When I was pregnant with your brother a parenting site I was reading asked if I were to describe my baby in one word, what would it be? For Keaton I chose inquisitive, which he has been since day one. For you, I chose spitfire. During the first few months after your birth I wondered if my instincts had been wrong; with the exception of your hernia you were just a laid back, let things roll off your back, baby. In the past several weeks it has become obvious that my declaration of you way back when you were still in my belly was spot on. At 11-months, you are our little spitfire.
The main reason I picked this word to describe you while I was still pregnant was because during your brother’s bedtime routine, after bath, after teeth brushing, but before lights were turned out we would sit in the glider and read bedtime stories. Without fail as soon as we were settled in and reading you started kicking. But not just any kicking, kicking your brother. It was as if you were saying, hey, move over, I’m here and want to listen too. Having an older brother is delightful in so many ways, unfortunately with the good comes the bad and you have had your fair share of toys taken away from you, seats stolen, and attention grabbed. Up until recently you were pretty laissez faire about this, but not anymore. You are done being pushed around by your brother and you’re putting your foot down. Now when he takes a toy from you, you take it right back. You grab his arm, neck, hair, whatever is within your reach, and you put up a fight. You also scream. And I’m not talking a cry, I’m-not-getting-my-way scream, I mean a from your belly, I am angry, give-me-that-toy-back-right-now-or-else, sort of scream. There’s usually some arm swinging involved as well and I’m just waiting for the day that you start stomping your foot.
For as feisty and sassy as you are, you are equal parts lovey dovey, snuggly wuggly. You love to be held and carried around on a hip and you have a way of melting right into our shoulders, smiling and tucking your head into the nape of our necks as if you are being shy, but really you’re just very, very happy. While Mama is still you favorite (and I’m perfectly fine with that buddy, that never, ever has to change!) you seem to have finally grown out of your aversion to being held by men, specifically your Daddy and Grandpas, and I know they are extremely happy about this. There was once a time when we handed you to one of your Grandpas and you would start crying, instantly stopping as soon as Mama or one of your Grandmas took you back. This past weekend I was holding you and Papa walked up to us and you actually reached out for him. It made me so happy to see this and it made Papa glow.
You’ve been on the move for awhile now, I wouldn’t say you crawl as fast as your brother, Lightening McKeat, but you get around with no problems, crawling, cruising the furniture, and going up and down the stairs (you learned down this month.) While you’re not yet walking you have taken several unassisted steps between your Daddy and me or between us and the furniture, and you can stand with no help for a good 30 seconds or so. But the thing that has become most obvious this month was pointed out to me by your Auntie Kira. I’m not sure why I didn’t notice it before but while we were at her house having a play date a few weeks ago you were all over the place, trying to get up on the table and into the cabinets. She looked at me and said “he is going to be your climber.” Yes, she hit the nail on the head. You climb on everything. And you scale things to get to where you want to be. It makes me a bit nervous because I have a feeling we have some tumbles coming in the future but it makes sense because we believe you are going to be an adventurist when you get older, rock climbing, sky diving, scuba diving, we can see you doing it all.
At 11 months you love to babble and ‘mama’ has become your favorite sound. You love bath time, which is in stark contrast to those early months, and will stand on the side of the tub begging to get in. You usually bathe with your brother but in the rare chances you have the tub to yourself you like to kick your legs out and lay on your belly in the water. You have six teeth (four on top, two on bottom) and have stopped eating purees. You are a big boy now with a plate to yourself and you like to eat. There isn’t much you’ve turned down or that we haven’t tired. Your new favorite thing is popcorn. I would have never given it to you this early but you got your little mitts in that bowl and surprisingly ate it with no problem. You’re not a fan of reading books but you like to play with balls, cars, blocks, and the vacuum cleaner. When you’re tired you arch your back and scream bloody murder. When we take something away from you and your mad you squeal and sound, I kid you not, just like a little pig.
We’re in the midst of planning your first birthday party and I cannot believe this year has gone by so quickly. The only consolation of these days going by is that we have so many more to spend together, learning new things and making new memories. I love you with all my heart my little piglet.