Thursday, 17 March 2011

Stuff My Baby Can Do

Generally, blog posts with titles like this one send mothers like me running for cover, reluctant to read another list of things that other peoples' tiny geniuses (genii?) have accomplished.  Abigail seems to have set out from the very beginning to be unremarkable in terms of development.  Rolling over at five months, sitting up and eating solids on the dot of six months, she particularly enjoys teasing us by doing something once - just to show us that she can - and then not repeating it for several more months.
Take her laughing, for example.  She gave us one laugh,  really very late - I think she was nearly five months when she first really giggled properly - and then practised an astonishing variety of facial expressions, from bemused to sardonic, over the next few weeks as we tried everything in our power to get her to do it again.  Even now, there are no guaranteed ways to make Abigail laugh.  Everything works once, and after that it isn't funny any more.
However, in the face of constant emails from companies like Bounty, which arrive in my inbox with the title "FIFTEEN MONTHS!!!" and inform me that my daughter must be walking, talking and attempting basic Quantum physics by now, I thought I would indulge and celebrate some of the things that she can, very suddenly and somehow unexpectedly, do.
You see, I've noticed a fascinating change in her over the past week, and it has to do with how she treats her surroundings and her toys.  She suddenly seems to know what everything is for.  Where only a month ago she would have picked up a baby doll only to chew its hand, she now says "Baba!" holds it the right way up and tries to clean its face and hands with a baby wipe.  She can drive her sit-on car (which, before, only went backwards) around the kitchen, making a "Brrrrm!" noise and beeping the horn.  If she finds a sock, she tries to put in on her foot (she succeeds in draping it over her toes) and when she picks up a soft toy, especially one of her bears, she gives it a cuddle.
Puzzles and Duplo blocks have suddenly come into their own.  Abigail has, as if someone had flicked a switch in her head, stopped wanting to destroy things and started wanting to put them together.  Skittles that she used to delight in knocking down are now carefully stood up.  Towers are shakily constructed.  She's got the hang of her stacking rings and tries putting them together in lots of different combinations, often getting them nearly right; although she won't be persuaded that the big green one goes on the bottom, but prefers to balance it right on top of the finished cone like a sombrero.  And the shape sorter!  She knows what to do with that, too, and we can have actual games of Abi-get-a-shape, Mummy-find-the-hole, Abi-put-it-in that go on for at least twenty minutes of undivided concentration - and even the occasional giggle.

No comments: