While getting out the Easter decorations, (a favorite activity for the children, not so much for me,) I was thinking about how quickly time passes ("seems like we just put away the Lenten cross") and how much the kids have changed from last year (Benjamin is now the one sorting plastic eggs, not Elisabeth; Amanda is setting out all the decorations, with her own eye for design; Madeline is speaking clearly about "baskets" and "bunnies".)
I started thinking about those developmental milestones in children, and how all parents know certain benchmarks... because we read about them in the parenting books. My brother and SIL have started asking things of 13-month-old Lucia, and she has begun to respond-- correctly. They say things like, "Where's the cow?" or "Bring me your cup." Sometimes Lucia even does as they say. Then, I started thinking about how two-and-a-half-year-old Madeline has mastered multi-step commands: "Pick up Libby's glasses, take them downstairs, hand them to her, and tell her the next time she forgets them she has to pay a dollar." But those are all objects she knows, and that exchange is part of our usual household routine, so it would be very familiar to Maddy.
Just for fun... and because the rabbit-and-frog toy wouldn't sing "At the Hop"... and truly because I was too exhausted to lift my rear from the couch cushion, I issued a challenge, telling Madeline: "Go find me three AA batteries and a small, Phillips screwdriver and we'll fix this bunny." Now, I knew full well that she didn't know a AA battery from a D battery, nor a Phillips screwdriver from a woolly mammoth. To my surprise, Madeline took off for the part of the house in which the battery box actually resides. After some time, she returned, with: nine AAA batteries; a beaded bracelet; a small, plastic bucket; and a large, stuffed duck; and without her clothing. I'm not sure where that puts her along the developmental continuum, but, in Krinkeland terms, she's just as weird as the rest of 'em.