Baby Umbrella and Baby Boogie

Petunia likes a game I call “Baby Hat” — I hold her on top of my head (with both hands, don’t worry) and say “Baby haaaaat!” while she laughs and squeals. So yesterday it was raining lightly and she had her coat on and I had nothing, so I invented “Baby Umbreeeeeelllaa!” Which she liked even more. She laughed so hard that Heidi, the one responsible adult in the family, didn’t even scold me.

We probably won’t get many chances to play that one, but it’s a new game in the Clark Family repertoire. Here in the Clark Household we’re always looking to innovate, seeking to create new kid games and teases to replace the old tired standards like “Pull my finger.” and “Got your nose.”

I think Mr. Freshpants senses this inventive spirit because he came up with an innovation of his own — something I call Blanket Boogie. He had his beloved blankie — “Night Night” he calls it — spread out on the floor and, while he was distracted, Petunia crawled on top of it. Because she can neither read nor write, Petunia is not aware of the decree that says Petunia cannot touch anything that belongs to Mr. Freshpants. Ever. So naturally Mr. Freshpants went to enforce the decree by doing the toddler equivalent of the old tablecloth trick. Except he wasn’t quite strong enough to pull the blanket out from under her, so he just pulled her around the tile floor. Petunia so enjoyed the ride that Mr. Freshpants got into it too. So now Mr. Freshpants is a bona fide Clark Family innovator and Baby Boogie was born. (Yes, we supervise that one. Duh.)

Petunia is showing promise. We’ve been trying to develop her fine motor skills by getting her to eat her meal from a bowl with a baby spoon instead of putting her food on the tray and letting her shovel it into her mouth (and ears, and hair…) like a barbarian.. So she quickly invented the game called “What’s on the bottom side of this bowl? Ooops.” Then, seeing how Mom and Dad reacted to “WOTBOTB? O.” with such, um, energy, she invented a new game. This is where she pretends to eat from the bowl, waits until Mom or Dad are halfway across the kitchen, and then holds the bowl in the air tilted just so that it’s about to spill. Usually she’ll look at us and smile. That game is called “How fast can I make Mommy run?” And she thought of it all on her own.

We’re so proud

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