Stella will be four months* next week, and she's at a really fun stage. She's so engaged with the world, really looking at people and things. She smiles a lot and laughs. I now feel like I might have an idea what comedians or other entertainers feel like onstage--it's kind of a rush to be able to make Stella laugh and smile. And we've noticed lots of new little activities and developments.
For awhile now, I've been handing Stella a little rattle she got from my friend Alison right after she was born. For a few weeks, she's been able to hold it. Then occasionally she would seem to take some pleasure in being able to make it make noise. Then, last weekend, I left her on the floor while I went to the kitchen when I heard a rattle noise. Tyler was in the bathroom, so I didn't think it was him. I quietly walked up and saw that Stella had rolled onto her side and was picking it up and playing with it by herself. It seemed like such an achievement! And it helped me feel better about not always needing to be engaging her and right there. Even though intellectually I know that's not necessary, since I've gone back to work, I want to make the most of our time together. But this helped me remember that sometimes being alone will help her do things she needs to do on her own.
You can see she's holding the rattle here, but really I just love the way Tyler and Stella are curved toward each other in this picture.
I haven't seen this particular first for reasons that will soon become more obvious, but apparently Stella can also hold her own bottle as she gets down to the last few ounces. This seems to be a relief for Tyler, since bottle feeding has been somewhat of a challenge.
Here's Stella chowing down with her own two hands!
Stella's also gotten to meet her first new baby friend from among our existing group of friends. While we've met lots of great new people with babies since our pregnancy, Todd and Christine welcomed Lucy into the world a few weeks ago. We went to visit and it was amazing the difference between 3+ months and 3 weeks. Someday it won't make any difference at all, but for now they are almost like two different creatures. We think it will be great to show them this picture when they're older!
Daughers and Daddies: Todd & Lucy, Tyler & Stella
And probably most momentous of all, Stella started rolling over! Unlike other babies we've heard of who are rolling from their stomachs to their back, Stella's decided to buck the trend and go from her back to her tummy. She spent a few weeks rolling onto her side consistently. Then she'd start to roll over but often get one arm caught underneath her. This video was from the first or second day she was really doing it pretty consistently. Now you can't set her down without her rolling over. The only problem is that she hasn't learned to roll back, so she'll roll, get tired of tummy time, fuss, we'll roll her back to her back, and she immediately rolls herself back to her stomach. This sometimes stops being cute after awhile, but it's entertaining to see how obsessed she is with her new skill.
Video proof of Stella's rolling abilities--now it's totally routine and an obsession
In some ways, these all seem fitting. Even though she's so young, one of the things we've noticed about her personality is a certain independent streak. (I have no idea where she might have gotten that from...)
And, to round things off, here are two recent favorites of mine:
Stella and the flamingo from Aunt Jeanne and Uncle Tim.
Stella on one of our Fridays together. I love her in blue since it brings out her eyes, but it will always make people think she's a boy...
So this day she also wore her first shoes to add a feminine flair to the outfit. They're so tiny and so cute.
* Stella had her four-month well baby check-up today. She is 16 pounds 1 ounce, 25 inches long and 16.5" head circumference. According to the doctor she's thriving and doing great, and she even handled the shots surprisingly well. No major post-shot meltdowns...yet...
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