Monday, August 8, 2011

Ellie at 5 months

I love watching my kids growing and turning into the people that they become.  It's one of the most awesome things about being a parent.

Eleanor turned 5 months old yesterday and is such a unique little person in this family!  She is such a big girl, so long and perfectly chubby, and is so strong.  I don't think I posted that at 4 months, she was 16 lb 7 oz (93rd percentile) and off-the-charts for height...but she has my little pinhead in the 40th percentile.  Those are exactly the same percentiles as when she was born, so she's staying the course! 

She was holding her head up briefly the night she was born and has continued to have fast muscle development ever since.  She rolled front-to-back at 5 weeks 6 days old old, back-to-front at 3 months 12 days old, and is currently working on pulling her upper body into a sitting position (and I really mean currently, since I'm typing one handed with her on my lap).  She can stay sitting without support briefly and is getting better at balancing like that every day.  She pushes up so far on her arms while she's on her stomach that she can get her whole upper body off the floor and can also get her knees under herself and tries to push.  If she puts those two together, we're in trouble ;-)  I'm predicting 7 1/2 months for crawling for her.  Let's see how close I am!

Jason and I have always subscribed to the belief that babies can't do everything at once--they'll develop physical skills for a while, then hold constant at that level of physical development while they work on verbal skills, and so forth.  Ellie kind of does everything at once.  She's doing wonderfully on physical skills, and is such a talker!  She babbles all sorts of sounds--dadada, bababa, nanana, mamama--and recently has taken to blowing raspberries.  The other day she was babbling "Dadadada" and then blowing raspberries.  Jason said "Oh great.  She's waited 5 months to tell the world that Daddy is gassy."

Here she is with Jason and her crinkle lion.  She also has a crinkle elephant and crinkle dog, and they are her absolute favorite toys.

She also recognizes certain words.  One of her all-time favorites is "nurse", as in "Do you want to nurse?"  It calms her instantly if she's upset and frequently she'll use her "na" sound when I say that.  I don't think she's *quite* to talking yet but she really, really wants to.  Who would have figured that we'd have another chatterbox in this family?  I figured she'd be very close-mouthed and taciturn like her brothers.

I think I just cracked a rib trying not to laugh.  BWAHAHAHAHA!


Speaking of her brothers, nothing--and I mean absolutely nothing, not even nursing--makes her happier than Patrick and Melkamu.  She lights up as soon as she hears their voices, turning towards them and smiling and babbling to them.  She grabs for them (especially Patrick's hair), smiles and laughs when they give her hugs and kisses, and tries to get to them if they're not right next to her.  For their part, they are awesome big brothers.  Patrick sings to her whenever she's upset and Melkamu always wants to give her hugs and kisses.  They both adore her and the level of hero-worship that she has for them is impossible to resist!

Ellie still doesn't nap much or sleep through the night but we do think the napping is improving in the last two weeks.  She's actually started falling asleep during the day and, as long as we don't move her from where she is, she'll stay asleep for a while.  Unfortunately, as she usually falls asleep in some inopportune place (the couch, the floor, our waterbed), we can't leave her there to sleep unattended and trying to put her in her crib generally wakes her.  Since she's nursing, we co-sleep a lot at night.  We usually start the nights in our own beds (her in a crib, of course) and then when she wakes up hungry, I'll lay down with her, latch her on, and go back to sleep.  She does sleep for one or two 4-5 hour stretches most nights, along with some shorter ones, and stays asleep until about 7:30 a.m.  Because we co-sleep, I don't feel particularly sleep-deprived.  It's not much interruption in sleep to grab her from her crib and lay down with her nursing so the fact that she's not sleeping through the night really isn't a problem.

My Ellie-bean prefers draft exclusively--straight-from-the-tap or not at all, in her mind.  And hey, who doesn't prefer draft to bottle?  It's made things a little tough for her at times when I've had to teach in the late evenings but up until now hasn't really been an issue.  It will become more of one when I go back to work in the days next week.  Jason will be home with her but since she won't take a bottle and won't start solids for another month, she may be hungry quite often.  I suspect they'll take some trips to my office so I can nurse her.  We've also got some new sippy cups and are going to see if she will drink expressed milk from them.  If not--well, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.  I have heard about reverse-cyclers who won't take a bottle during the day while the moms are at work but nurse a lot more at night to make up for it and suspect that's probably what will happen.  It's also the reason that I haven't worried about her not sleeping through the night.  Why try to get her to sleep through now when she's going to need more nursing time then if she still refuses to take her milk any other way?

She's changing so much every day.  Her eyes are still a pretty blue-gray but are showing a little more brown, so it will be interesting to see if they stay blue-gray like Jason's or turn brown like mine.  Her hair is definitely blonde and is starting to get longer.  Poor baby is going to have a mullet for a while.  We're about to switch to 9-12 month clothes (hello fall consignment sales!) and are getting a highchair so she can sit with us at meal times (since her current mealtime position, sitting on my lap, is harder to maintain now that she can reliably grab my plate and try to pull it off the table).  She likes to be in the middle of everything and doesn't want to miss a minute of the excitement.

I love getting to know Ellie and finding out who she is!  The first term I used to describe her is always "sweetie", closely followed by "strong-willed".  Both of these are good qualities to have and I can't wait to see what she does with them in the future!

1 comment:

Bubbi said...

The video is great. Our little girl and her brothers are a great team. I love seeing them all (including the pics from the last posting). Nice that Caesar is in the most recent video, too.