Dear Stella Bea,
Oh sweet girl, I have to apologize, I never found the time to write you a letter after your fourth, fifth, or sixth months. It nearly brings me to tears to admit that; each of your brothers have a letter for every single month and it bothers me so much that you won’t have the same. But the truth is, with each passing year our lives get busier and busier and finding a time to sit quietly amongst the working and schooling and sports playing has been impossible these last few months. I told myself I would write separate letters anyway, even if they were late, but as each day passes the sad reality is sinking in deeper and deeper and I need to just admit it to myself: I’m not going to get those letters written. But today I have a rare moment of quiet and while you and your brothers and Dad nap I wanted to catch you up on the last few months.
When I last wrote to you at three months you had just started to smile and coo; and your brothers loved to hold your hands and talk to you; as the days have gone by those adorable coos have turned into full fledged chatter. Oh Baby Girl, you, my dear, are a loud one! As your brothers were non-stop movement you are non-stop talking. We know you are awake in the morning when we hear your first squeals of delight – you rarely cry first thing in the morning, you either push yourself up on your arms and start babbling or roll over and break into song, as if to say “What a glorious day!” Either way we have to pick you up as soon as we hear you lest you wake up your brothers. And with those early morning squeals the day has begun – you talk in your bouncer, on the play mat, when it is quiet, and when everyone else is talking. You talk during mommy’s book clubs, at church, in the store, and throughout your brothers’ baseball games. More than one person has said, in reference to you, “Wow, she’s really a talker!”
You say Baa Baa Baa, Maa Maa Maa and Daa Daa Daa. You talk and talk and talk; unless, that is, someone new comes up to you and squeezes your adorable little feet or dares to pick you up, as strangers are known to do, then you furrow your brows and look for mom.
Oh yes my sweet baby girl, you are a Mama’s Girl. And it could not delight me more. You’re brothers were never this attached to me. I mean I was mom, so of course there was a certain measure of attachment, but everyone in this house knows that if you see me walk away or out of the room there are usually instant tears from you – even when Daddy is holding you. You are my side-kick, my constant companion, my best girl, and if that never, ever changes I would be ever so happy. In fact, it is my hope that in 10, 20, THIRTY years you will still want to be this close to me, still lean to me for comfort and still have this much faith and trust in me.
Since the last time I wrote you have also started moving so much more. You are not crawling or anything yet (though when you have something solid to push your feet against you have been known to get up on your hands and knees and start rocking) but you push up on your hands and are definitely starting to move around. You didn’t start rolling consistently until after 6 months but now you roll all over the place – the other day I hadn’t been out of the room for more than 10 seconds when one of your brothers called “Mom, she’s under the couch!” We can’t set you on your play mat and expect you will be there for longer than 30 seconds these days.
You’ve also started eating solids. We started you on them at 6 months with rice cereal. I really thought you were ready, you were showing interest, but quite honestly it was kind of disastrous. You didn’t care for it at all and you spit out more than you swallowed making the clean up tedious. Maybe this is the way it was for all of your brothers and maybe I just had more time/energy to deal with it then but this time around I said forget it. So we stopped and tried again at 7 months and guess what?? You were like a pro at 7 months. It went so smoothly and you get messy but not THAT messy and you get so excited when you see me preparing your bowl. In addition to rice cereal you have tried butternut squash and yams. You liked both but preferred the yams, I think. Tonight I’m going to whip you up some zucchini. I’m really looking forward to this summer and feeding you all these fruits and veggies as them come in season – fresh food is one of the perks about being a fall/winter baby.
Let’s see…what else can I tell you about you? You are known around here as Stella Bea, Stella Bella, Bella Boo, Bea Bea, and like your brother Nolan sometimes we just call you by your middle name, Beatrice. You have the chubbiest little thighs and cheeks and I just can’t help but kiss them constantly. You have blue eyes and your hair seems to be getting lighter; I’m still not quite sure what color it is going to be. You have a penchant for falling asleep in your high chair. You love your chewy rosary, wooden rattle, blue elephant that makes all sorts of noises, and this little computer that Nolan found the other day tucked away somewhere. It lights up and makes sounds and you kick and pound and cheer when you see it. You are wearing 9 month clothes and size 2 diapers. I’m not quite sure how much you weigh right now but at your 6-month check up you were 15 lbs, 13 oz (38%) and 25.5 inches long (24%). This is right in line with your two big brothers who were 15 lbs 6 oz and 15 lbs 13 oz, respectively (each between 25 and 25 ¾ long)…..apparently Nolan was the runt of you four, he only weighted 14 ½ lbs at your age. Speaking of those big brothers, Stella Beatrice, you may be the luckiest girl in the world, you have three brothers who love you so, so much. They would do anything for you and there is no doubt in my mind that as you grow up they will be ever so protective of you. That makes my Mama heart so happy, but not at all surprised, loving you is easy….you make it easy, because you are such a delightful little girl. Happy 7 months, sweetie.
I love you,