I started this post last night, and it was interrupted when I dashed across the room to grab something dangerous away from Carter... and broke my toe. So we spent our Saturday night at Urgent Care, unfortunately. On the bright side, Carter was amazingly patient, considering that we dragged him out at 7:30 pm and didn't get him home to bed until almost 11:00!
One of the great things about him is that he is a very social baby and loves to go out. If he's fussy and whiny, a sure cure for it is to take him outside to look at nature, or to take him to a busy place where he can see lots of people and action. So happily, he was fascinated enough by everything he saw at the Urgent Care center and in the little room we were stuck in for a while to keep him mostly entertained.
I fractured one of the bones in my right pinky toe, and there isn't much you can do about that but keep it taped to the next toe and wait for it to heal. I can't put any weight on it yet -- it's amazing how much you use that little tiny toe to walk. I have crutches, and we've moved down to the guest bedroom on the first floor for a while. The sad thing is that I won't be able to carry Carter around or help him walk much for a couple of weeks. Fortunately he's pretty mobile now and can follow me around.
Carter is really busy these days, and it's so much fun to watch. He's crawling all over the place, and pulling up on everything. If he had his way, he would spend most of his time standing. Even when his legs get tired, he'll keep standing. This is a cute video I took the other day that shows him standing by his toy box, falling down, and pulling up again. I also caught something on this video I'd been hoping to catch for a while: Carter saying "kee" for kitty!
Here are a few pictures from the last few days. On New Year's Eve we went out to a Japanese teppan-yaki restaurant, which was where we went on our first date -- 20 years ago exactly! We dressed Carter up for the occasion, and he really liked watching all the action.
He ate really well too. He especially liked the steak, as always, but he tried some scallop, veggies, and fried rice as well.
I wrote a bit about his mobility above; here are a few pictures of him getting around the house. Here he is in the kitchen, a space he's just discovered. I think he will be underfoot while we're cooking from now on. The space we've baby-proofed is our living area, which is open to the kitchen, and there's really no way of keeping him out of it.
Here he is playing on Doug's briefcase:
He's starting to get used to a little independence, which is cute, but also really brings out his stubborn side. ;-)
He's just hit the stage where he really, really fights going to sleep. Everything I've read says that this is totally normal for babies who are working on standing and walking, and after doing some reading about it, I think it isn't as bad as it could be. He doesn't wake up any more than normal at night, but it's suddenly gotten a lot harder to get him to sleep, especially at night. It's like he's afraid he'll miss something if he goes to sleep, so he fights really hard to keep himself awake. If Doug and I both lie down with him, he'll actually go to sleep pretty quickly. I guess he figures the night is over at that point.
The single biggest lesson I have learned as a parent this year is that any behavior, whether negative or positive, is only going to last a short while. If he's happy and content to play on the floor, I should enjoy it while it lasts. If he's fussy and fighting sleep, it will change soon enough. There's not much I can do but support him and help him ride it out.
The mantra I keep repeating to myself is that when he's fussy, he is communicating to me in the only way he knows how that he is struggling with something and needs help. That helps me push my impatience aside, I've found. Sometimes he just needs to be reassured that I'm there while he struggles with something, and sometimes he needs more attention. Surprisingly, I feel like I am getting really good at figuring out what he needs!
Now if only my toe would heal super-quick...