Fox update

Apr. 18th, 2017 01:09 am
rushthatspeaks: (parenting)
[personal profile] rushthatspeaks
The Fox cub is six months old!

A recent habit they've picked up is creaking very loudly in their sleep. It sounds like an extremely rusty doorhinge. It can be hard to tell when they've actually woken up and are protesting, but the creaking can also be quite distinct and not really a sound I've heard a human make before. The real problem is that it's loud enough to make it difficult to sleep ourselves.

Their weight is more average than gigantic nowadays, as is their head circumference, but Fox continues consistently in the ninetieth percentile on height. I don't have very accurate measurements right now, and won't until the next pediatrician appointment, but they have entirely grown out of six-month everything and also out of some of the nine-month. One-year stuff tends to fit with some looseness at the waist and occasionally having to roll up a sleeve. They are substantially larger than most babies I've seen them near (as opposed to toddlers), and in the new one-year T-shirts and jeans look confusingly like a toddler.

Except for the motor control. They can roll over front-to-back, back-to-front, or side-to-side in any direction easily, and can lie on their stomach and pivot in a circle around a fixed point somewhere near their navel, but crawling is not happening yet, which is apparently very frustrating. They've got the hand and arm movements down, and on the right kind of surface have managed an army crawl dragging their legs, but while arms can now move in opposition to one another, legs seem to have to move together at the same time, as though they were worked by the same lever. Also Fox does not have the idea of getting their knees under them, and will resist if put on their knees, though if placed on their feet standing has gotten to the point where on a stable surface I just hold them loosely with one hand in the back of their shirt. (I have tried more times than I can tell you to scruff the baby like a cat, and it doesn't work, and it keeps on not working, and I keep trying it again without thinking about it because it feels as though it ought to work. Sigh.)

When placed on their feet they inevitably try to bounce, too, as their bouncy chair is currently probably their favorite object and they like the motion whether in the chair or not. Some surfaces are better than others for bouncing, and people who assist the bouncing may find themselves required to keep doing it indefinitely, which is at the least a good workout.

They pass objects from hand-to-hand now, put down objects to pick up other ones, and it no longer seems to be out-of-sight equals out-of-mind, although still pretty close to that. They're not a very toy-and-object-oriented person-- people or cats are always far more interesting, no matter what-- so I don't know whether they have toy preferences except for the bouncy chair as an experience, and the experience of disassembling the mobile that hangs above their crib. The mobile is rated up to five months, and we discovered that this is because the baby will start reaching up and taking it apart. So far, though, they can only get off the parts that are rounded and easily chewable, and they really love removing those and chewing on them, so we're leaving the mobile up until they get to where they can disassemble it in a way that causes more pointiness. They like to disassemble the mobile at least once daily, along with a couple of stretches in the bouncy chair and many repeated, long, dogged sessions of working on crawling, which they are more systematic about than I would have expected.

They also want to do all the things they actually can do, which means that they now want to put the bottle in their mouth to drink, and they now want to hold the bottle. Unfortunately, their aim with the bottle is not great, and they can't hold it for very long in the right position, but they would still rather they do it. They love watching somebody make up a bottle (Ruth has stopped breast-feeding entirely, as it was not going well and everybody, especially Fox, hated it). Fox does seem to understand that putting things in a bottle = food soon, but gets annoyed if I have put the nipple on the bottle and do not instantaneously hand it to them, even though I have to shake the bottle to get the formula mixed up and this step of the process does not change.

Fox vocalizes a lot, and has many syllables in their repertoire, including 'da', 'ps', and 'pt' but not including 'ma'. They have learned that if they say 'hiiiii' when they see someone new everyone goes completely crazy, but honestly they learned that at about two months, so I don't think it's verbal communication as such-- they know 'hi' means everyone becomes very entertaining the way they've learned that bottle means food, but it's not connected to any larger context.

They recognize and react differently to several different people, including me, Ruth, Rax, my mother-in-law, and [personal profile] nineweaving. Ruth took them to New York City for Passover with extended family, while I stayed home and took care of the cats. Shortly after they got back I was sitting with them and needed to go the bathroom, so I told them I'd be right back, and apparently the moment I left the room they completely dissolved into upset. Ruth tried everything, and nothing was working, and when I got back suddenly everything was totally fine and the baby was all smiles again. So we have proof both of recognizing people and of a concept that people can go and come back, and they try different modes of play with different people, too.

They continue to be a sunny, lighthearted extrovert who is only upset for fleeting moments and who loves everyone who comes within twenty feet. They also continue to be a pretty good sleeper, although not as good as when they were littler. We've gone from them sleeping through full nights most of the time to up two or three times a night, sigh. I think it's part of the switch from newborn-type sleep to REM sleep and they're still learning how to self-soothe back to sleep when they wake in the night.

The Unitarian church Ruth goes to had a dedication ceremony for them, in which the minister blessed them and booped them on the head with a rose dipped in water. My mother-in-law and [personal profile] nineweaving came, being the grandmothers, and Rax brought some of their other partners, and it was all very nice except that I had to pretty continuously stifle laughter because the minister was getting our last name wrong. To be fair, it is difficult, but he picked a pronunciation and ran with it in the teeth of all evidence, and therefore our child was dedicated in the church under the name Firstname Middlename Wachowski Carrot. Wachowski Carrot! This shares some letters with and also rhymes with part of our actual last name, but the shared letters and the rhyming parts aren't the same parts.

Also the minister introduced me to several people as Lilia Wachowski Carrot, and then I had to tactfully explain to all of them that none of those words actually exist in my name. It is the best name error we have ever had, and I almost want to get some stationary made up.

So that is about where things are, at six months.

Date: 2017-04-18 08:49 am (UTC)
rosefox: An extremely delighted white toddler with messy hair beams at the camera. (kit)
From: [personal profile] rosefox
Name things: AMAZING.

Personality-wise Fox sounds very much like Kit, and I'd love to introduce them (maybe at Readercon?). Height-wise too. Expect to need a new carseat at around 15 months. I recommend the Diono Radian RXT or another seat with very high height/weight limits for rear-facing. Not that I have been doing a lot of research into this for our 95th percentile monster or anything.

I'm sure you are already aware of this, but IME it bears repeating: anyone who's new to caring for your kid should be reminded to treat them as their calendar age and not as the age they appear to be. We expect to go through this with every teacher and babysitter Kit ever has until they're old enough to remind people about it themselves.

The sleep will improve again, and you're exactly right about the cause.

Oh—in case your pediatrician hasn't told you, recommendations on allergens have changed recently, and four to six months is the ideal age for giving the baby at least small quantities of common ones so their immune system learns to recognize them as food rather than as danger danger danger. (If food allergies don't run in your family you can be a lot less fussy about this than we were.) We mostly mixed/mashed things up with formula and made sure Kit ingested at least a taste. They still hate non-mush solid foods, but we've been periodically giving them little smears of peanut butter to maintain immunity, as it were.
Edited Date: 2017-04-18 08:50 am (UTC)

Date: 2017-04-18 12:28 pm (UTC)
mrissa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] mrissa
Even after they're old enough to remind people about it themselves, they may well need the backup ASK ME HOW I KNOW.

Date: 2017-04-19 02:23 am (UTC)
thistleingrey: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thistleingrey
anyone who's new to caring for your kid should be reminded to treat them as their calendar age and not as the age they appear to be

Oh yes, so much. Reason was tall until three years old (now of middling height at twice that), and between the height and the curiosity, we had to learn to remind people gently. Wish I'd known it when Reason was Fox's age.

Date: 2017-04-19 02:45 am (UTC)
alatefeline: Painting of a cat asleep on a book. (Default)
From: [personal profile] alatefeline
And/or area-specific developmental age, as they get older. Some kids are ahead of average (but fine) in one area and behind average (but fine) in another and in the middle on a third, and it all has to be accounted for!

Date: 2017-04-19 05:13 am (UTC)
thistleingrey: (Default)
From: [personal profile] thistleingrey
Very true.

Date: 2017-04-19 05:52 am (UTC)
rosefox: Fake newspaper headline: "Newspapers called 'Huge Waste of Paper'". (irony)
From: [personal profile] rosefox
That's called "being human", I think. :)

Date: 2017-04-19 05:53 am (UTC)
alatefeline: Painting of a cat asleep on a book. (Default)
From: [personal profile] alatefeline
True! Really, everyone is all over the place, if you pay attention.

Date: 2017-04-23 12:35 am (UTC)
timmc: (Default)
From: [personal profile] timmc
We have a 2 year old and there's another family in the house with a toddler just 5 months younger. It has been *fascinating* to see how completely different their progression has been along different developmental axes. There are a few things we can compare ("oh, she starting demonstrating a sense of agency and autonomy around that age too") but physical skills in particular are all over the map.

Date: 2017-04-23 02:24 am (UTC)
alatefeline: Painting of a cat asleep on a book. (Default)
From: [personal profile] alatefeline


rushthatspeaks: (Default)

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