Granddaughter in a child's chair in the living room.

My granddaughter is just about 15 months old and, although she isn’t talking, she’s finding pretty effective ways to communicate. Her mother and I just need to learn her language. Several days ago she surprised us by shaking her head “no” when we asked if she wanted a drink. She hung her head slightly and shook it like she was trying to get a fly off her nose. Yesterday she surprised us again with a “yes” headshake when we tried to confirm what she wanted. Yes and no are pretty handy.

Friday morning, though, she gave me a bit more. We have two stores that we go to regularly; one we can walk to, the other requires a car ride. So when I asked if she wanted to go to the store, I qualified it with “in the car?” She smiled, looked bright and positive, then pointed to the picture of Sophie the giraffe that’s on the wall. I figured she wanted to carry her along- we had before. I looked, but a quick glance didn’t reveal the plastic giraffe; I grabbed her stuffed Pout-Pout fish instead.

We walked to the car, grandchild in our BabyBjorn and me with a hand on the fish. I unlocked the car door and started to transfer the child to her car seat when she pointed. At Sophie. The plastic giraffe we left in the car the last time we went to the store. Smart kid.

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