Friday, September 4, 2009

beanstalks, tricycles, letters and kidney beans

Just a few of Dean's latest Adventures...

TuTu took Dean to Kalama Park on Thursday morning for a change of scenery (they normally go the beach on Tuesday and Thursday mornings). Dean is going through a very bossy phase and likes to tell everyone what to do and where to do it. (he is often telling me "no, you go in the other room Mommy" if he wants to play by himself - I guess I should be glad that he enjoys playing alone, but he's just so bossy about it!!) Anyway, there was a little kid there who was younger than Dean and he was wearing a blue shirt (so later Dean kept referring to him as "the Blue One" in "Where'd the Blue One go TuTu?"). So "the Blue One" was playing by part of the play structure that has a big twisting / swirling green pole thing that goes from the ground up to the 2nd level of the play structure. The Blue One kept calling it an elevator, which was upsetting Dean. Dean kept looking at him and giving him a stink-eye (dirty look) and saying "No. It's NOT an elevator" and was VERY insistent about it. Finally, Dean said "It's NOT an elevator. It's a beanstalk." (in his best "you idiot" tone of voice) - I thought that was pretty freakin' smart!! Well, of COURSE it's a beanstalk, right!?!? (but where in the world did he get that? I'm guessing maybe they read about Jack and the beanstalk at school recently - he does have quite the imagination!!).

Tonight, I was pleased to see that Dean has finally fully mastered the art of really pedalling his tricycle. He's been able to do it for a few revolutions at a time for quite awhile, but would then get stuck halfway and get frustrated and put his feet down and scoot again. I know he rides the trikes at school quite a bit and we haven't had his trike out in some time at home. Tonight he got it out and pedalled it all over the neighborhood like a pro! He rode it all the way to the end of the street and around the block, only needing a little push to get up a couple of little hills. He was so proud of himself, saying "Look Mommy! All by myself!" several times.

As you know, Dean's known all of his letters for a long time now and he can almost write his name. He's got the "D" down like a champ and in the past week he's figured out the "E" and the "A" (ok, so the "E" actually has about 5 horizontal lines, but I'm saying it still counts because he obviously intends it to be an "E"). The funny thing is that he is WAY better at writing letters with a stick in the sand than he is with a pencil / crayon on paper. I mean WAAAAY better. There's a little voice in the back of my mind going "uh-oh. So do they let kids take the SATs in the sand in Hawaii?".

He's also reading better and better (I'm pretty sure that's incorrect grammar but oh well), but will NOT do it on command. If you ask him to read a word he totally ignores you (he's obviously not one of those kids that lives to please their parents), but if you're trying to get something done he's bringing you the cereal box or the newspaper or anything else he can find and pointing out random words and reading them and forcing you to "look Mommy". He also has the annoying habit of CONSTANTLY asking "What's that say?" and pointing to larger words that he is unable to sound out. It's endearing for about 5 minutes, but after the 800th time in an hour, it gets old. Especially when you're driving and he's pointing at signs from the backseat and saying "What's that say?" and you have to guess at what he's pointing at and you usually guess wrong and since he can read most road signs he knows that you got it wrong and then he gets really pissed and then you get about 18 "No Mommy, not that, THAT. What's THAT say?". He doesn't quite understand that the person driving needs to keep their eyes on the road!!

Dean has a new book called "Our Family Tree" that's about how different animal species have evolved over time. It has some really cool artwork in it and one page in particular Dean really likes to look at. The page has all these different cells on it and talks about how the different cells changed over time and some became plant cells, some became animal cells, etc. When we were reading the book for the first time earlier this week Dean was pointing at all the different cells and asking "What's that?" and we ran out of answers really quick (It's been awhile since I took Cell Biology!!! ha!) so we just started making stuff up that sort of went with what the cells were shaped like - so the answers were things like Surfboard, Sandollar, peapod, kite, and finally "kidney bean". I guess Dean had never heard the word Kidney Bean before and when Joel said "Kidney Bean" Dean looked at him and started cracking up laughing like it was the funniest thing he had ever heard!! He kept saying "Again, Daddy, say it again" or pointing at that cell again and saying "What's that?" and making us say "Kidney Bean" about a gazillion times in the past 3 days. It is so weird. But it hasn't lost it's hilarious effect on Dean. I have no idea what is so funny about Kidney Beans, but Dean will open up that book, say "Kidney Bean" (or better yet make one of us say it) and then be rolling laughing for several minutes. So TuTu fed him a Kidney Bean on Thursday and he did NOT think that was funny - he spit it out.

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