Last Friday, Nell turned one month old.
Where has the time gone? Where is that tiny, blinking, curled up newborn we brought home from the hospital? Where is our newly swaddled "burrito baby" who could almost always be calmed with a tightly wrapped blanket around her little body?
If I'm honest, a part of me misses that newborn from a month ago.
But mostly I'm loving watching this baby grow and change.
I love you so much.
I love the way you wave your head back and forth, opening and closing your mouth rapidly like a goldfish, when you are interrupted from eating and you want to get back to that very serious business.
I love the way you kick your little legs wildly, as if riding an invisible bicycle, when you're nursing enthusiastically.
I love the way those legs are getting stronger all the time, and you can "stand" for ten to fifteen seconds as long as we hold onto you to help you balance.
I love your squeaky hiccups -- even when you get them in church and they reverberate through the building during a quiet prayer.
I love the way you often observe the world around you with your tiny mouth in a perfect little "o" shape.
I love your little sighs and your sleepy smiles, and I especially love your awake smiles when you are at your most interactive.
I love all the little sounds you make now -- coos and sighs, dolphin-like sounds, and sometimes a little cross between a squeak and a shout that sounds like a small dog barking.
I love the way you want to be with me all the time. The feeling is mutual, little one.
I love the way you'll sometimes let me put you down in your swing now, but you follow me around the kitchen with your eyes.
I know you can't move your arms and hands intentionally yet, but when you inadvertently fling your arm up over my shoulder, or drape your hands across my neck, it completely melts my heart.