Friday, March 28, 2008

Incorporating Waldorf


So I just read "Kindergarten with your 3-6 Year Old" by Donna Simmons, and want to move towards Unschooling with a Waldorf bent (for now anyway). Most everything Waldorf meshes well with Unschooling (at this age). Some of the discipline ideas aren't completely "power-with", so I wouldn't use, but much is. One of the keys of Waldorf is to incorporate a rhythm into the days/years. I think this can help us a lot. We did two rhythm days this week. The days were along these lines:
Breakfast (with candle and verse)
Morning walk (yesterday we did walk in Stuy Town and then to playground, today we walked to natural grocery store for ingredients for chicken soup)
Songs/stories (and today we cut veggies and got chicken soup going)
Lunch (with candle and verse)
Quiet time / books
Painting
Playground
Dinner (with candle and verse)
Bath
Sleep

Yoav was getting a bit nutsy today just before we went out to the playground. Once we got out though, he was relaxed and happy. We went on a long walk, sat by the fountain and ate a banana and then went to the playground. I think I'll be able to work it out so we keep somewhat of a rhythm day-to-day so the days will be smoother - we'll get outside before Yoav starts to get wacky, eat before he gets too hungry, etc.

Our only issue now is that we bought a OLPC laptop computer for Yoav in December and it just came a few days ago. Jeremy wants to give it to Yoav and I no longer want him to have it. I have to do more research and thought. Jer agreed to hold off so we can talk more.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Elie Roll!

Elie definitively rolled from back to front this morning in bed. I've woke up before with him on his tummy, but he might have pushed off of me to get over. This time I saw him do it and it was all on his own.

Also, he's laughing a lot. It's soooo sweet. Reminds me I need to try to get video. We'll try this weekend.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Yoav and difficulty with changes

Yoav has had a hard time lately with changes. I assume it's due to the birth of Elie. He gets disturbed by seemingly very minor changes - like me wanting to change a pair of pants if mine get dirty or wanting to change cups or plates or whatever. Today I was getting things ready for him to do watercolors and couldn't find the white plastic painting board that we usually use. We also have an old wooden cutting board that we used before we got the painting board. So I said we could use that instead. Yoav said, "I only like the white one. I don't want to use the wooden one." I searched around a bit for the white one, all the while him repeating that he wasn't going to paint with the wooden one and me validating how much he likes the white one. When I suggested he use the wooden one today and another day after we find the white one, he could use that one. To that, he said he wouldn't want to paint another day (also a typical response for him). Finally, I said, "Well, I'll get everything ready and put it out with the wooden painting board in case you change your mind." Sure enough, a few minutes later, he said he'd changed his mind and he wanted to paint!

We played with S and G and later Mo and Lucy at the playground. It was fun all around. I really can't wait until the weather warms up a bit more. It'll be so nice to spend the afternoons outdoors.

Elie fell asleep at 8:30!!! Yesterday he slept from about 7AM to 8AM. YEA!!!! There were only two other nights before last night that he fell asleep before 10. Hopefully this earlier sleep time will stay for a while.

I got my Naomi Aldort CD on Saturday and got it loaded on the ipod yesterday and have been listening to it this evening since Jeremy is out. It's AMAZING!! If I could just listen and re-listen to this over and over, I think I could be the parent I want to be :)

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Laugh

Saba & Safta came over today and Uncle Dan and Uncle Dave, Aunt Nahama, and Yonatan and Alex. We all had fun. Yoav played some with Alex and Yonatan. Jer and Yoav went to Zabar's before everyone came for onion rolls/lox/cream cheese, etc. Always such a great brunch!!!

In the afternoon, I played peek-a-boo with Elie and he laughed!! A few times!!! So cute! This was his second laugh, but was a much more significant laugh than the first one (which was about a week ago - Yoav got him to do a little laugh) and he laughed a few times in a row. So cute. I love his big smile ;)

Friday, March 21, 2008

LLL

We had a fun day today. We went to LL Toddler in the morning. Yoav got to play with Abby, which always ensures fun for him :)

We had fun singing "Hit the Road Jack" together on the way home. Yoav suggested singing *together*, so I said, "Ready, Set, Go", and we both sang together. It was quite fun! Yoav sings a lot, but we've never done a duet before ;)

I rarely write about Elie, so I'll post an update. He has gotten very big (he's almost as big as his 6-mos cousin, Karli!), he is almost always ready with a smile if I smile at him, and his current favorite activity is blowing little spit bubbles:) He also spends a good deal of time trying to suck on his fingers - he's not so good at getting his hand in and sometimes uses his left hand to guide the right hand in. He's waking up about three times a night to pee - sometimes he nurses as well and sometimes he just falls right back asleep when I lie him down to dump the pee.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Jer traveling / Grandma / Syllables

This morning when Jer left, Yoav was SOOOOO sad. Jer was leaving on a trip today until Wednesday. Yesterday Jeremy let Yoav help with work, so Yoav thought he could go and help Jeremy. He kept crying, "Put my shoes on!" (he can put his own shoes on in regular circumstances) Then at one point, he told us to call Big Ducky to see if he had an idea and while Jeremy was on the phone, Yoav said, "He's not saying anything." Jeremy asked why not and Yoav said, "Because he's not there." Ouch. Even Big Ducky couldn't help today :( Finally Jeremy talked more to Yoav and he left with Yoav crying and we watched Jeremy leave out the window. Then Yoav nursed for a while and calmed down.

Grandma came today! She took the train up. Yoav had so much fun with her. They were playing with the marble run and built houses with the Cuisenaire rods. For dinner, Benny came and we had spaghetti (recipe from Nourishing Traditions). The photo is the only one with Grandma that I got - Yoav was making a frowny face about something.

Yoav has learned how to count syllables. About a week ago, he was singing about Isabella and then said Gabriella and said they were similar. I told him they had the same number of syllables and told him how to count syllables. Today he showed Grandma his Strawberry Shortcake sticker (that he got when Elie got his hearing tested) and counted syllables and told her it had five syllables. He then proceeded to count the syllables of various objects around the room. Since he loves counting things, this was a pretty fun activity for him :)

Elie fell asleep at around 7PM. He's been falling asleep around 10 or 11 lately (better than his 12 or 1 from about a month ago). At Cindy's one day he also fell asleep early. I'm hoping he's asleep for the night (it's now almost 9PM).

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Visit with Cin

We went to Cindy's house Wed until today (Sun).

A few quick things:

Yoav made Elie laugh for the first time on Sat, Mar 15 - he was counting pretend yawns and Elie made two short sounds that, together, I *think* made a laugh.

Today (3/16), Yoav was pushing a box and said it "slid like a snail". Seems like some advanced language skills there - a simile? definitely a bit of alliteration...

We had a great visit. Jana and Yoav seemed to play really well together. And it was really relaxing at Cin's house. It was so nice to spend time with Cindy and to see Karli and Jana. It seemed even easier this time than when I just had Yoav and he was younger. Elie is so easy right now and Yoav is easier to travel with than when he was younger since he can sort of go on his own without worrying too much...

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Visit with Cindy

I'm too tired to post much, but we're at Cindy's. Jeremy had to travel to Atlanta for work, so I decided to tag along and stay with Cindy. It's Elie's first trip and all's pretty well so far.

Our only problem is that Yoav seems really sad to be away from home. Last night, he was up at 11pm crying desperately for Jeremy. He was saying things like, "I want someone else in my family here... I want four people to be in the bed... (and more explicitly) I want Baba to come home... I need Baba... I want him to come be with me... " He said he didn't want me to call Jeremy, but finally I did and since Yoav was so tired from crying, after listening to Jeremy's voice for a minute or so, he just passed out.

Yoav's food has been really good. Yesterday on the plane, he asked what I had and he wanted an apple - I handed him a whole apple (with peel) and he ate a lot of it! That was the first time he's ever eaten an apple in that form! And he also ate an egg and bit right into it, although, as usual, he only likes the white. This morning, he ate several little pancakes that Cindy made - he just asked for his to have no blueberries. And for dinner, he ate quite a bit of tacos (just browned meat on taco shells).

Too tired to write more...

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Mommy's in the club?

Today was the second day in a row that Yoav was really sad when Jeremy left. Yesterday was so awful. As soon as Jeremy left, Yoav cried that they hadn't played the "under" game (they play under the bedsheet). Luckily Jeremy heard him from the hallway and came in to play for a few minutes when it was clear that Yoav wasn't calming down.

Today, though, Jeremy had an afternoon meeting and was wearing a suit when Yoav said he wanted to play the Under game. Jeremy suggested he teach Mommy how to play and Mommy & Elie could play with Elie. Yoav was happy with this!

This seems to have set the stage for Yoav and I playing better together (for today anyway). Usually, Yoav doesn't really want to *play* with me. He saves the *playing* for Aba. But today we did lots of playing - we played "Package" (the box for our mattress, which has been colored on and windows added), Cuisenaire rods, and we played some with his concentration game (which he doesn't play per the rules but just likes to talk about the pictures).

This afternoon when we went outside to feed the squirrels with Mo and Lucy, I started going down the stairs instead of the ramp, per Yoav's rule ever since the ramp was installed. Today Yoav said, "You can go down the ramp if you want." Wow!!! Before this, it was just "the Boys" who got to go up/down the ramp.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Yoav hailing a cab


3/8/08
Originally uploaded by jmilikow

We had a fun day today. Started at Claude's for breakfast. Then we went to B&N for a Rubik's cube (which I managed to solve with the help of the solution :) ). Yoav loves to read, so we were there for a while. He said something like, "I like it here." Towards the end, he "read" a small book (he was in a different aisle than us) and came over and told us that he read it and that "now I can read" and asked when he'd be able to read everything. :)

Here's a pic of Yoav hailing a cab home.

In the afternoon, Jer & Yoav went to Dan's and Elie and I did laundry. It was much easier with him in a ruck!!! So glad he likes to be carried on my back! Makes life much easier.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Yoav loves Elie / Empathy?

So, first things first. This evening, as Yoav was rolling around on the bed with Elie before he went to sleep (an activity that Yoav thoroughly enjoys LOL), he said, "I like Elie." Then, a second later, he corrected himself with, "I love him." WOW! That's a step in the right direction!

We went to Karma Kids Yoga storytime today with L and her twin girls. Yoav didn't participate, but I enjoyed it. The leader read a few stories about animals and did the associated yoga poses (like downward facing dog when the story mentioned a dog). The leader was young and enthusiastic and I enjoyed it. Afterwards, we went to the Union Sq playground. Yoav is still pretty pathetic about doing anything alone. He wants my help with *everything*! Although after getting my help to go up a three-rung ladder, he later did it himself on a two-rung one after I suggested that he could practice on the smaller one so he'd learn how to do the bigger one.

Afterwards, we went to Whole Foods. Elie went pee (he was dry for four hours). Then we went downstairs and Yoav picked out a 12-pack case of small water bottles. I told him I really couldn't carry that in addition to everything else I wanted to buy. He said he could and picked it up but quickly realized he really couldn't carry it for more than a few seconds. Then he picked up an apple juice container and said he wanted that. Again, I said I couldn't carry it. He said he could. I said he could get it only if he carried it home because I had a bunch of heavy things to buy and I really didn't think I could carry the juice as well. He said he could.

I tried again to see if he wanted to wait until next time to get the juice, but he really wanted it, so I got it in a separate bag and gave it to him to carry. He actually carried it to the bus stop (right outside WF) and onto/off the bus. Then we stopped to rearrange and the whole thing was so sweet and I felt bad seeing him carry the heavy bag, so I asked if he wanted me to carry it. He said yes! He was very cute though and seemed to empathize - he sort of cheered me on - first with, "We just have to cross the street, then go down the steps, then inside, then in the elevator and then we'll be there." and continuing to say the reduced number of things as we got closer. Then when we got home, while I was turning on the oven and then taking care of Elie, Yoav started looking for the juice himself and then proceeded to put ALL the groceries away!!! It was incredible. For each item, he'd show me and ask where it goes. I don't know what prompted him. Maybe since he'd helped with the carrying, he wanted to try helping with the putting away. Who knows. I hope we can make it a habit - it was actually quite helpful.

I rucked Elie after Yoav went to sleep and cooked two meals at once - roast chicken w rice and broiled carrots for tonight and split pea soup for tomorrow! It was an idea from someone on my AP group to make two meals at once. It's a great idea - much more efficient!!!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Yoav's crush

So Isabella is definitely Yoav's #1 now. He sings about her all day long!!! He did add Abby to the list of girls he "loves" today though. So we're up to Isabella, Zoe and Abby. The rest of the girls he "likes". Not sure where he got this like/love stuff from.

Here's a pic of Isabella and Yoav - I took it because Yoav wants to show Jeremy LOL. Also, after class, Isabella asked her nanny if they could walk with us to the subway! Yoav seems to be growing on her. He was totally distracted by her in class and kept going to sit next to her each time we changed from standing to sitting and everyone rearranged themselves in a semi-circle.

3/5/08

And I tried my first ever rucksack carry with my sz 3 Iris didy. I was planning to get a sz 4 to try rucks but I was able to use a 3 tied in the ends. Maybe won't last to toddlerhood, but it's more than enough for me to practice. Elie liked it too - he's alseep about 15 minutes later in the second photo! And it's much easier to clean and type on the computer with him on back (he's there now).
My first ruck ever!
3/5/08
And now Elie is asleep:
3/5/08

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Yoav's first love/s

Yoav has been singing about Isabella (from music class) for the past week. Today he added Zoe to the song (the song is just, "Isabella...Zoe"). I asked, "You're singing about Isabella and Zoe because you like them so much?" He said, "Maybe about I *love* them."