Tuesday, August 5, 2008

9 Months Old Today

Picture of Calvin and Andy playing. Cute outfit compliments of Auntie Alicia.

I put this one so that if you zoom in on his face, you can see that he's currently covered with mosquito bites. I took him outside for 5 minutes last night. Bloody swamp of a backyard.

Dear Calvin,

What another big month! You are now completely mobile, and we have a whole new set of challenges in keeping up with you. You walk wherever you can go by either holding onto furniture or palming the wall, or you resort to crawling where there's nothing to hold onto. You're maneuvering up and down stairs (still under close supervision) and all around the house. We can't count the number of times you've hit your head or done a face-plant trying to climb new obstacles, so we're just hoping for the best when it comes to your physical and mental health. We try to be so careful, but we just can't keep up with every move you make. Nor would we want to. It's fun to watch you figure things out all by your 9 month-old self. Here are some of the highlights of the month:
  • Over the past several months something you like to do while eating, having your diaper changed, or just laying on the floor playing is grabbing your feet. Lately though it has gone to a whole new level. You now contort yourself into the oddest position so that you can mash your foot into your mouth, sucking happily on your big toe.
  • Another new habit you have is unhinging your jaw so it pops out, and then you open and close your mouth, making a loud clicking noise with your jaw. We have to ask the doctor if that is normal. Even if it is, it totally grosses me out.
  • Last week your dad lowered your crib mattress because you have come dangerously close on too many occasions to throwing yourself over the side, plunging to freedom at a very painful cost.
  • The cutest thing ever. You will sit on the floor (you prefer the tile or wood floors) and just spin yourself around and around. Sometimes your spinning is accompanied by clapping, but sometimes you just like to pretend you're on your own invisible merry-go-round.
  • You officially have a lovey, blankie, wubbie, silkie, or whatever you'd like to call it. Aunt Annette gave you a soft striped blanket with a silky ribbon around the edges for Easter, and you can't go to sleep without it. You sometimes drag it all around the house, and grab for it anytime you see it cast aside from an earlier time when you may have momentarily forgotten about it.
  • You're very particular about how you sleep. When I lay you down in your crib at night or for naps, you automatically clutch your blanket to your face, roll towards the wall, and pull your blanket up so that your feet are sticking out at the bottom. If I cover your feet, you immediately poke them out again.
  • Any time you hear a beat, you dance to it. A few days ago you danced to Celine Dion in the grocery cart at Bloom, and today you were jamming in your high chair at Five Guys. You're not particular about who sees you get your groove on.
  • As previously mentioned, you are now the proud owner of a second tooth. I think they hurt you less now because you're not as defensive when I try to see them. You are also great about letting me brush them.
  • I fear that mommy and daddy have ruined you already. You have a real affinity for Baby Einstein these days, and today I was letting you watch while sitting on my lap so that you'd let me cut your fingernails. The DVD ended, the credits rolled, and you automatically grabbed for the remote control, frantically pushing buttons trying to bring your show back on. I swear you had to have learned that from your father.
  • The past couple of weeks whenever you get mad or we take away something you want, you push out your cheeks and blow really short fast breaths out of your nose. You look adorable doing it, but I worry that you'll think you can just huff and puff to get whatever you want.
  • You made me cry the other day at the pool. You stared at all of the kids playing, smiling and laughing in their direction, hoping they'd notice you, only to look a little bit hurt when they didn't. You eagerly tried to get the attention of everyone around you, but for once they were all too busy to notice you. It broke my heart. You love watching other children, longing to join them. I told your dad I wanted to adopt a child immediately. He said no, so I gave him the silent treatment for the remainder of our swim. I'll keep working on it for you, I promise. I don't believe in children feeling lonely.
You're the sweetest baby, Calvin. You are so excited about the world around you, taking in everything, no matter where we go. You are so impatient to know how to do and see everything. You don't get upset, but you squirm to get down and move on your own, you squawk at people to get their attention, you squeal with delight over so many things that interest you, smiling and laughing constantly. You still love water more than anything, and you love going anywhere fast - from us running when we push you in the stroller, to you throwing back your head and laughing when you swing at the playground. You are growing up so fast, but we truly are doing our best to enjoy every second.

We love you, Calvin and we feel beyond blessed that nine months ago today you came to live in our home.