Most of this is old news, as I’m woefully behind on blogging stuff about Lennie. Late or not, here goes.
Around the 20th, we discovered that her two top teeth had broken through the surface. We noticed this at her first concert ever, a free show put on by Sundown in the City, an effort to revitalize the downtown area of Knoxville by bringing bands in to draw crowds. We saw a good local band named Dishwater Blonde and then part of sort of a funkish band whose name I don’t remember. This picture helps illustrate how much Lennie liked the concert.
I’ve taught her bad table manners by grunting and mmmming with satisfaction as I eat and as I feed her. She picked the habit right up and now lets us know when she wants something to eat by emphatically Mmmming. She’s not shy about going up to pretty much anybody who’s got food and begging.
A few weeks ago, she took four steps in a row, followed by four more later the same day. Then a few days later (when I was out of town for a week), it was 11 steps. Now, although crawling is still her favored and most efficient mode of transportation, she doesn’t think twice about walking around, and she’s very prone to do so if I take one of her hands. It amuses and delights me to take one of her hands and walk around the room with her, just daddy and Lou Lou taking a stroll.
She’s too big really to sleep on M (her favorite place to sleep) in a conventional baby posture, so she sometimes just lies down in M’s lap and winds up across her legs, with a couple of her own limbs hanging down. She looks like a sloth or a leopard or some sort of animal that you might find sleeping in a tree with limbs dangling. In other mommy-closeness news, Lennie loves to nurse in the tub. She’ll be sitting at the foot of the tub playing with her toys, and she’ll turn and grin at M. Then she’ll climb up M’s leg and dump herself onto M’s chest so she can reach to nurse. She nursed through a whole bath — hair-washing and all — the other day.
She’s a big kisser and I think understands the word kiss. In any case, she understands that if you smack your lips (that’s kind of how she kisses), she should smack hers too, and she’s pretty good about kissing her baby doll. She seems to understand that hugs and kisses are how we show affection, and so she’s getting better about giving out hugs and kisses, though they often wind up being more like headbutts. “Baby” is her favorite word right now (though she says it “bah-bah”), and she goes around proclaiming “bah-bah” for long periods at a time and seems very proud about it. All in all, she’s got I think 30 or 40 words now, some of them (maybe 9 or 10) very much a part of her daily repertoire and some of them just things she seems to understand but not utter or to use infrequently. M was reading the other day that your average kid knows maybe 3 or 4 words by this age.
Lennie’s a whiz at climbing stairs. She first did this a few weeks ago at Dave and Karen’s, demonstrating no trepidation at all and just charging up the stairs (with me trailing close behind). She’s generally very brave and hasn’t yet developed that very useful fear of falling, which makes co-sleeping sort of scary. She’s figured out that the red chair I got for her is in fact hers, and she loves to crawl around on it as if it’s a jungle gym (again, no trepidation about the danger of its tipping).
What else? She waves bye bye (has been for some time), she still loves swimming (assisted by mommy), she’s gotten very good at playing with her elephant shape sorter, though she still tends to need help figuring out which hole to put a given block in, she still dances like a mad fiend, she still (less frequently than before) talks on the phone earnestly, and she’s started reading her books aloud, in much the same fashion that she talks on the phone (using a different voice and intonation, as we do when reading to her).
In 20 days, she’ll be a year old. This is impossible for me to comprehend.