Julia in the Clouds

Julia does well with white noise. This is very fortunate for us, since today we took her on her very first flight–two of them, in fact, to get from our home to my parents’ home in California. Jet engines happen to make exceptional white noise machines, at least after takeoff. Julia was fussy for a bit until right after we left the ground, and then she was out like a light. (A light that was just turned off. Certainly not like one that is still on.)

She just passed her four-month milestone, which means I have a lot of catching up to do here. It’s funny, in that not-funny-but-more-curious way, that I have no shortage of pictures, but I do have a shortage of words to talk about them. Maybe I should have made this a photoblog. Actually, it’s not quite fair to say that I have a shortage of words, because I don’t have trouble writing when I sit down and write. What I actually have is a shortage of time set aside to write, which I guess is typical for new dads.

Since January, Julia has pudged up a bit, learned to smile when she’s happy, and learned to laugh in an adorable baby fashion. She’s developed an appreciation for books (or at least for being read to), as well as for music of various kinds. She especially enjoys her Baby Einstein animal book, which can usually stop an episode of crying with remarkable speed.

Her last two “well” visits to the pediatrician have gone perfectly, and she is right on track for physical growth and mental development. She’s about 25 inches long and about 13 pounds, not too far from the 50th percentile for this age. She hasn’t started solid foods yet, but that should begin in the next month or so.

She doesn’t sit or roll over yet (or play fetch, though she is very good about not barking at strangers). We’ve watched her very nearly roll over a few times, but she hasn’t quite got the technique yet. The one time she actually did was definitely an accident. I’m not sure whether to be eager or fearful about that next milestone, since even just that much mobility means if we look away for even a second, she might not be in the same spot when our attention returns. I suppose I’m both excited and worried about how that stage of development will go.

I also suppose I’ll probably maintain those feelings about Julia until I’m dead. It comes with the territory.

Our biggest challenge for now concerns sleep, which is something that Julia still resists except under certain unsustainable circumstances (all-night open bar with Mommy). We’ve recently instituted a “crib-only” policy, where we do go in from time to time in the middle of the night for comfort or feeding if necessary, but she always goes back in the crib to sleep. Courtney especially has read and watched and listened to all manner of opinions on managing your baby’s sleep, and this approach (as the current goal anyway) seems to make the most sense to both of us. Things appear to be going quite well, all things considered.

Of course, now we’re heading off to California for 10 days, where we won’t be able to keep up all of the same bedtime routines, and she’ll have to adjust three hours (twice!), and we don’t have quite the same flexibility to let her cry when needed. Way to go, Mom and Dad! But it is what it is. We’ll do our best to maintain as much of that routine as we can while traveling, and then return to it completely when we get home.

For now, I need to pack this tablet up so we can get off the last flight of the day and say hello to Grammy and Grandpa! California, here we come!