Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday Scrappin'

Introducing...another new section of my blog.  This one is called "Sunday Scrappin".  Why am I adding all these blog features?  Well, my posts have become boring.  "Here's what we are doing.  Princess is so cute.  Look at these pictures."  I want to spice things up a little bit and give a little more variety.  Also - the new sections I am introducing are intended to keep me working hard throughout the week.  I cannot post about Tot School unless I actually work on teaching things to our little princess.  I cannot do book reviews unless I actually read some books.  And I cannot post about recent crafts I have completed...unless I actually do the crafts!

So here we go...

My Ta-Da for this week is a "Daddy's Girl" page from when our princess was a newborn (20 months ago).  I have not done any scrapbooking since May, so this was a big step for me.  It is a simple page, but it is a completed page!
My To-Do for this week:  Another page for the princess' baby book

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Tot School: Colors

Tot School
Our Princess is 21 Months Old  
We continued learning colors this week. This week we only added the color orange and continued to work on the colors from the weeks before (blue, green, yellow and red).  Our princess doesn't seem to be that interested in learning this week, mainly due to a cold, so we took things slowly.  I had the princess try doing puzzles that I got from COAH.  She was able to find which colors went together but needed a little help figuring out which piece went on the left and which went on the right.  Look at her proud little face when all the puzzles were put together:

I also invested in some dollar-store pom poms that so many other moms have posted about using.  I wanted her to sort these by color into the appropriate cup.  I did not have high hopes for this activity, but she did a really good job...for about a minute.  Then she realized it was more fun to pick up handfuls and stuff them in.  :)

We took a trip to the library this week - something we have not been doing enough! We found some great books, and Princess is excited to have some new stories read to her every day. She is a daddy's girl, so she especially likes when he reads to her!  See Monday's post for my review of Llama Llama Red Pajama.

Our craft this week went along with our color theme.  The princess painted her pumpkin.  She had a blast.  She began with one dainty finger in the paint:

and ended up a mess:

Here is the finished product - a pumpkin only a mother could love :)

Free Play
Our princess loves this alphabet toy.  It is one that has various functions but can say the name of the letter or number you push.  I love interactive educational toys like this, but we do not have very many of them.  I am glad this is one that she keeps coming back to!

Mom's Favorite
We got a new hit video at our house this week from the Auto B Good series.  Here is the princess, excitement written all over her face, watching her new video with Rainbow Monkey (the perfect stuffed animal for our color theme).  :)

Next Week's Plans:
I plan to continue working on colors!  Who would have thought?  :)  We are having a good time with this, and I enjoy coming up with things for her to do.  She is slowly catching on, and it doesn't hurt to take our time!  Next week, I want to work on making a Color Train - an idea I picked up from another mom at The Princess and the Tot.  The idea is originally from First Palatte.  I think this is a something my little one would really appreciate since she loves animals and loves anything with wheels!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Mommy vs. Daddy

I find it interesting that this is the look I get...
 And this is the look Daddy gets.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Llama Llama Red Pajama

I have decided to begin a new feature on my blog:  Book reviews.  I will include books that I am reading, as well as books I am reading to the little princess.

We took a trip to the library today and picked up a book with which Princess and I quickly fell in love:  Llama Llama Red Pajama, by Anna Dewdney.

This story presents the two sides of bedtime drama experienced by many, many families.  First there is Baby Llama, safely tucked into bed, who begins to miss his mama.  He calls for her, waits patiently for a bit, then begins to worry.  This worry eventually turns into a full-blown fit.  Meanwhile, Mama Llama is trying to get some cleaning done, the phone rings, and she is delayed in answering her baby.  The story climaxes as Mama runs up the stairs, her face covered with the anxiety any parent would feel as their little one screams for help, only to find Baby tucked safely in bed, waiting for her presence.  Thus the stage is set for my favorite line of the entire book:  "Please stop all this llama drama and be patient for your mama".  How many times have I uttered similar phrases to my little princess!

My princess loves books that rhyme and have captivating illustrations. This book meets both criteria. The rhymes are entertaining, and the storyline teaches two important lessons for preschoolers: Patience and trust that Mama will take care of them.

I have no negative statements to make about this book.  I am always impressed by someone who can write and illustrate their own story, as Anna Dewdney does.  I am a new fan of her work, and I look forward to reading more "Llama Llama" books in the future.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Tot School: Colors

Tot School
Our princess is 21 months old.
We continued working on colors for Tot School this week.  I continued to use the blue and green foam shapes from last week and added yellow and red to the mix.   The princess seemed to enjoy our games of "take the yellow car", and she even sorted colors into piles.

We also began working on our Color Book, which I downloaded from COAH.  I had her color each page with crayons, and then we pasted the appropriate pictures in place.  That girl loves to paste!!!

I was encouraged when we went to Staples this week.  We saw some different-colored balls, and Princess pointed to one and said "boo" (blue).  Her expressive language in developing much slower than her receptive, so to hear her attempt to say a color was very encouraging.  Oh - and she was right about the color!  :)
I am trying to get into the routine of reading with Princess every day.  We seem to be hit-or-miss with that, but we are working on it.  Her current favorite book is a collection of Biscuit stories.  These are great, because the stories include pictures of things she is familiar with, and she likes to point them out and tell me what they are.

Gross Motor
Princess jumped for the first time this week!  We sing a song at playgroup each week that involves jumping up, jumping down, spinning around, and falling to the ground.  She did all the motions for that, but the most impressive was the jumping.  I had her do it for my husband when he got home from work, and we all got a kick out of it.  She does the typical kid one-foot-off-the-ground jump, while her face and reaction make it seem like such a big deal.  So proud.  Also - Princess learned to "bear crawl" this week.

Free Play
Princess loves to visit our game cupboard.  She pulled out this game of checkers and had a blast putting the checkers on the board.  I was impressed when she handed me all the red pieces and said "Momma" and kept the black pieces for herself, saying "Suh" (which is how she says her name).  Way to sort!

Outdoor Fun
We had a good time outside this week.  It is getting a little chillier, but this little girl still loves to be outdoors.  She LOVED playing in the leaves this week.

Next Week's Plans:
Continue working on colors.  I plan to add 2 colors per week until we have learned all the colors in the COAH color book.  I also have a few craft ideas to introduce, and of course I will share details on those next week!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bringing Up Our Girl

Our church librarian passed along a book that I have been reading lately.  I have a little bit of difficulty with this book, for the simple fact that it overwhelms me.  I am reminded yet again of the tremendous responsibility I have as a mother.  That fact scares me!!!  At the same time, I love this book, because it is opening my eyes to some things I need to work on.  The book:  Bringing Up Girls by Dr. James Dobson. 

I have especially been challenged by the idea that it is my responsibility as a mother to teach my daughter to be a little lady.  I am the one who is responsible to teach her manners, which leads to the development of morals.  Dr. Dobson asserts that manners facilitate morals, but they also "help develop confidence and poise.  A girl who has been trained properly is never completely knocked off balance when she is in an unfamiliar circumstance.  She knows what is expected of her and how to deal with it.  Her sense of self-worth is reinforced by the way adults react to her charm, poise, and grace."  (pg 41)  Wow.  All beginning with manners.

We are working on "thank you" this week.  My little lady is 21 months old, and she repeats "thank you" when prompted.  We are working on getting her to say it whenever someone gives her something.  I am excited for the day when she looks up at someone and says "thank you" because she knows it's the polite thing to do...not because Mommy told her to.

I am currently halfway through this book, and I intend to post more about it later.  Stay tuned!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Tot School: Blue and Green

Tot School
Princess is 21 months old.
For the past few weeks, I have been working with the princess on colors.  Things have not been moving very quickly or smoothly - mostly because I had no idea where or how to begin.  I expressed my frustration to my husband, and he suggested I make things easier by focusing on two colors.  Previously, I had been laying out objects of various colors and attempting to get her to focus on green.  This week, I narrowed it down to blue and green, and she did so much better.

This week, we used foam shapes that I had cut out with cookie cutters.  At first, I held up two of the same objects - one green, and one blue - and asked her to take a specific color.  She did pretty well with this, but there were times when she would be looking at my face rather than the object, and she would just grab for whatever.  This idea worked best when Daddy was home and I would say "Take the green heart to Daddy".  Then she would grab the shape and go running.  She really loved that.
We moved on to "put the green airplane on the green paper". This took a little bit of time for her to get down. (I think she wanted there to be paste on the back of them. She has really been enjoying crafts at playgroup lately.)

Then I gave her the box of cutouts.  I was hoping she would continue with her sorting game.  Ha!

 The cutouts were thrown, one-by-one, over the back of the couch.  She had a good time though, yelling "weeee!" with each one.

Then I took apart a bracelet craft we had done at playgroup.  I asked her to put the green shapes on the pipe cleaner.  She enjoyed that, though it took a bit of coaching to choose the correct color.

That was Tot School for the week.  Next week, I am planning to continue teaching colors via foam shapes.  I plan to include a few more colors and bring out the crayons for some fun times.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Proud Momma

My baby shook the sheet.  That's right.  I'm a proud momma.  :)

For one of our games at playgroup every week, the kids hold on to the edge of a bedsheet, listen to a song, and shake a sheet along with the music.  Every week, Princess hides her head on my shoulder and cries during the "shaky sheet song".

This morning, we did a little practice.  The two of us shook her blanket around for awhile before playgroup, and she LOVED it. 

So at playgroup, all it took was me leading her over to the other kids, and she had a blast.

What's more - her buddy Mr. S. is also a careful observer at playgroup.  Today, HE decided to shake the sheet as well.  It was a big day at playgroup.  :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Autumn Already!

Time is flying!  I cannot believe it is already autumn...and that our little girl will be 21 months old tomorrow!  Last year at this time, she was crawling around, pulling herself to a stand, taking two naps a day, and still drinking from a bottle!  What a difference one year makes.  :)

The weather has been niiiiiice the past few days, and we have enjoyed some time outside.  Yesterday we went for a walk on the bike path.  It was perfect - warm weather, the smell of fall, and leaves crunching under the stroller as we walked. 

I am trying to talk my husband into taking us out for ice cream today, before it gets cold again.  That should be a perfect celebration for an expected Buckeyes win. 

We had a minor breakthrough yesterday and today.  Bluebeary has stayed in the crib all day!  Yes, you read that right.  We had to make several trips into her room yesterday to make sure he was still there and doing alright, and he did come out today to help her wind down before nap time.  But I am amazed that she has done so well without him. 

Here are some pictures of the princess:

 She woke up too early from her nap last Sunday and just wanted to snuggle with Daddy:

She absolutely LOVES lining up her "beep beeps".  She lines them all up and then comes to one of us and sweetly says "more".  Wait till Christmas, honey.  Wait till Christmas.

She also has a new fascination with her rubber duck.  I think this stems from her love of VeggieTales and repeatedly watching King George and The Ducky. 

And what could be better than snuggling with Daddy while holding every ball she could find?  :)