Growing And Learning

It seems that Chris and I are always commenting to each other about how amazing Lewis is with all his new accomplishments, interests, etc. Today Chris updated his facebook to say how proud he is of some of Lewis’ newest things he is learning and doing. I had been thinking of updating my facebook with something very similar, but then realized if I posted it here I could say more and would also have more of a “record” of it to look back on!

I really love how with all the billions of humans currently living and also those who have lived in the past, babies and children never stop amazing us. Every single human who has ever lived goes through the same development, learns to walk, to talk, to run and jump and cook and write. And yet, each and every one is amazing all over again. It doesn’t matter if you are a first-time parent or an old granny who has seen a hundred babies grow up – when you see a child learning or doing something for the first time it is a wonderful moment. And of course, when it is your own child and you watch them figure something out for themselves, suddenly doing something they weren’t just yesterday, it seems like the most amazing thing of all.

"Look, I unzipped it myself!"

“Look, I unzipped it myself!”

My favorite new skill of Lewis’ is something I have been waiting for for a long time. He has finally started saying Mama! (It started out as “Mum-um” or “Mum-um-um-um,” but is already sounding more like “Mama”) He has said it a couple of time for me this morning and I overheard him practicing in his crib after I laid him down to nap. He has been saying Dada forever, and also would call me Dada, so it is nice to finally have my own name!

Along the same lines of adding new vocabulary, he is also figuring out how to nod his head “yes.” This has been a very tricky motion that has been baffling him for the longest time. He has been able to shake his head “no” for months, at first just doing it because the motion felt neat. We have tried to show him “yes” and he could never figure it out, sometimes bouncing his entire body up and down in an attempt. He is still polishing up the movement and still gets his whole body moving with it sometimes, but he is getting a lot better at it and you can see how excited and proud he is of himself. He’s not using it with meaning/to answer questions yet, but I’m sure that will come soon!

A recent favorite game for Chris and Lewis is to basically play “I Spy” while reading his books. Daddy will look at the page in the book they are reading together and ask Lewis to find something in the picture. “Where is the lion?”, “Can you find the banana?”, “Do you see any flowers in this picture?” etc. Lewis loves this and is surprisingly good at it. Some of them he knows immediately because they are books he has read a hundred times and we have talked about what is in the pictures, but he also does quite well even with new books from the library. He will sit and study the picture very seriously until finding the object and pointing to it with a smile. If he can’t find it after studying the page he gives Daddy a serious look and shakes his head “no.” So cute!

He is obsessed with stars and can point to a star shape. When he sees a star he will do twinkly star hand motions like the “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” song, sometimes without any prompting or being asked about stars. He loves that all his socks have stars on the bottom as part of the no-slip stuff. He occasionally also points correctly to other shapes and some colors, but I think for the most part this is just lucky guesses.

He has been working on walking backwards and entertains himself with practicing this.

He is also finally figuring out how to sit down onto something the way you would sit onto a chair, rather than having to climb all around an area to get sitting where he would like.

We recently ordered a little potty chair for him (although it hasn’t arrived yet) because he has been showing a lot of interest in toileting for the past month or so. When I change his diaper I usually ask him if he would like to use the toilet. Sometimes he says yes, sometimes no. He is definitely starting to understand when he actually needs to pee/is peeing in his diaper/etc. He has done a little tinkle in the big toilet a few times but he seems uncomfortable being held over it (hence ordering him his own potty). Often he will sit for a few seconds, squirm to try to get down, and then run out and very purposefully pee on the carpet. Peeing on the carpet is obviously not ideal, but I do love that he has so much awareness of it already and seems to have some control as well! His diaper is still wet most of the time and only once in a while will he actually ask to go potty, so I’m not expecting him to be potty trained any time soon (I worked with two year olds – I know how long this can take!) but I do want to encourage the interest as much as possible and even one pee in the potty a day is a step in the right direction.

Signing "more" to ask for more chocolate Halloween night. (We didn't go trick-or-treating but when we paid rent the people in the office gave him a couple mini chocolates.)

Signing “more” to ask for more chocolate Halloween night. (We didn’t go trick-or-treating but when we paid rent the people in the office gave him a couple mini chocolates.)

His eating seems to have taken off recently as well. All my family who saw him over the summer got to witness his entertaining way of “eating” which has been to mush the food around in his mouth, maybe swallowing a bit, but eventually spitting out most bites before putting in the next. (This is quite normal with Baby Led Weaning, not sure how it compares to babies with traditional weaning.) He has finally mastered swallowing most of his food, and has been impressing me with the amount he now chows down at lunch and dinner. Breakfast he still only snacks a bit since he likes to have a huge nursing session when he wakes in the morning, so his tummy is full of milk.

Well, that’s all that comes to mind right now for his recent accomplishments, although I’m sure there are plenty more things I have forgotten at the moment!

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