Friday, January 30, 2009

The Thursday Habit

I didn't realized I'd posted all THAT much on Thursdays about Kittyboy's therapy, but what do you know - I didn't post yesterday, and this morning I had a call from my grandmother pointing out that she didn't yet have stories about her great-grandson from yesterday! (I e-mail her my blog entries)
So, amusing stories of therapy!
Every week, he dives into Janna and Ginny's bags to ransack them for his favorite toys. They have big tote bags full to the brim of lovely things for Kittyboys and girls to play with, rather like Santa - puzzles, books, puppets, dolls, trains, ring-stackers, shape-sorters, all sorts of things. I do believe he even knows by now which bags hold which toys, the better to find his favorites in a timely manner. Until yesterday, his all-time favorite of Janna's was a Fisher Price farm. This last week, however, we had a lovely surprise in the mail. My aunt in California sent us a package! A LARGE package, just out of the blue, with a Christmas gift inside, and a note saying she "hoped it wasn't too young for him". He tore the paper off the front and went hog-wild, pardon the pun, bouncing up and down saying, "Moo moo! Moo moo! Moo moo! Moo moo! Moo moo!" pounding on the box. It was his very own Fisher Price farm!! I could NOT get it out of the box fast enough for him, especially since I was undoing twist-ties with one hand while fending him off with the other as he jumped on ME, still frantically mooing. (He knows what cows say! BOY, does he know what cows say!) I had to just rip the animals out with the cardboard still attached, to distract him while I pulled on the barn itself. Somehow, I got everything out without anything being broken OR the Kittyboy's little brain going POP from over-excitement.
So, since he had been playing with his very own farm all week, Janna's farm wasn't the first thing he went for. The thing that amused him most turned out to be her boxes of flash-cards. The big box of cards has different sections in it, depending on the relative difficulty of the words. The first section is the two-syllable repetitive ones - ma-ma, da-da, moo-moo, nay-nay, baa-baa, and so forth. Next are two syllable words with different vowels, like mommy, daddy, baby, etc. It's like "Talking for Dummies", not to imply that children who need extensive help and practice to speak are unintelligent, but it's that sort of VERY basic, broken-down, step-by-step instruction. Well, for some reason he wanted those cards more than anything else. We went through cards again and again - then we would try to do a puzzle. He got maybe five pieces out of the eight piece puzzle, then he was DONE and wanted the cards again. Then we tried a stacking toy, which was going to become a tantrum when he decided again he was all done. Boy, those cards were just the coolest thing. He wanted the Mama and Dada cards in particular. At one point, when he was DONE with a book, he picked up the box saying "Mama! Mama!" Janna played dumb and pulled out ALL the cards and went through them one by one, pretending to not understand which one he wanted. "Woof woof?" "Mama!" "Peep peep?" "Mama!" "Nay nay?" "Mama!" After a few cards, he started walking in circles in front of her saying, "Mama Mama Mama Mama Mama Mama Mama Mama..." until she pulled out the right card.
Pretty much the only NEW thing yesterday is that he is more and more imitating what we say right when we say it, so he is imitating more consistently. He did say Bye-bye when we left! And he is beginning to make two-syllable noises for two-syllable words, even if it's just "nn-nn" or "mm-mm". It's just when he hears the words, he's not initiating conversation, but just seeing imitation of ANY sort regularly is terrific! It makes it easier to put up with the screams, squeals, grunts and growls he uses on a daily basis. We're getting there!

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