Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Aunt Becky has a new name!!

David and I love to hear Xander talk - the words he comes up with and the way they sound in his little voice are adorable. We are constantly working with him to say all the names of the people in our lives. He's mastered many - Mimi, Papa, Mama, Daddy, and GG (David's grandma). As I've mentioned in a previous post, my sister Erin is lovingly known as "E-oo", thanks to little Xander's pronunciation. He really is able to say "Aunt E," but is more interested in the way "E-oo" sounds. He calls Nathan, my brother-in-law, "Nay-nay" (although it often comes out "nanny" :)) We're still working on Grandma and Grandpa, but those are tough! Tonight he mastered another name - Aunt B!! David's sister, Becky, has now been named by her nephew. I can't wait to see her and hear him say it to her! Here's a video clip. And of course, the baby he's talking about with Aunt B is himself! There's a shout out to Papa in there, too. :)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Work - ECRR Part VI

Phonological awareness is being able to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words. Easily said it's playing with sounds. Being able to hear the sounds that make up words helps children sound out words as they begin to read.

Here are some tips to help your child develop phonological awareness.
1. Say nursery rhymes and make up your own silly, nonsense rhymes.
2. Sing songs. Songs have different notes for each syllable in a word, so childen can hear the different sounds in words.
3. Add actions as you sing a song or recite a poem. This helps your child break down language into separate words.
4. Play word games such as, "What sounds like 'ran'?" or "What starts with the same sounds as 'ball'?"

Here are some activities to do with your older pre-school child.
1. Ask whether two words rhyme: "Do 'cat' and 'dog' rhyme?" "Do 'cat' and 'hat' rhyme?"
2. Say words with word chunks left out: "What word would we have if you took the 'hot' away from 'hotdog'?"
3. Put two word chunks together to make a word: "What word would we have if we put 'cow' and 'boy' together?"
4. Say words with sounds left out: "What words would we have if we took the 'buh' sound away from 'bat'?"
5. Read some poetry together. Make up short poems together. Say the words that rhyme.

Now that I've shared those tips, I'll share some of my favorite nursery rhymes and songs that I often use in story times. I won't type them all out since some of them are lengthy, but if you have questions about any of them let me know and I'll send it to you!

Fingerplays/songs with motions:
I Have 10 Fingers
Open Shut Them
2 Little Blackbirds
5 Little Monkeys
Rain is Falling Down
Hokey Pokey
5 Little Ducks
5 Green and Speckled Frogs
Higgledy Piggledy
The Wheels on the Bus

Nursery Rhymes:
The Itsy Bitsy Spider
Jack and Jill
Little Miss Muffet
Hey Diddle Diddle
Little Boy Blue
Humpty Dumpty

Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Whew! It sure has been a whirlwind month!

David got a 4-month contract position with a firm in Charlotte! The firm is Neighboring Concepts. He knows a few guys there, so when he started on Monday he said he fit right in. He finished up his contract in Winston-Salem last Wednesday, so we were able to have a nice 4-day weekend as a family. It's an incredible blessing to be back in Charlotte as a family. I appreciate our families so much for taking care of Xander a couple of days a week while I worked and my parents for letting us live with them during the past 2 months. They have all been so supportive and wonderful throughout the whole ordeal. Now we get to live like we've never lived before - me still with my part-time job in Outreach at the library and David with a full-time job as a registered architect, while continuing to be mommy and daddy, wife and husband. It's been interesting to say the least! But I am so very thankful. It's so strange to think this will be the first time since Xander was born that we're living out this life. If you had asked me about it when I was pregnant I would have said this would be our life from the start - boy would I have been wrong!

Xander is continuing to grow like a weed! And I certainly know how weeds grow - just look at my flower beds! We went to the doctor last week for his 18-month check-up. I was a little sad when I first realized that the appointment would happen while David was at work. He's been to every one of Xander's well-visits and has been there to help comfort him after every shot. Then I found out that he would be able to go after all since the appointment was during the transition time while David was off for a couple of days! What a blessing! I'm not sure many dads could say they've been to every well-visit for their child! Xander did very well, even though he had to have 3 shots. He cried a little, but got over it very quickly. I had been told that he would probably be very fussy the rest of the day and maybe even the next day, but he really wasn't! We even took a family outing to Ikea and shared some frozen yogurt. :) At the appointment, we found out what we already knew - Xander is a hoss!

(Here's an aside to that statement - I typed it and then thought to myself, "Do I even really know what that word means?" So then I proceeded to look it up on This is what it said:
one who is a beast that can basically do anything he wants. He is usually loved by all and a ladies man. He could break anyone or anything in half. Hoss is a compliment.
Boy am I glad I gave my son a compliment!! Haha!)

He weighs 32.8 lbs (99th percentile), is 33 inches long (72nd percentile) and his head circumference is 19 3/4 inches (96th percentile)! He is a big boy! Everything else about him was great and he is right on target! We're so proud of our son!
He can do so many things now - he tries to walk up and down stairs by himself, which he can do, but I still don't trust him, so I am with him at all times on the stairs. He can point to any body part (almost) if I ask him where it is. He knows eyes, ears, mouth, nose, chin, cheeks, head, knees, legs, fingers, hands, feet, toes, belly button. He struggles with elbow, but that's a tricky one to point to! He knows circle, triangle, square. It amazes me how much he understands! This morning I asked him to get me a diaper because he had a dirty diaper. He went over to the diapers, pointed to them, looked back at me and said emphatically, "NO!" Haha! He hates having his diaper changed, so I guess that was his way of telling me. :) He insists on feeding himself like a big boy - no more cut-up little pieces for him. He wants the whole thing so he can bite off of it. It's pretty hilarious! And very messy, as he also wants to use his utensils by himself. :)

Xander got his first haircut this morning. His proud grandmothers were there to take pics and participate in the experience. Pictures are below.


The curls

Such a good boy!

No more curls.

He actually looks happy about it!

Maybe not so much. :)

I will always be oh-so-thankful that I chose to get my hair done at the same time. :P

The iPad was awesome! Xander loves it and it captured his attention while my hairdresser, Tina, did her magic!

Playing in the waiting room while mommy finished up. He was such a good boy!


Overall, things are going very well! I'm thankful to have my family back together full-time. I appreciate that more now than I ever could have if we were never separated. What a good, albeit difficult, lesson to learn.