Germ Warfare
I'm Too Embarrassed To Accurately Title This Post Because STUPID

Yes Ike Can

Despite an early surge of talky-ish mimicry, Ike pretty much clammed up and stopped talking altogether around his first birthday. He'd gesture and babble and all that, but it was a long time before we heard any real words from him again. 

He was testing me, of course. He was waiting for me to say something about it, to put the soupy dash of worry I was stirring around in my brain into words and admit that I was concerned about his lack of speech, especially as he rapidly approached 18 months — the age when Noah was officially put on the wait-and-watch list.

(Noah was 21 months when he was evaluated and found to be speech delayed, though by that age some of his sensory issues were already very pronounced — toe walking, texture and oral motor issues, lining up toys, etc. — and it was pretty clear that was all probably related.)

I refused to play that game, this time. Instead, I did exactly THE OPPOSITE what I've probably advised a hundred dozen advice-seekers who have emailed me over the years with concerns about their own children's development. I ignored the shit out of it

To be fair (and to sound slightly LESS monstrous), Ike has two older brothers who are basically talking ALL THE TIME, and quite often talk on his behalf. He uses gestures and sigh language (Noah did not point or wave, either), and does not toe-walk or exhibit any signs of sensory issues. Food textures, grass, clothing, noises — nothing bothers this kid. No delays in fine or gross motor, either. So I told myself his silence was probably just another sign of his laidback personality and general affability. A language explosion was just around the corner, probably. 

SPOILER ALERT: He's fine. He's talking now. I won. This time

He's certainly not as advanced a talker as Ezra was — that child started talking at 12 months and was practically speaking in paragraphs by this age, It's almost like I gave birth to three entirely different human beings, or something! Imagine that. But Ike is now saying a perfectly acceptable number of words and making decent attempts to learn and use more on a daily basis. 

WORDS HE CAN SAY: Shoes, sit, go, off, open, peekaboo, ball, book,  cat, woof woof, vroom vroom, hi, bye, there it is, what's that, teeth, cheese, juice, hat, Elmo, Ezra, Daddy.

WORDS HE CANNOT SAY: Mommy. Or mama. Or mom. Or wonderful exalted woman who gave birth to me. Whatever.

But his favorite word — oh my goodness, his favorite word in the whole world that he says a million times a day — is quite possibly the most marvelous thing ANY of my children have accomplished. And they've all accomplished some pretty damn marvelous things. 


Yes! The opposite of NO, which he actually does NOT say. He'll shake his head for no if he has to, but 99% of the time he'd rather answer your question with YES


And yes, it's hard not to abuse a little bit and ask the same question over and over again, or ask questions that he doesn't understand in the first place, like whether he believes in climate change or whether these jeans make my butt look amazing. "YETH!" he'll respond. "HIGH FIVE!" I'll say. "Good talk."

(And double-yes, I realize that by typing all this out and uploading that video, he will probably wake up from his nap screaming "NOOOO" at the top of his lungs, forever and evermore, amen. But it was real cute while it lasted, I guess.)


Jessica V.

LOVE his little voice and squeals of excitement over good dental care!


So stinkin' cute. I want to eat your children. I don't know why. I know that's kind of weird that that's my first reaction, but I could just eat him up. So sweet!

Rebecca @ Sink Or Swim

OMG that is the cutest thing ever in the entire universe!


I will look at your sons adorable cuteness when mine stops the damn screaming and goes to sleep already. Just to remind me that there are some cute kids out there :)


okay that was stinking cute.


He's too cute for everyone. And Yes! My mom was one of 13, my dad 6, I'm one of 10, have more than 50 first cousins, more than 30 nieces and nephews, 3 children of my own and babies don't say YES! Only no. Smarty pants ~ and a looker too!


You are becoming my favorite place to share my kiddo stories.

So when my oldest was 9 mos (or maybe 12 - whatever) she would say only "yes" and it was heaven. Now, I can only get her to tell me the clothes she doesn't want to wear, despite me telling her that I don't care what clothes she doesn't want to wear - just what she actually does want to wear, can she please stop screaming and crying, why is getting dressed so dramatic?!?

My almost 2 year old asks, "What happened?" My favorite is when she does it right after it was she who did it. For example, I say "ouch!" She: "What happened?" Me: "You hit me and it hurt." As though acting all innocent and claiming temporary insanity will keep her from having the no hitting lecture.

Also, my 3 year old is talking about who hurts her feelings and the cat is one of them. I don't know how the cat hurt her feelings - she's not so great at explaining her reasoning for things yet (neither the girl nor the cat).

Call Me Jo



Awwww I love him. My 2 year old loves the word "Nope." He got it from me (of course.) And now he likes to say "Nopey nope nope" in a really cute way that makes it super hard for me to be mad about him not wanting to eat his dinner.


Super-cute. Mine does not yet say "yes," but he will say "OK!" very enthusiastically. He might be banging on the door, and I'll say, "Do you want to go to the park?," and he'll say, "OK!" like he is doing me a favor.

Amy B

"It's almost like I gave birth to three entirely different human beings, or something!"

THIS. Money quote. Which I will need to remember as number 2 arrives soon.

Oh, and my 2.5 year old, despite being extremely verbal and articulate, still doesn't say "Yes." Whatevs!


Totally adorable!! I miss that 'learning to talk' stage. (Followed all too closely by the 'shut up Shut Up SHUT UP' stage.)

My favorite phrase from when my kids were little was the arms outstretched, puzzled look on face, "Where go??"


Also, he gets excited about brushing his teeth, which frankly puts him developmentally ahead of many adults I know.


If only every kid would squeal in delight over brushing their teeth.


So very adorable!


Maybe he likes to say "yes" because he really really likes the little girl in the Capitol One commercial? Just a thought....


So cute! By the third yes, he almost has a look in his eye like, "Dammit, woman, are we going to brush my teeth or not?"


Love this!!

My 20 month does a "yeah! yeah! yeah!" that makes my heart melt and laugh at the same time.


My 21-month-old daughter (just over Christmas) started saying, "Yeah-okay." So we will say, "Do you want a snack?" "Yeah-okay." It comes out as almost one word and is the funniest thing ever. She even sometimes says "No-okay." Since she started doing this I'm keenly aware of just how much I say "okay." It's a almost every sentence I say to her!


He's so cute. Sounded like he said something like "Yes.. it's good" Wish my 4 year old was as happy about good dental care. :)


My favorite is at the end when he says "very good" (or possibly "there you go"), clearly congratulating you for understanding.


That was so very cute. My little 20 month old has started singing 'ee aye oh' Just that. With an occasional woof woof or quack quack. But on repeat. It's the sound track to his life. I worry when he goes quiet... it means he's up to something.


if it makes you feel better, my darling daughter didn't have a word for me until about 22 months. Then I finally got the momma. and it's gold. I hope you get yours sooner rather than later. oh.. we actually had her telling us that goats say 'maaamaaa' before I could get her to call me mama... which might mean she originally associated me with goats. Maybe she'll enlighten us later.


He is way too cute, oh my gosh.

Also, my first kid started saying words at 10 months and added a new one every five minutes, I swear (but she didn't crawl or walk until super late).

The second kid worried me because she still had no words at a year. "Jump" was her first at something like 14 months, and then she didn't say anything at all for a while longer.

Also, she said "poop" before she said "mama," if that makes you feel any better.


Oh, please ask him a hundred more times! He doesn't seem to mind!


This makes me feel so much better! My son is Ike's age (ish - he's 3 weeks younger) and has been exactly the same. Said some words at 8-9 months, then stopped talking. I was getting a teensy bit worried, but he's started to pick up a new word every day just in the past week or so.


My second son was the same. He learned to nod "yes" well before he learned to shake his head "no." And he learned to say "yes" well before he learned to say "no." And I joked that he was the most agreeable baby in the world because "yes" was his default answer to everything, even if he meant "no." And then he learned to say "no" and we officially entered toddlerhood. (The other day, he was screaming "NO NO NO NO NO" as I was trying to strap him in the carseat. I said "You've certainly made good use of that word since you learned how to say it, haven't you?" His response: "NOOOOOOOO!")


So this is one of those "long time reader, first time commenter" things...

But this video has resulted in a breakthrough in my home. I showed it to my 2.5 year old anti-toothbrushing daughter and ... well not only did she smile and laugh but she also willingly brushed her teeth!! Properly. Like, not just chewed on the brush. Provided I "play baby movie again" ... But hey. Small battles.

So thanks Baby Ike! Me and my dentist thank you!


Early Childhood Speech Therapist LOVING IKE TO DEATH. And telling you how smart you are :). All your comments about previous words and big brothers were spot on. BTW, my daughter's first word was "kitty", then "Daddy", and only after those demigods were named did I get "Mama". My professional opinion is that he does not need to name you because you are the center of his universe and therefore cannot be summed up in a single word.


Yep, glad he's not mine. I'd be powerless in the face of all that cuteness.


Awww. I am happy that you have three talkers, that is win. The subsequent noisy cacophony is just the sound of success!
When my oldest was two I noticed how she always said 'Yes' and not 'Yeah' and I thought what a good job I had done of modeling correct pronunciation. And the next month it was nothing but 'Yeah' from her.

Lisa Y

At 18 months, my oldest only said, "cat" and "who zat?" I wasn't concerned. Now, I do happen to be a speech therapist, but not an early childhood SLP who would be qualified to make that call. I've worked in junior high and high school for my whole career. I have to keep developmental norms on my phone so I can reference them when people ask me about their 3-year-old daughter/nephew/neighbor. So basically I was just being lazy under-concerned but all worked out ok and she started talking up a storm. (But referred to me as "that" for loooong after she started calling my husband "Papa".)


YES! Insanely cute.


My girl was a 'yes' girl too. It's so enjoyable to spend time with such company! "Do you want a pickle sandwich with fried butterfly wings?" "YES!!"


Can I just say that Ike has been perfectly cast in the role of boy #3 in your beautiful little family?


OMG, cutest video ever. More. Ike. Videos.


1. So cute I can't stand it.
2. My second child said a slew of words before "Mommy". Including every other member of our family (plus the dog) and Batman. You can imagine how I loved that.


AWWWW. My son Tycho (17 months) doesn't have a lot of words yet, either, but he has learned yes also and I LOVE YES! Or, in our house yussshhhhhhh! It's the best!


I've watched the video a dozen times now. So stinkin' cute!!


Do I pink sparkly heart Baby Ike?



So friggin cute!

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