Finger Sucking

Any of you who know our girls, know that they are both finger suckers. They both suck the index and middle fingers. Norah sucks hers with her palm towards the ceiling, while Lucy sucks hers the normal way. Our pediatrician said we don’t need to worry about it until she is 5 or 6 or until they start losing teeth. I’m pretty sure I was in Kindergarten when I lost my first tooth (okay, I’m positive, because by my 1st grade pictures I totally had HUGE goofy teeth). Since Norah is 4 1/2, she could be getting close to that.

Anyway, I am looking for a few suggestions. Both girls basically suck fingers at bedtime or when they are sick or hurt. They both have silky blankies that trigger the finger sucking. We told Norah that when she is 4 1/2 (which is next Tues.) we are taking her blankie away. I know this is a process we need to begin, but to me it seem so cruel to take away her comfort item. I know my mom used some nasty tasting stuff (used for nail biters) on my thumb – I guess we could try that. I know some people put mittens/gloves on their child’s hand for bedtime – I just don’t know if I can do that. Any other suggestions or success stories are welcome.

Also, we have only talked about doing this with Norah, but maybe it would be easier on everyone involved, if we work on it with Lucy, too. I’m sure the younger the child, the easier it would be. After all, children who have pacifiers, often get rid of them before 2. Any thoughts?

20 Week Ultrasound

Last Thursday I had my ultrasound, and no, we don’t know what we are having.  We didn’t know with the girls so we decided to go the same route this time.  If Kevin hadn’t been with me, I might have been more tempted to know, but I know he prefers not knowing.  

The doctor said everything looks great!  It is hard to believe that we are over halfway now – especially since I will be having a c-section about a week or say early.  
Norah was excited to get to see the baby – Lucy didn’t care either way.  The technician doing the ultrasound printed a picture for each of the girls with the baby’s hand above its head with the palm out as if the baby is waving.     

Just a Normal School Day

After being away for a 3 day weekend and MDO yesterday, it was nice to get back into a normal “school” routine today. The chore can is going really well. Only once have the girls complained about having to do a chore (knock on wood).

The girls really like our devotional book, The One Year Devotions for Preschoolers. The pictures are really sweet – which is why Lucy likes it. The story is totally age appropriate for both girls – we love it!!

I’ve been working hard getting together a number of Montessori inspired activities for Lucy. Right now I have a toothpick sorting, noodle sorting, bean scooping and pouring, pitcher pouring with beans, dust pan and broom activity, and a wooden matching game. I’m currently working on a sound game and a toddler handbag activity. I would like to add an activity or 2 every week so that I can rotate things more easily. I’ve decided to have everything available on the shelves during school time, but then I pick it up when we are finished with school. It takes a little more effort, but if left out – Lucy could make a HUGE mess of things.

Norah is doing well with school. Several mornings she threw a little fit about doing certain activities (mostly the paper/pencil acitivities) so I have changed up a few things which has helped. I really like the MFW curriculum as a guide, but as a former preschool teacher I don’t like all the activities that are supposed to be done at the table. I can understand Norah’s frustration. My girls both have a lot of energy – they are always dancing, jumping, and tumbling so I am trying to incorporate A LOT of physical activity into our morning – it totally helps Norah concentrate on her handwriting and cutting.

Here are a few pictures of our new activities for Lucy. This common Montessori pouring activity is by far Lucy’s new favorite activity! Look at my cute pitchers!! They are from my grandma. I told her I was looking for 2 little pitchers and she had me pull these down off of a shelf at her house. They are PERFECT and the girls love them!! Today the girls (Norah wanted to try out all of Lucy’s new stuff) poured beans back and forth. Lucy did great – very little spilling! I will probably put rice in them next week and when she can pour the rice w/ little spilling, we will switch to water.

The idea of this activity is mostly a sensory experience – listening to the different sounds as she scoops bean with a metal spoon in a glass bowl. Lucy played with this a lot longer than I expected.

This is a Montessori “practical life” activity – learning to manipulate a dust broom and pan. Norah wanted try it – but wasn’t too interested once she started. We used that moment to talk about finishing things we start – even when we don’t like what we are doing. She completed the task and quickly put it back on the shelf.

I thought the Lucy would really like this activity, but I think she was so interested in the pitchers that she only sort about 1/3 of the toothpicks.

Pumpkin Fest . . . Rainout!

The girls and I went to my parents this weekend for the Pumpkin Festival. Unfortunately, it rained basically the whole weekend! There were some brave people who enjoyed the festival in the rain, but not us.

Luckily, the rain held off Saturday morning until the parade was over. All Lucy could think about was candy and, boy, did we get candy! There were very few kids around us (which is unusual, guess the look of the gray sky kept people away) so people in the parade literally dumped handfuls in front of us. I did a terrible job taking pics – hopefully my mom and sil took some good ones. Here is one of the girls at the parade.
We did have fun hanging out with my parents, brothers, sister-in-law, niece and my grandma. Contessa was so excited to see Norah – it was very cute. On Friday afternoon when Norah got up from her rest time, Contessa squealed and hugged Norah tight!
Maybe next year the weather will be better!

A New Favorite Activity

I’ve decided to take a little different approach with Lucy – sort of Montessori style. I have about 4 different acitivities on the shelf in the basement and when Norah is working on her reading lesson, Lucy chooses an activity. She puts it on a tray (if necessary) and carries it to the floor. When she finishes, she picks it up, puts it away and chooses a new acitivity. The activities will stay out for a while, unless she acts bored or they are totally theme oriented. I will add new ones as I have them ready.

Today was our first day to try things this way. I think it worked well because she could take ownership of what she was doing, instead of being told what to do. The activities that are available for her now are noodle sorting, matching blocks, puzzle, and farm animals and blocks (these 2 are together).

Her new favorite activity is noodle sorting.

I just bought a bag of Wacky Mac and then added some noodles that I already had. Lucy worked for about 20 minutes – I was just hoping for over 5. She went back to the noodle sorting between all the other acitivities. In the Wacky Mac there are purple, orange, green and plain (yellow, as Lucy called it). I added plain twisty noodles. Lucy wasn’t sure how to separate the plain shells and the plain twisty because they were the same color. I ended up dying the twisty one blue – that made Lucy quite happy.

Muffin Tin Tuesday

Since the girls go to MDO on Mondays, we had Muffin Tin Tuesday. I had just read this and decided to copy her idea and do a Children’s Literature Muffin Tin. As previously mentioned, the theme around here has been farms. Really, is there and easier theme for putting together a lunch? It was a good one to start with. We read Big Red Barn and The Little Red Hen.

The girls had toast, vegies, ranch (I’m sure you will notice ranch in almost all of our muffin tin meals), mozzerella cheese, hard-boiled eggs, and apples.

Next week will be a little trickier – elephants. I guess we will have to find out what elephants like to eat.

Field Trip #1 – Grant’s Farm

As mentioned before, Kevin and I took the girls to Grant’s Farm. This was our first official field trip. Norah’s science theme for last week and this is farm animals – so we thought Grant’s Farm would be the perfect place for us to go!

We grabbed lunch on the way and headed out. Lucy was totally freaked out by the tram ride – no idea why, but she cried for the first 5 minutes. Once she realized it was no big deal, she wanted to sit up and see the animals!!

The tour guide called this cow an “oreo cookie” cow. Norah thought that was quite funny!

Once we got off the tram we headed straight for the goats. Kevin and Lucy went into the pen to feed the goats. Norah and I stayed outside the pen and Norah fed the goats through the pen.

Besides the farm animals, Grant’s Farm also has zebra, elephants, kangaroo, buffalo, and ostriches. We saw the elephant show – Norah loved this part – which is great because next week her science topic elephants.

Lucy started to have a meltdown (understandable since it was after her naptime) – but we had already seen everything so we headed back to the car. Before we headed home we made a stop at Ted Drewes – we can’t be that close to Ted Drewes and not stop, can we? Kevin and Lucy shared the Apple Pie Conrete and Norah and I shared hot fudge, cararmel sundae with whipped cream. Yum!!

The girls fell asleep on the way home. Norah woke up when Kevin carried her to her room, but Lucy was out cold!