He now does most all of the animal noises (except for some inexplicable reason he pants for a pig.) He will do the hand motions for "Happy and you Know it" and "Itsy Bitsy Spider." He can sign or say almost all the foods he likes to eat. He even combines a few words like "up please," "book please," etc. Also, my nerdy SLP side is impressed with how many final consonants he can say like: hot, help, book, please. He says at least 55 words (I stopped counting when I hit 55, but I'm sure he knows a few more that I couldn't think of) and just signs at least another 10-20 on top of that. It seems like he learns at least 2 new words a day, so it's really fun to listen to him talk now! My favorite new addition to his vocabulary is "tsi tsisy" for sissy. I think I had my expectations set a little low because Claire was so advanced with her language. Also because Jude is a boy, and a second child, I never wanted to compare his skills to hers and end up worrying unnecessarily. But as I sit down and catalogue everything he can do, I can see that he's doing great!
His favorite things to play with are books and the singing rocking horse he got for Christmas. He can read forever and ever. He will bring you book after book and plop on the ground so you can read it to him. Sometimes he just wants to turn the pages, but other times he'll get frustrated if you don't actually read the words to him. He loves to dance to music, and will activate his singing horse over and over just so he can bop along to the song (we've only had it since Christmas and he's already shorting out the music buttons and wearing down the batteries!)
His personality is also evolving, some for the cuter, some for the worse. He loves to give kisses, he says "hi" and "bye bye" to every person we pass in the store, and he adores his Sissy (except when she is taking his toys or pushing him off things, of course!) He is very stubborn, and will continue to touch things long after he knows they're off limits. And one disconcerting thing that has been around recently is quite a grouchy disposition. This manifests most unpleasantly in walking up to other children, screaming "No! and hitting them. This happens anytime another child enters the room. It's the first thing Jude does immediately after seeing them. So horrible! He's totally "the mean kid" at playdates! I know it's just a developmental phase...probably has something to do with marking his territory against challengers, or something animal planety like that. I've tried a few things, and have settled on a reminder to "be gentle," which seems to work about 80% of the time. Hopefully this will not last much longer, or friends will start to dread our company!
We love our little monkey boy and it's so exciting to get to know every little new thing about him!