At the end of this month it will be two years since we moved back to Prague. It's gone pretty well, but not so perfectly that we're not open to the idea of a change.
K is four (and a half, she would want me to add) and fluent in Czech. She has trouble with a few sounds and she's still working the kinks out of her grammar, but a lot of children her age do the same. She loves her school and has become very Czech in some funny ways. She mixes Slovak into her Czech a lot and does not distinguish between the two very well, but I imagine that will come with time and continued exposure. The languages are really so similar that it would take a great deal of linguistic sophistication to draw the line between the two clearly.
M is ten months and the chillest baby ever. He is not yet walking, but that doesn't stop him from getting into everything in reach. He is a champion climber. He is starting to babble (ba, da) and can wave, clap, use a bit of baby signing and seems to recognize a few words but it's hard to tell. I feel like at this age K was making more sounds but understanding less, but we'll just have to wait and see what the next year brings as far as actual speech development for him.
I am confronting the classic problem of balancing two children and working from home and finding that anything else (blogging, playdates, housework...) tends to go by the wayside. The good news is I have enough business to work full time if I chose, but the bad news is I really can't until M is big enough to go to preschool. I'm really missing England and its nurseries right about now (before three years old you have to make private arrangements here, and I don't really want to hire a nanny). I wouldn't want to put him in full time, but two mornings a week or so would give me some time to work - and think - in peace. I think I'm getting grumpier in my old age. (Insert the Slovak nodding emphatically here.)
I need to let loose of the idea that each post has to be a production, because I would probably have time for mini-posts. I am active on Facebook, after all. :) But I always feel like if I don't have time to cover everything that has happened since my last post then I might as well not write at all, so the more time passes the harder it is to write.
It's not that we aren't still bilingual, though - in fact, things have been pretty peaceful on that front. K has a great command of Czech, occasionally uses a word I don't know, frequently comes home singing songs I don't know, and has developed a fascination with Hungarian in the last week so now knows several words in Hungarian. A girl from Hungary started at her preschool and K wants to talk to her, even more when she found out that the Slovak actually knows that language. So now she can say szia, igen, nem and koszi. (Pardon the spelling.) So we may be embarking on another language mini-adventure.
We have also recently started reading Little House in the Big Woods (first chapter book) and I'm building up K's repertoire of nursery rhymes and folk songs in English, since she knows a bunch in Czech and Slovak. She has a great memory for lyrics and the beginnings of an ear for music.
The Slovak is also doing fine - he had a hard time adjusting to living here again (reverse culture shock, his first experience with it) and still gets worked up about things once in a while, but in general he likes his job and likes talking to his daughter in his native language (um, more or less). I'm sure he will also be delighted to see this post, because he frequently hassles me about when I'm going to write again. And yet he seems oddly unwilling to do a guest post; he prefers me to do the work so he can read it. :)
So here you go, sweetie.