Tuesday, August 28, 2007

She's off

Well, she's off - on her own, on the bus, on her own, to her whole new world that begins today...

Nora got on the bus - by herself - barely turned around to say goodbye to me and went off to her first day of kindergarten. Bus came at 12:30, she was ready to wait outside at 10:30 (okay, a little earlier than that). Someone was VERY excited about going to kindergarten and riding the bus.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Updates on the girls - Part 3: Georgia

Bugly: 21 1/2 months old

Here she is - our little Bug. She's used to be a Cutie Pie, but now is a Cutie Sticky Bun (uh, cause she's ALWAYS sticky, naturally). Look at her, she looks so sweet and innocent and like she would never do anything wrong.


Oh so wrong! Looks are very deceiving in her case:) She IS sweet and adorable and innocent. But she is also very naughty and mischievous - she knows what she is doing is naughty and is not really sure that she cares.

Lately she has taken to pushing one of the kitchen chairs up to the counter and getting into whatever is on the counter. Her biggest accomplishment is when she can actually reach the basket of apples and take a bite out of each one before mom or dad catch her. She also really enjoys taking the wash cloth out of the dish water and spreading water all over the counter and the floor and herself. Or perhaps turning the dog's water dish over - or stepping in it is fine, too. Writing on the walls is not unheard of and pulling all of the books off of her book shelves is just part of life. At least the hands in the toilet has ended (mostly).

But then life also includes snuggling on the rocking chair and kisses whenever I ask for them. It includes a huge smile when I come into the kitchen for breakfast and arms reaching to me from her crib. Life includes waves in the opposite direction to say "Bye" and a tiny voice saying "Pease" when asked if she wants pretzels. She lights up when she sees someone she knows and she adores David more than anyone else on earth. She thinks she can walk on water, apparently, since she'll walk right up to the pool and step off of the edge - obviously she is fearless and has confidence that someone will be there to catch her. She starts her excited noises when she sees a strawberry or an avocado and they don't end until they are all gone.

Life is exciting and new for her - always. Everything is something to examine, touch and wonder about. Green tomatoes are obviously being grown so that she can pick them and flowers in a pot are simply there for her to remove. Nothing is off limits in her mind and luckily for her even the most simple of things is fun every time she does it - throwing herself on the pillows on the bed, for example, is as much fun the 50th time as it was the 1st time. She's not limited to simple, fun activities, though, strange things become obsessions for her. Right now she is totally obsessed with putting random toys in a basket - toys always include several balls - and carrying the basket all over the house, plopping down on the floor, taking them out and putting them back in. The basket goes everywhere - yes, everywhere - and sometimes they are big and hard to maneuver so she cries. And screams. And yells. Because she can't get the basket o' toys down the stairs. Or I have to take it out of her hands while I buckle her into her carseat. Basket must not leave her hands or her sight for even the briefest of moments or we're all miserable:)

She is constantly making noise - either babbling or singing her little Bugly songs or screaming about whatever she is obsessed with at the moment. She isn't talking a whole lot, but she can say:

Please = pease
Help = hep
Baby = Baaa-beee
All Done = Doh Doh
Woof = wff
Uh Oh
Oh No
Ow = owooooo
Thank you = Tah
Hot dog (I wish you could hear her say this and how excited she is when she sees one)
OK = ah kay

Her smile will light up a room and her energy and attitude are contagious - even at such a young age. When she catches a glimpse of someone she loves - even a picture - her whole face lights up and she smiles really big. What fun we are having with our Bugly!

Bugly and her basket of toys.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Updates on the girls - Part 2: Ryann

Ryann: 3 years old

So what do I say about Ryann - our Cutie Donut who refuses to be a cutie donut? She has a mind of her own and a will to go with it. She likes to dig her heels in and make life as miserable as possible when she's not getting her way. She has selective hearing and seems to not hear much of what is said to her. She has a terrible disability in the respect that every time she is asked to pick up toys, she keeps falling over. Over and over again - she falls over and just cannot pick up any toys. Oh, but then she says the cutest things and we have the best conversations. Its all part of being 3.

Lets go with some of our conversations...

Debating her cutie-donut-ness:
R: Mom, I'm NOT a cutie donut. I'm cutie chocolate bar.
J: Ryann, I don't care what you say - you will ALWAYS be a cutie donut. You simply cannot change your cutie-ness.
R: Mooo - ooom! I'm NOT a cutie donut, I'm a cutie chocolate bar. Some people DO change their cutie-Mess.

Discussing her being a big girl:
J: Ryann, are you a big girl or a little girl?
R: I'm a big girl.
J: When did you become a big girl?
R: When I was 2 I was a little girl and then I turned 3 and I was a big girl!

R: Mom, when is it my birthday?
J: In May. How old are you going to be on your next birthday?
R: I don't know.
J: Well, you're 3 now, so how old will you be on your next birthday?
R: I don't know - 17?

And my favorite - our new favorite sport:
I was painting the side door while the girls were playing in our side yard and in Nolan's front yard (they were gone for the day). They were playing with a soccer ball and had gotten sick of it and were standing by me and talking. I wasn't paying much attention to the chatter, but heard something and began to perk my ears up to hear better...

N: Mom, we're sick of playing soccer. What can we do?
R: Yeah, Mom, we're done playing bouncy lotsa lotsa. Bouncy lotsa lotsa is boring, we want to do something else.

Um hello? Did you read that? BOUNCY LOTSA LOTSA! Could there be a more perfect name for a sport? Soccer will forever be bouncy lotsa lotsa in our house, even though she now refuses to say it and has the following conversation:
J: Ryann, do you want to play bouncy lotsa lotsa this fall?
R: mmmm, no I don't call it that anymore I call it soccah.
J: You don't call it what?
R: (in a very quiet, tiny, hesitant voice) bouncy lotsa lotsa.

We have that conversation quite often so I can just hear her say those words;)

And I can't forget to add that we went and saw Shrek The Third for Nolan's birthday a couple of months ago. Ryann calls it Shrek Mafur - I'm sure I don't need to explain how cute that is and tell you how many times we try to get her to talk about the movie so we can hear her call it that:)

Oh my, she is so cute and just says the cutest things all the time. She is becoming quite a little person, although a lot of what comes out of her mouth is a direct copy of what Nora says. Apparently Nora has all of the best ideas, which is why Ryann feels a need to repeat them word for word:)

Ryann also has decided that she is going to marry Nolan's brother, Nate. They play together every afternoon and spend much of the time bickering and fighting, but yet, they are going to get married. Michelle and I watch, laugh and roll our eyes. They are the same exact kids but in different bodies. They throw the same fits. They fight with us the same way. It amazes me to watch Nate when Ryann's not around - because I feel like I'm watching Ryann. At any rate, they are getting married and if Cornbread and I have anything to say about it they will get married at the same time as Nora and Nolan so we can pay for one wedding and not two:)

Ryann is going to preschool 3 days a week in the fall and is very excited about that. She and Nate will be together at school and we're eager to see how that goes. This will be her first real opportunity to make friends without her sister. She has been going to nursery at Parkview for as long as we've been there, but its not the same as going to school. I'm very curious to see how this all plays out for her.

While she is a very sweet and loving girl, she does not like to be ordered to be affectionate. When I ask her to give me a kiss, she turns her head and groans - every time. It has now become just part of the process. I then tell her that she's stingy with her kisses and grab her and kiss her all over the face, which produces giggles and a huge smile. She is so much fun to be with and always does or says something to put a smile on your face - even if it is just looking at you. We have so much fun with our Cutie Donut - and who wouldn't? She's delicious!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Updates on the girls - Part 1: Nora

Since I haven't done so in a really long time, I thought I would put out some updates on the girls and what they're like right now. First of all - could Nora and Georgia look any more alike in the above picture?

Nora - 5 1/2 years old

As we all know, Nora broke her arm this summer. It was an incredibly long three weeks for mom and dad between surgery and getting her cast off. Remember - no water at all. No baths, no pools, no showers. That was tough, but we survived - and we're very fortunate to have friends who have been sympathetic and helpful with the whole situation... For example, every Wednesday evening we have a pool party at Doug and Jenny's. Nora LOVES Wednesday nights and this was what most upset her after having surgery - no pool. Fortunately, they also have video games and a lovely son who was willing to play video games for the entire Wednesday evening while all the rest of the kids went swimming. In addition, our next door neighbors have curtailed several summer water activities simply because Nora was unable to participate - they didn't set up their pool because of her, they put off doing water balloons because of her, they didn't set up the sprinkler because of her. How nice was that?

But as of this past Wednesday we don't have to worry about that anymore!!!! She got her cast off Wednesday afternoon at 5:30 and was in the pool for the rest of the night! We were all so happy!

Getting the cast off was kind of an ordeal. They use an electric saw to cut it off... and she was terrified. I think she was more frightened that her arm would hurt once the cast was off and she could move her arm moreso than of the saw - regardless, there was a lot of crying.

Her xrays looked really good and we could see that the bone had migrated back to the proper place. The pins are in place and all looks good. Then the doctor ripped the stitch out of her incision and she almost hit the roof - nice.

She has been reluctant to use her arm and favors it quite a bit. I notice that she still does a lot of things one handed that she could do more efficiently with two hands. She also has a hard time gripping things with her right hand - its hard to open door knobs, and carry things that require a firm grip. She colored with her right hand the other day and I made a huge deal about how awesome that was! However, she is still doing most things left-handed. It will all come with time, I suppose. As for right now, she tells people that her arm is "still a little stuff".

Other than the arm ordeal, she has had the best summer of her life. She plays with Nolan every day for the entire afternoon. They are going to get married and even wrote a "Wetting List" (read: wedding list) at the beginning of the summer. Nolan did the writing since he will be in 1st grade next year and already knows how to read. The list contained the following: "flowers, clothes, church, singing, kissing". Michelle and I had a mixture of "awww that is the cutest thing ever" and "oh my gosh, they are hysterical" reactions. Needless to say, the "Wetting List" is being saved for display on the big day.

Nora and Nolan are best of friends and do anything and everything together. They bug their moms all morning about playing with each other and they both get quite upset (read: cry) when they don't get to play in the afternoon. All things are judged on if Nolan will like it or not. All things are shown to Nolan with great amounts of excitement. And just so you don't think she is already on the path to becoming one of those girls that goes to great lengths to impress a boy - even to the extent of changing her opinion and doing whatever he wants... Nolan is equally in love with Nora and reacts the same with all of the above. He also stalks our house every afternoon looking in the windows but running away after the dog comes by. Their adoration is mutual, their excitement for each other is mutual and it lasts even when other friends are around - these are signs of true love in my opinion:) It will be lodes of fun watching these two grow up and change and drift apart, but remain close. I have high hopes for prom & graduation and college and the ultimate wedding and our grand children:)

Speaking of which, Nora told me that some day she would get pregnant and she and Nolan would have a baby. I asked her how old she would be and she replied, "I don't know, maybe when I'm 14." Um, we're going to keep a close eye on them starting when they're 10!

Even though she spent most of her tball season on the DL, she still received a trophy for her participation. She is very proud of her trophy and proudly displays it in her closet:) She also shows it to anyone and everyone that comes to our house. Next year we hope she makes it through the whole season injury-free... but you know how some of these ball players are - they just seem to injury prone and can't make it through a whole season. We're hoping the arm doesn't negatively affect her career or her trade options;)

Beyond all of that, Nora is looking forward to beginning kindergarten in the fall and riding a bus to school. She is going to afternoon kindergarten and I'm excited for her as she meets lots of new kids and makes new friends. She had her first taste of that with VBS at Parkview and she really enjoyed it. She finally gets to do that kind of stuff!

Nora, when she's not whining or complaining that Ryann is bugging her, is such a sweet little girl. She really has a heart of gold and is very caring and loving. She loves to play with Georgia and tolerates playing with Ryann most of the time. It is a continual battle sometimes between the two of them, but I know she loves her little sis. They are best friends - until one of them says, "I'm not going to be your best friend anymore! Hmph!" But eventually they're playing with each other again like nothing happened. We look forward to watching her grow up and being a part of her life as she does. We're thankful for the opportunity to teach her and love her through it all.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

me = idiot

I had a conversation with my neighbor the other day. She and I hang out just about every afternoon while the kids run around outside or make a mess inside her house (they're scared of our pansy dog so they won't go in my house). I was telling her that I get irritated that I end up throwing a lot of cereal away in the morning because Dave gives the girls too much and they don't finish. I also am not keen on the fact that he gives Nora a dish of cereal AND a dish of oatmeal in the morning - thats 2 breakfasts in my opinion and they're both carbs... Besides - she's not eating her entire bowl of cereal - probably because she's also getting a dish of oatmeal. She (my neighbor) is of the opinion that one should give their kids as many choices as possible and they'll eat what they eat and if you have to throw something away then so be it. I, on the other hand, have watched how hard Dave has worked to earn the money to buy the food and it kills me to throw it away.

Have you ever had one of those conversations where the person you're talking to is soooo not on the same page with you that you can't get your thought across and the more you talk the more hideously stupid you sound - even to yourself? Regardless of the opinions that each of us held, it was one of those times where I kept trying to explain myself and the more I spoke the dumber I sounded and by the end I was questioning myself.

I'm not the only one who has done this, right?

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