Eleven Months. Eleven months with this fearless, constantly moving bundle of boy baby. I am a little late getting this post out because trying to keep up with this speed crawler, who loves digging in our indoor plants, has my hands unbelievably busy. You guys, this kid is fast. And smart. He hears me walking down the hall and makes a bee line for the plant tucked in the corner. It's magnetic. And everything goes in his mouth. Everything. But nothing is quite as enticing as rocks, leaves, and leftovers under the highchair.
Sweet boy loves to climb, loves to wrestle and loves to keep tabs on his brother. I often find him down the hall, having snuck into Oliver's room, climbing on to the toddler bed. His very favorite hangout. We've caught him standing independently for several seconds at a time... and he grins with pride. He's mastered his alligator walker, and howls with frustration when he reaches the end of the hall and no one is there to turn him around. He turns laundry baskets, chairs, and any large toy he can find into a make shift walker.
Buddy loves food. He sprouted two new teeth this month and is now working with eight teeth total. He loves strips of almond butter and jelly sandwiches, meat balls, all fruit and most vegetables. Also, he loves his Gpa's Braum's Chocolate Chip Shake. He has very little flexibility with the timing of his meals and eats at 7:30am, Noon, and 5pm. He's down to four 6oz bottles per day (waking, mid morning, mid afternoon, and bedtime).
This means, that after so many sleepless nights, Milo no longer demands a bottle at night. It took a solid week of waking up to him fussing and snuggeling that sad sack of baby in the rocking chair, to convince him that night time feeds were "wants" not "needs." I wish this meant we were all sleeping better, but sweet boy still wakes up most nights at least once needing help locating a pacifier (I keep no less than 8 in his crib!) or decides to start his day at 4:45am, or is growing teeth, or fighting off a sniffle, or is over tired and has sleep disruptions at night... Getting rid of the night time feed did not get rid of the dark circles under my eyes.
I've said it before and I will say it again. Milo Chapman, we will have no mercy on you as a teenager when you have to wake up early for weight lifting, or band practice, or study group. We will have absolutely no mercy. You will get your bum out of bed without complaining or there will be such dire consequences. Daddy and I aren't usually ones to hold things over people's heads and say "You owe me..." but we have never been so tired in our lives for such an extended period of time. So yes, yes you do owe us.
In terms of sleep, Milo wakes, when Milo wakes. His first nap is around 3 hours after he wakes, typically about 90 minutes. His afternoon rest begins between 1-2pm and lasts another 90 minutes. Milo crashes for the day in my arms at 7:30pm while he takes his last bottle for the day. I love it. I love rocking that tiny frame of boy, all tucked in around me, with drowsy eyes fluttering before they close for the day. I love the quiet tenderness in those moments. I love the lullabies floating in the nursery. I want to memorize the way it feels to hold all of his being in my arms, the weight of his body, the scent of his hair, the twitch of his fingers as he falls asleep.
We can now with certainty say that Milo's first word has been "DaDa" (Just like his brother). Over the last week, he's pretty consistently said "Mamma, Mamma, Mamma" when he's hungry or when he wants something in the middle of the night. And Matt and I both distinctly heard "ahh done" today when he was ready to get down from his highchair. I cannot wait to hear that sweet voice as it masters more and more words in the coming year.
As a side note, it needs to be said that no baby pulls off overalls the way this Chappa-brudda does, with his wild, fuzzy head and fierce blue eyes.
Sweet boy, you have become a force to be reckoned with in our home. You are intense, you are bottled energy, you are aggressively affectionate. You are wet kisses and a scrunched up nose and baby snorts and giggles. You are a solid muscle, squirmy and impatient. You are curious and determined and fearless. You are persistent and playful and incredibly social. We would not be us without you, Milo buddy.