Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mommy’s Littlest Elf




Christmas Tree Uncertainty

P1110854A little concerned about the big box in the living room

P1110860She really wanted IN the box, but it didn’t make her feel much better about it all…

P1110864And after some soul-searching, she did finally get brave enough to touch it.

P1110866She got so comfortable touching it that she wouldn’t get out of the way so that we could finish putting it up.  Back in the box they both went…  (But, for the record, Piper did ask first so it wasn’t for the sole purpose of toddler wrangling…)

P1110873As unsure as Piper was, Addy had her beat.  She was p-r-e-t-t-y nervous.  I’m not sure she even blinked.  It was darn funny…


P1110881Once she got a chance to explore, she was okay with the tree in her house.  Not so sure about why there’s a tree in her house, but okay with it anyway.


The next morning, I was changing Addy’s diaper on the floor while Piper sat at the table eating breakfast.  I couldn’t change Addy fast enough- she kept rolling over and crawling to the tree.  So I said “Are you excited to see the tree this morning?” to which Piper replied “I ‘cited, too!”

I may have to keep the tree up long-term if it provokes sentences from my kid.  We could have a Valentine’s tree, Easter tree, summer tree…  Wonder if the hubby (and DOGS, haha) would approve…

Monday, November 28, 2011

A Swimming We Will Go!

I always get jealous when I read people’s blogs about their swimming adventures with their kids.  You know, oceans, lakes…  Even pools when they’re in anticipation of those oceans and lakes…

But when you live in landlocked CO, swimming in the pool is pretty much as far as it goes.  It’s as good as it gets.  Which is fine, and lovely, but maybe it explains why, over Luke’s long weekend away from work, we decided to take the girls swimming at the rec center.P1110838

For the first time.




It took Piper a little bit of time to figure out how to walk in the water when it got up past her waist; she wasn’t so sure about it all, and stayed really extra close while she was figuring it out.P1110796

This pool has a lazy river, a tube slide, a regular big slide, and a teeny little slide for toddlers.  It had a spray area with all kinds of sprayers and buckets that dropped water, too.  Piper had a BALL.  She even did the little slide all by herself (with us at the bottom because I was sure she’d go straight under…)  She wasn’t always too sure of herself, but she actually pushed herself through it instead of clamming up like she usually would.  P1110795

She even went with us down the B-I-G slide- and liked it!  Well, she liked it once Dad figured out he needed to keep one hand on the wall of the slide to keep from tipping over in the curves (yeah, it was FAST).  I mean, it was a BIG slide…P1110821

Addy was mostly along for the ride.  She likes the water and didn’t mind bouncing in it at all.  Just so long as she stayed wet and didn’t get chilly, she was happy as a lark.  She wanted to eat half way through (as if that’s any big surprise) so we went to the locker room so that she could eat.  I was certain that Piper would be ready to go when I got back.  Much to my surprise, she was still going strong.  She ended up wanting to stay for an hour and a half, and played HARD the whole time.  I think she would have played more, really, but by that time, Addy was exhausted (and cold!) and we just needed to head home.  And once I told her that lunch was waiting for her in the car, she was ready, too!

But best of all?  They both took LONG naps when we got home. 



Wednesday, November 23, 2011

When you’re a little sister…

…you learn all kinds of things WAY before you’re supposed to.

Because you have a big sister who likes to teach you things.

About six weeks ago, during speech therapy, Addy (who was four months, mind you) was laying on the floor playing nicely.  Piper got fed up with working and earned herself a break.  She asked for a glass of water (a very common occurrence in our house) so I got a glass for her.  She took a drink, laid the glass on the floor, and was off doing something else.  Addy was reaching for the glass, so I let her have it, thinking she’d “explore” it a little and be done.

Nope.  Not my kid.  She promptly took the glass and took a couple swigs.  Just like she’d done it a hundred times before.

Jennifer (the ST) and I cracked up and moved on.

About a week later, I caught Piper feeding Addy the cup.  So that’s where she learned it.  My two little twirps were conniving behind my back.  And I had no. idea (probably earns me the Mom of the Year award, donchya think?) 

Piper ALWAYS has a glass of water around the house.  Often more than one if I can’t find it at the end of the day.  I’ve always been thankful that she’s such a good water drinker.

Until now.

Because now I have a munchkin who goes on a hunt for the water cups so that she can help herself to a little somethin’ somethin’. 

Case in point:







And yes, she sucked and swallowed.  A lot. 

I guess we’ll stop leaving handled cups around, huh?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Dental Drama

Piper went to her FIRST dentist appointment last week.  I was “supposed” to take her this summer (told her ped I would), but, frankly, I haven’t been in the mood.  And since her 30-month check-up is coming soon, I figured I needed to get in before then. 

The drama started when I was able to get an appointment with a dentist who does loads of work with the Ds population here in town.  Problem is that he’s located on the other side of the world.  As in, almost to Arizona (or at least it felt like it.)  But, I figured that, since you don’t go to the dentist all that often, I was willing to travel for someone who came so highly recommended. 

So, I called and got an appointment in less than a week.  I was surprised it was so fast, but it gave me less time to worry about it (I’m so not a fan of dentists…), so I was game.  The appointment was on Monday; Friday night, the receptionist called and said that she was unable to verify our dental insurance.  And so that we didn’t get stuck with a huge bill, she suggested we reschedule until we could figure out why she couldn’t find us in the insurance system (despite having all the information AND a copy of my insurance card.)  BUT, I did think it was a good idea to hold out until we got everything squared away.  So, we cancelled our appointment and FINALLY got the insurance card figured out (she had Luke’s birthday wrong.)  We rescheduled to last week. 

So we travelled to The Other Side of the World and had our appointment.  I dragged my mom with us so that she could sit with Adalynn (and we partook in a little retail therapy afterword- which cost me less than $3.)  The appointment took all of 15 minutes, tops.  The dentist and his hygenist, though, were super nice.  They came out and sat with Piper on the floor and talked for a few minutes before they took her back.  Piper was NOT in the mood to have her mouth looked at, but they were able to get everything done that they would have.  Her teeth are healthy (wahoo!) but there is a little crowding on the top; hoping that, as she gets bigger, it won’t be an issue any more. 

And, of course, we checked out and got the bill.  After the whole insurance debacle from before, I didn’t figure it was going to be an issue; I KNOW that we get free checkups/cleanings twice a year.  So when I got a bill for $57.50, I double-took.  She said that insurance took it from $75 to that.  So, essentially, it paid for 16%???  I still don’t understand.  She said that if it was an error, we’d get a refund (uh, thanks). 

For some reason, dental insurance is such a PAIN.  It isn’t as spelled-out as medical insurance is, and it’s almost impossible, at least for us, to figure out if a provider is “in-network” or not.  And I THOUGHT that was why the receptionist was insisting on verifying our coverage before seeing us- to make sure that we were covered there!  To say that I’m a little peeved is a little of an understatement…  So, I’m hoping that it’s a glitch.  We’re waiting for the statement of benefits to look at it, and then call the insurance company to make sure that everything was billed correctly.  But, looks like we may be in the market for a new dentist.  JOY.

And since Piper was having NONE of the actual dentist office, the only pictures I got were of her playing in the waiting room.  Let’s just say that it was a good thing she had time to play; after the hour-long drive down there, she was itchin’ to move!

P1010742Winnie the Pooh was playing; she’s never seen Pooh before, but DID like Tigger.  Once Tigger had bounced off the screen, though, she wasn’t very interested, and did her very own bouncing…  Off the walls…


P1010744She made her baby play dentist, too.  It wasn’t nearly as funny, though, as the tantrum she threw when I told her that ADDY had to sit in the car seat, and not her baby doll.  Oh, the drama!

P1010747Isn’t it time to go yet???

Monday, November 21, 2011

Thanksgiving, The First

My side of the family traditionally has Thanksgiving dinner on the Sunday before the holiday.  It works out well because Luke and I (and my brother and sister-in-law) don’t have to run between houses all day.  We can all relax and enjoy our time together, and enjoy we do!  Lots of laughter, lots of stories, and lots of food- all ingredients for a fun afternoon!

My grandma even brought blueberries for dinner- which Piper reminds me every single stinkin’ time we go to Costco that we’re out.  Unfortunately, she eats SO many of them that I can’t afford the out-of-season fruit any longer.  Needless to say, Piper was VERY excited.  I’m pretty sure she almost exclusively ate blueberries and rolls for dinner.  Whatever.  That’s what holidays are for, right???

And while we were having pie, Piper talked Nana out of the whipped cream spoon.  She thought she was totally getting away with something.  And made a mess while she was at it!  And since she was such a mess, we changed into Christmas pajamas for the ride home (“we” meaning the girls; Luke and I did not drive across town in matching pajamas, I assure you…)  I figured that since it’s officially Christmas season after Thanksgiving, it was safe to break out the Christmas attire, yes???


And because Nana’s such a funny lady, she also gave the girls the idea to play “wagon” in her living room.  Addy, surprisingly, had a ball.  She liked it much more than sitting in the old-fashioned high chair- that she wasn’t so sure of…102NIKON

The girls played SO hard yesterday that they were EXHAUSTED today.  Piper got woken up after her THREE hour nap (which I, of course, paid for the rest of the day…) 

Let the holidays begin!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Piper the Pianist

One of the most fun parts of going to Nana and Grandpa’s house (besides the dogs, all-you-can-eat goodies, the toys, and, oh, yeah, Nana and Grandpa…) is the piano

Almost every time we walk into their house, Piper asks to play (her sign is reminiscent of a concert pianist playing Flight of the Bumblebees).  She’s enthralled with the ability to play high notes and low notes, playing a single key over and over to a very regular beat (better than I could, I think), playing keys right next to each other…  There’s seldom any banging- it’s a lot more organized and planned than that.

It’s so much fun to watch her.  Especially when she finishes with her song and looks to us as she awaits her much deserved (so she thinks) applause. 

And also?  She’s dang cute sitting on top of that big ol’ bench.











Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Preschool Previews

Oh, lordy

Today we had Piper’s transition IFSP review.  That transition, of course, being the transition from the Early Intervention program to the school district for preschool

PRESCHOOL.  Can you please explain to me HOW we can be talking about preschool???  REALLY???

Our coordinator met us when Piper was still in the NICU.  We always talk about how teeny she was back then and how different she is each time she sees her.  This time, the BIG difference was how much more vocal Piper was- she’d never heard much noise come out of her (and believe you me, there is NOISE now!)

Today we talked about what we wanted to make for our last set of goals in EI.  Everything, ultimately, boiled down to how we can make the preschool transition easier on Piper.  Our new expectations are things like she’ll sit at the table and complete preschool activities {read: she won’t use her “charms” to get out of activities that she doesn’t particularly like} and use her verbal expressive vocabulary more frequently and with longer phrases. 

I’ll admit that I’m a little apprehensive about sending her to school next year.  I keep reminding myself that, because of where her birthday lands, she won’t be starting until next September.  And that’s a long way away (don’t judge- the lie makes me feel better.  So sue me…)  I don’t know really what bothers me about it; her skills are age-appropriate, so I’m not so concerned about what services she’ll need and get- all I really care about is speech, and that shouldn’t be an issue.  And she’s got such a great personality that I’m sure she’ll be accepted by her staff and peers (it was brought up today that she’s gonna love preschool!) and I can’t wait to see how she blossoms once she gets there. 

I asked about our preschool itself.  We can see it from my back window, which has obvious benefits.  Apparently, our service coordinator knows of lots of families who are trying to choice-in to that school- it’s supposed to be REALLY good (WAHOO!), so that makes me feel better.  They’re opening another elementary school (which also has the preschool in it) just a couple miles away (really super close) which could be an option, too, but it’s not open until next fall, which means there’s nothing there to observe.  So, I guess I’ll make a trip up the street one of these days and take a peek at the classroom and make sure I like the teacher well enough. 

ChildFind is supposed to contact us in February or March to do a pre-assessment (to make sure she actually qualifies, apparently?  I dunno- seems silly when my kid has Down syndrome, but whatever…  I guess they also determine who, as far as therapists, need to be at the actual assessment) and then the assessment and IEP meeting are scheduled together a few weeks later.  I like the idea of the assessment AND the IEP being done in the same sitting. 

Everything sounds like it should be fairly straight forward and mostly easy.  I guess one of my concerns is that I’m afraid Piper will pull her “shy” act and not, for lack of a better term, perform to what she’s capable of.  Our therapists will write reports and submit them, too, which, I’m telling myself, will cover those holes, if need be. 

My big “ugh” moment, though, is that preschool is FOUR DAYS A WEEK.  And I’m not so sure what I think about four days a week.  It’s three hours a day, which sounds okay, but FOUR DAYS?  Honestly, I think it’s one of those harder-on-me-than-her kind of things, but yikes. 

Preschool, huh?  How can a person be so excited and so anxious, all at the same time???


Sunday, November 13, 2011

All Addy



DSCN2424This is the face Addy flashes when Piper does her “incoming” siren.  Addy’s usually happy about it, but man, oh man, does her alert system go off! And, as evidenced by the numerous scratching casualties on her face, the alert system is probably appropriate, although not efficient.


DSCN2165She really wanted to see what the deal was with this puzzle Piper was playing with.  She is quite good at getting the pieces off, but she couldn’t figure out WHY. 

DSCN2178…so, when she got frustrated with WHAT to do with it, eating it was the obvious second choice…