Oh my sweet Smiles. How time is flying! With each passing day you’re more and more a big girl and less and less my baby. The general theme of this past month has been,”I’m not ready!” ;) Over the past few weeks you have grown so much, changed so much…
I feel like having your big sister has catapulted you from baby girl to big girl overnight, as most of your waking hours are spent chasing her around. You crawl super fast (too fast), and our baby gates have saved your life a few times. Each morning I have to go downstairs to get breakfast ready, and you scramble behind me as quickly as your hands and knees can carry you, crying at the gate holding you back from toppling down the stairwell. You also can sit yourself up, and more importantly, can pull yourself up with ease. I’ve found you crying in your crib in the middle of the night, standing up so proud yet pitiful, several times over the past few weeks. And, over the past few days, you’ve been eager to let go and practice standing all on your own. Of course, you last about two seconds right now before you plop down on your bottom, but you’re trying and that’s what counts. ;) I swear you’ll be walking any day now, and, in fact, I found you cruising along with your walker the other day. (I about dropped my jaw at that sight!) I’m not ready!
Crickie, you are a total garbage disposal, eating anything and everything you can get your hands on! Whether it’s veggie pouches, crackers, turkey, meatballs, apples, bananas, oranges, waffles, frozen peas, oatmeal, yogurt, popcorn — you love it all! Mostly, though, you want whatever Emma Vance is eating, and as you get more bold in grabbing for her food, she gets more possessive. (I suppose this is where the refereeing starts, haha!) You eat so much more than E.V. did at your age, but I suppose that’s what being the youngest is like, right? ;) You can’t stand to be fed; you want to do it all on your own, which is why we’ve totally bypassed baby food jars and gone straight to pouches. You also have two bottom teeth, which came in one right after the other this month, which helps in your gastronomical adventures, of course! You are suuuuuch a haaaappy baby that teething has been a totally new experience with you; those little white devils definitely make you a little cranky and clingy. (But, let me be clear, you are still, even in all of your fussiness, are the happiest baby ever. We still call you Smiles for a reason!) Although, I do have to say, that you are the snuggliest little bug ever, so extra snuggles just sweeten the deal for me. I just wish I could do something to soothe you! So far, gnawing on frozen waffles and hard objects like spoons seems to be helping a little bit at least. Poor thing. :(
Speaking of how cuddly you are, Smiles, you can’t stand to be alone. There’s something in you already that hates to miss a moment of action, and being with others makes you come alive. Truthfully, sometimes I wish you were a little more content on your own, but when you have those independent moments, ironically I miss you! ;) We have our Cricket Mornings on Tuesday and Thursday, and I try to be at home (not running errands) at least one of those days each week. Occasionally I’ll be cleaning and look down, expecting you to be at my feet, and you’ll be over in the play corner, exploring happily by yourself. I’m always a bit shocked because you are so social, and those are the moments I’m both happy to have a minute to myself and sad that you’re content without me. (You are my sidekick, after all!) As you grow, so does E.V., and you guys are quickly becoming best friends. In fact, I’m pretty sure Emma Vance is your favorite person in the whole world. She makes you laugh SO hard! She’s always wrestling you around, trying to pick you up and yelling, “C’mon, Cricket!” as if you could just run right behind her. She also loves to play “Jumpin’,” where I put the two of you in your crib and let you guys jump around. Right now you’re standing and holding onto the rail while E.V. jumps around, but you giggle so hard the whole time — and so does she. This month the two of you started playing together on your own, and it makes me melt to secretly watch you guys. Although having two littles so close together is challenging, it’s also awesome. You guys are meant to be, and I know you will be close all of your lives.
You are growing developmentally so fast, as are you physically. You’re already in size 3 diapers and are starting to bust out of the more fitted 6-12 month clothes I have for you. You have a big ol’ head just like your sister, and so the two of you are pretty much sharing headbands already, haha! Since I have no worries about your abilities to sit up anymore, we’ve been taking rinses in the kitchen sink after meals (you love to eat, but you’re not so hot at it quite yet), and you love to sit and splash at the running faucet. We’ve also started having full-on baths with no baby tub, and it’s your favorite time of day. You love to crawl around the tub, chasing after E.V., chewing on squeaky toys and balancing yourself as you practice standing (Yikes!). You continue to be a very routine sleeper, and this month you fully dropped that afternoon nap. Nowadays you take a snoozer around 9:30 (depending on what time E.V. has woken you up that morning!), many times in the car as we run to toddler activities or on errands, and then take a long nap while your sister sleeps, usually from around 12:30 to 3 p.m. By 7:30 we’re ready for bedtime, and by 8 you’re passed out for the night. You’re fine to sleep in your crib or car seat, but your favorite place to sleep is our bed. (Shhh! That’s a no-no, haha!) I think it’s mostly because in our bed you get snuggles, so I can’t blame you! ;) I’m fairly certain that within the next year you’ll be sleeping with E.V. in her big girl bed, spooning her in a messy ball of sisterly love that will make me sigh out of contentment.
Crickie, I love you so much it hurts. It doesn’t matter how many times you try to crawl off the bed with an adventurous grin, how hard you cry of loneliness when I’m two feet away from you, how many times I find you chomping on a mouthful of dog food–you are perfect in every way. My heart feels like it could burst out of my chest just thinking about you. You are my sunny, smiley, happy baby, and as proud of you as I am for growing up so gracefully, I want to freeze this moment in time so badly. I don’t care about dirty diapers or sleepless nights or having no freedom; you are enough to make this life wonderful. Thank you for bringing me eight months of joy so far. Here’s to many more.
Me (and Dad and E.V.)