Whats that noise
What you doing, mum mum?
Go see her?
I do it
Catch the ball? Mum catch da ball?
Drink a milk, mum mum ?
Open da fridge. Mum ?
Open da freezer. Ice block? Some for daddy?
Drive the truck?
Cuddle mum mum
“I pity da fool!” Done in a Mr T from the a team voice. Really.
Aaa ah drink. I was thirsty.
Running? Running mum mum? Ready, sec, go!
Ryo holiday? Ryo in japan.
Ipad! Ipad? Ipad! unlock it? Unlock it!
We have hit 22 months old. We are in the land of sentences. Many many sentences. Verbs. Pronouns. And stupid long story telling. Sometimes, they are coherent stories. He tells me things he can remember. Like going to Vivid festival but finding the highlight of a garbage truck driver who let him push the buttons and work the truck.
And the visit to the fire station open day. That one comes up every Saturday morning now. He figures, right, mum went to boxing, she’s back, now is when dad took me to drive a fire truck. So….let’s go. It’s hard to explain that open day is only once a year….
“And ummm…..playgroup. Climbing. And ummm, garbage truck, and….running…..and…..lunchy lunch…..and…daddy go in his car?…and….” He tells me stories in the car, stories lying down in bed, stories when we sit down to have a meal. They are long and complicated. They are funny. He is actively making conversation.
“Learning tower? Learning tower! Learning tower?” The best / worst thing I ever did was order a learning tower from someone on Facebook. It was a bargain at a built-to-your-bench-height-$85. It is like a sophisticated step stool very sturdy, with a frame around it to prevent falls. It is very stable. It drives me mental and I also adore it.
Jman has several jobs in his learning tower. Putting the chopped veggies into a bowl. Cracking the eggs during cooking. Stirring anything. Wobetide the person that takes a bowl off him that he’s trying to stir. He tips things between bowls. He leans over and “helps” with the washing up. So it slows things down, and creates a bit more cleaning up. But he will also “cook” with me for forty minutes straight. We have a little nook in the counters where he is equidistant between the kettle and the stove, where he can’t reach the sharp knives by the chopping board or any appliance (apart from the coffee grinder. We’ve ground some excess coffee a few time lately). So he’s no chance at pulling boiling water on himself or anything like that. And he adores it.
He asks for it the minute his eyes open. He loves buttering his own toast, or tipping his porridge Into a bowl and stirring in the milk. And I can see him learning. He is practising sizes. He tries to chop things. He has a blunt plastic picnic knife and another little silver knife, and I let him “chop” mushrooms, and anything else that is soft and ok if eaten raw. He is testing, watching, experimenting, learning. So instead of me rushing to get things done to be “with him”, I am getting things done and teaching him as well.
He counts to 12. easily. All the time. He knows 80% of the alphabet. He sings to himself all the time. Happy birthday, baa baa black sheep, head shoulders knees and toes, see saw Marjorie daw, twinkle twinkle.
He is fearless on his ride on push along tractor. So much so, I’ve had to go out and buy him a helmet. He is ridiculously competent at it, going down hills along the footpath, steering, using his feet to speed up or slow down. Saturday, daddy took him up the skate ramp on the thing, and he did two ramps and was headed into the half pipe before daddy intervened.
He can climb six foot high rope nets. Sometimes these skills seem to arrive without warning, or fanfare. He can’t do things, then he can. Once he started going faster than I could run to hold onto his back, I decided the helmet was a must.
He is so funny, and charming, so ridiculously full of personality, so amazingly stubborn, so energetic, and so beautiful. He is such a person now. A bossy, demanding, engaged and engaging person. He is scary intelligent. When we turn into our suburb he announces “we’re home”. When we pass the local supermarket he says “go the shops, mummy?”. He knows about seven places we drive to without any prompting whatsoever.
He remembers everyone’s name and talks about them, like our Mexican friend who visited twice, a month ago, and he says “Roberto? Roberto gone home. Roberto on the plane.” I sometimes worry we should do more for a kid that Is racing ahead so quickly, but then I remind myself to just follow his lead. He shows me what he needs at most stages, I just need to take them time to listen, then think of things that will extend him, like the learning tower that arrived at the exact right moment for him.
All of a sudden he knows several books off by heart. He has started naming his books. “Cake” is “bear goes to town”, a French and English book about bear’s week. And because bear goes to the bakery / boulangerie on a Monday, this is a favourite book.
“Grug cooking / grug cars” are a series of books about an Aussie character called Grug. He is quite particular about which one is being read.
Then there’s the stunt man thing. I’m not sure if he’s training to be an Italian soccer player, or a stunt man, but jman loves a good fake fall down. First, he started falling down for laughs. Then, he got Dada to fall down. Dada had to fall down in a particular way, then jman jumps on top of him and they wrestle. It is a very important feature of each night. Must get a video of that one before it passes.
So 22 months. Fun, entertaining, full on and a real person.