Adelie and Staley's World

Adelie and Staley's World

Friday, May 30, 2014


Now when we're playing outside, when Adelie puts things in her mouth (acorns, leaves, sticks), she takes them right back out and hands them to me.  That's progress, right?

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Question of the Day

Which is more annoying?

Schlepping your two daughters and a half-full grocery cart to the questionable grocery store restroom so your daughter (who emphatically told you 15 minutes ago that she did NOT need to go the bathroom before leaving the house) could use the facilities...


...the kid-sized carts that the grocery store puts right at the front of the store (where every child that enters the store is sure to see them) with the metal bar across the front that is at just the right height to hit your Achilles tendon each and every time your child is not paying attention and runs into the back of your legs.

Not to discount your opinion, but if you voted bathroom break, then you've probably never tried to supervise a distractible 3 year old pushing a little cart through a crowded grocery store when you have a long grocery list, time constraints, and unprotected Achilles tendons.

Life with Adelie

This morning I went upstairs to get some nail polish so we could paint Staley's toenails before we headed over to the library.  Within 30 seconds of leaving the girls alone, Staley yelled up the stairs, "Mommy.  Adelie took all the toilet paper off the roll and is blowing her nose on it."  On the plus side, at least she wasn't eating it.

Don't let this angelic face fool you.  She's a handful!

Sunday, May 25, 2014


This afternoon I was at a baby shower.  Zach had just mowed the lawn so he was taking a quick shower.   Staley was watching her after-rest TV show while Adelie was playing with toys on the living room floor.  Zach had just gotten into the shower when he heard a blood-curdling Staley scream as she came running into the bathroom.  She was crying so hard that she could barely get the words out as she sobbingly cried, "Adelie...Adelie..."  Zach started to panic, wondering what had happened to Adelie and was about ready to jump out of the shower and rush into the living room when Staley was finally able to tell Zach through her tears, "Adelie turned off my movie."

To do list:  
1.  Figure out how to teach my daughter to calibrate the intensity of her reaction to match the situation at hand.
2.  Remember to put remote controls out of Adelie's reach.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A Conversation with Adelie

Last night, Zach and Adelie had this "conversation."

Adelie walked into the kitchen, wearing one shoe and holding the other one.
Adelie:  "Da!"  (while holding her shoe up to Zach)
Zach:  "Yes.  That's your SHOE."
Adelie:  (with a disgusted look, she lifted up her shoe-less foot and signed 'please')
Zach:  "Oh, you want your shoe ON?"
(He then proceeded to put her shoe on her foot.)
When both shoes were on, Adelie signed 'thank you', turned, and walked out of the kitchen.

I was pretty impressed, not only with Adelie's ability to communicate (and her manners), but with the fact that a whole conversation took place where one of the participants only said one word that really isn't a word.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Things a Big Girl Does

Staley is growing into such a big girl.  She does so many big girl things.  She gets herself dressed and undressed.  She sleeps in big girl underpants.  She insists on grown-up silverware and glass plates.  She keeps an eye on her baby sister, works the cursor on the laptop, and legitimately helps with cooking and cleaning.  And this week-end marked a few more big girl firsts for Staley.

This week-end, Staley had a big girl play date.  We've had lots of play dates with friends and family, but they usually involve Adelie and, therefore, I'm always in the mix.  But with Adelie napping on Saturday afternoon, Staley and her 4 year old friend had a great, fun, big girl time together.  They played in the basement and the playroom and the backyard.  I could always hear them or see them, but I was not a part of their play.  They did each other's hair and pushed each other on the swings.  They colored and pretended and shared.  They decided what to play and where to play and how to play.  It made me smile to watch them out the window while I did dishes or listen into the basement as I started laundry.   I hovered and listened and watched and checked in (probably more than I should have), but they didn't need me.  As strange as it sounds, that made me both happy and a little sad at the same time.

Big girl fun

On Sunday, we enjoyed family time at the Peoria Chief's game.  It was both Kid's Day (hooray for free hot dogs and running the bases) and Princess Day.  So not only did the girls get to enjoy the game and the mascot, but Staley also got the opportunity to meet Cinderella, Mulan, and Ariel.  And my big girl had no qualms about telling Ariel all about how she was a mermaid for Halloween, giving a hug to the mascot, bouncing in the bouncy house with the other kids, sliding down the big bouncy slide all by herself, AND running the bases without us.  (There was an older girl from our church who offered to run with Staley, which made me feel better.)

Staley and Elliott with the princesses

Enjoying the action in the ball game

Staley with Homer, the mascot

Running the bases

There are so many things I love about Staley getting older.  I love the increased independence.  I like that she can help out and entertain herself and take herself to the bathroom, and enjoy big girl activities.  But at the same time, I did like seeing how little Staley looked out on the field running the bases.  Because that reminded me that as big as she may seem, she's still just my little girl.


I try not to compare my children.  I know that they each have their own personalities, their unique strengths, those special traits that make them who they are.  But I can't help remembering that when Staley was Adelie's current age, she had hundreds of words that she used.  Literally hundreds.  And most days it seems like Adelie has one.  Da!  Everything is 'da'.  To be fair, she does have about 10 words.  But duck, dog, down, Dora, and done sound the same in Adelie-speak.  'Da'.  I just give her credit because she uses them correctly in context.  Add in dada, mama, sissy, Elliott, and up and you've got a vocabulary.  She fills in the blanks with her handful of signs (more, all done, please, thank you, help, eat, drink, book).  She has also developed a small repetoire of animal sounds (dog, snake, lion/tiger, monkey, cow, bee, and bunny), although I'm not sure how functional these are for getting her needs met.  And, of course, when all else fails, she has a high, shrill scream that can't be ignored.

Although it's not an all-encompassing mode of communication, Adelie generally gets her point across.  It's amazing what a few words, a few signs, the ability to point, and a loud scream can accomplish.  And in her back pocket, there's that magical word that pulls it all together.  'Da!'

Friday, May 16, 2014


Over a month ago, I shared this post about the ridiculous, 3 hour long eye doctor appointment we endured for the sole purpose of scheduling Adelie's eye surgery.  I wasn't crazy about the idea of my baby being under anesthesia.  I didn't love the idea of a doctor using a probe to open Adelie's tear duct.  A surgical procedure under our high deductible insurance plan didn't fit nicely into our budget.  But we were willing to face all those negatives for our daughter to be free of the constant goopy, watery, red eye she'd had since birth.  And as much as Adelie had grown to hate the fact that I was always wiping her eye, I'm sure she would have voted a big, fat YES to this procedure as well. 

Well, I don't know if something they did during that 3 hour long appointment unblocked her tear duct, if Adelie just couldn't face the thought of enduring another 3 hours for a follow-up eye doctor appointment, or if it was just an answer to prayers.  Whatever it was, Adelie's eye has been crystal clear since a few days after her eye doctor appointment.  With over a month without any sign of her tear duct remaining blocked, I cancelled the surgery she was supposed to have next week.  Hooray for no surgery!!  Hooray for a clear eye!!  Hooray for no anesthesia, no probing, no hospital bill, no follow-up appointment.  Cancelling the appointment made me happy.  And although she can't exactly verbalize her feelings yet, I think Adelie is happy about it too!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Not on the List

Today is my birthday.  I'm 37.  At 37, you don't really make a birthday list.  A relaxing day, a few well-wishes, no cooking.  That's about all I ask for.  But I can tell you what's not on the list.

1.  Cleaning up cat puke.  Not on the list.
2.  Both my girls waking up before 7.  Not on the list.
3.  3 year old tears about ridiculous things (probably related to waking up before 7).  Not on the list.
4.  High pitched, ear piercing screams from a 1 year old when things aren't going her way (like when she's thrown her toys out of her car seat and then doesn't have anything to play with).  Not on the list.

Now maybe when I was 36, a morning like this would have gotten me down.  But now, older and wiser, I realize that it's better to just focus on the positives.  Like the fact that my daughters pulled it together for a fun morning at the Riverfront Museum with Carrie and Elliott, my thoughtful husband who gave me an unexpected birthday gift, coming across some forgotten-about chocolates in the pantry, nap time.  So my daughters (and cats) may not have gotten the memo that my birthday is supposed to be all about doing the things I like.  They might have been working off the wrong side of the birthday list.  It hasn't been the perfect day, but it's still been a happy birthday.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Random Quote of the Day

Tonight at dinner, out of the blue, Staley said,  "Instead of Adelie, I want my sister to be called Lacey."

Unfortunately for Staley, we have a strict no-renaming-your-sister policy around here.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Friday, May 9, 2014

Things That Made Me Smile Today

1.  Having a little special time with Adelie this morning before Staley woke up.  Every time there was a lion in a book we were reading, she growled.  Every time there was a dog, she barked. And every time there was a snake, she hissed. It made me smile each time!
2.  Hearing my daughters playing and laughing together as I was getting ready for the day.  When I went into Staley's room after getting ready, Staley asked if I could go in the other room again so that she and Adelie could keep playing together.  I love it!!
3.  The beautiful, sunny, spring weather
4.  The free FFA petting zoo that we happened upon while out and about this morning.
5.  Listening through the monitor to my older daughter singing 'Frozen' songs and making up 'Frozen' scenarios with her figurines during rest time.
6.  Finding the set of keys that my husband has been searching the place that I told him they were and he couldn't find.  (Two good things:  finding the keys and being right.  :))
7.  Sitting on the couch with Staley after rest time watching part of 'Frozen' (shocker, shocker), and she just reached out and said, "Let's hold hands."  
8.  This...

9.  And this...

Monday, May 5, 2014

Question of the Day

Why is it that when my babies are done nursing, I'm more sad about it than they are?

My baby isn't such a baby anymore.

Friday, May 2, 2014

She Says...

Adelie has a funny game.  It always makes Zach and Staley laugh, so of course, Adelie will do it over and over and over again.

Staley:  "Adelie, say 'mama'."
Adelie:  (with a big smile) "Dada."
Cue Zach and Staley laughing.
Cue Adelie smiling and looking proud to have been so funny.

Some people in this house think it's funnier than others.

Reading...and Writing

Like I had mentioned in a previous post, Staley has been starting to sound out words.  She loves to practice with our letter magnets on the refrigerator.  Yesterday, I was spelling words on the fridge for Staley to try to sound out.  I put this word on the refrigerator:  P-R-I-N-T-S.  With a little help, Staley sounded it out.  Excitedly, she told me, "Now I'm going to make a word."  I left the room, but Zach was still in the kitchen making supper and could hear Staley making letter sounds and looking for letters on the fridge.  Without any prompting, under P-R-I-N-T-S, Staley put the word A-R-I.  Zach helped her remember to add the final letter sound.  And so Staley turned PRINTS into...