Auggie has finally realized that he can also vocalize the dreaded n-word. No, not that n-word. I’m talking about “no.” As in, “no no no no no,” his current favorite phrase.

The funniest part is watching him experiment with “no.” Just about everything you ask him, and I ask him a lot of questions as he doesn’t say too many words just yet, he answers with “no.” Most of the time, it comes out as “no?” like he’s not really sure that he means no at all, but since it’s his favorite word right now, he’ll go ahead and give it a try. So I’ve been taking him at his word and not doing whatever it is I just asked him. This has been met with mixed results so far.

Scenario #1: I ask August if he wants to eat some Goldfish crackers as a snack. He says, “no” and we repeat, inserting the rest of the pantry contents in place of the Goldfish. This is especially entertaining when I get to the spice rack. ‘Would you like some tarragon?’ ‘No.’ Eventually, he ends up with some variety of cheese.

Scenario #2: I ask August if he wants to go outside. He says, “no?” and I say, “OK. Then we’ll just stay inside and watch “Barney.”” To which he replies, “Nonononono.” Then I ask again if he wants to go outside. “Yeah!”

Scenario #3: I ask August if he is sleepy. To which he firmly replies, “no.” He still gets up and goes over to Daddy, who scoops him up and spirits him away to his crib, where he instantly falls asleep.

Scenario #4: August is playing with some of my notes for my freelancing work, which he knows he is not supposed to do. Under his breath, I hear him saying, “No no no no.” It’s so darling, I find it hard to ask him to stop. I’m such a sucker.

Equally great is the way August says “yeah!” He sounds so dang enthusiastic. I love it! I’m soaking it all in like a sponge, so when he’s a cynical, stoic teenager, I can remember these times.