The second miracle: I can give her a bowl of crackers and walk away. If it's not too full, I can even hand it to her in the kitchen and she'll toddle to the coffee table with it.
Normally Abigail would overturn the bowl of crackers, then swipe her arm across the table, back and forth, flinging the crackers, grapes, blueberries, what-have-you, in all directions. Apparently kids with Down syndrome have visual organizational issues, but Chica has been gaining some visual organizational management skills from the magic fairy known as Routine. Damn, Routine, you got game.
One-at-a-freakin'-time. No tossing, no frantic upset of the bowl. No overstimulation of fishy crackers. Seriously on cloud nine, my friends.
Now that Abigail can walk unassisted and stand for long periods of time, she's all about routine and helping out. She gets upset if I don't let her help with the laundry. She's so all about loading up the dishwasher that we always keep it locked now. She'll carry the vacuum's cord behind me as I walk. Abigail thrives on doing the same thing day-in, day-out. She eats a larger variety of food if we all eat together at the table at the same time (and, of course, we all have to hold hands and say grace). She helps get herself dressed as long as we go in the same order: shirt, then pants, hair, then shoes. If I'm consistent, sometimes for months, sometimes just days, she'll be like, "Hey, mom, how about I just eat one cracker from this bowl of 10 crackers?" And I'm all, "Hey, that works for me."
On one hand, it's a little freaky for me because I have OCD tendencies that I struggle with, and I don't want Abigail to get sucked into my idiocy of having to put away the forest friends toys in a particular order. I don't want her to have to count her duplos everyday for the rest of her life. I'm not sure if strict adherence to a routine is a two-year-old thing, a Ds thing, an imitation thing, or a problem thing. I'm pretty sure it's a two-year-old thing, at least for right now, and it's totally working for us, so we're big fans of Routine.
* * * * *
Epically terrible weather, from excessive heat, humidity, and thunderstorms, have us going stir crazy inside. When we lived in Chicago (*tear*) I used to go for walks almost every day that it wasn't raining. Even if it was nasty, we'd just go a few blocks. Or maybe walk along the beach. Something. But here there isn't much to walk. The apartment complex is not situated for walks, and it's about 1/2 mile to the downtown residential area, which means we'd clock a mile just getting to and from where we'd walk. A mile is about what my two-year-old and I like to stroll on days when it's 88 degrees with high humidity. Compounding the matter is a shortage of vehicles. In Chicago, Matt took public trans, so I'd have the car whenever I wanted it. Abigail and I could run out to Target or go on a fro-yo date or meander around the bookstore when we needed a break from four white walls.
So we're kinda going stir crazy. The town I live is a cute little place and our complex is quiet and safe. I like the town we're in, I just wouldn't want to live here.