Happy half birthday, sweet pea! Every day you feel a little bit bigger, you squeal a little bit louder, and you squeeze our necks a little bit tighter. You light up our days (and our nights), and I’m trying my best to hold on to every moment with you because you are growing far too fast.
You communicate with gggggs and kkkkks and bbbbs. You giggle when I kiss the sweet spot between your ear and your shoulder. You grunt and grab my shirt if you’re hungry. You yell at the big kids if they upset you. Yes, you have learned that you need to scream loudly to be heard in this house. You have quite the set of vocal chords, little one!
I suspect this will be the last month to enjoy your gummy grin. I expect two tiny teeth to poke through any day! Your fingers are constantly in your mouth, the collar of every shirt is covered in drool within minutes of putting it on, and your cheeks are a permanent shade of rosy red. Teething may also be the reason that you are still not a stellar sleep.
On a good day, you take a two-hour morning nap and a two-hour afternoon nap. Bedtime is at 7pm. But you almost always wake up screaming around 10pm. And again at 1am and 4am. And you are typically ready to start your day by 6:30am. I admit that I have not been very good at sleep training — it’s hard when you are still in our room! In fact, on more than one occasion, I have committed the big “no-no” and brought you into bed with me. But now that we have officially switched the big kids’ rooms — making room for your crib in the new purple girls’ room — I have more motivation to train you to sleep through the night.
This month, Mommy and Daddy planned a date night with our first real babysitter … ever! Needless to say, I was nervous. But I put you to bed before we left, the big kids had a blast, and we were home before your first wake-up. Another night, we took advantage of Oma and Opa visiting and went out with friends to watch the Penn State championship game. (I know, two nights out in one month! Insane!) As expected, you woke up at 10pm, but Opa didn’t mind rocking you … until the game got really, really good. Then he took you to the basement to watch the second half. You were wide awake and content when we got home at midnight. Little stinker!
Despite multiple nighttime wake-ups, you are so pleasant during the day. You are now capable of rolling and scooting all over the floor, dumping over buckets of toys, pulling ornaments off the Christmas tree, locating every tag and every buckle on every thing, chewing on books, spinning in your jumperoo, grabbing rattles and shaking them, banging a drum, sitting with minimal assistance. And, of course, picking up everything and putting it directly into your mouth.
Marbles and coin collections and tiny crystal rocks have been packed away. And the kids have been instructed to keep all LEGOs in Sam’s room. Baby proofing is a whole lot harder this time around! Fortunately, you don’t mind the pack ‘n’ play and are content to safely play with your toys in it while Sam and Nora play beside you.
But not to worry. We give you lots of pincer grasp practice at the dining room table. That’s right. You are now eating solids! One week of shy of your half birthday, I put a banana spear on your plate, and we haven’t stopped since. You’ve had sweet potatoes, carrots, cucumbers, apples, and pears. But I forgot how baby-led weaning is a little bit intimidating in the beginning. I watch you like a hawk and take away pieces that I think are too big for you to handle. And then you scream at me. Girl likes her food! Just like her parents.
You have really started to interact with your big brother and big sister. You will sit beside Nora in her armchair while she reads books to you (and you try to take them and eat them). And Sam loves when you grab his fingers or his face. They amuse you to no end. You are constantly turning your head towards their voices and giving them big, genuine smiles. I love having a front row seat as I watch your relationship with them grow.
You are curious: constantly tugging at the strings of my sweatshirt and trying to pull tags off your toys. You are cautious: backing away from unfamiliar faces. You are observant: watching every detail with those big blue eyes. And you are oh so sugary sweet.
Let’s hope the next six months don’t fly by as fast the previous six months. Love you, Evie!