Elora, 8 months

I've photographed baby on one of my favorite prints, Anna Maria Horner's Social Climber in Gold recently made available again in Floral Retrospective.

Another month of precious babyhood has flown.  After 6 months all the markers slope toward a year.  Now she's 2/3's of a year, next month 3/4, and then 5/6...  Oh dear!  Elora has been our bright spot in an otherwise slow and uneventful summer.  We each find silly ways to tease out her squeals and smiles every day.

Memory Box {Eight Months}

Milestones:  Scooting forwards on her belly.  From her play area in my sewing room she makes a bee line for the foot pedal.  Up it goes!  She won't stay put on this pretty fabric for a photoshoot either!

Also, gumming more solid foods like puffs, cooked beans and sliced avocados.  I was on the edge of my seat, literally, when she had her first puff.  My experience with Eleni has made me a little paranoid about all things breathing-related.  When Rora coughs to "protect her airway", as we learned to say, I am so, so grateful she is able. 

Biggest Challenge:  This month three teeth have begun poking their way out from baby's gums.  The first two came at the same time, mostly on a Friday when my mom was keeping her while I work. 

My mom is excellent and confident with children, so when she called to ask for advice I was surprised.  She called me that Friday to say that Rora was crying and nothing would solve it.  No temperature, good appetite - nothing to seriously concern us - but truly the first time she was inconsolable.  The next day she had teeth!  Poor baby.

Biggest Surprise:  The elephant sound makes her cry!  Really.  Please don't try.  It's too sad.  Her little face crumples up and then she bursts into tears.  Daddy is a purveyor of many exotic sounds, but that one is Not Amusing.

Special Memory:  If you are holding Rora when something (probably somebody) makes her feel happy, really happy, she curls in on herself in a little contraction that feels like the sweetest hug.  I know it's not really a hug, but it looks like one, it feels like one, and she is bursting with joy, so it may as well be one.  I love it.  Love it, love it, love it.  And other times when she is sleepy and lays her head on my shoulder - those times are so tender and precious. 

I didn't know before Eleni that arching backwards is usually a negative reflex, indicating pain, fear or some other negative feeling.  When we carried Eleni she always held her body stiffly or arched away from us.  Though unlikely to be a conscious choice, that moving away still felt like a distance between us, a sort of rejection.  It wasn't, but it felt like it. 

So when baby Rora leans in, when she curls towards me or rests her head, I sense that attachment, that happy attachment very acutely.  I treasure it so.