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Amusement
The easily amused are never bored.
aerrin
From thefridayfive:

1. What's an unfinished project that you should really get to finishing?

Nate's nursery. For. Freaking. Real. It's been like 90% done since the month before he was born, but we have two pictures to hang and a wall to repair and it drives me CRAZY that it's still not done.

Also grading these papers. I've been sick all week and they've been sitting here staring at me sadly, ungraded.


2. What's something you want to finish in the next six months?

Mostly small stuff. The semester. Re-mulching the flower beds and possibly moving some plants. Planting a garden. Printing and framing and sending out pictures from Nate's one year photo shoot.

3. What's something you've done in the last year or so that you're proud to have accomplished?

Kept a kid alive! Breastfed for a year (and still going). I've also done a lot of big projects at work of the sort that get little recognition, but which I feel very proud of - rewrote our for-credit research class, taught it for the first time, created a plan for the shelving of our books, etc.

4. How do you make yourself do something that you don't feel like doing?

Ug. Sometimes I don't. Other times... IDK. I make lists? I like lists. Checking things off makes me feel accomplished. But it's rare that I have a 'project' that I need to do and just don't want to. I (mostly) like the work of my job, and I generally don't mind housework and organizational work.

I sometimes sit around bored and annoyed at myself for being bored (this usually involves refreshing reddit a lot), and I'm trying to keep a list of 'things I could do instead of being annoyed and bored', which helps. If I find myself in that mood, a list helps me actually motivate myself to get up and do something else.

5. Is there anyone around you who's great at staying motivated, who gives you inspiration to be productive?

My former coworker was super motivated and organized, and she gave me a lot of energy. It's one of the things that I miss about her. Most of the time, I'm the organized, productive one in a group, and it was really great to have someone else like that in my life, both to help take the weight off, and to enthuse with me about progress and change.

I have some virtual friends (HELLO teza) who are similarly motivated and organized and productive, and projects with them are likewise usually awesome.

When I work with those people, I feel like being productive actually gives me energy rather than draining it. It's like-- the introvert/extrovert thing, but with productivity. There should be a word for that.

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amuse me
aerrin
I'm not usually one for nonfiction books, but I've been reading The Power of Habit, and it is seriously fascinating. If you've read that story about Target figuring out a teen was pregnant before she told her family, or about how they learned to market Febreze, this is the book it comes from.

I find myself analyzing my routines now - my cues, my routine, my reward. I have some hope that it might help me set some better habits (it hasn't yet - I'm weak of will) - but also, it's really interesting to start recognizing these things in myself, and in my family.

The second half of the book talks about institutional habits, and how good ones lead to prosperity and poor ones can lead to disaster.

I recognize some of those, too.

Yeah.

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aerrin
So here we are, three weeks short of a first birthday. WHAT.

Nate has been pretty delightful this last week. His clinginess is mellowing out, and his fourth tooth broke through on Saturday. He spends a lot of his time exploring and playing with things. Favorite toy is still the flyswatter, followed closely by the remote control. I've got to find him a good 'push buttons' toy for his birthday.

He's cuddlier, too, which I enjoy the hell out of. Sitting with him on my lap and pressing my cheek against his soft baby hair is one of my favorite things, and he barely fits anymore. This is totally how people end up with more babies.

He's really into mimicking right now, which is fun. He loves to have you pat something and then he'll pat it. He's started playing that game where I put my hand on his and he pulls it out and puts his on top of mine. He'll do high-fives about 75% of the time at home (and never when out - too many distractions). He'll mimic sounds, too.

No real signs of words yet, but he's pretty verbal. He spends a lot of his time moving, a lot of time on his feet. He can balance for several seconds without holding onto anything, but rarely does. I feel like we've got a month or so before walking, but who knows. The kid surprises me constantly.

He's laughing more at things that are 'funny' instead of just 'fun' - like being tickled or flipped upside down (he LOVES being flipped upside down). Sometimes Rob will make a face and he'll start to crack up. It's adorable.

He's very focused and slow to frustrate, which for some reason I find hilarious. Rob will play 'keep the pacifier away' with him for a good 5 or 10 minutes, and the kid just keeps trying, adjusting his angle or his hand or whatever. I watched him spend five minutes stretching up through the bars on his crib in an effort to reach his snuggie, perfectly patient while he worked on it.

My aunt keeps telling me he's such a serious baby, because when we're out, he spends all his time watching things very carefully. At home, though, he's got tons of smiles and laughs.

I've started sorting through pictures for his birthday party, and the contrast is insane. I mean, a YEAR. It doesn't feel that long, right? The pair of pants I'm wearing is older than that. And yet.

I've got 75 pictures in the folder and I haven't touched my phone yet. So uh. There's some trimming to be done. We'll get there. Eventually. I'm sure.

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aerrin
Clearly my count is off somewhere, because we hit an official 11 months on Sunday. I think just by a week though. This is really 48? That's not too bad, all things considered.

ANYWAY.

Nate's third tooth, which he's been working on for a while, popped out yesterday, so now we've got two on bottom and one on top. His teeth are super slow moving - from the time they pop through the gum to the time they're fully in is anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks, and I'd say it's nearly that long from when I think one is coming to when it pops through. I think this is probably a good thing - he's honestly a fairly pleasant teether and at worst we seem to get a day or two of crankiness. Just lots of gnawing and drooling.

His new thing this week is rocking back and forth, which is pretty adorable. He's also really picked up shaking his head 'no' at me again, though he thinks it's a game - interestingly, one he plays with me all the time, and with Rob rarely. He loves to do it on the changing table and right after nursing.

We had a little bout with constipation recently. My mom offered (out of nowhere! bless grandmothers.) to take him all night Friday and let us sleep in and have the morning off. It was glorious - and then I learned that he'd slept 8-11:30, then 3:00-5:00. AM. He has NEVER done that for me. Ever. He was fine the next night, but Sunday night he woke up a few times and was inconsolable (fortunately, all before 1 AM), and then he writhed and screamed to push out the tiniest little poop. TMI?

Anyway. Tylenol and gas drops got him through the night, and we have been working to up his water intake. I suspect that he's a little dehydrated, because we've been cutting back on breastmilk in anticipation of my no longer pumping at work when he turns one (HALLELUJAH), and I'm not sure we've been great about making sure he's getting enough other liquids.

He drinks like a champ, though, when we remember to offer. We have one of those great 360 sippy cups, and he can handle it entirely on his own and drink a good half a cup per meal. We probably need to work on the sign for 'drink' more so he can ask for it.

Cause he sure can ask for milk these days! If he REALLY wants it, he'll start to whine and just frantically clench and unclench both fists in this little adorable ball of MILK NOW MOM. It's the only sign he's great with, probably because it's the only one we're really consistent with. He'll do 'more' sporadically. We do 'more', 'all done', 'eat', and 'drink' sporadically. I also do 'bath time' with him, which he seems to know, but doesn't do.

Rob told me last night that he realized that Nate is more pleasant when I'm not there - which is true! Some of it is that I come home in time for the dinner-bath-bedtime routine, which often includes 'I'm tired and hungry' mild crankiness. Some of it is that I'm an anomaly to his routine and he wants to be on me a lot when I'm there. Both frustrating and endearing.

Most the time this kid is a hoot, though. He's (usually) pleasant and fun to be around and loves to play games. He's thrilled to pull all the rings off his stacker, he loves to be flipped upside down and thrown onto the bed, last night he was learning to high-five, he can pet the cat gently, and he loves to climb all over everything. He's pretty into books, too, and adores turning the pages.

Almost a year. Man.

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2 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
Yesterday Nate was hugging onto his snuggie while nursing - he's started to get REALLY attached to that thing and will drag it all over the house if we let him - and out of nowhere, he starts covering and uncovering his face with it. PEEKABOO!

This morning I went in to his room to grab him after getting dressed, and instead of his usual morning routine of digging out a basket or pulling all the books off his shelves, he was laying on the floor with a book open in front of him, looking at pictures and kicking his little feet in the air.

Moments like these remind me that this kid is a person doing person-like things. Toddlerhood is so close we can taste it.

I'm pretty sure he's working on one or two top teeth, but I've decided that his teeth just move slow. His bottom two still aren't fully in, and they broke ground about Christmastime. I can feel the bumps, but they're still below the surface. I'm bracing myself for a couple nasty days near the end, but he's usually quite happy after they break through, so there's that.

Nate's pretty into books these days. He loves turning the pages and gets annoyed that he can't manage it on his own. He prefers books with pictures of real things instead of drawings. In general he just loves to look at stuff. If I have him on my lap on the couch, he often scrambles up to stare out the window, which he can do for a good 15 minutes at a time. We went out to eat Monday and he spent the whole time hanging sideways watching the waitresses walk back and forth.

PS, this kid can eat a whole Denny's kids meal and then some now.

Also PS, taking him out to eat makes me realize how freaking terrible kids meals are and how few places even have sides I want to feed him. Denny's is actually pretty great - for $3 I can get him an egg, some toast, and half a banana or an order of broccoli.

He's in a blowing mood lately, so he crawls around with his little mouth in an 'o'. He's started clucking his tongue. He'll often repeat babbling back to you, especially if you sing it. And he's started bouncing to music when it plays.

Generally almost-eleven-months is a pretty fun time with him. He gets clingy in the evenings, which I could do without, but is a lot of fun to play with, and much snugglier than he used to be. Sometimes he'll even deign to lay his head on my shoulder.

I'm pretty excited for this spring, when he'll be able to go down slides and on swings. It's gonna be wild.

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aerrin
I'm in the mood for a good love story, preferably with a solid plot to go with. Must have good, fully-developed characters. My usual fare is genre stuff (sci fi, fantasy, horror, etc), but I'm open to other options.

Suggestions?

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5 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
... and let's hope I don't jinx it!

I THINK THIS KID IS FINALLY SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT!

For the longest time, we were down to two wake-ups for him, one for me - a feeding at 11, and one at 3 or 4.
Over Christmas break, I had a solid week off, and I decided to cut back the 11 PM feeding and go down to one. He'd done it a few times randomly and it felt like a sign he was ready.

And our sleep WENT TO SHIT. We were up two, three, once even four times at night. No pacifier or rocking would console him. We MUST EAT. For a week and a half, life was terrible. And just as I was about to give in and add the 11 PM feeding back in...

Lo and behold, our first tooth! Once it pushed through the gum, things got slowly better, and we have had FOUR nights now where we have not fed him at all - in fact, I have not even gotten out of bed to give him his pacifier. I have only heard him awake once, and I decided to let him fuss until he actually cried - but he never did! Put himself back to sleep!

There are no words for the feeling of getting a full night's uninterrupted sleep after a year and a half of interruptions.

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5 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
Just now Nate has found a piece of stiff paper which makes a pleasing sound when he waves it in the air. He's been waving it back and forth and cackling while kicking both legs and waving both arms for 15 minutes now. Every once in a while he pauses to explore the texture of the thing, then decides to go back to waving it and laughing.

Kids, man. I mean seriously. Who knew it'd be this much fun?

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1 amusement -- amuse me
aerrin
Good grief, I'm behind. And the further I let myself get the worse it is. SO MUCH HAPPENING.

When last I left you, I had a child with a runny nose and clingy fussiness. The nose cleared up, the fussiness lingered through the weekend before Thanksgiving. He just wanted attention, attention, to be held, held.

I was really concerned about the 4.5 hour drive we had for the holiday and how he'd do away from home, since the last big trip we took with him - to Texas - turned into a nightmare. It coincided with the 4 month sleep regression. I strongly suspected that this one would coincide with the 8 month one. That weekend we also went back to two feeds a night, which we hadn't done in AGES.

Fortunately, my fears were for naught. We drove about an hour and a half, and Nate slept for about an hour of it. Then we did some shopping and let him crawl around a bit in the 'husband chair' section of the stores, had lunch, did some more shopping, got back in the car just in time for another nap. We stopped by my grandparents' house and they met Nate for the first time. He was lovely for them - full of smiles and happy to show off crawling and laughing and sitting and other various baby milestones.

We rented a house about 45 minutes south with my parents and brother & family for $82/night, and it was enormous. Rob and I took the master bedroom, which had a bathroom the size of our living room, because PAST the bathroom was a giant walk-in closet big enough for Nate's pack 'n play. The place had three sitting areas, 2.5 baths, four bedrooms, two flat screen tvs, a lovely kitchen with an island, and a table that seats 8. It was really great for everyone to hang out in. Eight of us stayed full-time, and another 5, including my grandparents, came for Thanksgiving.

This got long.Collapse )

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aerrin
I'm gonna pretend I posted this two day ago when I started writing it, okay? Okay.

I had a three and a half day weekend last week, which was lovely, because I got to spend a lot of time with Nate, and not so lovely, because he spent most of it being a fussy whiny pants.

His runny nose has mostly cleared up, with no other symptoms of a cold and no actual teeth, so I'm still up in the air as to the cause. I THINK I can see teeth below the gum, but nothing's poked through yet. I've read that it can take weeks, though, so who knows. Maybe this is part of his fussiness - the more I though about it, the more horrifying teething sounds to go through. I mean, your teeth come UP FROM YOUR JAW and PUNCH THROUGH YOUR GUMS. Ow, right?

Part of the fussiness also seems to stem from the onset of separation anxiety. He's had bits of it before - a few weeks ago he clearly started noticing when we left him in a room. But it's sort of cranked to eleven lately, where he wants to not only be in the room with us, but RIGHT NEXT TO US with us, preferably with us paying attention to him. On the plus side, he's gotten happier about sitting in your lap. On the downside, he wants to sit in our laps a LOT, and also to be doing things like pulling on the pages of my books. I've been grateful for our Mei Tei a few evenings, because I've put him in it and done some things around the house and it really seems to calm him down.

Today I put him down for a nap and he spent fifteen minutes just HOWLING, which he's never really done. I went in eventually and picked him up, held him for about a minute, then put him back down and patted his chest, then left, and he was fine.

The neat part of this though is that he shows real preference for wanting this person or that person (usually Rob or I), which warms your heart a little. He's also started raising his arms to be picked up. It's funny, that seems like such a usual baby thing to do, but it took almost 8 months for it to appear.

He is SUPER ticklish in his good moods. Today I could basically tickle anywhere on his body and have him in giggles. His feet and inner thighs are almost always sure bets, but his ribs and up and down his back also often work. If I sit him up after his bath (all naked) and run his fingers up and down his spine, he gets this huge grin and hunches over like it's ticklish but he loves it and then starts laughing. It's pretty ridiculous.

We've started feeding him more things that we're cooking. I gave him rice and beans and chicken when we did enchiladas this week. Last night he got some marinated chicken from our chicken chili rice bowls and some warmed pear, as well as some sauce-covered rice on a spoon. He seems to like flavorful things, even with a little spice. He'll also suck on lemons at a restaurant and seems to enjoy it! I don't even know.

He's really into playing with our digital clock and X-box controllers (and anything else with a cord), as well as pulling the books off the bottom bookshelf. I guess I need to pack that stuff up somewhere until he's old enough to learn 'no'. We also need to get a fence/gate for our giant fireplace this winter. It's gonna be hard enough keeping the floor clean so he doesn't shove bits of wood in his mouth.

Last night I went to bad (too) late and had long passed his normal 11:00 feed (I'd given him his pacifier when he woke at about 11:45), so I decided to skip it and see what happened. What happened? He slept til 2:30, 7 and a half hours after his last feed and maybe 30 minutes earlier than his usual feed, then went back to sleep. Then up for the day at 6:30, which is usual these days.

So basically I think he's ready to drop that, and I suspect he may be ready to drop the middle of the night feeding if I pushed it. I'll start with one and maybe work on the next over Christmas break, when he'll be 9 months. WE'LL SEE.

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aerrin
Nate is finally getting over his cold (I think). He never had any other symptoms besides a stuffy nose, but boy did he HATE that one. He now starts to whimper as soon as he hits the changing table because he knows the nose sucker is coming out. We have sucked prodigous amounts of snot out of this kid's nose.

We have been gradually improving on the sleep front. We've moved his bedtime up to 7:30, which seems to be helping him sleep longer (?!? right?). It's been at least a week and a half since I've had to get out of bed just to give him a pacifier. Most the time he's up once at 3-4 and then wakes between 6:30 and 7. I sometimes do give him a pacifier then because he has a habit of talking loudly to himself in his crib and will instead play quietly if he's got a paci. I am not energetic enough to get up unless he forces me, so he often plays quietly in his crib for 20-30 minutes before I get up and get him up for the day when my alarm goes off.

He's starting to take real 'steps' on his knees, more than one in a row, but he can't quite get the cooridination down, which frustrates him. He likes to sit more and more, and look around at everything. He also likes sitting with me on the couch and crawling around to check things out. He remains a huge fan of chewing any cord in existence and will beeline across the room to find one.

Food continues to be fun. He's had pear and eggs, and Rob made him a pseudo omelet with mushroom in it this week. He also had 3 fries and an onion ring at BW3s on Friday because our food took 40 MINUTES and he was done by the time it got there. He was a pretty big fan. We gave him a little bit of peanut butter on a spoon last night and he sucked it off like a champ. He's getting to the point where I can hand him a variety of things off my plate, which is fun!

He's big into raspberries again and playing with blowing air in different ways, which is pretty amusing to watch/listen to. Also I realized last night that at some point in the past month or so, the excessive drooling has just... stopped. It's awesome.

We're going to Kentucky for Thanksgiving, and we rented a house along with my parents and brother and sister in law, about 30 minutes from my grandparents' house. They haven't met Nate yet. I think it'll be a fun trip and I'm kind of looking forward to it, even though it's a 5 hour drive. We'll see how it goes!

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aerrin
Just paid all the charges for Nate's emergency room visit and MRI.

Am now super broke.

We had four charges: ultrasound, ER (including CT scan), anathesia, and MRI. Guess which one hurt most?

AnswerCollapse )

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4 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
And another two weeks in one. You can probably tell what my life is like in general by how often I manage to write 'weekly' write-ups. Last Friday was the library dedication, which means that the last two weeks have been a flurry of last-minute panic attacks by certain people and a lot of unexpected physical labor.

But it's done. DONE. I don't think we'll have that many eyes on us again, even for opening. We have a more low-key open house for faculty, staff, and students today that should actually be a little fun. Friday was super stressful.

So! The last two weeks!

We started solids last weekend, and so far Nate has had avacados, sweet potatoes, banana, some bits of bread, and I gave him some tomato at Olive Garden yesterday. He really, really likes food, and is pretty good at feeding himself provided things are the right size and we don't mind a bit of a mess. He makes a pretty amusing 'wait, what is this?!' face for the first bite of new things, but then swiftly turns enthusiastic.

I've learned that I'm really terrible at laundry if it's more than normal wear and tear. How do I get goopy mashed avacado out of a bib? HOW DO I DO IT? Not to mention those 'peanut butter poop' stage diapers.... Fortunately, we have moved onto (TMI here I'm sure) the 'ploppable poop' stage, which is far more pleasant to deal with with cloth diapers.

Sleep is okay - I sleep with white noise now, which helps. Most nights I'm out of bed 1-2 nights, with one of those being a feed. He's still a good napper, still puts himself to sleep well most of the time. Sometimes he needs his pacifier, sometimes not. He'll often suck on his snuggie instead. He pretty much always sleeps on his tummy with his knees tucked up under him and his butt up in the air in the most adorable way possible.

He'll go up on his hands and knees now, but can't figure out how to coordinate arms and legs, so he mostly gets frustrated and goes back down to scoot. He can book it across a room if he's determined, and has started to dislike being left alone, so he's been known to traverse the short hall between living room and kitchen if he wants to join us. We have a set of two stairs down into the den that I'm hoping not to gate, and he's scooted over to investigate them several times now. He's nearly toppled a few times, but has so far caught himself. Really hoping he learns 'don't go down those'. Even if he doesn't, they're short enough that I'm not super concerned about injury.

He can sit like a pro, but gets annoyed because he can't get down and move around unless he just topples (and usually hits his head). We have put him in high chairs at restaurants 3 times now, with mixed results. He /can/ sit straight, but sometimes gets tired and annoyed and ends up slumping at an awkward angle.

We went up to visit my brother, sister in law, and nephew yesterday and spent a rainy, chilly day at a farm festival/corn maze/pumpkin patch, which was pretty fun. Nate was a trooper despite the chilly wind and poor naps. Next year I think will be super fun. I always enjoy watching my nephew (6) talk to Nate and try to play games with him.

And look, something like a family picture!Collapse )

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2 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
Another week where I haven't had nearly enough time with Nate.

His sleep is better - in fact, I've nearly gotten used to only getting out of bed once, for a feed around 3-4 AM. He often doesn't do the pacifier wake-ups at 1:30 or 5 anymore. He has taken to waking up for the day at 6:30 or 6:45, which I am not fond of AT ALL. So far I have been toss a toy and pacifier in his crib and sneaking another half an hour of sleep, but we'll see how long that works. I'm hoping he'll go back to sleeping til 7:00.

He's clearly slowed down on a growth spurt. His sleep is better and he's eating less.

Let's see, what else. Still no solids, every day I think 'maybe today', and every day we end up taking dinner to my mom or home late from work or some such. Scooting like a mad man. It's now no issue at all to just traverse the room after what he wants. Many times what he wants is a cord, so we're working on baby proofing. It's hard to not have cords, though! He's pushed up on hands and knees a few times, but never for long.

He can sit for several minutes if you sit him up. I got this triangle toy from Once Upon a Child this weekend, and he really likes it. It's a great height for him to sit and play with, since he can use it to help his balance.

We had a lovely time at the clothing swap on Saturday, where Nate flirted with everyone and was generally adorable and well behaved and snapped like a champ in his pack 'n play. I got the remainder of his 12 mo wardrobe and a good chunk of his 18 mo, as well as a few 24 mo(!!) items. I expect him to be in 12 mo in early winter and 18 mo about Feb-March.

I also found several fleece sleep sacks that are a bigger size for this winter, and a really super adorable dragon halloween costume! Also his first shoes, which he's not super fond of. And all of it for free!

I have had to pause this entry 5 times now, so I guess I will wrap it up.

I filled out Nate's baby book on Monday, too. Look how accomplished I am. Go me.

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aerrin
GUESS WHAT
WHAT
BABYKIN
SAID
MILK
WHAT
WITH HIS HANDS?
Well, he signed it.
REALLY?
Like you asked him do you want milk and he did milk?
Yep. I took his hand while I was holding the bottle and made the motion with it. Then I did it with my hand, and he signed it twice very quickly.
AHHHH!!!
OUR SON IS A GENIUS!
lol

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2 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
I blinked and it's Tuesday. I don't have a ton of new things to say this week in part because I feel like it's been such a rollercoaster otherwise (my mom is in the hospital and my dad suffers from severe anxiety even in the best of times) that I've barely had down time with Nate. Most our time has been him in car seats or hanging out with aunts and uncles, that sort of thing.

We had some really, really terrible sleep this week (one night I think I was out of bed 10 times), which I think is a combination of two things. He had a period of 3-4 days where he was completely off schedule, both for naps and bedtime. On Sunday he went down at 8, then woke at 9 and was up until 10:30. I mean UG. And also, growth spurt.

I put him in a pair of pants on Sunday that he'd worn two weeks previously. Two weeks ago, I'd had to roll the legs up a good inch or inch and a half. Now they fit him. I'm pretty sure this kid grew at least an inch in two weeks. So this was probably part of his increased nighttime wakeups and difficulty putting back down (I gave him and nursed in twice per night THREE TIMES this week).

We had a more typical night last night, with 2 brief pacifier wake-ups and one feeding, so I feel almost human again.

This week I learned to get him to cackle by tickling his ribs and his thighs, by which I mean 'actually pinching him pretty darn hard'. It's adorable.

He's also started sitting pretty well, though we don't do it often. Generally I prefer to let him do things he can manage himself, I think it's better for his motor skills, but I do try to sit him up once a day or so so that he gets practice getting out of sitting and falling over. If he's lazy, he'll lean forward on his hands, but he can actually sit pretty straight on his own, and he'll put a hand to one side now if he starts to wobble.

Still no foods. Meant to. Week of exhaustion and stress instead. So maybe this week. Our 6 month appointment is tomorrow. Last time she suggested rice cereal, so this at least is a chance to ask her if there is some benefit to it we're missing or if we can just skip it. Also her philosophy on timing of new foods for allergy reasons.

This weekend is the clothing swap my SiL helps run, so I'm driving up for that. Will probably take Nate with so 1) I can make sure socks and shoes fit him and 2) give Rob a bit of a break. He's been doing a lot of sitting with my dad this week. I have a list of things I'm looking for, but need to double check it a bit.

Mostly I need socks, neck size up pants, sleep sacks, a winter coat. 12 mo and 18 mo onesies would be great too. I think I took up maybe 2 dozen items, which means I can get that many in return, but my SiL often has extra 'slots' that she'll give to me. She also said they get baby carriers, so I'm kind of hoping maybe someone's tossed a ring sling in. I love my mei tei and my ergo, but I'd like to try a ring sling for hip carries when he gets older. I just can't bring myself to pay for another carrier because we don't use them often enough.

Anyway. Six months and a week, yay. 

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aerrin
Nate is 6 months (and two days) now!

I am trying to be enthusiastic about this, but right now all I can think about is how much I miss constant sleep. It's like a rollercoast - one week we're climbing up that hill, the next week, for no reason I can discover, we're PLUMMETING BACK DOWN! Nate's having a hard time soothing himself back to sleep again, which means more times up for the pacifier in the middle of the night. I keep thinking about handing this duty off to Rob, but it's so hard to drag him out of bed that I'm honestly not sure I'd get any more sleep out of it. Anyway, I'm particularly exhausted today after a bout of 20-minute-catnaps from 5-6:15, when I finally decided to just nurse him and he conked out for another hour when my alarm went off. I let him sleep in in the hopes that he'd be less grouchy and Rob would get some extra sleep, but apparently he woke shortly after I left, so WHATEVER KID.

We've had some fussy, clingy days this week (I say, like it's so terribly hard, when usually Nate is so mellow that even an hour of wanting to be held feels annoying). I don't know if it's just an off few days, or if he's finally teething, or... who knows. He's also started REALLY protesting when he's annoyed/hungry/etc. He used to just sort of fuss, now he actually cries.

Sometimes he clearly just wants attention and to be played with, because he'll cry and fuss, and then as soon as you look over at him, BOOM. Smiling. Like, wide-eyed grins.

In fact his grins are getting more and more fun. Yesterday I came home from lunch and he started grinning so hard it nearly broke into a cackle, and just kept doing it for like 10 minutes. For literally no reason except that I was there.

Rob can get him to cackle by kissing him all up and down his neck and tummy. Sometimes bounce-a-baby gets it, too. He gets so excited that he stops breathing, then lets it loose in a cackle. No real giggles yet, though.

This is also the week he started the hardcode military crawl. This kid can book it across a room - like a good 5 feet or so - in a minute or two. He's developed real preferences, this toy over that one, that are fascinating to watch. He's feeding himself his bottle most the time now, and he can pull it away and put it back just fine (and sometimes he tries to treat my breast like this, too).

He still LOVES to touch faces, especially when nursing. He almost always wants to have his hand on my chin or my nose or in my mouth, which is both sweetly adorable and really annoying.

He's super into the jumperoo. He loves to make it swing, and can turn the chair in a circle and play with nearly all the toys on it. He loves to make the things spin, and this week he realized that if he stretches on tip-toes, he can pull the bird down and stuff its beak in his mouth.

He's working on sitting. He can do the tripod thing, especially if supported by a boppy or something else. As soon as he starts to move, he tends to topple to one side or the other, though. Last night I watched him move from tripod onto one knee and then his stomach in pretty smooth succession, which was wild. He still loves floor time, and especially likes to be on his tummy now. He's pretty good at balancing and reaching with one hand.

We bought an avacado to start him with this week, but haven't fed it to him yet. To be honest, I feel like we are way not prepared for this solids thing. It's a different level of work, from prepping the food to cleaning him up to dealing with the non-breastmilk diapers, and I at least don't have the energy for it yet. We may way til our doctor's appointment, next Wednesday. IDK.

In some ways this feels like a huge step, and for me it's kind of sad. This is the point where my baby boy is no longer mine, in some ways. Right now, he's a 21 lb and some change chunk who has been entirely made by me. All of him. It's silly to be sad to lose that, especially since I think we'll be nursing for quite some time to come, but still. It is.

I also feel like this is the time when he's really starting to have preferences, and food is another part of that. Oh, he loves sweet potatoes, he hates broccoli, etc. I want that for him, but it feels like such a change from the little potato we brought home, which WASN'T THAT LONG AGO, that sometimes it's a little hard to deal with.

Which is stupid because I don't even like babies!

Except this one. I like this one pretty well.

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5 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
Ug. I am so tired this morning that my eyes will not stop watering.

I really miss a full night's sleep, guys. I really, really do.

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aerrin
Look at me updating on a Monday! Like a person doing things on time!

Nate has been kind of wild fun in the last week. His favorite game right now is 'bounce-a-baby', where he gets bounced on the bed. Rob can make him cackle by eating his belly (and this kid is weird - he likes to almost literally be bitten, it cracks him up). He loves to shake noisy rattles. He's really into his jumperoo and loves to make it swing and bounce, and last night was the first time I watched him play with the spinny toys. Every day he is more and more aware of what's going on.

This week he started stretching out his arms for people he wants. Mostly for my dad! He loves my dad's mustache and that he sings to him and makes funny faces and noises. My father has basically no dignity when it comes to this kid, and it's hilarious to watch. My mom is also a goof, but far more reserved compared to him. He also LOVES my parents' dog, and will reach for her and start grinning and cackling when she comes near. Fortunately, Maddie is patient and doesn't mind having her hair tugged. This is a great difference from our cats, who Nate is really into watching, but who only tolerate being near him if Rob forces them (and he does force them).

Nate is definitely mobile now. He's been rolling around for a while, but now he'll lift up on his hands and reach for what he wants, sometimes quite a ways away. If he can't get it, he'll inchworm his way across the room. The entire room. Sometimes it's an amusing inchworm/rolling combination. He's starting to show real preferences and choices, which kind of blows my mind. There's a real live human being with things he likes and doesn't like in there!

We're trying to cut back on pacifier use because he'd gotten a little too used to it, and I think it is helping his sleep a little. Sleep is largely the same - I'm out of bed about three times a night, twice for a pacifier and once to feed. For a while the pacifier trips were taking longer as he was still fussing and losing it again, etc, which is why I want to try less pacifier during the day. He's generally happy with it, it's just a huge DROOL issue.

I packed away his 3-6 month clothing and got out his 9-12 months. Which is the last size I have completely bought ahead. He's still in 6-9 months, so we have probably 2-3 months before I'm in trouble, and I'm hitting a clothing swap and a consignment sale before then. I'm going to have to start planning some for-real Once Upon a Child trips, though.

I seriously don't know how people afford to clothe babies in new clothing. He grows so fast and is often in two outfits a day! He's hovering at somewhere between 20.5 and 21 lbs now and I'm pretty sure he's put on several inches. We'll get weighed and measured for real in two weeks.

We finally stopped with the open-bottomed sleepy gowns last week as the evenings started to get cooler, so now he's in footie pajamas at night (and often during the day), as well as his sleep blanket. I need to get some larger sleep blankets, too. His sleeping gear when it gets really cold in the winter and we keep the bedrooms closed while we heat with the fireplace and it's 62 in there is a thing I haven't figured out yet. We may just buy a space heater, IDK.

Nate turns 6 months a week from today, which is impossible to believe. We have his 6 month appointment a week after that, and then we'll be starting solid foods. That high chair that's packed away because 'we won't need it for forever'... we need.

CRAZY.

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5 amusements -- amuse me
aerrin
The class I'm supposed to be teaching right now unexpectedly didn't show up. Can't say I'm too sad about that, to be honest.

With my extra free time, I fixed a stupid mistake making our log search for XF not work (at least it was a stupid mistake, because it took like 5 minutes to find and fix).

And now I'm sitting here waiting on texts from my dad. My mom is in surgery today; they are removing part of her colon to take out the bit with diverticulosis. This is hopefully a fix of the problem. It has a small chance of redeveloping, but it's small.

Now I'm going to sort through some survey results, try to get numbers of books vs shelves, and try to get caught up on marketing stuff I'm dangerously behind on.
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