Tag Archives: Sam

Happy 3rd Birthday Samuel!

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Everyone – and I mean everyone – got sick this week (including poor Caroline, which was heartbreaking). So we postponed Sam’s birthday until he was at school, and well enough to enjoy it (although we did give him his present from us – a massive box of Geotrax – so that he had something to play with while home from school during Caroline’s massive feed-a-thons), and at school so that he could give out his muffins and party bags (why muffins? Because when we asked is we could send in cakes, the teacher said “we prefer something healthy’ [oh good, I’m on board] “like muffins” [Aaaargh, tears hear out].

So now, 2 days late, I get to say:

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Happy 3rd Birthday Sam.

Sam, you have made me understand the phrase “the light of my life”. When you are around, things seem brighter. You make me smile more broadly, laugh louder and hug harder than anyone else (sorry about the endless hugs… I know you have stuff to do and they get in the way). Every day, your crazy energy reminds me how much joy there is to be had in life. Your unconditional love teaches me about loyalty and trust. And eating your grow up is one of the greatest pleasures, and greatest achievements, I have in my life.

I am so proud of of what an empathetic boy you have become. Yesterday, we were all sick, Caroline had cried for over an hour, and then you had a meltdown because I put water in your cup when you had asked for juice (sorry about that). So, helpfully I started bawling my eyes out (I might be where you get your fair for the dramatic… sorry about that too). You tired to ‘kiss it better’ and when I was still crying you said “I think we need to call Daddy to make it better… I think Daddy has your medicine… I took medicine in my mouth and it made me better..” Then you proceeded to look for my shoes and socks so we could get your sister to the doctor. I was awestruck by how mature you could be, and touched by such sweetness. I hope that concern for others, and that need to make those you love happy (which comes from your Dad) never leaves you. It will make you a wonderful son, friend, partner and human.

Sibling love, or at least, sibling curiosity

Sibling love, or at least, sibling curiosity

I am watching you grow into your role as big brother too – again, I am so proud of how you have adapted to no longer being the center of attention, and to the care you show your sister. I know it was tough when she came home, and when things changed, but you have bounced back and are our cheerful, happy boy again. I admire your resilience, and wish I had it too.

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You’re crazy – definitely a little wild. You quite proudly announced you had a time out at school you because you “broke Scott’s tower”. You looked me dead in the eyes and said “I broke it so hard”. You poured pretzels all over the floor today so your dump truck could scoop them up. We frequently find you have locked yourself in Ellie’s dog crate. You are crazy and loving and curious and wild and smart and demanding and just you. I am so grateful you are you. Every bit of you I love and I can’t wait to see what this next year brings out of you.

Love

Mummy

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Perfect weekend

Noah's Ark Houston

Quality Mummy-son time

2 1/2 years in, and I am definitely still adjusting to motherhood. 3 years in, and I am still adjusting to Houston. I have written before that I was unhappy for much of 2014, and 2015 was looking to possibly shape up in a similar way (albeit a little better). And honestly, partially because I don’t really recognize myself as unhappy (maybe a bit ‘flat’ or a bit ‘whiney’) until I get it right. Until I realize that I have made myself happy. That happened this weekend.

Saturday morning I took Sam to a kids’ swimming pool (Noah’s Ark) and we just had a blast. It was lovely to focus totally on him, and to be a big kid myself – yes, I climbed through all the water tunnels (so elegantly with my whopping bump), went down all the kiddos’ slides and picked Sam up and threw him in the water fountain (much to his delight). It was delightful, silly, exhausting fun.

I definitely did not look this cute on the slide

I definitely did not look this cute on the slide

Cue a stupidly large Mickey D’s, and then an unplanned nap on the sofa. Although I was woken by Sam waking from his nap (after only 2 hours! 3 hours at the pool is supposed to buy me more than 2 hours!)  he then played happily for several hours while I made a new card for my Etsy shop (<— still a work in progress) and updated my Stampin’ Up! blog. Pizza dinner, easy night down for the dwarf and then movie night with the Husband – we watched St. Vincent which was pretty good.

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Baby shower card

Today I played hard with the kiddo in the morning and then went and helped a friend set up her Stampin’ Up! website. She fed me lunch and I got a delicious frozen StarBucks on the way home. Sam woke the second I got home (again, after only 1.5 hours! What is up with this kiddo?) so we tidied the house together and then hit the garden.

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One of the best things Wes & I did was fence off a small area of our garden for Sam. We put in his sandbox, my hammock, and small IKEA table and chairs, a bench, a slide and a paddling pool. If Sam and I go out there I can get snatches of anywhere between 15 and 90 minutes to myself blogging, surfing the internet or reading. And when he does want to play, it’s easy for me to engage in water fights and sandcastles and chalk pictures on the wall. We usually have a blast and today was no exception.

Tea, Emma Bridgewater cup, biscuits for dunking, blogging and the boy playing happily - what more could I want?

Tea, Emma Bridgewater cup, biscuits for dunking, blogging and the boy playing happily – what more could I want?

 

We finished up with snuggles in the hammock – occasionally Sam will take his sippy cup and drink it like he would drink from a bottle as an infant, seeking out things to play with with his hands, his eyes going heavy and going into the ultimate snuggle mode – it’s BLISS.

Snuggles beats all else

Snuggles beats all else

Now the little one is in bed, I am finishing my blog post while eating delicious pecan toffee, and somewhere in there I even managed a face and a hair masque.

So – why was this such a blissful weekend? What made it feel perfect? It wasn’t tantrum free (you try telling a hungry 2-year old that is 1.5 hours past his nap time that he has to leave the swimming pool of awesomeness). I bought a new nail polish and don’t like it (damn you Essie). I didn’t get time to blow dry my hair and it looks a mess. I did, however, have time to really play with and engage with Sam – both at home and out and about. There was time for my hobbies, and some friend time. But what is most surprising, is that there was no work. Not a single email, nor a review. I didn’t open anything I am working on to poke at it, and yes, I let a few overdue things just sit in my inbox (I am certainly not luxuriating for time at work right now).

It’s odd. It’s uncomfortable if I think about it, and yet it seems like the most natural thing in the world. I realize that even 2.5 years in, I am definitely struggling to adapt to (working) motherhood. When I became a mum, I tried to carry on just like before – keeping work the same and fitting the kiddo in around that. When I couldn’t fit everything in, I dropped the ‘me’ things – make-up, skin care, crafting, blogging. I squeezed Sam in when I could (after a whopping great 3 weeks of maternity leave), and I did whatever it took to keep work going.

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My world

It’s not working for me anymore (sorry for the pun). Academia is hard – the way funding is (pretty nonexistent) it seems like a lot of input for not a lot of payback. At the end of the road, when I have focussed so much mental energy on work, and I have nothing to show for it it is hard to look at my beautiful son and think “I am glad I put you second” and “I’m glad I don’t know you as well as I could” and “Sure, I read you stories, and tuck you in, and I’m the one you run to when hurt – but I don’t mind having missed out on those little interactions that are your whole world right now”. It’s hard to look in the mirror at an uncared for reflection and say “I am glad I look a mess”. It’s hard to look around the house and say “I don’t mind that this doesn’t reflect my personality”.

I don’t have the answer. Academia seems to get harder and harder, and survival seems to depend on more and more publications and collaborations and grant submissions. And truly, I love what I do! When I can focus on my real work (not work I have foolishly agreed to do for others, so I am working on reducing that), I truly am fascinated by behavioral genetic questions and I love answering them and writing on them. But kiddos don’t wait, and papers don’t hold me at night. It feels like the wonder in Science is getting less and less, while the wonder in my son grows daily.

Yet, I still hugely look up to so many great Scientists. I cannot let the dream of being like them go. It’s clear that I need to reduce work. I also need to streamline what I do (focussing on behavior almost exclusively) and be much more efficient when I am working (less Facebook, more papers…). Yet, I am scared I cannot be successful like that. It’s hard to let go of the 24/7 work mindset. But I am also scared that I won’t be be successful continuing like I am, and I will have sacrificed everything anyway and be left with nothing. Perhaps these are the ramblings of the third trimester, but  I am scared of not having more papers than most people at my stage, of not having more grant submissions, of not having funding. I am terrified of saying no. Yet, I feel I have to take the plunge. I need to turn work off sometimes, and reprioritize when I am at work. I’ve never been like this! I have always been able to do anything and take on any task. I could work my way out of mediocrity. Perhaps this was the fearless I needed to be when I wrote back in January 2014. Anyway, I have to give it go. I have to make some changes.

Hammock snuggles are the best!! If not the most flattering angle ;-)

Hammock snuggles are the best!! If not the most flattering angle 😉

I have no idea if anyone else struggles like this – I see so many people having careers and personal lives seamlessly, but I am happy to go out on a limb for a minute and say: I am struggling. I am not getting it right. I am changing. I don’t recognize myself and I am worried that the ‘old me’ would have negatively judged the ‘new me’ (what a bloody awful confession).

I am optimistic, I am scared, I am excited, I am terrified. I have no idea how this will play out.

 

Samuel’s take on Christmas in Texas

Baby goats are awesome:

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Donkey rides are pretty good:

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Tractor rides are so good, they warrant clapping:

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Chasing ducks? The best! Can’t get enough of it.

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And Santa? Santa is NOT AWESOME.

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Even with Mummy, Santa is not at all awesome.

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Happy Christmas.

Dear Samuel… 265 days

530 days together

530 days together

Dear Samuel,

265 days. 265 days in, and here you are now: 265 days out.

265 days today

265 days today

I am so proud of you.

I took you to ‘The Little Gym’ playgroup today. The group was for 10 months plus, but the younger groups do not meet at the weekend. We decided to see how you would do in a group for older children. You tried everything. With only one other crawler (a strapping 13 month old), you still kept pace with the big kids. As the group was reaching the end of their semester, they were far into the moves; today was ‘finishing off’ tumbling. You have never tumbled, but you tried. You rolled over the blocks on your tummy, stretching your hands out for the ground. You were not so impressed at the idea of ‘tucking your head under’, but you let us flip your legs over your head. You looked confused – why were we doing this? Wasn’t just crawling sufficient? But, OK, you were game – and you even let us do it backwards. You let Miss Nicky use you as a demonstration baby for the class, although you kept casting glances at me to make sure it was OK. You sat in a large foam donut while we span you round and around on a parachute singing our ‘A, B, Cs’. Again, you looked confused [why do adults do such weird things?], but after a moment you looked resigned, and despite the crying toddlers around you, you smiled and clapped along. Thank you for humoring us. You were adventurous, you were fun, you were brave and you were sweet-natured.

I am so proud of you.

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When I think about what this day means to me, I think about independence. I think about 265 days you were in me. For 257 I knew about you. For another 5 I suspected you were there. I spent 262 days working so hard to keep you safe inside me. I fretted over every can of mini Diet Coke, I worried about your stress when I had dental surgery, I choked down vegetables when I could. Then you came into thid world and you were even more vulnerable. Tiny, so tiny. You couldn’t even control your eyes. As parents our job was clear: to love you and nurture you so that you felt safe enough to leave us and gain independence. As much as we wanted to hold you close to us endlessly, we saw our job, very clearly, as being to give you the skills you needed to function in this world on your own, although we are always behind you. And you have! You go to bed on your own, in your own room, with ‘Mr Wolf’ to keep you company. You play in your room by yourself, pushing your cars along and shaking your tambourine, for ages at a time.

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You feed yourself, and you talk: you tell us when you want breakfast, or your bottle, and when you need your Mama.

Mmmmm... sushi

Mmmmm… sushi

I see in you the ability to take the world on, to meet challenges head on, and step outside of your comfort zone and rise up a level when things are difficult.

Learning how to play

Learning how to play

I got this!

I got this!

I am so proud of you.

Putting your aquarium on for bedtime

Putting your aquarium on for bedtime

But more than we have given to you, you have given to us. You love us unconditionally, and despite all our mistakes, you have turned out pretty damn brilliantly. You bought out Daddy’s best side: he looks after us so well. You have made him build us a home, and fiercely protect us, but with gentleness. You have taught me to trust myself and to trust my decisions. You have taught me flexibility and not to judge others. You taught me not to sweat the small stuff – what was stopping breastfeeding early, in return for all the hours we got together? And from the unconditional love you have given me, from your first word being a very clear “Mama” said with outstretched arms when I was off to work, you have taught me that I am worthy of love and that I earn it: I have the love I earned well. You, in learning to be independent from me, gave me independence from my insecurities.

I am so grateful to you.

You made us, us!

You made us, us!

I am, and always will be, so proud of you.

May this journey be long, and may we always be hand in hand, even as we forge our own paths.

First playground trip

First playground trip

Happy 265 days Little One.

Mama.

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Introducing Ellie

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Two Fridays ago, Wes and I went down to BARC shelter to look at dogs to cheer ourselves up and NOT to buy one just yet 🙂 While Wesley continued his tradition of liking ‘proper’ dogs and looking at the large breeds, I asked to get a little chiweenie out of the a cage (chiweenie = a ridiculous cross between a dachshund and a chihuahua). I took it to the play area, but we didn’t quite get on. With some sadness, but not too much regret (we were, after all, only looking, and I reasoned a little play outside was better than nothing for these creatures), I handed her back to the volunteer to go back in her cage.

The volunteer at BARC said that she had another chiweenie and asked if I would see her. “Sure”, I said nonchalantly. Why not? A quick cuddle and home. She bought out 2 chiweenies: a run of the mill short hair, and a beautiful long haired brown and white one. I dutifully played with the brown and white one, gave her some exercise and handed her back. The volunteer placed the plain Jane next to me and she immediately she hopped into my lap and licked me. I grinned, scratched her head, received a ‘kiss’ on my face… …and it was love.

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We played, we walked, we romped, but we mostly cuddled. I asked Wes if she could come home with us, but Wes said no (!) Adamantly. He wouldn’t even play with her. He firmly said he didn’t like her, and that she had had puppies and he didn’t want a dog who had had puppies. The tears started, and rolled unheeded down my face. The volunteer took pity on me and said “the small ones often go… she’ll find a home”, but I was not comforted. Still, what could I do? Wes wouldn’t even look at the dog, so we left, chiweenie-less and broken-hearted (me).

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I understood (we can’t get a dog one of us doesn’t like) but was so sad. I cried all the way home. And around Target. And through the movie that night. I tried to brave, but I missed the dog so much! Wes confessed that he was regretting his decision, and said that he didn’t know why he had said X-nayed her, and offered to return to the pound to get her the next day get her the next day. Poor Wes, he happily lived a loner life where no one bothered him, and he couldn’t bother anyone else, until 3 years ago when he fell in love with the most er… passionate… woman around. I have a lot of love people… it manifests itself in strange ways.

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Confused at how his life had spiraled, and how he had inadvertently found himself breaking his one true life goal (make Lekki (and now Sam) happy), Wes took us back to the pound early on Saturday morning. We could not find our chiweenie! They bought out an identical one, which they claimed was the same one (psssshhhhh), but I sadly shook my head and asked her to be taken away (and cried a little bit more). Apparently she had been fostered, so they gave our number to the foster agency.

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Thus began the waiting game. It was odd, as dogs are not normally fostered over the weekend – it is the busiest time, so they like the dogs on display so they are more likely to be adopted. When we didn’t hear anything by Sunday, Wes called the pound – the volunteer quietly told us that she was not listed anymore, with no record of adoption, and our assumption was that she had been put down.

Poor Wes, his life was spiraling into more and more guilt through no real fault of his own. In desperation, he left a tearful me with Sam at home, and went back to the pound in person just to see if he could speak to someone…

…. and he came back with my chiweenie!!!!

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Now we have lil’ Ellie. She is very submissive – more even than you would expect for the breed. But she is coming out of her shell now that she is learning that we are her forever family 🙂 She is now about 80% house trained, and has learned to use a leash. Not perfectly, but she does walk on it. She has bonded with me well enough that I can even let her off the leash in the park, and she returns when called (and does not stray too far anyway). She is a joy to watch outside – all leaps and bounds and fast galloping runs.

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But, best of all, she is the ultimate snuggle bug. She loved to tunnel like a little mole under covers, and snuggle up. When I am working, she sits between my butt and the seat. She is a joy to have and I am so glad Wes went back and found her.

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Sam LOVES her. She will let him stroke her (well… he tried… he’s a bit clumsy) and she often makes him smile. She chose to sit on his lap for part of our road trip to New Orleans, and he loved it.

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It was meant to be 🙂

Sam at 4 (and a bit) months

Sam at 4 Months

Sam at 4 Months

Happy 4 months Sam 🙂 You have turned out to be one of the happiest, most rambunctious, noisy, roly poly, grinning little wriggler. Luckily for Mum, you are still quite the snuggler too.

Snuggles, but with Dad.

Snuggles, but with Dad.

Well, we are back from our 4 month check-up, somewhat chastened. Last time we visited the pediatrician, he told us that we should not be rocking Sam to sleep in our arms / feeding him to sleep, but establishing a bedtime routine where we comforted him, soothed him, got him sleepy and then put him in crib sleepy, but awake. Dr. Injac said that we could pat him and sit with him while he was in his crib, but he should learn to recognize sleep time cues, so that he could soothe himself to sleep in his crib, with us nearby. Then at 4 months, it would be easier to just put him down and leave him. A sort of step-by-step approach.

It all sounded absolutely fabulous…

….in the safe confines of the Doctor’s office.

At home it was a different story. It sort of worked until Sam figured out that the boppy was a sleep cue – whereupon he went ballistic when he saw it. Then he figured out that ‘lights out’ meant crib time was coming, and went equally as spare. He would wail, and we would soothe him, then as we put him down he would wail again. This would continue until he would fall asleep in my arms during one of the soothing times, and boom – objective not achieved.

In Mummy's arms only, please

In Mummy’s arms only, please

I guess I should at least be pleased he’s smart / streetwise?

Honestly, it eventually slid to me (or Wes, but I like to do the bedtime when I have been working) just cuddling him to sleep, and then laying him oh-so-gently down. Periodically I would ask Wes if we should be stronger with Sam, but he wasn’t keen and asserted that he was too young. Although not entirely comfortable, I would give in. I asked some Moms and got a mixed bag of answers. Although my head wanted a better routine… my heart was not quite in it. Without Wes pushing as well, I would put it off.  

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Today at the pediatrician’s we saw a student first. She asked us about sleeping, and we said he was going down at 7 and then being fed at 10.30, 1.30, 3.30, 5.30. She asked if he was eating much at those times, and when we said “Not really”, she said “Because we expect formula fed babies (oh the guilt!) to sleep for 8 hours by four months”. Right. I confessed that we had forgotten the baby monitor twice – but Sam’s room is next to ours so we’d hear wails, if not grumbles – and she said that she was not surprised.

She asked how he was going down and we were honest. We asked what to do – what should we do about him crying at bedtime? What should we do with the night waking? And she said that she didn’t know (!) but would get Dr. Injac. Well… at least she was honest.

So… Dr. Injac came in with a twinkle in his eye and said “so… I hear you are a softie…”. [Me??]. He laid it on the line: the kid should he sleeping through the night. He said that our job as parents was to love Sam, and to protect him, but to help him manage the stresses of life – and sleeping well, on his own, was a stress we had to help him negotiate. Unless, of course, (in his words): we wanted those thighs to continue into childhood (another pitfall of formula I guess). So, he said to leave him when he cried at night, if it was fussing, not if it was unhappy wailing.

I hesitantly confessed that we had forgotten the baby monitor twice. Before I could qualify with an urgent and embarrassed ‘But we’d hear if he wailed!” Dr. Injac said “Good”. Dumbfounded I stared at him. He grinned and said “The vast majority of babies across the world do fine without monitors…”. I admitted that when he had forgotten the monitor, we had woken at ~ 5 to a sleeping Sam. At ~ 6 Sam had woken up, not cried, seemed very happy and not seemed starving – he had eaten a good breakfast, but not until he had woken up a bit.

“So…” said Dr. Injac

*pregnant meaningful pause in which he looked optimistically at me, and I looked desperately blank pretending not to know what was coming*

“… turn the baby monitor off”.   I then asked what to do about bedtime. With some amusement Dr. Injac said “what I told you last time. Let him cry. For 5 minutes. Go in… soothe him… reassure him… pat him. Then go. Go back after 10… then 15…. up to 40 minutes”.”Forty??”.
“Forty.”
*glaring from me*
” It won’t get there.”
*cuddling of Sam from me*
“If you’re a softie – sit with him. Just leave him in his crib.”.

He grinned and said “And if you’re going to tell me that this is your special time with Sam, just you and him, and your favorite time of being with him… that’s just fine. I am sure he will learn to sleep on his own in college”.

Ouch.

Then

with a soft smile he said “Two to three days. That is all. And he’ll sleep. You’ll feel better. He’ll feel better. And… it’s the only way he is going to get a sister”. So, let me say at this point: I felt Dr. Injac was offering his advice on what was best, and not telling us what must happen for the healthy development of a baby. He did not push us, or be mean, and although he was strong in his opinion, he was kind and understanding. I think he made jokes because he knows us well. Personally I think there is no best way to sleep train, and no best time. It depends on the baby, and probably more, on the parents and what they want. I thought I would be an attachment parent-er. I wanted to be. It just didn’t work out. I couldn’t breastfeed…. Sam hated baby wearing until he was old enough to face out (~4 months)… I was at work and so on. And it just didn’t really click for me. I was actually glad we had moved Sam into his own room at 3 weeks – it felt right for Sam, and for us. And although I love to comfort my boy, and love to stop his tears, I had personally been uncomfortable with a completely Sam-led night. Great if it works for you and your family (all methods pretty much end up the same, I figure), it just wasn’t for us. Had it been, when the student asked how he was sleeping, instead of a worried recount, I clearly would have given a breezy “just fine”. So. With deep breaths and hardened hearts (and cheery wheat beer and Malbed wine, and pecan butter ice cream) Wes and I tried it tonight. Settled Sam in his crib, and turned the baby monitor sound off. Our monitor has video, and a little sound bar, so that even when the sound is off, you can see if there is noise in the room.

There was noise. On and off in bursts. Grumbles and wails. Usually at the first sound of wails I go up, but Wes reminded me that we were giving it 5 minutes. Deep breath. On the DOT of 5 minutes I RAN upstairs and softly said “Sam” and went in his room. I got there just in time to see him find his thumb and fall into a deep sleep. We have not had a peep since.

 

If, IF, it sticks, I think we were lucky enough to hit it at the right time: the time when Sam was old enough to self-soothe, but young enough not to form memories about what was happening – that happens at about 6 months, and at around 7 months you get object permanence and all the vagaries of the accompanying attachment anxiety. So, hopefully we lucked out. We’ll see. Would we have gone for a 40 min cry session? I doubt it. I don’t know. A child who goes to bed easily, and independently is very important to me… I just don’t know how important until tested I guess.

Finding his length

Finding his length

The rest of a the visit was a breeze. Despite looking chunky

Chunky monkey :)

Chunky monkey 🙂

Sam is 60th %ile for weight (16 lbs, 4 oz), and 56th %ile for height (25.5″) – still basically an average Joe. His head is only 26th %ile though – pin head! I have a pin headed baby! So, maybe his little head makes his body look chunky!

Not such a chunker as we thought.

Not such a chunker as we thought.

The Doctor mentioned solids, but I am not interested in introducing them yet. If Sam was breastmilk fed, I would definitely wait until 6 months. As he is not, I will *think* about it at around 5 months. 5.5 – 6 is a rough target, unless I happen to think he is extremely hungry before that. Dr. Injac mentioned rice cereal and bless my awesome husband, he knows how important nutrition is to me and said “we were hoping to avoid grains for a while; are fruits and vegetables OK instead?”. Dr. Injac said that that was fine – it wasn’t his view, but he said rice cereal was mainly used because it was convenient (he did say not to put it in a bottle), and that the French blamed America’s obesity problem on early grains, and not enough vegetables early on. He said whatever worked for us was fine, the main thing was to get Sam used to different tastes and textures. Seems to me that, like with sleeping, advice changes and waxes and wanes, and ultimately, you need happy comfortable parents doing something they believe in. So, any time between 4 and 6 months for food is fine – depending on your instinct. Mine is later… some say earlier. Dr. Injac did say to get messy and have fun with it – now that was advice we could go with.

War wounds.

War wounds.

Then vaccinations. Boo. Sam didn’t flinch for the first one, wailed at the second, but I managed not to cry (I did eat cake after though 😉 ).

Other than that, Sam has been having a wail of a time.

He loves his bumbo:

Bumbo tray viking

And hanging around in his new bouncer:

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He *almost* crawls. He moves forward across the floor to his toys, but only as a kind of belly shuffle, using the surface as friction (not his muscles). If he is on a slippery floor he can’t slither forward and yells in frustration.

A successful slither

A successful slither

No sitting yet – he makes a rubbish weeble, he wobbles, but he also falls down:

He is great at reaching for, and grasping his toys. He can even grab his big rattle in tummy time, upend it, do a little push up, and negotiate it to his mouth for a good ol’ chomp. Vocalizing – yes, a lot. But not babbling yet, he is just grunting and wailing. I can’t wait for his first proper pre-speech sounds!

Although, Sam did recently discover how to screech, in joy.

For 20 minutes.

In the car.

Until he completely lost his voice.

 

 

Joy 🙂

He is just a happy, happy baby.

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Anyone got any sleep training advice or experiences to share?

Sam’s first month scrapbook page

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Gah, I can’t believe it has taken me so long to make Sam his 1 month scrapbook page – in just 2 weeks it will be time for his 3 month page. Oh well, little ‘uns (and work, and scrap-booking, and Christmas) keep you busy.

It’s funny to look back at this day… Of course I loved Sam, but he was still a little stranger in our home. A little, beautiful, alien. Sam was everything, and yet, we were still making an effort to fit him in to our routine. We were still in throws of “I need to do X… how do I do it with Sam?”. Still figuring out this little person who had come into our lives.

We only had one ‘routine’ down. Every day, at about 4 am, Sam would get horrible gas and grunt and cry. I was so sleepy that the best thing seemed to be to climb into bed in the nursery and bring him with me. It was amazing, he would melt into my arms, relax, stop his grunting and look utterly at peace. It started out as an anxious time: me watching him, so sad he was in physical pain. Then, quickly, Sam adjusted, as did I, and it became a very special time. Time we would snuggle just the two of us. Time, that even now as Sam gets glorious independence, he is utterly dependent on me, his Mama. It’s almost like we are as close as when he was inside me.

We wake up together, and I love I am one of the first things he sees when he opens his eyes. His biggest smiles are always when he opens his eyes to greet the day, and greet his Mum. I pray he retains that joy in life.

Back at one month, he didn’t smile, but I did. We would sit and read books, look at toys, sing songs. He was floppy then, and so skinny, I can remember how passive he was in my arms. How I taught him even to have his body in a comfortable position.

Wes would come in when he woke. He snapped this shot of us – one of my favorites – and I snapped one of him, realizing that Sam was a whole month old.

A beautiful page for a beautiful boy. Quite different from the one before – his birth page.

I am super excited, some friends bought a very special gift for his 3 month picture:

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His hospital outfit, one size up 🙂 I think he will look quite different to this:

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