Every day, several times a day I go over a plethora (oooo!) of animal sounds with Topsy, using bath animals, pets and actions as prompts.
For example, I say 'What does a dog say, Topsy?
Then I answer: 'Roof, roof!' etc.
And with his bath elephant I also move my right arm up and down as a trunk when I make the elephant's high pitched 'broooooobrooooo'.
Topsy always stops whatever he is doing and observes me carefully when I start doing the animal noises. Then when I finish he smiles at me as though I have been making a complete fool of myself and goes back to whatever he was doing.
Topsy was snotty and coughy, not to mention sticky from his night church icecream cone. I decided that, rather than a just a wipe down with a warm face cloth, I'd give him another bath. He could not believe his good fortune.
Moments leading up to 'talking':
Topsy is fascinated with the bath tub's soap recess. We keep it free of soap so as he does not ingest any, but he still always checks it out. Lately I always put a little bathtoy in there, and he gets up to fetch it. Then the next time his head is turned I put something new there. It has become something of a game between us.
I got a hold of his largest duck and snuck it up into the soap recess. When he spotted it, instead of picking it up, Topsy stood up and pointed at it...
What he said:
"Duh, duh ,duh, duh."
I paid no attention. That is his most common word.
He said it again, and again.
Finally I asked, "What does a duck say Topsy?
He pointed at it patiently and repeated 'Duh, duh, duh, duh!"
Before I could react, he sat carefully back down in the bath. As soon as he was balanced, he grabbed up his little grey elephant with his left hand, waved his right arm in the air and announced 'broo brooo brooo brooo'.
Well! Monica Seles may as well have bought the house next to us, for the excitement this generated. We clapped and 'hurrahed', and (of course) checked a couple times to verify that it wasn't a fluke, before hurrying over to let everyone at church (eating their dessert after the service) know.