How he rolls

At 18 weeks old, it’s hard to believe James was ever a wee thing of just under six pounds. At his vaccination appointment last Wednesday on his four-month birthday, our little man weighed in at an impressive 14 pounds, 12 ounces and measured at least 24 inches with his knees bent. (It’s hard to tell how long he is when he’s kicking so mightily!)

His legs, which in November resembled popsicle sticks jutting awkwardly from a stiff and spacious newborn diaper, now boast rolls of flab with crevices so deep that Q-tips are necessary at bathtime to properly rid them of that special, cheesy-smelling fat-wrinkle jam that especially rotund babies produce on a continuous basis. That goes double for his neck, whose folds accumulate lint, dead skin and fermented spitup at an alarming rate. Even Maddi, with her prodigious, Michelin-manlike thigh rolls, could — if necessity dictated — last a good three to five days unwashed without smelling like a cheesemonger’s workshop. However, James is ready for his bath in two days, tops, and begins reeking with an unparallelled rancidity after four.

Of course, the stench doesn’t begin to touch the malodorous miasma emanating from James’ diminutive derriere, so it’s hardly worth mentioning. What’s a little sour milk next to pure sulfur, right? Besides, while his signature fragrance is strongly evocative of a Limburger-and-rotten-egg sandwich, what he lacks in aroma he makes up for with cuteness and charisma.

All a person has to do is look at James and our wee boy will drive himself into fits of delight. He’ll coo and smile and giggle and flap for what I assume would be infinite amounts of time, were they available to him. He doubles over with huge, gummy grins when we’re singing “Roly Poly.” He lights up when Daddy coos back to his overtures. He even giggles in the bathtub when I’m cleaning that horrid-smelling grime out of his flabby but adorable neck creases. I’m sure he would still be cute without all the rolls, but what’s better than a jolly little fat man? It’s like Christmas every day!

In other news, James is sitting well in his Bumbo now, lifting his head and shoulders a little off his play mat during tummy time, rolling from back to front and sticking his pacifier back in his own mouth from time to time. He enjoys rattles, mirrors, mobiles and chime toys. Maddi, oddly, didn’t really get into the whole toy thing, preferring instead to be entertained by human playthings and items around the house that meet her “Three-D” rule — dangerous, dirty or destructive. It warms our hearts (and eases our minds) that her old, little-used toys are finally being put to good use.

Oh, and here’s some odd news for you — James is working on some teeth already. Yep, at the tender age of four months (but really three, gestationally), our wee boy is a slobbering, red-cheeked little ball of teething cuteness. In fact, when he was crying the other day, Chris spied two white bumps under James’ gums use this link. Two kids in diaper is a fair bit of work. Two kids in diapers who are both teething sounds like a fair bit of overtime. Fun times are no doubt in store!

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