Monday, December 20, 2010


Now that we've passed the one year mark, I guess I am only updating the blog when there's something noteworthy, like a new first or an achievement unlocked. Does that seem fair? Maybe I'll just update each week with photos? Or maybe I'll pick it up again after the holidays. I'm in the process of putting last year's better posts into his scrap book so he'll have something a little more analog to have when he's older, but even this is really so much better than doing a store-bought baby book. Scott and I actually have the exact same Hallmark baby books from our respective infancies - his blue, mine pink.

His one-year check-up was the Tuesday after his birthday (the day after the last post), and though he's still not walking, he does have the dubious honor of continuing to be above the 100% centile for height (at 32.5" tall). His weight was 26 lbs, landing him at the 88th centile, and his head has grown to the 93% centile. That is such a weird measurement to take, I think, but there it is.

He's cut his fourth tooth, his top incisor now has its mate. It's just poking through, and he keeps his finger jammed in his mouth pretty much all day. Between that and the perpetually runny nose he's been sporting, he's been kind of a pain in the ass. I mean, he's still a sweet, funny kid, he just has a bit shorter fuse. Coupled with his attempts at new physical feats (like climbing onto and falling off of his little box-table 6" off the ground), there've been a few more tears than we're used to around here. He's definitely stretching his little wings a bit more these days, experimenting with autonomy.

He missed a few naps over the weekend, because I was gone to a holiday bazaar (where I was selling my poorly-made homemade soft toys) and though I was able to get him down for his morning nap before I left for the day, he didn't really go down for any kind of afternoon nap and this resulted in a little more night waking than I can really tolerate. I'm thinking of night weaning him over the holiday, since Scott will be home for a few days to help with the night parenting without it cutting into his workday performance. It feels really drastic to even think about cutting him off, but I'm just feeling really beat down by motherhood these days. I'm carrying a lot of back pain and my upper body joints pretty much all ache. I need to sleep more than four hours uninterrupted (he still sleeps from roughly 7:00pm to 7:00am, but wakes once or twice, and I nurse him back to sleep to expedite things). I put the Totoro pillow that I made him in his crib to try to help soothe him, and I'm hoping that helps. I just found out that he even likes that thing - Scott sent me a picture last week of Boosh laying down on top of it, sucking his thumb. In the middle of the day. He just grabs it and holds his face against it and knows it's for snuggling. That's its purpose.

Being a goofball in his robot pajamas ("robut jams") and his Halloween hat

He's starting to pick up more and more language, and that means I need to start watching my mouth around him. He actually does a perfect mimic of my exasperated groan, the one I let out whenever I'm driving. (Seriously, people cannot drive in this town. It's just rain! It does that here.) When we ask, "Zephyr! Are you hungry?" he says, "Ffff! Fffff!" (for the sound of us blowing his food to cool it down), and now we can play the Where's Mama's (insert facial feature here) game and he will point to the appropriate feature most of the time. We are careful not to ever ask about eyes, because then he will laugh and think it's funny to poke my eyes out. He already thinks it's hilarious to flip over in the middle of every diaper change unless I turn the TV on to distract him, but this requires me to only change him on the couch. I'm hoping this is a phase he outgrows soon.

His favorite toys are still pretty much just household items: wooden spoons, finger bowls, recyclables like berry pint boxes, shipping boxes (we gave him a giant box that still has the paper packing material in it and decorated one of the flaps to look like a computer keyboard, and he thinks it's pretty awesome in there), empty plastic bottles, that sort of thing. He's really into stacking rings these days, and is gaining more dexterity to actually fit the rings onto their stem. He will open books and "read" them to us, mumbling little words quietly to himself in a language we don't understand.

We bought a mini tree, against my better wishes. The potted trees were all around $50, but it was only $15 for a little tabletop fir. Besides, it supports our local economy. This will be his second Christmas, and I know it'll probably be the last one where we decide what he wants. I really can't wait to see the boy he'll become, but I'm trying my best to relish these last moments of his babydom.

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Cheese

We survived Zephyr's first birthday party the Saturday after Thanksgiving. We had cupcakes and bubbly to ring in the occasion, to celebrate passing our first year as parents and for keeping him alive. There were about a million kids in our house, running laps like wild dingos, and yet I completely kept calm and nothing got broken. It was amazing (the me-keeping-calm part).

He has more tomato sauce on his face than cupcake, I almost feel sad about this. I should've wiped his face off before giving him his cupcake so I could get good photos. Oh, well.

Oh, man, new stuff:

He's repeating animal noises, like the high-pitched "whee-e-e!" of a horse (I try to make realistic animal sounds for him, and my "neigh" is right proper), the low "mooooo" of a cow (his is a guttural groan) and random sounds I've assigned to the insects on his favorite puzzle. Bees and flies are no-brainers, but I've decided the wings of a moth go "thfthfthfthf" and spiders go "bulubulu" when they crawl. He's also stringing together more syllables on his own, in response to us and to tell us his thoughts on various matters. We'll try to remember to nod and shake our heads more so he can communicate the basic "yes" and "no," and eventually "no" will become his favorite word.

And big one this week: he stands alone! He just sort of did it one day last week, then again for a few seconds longer, and now we'll just look up and notice that he's fully standing unassisted, playing with a puzzle piece or somesuch. The funny thing is, he doesn't seem to realize it's a big deal and doesn't look at us for a big "ta-da" or anything. He's just like "finally, I can use both hands for playtime. It's about time."

Independence is his main goal, now, as evidenced by his inability to hold still for a diaper change (we've taken to just changing him on the couch and turning on the TV) and his newfound tendency to throw his spoon and bowl onto the floor when we try to help him eat. We try not to get too mad about it, and instead just say, "that's not cool, Zephyr."

But we really just need to let him do his thing, let him know that we trust his abilities (new and shaky though they may be), and let him fuck up once in awhile. It's the best way for anyone to learn, and I know I'm not doing him any favors when I fix everything for him. It'll take some doing for me to learn how to step off and get out of his way, but I think every mother struggles with this. I know I will, probably forever.