November 30, 2011

Christmas Baby

She isn't really a baby anymore ... but she's my baby. I call her that all the time. She probably thinks it's her name along with Pheebs, Peabody, and P-Biz (Eric's latest nickname for her.)

Isn't she cute?

Here are some comparison pics of the Boogie at the same size.

Peabody has peed in the toilet or potty four more times over the past week. She never tells me she needs to go, but if I sit her on there from time to time she occasionally produces something, and it's always immediate so I know she has some ability to control it. I have to say, I'm impressed every time. We shall see what happens ... I'm not holding my breath that she will magically potty train herself at a super-young age.

November 27, 2011

Oh, Boogie

Tonight at church someone told me that he and some other folks had been discussing some Boogie-isms, like this one: once while song leading during a church service, BIL2 asked if anyone had any praises or testimonies. The Boogie's hand shot up before we could stop her. "Yes?" said BIL2, "Do you have a praise?"
"Well, I think so," the Boogie shrugged, "I guess."

And this one: one day months ago she told FIL, "I know everyone that I know ... but I don't know strangers."

On the way home from church tonight she asked me the meaning of several words. One was "bidet." Bidet? Really? Honestly I think she made it up not realizing it was a real word. I didn't care to explain that one, knowing that she would be fascinated and just pass it on to her cousins, so I asked, "What do you think it means?"
"Well, it just means when you're angry and you're mad and you're angry. That's just what it means." Right. "Okay, Honey, let's think of some other words we can talk about."

A few minutes later she asked, "Honey, how do you spell 'tea'? Tea is a drink, and it's also a letter, but I'm talking about the drink."

At bedtime the Pheebs climbed into her sister's bed. We tucked them both in together and said good night. "Noooo!" protested the Boogie, "I want Peabody to sleep in her own bed!"
"Why can't she sleep in your bed?" we asked.
"Because my bed is very special to me and I just want to sleep in it by myself."

On the morning after Thanksgiving the first words out of her mouth were, "It's after Thanksgiving, now can I watch Charlie Brown Christmas?"

Tonight she wanted to watch the show about that red-nosed reindeer whose name she thinks is Ludolph.

Several days ago she asked Eric if she could watch "Lou's Clues."
"Oh, you mean Blue's Clues?" he asked.
"Okay," she shrugged, "if that's what you want to call it."

Yesterday morning she said, "What are we going to do today, Honey? I wanna go somewhere fun."
"Where do you want to go?" I asked.
"I wanna go to Chickfila for lunch and Friday's for dinner."
"Who's going to pay for THAT?" asked Eric.
"You are!" she said, poking him in the chest.

Today I mentioned to Eric, "Wouldn't it be fun if all of my family could meet us in, say, Florida one Christmas? All of us together, no gifts, just a really fun trip!"
The Boogie's ears perked up. "I wanna go to Florida! Would Pops and Lela be there?"
"Yes," I said, "Pops and Lela and your cousins from Washington. Wouldn't that be a fun trip? Maybe we can do that someday."
"I wanna go for Christmas!" She was very excited.
"Well, maybe one year we can go for Christmas, but it would mean no presents. Would that be okay with you, to not have any presents, just a fun trip?"
"Well, maybe we could just bring some presents," she raised her eyebrows quizzically, "some very small presents, like this big," she measured a few inches across with her hands. What a negotiator.

November 24, 2011

Quiet Thanksgiving

We always spend Thanksgiving day with Eric's parents, but they are out of town this year so we decided to have a quiet day at home with a very non-traditional meal of salmon and rice. It's a good thing we didn't make any other plans because the Boogie woke up with an upset tummy. She has spent the morning on the couch watching the Macy's parade. Hopefully she will recover quickly like she usually does, and the rest of us can avoid it, since Eric has four whole days off work and I know he would rather not spend them sick at home!

I am so thankful for:
-my husband
-our healthy children
-our wonderful extended family
-our home
-our jobs
-a loving, forgiving, caring, merciful, gracious heavenly Father

O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.
1 Chronicles 16:34
Unto thee, O God, do we give thanks, unto thee do we give thanks: for that thy name is near thy wondrous works declare.
Psalm 75:1

November 23, 2011

18 Months Old

Eighteen months old already!

At 18 months the Pheebs is wearing size 18-24 month and 2T clothes. She is wearing size 4 diapers and size 5 in shoes.

Her blonde hair is finally starting to grow in nicely. It's long enough on the top to comb to one side or the other, and curls up in the back when damp. I'm pretty sure that we will enter mullet territory sometime in the next six months.

She had her 18 month check up last week. She was
24 lbs 5 oz.
32 inches
and in the fiftieth percentile ... I think. I asked someone to write it down for me but she forgot and then so did I. We go back in a couple of weeks so I'll ask for it then. Poor little girlie had been running a high fever all of the day prior to her appointment and while the fever broke early that morning, I wasn't comfortable with her getting shots right away, so we'll go back for that. (The Boogie got her flu shot and did great! No tears at all. What a big girl she's getting to be.)

The Pheebs is just so much fun to have around. I LOVE this age. She is like a little sponge. She repeats anything and everything we say. She follows simple instructions like "Go get a diaper" or "Throw this in the trash." She says "thank you" all the time and usually adds "bye!" at the end. So we'll hand her a diaper to throw away and she'll say "Dain doo, bye!"

She tips her head to one side and asks, "why?" Sometimes she pauses then adds, "you do dat?"

The Boogie builds towers out of nesting/stacking blocks, and Peabody counts "One, doo, tree!" and knocks down the tower.
Action shot of Peabody bouncing a block off of the Boogie's head.

When she sees letters she begins to sing the alphabet song.

When she sees a rainbow she sings a song about it that she learned from "The Cat in the Hat" on PBS.

We have a travel-size Doodle Pro. It looks a lot like this. 
Peabody loves that thing. Sometimes I hide it from her because she drives me crazy with it. She brings it to me and pushes it into my hands pleading "Mama Mama Mama" and I have to draw something for her. Then she says "Dain doo, bye!" and sits down with it and scribbles all over what I drew and then erases it and then wants me to draw something again. Sometimes I draw shapes and name them -- last night I drew a triangle and she named it before I could! Impressive. I also draw faces: happy, sad, angry, surprised. She can identify those too. Sometimes we do corresponding voices which is hilarious. "'appy!" she says in a bright voice; "saaaaad" she says in a sad voice, then reaches out to pat my shoulder, "it's mmm-may [okay]"; when I say, "show me surprised face" she raises her eyebrows and shrieks; angry is a deep growl along with a grin -- she can't keep a straight face.

She loves music and dances around when we are listening to something upbeat. We listen to Pandora a lot and while I prefer Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald, sometimes I will turn on the toddler station and the Pheebs will sing along and dance all over the place to "The Wheels on the Bus" and her favorite "If You're Happy and You Know It."

The big purple dinosaur is still the only guaranteed soother for the overwrought toddler, but lately Blue's Clues has also become very popular around here. It is very repetitive which is comforting to small persons. Peabody chants along to the phrases and does the hand motions accompanying them.

She is hitting the Boogie much less than before. She is generous with kisses (sometimes.) She really loves her sister. At bedtime we pray together and then she immediately kisses the Boogie goodnight. Then she tries to tuck the Boogie in, and she goes to the drawer to get the Boogie a "beepee." Sometimes she wants her own burpie to sleep with, because the Boogie has one. Cute little copycat.

She is fascinated when the Boogie goes potty. We use the word "potty" but for some reason she always repeats "poo poo." I guess the fascination with that word begins very early! Shortly after she woke up from a nap the other day, she frowned at me and said "poo poo?" "Oh, you need to go potty?" I asked her. She ran into the bathroom and pounded on the toilet lid saying "open!" Why not? I thought, and took off her diaper and held her on the seat ... and she peed! Into the toilet! We all lavished praise upon her but she was very matter-of-fact about it. Despite trying that again a few times there hasn't been a repeat performance, but I gotta say I'm pretty impressed that it happened at all.

Both girls like my Nook. I have downloaded several interactive stories for them, and some coloring/drawing apps and games for the Boogie to play. Peabody pleads for "a tewey" when she sees it.
"No story," I say.
"A tewey!" she repeats, grinning impishly.
"No story."
"A tewey!"
"No story!"
"Mmm-may [okay]," she concedes.

Despite what the majority of these pictures imply, my children do not spend their days dressed in pajamas. They do, of course, sleep in pajamas. I slip in to check on them before I go to bed. Sometimes I have to take pictures. I am always surprised that the flash doesn't wake them.

November 17, 2011

Things I'm Thankful For

I often take things for granted, especially the things I use on a daily basis. For example, running water. I just push up a handle and cold or hot water comes out of the faucet. What a convenience, you know? But I'm so used to it I never think about it. And a water heater, too. Imagine having to pump and haul and heat water just to wash dishes, or to cook, or clean, or bathe. I gotta say, I surely am thankful for running water and a water heater.

I'm very grateful for the appliances I use all.the.time. A dishwasher. A washing machine, and a dryer. A vacuum. A microwave. A toaster oven (we use ours all the time!) A coffee maker. An electric range. A steam mop! If you are reading this, I'll bet you have one or more of these things in your house too. Do you take them for granted? I know I tend to. I get so used to using them, I forget to be thankful for how easy they make my life.

Last month I mentioned in an email to Mrs. Specktacular that I would love for the Boogie to take piano lessons some day, but first we'd need a piano. Don't you know that within a week, MIL mentioned in passing that she was planning on get rid of hers. Soon after that Eric and his brother and their dad wrestled the piano into a truck and drove over here and wrestled the piano out of the truck and into my living room. It is old and kind of worn and beautiful.

I am just dying for my sister to come over and play some Bach for me. (Heh heh heh, just kidding Vee. :p But of course you know I would LOVE for you to come and dash off some Mozart or Chopin or Rachmaninov or Grieg or Fliszt.)

Also last month I noticed some plastic cracking and breaking off of the harness in Peabody's carseat. The seat was an Evenflo Triumph that we purchased 3.5 years ago for the Boogie, and it has been in constant use ever since. Concerned about the safety of the harness, I called the company to order a replacement. Because of how the seat is assembled there is no replacement harness available (the harness goes over the shoulder into a sliding mechanism in the seat; it is adjusted by sliding it up and down rather than removing the seat from the car and re-threading the harness through different slots -- it was one of the main reasons we chose that seat and it's been so convenient on the many occasions when we've had other children riding in our car.)

The rep asked why I needed it and when I explained she said, "Oh, that is a safety issue. I can issue you a new seat. All you will need to do is send the old seat back so we can inspect it." A new seat? You mean, a FREE, brand-new, FREE seat? Yes, she assured me, a brand-new, free seat. "The only thing," she stressed several times, "is that it won't be the same color as your seat, so if you want to keep your old cover it will fit on the new seat." Keep the old cover? Are you kidding me? The cover that the sun has oddly faded from gray to purple, that has gone through multiple diaper leaks and blow-outs, that has been thrown up on, that has had juice and milk and lemonade and tea and milkshakes spilled on it? The cover that is spotted and stained and has crumbs firmly cemented into every crevice no matter how many times I wash it? Keep THAT cover? I will happily take a brand-new cover with the brand-new seat, thankyouverymuch.

I was so pleased with Evenflo customer service. Each person I dealt with was so pleasant and helpful. And I never dreamed they would replace the entire seat -- I truly thought I could just order a new harness!

November 7, 2011

Hello, November

October certainly flew by. Now we get to write 11 at the beginning and end of each date. How can 2011 be almost over?

I finally added pictures to and published the entry I wrote a month ago about our visit from the Specktaculars. Procrastinator, much? I blogged so infrequently last month that my friend from California emailed me to see if we were okay.

Peabody is learning new words every day. She is starting to say more phrases. She answers questions like this:
Us: "How are you?" or "How was your sleep?"
P, nodding: "Gooooo' [good]."
Us: "Do you want ______?" or "Are you okay?"
P: "Mo [no]."
Us: "Where is ______?"
P, holding hands up: "Mahna mo! [I don't know]"

She says her own little version of "here it is!" and sing-songs "where are you?" If we ask her "Where is Lela?" she says "Mahna mo! Leeee-la, whey ah yew?" and then finds a picture of Lela. If we ask her where Pops is she runs into my bedroom and points at the pictures of him as a little boy that I have stuck on my mirror.

All footwear is now "plap plop." She brings me her slippers. "Plap plop?" she asks sweetly, pushing them into my hands and flopping onto the floor. I had to pack away all of her summer sandals because she would bring them to us and then get mad when we wouldn't put them on her.

She has started saying "I want." Last week she told me "I wanna 'nack" after hearing the Boogie ask for a snack, and at Chick-fil-a said "I wanna play."

A few days ago she came up to me, asked "Ha yew?" and reached up for my hand with a limp fist. She didn't grasp my hand, but when I took hers in mine she shook it up and down. Then she said, "bye!" and walked away. Now she does it all the time. "Ha yew?" How're you? Ha!

She has started shaking one finger at us and saying "No no no!"

She calls her blankies "lally" which is so cute.  All of her blankies have silky edges; while we were in Washington my mom put silky edges on a couple of Peabody burpies so that we could stop taking big blankies everywhere with us. The Boogie still sleeps with burpies but Peabody knows the difference between hers and her sister's. When she finds a Boogie burpie she exclaims "beepee!" excitedly, but calls her own burpies lallies.

She loves orange Tic-Tacs (I never, ever, ever would have given the Boogie Tic-Tacs at this age.)

We signed up for Netflix which has a wide selection of Barney episodes. "Mama mama mama," Peabody says, banging on the tv, "blah blah blah Bee!" She quivers with excitement when we start an episode. She sings the songs. She does all of the hand motions. She babbles the dialogue with the right inflection.

She likes to buckle things -- as soon as I get her down from her chair she has to buckle the straps.

She loves baby dolls and carries them around patting them on their backs and kissing them. She puts them in the doll stroller and pushes it all over the house.

I often tell her, "You are so cute! I just want to eat your face." Then I nibble all over her cheeks and neck. She pretends to nibble on me. "Nom nom nom," she says. Eric taught her that and it makes me laugh every time she does it.

I have to hide my Nook from her because when she sees it she immediately starts begging "a tew-ey, a tew-ey, a tew-ey!" She has figured out how to turn it on and frustrates her sister during story-reading because she jabs her finger repeatedly at the screen, disrupting the narration.

Peabody hits her sister a lot. She is reprimanded and instructed to say "sorry" and hug or kiss the Boogie. Sometimes she apologizes immediately on her own: whack then "wahwry" and a smooch. One day Peabody hit me. "No hitting," I told her sternly, "say 'sorry, Mama'." "Wahwry," she said, then walked over to her sister and kissed her. Ha!

She says "thank you" with no reminder. The other day in a store I asked an employee a question, thanked her, and turned to walk away. "Day doo!" Peabody called over my shoulder. "Please" is a work in progress although she will always repeat it when prompted.

There is no consideration of possessions. If she wants something there is much shrieking of "MINE! Mine mine miiiiiiiine!" If she doesn't get her way she pitches a fit while rapidly stamping both fat little feet. Sometimes she throws herself on the floor and kicks her legs. Every now and then if really enraged she will attempt to bite. So charming. Life is so hard when you don't get your way all the time.

On the flip side, she can be very snuggly. She strokes our cheeks and snuggles her head on our shoulders and will come up at random times and kiss us.

 I found a pack of party-favor glasses on clearance. The Pheebs likes to wear them and can put them on by herself. One day we went for a walk and she wore them for the whole time. If she saw something interesting she would take them off to look at it more closely, then put them back on when we started walking again.

The Boogie has been playing with her cousin DR a lot. The rest of the NJ cousins go to school every day. Last year DR and the Boogie were practically sworn enemies; now they are best buds! Usually they will play nicely for hours, although when they've been together a lot over the course of several days I can tell that they are entering into sibling squabble territory. Overall they get along great, though.

The Boogie likes to talk about God. She is very interested in the concept of Him being everywhere all the time. While putting together a puzzle, "Honey, God is with me. Me and God are gonna play with this puzzle." She found a list that I had misplaced: "Praise the Lord!" she exclaimed, "Praise the Lord, God found this list."

She talks a lot about being five and going to "pembergarden." I just realized the other day that when she turns five in April she is going to think that she'll start kindergarten right away, so I've started telling her "first it will be your birthday, then it will be Peabody's birthday, then it will be my birthday, and THEN we'll start kindergarten." She goes back and forth between informing people that we are going to have a home school, and telling me that she doesn't want to go to school at home, she just wants to "go to that school where you have to ride the bus."

A couple of weeks ago the Boogie's little friend T stayed overnight so his parents could have a mini-getaway. The kids had the best time together! I wasn't sure how T would do at bedtime -- he'd never stayed at our house before and I feared that there might be a few tears shed -- but he did great. He slept in the same room as the girls and much talking and laughing ensued after the lights went out. The Boogie was the first to succumb to sleep, and then after a while T did too. I could hear Peabody chattering away long after the other two went silent.

T is very cute and very polite. I tossed some of his clothes in with a load of laundry I was washing -- he saw me take his socks and asked what I was going to do with them. "I'm going to wash them," I said. "Oh, thanks!" he said.
A while later he asked, "Are my dirty socks clean yet?"
"Yes, they're clean," I told him, "but they're not dry yet. Next they'll go into the dryer."
"Oh, thanks!" he said.
Later he saw me carry the basket of clean clothes to my room to fold everything. "Are my clothes in there? Are they clean?" he asked. I said they were, and that I would fold them and put them in his bag. "Oh, thanks!" he exclaimed. Such good manners. We all enjoyed his visit and the Boogie especially was very sad to see him go at the end of the second day.

Both girls like to draw on the magna-doodle thingy (what are those things called?) The Pheebs brings it to me and pushes it into my hands. "Mama mama mama!" she exclaims. I draw some shapes and name them. She takes it from me, scribbles all over my drawing, erases it, then pushes into my hands again. And repeat. The Boogie had it tonight. She drew an irregular circle, filled it with dots, and said, "Look, Honey, it's a germ! It's a germ that will make you sick." Where does she come UP with this stuff?

She sits with us in the service on Sunday nights. I looked over at her last night and saw this:

They are so much fun, these girls!