Ellis at Nine Months

Monday, October 23, 2017



TEMPERAMENT 

I was remarking to someone the other day how odd it was that people kept calling Ellis "serious," because he does like to laugh now and does smile. Imagine my surprise to find out that most babies are just smiling and giggling all the time. We do have to work at it a bit more- but his laugh is such a sweet reward. And he is serious, I know. He is watching everything and everyone, figuring the world out. He can be enjoying the heck out of things and still have a serious little facial expression. My mom says I was just the same, so there's that.

He can get overstimulated by too much of a crowd, which can make the Farmer's Market and even some family gatherings tricky. He's learning to handle it, but it felt like a light bulb to recognize where he's at, because we can all need different levels of stimulus.

MILESTONES 

Ellis understands quite a bit of cause and effect, which is fun to see. It changes how he interacts with the world. Before things seemed to happen at random to him, and now he sees the connections between things. Pulling a switch turns on a light. Certain actions or commands gets the dogs to do thing things, or our Amazon Alexa to respond. (By the by, not sure if I've mentioned this before, but we love having an a Amazon Alexa in the nursery. And Ellis totally knows its name and where it is in the room. He looks at it whenever we give a command to see if she responds correctly!) 

We are also on the verge of having a mover and groover on our hands. Ellis is pretty proficient at rolling over now, and can also get on his hands and knees, though he hasn't figured out crawling just yet. Instead he sways forward and backward, like he wants that momentum of movement but hasn't figured out the mechanics of it. If I leave him on the floor to go do a chore in another room, I often return to find him in a different part of the room- behind the chair or in a corner where it is obvious he got himself to and found himself stuck in a "dead end." He always wants to go forward, but he's mostly moving at random because he's either rolling over and over to move positions or, when trying to crawl forward, is inadvertently pushing himself back. Not sure if I should be excited about his movements or worried I'll never get anything done around the house again!

He does have a walker he uses at Grandma and Grandpa's, and he's getting quite proficient at rolling around their house.  He mostly moves by jumping or bouncing and that movement propels the walker forward. What is most impressive there is how good he is at turning, and backing out of dead ends. 

LIKES

Old favorites he still loves dearly: puppies, Grandpa, Daddy, and teddy bears. He also loves his stacking block rocket toy and I can leave him to play with that for a good fifteen minutes and he stays occupied. Imagine fifteen whole minutes in which I can get ready in the morning. Its bliss, basically. Current favorite books are: Anything by Sandra Boyton, but especially Pajama Time and Hey! Wake Up! as well as Jamberry and, surprisingly, The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse.  He has a ton of books, but we read these favorite titles several times a day. He'll knock over other books to get to these ones! 

New Loves: Pulling the cord to switch on and off the overhead light in our living room, and a fascination with my electric toothbrush. He liked to "help" hold it while I sit in front of him and brush. I guess that will come in handy with all the new teeth that may, one day, eventually (any day now? Please? PLEASE?) come in.

EATING

Mostly the same here. He gets a bottle about every four hours till bed and pureed food around 8:30 and 5:00. He's still not into solids around lunch, but, as the inestimable Katherine Tate would say, "I ain't bovvered." Pureed food is for introducing new tastes and learning swallowing and chewing. His nutrition is still mostly from the bottle. Plus, as everyone is always telling me, he looks very healthy with his little baby fat rolls.  I use Gerber's baby food, mostly, and always from a bowl with a spoon. It seems like that will help to learn more about eating, chewing and swallowing etc. He's a really good eater, if he's not teething. If he's teething, I bring two spoons and give one to him. He plays with it while I use the other to feed him. Truthfully though, if he's teething, he is definitely less interested in both the bottle and in pureed food.

We have introduced him- in very limited quantities- to some "real people" foods this month. Mostly, he has had things that are hard that he can gum.  In addition to the Rice Rusks, we've given him crusty bread and celery sticks.

SLEEP

Nothing too new here. Still two or three naps a day (depending on if he's teething mostly, as to how much sleep he gets). Sometimes he sleeps through the nights and others he's up a ton. Once again, mostly depending on teething. I've found over and over again, that for us, routines and rituals really help the most. He rarely cries on going down, unless the teething. Sleep- when it's good, it is very, very good and when it is bad, it is horrid.  

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