Thursday, May 27, 2010

:: Talky-Talk ::

I know that I have been a blogger slacker lately. I seem to have ideas for blog topics frequently, but I forget to write them down, and then forget them entirely. My time is also at a premium now, especially since I'm back to work with both boys. I am going to try and write shorter posts more often and see if that helps.

:: morning cocoa and hoot-hoot-baby ::

Liam has gotten over some of his Hatred For Everything lately with the return of our Regularly Scheduled Program, aka: Going To Work. I think he has also gotten used to Archer, and the fact that our twosome is now a threesome. I'm a little sad that we won't get to be a twosome again for quite awhile, but the new threesome got a lot easier to handle once Archer was about six or seven weeks old. Going back to work was easier than I thought it would be; I just don't have a very clean house, and I don't contribute a lot to the organization of the store quite yet. But T doesn't have to work the whole day anymore, and gets to spend more time with her family again, which makes me feel good.

Anyway, back to Liam. He still has the regular old two-year-old tantrums and outbursts (especially when Dadda thinks it's a good idea to take an over-tired toddler and swing him around in the air and scream like a banshee, thanks Dadda) but he doesn't hate going places anymore, which is a huge relief. 

:: little Blue Eyes at eight weeks ::

We had a 30 month  assessment recently with the Child Development Center where we focused on his speech. Michelle came over to our place and it was a nice visit and a good chance for me to think outside my little bubble about his speech and language development. She just had to ask me a bunch of questions and not torture Liam with any pressure-y tests, so it was easy. She put in a referral with someone from Speech Therapy, since she determined he's about a year behind in his expressive language. She thinks he's almost where he should be for his age for what he understands, but he doesn't speak in sentences, doesn't mimic us, doesn't use pronouns, doesn't refer to himself, etc. Michelle was so supportive, and put in the referral for speech therapy that same day, and also mailed us some activities and games to do with Liam to improve his language. She must have mailed it as soon as she got back to her office, since I got it two days after our appointment! 

Still, it was a bit scary for me to realize how far behind he really is, and sad to think that it might hold him back later on if he doesn't catch up soon. I know that he understands a lot of what we say, and he can point out many things in books, and point to almost all his body parts (and also say a few: eyes, teeth, nose) but I began to second-guess myself as a parent: do I read to him enough? Do I spend enough time with him, or is he playing too much by himself or watching a movie too much in the day? Spencer and I could both read before we were in kindergarten, and I taught my brother to read when he was three, so maybe I put too much emphasis on language. But it's hard to hear my friends' children prattle on and tell stories with sentences, while my kid talks in grunts, sound effects, and the same fifty words he's been using for months now.

 :: another eight-week shot - I almost caught the smile here ::

We booked another hearing test to make sure he can hear and that his tubes haven't come out yet, which was great because it was the first hearing test he has passed! In the past he has always cried and been creeped out by the testing process, and his ears were always filled with fluid. But this time his tubes were still in place and he participated in the test after a few false starts. Basically what they do is play a sound on one side of the room, and if he looks that-a-way then they light up a box with a toy in it or play a little video for 3 seconds on that side of the room. That way they can see if each ear can hear by his responses to different sound levels. The wonderful woman (whose name escapes my baby-ruined brain) who has tested his hearing several times was so impressed and happy that we finally got a good test. She didn't think it was out of the ordinary that he is about year behind in his speech - she thought that's about where he should be considering his hearing loss for the first year and a half of his life. Hearing her say that made me feel so much better, because she has actually been there and tested his hearing, and she knows her stuff and knows kids. 

 So we're waiting on the speech therapy (big waiting list to get in), and in the meantime we are talking in what I always thought was "baby-talk" and tried to avoid. But one of the sheets that Michelle gave us said to speak slowly and clearly, and eliminate filler words, because "baby-talk" gets the message across and focuses on the words he actually needs to learn right now.

:: since this photo was taken a few weeks ago I have slowly weaned him off the Nuk ::

A quick update on Archer too: he got his first shots at two months, and weighed 16 lbs. He cried that horrible cry when she stuck him (three needles and many many vaccines, yuck) but stopped crying as soon as it was over. I nursed him to sleep in the nursing room, and he slept all afternoon with no ill effects from the vaccine and no fever. 

He is a sweet baby and a good sleeper like his brother. I hope things stay that way! He usually only wakes up once a night now to eat, and oftentimes it's when Spencer's going to work, which isn't actually night at this time of year - the sun is out and birds are chirping at five a.m.! I can definitely handle one or two wakings in the night. He doesn't usually require a diaper change in the night unless he has a big messy baby fart, which was my super-pet-peeve when he and Liam were little newborns. I don't mind night feedings at all, in fact I think they're kind of sweet. And with Archer it is nice to be able to feed him without thinking of Liam at all, because I know he's sleeping soundly in the next room, and I can just focus on Archer. But changing a diaper in the middle of the night, with only the light of my little salt lamp to see by is just so annoying! I use only the salt lamp to avoid waking baby any more than necessary, but also to avoid a super-complainer Dadda who whines if my bedside reading lamp gets turned on (yes I have two different bedside lamps). So I am glad that he wears size three diapers now, which hold a lot of pee, and doesn't poop very often in the night anymore.

He smiles at us once in awhile, and has lots of funny baby babble things to say to us. His hair is growing in quickly at the front where it fell out, so it looks like he has a little crew cut because it stands straight up - so cute! He is so strong and can stand up on his legs when we hold him under his arms (seems like a miracle after our floppy achon kid) and he already has good head control. I've put him in the Bumbo a few times but honestly I love cuddling him and wearing him in my Beco, so I'm putting the Bumbo off a little longer.

I have more to write about later, including an awesome surprise visit from Nana and Papa, getting food poisoning with vomiting and diarrhea on a day where Spencer's work truck literally exploded hydraulic fluid so I was stuck at home with both boys all day while barfing, and also: getting mastitis! Yay! Don't you wish you were me? Hint: only one of these topics was any fun to experience. Haha.


Kim said...

Your blog posts are so chock full of info! I don't know how you handle it all! Love the pics of the boys-Archer is a big boy! WoW! Don't beat yourself up on Liam's speech. Preston was behind too and had the tubes put in at 21 months. Now at 4 1/2 the kid that was behind in speech speaks ebtter and has the most vast vocabulary I have ever heard. Liam will get there. And Preston watches a lot of tv too. Do not worry.
I am sorry you battled a virus and mastitis! Ugh! Have a wonderful weekend.

Jess said...

I think it's not quite the short post you prepped me for. Ha-ha, way to keep the bloggy friends in the loop, I value our phone talks more anyway.

Emily said...

Seamus was quite behind on his speech too due to hearing loss, and now at 4 and a half, he has tested out of speech therapy and no longer qualifies for it! He progressed in leaps and bounds in a span of 18 months. Is there any type of therapy provided for children who qualify where you live? We have a program called Early Intervention that is state-run and has been such a blessing. I'm certain that you are doing a fantastic job with Liam and hopefully feel reassurred that many achon kids have gone through the same delays! On a side note - what type of cloth diapers do you use? I would love to use them for the new little one but I am overwhelmed with the options!

Chelsea said...

Thanks for the comments, mama friends! It's reassuring to hear that your boys were behind at one point but are all caught up now. Sometimes it feels like he will never communicate in English.

As for cloth diapers - I use unbleached cotton pre-folds from a Bummi's kit. The Bummi's covers aren't the greatest, so I have been using them with gDiaper covers. However, after repeated use with the Liam, the gDiaper velcro is giving out. I am looking to move to all-size diapers with snaps instead of velcro - like the flip diaper system, for Archer. Using disposable is way too expensive! I will keep you posted - I haven't decided exactly which ones I will move onto next.

If you want to start out with something easy and practical, I would recommend pre-folds as they have many uses - under baby's bum on the change table, under baby's bum during naked-time to prevent diaper rash, as a spit up rag, etc. I love them, and they're so soft now that they're 2.5 years old!