Monday, September 08, 2008

Where's Ben?

Ben has started to get into playing "Where's Ben?" We started out trying to put a mini-blanket over his face and then pulling it away, saying "Where's Ben?" but he didn't like having the blanket on his face. So I would hold the blanket up to my own face and say "Where's Mommy?"

After a week or two of that, Ben started to hold the blanket up to his own face. I noticed him doing that and said "Where's Ben?", and he lowered the blanket down. He brought it back up and we did it again. Now he's doing it on a semi-regular basis, including when I put him in the swing for a nap a few days ago. He often goes down for naps in an unhappy way, but not that day, so that was a nice change.

He fights sleep, just like his big sister did. She still does if she gets any sleep in the afternoon, and will call out repeatedly and keep getting out of bed and just stay generally wound up for several hours after we put her to bed when she's napped or fallen asleep in the car. Hence the stopping of naps. They hadn't been working well, anyway, for some time. I tried to have her do "afternoon quiet time" instead, but she would pop out of her room every 5 to 10 minutes to tell me some vitally important piece of information, like "Alicia is Diego's cousin" or something else just as key for me to know.

And then if I tried to have her stay in there and *not* pop out, she'd get very upset. I finally figured out that she didn't like feeling so isolated. It was becoming a battle ground, so I decided that it wasn't a battle that was important to me, and we did away with mandatory in-her-room time. Sometimes she goes in there on her own and plays for a good amount of time, which is nice.

Other times, we play "Who are you from 'Beauty and the Beast'? Who are you from 'The Lion King'? Who are you from 'The Berenstain Bears'?" THAT is a game that can really wear on you when you play it 50 times a day for a week. We've had to impose No-Who-Are-You days a few times just to give ourselves a break. I'm glad she has such a good imagination, but she sure could use more playmates her age to exercise it with!

She's back in preschool now for the fall and is so happy to see her friends from there. Last week was Slow Start, where they attend for 1 hour on Wednesday with parents in the room, then 1 hour on Friday with parents down the hall. Today was her first 3-hour day back. She and her friend Hannah were *so* sad on Friday when their parents came to pick them up, so I suspect they're both pretty happy to be back to the full schedule now.

I couldn't decide which of these two photos I liked best, so I posted both!

Ben seems to be thinking "Uh, what's going on here?"

He doesn't always look this startled when Rachel's with him :)

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