Smaller things

I've noticed Kent's increasing attention to the smaller things lately. Today, while we were playing with his blocks on the woven rug in his room, he kept stopping to feel the texture of the rug, which I can't recall his ever having done before. He got very intent and would just run his hand back and forth over the ridges, very scientifically examining them. He had the greatest focused expression. Also, while we were playing, he took a new approach to the block towers I build for him, which he generally knocks down as quickly as I can put them up. It's fun, actually, like a race. This afternoon, I put up a tower of 4 or 5 blocks for him, and instead of reaching for the top block with gusto and knocking the whole thing over, he started to reach for the top block and then paused. He eyed it with his hand outstretched, then seemed to remember that it would fall over if he just grabbed wildly as usual. Instead, he waited a little while longer, seeming to admire the tower before he carefully grabbed the top block. The tower still fell over, but he had so much more fine motor control than he's ever exhibited before. Plus, I could see the learning happening behind his eyes — it was awesome.

More fine motor control came in the eating of his first Cheerios tonight. He's been working on his pincer grasp (thumb and forefinger), and he had a great time chasing the tiny cereal across his high chair tray. We let him play with them for about 15 minutes, and in all that time, two ended up in his mouth. One of those, I actually put there, because he would get them stuck in his fingers and couldn't quite figure out how to let go once they got to his mouth. FYI: Cheerios are sticky when wet. Five ended up in the chair, which we found after we picked him up, and several more ended up on the floor; Celia sniffed them but decided they weren't worth anything to her. Two Cheerios were still on the tray by the end. Jack and I were laughing a lot, and there's video. (We know, we're way behind on posting video, but there are about 17 steps involved in getting video off our camera, edited on the computer, and posted on Kent's site, so be patient.)

Just now, after our big day of fine motor control and good eating, I was lying next to him in our bed, nursing him before bedtime. When he was on the edge of sleep, I Gently Removed the boob from his mouth so that he could fall the rest of the way asleep. He almost always falls and stays asleep after this, but tonight, after half a minute or so, he stirred and started to rub his eyes. "Kiss of death," I thought. The eye rubs are usually the sign that it's going to take more effort to get him down. I was still right next to him on the bed, though, and barely opening his eyes at all, he seemed to find me. He threw his little arm over my chest, relaxed all over, and fell right back into his deep breathing. I like to think his thought process was this: "[Waking] No, wait, I'm awake! Crap! Rub eyes, rub eyes... hey, there's Mommy. [Sighing] I can sleep. Ahh." He needed me, and there I was.

As we cuddled thus, I felt I could just live in the tranquility of that moment forever.




Yeah for inspecting the carpet fibers! Is it bad that I already have his birthday presents?? I can't wait to see him grabbing and thinking and playing! Do you think he will be a fibers artist???
Your developmentalist friend over here is loving the detailed descriptions of Kent's milestones and exploring! :-) That's awesome.
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