Thursday, September 15, 2011

A Portrait of the Artists at 20 Months

As of last week, the husband has finally arrived home from The Year in New Mexico. To celebrate, we took a little trip to the beach and stayed at a resort with an indoor water park. Let me tell ya, for people with small children, it's pretty much the best thing ever. An added bonus: I think Veda may now be over her fear of all bodies of water that aren't her own bathtub.

It's Veda with me IN A SWIMSUIT. Am I the bravest woman in the world, or what? (Never mind that it's from the back and I'm wearing a skirt.)

Linus building a sandcastle with Daddy

The last couple of months have been, true to what all of the experts say, a language explosion. They say lots and lots and lots of things now, and their signing has also picked up. Not only are they saying more in general, they're also talking to me more about things that aren't going on in the immediate present (Linus especially), so it's fun to get to hear what they're thinking about. By the way, what they're thinking about is often a train. Choo choo!

Most of their speech is still limited to single words, but every now and then a short phrase will come out. When the husband got home and handed a new toy to Linus, Linus said, "That's cool!". He's been saying it ever since, and according to Linus, just about everything at the beach is cool.

Back to the signing - I am more and more glad that I decided to do ASL with them. How amazing is it that at not even two years old, they're already bilingual (more or less - they know the signs for most of the words they speak)? Being a bit of a language enthusiast myself, I've gotten hooked on learning ASL since we had such a positive experience with the baby basics. I'm looking forward to using finger spelling as they begin recognizing letters and learning to read since it will reinforce and enhance their learning.

Books are still a favorite activity, but their interests in that area have changed a bit. They're now less interested in books with stories (though they do still have stories they love to hear again and again) and more interested in books with word labels and "Can you find the ________?"-type books. They love sitting in my lap and finding all of the bananas or airplanes or cows on a page.

They're also art enthusiasts now... crayon and play-doh media mostly. Every morning we crank up our kiddie music station on Pandora and get down to the important work of dancing, coloring, and sculpting balls and snakes. Things often go downhill after they decide to do a play-doh tasting. They know they aren't supposed to eat the stuff, so they'll start out by sniffing it. Then when they think I'm convinced they're just smelling, they'll do tentative licks. This quickly advances to full-out bites. I'm pretty sure that most kids taste it once and decide that it's horrible. Nah, not mine. They'd eat the whole jar if I'd let them.

Veda is on her way to being ready to potty train. I'm still reading up and deciding what strategy I want to use. As a first-timer, I'm extremely intimidated by potty training. I'm sure than in retrospect, I'll laugh at myself for how worried I am about getting it right. In the meantime, though, I feel like I need to have a thorough plan since I'm doing this with two of 'em. As much as it freaks me out to think about both of them potty training at the same time (which I think is entirely possible since they do EVERYTHING at the same time, by their choice), I know that Linus hasn't shown many signs of readiness, and it hurts me to think that he's going to feel left out. With all of that said, it may still be a couple of months before we officially start with Veda. I just know that when I little lady starts telling you what's in her diaper, she's close.
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