Weight--21.5 lbs (very unofficial baby weighing this month--he was 22 lbs fully dressed)
Teeth--still 4 but his top canines look like they might make their appearance in the next month or so. He doesn't have front teeth yet but the four teeth that are in are huge--so big in fact that he likes to gnaw on everything.
Hair--Ben is one bald bruiser. He has wispy blondish hair that sometimes looks red and sometimes looks white. He will not have a first birthday haircut unless he joins the hairclub for men but I think he is a little young for that.
What We've Been UP to this Month.
Sleeping: Ben's eighth month of life was spent awake. Teething, separation anxiety, the need to play at strange hours of the night, wanting to be cuddled, standing in his crib, banging his head on his crib, babbling--the list of things that caused Ben to be awake seemed endless this month. His reliable schedule during the day was off and he naps were all over the place. At night he was up every couple of hours for visits to the mommy buffet or wanting to hang out. He went to bed easily but staying asleep was another story. For about ten days he wanted to be awake for about two hours in the middle of the night. We tried letting him cry it out several nights in a row in the middle of the night but his crying period increased rather than decreased. We even tried bringing him into our room (and that was a huge failure as he thought, "I get to play in bed with mommy AND daddy!") Just when we thought we couldn't handle another sleepless night Ben slept for EIGHT hours straight---a sleeping trend that is continuing into his ninth month. YEAH!
Eating: Ben is continuing his love of food. He eats something solid three meals a day. He loves pureed soup--especially chicken vegetable soup. I make most of his food but do keep some jars on hand when what we are eating for dinner isn't very baby friendly. He nurses about five times a day. We haven't had much success with a sippy cup but are still giving it our best shot. He doesn't love juice (which I am okay with), isn't sure what to do with water, and mommy milk in a cup doesn't cut it. We'll continue to work on this skill. He does like to drink out of a real cup so perhaps we will skip sippy's altogether. A few of his favorite foods include toast, peaches, chicken, carrots, sweet potatoes, puffs, bananas, and cheese. He is becoming increasingly efficient at feeding himself finger foods and looks very satisfied when food makes it to his mouth.
Dogs: Ben thinks that the dogs are his toys. He loves the word doggie and when you say it he smiles. His favorite book is called Doggies. When we received a pet supply catalog in the mail he started laughing at the dog on the cover. He tries to grab the dogs, feed the dogs, crawl on top of the dogs, grab the dog's food, play with their crate doors etc. The dogs are remarkably tolerant and the more that Ben talks to them, the more they accept him as part of their pack.
Moving: Ben started crawling this month and standing up. He speeds around our house every moment that he is allowed. He can crawl up the stairs. He pulls himself up on everything--including people. He never sits still and is constantly moving from one thing to the next. While he cruises around our house, he loves to crawl to his parents, get a snuggle, and continue on his movement mission. He loves to crawl over Andrew and I when we are on the floor with him. He never just sits to play--in fact we didn't even really know he could sit up for a long time because he wouldn't stay still long enough! I think we are in for it when he starts to walk!
Playing: Ben loves books and toys that make music. One of his favorites is a Fisher Price toy that he can push around. He plays with unlikely toys such as spoons. He loves metal spoons and will carry them around the house. The first time he crawled up the stairs he had a spoon in his hand the entire time. He loves looking out the front door. He likes to bang and hammer things and enjoys dumping things on the ground. He enjoys parent fetch when he is sitting in his high chair. Everything he plays with still goes into his mouth. He does enjoy looks at books and when we read familiar stories he turns the pages when I pause. One of his favorite books is called Peek-a-Boo Jungle and at the end of the story there is a mirror so he can see his adorable face. Speaking of peek-a-boo, who knew that it was such a fun game? Ben loves to play peek-a-boo in his crib and since I covered his crib rails with teething covers he has the perfect place to hide his face. He'll pop up and laugh even if you aren't really paying attention. The animals above his changing table (who received Ben's first smile way back in March) are again a subject of great interest as he likes to talk to them.
He also enjoys time outside. We try to go for walks every day that it is nice outside. There are several playgrounds close by so we have taken advantage of the baby swings. He loves swinging and crawling around in the grass. He also enjoys mommy assisted sliding.
Bathing: Ben gets a bath every day and it is a highlight. He kicks his legs when he realizes it is bath time and loves to splash around. He stands up in the tub, kicks around, talks, and sometimes just relaxes in the water.
Talking: Ben babbles all of the time. He babbles in "sentences" with inflection in his voice and it sounds like he is really trying to talk. He loves vocal play with his parents or when he is the center of attention.
Social Interaction: Ben is the life of the party. We have joined a small group at church and he is happy to sit at the table and talk away. He loves when we have people over so that he can show off all of his skills and is hard to get to bed when he knows there are things going on. He is so much fun to have around other people because he is so happy.
Even though we were all a little sleepy during Ben's eighth month, it is amazing to watch him grow. He is becoming such a big boy and every day with him is my new favorite. I love watching him learn about the world around him and figuring things out. We can't wait to see what he has in store for us next!