He told a joke the other day... at least according to my husband. According to my husband, their conversation went like this-
DH: Hey Benjamin! I can't believe you are already 5 months old!
Benjamin: Wow Dad! Its only been five months? It feels like a lifetime!!!
Yes. We are that corny. I love that joke, because to us it feels to brief, but to him its everything. It is crazy to think how much changes in five months. This morning we were thinking back to when he could not even pick up his pacifier, or when he could pick it up but not turn it around. So what is little Benjamin doing now?
Eating: He still is exclusively breast fed, no solids yet. He still is eating about every 3 hours during the day (and during bad nights), although in the last week he has been eating even more frequently again and I think it may be a growth spurt. On top of keeping him fed I have been pumping after he eats first thing each morning and I get 4-8 ounces each day this way, which all is in the freezer. He has become a very efficient eater so I can get him fed in less than ten minutes. He hardly ever spits up, and when he does it tends to come in spurts (a few days in a row and then back to nothing). When he does spit up its not much, and sometimes he is a ninja about it, spitting up on you without you noticing and without any getting on himself. Impressive!
Sleeping: His sleep varies greatly. Bedtime can be anywhere between 8 to 10pm. If it is late like 10pm its because he napped from 7-8pm or something... not sure how to fix that. On a good night, he will sleep from bedtime until 3am or so, at which time he eats, and then sleeps 3-5:30 or so, at which time he poops/gets gassy. If I get him re-situated he will then sleep longer, and get up anywhere from 6:30-8am. His bedtime routine is pretty simple and effective. When he starts to seem tired (like rubbing his eyes, getting a bit fussy, wanting his pacifier), I take him upstairs and change his diaper and put PJs on, read him a book or two, and then depending on the time either just put him down or feed him and then put him down. Sometimes I lay next to his crib for 5-10 minutes with my hand on his face holding his pacifier in (my parents call this the Vulcan Mind Meld move). Sometimes he does not even need that much. If it is a really "rough" night, I might turn white noise on the radio and set it to turn off after 10 minutes. Once I put him in his crib its usually less than 10 minutes to me being able to leave w/him safely on his way to sleep. During the day his napping is sporatic. Sometimes he wants to sleep all day, sometimes hardly at all. He still naps best in his bouncer chair under the bathroom fan. If he gets tired you can stick him in there and 4 times out of 5 he is asleep within five minutes. We also have been practicing going to nap w/out white noise and sleeping in the crib, and he can do these things now but will go down easier and nap longer with the white noise. If he falls asleep on your lap or shoulder and you put him down on his back in the crib he will immediately turn his head to the left and up and arch his back and expect a pacifier to be there, and when it is he goes to sleep.
Playing: We try to get in a good mixture of lap time, sitting time, back time, tummy time, baby gym time, and confined time (this last meaning his car seat or bouncer chair). He likes all of these to some extent, but wants out of tummy time the soonest. He has yet to roll from back to front or to crawl. He can stay seated quite a long time now if he has something he is interested in to keep him engaged (and not looking for mischief). If he is sitting up he will strategically fall over to reach for things. He reaches for anything and everything and tries to put it in his mouth. If you don't give him something to old he will reach for the table, or shopping cart, or anything else nearby and try to eat it. He makes all sorts of fun noises including ear-splitting screeches, coos, giggles, snorts, grunts, etc. He loves when we sing and make hand motions, like Itsy Bitsy Spider or Patty Cake. he also likes to see people dance and will start wiggling along. He also likes when you make sudden noises, like going "boo" and slapping your hands down on his stroller. Sometimes he thinks we are really funny and laughs at everything. He is very ticklish when he is in a good mood and seems to actually enjoy being tickled. If he is in a bad mood or tired he is not ticklish. He likes to be lifted into the air and he likes when I kiss each cheek in rapid alternations. He likes to be carried around a lot, and he likes to be outside or out in stores etc looking around.
Toys: He still is a big fan of the crinkly books (or his one crinkly elephant). He also has a plastic Tigger that lights up and plays music which he seems to really like. He also likes to pull the ring on the Baby Einstein panda that I attach to his car seat so it makes music. He has ended up with several elephant toys because when it comes to choosing which animal to get of many toys, I get the elephant because I know the trunk will make it easier to grab onto. He likes to grab board books as we read them and he has one board book, actually from when my siblings and I were little, that is very small, about 3" by 3" that he just treats like a chew toy in general. He likes teething rings and pacifiers to chew on, but there is no real signs of teeth yet. I am sure it will come any day.
Other notes: He still likes his baths and splashes a lot. We hope to incorporate a bath into his bedtime ritual eventually. He often pees when we change his diaper. He is wearing size 3 target brand right now. His clothing is 6-9 months, and he is outgrowing the smaller 6 month stuff rapidly. He gives me hugs now, puts one arm on each side and hangs on to me. He also likes to grab hair again (and try to eat it of course). He is still extremely sensitive to me not being around, separation anxiety, mama's boy, whatever you want to call it. He has a little baby acne again but nothing like it was the first go round. He does not like noises like sneezes or coughs and will even start to make a crying face if someone suddenly sneezes. When he gets wound up we call it his "mandrake" face, referencing Harry Potter, so we will say "don't go mandrake on me!!". He is just getting so big. When I feed him his feet just stretch out so far, its incredible to me. I have tried to measure him and he seems to be about 27" long now. His current pack and play is only 30" long, so we need to get into the new house so we can set up his crib!!
And now, for a video. Its not really funny or anything, just him sitting out on a blanket, doing what he does!