Thursday, October 23, 2008

Sign baby sign!

Baby signs are the greatest invention ever. I loves me some fat baby finger signing. With Raph we attempted baby signs but it didn't work. He started talking way to early and it would go something like this, "Raph. Milk. (insert milk sign). Milk." Raph would look at me, do milk sign and say, "Milk!" It became a moot point.

Colin is my nonverbal child. He's not totally lacking in the talking department but you know. Raph was talking in complete sentences by 18 mo. Colin has a few words at 18 mo. I started earlier with Colin. I was determined to have a signing baby. My niece Jenna was beyond cute with her fat baby finger signs. She was so good at it that she had a vast vocabulary (in signs) and could sign sentences. I wanted that.

At about 9 mo old, with a lot of help from Raph, we taught Colin some signs. Milk and all done. Two very important signs when your life revolves around sleep and your next meal. He did well with them for a few months. Then at a year he totally stopped talking, and he also stopped signing. It was very sad and quiet few months. Not sure what happened to him but he stopped all communication for a few months. Well, he would still scream and cry and laugh just fine but other than that. Nada.


Then the light switch went off and he started signing and talking again. He still doesn't have a very big spoken vocabulary but can say boo and doggie about 872 times a day. He's been adding in signs to his *speaking* and its just so dang cute. I got a video of him doing a few signs. Feast your eyes on the adorable world of baby signs!

**Please forgive the video quality. its hard to record a wiggly baby and turn pages of a book with your left hand lol.

http://s428.photobucket.com/albums/qq3/marcellazr/?action=view&current=Babysigns1.flv

Key to Video 1:

Frog- stick tongue in and out
Book - interlace fingers and open/close
Bunny - Hopping pointer finger
Cow - he moos
Goat - can you hear it? Its a word that sounds like Goat
Stars - hand over head wiggling fingers
Duck - he knows it well
Monkey - scratches underarm but I'm not sure he can reach his underarm so he just scratches
Fish - open and close fishy lips

http://s428.photobucket.com/albums/qq3/marcellazr/?action=view&current=Babysigns2.flv

Key to Video 2:

Bunny - hopping pointer finger
Goat
Monkey - scratching
Duck
Stars - wiggling fingers
Bear - he rrrrr's
Duck
Bunny - the ever present bunny! That works for squirrels and small woodland creatures

Sunday, October 19, 2008

House of Testosterone

I'm reading a book called, "House of Testosterone". The writer has 3 sons, a husband and a male dog named after a baseball stadium. She and I are kindred spirits and I'm laughing my way through this book thinking, "Oh I've been there." "I can top that." and "Oh shit that will happen some day?!"

I haven't made it through the whole book...its hard for me to find time to read these days. When I read a book I like to sit down with big chunks of time and read 700 page books in a day in a half. Sadly my current life does not mesh well with that type of reading, but I do what I can, when I can.

So I say to you Sharon O'Donnell, this is my own House of Testosterone...top this!

Last week as I was tucking Raph into bed he whispers, "Mommy I have a secret to tell you." Then I gasp for air and I'm overwhelmed with a formitable stench. I ask Raph if he just farted and he buries his face in his pillow laughing and pops off about 3 more farts! That's just wrong and what came out of his butt was unholy.

Then the next morning I'm zipping up his jacket and he says, "Mommy I have a secret."
NO! Do not fart on me!
Mommy I can't control my body and sometimes there are things that need to come out of my butt.
O
M
G
I wonder why there is not a song called "Thank Heaven for little BOYS"

And because there is always more here's another gem. The 'home living' section of his classroom is where they have the kitchen or transform it to a restuarant or whatever. Currently its football themed and they have it set up like a stadium with a consession stand, score board, cheer leader stuff and what not. He's telling me all about it and then says,
"You know there's just one thing they don't have enough of."
What's that?
"Cheer leader stuff. They need more cheerleaders."
Seriously?

Then the next morning as I'm getting him out of the car at school, "I'm so excited to be going to school today."
That's nice honey.
"Yeah I can't wait to play in the football home living section. I love football. There's just not enough cheerleaders though. They need more cheerleaders."
Lovely.
And not to leave off Colin. He started crying the other night b/c there was no baseball on TV. Mike refuses to watch the playoffs this year and he was crying, pointing to the TV bringing us the remote, "BallBALLLL Balllllballlllll" Oh the humanity!
Slowly but surely he's coming around to the new fall season of football. Ballball has a new meaning in our house...football. Fortunately for my little one with a limited vocabularly, there is always a sport on that involves some sort of ball.

That is my life in the house filled with men.

Friday, October 17, 2008

The sound of a toilet flushing...

I'm in the kitchen and I hear laughing coming from the bathroom. Then Raph singing a song about how he's pooping. Colin is cheering him on, or so it seems. Raph comes out to get help with his belt and I send him back in to wash his hands.

I continue making dinner and I hear laughing and singing and water and toilet flushes. Not too unusual. Hey, they are happy and I can make dinner without a wee one trying to pants me and another one begging for food now because he's starving. I half listen to them and focus on my dinner prep.

I start to notice that the toilet has flushed way too many times, "Get out of the bathroom and turn the light off!"

More flushes and laughing. In my best mean mommy voice, "GET OUT OF THE BATHROOM NOW!" I have a pretty good mean mommy voice. Raph stands in the hall jumping up and down and laughing...trying his best to not go running back into the fun filled bathroom. "Turn off the light and get out of the bathroom." He turns the light off and runs into the kitchen with glee, "Colin's getting blue soap everywhere!" My head spins around, "WHAT!? What did you let him do?!"

Nothing!

I drag Raph into the bathroom to see Colin drenched, water everywhere and him diving head first into the toilet after the most recent flush. No toilet paper on the roll and some on the floor. Blue foaming soap in the sink.

::head explodes::

I send Raph to his room and strip Colin, wash his hands and drag him kicking and screaming out of the bathroom. You see I just ruined all his fun. I'm mean like that.

I go to Raph's room and explain to him how things work. He thinks that if he didn't actually get in the toilet he's not guilty. I know he wouldn't get in the toilet because he's old enough to think its gross. Colin thinks its just this fun thing that makes wooshing sounds and has a never ending supply of water. Oh and a container to throw things into...an empty toilet can hold a lot.
I explain to Raph that when he watches Colin do something that he shouldn't do he's just as guilty. He has to either stop him or tell me what Colin is doing. But why do that when its more fun to watch your baby brother paper the bathroom, play in toilet water and splash it over every inch of the walls and floor?

After they recovered from the bathroom episode they resumed their daily chores of harassing me for food, one verbally and the other one signing with vigor and pants-ing me.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I have a secret

Tonight as I was tucking Raph into bed he whispers, "Mommy, I have a secret to tell you." Then he farted. Buried his head in his pillow laughing as I gasp for air and then pops off three more farts.

Yes, that's my little angel.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Damn Soy Cheese

Someone please tell me WHY they make soy cheese with caesin in it? WHY?! Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose of it being SOY? I will never understand why you would go through all the effort to make some processed cheese like food and then add some milk protein in it. Why? Same for rice processed cheese like food. Or almond processed cheese like food.

Raph is far from daring when it comes to food. He's borderline phobic of new foods. It is a huge production to get him to try new things. Even things like cake. His first THREE birthdays were: Cheerios on a candle, Jello Tower with candles and his third birthday he had cake but didn't eat it. You should have seen him last night eating a hamburger....did I mention he doesn't eat meat? It was his idea to have a hamburger and I'm pretty sure he regretted it later. He did eat half of it and it only took him an hour and a half. No exaggeration, 90 minutes of painfully slow chewing and occasional crying, but he did it.

Given his restricted diet (allergies to milk, egg and peanut...you stuff that's in EVERYTHING) he hasn't had a lot of variety. And not many mixing of ingredients. He has separate bowls for everything. No peas and carrots thank you. A bowl of peas and a bowl of carrots will do just fine. We've only just now gotten him to start using the same spoon for each food. He used to need one spoon for peas, one for carrots, a fork for noodles...you get the picture. You could have more than one thing on a plate, if they didn't touch. I think he took the run of the mill toddler OCD to the next level, but that's just Raph. He doesn't bend on much and things have to be just so.

Its not very often that he will try new foods. We've been on a blitz as of late. Next year he's going to Kindergarten and they aren't going to have prepared meals like they do at his school now. He's going to have to bring a lunch, that can't be refrigerated or microwaved. No container of plain noodles there. He MUST learn to eat sandwiches. Or something. We've tried jelly, soy nut butter, almond butter, apple butter, honey and nothing is a real hit. He will nibble at an apple butter sandwich but that's about it.

He brought up the idea of trying soy cheese. Cheese sandwich can be brought in a lunch box right? I've tried many times, but as with most things it has to be his idea. He sees Colin eating cheese all the time and I think it finally got to him. Today we went to Trader Joe's....all their *soy* cheese has caesin. Off to Whole Foods where no matter what you buy you spend $50 at a minimum. They had a whole case of soy cheeses, almond cheeses and rice cheeses. Only one vegan brand did not have caesin...those vegans are sticklers like that. We bought the only kind of vegan cheese like food they had and some soy yogurt. Raph nearly jumped out of his skin when he saw Cinnamon Bun yogurt. He was in heaven tonight at dinner with his new favorite yogurt. He tasted his cheese like food, said he liked it but only had one bite. Whatever, can't say I blame him if he doesn't like it. You just can't fake cheese...

~~Oh and by the way, I have a fabulous recipe for vegan pumpkin pie. It really is very good and tastes just like regular pumpkin pie without all the milk and egg....and fat. Seriously its a very healthy desert and very tasty at that. Let me know if you want the recipe. ;)~~

Saturday, October 4, 2008

My little Linus

We tried early on to get Colin to fall in love with a stuffed animal, but that didn't really work. Silly me, I thought he'd be just like Raph...because you know he's like Raph in so many ways (insert sarcasm here). Raph had his beloved George that was bigger than him. Eventually George had a friend Little One. Then Big George got pushed aside to accommodate Little One, Dumbo and Horse. Oh and of course the ubiquitous B's. Raph's first love was a cloth diaper. Sounds gross but you know the kind you use as a burp cloth. He associated cloth diapers with nursing. Like one of Pavlov's dogs, you put a cloth diaper under his chin and he'd start rooting and sucking his tongue. As he got older he would cozy up to the diaper and suck his tongue to fall asleep. It carried on and even today at 4 and a half years old he has usually 2 B's in bed with him...along with his other babies. Raph is a good daddy to his babies. He rocks them, sings to them, swaddles them and even at times breast feeds them. Here they are all snuggered up in his pillow for a nap.Colin has babies that he plays with but nothing that he absolutely adores. His one true love is a blankie he calls 'Bah-boo'. ::shrug:: This blankie has made it through three other kids before it became his. No one else loved this blankie, until now. This gender neutral green and yellow blankie was part of my oldest niece's going home outfit. Jacy didn't like it so it remained virtually unused when Jenna came along 6 years later. Jenna didn't like it either so by the time it got passed on to Raph 7 years later, it was again like new. Raph never liked this poor rejected blanket. Poor little bah-boo, tossed aside for so many years now gets dragged thru the grass, garage floors and everywhere else imaginable. I have to wrestle bah-boo away from Colin to wash its poor stinky self or slip it in the laundry when he's not looking and hope its clean in time for the next nap. Colin will squeal with delight when he sees his bah-boo and cozy up, suck his tongue (not unlike Raph with his B's) and lay down with his blanket. His bedtime routine consists of this: Colin do you want to get your blankie? He runs to find it and puts his head on your shoulder, commences tongue sucking and is ready for bed. A lovie is a beautiful thing...but we better put a tracking device on this blankie b/c its 12 years old now and I KNOW we can never replace it!