Junior at 13 months is a delight. He is in constant motion, although he will put his head down on the nearest part of us and say 'Aaah' to imitate the sound we make when giving a cuddle as he passes us in travel. He gives full on kisses with open mouth and lots of slobber, enjoyable in their enthusiasm rather than the experience itself. He has a big mouth, small pointy chin and wide cheeks, so when he smiles it looks as if his face will break in two with happiness. He smiles often at us and at our nanny, although is often quite shy with strangers until he gets to know them. He adores Pob and follows her around, wanting to do everything she does, which has the unfortunate effect of occasionally driving her to distraction as he attempts to eat her playdough or bash at the book she is reading.
He is very clear what he wants and doesn't want, and has had several full body tantrums when it's not forthcoming - including an occasion last week when he wanted to drink his nanny's coffee, and no amount of distraction could stop him from completely losing the plot. In the end she had to take him out of the cafe so that he didn't destroy everyone eles's afternoon. He does the same when food is not delivered fast enough or in sufficient quantities - the moment when the yogurt runs out, for example, is not a good one to be around. And if Pob is eating something, he wants it, so he has been introduced to many foods sooner than she ever was - cape gooseberries, for example.
He went through a phase of biting, but now just gently gums us instead. He puts most things in his mouth to explore them, and has a particular fascination for small pebbles, which are of course ideal things for babies to put in their mouths. He bashes anything that seems worth bashing - the louder the noise the better. He loves music and has taken to sitting and waving his arms around when it comes on or when we sing, or when Pob does 'ballet' (more on that anon).
He crawls like a demon now, and pulls himself up on anything. He can stand unsupported but if he realises he's doing it he quickly sits down, although in a very controlled manner. He walks quite well holding on to someone, but as soon as he actually wants to go somewhere he drops down to crawl there. He learnt to climb stairs a few weeks ago and ever since makes a beeline for them as soon as he sees them. He'll also crawl up anything on an incline, including slides. He can already throw a ball quite well, and enjoys chasing them.
He has no clear words as yet. We keep hearing things that sound like words, but he doesn't then repeat them. He does say mamamama and dadadada consistently in what seems to be a discriminatory way, but it's not 100% consistent. Given I know how early Pob spoke, I'm trying not to be concerned about this. He understands a huge amount so I don't think there are any hearing issues. He signs 'more' about 50% of the time, and 'thank you' about 80% of the time. He points a lot, and clearly is waiting for us to respond and tell him what it is. He waves. He does make a couple of animal noises, although again it's not completely consistent. I'm sure it will come. I'm not sure he feels the need to learn more words, as most of the time his urgent grunting and 'ahahahah' and 'da da da' are clear indicators of what he wants, and he usually gets it.
He sleeps. He goes down for a nap at 9 and again at around 1300 with no complaints. He goes to bed around 1900 and sleeps through til about 630, again with only very rare wakeups. If you are in the middle of sleep hell, I hope this makes you feel somewhat better - for a baby who simply didn't nap unless held, and who fed most of the night until he was 7 months old, this is a real blessing.
He loves his mummy, and I, of course, cannot explain how much I adore him. He's turning into a boy before my eyes, and while I secretly wish for another tiny baby, despite the sleeplessness and stress I know it would bring, I love watching him learn about the world. He is on his way.