SteelyKid was 5 months old last Wednesday. This post is late because first I was busy with work (back full-time) and then because I was vilely ill with a stomach bug. (Chad got it too, but I don't think SteelyKid did; she had a really weird weekend, though, so maybe it was some mild version.)
The big development this month is daycare. She started on Friday January 2, before she technically had to, but we thought it was a good idea to give ourselves a bit of a buffer. And it was: around 1:30 I got a call asking whether Chad held her in any particular way when giving her a bottle, because she was refusing to eat.
Which, of course, is pretty sensible: they were strangers, after all, how could she know that they weren't trying to poison her? But it didn't make me feel any better.
I called Chad (they'd been unable to reach him, I had better luck) and he went over, but by the time he got there they'd successfully gotten her to take her bottle, and then later that afternoon she ate with no trouble at all. So that was a huge relief, as you can imagine.
She's adapted really well—especially since some kids apparently take months to get comfortable. She does get upset when other children cry, but my mom (who ran a daycare for years) tells me this will probably diminish. In the meantime, she loves hanging out and watching the other kids, playing in a jumper, and cuddling with the nice staff.
I joke that she's like Chad in that she's an extrovert, because she really does surprisingly well (so far) in crowds. There were 29 people at Christmas Eve dinner, and it was loud and hot and crazy, and she was almost supernaturally good, just looking around at everyone and being held by various relatives. I kept expecting an "I'm overtired" meltdown, but I was walking around with her cradled in my arms exchanging the oplatek, and looked down to find that, quietly and without fuss, she'd fallen sound asleep.
Speaking of sleeping, she continues to have trouble, but not with sleeping generally, just sleeping through intestinal gas. We've been having rather a lot of difficulty, but think we've eliminated all the things in my diet that she can't tolerate, and are now attempting a different formula that asserts it has the problematic cow's milk protein broken way, way down. She only started that this week, and it may take time for the other to work its way out of her system. I just keep reminding myself that she can sleep without waking up except for hunger when she's not gassy. Indeed, I treasure the memory of the night, just before she started daycare, when everything lined up just right and she only woke up once with gas, and even then only needed five minutes of cuddling and help in her crib to go back to sleep. I so look forward to being able to speak of such nights in the plural . . .
In other food news, rice was indeed too constipating in quantity, but oatmeal seems fine. And squash and sweet potatoes have been huge hits. (Chad has a little video, in which you can hear me making an idiot of myself holding both sides of a conversation with her.) Fruits next.
Her two front bottom teeth came in on either side of Christmas and are really amazingly sharp. She likes to chew on our fingers, and I sometimes have to remove mine out pain: not only can she bite down astonishingly hard, but she sometimes drags our hands sideways against her teeth, which makes them feel even sharper. (Chad jokes that Sunny Baudelaire is her hero.) She has also taken to trying to attach herself like a lamprey to my face when I'm holding her upright against my torso, which is an extremely peculiar feeling indeed. And in other animal-imitating news, her new noise this month is what we call bird calls: "Can't you imitate some nice songbird, instead of a raptor?" High-pitched, piercing, and loud; we think they're generally a "Hey, pay attention to me!" noise, though that doesn't quite cover all the situations.
She still likes being upright, and has started trying to climb my torso when I carry her around—which, since my navel is at just the right level for her to dig a foot in, is not very comfortable. We tried a front carrier this month, which was a big hit, though we since got the babypod seat (as already linked here) and have tended to prefer that over the carrier when she's awake and we need to be doing things around the house. I think she'll probably be sitting unassisted in the next month.
She rolled back-to-front unassisted on my office floor in mid-December, during the power outage, and front-to-back this weekend in her crib. We have to remember to put her down on her stomach more; these days her play-gym goes on our bed, where the dog can't get at her (it now being too cold to stick the dog outside, which is what we used to do when she played on the library floor), and that's too deep and soft for her to go stomach-down. In her crib works, though.
Her cradle cap is basically gone. So is her hair at the back of her head, alas, from rubbing on the crib. What we thought was eczema turns out to be heat rash. And we have now retired all of her clothes in a six-month size. Her nine-month clothes are only a little baggy . . .
And I need some new icons of her, in the infinite free time she leaves me. Hah.
Do I still have to say it? I do, don't I. No unsolicited advice.