Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Kiddo Update: Bonus Materials

What mom can remember every single thing that her kids are doing and saying in one sitting at her computer?  Certainly not me, and it's become abundantly clear as I've been thinking on it that I left out quite a bit of information in my last post.  So here, in no particular order, are some fun miscellaneous goodies on my bebes (enhanced by an impromptu photo op this morning):

  • Favorite books:  Still "Go, Dog, Go" by PD Eastman, but other faves include "Panda Bear, Panda Bear, What Do You See" and "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See" by Henry Holt.  Also any of the Sandra Boynton books and anything by Richard Scarry.  (Honorable mention:  his copy of "Goodnight Moon" doesn't get pulled out much anymore, but he still does request it from time to time; the poor thing is so raggedy that I'm tempted to toss it and get him a new copy, but it has his first baby teethmarks on it and I can't bear to part with it, at least for now.)
  • Everyday activities:  lining up Matchbox and HotWheels cars, requisitioning one or both parents to "build BIG tower!" with blocks, or assembling a new line of track for his Thomas trains. He also adores playing hide-and-seek, sometimes involving us but usually involving hiding his humpback whale or orca toy and finding it.  (I think it must be genetic in every kid to peek through fingers while counting, and to do the speed-counting thing:  "1-2-3-45678910!")  He also really loves to pretend to be an airplane, holding his arms out to his sides and running around the living room in big figure-eight patterns, making all kinds of adorable zooming noises.  He gets SUPER-excited if he can get one or both parents to do it with him.  :)  He still loves drawing on his Magna-Doodle, too.  Will has an especial fondness for stickers, but I'm reserving my stash of those for potty-training bribery (yep, still working on this, too; sigh).  Will has this beautiful Melissa & Doug (if you haven't yet discovered these toys, you are in for a treat!) animal alphabet train puzzle, which he can put together entirely on his own, and he can say the names of all the animals, only occasionally getting tripped up on "G" for "gorilla" (of course it's a "monkey" too) and "N" for "norwhal" (yeah, cuz that just rolls off the tongue for any adult!?).  He also has a shapes puzzle and can say most of the shapes, but his clear favorite is a hexagon; in fact, if he sees a stop sign, he always points excitedly, "Hexagon, Mama, hexagon!"
  • (Our) favorite expressions:  Anything he likes, he will exclaim, "(X thing), oh my favorite!" such as "Chocolate chips, oh my favorite!" or "Bathtime, oh my favorite!"  If he wants one of us to do something with him, like lay down for a nap or bedtime, he'll say "Mama's turn for bed rest" or "Daddy's turn for bed rest."  (He still hates going to bed alone...working on that.)  He also says "That's beautiful" and "That's perfect" quite a bit; again, I don't know where he gets his penchant for dramatic language.  :)  Another one:  somewhere he learned that when you do a karate chop, you're supposed to say "Hie-yah!" but for Will, it comes out "Pie-yah!"  Similarly, when he wants to say "Hooray," it comes out "Pooray!"  The substitution of the "p" for the "h" is entirely too cute to correct at this point.  Will is also fond of saying, "You try!" if he wants you to do something with him, and the funniest thing to do is to insist back, "No, you try!" which starts a back-and-forth "You try!" exchange that gets louder and more vehement and pretty hilarious at its loudest and most insistent.  And probably my absolute favorite thing he does...I deal with headaches sometimes that I have to rest off in order to keep them from becoming migraines, so I will occasionally lay on the couch until the pounding stops.  I usually stick in a video for the kiddos so they will be occupied right where I can keep at least one eye on them.  Anyway, if I'm laying on the couch, Will retrieves his beloved blanket and covers me in it, then leans down and kisses me on the cheek, sometimes several times in a row.  It's absolutely precious and heart-melting and even during a headache, I can't help but grin from ear to ear.
He's sporting a small scratch under his right eye, sustained from an in-the-night itch? He woke up with it a couple mornings ago, and looks like a little bruiser.
  • Favorite books:  "Barnyard Dance" by Sandra Boynton, "Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed" by Eileen Christelow, "Nursery Tales" by Mary Engelbreit, any/all of the Nancy Tillman books, and any/all of our Sesame Street book collection.
  • Everyday activities:  Lucy loves to help her mama with laundry.  Her favorite thing is for me to open the dryer door (which opens down), place wet things on it, and allow her to push them into the dryer.  She always acts so proud of herself!  I've already mentioned that she is very musically inclined, so one of her favorite things is for me or Marty to sing her songs, and her ultimate favorite is "Itsy Bitsy Spider."  She doesn't quite have all the hand motions down, but she loves to try them, and when we're finished she'll say "Yay!" and clap enthusiastically.  Lucy also loves for me to put one of my robes or a blanket around her shoulders; she walks away with this look of pure girl vanity on her face, like "I am a PRINCESS and I'm SO pretty and you KNOW it."  It never fails to crack us up.  Another girlie-girl thing she does -- we have this set of rings that build onto a pole/tower, but instead of using them on the tower, she puts them on her arms like bangle bracelets.  I don't own a single bangle, so I think her desire to adorn herself with jewelry is purely genetic or instinctual, and of course I LOVE IT.  She also loves to play with phones, both real and play, and dig through my purse and wallet, pulling out every credit card and receipt.  I think it makes her feel big and important.  :)
  • More words:  Marty and I have been paying attention to her words the last couple of days, because we knew she had more than what I was able to list the other day.  Here's what we came up with:  She loves rainbows and butterflies, but for now the words come out "bow" and "bye" but she's clearly working on them.  She also says:  choo-choo, yeah, comb, hot, and of course, poop.  Nice.  :)
Well, hopefully between last post and this one, I have a pretty comprehensive update.  I'm going to try to do this more often, especially as these two little people become more and more interesting, which seems to happen with each passing day!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Kiddo Update: Spring 2012

I've been working on this update for a couple months now and it's high time I get it posted already, so here goes!  (Also, I was remiss in sharing Easter pictures so forgive the abundance of Easter-themed images.)

William Champion
My little man with the soulful eyes.
  • About:  You are now 34 months old, mere weeks away from your 3rd birthday.  We're going to have an "Ocean Friends"-themed birthday party for you in Indiana, so you can celebrate your big day with family (when we asked you what you wanted for your birthday party, you replied, "Elijah."  We think you might miss your cousins...).
  • Interests:  You continue to love anything and everything planes, trains, and automobiles-related.  Anything that has an engine, basically.  (Something tells me we are in for it when you turn 18...)  Lately you've really become interested in helicopters and you like to find them in the sky (even when they're not really there).  You and Daddy love to watch a show on airplanes and you get really excited to say "albatross."
Beloved Thomas and Friends.
  • You also continue to love ocean animals (thus, the theme of your party).  You often request to watch your "orca" movie, which is really just a documentary about the oceans.  You have these little bath squirter creatures and sometimes you won't take a bath unless you have "big orca, little orca, humpback whale, and shark" with you. 
  • Activities:  Your favorite, favorite thing in the whole world is go to the park ("big park" -- the huge playground by a lake -- and "little park" -- a neighborhood park just down the street).
On Easter, playing in your cousins' backyard.
  •  You dearly love to play with Play-Doh and will while away HOURS doing so.  Sometimes you don't fall asleep doing "couch rest" so I let you get up and play at the table.
You told me this was a choo-choo.  I can see it!
  • Food & Entertainment:  You are still a very picky eater, although you've certainly expanded your palate and (most of the time) will obediently eat what's on your plate when told.  Your favorites are grilled cheese and tomato soup, hot dogs, and DONUTS (I think you live for donut day -- we get Dunkin' donut holes once a week).  You also have to have a big cup of orange juice first thing in the morning and, true Southern gent that you are, you love to have a cup of iced sweet tea (decaf!) with one of your daily meals.  Your favorite shows are the LeapFrog videos (numbers, the alphabet, phonics), Caillou, Kipper, Max & Ruby, and the perennial favorites Dora and Diego.
Sometimes your soup spoons magically turn into "heli-top-ters."
  • Health & Development:  Thank the Lord, you are an extraordinarily healthy child.  I honestly can't remember the last time you were sick, and even then I think it was just a case of the sniffles.  Last month we took you out of speech therapy because we are just so pleased with how you're doing and want to let you continue to expand your speaking abilities on your own.  You now have so many words and phrases and sentences that we no longer keep track.  Mommy and Daddy have really learned this about you:  You might not develop according to the textbooks, but when you decide to grow in a certain area, you really go for it.  We've learned to stop worrying about you so much! 
  • Spittin' image of your Daddy.
  • Extras:  You continue to enjoy playing on your own, but you're including Lucy more and more into your fun.  Sometimes I hear the two of you giggling about something and I know you have your own inside jokes already started (I certainly had that with my sisters!).  I know she can get on your nerves sometimes but you love her dearly and desperately hate to see her cry.  You are my sweet boy!
  • "I love Lucy."

Lucy Elizabeth
My fair little blue-eyed beauty.
  • About:  You are now 21 months old.  We're also having your birthday party in Indiana, which will be baby doll-themed.  (I have some fun ideas up my sleeve for this!)
  • Interests:  You adore your babies and you love for me to give you bottles and pacifiers (out of the stash that we still use for you!) for them.  You have a stroller that you push them around in, but usually you just carry one or two haphazardly on your hip. 
You have a serious love of the staircase and you have this crazy competitive need to beat your brother to the top every time -- wonder where you get that from?  Ha!
  • Activities:  Besides following your brother around, you love to dance to almost any kind of music, but from what I can tell, you love Adele, Alison Krauss, and the BeeGees the most.  You also love the park and are much more of a daredevil than your brother was at this age; sometimes you scare us with your love of climbing on everything, but at least you prefer going down slides backwards (feet first) -- it just looks a little bit safer?!
  • Food & Entertainment:  Just in the last couple of months, you've switched entirely to table food.  You adore feeding yourself and will sometimes get angry if Mommy or Daddy tries to help you finish up -- you're a big girl now!  You actually love vegetables -- you will eat broccoli, green beans, corn, and peas like they're delicacies.  You also really love hot dogs, deli ham, spaghetti, crackers, yogurt, bananas, and cookies.  Your favorite shows are Dora, Diego, Sesame Street, and the Lori Berkner Band.
You're a good eater but a super-messy one... much so, that we often have to give you "sink baths" after each meal!
  • Health & Development:  Little one, you have struggled with high fevers since you were 8 months old, and even though we took you to the doctor every*single*time, we were always told "It's just a virus."  Mommy and Daddy never liked that answer and felt that there had to be another explanation, and it turns out we were right.  After a series of really yucky high fevers this spring, we finally got referred to a specialist who told us that you have a funny thing called "PFAPA" (pronounced "piff-pah").  The bad news is, you will probably have to have your tonsils out sometime in the next couple years, but the good news is, we can treat you with steroids until then, and even if the tonsillectomy doesn't work, you will certainly outgrow this.  We hate that you've had to deal with these fevers but we feel so much better now that we have a diagnosis and a good plan to get you on the road to a lifetime of good health.  Developmentally, you've been a tiny bit reluctant to start talking, but just today Mommy looked up what's typical for a toddler your age, and essentially, you're supposed to have at least 12-15 words.  Well, good news, you have at least twice that number!  Here's the list that we compiled just off the top of our can say:  Mommy, Daddy, Pup, hi, bye-bye, up, down, help, stuck, (where) are you?, there you are, go, no, outside, shoes, car, look, baby, eyes, nose, ears, hat, ba-ba (bottle), ball, wow, uh-oh, Dora, Diego, and bubble.
  • You love to wear anything on your head!
    You are also very interested in the texture of objects, like this Easter grass.  At the park, I have to double-check every plant that you touch because you can't seem to help yourself from touching anything with a leaf or bloom!
  • Extras:  You are very mischievous and can pull off the perfectly innocent look when caught.
  • "What?  Is there a problem?"
  • But more than anything, you are my little sprite who is constantly filled with joy and sparkle and energy and curiosity.  You love life!!!
  • So pretty.
    So big!!!