Today you turn eleven months old: only a month to go until you hit the big O-N-E. Hasn’t this month been a rollercoaster? I’m going to apologise now for not writing more about you this month, or taking more pictures, but in between the high-fever hallucinating and the throwing up, there hasn’t really been time. (Swine flu. Oh joy. Incidentally, you ARE having the vaccine.) Never mind, everything is OK when you have meringue.
I’m writing this as you sleep, during my precious work-time. You are sleeping better in the day and at night because we’ve moved away from blankets and bought you a proper duvet. The first night you slept under it you slept on your back all night with Donkey tucked in next to you: you haven’t done that since before you could roll over! The fact that I could just take a photo of you asleep without waking you is testimony to the power of The Duvet.
This month, you mastered your walker, and then a few days ago you took a STEP! And then another, and then another. You’re not quite confident enough to walk on your own yet, but when you have your walker (or a chair, or your bead thing, or the high chair, or anything else the right height…) you can run!
We’ve had an interesting month with food, haven’t we? Just after you turned ten months, you discovered chocolate buttons. Daddy and I discovered that chocolate buttons are a brilliant bribe (sorry, reward). This is good, because you seem to have hit the two-year-old fussy stage a year and a month early. All the wonderful fruit and veg that you’ve been eating since you were six months old? No thanks. Pasta in a lovely spinach sauce provoked a tantrum. Pears were even worse. Why? You ate pears last month. At Rugrats and Half Pints yesterday you refused to even put cucumber in your mouth, never mind bite it. It’s OK, though. Daddy and I have come up with a solution: we’re just going to cover everything in hummous or yoghurt, then you won’t know that it’s vegetables. That, or you can live on Mini Cheddars and chocolate buttons. And meringues.
Your cousin Wilfred came to stay for a week this month and you had a great time together. It’s the first time you’ve both been aware of each other, and it was lovely. You’re (mostly) very gentle with him, although you do splash a little too much in the bath for him. Watching you play peek-a-boo with him was one of the loveliest things I’ve ever seen.
Talking of baths: you adore them. There have been days where you’ve had three or four in a day. Not because you’re dirty (although meringue in the hair doesn’t help) but because you love them so much. You can now request “bath!” and “splash!”, and there have been occasions when we’ve spent an hour in the bath, playing with ducks, bottles, the shower… If you didn’t have to come out of the bath, I don’t think you would.
The way you play has changed so much this month. You’ve figured out that stacking cups stack, and that the farmer in your farmhouse can slide down the chimney. You’ve changed so quickly that you have next to no age-appropriate toys in the house, but your birthday and Christmas are only a month away, so you’ll have to hang on. You love sliding the beads around on the bead thing, and you love your tambourine and maracas. At Grandma and Grandpa’s house, you have a “phone” (a remote without the batteries in), which you pretend to talk to people on. Talking of talking, you are learning new words almost every day, and you babble as though we can understand you. You still have some very clear words, and yesterday you uttered your first phrase: “Get down?”. I can’t wait to have a proper conversation with you.
Your understanding and social interaction are at a whole new level, too. I asked you to sit down this morning, and you did as you were asked. You hold your arms out and say “Up!” when you want to be picked up, and you frequently stop playing, give Daddy or I a hug, and then go back to whatever you were doing. You also know when you’re being asked not to do something, and delight in disobeying us with a cheeky grin. You’re visibly thinking more: we can almost hear the cogs whirring in your brain.
You’ve developed an unbreakable bond with Daddy now. Well, you both laugh at fart jokes, find the word “poo” hillarious, and spend your time blowing raspberries at each other. Maybe it’s just a man thing. I love sitting back and watching you play together.
Son, I love you so much that I’ll almost think about forgiving you for throwing up in my car the other day. (Yeah, thanks for that.) You’re turning into a toddler so fast, and it’s amazing to think that this is your last newsletter before you turn one. I miss my teeny-tiny baby, but you are so much fun now. I’m not going to pretend that getting to this point hasn’t been hard, but now we’re here, it’s AWESOME, and I love you.
Lots of love,
Mummy and Daddy (who’s probably going to cry when he reads this)