Sunday, March 25th, 2012
I’m realizing pretty quickly that my son Jack understands a lot of what I tell him, though his vocabulary still only consists of 7 legitimate words.
It was always funny to me how in the Star Wars movies, the quick-to-assist Chewbacca could understand every word the humans told him though his best reply was always a mix between a gargle and a yodel.
Similarly, Curious George understands everything The Man in the Yellow Hat tells him to do (or not to do) though the clearest verbal communication George can respond with is cartoon monkey sounds.
Last night my wife and I were hanging out on the couch, entertained simply by our son who was burning off his “before bedtime” energy in the form of a one-baby show. As he grazed by us in the midst of all his running around the living room, we noticed that he needed to wipe his nose. My wife made casual mention of it to me.
Jack looked down at the coffee table, saw a Kleenex, picked it up and perfectly wiped his nose with it. That was cool.
But then, he ran over to the kitchen, opened the pantry door, pressed the lever on the garbage lid to open it, threw away the Kleenex, closed the lid shut, then re-entered the living room to continue his variety show for us.
He’s only 16 months! Sorry, but I’m impressed by that.
And then this afternoon I was getting him ready to go hang out with some friends and realized he was missing his left sock. I instantly assumed he left it somewhere downstairs. I told him, “Jack, we have to find your sock before we leave.”
He immediately sat up from the book he was reading, walked behind me to a pile of books he had already disorganized, and pulled the missing sock from underneath the rubble.
Again, the boy impressed me with his ability to respond to this new language that he is unable to speak in full sentences yet, but can fully respond and carry out certain actions;, just like Chewbacca and Curious George.
I’m starting to wonder what all I can train this little monkey to do…
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Thursday, March 1st, 2012
My son is learning to expand his vocabulary beyond “da-da-da-da” and “mehm-mehm-mehm-mehm” to refer to his parents. Today I would like to share his Top 7 favorite new phrases.
1. Bird? Anytime Jack looks out the window or is outside, he wants confirmation that he is either seeing or at least hearing a bird.
Usually he’s right. And if I never find the bird he is referring to, it probably just means that he has sharper eye sight and better hearing than his dad.
2. Uh-oh! The instant he drops a toy or his cup of Cheerios or the remote control he is playing with, he exclaims a very urgent “uh-oh!”
He hasn’t yet figured out that the phrase can be used for any accident. It’s interesting how the number of times he drops things on a daily basis has dramatically increased since he learned the phrase.
3. Bye-bye. Out of all his newly learned phrases, this is the one that he pronounces the clearest. He likes to tell everyone goodbye; even when he’s leaving somewhere with me. Jack hasn’t quite figured out who “bye-bye” applies to yet.
4. Bah-bah. Not to be confused with “bye-bye,” this phrase is actually Jack’s way of mimicking a donkey. One of his favorite books right now is Smack-Dab in the Middle of God’s Love, which contains several pages with a random donkey on it. My wife and I have both separately made the “eeh-awh!” donkey sound when we’ve read him the book.
By the way, the only reason I know that “bah-bah” is supposed to be a donkey noise is by the tone he uses. It’s an honest attempt on his part.
5. More? Thanks to his daycare, Jack has learned the sign language for “more.” He usually says “more?” to ask for more bananas or wheat bread; foods which he is obsessed with. But he has also been known to ask for “more” playtime when he knows it’s time for bed.
6. Peek-a-boo. Traditionally, playing “peek-a-boo” requires both hands, but Jack decided he can make it work with just one. It’s his way of emphasizing the “peek” part more so than the “boo.” Just imagine a 15 month-old little boy pretending to hide from you while looking you straight in the eyes, from behind one hand, and while smiling real big; as if to say, “I’m pretty clever, huh?”
7. Shoes? While Jack doesn’t know a lot of words yet for physical objects, he does know what his shoes are. Of course, it sounds more like “Zeus” when he sees his mom reaching for his new Velcro sneakers:
He was recently able to convince my parents to buy them for him a few weekends ago when they were in town. And how can grandparents resist when their grandson can say “Zeus?”
I mean, “shoes?”
Let’s see what new stuff he will say at 16 months…
My friend, Rebecca Thomas, who I went to Liberty University with, recently got her first book published entitled, Finding My Voice:
“When Rebecca Thomas moved from her home on the island of St. Croix to Florida as a young girl, she entered a different world. One year later when her father was contacted to start a ‘black’ church in South Carolina, Rebecca began a struggle with her identity that would last for the next several years and test her courage and loyalty in ways she never could have imagined.”
If you are the first to both A) leave a comment requesting a copy of her book and B) send me your mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org, I’ll arrange for Rebecca mail you a complimentary copy.
Congrats to Tamera of South Carolina for winning the book!
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