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Time tends to meld when you spend every day at home, like a hamster in a cage (although, as a nervous sort of hamster, I actually appreciate my cage and find it cozy and protective).

Going on vacation really helped put a time-stamp on a lot of Babby’s developmental progress.

I went to Nova Scotia with a baby who was 8 months old, clapping, but not pointing, who was not crawling, and only interested in standing.

I came home three weeks later with a baby who was pointing at everything while making little “ah!” noises, dragging himself around the house on one knee, and pulling himself to standing on every vertical object he could find.

The pointing thing gets a little funny. He points at everything that interests him (his favourites are lights, red things, knobs, and switches) but he won’t identify a named object by pointing.

Also, while I automatically name everything he points at, he’ll continue pointing, and then I’m not sure what to do.

“Fire extinguisher! That’s a fire extinguisher!

…Yep, that’s… still a fire extinguisher. It’s red! It’s… a fire extinguisher! Can you say “fire extinguisher”? Nice try, “gah” is close…

…Okay, that’s… still a fire extinguisher…”

If I can take him over to touch it (i.e. it is safe to play with and reachable) I will. But honestly, it’s like living with the ghost of Christmas Yet to Come the way that unwavering finger is always pointing, pointing, pointing.

He discovered the dimmer switch at my mother’s house, and is now obsessed with light switches. I can always make him smile by picking him up and letting him flick the switch up, turning his bedroom light on, and then down, turning it off. He grins and chortles with delight every time.

He has figured out the sign for milk (opening and closing his hand). I captured the behaviour by sticking a booba in his mouth every time he did it, and after a few experiences of this nature, he began to do it more deliberately. When his little experiments worked, by producing booba, he would nurse with his eyes wide, staring at his hand, opening and closing it thoughtfully.

So now he makes it ALL THE TIME while staring at me expectantly as his hand opens and closes, opens and closes.

Thing is, I’m not sure he really understands that it means milk.

I think he thinks it means Mommy.

Although since he probably percieves me as nothing more than a giant milk sack to begin with, it may simply be that the distinction is too fine at this juncture. He hasn’t picked up any other signs, and he doesn’t try to imitate what we do, either. He thinks it’s awesome when we imitate HIM, though.

I’m glad he’s finally crawling.

He totally figured it out the day after I made the post about how he had no intention of doing it.

It was clearly an accidental discovery.

He was trying to figure out how to stand up and walk, but discovered that one foot flat on the ground could propel the rest of his body along, and so that is what he does now. He treats his left knee like a skateboard and pushes himself with the right foot. It works, although when he gets going he begins to resemble a rampaging gorilla.

My life immediately got a lot easier.

He is now quite happy to move around a room, examining toys, putting dog fur in his mouth, playing with the knobs on his dresser and so on, for ten or twenty minutes at a time. Since he was already scooting around backwards anyway, things haven’t changed much in the watching-him category. The only difference is that now he gets where he wanted to go, and doesn’t end up screaming in rage from the other side of the room.

He wants to be clear, though, that he doesn’t consider this to be an ideal form of locomotion.

He loves to walk around the house while we hold his hands (although he’s still convinced that he would be perfectly capable of doing it himself if we would just let go of him) and he WOULD be cruising around the furniture if he didn’t keep letting go of the couch/table/parental pant leg and attempting to walk off on his own. He invariable falls over, which thankfully he usually finds hilarious.

In fact, after one failed attempt at walking away from the coffee table, he will often pull himself to standing and then let go again and again, for the sheer joy of landing on his butt and then laughing over the funniness of it all. I laugh too, and he thinks I’m laughing with him, but it’s also AT him a bit.

His top teeth are starting to come in, which is not helping the booba-biting situation. The problem with his nipping me at the breast is that every time he does it I yelp. He finds this hilarious and it actually encourages him. I always remove the breast and often plunk him unceremoniously on the floor afterwards, but until I manage to keep my mouth shut he’s going to keep nipping when he gets bored. Meanwhile the skin under my nipples is starting to flake and my boobas itch insanely all the time, probably from sheer irritation.

Itchy boobas aside, I am finding this kid increasingly entertaining with every passing day, and it’s killing me that soon I’ll have to leave him with someone else…