Here's what a visit from the little guy is like: his dad carries the car seat in and pulls him out of the convoluted contraption. He looks around the house, obviously expecting the rush of greeters that are always there for him. He puts out his arms to the first one (usually me), gives a hug, rests his head on your shoulder (in which your heart promptly melts), then pops the head up and looks for the next greeter. Once he's greeted everyone in the circle, he's ready to get down and explore the house from one end to the other.
I dropped by his house yesterday, and he was in his high chair being fed his goo that passes as food by his loving Mama. He began to fuss when I came in the room, and Mom asked if he was done. I stooped over to give him loves, and he hugged me as best he could, let me kiss his cheek, then turned his attention back to his food. I was ready to leave about the time he finished up and his mom pulled him out of the high chair. He began to fuss again, and again his mom asked what was wrong. I stepped close again to say goodbye, and he reached out for me. I took him into my arms, accepted his sweet little hug, kissed his little cheek, let him play with my keys, and after a few minutes he was ready to go back to his mom, as happy as can be.
How can you not fall seriously in love with that?
(Did I mention that we've determined he says 'Grandpa'? Really, Grandpa! And 'doggie' and 'hi'. And 'Da Da Da'. Mom is still anxiously waiting for a 'Ma Ma Ma'. And I wouldn't mind a 'Grandma', but 'Grandpa' at nine months is pretty darn impressive in my book.
Update: Ethan's Mom would like me to clarify that when I say "we've determined" I'm talking about my silly grandmotherly friends and I. She is NOT convinced he's saying DaDa, in any meaningful form, let alone Grandpa. But whatevs. We all know who has more experience with this kind of thing.