July 06, 2009

Rice Cereal: A story in pictures

We planned to start Zane on rice cereal on Father's Day, which was also his 5 month birthday. But I ended up in the ER that day, so we pushed it back a day. He has now been eating rice cereal mixed with breast milk, every night for two weeks and he loves it! But it didn't start out that way:

Hmmm....this is odd, wonder why they have me sitting up here.

What are you mixing up there, Mama? Can I have some?

Wait a minute! I was just kidding!

Seriously NOT impressed.

Why are you doing THIS again?

Maybe it tastes better straight from the bowl?

Or from a cup! What a great idea!



Ok. Maybe I was quick to judge. I will try the spoon again. Bring it on.

So far so good.

I can't believe I almost missed out on this! Hurry up Mama!

kthx! I will take it from here! Bye Bye!

And the rest is history......

July 05, 2009

The Z Files: Month Five

Dear Zane,

I am a week two weeks late getting this written. And although I want to believe otherwise, I am fairly certain that by the time you are old enough to read these letters and appreciate them, you will not be asking why it took your mother a full week two full weeks to finally get your letter written, but rather how she managed to get it done only one two weeks late. I am working on this kiddo, but something tells me it's a lifelong lesson for me.

But you! There is so much to write about you!

You are still generally the happiest baby I have ever known. From the moment you awake each morning, you are full of smiles. And although most mornings start much earlier than I would prefer (you are still working on the whole sleeping-through-the-night gig), the way you absolutely beam at your father and I when you open your eyes makes every morning our own private little party with you. But you don't save the smiles just for us. Oh no. You are generous with these treasures. Everywhere we go, you smile at just about everyone you meet, the only exception being the rare moments you are overtired. You actually seem to work at charming people. You try to catch their eyes, and then boom you floor them with your smile. And everywhere we go, people are just drawn to you. I find myself surrounded by cooing women at grocery stores on a regular basis. It's the "Zane show" all day, every day. And I could not be more proud. You seriously might have a future in politics if you keep this up, kid. You even won the heart of a two-year old girl at a restaurant recently. She was so captivated by you that she spontaneously leaned forward and kissed you! I am beginning to fear your teen years if this is any predictor of what's to come.

You are really affectionate. You regularly grab our faces and move in to dive-bomb us with a big slobbery baby kiss. You hold on to us, almost hugging us, as we hold you. You pat my back gently just as I pat yours to comfort you. You grab the fat on the backs of our arms with a little vice-like baby grip and pull yourself closer to us. And the absolute kicker? When you lie in bed between us, you reach each arm out to touch each of us. You want to be in contact with us as much as possible and you are never happier than when both your dad and I are cuddled up next to you together. This is something I hold so dear about you and I really hope is always a part of you. I hope you never lose your ability to be openly affectionate and loving with your family and those you love. You have caused our hearts to break open with your tenderness and we are so much better for it.

You are also incredibly physical and active. Of course, you still love your jumper and are launching yourself in the air as if you believe you might be able to fly if you just push a little harder off of the floor next time. And, you are not fully crawling yet, but that doesn't mean you aren't mobile! You have perfected your ability to roll in either direction with speed and purpose, and you have developed your own scooching, inch-worm/army crawl. You also are quick to propel yourself off of any surface by pushing off on your legs with all your might. It is truly amazing we have not had to make another ER visit yet. Also, at the end of this month, you spontaneously began sitting up and being able to balance on your own like this for a few minutes at a time. It's been really exciting to watch you tackle this milestone. You seem so proud of yourself and you concentrate so hard on keeping your balance. You seem to love the challenge of it.

You are a determined little one. Whether you are in the jumper, or on the floor, or being held - you have a knack for finding a way to get to whatever you want. You are the definition of perseverance. You just do not give up when you see a toy, a book, or random objects you'd like to get your little fists around. I love watching the concentration in your eyes as you try to figure out how you will get to what you want and I love watching how happy you are with yourself when you achieve your goal.

You lead the way more and more each day. I want to read, research, learn how to do this the "right way", without mistakes. But your presence, your exuberance for life, your eagerness demands that I turn away from the books and the internet and simply face you (and sometimes, just in time to grab your leg before you launch yourself off the couch face-first). And so I do. I face you, I look into your eyes, and together we figure out what comes next.

One of my favorite memories from this month is a walk we took together in the rain. It has rained nearly every day in the last few weeks. One afternoon, we were home together as the clouds rolled in. I watched the sky turn grey and the drops begin to fall. I wondered how we would fill our afternoon. You had already had some "jumper-time" and time on the floor with your toys. We had read books. We had sang. We had danced. What would we do now? I looked at you and the answer came to me. I carried you outside and we felt the wind blow on our cheeks and felt the first droplets fall on our heads and arms. No one else was out. It felt like our own private world. I grabbed the umbrella, put you in the Ergo, and we went for a slow walk in the rain around our neighborhood. The streets were quiet. The flowers in bloom. The leaves wet and dripping. We looked up at the trees, we knelt down to look at flowers. We inhaled the smell of the rain. The world was ours and I was filled with gratitude for it and for you.

I am continually shocked at how much you teach me about being alive, being in the moment, and being a mother. And when I can't find the answer simply by watching you and listening to my heart, you make me want to get the answer - whatever it takes - the answer that will help me be the best Mama I can. Because you deserve that and a great deal more.

I love seeing the world through your eyes. You are delightful little man. Completely delightful. I am so glad you are my son, and I am your Mama. I love you so much.