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Thursday, December 01, 2005
Monday Al took Jack to story time at the local library. Yesterday was
her Mother’s group lunch. Today she invited over a lady (and her new
daughter) from our antenatal class. Tomorrow Jack and Al are off to
visit a previous work colleague, and then are catching up with some of
Al’s Family. She is certainly ensuring he is well socialised.
She has been re-reading some of the books we have on child development
and play time. Jack is staying up for longer periods of time during the
day, and Al was finding her routine and bag of tricks was sometimes
coming up short. She came away with more ideas and different positions
to put Jack in which are meant to help him develop his balance and motor
skills. She said he enjoyed his first experiences. I have to give her
credit for the effort she is making, Jack seems to be thriving on it.
After a long gap, Jack has suddenly started rolling onto his side again.
I say start, but I suspect he never stopped. He is doing it with such
ease and a nonchalantly air; suggesting it was common practise at night
when he was alone in his cot.
He has also gone back to sleeping in his cot more of the night, and even
managed to skip the 11pm feed for three nights in a row. Of course last
night he was up every 3 hours, and I know he is sleeping on Al this
evening. We can’t assume anything with the little guy. (He seems to have
picked up the recalcitrant trait from his mother...)
Posted by Doug at 12:06 AM
The Federal Government currently has control of both lower and upper
houses of parliament. They have been using this power to push through
laws with what appears to me to be a lack of considered and careful
debate. Some of these laws take away long held rights and freedoms, and
leave individual’s to hope and trust in the good will of the
authorities, with little other recourse.
I have been horrified at how some of these new laws are open to abuse,
and can honestly say I feel less safe in my own country because of them.
The media reports on the errors of those in authority daily – something
I think we should acknowledge and put appropriate safe guards in place
for. While I worry for the individual who might get inappropriately
caught up in these new laws, I don’t honestly think the current
Government will abuse them widely.
I wonder however what will happen in the changing climate of the future.
I wonder at what sort of governance Jack will have to live within. I
wonder at what effects the laws I see today will have on the life Jack
will lead tomorrow.
Posted by Doug at 9:01 AM
Sunday, December 04, 2005
Between activities, visits, and visitors, it has
been a very busy week on the social front. On the whole Jack held up
very well to it all. He certainly enjoys all the stimulation – but he
gets a little over stimulated/tired on occasion. He has slept a lot
over last 2 days - we suspect it was his way of recovering from the
overload. (It has also helped me have some recovery time.) A reminder
though that where possible I need to stick to my original plan of
limiting outings to one per day, and keeping at least one quiet week day
and weekend day at home. That seems to be a better balance for both of
us instead of cramming too many outings in.
At the mother's group restaurant lunch on Tuesday
I could have sworn Jack was on a sugar high, but I couldn't think what I
had eaten that may have caused it. I later realised a honey and nut bar
was the likely culprit. Imagine a small kid on red cordial and this was
a similar effect. Jack has a range of activities that are amusing to us
at home but when all combined must have been quite a sight - sucking on
my nose and chin, pulling my hair, bouncing crazily on my shoulder, legs
kicking wildly when on my lap, loud happy squeals, and deliriously happy
smiles throughout. I had ordered a drink and the first time I went to
take a sip Jack grabbed at the glass and sent liquid flying. The waiters
went scurrying to get me napkins. The second time I ventured to have a
sip he grabbed the straw out and waved it wildly about spraying liquid
everywhere - first time I've ever seen him do anything like this.
When I put him up next to one of the other mothers
to chat to her and her son, he reached in and grabbed her 'food source'
- much to her surprise. (It is too early for us to try to explain to him
that this is not sociably acceptable behaviour - although perhaps some
males would think he should make the most of being able to get away with
It was the first time the other mothers had
observed all this sort of behaviour in him and they couldn't quite
believe it - nothing like their own babies. They decided that Jack has
lost the 'golden boy' title to Lachlan, who seems a quieter more
reflective boy than Jack at his boisterous best.
The 3 girls have their own versions of loud
squeals, but none seem to have Jack's active bouncing and kicking
habits. At least this week involved happy interactions between the
babies with none of them in tears after the interactions.
Jack currently really likes touching our faces and
hair. When I feed him, he often pats my face then puts his fingers in my
mouth for me to suck on for the duration of the feed (which was another
thing that took the mothers by surprise, and rather limits my ability to
chat). He also likes to hold my hair when he is going to sleep, and
sometimes just giving him my hair to hold means he is asleep calmly
within a couple of minutes. I wonder whether it is like a 'security
blanket' or perhaps he thinks that if he has hold of my hair, I won't
put him down while he sleeps. (Which is mostly true since I still hold
him while he sleeps during the day while I watch TV shows, read, or
sleep myself.) Of course sometimes he doesn’t calmly hold my hair
–instead giving it a good yank, which can be rather painful! My hair is
one of his favourite toys at the moment. I swish and sweep it back and
forth over him while he gleefully swipes and grabs at it. The length of
that game tends to depend on how hard he is ends up yanking on the hair.
Posted by Al at 10:25 PM
Monday, December 05, 2005
Jack supervises as his bath is filled.
Within a couple months Jack had grown out of his baby bath. (Or more
accurately, he splashed too much water out of it.) Since we don’t have
a bath in the house, we had to move him up into the spa. This involves
one of us sitting in the 1/4 filled spa holding him, which is not overly
ideal, but half amusing. Initially Jack delighted in kicking off the
spa edge, then migrated to furious splashing, and then more recently has
concentrated on just sucking his toes. Just recently he has gone back
to furious splashing.
Posted by Doug at 8:46 PM
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Jack is 5 months old today - and is thriving and
A few observations
- He is starting to reach out and grab at things
around him, such as toys lying besides or behind his head. He has
enjoyed looking at himself in the mirror for quite awhile, but has just
starting to reach out for his reflection with a big grin on his face. I
took him Christmas shopping in the Baby Carrier on Monday, and had to
make sure he didn't pull anything off the shelves. I also have to be
careful that nobody rushes past into his arms when they are reaching out.
- He is getting harder to hold as he is so wriggly
and active. He is full of energy, and enjoys kicking his legs up and
down a lot – laying on the ground, in his rocker, his cot, the change
tables, and even on my shoulders.
- He seems to enjoy pushing down on his bum and
the back of his head, arching his back, and looking back up at me while
in my lap.
- He has started making a few new noises in past
few days - ba, pa, aboo, boo-p, boo-ba (a couple of these sound rather
like what we call his food time...)
- At his weigh in yesterday he was 7.6kgs (so now
more than double his birth weight!) and 69cms (19cms more than when born)
- His cradle cap and the scratchfest seems to have
stopped in past few weeks; since his hair has grown longer. Hopefully
that is now behind us, with him only getting the odd short term rash
here and there. He is looking really beautiful at the moment with clear
skin and soft blonde hair.
- He is starting to outgrow some of 00 clothes and
moving into 0 clothes
- Jack was a good host for mother's group
afternoon tea yesterday, and was on his best behaviour for most of it.
When lying on the ground next to Kiara he threw a few toys over to her.
He gave Liana an appreciative look in her flowery dress and frilly
underwear! Lachlan and Jack put behind their differences this week and
happily played side by side in their rockers - we looked down at one
stage to see them holding hands (oohhh). The babies all enjoyed lying in
a circle while we posed them for some photos, and were all looking
around at each other and arms out reaching to each other.
2 minutes later…
I had just finished typing the last post and went
back to find Jack on his tummy on the activity mat, with his legs either
side of the mirror (so think he might have used that for leverage!) So
first time he has rolled from back to tummy (and I didn't get to see it!)
Posted by Al at 6:59 AM
Thursday, December 08, 2005
Mum is comfortable to drape on... oh Hi Dad - your upside down!
Posted by Doug at 10:28 PM
Saturday, December 10, 2005
It has been an especially busy and tiring week at work, and as a
consequence I’ve been feeling particularly drained.
Managed to knock half the Christmas shopping off last Saturday, and
completed the rest of it today. That should make the rest of the month a
little more relaxed.
Jack turned 5 months old during the week. I can’t quite believe it – it
doesn't seem that long. He celebrated by adding to his vocabulary with
Paa Paa Paa, Bbaa, Bboo, Boopa and Booba. That last one worries us, and
we will only have ourselves to blame if his first real word turns out to
be Boobie. We use the term regularly whenever Jack is about to feed.
“Time for Boobie Jackles” one of us will excitedly tell him.
He repeated those noises over a couple days, which was rather cute. He
then relegated them to his once in a while noise list, and moved on to
perfect a steady toned and loud AAAAaaaaahhhhhhh… That one is not so
This afternoon he started repeating Muuurra regularly. Hearing the
possibilities, Allison repeated Mummy over and over again to him. He
responded with grins and raspberries.
Last thought for the night – Jack has found his laugh. The chortle is
still there and regular, but he gets a belly laugh going, particularly
when being tickled or playing “Where’s Jack”. It is a top sound.
Posted by Doug at 10:54 PM
Sunday, December 11, 2005
We were preparing to go to Al’s work Christmas lunch today. Al put Jack
down in his cot and went to get changed. I was in the Nursery with him,
making up the single bed. As I was fluffing up the doona Jack broke out
laughing at the sight. Every time I gave the doona a shake, Jack would
laugh. I think this is the first time he has laughed at something not
specifically affecting him. I’ve also noticed he has started to laugh
in anticipation of tickling or playing “Where’s Jack”.
Posted by Doug at 7:00 PM
Al tickles a laughing Jack.
Posted by Doug at 8:56 PM
Monday, December 12, 2005
In the early days the pram was magic. It didn't matter how unsettled
Jack was, a pram walk would soon have him sleeping. Nowaways he spends
most of his pram walks turning his head from side to side looking at the
scenery, with regular glances over his shoulder as his parents. He
doesn't seem too phased by what he sees, although loud cars tend to
Posted by Doug at 11:19 PM
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
I was woken this morning by Jack making noises over the baby monitor. I
lay there listening to a constant stream of happy, exploratory and loud
AAArrrrrrr's, GAAaaarrrrrrr's, and Raspberries. He kept them coming at
a pace that didn't allow the monitor to have a break in its
transmission. I mumbled something to Al about how cute that was, and
she responded in an affirmative moan. I then rolled over to check the
time. The cuteness factor dropped somewhat under the glaring green glow
of my bedside clock. 3:10am.
The Baby monitor is attached to the side of the cot, overlooking Jack.
For the last few weeks it has been common for us to respond to his
noises and find him half on his side, looking back over his shoulder at
the monitor as he talks. It flashes a green light each time it
transmits. I'm not sure if he just likes the flashing, actually realises
that it relates to him making noise, or if he is simply calling to the
green light to make his parents magically appear again.
I'll have to check with Al, but he doesn't seem to get too upset calling
from his cot most of the time. He seems to stay pretty calm, and
sometimes can chat away happily for 20 minutes without the "Hello, I
want a parent here now thanks" tone. He also almost always turns to face
you at the first spoken words, and gives you a huge happy grin. In the
morning it will often be accompanied by a giggle and outflung arms.
Oooo this Kid is good at the parent manipulation.
He is still stuck on the loud AAArrrrrr noises at the moment, but has
taken to doing them with his fingers in his mouth. This as triggered
all sorts of variances, including AaaaHHHhhoooo (as in Yahoo) and
UughhHooo (a rather clear Uh Oh). I look forward to him saying them
without the help of 4 fingers.
I’ve found it fascinating to see him experimenting with sound, and the
obvious pleasure and joy he finds in it. The same goes for movement.
He has taken up doing the wheel borrow shuffle at the moment – lifting
his bum off the ground with his feet, arching his back up by forcing
down the back of his head, and sort of doing small little shuffles
backwards. Or, instead of him lifting his legs up and throwing them
down over and over, he lifts his bum up and lets it drop, over and over.
Posted by Doug at 11:07 PM
Friday, December 16, 2005
The pure happiness of a child is contagious.
Posted by Doug at 10:37 PM
Sunday, December 18, 2005
We baby sat our 8 week old nephew last night. One baby plus one baby
seems to equal four. It is a lot more work.
Posted by Doug at 9:33 PM
Monday, December 19, 2005
Jack tends to be fascinated with the rear end of his soft toys.
Invariably that is where he finds the tag – usually one of his favourite
It is Al and my 14-year relationship anniversary today. While our 10
year wedding anniversary comes up in May next year, we still note
December 19th as when we first became a couple. While my nervousness in
asking Al out still makes me cringe today, I am eternally grateful that
I persevered. She has played a huge positive role in my life, and I am
so much better off for it. She is the perfect partner for me. I hope
years down the track that Jack is as lucky in finding a partner.
I remarked a little while back about Al being a push over for Jack’s
manipulations. Tonight I was reminded about the other side of the
equation – when Al manipulates Jack. She was cooking dinner and Jack was
in his rocker watching. He was unsettled, complaining, and reaching his
arms out to indicate he wanted to be picked up. Instead Al walked around
preparing the food, calmly telling him the names of the utensils she
carried, and what she was doing with them. Intermingled with this were
plenty of smiles at Jack, encouraging comments, and short sung nursery
rhymes. By the time we sat down to our meal Jack was happily talking
away to himself and kicking away with his legs, unsettled mood
forgotten. It was a very skilful display.
Posted by Doug at 11:05 PM
Thursday, December 22, 2005
One more day at work before a much needed 11-day absence. I finished up
the complicated coverage schedule, communicated with all the clients,
and have completed most of the documentation and handovers that will
allow me to go on leave. I'm in serious need of a break - although a 1/3
of it will involve running around for season festivities.
Jack has been active the last few days.
In amongst his b and p sounds, he's come out with bob and barb over the
last day. The bob is particularly clear and amusing to hear. It isn't
spoken as a word obviously - just him playing with sounds. You can see
him actually twisting his tongue around and poking it in and out trying
to make different sounds. We make sure we cheer and clap on all new
noises - which brings a huge smile to his face. (He seems to associate
clapping with goodness.)
He has also suddenly taken up rolling over from his back to his front.
He soon realised that he couldn't then roll himself back, so after half
a day of doing it now tends to stop himself 3/4 of the way over with a
steadying leg. When that slips, he soon yells loudly at his parents to
come and roll him back over. Like many of his achievements, he is very
calm when he is rolling over - like it isn't such a big deal, and that
he's been rolling over his entire life. I can see some long nights in
the near future as we continually get up to roll him back over in his
Al had brunch with her sister today, escaping from the cleaners. Jack
was, as he normally is, pretty good out in public. He got a little
restless at times, but normally just looked over his mum’s shoulder with
great interest, grabbed at items in Al’s hands (including causing
another drink spill), or sat in his pram quietly looking around / played
with toys / wriggling a bit.
We have both been remarking a lot lately how lucky we are to have Jack
in our lives. His temperament and personality are certainly making the
whole experience more rewarding, and a little easier on us.
Posted by Doug at 9:09 PM
A couple weeks ago we finished up the last of
Jack's activity sessions for this year. I anticipated that this would
free up some of Jack and my time until they start again next February,
but it doesn't seem to have slowed us down at all.
A review of the activities completed this year:
. Baby massage course - was a worthwhile one-off
course to learn the techniques. Jack still gives me big smiles each time
I start a massage for him (which I try to do most days), and now laughs
when I do the tummy rubs and tickle him under his chin. It was also a
good opportunity to see a few of the mothers from our ante-natal class
with their babies, and gave me the opportunity to have since kept in
touch with one of them. I would not need to repeat this class for any
. Mother and baby yoga - was also worthwhile. Jack
loved his instructor, gave her big smiles each week, and was one of the
first people other than his parents that he bonded with. (It makes me a
little sad that he doesn’t get to see her anymore!) Jack enjoyed all the
exercises, and we still do them daily at home. He also enjoyed watching
the other babies in the class, and seeing all the mothers doing the
exercises. From my point of view it was a great way to fit in some
exercise while still being able to take care of and stimulate Jack at
the same time. While it would have been good for me to continue the
class, the baby exercises were the same each week, so Jack wasn't
learning anything more by continuing. If I did this for another child,
it would be more for my own exercise benefit, since I know the baby
. Baby Gymbaroo - has been a great. It allows Jack
to explore different equipment and toys, be involved in group
activities, watch other babies, and interact with nursery rhymes, dance
and exercises. It also introduces me to different toys, stories and
generally ideas on how to stimulate Jack. Again I have been able to
incorporate many of the ideas into our daily routine at home, such as
playing with balloons and balls, little musical instruments, every day
objects, nursery rhymes, story time while on his tummy, and further
exercises. I fell it is worthwhile to continue next year and ongoing,
and would be worthwhile for any subsequent children.
I have organised a busy schedule for next year –
continuing the baby Gymbaroo, and starting baby music classes, baby swim
lessons, and when we can fit it in - story time at the library. I will
of course also continue with mother's group and catching up with family
and friends where possible.
I wonder at times if I am trying to squeeze too
much in - but I want to make the most of the opportunities available
while I am on maternity leave, and actually able to do all these
activities with Jack. So far he really loves all the stimulation and
interest of it all. Now I just have to sit down and work out how I am
going to manage to fit in work from the end of March next year!
We have booked Jack to start childcare from the
start of February. We aim to start slow with 1 hour a week, and build up
gradually so that, hopefully, by time I go back to work he has adjusted
to it. That would certainly ease my mind in starting back at work.
In addition to organising all next year's
activities, the last few weeks have flown by with picking up last minute
Christmas items, delivering gifts, writing out cards (including belated
thank-you notes for all Jack's birth gifts), and continuing to catch up
with family and friends and colleagues at Christmas parties and general
One of these catch-ups was meeting and babysitting
Jack's cousin Jackson (now 8 weeks old). This was a reminder that
looking after 2 babies is considerable more effort than one in splitting
your attention and juggling both their needs. Family members are
currently flying in from interstate and overseas to be here for
Christmas, and the family catch-ups have already commenced.
A few days ago, Doug and I celebrated our 14-year
anniversary of when we started going out. It is wonderful that at this
stage of our relationship we are happier than ever. In becoming parents,
we have grown further as a couple and as a family unit, and had the
opportunity to see new sides of each other and appreciate each other all
the more. I know that I am very lucky to have found Doug as a partner,
and I realise that more than ever since becoming a parent. We operate
very much as a team and try to do what we can to make each other happy
and balance each other out in many different ways.
Coming up to the end of the year has further made
me reflect that between the joys of pregnancy, and followed by how much
I have loved watching Jack grow and develop, I would rate this as the
most special and rewarding year of my life to date. It is a great
feeling to be happy with where we are in life as a couple and as a
family, and to be happily anticipating the future. I can only stop and
enjoy the moment, and hope that we can continue to be as happy in our
relationship and in our family into the future, as we are right now,
through all the ups and downs that life will surely bring.
Posted by Al at 10:44 PM
Saturday, December 24, 2005
I’m a bit of a bar humbug person when it comes to Christmas. I approach
it quietly, and enjoy it more when it is quiet. I do however have fond
memories of going to bed on Christmas eve with mum watching the Carols,
lights off, and a couple candles burning on the coffee table, then
waking up to a full stocking at the end of the bed.
Tonight Al is watching the carols, illuminated by only the glow of the
TV, flashing Christmas tree lights, and candles. Jack managed to watch
the first few minutes of the carols before conking out. He is too young
to take anything in, but his parents are taking everything in for him,
and enjoying it.
Posted by Doug at 11:55 PM
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
And so that was Christmas...
We started with Christmas morning at home. Al and I gave each other a
couple small presents, and had breakfast as we watched Jack play with
some of his wrapped gifts. He turned them over and over, pawed at them,
and shook them up and down. As expected, once opened he was far more
interested in the wrapping paper than what was inside, and delighted in
pulling it apart and ripping it up.
At this stage of his development Jack seems to particularly love
anything that he can shake or rattle and produce noise from, and
anything that is nice to stick in his mouth and chew. Lately he has
also grown very interested in anything he can affect the form of – be
that paper to rip up, or objects that change shape when you press or
pull on them.
The drive down to visit the in-laws was wearisome. It took 50% longer
than usual due to heavy traffic, and was riddled with horrendous
examples of poor driving, selfishness, and a lack of charity. It really
seems to get worse year by year. We would normally try to miss driving
during the busiest hours, but with Jack you go when you can, not when
you plan to. We arrived a little late and feeling slightly frazzled.
Not a good start considering sometimes Al’s family events can be a
little crowded, rushed and fringed with stress.
This time though Christmas lunch was particularly well done, and we were
soon relaxed and enjoying ourselves. We exchanged gifts and it felt like
a good catch up. Jack met an Aunt, Uncle and Cousin for the first time,
and had a good visit.
Boxing day saw us pack the car again and head further a field to my
parents place. Generally I find the Christmas visits with my parents are
nice and relaxed. With 3 infants, a toddler and 8 adults in the house
however it didn’t run to its usual script. I kept finding myself having
to make concessions – biting my tongue, masking my true opinions, and
even leaving a room on one or two occasions to stay diplomatic.
Thankfully we did manage to spend some quiet time with my parents, and
they got to interact with Jack on a one on one basis. Jack was once
again really good on the visit, and we left the next day feeling
everything went reasonably well.
Jack woke up half way home, and after a period of calmly looking around
and playing, spent the last 45 minutes complaining. We had gone past all
the roadside rest areas by that time, so Al had to climb into the back
and try to placate him with nursery rhymes and direct attention. She
worked hard, and kept him to only a couple short crying sessions in
amongst all the complaints. We were all thankful when we pulled into the
driveway – Jack back to his normal self the moment he was out of the car
and in through the front door.
We are all recuperating today, Jack more restless than usual, which
seems his way after a busy schedule.
Posted by Doug at 1:25 PM
Thursday, December 29, 2005
Al is off getting her hair cut, and I’m here babysitting Jack. She gave
him a feed before she left, and after letting him sleep on her for 20
minutes, put him down in his cot. He does not usually sleep in his cot
during the day (and lately, during the night either!), but he’s been
sleeping peacefully ever since. It would amuse me if he does not stir
until Al returns.
Ok, some quick thoughts before Jack calls for attention –
. Al has stopped feeding Jack unless he actually demands it, or it is
convenient (about to go out for example). His feeds have dropped from
every 3 hours too more commonly every 4 to 6 hours, which is more
appropriate for his age. This has seen no other change in Jacks
. Jack is quite strong and deliberate in many of his movements – like
when he rolls to his side and reaches backwards for example. He has
actually caught a balloon and ball on occasion if you drop it into his
arms, and when he has dropped it during play, has quickly rolled over
and grabbed at it before it rolls away. (With varying degrees of
. His backwards shuffling, rolling on to his side, and manoeuvring off
objects has continued to get more coordinated. He will commonly move
himself 4 or 5 feet, and reorientate the direction he is facing if left
alone for any time. We have had to replace his mat by the window
downstairs with a new Portacot, and Al has started to have showers in
our biggest bathroom, so Jack can play on his activity mat in the
bathroom with the door shut. We also have to start looking at baby
proofing the house soon – and have allocated money in the budget to do
. We have been around a few different babies of late, and have been
reminded about the different parental approaches. I remember that before
Jack was born I had thought I would look to train his behaviour from
early on. Instead we have done very little of that – instead
concentrating on making him feel loved, comfortable and happy. We don’t
pander to his every call – but then again because he is generally happy,
he doesn’t seem to be overly demanding.
. When Jack reaches 6 months old (which is just over a week away) we
will start to work on his sleeping – getting him to drop off to sleep by
himself, and getting him to sleep in his cot for a majority of the time.
This will be the first time we try to specifically train his behaviour.
. I got an SMS from Al the other day at work – it went something like
“Jack peed on me, then laughed!”
Ok, off to check on Jack.
Posted by Doug at 11:39 AM
In the early days we suffered a number of periods where Jack would
scream for hours on end. Now on the rare time he does scream, it
normally lasts for under a minute – just until we can rush to his side
and let him know we are there. The only times he tends to scream is when
he wakes up with either stomach pain or from a nightmare. We can
generally talk, walk, hug and sooth him out of screaming fairly quickly,
although it hurts us to hear him in such a state.
The stomach pains I can understand – but the nightmares are hard. He was
obviously dreaming from very early on, and having the occasional
nightmare ever since. In the early months he did not always seem to
realise the difference between what he had been dreaming about, and the
reality since he had transitioned into wakefulness. It could take 5 to
10 minutes before he would fully calm down. Now it generally takes under
a couple minutes at most. I wonder at what in his subconscious might
cause him such distress.
Now he finds obvious comfort in his parents – especially Al. I watched
him today when Al got home from her hair appointment – he gave her some
particularly fierce hugs when she first picked him up.
He can and will often cry, complain and whinge for short periods of
time, but that is something both he and his parents find easier to
handle. He does this mainly during the times Al tries to settle him to
sleep, when over tired, and on occasion during burping or nappy changes
mid feed. That is just his way to communicate that he wants attention,
or isn’t entirely happy with the current situation. We don't mind him
communicating in such a way..
Posted by Doug at 3:41 PM
Friday, December 30, 2005
Sharing Jack's first Christmas has been a really
special time. I have enjoyed being able to introduce him to little
traditions already, even though he is too young to understand what they
are about. We can appreciate them on his behalf, and know that they are
things we can continue to do with him in years to come. He has been
intrigued looking at the Christmas tree and reaching out towards it.
Watching carols on Christmas Eve is something I've always enjoyed doing,
and it was great that Jack stayed awake long enough to see the start of
this. He got to see candles for first time too.
Christmas morning was exciting - watching him
shake and rattle his presents before his dad helped him to rip open the
wrapping. He then enthusiastically played with the wrapping paper – he
loved being able to pull it apart and rip it up, and was more excited by
this than the presents themselves.
You never know what new item will capture Jacks
interest, and what he will quickly toss aside. He opens his mouth in an
'o' shape and reaches his hands out excitedly whenever he sees something
for the first time. I love that he already reacts to new experiences in
this way – and even realises when something is new compared to things he
has seen before.
It was great to have a little time for just the
three of us to enjoy this special time together.
It was also wonderful to share in Jack's first
Christmas with both of our families. My families Christmas day was extra
special - having my brother there for first time in about 10 years, and
getting to meet his new son (my first direct nephew) for the first time.
My sister did a great job of hosting in her new house, and my brother
cooked the lunch to perfection. Doug's family celebration was on Boxing
Day, and was a busy affair with 3 new babies and a 4 year old dividing
attention. With all on different schedule, it made for a hectic time. It
was great to see all the kids together on the one day, for the first
People often say that Christmas is more special
with children around, and I have certainly found that. I think it has
been the best Christmas that I have experienced since I was a kid
myself. Jack is certainly lucky to be part of two big families, and has
been provided with many new toys and clothes from his grandparents,
aunts and uncles.
It was interesting to remember that last Christmas
we were happily announcing the pregnancy to our families, and here we
were a year later with Jack - a happy, healthy 5 1/2 month old. It is
good to be able to reflect back over a great year, and to be looking
forward to the year ahead.
A couple observations:
. Jack now hugs back. It is fantastic to feel him
squeezing back in response to cuddles, and to know they are now a two
. Jack has started waving his hand at himself in
past few days. He hasn't yet worked out to wave to other people - this
that is something we can look forward to seeing.
Posted by Al at 10:07 AM
Here's Jack's new spot by the window -
Two new observations for today. Jack was laying in his portacot this
morning. A small section of the cot was in direct sunlight. Jack was
laying on his side, holding his hand out over this lit area, watching in
fascination the shadows his hand created as he moved it. During a play
session Al put Jack on to his stomach twice today, and he rolled himself
over onto his back by himself. He seems to have worked that one out
It is 37 degrees here. The new air-conditioning we installed upstairs
the other month is working very well, and the entire house is nice a
Jack is a bit moody and unsettled. Not sure if it is the heat, he's not
feeling well, is teething, having a growth spurt, or he just feels like
being crabby. The books suggest it is around the time for his next
unsettled period, so we might be starting a week of it.
Posted by Doug at 3:25 PM