Tuesday, September 25, 2012

On Cloud Nine - Natalie at 9 Months

Natalie hit the 9-month milestone on Friday and we went for her well-baby check-up today. She weighs 19.2 lbs and is 28 inches tall, putting her right at the 50th percentile for weight and just above the 50th for height. She's wearing size 3 shoes and mostly 12 month clothes (mainly to accommodate her cloth diapers! Haha!), although she still has some 9 month things that fit.

Our baby girl is just the sweetest thing. She has started giving us more and more big, wet, open-mouthed kisses and hugs around the neck. *Smile* She pulls up on everything, including the dog, and has started taking a few steps while holding on to something (mainly a big 4-ft bean bag chair in our family room). I predict that she will be walking between 10 and 11 months (Alex walked at 9 months and I walked at 10 months).

Natalie's interest in solid foods has grown to the point that she gets very cranky if we don't share with her while we're eating. Suffice it to say that my days of being lazy laid back about introducing solids are over. I have to think ahead and make sure that I have something on hand that she can eat, like sweet potatoes or puffs or fruit, so that we can get through dinner! Recently, she wouldn't let me put her down on the floor because I had food in my hand, so I had to put my plate down first. Then, she let go of me to reach for the plate and proceeded to fuss at me to share with her. So, that day she tried spinach artichoke dip and she liked it! This kid has eaten every single thing we've ever let her try. Other than the artichoke dip, the other new foods she has had this month are plums, grapes cut into 8 little pieces, chicken and broccoli casserole and a teeny tiny taste of ricotta cheese from my lasagna. When she is ready for another bite, she tenses up her arms and face and makes a growling sound, to which we respond by telling her "no" and showing her the signs for "more" and "please". She loves her oatmeal before bed and likes to try and wipe her messy face on whatever is close by, be it the couch or our clothes. Needless to say, we are on high alert during feeding time. Our pediatrician said I could start replacing a few nursing times a day with solids, so I'm going to eliminate the 5 o'clock/dinnertime feeding and see how that goes. I'm not crazy about cutting back too much on nursing before her first birthday, primarily because I'm concerned about her getting enough nutrition from fruits and veggies compared to breastmilk.

A few other highlights from Natalie's 9th month are:
-Cruises in circles around our kitchen island while in her walker. She is a fast little thing and has become quite adept at maneuvering wherever she wants to go! It's hilarious to watch her cruise around and harass the poor dog!
-Enjoys her swing outside
-Crawls around the house very quickly and is more adventurous to wander into rooms away from mommy and daddy. We put a baby gate up to keep her in the family room with us.
-Natalie loves books. She gets excited nearly every time I pull one out for us to look at together. She pats the pages and likes books with flaps and places to feel different textures. I prayed that she would love learning and have been collecting a variety of books from yard sales so she would have lots of information at her fingertips. I recently read a blog post about how to instill a love of reading in your children and the writer suggested reading to your child every single day and always keeping books around when they play, even at Natalie's age. So far, that seems to be working for us!
-First 'real' family outing to a pumpkin weighing competition! I just love the pictures of her from that day!
-She has far less social anxiety and lets other people hold her for extended periods of time.
-Started taking baths in the 'big tub' instead of her baby tub.
-Might have possibly said "doggie", but it sounded a lot like "daddy"...I'm choosing to believe she said "doggie" because she was interacting with Layla at the time :)

I'm so afraid that I'm going to forget little details about Natalie at this stage, like the way she uses her heels to spin in circles when she's sitting on the floor, and the sound of her baby laughter. I just don't want to look back years from now, or even a few months from now and forget what life was like during this stage. I'm so thankful for every moment we have together. Even after a long day, I miss my baby when she's in bed for the night and have to linger over the crib and just stare at her and rest my hand on her for a minute before I can head to bed myself. Lately, I've been thinking that I need to put forth more effort to be intentional about my time with her every day. It's so easy to get caught up with housework and things that need to get done around the house and then before I know it, the day is over and I've missed opportunities to spend some quality time with her. We have been blessed with such a great baby and I want to enjoy every minute of her babyhood, as it is flying by so quickly!


  1. My baby does the spinning with her heels thing too! So cute. I'm jealous of your good eater. But it's nice that mine doesn't beg for my food

  2. Just found you (and following) through the babies & mamas thing on callie's blog!

    nice to "meet" you :) your family is adorable!

    and happy nine months to Natalie!!!

  3. I love those open-mouthed slobbery kisses! She is jsut so cute. I'm sorry I'm commenting so late, I'm WAY behind in my reader!