Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Letters to Aden: Nine Months


My little buddy, you are growing up so quickly. Today, you turn nine months old! Nine months (plus six extra days) inside my belly preparing for life; nine months outside in this great big world of ours. How does time move so incredible fast?

This was another big milestone month for you. Suddenly you seem like such a big boy to me - more resemblance to a toddler than a newborn - with every look and every action. Your face shape is elongating and blond hair now covers your head entirely. I find myself snuggling your sleepy body for a few extra minutes at night and kissing your pale, soft skin more often during the day because I know these moments of babyhood are fleeting. You are growing up!

Physically, you've busted out of 6-9 month clothes and officially moved into 9-12 month sizes. Last month, there were a few clothing items still making the cut, but now I'm officially retiring another set of outfits you've worn and I've loved. I feel like this every time you move up a size, but I'm having such a difficult time accepting how quickly you're changing. This month, I dressed you in the same onesies and outfits you've been wearing all summer and then I'd laugh out loud because you seriously looked like a "fat guy in a little shirt" -- your adorably round Buddha belly stretching the shirt's fabric tightly.

Love going for walks in the stroller

You don't have your official nine month check-up for another two weeks (I'm waiting to gang up your doctor's visit with Tory's appointment after her 3rd birthday), but unofficially I record you weighing in at 19 pounds. You are all boy, so solid and sturdy. This month, we moved you from an infant car seat to a convertible car seat because you were seriously so hefty for me to lug around. I worried you wouldn't be as comfortable or take as many naps in the car but, eh, you're so go-with-the-flow. Your new car seat suits you just fine with no complains. With much sadness, I also retired your beloved baby swing this past month. Believe me, if I could've kept that big ol' thing in our living room for the rest of your lifetime I would've because it was a treasured piece of baby gear in your early months of life. You loved your swing. Loved it. You enjoyed many, many naps in there and on the fussiest of nights I'd lay you in the swing and you've sleep the longest stretches you've ever slept. But, you were starting to look a bit ridiculous; your head was higher than the cute bunny-ears cushion and your feet dangled far past the swing's seat. #RIPswing This mama will miss you dearly.

Playing at the park by our house

You're sleeping *pretty good* in your crib these days, taking two naps every day from 9:00am - 10:30am and 1:00pm - 3:00pm and sleeping at night from 7:30pm - 6:00am with one (or two) wake-ups usually around Midnight. I'm not very good at letting your cry it out, mostly because you continue to scratch your face and head something fierce when you're frustrated and/or tired. No matter how well maintained I keep your fingernails, you manage to scrape your face with your hands or pull on your ear lopes until they bleed. Poor guy! Why do you do this to yourself? Putting mittens on your hands no longer works as you've figured out how to bite off one glove with your mouth and pull the other off with the free hand. So, I don't leave you alone long to soothe yourself back to sleep. I don't mind waking up with you once or twice in the night because you'll go right back to sleep after I feed you a bottle.

Other sleep notes -- I'd officially call you a side-sleeper as the minute I lay you in your crib, you'll roll to your left side and go to sleep. Or, if you're awake in your crib, you'll contently lay there and play with your feet or roll around until you fall asleep on your own. One tell-tale sign you're putting yourself to sleep is the way you rock your head back and forth (as if you were motioning no-no-no) until you find a comfy spot to settle into a slumber. In the last 10 days or so, you've been waking up for the morning around 5:00am which is way, way too early. You're happy about being awake and would occupy yourself in your crib until I came to retrieve you, but you're also so noisy squeaking and squawking, I don't want you to wake up the whole house. I think the disruption in your (fairly consistent until now) sleep schedule is all the physical developments you're learning as of late.

For one, you're rolling over like crazy these days. Any time I set you on the floor in a sitting position, you immediately flop onto your belly. You want to spend so much time on your tummy now and are constantly practicing how to push up on your arms and get your belly up off the floor. You're not crawling just yet, but I know you will be soon. If I put you in a crawling position on your hands and knees, you can stay there for a bit and rock back and forth trying to gain forward momentum. For now, rolling seems to be your preferred method of moving from place to place. You'll roll over to where Tory is so you can play along with her, too.

You've learned to wave "hi" to people (you do this by feverishly waving both arms up and down) and giving "high-fives," from swimming class where the instructor prompts the children to give high-fives when class is completed. Speaking of swimming class, you love, love, love the water and are so excited to swim each week. All the parents and the swim teacher chuckle because you're so content to float in the water. Last week during back-floats the instructor joked, "Now don't fall asleep, Aden!" because you'll float on your back forever it seems. You don't even mind having your face submerged in the water during "zooms" or when we're doing "Humpty Dumpty's" off the side of the pool ledge. This month, we took you swimming in the lake at the cabin for the first time as well. The water has finally warmed up to about 80 degrees so we put you in one of those baby floaties and you contently floated there all afternoon. You had a great time.

You grow more interested in eating solid foods with every passing day and prefer to feed yourself over me feeding you with a spoon (though you do eat purees 3x a day). This month, I discovered you have food sensitivities to avocados and all milk products. You ate about a 1/4 of an avocado and instantly broke out in hives on your face and upper body within minutes of eating it. I also gave you a few pieces of Tory's frozen waffle one morning (which I now realize contains milk) without much thought and you immediately reacted. I've since become very diligent at reading labels and avoid feeding you anything that contains dairy. Foods you enjoy feeding yourself (with no reaction thus far) are: zucchini, sweet potatoes, carrots, green beans, squash, cucumbers, peaches, watermelon, cantaloupe, blueberries, toast with dairy-free butter and chicken. Your favorite food, by far, is pureed peas. You can't get your mouth open fast enough to eat them!

Other things about you at this age I don't want to forget: the way you talk to us by growling in a low voice; your latest trick of smacking your lips together to make noise; your constant smiles and gorgeous ice-blue eyes; how eager you are to put everything in your mouth (pacifiers, toys, remote controls, telephones, sand - yuck!); your love for balls, teething toys and your favorite blue blanket; the way you idolize Tory and absolutely light up when you see her; your clammy feet, pudgy belly and skin as pale and soft as milk; and, how go-with-the-flow you are about anything and everything.

You are one of my greatest blessings in life, Aden. I love you more than you'll ever know. Happy nine months!



  1. Wow, I can't believe he is 9 months old already! He is seriously SO adorable! How interesting that he has a dairy allergy but it didn't show while nursing or with formula. Is that common? I hope he outgrows it at some point. I imagine that would be a big stress as he gets older.

    1. The dairy allergy has definitely thrown me for a loop. It didn't show up with nursing, but did as soon as I switched him to regular formula. So, now's he's on soy formula (and does fine with it). He's also shown immediate reactions to other dairy products like cottage cheese and the frozen waffles (containing milk). I'm crossing my fingers he grows out of it, too!