This past month has been a busy, exhausting, and monumental month for the BAM (Ben, Annie & Milo) family.
First, all the FIRSTS!
Road trip + Milo’s dragon boat race + fever: We took Milo to Vancouver, BC for the biggest dragon boat race of our season. Milo was a trooper the whole weekend, considering what we put him through. The drive up was certainly a learning experience: Milo did not sleep well in the car; he couldn’t tell if he was still dreaming or was in fact in McDonald’s for his first time; and at 1am, he wanted to “play” in the Pack n’ Play. We were all exhausted at the start of our outdoor weekend of racing. His first dragon boat experience unfortunately aligned with the wettest conditions in which we’ve ever raced and his first fever. I was stressed out making sure he was dry and warm, checking his temperature (in Celsius), and nursing in between races. At one point I came off the boat and fed him under the nearest tree before our next race. On the “bright” side, his fever kept him mellow and he was pretty content to sit in the stroller under a rain cover. Sunday did clear up some and Milo played on the crashpad. Fortunately we were staying with our friends and decided to drive home early Monday morning, and the ride went much smoother.
Mom’s night away: One of my birthday celebrations was a getaway with my dragon boat ladies. We stayed overnight at the McMenamin’s Edgefield, about 20 miles away. Even though it rained, we enjoyed wine, the soaking pool, being silly in our robes, dressing up, and rewatching Hunger Games. Meanwhile, Milo and Dad did great: Milo took the bottle for the night feed and only woke up hungrier than usual since he eats more from me. Of course I did not sleep through the night and lay awake at 5am wondering about my boys.
Swimming: Milo’s first dip in the pool was a success. Initially he was concerned about his surroundings but it didn’t take too long before he tried out his well-practiced swimming motion. I loved his expression after his first dunk.
Visitors: Milo had a lovely visit from his grandparents, Nana and Grandpa. It was great to have Milo spend time with his family. Grandpa taught him new old folk songs while weeding our neglected backyard and Nana lent a hand at feeds and got lots of smiles. They visited him at daycare and by the end of their stay babysat him for the day. On July 4th, we hiked around Silver State Falls and everyone was fascinated with the loud and impressive waterfalls. This past week Tata Kimmy, my cousin, came with her boyfriend and we had a fun, jampacked time. Their stay overlapped into month 8, so I’ll save that for my next post.
To us, Milo is an easy and sweet baby. We take him every where, ready to be challenged and diaper bag prepared for all scenarios, but he doesn’t really fuss. He lets us know when he wants something, usually by getting more vocal or putting his arms out to get picked up. We can’t get enough of him in the morning, when he’s playing on our bed and flashing his two-teeth wide smile. Milo is very observant and aware of his surroundings. He loves the outdoors, facing out in the Baby Bjorn, running water, even just looking out the window.
Milo is affectionate. He puts his face into ours to “kiss” and daycare pointed out he gives great hugs. Sometimes we can’t let go.
Games Milo likes to play: sticking his tongue out, the anticipation game which often ends up with us tickling him, jumping in and out of mirrors, and peek-a-boo, especially with Tata Chippy.
Often Milo puts up a fight at diaper and clothing changes, not because he hates it, but because he can. He rolls the instant I lay him down. I either hold him down tight, distract him with a different toy, change him somewhere new, or recite his favorite stories (“Barnyard Dance”). Sometimes I simply hope I put the diaper on correctly while he was on his knees.
Another continual challenge is the bottle. He obviously takes it at daycare but at home, he wants mama. He’ll drink if he’s absolutely hungry. One trick is to face him out sitting upright and swaying back and forth.
I’m starting to see some stranger anxiety in him. Sometimes he cries as we leave him at daycare (though he’s smiling by the time we reach the car); he’s had to adjust to new teachers at daycare; he can definitely smell fear in those nervous to hold him. In general, he doesn’t like to be overwhelmed and likes his space. Huh. 🙂
Milo’s schedule is pretty typical and predictable. He’s eating solids three times a day: bananas and yogurt for breakfast, a vegetable + carrot mixture, and whatever we feel like for dinner, usually something mixed with fruit, his favorite. He takes two solid naps, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours, usually around 9am and 1pm. By 6pm, he’s ready for bed. We hope eventually he’ll stay up later as it’s hard to get home in time to play with our little guy before putting him to bed.
We had to do a little sleep intervention this month when Milo started to abandoned his 7pm-5am nurse-7am sleep schedule. He was getting up once in the middle of the night and starting the day earlier and earlier, often after the 5am feed. It looked like his body would wake up restless, trying to crawl, yet he’d still be tired and rubbing his eyes. Multiple times we tried to have him cry it out, but after an hour and half and new levels of screaming, I’d nurse him to sleep or Ben would take him for coffee. Thank goodness for the French bakery’s loyalty to airing the Tour de France. He definitely likes an early bedtime: he’ll go down without a peep but if we push him past 7pm or when he’s overtired, he can moan and cry for up to an hour. On occasion, Ben has had to pin his head and legs down and sing him to sleep. Now, he seems back to normal, ever since he…
…yup, that’s right: Milo is officially crawling! Everyone said it would happen fast but we’ve been feeling his frustration in this “somehow mobile” stage for at least a month. He was like a gymnast covering all four corners: he would crawl backwards, pivot, roll, sweep the hardwood floor, do all the yoga poses, but it wasn’t enough… Then he started to get into the Spiderman position; a few days later, he sat up on his own. We thought he’d be content with that accomplishment for awhile, but the next day, we captured his first crawling steps on video.
The next day I asked daycare if he had crawled; I was curious if they didn’t tell me. They hadn’t seen it yet, so I put my phone out and sure enough, he went for it. It was almost as if he didn’t realize he could crawl. Of course it didn’t take too long to click and I nearly cried the first time he crawled to me. He was wobbly at first but has been getting faster every day, and is already trying to pull himself up. Someone told me he won’t be content until he’s running. Sigh.
I finally went through and organized Milo’s photos by the month, so here are pix thru month 7.