Ok, so really more like 9.5 if I wait much longer, but we do what we can.
She had her 9 month appointment and all is going well. The stats were:
Weight 23lb 15oz - 99% (actually less than she has weighed at some visits)
Height 29 inches - 92%
Head 18.5 - 99%
In short, still a big, healthy baby. She is on a maintenance dose of antibiotics through the end of the month to try to keep her ears clear, but for the first time since maybe her 4 month appointment her ears looked good. As noted, she is going to the ophthalmologist on Thursday and then back to her Dr. for one end of the ear season check at the beginning of June.
She is a lady in motion. She crawls everywhere and will at times wander off from wherever we are and have to be tracked down. This may end up being wandering in the kitchen looking for morsels on the ground or playing toys in B's room or wherever. She does well at pulling up, cruises and can move from person to person or along furniture, but no interest in walking.
Maggie's favorite food just now is cantaloupe. I think she might eat an unlimited quantity if allowed. I actually buy one a week, cut it up in small pieces and freeze in individual servings so there is always some on hand. We have, effectively, stopped pureeing anything so she is eating chunks of food or table food depending on the circumstances. Oddly enough, she is also a fan of cheese sandwiches. I was making one for B one day and cut the other half up into small pieces for her and she loves it so that appears in her rotation now as well. I think the newest food this month has been blackberries and despite some puckering she ate a lot of them (cooked in cobbler). She does MUCH prefer feeding herself and we do battle with getting a spoon in her without a mess. She will allow it for yogurt, but otherwise really thinks she can handle it (note, she can't). Also, we started with a little bit of sippy cups with water to help work towards the transition away from bottles in just three months!
Communication - I don't feel like she waves or claps as much as when they were new. She does work to get other messages across though. We're just starting on the limited baby signs we used with B, but she conveys messages rather clearly. We were eating out the other day and every time Brent got distracted or took a bit without sharing she would reach over and grab his arm to get some too. She will also open her mouth up wide indicating she wants more if it looks like you maybe clearing up and she isn't finished. She is getting closer to the all-down sign which is good. She also has a few tentative words. You can definitely here Dada and Mama if you try (parents are biased, I'll admit). She also seems to say "hi" occasionally and definitely has been trying things like buba and cantaloupe--- seriously, no she can't say it, but she did really appear to be trying and there are some recognizable syllabus there. In any case, she is good at getting her attentions across.
Paci - She still uses a pacifier. I try to limit it to just when she is sleep, but admit that in situations like church where we want her to be quiet we use it at times too. She can now put it in herself which is helpful. We use the paci clip from Tracie a lot!
Sleeping: M has been an on again, off again, sleeper and still struggles with her nap schedule. Sometime mid-April we decided we were through with random night behavior and just turned off the monitor. The doors were open so we could hear if she got really upset, but we didn't hear anything. We relented a bit when they got strep, but have only gotten up with her once in recent memory when we were at home (first day of strep). She does still fuss around 11pm and 4:30am but puts herself back to sleep. Her morning nap seems to be getting earlier to around 9 or 9:30 most days. The afternoon nap is still a bit of a mess, but is roughly around 2pm if other events don't interfere.
Clothes - we're on to the last of the clothes people gave us before she was born. There are some cute summer things that I love. We're wearing the skirt/skort things a lot as they are cute, cool and do not interfere with crawling like the longer dresses. Do to the self-feeding we do get to change clothes a lot. She remains in the 18 month size range with a few things edging towards 24 months. I really need to get her some more shoes as she is now more mobile and we only have one pair left that fits.
M has started shaking her head which is pretty funny to watch and she really enjoys it. Also, when she's tired she will sometimes randomly tilt her head back and throw open her arms. She doesn't cry or anything it is more like she is too tired to keep everything together. This is my best guess as sometimes she seems to do this randomly.
Firsts: First attendance at a marathon, attended first baby shower, just got her third tooth on Tuesday, first outdoor photo shoot (pictures coming soon), first strawberries, first taste of mud (I think), first time meeting second cousins, first mother's day, and first time in all day child care while I was away in DC, and I'm sure many more random things.
Very stubborn girl who is trying hard to communicate with us. I love her smile, her snuggles and her own sweet smell. Maggie and I like to sit with our faces/heads touching when one or both of us is tired. I love it. So warm, soft and comforting. Now that she is so busy and on the go I'm trying to savor the rare moments when she is still and will relax into me before headed off for her next adventure. Love you baby girl!