You can ask her to say mama and dada, and nothing – not a sausage even though she's perfectly capable of saying these words when she wants to and she knows exactly who we are.
You can point to a picture in a book of a lion, and say, 'lion lion', and she'll just giggle and hit the page with her hand, making no attempt at all to copy the word.
But even though she refuses to play along with these games, she reveals just how much she does comprehend of what we say to her in other ways, when you least expect her to.
We started to notice even if we mentioned the words hands and clap in a sentence she would start to clap her hands, so we tested the water for categorical proof, 'clap your hands' we'd say and automatically she'd clap her hands.
This started to develop into something a little more when my husband decided to say bouncy, bouncy to her and somehow she knew what that meant and would bounce up and down on the spot where she sat. When my husband commended her and said good girl she instinctively clapped her hands.
So now we have the repetitions of 'bouncy bouncy', and she will bounce up and down, followed by 'good girl', and she will clap her hands, as a whole new game in its own right.
She let's slip in other ways too. My husband will say 'where's mummy' and she will point over to me and say 'mama'.
Next door's dog will come out into the garden and we can say, the doggie's outside and she will look out the window in exactly the right direction.
Sometimes she will reply with a little noise that sounds very much like a 'yep' when you ask her if she's ready for lunch or whether she wants to play with a certain toy.
She's even started waving on demand. At bedtime I'll say 'wave to daddy night night' and she'll wave her hand frantically from side to side.
And she seems to know when something funny has been said on the television because she'll be stood there, her nose pressed almost to the screen and suddenly giggle with glee. I'll tune in to what has just been said and realise that indeed, someone on the TV has just said something funny. How does my daughter know that?
It's easy as a parent to talk about your child while they're in the room as though they are not there. They'll be no more of that kind of thing. It's time we all watch what we say.