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spacebaby2 is 3

Olive turned three last week. We had a nice little party with a few families over for lunch and cake. It was simple. Each kid got a toy but not a whole goody bag, I'm trying to scale back. We didn't buy decorations. The cake was homemade.

I kept trying to interview Olive throughout the week about what goes on at birthdays, her 3-year-old thoughts were pretty random. Conversations like...

Me: Olive what should we have for your birthday?
Olive: What?
Me: No, I mean... should we have cake? And what else?
Olive: Um... forks!

Day of the party she did pick out a nice dress to wear "because my friends are coming to my house!" she said, it was cute. After lunch we had her sit in her chair and she blew out her three candles by herself. Then Marc took the cake to cut her a piece and everyone was smiling at her saying she did such a good job and she burst into tears. Maybe because she didn't like everyone looking at her, maybe because she didn't understand that she was definitely about to get cake, but I picked her up and held her on the couch and asked her why she was crying and she said "because I'm sad!" and I asked if she wanted to go back to her party and she said "no, I just want to sleep."

my kid.

Marc and I were running around to events every evening that weekend, including day of her birthday, and I felt bad about that so I took a vacation day so we could have some special time. We went to the mall so she could jump around on the indoor playground, and we went to the library. It doesn't take much to have a very special day with a three year old. Olive was thrilled. We got home and I asked what we should play next and she said "let's just snuggle up!" so we did, I put on a slow movie and we napped together.

I'd say she's growing up so fast but the truth is she's not really growing, I'm a little nervous about this, the doctor says she's fine and official shortness doesn't start until you're in the bottom 3% but she's in the bottom 10%, at 35 inches tall. We feed her, give her water, let her in the sunshine, she just doesn't grow. Her marks on the wall were all six months behind Josie, but this birthday she wasn't even to Josie's 2.5 year old mark.

All the rest of her milestones are totally on point. She colors almost in the lines, she's got an adorably perfect pencil grasp, she can draw circles and faces. Three year olds are supposed to be able to carry on a conversation... she's there. She doesn't even need anyone around to carry on a conversation, it just goes. She can count and keep track of objects up to 8 or so, she can count pure numbers up to 13 or 14, then it gets a little random but the numbers generally go up. She knows all kinds of songs. We can understand almost everything she says, even though she has trouble with s sounds. Ask her what a snake says she correctly answers "sssss!" but ask her to say snake and she says "nake". she calls unicorns "waycorns" and tomatoes "buh-matoes". she loves clifford books, cutting with scissors, very long baths, playing outside, dressing herself several times a day, soft blankets and looking out the window. that's olive at 3.


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( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 6th, 2016 05:35 am (UTC)
Two comments:

1) On the s sounds: from a linguistic point of view, s + nasal (n, m) clusters at the beginning of a syllable are HARD. Many languages just don't do them. This is also the case for s + other consonants in onset positions (that's the technical terms). Think Spanish and Italian, which add "e" at the beginning (school vs. escuela, snob vs. esnob) to force the s and the other consonant into two separate syllables. Consonant clusters as a rule are hard and are acquired later, and these ones specifically are difficult enough that lots of languages have internal avoidance strategies to separate them.

2) My almost 1-year-old is off-the-charts small and always has been (between 2nd and 7th percentile, sorta falling off now). I am also a bit nervous about this, but all kids grow at different rates... And as with all things, there's quite a range of normal variation. Maybe someday they'll catch up. Or not—it's always possible ours will end up being outliers.
May. 6th, 2016 02:16 pm (UTC)
english sounds like the BEST we should definitely pick it for the most common worldwide language!
May. 6th, 2016 11:36 am (UTC)
I love the "forks" answer. It made me smile and think "that's a practical kid". :)
May. 6th, 2016 12:19 pm (UTC)
My heart strings just tugged, she's pretty perfect!
May. 6th, 2016 02:13 pm (UTC)
I'm happy that she had a good birthday! She sounds like a smart kid. I wouldn't worry about the height thing. I was a short kid since my parents are both short. I'm on 4'11" and I've never had any problems. Most people just think it's cute! It's nothing you're doing and she still may shoot up when she gets bigger. :-)
May. 6th, 2016 02:18 pm (UTC)
Nobody in our family is short though! Marc and I are both over six feet tall, my parents are tall, Josie is tall... I keep flashing back to my high school days when we had a short foreign exchange student and our house was not even set up for short people, she couldn't reach anything on the high shelves.

I don't know how this could happen, like we've got some secret short gene sneaking around in the family? nooooo!
May. 6th, 2016 03:24 pm (UTC)
haha. I can relate to the foreign exchange student. I can't reach anything in our home or grocery stores. I climb on our cabinets a lot and my husband gets so mad at me. He caught me doing that when I was pregnant. I didn't know how else to get what I needed!

lol. Being short isn't so bad...especially for a girl. I bet she shoots up when she gets older. I wouldn't stress too much over it at this point.
May. 6th, 2016 05:01 pm (UTC)
My kid grows really honestly in growth spurts, like one week she'll be the same height as the last three months and the next week she'll be up a half inch. It's weird. Kids grow weird. I wouldn't worry about it.

Anyway being short's not too bad unless you're trying to keep up with a tall person on a mission :P
May. 6th, 2016 06:14 pm (UTC)
She doesn't even need anyone around to carry on a conversation, it just goes. -- You just described my son as well.

I wouldn't worry about the height thing if the doctor says it's nothing to be concerned about. She sounds like she's doing perfectly. And what's wrong with being short anyway? ;)
May. 7th, 2016 12:13 am (UTC)
Aw, how time flies. Happy birthday, Olive.
May. 7th, 2016 01:10 am (UTC)
What a lovely little written snapshot.

I was always the second or third shortest person in all of my classes and I managed okay. It sounds like she's growing well in all the other ways that count!
May. 7th, 2016 03:48 am (UTC)
Sounds like a great day for a three year old!
May. 7th, 2016 11:44 am (UTC)
I disagree on not being concerned about the height. Your gut is warning you, and she shouldn't be falling off percentiles.

Doctors don't always give the best advice, so don't ignore your gut. Take her to a pediatric endocrinologist and they will probably just monitor her growth for 6 months -- but at least you are with the specialist who would be the right one if there is a problem, and one who if they say not to worry, it really can put your mind at ease.

She sounds totally precious -- and precocious!
May. 8th, 2016 10:02 pm (UTC)
I can't get Alice to count worth beans. She won't say her ABCs either, but she recognizes most when I ask. I decided not to push it. Your little one sounds right on track to me. :)
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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