This cool character is one and a half already!
So much has changed in the last few months that it was hard for me to write this post. Actually, truth be told, I have been too busy to take the pictures also. That can explain why I am writing the 18-month post when he is almost 19 months old! He is hard to photograph at this stage as well, of course, because he is curious and fast. There is no posing, no sitting still and smiling. He is constantly exploring, climbing, sniffing (you’ll see that below!), tasting, throwing, running…
He has grown a lot of hair in the past few months! It is actually brushable. I still forget at times that I need to brush his hair, and we leave the house with crazy bed head or some other funky style. It seems to want to stick up at the crown like Dennis the Menace. In the photo below it’s been recently combed with water, but it won’t stay flat for long. In the past couple of days I’ve noticed a waviness to his hair when it is wet. We are still holding out hope for curls!
He is a character! What a personality. I didn’t know that such a young child could be so funny! He imitates things that we do purposefully to make us laugh. He loves to pretend to eat his own toes (something I would do to him) and makes a “chomp” noise when he does. When he wants me to know that something is stinky, he waves his little hand in the air and wrinkles his nose. He likes to smell things, but in reality he is loudly exhaling from his nose and not smelling anything at all. It is SO CUTE. I captured a few shots of his tiny, crinkled up button nose in full sniff mode.
He thinks it is hilarious to offer food to someone and then take it away at the last minute. That is weird because that’s not something we have ever done to him! He likes to “tackle” us and then pick us back up (so we can be tackled again). When he lifts us up he makes a very loud and exaggerated noise like “umph!” We have decided not to allow this game any more because he has knocked down a couple of small children and it seemed a bad idea. 😉
He loves water.
He loves to swim, to splash, and to squirt. Here he is playing with the hose. He will squirt himself directly in the face, then shake the water off and laugh. He holds the hose to his mouth and blows bubbles into the water.
He is so affectionate. He will hug and kiss us on demand, and also when the feeling strikes him. I don’t think there is a better feeling than seeing him hold out his little bottom lip in “kiss face” knowing that he wants to kiss you. He makes the sound “mmmwah!” and everything! He will coming running to me sometimes and throw his arms around my legs in a hug. I can tell when I make him really happy because he rewards me with hugs and kisses.
He has been having a vocabulary explosion lately! I have tried to capture all of the words he says, and I will list them at the bottom. He is stringing together two words like “choo choo car*” for train or “dadu shoe.” He understands so much more than I realize. If I tell him we are going for a walk, he knows that I need my shoes, and I’ll find him yelling near my dresser “OCK!” because he wants to open the drawer to get my socks out! Somehow he knows that socks go before shoes and all of these are required to walk. Josh has asked him to get his shoes from the bedroom when we are in the living room. The first time I laughed at the idea that Jacob would do this. We heard him plod down the hall, and stop about halfway down. There was a pause and then he said “shoe!” as though he were reminding himself what he needed to do, and then he continued on and brought Josh two matching shoes!
Another day as he was coming in and out of the backyard sliding door I said, half to myself, “you should close the door behind you because we keep getting flies in the house.” He stopped, turned around, and closed the door.
If you don’t have kids or aren’t familiar with small children this may have sounded like the most unimportant thing you’ve ever read, but having a baby who grows into a PERSON who talks and responds to you (?!?) is amazing!
Josh and I remark often at “what a person” he is. Obviously we already knew he was a person, but what we mean is that he is so grown up and functions like a “real boy” — in other words, he’s not a baby anymore. It’s amazing, and fun, but also bittersweet and kind of sad. Time really does fly by!
Aside from understanding what we are saying, he’s doing much better at communicating with us through a combination of words and signs. He will yell “NANA!” while signing “banana” and then if I ask him “do you want to eat a banana?” he will say “No! Brapes!” (letting me know that he was simply identifying a banana, but would like grapes.) hehehe.
He loves to share whatever he has with anyone nearby.
Oh, except if it’s a toy and a child. Then he doesn’t want to share. We’re working on that.
Otherwise, he will hold out food to strangers with a big smile. He is very popular because of this!
Let’s talk about his teeth. He has a lot of them! He had the front four on both top and bottom, as well as his molars (all four) and now his canines are coming in. It’s so funny to hear him crunching on a cracker. He can eat pretty much anything now, and he does. He loves fruit. Sometimes I worry that he is eating a diet that consists solely of fruit, but I try not to worry too much. He will eat grape tomatoes until I stop him. He loves tomatoes! He has also been really into grapes, and we have been riding down to Sprouts a couple of times a week to replenish his supply. He still doesn’t really eat sugar, just because I don’t think he needs any more energy. He likes baby carrots, but he doesn’t seem to be able to eat the whole carrot and usually asks for my hand and spits small chunks of carrot into it.
I am not the biggest fan of that.
He loves smoothies, so that is one way I can sneakily feed him veggies. I pack them with spinach and/or kale and carrots. He can use utensils now! He hasn’t mastered it, and he gets frustrated pretty quickly, but he doesn’t want to be fed–he wants to do it himself–and he can actually manage to eat this way.
He is a great imitator. He likes to wash his hands (partly because he is playing with the water) and put lotion on his belly because he sees me doing that. When I put lotion on him after a bath he holds a little hand out for some and rubs it on his trunk with the most self-satisfied smile. He really wants to use the vacuum and broom. Most of the time I will just stop my sweeping and hand it over. He will push the broom or my little cordless vac all over the house with a very serious expression. He always wants to brush his teeth, and has taken my Sonicare toothbrush off the counter, turned it on, and held it in his mouth. This amazes me because after years of using that toothbrush it still kind of freaks me out. It makes him very happy to carry in Josh’s lunch box (although it requires all of his effort) or to drag his diaper bag down the hall, or my purse, which is will hang around his neck or shoulders. He likes to put things away — which is great! — but only when he feels like it of course. He will take out a pair of his shoes in the morning so that I will put them on (he really likes to wear shoes) and then if I refuse and ask him to put them back, he will. He has started to leave the contents of cabinets alone for the most part, so I feel a little more comfortable leaving them “unlocked” without the hair rubberbands. Of course I have to be in the room, otherwise he gets bored and goes after everything inside.
He loves to sing. He will sing in the backseat of my car, or in the stroller, just testing out his voice and seeing what it can do. Sometimes he just makes sounds, but lately he has been singing a song of all the names he knows: “Dadu mama koko mimi.”
One of my favorite new things he does is he likes to sit on the couch, like a PERSON and then pats the cushion next to him, sometimes while saying “mama.” He does it very sweetly and imploring me, and he is asking me to sit next to him.
He has a new funny habit of shaking his head “no” very exaggeratedly. His head swings side to side for a good 20 seconds until his eyes start to look dizzy. I can’t even imitate it because it makes me sick! It’s very funny and opinionated-seeming!
I don’t know if I would say that things are easier or harder in this stage. So many things are easier, but of course many are harder as well. It is wonderful to be able to communicate with him and have him tell me what he wants or needs, but difficult when we reach things that he is trying to communicate and I just don’t understand. His attention span is longer, so I find that most days I can get more done, but he knows what he wants me to do, and if he doesn’t like what I am doing he is big and strong enough to stop me! He helps me take his clothes on and off, but hasn’t cared to choose what he wears. He will wear hats now! He actually picked a straw fedora out in Old Navy and insisted on wearing it. He now wears it all the time. He will ask for it by tapping the top of his head and saying “‘at!”
As he gets older I am continually amazed at what he understands and figures out. I am amazed by his capacity for joy, his sense of wonder and curiosity, and his sense of humor. I am amazed by his sweetness and affection. I love to see him interact with others. He remembers people now, and shows that he likes them. I love to see the world through his eyes. It is full of wonder.The Jacob-Connor Dictionary:
Up: This word is sometimes used to mean that he wants to be picked up, but more specifically it means “help.”
Dis: Perhaps the word I hear most these days. Translated to “this.”
Bubble: He says it so perfectly and cutely! When you ask him if he wants to take a bath he says “bubble!” or when he sees a package of bubbles at the store, or holds out his bubble wand for me to make bubbles.
Beep beep: Used for buttons and keys. With keys, he presses the buttons on the key fob and says “beep beep!” because he knows how to press the panic button on anyone’s key fob and make the car alarm go off. This has led into most buttons being “beep beep”s.
Car/cars: Used correctly to describe cars, also used for water and I am not sure why. Running water, a bottle of water, the ocean, all of these are called “car cars.” Josh says that Jacob has his own language comprised of different numbers of the word “cars” in a row to describe everything.
Dadu/dada/daddy: He uses these interchangeably. He started calling Josh “dadu” and since then his vocabulary has grown to include both other forms of the word. Again, I have no idea why, but it is cute!
Mama: Until last week, I had hardly any proof that Jacob knew this word, he had said it so seldom. However, when he got sick on the family reunion trip it became the only word he said. His heart-wrenching cries of “mama!!!” were so sad for me. He wanted to be touching me at all times. Since recovering, he is still saying it quite a bit, but more to get my attention, ask a question, or encourage me to follow him.
Kol/Koko: Koal has been reduced to the effeminate “Koko” by Josh and I now. Jacob has been calling him “Ko” or “Koko” for months, but he can now make the “L” sound on the end. Even still, it sounds like “kol” and not “Koal” and I can’t explain why. 🙂
Eye: He points out his eyes, my eyes, cousin Lexie’s eyes, and touches them gingerly. Once day he hurt his eye and it was like a remarkable breakthrough to ask him what was wrong and have him respond with the answer!
No‘: Do not be fooled; it sounds like “no” but this one is actually “nose.” The difference is that he will also point at his or someone else’s nose when he says it.
Baby: Used to describe any small child, even those much larger and older than him (which sometimes makes said child angry).
Da: This means “yes.” Maybe he speaks Russian?
Noooo: This time it really means no, and I hear this a lot. It usually has a long, drawn-out “o” sound: Nooooooo. I think that between “dis” and “nooo” he can communicate with me about what he wants to eat or do at any time.
Ice: When he says it, it sounds a bit like “eye” but he will point at a glass or the fridge and he means “ice” as in, he would like an ice cube.
Brrr: Also known as “bird.”
Shoe: One of this favorite things and favorite words. He has been saying this one for a while. Now he combines words to say things like “Dadu shoe.”
Ock: This is the Jacob word for “sock.” He understands that socks come before shoes and he will yell “ock! ock!” to me to make sure I do not forget.
Yuck: I started saying “yuck” and “yucky” to try to dissuade him from touching certain things, like Koal’s poop in the yard. Now he lets me know when something is yucky. He loves to walk around the yard and find Koal’s poop and scream “yuck!” while pointing it out to me.
Ash: Similarly, he lets me know when something is trash. I am rather amazed that he understands the concept of trash! He also knows where the trash cans are and will throw things away (and 99% of the time it really is trash!) Sometimes he will announce that something is “ash” and look for a trashcan. He can usually figure out where one is, which, if you think about it, is pretty remarkable.
Ball: What a boy.
Truck: He has, very seldom, said “truck” to differentiate from a car.
Bay-psss: Jacob’s word for grapes. It has a long “psssss” sound at the end, which is adorable.
Go: I have no idea why, but he has started to yell “go!” very enthusiastically when we are sitting at a red light, or a child is in his way on the slide, or we are at a bike race. How did he figure that out?
Door: He is obsessed with closing doors right now. He likes to go down the hall and close all the doors and gets mildly upset when I open them.
Close: He doesn’t say this often, but he can say “close” and uses it correctly. Sometimes he uses it to let me know that he cannot get a door open and is upset by this. He might say “up! close!” (Help, the door is closed!)
Hi: Adorably paired with a little hand wave. He likes to say “hi” and wave at me when he is doing something frustrating, and it accomplishes the task of making me instantly forgive him.
Mimi: What he calls my mom.
Pop: He just started to say this, to describe my dad, who is Poppa.
Hello: Most often used when he is “talking” on the phone.
Nana/Nanana: Jacob for “banana.” He also signs the word while he says it. He gets very excited in the grocery store to point out bananas to me.
Fsh: “Fish.” Usually used to ask for goldfish crackers.