Month Five

Dear Rachel,

Today you turn 5 months old. As always, it’s hard to believe that you’re growing up so fast, but what makes it even more unbelievable is when I look at a child younger than you.


I went with Chris to visit our friends Andrea and Caitlin and their new baby, Annika, last weekend. You couldn’t go because newborn babies aren’t supposed to be around other babies for a while. I couldn’t believe how tiny she was, and it made me think back to the summer when I first held you in my arms. I had forgotten how small you were and how light you were. I’m not trying to say that you’re fat or anything, but you have been eating like a little piggy lately.


We moved to our new house and you were really great about the whole thing, quietly playing with your toys and letting your parents get things moved into and around the house. This will be the first house you remember us living in, so I hope you like it.


Your Grandpa Rick and Grandma Connie visited right before we moved, and it was great to have them down. We always like seeing them, and they missed you a lot in the last couple of months. Grandma Connie almost started crying at the airport when she saw how big you had gotten.


You went to another wedding this past month, and you were quite the attraction. I think you may have even made the bride a bit jealous, because you were getting so much attention.


We started feeding you rice cereal over the past couple of weeks, in addition to the full bottles you’ve been drinking. At first, you made faces and “ACK!” noises when we fed you the cereal. Now, you reach for the spoon, and open your mouth wide when it’s coming toward you. Mostly, you get the cereal all over your face because you haven’t quite figured out the chewing and swallowing thing yet. You get it in your mouth just fine, but then proceed to push it out with your tongue, and when your mother or I try to catch it with the spoon, you move your head around so much that it ends up all over your cheeks, chin, and sometimes nose.


You also recognize your bottle now, and get quite cranky if you see it nearby and it’s not in your mouth within 10 seconds. What’s really cool though, is when you reach out and grab it, then pull it into your mouth. We still have to help you get the nipple in your mouth just right, but after that, you can hold it on your own and eat without much help. I even managed to pass you off to Mommy the other day without the bottle coming out of your hands or mouth.


You also will reach out for the dog when he’s near. Anytime your hands come near his face, he’ll start licking them. You will try to grab his tongue, and then some point later you put those very hands in your mouth. He also licks your feet, which you started sucking on in earnest this past month, too. Hopefully no one judges us by the fact that we let the dog lick you…we just figure that it’s going to happen, and the sooner the better to work it into your immune system.


You started turning yourself over this past month, almost as soon as I had written the words in your last letter that you weren’t turning over yet. You’ve almost gotten the flipping over from front to back thing down too, but not quite as consistently as the back to front rolling. It seems like every time we put you down, you’re on your tummy within 30 seconds, and usually drooling all over whatever it is you’re laying on–our bed, the floor, daddy’s chest. Of course, you get one of your arms trapped under you, and that makes you crabby. When we put your on your tummy to start with, and both of your arms are free, you’re usually fine for a while.


Your legs are getting very strong, I think from being in the jumper and the excer-saucer at Miss Judy’s. Last night, you stood up in my lap for almost 5 minutes, and all I had to do was help you keep your balance. I was doing that with the light touch of one hand. I have a feeling you’re going to start running before you can even crawl.


I can’t wait to see what this next month will bring. You learn so much new stuff every month, it’s hard for me to keep up with it all! Hopefully this month you’ll get to meet Annika, and you’ll have your first Thanksgiving. I can hardly wait to see what you do with a plate full of mashed potatoes!


Love,
Daddy

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