Sunday, March 29, 2015

Abigail Update

In December, Abigail came home one day and asked if she could get a violin and have violin lessons.  Lar and I decided that if she could learn to read notes enough to play a little on the piano and stick with it, that we would get her a violin and lessons if she is still interested. This music trial period is also good because Lar can give her lessons on the piano.  (If she ends up sticking with the piano, I would eventually like to find her another teacher so that she can learn to play jazz and casual style music, not stilted classical music, which is what Larry plays.)

She is reading fingerings now, which I didn't know was a thing.  But, she did give her first concert, a duet of "Merrily We Roll Along" while sitting on a stack of books so that she could reach.  Too cute!

In other Abigail's Growing Up news, this happened:

It was loose for 2 weeks before she just "yanked it out" (her words" during school one day.
The Tooth Fairy left her $1 and a new electric toothbrush.
Someone told me that was low and that the national average was actually around $12 per tooth.  Foolishly, even though I know better when it comes to other people and numbers, I repeated that statistic a few times before looking it up and learned that the mode of the payout is a reasonable $1 per tooth, while the mean is $3.70. Parents aged 18-24 and/or earning less than $25,000 year are the demographic paying over a dollar.  [This data is from Time, August 30, 2013]

Not fully understanding the term, Abigail asked me to take "selfies" of her and she posed a dozen different expressions for me.  Who could resist this face?  Larry said that he read somewhere the kids stop being cute to other people (not their own parents) in the age range of 5 to 7.  I can't imagine this face not being cute to any sighted person.  (But then again, I am super biased.)

Monday, March 16, 2015

Sleep Terrorist Update

Most of my readers are familiar with the daily, exhaustive struggles of living with our little Sleep Terrorist.  For those of you who aren't, he falls asleep between 7:30 and 8 pm.  He often wakes several times throughout the night before popping up, wide awake in the 4 o'clock hour.  I mean Up For The Day at 4:something.  It can be 4:10 or 4:23 or, when he is feeling generous, 4:54. Even on the night of the DST time change, we thought we were guaranteed one "sleep in" as his body slept to Old 4:something, it would be New 5:something and it would be like sleeping in, except on that day he awoke at Old 3:50.   
(And sure, several people think they have the solution.  "Longer naps!"  "Shorter naps!"   "Earlier bedtime!"   "Later bedtime!"    "Weighted blanket!"   "Essential oils"    "Melatonin drops!"   It is amazing how many people feel the need to tell us what the Magical Sleep Bullet is just because something worked for the non-adopted child of a cousin of a neighbor of an imaginary friend.  Sometimes, when a person is going through something, they just need someone to listen, nod emphatically, not preach and say "Damn!  That sucks!"    Know what I'm sayin'?)  

A week ago, Lar was sick/congested so he slept in the guest room and somehow (a finely tuned toddler telepathy I guess) Joseph discovered that (A) there was a vacancy in our bed, and (B) he can climb into bed with me while I am sleeping in the middle of the night and I wouldn't even know until I get accidentally toddler-kicked.  

And while he is cuddly, that wasn't sustainable.  Since then, we have been working with him at bedtime.  We practice "waking up" and checking the Bunny Clock.  We practice "going back to sleep" when Bunny is still sleeping and we talk about waking up Mama and Baba if the Bunny is awake.  (The Bunny is set to wake up at 5 am.)  I said to him "Do not wake up in the middle of the night and climb into bed with Mama.  Okay?"  When I said that, he got very sullen and just hugged me and buried his face in my neck and wouldn't let go.  The next morning he woke up at 4:something but laid in his bed crying quietly, staring at his Bunny like I told him to do!

Eureka!  We had suspected that he understands everything, even though he isn't able to speak much yet.  And sometimes he even wants to please us!

But today, this little bed-headed Sleep Terrorist gave us a delightful surprise.  

He not only slept straight through the night, but he didn't wake up until 5:20!  The little guy received so much positive reinforcement for this miraculous feat.  Maybe it was the new Elmo pjs.  Maybe it was all the fresh air and sunshine after a long winter.  Maybe it was an isolated incident.  (No!  Say it ain't so!)  We are being cautiously optimistic that maybe 5:something could be our new normal.  But I won't get my hopes up either!