Speech Therapy for Jimi

At Jimi’s three year well check with his doctor we (well James, I had to work :/ ) addressed our concerns with Jimi’s speech. While his vocabulary, comprehension, and ability to formulate complex sentences is outstanding, his pronunciation is not. Jimi leaves off the final sounds of most words. While we (James and I) typically understand him, most other people have a hard time if they’re not accustomed to Jimi-nese.

Our super amazing and supportive pediatrician Dr. Katsh referred Jimi to a speech evaluation at Seattle Children’s Hospital’s division in Everett. After the evaluation they noted that he was advanced in most areas but was behind in his termination sounds. The therapists there recommended that Jimi see a speech therapist once a week.

We had a lot of difficulty scheduling issues and were not able to send Jimi to the speech therapists with Children’s because we need a late afternoon/evening appointments and they did not have any weekly appointments currently available. We were fortunate to discover Bothell Pediatric and Hand Therapy which was able to accommodate our schedule, is only a few miles from my work, and has late enough appointments that I am able to attend his therapy sessions too.

Each week Jimi meets with his therapist, Danny, for “play sessions”. At Jimi’s age one of the most effective ways to help his speech is through regular play and activities he does everyday. The therapy center has a big train set that Jimi asks to play with every single week. While Jimi and Danny are playing, Danny works with Jimi when he hears Jimi dropping off the sounds of the word he ask him to repeat it and works on helping him figure out the sound. Before we started going to therapy we had been trying to work with Jimi to learn how to finish his words but he often became resistant and upset with us.  Jimi loves going to speech therapy each week and has never put up any resistance towards Danny.

At the end of each session Jimi is sent home with some “homework” consisting of a terminal sound to focus on.

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Jimi began the weekly therapy sessions in late November and I definitely feel like we are seeing some improvements. While Jimi still needs some prompting to finish his words, he frequently does so without prompting and is less frustrated with our attempts to assist him.

I know that Jimi is young and he would have likely developed his speech over time without assistance. But I also know what he is gaining confidence in his speech now with some assistance. There may be critics of early intervention in such forms as speech, but if we’re help to help eliminate some of his frustrations and give him the tools he needs to be a clear speaker early on, than I am all for it.

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Jimi’s Garbage Truck Bash

When I asked Jimi several months ago kind of party he wanted to have for his birthday he quickly insisted that he wanted a garbage truck party. I kept asking him for the next couple months and he never wavered. At one point I almost had him convinced that he wanted a Curious George birthday party, but then he informed me that his dad wanted a Curious George birthday party. (Surprise honey!).

I was a little nervous trying to figure out what to do for the party but if you search pinterest and etsy for garbage truck parties there is a surprising number of results.

Decorations for Jimi’s party were pretty easy. We put balloons on the recycling bins and garbage cans in front of the house (green and yellow for Waste management colors). But it was raining too hard for the balloons to stay up.  I went to the dollar store and bought a foam wreath which is wrapped with newspaper that I frayed and then hung one of Jimi’s toy garbage trucks in the middle of (I forgot to take a picture of that though, sorry).

For inside decorations we went some good ol’ streamers and balloons. I also spent a ridiculous amount of time making a streamer garland with newspaper and plastic bag strips in it to give it a recycled look. It took me a while to get the hang of tying the streamer and newspaper pieces on without them tearing. You have do it really gently and don’t pull it all the way tight.

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We happened to go to a “Touch a Truck” event in Marysville the week before. (Which is exactly what is sounds like. The city had a ton of different types of city vehicles, buses, firetrucks, excavators, etc out of kids to sit and climb on and mess around with). At the “Touch a truck” event they had two different garbage trucks for Jimi’s viewing pleasure. I took a picture from the event and it printed in 16×20 at Costco. I hung in the middle of a wood frame that I’d been hanging onto  that came with a dishwasher delivery. To make it look a little nicer I made a mini pennant banner to hang across the top.

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We didn’t do anything too special in the way of theme foods (who wants to eat trash?) but I did make some good old fashion dirt cups. a garbage truck cake and some green cake pops with yellow sprinkles.  We also had a veggie  tray, chex mix, cheese and crackers, pigs in a blanket and a delicious brisket that my Dad started smoking at 4 am (THANKS Dad!!!)

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Thank you to everyone who was able to attend Jimi’s party and help make his birthday special!

The blog in which I write about things that happened a while ago…

Alright, that’s not a very good title. But I have been slacking on my blogging. I think I have a few excuses; a toddler, an infant, and grad school among them. However, many other bloggers are able to keep up with their blogging with probably a lot more going on in their lives than me, so maybe I don’t really have an excuse…

Back to the point.

Tulip Festival 2013

In April we went to the annual Tulip Festival in Mt. Vernon. We’ve gone every year since Jimi was born (you can see last year’s trip here). This year we made our way up to Tulip Town. James’ Dad, Jay, and Step-Mom Karen, joined us this year. Unfortunately weather was not so great so we didn’t spend too much time looking at the flowers. But they were gorgeous and the kids seemed to have fun. Cecilia might tell you that they taste delicious as well. After we finished up at Tulip town, we went to Skagit River Brewery for some delicious lunch and drinks!

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Mother’s Day 2013

A couple of weeks ago was Mother’s Day. James spoiled me rotten and I had a fabulous day! James got up with Jimi at 6:30am (Jimi’s choice, not his), he then made me breakfast in bed. James mad me eggs benedict, with homemade hollandaise, and brought me coffee and a bloody mary. After breakfast we got everyone dressed and headed to the zoo, with a stop to my favorite burger place, Dick’s Hamburger’s on the way. The weather held out and we had a great time at the zoo. When we got home James made me my scallops, asparagus, pasta and alfredo sauce (from scratch!) and got me angel food cake (my favorite for dessert). I had such great day. I have a lot to live up to on Father’s Day. THANK YOU James!!!

(This is where I would upload pictures but wordpress is telling me I am out of memory space. Not good. I’ll have to work on that.)

Dear Cecilia: 8 Months Old

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It was really hard to get you to sit still for pictures this month.. but who can blame you when there are things like this happening

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Brothers tackling you049

and chairs that need climbing

 

Dear Cecilia,

You are 8 months old going on 18 months. .. You are fully on the move and clearly itching to do more. Please don’t. Mommy and Daddy need the sanity and peace of mind that comes with a baby who can’t walk yet. You are now a master at pulling yourself into standing position. You can pull yourself up on any and everything, even if it’s not too safe to do so. You can also now safely lower yourself back down on to the floor, bend to pick up objects and return to standing, walk around objects while holding on and move yourself from object to object (i.e. the coffee table to the couch) while standing with no problems.

Aside from becoming a pro at standing, your biggest accomplishment this month is growing a TOOTH! A few weeks ago I thought that it looked like part of your lower gums had a dent in it but I couldn’t be sure because your are a little booger and cover up your gums when anyone tries to get a peek at them. But upon further inspection, we have definitely spotted and felt a tooth on your lower left side. This is a big deal in our family since your brother only had one tooth by the time he turned one. The more teeth you have, the more yummy foods you can chew, which you love to do. You are the best little eater and it is really exciting for us to watch you try and LOVE each new food.

Occasionally you wave “Hi” and give “high fives” to people. The bath is your new favorite hang out spot. If you know anyone is in the bathroom you scoot your way in there hoping to get a bath.

Your bright and sunny demeanor is continuing and you are such a joy to be around. Thank you for being such a sweet and laid back baby.

I love you always,

Mommy.

Easter Craft with Jimi

Jimi is finally at the age where he can handle doing some small crafts (with some guidance). For Valentine’s Day, I had him do the easy craft of coloring on coffee filters and flicking water on it to make cool color blends. We turned those into cards to mail to family. I saw this cute  Easter craft on pinterest using shaving cream and paint and thought it would be a good one for Jimi to try (original post can be found here).

I found a set of glittery acrylic paints on clearance at Target, bought some cheap shaving cream, did a google search of egg templates until I found one I liked, traced it onto some card stock I already had and cut them out.

What you need:

  1. Shaving cream
  2. Paper plates
  3. Acrylic paint
  4. toothpicks
  5. card stock or construction paper
  6. wax paper or parchment paper
  7. Scraping device (like a rubber spatula)

What to do:

  1. Spray some shaving on the paper plates. Spread it around with the rubber spatula
  2. Squirt different colors of acrylic paint onto the shaving cream
  3. Use a tooth pick to blend the paint colors (you only need to mix them a small amount. If you over mix the there won’t be a swirly/tie-dye effect)
  4. Take the card stock (cut into whatever shape you want) and press into the shaving cream
  5. Place the card stock on wax paper to let the shaving cream mix set on the paper
  6. After a couple of minutes, use the rubber spatula to scrape the shaving cream off of the paper

After the shaving cream is scraped off the paper you will be left with a super cool “painted” egg

Here’s how our project went:

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015A grumpy boy because I made him wear one of my shirts over his clothes.

018Ready to add the paint.

021022 024Pressing the egg shapes into the shaving cream/paint mixture.

025Letting the shaving cream/paint mixture set on the card stock.

032I used a rubber spatula to scrap off the shaving cream.

004Our His final project. Glued on to card stock to make them into Easter cards.

Free Entertainment!

We had to go to the mall yesterday to get Rebecca’s rings cleaned, part of Jared’s maintenance warranty. In the middle of the trip Cecilia got hungry, as newborns do, so Jimi and I had to go find our own entertainment. I was just going to walk him around and let him explore new sights, but I soon found the perfect distraction. The Everett Mall has carts for rent that have cars on the front that kids can pretend to drive, and they were all locked up together! Jimi spied the rack and immediately shouted “Car!” and started climbing on them. I didn’t even ask how much they were to rent, I just sat down and watched him climb in and out, turn the steering wheel, and open and shut the door. The ladies at the customer service thought he was cute, but a security guard kept circling us like a great white shark sizing up his next meal.

Jimi driving

Driving!

He had to try all of them.

Another family walked by and their son, who was probably a couple months younger than Jimi, saw Jimi playing and immediately wanted to try it. They let him, but when it was time to leave, he threw a fit. So the mother asked how much and was told they were five dollars. They were trying to see how many quarters they had, but when she got the price she said “Five bucks?! That’s gay!” Inappropriate for any age, but this woman was about thirty and should know better than to say that. Their son kept crying, so they unhappily gave in and ponied up the Lincoln. I didn’t feel bad at all.