Monday, March 5, 2012

Obvious Brilliance

So smart she can already read upside-down

Our friends babysat Juliana the other night. They said they showed her the bookshelf in their office, the bottom shelf filled with children's books. Instead of picking one of those, she chose a Dorothy Sayers book from the upper shelf and sat down at the kids desk with it, then carried it around for a while. I have always suspected brilliance.

Yesterday she said (or at least repeated) her first string of of words. Juliana and I were hiding behind our bedroom curtain and Kevin peered around the edge and said, “I see you!” And Juliana said, “I see you!” Then she repeated it about five times just to make sure we knew she had gotten it.

I think this phrase came easy to her because she has a book called Peekaboo Kisses, where on each page it says, “I see...(open the flap)...fluffy kitten kisses” etc. For a while she was only interested in the squeaky mouse page, which has an actual squeaker inside. But now she brings us the book saying, “I see, I see.” As she opens the flaps and we say “furry puppy kisses,” she bends down gives each animal a big kiss. The last page has a mirror and says, “I see you.” She especially likes that page and gives herself several kisses.

After a period of being far too busy to sit through a book, Juliana has renewed her interest in reading. She still prefers the books that “do” something or involve a song. She can spend a long time opening the flaps on her animals book. She has already rough-handled most of the moving parts out of her Tails book. She imitates the sounds of Wheels on the Bus and Quiet LOUD. She tries to sing along to Jesus Loves Me. In boring books that just have pictures, she flips through the pages as fast as possible.

The past few days she also loves to look at her baby book. She points at the top shelf where I keep it out of harm's way and tries to say “book,” which is some kind of word with a resemblance of the “b” sound. She leafs through the pages saying, “Baby. Baby. Baby. Mama. Da-di. Baby!”

In a final sign of good taste, she loves I'll Give You Kisses (formerly Smile for Auntie), my favorite baby book, in which an overbearing aunt tries everything she can think of to get the baby to smile, but the baby won't smile until he finally drives the aunt away. Classic. Juliana is already working up the perfect mix of brilliance and twisted humor.
Pausing to pose with her toys


Mallary said...

Impressive! I'm not sure I can read upside down. I love the photo of her with her toys. She is so pretty.

Nate and Molly said...

Can I just squeeze those cheeks??

The reading experts say to let babies/toddlers explore the books and not get hung up on not finishing the book, but the OCD in me drives me crazy to do that. . sigh. I suppose I'll have to get used to it.

And of course she's brilliant--no surprise there!