Monday, February 28, 2011

such a little man

i'm constantly fascinated by how much milo looks more and more like a little boy than he does a little baby. maybe it's the fact that he has practically no neck-fat whatsoever, and such great head control?

ben's also noticed that he has much better hand control than when we left for chicago just one week ago. he's grabbing onto the straps of his johnny jump up, holding his bottle on his own (albeit briefly before flinging his hands in all sorts of wild abandonment), reaching towards and sometimes successfully moving the toys on his exersaucer...

and when i watch him on the baby monitor, when he's just waking up but not really fussing yet, contentedly looking around, i have to remind myself that he's still only four and a half months, not four years old... i don't know what it is, but there's something about his face that i can just see the little kid in him that's going to emerge.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

"did he get a haircut?"

ben asked me this upon our return last night. (and for the record, i have not cut a single hair on milo's head. the abundance of milo's dark hair that was present when he was first born has now surrendered to this light peachy blond fuzz with the exception of the lone spurt of dark hair at the nape of his neck. yup, our son sports an all natural rat-tail/mullet.)

milo and i have been visiting my folks in chicago this past week. we left on monday, but just barely, what with the freezing rain and milo's first viral infection: a surplus of boogers accompanied by a nasty sounding cough, but the dr. assured us that his lungs were clear and crackle free, so it definitely wasn't pneumonia. he handled being sick a lot better than i expected, although maybe this just wasn't that bad of a cold? he was certainly fussier than usual, but even still, he maintained his happy, easy-going ways.

he's definitely laughing a lot more often, although it still takes a good deal more than a tickling touch. he's also getting very talkative. all sorts of consonant and vowel combinations are pouring from his little lips, thought none of it discernible as of yet, but we'll get there.

ben is also certain that milo grew while we were gone, both in size and weight... it's very possible, but hard to notice when i'm with him

we tried feeding milo rice cereal after our pediatrician gave us the okay at his 4 month well-baby visit, but he didn't seem to enthused about it, so i figured we'd try again after i got back from chicago. i suppose we're back, so now's the time to start trying it again?

i also found out from our pedi that i need to give him more tummy time. apparently 15 minutes at 3-4 times a week isn't enough, and i should be getting milo on his tummy at least twice every day (although he didn't say whether 15 minutes was substantial enough per day, or if i needed to up that count too)... it's tricky when milo doesn't seem to be a huge fan of tummy time on his own, and as much as i love him, laying on the floor with him to keep him entertained only works for so long before i feel the itch to move...

he's perfectly content (for the most part) in his johnny-jumper, though. my brother has commented how his thighs are comparable to those of the michelin tire-man, and it doesn't feel too far from the truth. this kid has ginormous thighs... it's no wonder he loves to bounce.

i still have not hung my homemade owl mobile for milo yet.... it's all done except i need to figure out how to attach it to an s-hook that i have which will hang from another hook from the ceiling so that it's balanced and hangs properly. considering i have yet to get my harvard engineering degree (not to mention the million other things i aim to get done in a day) it may take a little longer than anticipated. (i can only hope i manage to figure it out while he's still sleeping in a crib.)

Friday, February 18, 2011

peekaboo and picking battles...

milo has finally started getting into playing peekaboo.

getting him to laugh is still the ultimate prize that he doesn't hand out so easily, but we can definitely get some good smiles with the peekaboo game - that and blowing raspberries at him (the drooly-fart-sounding raspberries, not the delicious fruit).

figuring out what makes milo laugh is almost becoming a game to me. my friend's 15 month old son had milo in fits of giggles when we had a play-date not too long ago. every once in awhile, i can get milo to laugh with a new trick - like tickling his feet or putting him on my knees/legs while laying on my back and playing "airplane" - but then it's had to get him to laugh again with the same thing that worked before.

then other times he'll just randomly start laughing, like when the lady at expert tire was telling us about their coupons and how they have a mechanic who's also named milo. i still can't figure that one out, but he was having a good guffaw as i held him standing on the counter while she rung us up, and i sure enjoyed getting to hear it.

on the opposite end of the spectrum, milo seems to be learning to pick his battles? i'm not so sure of the actuality of him consciously deciding "ok, this one isn't worth getting that worked up over," but in telling it to my mom (and her retelling it to others), that's the response i've gotten to what happened:

last weekend, as we were driving from the cities down to albert lea, milo was fussing a little in his car seat. ben and i comforted him as best we could, but he wasn't hungry (he had just eaten) and his diaper was fine, and really you could tell he was just being a little fussy.

finally he lets out this emphatic, discontented sounding sigh, and that was the end of his fussing.

he's such an expressive little guy, both vocally and in facial expression. it's usually not too hard to figure out how he's feeling (happy, sad, mad, etc.)... figuring out the why on the latter of those emotions is what tends to be the hard part. ("milo, what's wrong? are you tired? hungry? full of gas? want to play?") lately though, i've been finding that it's when he's overtired that he gets the most upset.

otherwise, he's still a pretty easy baby, and we're counting our blessings every day.

(makes me a little nervous for the next baby though - not that one is on the way! but sometimes i wonder if our next child will be the *un*easy ying to milo's yang...)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

tickle me milo

for awhile now, i've been trying to tickle milo to see if it will make him laugh. at first it did nothing, but gradually, i could tell he was starting to tell the difference between regular touch and a tickle. when i tickled his feet, his leg and foot would begin to quiver a little bit, and he would open his mouth wide as if he wanted to laugh, but the expression on his face was nervous uncertainty.

today, after he had been fussing a bit, and i couldn't figure it out, i put him on his changing table (oddly enough, this act alone usually calms him down, even if only for a moment), and decided to check him from head to toe to see if i could figure out what it was. he probably just wanted to play, because he wasn't tired (or at least not willing to even try and nap in his crib), and he wasn't interested in food, and all the usual games and songs and bouncings we try were of no luck. anyhow, i pulled off his socks to check for hair tourniquets, and upon finding perfectly happy little piglets, decided to give them a happy little tickle, and he laughed!

if i could make him laugh all day, i would; it truly is addicting.

as for naps, though, milo has been difficult lately, and it's getting harder and harder to figure out the best solution.

some days, he'll nap like a champ: in his crib for at least an hour at a time, sometimes even an hour and a half, and he might wake up and fuss a little, but then soothes himself back to sleep.

and then we have days like today, where he only wants to eat 2 ounces every hour, and the mini "food coma" he gets from it isn't enough to keep him drowsy once i put him in his crib. i try to let him fuss it out a little bit, i shush him and play the sleep-lamb rain noise, and offer him a pacifier, and rub his tummy. he slept for maybe half an hour in his crib, at best.

so he wakes up, we play, we eat, he starts to exhibit the "i'm tired" signs (rubbing his eyes, yawning, and droopy eye lids), so i offer him a little more formula to try and get that food coma going again. nope, not what he wants (even though he hasn't finished off a four ounce bottle - his usual feeding frenzy - even once since he woke up this morning). so i rock him and hold him and try to calm him down, now that he's over-tired and screaming mad. i get him to calm down. i put on a movie and sit on the couch and hold him, and that does the trick.

only for forty minutes though.

we do the whole routine over again. this time, when sleepy-eyes hit, i try buckling him in his carseat - this will usually keep him sleeping contentedly for hours when nothing else will. but again with the waking every half hour. i rock him back to sleep, put down the shade so he can't see anything to get excited about, and he still wakes up....

i don't understand, and i wish all the books had better advice than "all babies are different, yours may not be at this stage just yet," "developing a routine/schedule is best for you and baby," "this week your baby should be eating 25-40 ounces a day"... egads! it's all over the place!

i feel like just when i'm starting to get in the routine of things and figure out the hang of it, he decides to not follow suit anymore and go back to anti-routine, anti-normalcy, etc.

i look forward to the days when we do have an established routine/schedule, i just wish i knew how to get there effectively and without feeling like i'm going cuckoo for coacoa puffs.

(and i just keep reminding myself, it's all an adventure, the joy is in the journey, right?)