What a fun month this has been! Elle is so mobile now, and she’s becoming more and more independent. She was obsessed with walking for a long time and loved cruising around with her push toy. She would walk up and down the living/dining room all day long if I let her, and she’s even taken her first few steps this month. The few times she’s done it, she lets go of the coffee table for a few seconds, then takes a couple of steps and either grabs onto something or falls down. But, at some point, she realized that if she just lets go of the push toy, table or whatever and crawls then she can go wherever she wants and get there a lot faster. So, her current obsession is crawling and she loves to crawl around the whole downstairs most of the day, usually panting like a dog as she goes, especially if she’s trying to crawl fast. She loves it when we join her on the floor and chase after her or hide behind things and jump out to surprise her. It’s so much fun to watch her get soo excited and squeal in anticipation of you jumping out.
She’s understanding a lot more of what we say and has even started to say a few words, although we can’t always get her to say them on command. She has a baby doll that we’ve been encouraging her to play with as a distraction from Sam (the 5-month-old boy that I watch during the week), so she’s started saying “baby,” and she loves to play “gently” with the doll. And by that I mean that she loves to body slam it on the ground and bite its head and jump on top of it. She’s really learning a lot from my lessons on being “gentle” to other babies. She also says “bye-bye” to Sam and his mom, Tracy, when they leave for the day and she waves backwards (again, we can’t get her to do this every time). She still says “dada” and LOVES to play with my phone and look at his picture, since he’s the background. She’ll open it up and say “dada”, then close it and open it again and say “dada”. She finally really started saying “mama” this month, and it’s soo sweet, although she still has some major separation anxiety issues. We left her with a babysitter recently, and we told the babysitter to call if she was crying and wouldn’t settle down. So, after less than two hours, the babysitter called and said we should probably come home. Apparently, Elle had been crying basically the entire time we were gone, not top-of-the-lungs screaming, but crying and whimpering the whole two hours. The babysitter tried taking her next door to play with Peyton, who is the same age, but she said Elle would just crawl away from him and towards the door. Then, she’d sit at the window near the door and say, “mama, mama, mama”. She said she tried everything she could think of to make her happy, but it didn’t work, and she did this same thing at home too. Talk about making me feel guilty! It seems Elle’s only other “friend” besides Kyle and I is Sam’s mother, Tracy. She gets excited to see Tracy every day when she picks up Sam, and even played at Tracy’s house without us for a whole two hours without crying. We keep telling Tracy that if we ever have to go somewhere important, we’re going to hire her as our babysitter. She has also started to hear the word “no” this month, although she thinks it’s funny. We tell her “no” when she goes to touch the TV, since it’s one of the only things she can’t touch downstairs, and she turns around to look at us and of course continues to touch it. So, we walk over and move her away from it to play with something else, and she just laughs and crawls right back towards the TV. What a fun game for her!
Other than walking and talking, Elle is still a picky eater, preferring avocados, green beans, popsicles, and all forms of carbs (mashed potatoes, grits, stuffing, etc.) over most anything else. She doesn’t really like fruit, although I can usually get her to eat some bananas, and she still loves to nurse (so, I know weaning is going to be really hard!). She’s still plays kind of rough with other babies, and I’m not sure why. She tries to get on top of them and pushes them over and grabs at faces. I guess we need to wait a while to give her a brother or sister! She now has 5, almost 6, teeth and has been biting on everything recently. She even tried to bite the tile floor the other day and constantly tries to bite the couch and my arm. She’s just so desperate for her teeth to break through. She also loves to clap and will do so anytime someone says “yay” or if she hears people clapping on TV. Whenever she says a word, like “baby”, I always tell her “good job” and she usually claps for herself. She often lets go of the table or whatever she’s using to help herself stand so she can clap. She also loves to try and copy anything we do, so she clicks her tongue (see the video) and does some other tricks in her attempts to mimic us.
We’ve been trying to take more videos of her, since we didn’t think to do that in the beginning, and especially since we got a new camera that takes better videos. So, I’ll be posting those periodically.