Ten Months Old

Monday, July 11, 2011

Dear Nora,

You may not be walking yet, but you are sure looking more and more like a toddler these days. I watch you play on the floor, or as you stretch out across my lap to nurse, and I find myself wondering when you got this big. We go through photos of you from just three months ago and we can’t believe how different you look. Going through photos from six, seven, eight months ago? Those moments with you seem like years ago now.

You’ve hit a lot of developmental milestones this month. Let’s start with the most recent—your first word. In your nine-month letter, I described how you had started to babble. Ba-ba-ba and Da-da-da have been everyday sounds around here. You “sing” the vowel sounds, too. I love driving down the street only to hear your little sing-songy voice going, “Aaaahhh! Da-daaaah!” in the back seat.
But a couple of weeks back, we started to hear another sound: Teh-ta. Teh-ta, over and over again. From the beginning, we thought it sounded distinctly like “Tessa,” and we started to notice that you were almost ALWAYS looking at Tessa when you said it. We suspected that you might actually be connecting the word “Teh-ta” with Tessa, and in our minds, that made it your “official” first word. But we kept waiting for it to be a little more obvious, just in case we were wrong, and you were still just babbling.
Then, when we were on vacation, Daddy was showing you a video of yourself on his phone, and suddenly you said “Teh-ta!” We were both AMAZED when we realized you had said it right after Tessa had walked across the screen in the video! And sure enough, the entire time we were away from home, you did not make the “Teh-ta” sound a single time. As soon as we got home and you saw your beloved doggie? “Teh-ta” reappeared. Not only did you start saying it again, but you suddenly began to add the “S” sound in the middle of it. So although the “Teh-ta” sound was still around, you began to mix it in with what we swore was “Tessa”—plain and simple. Sure enough, we caught it on video last weekend, and it is most certainly official now.
How fitting that your first word is not Mama or Dada, but Tessa. And now, you seem to be connecting the “Da-da” sound with your daddy, so that’s likely to become your second official word. In the meantime, you have not even started the “Mmmm” sound yet, so I have little hope that you will be saying “Mama” any time soon. Don’t you know that I’m the one who carried you in my belly for nine months and pushed you into the world without pain meds? (Well, by the time you read this letter, I’m sure you’ll know that story, because it is my right to hold that over your head for the rest of your life, you know.) C’mon already! :)
In case you can’t tell by the four paragraphs about it, the first word was a big deal around here. Another big one is crawling—sort of. You’re not up on all fours yet, but you do move both your arms and legs to scoot yourself around. You are getting FAST, and the distances you travel are getting farther. You’re making your way across rooms, down hallways, and throughout the house these days. We are trying to avoid going through the effort of baby-proofing until we move—fingers crossed you don’t try to get into too much trouble before then!
Other milestones this month: Learning how to sit up from a lying down position; learning how to play pat-a-cake, a.k.a. give high fives; figuring out how to “officially” clap your hands; splashing in the bath tub. Things we are still working on: Your first tooth. The sippy cup. “Chewing” bigger pieces of food.
You are learning so much every day, and you remember them the next day. When you figured out how to sit up in your crib, we were SHOCKED to find you that way, because it happened so suddenly; now, you sit up from lying down over and over and over again. Daddy showed you how to put a ball through one of the hole in the one of the stackable rings; now, we watch as you put the ball through the ring on the floor as you play by yourself.
In the standing/walking department, you are starting to try to pull yourself up on things. At this point, you’re just pulling yourself up to your knees, but you’re getting close to being able to do it to your feet. You hold yourself up at the edge of the couch, or in your crib, but you can’t get into that standing position yourself.
We’re getting close to the homestretch with the breastfeeding. You seem a little less interested these days—well, except in the mornings. In the mornings, you’re STARVING and impatient. Otherwise, there is so much to look at in the world, you do not want to be stuck feeding at the breast. You’re eating a lot more purees and “real food” now, so it’s possible that you just don’t need as much milk as you used to. Still, you’re drinking the same amount (three 5 oz. bottles) at daycare, so I’m struggling to continue to keep up with the pumping. At this point, I’m still taking it day by day, but hoping to be able to get to that 12-month mark! Aside from just wanting to hit that goal for us, I hate the idea of actually having to go out and buy formula when we are SO CLOSE! Fingers crossed, little one.
With solids, we’ve expanded your diet to include things like cheese shreds, small pieces of veggies, broken up pasta, and whole beans. We’re giving you pieces of the things we’re eating so you can try them. Some things go over really well; other things cause you to gag or spit them out. I believe it to be a texture issue and not taste—you’re still working on the “chewing” skill, especially since you still don’t have any TEETH! Speaking of which—I know I’ve said this before, but I’m VERY confident you will be sprouting two little teeth on the bottom before I write your next letter. The lower gums are so swollen and I can feel those teeth under there. They just need to pop through already!
You earned your first stamp in your passport this month, when we flew to Mexico to attend my cousin Kelly’s wedding. You were your usual laidback self—with a few cranky exceptions—but we ran you ragged, so we couldn’t complain. This was the trip on which you pooped all over Daddy. By the time you read this letter some day, I’m sure that story will have already been embarrassing you for years, so I don’t think I need to retell it now!
At your nine-month well-baby doctor’s appointment on June 20 (so it was a week or so late this month), you were 16 lbs. 4 oz. and 25.75 inches long. You’re still firmly in the 5th to 7th percentile for weight, so you’re a petite little thing.
You’ve got personality for days. Sometimes, we just giggle at each other endlessly. You are becoming a little bit of a mimick—you have this laugh that you’ll bust out every once in a while that is almost a “mock” adult laugh. You’ll look at me all serious, I’ll smile at you, then you smile. I give you a toy; you give it back.

You are busy, busy, busy. You like to be doing things. You’ll usually happily entertain yourself as long as you’re free to do what you want. One of your favorite pastimes is to play with the dog crate. I’m convinced you could open and close that door for hours.
So, ten months. We’re at ten months. I can’t believe it. We are getting so close to a year. Lately, I’ve been reminiscing about my pregnancy with you, thinking back to this time last summer, and what we were doing.

It seems like yesterday. It seems like years ago.

I love you so much it hurts.


P.S. During your monthly photo shoot, you thought it was HILARIOUS to launch the yellow duck over the edge of the chair. You also were NOT having the lying-down-in-the-crib, purple-background pics this time around. You were FURIOUS. Just goes to show that you’re not ALWAYS happy! :)


Shauna,  July 13, 2011 at 9:22 AM  

She could not be cuter! I love that you post the progession pics each month.

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