Thursday, August 18, 2011

18 months of Muffin

Muffin turned 18 months this month. It's so quick. I still call him baby but at the same time, I am well aware of how quickly he is growing up. This is further accelerated by the fact that he worships the ground his siblings trod on and he imitates them, making him grow up seemingly faster.

All the child development books divide development into the different aspects. So let's see where he is on the different planes.
Cognitive development
Muffin is still pre-verbal although he surprises us with nuggets of difficult words occasionally. The regular rhetoric is usually repetitive sounds- "Mama", "Papa", "Korkor", "Bear-bear", "Duck-duck", "cold-cold", "no-no". But when he feels like it, "Bubble", "Bathtub", "Turtle". His favourite family of words are words denoting action including verbs. "Go!" "Jump!" "Up!" "Down!" And of course, "NO!"

He also loves imitating his siblings so he can hold a crayon and scrawl. Unfortunately for us, it sometimes ends up on our walls. He has favourite songs that he will clap and groove too and he clasps his hands together in front of his chest to indicate "Please!"

He understands instructions and is a wonderful little helper, bringing things back to the kitchen or helping to clear up the big messes after their mega play sessions.

Social and Emotional Development
Muffin has a fiery temper. He gets pissed off when he doesn't get what he wants. He screams and he throws himself dramatically on the ground and wails. But it passes as quickly as it appears and he is soon laughing and has forgotten what he was so royally annoyed with.

But he has a great time playing with his two siblings. They fight a lot, he terrorises them with his teeth and he has no qualms hitting them. Nevertheless, his siblings include him in their games and he has learnt to play with them. Getting them to chase him. Seeking them out when they are hiding and waiting for them to catch him at the bottom of the slide.

He is also happy to shower everyone with hugs and kisses, waving at strangers and giving everyone a nice big grin. But that is on condition that I am with him. Without me, he is suspicious and will not budge if a stranger approaches him. Thankfully, somewhat kidnap proof.

Kinesthetic Development

This is where Muffin excels. He walked at 8 months, started running at 1 and is one tough cookie. He has no fear and doesn't cry when he falls and hurts himself. The only time he really cried was when he whizzed down a wet slide so fast and landed on his face and bled through his gums and lips. Even Mommy cried with that one!

Anyway, our little Speedy Lightning McQueen owns the playground. He jumps, he hops, he throws balls and attempts to catch them. He goes up and down stairs with confidence only slightly less than his siblings 2 1/2 years older than he is. And he also does scary, heart stopping things like jump off the dining room chairs, my mattress which is about 2 feet off the ground and his latest- flipping himself backwards off the arm rests onto the couch.

The number of scraps he gets himself into running around like Speedy Gonzales and hunkering down to tackle whoever is in his way, I think I need to get him an American Football uniform to keep him safe from himself. Sigh. I miss Baby Muffin more than anything. The one who didn't bite and kick so much. But then when toddler Muffin flashes that toothy grin at me, it's hard to resist. He's totally got me suckered.

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