As the honeymoon phase of parenting ends you may notice a drastic change in the relationship you have with your partner. The last eight months have been all about baby and your relationship may have suffered for it. Make it a point to reengage in your relationship – plan date nights, spend time alone with your partner or ask family to watch baby for a short overnight or weekend trip together.

You may also notice changes in how you feel about parenting as things get tougher. Baby may scream or cry for no reason, grab everything he can reach and throw it around the room or pull out every toy he owns all at once. When your emotions get the best of you, place baby in a playpen or other safe space for a few minutes while you collect your thoughts and bring your emotional level back to even.

Your Baby’s Development
You may notice a change in how baby handles objects he picks up around the home. A few months ago everything he picked up went straight to his mouth, but he is quickly learning that objects have other purposes. He may shake, throw or bang objects before placing them in his mouth. Now is the time for adventure centers and toys that respond to touch with sound or lights. As you introduce him to new objects, show him how they are used in your life. A phone, for instance, is an amazing toy, especially when baby finds out you can talk into a phone and hear someone on the other end.

Your Baby’s Food
This month is more of the same, in terms of baby’s food habits. You are still introducing new foods at a rate of one per week. His appetite is increasing, so breast milk or formula may not be enough to keep him satisfied. Remember to stay away from foods that commonly cause allergic reactions like peanuts. Work with your pediatrician on a schedule to add foods with higher risk of allergic reaction.

Your Baby’s Health Issues
As baby becomes more mobile, the risk of injury increases. There will be slips, falls and quite a few close calls. Baby-proofing the home is more important than ever as baby’s mobility is increasing daily. By nine months some babies are cruising or walking. Cover sharp corners on tables with rounded guards to help prevent injury.

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