It's been a few months since I've updated my post. I have lots of reasons, but honestly I just couldn't prioritize sitting down to write something coherent when the business of being a Mom, wife and daughter were much more pressing. So here we are, more than halfway to baby boy's first birthday. He is closing in quickly on nine months, and has been growing and developing faster than I can keep up. The only reason I have a moment of rest to even write is because the whole family (parents included!) has been felled by the savage beast that is the common cold. Mr. Action himself is snuggled up on my lap, alternating between joy and misery, his misery precipitated primarily by his desire to breathe through his very congested nose. As for the joy he's struggling to maintain, that's his natural mood it seems. He is a quirky, happy, saucy little man even when fighting a cold. Oh how I love him!
One would think that at some point, we would run out of uniqueness and variations in our kids. By our fifth, I thought for sure we'd have a little carbon copy of some earlier child. Wouldn't that be convenient? I could tailor my parenting to this new person, having learned from my mistakes. Family harmony from birth! Ha! No dice, people. While baby boy in many ways looks exactly like his older brother, personality wise he's his own little person. Even though he has some similarities personality wise to our oldest boy at the same age, he has lots of fabulous little quirks. A fabulous turn of events is that, while he is of course very attached to me, he is a Daddy' boy. Whenever his Daddy comes in the room he stops whatever he's doing to try and get his attention. Squeals, lopsided smiles and flailing limbs are all employed to catch Daddy's eye. The two of them are completely smitten. I love seeing the two of them goof around. It does a mother's heart good.
As for his physical development, he's small for his age, just like his siblings. That hasn't kept him from sprouting 4 little teeth, crawling, playing, pulling himself up on anything he can get a grip on (which has produced some pretty big spills), and chowing down on a veritable cornucopia of solid foods. Baby led weaning has been a real boon for me. He can eat pretty much anything the rest of us have without any problem. We eat simply anyway, so it's no extra work to pop him in the high chair and set him to work on some spaghetti or quartered meatballs. In his nearly nine months he's never had a drop of formula. He's my first %100 exclusively breastfed baby! Even baby sister had some supplementing but not our baby boy. Besides the expense saved, there is something incredibly satisfying about this milestone. Although he still dropped a curve on the weight scale (like every one of our kids), our doctor is completely unconcerned as she knows he's on track with solids.
I stand by my belief that the more kids we have, the easier parenting has gotten. I don't feel like I have five times the stress or even five times the work. Sure there are times when it feels like everyone is fighting or crying and I feel like my head will explode, but I had lots of those moments when we only had two kids. In the end, the joy I get from watching them play and create together more than makes up for the days when nothing seems to be going well.