Friday, September 30, 2011

Does that really happen outside of Leave it to Beaver?

So it's dinnertime and I made the mistake of asking for a volunteer instead of just choosing someone to say the prayer:

Me:  "Dinner's ready!  Everyone up to the table please!  Who would like to say the blessing?"
Both girls in unison:   "ME!!!"

Now this is the point where the house would usually erupt into shouts of accusation about who said it last time and lobbying for their case.  However, just as I was stealing myself up to break up a fight and impose the iron decision of Mother to settle the issue, I heard this from my younger princess:

Banana Girl: "(Princess M), you can say the prayer if you want to."
Princess M: "Thank  you, (Banana Girl)!"
Banana Girl: "Welcome."
Princess M: "You can say the night prayer, if you would like."
Banana Girl: "Thanks!"
Princess M: "You're welcome."

Who are you?  and what have you done with my kids?  ...And can I keep you forever?  It made my night.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Happy Double Birthday!!!

Yesterday was Alex and Banana Girl's Birthday!

We had a busy day from the start.  Alex took the two older girls to the local swimming pool in the morning, while I finished canning our last batch of salsa.  (A week ago Saturday we received 125 lbs of tomatoes, that we have been canning into diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and salsa all week long.  I'm so glad that is done!)  When the last batch came out of the canner, we loaded up the kids and all went to the fair in town. 
Here's me and my girls!

Here's the Birthday Girl and Boy! (and the baby too.)

Banana Girl and Princess M rode the train together.

These three rode the Mary-go-round.

Banana Girl rode her first ride all by herself.  I was afraid she would be to nervous by herself, but as you can see, she had a blast and waved to us every time she came around.

Princess M and I rode the Farris Wheel.  And Alex and Banana Girl rode the giant slide together, but were too fast for a picture.  (My camera was taking too long adjusting for the dark and flashing lights.)

We ended the day with presents and cake.  (I know the candle is a 7.  It's the only candle I could find in the house.  She really turned 3.  The cake still tasted good.)

Princess M helped me decorate the cake.  It's half princesses for Banana Girl, and half boy toys for Alex.  (Names have been changed to protect the innocent.)

I'd like to take a moment to record some observations on Banana Girl on this, her 3rd birthday.  At this point in her life, these are her favorites:

Favorite Color:Still Yellow by far, but she's starting to say Pink and Green as well.
Favorite Toy: My Little Ponies
Favorite Foods: (Here's what she chose for her birthday menu:) Eggs & Toast, Doughnuts, Daddy Mac (macaroni with cheese and diced tomatoes added), Chicken Nuggets, Broccoli, Apples, and Ice Cream.
Favorite Movie: Barbie & the 3 Musketeers.
Favorite Music: Abba/Mama Mia; Especially "Money, Money, Money", "Dancing Queen," and "Mama Mia".
Other Favorite Songs: "Stuck Like Glue" by Sugarland, "Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam", and "Winnie the Pooh".
Favorite TV show: Ni Hau Kai-lan.
Favorite activities: Swimming, going for walks, riding on the back of Daddy's bike, playing with her older sister, and going on errands with Mama or Daddy.
Favorite Clothes: Swimming Suit.  When I won't let her wear that, then it has to be a pretty dress.
What I Want to Be When I Grow Up: A Ballerina.

Banana Girl is my sweet peacemaker.  She is very often thinking of other people without being prompted.  I love to hear her prayers, because she always includes either her sister or her daddy and often both, that they might have a good day at school, work, ballet, or whatever they are doing that day.  She almost always greets us at the door when we come home from somewhere and asks us, "How was school/work/ballet/etc.?"  She's the first to give thanks for whoever cooked the meal, and almost never forgets her please and thank yous.  She's quick to hand out kisses and hugs, and always lets us know when Little Mouse is crying.  She's very patient with her older sister, who is more inclined to lead and direct their play.  She will usually let her sister take the lead and do whatever she's told to do in their play.  She loves being with her sister and misses her when she's at school.  They take care of each other too.  I love to see them holding hands (of their own choosing) when in a big crowd or crossing the street. 

She is also my singer.  Banana Girl loves to sing at the top of her lungs and dance along too when the song moves her.  She can't sing "Dancing Queen" any other way than on high volume and top speed as she skips around the living room.  She's very good at singing too.  She's always been very accurate in her tone.  Even before I could understand the words she was singing, I was always able to pick out the song, because she's exactly on her notes.  I need to figure out how to get home recorded mp3s on this site because I have some great recordings of her singing Abba.  I absolutely love it!  It makes me smile just to hear her voice. 

As long as you don't catch her when she wakes up from a nap (she's a real bear for a while; like her daddy,) she's usually very happy and is really into silly words (esp. gugie and boogie) and giggling.  She loves to climb, as high as she can get.  I'm always having to order her off the high stools and stacks of boxes, or backs of chairs.  She's not very fond of the puppy (it's too jumpy and nippy for her tastes) at our house right now, but she loves petting the neighbor's cat.  I can't wait to see how she takes to a kitten.  She loves being a big girl, and is excited to be 3 years old. 

Happy Birthday Banana Girl!!! I love you very very much!!!

Alex, I haven't forgotten you, but this post is already way too long.  Stay tuned for our anniversary post coming soon.  I love you very much!!!  and Happy Birthday!!!

Princess M's Art Gallery

Princess M has always liked to draw.  I remember when she first started purposefully coloring (not just scribbling) and I showed her how I draw a smiley face.  She took to it right away and started asking me how to draw other things.  It may have seemed mean, but I wouldn't show her anything else.  I didn't want her to feel there was only one right way to draw.  So I told her that she could draw things however she wanted to; and I was surprised when she actually accepted that answer and decided to go draw things on her own.  I've loved watching her try new things and expressing the way she sees the world through her drawings.  It began mostly with stick figures, flowers, and eventually rainbows as you can see in this picture from June:
Now that she's in Kindergarden she brings how a LOT of papers.  A lot are worksheets or coloring pages that she has colored.  But my favorites are still her freestyle drawings that show how she's learinging to express different ideas in pictures.  Here's my favorites:

These are her ruetines: See if you can figure them out.  (Morning: make her bed, eat breakfast, get dressed and got to school.  Afternoon: ride a bike, eat dinner, jumping, and ballet.  Night: go to bed.  and her favorite: to watch movies.)

These are 2 monkeys jumping on the bed

Things she likes: butterfly balloons, sun, sky and birthday cake.

Scary things: Spiders and snakes.

Things she doesn't like: rattlesnakes, bees, and tornadoes.

A self portrait. (I saw this and said, "Wow! someone has big teeth"  M replied, "Mmm, that's me."  Oops.  I tried to backpeddle; not sure how successfully.)

The right side of this is a picture of herself helping someone who fell down. 

I might be a little biased, but I just love them!

Roses & Teeth

Here's a few pictures I meant to post last week, but didn't get around to it. 

One of the things I love about the home we're living in now is the many rose bushes throughout the front and back yards.  Although when we moved in they were wild, overgrown, and about spent for the season for lack of care.  So as part of the massive yard cleanup, we really pruned back all the rose bushes and gathered up the last few roses to put in vases in the house.  Here's Princess M with her favorite:
Isn't it gorgeous!!!
I'm sure those bushes were very angry at us for cutting off so much of their hard earned growth, but the first bush that we pruned back 3 weeks ago is now full of new growth and has over a dozen little buds.  It's going to be amazing with they bloom; and the rest should probably follow suit not too long after.  I'm planning another hard pruning come January when they are dormant and more suited to pruning. 

The other exciting picture is this strange one of Little Mouse.  It's hard to see, but last Sunday, a lady at church spotted a little white tooth in there.  On bottom, to the right. 

My Little Mouse is growing up. 

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Labor Day

We opened up our home for labor day to host the first, of hopefully many, family game afternoon.  We invited 2 families that were old friends and 1 family we had just met the day before.  We shared a BBQ, potluck snacks, good conversation, and a game of Settlers of Catan.  It was crazy crowded in our little house, but nobody seemed to mind.  The adults played games, while the kids played together and with the dogs in the backyard. 

And yes you heard me right.  There are dogs at my house right now.  Those who know me, know that I'm not a dog person.  However, my mother-in-law, Lynda has two shih-tzu dogs, who had puppies in Maryland.  She stopped by here on her way to Mexico and asked if we could take over the selling of 2 of them.  The puppies were so cute that we agreed.  If they would stay that cute and little forever, I might allow them to stay, but since no puppy stays little forever...Anyone want to buy an adorable puppy?  Please! 

Princess M is loving having them here for now though. 

6 Months

Little Mouse will be 6 months old in 2 days. That means she's old enough to start solids in our book. However, I had a really really long work/real estate day on Friday so Alex started her just a few days early. Here's some photos of her first experience with baby food. Apples, I think.

Princess M begs me to let her feed Little Mouse several times a day now.  We'll see how long that lasts.  She could be quite helpful in that way now.

6 months is probably a good time to record some thoughts on Little Mouse.  She's been my most contented baby for the most part.  As long as she's in a dry diaper and fed she's happy to sit in her play station and suck on the baubles.  She LOVES attention though, and will give big smiles to anyone who will look at her and talk to her a little.  She loves her older sisters and they adore her (sometimes a little too roughly, but loving all the same.)  She's very patient most of the time with their dressing her and playing with her. 

She's rolling over like a champ these days and we had to set up the crib in our room because she's rolling too much to sleep on the bed anymore.  She's also pushing herself up on her tummy, and is getting so close to learning how to crawl and sit up.  She has the desire to be moving around, she just hasn't figured out the mechanics quite yet.  (And I have not tried to hurry it at all.  We're going to have to install all those child locks on the cupboards soon.)

She has always been very friendly with other people, but recently she has figured out that babysitters mean that Mom will be leaving; and she has decided to punish them for it.  The last 3 times we've tried a babysitter, she has screamed the ENTIRE time!  The last 2 times, the babysitters couldn't take it anymore and had to call us to come home early.  And yet she doesn't scream when others hold her at any other time.  Smart girl!

She's my first baby that doesn't laugh when she's tickled.  She still clenches up and holds her breath in shock; but it looks more like torture to her than fun.  She does however laugh at things she thinks are funny or startling.  How I love to hear her beautiful laugh too.

And last night she slept the entire night non-stop in her crib for the first time!!!  I got the best nights sleep than I've had in a long time.  

How I love my little Mouse!  I love to hold her and squeeze her and kiss her fat little cheeks.  I love kissing the top of her head and breathing in that wonderful baby smell from her.  I love the way she smiles so big every time I look at her.  I just love being her mother!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

A little catch up

Is August really over?  Wow time is flying by!  Between working real estate, unpacking a house, repairing same house (it was a real wreck when we moved in) taking care of 3 princesses, and starting a new job, time has really flown.  Here's the few pictures I found on my camera from the last month:

Princess M started Kindergarten the beginning of August.  She's doing great.  Here's a photo of her first day of school in her new uniform.

She's practicing to be a professional model photographer.  I found her in the kitchen with the camera, showing her little sister how to pose (she would place her hands, lift her arms, and tilt her head to get exactly what she wanted from her sister,) and then step back to take a picture of her subject.  Here are some of her shots:

All she needs now is to drop a few lines like, "work it baby" and "love the camera"  and she'll be a true professional.