Sunday, September 16, 2012

Little R Is Nineteen Months Old

R at the pool, contemplating life
A favorite activity, pushing a baby doll around in a stroller
Another favorite, reading (this is at a playgym full of toys, but R found one of the few books and sat down to read it)
Being goofy at the park
Having a sweet moment
Her thoughtful pose (actually this is a naughty look, she is sucking the pen to see if I will scold her)
R giving me directions about the paper she's holding
At the Reggio Emilia play atelier
Cool with her shades (which she won't wear)
This is R at a museum in Kuala Lumpur: I love her look of wonder (she is admiring the architecture)
R at the skybridge, Petronas Towers
Mischievous look: this is from two days ago
My beautiful baby
This month R started school. It was off to a slow start at first (the first and second week she only went one day; the third week she was ill and only went for an hour) but she absolutely loves it and is so excited to go that we can't leave the house quickly enough. Sometimes she cries when it's time to go home. So she will be attending three afternoons a week from now on.

Maybe it's going to school (or not), but she's become a little bit more independent. She doesn't cry when I take a shower without her anymore, and yesterday I left her with the sitter for several hours without any tears. She's also not quite as clingy around the house, and will happily play by herself in the other room again (for a while she needed to follow me everywhere I went). She is generally quite confident with herself, glad to meet new people, try out new skills, and manipulate new objects, which is great but also means I need to watch her like a hawk (because she has no fear/caution).

Parenting is pretty tiring right now, due to 1. the constant vigilance required and 2. R's need to ascertain the rules/her limits through practical experience. There's a lot of repetition of what she can/cannot do (very tiresome). In general now that she's discovered she has power and is confident in her ability to affect the world around her, she wants to use this power as much as possible. SHE wants to make all the decisions, whether it's about getting dressed, deciding which way to walk, or what toy to play with. I try to give her as much freedom as possible of course, but ultimately she has to learn that I always have the final say (and the freedom she does have is both limited and on sufferance only). Sometimes learning this leads to tantrums; more typically it just has to be repeated over and over, in multiple ways. Things will be a lot easier once R doesn't have to continually review this! Thank goodness she sleeps well at the moment, since it gives us a break from each other (R finds the process of accepting my authority almost as tiresome as I do.)

Luckily R is darling, affectionate, and charming the vast majority of the time. We have so much fun together now that she's old enough to really participate in things. Since B has to work, R and I spend a lot of time one-on-one: we visit museums together, go out to lunch together, read books together, go for walks together. She's not my friend exactly, because we are not equals, but she really is a wonderful companion. Maybe like an augmented dog?

Nicknames: Fur, Furble, Zizi
Temperament: Self-willed, curious, happy, confident
Things I Could Do Without: The constant boundary testing: aagh this is driving me crazy; your inventiveness in finding new things to get into; your desire to get your own way, all the time
Item/Toy We Love the Most: Dora the Explorer videos, because now you can watch them in the "death zone" (the half hour before dinner, when you are tired, cranky and bored all at once)
Item/Toy You Love the Most: Our CDs and DVDs (they are just pirated ones from Chinese street vendors, so we let you play with them). You love taking them out of their sleeves, sticking them in other containers, carrying them around, trying to put them in the CD player, etc.
Things I'm Loving Most Right Now: You are starting to really talk (letting me know what you want, responding appropriately to questions). You have also begun to discover reason: now I can say "You can't go swimming right now because you don't have your swimsuit on" and this will make sense to you, and affects your behavior appropriately. I can also promise to do things you want later, and this will make you happy. Finally you are being to think like a rational being!
Things You're Loving Most Right Now: Getting your way, even (especially?) if it doesn't matter: you want the control, not the object/activity; going to preschool (two days ago I was talking about school to someone, and you overheard and thought we were going: when it turned out we weren't, you cried from disappointment); a Youtube video of a singing gummy bear
Foods You Like: Cheerios; muffins; bread; pasta. Basically, anything that's a carbohydrate. You also like anything sweet (especially gummy bears). You still aren't very picky though: food isn't an issue for us right now.
Sounds/words: You have eased up on the "no". Instead, your new favorite is "mine" or "my", as in "my ball", "my brush" (you wanted to take your toothbrush to bed with you yesterday), "mine this", "mine!!" (when another kid wanted to play with the toy you were using). You're a little unclear on the concept though, as according to you everything is "mine". New words include open, diaper, gummy bear, brush, ball, book, and done. You still don't really talk though: everything is just one or two word phrases, and often you just use gestures to communicate instead.


  1. Time is flying by so quickly!! She is such a beautiful little girl! Those little red curls are just to die for.

  2. I love her hair! We just started the "no" phase. I like reading these entries to see what's ahead for us!