I have an exciting update on Ella and Emma. They’ve both said their first real words! Two weeks ago Emma said “pig” and last week Ella said “bubble.” Hurray! Kyle and I are overjoyed that our sweet girls are finally learning to talk. I know there are other children out there with more significant issues and delays, so I sometimes feel guilty sharing my girls’ achievements. But I have to realize that everyone is dealing with their own struggles so while this particular struggle may not be as bad as someone else’s, it’s still important.
Emma has added a few other words to her vocabulary including Penny, bubble, ball, car, cow, and poop. That last one was an accident on my part but she’s going to learn it anyway, right?
Here’s a video of Emma saying “Pig.” I love how she’s so matter-of-fact when she says it.
Ella was trucking along with bubble but last night she added “bebe,” “night night,” and maybe more. My sister babysat for us and was filling me in on what all she said.
Here is a video of Ella saying “Bubble.” She gets so excited!
Also they are both signing “more” while eating. I’ll try to catch a video sometime this week. Valerie (their ECI case manager) and Michelle (their Speech Language Pathologist) said we might run into a problem with about using “more” because it can become a blanket sign for everything. For example, instead of saying or signing “cup” or “cracker” they cheat and sign “more.” Valerie and Michelle both said in their case we’ll just be happy that they are signing and to only use it while eating.
Valerie is so impressed with their progress. She texts me after she sees the girls to tell me how excited she is! We just love her and really appreciate how hard she works with the girls.
Their teachers and the staff at First Class are impressed too. Every day when I walk in someone is jumping up and down saying “Ella did this!” or “Emma said that!” They talk with the therapists after each visit and make an effort to work with the girls on whatever the therapists suggest. I’m so thrilled to have such a great team working with Ella and Emma!
We have a slew of different “homework” activities that we try to incorporate into our day as much as possible. Essentially we try to turn everything into a game or a teachable moment and I’ll be honest…it can be exhausting. Their school is travel themed so the hallway is covered with different planes. We play “Stop & Go” in the hallway at school and I swear I say “plaaaaane” at least 200 times a week. HA! In the car, I say what we see: “car,” “tree,” “dog,” “house,” etc. At home we point to and name pictures in books and on the blocks: “Turtle!” “Turtle!” “Turtle!” “OK, where’s the turtle?” We work on stacking blocks and kicking balls to help their gross motor skills. We do “pretend play” and talk on play phones, rock baby dolls, put play food in the grocery basket and play tea party to help them learn appropriate play and responses. It’s just a lot of regular play with an agenda of eliciting some sort of reaction from them. Sometimes they are troopers and play along but typically at the end of the school day they are exhausted and want nothing to do with finding the missing turtle or making a block tower.
They girls are continuously improving and that’s all we can ask for. It’s almost like their personalities were locked away before and now they are unlocked. They are making great eye contact, showing interest in toys and activities, interacting with each other and their classmates, and exploring. My heart just swells with pride when I think about how far they’ve come in just a few short months. What a difference! Thanks for sharing in this amazing experience with us by reading my blog!
P.S. I’m using a new blog format which should fix the problems with leaving a comment. Do me a favor and try it out so I can make sure it works. Thanks!