Wednesday, May 27 2009
View LYNNABEL's food & exercise for this day
Ellen is 1.42 years old.
She is very communicative, but not necessarily in an understandable way. Some of these are guesses on my part:
She is saying “bubble”. What I thought was “Ernie” or “Barney” is, I think, “Le Nez” from a Baby Eistein DVD. She says “Mama” just the way Will does – which is yelling it from another floor of the house.
She signs “Thank you” – have I mentioned that? Its very sweet.
She says, “Light!” – with the exclamation mark, too. As if she’s the first to discover this amazing thing. She’s so bright, I wouldn’t put massive discoveries past her.
She says “cup” and “up”. I think she is saying “careful”, and she has a word for “movie” that I can never reproduce from memory.
For a few weeks there, she decided she didn’t want to sit in her high chair. I suspect it was because she realized that her adult handlers were using this time to get stuff done, which she was not going to tolerate AT ALL.
She actually puts a shape puzzle together – granted, the slots match the shapes, so it isn’t like a jig saw puzzle, but still. She’s so bright. If I ask her to point to a circle or a triangle, she will.
I mentioned before that there was a 5 day (or so) period where she walked JUST like Grandma Jean, who passed away last month. She doesn’t anymore, which makes it all the more significant to me in retrospect.
One day, I heard her grunting in the next room, and went into investigate. She looked up at me and said, clear as day, “Poop.” Brilliant, I tell you. She’ll say it when she is getting changed, now, too.
One word that we have no trouble deciphering is “No”. She uses a variety of inflections to let you know what type of “no” – gentle, emphatic, condescending, and my favorite: “it-might-be-up-for-debate-if-you-sweeten-the-deal”. How someone so young can express herself so skillfully with voice inflection is amazing to me.
Further proof of her brilliance. I said to her (experimenting), “Ellie, go get “Little White Fish is Happy” on the couch, and I’ll read it to you.” Sure as shooting, she toddled over, grabbed the book, and brought it back.
She “talks” a mile a minute when she gets going – she’ll “read” out loud simultaneously with me, which is hilarious because I get so into her “words” that I can’t keep reading myself. She’ll stand with that long, skinny neck stretched forward in eagerness on top of that big bald head, and produces SPEECHES, complete with alarmingly huge dimples and gap teeth, and dangerous mischief in her eyes. Her fists clench, and you just KNOW she is telling you something of VITAL IMPORTANCE. Unfortunately, its not in any language identified to date by mankind. But we eat it up.
Will is 3.57 years old.
The biggest, most recent news, is that I spent the last 4 days potty training him. And I can declare (qualified) success. He got the tinkling thing within the first day, but the pooping was another matter. He was dry through 3 of the 4 naps, which he was very proud of, and by the end of the 2nd day he was doing some of the initiating, “Mommy! The tinkle wants to come out!” I had a stern talk with myself part way through the second day that I needed to not stress out over the pooping, that it would happen when he was ready for it. And sure enough, last night, before bed, he said to me, “Mommy, I want to try to poop.” And he did!! I was SO proud of him. And he was proud of himself. He had only two accidents in the 4 days, and the first was the discovery of what the underwear vs diaper meant, and the second was a result of being sent to a time out. (Not due to the length of the timeout, just the stress of it).
So, he’s wearing pull-ups only at night and during naps. For one, he’s still in his crib and for two, he still naps. It just seems better to keep the sleeping arrangements as is for now, since his sleeping habits are so good. He’ll drop the nap and go to a regular bed soon enough, and then we can worry about underwear during naps and at night. Although, from what I understand, some boys need pull-ups for quite a while.
This was Will’s success, learning-wise, but I feel really proud of myself too – I did it – I guided him through it, and we learned together.
Some fun Will-isms lately:
“What does a minute look like?” (me: “A long time to you, Buck-o” – okay, I didn’t actually say that).
“Why do flowers bloom?” (me, lamely: “That’s just how they are made.” I didn’t want to get into the bees since he got stung this weekend and I didn’t want to remind of that).
“Its out of order.” (in reference to anything broken, including a squashed fly).
“That’s a good question, Mommy” (I wish I could remember what this was a response to, but I can’t. It struck me as hilarious at the time, whatever it was).
One night Steve and Will were reading on the couch, and I sat down next to them so that Will was in the middle. He was delighted. He said, “Now we are TWEE.” Steve said, “If Ellen were here, how many would we be?” Will thought about it for a moment, and said, “FOUR!” Much praising by us. Then Steve said, “And if Ellen AND Ripple were here, how many would we be?” Will thought about it, then said, “LOTS!” I, personally, found this to be very accurate. As Steve and he were walking up the stairs he looked down at me (still on the couch) and said, “Now its just one.” Steve and I were SO impressed with this very clear indication of adding and subtracting.
He went through a period of time being obsessed with my work schedule. And I can see that it would be very difficult to get a handle on something like that. He still talks about it a lot (“Who is going to get me up?”) but at least he doesn’t seem as distressed by it anymore.
The phobias feel out of control. I’m guessing they are normal, and partly due to his very isolated existence right now, but they alternatively break my heart and make grind my teeth with frustration.
I love watching him concentrate on something – his mouth makes a funny mou and his eyelashes are so long and dark over his cheek.