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November 24, 2001 - Saturday
I got an interesting email yesterday in response to Harry's changing bedtime routine. It was from my aunt who said that, when they were young, my cousins had what they called 'subject' time as part of their bedtime ritual. They would pick a subject and talk about it with their father before they would have to go to sleep. Harry starting requesting songs a couple of months ago, but this would certainly be a little different than that. Harry likes to talk more these days, but I replied to my aunt saying it sounded like a great idea for Harry, but one that might take some time to establish since Harry's world is really still fairly limited. But then last night as I was trying to move from listening to Harry talk about daddy's eyebrows and the backhoe that he had seen last week to singing him his four songs, Harry earnestly said "words." It wasn't absolutely clear, but he seemed to imply that he didn't want songs and rather wanted daddy to talk more.

Tonight, however, there was no mystery. As I tried again to shift the focus of our bedtime interaction to song, Harry made his wishes absolutely clear. "No song, Harry talk words." I asked him what he wanted to talk about and Harry, whether he understood the question or not, latched onto his current standby of naming body parts and then talked about the moon. I did eventually sing a song, Moonlight in Vermont, because as I was getting ready to leave, Harry piped up with my usual preamble to the finale of "one more song." But, it was pretty clear that our routine has indeed shifted and maybe 'subject time' isn't so far away after all.

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