Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I Think My Baby is So Smart

I just love "Moo Ba Lalala!"
I think my baby is so smart. There, I said it. Do I knock on wood now? Should I feel a little guilty for being so forward? Honestly, I just can't get over it! So I'll let you be the judge...

She is obsessed with books. She flips through pages and "talks" as she goes. Albeit most of the time the books are upside down, but yeah- she's "reading aloud!"

She is following commands. I'm shocked that she understands full sentences when I or Dennis ask her to do something. Tonight, we were Skyping with Nana Lita and I asked her to go into her room and bring out the green toy (that her Aunt Mary Eileen gave her) to show her Nana. She stood up and looked at me, uttered something and pointed to her room. I said, "yes, the green toy." And she promptly walked in, picked up the green caterpillar (and mind you she has A LOT of toys in her room, and a lot of green ones too) and brought it out to me! Also, when it's time to put her shoes on, I've taught her to sit in my lap. I used to have to ask her to sit in Mommy's lap, now she just picks up her shoes, sets them down in front of me, sits in my lap, looks up, as if to ask, "What are you waiting for Mommy?"

She is headstrong. Yes- I know, that's a euphemism for stubborn. And she is. I can admit that too. There are two things at home she is obsessed with but not allowed to touch - the dog bowls, and our open shelves in the dining room (yes, yes, we're planning on buying a cabinet with doors). No matter what I or Dennis tell her, no matter how many "no-s," "don't go there-s," or "Alyssa (stern voice)," she always manages to pretend she's deaf. And when we reprimand her, she cries and then buries her face in her hands because she knows she wasn't supposed to do that.

She understands computers. Remember how earlier I said we were Skyping with her Nana Lita? Well, she understands that it's her grandma in the Philippines, and she knows the difference between Skyping with her Grandpa Anatoly and Grandma Bella in Springfield. Amazing.

She plays pretend. One of her favorite games is to drag her changing pad that now lives underneath her crib out to the dining room. She then pretends that it's time for bed. She lies down on the pad, sucks her thumb, and then she laughs and gets up. Round 1. This can go on for a while... Another favorite game of hers when I need to corral her and put her in the play yard, is the game of "pick-up-tiny-things-and-give-them-to-Mommy." It's exactly how it sounds. She bends down in her play yard, picks up teeny-tiny things with her forefinger and thumb, stands up and hands them to Mommy very gently, one at a time. I have no idea what the teeny-tiny things. Go figure.

I know this is just the tip of the iceberg. She knows how to choose her own clothes now. She knows how to complain when Marley is lying on her changing pad - by pointing to him, screaming while looking at us. She throws a ball back and forth with Marley because Daddy taught her how. So now, you tell me- is it ok that I said it? Is it ok that I said, my baby is so smart? :)

Welcome to Alyssa-Land!

Sucking her thumb, hugging Brownie
So a couple of years ago Dennis and I decided that we were emotionally ready to start a family. By then we understood that fretting about whether we were financially-ready was not a good way to gauge our "readiness." It was the emotional part that was important. If we were going to wait until we were financially ready it would be a long time before we could start trying! So one day we just decided - we were ready to try.

Two years later, here we are. Alyssa is 14 months old, walking, babbling, understanding what we say to her, what we ask her, and she's got a mind and personality of her own. I can hardly believe it sometimes. How quickly did we go from that morning when I looked at a stick in the bathroom that said PREGNANT, to today? I'm turning 36 this year and I've never experienced a year that went by so fast as this past year has. And I've got to say, I'm kind of dizzy.

Of all the adventures I've had in my life, this one takes the cake. This one is the most fun, the most emotional, the most overwhelming, the most scary adventure ever. I have never laughed so hard, cried so much, loved with all my heart as I have in the past year. What's amazing about it all... it's just the beginning. She's really only a year old after all!

What new adventures await? How much more will I laugh? How many more tears will I cry? And is it possible for my heart to burst with so much love?

I started this blog so that I could begin to write more lengthily about my reflections on Mommy-hood and my travels in Alyssa-Land. Why Alyssa-Land? Because it's a whole new world I could never have dreamed up on my own. It's a world I get to see through her eyes. I can't tell you how excited I am to explore! I hope you come along for the ride.