Here are a couple of bedtime rituals I want to remember.
Every night Bryan says, "Out of all the 35 year-olds in the world, you're my favorite."
As part of our relentless campaign to coerce Rand into talking,* we line up the older boys outside his door every night at bedtime. And then...
Me: (Rand on my lap, cheery voice) Rand, do you want David to come give you a hug and kiss and blow your belly?
Rand: (ecstatic, kicking his chubby legs and flapping his little arms toward the door) Muh! Muh!
Me: (still cheery) Say, "David."
Rand: (still ecstatic) Aiyah!**
Me: (cheery, ad nauseum) Say, "David."
Rand: (moving from ecstasy to annoyance) Aiyah!
Me: (resigned) Okay David. Give him a hug and kiss and blow his belly.
Rand: (squealing, flapping his arms, reaching for David)
Now David hugs him, dodges the attempted French kiss but offers his cheek. Then Rand gleefully lifts up his shirt and David blows his belly. We repeat the same process with Jacob and Bryan. While it hasn't been very effective in terms of forcing him to say his brothers' names, it sure is cute.
*He's started talking a lot more this week. As a sign of my desperation, or possibly evidence that I've been beaten down by prepubescent boys, he said, "poop" and "butthead" (possibly repeating something he heard from his potty-mouthed brothers). I cheered wildly. He's been building on that impressive vocabulary daily.
**"Aiyah" is his standby word when saying something is our idea and not his. As in,
Me: Rand, do you want CHEESE or CARROT?Rand: Aiyah!
Me: Rand, say "Up."Rand: Aiyah! ...