h-a-p-p-y

avi is eight months old today, which – as a separate notion independant of the baby as an individual – is pretty amazing. and when i think about who he is as a living, breathing personality, it’s even more remarkable.


he can do so much (and has mastered it so fast) that it really blows my mind. sometimes i go through older baby pictures to remind me how much he’s changed. it is difficult to keep track of physical changes – his face especially – because i see him every day. sure, i know his cheeks are thinner now, and his hair is certainly longer and darker and more prominent on his forehead, but i often don’t realize how drastic it is without the photographic proof in front of me.

i wish i knew *how* big he is. avi has been an exceedingly healthy baby, and our wonderful doctor doesn’t need to see him again until he is a year old. trying to measure him at home is pretty awkward, but i think we’re going to try if only to confirm that he is indeed big enough to turn his car seat around, since his poor little feet don’t have room against the back of the bench! i also wonder if he’d be willing to sit on the scale long enough to get a semi-accurate weight measurement. things i can judge are the sizes of his clothes (9-12 months in rare cases, 12 months in most cases, 12-18 months, in a few cases, 18-24 months in a couple odd ball items!), shoes (3), and the fact that i consistently underestimate other babies’ ages because avi is larger than the average bear! he is most decidedly *not* fat, though. his whole torso has thinned out as he’s grown longer (taller?) and the cute little pot belly is almost completely gone.

now let’s talk about the teeth…seven! i can’t believe it! he has four on top and three on the bottom and i can’t find even anecdotal babystory evidence that this is in any way even remotely normal. he is definitely cutting the fourth on the bottom, and we estimate he’ll have eight teeth before he’s nine months old. you know, for all the big game he is chewing, right? actually, he has no teeth for real chewing – molars don’t come in for awhile. he certainly has teeth for biting, though. far less painful than fingers (and more amusing too) is the way he tends to bite of tiny bits of cracker when he’s feeding himself. we’re talking crackers the size of cheerios, but in the shape of a star. he’ll bite off two or three star points with all those teeth before popping the rest of the cracker in his mouth (or getting it lost in his fist).

he’s eating three full meals a day, and still has about 18oz-24oz of formula. it’s absolutely freaky that he can put away as much as i might eat for breakfast – a full container of yogurt, half a banana, and some cereal. of course, i mix his all up together, but it is still substantial. i guess to be completely fair, i don’t have any idea how much cereal he actually eats – i use his yummy dry cereal flakes to thicken alot of his other food now that he is trying to chew. for lunch he usually has turkey and vegetables, or chicken and vegetables, or vegetables and cheese, or something along those lines. lunch time is also star cracker time, along with anything else random we happen to have around the house that he is allowed to have or try. dinner is often the rest of the meat+veggie concoction plus more fruit thickened with cereal. there is no dessert in the world of a baby, poor kiddo.

avi is a world-class crawler, and will most certainly be representing the united states in the next olympics. he’s is so fast and so…crafty. the other day, d pulled the cat food in from the living room to the kitchen in the hopes that it would fool the baby but not the kitten. unfortunately for all, avi just came right in after it, and the poor cat was left eating a lone dry food bit that had fallen onto the floor. he can also get himself into a sitting position, and will often pause his pursuit to sit for a bit before continuing. i am very pleased that we are moving – the baby can have alot more room to play without d and i worrying about potential interaction with computer wires (or cat food). he’s started pulling himself up as well, so i know it is only a matter of time before his range of motion increases even further. sometimes we let him practice in the laundry basket – he sits in it and pulls himself up by holding on to the sides. it’s very cute, and not at all worth calling child services about, really.

moth actually has alot more to worry about than missing her food now that avi is so fast. he will chase her into a corner, no doubt hoping to score some time with his friend “tail”, so the poor cat has no option left except stealthily running away. she’s a lot better at turning than the baby is, but she’s also A LOT more patient with him than she used to be. i think we are blessed with a relatively tolerant cat afterall.

d and i have been signing with avi for two months now, in a combination of conversational signs between the two of us and reinforced signs at key times (eating, changing, playing, etc.) with the baby. d is taking his second asl class, and he has such an aptitude for languages it makes me insanely jealous. i think he’s probably surpassed my skill level, and will only continue to improve since i am not taking class or working at the school for the deaf anymore. we are both excited to see where this takes us with avi, however. it is usually around nine or ten months that babies start to make the connection between the signs and the objects or actions they represent, and shortly thereafter some babies begin to attempt signing themselves. since neither of us speak “avi” – a combination of yelling vowels and consonant combinations, peppered with clicks of his tongue – i think we both look forward to the day avi first associates the signing with communication.

the bug seems to have completely gotten over his terrible sleep issue, and is now sleeping from about 830pm to 930am. yesterday he took a two hour nap, but i think it was probably a fluke. still, i know we are very very VERY lucky that he has such superior sleeping skills at this age.

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and he’s also an excellent typist.

(the title to this lengthy and lofty post is appropriately from the show grand hotel)

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