The Ruark Kids

The end of the earliest beginnings

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Siena has been spending a wonderful week with extended family at the summer home this past week while mom is doing some externships at local vet clinics. It has been a veritable boot camp for the little bean, what with her Nonna putting her through a strict regimen of tummy time, swimming, assisted cruising and walking, and plenty of the usual eating, chatting, sleeping, giggling, and reading.

This discipline has paid off! Over the weekend, Siena was performing a number of feats that frankly don’t bode well for life at home upon her return, and hence mark the end of the earliest phase of life, where Siena could be counted upon to stay where put.

Namely, various family members observed her doing the following:

  • Pulling herself from sitting into standing position by holding onto a chair, with no assistance or balancing support from anyone else;
  • Cruising from this chair several feet across a hutch that has a set of drawers with nice pull handles that serve essentially as a climbing wall;
  • Crawling (in her own special way, see below) six or more feet across a floor to get to a toy or person (this one is especially exciting and worrisome, as she finally seems to have crossed the mental hurdle from “I can’t get to what I want sitting here so I’m just going to flap my arms and be fussy” to “I can’t get to what I want sitting here so I’m going to go to it and get it”); and
  • Getting into a sitting position from a completely prone position, which in the past meant she was like a fish out of water or a turtle on its back; this time she actually managed to get up on her hands, then push her knees up under her waist, and shove herself backwards to get sitting up. Mom and dad were so excited we pumped our fists and cheered.

Siena’s crawling technique is awkward, to say the least. From a sitting position with legs tucked in the middle, she throws her arms forward and then sticks out one leg and gets up on the foot of that leg. The other leg she keeps tucked under, so it’s like she actually drags that leg along as she propels herself forward with her arms and her foot. It looks like it must hurt, but she seems to prefer it to using her knees.

While I don’t have a picture of this, as a reward for getting this far in the text, I offer you this photo of Siena swimming with mom:


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