It’s hard to believe you’re already six months old. Sometimes when I remember back to how teeny, tiny you used to be, I feel a pang of sadness. Then I remind myself to enjoy right now because I’ve realized that it will be a blink before I’m pining for your little fingers and toes at this stage. If there is one thing I’ve learned as a parent, it’s to think of everything as a phase and to appreciate and enjoy each and every moment.
The past few months have been my favorite so far, without question. Your little personality is emerging and your disposition is absolutely lovely. Your smile is quick and lights up your whole face and your giggles and laughs are infectious. I love that you smile at anyone and everyone and have no problem being held by family and friends. You’re also a rock star traveler and napper. You’ve been to lunches with us out in Boston; attended 2 days of Newport Folk Festival; enjoyed the Fourth of July fireworks at the Fairfield Beach Club when most babies were at home, asleep; and even met Sara Bareilles last week. Your adaptability and easy going nature make you an absolute pleasure to be around. I’m such a proud mama.
Your little voice is the sweetest; daddy and I love to “talk” and sing with you. A few weeks ago, you even imitated me when I made a high-pitched screechy noise; we went back and forth doing it for an entire afternoon, cracking each other up. You haven’t imitated me like that since about 2 months when you discovered your voice and would coo back at me in the same inflection. Like most parents, your daddy and I are constantly exclaiming to you and each other that you’re a genius. (At least 100 times a day.) We’ll try to temper this, but I can’t make any promises. We’re just so incredibly proud of you.
You’re sooooo close to crawling, but when you’re not on your tummy, maneuvering around, you love to look out the window to spy on our neighbor, Alyce, and her dachshund, Brownie and other street activity. I’ve also been laying you on our bed while I get ready in the morning and giving you random (safe) things to play with. Some favorites include a Nature Valley granola bar with a crinkly package and my collection of bangles. When you’re in your high chair with us out in the kitchen, you love to play with your plastic spoons and textured balls, but we’ve also had fun with a silicone marinade brush and a spool of blue gift ribbon. And when you’re tired of independent play, you love to sit on my lap while I’m working and explore the open drawers of my desk. You’re an absolute maniac the second I pull one open: hitting and pushing around the small pile of pages stacked inside, pulling out my headphones and post-its and quickly trying to maneuver whatever you can into your mouth for tasting as fast as possible. It’s no wonder your fine motor skills are so well-developed.
You’re going to be Madeline for Halloween so I’ve been working on sewing your costume. Madeline was on the short list for your name actually, largely because it’s one of my favorite children’s books. When we decided to use Emilia, we considered Madeline (and Madeleine) for your middle name, too, along with Alexandra, Grace, Caroline and Charlotte, but ultimately didn’t use it because it’s a font-runner for a future little sister! I’m happy we chose Grace for your middle name though; it suits you and I love that Grace means “beloved of God.” I’ve always hated my own middle name (Jeanne) so this wasn’t a decision we made lightly.
Speaking of names, some of our favorite nicknames for you lately are monkey, pumpkin pie, monster (that’s daddy), sweetness, my little munchkin, and sweet baby girl. “E” continues to be one of my favorites for you too. Notice there are a lot of food references.
You’re a wonderful eater — you LOVE your greens. I’m secretly incredibly proud of your flavor preferences too. You’ve loved some of the more complex-tasting veggies and you appreciate spices. Your interest in food has been brewing for about 3 months now, to the point that you not only stare me down while I eat, if you see a fork headed toward my mouth, you actually open your mouth and cry if I don’t give you a little taste. Daddy isn’t thrilled that I’ve gone completely rogue with our “Solids” plan but I can’t deny a girl a taste of the good stuff here and there. Recently, you grabbed a hunk of apricot-almond muffin while we were at the Thinking Cup on Boston Common visiting Brian’s cousin Kevin and earlier today, you enjoyed a few tastes of my spicy penne and veggies loaded with freshly grated parmesan. You’re hilarious to watch as you taste something with a lot of flavor. I love how curious and adaptable you are. Your little spirit is just lovely.
Thank you for bringing such light into our lives, Emilia Grace. You are so deeply loved.