From Toddler to Talker

I know some toddlers who could recite the entire alphabet with ease before 18 months, and other ones who literally said no words until after two years of age. Every child’s development path is different and each kiddo learns at his or her own pace.  We are somewhere in between the two extremes at our house, but in the last few weeks it’s been really exciting for us to watch Max’s speech development continue to grow.

Yes, parents of older children, I fully understand that someday in the future talking back will happen too, but I can’t wait to hear more about what Max thinks about and feels, and the ideas floating around his inquisitive little head.For quite some time he’s nailed the basics, “yes” and “no”, and other basic words. He has asked for all drinks by asking for milk (“Meelk” as he pronounces it), and “Cracker” has applied to all food.  But more and more, Max is asking for specific foods by name, like apples and packets.  And when he sees steam coming up from a meal we are cooking or can feel the heat coming out from the oven he will point and then dramatically pull his arms back yelling “Hot-a!  Hot-a!  Ouch! Hot-a!” (I think that may be my favorite.)

But the really neat thing most recently is watching Max start to experiment with constructing sentences, and learning more complex communication.

(For details on Max’s outfit and links to buy, click here.)

On Monday, the 10 minutes immediately following dinner went something like this:

“Mimi, up… up… up…” pulling me toward our staircase (I’ve never been mom or momma, just “Mom-mom” or “Mimi”).

After we got to the top of the stairs, he ran down the hall to the door of his bedroom with me following closely behind, politely asking “Open?” once he arrived. I opened the door, and he ran to his crib to crab his giraffe Wubbanub pacifier from the side (his favorite friend to fall asleep or relax when he’s tired).  As soon as he picked up his pacifier, he told me “all done” and walked back out the door.

We started back downstairs, counting the steps as we descended.

We sat on the sofa for a minute watching the dogs play with each other, but then Max grabbed my finger and pulled, telling me “Mimi go, go outside”.

As he walked to toward the front door he said “outside bubbles”.   I thought this was so cool because he remembered that we left the container of bubbles outside on the front porch, notwithstanding the fact that we had been on vacation and it had been nearly two weeks since we last sat on the steps to our porch to blow bubbles together.  Knowing that he remembered where we kept the bubbles after such a long time is not big deal, I understand, but realizing that his memories are building and how much he is learning was really cool to me.

We walked outside on the porch and Max picked up the container of bubbles from the table as I sat down in one of the comfortable wicker chairs to watch him play. Max blew one or two bubbles, but he stopped and just looked at me.  He grabbed my finger again with one hand and with the other pointed to the stairs on our front porch, and hopefully asking “Sit, Mom-Mom, sit?”

I looked at those big brown eyes, and gladly obliged, happily watching my little nugget smile with pride or gasp in delight at every single bubble he blew.

I know these are such simple things, and nothing out of the ordinary for any child, but when it is your little baby, somehow they become the most special and amazing accomplishments in the world.

I am in no rush for my little man to grow up, but I am so excited to get to know the little person that is inside that brain of his.   He has been the greatest teacher so far in my life, and I can’t wait for him to tell me even more.

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