In less than a month Niki will be a year old. My last little baby. There will be no more babies in my house. Sniff sniff. When Anna was his age I used to really look forward to her growing up, to the new milestones, the new achievements. And I have actually enjoyed her much more once she started walking and talking and doing the super smart and super cute things she does. But Niki is my Baby, the one who I don’t want to grow up so fast, the one I want to keep small enough to squish and squeeze and just keep inhaling his baby awesomeness. I’ve never ‘tracked’ any of his milestones, I haven’t fretted much over him, in fact we have been typical second time parents – letting him grow up on his own. We haven’t clicked so many pictures, I don’t share so many updates about him on Facebook, but we have enjoyed him so very, very much.
He’s almost walking now. He can cruise comfortably holding onto something and now needs only one finger to hold onto to walk well. His walking speed has really gone up too. Whenever he wants to go somewhere he’ll just take hold of a finger of the nearest person, say unh-unh-unh to the tune of ‘This old man’ and take off, leaving the said person scrambling behind him. He’s just not happy in one place any longer and wants to keep going around the house. He’s also really fascinated with the cupboards and drawers and stops when he crosses them and tries to open them. I have a feeling we’ll really need to baby proof this time around. He takes the lead while walking and goes in the direction he wants to. Gone are the days when we used to hold his hands and make him walk. He’s even started crawling a bit though he doesn’t like it much and only does it to go from one end of the carpet to the other to fetch some toy. If he wants to go further than that he’ll put up his hands and say unh-unh-unh. Meaning take my hand and help me walk.
He almost has one tooth now. His teeth are coming out even later than Anna’s. The bottom right tooth has broken the skin and is peeping out but is yet to fully come out. His eating habits are still good though not as good as I’d mentioned in the last update. He’s become really fussy about fruits and usually won’t eat more than a few bites a day. He even needs to be coaxed to finish his 2 ounces of juice. Current menu is bread/oats/scrambled egg for breakfast, fruit and juice after his morning nap, khichdi and dahi for lunch and sooji or daal-roti for dinner. In addition he’ll occasionally have a biscuit if he’s hungry. He also still wants to at least take a bite of whatever anyone else is eating. Yesterday I’d made pasta for Anna’s tiffin and tried to feed it to him for breakfast but he refused and had his oats instead. In the evening when I was eating the leftovers he insisted on tasting and then eating quite a good amount. Silly baby :). He drinks his formula without fuss, a bottle before his morning and afternoon naps and then 2-3 bottles at bedtime and through the night. We’ll be starting him on cow’s milk soon and hopefully he’ll like it. Anna recently became very fond of first custard-jelly and then just jelly. We used to make it every few days since there is very little stuff which she really likes. Niki used to see her eating the jelly and so we gave him a taste one day and he went crazy over it. After that whenever Anna was eating it he had to be either taken out of the room or given some for himself.
He’s started understanding quite a lot of stuff now. Correctly looks at various things in the house like fan, light, balcony (on being asked ‘pigeon kahan aata hai?’), painting, ball, eyes/nose/mouth etc. He gets so very excited when we come home and the latest person in has to pick him up. If R comes after me then he’s not happy even with me and keeps protesting till R doesn’t pick him up. He’s also started really playing with Anna. He gets excited and starts jumping the minute he sees her or hears her. Today morning Anna got up early and came to our bed and they really played nicely together for around half an hour. One more special thing he does is shake his head sideways vigorously as if saying no. He’s been doing this since he was a few months old. It looks really funny and people used to be quite surprised to see such a small baby shaking his head. I don’t think he used to do it to say no but a lot of the time he’d shake his head when he’d had enough to eat and didn’t want more.
Sleep is decent. Till 3-4 days ago he was taking two 1-1.5 hour naps a day. Then he’d go to sleep around 7:30 and get up for the day at around 5:30-6 (sometimes even earlier) and also get up 3-4 times in the night for the bottle/paci. He’s dropped his afternoon nap for the past 3 days. I don’t know whether this is temporary or he’s settling down to one nap a day. Anna was around 13-14 months old when she dropped her morning nap. The problem is that because he’s not sleeping in the afternoon he’s really sleepy in the evenings and is going down for the night just before 7. So he’s getting up a bit earlier in the mornings and is desperate for his morning nap by 8:30 (he is usually asleep by 9:15). If he’s really down to one nap then we need to try and delay the morning nap to at least 10 so he sleeps till 12 and is less sleepy in the evening.
He’s babbling a lot. He keeps making sounds and the favourites are mamama or ummaa. The maid who does the cleaning is called Uma and seems to be his favourite person in the whole world. Maybe because she is the person who gives him the least ‘bhaav’. She smiles at him and occasionally picks him up but she’s mostly busy with her work. The minute he sees her he starts off with his umma-umma and keeps looking at her all the time. He also says ta-ta-ta and unh-unh-unh to the tune of ‘This old man’ a lot. Says ba and waves his hand sometimes when someone says bye to him. Ask him to do peekaboo and he puts one hand on his head.
He doesn’t like the car much. Going out with him is tougher than it was with Anna. She used to mostly fall asleep in the car but Niki rarely does. He’ll keep jumping and pulling my hair and in general makes sure that we don’t get too comfortable. Even once we’ve reached he won’t be happy in his stroller (even though he sits happily in it for his evening outing), or our arms and keeps diving down to get on the floor.
Here he is, drinking tea. The minute he sees us drinking tea he tries his best to get his face into the cup. We usually let him take pretend sips once the we’ve drunk off a bit and it’s a bit cooler and then let him have the cup to play with once it’s finished. At which point he’ll either lose interest in it or try and bang it against something.