She is the babe you hold in your arms for an hour after she's gone to sleep. If you put her down in the crib, she might wake up changed and fly away. So instead you rock by the window, drinking the light from her skin, breathing her exhaled dreams. Your heart bays to the double crescent moons of closed lashes on her cheeks. She's the one you can't put down.
Barbara Kingsolver, The Poisonwood Bible
|Win $20 shop-credit to LillyBelleMarket, where I bought these matching headbands.|
Contest at end of posting.
Autumn turned 4 months on September 26th, so for the majority of the month, she was 3 months old. It was an exciting month of changes and milestones, with something new almost every week. The month started with Nathan going back to work, although he didn't have students until after labor day. On our evening walk that first night back, she started to notice and look at the planes that fly overhead for the first time. She also started to startle. She's most susceptible to this when she's falling asleep and there's a loud noise. For example, Nathan sneezing, Trevi barking. One day, it was her friend Olivia's excited squeal when we popped over for a visit. They live on the same street, and Olivia is 3 months older. They seemed to be communicating with each other, holding eye contact and babbling when Olivia smiled and became excited. Somehow, this startled Autumn and she just started bawling, with real tears. Another time, as she was drifting off to nap time in her pack and play, Trevi barked and Autumn cried so much she was trembling. She's quickly consoled though, and went down for a 2 hour nap.
On September 4th, I dressed her in her new Baby Legs legwarmers and snapped a few photos. I had her on the floor of the nursery, and left to check on the shepherds pie I was making. When I came back, she was on her stomach. I had to stop and ask myself if that was how I left her. No, I definitely left her on her back. She rolled over! When I brought her out to the living room, she did it again, and again, I missed it! As I write this at the end of September, she has yet to roll over again. But all month she has been doing little abdominal crunches. She lifts her legs off the ground, and lifts her head and part of her shoulders. It seems like she may sit up before she gets the hang of rolling over!
We had her baptism on September 13th, and she did so well with all of the activity and visitors. I still marvel at what an easy-going, happy baby she is, and this event was no exception. She's easily passed from one person to another, and usually gives a smile that shows her dimple. I was really surprised and impressed by the turn-out. So many family and friends came to witness and celebrate this special day for her.
We received a few days of rain, and Autumn was alert enough to notice it. We stood at her nursery doors and she looked around the back yard as it fell from the sky and the eves. It also misted a few times on our walks.
Mid-way through the month she started using her hands more. The day after her Baptism, she intentionally touched my face for the first time, exploring my mouth and nose with her hands. The following day, she grabbed Trevi's fur and did not let go. She has a very intent look when she does these things that is just so cute. She furrows her brow a bit and looks very serious. Around the 22nd of September, she started using her fingers more and it was so exciting to see her grasp and touch a toy placed in front of her.
Still sleeping through the night and still an excellent napper, I started posing her and creating her "nap-time adventures" series. I was inspired by this posting. I have a few more ideas, and hope to continue doing this as she grows.
On the 18th, we had our first trip to the library, and she started story-time there the following Monday at 11:15am. I thought she would be too young to benefit from it, but she is fascinated with all of the other kids. When the kids do interactive dances or act out parts of the books, Autumn sits in my lap and watches them. On the 28th, everyone held shakers for part of a song. I went and got one for her, so she wouldn't be left out but was planning to shake it myself. Much to my surprise, she took the shaker, held on to it and shook it a little! This was the first time she held and made noise with a rattle. She is starting to help me hold her bottle, but has yet to hold it on her own. She does seem to understand push-pull and will sometimes direct it toward her mouth, or push it away if she's had enough.
On the 22nd she had her 4 month appointment, which involved shots. I dread her getting shots, and look away while Nathan helps hold her. We asked first-time parent questions such as when can she start solids (6 months) and when can I run with her? (also 6 months). She is on track with milestones such as spontaneous babbling and holding her head up, and weighed 14.1 pounds which is in the 67th percentile and was 26 inches long, putting her in the 97th percentile for height. She now giggles, and laughs when we do silly things, like when Dad hold her away from him at arm's length. Who holds a baby like that? she wonders.
The first day of Autumn was September 23rd, but it has yet to come with cooler temperatures. On Saturday the 26th she turned 4 months old and we stayed at the St. Regis in Dana Point. It was a weekend of firsts for Autumn: first 5 star resort, first beach, first pool and first time being picked on. But that will be in my next blog posting, along with how we were fortunate enough to stay there for free.
The month ended with Autumn demonstrating improved control over those tiny, cute fingers. While out at pizza, she was playing with my water cup and learned how to take the straw out, several times.
Things I don't want to forget about this month:
- Her pursed lips when she makes her ooh and ahh sounds.
- The noise she makes when she yawns. When we thinks she's about to, we stop talking and wait.
- How she explores my face with her hands.
- That she has started to cling to me when I hold her.
- How she zones out when she's tired.
- How she loves bath time and how she first splashed in the pool.
- When she grabbed Trevi's fur for the first time.
- Soft sighs she makes while shes's sleeping
- Cutting her tiny fingernails.
- Watching her use her hands.
- How her face lights up when she smiles.
- How she falls back asleep on my chest every morning after her first feeding.
- When she wakes up, she babbles and never cries.
- The sounds she makes when she drinks from her bottle.
- Seeing her playing with Peter Rabbit which is attached to her crib rail.
- How she puts both arms out, stiff, when she's excited
- Her little leg rolls
- Her abdominal crunches
- How much I miss her when she sleeps and how I am always excited to see her in the morning
- That I've never felt closer to her Daddy
Routines we're establishing:
- Listening to Pray as You Go every morning.
- Listening to songs: Love Me Do (Beatles), What a Wonderful World (Louie Armstrong), Gold Digger (Kanye)
- Singing: You Are My Sunshine, Que Serra, Amazing Grace
- Reading daily, usually the book from my book club
- Morning and evening walks
- Skype calls with Uncle Glen - the only time she gets screen time!
Okay, now - contest time!
One of my favorite Etsy shops, Lilly Belle Market, is giving away a $20 shop credit! This is where I ordered the matching headbands that Autumn and I are wearing in these photos! But that's not all they have. They carry a variety of things such as bows and skirts, all handcrafted with perfection. Enter below, and good luck!