Dearest Braxton Cade,
Today you are NINE months old - that's right, NINE! Where oh where did this last month go? We have kept you pretty busy - and you've been a champ through it all. Here's what has been going on in your life these last 30 days:
Eating: You still nurse exclusively and love your mama's milk. You typically eat 5 times a day, with stretches anywhere from 3-4 1/2 hours during the day and then a longer 8-9 hour stretch at night (most of the time). You love your fruits and veggies and were introduced to some new ones in recent days - broccoli, apricots, peaches, spinach, and cherries. You're also eating yogurt and cottage cheese and butter beans for protein and already mastered the puffs only a few days into trying them out. (I found a healthier version of the Gerber puffs at Target - Happy Baby brand - that are much better for the babe's tummy! Puffs are the best distraction EVER during the "witching" hour of making dinner). You have also started to master the sippy cup and finally figured out that if you tip it far enough, water comes into your mouth. Way to go, buddy! You're already way ahead in that department than your big sis ever was.
Sleeping: Sigh. We just don't know what to do with you, little boy, except to keep you, love you, and power through the days on limited sleep. You are typically a good little sleeper during the day - taking a 45 min-1 hour nap in the morning and then another 90 minute-2 hour nap in the afternoon while big sis sleeps. You even go to bed (usually) without a fight. It's just that you now like to usually get up 1-2 hours into sleeping, and then again an hour or so (or more!) right before your 3 or 4 a.m. nursing session. We've tried several things but are just hoping that it's something you'll grow out of and a test that we'll keep struggling through.
Movement: You are sooooo close to either crawling or standing - which one will come first? You love to stand at your music center and play. You now hate the exersaucer and Johnny Jump-Up. I vaguely remember your sis hating it once she started to move more and was "too cool" for the baby toys. You're more content sitting on the floor and getting into all of the cupboards (see below) or banging pots, pans, and tupperware around. You love to get on all fours and then can't quite figure out how to go from there. Any day now, buddy, and we'll have to put the baby gate back up!
Disposition: Despite the common sleep troubles, you're a happy baby. Everyone says this! You're our laid-back dude who - when he's not hurting from teeth coming in or sister whacking him on the head with her princess wand - loves to smile and giggle and blow raspberries. You are starting to be a mama's boy. While I love that you love me, it's also not the greatest to have you screaming and upset every time I leave the room or go somewhere. We're working on that. You're also super duper close to getting a tooth (or two!) so there have been times throughout the day where you're just downright cranky. We fix this by wet washclothes and teething rings that have been frozen or are super-cold. You then seem to feel better! (phew!)
Verbal: You're babbling and blowing raspberries. You love hearing "Soooo big!" and then reacting with your hands in the air. The ear tubes have been great, as you're hearing everything so much better now - and for the first time, instead of telling you over and over again. You're learning some baby signs, especially during meal time, but haven't quite caught on (though you give a good "milk" sign!).
Other Highlights: You went to the chiropractor for the first time. Dr. Andrea did some cranial exercises on you as well as massaged you and worked on your flat spots on your head.
Love you, little man!