Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Is There Such a Thing as Henry Proof?...

Henry looks comfortable on this car, but he can't move around on it himself, you have to push him and you have to do it really carefully or he loses his balance and falls off. He can't even get on the thing himself really. He just tries to throw himself over it and ends up looking like a sack of grain on a horse, so you have to put him in the thing. But, he sure knows how to smile for a camera.

According to my family as I child I was legendary for getting into trouble and breaking things. My parents love to tell the story about how I got a child proof record player that my uncle claimed was "indestructible". It was this big plastic contraption that came in a suitcase sized plastic shell. I broke it the first day; I used the box as a stool and stood on it to get a toy on a high shelf.

So really it is only fair that my own child would be equally aggravating. Henry is 9 months now and he is crawling around at a pretty quick pace and he tries to get into everything. We baby proofed the apartment a couple weekends ago. We moved the couch in front of the bookselves so he can't pull books off the shelf or hurt himself trying to climb them or something. We taped all the cords so he can't pull them. And we put up a baby gate in the hallway. We also ordered an extra long gate for the kitchen, but it hasn't shipped yet. So we are currently using chairs and a sheet as a second baby gate.

Anyway the point is, it doesn't matter how much baby proofing we do because the kid still finds the one or two things we can't do anything about and goes straight for them. Like we have a little memory stick sized thing hanging out of the computer that gives us the internet and Henry tries to yank it out over and over again. You pick him up and plunk him back down by his toys and he screams and crawls over to the computer again. Sometimes he has a one track mind. Carol and I joke around that he only wants to play with the things we don't want him to, but it's kind of true.

Henry has a set routine for bedtime, we call it "bath, bottle and bedtime." Usually Carol gets his bath ready and I get him undressed. Then Carol gives him his bath while I get his bottle ready and then Carol and I switch off as to who gives him the bottle and puts him to sleep. Carol usually sings him "Hey Jude" while she gives him his bottle (it is after all his middle name), but when it's my night I give him a Harry Chapin concert. I'm a Chapin fan, so I know all the lyrics. I sing him "W.O.L.D.," "Cats in the Cradle," and I usually only get a little bit into "Taxi" before he's done with the bottle and asleep. Sometimes I think about singing something else, but I never seem to. And other times I wonder about the lyrics and how the songs are about not so great dads. But, then I think it's all good, they're just fun songs and Henry doesn't really understand much English anyway. The funniest thing is that Henry isn't the only audience for our family's nightly concerts, one of our cats Stella loves to sit and hear Carol and I sing. Some nights we forget she's in there and we close Henry's door and we don't realize she's in there until we hear meowing over the baby monitor.

Henry continues to amaze me. He can already feed himself. He eats Cherrios and little bits of pear. But I'm most impressed with the fact that you can give him half a banana and he'll just sit there and eat it one bite at a time. And he has already learned how to share. When he's eating his Cheerios if I come and say hi to him he'll offer me one. Sometimes when we're playing on the floor he'll offer me the toy he's playing with.

Oh and everyone will be happy to know that Henry is now saying "Ma Ma,"  and "Da Da." I think Carol was a little jealous when all he was saying was "Da da." He also says "yes." Sometimes you'll tell him "no" and he'll say "yes." 9-months-old and he's already talking back. Something tells me this kid is going to be a handful. It's a good thing he's so darn cute.