Speech Progress and Introducing Baby “Aaaaaa”(lice)

Goodness life has been busy these days!  Hard to believe it’s mid-June, and my maternity leave is more than half over!

Almost two months ago now, we welcomed the sweetest little bundle, Alice Marie Petersen.  I know birth plans are very loaded decisions, but man, after the trama of the first time I gave birth, a scheduled c-section was the way to go.  We arrived at the hospital at 6am, signed some papers, got hooked up to some machines, a little slicing and dicing and had a baby by 9 (too far? ;-)).

csection

I can’t say enough good things about North Memorial in Robbinsdale – might not have the biggest rooms, but the BEST doctors/nurses/resources.  We started with a midwife at Maple Grove Hospital Teagan’s birth, and it was a horrible experience – ended up having a c-section with a doctor I’d never met, then having to be transferred to North Memorial – but that that is a subject for another day. We went with a doc who would deliver at North Memorial right off the bat with Alice, and luckily, everything went off without a hitch this time around.

Hospital kisses

My parents came up to stay with Teagan while we were in the hospital, and both grandmas got to experience one of her in-home speech therapy sessions with our new therapist, Amy.  She is the bees knees – Teagan’s progress this summer has been AWESOME.  In the span of about a two weeks we went from “get her to say ‘eee'” to “this week her homework is to say on, eat, hat and puppy.”  Joel took the day off today (which is how I get to be sitting in Caribou Coffee, drinking a fatty mocha and writing this post – you’re the best sweetie!) so we were both at her session this morning.  When Teagan went from “pu-pu” to “pu-peeeee” all three of us cheered – which Teagan loved, the little ham.

Although progress has been awesome, I hadn’t realized how much had to happen before she could talk.  She has low muscle tone in her mouth (and everywhere), so she has to work a lot harder to move her lips into shapes that come naturally to most everyone else.  For example, it is really hard for her to make an “oooo” sound.  She just started drinking out of a straw, so Amy and Nicole (OT) are hoping that means some stronger mouth muscles are soon to come.

Teag has become quite the little signer.  Jacque (school district ST) taught us a few signs, and Amy introduced us to Baby Signing Time, really great DVDs that teach kiddos to sign so they communicate before they can talk.  I highly recommend them if you want your little one to sign, as long as you can put up with a very enthusiastic woman who signs songs that are impossible to get out of your head (These are the pets I love, these are the pets I love!  Horse, horse, horse, horse, NEIGH NEIGH NEIGH NEIGH NEIGH!) they will teach you and your kiddo a lot!

Baby signing

Our goal was for her to be able to say 75 words or signs by the fall, and I have no doubt we will get there.

One word Teag has been working especially hard on by her own volition, is Alice, which comes out “Aaaaaaa!” for now.  Teagan is such a good big sister – she brings Ali toys and blankets, gets down next to her on the floor and sets up books for her to look at during tummy time, and she gives LOTS of kisses.

Hi sis

She also pets Alice like a dog, which is hilarious, and loves to help burp her.  This is fine, now that we’ve taught her you pat your sister on the back, you don’t wack her in the face.  Seriously, there has been a little bit of jealousy, but overall Teag has taken to Alice just fine.

Carseat

And Alice is the most precious baby.  We call her Turtle, because she loves to perch looking over your shoulder and for a while would bob her head like a little turtle – although she holds it pretty steady now!  Now that we’re out of the zombie phase of new baby-dom (well, at least for a little while) we are quite enjoying our time together – she likes walks in the moby and snuggles on the couch.  But maybe not quite as much as I do <3.
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