Monday, July 14, 2008

July 14: Six Months Old

Dear Elanor,

Today you are six months old -- a whole half-year!

I was just looking back at the last monthly letter I wrote, and was confronted with a picture of you on our trip to Denver. You were so little, and despite how I thought you were so big, you were still such a little baby compared to the person you are today. I'm sure I'll say the same in a couple of months when I look back at who you are now.

Unfortunately, I don't have a letter for you for months four or five. I was not able to write them, because on the day before your four-month birthday, I underwent what I am sure you will one day realize was a very frightening experience.

That said, I am so, so, so glad to be here today writing about the past couple of months. I'm so glad I am here to see you grow up and change from a baby into a toddler into a girl and someday into a woman.

At Magnuson Park, July 11

So, to recap, the past couple of months have been pretty chaotic for us. You, however, have weathered the chaos extremely well. Your adaptability and good-naturedness has been such a blessing to us and to those who have helped us care for you -- all of our family members, and many, many good friends. Especially during the first very difficult weeks, you were so good and amazing and really just rolled with the punches in a way most babies wouldn't.

Getting kisses from Papa on Father's Day

And now to the more immediate past and the present. Before all of this stuff with my health happened, I went back to work. It was a hard transition for us, but we were doing ok. With help -- again -- from our family and friends, we were making it work, even if Papa and I were tired and a little overwhelmed by everything.

But then my heart stopped, and we had to realign our priorities. Spending time with each other and with you became even more of a priority than it was before.

Showing off how well you can sit up -- not to mention your amazing fat rolls -- at Magnuson Park, July 11

Your Auntie Rachel came up just after your five-month birthday to take care of us and of you. You have been having a great time with her every morning while I've been back at work! She takes very good care of you and you love to be with her.

Within the past two months, you've had lots of fun firsts: you've rolled over, front to back and back to front, you've gotten two teeth (one on June 10 and one that popped through this past week, both on the bottom), you can sit up unsupported, you've learned how to inchworm yourself forward (but not quite crawl, although you are so close), and you can stand up if we help you balance.

Standing up with some help from Kim, July 6

You enjoy playing in your exersaucer for quite a while. You like the orange lion because he's squishy and nice to chew on, and you like the little flippy book part with the pictures of monkeys and lions and such.

Looking adorable in your exersaucer, June 20

When you've had enough of your exersaucer, you'll now look at us and do what Noni calls uppy -- you put your arms up in the air and look at us pleadingly and make little whimpering sounds, which is your way of asking us to pick you up and snuggle you.

Another important thing we've done lately is introduce solid -- well, ok, mushy -- food. You liked cereal ok, you loved bananas. Avocadoes, though, were more fun to squish than to eat. I am excited to continue offering you new things. Despite all of the new foods, you still love to nurse and I am in no rush to stop doing that. It is so good for you health-wise, it calms you in a way nothing else will, and it's such a lovely connection that we have. I'm so very thankful that we are still nursing. It's a minor miracle considering what I went through medically.

Avocado aftermath, July 3

Your hair is less mohawk-like these days. It sits down on top, unless it gets messed up by the wind or something. But it's soooo long in the back. What we used to call your mullet has grown and is now your rat tail. I am not sure what we will do about it, whether we'll let it grow or whether we'll eventually cut it off to even things up.

Stuck under a chair after scooting yourself there, June 29

Sleeping is still not really in a schedule yet. You have a general pattern, though, and I am really ok with that. You continue to sleep really well if you are in the Ergo or sling, or if someone is lying down with you, although there are times when you will sleep by yourself if you are in the co-sleeper or on our bed. Honestly, though, even though 90% of your sleep is with one of us in bed with you or with you sitting on us, I don't worry about it. It's funny, though: if someone had told me that you'd be sleeping with us 100% of the time at six months, I wouldn't have believed them. And I would have been even more incredulous if they told me that I'd love it. I guess this is just one of those things about parenting that wound up being totally different than I'd pictured it.

You still love to squeal and screech all the time. The sounds you make are starting to mimic our speech more, which is fun. You say lots of sounds like "Ma ma ma ma ma" and "Da da da da," which is so fun to hear. However, although I was saying words at your age, you have not yet spoken any true words. I feel like that's coming soon, though!

Enjoying your pool, June 28

The water is still one of your favorite places. Even though the water is usually freezing, you love to sit with Papa or me in your little plastic pool on our patio. We slather you in sunscreen and put your swimsuit on and you'll splash and play until you're shivering, but you don't seem to care.

You also had your first media appearance this month! Papa competed in the North American Beard and Moustache Championship in Bremerton, winning second place for his moustache and beard. A photographer from Newsweek snapped a picture of the three of us while Papa was waiting for his turn to be judged on his beard. Pretty neat, not even six months old and already in the national media!

With Papa at the North American Beard and Moustache Championship, July 5

I've now said it every month, but I'll say it again: you are amazing and you fill my heart with joy. You are happy, funny, adorable, beautiful, and good-natured. Papa and I love you so very much. I am beyond happy to be here on this Earth to take care of you and to see you grow.

Looking beautiful at Magnuson Park, July 11


Kris said...

She is looking beautiful and growing! I can't believe six months have gone by already.

Liz said...


[also, our daughter turned one month old on july 16th. she is also named elanor.]