Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Eight months with Silas...

“If one feels the need of something grand, something infinite, something that makes one feel aware of God, one need not go far to find it. I think that I see something deeper, more infinite, more eternal than the ocean in the expression of the eyes of a little baby when it wakes in the morning and coos or laughs because it sees the sun shining on its cradle.”
-Vincent van Gogh

As mentioned in the last post, we started the month with pink eye and ear infections. Sickness seemed to hover over our heads for a couple of weeks. But the highlight of the month was our family vacation to Richmond, VA for the World Cycling Championship races. We urban-hiked/rode in the stroller over 40 miles as we cheered on the cyclists for three straight days. Silas was a great little tagalong for the whole adventure (minus the one night in the hotel when he uncharacteristically screamed for an hour at bedtime).

What's Silas up to?
Oh my, Silas is really mobile now! No longer can we leave him somewhere and expect him to stay put. He's even learned to flop onto his belly from sitting... it's not pretty and maybe a little bit dangerous as he dives headfirst into the floor, but it's effective.

He is fast with his army crawl. Usually he grunts with every scoot forward so you can hear him coming, but sometimes I look up and he is halfway across the house. His little rocking chair sits in between the living area and the kitchen, and while it's never directly in his path, he always chooses to go under it, rather than around it. Unfortunately he's ruining onesies as he mops up the floor with every scoot.

He has also started dropping things to watch them fall. This is both amazing to watch the wheels turn in his head and maddening to keep picking up the same toy over and over again or to watch all of his food land on the floor rather than his mouth.

Silas is a good little eater. We usually feed him bits of our dinner; he picks out the pieces of meat to eat first. I let the daycare start feeding him breakfast and lunch, until one evening when he projectile vomited it all back up (in the car on the way to Richmond!). Rob and I feel really uncomfortable with how processed the daycare food options are (beef-a-roni and strawberry Pop Tarts, for example), so I've decided to pack fresh fruits and veggies for him for the time being.

Silas is certainly a Mama's boy these days. Daddy is okay, but only if he isn't reminded that Mama isn't around. Luckily he seems to be okay at daycare drop-off, but he has cried through his stays in the church nursery the last couple of weeks, and they even paged me to come get him one morning (so fun to teach Sunday School while simultaneously trying to calm a baby). Although one day when he was hanging out with me at work while he was sick, we discovered that he can be comforted by someone else with long hair (he must associate the long hair with me).

A week after the ear infections cleared up, I got called to come pick Silas up from daycare because he had a fever again. The pediatrician couldn't find a reason for the fever; however a few days later, two bottom teeth popped through on the same day. Poor baby! No wonder he's been so grumpy.

While at the doctor's office, she did diagnose both of us with thrush (Silas had a rash in his diaper area and white patches in his mouth; I had the bright pink and bleeding nipples.) Luckily we may have caught it early, and after ten days of antifungal meds, we seemed to be symptom-free. (Funny sidenote: I had to wrestle Silas down to give him the oral medicine in each cheek for the first week. But on days 8-10, he just opened his mouth and took it like it was candy.)

Even more firsts this month... first music class at church, first time sitting in the grocery cart, first Georgia Tech game on TV, first clapping, first trip to the pumpkin patch, first solid poop!

From Mama's perspective...
Although I'm trying hard to stay present this year as a part of my "one little word" inspiration, it was all I could do not to wish away the weeks when we were under the weather. And, yet, Silas was still learning and growing and doing all of the cute things that I want to remember forever, so I tried to live in the moment as much as I could.

The daycare food situation brought on all of the anxiety this month. I'm really uncomfortable that Silas' environment during the day is so different than what it would be with me at home. I've been trying to decide if it's just a control issue (isn't parenting just a giant exercise in letting go of control?) or if there's something to genuinely be concerned about. It makes me second guess all of my "motherly intuitions" and makes me feel very unsure and haphazard about the parenting philosophies we ascribe to (I even feel unqualified to use the word "philosophy" to describe the decisions we've made). I'm determined to check out a few different childcare options next month, but I'm afraid that it will all just be more of the same.

This month I've been trying to put together/wrap up a big project for church. It feels a bit thrown together at the moment, as the direction of the project was decided much later than I would have liked. My time for creative endeavors is so much more difficult to plan these days (I can't just drop everything to chase a creative idea, nor can I schedule aha moments to emerge during naptime), and without a generous lead time, I feel really stressed. Luckily I think I will get it done in time and hopefully it will look polished to the outside eye, but this is not how I like to work.

A few of his favorites...

  1. MULA Shape Sorter :: Silas will scoot across the room fast when this toy catches his eye. He loves banging the plastic pieces together and on the wooden box. We are no where close to matching shapes, but there are two pieces of each color and each shape, which in the years ahead will provide many potential games/learning activities.
  2. Mini Acorn moccasins :: These adorable moccasins were one of the first purchases I made when I found out that I was pregnant last summer. I'm so tickled that now there are baby feet to fill them. We've only recently begun to wear shoes (and then, only every now and then), but he will keep them on for pretty much the whole day. 
  3. Haba Allegro Stacking Ball :: Silas likes to play "catch" with us. We're not sure if he "gets" the game yet, but when we toss this ball into his lap, he will bat it away, sometimes back towards us. Just like his other favorite (Fisher-Price Rock-a-Stack), the rings of this ball come apart leaving a center core. And, even better about this toy are the fabric tag that he likes to grab hold of and the crinkly sound that the end piece makes.
  4. Melissa & Doug First Bead Maze :: I had heard mixed reviews about bead mazes and whether kids actually played with them. However, when I found this one at the thrift store for $2, I went ahead and bought it. This model is just the right size for Silas at this age; he can hold onto the metal wires and spin the beads around. He doesn't quite get the idea that beads move from one side to the other, but he will push the beads down, if I get them started for him.
  5. Just One You Made by Carter's Boys' 6pk Month Socks :: Totally an impulse buy at Target. But the boy was in need of socks. These make for the cutest photo ops.


  1. Hi Jana, your mom & my mom (Sandy Johnston) are friends, and I found your blog through her. I wonder if you've looked at the Montessori method or Montessori schools. It seems like they would mesh well with your parenting style. I have a good friend who uses the Montessori method at her house. She has a 16-month-old right now, and so maybe you might find her ideas is helpful with Silas as he gets older. Her blog is www.thekavanaughreport.com. My own kids (5 & 2) are in a Montessori school and just love it. Anyway, I just wanted to share in case you found it helpful. Happy parenting!

  2. Hi Susan! Funny you should mention that! I just visited/toured a Montessori school this morning... and loved it! They start preprimary with 1-year-olds at that school, so that may be the way we choose to go next spring. Thanks for the blog recommendation... I can't wait to delve into the archives even now to supplement our "afterschooling" activities!

  3. I love seeing the updates each month and can't wait to hold that little guy in a couple of weeks!!!! I appreciate your candidness in voicing both your joys and frustrations in a public way--that is never easy. But, mostly, I hope that you will trust your instincts---you and Rob are amazing parents and Silas is so lucky to have you both! Love you!


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