Every stage has its fun moments, but seven months is full of so many favorites! You are mobile and vocal. You are curious and content and gaining confidence every day. You can entertain yourself for long periods of time, but you still want to snuggle. You are capable of communicating what you want: when you want to eat, when you want to play, when you want to be held, when you don’t want to sleep.
At the beginning of December, you could not sit for more than a few seconds without toppling over. But you strengthened your little ab muscles and figured out how to stay upright just in time to open Christmas presents! Soon after you mastered sitting, you learned how to push yourself onto all fours, rock back and forth, scoot, and squirm across the floor. The house has officially been baby-proofed. (Well, except for Sam’s room, but that is never going to happen.)
You pick up toys and shake them and bang them and put them into your mouth. You try to pull over boxes and bins, try to open doors on toys and flaps inside books, try to turn knobs and push buttons. Basically, you are into exploring everything that you can get your little hands on! This includes Sam’s light sabers and Nora’s princess dolls. The big kids are usually good sports about sharing. And one afternoon, I caught the three of you playing with the Klip-Klop castle. Sam and Nora would take turns pushing the horses down the ramp, and everyone would giggle when you grabbed them.
Favorite toys this month include the dancing Bright Beats, B blocks and balls, the Poppity Pop Hippo, and the Leap Frog house. You still enjoy the jumperoo, though you much prefer to roll around on the floor. I suspect (hope!) we will be able to pack it away next month. You’ve also outgrown the beloved bouncy seat that has occupied (and contained!) all three kiddos, the K’tan wrap, and the reclining high chair. We lowered your crib mattress, raised the straps on your car seat, and moved you to the toddler side of the bathtub. Stop growing so fast, sweetheart!
Two itty bitty bottom teeth poked through at the beginning of the month, and I expect the top two are not far behind. You are wearing size 3 diapers and mostly size 6-9 month clothing. Diaper changes are nearly impossible if I don’t give you a toy to occupy your attention. You’ve had more blow-outs than I can count, and I’ve had to do full wardrobe changes on the passenger seat of the car and in the restrooms at Macy’s and Barnes and Noble.
You love riding in the stroller and don’t mind the car seat. You prefer to face forward in the Bjorn vs. towards me in the Ergo. One of my very favorite things is when I come home from running errands to find you strapped to Daddy. You kick your arms and legs and squeal with delight when you see me.
You are definitely noisier than either of your siblings were at this age. (Which leaves me quite nervous for how much louder you will be when you are the age that they are now.) You yell at the dinner table, screech in the bathtub, and protest if I put you down and leave the room. And your nighttime screams are persistent and ear piercing.
Let’s talk about nighttime. That was, by far, our biggest struggle this month. I got into the habit of nursing you back to sleep at least four times every night. Because it was a lot easier than listening to you scream, especially when your bed is just a few feet from mine. Then, before I knew it, I was bringing you to bed to nurse because I was too tired to sit upright in the chair. And, inevitably, you would nurse for two minutes, then fall asleep in my arms, and I would doze off beside you. I know. Auntie Laura already lectured me about a dozen times on the potential dangers of co-sleeping. So as soon as we returned from Christmas in Dover (because neither of us were able to make any drastic changes while traveling), I started a very loose adaptation of sleep training. Things are slowly improving — I’ll give a full progress report next month!
You may not be sleeping through the night. But your naps are solid and predictable. You sleep for 1 1/2 – 2 hours in the morning and another 1 1/2 – 2 hours in the afternoon.
Baby-led weaning is going strong. At the beginning of the month, you would gag and spit out almost everything that went into your mouth. But now you have figured out how to gum bites of food and work them around in your mouth until they’re manageable to swallow. You will eat everything that I put onto your plate: apples, pears, blueberries, mandarin oranges, cucumbers, peppers, steamed carrots and broccoli, roasted sweet potatoes, ground turkey, shredded chicken, cheese. You’ve even tried blueberry pancakes and taco meat.
What I love most about BLW is that it gives you the opportunity to set the pace. I’m amazed by how much you more efficient you’ve become in just one month. And our breastfeeding schedule has become more predictable — roughly six times per day vs. on demand.
I love how you hook your arm around mine when I’m carrying you on my hip and how your face lights up when I walk into the room and how you rest your head on my shoulder when you’re sleepy. You bring us so much joy, sweet girl!