tiger_spot: (foot)
Happy birthday, Tori!

Morgan spent a good chunk of yesterday afternoon making signs and banners to decorate the house for Tori's birthday. She is very excited, and keeps asking Tori if she's looking forward to opening her presents and eating cake and all that.

Tori is cheerfully oblivious.
tiger_spot: (foot)
(I skipped some. Sorry!)

Tori is eleven months old.

Movement
She walks about 75% of the time, occasionally crawling if she falls down partway to her destination. She can go up stairs very quickly, and loves to go down the slides at the park in somebody's lap. She also loves swings and wrestling and climbing anything that holds still long enough to be climbed. She's trying to figure out how to go down stairs and get off of couches and so forth. She does well sometimes, but also thinks that just rolling off sideways should be fine, so she does not in fact get to practice unassisted on things higher than a cushion yet.

Physical Development
She has eight teeth and eats everything you could possibly expect eight teeth to manage and lots of things you wouldn't. She's really thirsty -- I don't remember Morgan drinking anything near this much water, but I guess she was getting more calories from breastmilk so maybe she just didn't need as much.

Sleep has been a bit disordered lately. I sure hope she'll settle into just moving her nap to the afternoon rather than dropping it entirely, but I am having a hard time adapting to not having a nice predictable morning nap.

Tori is still enormous. She's in mostly 18-month clothing now. She can reach the tops of entirely too much of the furniture, and she's very strong. Unfortunately, this strength is not combined with a more-than-usually advanced knowledge of how not to kick Mama in the face while nursing, how not to yank sister's hair, how to pat gently rather than smack with all one's considerable might, etc.

She has very little hair of her own yet, but there is now enough that if it's wet it can be made to stick up.

Communication
Communication is interesting. Tori can pretty effectively answer yes/no questions by being enthusiastic or not, and clearly understands a lot of requests.

She knows the sign for 'milk', but usually only uses it when someone else has just shown it to her, or when she's nursing. She hasn't really used it independently as a request yet. She does use arms-up to request being picked up, and sort of whole-arm pointing to indicate things of interest she can't reach, usually when being carried. She claps and gives high fives. She miiiiiight have tried to use the signs for 'more', 'all done', and 'diaper', but not repeatably enough for me to be sure.

She's gradually developing more syllables and intonation. She'll babble back and forth with people, but doesn't seem interested in copying anything other than raspberries.

Interests
Tori loves the dog, her sister, the baby in the mirror, balls, the shape sorter, blocks, and anything that makes noise or has parts that can be moved. She has just recently discovered books as something more complicated than bricks that can be knocked off a shelf, although she's still not much interested in sitting and being read to. She likes to turn pages, she likes pages with close-ups of faces, and she likes when I do funny voices.

Tori likes to look at the baby in the mirror, and especially to go back and forth between the baby in the over-the-sink mirror and the baby in the bathroom door mirror, which are about a 90° angle apart. She has discovered that the mirror baby is bad at the pass-the-thing-back-and-forth game, but quite good at high fives.

She is fascinated by places she's not supposed to be, especially the pantry and Morgan's room, and remarkably quick to notice a door left ajar. She may have figured out how to defeat the babyproofing on the art supply cabinet; it might not have been latched properly but I'm suspicious.

She has just figured out that things can be put inside other things, not just taken out of them, so she has been experimenting with putting parts of different toys together to see what fits where.

She's hit a stage where she's very excited about new things to look at/manipulate/chew, so we should really get out more. Tomorrow we will try the parent/child class at the Little Gym.
tiger_spot: (foot)
She is a very zoomy active baby. She figured out crawling just after seven months, and has been charging around the house at high speed ever since, pulling up on everything and trying hard to get into any trouble there is to be found. She wants the vacuum robot to be her friend, and likes to go hug it into her lap. If a door to a room she is not normally allowed in, like the pantry, is opened, she makes an immediate stomping beeline to it. (Didn't know you could stomp while crawling? She is very determined.)

She has just grown her third tooth. It is not on the top forming a matching pair with either of her existing teeth, but rather is next to them on the bottom. She eats everything you could possibly imagine eating without opposed teeth, with great gusto.

She growls a lot. She doesn't make many standard vowel-type baby noises, but rather a lot of Gs and Rs like a movie pirate or a wolf cub. She has developed a very specific "thwarted" cry, which is ear-gratingly terrible, because being thwarted is obviously the most horrible thing that could possibly happen to her.

She's hit the first round of separation anxiety. She's still a very independent baby, happy to go explore the living room or play with toys in her room, but she really doesn't like having a closed door between her and me. She's interested in interacting with new people, but checks over her shoulder now and then to make sure I haven't gone anywhere while she does.

Tori and Morgan and Andres (and occasionally Cathy) have been attending a Music Together class which is apparently great fun for all. Tori does not clap along but she does clasp her hands and bounce them up and down in something vaguely approximating rhythm which is certainly adorable when Andres reproduces it for me. :)

She's really into the baby swings at the park. She likes crawling around on the rubber surfaces and pulling up on equipment but she is not into sand, slides, or rough pathway material. She is of the opinion that books are great for pulling off of shelves, and occasionally for chewing, but she's not interested in looking at the pictures or being read to.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Four and a half! It is a different age than four, and a very different age than three and a half.

She's increasingly capable of remembering and reasoning about her own emotions. Her reports of her preschool mornings consist of who she played with, what they did, and whether anyone was mean or bossy to her. The common threat at this age is "If you don't [play what I want] I won't be your friend any more" and it is a very present and scary threat to Morgan. Even though she doesn't have independent contact with any of her friends they are very important to her and she thinks and talks about them when they're not around.

She's having a hard time dealing with Tori getting more attention, and spends a lot of time pretending to be a baby too, or wishing they were twins.

She still won't admit she can read, because it's hard and puzzling out words does not result in anything like the pleasant story flow of being read to. She can write, though. She usually wants the nearest grownup to spell out each word for her one letter at a time, hEr OrtHograPHy lOOkSSS LiKE thiS, and sometimes she takes several stabs at a particularly tricky letter or runs out of room left-to-right and takes off in a random direction or starts somewhere else entirely -- or all of those, which can lead to particularly inscrutable collections of letters if you weren't watching her write it down in the first place.

She's quite good at simple addition, and subtraction as well if she's got paper to jot hashmarks on for counting. She can write all the digits from 0-9. She still tends to skip 15 when she's counting.

She colors inside the lines; draws faces with eyes, noses, mouths, and sometimes hair; draws stick figures with arms, legs, and occasionally hands. She's gotten much more willing to just take a stab at something even if it doesn't come out exactly like she wanted.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Tori signed to me today!

(It's 'milk'. Of course it's 'milk'.)
tiger_spot: (foot)
"I don't know what to tell you," said the pediatrician. "Usually at this point I'd tell you what to expect between now and the next visit, but she's met most of her nine-month milestones already."

Tori is still at the very top of the growth charts, very robust and healthy. She's got two teeth, can sit up as long as she cares to (although she needs help getting into a sitting position), and even pulled up from sitting to standing the other day. She can stay standing, leaning on something for balance, for a long time too. She hasn't quite started crawling, but she gets up on hands and knees and rocks back and forth like she is about to launch herself into orbit. Between rolling sideways and rotating in place, she can get pretty much anywhere. She does it sideways and backward, though, so sometimes she winds up stuck under the furniture.

Those teeth I mentioned caused some sleep disruptions for a while, but she is back to normal now -- 11 hours most nights, with maybe one night waking to nurse every other day or so. Two naps usually, sometimes just one, sometimes none at all (but she goes to bed a little earlier if she doesn't nap at all, so that evens out some). She still falls asleep on her own after fussing for a few minutes, because she is made of magic and stardust.

She's gotten a lot more social. She has a great big baby grin, and a delightful giggle. She likes peekaboo and tickles and basically anything her sister does.

We've started giving her some solids. She is VERY ENTHUSIASTIC about food. So far she's had carrot, potato, apple, banana, pear, tofu, a bit of carnitas, cheerios, rice crackers, plain ol' rice, bell pepper, fennel, grapefruit, squash.... It's hard to tell how much gets eaten as opposed to pulverized into a fine mist and spread on all nearby surfaces, or dropped and eaten by the dog, but she's having a fine time exploring textures and flavors.

She does not like baths.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Tori had her four-month checkup recently. She is very, very large and healthy. She's good-natured and cheerful -- she didn't even cry at the first shot, and calmed down quickly after the second. She still sleeps through the night reliably, and puts herself to sleep with a few minutes of fussing most of the time.

She's interested in toys and people, but not much in books yet. She drools a lot and chews on everything, so I think she might have teeth coming soon.

Just in the last few days she's figured out how to roll front-to-back and back-to-front (though she mostly does either when I've stepped out of the room for a moment).

She and Morgan are delighted by each other.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Morgan has one last consistent mispronunciation, which I should record before it goes away. It's an odd one -- every instance of the sound cluster "ula" becomes "lia". So "formlia", "ambliance", "Bunniclia". (She enjoyed the first Bunnicula book very much, and we started the second but she got distracted by other things. We'll get back to it eventually.)
tiger_spot: (foot)
Right! Time keeps passing!

Tori is doing wonderfully. She sleeps through the night most nights. Last night she fell asleep about 5:00 pm. I thought she was napping, but she just slept straight through to 7:00 am, then woke up and started squealing like she was tuning in Happiness Radio. (I would tell you how to get your baby to do this, but it isn't anything we did. She just came this way.)

She's figuring out how hands work. She's gotten good at stuffing them into her mouth, and she's working on using them to stuff other things into her mouth too. She's very close to rolling over. As soon as she figures out what to do with that bottom arm she's golden.

She has an amazing attention span and is totally happy to hang out in the activity gym or her little rocking chair and inspect the various objects on the toy bar for upwards of 45 minutes. She also likes to make faces and have little practice conversations with people, but not for as long. She is an introvert. I didn't know babies came in introvert flavor.

Morgan still thinks she is just the coolest thing, and looks forward to when she is more interactive. Tori finds Morgan very interesting but often a bit much. Galen really really wants to lick her face.
tiger_spot: (sword)
[livejournal.com profile] chinders has become completely obsessed with Hamilton. This seems to happen a lot. But if you don't understand the reference in the title and you would like to, look! The whole cast album's on YouTube! Here's the relevant song.

(Management is not responsible for resulting musical theater addictions. If your earworm lasts longer than 24 hours, seek medical treatment or listen to something else real loud.)

Anyway, this is really good advice for our current stage of parenting.

Talk less.
Especially when you're giving instructions. Yes, kids this age can understand and follow multi-step directions. But they need some processing time to do it.

Furthermore, when tantrums are happening, interaction prolongs them. As long as there's an argument to be had, the kid will reflexively continue having the argument. Make your point concisely once, then stop. Eventually the flailing will burn itself out. But every time you say something (or, in M's case, try to touch her -- I hear some kids like being held when they're upset, but NOT THIS ONE) you reset the clock.

Example from this morning: Morgan is chewing on the edge of a box of Go Fish cards.
Aaron Burr: If you put cardboard in your mouth it will get wet and the box won't hold the cards anymore. ::waits for child to process information and come to conclusion that she should probably take the box out of her mouth; or not, honestly, no particular skin off my nose either way::
Alexander Hamilton: Morgan! Stop chewing on the box! It'll get all wet and the cardboard will fall apart and then it won't hold the cards in! Then you won't have a box and the cards will get lost! So you should stop chewing on that right now! Or the box will break! Morgan! Stop chewing!

Smile more.
Two points: One, if you can think of a way to make it a game, make it a game.

Example from yesterday: Morgan is scared of the doctor and doesn't want to lie down so he can check her tummy. She has brought a stuffed animal along to keep her company.
Aaron Burr: Do you want Figment?
Morgan: Yeah.
Aaron Burr: Here he comes! Oh no! He's jumped on you and knocked you over! ::gently tilts M backwards onto the exam table::

Two, praise is magic. Catching kids being good and thanking them for behaving nicely or being considerate or doing their chores promptly makes everybody happy.

Don't let them know what you're against or what you're for.
Okay, for this to be parenting advice you have to interpret it a bit differently than it's meant in the song. But I find it helpful to keep in mind during tantrums that I don't need to argue her into my position. As the parent I have all the power; I have already made the decision; I am waiting for her to accept it or emotionally process the disappointment or whatever, but I don't need her to agree with me. (I am in fact totally happy to have discussions about what the rules ought to be at some other time, when everyone is calm and capable of discussing them and bringing up relevant points, but not when there is already upset happening.)

Also, it helps a lot to be able to present choices you are more or less indifferent between. Either you get your shoes on and your dishes put away by X time and we'll go do Y fun thing, or you don't and we'll stay home. If your room is picked up you can have iPad time, otherwise find something else to do. It's much easier on me having a plan for either way things could go; otherwise I am standing there banging my head against a brick wall trying to figure out why the child does not want to do some ridiculously simple thing and is blocking the whole rest of the day. Obviously I usually have a preference here, and I don't generally mind telling her that I am sad that, say, she wouldn't get dressed so we have run out of time to go to the zoo this morning, but the more I practice non-attachment to my vision of how the day will go, the better the day in fact usually goes.

Furthermore, kids this age are practicing differentiating themselves from their parents. That means that they have fairly recently realized that they are independent entities, and just because you told them to do something doesn't mean they have to do it. So direct instructions will tend to invite "No!" or ignoring you or otherwise experimenting with Not Doing What Parents Say, while information that reminds them what they're supposed to be doing without actually being an instruction doesn't trigger that reflex.

Example from this morning: Morgan requests help picking up a pile of stuff on the kitchen counter.
Alexander Hamilton: Okay, start with these hair clips. Your hair stuff box is over on the table by the comfy chair, so go put the clips in there and then put the box away where it goes, then come back and get the next thing.
Morgan plays with the clips while Alexander Hamilton puts away the bag they were in.
Alexander Hamilton: Morgan, are you going to put the clips away? Put the clips in the box and put the box away, it'll just take a minute.
Morgan: You do it!

Later, Morgan again requests help picking up.
Aaron Burr: Okay... I see some shoes and a pair of pajamas in the bathroom.
Morgan picks up the pajamas and puts them in the hamper, then returns for the shoes.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Morgan has been experimenting lately with concepts of privacy, control of space, and locks. She's locked herself in various bathrooms and bedrooms (fine if it's her bedroom, not allowed if it's ours; fortunately, our interior locks are very easy to overrule so there is no arguing necessary to fetch her out of unauthorized locked locations), announced that she needs "alone time" in a variety of situations, and tried locking various adults out of the house (come down on like a ton of bricks).

She has apparently just realized that different people are aware of different events based on where they are looking, and has been manipulating that hard to get at things she isn't normally allowed. Monday, she got into (1) some cookies, above her reach on the counter, (2) the medicine cabinet, by climbing into the sink, and (3) the dog-walking bags, kept on a high shelf in the pantry. Later, I saw her dragging the wooden stool across the kitchen to the pantry again, intent on another high-shelf raid, and raised my eyebrows at her. "You keep doing what you're doing!" she said cheerfully. "Don't look over here!"

This morning I recounted that event to [livejournal.com profile] suzanne while Morgan was getting her shoes on. Morgan wanted to know why I had not, as instructed, kept doing what I was doing and not looked over there. "Because," I told her, "I have been on this Earth for 33 years and I know what Up To Something looks like."

"Not if I close the door!" she chirped.
tiger_spot: (sword)
Today I am thankful for modern dentistry, anesthesiology, and medical professionals who are legitimately good with kids. (Morgan needed several fillings but was too anxious to cope with the dentist while awake. Everything went very smoothly and she is all better now.)
tiger_spot: (sword)
Today I am thankful for the increasing self-entertainment capabilities of children as they age. Also for the ability to speak for stuffed animals, invent scenery and imaginary props, and adapt to their play partner's preferences in matters such as "Shall we play more chase or shall we lie here on the bed where we have fallen?"

Also for a kid who is willing to tidy up after art projects with minimal prompting and no complaining.

Death

Aug. 12th, 2015 03:18 pm
tiger_spot: (foot)
We have had two deaths in the extended family recently, so Morgan has been seeing various parents be sad, and hearing about some concepts that are new to her, like funerals. But neither of the relatives had been a regular presence in her life, so they were fairly abstract new concepts.

Then one of the chickens died. (Not unexpectedly; Teckla'd been gradually declining in a vague sort of elderly-chicken way for about a year, and one day last week settled in behind the shed and waited quietly until she was all done being a chicken.) So that brought some of this confusing stuff we'd been talking about into sharper focus for her. It's hard to tell how much of it she's understood; she nodded along with all the explanations in the evening, and watched me bury Teckla, and asked questions then, but the next morning she called for her when we were feeding the chickens, and was mad at me for burying her so she couldn't come get her treats. She says she misses Teckla, and also that we should get a puppy since we're down a pet.

As part of her processing, one of her imaginary brothers and sisters (Bean) has died, and there are only two left now (Eggplant and Lettuce). I feel much sadder about that than seems reasonable. Possibly I am sad because Morgan isn't particularly; she mostly brings it up when I am being impatient about her stealing the bike pump to inflate her babies' imaginary scooter tires, to assure me that she'll be quick "because Bean died, so there are only two scooters now."
tiger_spot: (foot)
I want to record a couple cute mispronunciations before they go away:

yellow --> lellow
piñata --> pinyaya

At a party this weekend she and an older girl did like three-quarters of a Who's on First style routine about yellow jello.

She's started telling long stories, with dialogue tags. If one person tells her something or answers a question, she will immediately turn to the next grownup and repeat the information. She really wants to make sure everybody's on the same page. She's also into traditional playground games lately -- Red Light Green Light, London Bridge, that sort of thing. She wants me to make mistakes in Red Light Green Light when she's giving the instructions. She likes to make up variants of songs she knows; every two-syllable animal there is has gone around the cobbler's bench this week.

She's suddenly interested in sign language again -- she's been asking us to spell things, and wants the fingerspelling along with the verbal recitation. She's got the manual dexterity to make the handshapes herself now, too, and she knows at least A, B, E, and L. She gets T, N, and M confused, because they're quite similar, and she might have some of the others but I'm not sure off the top of my head. I think we'll be signing up for the preschooler version of the class we took when she was a baby the next time it comes around to the nearby location. At the park today, she was trying to get a younger kid (maybe a year, year and half?) to eat some pretend pie, and tried signing "eat" when the kid didn't react the way she wanted to verbal instructions.

She is thisclose to reading, and has been for a while. She knows all the letters, and the sounds they make (thank you, Endless Alphabet), but hasn't quite made the leap between sounding each letter of a word out one at a time and recognizing that as a word. She knows that MAMA has two Ms and two As but isn't sure what order they go in, and gets very excited about typing out MORGAN and other names she knows when someone walks her through the letters. I think she may stay thisclose for some time; she's very resistant to pushing in this area, especially if an actual book is involved. Possibly she is afraid we will stop reading to her if she can do it herself?

She's not trying to write yet, or draw symbols; still in the scribbling phase there.

She informs me regularly, unprompted, and very seriously, that she wants to be a nurse when she grows up. She would also like a baby sister.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Morgan likes to tell stories about her and her babies. After the initial flourishing, in which she had fourteen babies and a special purple car with enough carseats for all of them, she has settled down into a consistent two.

Their names are Mashed Potato and Green Bean. Morgan is a grown-up, and specifies this in every story. Mashed Potato is anywhere between 3 and 5 1/2 years old, and Green Bean is 1 to 2 1/2. (The difference between the ages is not consistent.) Morgan informs me that "They're not boys, they're just babies!" but consistently uses masculine pronouns for both of them.

She likes to use them to work out things that have just happened to her, where she represents me and Mashed Potato represents her. So when she got a pain in her foot and needed to be carried for the rest of the dog walk, the Morgan's Babies stories that day and the next were about how Mashed Potato stepped on something sharp, so Morgan took his shoe off and cleaned off his foot, and then carried him, and I carried Green Bean, because Green Bean is too little to walk the whole way.

This morning they all went to a gym class, but first Morgan made octopus cupcakes for Mashed Potato's birthday ("It not his birthday yet, but I have to be prepared!") and cut out a red felt heart and put it up in his room with sticky-tack.

I am fascinated to see how this develops.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Morgan is two and a half today.

She knows all the words you could reasonably or unreasonably expect her to know (energetic, noticed, unfortunately, chupacabra, quidditch), and makes up her own when she needs more. She likes to invent little songs, usually to the tune of "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star", about whatever she's doing at the moment. ("Splashing, splashing, little soap. Splashing, hum hum, in our tub....")

She is really into imaginative play. She loves her little kit of doctor's tools, and tries to get any grownup (or dog) that wanders into range to be her patient. She also spends a lot of time putting out imaginary fires by going down slides, locking people and things in jail, and flying rocketships. She tells a lot of stories about her and her babies, driving her purple sports car (with orange stripes, and car seats for all fourteen babies) to the grocery store or the pool or her condo in Hawaii.

She counts one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, fourteen, TWENTY! She knows either the name or a sound for I think all the letters in the alphabet, both for most, and will read them off trucks and signs and so forth. She hasn't quite figured out how to put the letters together into words yet, but she's good at guessing from the first letter and a bit of context. She also has a terrifyingly good memory, so as long as she's had a book read to her a few times she can then 'read' it to the dog, using the pictures and possibly parts of the text as memory aids, usually not perfectly but better than I could if the text were covered.

She recently decided she didn't want to go to gym class any more, which is a surprise because I thought she was enjoying it. I guess we'd gone through the whole curriculum, so she might just not have been getting a lot of new skills out of it any more. We'll try again when she's three and the independent classes start up. I'm not really sure how preschool is going. It seems like every time they have a holiday or she has a cold, she doesn't want to go back, but then she gradually gets to like it again until the next holiday. She comes home with lots of scribbles for me, and occasionally for her other parents, and tells me she cried. The teachers tell me about lots of things that they've done with her, and that she's not crying all that much. Sometimes she reports things that other kids did that day, and now she's listing three of them as friends (I suspect, based on my observations at drop-off time, that these are basically the art-table posse), although she doesn't seem to be what you'd call playing with any of the other kids much, either by her report or the teachers'. She does play with other kids at the playground now and then, but she's at a stage of social skills where she's good at coming up with ideas, or copying someone else's, but not so much at incorporating other people's ideas into her play in a fluid negotiated manner. She's also gotten nervous about approaching kids she doesn't know, but with a little encouragement from either me or them she does well once she's talking to them.

She is just now tall enough to ride all the rides at Happy Hollow. She thought very hard about trying the roller coaster, but decided it was a bit much for now. She really likes the swings, though, and has determined to try the Frog Hopper next time we're there (it was not running on our last visit).

I need to put some thought into ways she and the dog can play that they both like, because she would very much like to play with him but neither of them likes the other's favorite games at all.

And that is Morgan at two and a half: a cheerful, energetic, very focused little sprite, who loves books, music, and dressing up.
tiger_spot: (magic)
Morgan has started going to preschool two afternoons a week. She was very excited beforehand, but is having some trouble with the actual transition. Last week was a little rough, but she was looking forward to seeing "Ms. Kim" there today. I remembered her saying something last Wednesday about Ms. Kim putting up Thanksgiving decorations.

"Is Ms. Kim a teacher?" I asked.
"No," she said.
"Is she somebody's mom?"
"No!" Morgan laughed.
"Well, who is she?"
"She's my friend."

When we arrived today, we were greeted by one of the older girls charging out to inform us that Ms. Kim isn't coming today, followed closely by a teacher explaining in a long-suffering tone that she does not need to tell everyone Ms. Kim isn't coming, they will see that Ms. Kim isn't there as soon as they walk in, sheesh.

Darn, I was hoping to meet her.
tiger_spot: (foot)
Miss Morgan had her birthday, and then her birthday party, and these were both wonderful things. For the party we had a whole pile of small children over for a pirate treasure hunt with monster cupcakes (cup-krakens) courtesy [livejournal.com profile] andres_s_p_b. Morgan had a blast. We've been opening one present a night since her actual birthday; the family presents lasted until the party so now we are working on the friend presents. Morgan adores making cards for people, so thank-you notes are proceeding very quickly upon the heels of the actual present-opening. Hurrah instilling useful habits.

Speaking of cards, her art skills are coming along. She's gotten much better at aiming stickers and crayon scribbles for unoccupied parts of the paper, and recently learned how to use glue sticks. Scissors are still a bit beyond her fine motor skills, but she likes to try them out.

She's coming out of a few weeks of frequently pretending to be a baby, and seems to have made some kind of cognitive leap in the meantime. I can't quite put my finger on it, but her language seems to be both more coherent and more inventive lately -- she'll stick to the same topic for longer, and she's making up imagined incidents in a way that is clearly creative rather than confused. She's also sorting out her sense of time. She's very interested in what day of the week things happen on. She'll talk about things that happened "this morning", "yesterday", "last night", "last week", or "last year", although there's no particular correlation between when the thing happened and the time word she uses. If you express interest, she can go on providing novel details about some past event for a surprisingly long time. She observes a great deal about the world, and she can tell you all about it or process it into generalizations and predictions very quickly. If you ask her about something she doesn't know, she will probably tell you that it is either "a kind of a fish" or "a kind of a bird".

She likes to sing, and to recite bits of her books. She's starting to recognize a few letters, though none particularly reliably yet. Counting usually goes "One, two, three, five."

Her default pronoun is still "she" but she is starting to figure out gender and has gotten a lot more likely to call men or boys "he". Nested categories confuse her a bit, so she knows that Papa is a man but appears to be under the impression that he is therefore not a human.

Cathy's been delighted with the appearance of incorrectly standardized past tenses ("torned", "clean upped", etc.). Her little linguist heart thinks those are just the cutest thing ever.

A week or two ago Morgan asked for underwear with her pajamas, and she's been doing pretty well staying dry at night. I think she's had two nights with small accidents, plus another night or two where she wore a diaper because the parent putting her to bed was on autopilot and she didn't object, but it seems like a pretty good ratio so far.

She's gotten much tidier when using spoons and forks, and likes to use a table knife to cut soft fruit or spread butter on bread. She would very much like to use sharp knives too, but seems fairly contented with the idea that this is a "grownup thing". She gets frustrated when we insist on helping with anything that is not categorically a "grownup thing", but she doesn't have the physical skills to do quite all the parts of getting dressed and getting breakfast and so forth that she would like to, at least not reliably, so mornings have been kind of rough lately. Also, she has started telling me not to do things like put my tablet where she can't reach it on grounds that "it could break", which is very clever linguistic judo as that is a phrase she has been hearing an awful lot lately as we remove her from drawers she is using to climb up onto the bed, the bathroom counters, the top of her dresser, Mount Everest, and/or the moon. It doesn't work for her to convince me not to do things any better than it works for me to convince her not to do things, but I expect we will both continue repeating it for quite some time.
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