Thursday, April 19, 2007

Twins, batting, cage, looking up

And the password is . . . not baseball. These words all describe the past couple of weeks in Mallon Country. Alexander and I visited Tracy and her twins, Bronson and Brad, last Saturday. Brooke, Sean, and Foster also visited. We had a great time, especially being entertained by Brad and Bronson, two very happy and (Tracy's apt word) BUSY boys.

Bronson's future as a stealth operative is secured, as evident in his ability to steal a cracker from a grown man. Brad's escape artist skills still need a bit more work, but he fearlessly goes where no man has gone before (where no man would fit, but that's beside the point).

More pictures (from our camera and some from Tracy's camera that I shamelessly swiped and posted) are on our photo site: We also posted several photos of Alexander just hanging out, sleeping, getting his regular bath from his dad, and other miscellany.

I started back to work a couple of weeks ago, and I committed to two manuscripts, not realizing just how difficult it would be to carve out the time to work on them. This is in part because Alexander is not really going for that whole nap-in-the-crib business. In his crib, his swing, his bouncer, he might nod off for 20 or 30 minutes, but generally, he prefers to giggle and talk to the various mobiles, soothers, and any other singing and moving pieces attached to these contraptions. The only place he still reliably naps is in his carrier, and even there, sometimes we have to walk around for most of his nap because he wakes up when we sit. I'm afraid we may have gotten him too used to sleeping in the carrier or in our arms.

This is more than offset, however, by his sleeping at night. About a week and a half ago, I was thrilled to wake up after 7 hours of straight sleep. He did this the next night, and then the night after that, the little guy slept for 12 hours. Well, that's not entirely true. He slept for about 10 1/2. I could hear him in his crib at 6 am, talking it up with the creatures on his soother, his mobile, and perhaps with his buddy the ceiling lamp, even though it wasn't on. So I just kept sleeping for another hour. He still sounded happy, so I grabbed some breakfast then finally went in to feed him at 7:30, even though he still wasn't fussing just yet.

The next couple of nights, he started sleeping less and less, and I thought this had all been a fluke, but he has since been relatively steady, sleeping from about 7:30 to 6:00, give or take a half hour on either end. With this kind of luck at night, I can't really complain if he's not a regular napper, although it's still early. He could revert at any point, so I'll just enjoy it while it lasts.

Anyway, since he won't nap during the day, I've decided to put him to work proofreading my editing. He's still struggling with coordinate versus cumulative adjectives, but he's definitely making progress.

Today's videos show some more steady head-holding action and a bit of toy batting. I don't think he's deliberately going for cause and effect just yet, as we make it seem (that is, I don't know that he intends specifically to hit the bird so the music and light go, or to hit the butterfly so it will rattle), but he does seem to be trying deliberately to hit in general, if only to make something happen. He's gradually gaining a bit more control of his hands, beyond his heretofore depicted thumb-sucking prowess. And the last movie is, of course, the gratuitous talking and laughing video. He loves talking and singing with his changing table mobile. In fact, he's almost freakishly delighted by it at times.

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