1. New word of the week: "barkistan." No, it's not some war-torn country. It's a garbage can. Expanded version of the earlier favorite, "barkip." A similar word with totally different meaning: "Barkinih!" This means, "It's broken!"
2. Gone, oh, gone are the days when Avtalyon was an easygoing little baby, content with everything. He has figured out that the best way to get my attention is to be LOUD AND DEMANDING. He summons. He shouts. And when he wants my attention, he hollers both syllables, loud and clear: "EEEE! MMMMMMA!" It doesn't get him anywhere, but he does it anyway.
3. He likes chickens, both in toy and food form. "Chickum!" Current favorite toys are probably legos, which he likes to attach to the train pieces and drive around. Beep beep.
4. He continues to adore Asnat, and to associate her most strongly with the eating of oranges. "Apooz!" His Hebrew is pretty impressive. Today I heard him tell her he wanted to eat. "Echol! Echol!"
5. He still likes his pacifier and his blankie, specifically, the tag, which he holds up against his cheek. If he is feeling magnanimous, sometimes he'll rub it against my cheek or Abba's. He's only supposed to have the blankie and pluggie when in his crib, although this rule is not absolute--sometimes he'll pull the blankie out through the bars, or find a pluggie hiding somewhere. It's clear when he does this that he knows he's getting away with something--he gives me a guilty grin and doesn't really protest much when I take them away.
6. He can open the fridge now. This is annoying. Sometimes when I open it, he pushes past me and starts taking things out.
7. I've started making him clean up his toys. A couple of times this week, when I told him to pick up Lego and he decided to see what would happen if he said no, he found himself in his crib having a time-out. Then he cleaned up. Happily. He even sang the cleanup song: "Yeeyup! Yeeyup!"
8. Puzzles continue to be a huge hit, such that I bought a few more today. He and Iyyar, who will not turn 4 until May, can do a 100-piece puzzle labeled for 6 and above if they work on it together. Not a brand new one, one they've done before with help, but still--I'm impressed.
9. He hates sweaters. Annoying, but true. I have to force them over his head when we're going outside and he tries his best to get them off as soon as we get home.
10. He likes Ernie. It's so funny; Barak likes Cookie Monster, Iyyar loved Grover, and Avtalyon, for whatever reason, is an Ernie fan. He likes to come into my room, take the box of size 1-2 diapers for Marika that's sitting on the dresser/changing table, and neatly arrange them on my bed/the floor/the bouncy seat. Mysteriously, the Ernie diapers rarely make it back into the box--sometimes I find them hidden under his crib.
11. Although I usually buy generic diapers, I weakened at his obvious delight in Ernie diapers and bought him a huge box of size 4 Pampers at Sam's Club. Now, of course, I am stuck; he won't ever be willing to go back. Wonder if I can leverage this into early toilet training...
12. He has been taking really long naps lately, sometimes finishing them with a long spell of being awake in his crib but not asking to come out. Sometimes he's in there until past 3; I go in to see if he's OK and find him just standing there, holding his blanket and sucking his pluggie, looking perfectly happy. Once he sees me, of course, he's excited to come out.
13. He seems to spend much of the afternoon just waiting for Barak to come home. Every so often he'll run to the window and ask for Barak; when Barak does finally make his appearance, at about 4, the joy is boundless.
14. He likes pizza. A lot. He's been asking for it daily for at least a week. I should really make some tomorrow. It's not a bad dinner when it's whole wheat, and Avtalyon happily eats his loaded with vegetables.
15. He likes chickpeas, straight out of the can. I don't get this personally, but okay.
16. I still haven't cut his hair. It's fine in the front but is getting shaggy and curly in back. I don't want to cut it till I have to though.
17. After months of wearing real shoes, he came across some of the knockoff Robeez shoes from Target with giraffes on them. I don't think these were ever his--I'm pretty sure they were only Iyyar's. Surprisingly, they fit, and he loves them. He asks for them in Hebrew. "Eeyafa! Eeyafa!"
18. Avtalyon does not laugh. He chortles. Sometimes he actually says "ho ho ho."
19. He likes sitting at the table, preferably without booster seat. This is hard for me when the other kids are in the kitchen but Asnat, with fewer kids to watch, lets him do it. I think it makes him feel big.
20. He really likes Play-Doh, but if you don't watch him, he eats it.
21. He likes toy tools. He especially likes to hammer things.
22. He often sleeps with his feet sticking out through the bars of his crib. Doesn't look too comfortable to me, but he doesn't seem to mind.
23. If I disappear into the bathroom or office, he comes looking for me. "Imma! We'ha you! IIIMMMAAAA!"
24. He likes my water bottle, but whenever I let him have it he invariably dumps out the contents. He's very into high chair chemistry experiments too. The milk! into the oatmeal! Chickpeas into the cucumbers into the water! He has figured out that bad things happen when he dumps things on the floor, though, and has stopped doing that--mostly.
25. He wants to do everything his brothers do, and is convinced that he's at least five. In fact, he's not. He's still my baby boy.