Friday, June 19, 2009

And the baby is one

This past week marked the first birthday of our youngest.

Jonathan ("Jon-Jon") celebrated with a recycled toy (Abraham's dump truck, found in a box in the garage, cleaned up, and wrapped by Lily) and the promise of another gift when we can find it. Ethan's mom gave Benjamin a GREAT ride-on scooter when he turned one. It was plush,  soft, and cheery. It lasted through all of the other children and just recently fell apart past repairing. But we're not settling for any plasticky TV-character themed scooter. So the next time we visit Murdock's (because we already tried the obvious Shopko, Walmart, and Target), we might find the adorable scooter we're looking for.
I can't believe this child is one. He seems littler than the others did, although he's trying hard to get an attitude (which is the mark of maturity). He refuses to try to walk, although he will stand for long periods of time when he doesn't notice. He didn't sit until he was nine months old, but this was because he wouldn't stay still long enough. He's been crawling since he was five months old, and whenever we tried to sit him down, he would just take off.
(Incidentally, I was the same way. Only I just found this out. All of my life, my mother has told young mothers, "Rachel didn't sit until she was nine months old. She was so RETARDED!" So a few months ago, after Jonathan finally learned to sit, I called her up and asked, "Did I crawl before I sat?" "Oh, yes, you'd been crawling for ages!" she replied. Thanks, Mom. I (and I'm sure all you told) had visions of this helpless roly-poly baby lying prostrate on the floor, bumbling around and wondering, "How do I SIT?")
His vocabulary impresses me. He can say Papa, Mama, Edee, Yeeyee (Lily), Bumbum (Ben), Boo, Dog, and Deer (and he can identify deer from the living room window!). This impresses me because No is not yet in there.
He is one of the gang. With each baby, I have wondered, "How will they fit in with this group that is already a happy, complete group?" And with each baby, the group has grown and loved their new member and become a bigger, happier, more complete group.

He loves cars and trucks. He pushes them around the floor, making car noises while he's doing so. He loves to take the crank off a casement window and then studiously try to get it back on (and he has succeeded a few times). His bottom starts pulsing with any beat (the radio, the musical toys, the cell phone ring). He taught himself "Peek-a-boo" when he was only a few months old.
We are working on the screech. He was born with this high-pitched cry that can rattle the nerves of the strongest. Fortunately, he is getting to be old enough to recognize that there are bad consequences for this cry and is picking different ones. His feet never stop moving: his ankles are usually turning if he's being held, and he pumps his legs vigorously if he's excited or agitated.

High-pitched wail at the carwash (what IS that scary thing?):
He has such a passion for life. It's all-or-nothing with him. (Which does, incidentally, make sleeping in his carseat a rare thing indeed.)
I'm pretty smitten with this little guy. He has a great sense of humor and personality already, and those brown eyes . . . when those are bright and smiling and his dimple and baby teeth are showing . . . well. He could have the world. Or my piece of cake, which is more likely what he's after.
(I will post actual birthday pics later ... they are still uploading ... new laptop/new system/ new learning curve.)

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