Sunday, November 30

Is There A Girl on the Pittsburgh Steelers?

We've had a very relaxing Sunday, as we wind down another Thanksgiving weekend. We spent the better part of the morning in our pajamas, and if it wasn't for needing milk, we may have never left the house all day. It is cold and raining, just another sign that winter is here.

After nap time, we ate a quick dinner and then have been watching the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. New England Patriots football game. We made hot chocolate and gathered in the living room together, watching football. The Pittsburgh Steelers were on defense, when we heard Drew say, "Oh No! She missed it!"

She missed it? Drew's Dad and I both paused for a minute, looking at each other a little stunned. As a replay was being shown, we again heard Drew say, "Oh No! She missed it!"

As we watched the replay we realized that Troy Polamalu was the player that had just missed catching an errant pass for an interception.

Drew was calling Troy Polamalu "she" because of his long hair hanging below his helmet! Hilarious.

I've never been a fan of NFL players having long hair. Maybe being called a girl by a two year old will make some of these guys think about their hair style.

Saturday, November 29

Seven Words?

Seven Words!

Yesterday as we were decorating for Christmas, Drew said, "I wanna go roll the ball outside." I stopped dead in my tracks and immediately finger counted the number of words in the phrase he had just said. Apparently Drew's Dad found it rather amazing as well, since we both yelled, "That was SEVEN words!," at the exact same time.

After we finished decorating the Christmas tree, hanging the stockings and mistletoe, we all headed upstairs for bedtime. As we walked, Drew turned and said, "Bye, Bye Christmas tree."

Drew has already learned so many "words" of the season: Merry Christmas, Jesus, Ho, Ho, Ho, Santa Claus. He is also learning to sing "Jingle Bells" and "Oh Christmas Tree." I just love it when he starts singing one of his little songs all on his own.

The holidays have always been my most favorite time of year, but two years ago we had a rather awful holiday season, having just found out about Drew's hearing loss. I wish there would have been a way back then to fast forward for a moment to see how Okay things would be. We are just loving sharing the sounds of the holiday season with Drew.

Wednesday, November 26


On this Thanksgiving, I once again find myself overwhelmed with things for which I am thankful. I am thankful for my family and my two beautiful children. Thankful for their health, their happiness, their expanding personalities.

I am thankful that there are days they talk so much I think I just might lose my mind.

I am thankful for technology giving Drew the wonderful gift of hearing, and communication.

I am thankful that I actually heard Drew's Dad say to Drew one day, under his breath, "Would you shut the h*** up?" And I'm thankful that we both laughed so hard we cried at this statement, since there was a day we thought we might never hear Drew's sweet voice.

I am thankful that I get to hear Drew say, "dube (love) you too," every day.

I am thankful for hugs, kisses, story times. Quite moments together. Thankful for their unconditional love.

Most of all, I am thankful that Drew and his Sister are mine. And thankful for all of you who are sharing in Drew's hearing story. Drew and his sister have given us many things to be thankful for this year. I wonder what they have in store for 2009?

Saturday, November 15

Take A Look

I finally had a moment to update the list of blogs on the sidebar of Turn On My Ears! Please take a moment to look at the new list and make sure that your blog is listed. If you would like to be listed, and are not, please leave a comment. Also, if you would like to be removed, please let me know.

Friday, November 14

Meet Me in St. Louis?

I mailed our registration today for the Parent Summer Workshop at The Moog Center for Deaf Education. This program, Helping Your Child Learn to Talk, runs from July 15 -19, 2009 at the Moog Center in St. Louis, MO.

We are really excited to return to Moog. It will be nearly three years, when the conference rolls around, since our last visit. We were in such a different place emotionally when we were last there. Having just learned of Drew's profound hearing loss hours before, we toured the school and talked with the director, and left with the hope we needed to carry on. I will be forever grateful for the information and direction they provided us in some of the darkest days of this journey.

I'm also really excited to show off our little guy and get an "outside" evaluation, from one of the top Oral Deaf Education program's in the country. I'm hoping they see him as the CI Superstar we do.

Tuesday, November 11

One, Two, Three, Four, Seven

Drew is learning to count, and is doing quite well! Our primary therapist says that counting is a skill usually learned around the age of three, but we are going to start working on this now. At his most recent therapy session he was counting on every task we worked on, so he has shown a clear interest which is why she wants to go ahead and work on this skill now.

Often Drew will be playing by himself and I will over hear, "Oooone. Twoooo. Threeeeeee. Fooooour. Seven." It is hilarious, and makes me smile and laugh every time. He will count coasters, M & M's, balls, leaves. It really doesn't matter, he will count anything he can find, and he really enjoys it.

Drew continues to progress well, now talking regularly in three word phrases/sentences. He often says "I don't wan it," when referring to his dinner, or "I wanna go downstairs," telling me he wants to play with his sister. He has several phrases he uses on a regular basis, and it is becoming easier and easier to not only understand his needs, but understand his language.

We are having so much fun with this. I am forever thankful that I have learned to truly appreciate this gift. It is so fun hearing him talk, and each day we find him saying something new. I'm just so thankful that life is this normal, and that I don't take it for granted.

Sunday, November 9

Learning Our Alphabet

After attending the conference on literacy, Drew's Dad and I have been trying to work with both Drew and his sister on not only learning their alphabet, but learning the sound(s) that goes with each of the letters when reading. We have been working on the alphabet for quite some time with our older daughter, but it never occurred to us to teach her the letter sound while learning the alphabet! Duh!

Drew's Dad came up with "Letter of the Day," where each morning we put a letter of the alphabet on an object inside our home. We talk about the letter being a big letter "D", vs. a little letter "d", and then we discuss the sound(s) the letter makes and discuss different words that start with that letter. (Since taking this picture we have added the lower case letters as well; it is important for children to learn all of the ways a letter can look.)

We now have a "T" on the television, "W" on the window, "R" on the refrigerator, "L" on the lamp, "D" on the door, "F" on the fireplace, etc. Drew enjoys taking us all on a walk around the house pointing out each of the letters and naming the object they are on. He remembers them quite well, and can say the sound of each letter when asked.

This just might work.

Tuesday, November 4

Anchorman Drew Breaks Down Election 2008

A few weeks ago Drew's sister asked from the rear of "daddy car", "Daddy, what are all those signs everywhere?"

I answered that they were for John McCain and Barack Obama, because they were running for President. After answering the following "why?" questions, I figured the issue was over.

However, after turning onto a new street where a whole new set of signs lay ahead, I heard Drew exclaiming from his car seat "John McCain! John McCain! John McCain!"

So that is how Drew learned to say John McCain and Barack Obama. Somewhere in there, they both also learned the name "Sarah Palin".

Naturally, we thought we'd get all of this on tape and so we dressed Drew up in his tie, cleaned up his face, bribed him with Skittles and rolled the tape. We didn't practice this beforehand, didn't suggest answers for him or his sister, and neither of them know who we're voting for...Here's how it turned out.