We’re on track for reading! Owlet loves books, and lately she has started touching words or making us run our fingers under the sentences when we read aloud to her. Then she tries to do the same thing. This means she knows that what you say changes as you move from word to word, which is so exciting. It’s also exciting that if you ask her to find two of the same word on a page, she can do it, which means she’s recognizing patterns and word shapes.
The child gates are now all gone (yaaaay! our shins are so grateful!) except the one to the stairs leading to the office. Even that one we leave closed but unlatched a lot of the time, so it’s mostly a visual reminder that she’s not supposed to go up there. Occasionally if she’s alone for whatever reason, she takes it into her head to pull it open, climb the stairs, and play the piano, which is always amusing. (And yes, it is still a “pinnannose.”)
She loves playing with her new build-a-bug app on the iPad, and she’s getting better at the matching games, too. She was very into The Princess and the Frog for a while, including the music, even though she kept saying she was scared of the shadows in it. We think she was working through fear/discomfort by desensitizing herself to it and play-acting through all the stages of “I scared!” and “shadows can’t hurt me.” Now, of course, everything is all Frozen, all the time. Nana bought a copy for them and brought it with her when she visited a couple of weeks ago, and the children were over the moon.
Her favourite books are a little less clear; she cycles through her bookshelf pretty regularly these days. We read Are You My Mother? frequently, she’s been enjoying Chester and the Scaredy Squirrel series by Melanie Watt an awful lot. She likes magazines because they have lots of different pictures in them, preferably her brother’s copies of Chickadee. She loves choosing a book to bring in the car in the mornings. And one day she insisted on bringing her chosen book into the daycare, even though I told her she’d have to share it with the other children. She actually got excited about that, and was pleased to pass it around and talk about the baby animal pictures in it.
She’s suddenly into puzzles. She’s past the wooden ones with the lift-out basic shapes, so we cleared most of them out and sent them to the daycare along with some other toys she’d grown out of, which pleased everyone; they had fun with their new puzzles and she was happy that she’d shared them. She’s now into the 24-piece cardboard ones, and is pretty good at them, so long as one of us turns the pieces the right way up and makes sure they’re sort of in the right general order. She’s learning to look for pieces that have the colours of a certain character on it and put them together first. She really doesn’t understand the concept of lining up the straight edges of the border yet, though.
The best new game of pretend is “ocean.” She spreads the blue afghan out on her floor, pulls the old baby bath out from under her bed (where it holds random stuffed animals and toys), climbs in, and pretends she’s in a boat. It is best played with Sparky, who can rock it, and they “dive” into the “water” and swim around, or catch fish, or pile any water-related toys they have into the boat with them (like stuffed turtles, fish, puffins, and so forth). It’s a great game. The two of them are working out their relationship; he thinks and imagines so much more quickly than she does, and in general she’s willing to enthusiastically follow him. But she’s starting to suggest her own variations of what they’re doing, and Sparky is having trouble being flexible; if what she imagines doesn’t fit in with his vision, or alters something he’s already proposed, then he gets cross with her. We’ve been doing a lot of refereeing, reminding them to share the imagining and take turns suggesting the next development.
She is so ready for winter to be done with. She has been pulling her rainboots out of the cupboard and tromping around the house in them. It’s warm enough that she can wear a spring jacket to daycare in the mornings for the quick jump between the car and the building, but not warm enough to wear only that (plus splash pants) to play in. So we’ve been toting two complete outfits to school each day, her spring one and her winter one.
She loves, loves, loves painting and coloring. She enjoys tracing things like cups and hands (including Hop-Hop’s paw). She still directs people to draw things for her instead of scribbling herself, though. Stickers are still the best things ever, but she gets whiny about which ones she has to be using. We are forever peeling stickers off the floor, chairs, windowsills, doors, and our arms (we even find them in the dryer exhaust screen). Fortunately they’re easily removed, and don’t leave adhesive behind.
Among her current favourite foods are ‘rolly cheese’ (her term for a slice of processed American cheese, the kind we use for special grilled cheese sandwiches, because it’s flat and she likes to have it rolled up), carrots (because she can share them with Solstice), peanut butter toast, ‘graby’ (her term for gravy, which is also what she calls maple syrup), peas (preferably frozen, and preferably while she is pouring them into the dish before microwaving them). She is totally off potatoes, for some reason. All meat is awesome if it comes with ‘graby’ to dip it in.
She’s mostly in size 4; we’ve given up on size 2 and 3, because they’re generally too small. I have no idea what size her feet are; her rainboots are size 7, but her snowboots are size 9, and it’s been forever since she wore a shoe. She has recently asked for an umbrella, and as they’re going to be doing umbrella-related activities later this month at daycare, then I’ll have to pick one up for her. She has decided she would like fairies or Hello Kitty on it.
She loves helping with the dishes. Her job is drying them, although she needs to be reminded each time to put them on the counter instead of dropping them back into the dirty water. She’s gotten much better at sitting still while we put her hair in ponytails, although leaving them in is still not guaranteed. She’s always moving, always imagining, and always loving. She’s fun to have around.