Better late than never, right? (Story of my life).
I can barely keep up with you now, Alden. You are into everything and we’ve had to take childproofing our home to a level beyond anything we ever had to do for your sisters. We removed the plastic baby-gate wall that provided you with a small “safe place” to play because you were figuring out how to scale it. Actually, we just moved it and instead of keeping you corralled in it, we now use it to contain your sisters and all of their non-baby-safe art supplies and toys. They think it’s funny that they are the ones in the “play pen” now.
Silly games are your favorite things ever. Peek-a-boo remains a favorite. You also love to give slobbery, open-mouth kisses all over my face, making me laugh and cringe at the same time. You never fail to laugh if I suddenly say, “Ha-chooey blooey!” to you.
You adore your older sisters and want so badly to keep up with them. You give Zoey a “come get me look” and then take off in the most adorable little “run” so she’ll chase you saying “I’m gonna get ya!” Then you squeal with delight when she catches you and tackles you to the ground. You love to wrestle and be tickled by her.
You and Eleanor are continuing to make progress with your relationship now. You give her kisses and hugs and most of the time she’ll reciprocate. She likes to bring you toys to play with and help feed you in your high chair. Although you just learned how to hold the spoon and try to feed yourself, so I’m not sure how much longer you’ll let her – or anyone else – do that.
You’re quickly moving away from baby food and eating more “real” food. You finally got more teeth. I think it had been more than six months since your last tooth broke through, giving you two on top and two on the bottom. Now you have two more on top for a total of six. Last night you were screaming and inconsolable in the middle of the night. I finally put a finger in your mouth to massage your gums, thinking perhaps you were getting more teeth on the bottom, and was horrified to discover that your gums are swollen up to three or four times their normal size on the bottom. Poor baby! It must be so uncomfortable for you, but you still keep smiling and laughing through most of the day, albeit with a few more cuddles.
I never mind the cuddles.
You are beginning to mimic so many behaviors you see us do, like using the tiny broom and dust pan to help sweep the floor, brushing your hair, bringing us our shoes. You mimic sounds we make too, although still not any words. It’s the intonation you get right: the same as when we say “thank you” or “peek-a-boo.” We can tell what you are saying by your tone and body language, even when we don’t understand your words. You also can sign several words, which helps a lot at mealtimes. You become visibly frustrated when we can’t understand you, so I keep hoping you’ll develop words soon. Every now and then you’ll say “Mama,” “Dada,” or “Hi” but that’s it for your English skills.
You hate having your diaper changed all of a sudden. You scream bloody murder, arch your back and try to roll over, sit up, stand, or crawl off the table. When I stop you and lay you back down (or, god forbid, gently hold you down so you don’t fall off the table) you get really mad. You have quite the temper, little one, although it is short-lived and you tend to forgive quickly. Your happy nature always wins out in the end.