It's odd how different the pixie is from the imp. I mean, there're a lot of similarities—they are siblings, after all, and both have the same stay-at-home mother and devoted father—but just as many differences.
Both were born early—the pixie stayed put longer than the imp, but was still impatient—and both were able to hold their heads up and look around quite well, just days after they were born. Both took to nursing quickly and easily. Both are incredibly happy and secure babies. Both are strong kids, and sat, rolled over, and crawled early. The imp started army crawling (elbows and knees, with his belly close to, but not on, the floor) at five months, the pixie at six on both hands, one knee and one foot.
The imp started wanting to put down to play at about two and a half months (he's been home for a bit more than a month at that point). Then, a bit later, he wanted me to go away: he'd fuss until I put him in his crib to play, play for a little while, then start fussing again, looking from me to his bedroom door and back until I took the hint. When he was sleepy, he'd go to sleep for a nap—on his own. No fuss.
Despite having a worse case of acid reflux than the pixie, he started eating baby food (pears—he flat refused cereal of all types) at four months, transitioning to three full meals of baby food per day (about six ounces of food per meal—a jar of corn and a jar of lamb being a favorite meal) by about nine months.
The pixie, on the other hand, loves socializing. She's only started wanting down to play within the last month or so, and usually gets upset if there's no one in the room with her. She's seven and a half months old, and has only just now started to leave the room I'm sitting in to explore. She sits herself up and is cute at us (wrinkles her nose, grins, puppy pants, flaps her hands, and shakes her head at us) until we get down on the floor to play with her.
She won't take a bottle. She won't take a sippy cup. She won't eat much baby food—all I've found that she likes is sweet potatoes and prunes, and won't eat much of those, and can't seem to get the hang of using a spoon. She leans forward like she wants the bite, then sticks her tongue out and licks the spoon. She won't take the spoon in her mouth, and gags if I push the issue.
The most frustrating thing, though, is the sleep issue. I never have had many problems getting the imp to go down to sleep. Indeed, he has a self-imposed bedtime of about 8:00, and wakes about eleven and a half to twelve and a half hours later. He naps well at home, usually about an hour and a half to three hours. When he was the pixie's age, he slept 'till eight, went down at ten for an hour, 1:00 for two hours, then another nap at about 4-4:30 for another two hours. I know he slept a lot—he was eight weeks early, and was trying to catch up on growth (and he did—with a vengeance: he's over 40" tall, and won't be three years old 'til October).
The pixie hardly naps. I'm lucky if I can get her put down for a half an hour in the morning, and another half an hour in the afternoon. Bedtime is 9:30-11:30, and that's after an hour or two of fighting with her about going down. I'm hesitant to let her "cry it out" because that just seems cruel. She's a happy, happy baby on the sleep she gets, but mama's definitely not a happy camper. There have been times that I've been tempted to have an adult beverage before her last nurse before bed, just to see if she'll go to sleep easier and sooner. I haven't given in to that temptation, but it's there.
Worst of all, the whole battle of wills thing over sleep—the battle I'm currently losing—is making me shorter tempered with the pixie and the imp (though he does earn the scoldings, and/or time outs: his favorite things are chasing the cat, messing with Daddy's computer, poking things at the framed posters on the wall to watch them swing, and spit painting. Soaking his finger in spit, and flinging or wiping it onto the wall, crib, high chair tray, toys, doors, windows, chairs, etc., ad nauseum. ). The raised frustration level and raised scolding is making me feel like a total failure of a mother. Which only makes it worse.