learns to walk. This often happens about 12 months old, but she may take her first steps anytime between 10 and 18 months."
Dang you and your inaccurate information, babycenter.com. My baby girl turned 8 months old all of 7 days ago, and I caught her climbing the stairs all the way to mommy and daddy's room today. That's a full HALF of her life off, babycenter. So there.
Better average out your research with my family next time you post something like that as fact. All three of my kids took their first steps between 6 and 7 months old. And the first two were proficient walkers by 9 months.
Our baby started crawling about 3 weeks ago and only recently has figured out that this trick can do more than get her from Toy A to Toy B, sitting only feet apart from one another. Now she follows us around like a miniaturized, 3-dimensional shadow that likes to use our pant legs to stand up. Plus our shadow is cuter than us, and balder than my wife, at least. Now we find her in the kid's bedroom. We find her in the kitchen. We rarely find her where we left her like we might have - ohhhh - three weeks ago.
This makes for some world-class double takes. Today, she was shadowing me into the kitchen when the stairs caught her eye. She peeled off my ankles and started using the broad landing stair to stand up. I thought nothing of it because she often uses anything she can get her hands on to stand up. (By the way, she took her first steps two and a half weeks ago, while still 7 months old.) She seems liberated by the revelation of locomotion. She's happier than she's ever been.
Anyway, I went to check on something in the kitchen and then glanced back to where my shadow had lost me.
I had lost my shadow. It was not in view. The pieces of the puzzle came together in my head: "Baby's crawling up the stairs!" I told my wife urgently and zipped over to confirm my solid hunch. Sure enough, she had already ascended two stairs, happily cooing as she worked on the third. Her major problem was posed by her slippery footy jammies. On our wood stairs, she kept slipping as she tried to kneel on the stair below to attain the stair above.
"If I weren't so dang proud of you," I told my 8-month old, "I'd swat your bottom."
"Vvvvbbbblllllbbnnmm," she hummed at me, crinkling her eyes with glee. I'm glad I caught her when I did. Instead of being a 100% responsible father, I decided on 90% responsible and let her continue up the stairs with me as a spotter, hovering inches away in case of an emergency. On about step number 6, she relinquished her handhold on the steps and stood, unsupported, waving her arms in circular triumph. The longest I've seen her stand without holding anything is about 30 seconds, but with slippery footies on polished wood stairs, I don't trust her as far as she can fall down, ummm...the stairs, I guess. She righted herself and kept on going up the stairs, despite my concern.
The worst incident actually came when she stopped to rest. Since she had been hugging the wall, when she turned to flop on to her bum and take a breather, said bum encountered said wall and she flopped forward onto unsaid face. Unsaid face began to cry. From the kitchen, unsaid Mommy threatened unsaid Daddy's life, assuming he could have done something to prevent it.
In the end she all but summited the staircase. And if she'd been wearing the getup of the child in the picture above, she would have made it look a heck of a lot easier than climbing a 1,000 foot sand dune. Many parents would be chagrined to find such a young'un scaling a staircase. In fact, I know many parents who go out of their way to ensure their babies don't walk until they're two. It would be easier that way, I think. But I love to see such short little legs taking such long strides. The thrill just wouldn't be the same if she were doing this half her life later. Besides, she's just prepping herself for the great outdoorsy life we have planned for her.