The other night, one of Kate's shoes came off and she refused to let me put it back on for her. Instead, she spent fifteen minutes trying to put it back on herself. She tried sitting down on the floor to do it. She tried standing up and stepping into the shoe. She tried sitting on the hearth and reaching down. She tried climbing up on the coffee table to do it. She tried sitting on the stack of towels on which I had been sitting moments earlier (to keep her from unfolding the just-folded towels). She tried every position she could think of to try and put the shoe back on.
She never did get it back on, but I admire her tenacity!
Earlier in the evening, I was vacuuming, and Kate was curious but keeping her distance. Then, she came walking into the room with her popcorn-popper toy, dragging it around and pushing it back and forth like I was doing with the vacuum! I wouldn't have thought about the fact they they are kind of the same shape, but to her, they looked alike enough that she could be "like Mommy" and do some vacuuming too!
The whole idea of kids learning to recognize the "forms" of things amazes me. Like when a picture book shows a chair as curvy and blue, and our kitchen chairs are straight and brown, but one still knows they are chairs (is this making any sense?)
The other day, she grabbed my keys and started poking them at the doorknob on the back door. She was using my car key and the doorknob was a button lock, not the key-deadbolt above it, but still. She had seen us unlock the door enough times that she knew how to do it too (on some level, at least).
I know this all must seem crazy to a non-parent, but when a child starts out as just a little potato-lump (sorry--newborns sometimes look like potatoes to me) unable to do anything for themselves and the whole world is new and overwhelming, it really is amazing to watch her learn these things that we take for granted. For instance, the extreme intentionality with which a baby will reach out for an object, practically going cross-eyed to calculate the angle at which she needs to move her arm to make contact--it's an absolute miracle.