Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Three Talkers ... wait, I think I mean Four

I guess I have to count myself in there.  If you know our family at all, you can guess who I'm not including in the count.  He almost doesn't stand a chance nowadays.

As soon as the girls get in the car afterschool, it's a fight to see who can have a turn to talk.  I am trying to have them take turns telling one thing at at time about school, but it's hard to share that time and wait to talk. 

And meanwhile, JM is pointing out "'cool buses" and "Jeeps" left and right.  I have to say, there must be something instinctive with boys because he is actually spotting Jeeps, both old and new.  I don't think Mike has given him any secret tutorials, but who knows...

So John Michael is busy repeating everything we say and trying to tell us all sorts of things.  The other morning, I was getting ready to get him out of bed (I was trying to finish up some work at the computer first) and I could hear him calling something.  When I got closer, I discovered it was "Wake Up . . . Mommy!, Wake Up . . . Mommy!" Again and again and again.  But it was very cute.  I guess he thought he would be my alarm clock.  

Then the other day, he was so cute, that he got to skip afternoon nap.  I was working on the computer (again - yes, it's that time of year, JBF is right around the corner and I'm busy actually working), and I called out "John Michael, are you ready for your nap?"  Which, as any halfway intelligent person knows is really not a good question to ask, but anyhow, I asked it.  And I actually got a respose:  "No ... Mommy .... I playing."
It was very cute.  I asked him again later to see if he would repeat it and he did.  His speech is so funny to listen to right now, one of my friends summed it up by saying he sounds like a robot! 

The only thing he really has difficulty with is those starting "S" or "sh" sounds.  His stuffed shark is a "arksh" and he was telling me all about the railroad crossing "ign-sss" for his Thomas train.  So it's kind of funny to tell him an "s" word and then hear him say it. 

That's all for now - I'm hoping to get some beach pictures up soon.  I managed to post a few along the side of the blog, but I have lots more (of course!)  But I suppose I should fix dinner for my family now, rather than continue to blog???

1st Day of School!

Two happy girls - I think Monday was the longest day ever for them!  They were so ready for this day, but Clara was still a little uncertain, but definitely excited.


Dropping Gracie off:
 
A few hours later & it was Clara's turn:

Even JM enjoyed himself, at least until I dragged him out of the kindergarten room (which has lots of fun stuff to play with) and then when he realized that Clara would be staying behind. 

They both came home yesterday afternoon still happy about school.  Clara told me "I was a little worried, but I *love* school!"

And we made it through morning drop off again today - although Gracie missed being tardy by about 1 minute - yikes!  I guess I relaxed a little too much after the first day went so smoothly.  We'll shoot for a happy medium tomorrow!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Talking away

JM has moved on to sentences these days.  He tries to echo just about everything you say.  If you don't know what he is trying to say though, it can still be tough.  But he does try at just about every word! 

And I've finally discovered what "bin" and "ben" are.  Bin = Put in and Ben = Put on.  Aha!  What a light bulb moment.  Now I'm curious about what he was always asking me to put in or put on. 

It will be fun to see how much he talks next week when we are with my family at the beach.  Busy getting ready for that big plane trip.  Maybe I'll get in a few more posts before we leave!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Tooth Fairy has been busy . . .

Can you believe the tooth fairy gives out gold dollar coins?  Or silver dollars, as Gracie likes to call them.  She's got a total of seven so far - one from her kindergarten teacher at graduation, two for the first tooth she lost (bottom front), two for the first top tooth and one for each of the other teeth. 

She's had quite the adventure with her teeth.  The first one she lost was actually the least dramatic - just a normal wiggly tooth that she kept wiggling and wiggling.  The only drama came from me when I saw it leaning over at a ninety degree angle in her mouth - I had to send her off to Daddy to help her with that.  Apparently, I'm not made for teeth pulling or looking or anything.  Then, I guess (Mike is actually having to tell me because I already don't remember! acck!) she lost her other bottom tooth, and that was just your average wiggle, wiggle and then (I'm just finding this out as I'm writing this and consulting with Mikey) pulled out by Daddy.


The next tooth out was definitely more exciting - and unexpected.  We knew she had a couple of teeth that were starting to wiggle, but they weren't what you would call loose.  I knew she didn't like to crunch into anything and I had to cut up her apples for her, but that was about all.  So, we were at the reception for her Art Camp (more on that later), and Mike, Clara and John Michael had already left.  We were milling around looking at the kid's artwork that was displayed on the walls, window sills, stairways, and ceilings and Gracie decided she would have an apple from the refreshment table.  Next thing I know, she's looking concerned, holding out her apple to me and mumbling something.  I finally grasp that she's asking me if her tooth came out.  What??? Sure enough, I look in her mouth (wishing Mike hadn't already left) and there is only one upper front tooth left.  Wow - that was one crunchy apple, I guess.  So I look down at the apple, assuming the tooth will be there.  No tooth.  Hmmmmm. . . so I ask her, "is it in your mouth?  Did you swallow it?"  Okay, so I asked that second question several times before I realized a) I was going to freak her out by asking that and b) she probably would have noticed swallowing something as big as her tooth.  Once the rational part of my brain kicked in, I finally located the tooth on the floor under the refreshment table (luckily, no one else was paying attention to me and my frantic tooth search).  I was thrilled we had found it and Gracie was happy to have another visit from the tooth fairy.


Or so she thought.  For some reason, the tooth fairy didn't show up that night.  I thought it might have been because Gracie went to bed so late (10pm), but Gracie decided the tooth fairy wanted her to be able to show her tooth to Aunt Carolyn who was coming for a visit the next day (and who was thrilled at the sight, I might add).  Luckily, the tooth fairy did come that second night, and even brought her 2 gold dollars since it was her first top tooth.


And the other top tooth had an exciting finish as well.  It was actually wiggling, but not ready to come out yet.  In the midst of Gracie and Clara having a grand time playing with one of Gracie's school buddies (Alex), Gracie got bumped in the mouth and her tooth started bleeding.  It didn't come out, but I guess if I had been brave enough, I might have pulled it out.  But ... I didn't.  So we headed home and she said it was fine, but she wouldn't touch it either.  Fast forward to 5am... Gracie: "Mommy, I woke up and there was a tooth in my mouth."  So Gracie got to take her tooth on her first ever camping trip with Daddy and Clara.  And the tooth fairy managed to make it into their tent that night and leave her another gold dollar. 


I'm kind of hoping the rest of the teeth will be more of the wiggle, wiggle, and then Daddy pull variety.  I think I've reached my handling loose teeth quota for the year.  

And as a final note, of course Clara has been checking in with us every few weeks or so, sure that some of her teeth must be loose, too.

Finally! The girl's accomplishments

And since it's been what, 2 months?  There are so many more to report now!  But I think I'll stick with my original plan. 

Clara -
She finished out her year of gymnastics at The Little Gym. She really enjoyed it, but we are switching back to music for this coming year.  And, the big news of the past few days is that Clara will be a kindergartner next year.  Mike & I have debated endlessly about this and finally after talking to Mrs. Matejka (who knows Clara from all the parties and other events we attended for Gracie last year), we decided to go ahead and let her start.  She'll be an afternoon kindergartner, since those are the spots that were left.  Hopefully, it will be a good fit for her and it will be nice to have her year be a little different than her big sister's! 

But, back to her gymnastics - here's are two short clips of routines she did during the final performance:
video


video

Gracie -
So this video clip is from her recital at the end of her music camp.  It was her first keyboard classes (she'll continue in the fall with the same - group keyboard) and it was the first camp of the summer.  Poor Gracie missed one of the four days after she got some sort of cold/virus and ran a fever.  I don't know that she really felt well on the last two days, but I hated to have her miss when it was such a short camp and she was so excited.  But she hung in there and here's the end result:
video


I'll have to make a new recording of her playing that (or something else), because we now have a lovely new (to us) piano in our living room!  Thanks to my Mom & Dad for scouring the metroplex to find us a really nice piano.  We've had it for about 2 weeks now and the kids really enjoy it.  Gracie has learned to play all of the sheet music she has (simple songs from her classes) and even wrote out a duet for her and Clara to play. 

 In other exciting news, Gracie has now lost *4* teeth.  And yes, those would be all of her front teeth.  When she lost the last of the front ones, we poked some fun at her about how tough it was to make those "ss"  sounds, but she was a good sport about it.  And luckily, she now has both bottom teeth about half way in.  Those top teeth are probably going to be awhile coming in, but more on that in another post.