Seriously, isn't it August? September, tops. Basically the time is flying by because my days are full. Get up, go to work, probably have to interact with people at meetings, come home, amuse Hamish for a bit, make tea, put him to sleep, zone in front of the pc for 30 minutes, collapse. Basically it gets to the end of the day and I don't really have any words left for writing down.
So. Its been about 5 months since I wrote things down, and there's been some changes in Hamish in that time. Not unreasonably, I feel, given that 5 months is still not even 10% of his life. He's about 5cm taller, and about a kilo heavier, but its in his MIGHTY BRAIN MEATS that most of the changes have been going on. He's collecting data and making inferences, and he cannot be stopped.
There are the brilliant things where he works things out, and uses that knowledge in other situations, often in ways that are logical but unexpected. I got tired of him standing at the bottom of the stairs and yelling at 6 in the morning, and finally got it through his head that it was not acceptable. What I was expecting was that he would come up the stairs (and probably yell). What actually happened was that he would stand at the bottom of the stairs and whisper instead of screeching, which is actually surprisingly effective for waking you up. Sometimes its just becoming familiar with a pattern - I forgot to say "you're welcome" when he said "thanks" once, so 5 seconds later a piping voice said "I'm welcome!". He's grasped that electricty comes through the high tension power lines and launches into a totally incomprehensible explanation of how it gets from there to his toys every time he sees them - given they go near both our house and tacomonkey's, that's a lot.
Then there are times when he tries to extrapolate from what he knows and gets the conclusions a bit wrong. One morning he came up stairs and decided it was goldengrove's time to get up, so he brought up his stool and a bunch of books and read them to her to wake her up, somewhat on the theory that he gets read books to go to sleep, so maybe other people need books to wake up. Recently he pointed to somewhere in Mongolia on a map and declared "That's where my great great great father lives." and wouldn't hear a bar of it any other way. I have to admit in this case I am slightly suspicious he knows something I don't, given my lack of luck in tracing said gentleman.
Aaand other times he's just full of hilarious nonsense. Apparently when the traffic lights turn pink, cars are allowed to fly. In a fit of working out that wool comes from sheep, honey from bees, and milk from cows, he declared that chocolate comes from cake. He doesn't quite grasp hide and seek yet - when bjj_moves yells out "ready or not, here I come!" the correct response is not to call "here I am! I'm here!". The whole concept of taking turns in games is a bit hit and miss, depending how excited he's going by the whole prospect of having another go.
The most dramatic changes in the last while have been mental and verbal, really. Physically, most of the changes seem like its refining and improving rather than new skills. He has always been fairly strong, and that has continued on as he's got taller and heavier. He can push his bike along at a fair clip on his own, which fortunately has come in combination with a conceptual grasp of 'brakes', because sometimes it can be a bit of a sprint to catch up to the handle on the back of the bike if you're also lugging around a few bags full of shopping. If you turn your back for a moment or two near anything that he can scramble up, you'll turn back to find him at eye height with you, or higher if he can manage it.
His hand-eye coordination is not too bad - he practices by doing arts and crafts, which usually involves sticking one thing to another thing, then cutting all the things into tiny pieces for some reason. Its not real arts and crafts unless something has been spilt or otherwise distributed around the house. Glittery tinsel muck has been a major feature of vacuum use for the last month, and on one occasion goldengrove found him throwing crepe paper and foil strips down the stairs. One special day, he apparently woke up early and got some paint open, colouring bunches of train tracks in red. Oddly we didn't notice until it came to bed time, by which point the damage was done. Fortunately he didn't really get bright red paint on anything else.
Other practice comes from using various computers around the house, whether kid-specific computer games, angry birds ("I got the piggy! haha! Score!") on phones, tablets or pcs, drawing randomly with gimp (image processing software), or just randomly typing things in windows ("I'm doing something *important!*"). He has an astounding ability to mess up tacomonkey's ipod just by randomly dancing through menus - on more than one occasion he's set an alarm for before dawn, much to the surprise of anyone trying to sleep in the area.
One day Hamish took his pants and socks off and tried to juggle them; when that ended with the not-entirely-unsurprising outcome of socks and pants all over the room he looked at goldengrove and said "juggling is really hard". So much for a promising career in circusry.
Semi-phyically, bedtimes have evolved from sitting with him while he dozes off (a practice that chewed through a lot of batteries for torches, but did let us get some reading in), through to mostly being able to put him down on his own and have him go to sleep. It can take a couple of goes sometimes, and he has a range of tactics that he tries out ("I'm not sleepy!" "I'm starving!" "I want another big cuddle!") but tacomonkey's gift of an mp3 player and tiny speaker for it has been a lifesaver - we have put on some copies of Winnie the Pooh stories and he will often drift off listening to those. He's now not really having a day time nap, so we need him to get to bed by about 7pm because he's up again most days by about 7am. Useful as an alarm clock, but only just enough sleep for a growing 3 year old. For a few days he insisted on using my giant black coat as a blanket, but the fad grew old quickly - now the bed clothes of choice is the leopard print polar fleece blanket.
His vocabulary has expanded beyond being easily measured, even if sometimes the pronunciation is a bit mangled, he spoonerises things ("pail nolish"), or he scrambles syllable order - its extremely hard to correct 'crockledino' or 'ephalent' because its so cute. You could tell when he'd assimilated another word or phrase because it would turn up constantly in things he said until it was bedded in - we had a couple of weeks where he learnt "must!" then "can't!" then "have to!". As you might have guessed, mostly he uses his grasp of language to emotionally manipulate people - eg:
- *big sigh* "I wish I had a stamp...."
- "Walking is boooooring"
- "I'm sooo hungry, i'm staaaaarving"
- "Dad will love that. Its perfect."
- "That's amaaaazing."
- "Quieten down, dad! Quieten down!"
Food is still a trial, as folks that heard about the "Battle of Will You Just Eat the Damn Salad" are aware. He has a set of foods that he'll eat, and its a subtle mix of psychology and straight out bribery to get him to even taste anything else - and by taste I mean he sticks out his tongue and touches it the bare minimum that he can get away with. It took 5 goes to get him to eat creamed honey instead of normal honey, for instance. Its honey. Its sweet. How hard to convince could one person be! Greenery is limited to baby spinach and mint leaves. Potato will only be eaten in chip form. Carrot is reviled. He is growing up into a carnivore, because ham, bacon, sausage, dinosaurs (chicken), eggs, pies and calamari are devoured with great gusto, but the possibility that I should force him to eat one pea leads to wailing and gnashing of teeth.
Birthdays! There were many days of presents and cakes, which has left Hamish a bit confused about the whole concept. He keeps telling us that he has two birthdays and they are both in September. Given he had a morning of present opening on the actual day, then a party full of family and folks that have interacted a lot with Hamish as he's grown up, and then later an additional mum's group mass 3rd birthday, its not terribly surprising that confusion has arisen. Hamish obtained much excellent loot for his birthday, and ate much cake... icing, and generally seemed content with how the event had unfolded. Conversely, at the end of the day, adults were confused and bewildered.
Other things! So many events! bjj_moves set Hamish up a tent in his room, the appeal of which lasted until the lights went off. A further experiement in the backyard after his 3rd birthday was more successful, but led to bjj_moves discovering that "one man" is "one very short man" when it comes to tents, and there have been no further camping adventures. Hamish insisted on having another adventure one Saturday, so the two of us went into the city to the playground at the back of Federation Square, rode a tram, then visited a mysteeerious underground train station where trains drove through tunnels rather than in the open air! With added bonus escalator ride!
tacomonkey and rhyannonf decided that they would like to take Hamish to the Collingwood Children's Farm one Saturday morning, mostly to give themselves an excuse to go along I suspect. This gave Hamish an opportunity to discover nature's most hilarious animal, the donkey. At the first loud "eeyoree!" he lost the plot and couldn't stop laughing, and they were setting him off all day just by making the noise. This was also one of the times when he'd be out and about and focus on a 4 or 5 year old girl - usually a red head - and follow her around for the whole day.
So many other things in the last few months...
- Melbourne Show II - the revenge.
- visiting the aquarium also with tacomonkey and rhyannonf
- going to the cinema for the first time (Cars 2)
- Kara's name day and 1st birthday
- visiting Boronia Arboretum
- couple of visits to Wattle Park ("tram park!")
- weekly mum's group & playgroup
- occasionally coming into work for lunch, and to visit the MURP tournament
- a ride on a steam train up the Glen Waverley line
- multiple trips to Jells Park
- visiting my uncle & aunt at Mirboo North