Sunday, February 15, 2004

A Quick Anna Laura Update

Anna Laura has this toy with pictures of animals on it. As she correctly identified the monkey or the bird or the cloud, I would give her an affirming "Good, Anna Laura." As we started to run out of new animals to name, I showed her that the monkeys were sitting in a tree, to which she promptly replied, "Good, Daddy."
Anna Laura has a blanket that looks like a lamb; we called it "Lamby," but she nicknamed it "Nini" early on. She loves to sleep with Nini and lately, whenever she is getting tired or she thinks we are getting ready to put her to bed, she preempts the move by saying, "Lay down with Nini."

There's really not a body part that Anna Laura cannot name. Hair, eyes, belly button; but regularly she calls her wrist her elbow. That's acceptable when you consider she gets "eyebrow" correct.

Except for skipping the number 4, Anna Laura can count to ten without us prompting her. Kudos to Baby Einstein, she has even gone as high as eleven.

Sometimes Anna Laura wants us to pick her up; she'll say "Up please." How can we say no? We have taught her "please" to the extent that I believe she thinks there is no word "up" only "up please." When we pick her up and she wants down, her new thing to say is, "Anna Laura walk around."

Anna Laura can climb up and down stairs - though we don't let her do it alone yet, but not much is "down," if she wants higher or lower, it's always "up." Kyndall reminds me she has been stuck a few days on saying "Down the stairs" if she sees someone going downstairs.

I suppose it is worth pointing out that she can say her own name. We worried at first if it was too long for her, but she says it fine and occasionally substitutes "me" when appropriate. Recently, she started saying Anna Laura Nixon.

Often, Anna Laura will walk up to us with a book saying, "read the book." It's her pleasure to say "page" and help us turn to the next one whenever it's the right time or whenever she is bored with the current page.

When ever you put on Anna Laura's boots, or even say the word "boots," she starts to say, "Go outside" and is a basket case until she gets to go. I can't blame her. Lately, though, when she grabs a handful of snow, her reaction is as if she just picked up some lava and the tears flow.

She says, "Nighty night Mommy, Nighty night Winney the Pooh, Nightly night Ducky" as we take her into her room at the end of the day. We've started nighttime prayers, and without having to teacher her, she folds her hands and closes her eyes - it must be the preschool she is attending, but it's the cutest thing.

I was driving to the grocery with Anna Laura, just to get her out of the house. It was quiet; she was looking out the window, so I asked her, "What are you thinking about, Anna Laura?" To which she responded, "Tiggers bounce."

Colors are not Anna Laura's strength. She knows the words that are colors, like green, yellow, blue, but if you ask her what color something is - or what color crayon she wants, the first answer is always the same, "Yellow." No matter if the color is green, red or blue. When showing off to friends, I always start her with something yellow! Then she looks like a genius.

As I push her diaper into the diaper genie, she will sometimes say "Bye bye poop!" And although she can say "potty chair" and will sit on her potty chair, it has only once been dirty; but at least she understands what it is. Now to teach her that splashing in the big potty chair is a no no. Just kidding!

Whenever we correct Anna Laura to sit or put something down, we tell her thank you - you know, for obeying. She's a little past the stage where she will do something wrong and tell herself, "no no" - outloud even - very cute. Now she starts to do whatever is wrong, stops, and tells herself, "thank you."

When Anna Laura got back from Thursday school, we asked her who she played with, a few weeks before she had told us about her friend Abby. But this time, she looks over to refrigerator (where we have pictures up) and she started listing our friends and family; Papa, Jason, Mindy, Ky - they were all at school? Pretty cute.

Anna Laura is tall enough to reach on top of the kitchen table.

Anna Laura can name about 5 letters of the alphabet. I is really easy, and so it O, and she can find a K if you ask her to. J and V are her latest additions. She has this big, soft alphabet puzzle that acts like a kind of throw rug; it has really helped.

There is this toy that lets Anna Laura put a square peg into a square hole, then a circle, a star and then a triangle. I don't know if it is rote memory or what, but she puts the right shape into the right hole and can pick up the right peg when you call out a shape name.

Anna Laura knows all the names of kitchen things, like plate, fork, spoon and knife and though she thinks she can use a spoon, she really can't seem to keep from dumping out the food before it gets to her mouth. She's a fire-and-forget kinda eater though. If you can make it all finger food she will pretty much feed herself.

After a bath as the water is draining, Anna Laura yells, "Bye bye water!" and starts to kick and splash like she hasn't been taking a bath for the past ten minutes. Then I pick her up and, because I used to say it, now she says, "Shake shake" as I do just that over the tub.

Peek-a-boo is always a winner, except we started saying, "Where's Anna Laura?" when she's covered up and then "There she is!" when she is revealed. Now that is the way she plays. "Anna Laura?" she will say pulling something over her face. "There she is!" shortly follows.

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