Friday, February 28, 2014

24 Weeks!

Viability!! Nora is finally more likely than not to survive if she was born now -- but lets hope that doesn't happen. We are nowhere near ready, since we still seem to be in ignore-the-baby mode around here. I'm not really sure why, but its just so hard to get into this pregnancy. We did buy one outfit after our ultrasound, and the fabric for the nursery, so that's something.

Thankfully, Wiggles seems content in there. She is so wild and constantly on the move. At my OB appointment her heartbeat was 159, and I was measuring great. So, all good news. 

I'm feeling alright, for some reason, I have been so exhausted (hence the lack of posts lately). I seriously feel like I cannot move by the end of the day. I've been sleeping alright, so I don't think that's the issue. I do seem to constantly be fighting some little cold, so I'm blaming that. My symptoms have still been fairly mild, other than the exhaustion. My back is starting to ache more, a little swelling, and I've had a little heartburn but not much else. 

Since my last update, I got the results back from my heart monitor. Everything seems normal, although they did pick up a few irregular heartbeats. Since the irregularities weren't prolonged and don't seem to be causing issues, we aren't doing anything about it now. The OB I saw (mine is on maternity leave now -- sob!) was slightly concerned about my low blood pressure -- 95/57 at my appointment. So, I'm drinking water and a little extra salt to try to get it up some.  

I've also started wearing a carpal tunnel brace to hopefully avoid the terrible carpal tunnel syndrome I developed with Henry. With Hen, by 37 weeks my right hand was almost completely numb all the time and stayed that way until he was 8 or so weeks old. I'm hoping a brace will help avoid this annoyance -- especially since its pretty hard to blog or work (as a writer) with numb hands. The OB was hopeful that my lower starting weight this pregnancy will work in my favor in avoiding it, but she did warn me that I shouldn't gain too much weight (I'm only up 8 pounds so far) and warned that I was gaining too fast -- um, ok, whatever crazy OB. 

Anyway, lets hope the next OB I see is better, that I pass my diabetes test in a couple weeks and that I finally start preparing for Nora by the next time I update!


Monday, February 24, 2014

Letter D Tot School

Henry is 35 months old. 

We had fun with the letter D a couple weeks ago. I'm surprised how quickly Henry is picking up each letter's sound these days. Children's ability to absorb and learn is so amazing.

On our first tray was a set of Safari Ltd. Dog Toob figures, and a sheet with pictures of real dogs. The goal was to match. Some were easier than others, but some were kinda tough. It took close examination of each dog to figure out which was which. Henry always loves using little figures.

The second tray was a set of dinosaur shadow matching. This was the first time I've done matching to shadows, and Henry seemed to enjoy it. It was more of a challenge than his typical matching activities.

The third tray was using duplos to make towers the same size as the number cards. Henry loved this tray and spent the most time with it this week. It was also a hit with the co-op kids.

Other things we did this week included:

Letter D Sensory Bin:

Letter D Magnet Board:

Sandpaper Letter/Salt Tray: The kids are starting to get over the sensory aspect of these and make the letters! Its great to see, especially for Henry who is very reluctant to use anything to write letters.

Sight Word, Letter Matching: We did a few more of these cards, and they were still a big hit.

Easy D-Word Puzzles: We used these last time we did the letter D, they were just letter D words cut in half. They were probably a little easy for Henry.

Tot School
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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

The Great Preschool Debate

It blows my mind that we are already at this point -- thinking about sending Henry to school. The reality is that in a little over a month he is going to be three-years-old. Technically, he losses the label of toddler altogether and is officially a preschooler. But, does that mean he should go to preschool? 

Morgan and I started thinking about preschools a few months ago. To be completely honest, I was completely set on sending him to a traditional Montessori children's house. Why not? We love Montessori. It provides a great academic base and a chance to gain independence. 

Well, then realty hit. Montessori is expensive. Really really expensive. Schools in our area were in the $400 to $500 a month range for two half-days a week. I would have to get a full time job just to be able to afford it. That just doesn't make sense at this point. Playschools were still an option, but I really don't like the idea of sending him to an expensive glorified daycare center. 

With Montessori out, I shifted to homeschool. Academically, I'm not worried about Henry. He knows all of his letters, most of their sounds, can almost count to 20, recognizes almost all those numbers. I could just continue what we do at home. 

But, socially, Henry sometimes struggles. He has a difficult time with transitions and crippling anxiety when it comes to separation. If he knows he is going somewhere without me, he will stress {including waking in the night to talk about it} for days ahead of time. Even if its just a quick drop off somewhere familiar. And, unfortunately, this is something homeschool can't help. But, he's only 3, so is this really a problem?

So, we continued our search. And finally found a great academically based program {although not Montessori} near our house for a reasonable price. Its in our local public school, and may be where Henry will go to elementary school. There were limited spots so we applied for the lottery. Yesterday we got notice that Henry was accepted! He starts September 9. 

I'm hoping we made the right decision. Have you made preschool decisions? Are you sending your 3-year-old? Homeschooling? Playschool? Waiting another year? What are your thoughts? 


Monday, February 10, 2014

Letter C Tot School

Henry is almost 35 months

It's so nice to be back to easier letters where we can do some fun activities. Henry's interest in tot school and choosing to be in the classroom, however, seems to be at an all time low. He's been going through some major growth spurts lately and I think he just can't focus on anything for long. 

Either way, he's been making some major connections between the letters and their sounds lately. Its been great to see his progress as pre-literacy basics are coming together. 

On our first tray was a set of colorful counting cards I made. On one set of the cards were colorful dots from 1 to 10. Then, on the other card were regular number cards 1 to 10. Each number had a different color and the goal was to match them. I wish some of the colors hadn't been so close to each other, but it was still a great exercise in counting and color matching. 

The second tray was a one to one corn fine motor tray. I have a {ice cube?} tray that includes a bunch of small spots. Then, Henry and the co-op kids could place one piece of corn into each slot. A few of the kids actually had the patience to sit and do this tray, but Henry didn't. He would do a couple columns and move on. 

The third tray was Henry's favorite. It was an object to card matching tray. He could match small C-objects to cards with pictures of the objects, then match a word card to the others. It was a big hit for Henry, especially the cherries. 

The final tray was one of our wooden chalkboards from Virtual Montessori. These are always popular with all of the children. 

Other things we did this week included: 

Car Color Matching -- This was a popular tray from the first time we did the letter C. It was still a big hit a year later! 

Magnet Board -- Henry loves the car magnets

Sandpaper Letter Salt Tray -- This was a nice easy letter and several of the kids were drawing it in the sand after a few attempts.

Letter C Sensory Bin

Cat Shape Matching -- Another repeat from the last time we did the letter C. Henry enjoyed matching the shapes, and knew all the names. It was probably a little too easy for him. 

Tot School
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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

It's a...

Meet Nora Marjorie Kavanaugh! Perfectly healthy, measuring 20w6d and 13oz! We can't wait to meet you baby Nora!