Astrid at 9 months

designI’ve been so incredibly crap at keeping records of what Astrid has learnt and how much she has grown. I was brilliant at this when Iris was tiny, so obviously I’m feeling all guilty and like I haven’t loved my children equally. So ridiculous!

This year has been such a whirlwind. There has been so much chaos and I’ve been so exhausted, but there’s also been so much fun and laughter. Astrid has completed our already rather huge family and she has bought us all so much joy. And stress too, of course.

She was such an easy newborn. She slept when I put her down. She was really laid back, portable, easy to feed and really cuddly. Once she started smiling she didn’t stop for a while, and seemed so jolly. Then she went through a leap or something and screamed almost non stop for a few months. It pushed me right to the edge and I’m not ashamed to admit that I briefly wasn’t coping at all.

All of sudden, out of nowhere, jolly Astrid came back. Thank goodness.

She’s rarely without a smile now. She has such a round squishy face and big deep dimples in her cheeks. Her fluffy blonde hair quite often sticks up in a happy sort of way, and she just lights up a room. She’s much rounder than Iris was as a baby, and Trevor often says she’s ‘a dollop of baby, like somebody got a big spoon and scooped her out of a tub of baby and dolloped her there’. I can’t argue with that.

Breastfeeding her has been so easy, especially in comparison to how feeding Iris was. She’s never done the cluster feeding thing, or the feeding for hours on end thing. She’s efficient and when she’s done she’s done. Feeding her solids has been so easy too. She loves food. Like Iris, she won’t be spoon fed. She absolutely refuses to be helped in any way. She hates mushy purée type stuff, much preferring stuff she can hold. She literally stuffs handfuls of food in her face, and makes happy ‘yom yom yom’ noises the whole time she’s eating.

She’s been mobile for a while now, and crawls all around at high speed. She pulls herself up to standing too, much to Iris’s disgust. She can reach toys even when Iris attempts to put them out of her reach. We’ve had to go back to being careful what we put on the coffee table, and once I forgot which ended with Astrid wearing a cup full of pink milkshake. I have a feeling she will walk earlier than Iris did, and honestly I’d rather she didn’t. She’s growing up far too fast for my liking!

She has two teeth now, and has started biting me when she’s breastfeeding. Ouch!

Just this weekend, she’s started saying ‘Dada’ and seems to know it’s the word for Trevor. If he leaves the room or she can’t see him she’ll call ‘daaaada’ until he returns.

Unlike Iris as a baby, Astrid likes her sleep. By this age I’m sure Iris had started having two naps per day a roughly the same time. Astrid has lots of naps and is completely unpredictable. She’s usually asleep much earlier in the evening than Iris used to be. Sometimes she’s ready for bed as early as 6:30! At the moment she’s struggling with a cold and her teeth so isn’t sleeping as well, but usually she only wakes once or twice a night for a quick feed and then goes straight back to sleep.

On the whole, she’s now a pretty easy baby to look after. She’s clearly not going to let being the youngest of 4 girls affect her, and already knows how to make sure she gets lots of attention. She’s a joy to be around (apart from when she’s angry – poor thing has my temper!) and has filled a hole we didn’t know was there. Her relationship with Iris is beautiful, and I’m enjoying watching it develop. I’m a bit shocked that bickering starts so young, but when they play together it’s so lovely to see.

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