Monday, June 28, 2010

RI here we come

In just a few hours Ryleigh and I will be sitting on a plane, bound for Boston. The plan is for my parents to come pick us up at the airport, and then we'll do some walking around the city before driving to RI.

I've already downloaded countless episodes of Dora the Explorer to put on the iPod to hopefully keep Ryleigh entertained. Thank God it's only a quick flight from PA to MA! I really don't think Ryleigh will tolerate sitting on my lap for more than 5 minutes, but I'm hoping the excitement about being on a plane will keep her entertained.

We have plans to celebrate my cousin's birthday (who I happen to share a birthday with) on Wednesday, so I will get to see my mom's side of the family all together. We may also head to Newport to do some exploring. The rest of the week is pretty open but I'm excited about finally getting a chance to help Laura with some wedding planning stuff!

Even though I'm going to miss Ryan I am really excited about spending all this time with my family! I hope everyone has a great week!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

So Big!

Ryleigh is seriously getting older so quickly.

It really hit me now that she is in a toddler bed. And now that she isn't really taking morning naps I realize how independent she is. I can just keep her contained in her room and the living room while I shower and she is so good about reading books or playing with toys. She now tells me when she is hungry, and tells me what she wants to eat. I'm pretty sure that if she could open the refrigerator by herself she wouldn't need me for anything (just kidding).

And the rate at which she is learning is astounding. She now recognizes some of her letters, and some shapes. She knows what "R" is for (Ryleigh), and she will sometimes tell you that "W" is for Weber. She can name most of the ocean animals, and most of the farm animals. And she can "read" her own name.

We also have a little photo book in which we've put pictures of all the family members so that she can learn everyone's names. If you ask her to point to anyone she will find them in the book..... except she confuses Amelie and Maeve. She has a hard time with longer names like Aunt Michelle, but she can say "Shell". And she says "Mama" for "Grandma", but she definitely knows who Grandma is!

I think it's just so much fun to see her learn and discover new things. I love that I get to teach her, and take her on all kinds of experience trips to broaden her world. In two days we get to fly to Boston, and I am excited for her first plane ride.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Score! Two birds: One Stone

Months ago our nutritionist recommended that we try and add calories to stuff like fruits and veggies by letting Ryleigh dip them in fruit dip, salad dressing, and what not. To a mom who tries to keep her kid at least somewhat neat (even though I usually fail) it sounded like a ludicrous idea. Plus I felt like the whole "dipping" concept was a little beyond Ryleigh's fine-motor skills at that point in time.

However, yesterday we had a play date with a mom and her son who also went through the whole FTT thing. He was dipping his chicken nuggets in ranch dressing, and doing very well with it, so I decided to let Ryleigh try while she could see someone else do it, and mimic them. And it totally worked. She did so good with dipping her chicken nuggets, honestly I was pretty surprised.

Fast forward to tonight.... The only thing Ryleigh wanted to eat was peas. She turned down a buttered roll, carrots, potatoes, and roast beef.... until I got the idea of putting the gravy on her veggies, and she started eating a few more. Then I thought about putting gravy in a ramakin so she could dip whatever she wanted. And it worked so well! She sat there for a good 10 minutes dipping all her veggies, bread, and beef in the gravy and then gobbling them all up.

For a FTT mom it is so wonderful just to have one good meal in the day. It is a huge stress reliever. So, to actually have the added bonus of adding extra calories with gravy is like Christmas!!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Thinking about....

Lately I've been thinking about how much I want another baby.... but there are some goals I want to reach before another kid is born. 1. Get Ryleigh off her binky addiction. 2. Get Ryleigh into a toddler bed.

But then once I start thinking about putting Ryleigh in a toddler bed, I think about getting new bed linens for her, and then I would just have to buy matching curtains as well. :-) But then if I'm getting all that stuff it probably won't match her Winnie the Pooh theme, so I'd have to take the wall decorations down, and buy new ones.....

haha..... as Ryan says I am just like the mouse in "If you give a mouse a cookie". :-)

Now that I am inspired to do all that work I'm gonna have to start saving up my "allowance" to afford my new project.

Conversations w/Ryleigh

Although Ryleigh can't form words into sentences yet she can definitely get her point across. Here is a conversation we had earlier today.

Ryleigh: star
Me: (looking around for a star) What star Ryleigh? I don't see one
Ryleigh: she-be (That's Ryleigh's speak for T.V.)
Me: Oh, you want to watch star on TV. (referring to Sprout's goodnight show w/Nina and Star)
Ryleigh: Yes. Daddy.
Me: You want to watch Star on TV with Daddy??
Ryleigh: Yes. Cream.
Me: So you want to watch TV and eat ice cream with Daddy?
Ryleigh: Yes


See. She's so smart.
Every night Ryleigh and Ryan watch the goodnight show together while I am working. That's when they sit on the couch together and eat ice cream. Apparently Ryleigh was really looking forward to their "tradition" tonight. :-) (And since I don't have to work tonight maybe I can get some me-time!)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sweet 16

I've realized that 16 months is one of my favorite ages. I absolutely love spending time with Ryleigh, and I've realized sometimes I prefer her company over some other peoples. haha.

I love that she is independent enough to be left in her room to play with her toys, but she still needs me for cuddles, and to kiss her boo-boos.

I love that she can communicate her wants and needs, so I don't have to play the guessing game when she's fussing.

I love seeing her face as she discovers new things, and learns more about the world around her.

I love watching her start to interact with other kids more and more.

I love that she is still obedient (for the most part), and hasn't gotten into the temper tantrum stage yet.

And most of all I just love making her laugh!

I'm sure I'll enjoy all the other ages and stages as well, but I am most definitely trying to enjoy this age as much as possible!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

On the homefront

As everyone knows, Ryan and I are hopefully going to be buying a house next spring/early summer. There's a few things that can deter us from this goal, but at this point we are planning on it.

Today as we were watching "My First Place" on HGTV this one crazy woman actually stated that a house that didn't have an ice machine dispenser on the front of a refrigerator was a deal breaker for her! Obviously she was insane and seriously needed to readjust her priorities on what she was looking for in a house. But, it got us to talking about what we want in a house. And the obvious main factor is location!

However, our requirements for location are all over the place, hopefully some of you can help us out.

1. We want to be close to 295, but are willing to live between exits 17 and 34. Preferably between exits 26-34 though.

2. We need a city that has decent schools systems, with a high school that has good academics, sports, and arts programs (you know, just in case all our kids are super talented)

3. A nice neighborhood where we can feel comfortable letting the kids ride their bikes down the street, or walking to the nearest Wawa. I definitely want a neighborhood with sidewalks. I am so tired of wanting to go for a walk but having to walk in the street with cars speeding past Ryleigh's stroller.

4. We are also considering Pennsylvania, probably south of Philadelphia, so it would still be reasonable for Ryan to get to work in Gibbstown (exit 17 off of 295).


I think the biggest thing we really need to find out more info about is the school systems. Since I grew up in RI, and Ryan went to private school we have no clue how the public schools fare around here. So, anyone with any advice let us know. Or if you know of a good website to check out the schools that would be great too.

And yes, we know a realtor can help us with these questions, but we don't have one yet :-)
So if you want to suggest a good realtor that'd be great too :-)

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Here's your asnwers

A few people have expressed concern because of my status updates about Ryleigh's health "issues". Thank you for being concerned and caring about our family. :-) But here's the scoop. Ryleigh still does not have any symptoms of any kind. I know I have mentioned that I've been stressed out, but it's just due to the fact that I have had to go to the pediatrician about 4 times this week, the children's hospital once, and to LabCorp. It's a whole lot of running around to get tests done, and I get frustrated because I don't think the tests are necessary. Plus it is absolutely heart crushing to have your child labeled as, "failure to thrive". I cannot even put into words how that makes me feel.

It is extremely difficult to allow my child to be restrained while a phlebotomist draws her blood, and to hear her crying "mommy" wanting me to save her..... when I don't even think the tests are necessary at all. They are testing for serious diseases for which she has no symptoms what so ever! And I do not need to hear, "well, you never know, you should test just in case".

How would you feel if your child was perfectly healthy, never sick aside from a cold, hitting milestones at the correct time, and very intelligent. Imagine if your doctors told you to run around 2 states, make all kinds of appointments, just to test to make sure nothing is wrong when there is no sign of a problem at all. And then think of how you'd feel when all the bills came in while you are trying to save money for a house!

I am underweight. I have been underweight my whole life. I cannot gain weight even when I try. I have fast metabolism, a small build, and a small appetite. My daughter has inherited it from me. It's not a huge surprise to me that she in underweight and probably will be her whole life.

Ryan told me not to blog about all of this because I hate when people give me advice on a topic that they know nothing about. He'll probably get mad at me because inevitable someone will give me more advice that I don't want to hear. So, in order for my husband not to get mad here are the rules:

Do not offer me advice unless a) you currently hold a medical license, specializing in pediatrics, or b) your child has also gone through this same type of thing..... and as far as I know no one I know falls under category a, and I have already had open discussions with the people in category b.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

"We did it!"

All of a sudden Ryleigh has decided she loves Dora the Explorer. I don't even know how it happened because we never even used to watch Nickelodeon.... subliminal messages somewhere to attract her to the channel, and then inevitably to all the toys and accessories with Dora's big head on it perhaps?

Anyway, her new love for Dora has led to her saying her first "sentence". She now says, "Did it!", from the song Dora always sings at the end, "We did it". She walked around the entire doctor's office last night saying, "did it", to anyone who would listen to her. She also now walks around with her backpack, pretending she's Dora, and occasionally she'll shout random things like, hooray, and boots.

However, her love for Dora still does not hold a candle to her love for Veggie Tales. The first thing she wanted today was "Bob book", which refers to her Veggie Tales alphabet book. As soon as I let her out of her crib she ran to get it, and made me read it for the  millionth time!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Freeness!

I am constantly scouring the internet trying to find fun, cheap, interesting things for me and Ryleigh to do. Lately Ryan's been working 6 days a week, so that's a lot of time in the day for us to fill. Sometimes we go on play dates. Sometimes we have absolutely nothing to do so we peruse Target, and it usually ends up with me buying more toys. Today however, we had a fun-filled free day.

There is an equestrian center in Logan Twp. called Dream Park. They had a community day today, with tons of free things. We got popcorn and snow cones, and we got to walk through the stables to see all the horses. Ryleigh was in heaven! She was all about petting the horses, and did not show the tiniest bit of fear. Even one big stallion aptly named "Spirit", who had a lot of spirit....but kinda leaning more towards the evil side. He kept "neighing", and while all the other kids backed away in fear Ryleigh laughed at him. Haha.

Dream Park also had free pony rides. And again, while other kids were too scared to get on the ponies Ryleigh jumped right on with no problem. (I was holding on to her the whole time, and walking beside the horse of course). She absolutely loved it. When it was time to get down she didn't want to let go. As soon as I got her off she started signing "more". So I asked if she could ride again, and since it was free she got to go again. She probably could have ridden as many times as she wanted, but I decided it would be nicer to give other kids a turn.

After that we headed to Friendly's for Free Ice Cream day! Yay for more freeness!

I was so happy to have a fun day with Ryleigh, without having to worry about money. I was also thankful that she got to experience something new today. I love watching her have new experiences!!

Next week we're planning on going on a Duck boat tour of Philadelphia. It's something we've always wanted to do, and I'm pretty sure Ryleigh is going to love it..... well, maybe not so much the tour part, but she'll definitely love the duck, and the boat parts. (Too bad it's totally not free!)

Friday, June 4, 2010

Acquisition of Language

In college, as an elementary education major, I had to learn all about the acquisition of language. Totally boring when reading about it in a textbook. But, very interesting when watching your own kid learn how to talk. And because Ryan was a Psych major he also finds it very interesting to "study" Ryleigh. And together we have realized that our kid just defies all the rules.

1. She has a lisp with her "th"s sometimes... but not all the time. You would think someone with a lisp would be consistent.

2. She can pronounce the word "treats" perfectly clear without a problem. However, she struggles with the simple word "cup". (She calls it a "pup")

3. Despite not being able to say the word "cup" she can clearly say the "k" sound at the end of the word, "book".... she actually really enjoys stressing the endings of words right now. So she will say, "book-k-k-k", just to make sure she's really got the ending down.

4. The word, "Hera", (our cat's name), was one of the very first words she could say. She said it perfectly clear. And then all of a sudden she resorted to saying, "Rera" instead. Now she is back to saying "Hera", but it is a word she has to think about and pronounce the "h" deliberately.Weird.

5. According to statistics I've read in baby books and websites Ryleigh has a vocabulary about 15x's that of a normal 16 month old. Apparently at 16 months they are only supposed to say about 7 words. I'm pretty sure it's because Ryleigh would rather sit and read books over and over again than play with toys.

I just think it's fun watching a child grow and learn. And I love seeing her learn new things every day. 

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