The months are racing away. I can't keep up. It seems like summer is still a recent memory and Emma has just turned six months, but suddenly it's already the end of the year and my little girl is now nine and a half months old.
We all went to get our hair cut on New Year's Eve, to start the new year with decent hair at least. Emma sat on my lap, mostly very still and well-behaved, letting the hairdresser trim her fringe, somewhat overgrown since her last - and first - visit to the hairdresser back in October, just before her christening. She has grown and changed so much since then.
Emma was almost seven months old when she was christened. My parents were here visiting, so it was a great family occasion. She wore the gown her Mexican grandmother had been baptised in almost 70 years earlier.
|At the christening|
|At home in the new cot|
In terms of feeding, she has four bottles of formula milk a day, plus three "meals". For lunch I've been making her purees of chicken and vegetables, sometimes with rice, adding onion and garlic into the mix, too. At breakfast time she has mashed banana, apple and occasionally pear and papaya, with baby cereal or oats mixed in with her fruit and milk. The one thing that really annoys me is that cereals for babies have sugar as the second or third ingredient - why do they have to have sugar in at all? I will probably rant about this in a future post. She also usually has some more fruit with her last milk in the evening, generally from a jar rather than fresh. There's definitely room for improvement here on my part and I'm going to be resorting less to shop-bought jars and preparing more fresh food. I also need to include more varied ingredients in her menu - the same goes for the grown-ups' meals too - so I will probably be researching recipes in search of inspiration.
I'm still working on introducing "solid" food after a few scary choking moments. Maybe we're lagging behind with this next step and are being overly cautious. Still, on several occasions she has enjoyed gnawing on the hard crust of a bread roll and has managed to swallow the little bits she chewed off, so perhaps I should be bolder with the food I give her. We still don't have a high chair, which would make feeding experiments much easier, so that's next on the list of priorities and pretty urgent, in my opinion.
Christmas Eve was the first time I really saw Emma crawl. She had been almost crawling for a while, but not quite; managing somehow to reach things she wanted just by willpower, and an inexplicable combination of rolling, stretching and caterpillar-like shuffling. That afternoon, she actually properly crawled a few paces across the bed. She looked so excited an pleased with herself, but again, I was too slow with the camera. On Christmas morning, after opening presents under the Christmas tree, she did a bit more crawling, first on the rug, then off the rug across the cold, hard floor where, at one point, her arms gave out and her face hit the ground with a bit of a thud.... the tears were eventually abated with lots of cuddles and some attempts at distracting her with a new toy or the squirrel from the Christmas tree. After that, we learnt to be much more careful when she's on the move, and I think Emma may also have learnt that the floor is not at all as soft and forgiving as the bed, because it hasn't happened again. Of course, she's suffered other knocks and bumps since then on mats, carpets, floors and even my elbow, but I think it's all part of the learning process.
She's also pretty keen on trying to stand up. Instead of her hands and knees, she tries to move on her hands and feet - on the bed she does a kind of bunny hop and she pulls herself up using people and objects to hold on to. She can already pull herself into a standing position in her cot and in her playpen, a little wobbly and in need of support still, but she's getting there.
At this point I realise this is turning into a monster of a post - that is what happens when you don't write anything for ages; now I have so much to write about that it's impossible to fit it all into one post. So, I'm splitting it in two right here. In the next installment I'll be writing about speech and language, amongst other things, attempting to keep up.
All comments, opinions and advice are welcome!