Handing us rocks along the N.Fork of the Little Santiam
I'm not exactly sure how to verbalize exactly what happened over the past week in regards to Kaya's language abilities...but something took place, for sure. The nuances are hard to put a finger on, but the closest I can come to summing it up is to say what implied in the title:
Kaya has become a two-way conversationalist.
She has been answering me with simple "ja" and head shakes for a while now (again, I'd have to check the blog record to remember exactly how long), but starting the middle of last week, and all this weekend, conversation with Kaya felt VERY different. Let me try my hand at adding a few details which may shed some light on what I mean...
-She responds to 95% of what we say to her or ask her, with not just a simple, "jah" like before, but now with a more heartfelt, "Jaaaahhh". I've got to get it on video because her tone just warms my heart and makes me smile almost every time!
-Even when Geoff and I are talking with each other, usually about her or something she responds. For example, while we were camping and swimming this weekend on the North Fork of the Little North Santiam, I was letting Geoff know what it was that she was wanting, what she was pointing at. "She wants the T-U-R-T-L-E," I said, spelling out the key word that I figured would upset her. "Jaah," she reponded, immediately, looking intently across the water and pointing at the big, blow up turtle.
Here she is before the turtle came along, enjoying the peace and solitude of the river with Dada.
-She now repeats things on her own, a great deal of the time, without us having to ask, "Can you say ____?". It seems that she chooses words that she either likes the sound of or thinks she'll be able to muster with her existing vocal abilities...
-On Wednesday evening, before we left for our camping trip, our neighbors, Lena and Andrea, both heard Kaya say, "Look at Mama," while pointing at me across the way. That marks the moment of her FIRST three-word phrase!
-She's been saying, "Hello, Mama" very clearly over the past three days...she'll start saying it, often when she's playing peek-a-boo through her "schnulli" (pacifier) string. She says it over and over again, continuing even longer if I say hello back to her. I'm very surprised at how CLEAR her annunciation is when she says it.
Her favorite word these days: Baaaow (Ball)