I have had my sister Christie's baby Kate for about three days this week. She is just three months younger than Ali. Having two busy one year olds keeps me going, but they are so cute. They have spent hours practicing going up and down the stairs.
Ali still isn't walking or talking at almost 17 months. She is at least showing some interest in walking by pulling herself to her feet. And occasional walking along furniture. I would be surprised if she takes off any time soon. All of this crawling has made for a very dirty summer. She will have no cloths to hand-me-down to a future sister or cousin because she has ruined everything she has. She does do a bumb scoot as well so her cloths are really tattered. It is sad. She loves to crawl into small spaces and and climb things, but no walking!
She does love her nightly bath and it is a good thing because she never gets to miss it.
Speaking of ups and downs - the major down of the summer has been getting Caleb to play piano or do any chore for that matter. You would think that I am trying to kill him by asking him to practice 3 songs 5 times each on the piano. There are days that he chooses to be grounded from friends, computer and video games rather than practice the piano which literally takes him less than 15 minutes. He has told me a million times, "I don't like to do anything hard. I just want to play." This is becoming a battle of wills and we are both very strong willed. It isn't that he just doesn't like piano. He doesn't like anything that requires effort. What is a mom to do??!!
Cara has her last day of preschool speech next week. She has been in speech therapy since she was 20 months old. (At the rate Ali is going she is on about the same track. Ali has said oh-oh a few times and da or dad in context, and she does a lot more babbling than I remember Cara doing. Cara didn't get her tubes until she was 19 months and Ali got hers at 12 so hopefully Ali will catch up faster. The ENT said that the most critical time to hear for speech development is 9-18 months.) Cara has been going to speech with Miss Wendy Cardon at the school district 3 times a week since she turned 3, 2.5 years ago. We will both miss Wendy. Cara really loves her! Cara is saying all of the age appropriate sounds but she will continue to have speech once a week after school through Kindergarden as long as she is "actionable" for the older sounds.
Andy is officially potty trained. After about six weeks of pooping in his under-ware 100% of the time and only going potty when he was taken there I decided to go to extreme measures. Of course there was positive reinforcement all of the time, but he didn't really care about the treats or the presents. So I needed a negative consequence. He didn't care one bit about wearing wet or poppy cloths, but I cared. It may sound like abuse (at least I wasn't hitting him, yelling at him or calling him names) I gave him cold showers. He "needed to get clean." I would only put him in for a few seconds and he would scream "this isn't funny" over and over. It would make him so mad! After just a few days he started telling me every time he needed to go potty without me even asking and after a few more days he started going poop in the potty too. It is great to have that done.
Now that Andy is potty trained he is practically perfect again. He loves to play outside and is very content with whatever we are doing. We got a kit and hatched a "fish" a few weeks ago. It is growing like crazy and it has been fun for all of the neighborhood kids to watch. (The gunk on the tank was part of the kit. That is what the eggs came in.) I know, this is very much like a pet. I hope that nature takes its course and it dies soon. I am avoiding becoming attached.