I mentioned the other day that baby E's language development has taken off in the last few weeks. He's gone from using only a handful of words, to using tons of them. He's gone from using 1-2 signs, to 8-10 regularly. It's amazing. It's like a light has finally gone off as he realized that by saying or signing words, he could get things to happen.
He signs for "milk" now when he wants to nurse. He says "up" when he wants to be held. He signs "eat" or says "ahhh-puulllll" (aka apple) when he's hungry. He says and signs "help" when he closes himself nearly all the way up in a kitchen drawer. He says "buh-byyyeee" when people walk out of the room, whether or not they're actually leaving. He signs "more" when he wants something else to eat, or for me to sing "Twinkle, Twinkle" for the thirteenth time. He signs "please" with the most adorable turn of his head to the side, and he knows it will likely get him what he wants, especially when done without prompting.
He gets it.
Hubby has expressed some worry over the last 8 or so months, feeling that baby E was falling behind in his language development. I knew he was on target, but compared to the kid, I can see why hubby was concerned. The kid was talking in sentences at this point. (Though he sure wasn't climbing on top of the kitchen table, or anything else.) He was no longer using signs because he didn't need to. That kid could say absolutely anything. I mean, when he was about 19 months, he looked at me and said, "I not available ah [to] you". He used to take my face in his little hands and make me repeat words over and over until he could say them perfectly. And then he used them. A lot.
So the fact that baby E isn't yet putting words together, and continues to use signs does seem worrisome. Except when you step back and realize that he is only 17 months old. And that means he should only have a handful of words. And the signs are actually a bonus. He's right where he should be. And I'm more than thrilled with that.
Today's lesson: The kid never has been a tantrum thrower (I'd say he has thrown fewer than 20 ever). Baby E, on the other hand, has multiple tantrums an hour. I've got to believe that the differences in their language development has a lot to do with this. Sure, their temperaments are very different. But being able to express exactly what's in your head must leave a kid feeling empowered. And not being able to express more than the basics, has got to be frustrating. And make a boy fell a bit pissed off at times.