The best way to describe Olivia in terms of learning is that she's like a sponge. She sits there and observes and soaks up as much as she possibly can before moving on to something else. When she's playing with her toys I'm quite convinced that she's coming up with ways to take them apart and put them back together a la mad scientist. We already knew that she knows what she can get away with and with whom, but yesterday's story from Nonna cracked me up. Miss Olivia was down for her daily nap and eventually she was stirring so my mom went up to get her and found her standing in her crib waiting for Nonna.
My mom asked Olivia for her pacifier trying my technique of "Olivia you're a big girl, you don't need a pacifier" and normally this works and she'll hand it over. Yesterdayyyyy - wouldn't you know the little stinker had dug up another pacifier that she hid somewhere in her crib the weekend we were flying solo and when Nonna asked for the pacifier, Liv just pointed down to the crib where there was a pacifier laying there like "There you go Gram - you want a pacifier, there's one for you" all the while keeping her original napping pacifier in her mouth. My mom tried asking again just thinking maybe it was a fluke and nope, same little finger pointing to the other pacifier laying in the crib. Hilarious!
As for the pacifier, she's really too not attached to it (we only use it for sleep), once she's up from her nap or waking up for the first time in the morning, if she doesn't hand it over upon request I just pull it right out of her mouth and she doesn't fuss about it. Current goal to go without it is around 18 months, I definitely don't want her to be dependent on it nor do I want it to do any damage to the way her teeth grow in. Speaking of teeth she has gotten much better about letting her teeth be brushed and actually enjoys it now that we use a safe fluoride-free toothpaste - in fact she will actually crawl to the bathroom where we keep her toothbrush and toothpaste looking for it and to have those little chompers cleaned.
As a cardiac patient good oral hygiene is a really important practice to hopefully lower the risk of any bacteria getting into the bloodstream and potentially increasing the risk of stroke or bacterial endocarditis (infection of the heart tissue). Most if not all dentists will recommend a preventative dose of antibiotics prior to any normal cleaning and definitely before any extensive work is done on the mouth of a patient with an increased risk of complications from bacteria of the mouth getting into the blood and traveling elsewhere in the body. Olivia's current teeth count is up to 8 with a few more looking to break through any day. Sigh...I feel an temporary end coming to the peaceful nights we have been enjoying as of late.