I'm so excited to see all the little changes again in Archer, things my mummy brain have forgotten since Liam was really wee. He does everything on a completely different time-line than Liam did, but they're still the same baby milestones. His smiles were reliable now at three months, when he'd been doing it for a month . We have gotten laughs out of him as well, those hesitant and gutturally delicious belly-laughs babies have in the beginning. He definitely has a sense of humour, and loves it when his Tia and I laugh to get him to laugh. I just love that big gummy grin, and his eyes seriously twinkle.
:: my baby - 4 months old ::
He sleeps with me at night, and when Dada has to work, he sleeps in the guest room., leaving the deliciously comfortable bed for me and Archer. This honestly works best for us right now, as Archer's cues for a night feed disturb Daddy, and Daddy's getting-ready-for-work-routine at 5am disturbs me and Archer. Also, we have a new mattress and I'm happy to hog it all! Archer is more of a bed hog than Liam was so co-sleeping with him requires more room for baby due to his increased mobility. I am pretty spoiled most nights and get a few good solid chunks of sleep, aside from nights like tonight when I stay up late.
He started rolling over at two months old, and for a few weeks he could do it when he was in the right mood - it takes a lot of strength. But now at four months he's an old pro, and rolls onto his tummy like it ain't no thang. He can also roll onto his back again, but he doesn't do this as often. It's so funny for me to see a baby who loves tummy-time, which he usually does for a few good minutes before he decides it's too much work. His back arches and his little toes scrape the blanket and he wings his arms around. He knows that there's something he's supposed to be doing (crawling!) but he doesn't know just what it is yet.
:: he can get around quite well and steer with this walker ::
And while Liam remains challenging, and ornery, and hyper-sensitive to changes and situations where he's not 100% appeased, I still have many lovely moments with him every day. I have to hold on to these, because thinking about quiet snuggles during story-time at night can get me through a gut-wrenching, screaming tantrum. His ordinary (hah!) two-year old tantrums are exacerbated by a few things: he cannot express himself verbally at the same level of his understanding, and the two are much more disproportionate than for other kids his age, and also he can't remove himself with any ease from situations he doesn't like. He feels trapped when he's on a couch or any bed besides his own. Even though he could physically get down and walk if he tried, he doesn't bother. He has taken steps on his own, but doesn't seem motivated to take any more. And this ends up frustrating him when he gets "stuck" places. But not enough to motivate him to move!
:: getting ready for the walk to work, before it got too hot to walk ::
We practice walking with the Sparrow every day, many times a day. He walks while holding our hands, and he has two different walkers that he occasionally uses. We take a step away from him and try to get him to come towards us, but no dice. He does not seem to want to walk, even though we know he is physically capable. He can walk with his doggy-shaped walker with no problem, and barely even holds onto it! I made an appointment with his PT for next week, since she usually is good for tips and things to motivate him.
So while he is very, very close to being completely mobile, he is still stuck for now. It is funny in a weird way to see how quickly Archer seems to progress in comparison - it took about three sessions in the Jolly Jumper at three months old before he "got" it and really started hopping around. He can roll over and is strong enough to move himself backwards on a flat surface with his feet. It is automatic for him to stand when I hold him under his arms, and I still have to remind Liam!
:: tie-dye boys watching the boob-tube in the back room at the shop ::
We are still on the waiting list to see a speech therapist for Liam, but I have noticed some progress there lately! Strangely the progress seems to coincide with his new love for Thomas and Friends, or Choo-Choo (Liam says "koo-koo"). I created a youtube playlist with all different Thomas videos - some are narrated by George Carlin or Alec Baldwin (the American versions I guess) and the British ones are narrated by Ringo Starr! I love hearing his Liverpudlian accent. Anyway, the difference in this show compared to other videos he likes to watch is that the episodes are always narrated. And Liam has been mimicking the stories! He started by repeating certain exclamations that the engines say, and now I hear him repeating things all the time. He seems to do this more when I'm "not paying attention" (so he thinks). And I have noticed a jump in his vocabulary since he started mimicking, which I recently learned is a beginner milestone in language development. Some of his new words are really difficult to understand, and we occasionally end up doing a guessing game for me to find out what he's saying. But it is so reassuring to see some progress for him. It really is a downer sometimes to see other kids developing in leaps and bounds around him, so little things like this give me hope.
:: Daddy built Sparrow a sandbox! Daddy is good at making things for free.
Sparrow has a thing with "textures" since he doesn't walk or explore yet,
and the sandbox is helping him get over that (we hope) ::
I love seeing the differences between them, and strangely the similarities are, at this point, not as easy to point out. I think so far they both have a very sweet spirit, and I'm a lucky mum in that I have two self-entertaining boys. Neither one minds being alone for a short time, and Liam likes playing by himself. They both seem to have a goofy sense of humour like their dad and me, and can switch emotions quickly. (Water family: Pisces Daddy, Cancer Mummy, Sparrow Scorpio, Archer Pisces - even the pets are Cancer and Scorpio!) I have two boys!