We are quickly closing in on the end of Jack's second year, so I think it is time for an update on all his latest developments and skills. This is a really fun, while occasionally challenging, age! It's been so fun to watch him grow and learn - we've got a pretty bright little guy on our hands.
The most fun right now is the ability to carry on conversations with him. His vocabulary has been increasing exponentially - I tried to count the number of words he says a few weeks ago and very easily got to 50, so I know he's well over that. It seems like he's saying new words every day. Some of his favorites are truck, bus, bike and plane, all of which he points out over and over again when we're in the car. We routinely have some variation of the following conversation when we're in the car:
Jack: Bike! (insert mode of transportation here)
Mama: Ooh a bike, I saw it too.
Jack: Where go?
Mama: I think it drove that way.
Mama: You want to see more bikes?
Mama: Well, we'll have to just keep watching to see more of them.I'm not exaggerating when I say that we can repeat this conversation 5 times in our 30-35 minute drive to work/school in the morning.
Other favorite words are the colors. Jack is now able to identify and name blue (boo), green (geen), yellow (yeyyow), red (re), pink (pin), purple (pupple) black (back) and white (why); basically all the main colors with the exception of orange and brown. We're still working on those two. He is always identifying things by their colors - truck has now become white truck, etc.
He is also getting pretty good with his manners. He often still needs to be reminded to say please, but very often will say thank you without being prompted. We're so proud. He also remembers to cover his mouth when he coughs about 1/3 of the time. Pretty good progress for a little guy I think.
Jack's favorite playtime activity is playing choo choos. He has a train table he received at Christmas, and he is constantly taking one or both of his parents by the hands to drag us into the toy room to play choo choos. We are in the process of getting his big boy room ready (more on that in a later post), which includes a choo choo quilt on his new bed. The first week we had the bed in there, the child didn't want to leave the room. He calls it his choo choo room. I was worried that I might regret choosing a somewhat childish theme for the new room, but given his current obsession, I'm happy with the choice. We can always update it a few years down the road as he grows out of it.
Our little man is constantly imitating what we do, from gestures to postures to words we say to sounds we make. Monkey see, monkey do! It is a riot to watch him - sometimes he takes several minutes comparing his stance to ours, for example, to make sure he has it just right. Here's a demo from tonight: sitting just like Dada was while they watched TV, hands on his feet and all.
He's becoming very independent, as all toddlers do. My favorite example of this is his recent insistence on choosing the shoes he wears each day. It started with him preferring flip flops to his tennis shoes and quickly moved on through his whole shoe line-up. We've run numerous errands in our frog rain boots, have gone to the Ashers house in our snow boots (when it was 90 degrees out) and even once wore Mama's flip flops into the post office (that added about 15 minutes onto our quick pit stop to check the business P.O. box since he could barely walk without them falling off his feet). When we get comments, stares and laughs from passersby, my standard response is "you have to pick your battles, right?"
He's also been enjoying wearing Mama's heels, which is quite a hoot. Luckily he hasn't insisted on wearing those out of the house (yet!).
Along with Jack's independence has come the tendency to throw tantrums. Lately when he doesn't like what we're telling him to do, he gets mad and then slowly and deliberately bangs his head on whatever is nearby - the wall, a chair, the floor, you name it. He even gave himself a bloody nose on his crib the other day. Hopefully this is a quick phase we can snap out of quickly.
I think that covers the basics. All in all, things are great in our world. We have a happy, loving little guy and we are enjoying every minute with him.