Monday, October 25, 2010
So before Annabelle could use words to communicate, I thought I'd teach her a little sign language. (I took four years of ASL in college, although I am way less than fluent.) I started with the sign for "please." One day when she was sitting on my lap, I repeated the sign a few times, and bam. She was saying please every other second. The first few months of please were brutal - you see, her vigorous signing was so stinking cute, we couldn't say no to anything. She got everything she wanted with the mere wiggle of the sign. After that, we decided we were being totally taken advantage of and decided to stunt her learning development. We didn't teach her anymore signs. Of course, she didn't care and started using words.
Especially in the last few weeks, she's been gobbling words up like they're candy (and she does say "can!" for candy or "choc!" for chocolate). I say something, my little parrot spits it right back out. When something fell down from my closet, I said, "Oh, shoot!" (I'm really not a curser) and for the rest of the day my little parrot said, "Oh shoot! Oh shoot!" except hers sounded a little more like the curse. When she got concerned about the sound of the lawnmower outside our apartment complex, I took her out to show her what was making the noise and told her it was a lawnmower. For the next hour while they mowed, I heard, "Mawnmower? Mawnmower!" She routinely requests a "high bibe!" or "bow" (bones) or a "hea bup" (head bump) or a "lub" (love) and sometimes even a "kibb" (kiss). She knows how to ask for "wat" (water) or a "bott" (bottle - which means both bottle and milk), and when a loud vehicle passes the apartment, she announces "Ruck! Ruck!" (truck). She loves all "ah-mulls" (animals), and I think my favorite aunt's name is "Coke!" (Courtney), although she does a really good "Whit-KNEE" (emphasis on the second syllable).
She loves her "wome" (glowworm) and points out witches (witch!!) and pumpkins (punk!) wherever we go. She likes eating "gurt" (yogurt) and "nugs" (nuggets). She loves hiding things in her "pock," and one day requested an "ink" (earring) by pointing back and forth from her ear to mine. When she knows we're getting ready to go somewhere or she just wants to leave, she asks, "Shop?! Shop?!" which is to say, "Are we leaving?" more than it means she wants to actually purchase something. When her Uncle Jeremy's dog, Shadow, was visiting, she quickly picked up his name and we now routinely hear, "Shadow! NO NO! Sha-dough!" (even though he's nowhere to be seen). She lets me know when things are "haw" (hot) or "weh" (wet), and particularly loves "ray!!!" (rain). When she sees football on the TV (any team), she shouts with double fist pumps, "GO OOTS!" (I realize that as a Cougar, I should probably correct this, but it's way too cute.) And when she knows she's done something pleasing, she proclaims, "Goo grrr!" (good girl).
And while every day it seems new words are tumbling out of her mouth, until recently we weren't able to get her to use her mouth to say please. It was confusing to her and she'd just wiggle the please, followed by the appropriate "Tank ewe." Until a few days ago. Now, not only does she do the irresistible wiggled please sign, but she also smiles and very sweetly says, "Peas?"
Dang. It. Kid is going to get away with murder.