My little Chub-Chub,
I am awash in your slobber. This month, your favorite thing to do has been to give me big, open-mouth kisses. More often than not, they involve a solid blurple (our family term for one of those vibrating raspberry-type things) to my cheek, my shoulder, my leg. We’re pretty sure it’s a gesture of affection, because you are quite capable of biting, but when you move in for a kiss, you never use teeth.
You’re pretty mouth-focused these days. I’ve stopped scrambling after you to pull every single floor crumb out of your mouth, because that task was using all my energy. Now I stick to scooping out only non-food items or potential choking hazards. Technically, you’re not supposed to have a lot of the things you’ve tasted until you’re a year old. But you’re only two months away from that milestone, and after all the rocks and wood chips you’ve passed through your lips (and, if I’m not fast enough, your digestive tract), it’s hard to get too worked up about an Oreo crumb.
You have five teeth, and a sixth one is on the horizon. Your chubby little cheeks and legs are becoming less so as you burn calories crawling all over the place. You’re intrepid, curious, and not very cautious. You love to pull up against anything that will support you, and you often let go and stand with just one hand holding on. It’s not going to be long before you take off walking, I’m sure of it.
Photo by Beth Clarke
You’ve also started waving hello and goodbye, and Miles taught you to clap. You sign for more, not quite perfectly, but consistently enough that we know what you’re saying. One of my favorite things is when we’re in the car together, and I walk around to your side to get you out. As soon as you spot me through the window, you return my wave, and your beautiful smile shines out at me. Even when you’re tired or hungry, you always have a smile for me. You’re saying mama more and more, as well as dada, and (we think) bubbah to mean brother.
We just got back from our vacation to Breckenridge, Colorado. You got sick there, which was so sad. I think it was your first significant fever. You were sleepy during the day and cranky at night, you didn’t want to nurse or eat solids, and your sweet little face just wasn’t right. We also found out that you hate Tylenol and will spit it out. Also, like an idiot, I accidentally bought the pink kind instead of the dye-free kind, and it got all over your dad’s favorite green Obama shirt. Fortunately, I brought ibuprofen too, which you tolerated better. You healed up after a couple of days and returned to your normal jolly self. You loved splashing around in the swimming pool and examining trees on our hikes.
Then your brother got it.
While it wasn’t the worst vacation ever (we didn’t have to tie Aunt Edna to the roof of the car or anything), it would have been a lot better with healthy kids. Maybe next year will go more smoothly.
Oh crap, I just realized I forgot to buy more outlet covers when I was at the store earlier. Your infinite curiosity often settles on outlets, and I know you know you’re not supposed to mess with them. Today I saw you heading for one and leaned down to snatch you away, but before I could even get to you, you locked eyes with me and changed course. I’m glad you’re aware that you’re breaking the rules when you touch them, but something tells me that’s not going to dissuade you when you think you can get away with it.
You are such a stinker. You are a stinker, but you’re also a charmer, with your big blue eyes and generous smiles. You’re a Bill Clinton type, I’m afraid. I kind of wanted to name you Woodrow, after my favorite president, but your dad said no. In retrospect, he was probably right. You’re much more of a Clinton than a Wilson, insofar as a personality can be diagnosed in a ten-month-old. If you want to be a Rhodes scholar, that’s fine with me, but do remember that actions have consequences, and that a cherubic grin doesn’t solve every problem.
I am, of course, referring to the disastrous 1993 Battle of Mogadishu.
I love your adventurous spirit and sunny attitude, my sweet Tobin. You bring out the best in your brother, who can often be churlish with your dad and me, but almost never with you. I can’t imagine our family without you, because you have added so much laughter and joy and exhaustion to our gang. On the plus side, you’re finally learning to take longer naps. That’s helping with the exhaustion, even though you still do the occasional early morning Power Hour. You can quit with those whenever you want.
Have a good month, my wiggly puppy. Even if I get a sunburn on my face because you’ve blurpled off all my sunscreen, it will be worth it.
Photo by Denny Crall