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10 things about Neave, aged 21 months

Posted on: January 28, 2012

Little Neave, you’re growing up so fast. These are my favourite things about you at this age:

1. You are learning words very rapidly now. You’ve got to the fun stage where you’ll repeat nearly everything we say, so you’re picking up at least five words a day. Some new additions that I heard for the first time recently: doe (toe), dankie (blanket), sit, why? (I can’t believe you’re asking why already!), dock (sock), tuck (truck), bike, fine (find). You even put two words together the other day. You came to me and said, “dankie, fine?”, and then you showed me your empty hands and shook your head and said, “air?”, which I think meant ‘where?’ When I put it all together, I translated it as ‘I can’t find my blanket, where is it?’ So we went to look for your blanket together and you were overjoyed when we found it – partly because you wanted your blanket, obviously, but I think you were also very happy that I’d understood you straight away. It was a really nice moment of communication between us.

2. Your language skills even extend to giving us a serve when things don’t go your way. If it’s something you’re only mildly annoyed about then you’ll have a go by yelling “Da da da da da da da da!” Then you’ll give us your adorable grumpy face. Recently, Tiernan was swinging back on his chair at the dinner table. You were concerned for his safety, as you have fallen backwards doing the same thing more than once, so you were telling him to stop by yelling, “Da da da” at him. Then you pointed to the seat and said, “Sit!”

3. You’ve taken a big interest in Molly’s doll pram. You like to tuck your teddy in tight under a blanket, and then take him for a stroll down the hallway. You usually grab your handbag before you go, and wave and say “Byyyyyye!”

4. You love to help pack up. It’s one of your best features (kidding). But I do love it. It’s great because when I’m trying to get Tiernan and Molly to put their things away, all I have to do is praise you for the fine job you’re doing, and they start pitching in, too.

5. You love to put my shoes on and clip clop around the house, just like Molly does still. You’re surprisingly good at it, too, even when the shoes are so big that they end up backwards on you.

6. I don’t know if this is good or bad, but you are not afraid of the trampoline. Whenever your brother and sister go out for a jump, you are right behind them. You climb up onto the chair, open the zipper, pull yourself up (I don’t even know how, you’re such a strong little thing), make sure you shut the zipper behind you, and then run around in circles yelling, “Dump, dump, dump!” We have to watch you, because sometimes you get too close to the others and they knock you down (sometimes accidently, and sometimes not). You also like just getting on and off the trampoline over and over again sometimes, skipping the “Dump, dump” part.

7. You seem to be taking an early interest in the toilet. I don’t know how long it will last, but you occasionally like to go to the bathroom, saying “Wee” as you go, and then you take off your nappy and ask for help to sit on the seat. You then sit there looking very pleased with yourself for a few minutes, before pointing to the paper so that we know to give you some to wipe yourself with – well, really you just chuck it into the bowl with no wiping involved. You’ve yet to actually produce anything in the toilet, but we’re happy to go along with you for now. It’s kinda hard to believe that one day we won’t have anyone in nappies!

8. Whenever you hurt yourself, you always come to your Daddy or I and want a kiss to make it better. You must have seen us do this with Tiernan and Molly a few times, so now that you know how it works, you make sure you get your magic kiss every time! You come to us saying, “Ow, ow”, and hold up whichever part is sore until we kiss it. Then off you go on your merry way.

9. You love to play with dinosaurs, just like Tiernan and Molly do. I love it when you say, “Didor, raaaaah!” Very cute.

10. I’m finally Mummy! All it took was for me to go away for a weekend, and by the time I got back I had graduated from being ‘Daddy’ or ‘Teddy’ to a full-status ‘Mummy’. Aww.

Asleep on Mummy

Not so great:

1. Your favourite game is climbing down in between the two lounge chairs and getting yourself wedged in there good and tight. Then you say, “Help, help,” until someone comes and rescues you. Then, two minutes later, you’re back in there, asking for help again. Boring and monotonous for us, exilharating for you. I’m over it.

2. Since you learnt the word ‘bikkie’, you have been coaxing anyone and everyone into the kitchen with you, then pointing your little hand at the biscuit cupboard, putting on your angel face and saying sweetly, “Bikkie.” If a bikkie doesn’t land in your hand pronto, then, on a good day, you might add a belated, “Pease,” and an expectant little smile. If still no bikkie is forthcoming, then a mighty tantrum will ensue, one that involves a lot of pathetic flailing and throwing yourself backwards. On a bad day, you skip straight to the tantrum. This act gets repeated several times a day. All too often, you get the bikkie.

3. You have added pinching and biting to your repertoire, which is bad news for anyone who crosses you and happens to be standing too close. Although, I sometimes can’t help feeling just the tiniest bit proud of you for standing up for yourself when your big brother and sister give you crap! I’m not quite so proud when I’m the one being pinched for simply trying to fasten your seatbelt in the car, however.*

4. You’ve developed a weird habit of never eating with strangers. Well actually, they’re usually not even strangers – if anyone, even your grandparents, come to eat a meal with us, you won’t eat a bite until they have left the table. Then you’ll happily eat your whole meal, all on your own. I’m not sure what to make of it.

5. I said before that you like to pack away, but the truth is that you like to make a mess equally as much. If not more. You delight in taking things out of boxes and tossing them over your shoulder. You also love to pull books off shelves, empty clothes out of drawers, and pull vertical blinds down. Ho hum.

*UPDATE: Since receiving some negative feedback about this particlur statement, I feel compelled to explain myself more clearly here. I can see how the wording above may lead people to believe that I allow Neave to bite people willy-nilly, and this isn’t the case. I have never witnessed Neave biting or pinching unprovoked; it is usually in response to one of her siblings taking her toys or being too rough with her, which, being still very young themselves, they are bound to do from time to time. I have never allowed Neave to ‘get away’ with pinching or biting, no matter what the situation; she is always given a stern ‘no, biting hurts’, and sometimes I will get her to say sorry to whoever she has bitten. Any further discipline would be inappropriate – she is too young to fully appreciate what she is doing. As I stated above, she has, on occasion, bitten me while I was trying to put her in her carseat, and while I am not happy that she does it, I can see why she would find it necessary – she is, afterall, being firmly placed into a seat against her will, and strapped down so she can’t move. In her own mind, why should she have to put up with that??? I have never witnessed her bite another person oustide of our immediate family. This makes me feel that, while she may not be able to control the urge at home amongst her family just yet, at least she does understand not to do it in other social settings, such as playgroup or daycare. As for my feeling proud of her, perhaps I should clarify that I’m certainly not proud that she pinches and bites – however I am proud of her willingness to defend herself. Once she learns (as she will, in time) that pinching and biting are not appropriate behaviours, then I hope that she will continue to stand up for herself, in other ways.

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1 Response to "10 things about Neave, aged 21 months"

The second entry in each category is just priceless. Libra’s always getting after Gemini for things – “No baby, you can’t go there, you are too tiny,” and “No baby, that not safe.” I’m torn between being glad he is looking out for his brother, and trying to curb his tendency to be bossy – it’s a tough line to walk!

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