you're two months old! (Plus one week now, but who's counting?)
The time just keeps rushing on by, and as such, I've been spending a lot of time snuggling you and postponing writing this letter. In some ways, it's hard for me to believe you've been in our family for nine weeks already, but in many other ways it's hard to remember the world without you in it. What a trip this life is!
You have had quite a few visitors this month! We started with your Great-Aunt Susan and Great-Uncle Bob, followed closely by Nana and then Grandpa. You got lots of snuggles and love: plenty of arms to hold you while you napped and legs to bounce you while Papa and I took breaks to eat and shower... and Brother Daniel had plenty of new playmates and book-readers. I'm so grateful to them for all their help, and it fills my heart with so much joy to see our loved ones loving on you. You're so very dear to me, and so precious to so many family and friends all over the world—most of whom haven't even met you yet!
you will only nap during the day if you're being held or worn, and you rarely sleep during Daniel's nap time. This combination does put a bit of a cramp in my daily nap habit, but I'm alright with it. You're very snuggly, and I dig it.
One area where you're having some difficulty is digestion. You're a little reflux-y (though that seems to be getting better over time) and your belly seems to be bothering you pretty frequently. Every day Papa and I give you gentle belly massages and bicycle your legs, and we're giving you infant probiotics. I have also given up eating dairy (in part) to see if that has any influence on how you're feeling. I'm hopeful... we'll see! In happy eating news, nursing is going much more smoothly! I feel like we've finally figured it out, and neither of us gets frustrated when latching anymore. We can even nurse in public now without too much difficulty, so life is good!
a bit elusive to catch on camera (mostly because the camera is so darn distracting) but we managed to record a few for posterity. I've especially enjoyed watching you wake up each morning and seeing that sweet little smile when you see me there next to you.
You're also cooing a lot more in these past few weeks. Your awake times are longer and you're really starting to engage with us socially. Papa, Daniel, and I are all having fun having conversations with you these days. Daniel particularly likes to translate the things you're saying into words or phrases.
This month I've really noticed how different you and Daniel look from each other. You certainly look like siblings, but there are lots of differences already that weren't as apparent (at least to me) right off the bat. By two months, Daniel had lost most of his dark newborn hair and had the beginnings of blonde fuzz growing back in; your dark hair has persisted but now has blonde roots! Your eyes are very blue in the centers, while Daniel's stayed dark grey until they turned brown. And of course, you have Momma's chin dimple—how fun!
your brother adores you. He likes to snuggle with you and pet your hair. He reports to us from the back seat of the car to let us know what you're doing: "Joel's awake!" ... "Now he's asleep." Daniel gets particularly concerned when you're upset, and tries his hardest to gently help you to feel better. And you, in turn, perk up and look his way when you hear his voice. I didn't have many expectations about what it would be like to watch you two develop a relationship, but it has been truly awesome already.
I love you more every day. You brighten up my days with your smiles and keep me warm at night with your grunty, sweaty little baby snuggles. I'm so glad you're my kiddo!