Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Griffin is 7 months old!!!

Wow, it seems like Griffin has grown up an awful lot in the past month, he is doing so many new things! He is getting soooooo big too. He is now 27 3/4 inches long and weighs in at 19lb 7oz. He is wearing size 4 diapers and basically everything in 12 month sizes now, the pants are still a bit long but we roll them up on the bottom and he does fine.

Griffin is now on the move big time, he can get across the room from one side to other in no time flat when he is motivated, and when he is going for something he gets this hilarious intensity in his eyes and ignores everything else. Most of the month he wasn't exactly army crawling, but not exactly crawling on hands and knees either, what he did was he reached his hands far forward and then pushed up onto his hands and knees, this moved him forward about 2-4 inches and then he collapsed back down onto his tummy and repeated the process until he got where he wanted to go.

It took him a long time to figure out that he can move his hands while he is on his hands and knees but a week before he turned 7  months he figured it out and now he REALLY crawls. It is sooo funny to watch because he is so stiff when he does it, he looks like a little crawling robot!

Since he has been able to move around like this I have had to watch him a lot more closely because he really wants to "get" daddy's cords to all the electronics by the TV, the wheels on daddy's office chair, the empty bottom shelf of the bookshelf and he is constantly trying to crawl after the fan we have in our bedroom doorway to circulate the air, for some reason that fan is sooooo fascinating! When I can tell he is going to try and get something he is not allowed to have I say eh eh in a loud enough tone to get his attention, when he hears this he will stop in his tracks, then I say no Griffin. It's funny because he pauses as if considering his options and then continues straight for the forbidden object. At this point I usually repeat the process and then in his considering pause I pull him away and distract him with something else. I don't expect him to actually listen at this point but I am hoping the way I approach this, by giving him the chance to hear the word no and then taking him away from whatever he is not supposed to have the connections will start to be made in his brain. 

He also "chased" me for the first time this past week, I went to go start a load of laundry and he was yelling at me because I left him, well suddenly it got quiet so I peeked my head out of the laundry room to see what my little trouble maker was up to and low and behold he had a look of determination on his face and he was coming straight for me, lol. So I said "come on Griff, come get your mommy", and then I popped back into the laundry room to finish up what I was doing, about 1 minute later when I came back out he had made it 3/4 of the way there and then got tired and flipped onto his back he was just laying there grinning and playing with his feet!

The best part about Griffin being so mobile now is that he is a lot happier. He is so full of energy and gets bored so fast, but now I don't have to try as hard to keep him amused because when he is bored of playing with something he has figured out that he doesn't have to scream until I put something new and interesting in front of his face, he can just go and get what he wants :) He even crawl over to his toy bin and tries to drag toys out on his own already. So happy baby and happy mommy!

Griffin's fine motor skills are getting better, he can grab things and get them to his mouth with a lot more accuracy and yes that is still where everything ends up directly in his chomper.

He also wants to pull up on things, he can't quite figure out how to attack the couch or other things that tall yet from the floor but will climb up mommy and daddy's lap moving his hands from our legs, to our chest until he is standing. If he does this and we are sitting close to the couch he will cruise right over and transfer his hands to the couch.  He can also climb up till he is standing with his hands on the second stair up from the bottom. He loves to do this in fact he will spend half an hour climbing up, standing, loosing his balance, and starting over. He is such a dare devil and just wants do everything the big people do, he thinks he has better balance than he really does.  He even tries to let go sometimes with one or both hands in which case he will balance for about 1/2 second and then either lurch forward with arms outstretched like he is trying to catch himself or he falls backwards and sit/plops down right onto his little tushy (thank goodness for the padding of a diaper). He thinks it is great fun though. He also thinks it's fun to march in place/dance while he is standing and you hold his hands.

Griffin can not only sit independently now, but can get into a sitting position on his own from hands and knees. He really has very good balance in sitting now and doesn't fall over unless he is distracted by something. When he is done sitting he just leans forward and transitions straight onto his hands and knees so he can go get whatever caught his eye. If he does loose his balance he is really good about getting an arm out in time to catch himself enough that he doesn't hurt his head.

We also started sleep training in earnest this month, before that I would sometimes lay Griffin down awake and he would put himself to sleep but for the most part I would rock him to sleep and then lay him down. It actually went really well, We started with naps. We would lay him down and then let him fuss and figure it out on his own but if he REALLY cried than I would go in and rub his back or pick him up for a few minutes until he calmed down and then lay him down again. At first it would take 15-20 minutes for him to wind down and fall asleep, now a month later most times it takes less than five minutes and about 1/2 the time he doesn't even fuss at all, just talks to himself and "sings" himself to sleep.

Part of the sleep training that we decided on was saying goodbye to the pacifier. Griffin could not yet figure out how to put it back into his own mouth at nighttime and was waking us up 6-7 times a night just to have it popped back into his mouth and then he would fall back to sleep so no more paci for our big boy. He was not happy for a few days but has adjusted very well. We have pulled it back out for a few "emergencies" like him screaming bloody murder while we were out shopping at the store and one night when he was teething VERY bad, but I can count on one hand the number of times he has had one since we say goodbye to it so we have been sticking pretty well to the plan. To be honest I would have caved but Jeremy was the one who kept reminding me why we made the decision in the first place and why it is better in the long run to get rid of it now, so I think it is gone forever. RIP our dear friend Paci ;)

We set up Griffin's big boy crib about half way through the month because he was getting up on his hands and knees in the co-sleeper and grabbing for the sides. It was no longer safe. He has adjusted to the crib very well, the first night was rough, he cried A LOT, but ever since then he has done fine. He is such a wiggle worm in his sleep and rolls and scoots all over the place, he usually ends up spending most of the night crammed all the way in the top corner. He also sleeps on his tummy now about 90% of the time. When he wakes up he will crawl around in his crib yelling for us and smoosh his face against the bars to look out, it's so cute!

Griffin still has a bedtime of 8pm. Our evening routine starts at 6pm with a dinner of veggies and fruit mixed with cereal, then we go back downstairs to play for about 1/2 hour, then at 7pm we go upstairs so Griffin can have his bath, then new diaper and pajamas go on. Next I put him in his jumper and turn on Yo Gabba Gabba, or Wonder Pets for him to watch for 1/2 hour then he has his bedtime bottle and off to sleep.

All month we have gone back and forth about whether Griffin still needs a bottle during the night. There are nights he sleeps until 6-7 in the morning without one, and that was kind of making us think he didn't really need that 4am bottle but then we would try to take it away every night with mixed results. So for right now we have decided to just play it by ear, some night he needs that one bottle and some nights he doesn't. He usually wakes up a few times a night and needs us to turn on Mr Wetums and start up his mobile music for him and then he will fall back to sleep. He usually stays in his own bed until between 7-8am and then I grab him and bring him to bed with Jer and I to snuggle. I always hope he will fall back to sleep but he rarely does. Mostly he snuggles in beside me and talks to me, grabs for my face, kicks and wiggles, yells, and giggles when I tickle him. When I have decided that all chances of extra sleep are gone I usually release him to crawl over and wake his daddy up if Jeremy hasn't already been woken up by Griffin's loudness and flailing about, it's funny to watch because he get's so excited to "get" daddy and breathes really heavy and fast and crawls up to Jeremy and either head butts him in the stomach or smacks him until he gets a response, lol

Griffin did something amazing this month, he got his bottom two front teeth, YAY!!! One day he was chewing on my finger and suddenly I noticed something sharp in his mouth, I look and sure enough two tiny razor sharp teeth making their way in! So he is learning something new, mommy's hand is no longer an acceptable chew toy, lol. I pull my hand away and tell him no biting when he tries to put it in his mouth so he is starting to learn what that means. I've gotten nommed on by him a few times when I wasn't paying attention and yikes he has some strong chompers!

He is still eating well. He now shows preference for his fruit over most of his vegetables but will still eat both. He also gets chicken or egg yolk mixed into his evening veggies sometimes now. He likes the egg yoke best.  His favorite new activities during meal times are biting down hard on his spoon so I can't pull it away, and trying to "help" feed himself. I've let him go at it himself with no holds bared a few times and it is MESSY but so much fun to watch. He had such a ball making a mess and always seems to throw his bowl and spoon on the ground when I least expect it. Zoe sure had a fun time helping us clean up after him.

Griffin is very vocal, his new sounds this month are bah bah, and mama (hurray!) he also likes to make the mmmmmm sound with many different inflections, sometimes happy, sad, irritated, even angry (who knew it had so many applications?) and near the end of this month we just started to hear him say da or dada every once in a while, we'll have to work on that one. One of Griffin's favorite things to do for the purposes of self expression we like to call the hulk impression he basically growls and his face gets all red and he makes fists and his arms shake, lol it's so cute. He doesn't do it when he is mad, mostly it's just something he does when he is playing.

We are trying to teach Griffin how to be gentle. He doesn't quite understand that what he does can hurt someone else yet, and this month he has become dangerous! He will pull my hair non stop if it isn't up so I wear it up just about everyday, he likes to grab your skin and then pinch/squeeze REALLY hard (he has even drawn blood with this one), and he also likes to hit everything so that includes your face. He will just be looking at you all peacefully and then out of nowhere here comes that tiny hand quicker than a blot of lightning and before you can do anything to stop him SMACK, he'll get ya. I'm hoping he grows out of this phase soon, we are working on it.

When I take Griffin up for bath time he can be fussy and grumpy but the minute we go in the bathroom and I lay him down on the rug so I can fill up the tub he gets a big smile on his face and then usually rolls over and crawls around, he like to play with the scale in the bathroom or grab fistfuls of the rug fibers and try to yank them out! Lately he has been getting frustrated with bath time, he wants to sit up or crawl around in the bath but it's so slippery it is not safe for him to do that yet, and he get bored so I had to take some toys up there for him which has helped. He also thinks that  he owns the bucket I use to pour the warm water over him, he gets mad when I am trying to rinse his hair or wash the suds off his body because he thinks it's HIS bucket. He also kicks like a madman with his feet, splashes water droplets into his face and then it takes his breath away and he looks so surprised every time it happens, then he smiles. Even with some of the frustration lately bath time is still one of his favorite parts of the day.

Griffin has gotten a lot better about being happy while I do things I need to do, he used to never let me get anything done in the kitchen and I would have to do dishes and make myself food while he was sleeping but most of the time now I can put him in his chair with some toys, or in his bouncy and he watches me and plays. He also REALLY likes to chew on frozen fruit or pickles in his mesh feeder. I can usually steal about 20 minutes to get something done as long as he is in a good mood so that has been nice.

Griffin got his first hair cut this month. We finally evened out the last of his newborn hairs that stuck up about an inch longer than all the rest of them. He did not like it very much but he lived through it and now his hair is mostly even, I say mostly because of all the squirming he did during the process. Lucky for him his grandma Jane was kind enough to give him the haircut and make him extra handsome despite his protests. :)

Griffin got to go to the Berrien county youth fair this month with Jeremy and I. He got to see all the animals and all the rides and bright lights. He thought it was all very fascinating.

The leaps and bounds Griffin has taken lately have made this such an exciting month. It seems every time I turned around there he was doing something new, usually with a smile on his face or a mischievous gleam in his eye. He is just so much fun, and definitely keeps us on our toes! It is so amazing  seeing him realize he can do something new and the pure unbridled excitement that just seeps out of his pores. And I swear you can see the wheels turning in his head sometimes, he is constantly trying to figure out how things work and what else he can get up to!

Griffin has also gotten more snuggly lately and will drop his head on your shoulder and nuzzle into your neck, it is so sweet. He loves it when I take my hand and run it gently down his face like my fingers are tiny little feathers, he flutters his eyes closed and then smiles and coos. When I hold him and I feel the warmth of him, the heaviness or his little body and smell that wonderful baby smell, I am so at peace. Being a mommy is a challenging job but so amazingly rewarding, this little human being gives me so much joy and such a wonderful purpose in my life right now. He is just the best baby ever and such a blessing to have in our lives :)


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