Starting at around 9 months, Max started with the infamous toddler hitting. I think it is a completely normal way of testing boundaries and judging reactions. What happens when I hit mommy?
I have been trying to redirect him, so when he hits, or bites, or kicks (man, I make him sound like a horrid child...it's normal I swear! Right?) I have made him stroke my face and said Gentle, Max, Gentle.
This morning, as I was getting Max ready for School (or Cool in his baby language) he was absentmindedly smacking my leg. I didn't even bother to redirect, I just casually said, "Max Be Nice"
"Gentle" He said it so clearly as he started softly stroking my leg (much better than smacking) It was so cute, and he did it over and over again, obviously pleased with my excited reaction.
Now we just need to work on "Massage" as I teach him to rub Mommy's back or "Fetch" as I send him to get something....who knew I would be better at baby training than dog training?