DOUBLE DIGIT MONTHS ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?
Kill me now at the thought of her being ten YEARS old. No thanks.
I think the theme of this month is Sweet Child of Mine. I'm definitely one of those "with each passing day I only love you more (name that song)" parents, and I'm fully obsessed with this child all day every day. She is, mostly, a JOY. She's sweet, inquisitive, busy as all getout, and really good natured as long as we do what she wants when she wants with no deviation, which is fair because her brain isn't very patient yet. Har.
Sleep is still going consistently, with 2 naps per day and 12 straight hours at night. Day naps are shorter than they should be, which is frustrating because 1. it means I can't get anything done and 2. it means that Beck sometimes wants to go down for the night at 6pm, which means she wakes up at 6am, which is a no thank you. So we keep her up and she's a real B, if you know what I mean. But then we give her cheese and it's fine. Waking up before 7am when I don't have to is kind of a downer, but to compensate Jay and I have been waking up around 6 to get some things done before Beck gets up, and that's a little bit rough since we still stay up pretty late. I am fully aware that having a child that will sleep for 12 hours straight is a huge gift, so we try hard to look past the other little things - it's a given that we won't all sleep at the same times, and so be it. A perk to this is that if Beck is sufficiently entertained, say in a restaurant or around friends, she'll stay up for a loooong time with no fussing, just some extra neediness. I'm grateful to not have to be a slave to nap times; they happen about 3 hours after the last time she woke up, but if they don't she deals pretty well.
Of course, the best part about this month, and our ability to mess with Beck's sleep, has come from the fact that we are alllllmost all the way away from pureed food, which is crazy because it feels like we just started all of that! But, I was thinking yesterday that it's been awhile since I did a really long day of cooking and jarring and blending like I did for awhile. Beck still eats a few things from pouches at restaurants and yogurt, cottage cheese, etc that we spoon feed her, but she LOVES to feed herself so I try to let her do that whenever I can. Plus, selfishly, it's a great activity that I can supervise but not be involved with, = getting.things.done. Favorite finger foods so far are black beans, peas, corn, sweet potatoes, cheese, ham, and pulled pork, but we're at the point where we try to give her bits of whatever we are eating, and so far she eats everything. Sometimes it takes a day or two to get her to like a new food, but we don't have anything that she's refused after a short time of trying it. My trick is to give her things she's not crazy about first, when she's starving, because she's very into necessity eating, so that at least forces her to try things.
Still no teeth, which is weird but adorable. The gummy smile is just to die for.
We still nurse and pump, and I love the former and hate the latter. Beck is eating a ton of food and I'm not making a ton of milk, which is fine, but it makes pumping that much worse because it's FOR NOTHING. Well, it's for a few ounces, but still. Frustrating and I know I could quit, but I'm sticking it out until she's a year, for my own reasons. When we're together we still nurse every 3-4 hours, but when we aren't we don't and that's fine too. Beck nurses best in the morning and when she's sleepy; if she's into other things she gets so distracted but also pissed when she turns back to me and I've put my boob away. Can't have your cake and eat it too, kid, sorry. It doesn't bother me that we nurse less, but sometimes if she's tired+hungry she'll nurse for longer stretches and kind of stroke my chest and shoulder and that makes me miss the teeny days where milk/I was all she needed, but the fun of watching her grow overshadows that 99.9% of the time.
Communication is becoming a struggle for us, and that's a new thing this month. Before, I could tell if Beck was tired or hungry or bored, and those were her 3 main emotions. Now, though, she has PREFERENCES, which is a massive pain in the ass because I just want her to do what I say and be easy going. I'm not easy going, so I don't know why I expected her to be, but still. For example, if she's tired she's less likely to try new foods even if she's hungry, so I'll give her something and she'll YELL, but not words duh, and it's so cute yet annoying because then I have to guess what she wants which is...hard. The cute part is the look of visible frustration on her part; she's developed enough to know that options exist in the world, but has no words to tell me what she wants. I feel for her, I spend half my life trying to communicate with people who use different words than me to describe the same thing. We didn't do baby sign language, which...I don't know, I think it's wonderful but also was always on the bottom of my list of things to do, and now she's starting to imitate the words we say so we'll just keep her frustrated and maybe she'll talk early? Cue me talking about this same thing in 6 months.
Because I'm pretty sure Beck understands us, I'm trying to vaguely think about things we should and shouldn't say around her. We have implemented exactly zero rules for adults, and I'm not talking about curse words necessarily. More, I don't want to talk crap about people in front of Beck. I don't want to display inappropriate anger levels to small situations. I think it's important to model the right feelings at the right times (very sad at very sad things, very mad about very frustrating things, but a string of cursing and hitting walls and yelling over a stubbed toe is too much, that kind of thing), so....stand by for more on that. Or roll your eyes at the fact that I think I have any control over teaching my kid anything, you do you.
I do think that Beck is ahead of some imaginary development curve in terms of communication; she's all about waving (at appropriate times, when someone says hi or bye), and the kid waving at the dog every morning makes me die. DIE, I tell you. She has more and more sounds that she imitates, and recently she has started roaring like a lion, guys. I have no clue where she got this. Jay doesn't know if he did it first or she did. It's like watching Simba and Nala practice their ish, and it is SO cute. She hasn't seen a lot of TV and I don't even know if we have any animal sound books, so if anyone can tell me where this cuteness came from I'd love to know. I'm trying to get a video, it's just the best.
In terms of behind the curve, this kid is still relatively immobile. Note, though, that girls usually do talking things before boys, and boys do more physical stuff, and all babies are different, and the doctor says she's fine, so PLEASE. It's all good. But, compared to the waving and the roaring, sitting and kind of scooting but yelling when she gets left behind is moderately unimpressive, you know? Just can't be bothered. No pulling up, nothing of that nature. But, when we sit on the floor to play and I look down at my phone for one second I'll find that Beck has ROLLED 10 feet to the other side of the room. And, like every other kid in the world, she likes the outlets, blind cord, breast pump, and trash can more than any of the toys we have for her. Of course.
She's outgrown a bunch of clothes recently so I've gotten to do some fall shopping, which is the most fun of all the fun things. I'll do a favorites post soon, but I'd love to know if you have any different-but-affordable favorite clothing brands for babies. I'd also like to know any experiences you have with toys that let babies DO stuff - buttons, pulling up, little cars they can ride....anything that might be entertaining. I feel like Beck gets bored of her baby toys and books sometimes, but short of turning on the TV or walking her around the yard I run out of ideas, and, yes, Peek-a-Boo is very boring after about
90 seconds 5 minutes.
And that's it! New jobs and new skills and this family is kind of grooving, and it really does get better all the time. Until she hits puberty at, what, 5 years old these days? I'll enjoy this for now, thanks.