You've started grinding your teeth. It's driving me crazy!
Today at dinner I gave you cheese for the first time. I let you take bites from a piece of cheddar. You were so cute. You'd open your mouth way wider than necessary, hold your mouth open with the cheese stuck in there until I said, "bite it!", then bite down gingerly and smush it in your mouth. And then proceed to grind your teeth.
You can sit up on your own now (from your belly, pushing up with your arms -- not sit-up style). Yesterday was the first morning I went to get you from your crib and found you sitting up in there. It made you seem so grown up! Today you did the same thing after your nap. Before long I'll be finding you standing, I'm sure.
You love to play catch with a ball. You whip your arm forward and the ball flies out, then you wait anxiously for the throw back to you. Sometimes you pull off sweet one-handed grabs off the bounce, which to me means you're a natural athlete. So far you seem to use both hands equally, but I think that's normal at this age? Not sure.
(Oh dear, I need to clean that mirror.)
Also, you've started following the command "arms up" -- but only when you feel like it, of course. Your arms are so tiny they barely reach above your head. So darn cute.
Now that you can sit up by yourself, getting you to go to sleep is a new battle. Today you skipped your morning nap, and at bedtime you rolled around and sat playing in your crib for over an hour before I nursed you a second time to get you to relax.
You amaze me every day. I laid you down for your afternoon nap, but you weren't tired enough -- playing with all the snuggies in your crib is just too fun now that you can get yourself sat up. You were quiet and content in your room; when I finally peeked in to check on you, you were sitting with both of your legs through your crib rails and a big ol' grin on your face. You didn't seem the least bit tired, so I enjoyed your cuteness in your crib for a bit, then picked you up and set you on the floor to play. You've been there in your room, playing with your toys and books, like a sweet, smart, little child, for about 15 minutes now. You just found a toy I had hidden in a shoe box for you and flapped your arms in excitement. Now you're waving the box top over your head. When you get bored with what's in front of you, you head over to grab another book. Sometimes you bonk your head and whimper a little, then go right back to what you were doing. You are such a good boy, working hard at your play. I am so proud of you.
I've noticed that the velocity of your army crawl is almost entirely dependent on how off-limits the object you are going for is.
You have a new book that you love: B is for Bear, a touch and feel book. You love to rub your fingers on the different textures. Also, last month when I wrote about your favorite books I forgot to mention your favorite of all: Global Babies. Your pediatrician's office gave this to us for free ("we like for our patients to read this" -- I did think that was a bit odd). The whole book has just one sentence, which after a hundred times of reading it I know by heart: "Wherever they live, wherever they go, whatever they wear, whatever they feel, babies everywhere are beautiful, special, and loved." Each page has a photograph of a baby from a different country. Super cute. It's probably my favorite book too.
After skipping your afternoon nap, you stayed up 'til your normal bedtime at 8pm -- that means you were up for 10 hours straight today; I'm quite sure that's a record!
11:35pm. When I finally put you to bed earlier you were pooped...
... and since you only slept for an hour today I'm hoping you'll sleep straight through 'til morning. When I went in to check on you before going to bed myself you were just so cute (as always), lying on your belly/side (as usual) and I figured it would be the perfect night to take a couple of pictures of you sleeping. I turned on the lights one by one and took a few pictures. When you stirred a little, I started turning the light off. But when I was going for the last one, the lamp on the bookshelf, I tripped over your bouncy chair and kicked a photo frame leaning against the back side of your crib, and I woke you up! You grunted then got up onto all fours and raised your head. I turned out the light and snuck across the room to the door. When I went back in to check on you a moment later, you were collapsed in the very same spot, with your face down and your head against the rails. I turned you a little and you spread your fingers wide, but didn't wake.
You did not sleep through the night. I think you got up three times between 11pm and 5 am. But then you slept until 11am, which you have never done before. Dad and I slept til 10:30 --what a rare treat!
Your favorite things to do nowadays are: anything outside, especially baths in the yard and swinging at the park, reading books, chewing on books, pulling everything off any shelf you can reach, hanging upside-down and getting thrown into the air, playing ball, and eating of course.
You eat some finger foods now -- mostly pieces of bread and Cheerios. Pieces of fruit are usually too slippery for you to get ahold of. Sometimes you pop the Cheerios straight into your mouth; sometimes you hold one in your thumb and finger and bite little pieces off with your teeth. Every single thing you do is so precious.
You don't watch TV except for the Your Baby Can Read DVDs, which you love. As soon as you see the dvd menu or hear the music you get very happy and excited.
Yesterday was your nine month birthday. It also happened to be the end of Beverly Homecoming weekend so we went out to grill with friends in the evening, then walked to Independence Park with you in your stroller to watch the fireworks over the harbor. You handled your second set of fireworks just like your first: you were enthralled at the beginning, then after a few minutes lost interest. You spent the majority of the show wrestling an empty box of chocolate eclairs.
On the walk back you fell asleep in your car seat. I knew I'd have to pick you up at 11pm, the time you were born, so we left you sleeping in your seat 'til then. You were not happy to be awoken. Dad was kind enough to set up a little family photo while I fed you.
We love you SO much, Robert. We're so glad God gave us YOU!