Alden is such a fun baby these days -- except at night. At night he is not a fun baby. Although, to his credit, he keeps a VERY precise schedule. He goes to sleep at 7:30 PM. I transfer him to the pack and play so I can go downstairs and finish cleaning and hang out with Kai and Eric for a half hour before she goes to bed. Then, at 8 PM, I return to our room to have some down time/iPad time while Eric puts Kai to bed. Alden wakes up and wants to come into our bed at about 8:30, but snuggles right in and falls back asleep. Then, he wakes up wanting to eat at 12:30, 3:30, 5:30 and is up for the day at 6:30. I swear, I don't even need to look at the clock. He is like a clock. A clock that is slowly driving me batty.
Last night he actually missed his 12:30 wake up but he has ME programmed, so I woke up anyway and then couldn't get back into a deep sleep because I was just waiting for him to roust. He finally woke up to eat at 2 AM and then was up again at 4 AM and 6 AM. So, he threw himself off a bit too.
The nights have definitely been rough. But, the rest of the time he is a joy. He's so happy -- although loud. He is LOUD. You cannot ignore Alden. He doesn't cry when he wants something. He reserves his cries for being hungry or tired or hurt. That's it. If he's crying, it's definitely one of those three things. But, when he wants something (another bite of food, to be put down, to get out of whatever contraption he's in so he can crawl around, etc) he YELLS. He just hollers. And he keeps hollering until his wishes are granted. We had friends over this weekend and he was hollering and they said, "is he upset?" Well... not exactly. But, he does want something!
Usually these days he wants to be let loose. He is serious about practicing his standing skills and annoyed when he's trapped in the bouncer, the high chair, or someone's arms and unable to practice getting up on his own.
These videos are about a week old -- now he can pull himself up on almost anything and no longer has to search for the perfect place to accomplish his stunt!
He can also crawl now. Not the commando crawl he's been doing since he was just shy of 5 months. The regular crawl on his hands and knees... although, he still prefers the commando but, just as he reaches his desired destination (usually some object), he pulls himself up onto his hands and knees and does a proper crawl in order to get to where he's going. Not sure why he only ends with the hands/knees crawl -- but, that's his style.
The other thing he is really into right now is feeding himself. I am so paranoid about babies and eating. I know, I know -- he's SUPPOSED to learn to eat. He has 7 teeth. He can crawl on his hands and knees. He can pick up his own food and get it to his mouth. He's ready for something with a bit more consistency than a finely blended milkshakes. I know. But, I don't like it. I finally gave him so puffed cereal yesterday and he was STOKED. I would only give him one at a time, but he was so happy to get to pick up his own food, get it into his mouth and chew. He entertained himself for an hour eating one puff at a time. I also let him eat a banana without mushing it up first and he quite enjoyed that as well. Letting him eat something that can't just slide down his throat is not my favorite thing, but it is one of his!
Alden is also starting to say a few words and understand language. He says, "mama" and "dada" and it's clear he is referring to us when he says it. He also gives me big, open mouthed kisses when I say, "Alden, can I have a kiss?" They are slobbery messes of kisses -- but I love them.
This year has gone so fast -- I cannot believe he's closing in on nine months. But, the eating, standing, kissing, and first signs of speech are clear indicators that this baby is zooming towards toddlerhood. I wish I could just bottle his babyness -- he's been the sweetest of the sweet babies. I'll miss it when it's gone.