Dear Elanor Six Months

Dear Elanor

You are six months old today.  One half of our first year is in the past, and you are only 6 months away from being a one year old.  You’re growing so quickly that I feel as though every time I look away when I look back you’re doing something new.

During your fifth month of life you began solids at the advice of your gastroenterologist.  Between 4/3 and 5/3 you tried rice cereal, carrots, sweet potatoes and peas.  You like the rice cereal and carrots.  You LOVE sweet potatoes.  You absolutely detest the peas, to the point of taking a bit eagerly and then giving me a look of utter disgust and betrayal once you realize what I’ve given you.  You then clamp you mouth shut and turn your head rather than accept another spoonful.  Your sixth month will be a month of fruit, which I think you’ll like more.

You are completely transitioned to your Elecare formula, which is made of broken down amino acids with no proteins whatsoever, to help with your presumed food allergies.  This week we’ll visit with your doctor again and find out what the game plan is for the rest of this year, and how we’ll introduce the potential allergens (dairy, soy, nuts, eggs) to your diet and at what age(s).

Developmentally you are doing great!  You *can* roll over, but you generally prefer not to.  You don’t like being horizontal…you strongly prefer sitting to laying and standing to sitting.  In the last two weeks you went from sitting wobbily to sitting unassisted for minutes at a time.  The next skill that you are working on (and the Early Intervention nurse says is emerging now) is that you’ll put your hand down when you start to tip over sideways and catch yourself before you tumble.

Everything goes in your mouth.  Even things that there’s NO WAY are ever going to fit in there…such as your happy apple (giant apple with chimes in it)…you’re willing to give it a shot.  You chew on my and your daddy’s fingers often, and we can feel the teeth that are not yet poking through, but are on the verge of it.

This month you got your exersaucer, which you would play in all day if we let you.  You stand and bounce and laugh as you mouth, whack and play with all the toys.  You are much less interested in your bouncy seat (I mostly use it when I take a shower as a conveinent place you’ll tolerate being long enough for me to get clean) and you have almost zero interest in your swing.  It’s odd for me, because it wasn’t that long ago that the swing was the magical place that you loved being in and that soothed all the ills of your world.

Your high chair is the other big purchase of the month.  While the tray is still a bit high for you, we like having you join us for meals.  When I feed you, I mostly take the tray off and just have you sit in it.

You are also less tolerant of cuddling.  You enjoy being held when we sleep or nap (although I don’t do it all the time…) but you will only tolerate being held for a short period of time before you want to be put down so you can play on your own.  I remember when you hated to be put down, and I don’t know that I appreciated how short that period would be.  I wish I had treasured it a bit more, rather than being a little aggravated when I felt like I never had a hand free.

You have gone from your snap n go stroller to your big girl stroller.  Mostly because of my bad back…your weight plus the carseat is no longer easy for me to transition in and out of the car.  Due to the experiences we had in Colorado (you in a cheap umbrella stroller facing away and hating every second of it) we bought a stroller where we have the option of it facing us or away, and that is light enough to spare my back agony when getting it in and out of the trunk.

A big milestone achieved in this past month is that you now sit in shopping carts (as long as they have the seat belt that can be tightened to fit your teeny size).  You think sitting in a shopping cart is the coolest thing ever!  You laugh, you kick your feet, you smile at us and you vocalize your pleasure.  You genuinely think it is awesome.  I think you like it even more than the stroller.

April was the month of your first photo shoot.  I took you to a place called Portrait Simple in the mall.  They got some amazing shots of you…and I now have a giant poster sized framed print collage of 7 of the best shots.  You’ll probably remember seeing it over the couch as you grow up.  Ironically I scheduled it for when I did because Portrait Simple had live bunnies to pose with…and the one you posed with nipped your toes and freaked you out.  So much for that.  We also scheduled it for when we did so that we could give your grandmothers professional pictures for their first year as grandmothers on Mother’s Day.

Daddy and I took you to the Aquarium and you met Myrtle the giant sea turtle!  You also met other turtles, but what we loved best was finding Myrtle in the big tank and the few minutes the two of you spent just looking at each other.  You were fascinated by her.  In the gift shop, I showed you a small stuffed turtle and you went nuts for it.  Now the turtle is in your crib along with Owly and you sleep with them every night.

The biggest thing to happen in the last month is our move to the new apartment the day after Easter.  Daddy and I love the new apartment.  It’s in downtown Waltham, within a 1/2 mile of Daddy’s work (so he can walk to work almost every day), we have a covered parking spot (no more shoveling out our cars while having you sit in the car in your carseat with the car running during the winter), an elevator (no more stairs!!!!!…those two flights of stairs were killing my back, especially as you got bigger) and the apartment is all one floor.  You and I have gone for plenty of walks already, and now that the weather is getting nicer, we’ll be able to do it more frequently.  You still sleep in our room, but I am getting the nursery set up.  Dada came over and helped us baby proof by screwing all of the bookcases to the walls.  Our friends helped us move all the little things, and then the moving company moved the rest.  Your auntie DD packed us, and we stayed with Dada and Dadi the week before the move.  We spent Easter weekend in a hotel, though, for some private time.  There’s still a lot of unpacking to do, though.  Having you around makes the process a bit slower 🙂

You spend a few hours every Friday with Dada and Dadi so I can get a break.  They love having time with you.  I know your Dada has taken you for a few walks and your Dadi likes to play with you.  The two of you sit on the couch and play with your toys, like your teething rings, your alphabet ball and your ducky.  I know you’re having a great time and so are they, so I can see a movie, get a pedicure, or whatever with no guilt.

Speaking of your grandparents, they threw you a party.  All of their friends came just to meet you.  A lot of these friends have known your Daddy since he was little and several had moments of awe to realize they were holding Ravi’s kid.  Your Roopafoi (Aunty Roopa) gave you a silver spoon and fork from Tiffany’s that I had been eying, but Daddy hadn’t let me buy.  You were so excited to meet all these new people that you stayed up WAY past your bedtime of 7ish until 10pm!

We also took you to Chocolate Madness.  This is an annual event put on by Mass Naral (a pro choice group) where various restaurants in Boston donate chocolate desserts and you get to go and eat as much as you want!  This was our second year going, and like last year we went with Uncle Jim.  You were absolutely adorable in a red dress, and we got you a button that said “vote pro choice.”  You were one of maybe 4 kids there, but we didn’t feel weird having you with us.  In general your dad and I like to bring you everywhere, and would generally prefer not to go somewhere than not have you with us.  We love sharing the world with you, and get a huge kick out of seeing your reactions to the world around you.

We have started swim classes on Saturday mornings.  It’s a class of fifteen babies and parents.  We sing songs and play games to get the babies used to the water.  The baby next to you screamed through the whole first class.  You, however, were fascinated by the other babies and kept sticking your tongue out (to try to taste chlorine?  I have no idea).  I love the water and I want you to be happy and safe there too.  It’s something we can share 🙂  You were startled when I accidentally got water in your face, but when everyone said “yay!” you were willing to accept that maybe it had been fun.  You look adorable in your green swimsuit with butterflies on it.  Your overly large (but required by pool regulations) swim cap is the most precious thing.

As with each month, your personality is growing by leaps and bounds and we are getting to know our Turtle better each day.  You are fiesty.  You have a temper and DO NOT like it when we are fastening you into things like car seats or strollers.  You “talk” to try to keep yourself awake when you’re tired.  You are SUPER social…you love meeting large groups of people and babies…in fact I think you liked seeing other babies more than you liked being in the water at swim class.  You are starting to be ticklish in your armpits.  You will mostly tolerate wearing hats.  You love Lady, and try to pet her when she comes near you, and often she’ll tolerate it or will even rub against your hand to help you pet her!

Your daddy and I love you to pieces, Turtle.  But you know that…that you reach out for us to pick you up, and look for us when we’re gone, and smile and laugh with us tells us that you know and that you love us too.


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One Response to Dear Elanor Six Months

  1. Kelly says:

    My daughter is 20 months and was on a similar diet with a dairy protein and lactose intolerane she also had to avoid soya, nuts, eggs, sheep and goats milk, It was hard at first but once they find the right formula you feel like you have a whole new baby, we tried about 4 different kind of formula before we found a suitable alternative and Elsie is thriving now, unfortunatly she has not ‘grown out’ of her allergies – as was hoped, but we do try to reintroduce things from her ‘bad list ‘now and again. She is definatley a happier and bonnier baby since he had the new formula, I hope it works for Elenor 🙂

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