Saturday, February 25, 2012

Linnaeus 18.2

I'm hearing more three-word sentences & finding that our interactions are becoming a little more conversational. In the past few months, most of the time it was Sprout saying one word, then me answering or commenting & that was it. Or I'd ask him a direct quesion & he'd respond with a word, but less often. He's really paying attention to everything we say, parroting us constantly. Sprout's pronunciation is improving & I think he's getting a lot more intelligible to people who don't know him. He's also picking up a lot of two-syllable words. A sampling from the past week or so: toilet, wallet, pocket, 'puter, bottle.

Another exciting development is his memorization of the words in some of his books. When we read 'Opposites' (another Boynton book) he'll supply the second word in the pair almost every time. I'll read, "Big and..." He shouts, "SMALL!" "Short and..." "TALL!" Sometimes he's a bit creative with it: "Weak and..." "RAWR!" or "Right and..." Snort, snort. He will snort any time he sees a pig, as in this page of the book, or even if someone just says the word pig.

'Helping' unpack the veggie delivery.

Sprout's getting more interested in putting on clothing & accessories. That sounds funny to say my toddler is interested in accessories, but it's the little things like watches, bracelets (actually rubber bands & hair elastics), hats, mittens & scarves that he likes to put on most. Also bibs--he's started putting them back on again after he pulls them off at the end of a meal. Because of the interest in accessorizing, I've brought out Sprout's hat collection to add to his toys so he can play with them too. I might add in some scarves & try to find something that he could put on his wrist that isn't potentially hazardous like little elastics are.

I think the accessorizing is all a part of a general mimicking trend. He often wants to do exactly what we're doing. If we're wiping up something he spilled, he'll try to get a cloth & help wipe up too. When I give him his food at meal times, he frequently wants a fork before he'll eat anything. He always demands to have the same drink as us. Sprout identifies all drinks as either water, beer (anything fizzy or from a bottle) or tea (anything hot). Though he drinks it every day, he doesn't say the word milk yet, oddly enough. Even when he requests to breastfeed, he just points at my chest or neck, saying, "Amah?" & then says, "Shirt!"

Playing with 'Moo'.
I learned a great trick recently to get little Mr. Iron Grip to relinquish something. Sprout really likes to play with his & my Swedish Dala horses, as well as a little cow-shaped cream jug I have. The horses are wood, but I don't want him to damage the paint (who knows if there's lead in the older one? Plus they were brought all the way from Sweden as gifts) & the cow creamer is breakable, so all of them have places up high where Sprout can't access them. At some point nearly every day he demands his hyush or cow & I lift him up to grab them off their respective shelves. He'll kiss them, make me kiss them, & then when I suggest we put them back, he will do it. I can't get them out of his strong little hands by force, but if I ask nicely, he'll just put them away most of the time. I've started using this technique when he's got hold of anything I want him to let go of. It actually works quite often. If only we could find a nice, non-coercive trick like this to get him to nap.

We've been working on getting Sprout used to napping in his crib (as opposed to sleeping in the stroller). He has been sleeping in his crib, which is a step forward, but he usually fights it for about an hour. Sometimes less, sometimes as much as two hours. What I want is to be able to put him in his crib, leave the room & he'll play quietly with a stuffie or book for a little while, then go to sleep. After about two weeks of working at this, we're down to having to go in & calm him down once or twice before he goes to sleep. I think trying to stick to a more consistent time would help too, but it's an adjustment, as we never had to be home at a specific time when he was napping in the stroller. Getting all ready to go early enough to actually do anything before coming home for lunch & his nap is difficult.

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