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everybody poops

Another thing that I need to catch up on:  My little man is potty trained.  He’s been for… oh, a couple months now?  He was potty trained right after he turned 2, which people never stop telling me is highly unusual – especially for a boy.  Well… it’s not so unusual for OUR boy, no?  *smile*

A couple people have asked how we did it, upon noticing the lack of “diaper bulge” when we’re out and about, but I have little advice to offer.  As always, I simply followed his lead.  When we was around 6 months old, I considered trying “elimination communication” with him and purchased a little red potty.  It’s been sitting in the bathroom since then.  I was too lazy to do the elimination communication thing, though, especially since he was, at 6 months, “a late starter.”  The only advice I can possibly think to offer, then, is this:  Don’t be shy.  Chris & I have not been at all shy (ahem) about bathroom habits.  Felix has seen everything & has always tended to wander in and hang out.  Since his little red potty is in his bathroom, he would often sit on it and wait.  I’m sure that has much to do with it.  We never pushed and never made a big deal out of it.  I did notice that he found the whole idea pretty interesting (I know, strange, but we’re talking about toddlers here) and liked sitting on his potty.  Then I found out that, in order to go to preschool, he needed to be fully potty trained.  So I started letting him run around the house sans diaper and pants and would occasionally ask if he wanted to sit on the potty.  After only a couple of days, he was totally in to the idea.  At home, without his pants on, he just started going to sit on his potty whenever he had to pee.  Flash forward to now – he never wears diapers during the day, even when we’re out and about.  We’ve been out for entire afternoons and he will always ask to go.

Poop (just what you want to hear about, right?) was another matter.  For a couple of weeks, it seemed to frighten him and he would get frantic whenever he’d feel like he had to go.  For about a week, he drove me mad by asking me to “wipe” him every 5 minutes, for hours on end.  And then he’d poop on the floor, which cracked me up.  I didn’t care that he pooped on the floor, I just didn’t like the endless demand of “wipe wipe wipe?”  That lasted for a couple of weeks and then he started going on the potty.  Another couple weeks of letting him run around without pants all day (because that was the next hangup) and then I eased him in to wearing underwear (toddler boxers briefs!  CUTEST THING EVER) and now it’s all exactly what you’d expect from a civilized, socialized person.  And I will say… having a potty trained kid, at 2 years, is freaking awesome.  Life truly is grand, after diapers.  But other than “don’t be shy” the only other bit of advice I have doesn’t work for everyone because it seems like parents just get obsessed with the process:  don’t stress out, don’t push.  This all happened, for us, because we didn’t care that much.  It was “if you want to, here’s the option but if you don’t want to, cool.  Do whatever.”   I mean, I had a little internal pressure going on about the preschool thing but I knew that the worst case scenario would be that he’d start a little later than we wanted.  No big deal.

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book worm

Oops. Oh, look… over a year has gone by since I properly updated last?  So much to catch up on.

My first order of business is: the kid loves books.  LOVES BOOKS.  I remember, months and months and months ago, being disappointed because I would sit him on my lap and try to read to him, but he had no patience for it.  He just wanted to flip through the pages, himself, and look at all the pictures on the pages.  Now, he cannot get enough of being read to.  It all started with a set of “mini masters” books that I came across at a cute little store that I love called “Burnt Sugar” in Fremont.  The “mini masters” are little board books that feature a particular artist (for example, Van Gogh) and several of that artist’s paintings, accompanied by (sometimes random) rhymes that tell little stories about each of them.  Felix, at just barely over 2 years old, can identify great works (such as Starry Night) by sight & name and walks around begging, “Read Matisse?  Read Degas?  Read Monet?”  And he pronounces them correctly.  “Read Gauguin?”  Freaking awesome.  (I started this post a couple months ago when he was just a month over 2 years.)

So we started reading him the few books we had laying around, for him, which I quickly got sick of.  I headed over to the library and picked up about ten more books, which will have to be traded in for new ones, soon.  He LOVES BEING READ TO.  Within a couple of weeks, I’ve already gotten sick of the library books I brought home.  I have never seen a 2 year old with the ability to sit through so many books (and some long ones, at that) – but I mostly pick up longer stories, because he seems to like those best.  He sometimes sits on the couch or our bed, flipping through each one while reciting all the words to himself, which he’s already memorized.

Did I mention he just turned 2, a few of months ago?

I’m trying to keep track of the books we’ve read & his favorites (this blog is, after all, meant primarily as his “baby book”, electronic version).  I don’t remember the earlier “baby” books, but no matter.  The stuff we’re reading now is far more interesting.

The first “mini masters” books I picked up were a set (from Burnt Sugar).

Mini Masters Boxed Set : The set includes Dancing with Degas, A Picnic with Monet, A Magical Day with Matisse, and In the Garden with Van Gogh. While the “stories” for each book are pretty simple (usually about frolicking and seeing sights during the day then going home to bed or to rest), they aren’t terrible.  Plus, it’s fun to review so many great works while teaching your little one about art.  Felix seriously has several words from every page of every book memorized, already.  After going through these 4 books, I sought out a few others and plan on getting the few more that are yet remaining.

 

 

 

 

 

Painting with Picasso: Another from the “mini masters”, see above.  This one wasn’t in the set, but there’s about 10 other “mini masters” books I need to pick up.  I think the Picasso book is my personal favorite.

 

 

 

Skippyjon Jones: This book cracks me up.  It’s about… well, I’m not really sure what it’s about.  It’s about a cat/kitten that likes birds and likes to pretend he’s a dog (specifically, a Chihuahua), but that pisses his cat mother off – so he gets sent to his room to think about how he should act like a cat but starts fantasizing about being a member of a gang of chihuahuas, instead.  And he saves his chihuahua friends by busting open a bumblebee full of beans.  BEANS!  Seriously.  Right?  What the hell is all that?  But it’s uproariously fun to read (I’ve been trying to give him some Spanish here and there) and just too wacky to not be fun.  Felix loves it and loves to yell out the Spanish rhymes as I’m reading.  Since starting to write this post, I’ve picked up other Skippyjon Jones books (there’s several), all of which are fun.  I’ve used of all my possible renews at the library, so we’re going to have to purchase this one.

More “mini masters” I’ve picked up:

I expect that when I finally get around to taking him to to see the Gauguin exhibit at SAM (Seattle Art Museum), he’ll be running around pointing to the paintings and reciting the poems from books.  Or calling out the names of the the painting.  And everyone around us will think, “My god, who is that genius child?” cause… he kind of is.  *smile*  He also sits through Olivia Saves the Circus, The Snowy Day (which he was reciting when he went outside during our Big Snow Storm) and various Eric Carle books (of The Hungry Caterpillar) fame.


I also enjoy Bruno Munari’s Zoo, which we’ll have to purchase & check out more of that author’s books.  The illustrations are quite unique.

 

 

 

I have been speaking some Spanish to him and he loves to randomly ask “como estas?” throughout the day.  I’ve also been listening to French language podcasts in the car (both to brush up & relearn my own French as well as for his exposure) and with perfect diction, he says, Je t’aime maman!

His speaking, in his own language, is out of this world.  I don’t really have much to compare him to, I only see the looks on people’s faces when he speaks.  Though we occasionally bump into other people with kids his age and I’m struck by how very different his manner of speaking is.  Longer sentences, clear pronunciation, huge vocabulary.  I told him we were going t see the chiropractor again, today (for me, not him), and he spent the morning saying, “Ride to the chiropractor!”

He starts Montessori preschool in exactly two weeks.  (Be still, my beating heart.)  I would love to keep him home with me, every day, for another couple years.  People keep going on at me about all the freedom & time that I’ll have, but that’s just not the sort of thing I think about.  I haven’t been aching for “freedom” or more time.  This kid is so easy going & such an independent player that I tend to sit around thinking I have too much time on my hands that I’m not using very wisely.  I love these days with him.  But no… I saw the readiness and realized that the best thing, for him, would be to start preschool, now.  So off he goes.  I have yet to tell him how much fun he’s going to have without getting choked up, every single time.  Pretty much everything we’ve done with him has because I’ve simply followed his lead.  This kid… he’s something special.

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yet more words and other things

More things that Felix says, off the top of my head (still forgetting a zillion things):

Bye bye (often said as he races down the hall when he hears Chris opening the gate to leave for work.)

He says Jenn and Denise, for our sitter and her sister, who also watches him.  Coffee when he sees our coffee mugs.  Milk.  Smoothie, as soon as he sees me break out the blender for our morning smoothies – though it sounds like moo-ey.  Chocolate, which he loves.  Water.  Swing.  Mail (he loves to go outside with us to get the mail.  Especially on rainy or busy days when we haven’t otherwise gotten outside.)  Socks. Slippers. Bird (for actual birds in the sky and my favorite red bird necklace.)  Cat.  Truck, which seems to sound more like “dot” and bus.

Bath and bath time (which sounds like “bad time”).  He often races to his bathroom, bangs on the door and says bad time bad time bad time when Chris gets home from work.

Dinner.  Outside.

More (milk, water, smoothie).

Blankie.  Ami (“ah-mee”), which has somehow come to mean all of his stuffed elephants.  Bear.

He also repeats another million words right as we say them, with perfect or near perfect clarity.  Unfortunately, this means that he occasionally walks around saying, “Sh*t sh*t sh*t”. (I’m working on that.)

Oh, and my favorite, of course – I love you, which is sometimes accompanied by a sneak attack hug.

And then there’s all the routines and habits that he knows.  Like after we change his diaper, we go to the bathroom to put his (cloth) diaper in the bucket.  Though we’ve started changing him in the bathroom and letting him sit on his toilet for a few minutes, which he actually seems to enjoy.  On one hand – it’s early for typical potty training, but we’re way late for “elimination communication” potty training.  So I figure, since there’s really no pressure now, there’s no harm in introducing the idea to him and seeing what happens.  Honestly, I suspect if I hadn’t been so lazy about the elimination communication training at a year old, he’d be potty trained by now.  So I suspect he’ll be potty trained early & easily when we really do it.  He’s smart and he picks stuff up quickly, understands concepts without much trouble.

We’ve visited one Montessori school so far, and will be checking out a few more.  Yet again, we were told that he seems incredibly (read: above average) bright, very independent and observant, and yes, yes he has MANY more words than most kids his age.  Not only that, but also that usually, only the parents can understand most of their child’s words and language at this age, but that everyone can understand Felix because he speaks so clearly.

I’m really eager to get him into Montessori school, I think it’ll be really really good for him (he’s explored about as much as he can at home – though we will be getting out more now that the weather is getting nicer again.)

I’ve also realized that he demands manners and patience.  For example, when he opens the drawer and pulls out the tv remotes – if I yell at him (as you tend to do when someone gets into something a zillion times) to put them back, all I get in return is a mocking grin.  So I sigh, change my tone and say, “Felix, please put the remotes back.”  And then, “Thank you, now please close the drawer.”  So long as I say please and am polite, he’ll do anything I ask.  Kid isn’t even a year and a half years old yet, and already keeping me in check.  Point taken, kid.

Oh, but he will also announce when he’s doing something he shouldn’t.  I might be in the bedroom and he’ll be in our room and I hear him saying, “No no no no no!”  So I go in and find him rifling through drawers or carrying a pair of my glasses around.  Let’s see if he does the same as a teenager!  ha!

He’s a delightful kid, all around.  I sometimes forget he’s just a toddler because he seems so aware and so … well, wise.

He has his first swimming lessons in June – I can’t wait.  I think he’ll do well with them because he looooooooooves water.

And then, just like that, I’ll be writing about him going off to college in Spain or some such.  Sigh.

 

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more words

So we also have up (which he occasionally still confuses with butt down), pancake, bath (which he demands, while banging on his bathroom door, after Chris gets home – because Chris always gives him his baths.)  Ah, and I already listed shoes, which excite him to no end because it means going outside, but he always says shoes on when he specifically wants… well, for someone to put his shoes on.

Gah.  *scratching head at all the words I’m still forgetting*

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Tower of Babble

A few weeks ago, we were watching “Teen Mom”.  In the episode, one of the teen moms had taken her 18 month old to the pediatrician and was told that babies should be saying 10 words by 18 months.  And our big Dr Sears Baby book says 15 month olds average 5-6 words.  I know these aren’t hard and fast rules, but Felix is 16 months and has at least 30 words, not including the ones he repeats after us every now and then but doesn’t use with every day frequency.  I haven’t been keeping track – it got to be too many to remember, but I’m attempting to make a list.  (Though he seems to be doing a new one every other day, so I should update every week!)

His first clear & perfectly discernible word (or rather, phrase) was “uh-oh”.  He said that months and months ago, with perfect intonation.

There’s mommy, daddy (thought “daddy” seems to be equated with the crackers in the cabinet.  Is he calling his daddy a cracker?)

Nana, which he now occasionally adds the “ba” to the beginning for banana. Grape (which comes out grep.)  Apple, which is pretty much spot on.  Orange, which comes out “arahn”.  (I think he’ll be picking up my northeastern accent for this one.  “Ah-rahnje”.)

Bottle which comes out “bow”.  Hot, which is usually whispered with urgency.  Bye and bye bye.

Car, for which he hasn’t mastered the “r” yet and comes out “ca-y”.

Froggy, for his fuzzy frog chair and this comes out “baddy.”  This was one of his first words, months ago, too.

Pee, which he occasionally does on command, in the tub!  Cheese which is always cheeeeeeeeeeeeese and quiche.

No, of course.  Puppy, which he equates with puppies, dogs, squirrels and now the raccoon that visits our yard.

Butt down, which means “I want to get down” and he picked up from his diaper changes.  When I change him, I always lift his butt up to remove his diaper and put his butt down to snap the new diaper on.  I always say “butt UP!” and then “butt DOWN!”  So if he’s in your lap and wants to get down, he says, “Butt down! Butt down!”  If he’s sitting on his fire truck and wants to get off, he declares, “Butt down!”

Ah-choo! after we sneeze.

“Shoes!” always said with exuberance.  He loves wearing shoes.  Because wearing shoes usually means going “outside!” which he also loves and which sounds like ow-sigh.

Poopy, which needs no explanation, huh?  It used to sound like mumbai, but now he’s got his “p’s” down.

Indeed, which he always repeats after I say it, minus the I for ‘deed”.

Book, which he also says in Romanian (our babysitter has been teaching him Romanian words and he knows a few that I need to ask her and write down.)

Chilly, for when I tell him he needs a jacket to go outside.

There you go, because I say it all the time and sounds like “der go”.

I know I’m missing a few, trying to quickly write them all down as he says them, before I forget.  Though, like I said – that’s a lot of writing down, especially since he’s adding new ones every other day!!

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Time

Oops.  A lot of time has passed since my last update.  The thing is, it’s a lot easier to update when they’re LITTLE and there’s not as much to say.  Then one day, you wake up and OH MY GOD, THAT’S A LOT OF MILESTONES.  I didn’t realize it’d be like this already.  By “like this” I mean, he seems so grown up.  I have to stop calling him “baby” because he’s not.  He’s a little boy.

He started full-on walking right after his 1 year birthday, as predicted (by me.)

In fact, this past week it seems he discovered that he can also walk backwards and he does it often, at completely random moments.  It’s pretty funny to watch.

I think his vocabulary is about to explode – he’s had his repertoire of onomatopoeia words (like “Boom!”) and “Uh-oh” was his first word, months ago.  Whenever I ask him where his froggy is, he runs towards it, saying “baahdee baahdee!”  He’s recently started repeating “pee!” (and even peed when I said it, in the bathtub, a few nights in a row.  I still can’t tell if that was coincidence or not?)   A couple days ago it sounded like he said “monkey” after me, but not again.  This morning he was playing with one of his “noisy” toys and when he pushed the yellow key and the voice sang out, “yellow!”, he said, “Yoh.”

There’s so many I’m already forgetting them all. Regardless of any words that we understand, he talks a lot.

I took him to the KidsQuest something something Museum the other day, which *I* did not like, at all. No point in mincing words, there were a lot of brats there.  One kid pushed him over & away and while *I* was pissed, Felix just got up and walked away, calmly, not a care.  Anytime any other kid would get in his way or grab something he was going for, he’d just change course.  He’s rarely interested in objects and toys when we’re out, anyway.  He just walks and walks and walks and walks around and around and around and around.  I took him out of the little kids area (for crawlers and new walkers) and into the other area, where all the big kids were running around.  (Luckily, it wasn’t that crowded so I didn’t have to worry about big kids running by and slamming into him.)  He seemed to enjoy the “big kids” stuff a lot more.  More to see, more buttons to push.  And the WATER, he loved splashing his hands around in that.

But KidsQuest is an indoor area, attached to a mall, of all things – I don’t really like that atmosphere.  Yesterday it was sunny and blue, so I decided we needed to get outside and took him to the zoo.  *I* thought he’d enjoy looking at all the animals, but nope – what he loved was all the open space, so he walked and walked and walked and walked and turned around and around and walked and walked.  He just loves to look around and observe.  The one animal he was interested in was the peacock.  There was a peacock running around, loose, and Felix wanted to run right up and grab it.  I had to hold him back a few feet and Felix fought me the entire time, eyes glued to the peacock.  For the rest of this winter season, we’re sticking to outdoor stuff.  Even when we’re at home,  he walks and walks and walks and walks, stopping only occasionally to flip through a book or play with his workbench.

Oh! And yesterday, the babysitter told me that she was reading to him from a book about colors.  When she got to the “pink” page, he pointed to her fingernails – which were bright, bright pink.  He didn’t do that with any other page.  Coincidence?  I think not!

I also taught him the “monkey” gesture (one hand on head, one hand scratching armpit) and the monkey, “ooh!  ooh!  ooh!”  Now when I either make the noise or say “monkey” he makes the gesture.  We’re working on elephant, next.

He’s an excellent eater.  (I realize this can change and he could turn picky, but the thing is, I don’t care.  We’re not going to make an issue of it, he’ll eat or not – all I care about is that what he DOES eat will be healthy.  He’s not going to be one of those kids who gets picky, so we start giving him junk and processed foods just to get him to eat.  I do plan on including him in meal planning and decision making as he gets older, so I think that will help.)  He still loves his raw milk, which I am happy to let him drink a few times a day because it’s good for him.  He also loves water – whenever I fill his sippy cup, he dances around excitedly until I hand it to him.  That’s pretty much all he drinks.  In the Fall, I gave him some apple cider occasionally and in the summer, I’ll give him some fresh squeeze orange juice or some such, but he eats bananas and oranges and real fruit, so why bother with sugary juices?  He loves the bananas and orange slices.  Apples in his oatmeal, with raisins.  Pears.  Strawberries.  Blueberries.  I’ve started making baked oatmeal, so that we make it once and just heat it up every morning, he enjoys that with a little raw honey and yogurt.   He likes quiche (this morning he had some broccoli cheddar quiche with his oatmeal).  Oh my god – he does not like cheese.  This befuddles me.  How can you not like cheese? *shrug*

People have said things to us like, “Oh, just wait until he’s such and such age and he’s got personality!”  I want to ask them what’s wrong with their kid, but this one has had big personality from the get go.

We (I?) waffle back and forth about having another one.  One one hand, sure.  On the other hand – Felix has kind of set an impossibly high standard.  He is such an easy going, independent kid.  He amuses himself all day (sometimes pushing me away if I try to play with him – just like he does if I try to help him over a small obstacle when walking, “I can do it myself!!”) and he sleeps from 8-9:30 in the morning!!!!  If he didn’t nap much the previous day, he’ll sleep till around 9.  But otherwise, he averages around 8:30.  My worst nightmare, when thinking about having children, was of having to get up at 6 am every day.  UGH.  What are the odds of getting another one that sleeps until after 8am???  What are the odds of having another one that is so easy and independent as this one?

And CUTE?  I know his cuteness is because of his genes, but c’mon – I think we used up every ounce of cute available on this one.

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Oops

You know what they say – Time flies…!

I’ve been pretty lame about updating lately and there’s a lot that’s been missed.  Within the past month and a half, it seems he’s turned into a completely different person.  He’s proven himself, yet again, to be a world class traveler who people LOVE to have on the plane with them and he continues to charm & flirt and oh! manipulate with that little face of his.

I’ll get to the details.  In the meantime, the photos from 10 and 11 months – 10 months here and 11 months here.

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9 months

Wow, really lagging here – too busy livin’ it to write it, I say.

It’s a week past, but Nugget had his 9 month check up.  I’m so grateful to have found a naturopath pediatrician.  I get 110% support for the raw goat milk, an easier & modified vaccination schedule and just an overall sense that she matches my own beliefs about health & what’s good for us.

felix2She took some blood and tested him for anemia & his vitamin D levels today.  She does this with all babies, since so many people, including babies are vitamin D deficient these days and she likes to catch it early.  I’m pretty sure he’s far from being vitamin D deficient – I make a point to get him outside & into the sunshine almost every day.  On particularly hot & sunny days, if we get out between 10 and 2 and we’ll be out for awhile, I wait about 15-20 minutes to put sunscreen on him, so that he can get the most potent amount of vitamin D & sunshine possible.  (Myself, as well.)  Since we live in the Pacific Northwest now, getting enough sun is definitely something at the forefront of my mind.  I also asked her about giving him some of our fermented cod liver oil in the winter (another thing that’s good for combatting vitamin D deficiency) and she was all for it.  I’ll have to figure out how to get it to him, though, seeing as the capsules are too big and I doubt he’ll want to taste that in his milk.  Blech.

He’s grown another inch and a quarter in the past 3 months – he’s now at 29 and some odd inches.  He’s a little over 20 p0unds.

He wasn’t happy about having blood drawn from his finger, nor happy about his 2nd DTAP vaccination, but he was a champ.  I don’t think he cried once .  I was surprised, as I thought he’d be pretty miserable since his top two teeth are starting to come in now, also, and I suspect that’s the reason he had kind of a crappy night of sleep last night.

felix7His top two teeth!  His bottom ones came in completely last month.  (I think it was last month?  I’m losing time already.)  We took him to the Ricicli photo shoot (you know, cause HE’S A MODEL, NOW!) and it made me nervous, for a moment, to see a 7 month old who was already crawling & could get herself up to a sitting position.  Only for a moment – I remember when I was worried that he didn’t roll over much before and then suddenly one day, BAM! he’s all over the place with the rolling.  He sits, but doesn’t get into a sitting position by himself yet and he scoots around from one end of the room to the other, without crawling.  Within the past couple weeks, he’s started to get up on his hands & knees and rock back and forth – which means in the next couple weeks, I’ll just wake up one morning and BAM! he’ll be crawling all over the place and driving me mad.  I watched him with the other babies at the Ricicli photo shoot and he’s definitely an observer.  While the other ones rolled around, smiling indiscriminately and grabbing at everything, he just sat there, watching watching watching and taking it all in.  He did occasionally reach out and touch others, but only when their backs were turned.  (Typical boy.)  They say that easy going babies tend to take longer to do things like crawl, walk, etc – while he is incredibly easygoing, I think he’s also so busy thinking that he tends to forget to move.  He gets that from me, for sure.

(And pssst… I have it on good authority that he’s showing signs of being a “gifted” child.  Just confirming what I already knew…!)

650He is also quite the little piggy.  I see how much other kids eat, then I see how much we give him.  I asked the pediatrician, and she waved me off.  “He’s growing beautifully.”  In other words, don’t compare.  He loves peaches, apples, pears, cherries, yams, peas, green beans, carrots (orange AND purple), avocado and… I’m sure I’m forgetting something.  He’s very interested in food and seems to get a little angry when we’re eating stuff that he doesn’t get.  This weekend, I think I’m going to add oatmeal (to go with his peaches or blueberries) and maybe a little spice like cinnamon.  I had asked the pediatrician about food and she made a good point – there are so many different things done across so many different cultures.  Who’s to say which is right?  He’s hungry, he loves to eat… so we’ll just keep going.

Whenever I brag about how much he eats & what he loves, people inevitably tell me that “yes, he likes it now, just wait…”  Well, I’ve read many an article that said kids are far less likely to be picky eaters when they see where the food comes from and are connected to it.  Felix has been to farms, farmer’s markets… we’ll get chickens sooner than later… he watches me cook every night (and will help me cook, as well as help us decide what we all eat, as well.)  So, I feel pretty confident about how picky he’ll be -or not be.

Yes, he is in the phase of being suspicious of strangers.  He especially doesn’t like people getting in his face, or several people at once and as far as I’m concerned, that’s normal.  I STILL hate people getting in my face or groups of people.

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*crickets*

Wow, I’ve been slack in updating.  The longer you go, the more there is to write, which just overwhelms my brain and makes me procrastinate even longer.

There aren’t any specific changes, really, just changes to the overall picture.  He’s so much bigger & older & more capable than he did a month ago.  He seems far less like a baby and more like an actual person.  He’s grabbier, smiley-er, more persistent, more stubborn, more aware, more communicative.

I’ve been continuing with feeding him solids, a couple times a day.  I originally thought he didn’t like cauliflower or avocado so much, but he loves it.  Apricots, avocado, cauliflower, yams, carrots, apples, pears, peaches, potatos, broccoli, and now peas are all in his repertoire.  He seemed to really love the peas, I was surprised.   I’m planning on adding cherries this week.

And NOISES!  His noises have stopped sounding like baby nonsense and more like human language. He says, “mamamamamamamamamamama” a lot and once, when I picked him up out of his bed, he looked right at me and said, “mama.”  Hmm…  He says, “baba” when he sees us bringing his bottle over.

I can’t believe I was ever worried about him not rolling over from his belly to his back.  Uh… the kid can MOVE.  He rolls, he scoots, he damn near winds up on the other side of the country.

He has a fascination with his hands, as of late.  He holds one out, as if conducting an orchestra, and stares at it.  Or just waves it around.

Right now he’s playing bumper cars with the stool I put in front of the stairs to block them.  He LOVES his walker.  His favorite position, ever, has long since been standing.  It took him all of 10 minutes in the walker to figure out how to zip all over.  It took me all of 5 minutes to realize we need to get a baby gate & start baby proofing, STAT.  In his walker, he likes to spy for things to grab.  Often, he finds power cords, dangling and likes to see just how long it’ll take me to run over and unplug.

OH!  And oh my god!  He has teeth.  It seemed like we were waiting forever to those bottom two to bust out.  They were RIGHT THERE for the longest time.  Then one day I looked and SHAZAM!  The left of the bottom pair had broken through about halfway.  Now the right one is about halfway out and the right one is done.

Now he’s wandering around the kitchen, banging his hand on the cabinets.  He also found the bottom drawer that we keep bags in, half open.  He reached in and started pulling out all the plastic bags.  Oh yes, yes I know – TIME TO BABY PROOF.

Yesterday, I realized that he’s probably going to be a shy kid.  And that he’s the sensitive little Scorpio baby I expected him to be.  He used to give smiles out easily & quickly.  But the past couple months, when we’re out and someone gets in his face to admire him & talk to him, he seems to pull back and start scowling.  (I can hear Chris saying, “He’s just like his mother.”)  He needs time to get to know people and doesn’t like people getting in his face.  Nuthin’ wrong with that.   But then yesterday, we were out for a walk, many of our neighbors were out enjoying the sun in one of the neighbor’s driveways.  We stopped to say hi and talk and introduce another baby on the block to him (10 months, his first girlfriend, perhaps?)  I noticed that the 10 month old was happy to be around a lot of people, smiling at everyone and grabbing for Felix.  Felix sat in his stroller looking disturbed & overwhelmed by all the people and finally started crying.  I picked him up and he hid his face in my shoulder.

Yup.  He might look like his Dad but he’s sure starting to seem a lot like his mom.

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6 months

Dear Felix,

HOLY CRAP, you’re 6 months old.  And… Wow, really, it’s only been 6 months?

015Today, you had your 6 month check up, one day after the fact, and you’re still growing like a week and a picture of good health.  So when you’re older, and you hear people say  that goat milk isn’t good enough for babies, you can tell them that YOU were raised on it – raw, no less – and just look at you.

(Because I’m sure this is the type of conversation you’ll have as an adult, right?)

You are 17 pounds – which is now right smack in the middle of average, which is more than fine.  And you’re over 28 inches tall which is way above average.  How’d you get to be so tall?

So far, you like every fruit that’s passed your lips.  But you have not like broccoli nor lunged for avocado like you do bananas.  I’m kind of surprised at this.  I had it in my head that you’d be all about the vegetables.  You do, however, have a very “if you want me to eat it, I will” attitude about it – but you make sure I know that you’re doing me a favor.  Yup.  You’re my kid.  Oh, are those faces supposed to make me decide to stop giving you broccoli?  Not going to work.  But hold on to that, you can guilt me for it later.  When you’re 5, you can complain about how you let me feed you broccoli even though you didn’t want it, so I should let you x, y, z.

Today, we’ll try cauliflower, because it can’t be all about fruits, Nugget.  I can’t possibly see how you could have a problem with cauliflower – it tastes like potato and how could you not like potato?

Yesterday, I saw a video on that stupid “Momversation” thing about “Do you have to play with your kids?”  I feel sorry for other mothers who say “Do I have to play with my kids?”  We like to play with you.  We can’t wait to play with you more.  When you’re bigger, we’ll do things like go to the zoo, the waterfront, etc AT LEAST every other day.

031Anyway.  The people in the “don’t play with your kids” camp claimed that playing with your kids too much would make them “too dependent” on you and not imaginative enough.  Not self-sufficient enough.  I think this is bullshit.  There’s so many other factors and quite frankly, that attitude doesn’t give enough credit to each child’s individual personality.  But I guess I say that because you already show quite a lot of independence and seem pretty good at amusing yourself already.  If you want us to play with you, and to show us things & talk to us about stuff & share whatever it is that seems to be going on inside your head all the time, we’ll be more than happy to oblige.

(I do think, though, that people who claim to not want to play with their kids because they want them to be self-sufficient, etc are making that up as a cover for the fact that they just don’t want to spend a lot of time with and energy on their kids.  Period.)

But there I go on my high horse again, and I fear you’re going to be that kid that annoys everyone by telling them, “Well, MY mom said…”  You’ll probably often end that sentence with something about how I said that if their moms really cared about them, they’d do x, y, z.  Or how one of their teachers is an idiot.

Ahem.  Yes, I’ll be THAT mom.

Your dad?  Well.  He seems to be the reasonable one, but he named your giraffe “Jihad.”  I’ll get called into school about things like that, too.

You & me are going to have to have a talk about this sleeping thing soon – we’d like a little after 7am consistency, please?  But other than that, you’re incredibly easy.  It feels like it was really hard the first few months but I don’t know if YOU were all that hard.  We were just terrified of you.  On your very second day here, we had to drive you to the pediatrician – ON THE FREAKIN’ LA FREEWAY.  It was awful.  I’m surprised I didn’t have a heart attack right then and there.  LA sucked.  LA still sucks and I hope you don’t ever have urges to go spend a few years in the city where you were born.  All I wanted was to get you out of there.

I was afraid to drive with you, afraid to let you cry, afraid of going out in public with you because I didn’t want to bother everyone or be completely frazzled out in public.  DUDE.  That was the stupidest fear because you’re really quite good when we’re out.  Dazzlingly so.  Especially when you & I flew to Pennsylvania alone – oh, I saw the looks on people’s faces when they saw me sit down in the boarding area with you, and you were cranky because I’d woken you up at 3 am.  People went out of their way to talk to me & compliment you at the end of the flight.  You were born to travel & be on the move.

We drove aimlessly for 3 hours one weekend – well, 3 hours away and 3 hours back.  You just sat in the car seat & stared out the window or slept.  You got a little cranky, momentarily, which was understandable because you were all wet & hungry.  But once that got taken care of, you were fine.

Anyway.  That drive on the LA freeway.  The midwife & one of her assistants made a huge fuss about how small you were and they got me all worked up and worried about it.  I’m kind of annoyed at that.  I’m kind of annoyed at some people’s handlings of us back then.  Had you weighed one more pound, no one would have worried much, and I can’t see that one pound makes much of a difference.  Plus, you were small but there was nothing weak & or unhealthy about you.  I’d say you were better off than most babies who weighed more at the get go.  There also seems to be a lot of “small babies” on both our sides of the family, so perhaps it just runs in the family and they should have stopped getting on my case about “how I ate while pregnant” after the fact.  (I did not eat a lot, because I, strangely, had no appetite.  But I tried to make it count, what I ate, plus I drank lots of raw milk & used lots of butter… plenty of fatty things.  Including me! hahahaha  I gained a lot, but little of it seemed to go to you.  So.  In hindsight, I’d have snapped at them to get off my case.)  Which is also why I feel a little smug, now, because you are above average in everything.  Including personality.

You don’t feel so fragile anymore – though, you never were, really.  WE were the ones that were fragile.

You have a slightly nerve-wracking habit of liking to pull a blanket over your face to fall asleep.  Sometimes it’s the ONLY way you’ll fall asleep.  It’s fine during the afternoon when I let you fall asleep, then immediately move the blanket off your face.  But often at night, I feel a need to keep checking or have to be yanking it off your face throughout the morning.  This is a habit we need to start breaking.  Though you have a thing about rubbing your face on anything soft.

We’re taking hours of video of you just making faces & blowing spit bubbles, etc.  You have a vast repertoire of noises.  You do have one noise that almost sounds like you’re saying, “Momomomomomomom,” but we’ll see.

YESTERDAY! Your actual 6 month birthday!  I put you in the stroller “like a big boy” for the first time.  I think you were a little dazzled by the new view.

You’re starting to sit up now, and you try REALLY hard to get yourself up to a sitting position while laying down, but you’re not quite there yet.  You’re grabby grabby grabby and I think if I need to make this many adjustments just because of your grabby little hands, dear god… the crawling…

We had our first encounter with a large group of people and I feel like I let you down there.  You were tired & cranky and I absolutely do not support the passing around of babies and the fact that I just stood there and let it happen is… strange.  Very unlike me.  But you can be sure I’ll back you up, at all times, in the future.  If you ever say no to someone and they don’t respect that, you tell them, “Don’t MAKE me call my mom over here.”  I’ll open a can of verbal whoop ass on anyone who doesn’t treat you like the individual that you are.

I think some people are kind of surprised that I’m good at this parenting thing.   My favorite compliment & thing to hear is when people say things about what a strong bond I seem to have with you.  People actually say that to me all the time, and it makes my day.  We like to speculate and make jokes about “he gets this from me, he gets that from you,”  but at the end of the day,  it’s all you.

And if you never learn to like broccoli, I promise not to make you eat it too often.