Saturday, September 27, 2008

So Many Changes, Part 2

Every week we see Zoe change, and lately she seems to have moved into overdrive. Her coordination and strength has visibly improved. She can now balance herself between the coffee table and the couch (until the coffee table slides away—thump). She can climb up the steps of her slide one handed while carrying her bubbles, and at the park she climbed a vertical ladder to the top. She is speaking at least a few dozen words (although some interpretation from Mom or Dad is usually required). She has also suddenly become interested in dressing herself. She will scavenge up some piece of clothing, not necessarily her own, and try to pull it on. Nine times out of ten this activity will end in a scream of frustration, since she almost always tangles herself up to the point of immobility. But probably the biggest sign of change we have seen came the other day. I was reading her a book, and when we finished she took it from me and put it back on the shelf before grabbing another one. Now if she could just figure out how to change her own diaper…

Mom and Dad interact with Zoe in different ways. Here are some examples.
  • Mom will hug Zoe and say, “I love you.” Dad will hang Zoe upside down and say, “I’m going to drop you.”
  • Mom will sit with Zoe on the couch and read her a book; Dad will sit Zoe on the couch and hit her with a pillow.
  • Mom will sing ‘All Around the Mulberry Bush’ while turning the Jack-in-the-box; Dad will teach Zoe how to use the top of the box as a catapult.
  • Mom will look for opportunities to kiss Zoe; Dad will look for opportunities to startle Zoe.
  • Mom will roll the ball to Zoe; Dad will bounce the ball off of Zoe’s head.
  • Dad will intentionally push the stroller through the bushes; Mom won’t.
  • Mom likes to sit Zoe on her lap; Dad likes to sit on Zoe.
  • Mom will tell Zoe what each stuffed animal is; Dad will see how many stuffed animals he can fit down Zoe’s shirt (it’s a counting exercise!).

The other evening I gave Zoe some raisins and Cheerios in bowl and sat her down on the kitchen floor while I made dinner. She was playing with a spatula and when I looked down she had spilled her snack out onto the floor and was sweeping the spatula back and forth, spreading the raisins and Cheerios in a widening arc. I asked her to stop, and she did (!?), but when I asked her to help put them back in the bowl she sat there watching me pick them up. I asked her a half dozen times and on the very last Cheerio she picked it up and handed it to me. Raisins and Cheerios are a frequent snack, but they regularly escape. I often find squished raisins stuck to the bottoms of my socks, or flattened and pulverized little circles of Cheerios in the middle of the floor. Though I guess those are still better than the periodic lost grape.

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