Eleanor, it’s so hard for me to imagine what my life would be like right now without you. Every day is so much more fun with you in it. We go everywhere together and spend much of the day physically together as you sleep in my arms, nurse, or just want to be held and comforted – it’s like you’re a part of my very body and it’s hard to be away from you even for a good reason.
You’re holding your head up like a champ! You started doing that really early (honestly within a few hours of your birth you were picking it up for a few seconds and looking around – quite a feat for a newborn!) and spend more and more of the day with your chin raised and your eyes searching your surroundings. One of your favorite positions is to lock your knees and “stand” in our laps, craning your neck in new directions to see what else there is to see. Even when you’re laying on the floor you stick your legs out straight and raise them up making your body an “L” – sometimes they flop over to the side and pull your whole body with them, giving you a new perspective.
Your blue eyes are constantly searching the room and they have begun to follow us around especially if we’re talking. You light up when your Daddy comes home from work and you hear his voice d own the hall. Daddy and Papa (my dad) are both trying to teach you to say their names, as though it’s a competition (I hope you’ll show them both and say “mama” first, but I know that’s probably not likely!). You’re trying out lots of new phrases, yelling “Hey, Hey” and “Gah, Gah” and “Meh, Meh” all the time. When we call back to you sometimes you’ll echo us again, going back and forth a few times till you lose interest in the game.
In your nursery we’re using a dresser as a changing table and attached to it is a huge mirror. Recently you found your own image in it and will lay mesmerized as you check out your reflection. You’re a goofy girl when it comes to diaper changes – when I change your diaper you yell and scream, but when Daddy changes you I hear you giggle – I have yet to figure out what the trick is to make it less traumatic. Often that mirror will distract you, though. When you catch sight of Daddy or me making faces at you, you’ll giggle and make the faces back at us.
Making faces is something you do a lot. You’re really working with your facial muscles now and love to smile really big. When we’re playing on the floor you’ll try to mimic whatever I’m doing – making a big “o” with my mouth, sticking out my tongue, or smiling – I don’t know if you realize you’re doing it, but it’s adorable.
Each morning and afternoon you’re alert enough to lay on a blanket on the floor and entertain yourself for a while (maybe 15-30 minutes, depending on the day). It’s nice because I can get some stuff done around the house to the soundtrack of your coos and laughter. You usually lay with your feet raised up of the floor and your hands wave around in fists. I’ve read that most babies prefer to look to their right, but you seem to favor your left side – maybe because the windows are in that direction based on how I lay you down.
Over the past month we’ve had some concerns about your weight since your percentile has been much lower than desired. When you were born you weighed 7 pounds, 6 ounces, and after almost 6 weeks you were only a few ounces over that birth weight. We were very concerned about your health and growth, and much of the last few weeks was spent juggling nursing (which I love!) and formula feeding (which I loathe!). Thankfully you’re back up to a healthy weight (9 pounds, 3 ounces last week!) and you’re definitely headed in the right direction. I think you’re destined to be a tall and lean girl like your cousin Kathryn, who also had some issues with weight gain. Your Uncle Jim observed that we both had fast metabolisms when we were little, and it seems our own children are following the same pattern. [Read more about that here and here.]
In the last 2 weeks you finally… finally… began to outgrow your newborn clothes. I’ve been so excited to get you into the next phase of your wardrobe, I keep buying adorable onesies and shorts and skirts and dresses and cute little things for you to wear. You’re much more long than you are wide, so many of the clothes that fit you properly in length seem to swallow your little torso and skinny legs. I still think you look cute, though!
We’ve been going on some trips out of the house regularly. A few times a week we walk with my friend and her baby (he’s only 5 days older than you!). Depending on our day and how you’re handling things, we also take some trips to Target or the grocery store together. It’s nice getting out of the house and I think you like the change in scenery. Tomorrow we’re going walking at the park and I’m so glad the weather should be warming up more consistently for us to get outside regularly!
I love watching you grow and change, sweet girl. You’re the light of my day and even when I’m gone for a few hours I get excited about coming home and getting some snuggles from you. From your tiny fingers to your button nose, I’m completely in love with you. Each day is a new adventure, even if we’re just staying home and spending the day together. Your Daddy and I constantly comment that we can’t imagine life without you and can hardly remember what it was like before you came.
I love you more every day.
Eleanor’s 8-week picture below:
**I realize as I create this post that I have only a few pictures with you. This must change! In the meantime, enjoy all the sweet photos of Daddy and Eleanor. Next on my to-do list… guiding him to pick up the camera more!