Only little babies do that…

a blog by Emily\’s mother

Archive for the ‘General thoughts’ Category

Saying Hi To The High Chair

Posted by Caroline on January 2, 2007

Now, shall I eat this or throw it on the floor?This weekend we finally got around to assembling Emily’s high chair, after feeding her on my lap was becoming increasingly impossible. While it might have been fun when we first started weaning, we soon realised that trying to spoon food into the mouth of a baby who is liable to roll over on to your lap mid-meal and smear her sweet potato covered hands all over your living-room curtains represents something of a challenge.

The chair in question is a cheap n’cheerful number from Ikea – we had the option of buying a more expensive model but we figured that this one would do the job just as well – and we can always change it at a later date if we want something a bit more fancy.

So on Saturday morning we popped Emily on the floor next to us so she could watch what we were doing, unwrapped the unassembled bits of chair and set about putting it together – something which proved surprisingly easy, given that we have in the past taken hours, nay days, to put together self-assembly items from the Swedish furniture giant.

And Emily’s reaction? Well bemusement initially, followed by her usual level of acceptance (“OK, so I’m going to sit in this chair to eat my dinner now…..”) but it’s certainly made the whole process of feeding and eating a lot easier for both of us. Well, some of the time at least.

I had reckoned on her flinging food all over the place (and in fact she came within seconds the other day of dumping her whole plate face down on the carpet) and banging her food tray, but trying to attract her attention was something I didn’t predict.

Sometimes she just stares glassy-eyed at the TV while she is being fed, presumably getting in some practice for future TV dinners, other times she just turns her head completely and has a good look at what’s going on behind her. And yesterday dinner came to a crashing halt when she lost interest midway through dessert and decided instead to gnaw on the side of the chair. For about half an hour. Go figure.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 9 Comments »

You Need Hands….

Posted by Caroline on December 31, 2006

Wow, where did these come from…….?Although Emily has been quietly fascinated with certain parts of her body for several weeks now (her knees, as I’ve mentioned before, have been particularly popular), she’s suddenly realised that there’s more to her than that.

She’s discovered that she has a tummy, for instance, and has taken to scratching it when she’s having her nappy changed or being dried after her bath (another reason why I was eventually driven to cut her nails). And recently, I’ve gone in to her room to get her up in the mornings and found her staring at her hands in abject wonder, as if she can’t quite work out what they’re for.

In the last couple of days, she has also realised that she has feet. What’s more, she’s also realised that feet taste quite nice when pulled into one’s mouth. It always amazes me how babies are able to do this, since it requires a kind of dexterity and bendiness that us adults just don’t seem to possess. My mother has pointed out that she is only just realising her limbs are part of her, hence the reason she is so captivated by them.

The most entertaining moment, however, came when she discovered that she had hair. We were in the middle of the supermarket, when she suddenly started stroking the side of her head, with a very bemused expression on her face. And she kept on doing it all the way to the checkout.

Of course the fact she can’t actually see her hair, whereas she can see her hands and feet, must have confused her even more. Which leaves me wondering just how she’ll react when a tooth finally makes its appearance.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 6 Comments »

Circular Motion

Posted by Caroline on December 27, 2006

I’m going nowhere fast……Over the past few days, Emily’s mobility has noticeably increased, and although she hasn’t quite mastered the art of getting from one side of the room to the other, she has discovered that moving herself round in circles is a fun alternative.

Yesterday morning, as per usual, I put her down on her playmat once she had finished breakfast. It was no surprise to me when she rolled on to her tummy within a few seconds, but I was rather taken aback to walk back in the room five minutes later and discover her facing the opposite wall to the one she had previously been facing. Another few minutes and she was the other way round, staring at the sofa. And all I could think was, “Just how did she do that?”

My mother later informed me that babies tend to have their own unique ways of getting around. My older brother, she says, used to move along on his tummy, while my other brother was more content to shuffle around on his bottom. I, meanwhile, favoured the hands and knees method of getting around.

She also told me, however, that Emily’s new-found abilities indicate that she is just a stone’s throw from crawling. And with that in mind, I am off to put everything in the apartment under lock and key.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 13 Comments »

Emily Phone Home

Posted by Caroline on December 24, 2006

What is it about babies and their fascination with household gadgets? As I’ve mentioned before, Emily is particularly fond of our phone – to the exclusion of everything else, it seems. No matter how many toys we may place on the bed or sofa to try and distract her when we’re having a chat, she’ll still ignore them and make a beeline for the phone – normally to try and have a good chew on the keypad but sometimes to just stare at it in abject wonder.

In fact, she is so fond of it that when she is lying on our bed and the phone is there just out of reach, she’s taken to pulling the bedsheet as a way of moving it towards her. As enterprising as this may be, it usually results in failure since she still can’t quite reach it and gets a tad frustrated.

But it’s not just the house phone that seems to have attracted her attention. Our laptop computers,mobile phones and TV remote controls also seem to have a strange contraction – the first time she got hold of the latter, she actually examined it carefully, even going so far as to turn it over to see if the reverse had the same array of coloured buttons as the other side. Then, of course, she attempted to eat it (only to be stopped by nasty Mummy).

To try and combat her attraction to the phone, both grandmothers came up with the idea of buying her a toy phone as a Chanukah present – so now she has one from Fisher-Price and one from Vtech. They’re both really good, coming complete with lots of flashing lights and buttons to press – and we were convinced that she would leave our phone alone now she had one of our own.

We were wrong, of course. Upon presenting her with the first phone, she played with it for a few minutes before casting it aside in favour of the real phone. The second one seems to have kept her busy for a bit longer, but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before she’ll be after the real thing once again.

Of course, given the amount of time that girls tend to spend on the phone, I can only assume it’s a sign of things to come.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 7 Comments »

How Not To Roll

Posted by Caroline on December 20, 2006

I mentioned in a previous post that Emily has recently learned to roll on to her tummy, but still isn’t quite there when it comes to rolling back again (although she is making steady progress on that front). What I didn’t anticipate, however, was that she would enjoy her new-found skill so much that she would – quite literally – practise it at all hours of the day and night.

While she’s not a bad little sleeper, I’m now quite used to her waking up towards the morning and singing to herself in her cot – so it came as no surprise to me when at about 5.50am last Sunday I heard happy little noises coming from her room. All was well – until they were replaced, about five minutes later, by anguished sounding wails.

Naturally, I got up and went to investigate – only to find her lying on her tummy in the cot, looking round with a slightly bewildered expression on her face as if she was wondering what had happened. Since I had assumed that rolling over in a sleeping bag would be somewhat difficult, I think she had managed even to surprise herself.

Having calmed her down with a cuddle and a feed (whereupon she slept until nearly 8.45 – and no, I’m really not complaining about that), I couldn’t help but laugh at the predicament she had gotten herself into. Of course, it probably won’t be quite so funny when she starts doing it on a nightly basis at 2am, but we’ll worry about that when it happens.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 13 Comments »

Lost In Translation

Posted by Caroline on December 18, 2006

If I’d known what was going to happen today I wouldn’t have bothered getting out of bed this morning……Ever since she was newborn., my husband has said he can’t wait for Emily to start talking. Given how chatty both her parents are, I have said that once she does start talking she probably won’t stop, but nonetheless waiting for that all-important first word is exciting.

For some time now, though, she has been given to making random sounds as if she is trying to have a conversation – although she hasn’t quite reached the level of babble yet, she still chatters away very insistently and enthusiastically, almost as if she believes she is making perfect sense.

What’s more, she’ll seize every opportunity to exercise her vocal cords – whether it’s over the phone, sitting in the car, rolling around on her playmat or lying in her cot at 5am (I’m particularly fond of that one, as you might imagine).

When she does this, it’s very tempting to try and work out what exactly she is trying to tell us – assuming she is actually talking to one of us at the time (for she does have a tendency to happily chatter away to herself as though she thinks no-one else is listening).

Normally I have no clue, but today I think I may have cracked it. This afternoon she had her second pneumococcal jab – and since the weighing clinic operates at the surgery on a Monday, we took her to be weighed first. Having been scared by the lady who runs the clinic, she screamed her way through the weigh-in, and no sooner had she calmed down from that than it was time for her jab, which of course brought more screaming – albeit briefly.

Afterwards, in the car, she started chattering away incessantly, and I’m convinced that what she said was, “Firstly you take all my clothes off and put me on a cold metal weighing scale, then you take me into another room and stick big needles in my thigh. I don’t know about you, but my afternoon has been rubbish…..”

I may of course be entirely wrong. But that’s what it sounded like.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 8 Comments »

The Joy Of Food

Posted by Caroline on December 17, 2006

Mmmmmm, carrots!In recent weeks Emily hasn’t been the most forthcoming baby when it comes to food. Perhaps her teething has had something to do with it but meal times have been greeted with, at best, indifference, at worst, a complete refusal even to sample my delicious mashed carrots or pureed pear.

This weekend, however, that all changed, when she suddenly and unexpectedly turned into an eating machine of the ‘I will consume anything you offer me which isn’t nailed down’ variety.

Over the past couple of days she has not only enthusiastically approached her food, but polished off the lot in about ten minutes flat and taken more when it was offered. The result has been rather like watching Homer Simpson feasting on a box of donuts, and every bit as entertaining.

Avocado and banana definitely seems to be her favourite at the moment, but porridge and blueberries have also gone down well over the weekend, and carrot and sweetcorn puree was equally well received. And then for afters, she has taken to munching on her napkin, her bib or anything else within chewing distance. I could of course turn these into something more palatable for her, although I’m not entirely sure that mashed serviette would go down too well.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 7 Comments »

Baby’s First Chanukah

Posted by Caroline on December 15, 2006

Happy Chanukah!Being Jewish, we don’t get the chance to introduce Emily to the ‘magic’ of Christmas – but fortunately the festival of Chanukah also takes place in December, and that’s also a time for celebrations, parties and the exchanging of gifts.

However, Chanukah lasts for eight days, and I have been reminded by my mother that it is traditional to give loved ones presents on every day of the festival – meaning technically that I owe Emily eight presents.

We’ve gotten off to a good start on this front. While out shopping the other day we bought Emily a plush toy in the shape of a traditional Chanukah spinning top – or dreidel as it’s known. Although we didn’t actually give it to her until the first night of the festival, we allowed her a sneak preview of it the other day.

And she absolutely loved it, possibly to the exclusion of all her other toys. So much so that her little face lit up when she saw it, and when my husband took it away to remove the packaging she was rolling on to her side and frantically reaching out for it, as though it was being taken away for ever.

She forgot about it as soon as I took her into the other room and reminded her of the existence of Laugh n’Learn Puppy, but she was similarly enthusiastic when we finally gave it to her for good.

As for presents for the other seven days – well, I suppose I’d better get shopping.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts, Shopping | 9 Comments »

Label Queen

Posted by Caroline on December 15, 2006

Now, where’s that label got to…..?Emily is now at the age where she is able to play with her toys – and as I’ve mentioned before, everything she gets her hands on goes in her mouth. With certain playthings, however, it’s not the bright colours or the music they play that is the biggest attraction – instead it’s their labels.

Over the past few months we have bought Emily several plush toys from Ikea and Tesco, which are great for small babies since they are soft and chewable and easy for little hands to pick up. They also have very long labels on them, which we were unsure about at first – even to the point that we considered cutting them off.

However, we changed our mind after seeing our little girl’s reaction to them – more often than not, having had a good old nibble on the toy of her choice, she’ll turn her attention to the label and stare at it intently before giving it a cursory lick.

It’s not just the labels on toys that seem to attract her though. Many’s the time I have looked in on her in the morning before she gets up and found her rustling the labels on her cot bumpers (also from Ikea, coincidentally) I now have to tuck them away so that she doesn’t start rustling them in her sleep and waking herself up (although I have to admit there have been occasions when the act of moving the label away has been enough to wake her).

Personally, it’s hard to see what the appeal is. But then again when you’re six months old, I suppose even the mundane seems fascinating.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 9 Comments »

Still Toothless After All These Months!

Posted by Caroline on December 12, 2006

Nope, no teeth yet….!Over the past few days, we’ve been seeing what could be interpreted as more signs of teething in Emily. Given that she is now six months old, these come as no surprise, but it has occurred to me that I could of course be completely misinterpreting her symptoms.

Recently she’s been fussing over her bottles and turning her head away from her food (despite my efforts to tempt her by dishing up her favourites). Which could of course mean her gums are hurting but could also mean she needs to move up a teat size on the bottle – or simply isn’t hungry.

She’s been chewing on anything in sight – but this could be put down to babyish curiosity. And she’s been sucking in her lower lip as though her gums were tender, and has complained whenever we’ve tried to wipe her mouth after a feed, as if it hurts. And lately she has been dribbling for England.

All of these, however, could be explained away in other ways, and aren’t necessarily related to teeth.

Perhaps she really is teething (and to be honest, she probably has been for months), but in a way maybe I’m just so excited at the thought of her first tooth appearing that I’m interpreting every little thing as an excuse to run for the teething gel and start shopping for little toothbrushes.

Yet every morning when she wakes up, she is still toothless – and I’m fully aware she could remain so for months yet. I guess I’ll just have to carry on waiting.

Posted in Day to day, General thoughts | 8 Comments »