Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Games we play

Chloe toddles over to the pantry and points to the crate of clementines. "Apul!" she says.

"Orange," I say, taking one down and starting to peel it.

"Apul!" she says, with a grin.

"Orange," I insist. We've been over this. She's said orange (or "oh-ahh") before. She knows what it is.

"Apul!" she says happily. "Apul, apul, apul!"

"Orange, or you're not getting any," I say, with a smile, holding out a section.

"Oh-aah," she says.

* * *

She loves to play in the laundry. I've taken to telling her she can play with the unfolded laundry only. I sat on the couch just before bedtime last night, folding towels. She came over and reached for the stack of folded towels. I quickly put my hand over it. She slapped her hand alongside mine, then left it there. "Play with the laundry that isn't folded," I said sternly, pointing to the basket. Then, when she didn't move, I took the towel in my lap and threw it over her. "Where's Chloe?! Where is she?"

She clawed her way out from under the towel, and I took it back because she didn't seem pleased. She grabbed it back from me and threw herself down on the couch pillow that she had previously tossed on the floor, then attempted to drape the towel over herself like a blanket. I helped, and asked if I could cuddle with her. She let me, but only if I let her brush my hair out of my face.

* * *

Eric accidentally taught her how to head-butt. He's since taught her that it must be done very gently. I haven't been encouraging it, but I admit it's cute. When Eric asks for "a bonk" she inclines her head in the most delicate forehead bump, and then more often than not runs to deliver one to me as well. (Often when he asks for a hug or a kiss she gives me one too--sometimes first, if she's in my arms at the time. When we picked her up at Memaw's the other day she gave hugs all around, including Eric and me, I guess to be absolutely fair.) She wouldn't go to Eric's arms for a hug and kiss last night, so he asked for a bonk and received one. Then she turned toward me. I tried to decline, but she reached out for my cheeks to hold me in place so she could bump my forehead. Apparently the problem is not that Mama doesn't want a bonk, but that she doesn't understand how to receive one.

* * *

Our main floor is very open, with separate spaces for the living room and dining room and entry but no doors between, and there's a small section of wall in the middle where the TV is (and, often, the vacuum cleaner). It's very easy to run in a circle around it. When I come down the stairs and Eric says, "There's Mama!" it's very easy to let Chloe see me, then duck behind the wall and wait for her to get up and try to follow me. I wait until she sees me, then move ahead, around and around, until finally I run up behind her and shout, "Boo!"

She jumps, and then she says "Boo!" back and squeals as I lift her up, and again when Eric takes her to toss her in the air, giggling madly until we all collapse on the couch.

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