The Nugget started "playing pretend" a few months ago, and each day we witness his imagination grow a little more. I am that person who names marshmallow Peeps (and thus can't bring myself to eat them so they sit mummified for years), so I am not really surprised that the Nugget has started to speak and relate to inanimate objects.
1. The Nugget likes to fist bump, high five, and shake hands with people but will also engage trees, doors, walls, cups, and stuffed animals in the same manner.
2. Yesterday, when Doggie was playing with her squeaky cow, the Nugget became very agitated. Usually he squeals and runs to throw it for her to fetch. When asked what was the matter, he just kept repeating, "Cow, cow, cow." When Doggie dropped it, he gently picked it up, touched its nose, signed "Cry", and said, "Sad". I asked him if he was upset because he thought the cow was crying, and he answered in the affirmative. We assured him that cow was just fine and liked to squeak for Doggie. He does not seem to share the concern for the squeaky mouse - perhaps because the squeak is normal for a mouse and uncharacteristic for a cow? Anyway, I am very pleased that he is displaying empathy and comforting skills, even if just to a latex cow.
3. The Nugget likes to feed stuffed animals pretend bites of his food. I indulge him as long as it's a dry food like a cracker. Lately, he's also been sharing crackers with any animals decorating his shirts - he'll hold it to their mouths, make chomping sounds, and say, "Yum!"
4. The Nugget has started making my old stuffed bunny hop around the room. He slams the bunny down on the floor then flies him way over his head in an impressive leap, narrating each bounce with an exuberant, "HOP!" (Note that only the bunny hops, not the horse, cat, tortoise, or duck.)
5. We are finally the recipients of play food cuisine, lovingly cooked up by the Nugget in his play kitchen. And yes, the experience of being served a plush sandwich coated with dog hair and a side of drooled-on wooden fried egg could not be more fantastic.