Saturday, August 27, 2011

Lila's 8- and 9-month posts (very belatedly!)

This is a long post -- I'm playing catch-up!

8-9 months old

Lila turned 8 months old on June 26th. This was her first birthday in our new house in Wisconsin (we officially moved in June 21st), and Grandma Bonnie and Papa Jeff were visiting from North Dakota to help us get settled in.

They hadn't seen Lila for almost six weeks, and they couldn't believe how much bigger she was and how much her hair and grown in that short time! They were also impressed by how much easier it was to feed her solids. (She had finally mastered swallowing towards the end of May.) Here's the little girl during mealtime in our dining room:

But what really won Grandma and Grandpa over was her new trick -- putting her arms up in the air to say "so big!" Luckily, I was able to get a series of photos showing how she did it (she doesn't do it very often anymore now that she's older -- she has other tricks in her repertoire). Here's the "before" moment. Lila's just playing with one of her favorite toys from that month, the Fisher-Price turtle that was a gift from Great Aunt BJ and Great Uncle Noel.....

Now she's listening intently to Mommy as Mommy starts saying it.....

And now, she's showing Mommy she can do it, too! "So big, Mommy!"

"Boy, that sure was fun, Mommy!"

One of the great things about unpacking all the boxes at our new house was the fact that we unearthed a whole bunch of baby toys that had been in storage in Texas, including the table top to the Fisher-Price activity table that John had so enjoyed as a baby (we had only brought the legs with us to Illinois). The table quickly became another favorite toy of Lila's, especially the section with the laptop that opens and closes.

The rest of June and the first weeks of July were really busy for Miss Lila-pie. After her grandparents' visit, she had a visit from her boyfriend, Kael Boenitz. Kael and his parents, Eric and Chiara, flew into Chicago from North Carolina for the 4th of July weekend. They stayed with us at Grandma Kay Ellen's house while Grandma was in Oregon with Aunt Katharine and Uncle Jarey.

Baby Kael.....

Lila with her Aunt Chiara/future mother-in-law.....

Baby Kael with Uncle Ross/future father-in-law.....

Baby Kael and Lila-pie getting reacquainted after a six-month separation.....

Less than a week after the Boenitzes' visit, Lila had her very first plane ride! Daddy, Mommy and Lila flew to Texas July 7th to attend a few events with Daddy's old unit, Task Force Gambler. There was a Hail and Farewell at Mel's Lone Star Lanes in Georgetown the evening we arrived and a marriage retreat at Horseshoe Bay the 8th (my 30th birthday!) and 9th. (Grandma Kay Ellen and her friends were watching big brother John for the weekend.) We also got to see our good friends the Reclas, including little Lauren, who is exactly 3 months younger than Lila (she was born January 26th of this year).

It was SO nice to have some one-on-one time with Lila! She did really well with all the traveling, although the plane rides got a little tedious. I had been thinking she'd nurse during take-off and fall right asleep, but she didn't fall asleep on any of the four flights. (We had a connection in Dallas both trips because we were flying in and out of Killeen.) She wasn't entertained by any of her toys or books for very long, especially on the Dallas-Chicago flight. The only things she wanted to play with were the Children's Tylenol bottle, the teething gel container, and the butt paste container. We rotated between those for a while, and then we just stood and walked around with her. I wished we could have used her infant car seat on board, but there wasn't a single seat free on any of the legs of the flights. I know she would have fallen asleep in her car seat.

We didn't take any photos in Texas except for a few at the resort, where Daddy took Lila in the pool one morning. This was Lila's first time in a big pool -- she had only been in a really small baby pool up until then. She loved splashing with her arms, just like she does in the bathtub!

July passed quickly because of all the traveling we did between Wisconsin and Illinois. Lila actually got to see her boyfriend a second time shortly after we returned home from Texas. John, Lila and Mommy stayed in Illinois for Grandma Kay Ellen's brain surgery, and Baby Kael, Aunt Chiara and Uncle Eric flew out to help us (and help they did -- they were LIFESAVERS!). It was wonderful to get to hang out with them again, even under the circumstances. The babies enjoyed each other's company for sure!
Through all of traveling and transitions that month, Lila was a total peach! Here's a quick rundown of some of the notable things about Lila at 8 and 9 months old.....

Physical stats:

At her 9-month check-up with her new doctor, Dr. Dunigan, Lila weighed 17 pounds, 5 ounces (25th-50th percentile) and measured 28.5 inches long (75th-90th percentile). I think John weighed 18 pounds, 1 ounce at his 9-month check-up. Lila definitely takes after her Daddy -- long and lean!

Lila's eyes are still the same dark blue, but her hair seems to be getting darker. Maybe it's just that it keeps getting longer and thicker. Dr. Dunigan was definitely smitten with Lila -- he kept saying what a beautiful baby she was.


Lila was still a good nurser, although it started getting a lot harder to keep her focused. She started wanting to pull up on the sides of the chairs/sofas on which we nurse. Also, she started trying to get out from under the nursing wrap when we were out in public (like on the plane rides).

As for solid food, she has always eaten everything we give her! We buy the jars of Earth's Best organic baby food, and there isn't a single one she hasn't liked. The fruits she has tried include apricots, peaches, pears, apples, bananas, plums, prunes, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and mango. The veggies include green beans, sweet peas, zucchini, corn, carrots, sweet potatoes, butternut squash and winter squash. She has tried a variety of grains. We started giving her (pureed) chicken and turkey in late June/early July.

She started regularly eating breakfast (her 3rd meal) the week of July 11th. We had tested her while we were in Texas to see if she would take solids in the morning, and she was definitely ready!


Lila's daily schedule didn't change much over these two months. She was still waking up between 6:30 and 7:30 a.m. and going to bed at night around 7:00 p.m., and she was still napping at around 9:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. She was still nursing four times a day (and once at night). The only feeding change was adding the third meal at breakfast.

Much to our dismay, Lila was still waking up several times at night. There was a period of about 3-4 days at the end of July when she slept through the night completely, and it was wonderful! Then she started waking up again at least once during the night. I'm sure it didn't help that we were doing so much traveling. The transition from crib to port-a-crib back to crib must have been rough on her.


Lila's 3rd tooth (top center right) broke through on July 24th and her 4th tooth (top center left) broke through two days later on her 9-month birthday. Luckily, her teething didn't seem to bother her very much.

Separation anxiety:

Lila's first-ever time at child care was at the marriage retreat in July, and she did wonderfully. After that, she started going regularly to the nursery at the gym and church. So far she hasn't shown any separation anxiety in these settings. She does sometimes get a little upset at home if Daddy takes her from me.

Pulling up and other milestones:

Lila started getting very adventurous during these months. Besides trying to pull up to standing while nursing, Lila started rocking back and forth on her bottom in an effort to move towards out-of-reach toys. She'd get up on all fours and continue to rock back and forth, but then she'd plop down on her tummy. She started being able to stand up against things unassisted at the end of July -- her Fisher-Price activity table definitely helped her with this. She also started waving (sometime in June) and clapping (end of July).

Favorite toys:

Fisher-Price numbers/shapes turtle, Fisher-Price activity table, Chicco activity walker, kitchen utensils, Mommy's cell phone, water bottles, and generally anything else in Mommy, Daddy or John's hands. She definitely stopped liking actual toys as much.

To cap off this lengthy post, here are some other random photos of Lila from June and July. (Most of these are from Grandma Kay Ellen's house.) I'll be uploading a bunch of photos in the next few days so I can get Lila's 10-month post done. She turned 10 months yesterday!!!!

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