Yes, it's been a long time since I last posted, not because nothing has been happening in the Planet of the Monkey, but a lot of work suddenly landed on my plate and every time I sat down at my computer it was to be productive OR ELSE!
And while that was quite nice, it also means that I am very far behind with Monkey updates, because such a lot has been happening!
This will give you a fairly good idea of where we're at right now:
Yup, the Monkey has achieved verticality! And yup, he is extraordinarily happy in this state. He is also crawling about, traditional style - hands and knees. I can't remember exactly the moment it began - but the progression was funny to watch: he started off rocking on all fours in place. Then lifting up a leg for long periods of time, like a dog with a bladder problem. Then managing to move his arms and legs with the result that he travelled slowly backwards. Finally, after a few tantalising steps, the process clicked and he was off. The whole thing probably took him about 5 days to work out, at the end of which he was able to crawl while obviously focusing very hard on each limb as he moved it, and was still inclined to drop into his commando creep if he wanted to get anywhere fast. Over the last few days though, he's started to find his rhythm and occasionally even moves two limbs at once!
About a week and a half ago, he performed his first unassisted pull-to-stand on a chair, and now can happily pull himself on virtually anything. This makes him ecstatic and the cats nervous, as they're no longer safe on their sofa perches. We've also had to take our baby-proofing to the next level. He's just able to get his fingers over the top of the dining table, which means that anything sticking over the edge is fair game as far as he's concerned.
'Cruising' is the sport du jour - and it's been very interesting watching him getting his sense of balance. He can now make it between the sofa and his play pen, which involves switching his grip, stepping, and transferring his weight. Easy for us, but quite a concept for the Monkey! Unfortunately, this manoeuver brings him right up close to the stereo controls. Hello Volume Knob!! He's also worked out how to get down from his standing position, which is probably the latest development. Initially the only way down was by imitating a felled tree (if felled trees screeched and wailed for a good 15 minutes). But now he has a couple of methods. One I call the 'bottom bump', and the other is a very careful method of leaning forward and bending at the knees and ending up in a crawl position. This second method takes about half an hour, though, as he keeps changing his mind.
Last note before I sign off to tend the little guy (who is burbling in his cot). He's getting not one, but two(!) lower front teeth. He is about to learn that biting is NOT GOOD.