Monday, October 11, 2010

Our little Cincy Vacation

We wanted to do some little getaway for fall break but went back and forth as to what we would do. Our decision was made when we decided we wanted to get Lylah a play tent for Christmas. Do you know how expensive those things are??? I also looked at blogs and thought about trying to make one, but decided my sewing skills weren't up for it. I found a simple little tent on IKEA's website and so we decided to go to Cincinnati. We left early Thursday morning and went straight to IKEA for some shopping and lunch. After that we checked in our hotel and tried to get Lylah to take an afternoon nap....tried. She finally did fall to sleep for a while which was nice because we were really tired too. After our family nap time we went downtown to the river front (my favorite part of the trip). They have a beautiful river front with two incredible play grounds. They had lots of little areas to explore and fun slides. Lylah played for probably close to two hours and then we went and got some dinner to take back to the room. We did some swimming before trying to put Lylah down for bed.....again trying. Our lil' lady was not much into sleeping that day!! Needless to say we all slept in a bit on Friday morning. We got ready and headed to the zoo so we could get an early start. Thanks to Triple A we only had a small wrinkle in our plan when we locked our keys in the car... :) It was really fun watchin Lylah at the zoo. She would study the animal and then if she knew it's sign (monkey, penguin, elephant, giraffe, zebra, cat (for all cat like animals) she would start signing like crazy. If she didn't know it's sign she would just oooooooh and aaaaaah in amazement. In fact, since we've been home her animal books have become her all time favorites!! It really was a good zoo, but nothing we will probably do again just because we have two other zoos that are so much closer. We headed home in time for Lylah to get an afternoon nap (hypothetically since she really only slept for 30 min.). We stopped in Louisville for dinner and some more riverfront views and play time. Lylah even made some new friends!! All in all it was a nice time away for some family fun!!

Fall Fun: Part 4

There is a little hidden treasure in the Grove....Pelly's is an extension of The Garden Patch. The Garden Patch has all the pretty plants you could ever wish for, while the barn (Pelly's) is more like a farmers market. They also host lots of great events throughout the peek season (March-Dec). This time of year they also have loads of pumpkins and some fun animals!! Lylah and I actually visited 3 times during fall break!! She loves the animals and now that she can sign "pumpkin", well, she loves them too. I love the fact that it is just around the corner from our house (a little under 3 miles) and the Pelly's are a super sweet family. This past Saturday, they had an old fashioned farm day. There were lots of demonstrations (corn grinding, along with sorghum and apple cider making), face painting and a live band. They also had cows, chicks, pigs, and a horse for Lylah to pet/feed and there are sooo many pretty places to snap some pictures. I have decided that the people in BG need to add Pelly's to the list of places to visit with their families in the fall. So, if you haven't made it up the rode to the Grove lately, why not come on out and visit!!

Fall Fun: Part III

Chaney's-another BG tradition for many folks this time of year. It was a super windy afternoon, but that didn't stop us from enjoying some fun before we blew away!! Lylah even got to go on her first horse ride!! I was sure she wouldn't like it (I don't know why I thought that since the girl loves animals), but she actually really liked it, more that mama did I think!! Here are a few pics taken before we gave up and went to the barn for some ice cream :)

Fall Fun: Part II

What is fall without a little craft time?? First Lylah got all dressed up in her pumpkin clothes:
Then we made this cute lil' sign:

Happy Fall!!!

Fall Fun:Part I

Fall is my favorite time of year. The weather is cooler (usually), I get a break from school, and we can go on fun outings. One of the standard fall outings here in BG is a trip to Jackson's. We got a chance to do that with mom and dad when they came up for mom's birthday!! Lylah agrees with the rest of town that it's a great place to go this time of year. She enjoyed the petting zoo, esp. on little goat that she insisted on giving bunches of hugs!! She also LOVED, LOVED the cider slider!! She only went twice, but kept pointing to it and signing please the rest of our visit! The other thing she really liked at this trip was the little play house. *It is just one of those little tykes or fisher price ones with the door. She kept going in and out. We didn't do a slushie or hay ride for lack of time, but Nathan and I plan on taking her back for those important moments!!

*As a side note, if anyone knows where I can get a VERY cheap OR free playhouse similar to that one I know Lylah would be very thankful!!

An Oldie but a Goodie

This little dress was one of my favorites when Lylah was a baby. Nothing fancy, just cotton and my favorite color-yellow. Well, she had A LOT of clothes at that point in her life and the weather actually cooled off in September so she wasn't able to wear dresses long. I think she must have worn that little yellow dress once or twice...sad day....

except that our little lady is a bit of a small fry, SOOOOOOO....
why not re purpose it as a shirt!! We aren't going to talk about how close I came to tears when I found the baby picture and realized how much she has grown (for a small fry) and changed since the days of sitting in the bouncy seat on the kitchen counter! Instead, we'll just say we've worn mama's favorite "shirt" several times lately!!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Thoughts on signing

Once Lylah started waving, "bye-bye" we started introducing basic signs. I was so excited when she first sign "more" to communicate that she wanted more watermelon. Soon after learning "more", she started to sign "milk" and "water". We continued introducing other signs that would help our lil' lady communicate before she was able to talk. At one point this summer while at the library, I realized they had the signing time videos available for patrons to rent. Since then we have rented a couple every 2 weeks to watch and enjoy. I think we may be the only ones to rent them, which is okay because it means we get to choose which ever ones we want!! These videos are great not only because of the way they introduce the signs, but because they are very engaging and educational to teach verbal vocabulary as well. The thing I've heard the most as people have found out that we are signing with Lylah is, "well, will she ever learn to talk then?". The answer is, "YES!" When we sign with Lylah we always say the word too not to mention that we are always talking with her throughout the day. Research shows that babies who sign have a higher IQ and reading level later in life as well as less frustration as toddlers, plus it is so fun and super cute!!! In case you are wondering here are the signs our lil lady knows:

more, milk, water, eat, please, thank you, finished, play, play ground, swing, I love you, help, home, me, duck, bird, monkey, cat, rain, and even "signing time"

Here are the words she can say: mama, dada, hi, hello, bye-bye, bath, ball, balloon, bubble, baby, home, water, night-night, ruff-ruff (for dog), mooo (for cow), quack (for duck), uh-oh. That is a total vocabulary (including signs) of close to 40 words (and I'm sure I'm forgetting some). I also feel like signing has increased Lylah's understanding as well. We use lots of other signs with her that she hasn't started using yet, but knows and understands. She follows directions probably 80% of the time. The other 20% she is usually be stubborn :)

So if you have thought about signing with your child, then give it a try!! Remember that when babies sign they may not make the sign perfectly and that is okay. Lylah used to clap her hands for "more" but now she does it correctly. It is just like speaking in that she did what was developmentally appropriate for her at the time. We are very glad that we started signing with Lylah and we are even enjoying learning the language ourselves!!

I don't have very many pictures of Lylah actually signing, but I have accidentally caught a couple of her signing water.

signing water at the fountain at the Indy canal
signing water at the park when it was hot and she wanted something to drink :)