Penelope is not using a lot of words yet. She says a few things, maybe a dozen words, so I’m not concerned, but I do think she is not saying as many words as her sisters did at the same age. However, she manages to get her point across quite well using non-verbal communication.

She is the most free with her laughs and smiles of the three, which is nice. The sound of a baby laughing has to be one of the most joyous noises there is, and our house is filled with baby laughter.

With two older sisters, however, she needs to make her wishes and displeasure known. So she screams. The loudest, most high pitched scream possible. She sounds like a dolphin. She screams to tattle or to get my attention when the older girls are hogging it.

She also bites and pushes. She’s really strong and can knock her sisters down, especially Ella. This leads to more screaming.

The biting is becoming a problem. If she feels wronged her first response is to open her mouth as wide as she can and attach herself to the closest body part of the offender. Legs, arms, tummies, backs, and heads are all fair game. She hasn’t broken the skin, yet, but she does leave marks. And then there’s more screaming.

We’re working on scolding her when she bites with a stern “no”. My hope is once her language develops some more, she’ll outgrow the need to be so physical when she’s mad.

Saturday, I saw evidence that she is indeed starting to use her words instead of her teeth to communicate.

She and Ella were playing on the ground with a blanket. Ella was covering her and she was kicking it off. Penny thought it was a great game. Ella was pretending to be a mommy and put her baby to bed. She was not pleased that her baby kept kicking the blanket off. So she covered Penny and then laid on top of her, thereby keeping the blanket on.

Penny was not happy. She started screaming. I told Ella to get off because she was hurting Penny. Ella got off.

Penny got up, walked over to Ella and shoved her. She stood, pointed at Ella, and shouted “Na na na na na na!”* Followed immediately by sticking her tongue out and going, “Ppbbblllttt!”


How do your kids fight? Are they physical or verbal? Any advice on the biting?

*Na is how Penny says no.

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10 Responses to “PPPBBBLLLTT!”

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  1. Moomser
    Twitter: moomser

    Hi, my daughter (second child) never bit but she did hit her (20 months older) brother, I just basically stopped her, got down to eye level and scolded her every single time she did it (and I caught her at it). She’s stopped now. I think they just need time to figure out what’s acceptable behavior and how to get what they want within it. The only thing I think works is being consistent, though admittedly it can be boring and oftentimes seemingly useless. Repetition is a mother’s work!
    Moomser´s last post ..Parenting is hard ie the post wherein I state the obvious

    • Jessica Anne says:

      Yeah, that’s what I’m hoping, if I just keep telling her no, she’ll eventually stop. My middle daughter was a biter too, and it took time, but it did stop. Penny’s pretty tenacious about it though. She holds on and I have to pry her mouth off.

  2. Amanda says:

    My middle daughter started biting my oldest around 15 months. (My youngest hasn’t tried it on anyone but me yet.) She usually gave everyone some warning before it was about to happen – by fussing, whining, sounding angry and frustrated. I watched her like a hawk for a few days (which was kind of a PITA) and would pull her away from her sister before she would bite. It seemed to help.

  3. Kristin @ Peace, Love and Muesli
    Twitter: kristinglas

    Very verbal fights here. There are some physical scuffles but those are mostly wrestling gone wrong.
    Clarabel was a biter at about a year. She only bit me. I said no, plopped her somewhere and left her alone. It was a short lived phase but she only had me to bug her.

    • Jessica Anne says:

      I’m hoping it will be short lived. One of the problems is she bites Ella, who responds with hitting and escalates the situation. They both need to work on impulse control.

  4. Amber
    Twitter: adpaz

    My boys fight physically a lot. Wrestling and hitting, with the occasional bite from Pete. There’s also a lot of yelling. It sounds like Pete and Penny are pretty close in age (Pete’s about 2 1/2.) So I feel a lot of your pain!

    Regarding the biting, my boys’ PDO director made a suggestion to me that worked for one of her former teachers. Whenever Penny wants to bite, tell her that rather than biting a person she needs to bite a lemon. For the teacher/mom/parent in question, she said it worked within a couple of times. She suggested cutting a wedge of lemon and wrapping it in cheese cloth for easier holding. When it’s not being used, it can be stored in the fridge in a ziploc bag. I did try it on Pete, only to find one unfortunate problem – he likes the taste of lemons. :)
    Amber´s last post ..Silent Sunday

  5. Carly says:

    Hi Jessica Anne! I am new here, a friend just linked to your food coloring post, but I scrolled around ;) My son was a biter, he could leave a mark through a pair of jeans! I like the lemon idea, our doctor suggested spraying his mouth with a water/vinegar solution every time he bit. Both are better than the other old southern advice I got of “bite him back!”

    • Jessica Anne says:

      Thanks for stopping by and looking around! I like the water and vinegar too. I’ve been told bite her back too, but I don’t think we’re quite at that point yet. :)