Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Six Month Catch Up

Look mom, I can stand!
I am titling this entry the six-month catch-up because that is exactly the way it feels.  The past few weeks have been an absolute whirlwind full of growth spurts and time seemingly flying by at unprecedented speeds. I'm not sure if it's Piper's abandonment of her babyhood for a more pre-toddler like self, therefore keeping me busy and on my toes,or if I'm just becoming less organized; but either way, there just doesn't seem to be enough time in the day to get everything done that I want to accomplish.

She keeps getting cuter and cuter!
In order to get things more back up to speed, I'm about to throw out all things I've got on the back-burner, and front-burner for that matter, and get my slate clean and tidy so I can once again let it get filled to overflowing and rinse and repeat this whole scenario.  So let's get this party started before even more time goes by and she ends up 7 months old.

How could anyone resist this face?
Piper had her sixth-month check-up on the 17th (she turned 6-months on the 10th).  She has once again surpassed all the typical milestones and impressed the hell out of her doc.  At her 4-month visit she was said to be on a 6-month level, so I knew she was already ahead.  I was shocked to hear the doc say Piper was now somewhere around a 12-month level or maybe even a little further along than that.  Wow!  I knew she was a smart cookie with pretty good physicality for a 6-month old, but a yearling?  Then again, I was also shocked when the doc told me she didn't usually worry about a child's advancement unless they couldn't say 5 or 6 words by 18 months.  Piper has already got that whole 5 or 6 word thing down for the most part. She started saying "hi" a couple months or so back.  Just in the past few weeks she has solidified "mama" and has been throwing out a few others at whim such as "bye-bye," "boobie," "nana," and "uh-oh."  She has also been saying the typical "dada," which baffles me as she doesn't have one of those around and doesn't hear that word.  My best guess is that I have a co-worker named David who she absolutely adores, we call him uncle David, and I'm presuming she is trying to say his name.

She's got crawling down now!
Speaking of, she has actually said David as clear as a bell before, and threw all us witnesses for an absolute loop!  Had I been the only one who heard it, I would have thought it was my imagination.  However, David had just walked into the room, and my cousin was also present, and Piper looked straight at David and said his name.  All of our jaws dropped and we questioned each other on what we'd just heard and all agreed. She has yet to repeat that feat, but it happened, I swear it!  It's not the only time she has thrown out a surprise word, either.  Just the other night she repeated the TV and said "animal."  I guess if she's going to start the random mimicking thing, I may want to curve the f-bombing! ;)

She's still a messy eater, lol!
As for saying "mama," that one is a no-brainer.  I read somewhere that children often begin saying this one without knowing the meaning, they just repeat it after hearing it so often.  I would say that was true if she didn't always look directly at me when saying it.  She will even say it in surprise and joy when I walk into the room, or crawl right up to me, look me in the eyes, and say mama!  She has never addressed anyone else as mama, so I take that as knowing it is a word meant for just me, regardless if she knows the scientific definition and magnitude of it's meaning.  I do know it is the absolute sweetest, most beautiful sounding word I thought at one point in my life I would never hear.  Of course it makes me tear up with joy at times, as it did my parents the other night when it flew out of her mouth as plain as a fully talking child had said it.  My dad was holding her and I was sitting across from the couch in a chair not paying attention, and she was trying to get my attention, and believe me she did.  She'd said it before, and has said it since, but there was something special about that one, you'd just have to have been there.

I wish I could sleep this good!

So why the dramatic pause?  Because that is right after where I left off six days ago!  Yes, I've been that swamped and tired!  Work has been kicking my butt still, and after a long day of it, I've just been too damn tired to do much more than try to unwind after the workday has ended.  My intentions have been to write, but the brain gets tired, the words get jumbled, and next thing I know I'm heading to bed.  Today was particularly rough, but I'm determined to quit delaying everything outside of work.  Where's the fun in that, right?

Yes, we sleep with a giant sock monkey!
Anyways, let me get back to updating everyone as to Piper's current development.

Let me restart with her current growth stats as per her 6-month check-up:

Weight:  17lbs 7oz (75%)
Length:  26.5 inches (73%)
Head circumference:  16.5 inches (30%)

I was very pleased with her stats this go-round, especially her head circumference.  If you remember, she was in the 5% range at her 4-month check-up.  Knowing that her tiny head is catching up gives me quite a bit of relief.  In that regards, however, I will say that I think the head circumference averages are a bit skewed since I've noticed back sleeping babies tend to have much wider skulls than the tummy sleepers.  If my observations are correct, then the norms for this feature are not relevant to Piper.  It hasn't been a secret that I let her tummy sleep, as I am against back sleeping (to each their own, though), so I didn't put as much weight on this figure as my doc may have.

She's got the cutest head in the world, as far as I'm concerned!
As for her height and weight, the doc said she was perfect.  Having those two numbers in relatively the same percentile range is a very good sign.  It just simply means she is the right weight for her height and vice-versa. I want her to be on the taller range, so I am very happy that she is already above average for her age.  All the women on her daddy's side that I know of were 5'10" or above.  I think she has a pretty good chance of being on the taller scale, and I suspect taller than my 5'7".  As for her weight, I know she is going to be slender like I was, and probably actually more so, being built more like her Nana than me.  This is only a guess based on her current build, but I'd wager a pretty penny that I'm right.  I hope that I'm right since I want her to take ballet.  Slender helps for sure when it comes to the world of dance!

So cute I had to add another one!
On a brief side note, she did have a bit of reaction to her vaccinations and flu shot this go round.  She felt fine right after, barely even cried after her shots, but by the early evening she was feeling pretty icky.  The next morning we woke up and she was burning hot.  I took her temp and it was at 103.2 degrees!  She wasn't complaining at all, just a bit glassy-eyed and melancholy.  I gave her some Tylenol, took the day off, and we spent the day cuddling.  By that evening she was perfectly fine.  She did run a very slight fever off and on Saturday, but has been fine since.

Our day of cuddles while she wasn't feeling well.

She did a lot of nursing that day.
Okay, besides her stats and current vocal abilities, her mobility has been off the charts!  She started true crawling at 5 months and 2 days old.  However, she was still quite wobbly.  She would crawl a few steps and then collapse, pick herself up and restart.  This went on for a few weeks.  All of a sudden, however, on her actual 6-month birthday, she started speed crawling with no missteps or shakiness.  I had dropped a dime on the floor at work that day, and she saw it's shininess, rolled from her butt to her knees, and just took off!  She reached the dime almost before I could get to her and keep her from putting it in her mouth.  Once she figured out she could crawl without taking a break every few steps, she was unstoppable!  Now she cannot be left alone at all unless she is in a safe-to-play zone.  If I leave her in her play area in my office at work, I will come back and find her cruising in the hall looking for me!  She is still relatively good about not getting into too much mischief, but she is expanding her horizons and testing new limits everyday.

Yes, at first I made her crawl for objects!

Besides crawling like a seasoned vet, she has also been pulling up to standing on any object that offers her relative stability.  Because of this I had to lower her crib mattress down, and now she stands in it all the time. She also can no longer sleep in her co-sleeper.  Once she began the speed crawling and standing, she immediately started crawling into my bed from her sleeper.  Needless to say, she is now sleeping in my bed. I tried moving her to her crib, but she stood staring at her bedroom doorway, in the dark, until after about 10 minutes she started sniffling, then I started crying watching her on the monitor, then she started crying wondering why she had been abandoned, and then I caved and let her be my nighttime snuggle buddy. What can I say?  We haven't been separated more than an hour since she was born and I don't have the heart to separate us now...nor do I want to as I waited so long for her.  I want her in my bed, and I'm not afraid to admit it!

Caught her doing this in her swing instead of
sleeping the other day at work!
Oh, and remember that tooth I said she sprouted while at the pumpkin patch?  Or did I remember to mention that in a previous entry?  Anyways, that tooth has turned into two teeth.  They are so dang adorable, and I imagine that some of the low-grade fever she ran Saturday had to do with that tooth still slicing it's way through the gums.  Both of those bottom incisors are now fully exposed above the gum line.  I think they're the cutest teeth I've ever seen, and yes I know how ridiculous that sounds.  With those teeth has come her introduction to teething biscuits.  Her favorite right now are the Baby Mum-Mum brand.  It's so nice that she can sit and have a self-serving snack while the rest of enjoy our meal.  As a matter of fact, we went out to dinner with a friend I hadn't seen in a bit, and Piper sat in the big-girl high chair at the restaurant, while we chatted and dines al fresco for close to four hours.  She enjoyed her fruit punch and rice biscuits and was perfectly behaved the entire time.  Everyone at the restaurant had to stop and compliment her, especially her eyes, so once again proud mama status was achieved!  Needless to say, I was very proud of her behavior in public.  I've seen absolute tyrannical children at restaurants, and have had my fair share of moments wanting to choke the living shit out of them and/or their parents, so having Piper act like a civilized human being in public makes me oh so very happy.

Thank goodness she doesn't act like this in public! :)

Piper also has a new favorite Halloween toy.  We went to visit her great grandmother a couple o f weeks ago and I had to run into Walgreen's for a couple of items.  While perusing the candy aisle, I ran across a very cool Vampire-in-a-Box.  It's like a Jack-in-the-Box, but much scarier!  Of course I had to buy it for her.  I am a huge horror genre buff, so I want to get her introduced to all things fun and spooky early on so she won't be a scaredy cat later on in life.  Well, I thought she might be a bit frightened by the toy, but she absolutely loves it!  It's her go-to toy whenever she is playing on her blanket at home.  She has even learned the shortcut switch to make it pop open without having to turn the handle.  She is learning to turn the handle, but she still doesn't quite have the manual dexterity to make it go all the way around over and over.  Now don't take the following video wrong.  Yes, she does complain about it at first, but now she is to the point of batting the vampire around and smiling at him.  It might be because mama pointed out that he has jazz hands. Who can possibly be scared of a vampire with jazz hands?

It's the delayed reaction that makes it so dang funny!

Okay, what have I left out? I'm thinking I'm going to just quit here and get this post published.  I'm sure I'm definitely forgetting something, but I can always put whatever that may be into another post, right?  This one has taken me almost two weeks to get together, and that to me is unacceptable.  I know if I don't just go ahead and wrap it up, something else will happen that delays me, like the need for sleep.  So, basically, that's where Piper stands at 6.5 months.  She's still in this growth spurt she's been going through the past few weeks, the one that seemed to start while watching the pig races and the pumpkin patch, and I'm beginning to wonder when it'll pass.  I secretly hope soon since it's making time fly by too quickly.  I want to keep her little for just a wee bit longer.

Aw, she looks awfully cute in mama's bed!
I hope you all have enjoyed the post, pics, and videos.  Sorry it took so long between posts this last time, I'll try not to let that happen again.  For now though, if you could please show your forgiveness by dropping me a vote over at top mommy Blogs and Top Baby Blogs, that would totally make my month!  Then drop on by my other social sites, especially Facebook, cause the action happens there daily!

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