I meant to keep doing separate updates for each month of Katie's life, as I have been. However, her thirteenth month passed without anything much more exciting to report than a changeover from two naps a day to one. She did at one point shuffle one of her feet a fraction of an inch forward while standing unsupported and I got very excited and started planning a blog post complete with Neil Armstrong references, but then she didn't repeat this for the rest of the month and, really, once I thought further about it the excitement value seemed pretty limited even when viewed through the Doting Parent lens. So, a month without anything much to blog about. Then she hit fourteen months and, suddenly, all sorts of neurones seemed to connect in her brain. She started pointing at everything and discussing it with enormous interest in Katie language, politely but firmly expressing her opinion that those curtains should really be opened now, thank you, Mummy, or that she would like the radio back on, please, or just telling me about the really interesting thing that she could see over there in that corner of the room, all in cheerfully indecipherable syllables and gurgles. And then she started walking and talking. Well, I exaggerate slightly - she started taking a few wobbly steps and saying a few definite words - but it was still pretty cool, milestone-wise.
My policy in these updates has been that while each monthly update should be restricted scrupulously to the events of the month, the whole month, and nothing but the month, any noteworthy developments between the 25th of each month and the time I actually get round to writing that monthly report up can rate a passing mention as long as I clarify that they weren't part of the events in the month under discussion. However, the contrast between the non-event of her thirteenth month and the amount of development that seemed to be taking place by the time I was getting round to writing it up was so great that I just thought, sod it, I'll make it a two-monthly update this time. Besides, I was even more desperately strapped for time than usual.
So. Thirteenth month - the nap transition. For the previous couple of months, since being night weaned, Katie had been on a schedule of napping once in the late morning around 10.30 - 11-ish, and once in the early-to-mid-afternoon, for an hour or so at a time; shortly after her first birthday, she started switching over to the toddler pattern of having one nap a couple of hours long at the beginning of the afternoon, right after lunch. The books all seem to paint this transition as a horrible time of tiredness and crankiness due to baby not being fully in either sleep pattern, but in fact Katie accomplished it perfectly smoothly - she just went back and forth unpredictably for a bit between days when she was in the old pattern and days when she was in the new (with the latter becoming more frequent over a period of a few weeks until the former had disappeared), and was perfectly happy as long as we watched her and went with what her pattern was on any given day. So we simply watched her as she got to late morning to see whether she seemed to need a nap then or not, and arranged things accordingly. If we'd had any sort of social life that we wanted to plan it would no doubt have been pretty awkward, but, as it was, it all went swimmingly.
Fourteenth month - the actual interesting milestones. As above, plus brief summary of other milestones as follows:
First wobbly unsupported steps. This was, with excellent timing, on New Year's Eve a few hours before we headed up to see Barry's parents, so they got to witness this new skill at an early stage.
First definite word (as in, something I was sure was a word and not just something that might have been either a word or a random sound that fortuitously happened to resemble the name of the thing she happened to be looking at). This was also on New Year's Eve, and was inspired by Barry's parents' dog, which proved to be even more exciting than Christmas trees or Barry's mother's comb. So Katie's official first word is "Dog!"
(From the Katie-at-thirteen-months dictionary: Dog (duhg): 1. Furry canine animal. 2. General expression of delight or amazement at any of the many things in life that are so awesomely wonderful as to be almost in the same category of wonderfulness as dogs are.)
Second definite word, which was "Da", as in "Daddy". I'm clearly an also-ran as far as naming is concerned.
Other possible word sightings (hearings?): "Ted". "Key". "Dere". "Dat". I'm pretty sure about "Ted". The others are probables.
Breastfeeding status at end of fourteenth month: three times weekly. Tooth count: nine (eight incisors, lower left molar) (vg).
And now I shall wrap this up and post it before it turns into a three-month update.