Posts tagged ‘Fun’

December 19, 2011

The Demise of the Ducky

There is a blessing and a curse to blogging about life with a young child. More often than not, the behavior/oddity/phenomenon I post about one day is gone the next. This is great news when I’m writing about something that frustrates me or is difficult to manage. This is bad news when I post about bathtubs.


Jacob was getting very cozy with his ducky bathtub last week. He’s always loved it, but last week he was in it a couple of times during the day, fully dressed and with “toys” like spatulas and kitchen timers.



Saturday morning, John and I woke up to find the ducky had taken a turn for the worse:


Jacob may have slathered a little too much love on the poor guy. The really bad news is this is our second ducky tub. The first one didn’t quite make it through our family vacation in June. I think we moved it too often in and out of the bathroom we were sharing. Just because something is inflatable doesn’t mean it should be repeatedly traveled with. The company very generously sent us a second tub for free, because I couldn’t find the hole through which air was leaking.


I’m not sure how many more times I can request a free tub. Although as far Jacob’s concerned, this one still works just fine.


December 9, 2011

Dear Uncle Michael

Dear Uncle Michael,


Yup, this post is a letter directly to you, Michael. I want to address what must seem like my recent slacking in the photo department. For me, this blog is mostly about the writing, but I know for you, it’s about the Jacob photos. And I’m cool with that, really. The thing is, getting photos has been tough these days. It’s not like last year, when the worry was that catching the wrong angle of Jacob would make it look like he had more chins than I could count.



I don’t know how often you’ve tried to take photos of a toddler, but as you might imagine, it’s not easy. Sometimes it seems like all I end up with is a temper tantrum and a photo that looks like this:

Or this:

Or this:

But for you, Michael, my #1 cheerleader when I joined your family, you know I’d do anything. And so I risked the tantrums. Jacob must have known these photos were especially for his uncle Michael, because he cooperated pretty well. Either that or he was just distracted once he was outside and there were people to wave at.


See you soon!


Your sister-in-law and JBear

December 6, 2011


Over the past few weeks, Jacob’s really taken to signing. Like they say, I was doing it for a long time (only sometimes feeling ridiculous) before I saw him begin to respond. Now we have proof of how much he’s taken in. He started to say “thank you” last week. The motion is a little bit more violent than it should be, but it’s super cool to see it, all the same.


When I tell people how old Jacob is, they often ask whether he’s walking, talking, or both. Walking is an affirmative, and he often gets compliments at the park for how good of a walker he is. Do they make a bumper sticker for that, maybe in the style of those “My student is on the honor roll” ones? Because I’d get one, even though we don’t have a car. Or a bike. Anyway.


When I tell folks that he’s pretty much just using “da” to verbalize, but he’s signing, I’ve been pleasantly surprised with people’s interest and encouragement. In learning about signing, I’ve read that some people don’t esteem it very highly. Some people are concerned that because signing kids speak later, they won’t speak as well. Really, their language acquisition is often better in the long run. I think it’s because they avoid some of the frustration of not being able to communicate.


Well, sometimes.


The great thing about signing is how much of what Jacob wants to say John and I can understand. The other day, Jacob was uncomfortable because he was too warm. He made his sign for “hot” and (eventually) we figured out that we needed to take a layer off of him. Happy baby, happy parents.


The tough thing is when Jacob is around people who don’t know ASL or the signs he’s created. “Help” has ironically been the most problematic sign thus far.


The sign for “help” is a fist seated on an open hand, moved up and down together, as if you’re offering a helping hand. Jacob’s modification is one hand in a fist and the other hand wrapped around it, moved up and down together. John and I recognize any variation on the up-and-down movement as a request for help.  Others, of course, don’t.


A few weeks ago, our Italian friends thought he was just being really dramatic and pleading for something they had.  Over Thanksgiving, John’s Chinese mother thought Jacob was making the sign her culture uses to offer congratulations. I don’t think she knew what she was being congratulated for, but she thought it was really cool that Jacob could speak Chinese (especially when John and I can’t . . .)


What a shame to be only fourteen months old, and already so misunderstood.

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