By Charlotte Hilton Andersen, REDBOOK
On Christmas Day, President Obama paid a surprise visit to some marines stationed in Hawaii and got a little surprise himself. While holding Cooper Wall Wagner the 8-month-old did what any baby being held by a stranger does: he stuck his fingers in the President's mouth. I'll admit it: I watched the video about five times and laughed harder each time. It was kind of nice to see someone else on the receiving end of a handsy baby. And for the record, President Obama handled it every bit as well as a father of two should by laughing and removing the baby's hand.
I don't know what it is - developmental stage? curiosity? lack of boundaries? - but babies have a thing for getting adorably up close and personal with not only their parents but random strangers too. Here are some of my favorite baby moves:
1. The fish hook. Demonstrated so expertly on the President, this is where the baby will suddenly stick his hand in your mouth, often grabbing your jaw while you are trying to eat or talk. Even better if he can get a finger or two up your nostril as well.
2. The chest bump. Looking for lunch or perhaps just a soft place to rest a tired head, babies are notorious for burying their heads in whatever cleavage is available. One of my favorite parenting moments was watching my infant son try and latch on to his dad's bare chest. Neither were as amused by the experience as I was.
3. The skirt flip. Marilyn Monroe's sewer grate has nothing on toddlers when it comes to exposing women's underpants. I can't count how many times one of my kids has run up to me and either thrown my skirt up or jumped up on me and brought the skirt up with them. Another variation is when they try to sit on my lap and inadvertently slide my skirt up my thighs.
4. The nip slip. My toddler loves buttons. Really, really loves buttons. And she's really good at undoing them! Especially when I'm holding her and not really paying attention. I've started wearing a lot of camis now.
5. The glasses grab. I've never met a baby who didn't want to pull my glasses off my face immediately upon being introduced. I had one son who was so unnerved by the sight of frames around my eyes that he'd wail until I took them off. Best reason ever to get Lasik?
Have any of your babies been grabby? What's their signature move?
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