2 years hearing!

happy birthday

Today we celebrate Fiona’s 2nd year hearing birthday!  2 years ago today her right cochlear implant was turned on for the first time.  To reflect back on this amazing year of hearing I created a top 10 list of our favorite hearing moments:

  1. When Fiona started pronouncing daddy’s name correctly. Dadda instead of haha.
  2. When I turned off the music and Fiona passionately yelled “Turn it on!!!”
  3. Fiona saying “I love you.”
  4. Fiona using actual sentences.
  5. Listening to Fiona sing ALL DAY LONG.  Favorites are “wheels on the bus”, “daddy finger song”, “if you’re happy and you know it”
  6. Fiona using her words to communicate to her teachers at school!
  7. Watching Fiona try and count to 10.
  8. Fiona pronouncing the word dog with an actual “d” instead of “h”.
  9. When Fiona tells me to stop talking.  This is especially funny since with auditory verbal therapy we are supposed to narrate everything.  She’s caught on.
  10. Watching Fiona enjoy dancing to music.  Almost every morning she requests that we listen and dance to “Et-tannah” which is Madonna.

 

Here are some pictures of Fiona being herself:

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Of course I can’t finish of a profoundly strong blog post without a video.  Here are some Fiona dance moves:

Thanks for reading!! Here’s to another great year!!

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Some Songs

Hi there!  We’ve had a great couple of weeks with Fiona’s speech.  There’s been several times when I’ve heard her say full sentences.  Here are a few examples:

  • I got a doggy! (showing me a valentine dog she got at school)
  • See you later mommy.
  • It’s a purple bow.
  • This is mommy’s pizza.

Sometimes when this comes out of her mouth I have to stop myself and think, woah, did she really just say that?  I just can’t believe she is talking.  We’ve worked so hard to get to this point its so nice to hear sentences!

Fiona’s pronunciation still needs a whole bunch of practice but learning how to talk is hard!  For example she uses the “h” sound a lot in place of the “p” sound.  We’ve been practicing speech babble at home.  (Having her repeat sounds like “pah pah” or “pie pie” over and over until it sounds correct). She gets bored of this game easily and sometimes yells NO!!! when we work on it.  She can be stubborn but works hard for ice cream cone stamps.  haha!!

Here are a few songs.  You’ll see what I mean with pronunciation.

Grandma and Fiona have been practicing this one a lot.  The wheels on the bus:

If you’re happy and you know it.  They do this song a lot in school and her teacher says “boom boom” when they stomp their feet.

 

2 minutes of chatter

I got a really good video of Fiona talking before lunch time.  She says a lot in this video.

We’ve been drilling the word please at home and I think she’s getting the hang of it. She’s a little under the weather – please excuse the crazy hair. 🙂 Sick kids don’t have to brush their hair.

Fiona singing

Happy New Year!!

I wanted to share a video of Fiona singing her favorite song of the hour. She’s singing “here I am” if its not clear.

And because I’m a super nice person I want to share the video where Fiona learned this song.  This is what parenting is like folks. Tons of these great kids songs, haha!  I want to apologize in advance if you are singing this tonight when you’re trying to sleep.

Here’s a really cute video of Fiona driving a truck with her Daddy at the Atlanta Children’s Museum:

 

 

 

Silly Kid

Here’s a video of Fiona repeating family member’s names back to me.  We have been working a lot on pronunciation during therapy.  Sorry Stephanie, your name is so hard to pronounce!! She will get it eventually!  🙂

She was looking at herself while making this video and that’s why she was acting so goofy.  Sorry about the mouth full of food.

The word gap

One of the most important things I’ve learned on this journey is how important it is to talk to your babies and toddlers at an early age.  Before Fiona was born I don’t think I realized that the words spoken from parents and caregivers has such a huge impact on the children’s education and future. This “word gap” is a daily reminder of how important it is to talk and engage with Fiona instead of turning on Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.  🙂

This article goes into more detail:

http://www.npr.org/2013/12/29/257922222/closing-the-word-gap-between-rich-and-poor

“In the early 1990s, a team of researchers decided to follow about 40 volunteer families — some poor, some middle class, some rich — during the first three years of their new children’s lives. Every month, the researchers recorded an hour of sound from the families’ homes. Later in the lab, the team listened back and painstakingly tallied up the total number of words spoken in each household.

What they found came to be known as the “word gap.”

It turned out, by the age of 3, children born into low-income families heard roughly 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers.

Research since then has revealed that the “word gap” factors into a compounding achievement gap between the poor and the better-off in school and life. The “word gap” remains as wide today, and new research from Stanford University found an intellectual processing gap appearing as early as 18 months.”

“The parent should “tune in” to what the child is looking at, talk about it and ask questions that can create a sort of “serve and return” between parent and child.

Suskind says that research shows overhearing a cell phone conversation or sitting in front of a television program doesn’t cut it when it comes to building a child’s brain.”

Fiona Update

Hi everyone,

Its been a while since I’ve posted. Sorry about that!  It’s hard to get video of Fiona – she tells me “no” every time I try to record her.  haha

Fiona has been saying 3 word combinations. Here are some examples:

  • Ice cream song
  • good job momma
  • it’s all gone
  • I want juice

We are working on pronunciation more in therapy.  We are helping her sound out the words so that they sound more intelligible. She still uses an “h” for d words.  Example: haha instead of doggy.  She uses “n” for w words. Example: nana for water

We bombard her with “d” words at home so that she hears the “d” as much as possible.  It’s a slow moving process but she will get there!

Here is a video of Fiona telling me “good job mamma” after vacuuming the house.  She always runs into the room to tell me this which is SOOO sweet.

I’ll try to post some Christmas pictures later this month!  Thanks for following!!