Okay, get ready to be amazed. Here is Zack playing with a ball, and well, you may actually hear him say, "Ball." Also, brace yourself for the face plant at the end of this segment. I know that's a little rough, but I think it shows a lot about how he's been doing lately. The crying from any little stumble like that only lasts a few seconds. Jeff and I both have the same philosophy of reacting to that stuff, which is to make sure there's a complete lack of drama. So even though inside we're thinking, "Poor Zack!" And then, "Awww...he looks adorable when he's upset!" we only say, "Yes, you took a little spill," or something like that. Then, it's no big deal, and playing resumes immediately.
Marc makes Zack laugh. Sometimes. Other times,
Marc makes Zack look confused.
Jeff is off for most of this week, and I'm on Spring Break. So we've been taking care of some business around the house and playing with Zack. We've been trying to deal with child proofing. First priority: securing the cables on our new television! We're so practical.
The other night, I got the last bit of the internet madness fixed, and I was ecstatic to have a fast connection. So there I was surfing the internet, while Jeff perused the new TV's features. This lasted for maybe three hours. Then we looked up from our respective screens. It's a happy marriage, folks!
Oh, and I cannot believe I haven't been shouting this from the rooftops. We had three hours to ourselves because Zack is sleeping through the night!!!
Forgive the indulgence with the exclamation points. But really, three is not enough. We did it! We night weaned him, and then we had one rough night of checkins with some crying. But the second night, we did not even have to check in once! He's sleeping on his own and he can get himself back to sleep if he wakes up.
It's like a miracle. I'm soooo proud of him. And of us.
I still kind of miss sleeping with him, but in his new phase as a mobile baby, he will not drift off peacefully. As long as there is someone there to play with him, he will play and play until he drops. And then he won't actually drop. He'll just keep playing with his eyes half shut. He's actually fallen asleep several times now, sitting up in his crib. So it's just not possible to co-sleep at this point. Fortunately, bed time is great now. Since we tackled that a few months back, he goes down very easy and just babbles in the crib for a bit.
Now that I'm with him in the mornings, I'm also realizing he's waaaaay off on naps. I've been pretty mellow about naps and scheduling. But I guess Zack never takes one in the morning at daycare, since he's so busy playing. At home, he has been napping by the book. So we have to fix that! I didn't want to get uptight about the nap stuff, but now I'm thinking the kid's been somewhat chronically sleep deprived. Whenever I pick him up, he just crashes in the car. It's suboptimal.
Today I put him down for his first nap, and when I checked on him, he was on his feet, looking in the closet door mirrors, jumping up and down. It was awesome. Then he started to fuss, and I did do a little soothing and nursing, and he slept for two whole hours. So clearly he does need a mid-morning nap. He just has to be absolutely convinced that he needs it. I'm not sure if daycare can actually fix this one, but I'm going to work with them on it.
This was Mommy's birthday party! This is an odd picture, but I like it because it gives an idea of the general chaotic vibe. Pictured are Jessie (with Duncan inside the yellow shirt), the back of Tekla's head, Bruce, Zack, Julie, Marc, Darlene and Kelly, Stephanie and Birdie, Sarah and Lucy...and maybe some extras from the gigantic party for a one-year-old at the next tables over. Turns out if you're a Mexican toddler, our local park is the place to be on your birthday! Marion managed to snag a spot for us.
Natalie managed to get her butt in the baby swing. I'm not sure if there's an award for this, but there should be.
Marion and Jason. I just think this is a nice picture of them. As you can see, we had fantastic weather for the party. Unfortunately, Baby Wes decided that the party was optimal nap time and had to leave.
Since I'm off work, we took Zack to infant and toddler story time at the local library. I can usually not make this event, since I'm working. It was really fun, even though it was total chaos! Zack had a great time. One LA note: many nannies were there. I know I keep mentioning the Hispanic population where we live, but it is interesting to see a 40-year-old Guatemalan woman with a little tow-headed baby. We just looked at a house a block away from us--it cost close to a million dollars. And at our local park, I often see $900 strollers. So that's where we live, in an apartment that for some mysterious reason is one of the least expensive in all of LA. Oh wait, I think I figured out the mysterious reason: it's kinda crappy. But cute!
Another thing I learned at infant and toddler story time is that Mommy is a SAP. Yep. When the librarian was singing the shake your body song, at the end part, where you shake your body and walk around and say hello to your new friends...well, I almost lost it. I loved seeing all those little babies walk around and say hi to each other.
I had a similar reaction at Avery's birthday party. Avery's brother, Jack was grousing and crying about how he wanted a certain seat. Avery did not want to wear her birthday crown. Robyn couldn't get the lighter to work to light the candle on the cake. It looked like there would just be a complete implosion at this key point in the party. And then the candle got lit and everyone sang Happy Birthday, and guess who almost started crying? It just seemed so cool--family life!
After story time, we took Zack south to the Citadel Outlets, located at the intersection of the Five Freeway and all my memories from childhood. We used to pass this place every trip to LA from Orange. It looks like a giant Babylonian temple. It's now a mall. I had never, ever been inside until yesterday!
We had to get Zack some clothes. Until now, we haven't had to buy him really anything, but we were almost completely out of PJs that did not fit him like a tight little sausage casing. And Elsa, his main lady at daycare, doesn't like to dress him in tight pants. We got him six pairs of "Roomy Comfy" pants for a two-year-old at the Carter's outlet store.
Chocolate mousse cake we had yesterday.
And I had today. For breakfast.
My "It's my birthday so I can eat anything" mentality
has been in effect since Sunday.
Jeff went to pick up food and picked up a ball for Zack, which was a hit! He spent the entire visit at my folk's throwing this thing and then chasing it around and talking. So much fun for $1.09!
So yesterday was story time, outlet shopping, and visit to my family. AND, in the morning, we heard a new word. We really could not get over this one. As I was leaving our room to get the phone, I could have sworn I heard Zack say, "Water." He was playing with Jeff's water bottle. Water bottles are probably his second favorite toy, after this new ball.
Jeff said, "Did he just say water?" Then we heard it several more times! The weird thing is that I was getting the phone to call Arrowhead Water and straighten out our order for today. So Zack kept saying, "Water!" and messing up the phone interaction with the Arrowhead robot customer service system.
Later, Jeff was filling up Zack's sippy cup, and Zack again said, "Water!" It was so clear. The feeling of amazement I have when I hear this is totally disorienting. Jeff said, "Yeah, it's like seeing a ghost or an extraterrestrial creature or something. Like something you've heard about but never believed in." And that's really it. I knew the kid would talk, but seriously? He's talking?
He doesn't seem to accumulate words yet. We hear these things, and then the next day it feels like we dreamt it, because he doesn't repeat himself. Today we heard "Mama" again clearly. But it's not like he starts using a word and then continues using it regularly. It's still like a flicker, like we're getting some flash of reception from far away, and then back to jumbled static. Except the jumbled static is actually still pretty charming.
Here's some fun footage of Zack trying to stand. He is so determined. He has also started cruising along furniture. I have written a lot in this post because this video takes for-EV-ah to load. So I hoped you enjoyed my chatty run down of the last few days.
Freaking finally...video's loaded!
Oh, and one more thing. I've pretty much been thinking all along I would nurse Zack for the full first year, and I still believe we'll get there. Nursing has been easy and enjoyable, for the most part. I'm just sick of pumping at work, and I'm finding I want a little personal space back. But yesterday, he bit Mommy soooo hard that he actually broke the skin, and I bled onto my shirt. It was a pretty bad scene. I had to hand him over to Jeff right away, because I was so upset. I think I actually said, "You little bastard," which is something of a low blow, since you know, Zack really is a bastard. But in a good way. So I'm less inclined to believe we will go past one year of nursing, and more and more I'm thinking we'll get him onto cow's milk in a couple months and I will pack up the nay nays. But we'll see!