Even though I've been trying to sign to her since she was five months old, Jade hasn't adopted the whole sign language thing. She's been working on her own forms of communication instead.
For example, when I think she might need a diaper chance, I will take her into her room and lay her down. If she needs a diaper change, she'll let me change her diaper. If she doesn't, she'll cry and try to crawl out of the room. On many of those cry-and-crawl occasions I've changed her anyway, just to be sure, but she's always been right.
When I'm trying to feed her, if she wants something, she'll lift her eye brows, Inuit-style, in approval. Likewise, if I'm trying to feed her and she doesn't want something, she'll scrunch-up her eyes, Inuit-style, in rejection. She's never been to Nunavut! When did my kid learn Inuit-style body language?
Today, she did something different. Formerly, when she got tired and needed to be put down for a nap, she would yawn and rub her eyes and look just plain tired. The other indication that she was ready for a nap involved crying. This morning, however, after happily munching on a digestive cookie that she stole off the coffee table, she lay face-down on the floor and closed her eyes, pretending to be asleep. She opened her eyes to make sure that I was looking at her, smiled, and pretended to sleep again.
Not entirely sure that this meant she wanted to go down for a nap, I figured I would give it a try. I put her into her grow-bag, gave her her blanket, and put her in the crib. Not a yawn. Not a peep. She went right to sleep.
So, I'm thinking that I'll stop trying to teach Jade how to sign. She's doing a much better job training me.