I told Aba you’d been chewing your hands frantically all day and he reckons you’re teething and have been for weeks, which makes sense because for the last month you’ve constantly been trying to get your hands in your mouth, chewing not sucking on your fingers – at some points we thought you’d almost managed to get your whole fist in your mouth. You definitely don’t take after me in mouth size because I have a tiny one whereas you have a beautiful elongated mouth which opens into a wide mouthed smile when you’re happy and when you’re not sure or are upset (like when we try to burp you) your bottom lip quivers and melts my heart!
Before your hands find each other I have to write an update. At about 3 months old you started to really grab things. Before that we’d tried to put a rattle or toy in your hand but you weren’t really aware it was there. Then you started putting your hands in your mouth at every opportunity, discovering them by licking and slobbering on them. And then you started to grab hold and keep hold of things and put them in your mouth. It meant we could put you in your rocking chair with a toy and you’d sit and maul it.
Favourite things to grab and slobber include the geometric wooden toy the Kirrages gave you because the elastic is small enough for you to hold onto. The ears and feet of your rabbits. We bought you a rattle for chanukah which has different textured surface and although at first I was a bit concerned at the pointy bits going in your eyes because you didn’t have control of your arms and they’d sometimes go flying, you seem to have got the hang of it now. We added a monkey to your play mat with plastic rings attached which you love to suck on every morning and your newest friend is a lion which Tash and Eugene bought from South Africa. At first you were a bit scared by its roar but now you love grabbing its main with both hands as you lie on your back.
You also started holding onto our hands as you were feeding. It started with you grabbing our fingers either side of the bottle and now you sometimes put your hands on the bottle as you feed.
Savtal asked if your hands had found each other yet and I realised what she meant. You’re starting to grab things with both hands and one hand will often grab the other, but I don’t think you’ve yet realised you’ve got two of them and they can work together. They’re still pretty independent of each other but I’m sure it won’t be long before they connect.
And your hair has grown so much. It started as little black fluff when you were born. Then at about 12 weeks you started growing the odd long hair and then it slowly took over and now it’s getting thicker and longer and (dare we say it) blonder!
Your mobile is still the number one chillout toy. You can lie and watch it for hours, whether the music is playing or not, and I know when it’s stopped because you call out from your cot, questioning why it’s not moving any more and settling down the moment I turn it on again.
Another thing which settles you incredibly well has been the Kari-me sling. I love carrying you in it strapped tightly to my chest, it keeps me very warm and I can reach down and kiss your head. It also protects you from the cold and wind and from nosy people who want to inspect you and you’re now strong enough to sit in it facing outwards so you can see the world. And if you get frantic and over tired then it calms you down, something your aba discovered at christmas! We’ve already been out for a country walk with you when aba was off work between christmas and new year, he carried you half the way in his ergo-baby and I carried you on the way back, which happened to be the uphill part!!
And at 4 months old you got your first cold – sneezes, coughs and a runny nose included. Apart from a few sleepless nights, struggling to breath through your nose and suck from a bottle with a blocked nose you have been amazing, better than I’ve been with the same cold, not even making a fuss when I squirt saline up your nose.
On the weekends Aba loves amusing you in our bed after you’ve spent some time on your mat. He’ll sit you on his knees and fly you in the air. We sing lots of songs with you, especially in the afternoon as we wait for Aba to come home – you love Humpty Dumpty, Wind the bobbin up and We went to the animal fair. We’ve also just started going to Rhyme Time at the Sure Start centre so will hopefully learn some more songs. They also gave us some books and told us to read a few pages every night so we’ve been reading That’s not my car with you. And when Aba puts you to sleep at night he says the bedtime shema with you and sings Adon Olam which you smile and gurggle along to.
I’ve already had to pack away all the clothes we had for you up to 3 months old. When I first looked at them they seemed so big and now you’ve grown out of them. You’re very long and have already moved into a onesie for a 6 month old and it won’t be long until your 3-6 month vests won’t fit either, although you still don’t fill them width ways.
Between 3 and 4 months you grew amazingly quickly and when we last weighed you at 16 weeks you were already just over 7kg and had jumped above the 50th centile – having been below it since you were born. You’ve been drinking 5 bottles of milk a day and we’ve pretty much got a good routine going. You wake up just after 7am, we feed you at 7.30am and go down stairs to lie on your play mat while I have some breakfast and watch the news. Then it’s back to bed at 9am for a sleep – it’s exhausting work playing with Rabarroo and Monkey. You’ll be up again at about 10.30am and we’ll wash your face and hands and change your nappy and get you dressed for the day, then it’s a feed at 11.30am and we have been experimenting with your lunchtime sleep from 12pm-2pm but it’s usually a bit later and more broken and sometimes we’ll be home for that and you’ll sleep in your cot but other times we’ll go out walking and you’ll either sleep in your bugaboo bee pram or in your sling.
But to catch up on your first 12 weeks. Auntie Snora came over from New York for Rosh Hashanah and to see you. She picked you up a bit like an expensive handbag, holding you slightly away from her to admire you. We were all at Savtal and Saba’s for Rosh Hashanah so you met all the family and the Gordons and the boys loved looking at you and wanted to stroke you and feed you.
We went to shul to hear the shofar when you were 3 weeks old, I was very nervous and wanted to go home but Als and Snora insisted we went and it was fine, you slept in the sling the whole time. We spent a lot of time at Southway over the chagim, it was nice to get out of the house and spend time with my sisters and everyone was very supportive because I found the breast feeding so difficult. They loved holding you and changing you and looking after you while I slept upstairs.
The day after Yom Kippur was your Pidyon Haben. We held it at Kesher, Saba had picked up silver coins from Bnei Barak when he was in Israel after you were born. Joost Cohen acted as the cohen and Rabbi Simon explained what the whole ceremony was about. It was a lovely celebration, Auntie Snora helped me pick up the balloons and food while Aba looked after you. Whereas all your grandparents’ friends were at your Brit, all our friends came to your Pidyon Haben as well as the family – except for Gnunu who had ended up in hospital.
It has been a little difficult to come up with nicknames to do with Boaz but Savtal and Saba call your Boazi (my Boaz) and Aba calls you Bobo. But because we didn’t name you until your Brit you had lots of other names like munchkin and mr magoo. You love singing and you quickly decided that you also liked bouncing, pushing down with all your strength on your legs and also wanting to stand on them. When ever you’re sitting on someone’s lap it’s not long before you’re up on your feet.
You especially like bouncing in the bath where you can also splash. Your fast bath was in the little baby bath which you didn’t like at all and screamed the whole way through. Then we tried putting you in the bath with us, warmer and deeper, which you liked and now we bath you on your own in the big bath which you love. You lie on your back and we swim you up and down singing ‘row, row, row your boat’ and ‘twinkle, twinkle little star’ as you smile and chuckle. We thought you liked it so much that we decided to take you swimming and you were the littlest baby when we went to Waterbabies for the first time at 10 weeks old. You didn’t seem very impressed with being put in a wet suit to keep you warm and it was noisy and choppy, but with a bit of growing over the new year you now love it and are the only baby not to cry. Your aba has already helped you swim underwater several times already and you hold your breath beautifully.
You may not appreciate me saying this but you did the most spectacular poos in those first 3 months. You had a lot of wind in you so your poos were quite whippy and full of air and went on and on and on. You especially liked pooing when we’d taken your nappy off to change you and it would just keep on coming and coming in one long stream. We started putting you on your tummy to sleep because that helped you cope with the wind in your bowels, you never cried from it but would moan and pull your knees up so it couldn’t have been comfortable. Now we let you chill out on your back for a bit (if you’re really exhausted you may fall asleep but you wake yourself up whenever your arms relax) and then when you look ready to drop off we ‘flip you over’.
And the boggies amusing too. We were given the essential first aid kit for you by Gwen and in it was a boggie sucker which we had great fun trying to use and wasn’t terribly successful on the whole. But when it worked we’d get a great big thing out and couldn’t believe where it had come from. Other times you’d sneeze and we’d be able to grab the end and pull it out.
And in your first 3 months you also made your first trip abroad – to Wales. When you were almost 9 weeks old Katie and Darcy came over from Australia so we drove with Anna and Tabitha to stay with them at Margie and Lyn’s in Mumbles, just outside Swansea. It was a long drive but you and miss T were incredibly well behaved and we had a lovely time there, eating and chatting, we slept in a room overlooking Mumbles Bay, you were on the floor in a Moses basket and kept me awake all night with your snuffles and we drove back the next day. It was too short!