Tuesday, August 4, 2009

my 8 month old Z girl

Eight months. Two thirds of a year. One less month than I was pregnant.

Zoralee is definitely living up to her nickname of Pickle. Like Jason says, sometimes she's a sweet pickle, and sometimes she's a sour one. She is busy. And curious. And sometimes sociable to the point of ridiculousness. She cops an attitude, which she can be distracted from with a little ingenuity, but every day you've got to change up your game. She grunts and hollers and slaps the table for food tidbits. She shakes absolutely everything she picks up to see what it does.

My absolute favorite thing these days is the Quick Chin Down move. When she's really happy about something, she quickly puts her head down EXACTLY like a Chinese nod. I say she has some Wong in her. Wong was a Chinese man who married my great-great-grandmother later in life, so he would be Zoralee's step-great-great-great-grandfather. Somehow that nod, it made it through the deep and wide pool of genes.

She knows which things are off limits, and so far, a strong "No" suffices, especially if she gets moved to another spot in the room. If she really wants to play with something questionable, she'll go toward it, then turn to see if we're looking at her. For the most part, we try to keep those things out of her reach. But you just can't do that with everything. If there are 3 billion and 37 okay things to touch in a room and one tiny poisonous speck frittered away in a corner, she'll find the speck.

Mostly though, Zoralee's eyes roam the earth, searching for something to climb. She learned the knee-up technique a couple of days ago. Jason and I had put our mattress on the floor to form more of a family bed with her mat. We got into her bed and played with toys so that she'd feel happy about the new arrangement. Evidently it worked, because she kept climbing in and out of her bed up onto ours, using the hereto unknown knee-up skill, squealing, and then dive-bombing off of our mattress toward the floor. She had all the confidence in the world but not all the sense. She also stood up with her hands at her side for a solid second or second and a half, twice. Both times, she freaked out with glee, probably because we were. Today she climbed up onto the bottom step of the staircase. YIKES. I am feverishly sewing the cloth part of a boundary thingy that Jason fashioned from PVC pipe. As it is, we are all the time laying chairs across doorways or open spaces, and that's getting old.

I hear the sentiment from fellow new moms that there is a definite pattern in babydom of routines and preferences lasting two or three weeks. Then they're suddenly onto something new. I totally concur. Right now, I've been getting a huge kick out of Zoralee's interest in tasks. If I open one of her dresser drawers, she'll stand there and take every last garment out. She may even crawl away for a bit but then return to finish the job.

It reminds me of some things I learned when I subbed at the Montessori school in Anchorage last year. I'd put all that on the brain's back burner, but when I saw Z at the dresser drawer, I got really excited to find a book or two on Montessori principles and incorporate them into her play. One thing I remember is that it was a big deal to not interrupt babies and children working on little tasks, especially with unrelated things like, "Hey, you want a Cheerio?" but also even to say "good job," or "Oooh! What are you drawing? It's so pretty!" because it disrupts their flow and trains them to look for external praises rather than working within their own motivation. If they show us voluntarily what they're up to, it's cool. Really interesting.

Well, that'll be enough for now. One tired mama is signing out. Maybe Z will start a new habit tomorrow of sleeping in until 9 or 10 a.m. Ohhhh gosh. I crack myself up.


Rena said...

I loved the post and the pictures. Even though I live right here with Z (and you,of course,) there are always things I haven't seen. And things seen through new eyes. Happy 2/3 year birthday,Zoralee!!

Autumn and Dan's family said...

Mezmur is the same way! I'm more of a...teach the child what they can touch and can't touch, but Mezmur only wants what she can't have. In a huge grassy park she will find the only piece of gum in the grass. Yes she did. No matter how many times I say no or move her she goes right back to the no-no thing.
Happy 8 months Zoralee! She is such a sweet baby! I wish you lived closer so Mez and Z could be friends.

Rachel Clear said...

There are no words. I love her so much that sometimes I can hardly stand it.

kranberrys said...

It goes by too fast! You are doing a great job of documenting her life! Happy 8 month b-day "Z"!~

Christi said...

Okay, this post kinda reminded me of how tired I am right now. She is such a busy girl!

I like your Montesorri tidbit...share more of those if you get the chance!

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