would keep laughing. You get so much joy out of making people laugh!
Alden Zachariah, you may not have said your first word yet but you are days away from your first steps! You almost did it just the other day, trying to let go of the couch to take a step to me. Excitement was written all over your face at the prospect; not a trace of fear or apprehension to be found. Yesterday, you pushed the little toy car around the living room, walking behind it, until you reached a shelf. You then proceeded to climb up on top of the car (which is one wheels!) to be tall enough to reach the forbidden items on top of the shelf. I think my heart stopped when I looked over and saw you in such a precarious position. It took all my Ninja Mom skills to get to you as fast as possible without startling you and making you fall. Undeterred, moments later you were headed straight for the cord to the Christmas lights that I’d pulled you away from at least thirteen other times already that day.
Speaking of Christmas, you are the reason there is a plastic Great Wall across the middle of our living room, separating you from the Christmas tree. Of course, that doesn’t stop a determined little dude like you. You merely find a large toy (or pile up a bunch of small ones) to climb on top of so you can reach over the wall and grab for ornaments and branches. I’ve had to scoot the tree further away and there is still an entire chunk of the tree with no ornaments.
We’re finally finding a way to get real food into you. It turns out it’s not pureed food that you hate, it’s being fed. You want to feed yourself. Because, of course you do. So we invested in some reusable pouches and just dump a jar of baby food into one for each meal. Voila! You love them! I’ve seen you suck down almost an entire jar without pausing for a breath. You still love frozen peas, Cheerios, spaghetti noodles and most other finger foods we give you as well.
As for sleeping, I think you’ve been going through the nine-month sleep regression, but it hasn’t been nearly as bad as your sisters were. You just get upset whenever we lay you down in your crib, but eventually Daddy can usually get you to sleep. The other night you gave me the first eight hours of uninterrupted sleep that I’ve had in a full year! Nevermind that you followed it up with three nights of only four hours of sleep…
Oh Alden. I can’t believe I’m going to have to start planning your first birthday soon. I have been enjoying your babyhood so very much. More than I ever thought possible. And it has just flown by in the blink of an eye. Keep making me laugh, little buddy. It’s the best.