Category Archives: milestones

10 months old

Mom sent this out with the Daily Grip yesterday, and I thought it was sweet so I’m posting it here (she doesn’t, despite occasional nagging from me, post to the Grip Diaries much… meaning at all).

Grip is 10 months old today and I have no idea where the time has gone. He seems at times to be mere moments away from walking — for which I don’t know whether to be excited or very nervous. As he becomes more and more physically capable, it’s really interesting to see how “boy” he is. He simply must affect things. Yesterday he spent quite a while shaking our entertainment center — those of you who have seen our entertainment center understand that this is no small feat. He also likes to operate the spigot on our bottled water (I’m less a fan of this hobby), roll his high chair back and forth, pull down everything within reach (which is getting higher and higher by the day), roll balls across the floor, yank the cat’s fur, and turn the pages in his books. As a result of his avid interest in motion, it’s really hard for him to go to sleep. He just can’t stop. Our nightly bedtime ritual resembles a wrestling match more than a tender mother/son cuddle. Tonight, I’ve given up and handed him off to his dad so I can get some work done and this email sent.

If for whatever reason you are reading this but do not get the Daily Grip email — which is just as it sounds, a daily picture of the Gripster — you can sign up for it here.

since we last wrote

Grip has started pulling himself up. He says “ba ba BAA!” and occasionally “ma ma,” which almost sounds on-purpose. He has 543,234 more facial expressions than he used to. He claps. He drums on anything and everything. He likes to squinch his face when he doesn’t like something, or doesn’t want to do something, or sometimes just for fun. He eats bananas and rice and pasta and about everything else, and is getting sick of baby food in jars. He’s still totally comfortable with strangers, but he lights up when he sees us, which really is to die for. When we walk him in his stroller, he sits forward and thrusts one or both arms into the air, and likes to point and shout “ah!” His favorite thing is to take baths.

Hopefully we can write again before another four months pass.

too much time on my hands

Get this…the baby is awake and I’m typing on the computer. How can this be? Well, it turns out having the ability to sit up and transfer object between hands is a _lot_ more entertaining to a baby than lying flat on his back motionless! I had heard this development was coming but I can scarcely believe it. Of course, Grip is about 2 seconds away from actual crawling (he just scoots backwards now) so this honeymoon from constant monitoring is going to be pretty brief, but it sure is sweet while it’s here.

Part of the joy (and relief) of his ability to self-entertain is that he had a really rough last few weeks. He cut two teeth within days of one another and then after a brief, fun vacation came back and got a terrible cold. So, our normally sunny, mellow little guy had been a little less sunny than usual. The way it feels to have him back to his old self is a lot like the way it feels on those precious January days in Seattle when the sun breaks through after months of overcast and rain. You don’t realize how much you’d missed it until you realize how happy you feel at it’s reappearance.

the blur: month five

Grip’s fifth month has been a blur of activity. He learned how to roll from his back to his front (we both got to see his very first time). He got a tooth on the bottom front, then another. Now one’s about to break through the top. He’s learned how to sit up almost completely by himself — with great posture to boot. He traveled on a plane for his first time, to go down to the South to meet my side of the family. (His behavior on the plan was predictably mellow and wonderful.) He got to meet and interact with other babies, not to mention uncles, aunts, great uncles and aunts, second cousins (once removed?), his great grandmother, other relatives with family relations to complicated to trace, and my mom’s entire school faculty. He went on his first extended car trip, from Cookeville, TN, to Atlanta, GA. (He didn’t like that much.)

One of the babies he met on the trip, Noah (my mom’s secretary’s grandson), is five days older than him and extremely physically vigorous. He knows how to get up on his hands and knees and rock back and forth. Grip apparently took this as a challenge — a day or two after we got back to Seattle, he started struggling up onto his knees. (Thanks Noah!) He’s going to be crawling before we know it, and we’re starting to panic about how un-baby-proofed our place is.

Just yesterday, there was another epochal event in the Life o’ Grip: his first boy cousin was born. Samuel Flynn Guy is almost as tall as G was when he was born (21″ to Grip’s 22.5″), but he weighs a full three pounds less. We’re thinking he’s going to be, as a child, tall, skinny, gawky, slightly nerdy, and a little bit wild — i.e., we think he’s going to be his father George. He could do a lot worse. We know it’s going to be a few years yet, but we can’t wait for Grip and Sam to buddy-up and start causing mischief.

So that’s where the G-Man is today: a new cousin to play with, new physical skills, a new regional fan club — in behavior, appearance, and family accouterments, more and more a little boy every day. It’s a cruel irony of this diary that the more happens worthy of recording, the less time Mom and I have to record it. Such is parenthood, I suppose.

family christmas

This morning Mom, Grip, and I had our first Christmas together as a family, alone, with a roaring fire and nice music and coffee and gifts and tons of love. (Grip gave me a baseball, for us to throw a little later.) It was about as close to heaven as you’re likely to get before death. I’m sure the kid had no idea about the holiday, but I’m pretty sure he could sense how happy his parents were. We are thankful every day for our luck and immense good fortune. Merry Christmas indeed.

ah-goo means “I love you” . . .

giggle.jpg…at least it does to me. We’re having long conversations with Grip these days — actually they aren’t so much conversations as his parents making a gaggle of goofy syllables in an effort to get him to let loose one or two of his own. Occasionally, he’ll reward us with a whole string and — if he’s really feeling generous — a bonefide smile. But, smiling must be hard for him, he usually has to take it one side of the face at a time. First, the left cheek will contract, revealing the oh-so-charming dimple located there, then the right side will follow, resulting in a full-on, gum-baring, heart-melting, and much too fleeting grin. We may have even spotted a proto-giggle. Stay posted!


handsGrip has discovered his hands. Actually, I don’t think he realizes that they are _his_ hands, but he does get very excited when they happen to be in front of his face — particularly the mouth part of his face. He’s still trying to figure out which finger/thumb combination is the best for sucking.

belly button update

umbilical absenceToday, the last of Grip’s umbilical cord fell off. Fellow parents will recall that new babies have a short, black, icky, clipped stump for their first week or so, which makes cleaning and diaper changing tricky. It’s also an unsettling reminder of the whole body-parts-on-the-outside thing that I got more than enough of via Mom’s c-section, thanks.

Anyway, our little boy’s all grown up!