Thursday, March 16, 2006

Our Life in Pictures (and a few words, too)

I have been seriously distracted this past week with preparations for an upcoming visit from C's family, so I apologize for the lack of posts. To make it up to you, I will now give you a quick synopsis of our activities accompanied by lots of pictures! You probably won't hear from me until after the visit, but I'll fill you in next week when they have gone.

My sweet girls really do love each other! Not that you'd know it as often as they bicker and annoy each other... But here is proof; I found them sitting in my office watching the pictures on the screensaver, all snuggled up:

Last Tuesday, we had our Lifelearner event. It was a pool party to celebrate the birthday of one of the little boys in the group. The weather was just barely suitable for swimming, but with the pool warmed up and the hot tub really warmed, the kids had no problem getting wet! I can't say as much for us moms! We sat this one out. They have a trampoline and that was fun between dips in the pool. Here is E, bouncing away, and A soaking in the hot tub. I even joined E for a bounce. The search for a trampoline is on! I would love any and all recommendations for a good one. As soon as the tax return is on it's way to us, I'm buying!

We've been using the chalkboard a lot lately. I wrote out the alphabet, both upper and lowercase, print and cursive, across the top of the board, for reference. E has been writing a lot and asks what a letter looks like often as I spell out words for her, so I figured having them all out there would help. E drew a picture of a little penguin and wanted me to never erase it, so I took this picture so we would always have that penguin, even when we cleaned off the board. Behind her is a picture she drew of her and her friend M in a haunted house. The white blobs are ghosts.

A is about to lose her first top front tooth. She refuses to try to pull it out, saying "I want to let nature take it's course". She looks like a real hillbilly, with that tooth hanging by a thread ( the tooth on the right, in the picture)! We made a little loop of dental floss for her to put around the tooth and wiggle it, but she won't do the tie-the-other-end-to-a-doorknob-and-slam-the-door-shut trick. She is having trouble eating. Once I bumped her arm as she was touching the tooth, causing her to bleed. The blood scared her and I assured her it was normal. That tooth will come out when it is ready and not a moment sooner!

Yesterday, at a Life Learners park day, we went to a park that has a duck pond. Some of the moms brought bread to feed the birds. One Canada Goose jumped up on the side of the pond to get a better chance at getting the bread. E was wary of him, but A got right in there and held out the bread for him to nibble on. He was quite tame, letting some of the kids touch his back gently for a moment. A even spoke to him in Goose. She is a little Dr Doolittle!

While I was typing that last paragraph, A came in to my office and started reading over my shoulder, "Yesterday, at a Life Learners park day". I stopped typing and ogled at her, "How did you read 'yesterday'?" "I'm good." Yes, she is! The other day, she was playing Zoo Tycoon, actually Zoo Tycoon 2 Endangered Species Pack Trial Version (she is dying to buy to full version!), and I was watching her. The game gives you a running account of what each animal is doing, if you select it. She had the Bengal Tiger selected and was watching him do his thing. She read 'going to rest in the rock cave'. I hesitate to declare it outright, but I think I have a reader! Just to remind all you faithful readers, I did not teach her to read. She learned it all on her own. All I have done is answer her questions, read to her, spell out words for her when she wants to write them, and assure her that when her brain was ready, she would read. And she has! And more importantly, she has faith in herself and her ability to accomplish that which she sets out to do. By standing back and letting her own the process of learning to read, I have given her the gift of herself. What greater gift could I have given her?

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