Our “little” baby Noah is now 9.5 months old, is 23lbs. and wearing 18m clothes. He has been crawling so about a month, albeit robotically at first. He likes to find a toy and crawl about like a little puppy carrying his toy in his mouth. He is so very proud of himself when he pulls up to standing and wants to play with everything his brother takes an interest in (to little Joseph’s dismay.) He likes to roll his big brother’s cars back and forth and say, “vroom, vroom.”
He has also grown intensely bonded to me. On the days when Joseph is home from his nursery school program, Noah often prefers to nurse rather than eat solids, just to ensure some quiet one-on-one time. (He has 4 teeth, is constantly teething but is trying some finger foods.) He is very patient and an observer, and while Joseph always leapt in to the action, Noah likes to watch, then make his way over at his own pace. From his birth, however, Noah has been the most content, laid-back baby I’ve ever known. He always smiles for everyone and loves to laugh and dance. He is such a sweetheart.
He is also now waving bye-bye and hi! and likes to very dramatically say “da!” and “tuh, tuh.” He is experimenting with all the consonants, and seems to get that the “mmm” sound has something to do with me. He lights up when he sees Daddy, adores his older brother, and little Joseph is always the first to introduce Noah to whomever glances our way.
Speaking of our little social butterfly, I’m so impressed by Joseph’s burgeoning social skills. We frequently have large and small groups of toddlers and babies over, and he not only shares his toys with great pleasure, but even if the child is a stranger, he shows such happiness at their arrival, he greets them with a hug and practically begs them to follow him to his toys. He remembers his friends’ names and even if weeks go by between visits, he asks about them. His very best friend is Marley, the little girl across the street.
He is exploring imaginative play, making his toys talk to each other in voices, and constructing superhero-style capes out of towels or crib sheets. It is so fun to see his make-believe world come to life, but with everything, there are two sides.
Joseph is a very loving little kid, so it surprised me when I heard about some aggressive behavior at school a few weeks ago. It involved make-believe sword-play, and when my husband and I, baffled, gave it more thought, we realized that both his beloved Peter Pan and Puss in Boots from Shrek carry on with swords, without, of course, any consequences. When we turned him away from those images to Blues Clues and the like, poof! away went the sword-play. (Yes, we let our child watch children’s movies. I don’t think we’d ever get dinner on the table, otherwise.) Sigh. He adored that Puss in Boots: “kitty-cat bootiful” is what he called him, and Peter Pan was simply “Pete-ah” with a British accent, since Joseph now mimics EVERYTHING he hears. From his first few words, I’ve just loved the dialogue that has developed between us, and of course as a parent we can’t hear the words “I love you” enough from our children. While it’s so interesting to hear long sentences and descriptions pour out of him, I love that some of his words remain stuck in his baby years: airplanes are “o-pwanes.” His third birthday is right around the corner, and I can already tell this will be a banner year.