Thursday, January 2, 2014

Two months old

Dear Annika,

Today you are two months old. I am pretty sure this is the start of my favorite age.

Just in the last week or so, it feels like you've turned from a birdlike, blobby newborn into a chunky, adorable BABY. You've started looking less alien-like and you've become much more aware and interactive. I remember with your brother looking back at photos of him and thinking I didn't really recognize him until he was about two months old--and now I see why. Apparently this is the age where something clicks and you turn into the first version of your future self, if that makes sense.


In the last couple weeks you have become significantly more smiley and more vocal. You like to coo softly, especially when we talk to you--you fix your eyes on our faces and make all sorts of vowel-y noises back to us. You have given big grins to me, your dad, and your brother--and recently you also smiled at a stranger for the first time because she smiled at you first. You watch us when we walk around, and smile when we come in the room and you first catch sight of us. I've noticed that you are especially smiley for me compared to other people, and I have to say I love that. It's a refreshing change to be your favorite after your brother was obsessed with your dad from the start.

Of course it's too early to really know what your personality is going to be like, but so far you seem mellow and also kind of... reserved? Or somehow even-keeled, for a baby. You don't give up your smiles easily, and while you certainly express displeasure if something is wrong, it seems to take a lot to make you upset. I am very curious to see if this is a personality trait that will bear out over time or if you're just focused on learning about your world for now.

You remain a calm, easy to please baby. By now you really enjoy your activity mat, and will lie there waving your arm and legs, batting and cooing at your toys, for quite some time. You don't love tummy time, but your little neck and core are quite strong by now, and you can hold your head and shoulders up indefinitely during it. Recently we've noticed some grunty thrashing that seems like it may be the precursor to attempts to roll over, but I think actual rolling is still a ways away. You're also content to sit in your bouncy seat or your swing, or just hang out on our laps, looking around.

It seems like you're starting to notice your brother a little bit, too. You watch him intently when he comes in the room, and sometimes you smile at him even when he hasn't smiled at you first. He's very interested in you too, and likes to hold your hand and stroke your head and give you kisses. Seeing the two of you together just kills me with sweetness.

You're still sleeping great. Your nighttime stretches are getting longer--we can almost always count on your first stretch of the night lasting six or seven hours, and twice now you've done a full 10-11 hour stretch overnight, which has been amazing. Swaddling you really matters, and once I figured out that I should swaddle you for naps and not just at night, you started taking one or two really long (3-4 hour) naps each day.

You're still growing like crazy. You're fully in 0-3 month clothing at this point, and while your two-month well-visit isn't until next week so I don't have official measurements, my amateur home attempts put you at 13 pounds (86th percentile according to my Baby Connect app) and 23.5 inches (90th percentile). You still nurse before every bottle, and are eating close to 25 ounces of formula per day. I get the feeling that 3-6 month clothing is in our not-too-distant future.

I have to say, I worried a bit about the transition from one kid to two--I'd heard that it was one of the hardest, because it limits your lifestyle more than just one kid. But so far we haven't experienced that at all. You fit so beautifully and easily into our lives. It feels like you should have always been here, because you fit so perfectly, and we didn't even know it--but we needed you so much.


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