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Bin boy

September 15 , 2003.

Two weeks until the baby arrives, and big brother Stephen seems pretty cool with the idea. When we have our pre-bedtime cuddle, he often brings up the subject, and we talk about what life will be like with the new baby -- how Mommy will have to spend a lot of time taking care of the baby, but will still love Stephen; how the baby will mostly nurse and sleep right at the beginning, but when s/he gets older, Stephen will be able to play with him/her; etc. He usually brings it up, with an intro like "I'm going to be [the] big brother!" or "The baby's going to come soon!" Yesterday, he seemed to think that the baby would either come through the window, or be brought to us via train. At least there are no storks involved.

He's doing well in other ways, too. Speech has been consistently improving for the last four months, and he's pretty well understandable to everyone now, though of course he has his own take on a few words. "Elevator" is "ephayator", "simulator" is "simuyator" (he loves the Train Simulator program), and "splancnic ganglion" is "spankyic gamblion". His current favorite game is... strange. He will "remove" various body parts (ears, eyes, nose, lips, etc.) and hand them off to people, and get very upset if they are not returned in a timely fashion. He takes like parts from others (especially lips: "I got your yips!") and sticks them to whatever surface is handy. All transfers are accompanied by appropriate noises (a pulling sound for removal, and a popping sound for replacement). David has taken his: appendix, spine, uvula, ego, id, and splancnic ganglion, among others. "That's MY [fill in body part]!" being the usual reply.

Stephen's new bed -- click for larger imageTrains are still the number one attraction. He is full into Thomas territory, and names many of the characters by sight, but any train will do in a pinch. The aforementioned Train Simulator (a Microsoft program that lets you drive different trains on different routes in real time) is his favorite computer time activity -- he can drive a number of trains that David and I haven't even figured out. He would play it for hours if we let him. If you look at the most recent (month 40, or 3 years and 4 months) pictures, you'll see his new bed with its new train sheets. Bob and my mom built the bed for him, and it's a stunning piece of work, and best of all, Stephen loves it! He's got a big play space underneath, and a raised platform to sleep on. It's given him a lot more confidence in climbing as well, so he has more fun at the playground, too. Once his sibling is in his/her own bed, I think it'll make a good bunk system, as the lower one will be right at ground level, good for a 2-3 year old.

His alphabet is coming along nicely -- he can do A-K and Q-Z without prompting, though L-P are problematic -- I think it's because those letters are rushed in the alphabet song. He knows most of the letters by sight, though, and I think he'll be recognizing words pretty soon.

He's still very picky. Not much more I can say about that which I haven't already gone over in previous updates; I'm sure he's getting enough protein (loves soy milk and soy beans) and nutrients, but it's an awfully narrow palate. I'd like it if he'd grow out of it soon, but until then, at least he's not starving. Potty training is stalled as well, since he doesn't -- and perhaps simply can't -- tell us before he has to go. I gather it can take a while for some children to develop that skill. I do hope that having a new baby will help somewhat -- maybe we can get somewhere with "the new baby needs to wear diapers, but you're a big boy and could wear underpants." Who knows.

The next time I update this, we'll have a newborn! Wow! I guess I should set up a place for his/her updates, too. Until then, hope you're all well. Enjoy the new Stephen pictures and the fall weather!

Oh, and Stephen says, "I got your yips!"

Previous Stephen updates: July 2003, May 2003, April 2003, February 2003; November 2002, August 2002, May 2002; April 2002; March 2002; February 2002; November 2001.

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