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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

In Which I Shameless Brag About Squirt's Smarts

Squirt is exploding developmentally, and I don't simply mean catching up.  She! is! exploding!  It's kinda freaky, actually, how fast her little brain is going, but it's wonderful to watch at the same time.  (I continue to feel stunned by the changes brought about from a simple dietary switch.)

So what can she do now?
Well, five months ago she had exactly two words.  Three months ago, she still couldn't even say "mama" - she called me "wawa" instead.  And now?  Now she easily has well over 100 words, maybe even close to 200... there are so many new ones each day, I've stopped counting.  Which means I'm simply taking note of the two-word phrases she uses, and verbs, of course.  Verbs are big in a two-year-old's speech assessment.  Squirt's therapist wants to see at least 25 verbs by 24 months of age.  At the moment, Squirt has around 20 verbs, including my two favorites... pray, and snuggle.

(It just melts your heart, doesn't it?)

Squirt is also stunning me with her ability to play cognitive catch-up.  She's learned numbers one through nine by sight (thank you, toddler apps).  She's rote counting past ten, but also doing one-to-one correspondence consistently up to seven.  Basically that means that she not only verbally counts past ten, she can also count how many of something she sees, as long as it's seven or less.  One day at the beach she just plopped herself down on a towel next to the Tongginator and began counting the seashells we collected along the shore.  Of course she went from seben to mime to ee-beh-ben to ay-teen, but whatever.  I felt totally impressed.

She also now knows all of her uppercase letters and their associated sounds, plus a small number of lower case letters to boot.  Tonggu Grammy didn't believe me about that (she totally thought I was exaggerating) until we were all at the beach together.  You should have seen Squirt on the Boardwalk, jumping from sign to sign, pointing at random letters before shouting out their names and sounds at random.  People followed us around, y'all; we were that much of a spectacle.

As for colors and shapes... I have no idea how she learned her colors, except that I tend to label things by color as we go about our day.  But she knows 'em now, and she even sorts objects by color.  She's learned her shapes as well, but I kinda expected that because I have a few cheesy songs that I sing about shapes that teach kids early.  (If y'all PROMISE to be kind about my singing voice, I'll share a video of the songs tomorrow.)

All of this creates problems though.  I know, I know - it doesn't seem like it would, but it does.  Squirt's fine motor skills are now nowhere near to matching her cognitive skills.  Which creates lots of Drama And Frustration around our house.  To work towards solving this problem, I've shifted our focus to sensory and fine motor experiences, all the way.  We are painting, and molding Model Magic (it's gluten-free), and coloring, and sorting and counting small objects like large pompom balls and over-sized buttons using spoons, kids chopsticks and our fingers.  We're also trying to foster an interest in puzzles and duplos, but oh my lands, y'all... let's just say this is not Squirt's strength.  *snicker*

We are keeping BUSY.

It's fun, and it's exhausting, and it's amazing to watch.

This will probably be my last post about Squirt's developmental progress, just because it sounds too much like bragging.  Okay, okay, it IS bragging.  Whatever.  It's my blog.  Go ahead and hate me.  Tell me I'm obnoxious.  I don't care because I'm just so darn amazed by my girl.  But mostly I wanted to share this with y'all so you can see how much gluten can effect some children.  If your child has developmental delays, or some type of behavioral challenge (such as sensory processing disorder, ADD, autism, etc)... consider eliminating gluten from his or her diet.  Of course it may not work for your child.

Then again... maybe it will.

Because oh my lands, y'all, did it work for Squirt.

As you can see.


Kerrie (and Jason) said...

Incredible to see such progress with a 'simple' (Yes I roll my eyes as I type it) change to diet. Great news. YAY for Squirt!

Aus said...

A couple thoughts - I can't wait to see the video - should be a riot!! But most importantly - one of the few things I can remember my dad saying (and since I was 8 when he passed away there are only a few!) - "It's not a brag - as long as it's true". That's something for you to remember - and not because it's "your blog so whatever" - it's about "true"! ;)

hugs - over the moon for you guys -
aus and co.

Dana said...

I love it! And I think you have every right to brag. Brag away! Your readers are just cheering you on.

My name is Andy. said...

I love to hear the "bragging" don't stop now!

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure there are also some parents out there going through what you are going through who will stumble upon this post and think, "There is hope." So I wouldn't worry about any nay sayers. Who cares what they think.

Mel said...

First, you have the absolute right to brag! Second, I don't even thinks this sounds like bragging. It sounds like celebrating some very hard work that you have done together and THAT is AWESOME!!! Congratulations on the progress.

3cmum said...

Please brag - it will help others.

I so want to go up to every mother I know with a kid in a buggy/pram and say TURN IT AROUND. My little one was beating every language target set for regular (i.e. non adopted) kids within 3 months of coming home because (I believe) i had her in a backward facing buggy (i.e. looking at me) and I talked to her constantly - we also lived in a city and we were out every day for hours in the buggy (and dog walking, picking up DD1 at school etc. UNTIL she graduated buggies.

Where did I get this - a blog! So brag. It helps everyone and frankly Squirt deserves it!

bethee said...

This is fantastic!

One thing that helped our son catch up with the fine motor stuff when he came home from Russia was getting a bunch of those puffy stickers in all sorts of shapes and sizes. He spent at least an hour or two a day creating masterpieces to show daddy when he got home. We would talk color, shapes, sizes and counting, too! It was a great all-in-one play.

Best part? They have to peel off the back of the sticker, so really need to focus on the fine motor actions. I got a huge roll of paper and would cut a big piece for him every day.

Keep it up, and please keep sharing! I love hearing about all this wonderful progress!!

Joanna B said...

Yay for Squirt...and yay for you, too. I know how that makes a mama's heart happy!

Stefanie said...

Your little Squirt is something else :) Soooo happy she's doing so well... and I can't imagine how happy you must be!! Brag AWAY :)

Anne said...

I'm with Aus: over the moon for you guys! What wonderful, amazing, miraculous progress! Go Squirt!!

Anonymous said...

Very excited to hear of Squirt's progress! As far as I'm concerned you have earned the right to brag about her:)

Also, Gluten-free is awesome!


Sunday Taylor said...

When you worry, work and wait so long…bragging a little when you see progress is quite alright!


Asianmommy said...

What an exciting time! I'm happy for you & Squirt.