[personal profile] familyvalues
owenIMG_0259 by marymactavish
owenIMG_0259, a photo by marymactavish on Flickr.

Owen was born six months ago today, by calendar month, and of course, that's now a bit more than 24 weeks.

Except for size, he's mostly right on schedule, and given his genetic background (Casey's big-boned and somehow, at the same time, lanky; Audrey's not petite) Owen's size is unsurprising. Currently he's in the 90-95th percentile for height and creeping up fast on weight and weight-to-height. His head size is off the chart but healthy, “It could just be a growth spurt," says the doctor. At any rate, he's in anywhere from 9month to 2T clothing depending on whether the shirt has neck buttons, crotch snaps, or is in a brand that tends to run small. I'm loving 2T, he is a wiggler these days, so those are easy for me to put him in.

Owen babbles like a babbling fiend, and can say “Obama" now and then, but of course, he fits “da" and “geh" and “bagabah" and blowing raspberries all in exactly the same context – but then, so do I.

His smiles still light up a room, and do so often. We say he has a little jar with which he collects souls, and when someone notices him in public and he beams at them, and you can see them melt a little, the jar goes “ka-ching" and he collects a soul. Yesterday, he collected the souls of two rather burly firefighters at the supermarket, and I caught them making goochie noises from the next lane over.

He's also more easily frustrated than ever before. He seems to set goals high for himself, and though he can flip over and get most places fast on his belly, he wants to move, to crawl, to walk, right now. Like many babies his age, he likes to have his hands held for support as he slowly walks around the room. Mostly we let him do things along the lines of Magda Gerber's theories, just in that we think it's fine for him to be frustrated and figure things out or be patient while we're nearby so he's safe and feels supported, and sometimes he even does and is, but we also just have fun with him trying out the walking around. I don't think any single development theory has all the answers.

He's clearly happy and thriving and we're not worried.

We've moved to a new home (that post is coming in a couple of days) and he's got his own room now, and has just started sleeping all night there, or nearly all night, waking up now and then for a feed or a diaper.

He adores DJ, and he is her puppy. She's mostly patient with him, and we're teaching him to pet gently, but of course, at his fine motor stage, sometimes a fur-grab is all he can do, and she'll just get up and move away – her teaching method is probably at least as good as ours. Sadly, we're almost down to one dog – Sadie died last month, and Zoe's cancer will take her very soon, but for Owen, DJ has been the go-to dog anyhow. I hope that she lives long enough for him to remember her, as they've really got something going already.

Our new place is a block from a wonderful park with wonderful playgrounds, and it's got baby bucket swings that he loves. I sit on the ground in front of him and push gently, and he squeals … until he sees something, anything, more interesting, children playing, geese squabbling, it doesn't matter. Everything is interesting. He's not done swinging, he just wants to stop to focus. He also enjoys just lying or sitting (he can sit upright for very long periods but can't get to sitting himself just yet) and watching the kids in the playground. He seems to be studying them.

He is eating some solids now: a little cereal, also blueberries, strawberries, bananas, mango, grapes, watermelon, canteloupe. We feed him squished stuff off our fingers, or sometimes a spoon, but mostly through mesh feeders. He starts kicking when he sees the mesh feeder arriving, he is a huge fan of food.

All in all, he's so much fun, and also exhausting, frustrating, and fun. I love his naps, and I love seeing his smile when he awakens.

I so very love being part of this family, the people who love Owen together, the people who get along. We take care of each other, our extended families take care of us too. I feel rich.

Owen is a protogamer





With the dogs being sick and dying, and the big move to this new place, and my RA flaring up big time, I've been a bit overwhelmed for even thinking about blogging, but I've got a few posts queued in my brain. Mostly, I want to write about moving to our new place, having it become a basic suburban house-with-baby, fitting into the new (lovely, friendly, but somewhat old-school familywise) neighborhood, and feeling like family; and I want to write about how I've had to modify my attachment parenting expectations (which were already modified for realism on my part) to suit both a multiple-parent household and my chronic pain escalation. As usual, sometimes your questions or interests help guide how I write, so if you're wondering anything specific about either of those, or anything else, please ask: I'll answer what and how I can.

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