It seems crazy, but Rachael is 8 months old. She's 2/3 through the first year of her life. That's pretty big for me. My little baby I took home from the hospital isn't so little anymore.
Tori and Rachael 3 days old
She'll be one before I know it, it seems. She is asleep on my lap right now, which means she still gets to be my baby for a little longer
Rachael has had her first two teeth come through. Rachael discovered what to do with them (besides biting mummy) while eating some pieces of raw apple for the first time. She seemed pretty proud of herself, and rather enjoyed the apple. It must be rather odd to suddenly grow teeth, having no idea what they are. As a result, she spends a good part of her day with her tongue out of her mouth, just feeling her new teeth. On the upside, she enjoys the fact that she has refound the art of blowing raspberries, which was out of favour for a while.
Rachael has also started to say "mum". I'm not getting too carried away with it however, as she only says it when she's hungry and demanding a feed. Mum mum mum mum is a continuation of the mmmmm sound that proceeded it. So "mum" pretty much means "I'm hungry, feed me NOW". Other people seem pretty excited to hear it though.
While still not crawling yet, Rachael is pretty proficient at rolling around to get what she wants. She has also hopped along on her bum- once, and that was to get to Aunty Katie's laptop cord. Feat has not been repeated since. Crawling is still only getting as far as getting her backside into the air, or her arms up, but rarely both at once.
For several weeks, Rachael's obsession has been standing, holding onto the hands of a parent. Any time you offer your hands to help her from lying to sitting, she pulls right up to standing. She'd spend the whole day standing if you had the stamina to hold her the whole time. Unfortunately, she has very little balance, but that doesn't stop her trying things. Her confidence is better than her balance, she insists on trying to climb (mainly up a parent's body), picking up toys, or just looking at her own feet.
Foodwise, we haven't found a meat Rachael doesn't like. Steak, roast beef, chicken, fish, lamb- they're all on the good list. Vegetables are ok, give her a lettuce leaf, she'll pound it into the table. Salads don't seem to be her thing. A girl after my own heart :)
Rachael has a specific "look at me" sound to attract the attention of other people. She had a great time while shopping in her hug-a-bub this week. Every single store we went into, she made her presence known, and sure enough, got herself plent of attention. While she was very pleased with herself, she's getting a bit heavy to be carried around for so long, my shoulders still aren't loving me a few days later.
There have been a whole heap of significant days this week, that got me thinking about what traditions to start with Rachael.
Good Friday morning we were lucky enough to get invited to go along with Nic, Hannah, Finnian and "ma" to the walk of the stations of the cross. Long story short, having two prams and a toddler, we ended up being up the back so we couldn't hear much, ended up cold and wet. Regardless of this, it was realy nice to share this occasion, and I think we'll be back in future years, hopefully with better weather and the ability to hear it.
This morning Rachael, Jai and I attended the ANZAC Day dawn service with dad, Katie and Tori. Dad and I have been going together for about 7 years or so, in recent years with Jai. Rachael atteded by default last year (I had to kneel part of the time because my pregnant body had a severe lack of blood pressure). I can't remember if in years previous we went (we may have). It became more significant for me after, as a cadet, I was priveledged enough to serve on a Catafalque party at a dawn service. Going with dad (and others, depending on the year), is a special tradition for me, and I want to continue it.
We were able to spend time with members of both sides of our family over Easter. It was really good to do this.
I hope that in years to come we can continue these traditions, as they mark significant things, and have a great sense of community
Another month has passed (very quickly), and Rachael is now 7 months old.
27.3.2011 Rachael was Christened at St Aloysius. Her godparents are her Aunties Nicole and Tabitha. I was a little concerned about how she would go having the water tipped over her hed, as she screams in horror should I try to bath her in the baby bath, but it turns out that she was too busy checking out what the priest was up to, to notice the water.
(Aww, those two are so cute)
She wasn't so keen on the Stoll though, she was trying to take it off the whole time
She was very good throughout the service though.
We enjoyed an afternoon with family, and dug out the top tier of our wedding cake, which survived a year and a half in the freezer quite well.
Another major event was the visitation of Rachael's cousins Adelaide (18 months) and Clementine (2 1/2 months). It was our first chance to meet Clementine. You forget so quickly how floppy, light and placid they are at that age. Although I suspect altough light, Rachael may not have been ever so calm as her cousin.
The three of them had a "play" session, although they are all at such different stages, they had nothing in common to "play"
We decided to try to get the first picture of the three of them. Not easy when Adddie had no intention of staying put for the photo.
But I think they're super cute anyway.
Rachael hasn't met any younger babies before, so was quite interested in Clementine, but if course has no idea of the word gentle yet. But she did recognise they dummy on dummy holder attatched to Tiny, and thought it'd be fun to pull at
I wonder how long it'll be before Tiny outgrows Rachael? Not very long I suspect But we did manage to get a cute picture of Rachael, who is getting the hang of smiling for the camera.
Developmentally wise, Rachael is rolling with intent now. She can roll around the room to get to the toy/couch/powercord that catches her fancy. She hasn't started to crawl yet, but has learnt another way of getting the toy that is too far to reach- she pulls her play rug (as seen above) towards her, and the toy comes to her.
Foodwise, Rachael isn't as keen as we first thought. Although the concept of food looks great, the execution is a bit tricky, so not much makes it to her tummy. One thing we can be sure she eats is carrots though. There has been eveidence that she has consumed carrots of both the orange and purple varieties, thanks to Aunty Katie. Toast is good to munch on in the morning, but by the pile of soggy, gummed bread I'm left with, I doubt very much gets in. Rachael does have the ability to always get soggy toast on the back of her head. How, I'm not sure yet.
Rachael's favourite food is most definately meat. Chicken from stirfry, Roast beef and Lamb from Kebabs, they are most enthusiastically enjoyed. The peice looks rather ragged after she has sucked on it for a good 20 minutes or more. Without any teeth as of yet, sucking the juices is as far as it can get.
Fruits and veg tend to get a play with, but we tend to have enough bits all over the place at the end, that the whole piece must still be left. I tried her with some banana yesterday, babies are supposed to love banana right? Not this one. She screwed up her nose at the taste, and after a while of trying to get the precious goodness in (they're $12.99 a kg at the moment), I gave up, and was left with squashed bits of wet banana. Nice. Oh well, got to remember "Food for fun until one". I've had a few moments of late where I've been tempted to give up on BLW and shove some mash in, but plan to stick with it for now.
For the last week, Rachael has had terrible wind at night, and spent more time crying/ midnight feeding than we would like. We've now taken her off solids for two days (except the failed banana experiment), and we all got a decent night's sleep last night. Not sure of the cause, but will be trying her on different foods.
Sleep-wise (with the exception of the last week), Rachael now sleeps at night in her own cot. She does tend to come to our bed after 5 or 6am though, so we can get a little more sleep. There is a soft toy rattle pig up the opposite end of the cot, but you'll often find Rachael has made her way up the cot, to play with "pig" in the mornings, having pulled her way up the cot bars. Or Rachael and pig up opposite ends of the cot to where they started, her having got to "pig", and then thrown him. Day sleeps are still in arms, something I'll have to change soon, as I will be back in paid employment two days a week in 6 weeks time