fourteen months

Anselm turned Fourteen Months on May the seventh. My camera was in the shop, and I entertained the idea of just using phone pictures for his post, but in the end I decided to just wait until the camera was back in my hands and I could take “real pictures.”

a 14 mos-7

His hair is getting longer, longer, and flippier and flippier. It doesn’t really seem to actually curl, but I keep letting it grow in the hopes that someday it will magically turn into ringlets. (It does, at least, have substantial wave to it, which means 1) he doesn’t have my hair at all, and 2) his Baby Mullet doesn’t really look like a mullet at all. He is, however, frequently mistaken for a girl because he does not have the same haircut as the other boys.

a 14 mos-6

He is really coming into his own Look, which still doesn’t look like much of anyone to us, although he does have a lot of Ephraim’s mannerisms, and a lot of Clive’s reluctances. His will and his personality are shining through that baby sweetness, and we have begun to have our first real clashes of will. I am happy to report that they were not as difficult as my first power struggles with Clive.

a 14 mos-8 a 14 mos-9a 14 mos-10

He has five teeth, almost six–he gets around by slithering about on his belly (army crawling) and by whining until someone gives him their hands and helps him wobbly-walk around. I had really, really hoped that he wouldn’t be a really late walker like Clive, but it looks like I’m out of luck. I’m just glad Ephraim came first and was “normal”, so I wouldn’t wonder that I’m doing something terribly wrong.

The other day I had him on my lap while I called to Clive: “Clive, Clive!” And he echoed, to himself, each of my calls, “Kye, Kye…” I managed to get him to repeat Mama, Daddy, Kitty, and Ephraim as well before he caught on to what I was doing and clammed up. He really abhors doing things on command. Even though he is perfectly capable of telling everyone goodnight, he won’t do it until we’ve all given up and I’ve walked him out of the room. Likewise, when I make him laugh by kissing the teddy bear, then hold the bear for him to kiss (which he does,) then try to kiss him myself, he promptly turns his head and won’t do it.

I think he’s an Evil Genius and he’s probably totally faking not being able to walk.

We should call him Dr. Mo instead of Mr. Mo.

a 14 mos a 14 mos-2

He still prefers his loopy, squealy sounds to most words, and will occasionally “repeat” something you’ve said in his own noodley vernacular, grinning to himself like he’s made a secret joke.

He loves his books, and has learned not to grab them out of my hands until the story is done. He sits quietly for longer books than I remember Clive doing at this age. But really, I’m a little sad to say that I don’t remember much about Clive at this age as I was too sick with Anselm. That is something I am determined to appreciate about this age with Anselm–it’s been the first time I’ve had a fourteen-month-old and haven’t been preparing for another baby.

a 14 mos-5

For about ten days of the last month he initiated a new bedtime routine where I would turn on his noise machine, and he would immediately lie against me, cuddling his blanket and sucking his thumb. He would sit like that for a long time, until I got him up or he sat up himself and was ready to go to bed. It was very sweet while it lasted. Then one day, a few days ago, he just stopped. Who knows?

a 14 mos-3

He is a stinker. He’s my stinker. Happy Fourteen Months, Dr. Mo.

fourteen months

thirteen months

Anselm Ioan turned thirteen months yesterday, and I did something I have never done before in my entire career as a mother…

forgot.

anselm 13 months-6

I mean I actually just remembered. He’s thirteen months! It happened yesterday. Fortunately I did take pictures of him yesterday–and except for my compulsive desire to be honest, I could have completely pretended that they were intentionally his thirteen-month-pictures. But now you know the truth.

Knowledge is power.

anselm 13 months-4 anselm 13 months-3

Our Mr. Mo is thirteen months. He’s getting around pretty well by army crawling, which means all of his clothes bear the tell-tale signs of a scooter: great long smears of grime across his belly and his forearms. It’s been a difficult transition for me; having late movers lulls you into this false state of confidence at being able to sit your baby down and come back several minutes later to find them in exactly the same spot. It’s as if you convince yourself that you have trained them that way. It is most unsettling, therefore, to have to wonder to yourself where on earth that baby is that you just set down next to an inviting pile of toys. Add to that the fact that’s very, very quiet…! The fact is that he’s gone from being an oversized paperweight to a baby ninja.  He is very pleased with himself for being able to covertly clamber across a room and disappear before you know he’s gone.

anselm 13 months anselm 13 months-9

He is pleased with himself for a great many things, actually. Being charming is certainly high on the list. He seems to be hyper-aware of the fact and uses it to his great advantage, like disarming grown-ups who are irritated at him for throwing his milk cup off the high chair again. I can’t quite get it across to him that that does not work. Much.

He also takes great pride in his conversational squealy-sounds that he makes in lieu of babbling. Oh, he does babble–and says a few words, when he wants to–but most of the time he resorts to just making those loopy, noodle-y, wheeling squeals that don’t seem to serve much purpose except to express a sort of delirious pleasure at whatever is capturing his attention.

anselm 13 months-7

He is unfortunately following Ephraim’s habits in regards to eating, which meant he loved to eat anything and everything until the one day that he didn’t like anything anymore. He does, however, like to suck the milk out of mini-wheats and is a pretty big fan of ham and beans (!?!) but I seem to have managed to birth a child that doesn’t like fruit AT ALL, and if not for the fact that he had those unmistakeable stork bites as a baby I might be concerned that the hospital switched babies on us.

anselm 13 months-10Just kidding. Sort of.

We’re coming to the end of the adorable one-tooth-wonder era. (Well, one tooth on the top.) Three more top teeth are poking through as we speak. Er, read?

anselm 13 months-2

Happy Thirteen Months, Mr. Mo.

thirteen months

eleven months

anselm 11 mos-3 anselm 11 mos-4Oh boy. So hard to believe that almost a whole year has gone by with this little guy in the house. How did we ever get along without him?

anselm 11 mos-6

We’re still waiting to jump onto the mobility train (and I thought he’d be an early mover!) though he’s getting quite proficient at pulling himself along when he has Mama’s hands to hold onto. He’s also started holding himself up on all fours for (very) very short periods of time. I’m just hoping something clicks in the next four weeks so I don’t have to go to another twelve-month appointment with an immobile one-year-old.

While Big Brothers Ephraim chose his eleventh month to decide he didn’t like bananas anymore, Anselm used his to make peace with the fruit, deciding that they weren’t so bad after all; he has added them to his very, very long list of Foods That Are Delicious (which included essentially everything except bananas and most baby food.) The boy is an eater. We haven’t really had one of those, yet. Anselm will be the one to eat us out of house and home.

anselm 11 mosHis lexicon has expanded to include the words boo, bye-bye, Daddy, Kee (kitty), night-night, and a lilting utterance representing “There it is!”

He still enjoys squeaking and squealing. “Squeaky Mo” is a persistent nickname.

He’s learned he can make his brothers laugh by making farting noises with his mouth and the arm of his highchair. He can also get a good giggle out of everyone by making a few other silly vocalizations. (They are hard to describe.) He observes these interactions with the scrutiny of an anthropologist, and only laughs if someone else does. If not, he stops and moves on to something else, no doubt making a mental note about the exchange for future reference.

He’s stuck for the moment at two teeth, which are perfectly displayed in his favorite facial expression: the Scrunchy Face, of which there are no pictures presently but surely will be soon as he does it All The Time.

anselm 11 mos-2

One more month to go, then we aren’t really a baby anymore, are we?

eleven months

ten months

Anselm Ioan turned ten months yesterday. anselm 10 months b-14 anselm 10 months b-13 anselm 10 months b-10New this month: he has two teeth. Finally! I think he was latest teether of the three, though he still managed to slide in under ten months, though only just. “By the skin of his teeth?” I’m perfectly fine with my late teethers, as the presence of those two little pearly whites can really change the whole breastfeeding relationship thing.

Note to self: if you make him laugh while nursing, he will bite.

This is kind of difficult, because he pretty much laughs at everything.

I’m serious, I can’t even make eye contact with him.

anselm 10 months b anselm 10 months b-2While Big Brother Ephraim has had the corner on the Anselm Belly Laugh market, this month found him hamming it up with all members of the family equally, as if he’s finally decided that we’re all cool enough. Ephraim is still the favorite, though. (Will any monthly update ever show anything different? I’m beginning to wonder. I think I say this every time, but it’s true. Anselm + Ephraim 4-EVA.)

It’s because he hasn’t bitten him yet.

anselm 10 months b-7 anselm 10 months b-12On New Year’s Day his little life was forever changed: instead of rolling around in his carseat snapped into the double stroller (which I usually do because it’s just easier) he was buckled into the front seat where he could see! Everything! It was amazing! It was like being strapped to mama’s chest, except lower and not as hangy! Needless to say, he doesn’t take kindly to being strolled in the carseat anymore. Who wants to ride backwards with a moose hanging in your face, anyway?

Right on time with his brothers, he’s developed his own special scrunchy-face grin that he whips out when he really thinks you’re funny (or when he’s hoping to charm you a little.) It works like…um, well, a charm. He’s just really good at it.

anselm badger anselm 10 months b-9

He’s really, really working on crawling…or maybe working on working on crawling…fortunately he likes to be on his belly on the floor, which puts him light years ahead of Clive at this age. I’m savoring these last times of putting him down someplace and coming back five minutes later to find him in the same spot.

He’s a pro in the Johnny Jump Up, and jumps to get around in the walker. It’s great.

He’s great.

Except when he uses those great jumping skills to hop himself over to the houseplants so he can eat them. I’ve had to move them where they are unaccessible to His Royal Hoppiness.

I sat him on my lap this morning after nursing (during which I was not bitten because I carefully avoided eye contact) and told him, not for the first time, how very happy I was to have him around. Anselm’s pregnancy was by far the most difficult of the three, but it was beyond worth it.

He grinned his scrunchy-face grin, waved and said “nye-nye.”

He gets me.

anselm 10 months b-5 anselm 10 months b-6

ten months

nine months

Anselm, Anselm, Anselm.

anselm 9 mos-10

How can I describe this little man who is now three-quarters of the way through his first year? He is a one sweet, silly, crafty little bird.

He started waving and clapping this month, but only after I quietly confided in Jeremy that I was a little concerned that he wasn’t waving or clapping or shaking his head (like Clive loved to at this age) or anything yet. Of course, the next day he started doing it. At first he only cared to wave at the pictures of Ephraim and Clive I have hanging over his changing table. I would wave and wave and wave at him, only to receive a blank stare in return. Then I would lay him down to change him, and he’d immediately start in on the waves. “Oh hey, guys! Long time no see! Look what I can do!” Little Stink.

Now he will wave at family members and occasionally Other People, but only after the Other People have been trying to get him to wave for at least five minutes and have given up and turned away.

anselm 9 mos-5

Once he started waving, he started in with something that sounded suspiciously like “night-night”, which I figured was a fluke, until I picked him up from his high chair one day to take him upstairs for his nap, and he waved and said it very purposefully: “Ni-ni.” So okay, first word, maybe? Probably? I’m going to go ahead and count that one.

anselm 9 mos-11

anselm 9 mos-7

He also smiled and said “ma-ma” quite clearly one morning when I went to get him out of his crib. Just that–ma-ma–nothing else, no extra syllables, no babbling. So okay, second word, maybe? Probably? Probably not? I’m going to count that one too. No one can stop me.

He’s still pleasantly immobile. Just like his brothers at this age, he doesn’t even really care to roll over. He does, however, bring his knees up and shake his backside back and forth when he’s lying on the floor. It could be the first step towards crawling, or it could be his first attempt at a Zumba move, which would really be something to put in the baby book. Time will tell, I suppose. In the meantime, I’m enjoying being able to put him down somewhere and come back later to find him in the exact same spot. I’ll be missing that in a few months, I’m sure.

anselm 9 mos anselm 9 mos-2

He’s decided he likes the cat. This is good because she is still obsessed with him and it was getting kind of awkward.

Family preference goes like this:

Ephraim
Daddy
Clive
Mama
Cat

(This list is created by observing how long he does his happy-flappy arms when he sees someone.)

anselm 9 mos-4 anselm 9 mos-8

I haven’t noticed much stranger anxiety yet–he is still mostly cordial with the people he meets–but he has officially entered that stage where he realizes you’re leaving when you walk away, and he is generally Not Happy About It.

He’s following Ephraim’s lead in his penchant for babbling, loving to spend his happy times making happy sounds, n, m, b, p, g, d sounds, and happy growling, over and over again. When he is unhappy, he does all of the above, only in a most ornery and unpleasant manner that Mama and Daddy look at each other and wonder aloud if the other two boys were this vocally churlish at this age.

This phenomenon is chiefly experienced about the hour of 5:55 p.m., at which time Anselm turns into a pumpkin and is not amused by anything that doesn’t look like bedtime.

Crafty little bird.

anselm 9 mos-9

 

 

 

 

nine months

eight months

Our little Anselm turned eight months on Friday. To demonstrate how poorly I am keeping up with how ridiculously fast time is flying, I initially typed “seven months” as the title of this post.

Eight months? How can that be?

anselm 8 mos-5

He is right where his brothers were, pretty much, at this age. No teeth, no mobility, no chance of him being on his belly without fussing now that he’s sitting up steadily. He is more like Clive in that he doesn’t babble much (Ephraim babbled incessantly) and more like Ephraim in his eating (he enjoys quite a number of things, unlike Clive, who liked NOTHING.) Stand Up, Sit Down is a favorite game*, and he likes being in the walker, though it frustrates him that he pushes himself into corners that he can’t escape.

He’s started sort-of-waving and clapping this month, really enjoying doing it himself, but pausing and looking at you weird if you do it back to him, as if you’ve somehow encroached on the coolness of it.

He’s already an elitist.

anselm 8 mos-2

He greets nearly everything interesting with his gummy grin and chipmunk laugh. If he finds you especially amusing, he’ll suck his breath in to make this odd, low squeal. (I can’t think of how else to describe it.) Belly laughs are almost exclusively reserved for Ephraim, who has nearly become Favorite Family Member, save Mama, I think, but only because I feed him. He erupts in a flurry of squeals and flailing when Daddy comes home, presently finds Clive more than tolerable, but doesn’t particularly care for the Cat, much to her chagrin.

anselm 8 mos-4

He and Ephraim still share a very special relationship, but Clive has really entered the picture more in the past month; he’s taken a new interest in his Baby Brother, and is generally concerned with his entertainment. He’s found that saying “Oooohhh, WIGGY!” gets quite a good chipmunk chuckle out of Anselm. I’m not sure where that came from, but who can profess to know the mind of a toddler? I’m just glad there’s no more eye-poking attempts going on.

anselm 8 mos-3

For comparison, here’s Clive’s eight month post, and Ephraim’s eight month post.

*To play Stand Up, Sit Down, hold the hands of whatever grown-up is willing to play. Use their hands as leverage to pull yourself up while they say “staaaaaaand up!” Once you are standing, sit down purposefully and forcefully as they yell, “sit down!” Then giggle and repeat.

eight months