Saturday, January 31, 2009

Sign Language

For Silas' last birthday his Grandmommy and Grandad gave him money for books. Recently I went shopping on Amazon for his presents and after purchasing the books I had in mind for him I had some money left over and I decided to get him two Baby Signing Time Videos. I had heard about these videos from several people and I know they come (came?) on PBS on Sunday mornings but I had never seen them. Taking a chance I ordered the first two in the set. When the girls were small we taught them a few signs so that by the time they were about a year old they could tell us what they wanted pretty easily. Silas is 15 months old and he would only sign 'all done'. So after we got this in the mail and they watched it a few times he is signing a lot! Here is a list of signs he has learned from these two videos.
Thank You
And he uses them correctly to ask for what he wants. Cecily watched them about two times and has memorized almost all the signs to the point where she is ready for some more videos. Clara loves them and asks for them everyday. She sings along and does all the signs. They are great!

I have a little story about Clara...

One of the guys who work for us taught Cecliy what she calls Knuckle Fist, you know the things where you touch fists together instead of shaking hands. Now when she gets excited about something like if I tell her we can go to Chick-fill-a to play she'll say in a high squeaky voice "All right! Clara, give me a knuckle fist!" then they touch fists. So one day as we were getting ready to go out I told Clara, who had just finished watching Baby Signing Time, to "Please go and put on your..." and then I did the sign for shoes which is you make two fists and knock them together where your pointers would be next to each other. Like your holding a pair of shoes and knocking them together. And she immediately said "knuckle fist-es!" and hopped out of her chair to get some. I was laughing as I explained no go get your shoes. :) She is such a silly girl!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Well its dosen't look as exciting in a picture but I said I would put a photo of my crafting table so here it is. The black spots along the top are outlets that allow you to plug multiple crafting tools into at the same time. The drawers house all my glues,ribbons,papers,stickers and tools. To the right are the keepsakes waiting to be embellished. Along the top are my scrapbooks and things that won't fit into the drawers.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Adventures in Weaning part 2

I'm not sure I have made any progress since those first four days. I'm beginning to wonder if maybe we should've tried 'cold turkey', as in quitting. Is it possible to continue nursing during the day and teach a little one to sleep through the night? After all Silas is almost 15 months old and has never slept all the way through one night. I wouldn't even mind nursing during the night if it was maybe twice, two times seems reasonable to me. But he will wake up 4 or 5 times each night and is not satisfied with anything but me. If Shiloh goes to him he throws a fit! It has been this way with all of my babies but he refuses a pacifier which made this easier the first two times around. I'm sure super nanny would tell us he is predicting our behaviour and we need to take charge. I'm beginning to think the only way is the crying method, you know unplug the monitor. I've never done this and I would never do it to a small baby but I wonder if he is old enough to figure out to just put himself back to sleep. Does he need nourishment in the night. Is he actually younger than he seems to me? Hmmmm I don't know what to do but for tonight I can't listen to the crying anymore so off I go upstairs for the first time. Any advice is appreciated! Maybe I should contact La Leche League do they offer support for stopping or just starting?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Random Thoughts

The toys seem to be in pretty good order I'm just debating the best way to organize the tiny pieces. Yes, we have moved into that stage with the girls. Last Friday when going on our date Clara declared she wanted to go too and Shiloh told her that she would have her turn soon but maybe there would be a surprise waiting for her the next day. After eating out and rushing to the movie there was no time for surprise shopping so the next day I was out and I stopped into Claire's. They had on clearance for $3.75 those Disney princesses with the rubber dresses and the shoes that are the size of and orange seed. I picked up three of them and brought them home. I let each of the girls choose their favorite Cecily chose Cinderella and Clara chose Belle. They got them on Saturday afternoon and played with them every waking moment until today (today we came to work and the tiny pieces stay home) They did not even ask to watch a movie which is incredible. I could not have picked a greater surprise. Snow white remains in her packaging waiting to be given as a gift to our niece Leilani for her birthday next month. The girls sometimes ask to hold it and they love to see all her dresses (they come with four each) but they have not opened it. I think this is good for them, a little self control and doing something nice for someone else. We are only missing Belle's yellow shoes and her necklace which is smaller than tiny but I think with a good sweeping they will turn up.

So next on the organizing list is scrapbook supplies. Shiloh bought this great table from someone and it is absolutely perfect for scrap booking/crafting at. I'll put a pic. soon when someone comments on my previous post. Anyway it also holds all my supplies and I'm thinking I will only need one container for all the keepsakes that are waiting to be embellished and glued to 12 by 12 pages. I want to get one just like I got for the toys and I have already planned out what to put into each drawer. Three large drawers, one for each child...perfect. Four smaller for Shiloh and I as a couple (dating through current), one for travel, and one for each of us as a child. I love these containers, sterlite should hire me as a spokesperson. :) The first thing I would do is create more colors but blue is my favorite so I guess I can live without red.

One thing that is important for me to teach the children is to "use what you have" I think in our society we think of things as disposable far to often. If it breaks or goes out of style we just get a new one far too often and I really want to avoid that as often as I can. I was looking at my scrapbook embellishments and thinking it would be fun to do a book that was strictly decorated with things found. Bottle tops, clippings from boxes and magazines, tags from clothing, even old clothing itself. It would look very old fashioned, after all isn't this what they used to do? Then I thought maybe I should make this a rule for all my books. Then I went through all my papers and stickers and such and realized maybe not. Some of my stuff is so darn cute it could positively make me swoon. :) So I think I will stick with the one book idea unless it comes out so cute I change over to that for good. Hmmm we'll see......

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Little Help Please?

I was just wondering if anyone could explain to me how to add more than one photo and have words in between each photo. Is this possible? If you know how or have any handy tips I would love to hear from you. Thanks!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Adventures in Weaning

Ok well I've been wondering how I would decide when to wean Silas and then one night it seems a decision was made for me. I made the decision long ago to co-sleep with this one because I did not want to go trudging through a cold house 4 or 5 times a night for a year +. I did some reading and found a book that assured me that this did not mean they would still be co-sleeping when they were eight. I slept tons better this way because I did not worry about him in his crib and I barely had to wake up to feed him.

Recently along came teething and some mild sicknesses and it seemed he wanted to be latched on all night long. I could not sleep very well this way and was thinking about moving his crib upstairs so he couldn't see me from it but I just couldn't go ahead with that decision because I really wasn't ready to stop nursing. Then came the night. I was dreaming that something (its all kind of a blur) was sucking on me and would not stop. (Imagine that) and I hit whatever it was. Instantly I woke up to find myself sleeping on my back with my little one draped across the top of me(a very creative nurser) and I had sort of lightly rapped his back with my knuckles. It didn't hurt him, he didn't even stir but I knew then that it was time. So it was decided to move the crib upstairs to the guest room. And then night weaning went something like this.

Night One-Sunday

I nursed him before I put him in bed and once again before I went to bed (he can sense when I'm ready to retire and always wakes up) I told Shiloh that the rest of the night was his. He had agreed this was the best way. So at the next awakening he went armed with a bottle of milk. Silas refused to take it and cried a lot so Shiloh snuggled up next to him on the guest bed and tried to sleep as Silas woke up every few minutes to wonder about me. I was blissfully unaware.

Next Day and Night Two-Monday

Silas was very happy to see me the next morning and nursed happily until he felt he had made up for the lost 7 hours. About 11:00 that morning I felt as if I came down with the flu. I somehow managed to survive with the children until Shiloh came home at five and I went to bed. and He decided to let Silas have a bottle while he walked around and played. It worked, he actually drank it then went happily to bed. Shiloh decided to go to bed upstairs armed with a sippy cup of water (because in his tired state Silas was sure to refuse the bottle) When Silas woke up Shiloh brought him to bed with him and gave him the cup. Instead of waking up and crying this time he would wake up and take a little sip and go back to sleep. In the morning he brought him to bed with me and he nursed and dozed a little before the girls came in requesting breakfast.

Night Three-Tuesday

As he was nursing this morning I realized I was super tender and figured out why I had the flu symptoms. I had a clogged duct. This was my first one and it seemed mild compared to other stories I have heard. But I couldn't believe this happened because of 7 hours of not nursing. The only way I knew was because my sister told me a while back this happened to her when her baby randomly slept through the night one time when she was about 7 months old. Any how that night I was still feeling poorly and again went to bed early and woke up when Shiloh came back to bed saying that Silas had had two bottles and he wanted to sleep in his own bed this time. Silas never woke up after that. Progress.

Night Four-Wednesday

Silas went to bed with a bottle and then nursed when I got home late after a girls night out (he instantly sensed when I got home) and then woke up just one time refused a bottle and actually wanted back into his own bed! Gasp. Once more we heard him fuss and didn't respond immediately and he went back to sleep for the night.

Tomorrow night we have a date planned and Samantha our great sitter will be here. We actually have hope that he will not wake up at all (at least until we get home) Can it be possible...

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The girls played with their toys for so long after I put them all in the the containers. I guess they could find things they hadn't seen in awhile.

Toys Toys Toys

Probably the #1 biggest mess maker in our house has to be the toys. So it seemed natural to start with that. We've been spending a lot of time at the shop during the days and now that the days are cold and we are officially opened the children can not run around outside as much as they did before. Too bad because they can keep themselves entertained for hours outside. However the need for toys at the shop came up and we decided to bring them all here. We loaded every last toy (except for the dollhouse and one doll and teddy bear each) into Shiloh's truck and hauled them to the shop. Our four year accumulation of toys filled up the entire back end.
Once at the shop I organized them into boxes and tubs. This still seemed disorderly so I went to target to get these great sterilite containers I had seen, of course they were out so I had to go to walmart (grrrrr) instead. I was able to fit two of them (along with the children) into the van and those two were enough to fit all the toys! I spent one whole day organizing them into the correct drawers then I took pictures of each type of toy and I plan to tape that to the outside of each drawer. This works great because the girls can play with any combination of toys they like and then after a few days of play I have them gather up all the toys and bring them to me and I put them back into the correct drawer. While organizing I did come across some toys that we had outgrown and they sold very well on ebay. Yeah! a few dollars for our something special at the end of the year. I can't figure out how to put a picture in after the text so I will add more photos of this later.

Friday, January 9, 2009

A Little Change for the New Year

The past couple of years we have made changes at the beginning of each new year and stuck with them either for that year or permanently. This year we've decided this is a good year for organization. Our house,our cars, our garage, our yard, and our business are all in for a good spring cleaning. Only its going to last all year (that's how much stuff we have to go through). I like to organize and because I think its fun, I'm bringing anyone who wants to read, along for the journey. Here are the rules:

1 We can not bring anything unnecessary into the house, garage ect... until everything is gone through. So shopping only for the necessities or pre-agreed upon items.

Hmmm I guess that's the only rule so I guess I'll tell you what my plans are.
I'm really into ebay and craigs list so I'll go through one type of item at a time and decide what to keep what to sell and what to donate or give away. Then I will take the remaining items and give them a permanent organized home. Oh, I just thought of another rule.

2 Any money that comes from selling unneeded items will be saved up for one year and at the end of the year we will decide on one big thing to spend it on that either helps us stay clutter free or will be a permanent change. (Like a bed for us, all we've had up to this point is a frame with mattresses. Or shelves for the girls room would be nice)

I think by the end of the first six months we should be cardboard box free. So we might dedicate the remaining months to repairs on the house. Last night I counted up the light bulbs in the upstairs and there are 22 total, out of those 8 need to be replaced. Down stairs there are 25 and at least 10 of those need to be changed out as well. When I mentioned this to Shiloh he said we should look into getting l.e.d. bulbs because they are said to last 50 years and that would be a permanent change. Sounds expensive but I got a head start in December with some sales on ebay and maybe the first bit of money should go to light bulbs. Hmmm sounds like I have some research to do. I'll let you know what we decide to do!