Monday, July 18, 2011


My Bee is experiencing her share of the typical baby benchmarks, and, as her mother, I naturally find these milestones compelling. (Basically, I’m having delusions of interestingness.) So, in honor of the baby's nearly nine months of life, I thought I’d catalog a few of her, and our, recent triumphs.

Bee eats puréed sweet potatoes, acorn squash, applesauce, cucumbers, pears, coconut milk (wait, is that normal?), bananas, carrots, peaches, fava beans, and other “solid” foods. (I may have also given her some maple syrup, causing her to freak out until I gave her more maple syrup.) She makes all kinds of cool sounds, including “da da da da da,” which may or may not signify. She’s been to the swimming pool, where she kicked and splashed maniacally. Bee can roll* anywhere she wants to go. And my dexterous girl effortlessly transfers stuff from hand to hand and can pick up, using a tiny thumb and index finger, the most miniscule bit of bitty bittiness, which means I really need to be vacuuming more.

One of the more pathetic milestones, though, is Bee’s recent semi-habitual practice of sleeping for a full hour without waking up. No, not sleeping through the night – sleeping for sixty minutes. Our kid is almost nine months old and when she sleeps for a full hour (not in our laps! zomg!), Ben and I are in the living room dancing a freaking jig. (A very quiet jig.) So, nowadays he and I can generally count on a single hour (another way of looking at it: a whole hour!) per evening of sitting on the couch, eating ice cream/watching a DVD**/conversing like grown-ups. Compared to every previous day of the last eight months, it’s pretty much glorious.

This recent innovation on Bee’s part, insufficient though it may be, is a big deal for us. It came about after we put into action some advice from this book, an anti-cry-it-out manual that will forever have a place of honor and affection in my heart.*** And while sixty minutes of undisturbed sleep might not be the most stunning milestone you’ve ever heard of, Ben and I try hard to stay positive (and caffeinated). Yes, I’ve wailed the words “I can’t go on like this!” almost every day since last fall, and Ben and I would prefer (strongly prefer!) to see more radical improvements to the whole family’s sleep schedule, but what can I say? At present the oracle has not spoken.

* That’s right, instead of crawling, she just rolls everywhere. It’s not the most efficient mode of transport, but it’s original. As for crawling, Bee seems to detest her own grueling attempts, and bawls her way through each and every effort. For her, crawling involves literal kicking and screaming.
** Reader, Ben and I now have the option of watching the same DVD at the same time, together, snuggled on the couch, instead of resignedly taking turns with everything Netflix sends us. (Yes, we’re still enjoying the DVD option. I know, lame. It will be yet another milestone in this family when he and I finally commit to the streaming-only option. We came of age in the roaring ‘nineties, you know; we think DVDs are shiny and cool.)
*** It’s the only baby sleep book that I haven’t wanted to cut apart with kitchen scissors. Elizabeth Pantley ponies up options other than “put her in the crib and let her cry” or “live with it.” Yays!


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