Now that I am working at home, I get a different perspective on my kids. In a word, I get to eavesdrop on them when they are not with me. I also get to hear them without seeing them, which, as those of you who have had babies may know, sometimes gives you a Eureka! moment when you realize that those sounds the baby has been making are not actually gibberish.
Asnat is here today, and when she is here she tends to put in Barak's Meah Shirim Rishonim (Hundred First Songs) CD. There are two CDs in the set: a green one and a yellow one. Barak likes the green one better. Somewhere on the green CD there is a song about the letter lamed which he likes very much, and on days when Asnat has been here he can frequently be heard singing "la-amed! la-amed!" A few minutes ago, he was singing the lamed song in the kitchen. Then I heard Iyyar, singing, "a-ama! a-ama!" with exactly the same inflection. Barak, in delight: "Hiss singing a green song!"
Other things I've noticed recently: I think I mentioned a while back that when Barak categorically does not want to do something, he announces, "I can't." It makes sense. When I say "I can't," it means I'm absolutely not doing it. I can't turn the light on because it's Shabbos. I can't read you that book because I'm going to work now. I can't give you milk because you're in the middle of eating a hot dog. So it's logical that Barak would add to his vocabulary "I can't eatta green," when I have neglected to peel his cucumber, or "I can't pish potty" when he is too busy playing for a bathroom trip.
And it makes sense that he has now started objecting to anything that someone else is doing that he doesn't like by saying, "Iss very dangerous!" Because once Imma has declared something dangerous, that child is categorically not getting to do it. Iyyar can't eat grapes, they're dangerous. You can't run down the street by yourself, it's dangerous. You can't cross the insane intersection near where we live on your feet, it's dangerous. So, logically, when he was in competition with his cousins for his treasured ride-on backhoe loader "Menucha can't sit onna backhoe loader! Iss very dangerous for Menucha!" Or, "Iyyar can't touch my airplane! Iss very dangerous for Iyyar!"
There was one other thing... what was it? I can't remember. Oh, right. Iyyar, as I might have mentioned, was never a huge fan of his pacifier. He always chewed it more than sucked it, and didn't find it that comforting. He ditched it entirely by about nine months. A few weeks later, I noticed distinct sucking sounds coming from his crib as he went to sleep, and investigated. He was sucking on his blanket, one of those cheap fleece blankets from Target. Then, a few weeks later, I realized that what he was doing specifically was sucking on the label. Now if he wakes up in the night, I go back in there and find the label for him and he goes back to sleep. The other day I saw on Etsy that someone was making and selling blankets with folded-over bits of satin and grosgrain ribbon sewn on all around the edge, like a blanket with fifty labels. So my baby can't be the only one doing this. Right?