I really dropped the ball on my 100thpost & didn’t want to make that mistake again as I saw my 200th approaching. My original intension was to have my 200th post coincide with my Blogaversary back in February…by life in February was…hard. As my anniversary passed, I even considered making my 200th post a good bye…Now that I can feel the weight of grief (slowly) lifting from my chest & I am making an effort to get back on the blogging horse it seems appropriate for my 200th post to be an update on Little Miss Elena…
Let’s approach this like a classic blog update…
Height: At 3 years & 3 months old, she is currently 42 inches tall…yes, at 3 feet 5 inches Elena is a very tall 3 year old!
Weight: She weighs in at about 37 lbs…so though she’s tall, she’s pretty skinny…& all legs!
Daily Routine: Well, let’s see…Mondays are an off day for Elena. Sometimes my Mom will take her swimming or maybe to the mall…mostly it’s a free day for them. I work, obviously…Tuesdays Elena has preschool then after a mandatory visit to the park beside the school (if weather permits) & usually a lunch out, she was off to music class. This girl LOVES her music! Wednesdays were play group at my Mom’s church but that is on hiatus for the summer (as is music class)…Thursdays are another free day for swimming or whatever…Fridays are preschool again. Saturdays I get to take her to gymnastics in the morning & the afternoons are free to do whatever, sometimes swimming, sometimes errands, often just playing at home…Sunday mornings is when we usually get our grocery shopping done…then she has swimming lessons before dinner…I think we’ve achieved a nice balance of structured, organized fun & freestyle fun…Elena loves going to the park, she is getting really good with her balance bike & will probably be ready for a two wheeler next summer. She’s still the little helper & loves working alongside my Mom at whatever chore needs doing. She has won the hearts of all our neighbours with her giggles & laughs.
Preschool: To elaborate a little on Elena’s preschool, I am still beyond pleased with this amazing place. I was worrying a little at first, I expected more communication & was feeling very disconnected until they realized I wasn’t on the email distribution list. Since then, they have lived up to & exceeded my expectations. There was a teacher change in Elena’s class & I didn’t feel as confident in her new teacher…not that there’s anything wrong with her, there’s just no…warm & fuzzy from her. But I’ve only met her twice so I didn’t want to jump to judgments. I notified them that I would increase Elena’s attendance in the fall…not long after that, they advised Elena would be ready to move up to the next class & asked if they could have her visit regularly between now & the fall to make a smooth transition. I am so over the moon that Elena will be in the new room in the fall as my two favourite teachers lead that class, one of whom is the owner’s daughter. Speaking of the owner, this woman is an angel on earth. She is one of the kindest, most nurturing human beings I’ve ever met. And boy does she have a soft spot for my Elena. I could burst with pride hearing all the great things she has to say about Elena. I know Elena is a super kid, but it’s nice to hear it from someone else, someone in her position.
A few weeks ago, they had their spring show. It was so precious…Miss Elena was struck with a little bout of stage fright…My heart went out to her but it was also a bonding moment for she & I. When she came out on stage, you could see the fear rising in her. She was scanning the audience & I purposely went to the side aisle so she’d see me. When we made eye contact, the relief washed over her & she tried to be brave & perform but when another little girl started crying, Elena was hard pressed to keep it together. She would search of me with her eyes & I would give her the thumbs up & she’d suck in her trembling lip. In the end, it was a precious show & I couldn’t be more proud of her.
I am also so very glad to have found such a great preschool for all that she’s learning. I can only imagine how much more she’ll learn when she’s going 4 mornings a week this fall. They are teaching her things, basic preschool stuff, but stuff that never occurred to me to teach her…she is so proud to be able to identify the letter E & knows that is the 1st letter in her name…she can identify her name when she sees it written…she also knows her colours, letters & numbers…I’m amazed at how much she knows now.
Swimming: And while I’m elaborating, I have to mention Elena’s swimming. The kid is a fish! Back in January she started her 1st lessons independent of me or my Mom…she did so well…but she was also bored. She was a bit more advanced than the rest of kids. The lifeguard would tell them they were going to do a back float, and then help one child at a time, well Elena would be doing it by herself while waiting for her turn. So for the spring session I splurged & got her private lessons. Half hour weekly one on one sessions has been great for Elena! She is swimming on her back unassisted & on the verge of actual front swimming on her own!
Imagination: Elena’s imagination is exploding. She has started pretend play & it’s fascinating to watch & participate with her. The other night she wanted to go to the mall (yes, she loves the mall!) but there was no way we’d go after dinner…so instead, I pretended we were at the mall. The look of awe & intrigue was priceless! We had such a great evening!
The Theatre: After taking Elena to see Toopy & Binoo last year I had this brilliant vision of Elena & I going to theatre productions for years to come…so I may have gotten a little overzealous…we have now gone to see Dora Live, The Wiggles, The Backyardigans, Mickey’s Rockin’ Roadshow & she & my Mom went to Disney on Ice Heroes & Princesses. We also have tickets to an upcoming show of The Imagination Movers. We may have a few years before we hit Broadway in NYC…but Elena is enjoying these shows. She’s not one of those kids that dances & cheers…she is much more reserved & wholly captivated by the shows.
Sleep: Now onto more mundane update details…We have a really great sleep routine going…it’s not flawless but it works. We’re still co-sleeping & I have no regrets there. We recently had a house guest that necessitated I sleep in the living room so my mom could sleep in my bed so the guest could sleep in my Mom’s bed…& though it was nice at first to have a bed to myself & get some uninterrupted sleep, I really did miss her & now that we’re back to our own beds, we’re sleeping better than ever. I start trying to hustle her into bed about 6pm, basically because she has become the queen of the stall tactics! I can’t blame her, we get so little time together from when I get home to bedtime & she doesn’t want it to end. After teeth brushing & book reading, she’s usually asleep by 7pm & will sleep until 7am most mornings…she does stir in the night & sometimes wakes as I’m getting up for work about 4:30…when she does wake in the night, sometimes it’s from nightmares. I wouldn’t call them terrors as they don’t sound as bad as I’ve read about but it breaks my heart to hear her screams & calling out for me & makes me so glad she’s right there beside me so I can comfort & calm her instantly. I had nightmares most of my childhood (I was a sleep walker too) & I know how frightening it is to wake up alone & scared in the dark. Funny story, I did have a nightmare myself not too long ago & was calling out & woke up to Elena saying, “Momma?” questioningly…I’d obviously been calling out for real & woke her up!
Feeding: Well, Elena eats pretty well…she’s not a very adventurous eater & doesn’t have a taste for vegetables but loves most fruits. At any given meal, if you ask what she’d like to have, the response will inevitably be, “Pizza!!” The funniest is when she requests, “Man Pizza!!” by which she means pizza delivered lol!
Favourite Colour: OMG, I cannot possibly explain to you the irony that Elena’s favourite colour is PINK!! What’s hilarious is that when I ask her why, she tells me because pink MATCHES her!! What a kid!
Haircut: Elena had her 1st haircut in April…I took her to the salon I go to & my stylist pampered her & she loved it! It was such a special day & one of those moments I dreamed about when imagining having my daughter.
Speech: The elephant in the room…it really deserves a post of its own…Elena has an expressive language speech delay…the temptation is there to say, “only a speech delay” but I think that minimizes the challenges we’ve had surrounding the delay but what I mean is that she’s been assessed & has no other delays other than speech. The number of words, spoken, understandable words Elena has in her vocabulary is probably 20-30…if you include the signs she knows, this would bring us up to 40-50…she still has her Elenaglish but we have gotten better at communicating. We got an app that teaches us basic signs & this helps immensely…except that she’ll go on it when she gets iPad time & teach herself signs then use them on me & I have no idea what she’s trying to say!! I feel so much guilt for not understanding her, she tries so hard. I tell her constantly, “It’s Mommy that doesn’t understand & I am sorry…but you keep trying” I am anxiously awaiting a call from our provincial services to get help…we were in that program last fall & it was amazing & then we were put on the waiting list…& have been waiting…3 weeks ago I got the call that we were finally at the top of the waiting list…but we’re still waiting for services to begin…very frustrating.
There you have it...if you've made it this far, thank you!!