It has recently become extremely hard to photograph my child. We have a great camera but we have to keep it in a room that he never goes in, on a high shelf, because he is magnetically drawn to it and if it's anywhere near where he is, he will climb and jump and strain and grunt until he gets hold of it. So, it's never on hand and available when I want to take a photo of him. As a result, I wind up using my phone to take the vast majority of recent photos of him, and my phone isn't nearly as good a camera to begin with, plus he's in constant motion and there's no way my phone's crappy shutter speed can keep up.
So, nearly all of my recent photos of Callum are a little blurry, a little grainy. Definitely not works of art. But man, they capture the most vibrant, hilarious little person.
He runs everywhere. For the longest time he wasn't much of a climber and I thought maybe he never would be, but recently he's figured out how fun it is and does it all the time. He climbs on everything--tables, chairs, shelves, the back of the couch. He loves to run back and forth across the couch, turning the lamps at either end on and off over and over.
He loves trucks. I got him a little truck board book and have been giving it to him in the car and he will spend an entire car ride looking through it very thoroughly, over and over again. I showed him how to drive a toy truck into a block tower and now he'll do that and yell "wow!" after every crash. He loves blocks and he's still really into buckets. If I would let him, he could spend an hour just sitting on the floor with a box of tissues, pulling them out one by one, pretending to blow his nose, and throwing them on the floor.
He's still a mellow, happy, laid-back little kid but one benefit of our nanny share is that he's learning to stand up for himself a little more. When we first started this arrangement, the other baby had been going to daycare for most of her life and was well versed in asserting her claim to toys and the word "mine." Callum wasn't at all, and he would just hand over whatever she wanted without protest. Now something has clicked and he's figured out that he doesn't have to give something up just because she wants it. Yesterday morning they had a massive battle over a toy truck--Chloe was holding it, Callum grabbed it, they both pulled as hard as they could, neither of them budged, both of them yelled "MINE!" and then both of them burst into tears. I have to be honest, it was pretty hilarious. But then, most of what Callum does is pretty hilarious. Even his tantrums are hard to avoid laughing at--he gets so angry and he sits down on the floor in protest, and if he's extra upset he will then throw himself down so he's lying on the floor, and sometimes he adds in bonus kicking and screaming.
Generally, though, he's a well-behaved little guy and a surprisingly good listener for his age. He loves to clean up and generally help when asked, and will run around the room looking for toys to pick up and drop into bins. Whenever he does something we ask him to, he punctuates it with a loud, exaggerated, "Woooow!" He's also become a much better eater, though still not wonderful; the food-throwing/dropping phase has mostly lifted, and we can usually count on getting SOME kind of food into him over the course of the day, though he still won't have anything to do with vegetables or most fruits unless they're in those outrageously expensive squeezable pouches.
He talks all the time. He says over 60 words, many in both German and English, and when he's not saying an intelligible word he's babbling in a very realistic-sounding alien language. When Torsten was on a business trip recently, we FaceTimed with him and the second his face appeared on the screen, Callum yelled, "DADDY!" and then proceeded to hold an entire alien conversation, complete with inflection, questioning tones, and expectant pauses. It sounded just like a real conversation except one side of it was totally unintelligible. He's starting to combine two words together, saying things like "more water" and "bye Daddy" and "help [insert toy name]" and, most recently, "stack blocks." His articulation is starting to improve, though it's still not great, and the cutest thing ever is how he now says "I love you" at bed time, but pronounces it "ah wah woo." Even though I'm sure he doesn't really know what it means, it kills me every time.
Basically he is just the cutest thing ever and I spend most of my time resisting my urge to squeeze him. He is a completely irresistible little person. 20 months is my favorite age yet. But then, I say that about every age, which presumably means that there are only better things still to come.
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