Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Month Five

Penelope Catherine,

You are five months old! I know I have said it every month, but, impossibly, you keep getting more and more fun, and my love for you continues to grow.

This month was a little respite from travel and visitors; as much as we love seeing our friends and family, it was nice to have some quiet time at home, just the three of us. 

Your eating is still great - 6 times per day, ten minutes per time. You did have a few days at the end of the month which had you waking up to eat at night and eating more during the day. I was pretty sure that you were having a growth spurt, and then it was confirmed by the fact that you gained 1.5lbs in 20 days!  You are a poster child for a fat, happy, breastfed baby. You are still getting a dreamfeed around 9:30pm each night, though at this point it is really more for me. I know I could wean you off it, but I love those final minutes of the day with you nursing sleepily and then snuggling up against my shoulder, fully content. It's going by so quickly, and I am reticent to let this last little piece of your newborn days go.

You had your first cold this month, and, while it was nothing serious (low grade fever, stuffy nose), it was so pitiful to see you not feeling like your normal self. All you wanted to do was nurse and be held, which I was happy to oblige. It took you a full week until you were feeling great again. 

Now, an update on your sleep. Oh, your sleep. At the very beginning of this month (August 28th) you slept through the night without even needing the pacifier. We thought it was a fluke, but it was like a switch flipped and from that night on you have been sleeping from 6:30pm until anywhere between 6:30 - 7:30am without so much as a peep. Which is lovely, because your day sleep has really gone to hell in a handbasket.

To be honest, I was kind of expecting it with everything I read about month four/five sleep being hard. Between your mastery of rolling over, your want to be with mama all the time, and us trying to figure out if you are ready to be weaned off the swaddle (spoiler alert: no, no you are not), it's no wonder you've had a hard time staying asleep during the day. Basically, I have been calling your Aunt Sarah on a daily basis making her promise me that this is just a phase. I have just started to assume you will nap for 30 minutes, so that way those (rare) 1.5 hour naps are just a lovely surprise. We are slowly weaning you off the swaddle; right now you are still swaddled for naps and nighttime with one arm out to give you access to your thumb.

This month you have become a Mama's girl. It sets my heart on fire to see you light up when I come into the room - you smile and kick your legs and reach out for me, and then when I pick you up you will grab onto me so tightly and bury your face in my neck. You also started babbling "ma ma ma," and though I know it is just babbling and not intentional, you do manage to implement it at very opportune moments, like when you want me to get you out of your crib. Clever girl. I started carrying you on my hip this month, which made you seem that much more grown up - no cradle hold for this big girl! You are happy to be toted around like my little baby sidekick for hours on end. Of course, you still love your Daddy and can't take your eyes off of him when he is anywhere in your line of sight. When we are in the bed and you are nursing, you will frequently fling your arm behind you to pat him and make sure he is right there beside you. 

Month five has been a huge one for you developmentally. You are laughing and rolling across the room and starting to babble sounds and almost sitting up on your own and reaching for us when you want to be picked up. When you do something that makes your Daddy and I laugh, you get so proud of yourself and start smiling your biggest smile and kicking your legs and looking back and forth between us to make sure we are still watching you.

When you see something you want, you will barrel roll across the room to get it. I lost you momentarily under the coffee table when I turned around to get my coffee. You want so badly to be able to scoot, but right now you just balance on your belly and kick your legs and wave your arms.  Soon enough, sweet girl. 

You have started showing more stranger anxiety this month. You are happy and outgoing with people you know, but it takes you some time to warm up to anyone new. You scrutinize new people with a stone-faced stare until you decide that are worthy of your silly baby antics, and then you will smile and chatter away.

You have weaned yourself completely off the pacifier and now only use it as a chew toy. When you are done chewing on it, you will fling it across the room. You suck your thumb to soothe yourself, but only when you are falling asleep or when you are very tired. 

Penelope, as these months are ticking by and you are becoming more and more like a little person, I spend so much time thinking about the dreams I have for you and how to help you grow to be everything you want to be. And though my list of hopes for you is long and the list of ways I want to try to be your best Mama is endless, I think both can be summed up in this: I hope you know that you are loved. That your Daddy and I love you with a depth and breadth that you cannot begin to understand. That there is nothing you can ever do that will rock the steadfastness of that love. I hope that our love seeps into every fiber of your being and gives both courage and comfort for your whole life.

Every lovely thing you are so wildly eclipses even my loftiest dreams, but none of those are the reasons I love you. I love you simply because you are here and you are mine. 

Happy five months, my baby girl. 


Five Month Stats
Weight: 16lbs, 5oz (81st percentile)
Clothing: 6 month, a few 3 - 6 month dresses
Diapers: 2 snaps open in the middle during the day, 3 snaps open in the middle at night
Eating: 6 times per day, 10 minutes per time
Things you love: Bathtime, Mama, playing on the floor, playing outside, going for walks in the stroller, when Daddy walks in the door, Fletcher, playing in your high chair.
Things you don't love: Naps, long trips in the car.
Slept through the night without pacifier: August 28
Babbling "ma ma ma": September 8
Milestones: Sitting up unassisted for short bursts, rolling everywhere, reaching to be picked up, babbling "ma ma."


  1. I love reading your updates on your sweet girl. I wish we lived closer to each other and we could meet up for playdates :) She is just so beautiful and you can see her personality through the pictures. I just want to squeeze those sweet cheeks!!