Life with NeutronLad: 11 Months

It’s been months since I last wrote about my son NeutronLad, and what an eventful couple of months it’s been! NeutronLad learned to crawl at around 6 months and started pulling himself up shortly there after. Now, at 11 months, he’s starting to “bridge”, moving from one item to another in a precursor to walking. Along with this new-found mobility has come a desire to explore everything … which means we’ve had to start baby proofing in earnest.

Yes, I am too cute for words

NeutronLad continues to be a very happy, well-adjusted baby who only gets grumpy when he has a reason to get grumpy (e.g. teething, gas, colds). He has a sweet, happy-go-lucky disposition who’s a joy to be around. He’s also a hell of a flirt — if we’re out at a restaurant, the coffee shop or a book store you can rest assured that he’ll be watching whatever girls or women he can find, and smiling enthusiastically at them.

Stairs are fun!

Unlike StarGirl, who was never a big fan of the dark, NeutronLad will happily head off into the darkened library and dining room on his quest to get to the kitchen and do some real damage. He loves playing in the dogs’ water bowls and emptying the Tupperware and pot cabinets of their wares.

His true passion, however, lies with climbing stairs. He’s obsessed with the stairs to the second floor, and if you put him down in the living room or library he’ll be to the stairs and on his way up them before you can turn twice looking for the baby gate. Why is he obsessed with the stairs? I suspect it’s mostly a “because they’re there” thing — he wants to do it because he knows he can. The fact that we always come running when he starts climbing is an added bonus.

Look what I can put in my mouth!

NeutronLad has been holding his bottle and feeding himself for months, but when he started on solid foods he had no desire to pick up his Cheerios and put them in his mouth. He’d happily eat them if Sue or I put them in his mouth, but he wasn’t about to do it himself. That changed at about 10.5 months the light went on, and he realized he could do things a lot faster himself. Of course, this brought new challenges: the first thing he fed himself was Cheerios. The second was a big stick of chalk.

Once again, this sparked another round of child proofing, and reminders to NeutronLad’s big sister StarGirl (who’s four) not to leave her “Littlest Pet Shop”, LEGOS or any other toys with small pieces on the first floor where NeutronLad could easily get them. Of course, one of his missions when he reaches the top of the stairs is to immediately go into StarGirl’s room, and the first thing he picked up was a pair of miniature dog sunglasses that Jordie had left on her floor.

Hey, watch me drop this bottle!

NeutronLad has a definite mischievous side to his personality — he likes to do things just to see what sort of reaction he’ll provoke, and he particularly likes to do things he knows he shouldn’t. His latest trick is to drop his bottle on the floor when he’s decided he’s had enough to eat. The thing is, he doesn’t just drop it — he looks around first to see if anyone’s watching, and then he drops it.

Xboxes Rock! (what does this button do?)

Like StarGirl (and I suspect most kids in this day and age), NeutronLad has an intrinsic love of buttons. He’ll happily mash the buttons on his cash register, and if he gets near a laptop, he’ll bang away on the keys (though after StarGirl ripped a key off my iBook as a baby, we learned our lesson, and don’t let NeutronLad near any laptops).

NeutronLad’s true joy comes from playing with my Xbox 360 whenever he can get near it. While it warms my little geek dad heart that he’s interested in such a marvel of gaming technology, his little fingers fit into the controller and USB ports all to well. He’s also extremely proficient at pressing the “power button” on the 360, either turning it on or off depending on whether I’m using it at the time. I can’t blame him for his interest — the power button on the 360 is ringed by four arcs that flash when one of my Xbox Live friends comes online or sends me a game invite. That makes it an even more attractive target for an 11-month-old, and it has me scrambling for ways to shield the 360.

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