Elisa has discovered the joy of waving and used it to charm multiple people at this point. The fact that it is still unpredictable makes it all the more enjoyable. She will spontaneously wave hello to the cat but refuse to wave when Mommy and Daddy encourage her to wave goodbye. At the end of May, she had her musical debut at a church talent show singing “Inright Outright Upright Downright” with Mommy. [Grandma recommended starting early before an audience since it seemed to help Mommy have no fear of performing and Mommy tries to follow Grandma’s instructions…especially when it shows off Elisa!] Mommy helped Elisa do the actions, which Elisa regularly enjoys – for a couple months, the song got her out of a bad mood every time – and everyone was delighted and clapped hard. Once Elisa understood that the applause was for her, her face lit up and she waved both hands very hard. The double handed wave is a sign of great excitement. It also showed up last weekend at church: while Mommy was leading songs up front while playing guitar, Elisa shouted out (singing?) and waved both hands very hard. While not entirely conducive to worship, this provided a good moment of group laughter.
Elisa has continued to walk, walk, walk. It is still a rolling sort of gait – Grandma says it is like she is riding a horse – but she can move pretty well. Most of her falls happen when she gets so excited about moving that she gets ahead of herself and trips. We went to visit Great Mama and Great Papa Greene in Berlin, NY at the beginning of June and during our two days there she moved from a few forays into the middle of the room to ignoring walls entirely and walking 10-12 steps at a time. One of the big advancements toward this was learning to stand in the middle of the room rather than pulling herself up. This is also much more graceful since she has not learned to plant her feet and line them up with whatever she pulls herself up; instead she may have her legs all twisted and stay on the tops of her feet until the very end. Last week in church was the first time she was truly mobile and at the first opportunity, she left the pew (2nd pew, piano side) to come visit Mommy at the piano. Mommy was considering letting Elisa stay until she starting plunking the keys on the piano – apparently the Clavinova is enough lower than the home piano to provide good “plunking.” Now Elisa is almost running – but her rolling gait keeps it from working!
We have “invested” all of ten dollars in a baby pool – one that is inflatable and has a giraffe neck and toys built in. We have yet to use it for swimming, but we did blow it up to see what it was like and discovered that it makes a great jungle gym. Elisa will get in or out on her stomach and will happily play inside with the built in toys or her own toys.
Elisa has two favorite expressions at the moment, one with her tongue out and another that we call the turtle-face – she makes a fish face, but then sucks in the bottom lip so the top lip hooks over the bottom one. She also has continued to make very expressive sounds, although not words. She inherited the ability to project her voice well and prefers to belt at meal time. We’ve just been working to make sure she sticks to lower pitches rather than that of a fire siren!