Mali Riding a Rocket

Someone punched the button that transformed Mali into a real little person over the past week. This is oh-so-reassuring. I clearly remember Iz rounding this corner; it was a particularly joy-filled phase of parenting. Leelo approached the corner but then turned and ran in the other direction.

Mali's biggest changes are in the way she combines verbal and body language to communicate--she's simply not baby-like any longer, especially her facial expressions. Though I can't see the body language in the middle of the night when she murmurs, "Mama...? Nurse? Nurse?"

Yesterday she clicked onto the fact that "M-A-L-I spells...?" should be followed by shouting, "Ma-ee!" and pointing to her chest. When she sees her name, she says it. When she sees other words, she names letters. Conditioning rather than anything else, most likely.

She knows how to knock on doors. Not just slapping the door with an open hand, but rather rapping with her knuckles. I have no idea how she figured this out; I am guessing from observation.

She adores her friends, especially Merlin, whom she chases around while squeaking, "Hi Muryin! Hi Muryin! Hi Muryin!"

She likes to find writing implements and draw on walls. She also automatically places any stray socks in the cat's water bowl.

I am not pleased that she is still nursing two-three times a day, and insulted that she will sometimes ask for water afterwards. I am downright pissed that she won't fall asleep unless I'm in the bed nursing her, most nights.

She has one hell of a temper. Oh my. But she is the most fun baby to goof around with, ever, when she's chipper--which is most of the time.

Her standout characteristic, to me, is that she is proactive rather than reactive like her siblings. She makes her own fun, and figures things out on her own. I had heard that children were capable of independent thought and play but have never before witnessed the phenomena.

Summarized: Mali is an ideal third baby. I feel very blessed. We didn't know we were entering the cakewalk, but as of now we're licking icing off of our fingers.

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