Wednesday, April 2, 2014

March 2014 Newsletter


Dear Riley,

School girl, big sister, Mama's helper, artist, tumbler, you have many titles! I think you love being a big sister the most. You LOVE to play with Ella. Your favorite is "school." I can totally relate to you in this respect. I remember playing school with my little sister, and I, too, was always the "teacher." Always. That part wasn't negotiable and it isn't negotiable with you. Ella is a little harder to teach than Morgan. She's still a little small for that game. So, when Ella gets tired of playing school with you, you like to draw in your room. ALONE. Ella may not enter during this time. If she happens to sneak in, she will be manually removed. 


You are a very smart and mature 5-year-old. Your questions, which are constant, are sometimes hard to answer. You make conversation with any one who will listen to you. You love to brag that you have asthma and are allergic to dogs. 

Grandad is your best friend. When I was growing up I never would have believed that my daughter would be best friends with my Grandad. Since his knee replacement surgery, you've spent the night with him and are a big help. You love to run and fetch things for him. Grandad tries to make things extra special and memorable for you, and one day when you're older I know you'll be so appreciative. I am forever grateful for everything Grandad does for you. 

Ella, 

I can't help but smile when I think of you. You are so sweet and so intense and so demanding, all at once. You are definitely our firecracker! 


You have completely mastered the spoon. You love any opportunity to sit in your high chair and use a spoon. Your favorites are yogurt and apple sauce. High chair, you say? Yes. You're almost two and I've started trying to get you to sit at a little table and small chair while you eat your meals. It's not working. You will sit and eat a bite or two, and then you're off running around the house while still trying to eat. Food gets everywhere. I know you're not ready, but someone is crowding you out of the high chair. 


We finally caved in and just gave you one of your old pacifiers back. Even though you don't "need" it during the day (not to mention I think you're too old for one), if Nolan has a paci it's not fair to you. Now you and Nolan both have a pacifier the majority of the day. Most of the time you trade them out, back and forth. One interesting thing, you don't call a pacifier a paci, or anything close to that. You call your pacifier a "bobby."

You love tennis shoes and you love to play outside. You really love it when someone oohs and aahs over something you're wearing or your hair. You love wearing new earrings and will bring a new pair to me when you want to switch them. 

On the list of words you can say: Mama, Daddy, Riley, Nolan, more, drink, bye-bye, puppy, remote, come here (m'here!), Paw-paw, Grandad, Mi-ma (Aunt Ma), No!, potty. Maybe a very few more, but that's it. You understand SO much more, though. You, too, love to help me with chores. I can get you to follow me all around the house helping me put up clothes. You love to help. And you love for me to tell you good job. You can say that as well. 

Every night when I get you out of the bath tub, you walk naked into the living room to get your diaper and night clothes on. Every night when you get to the carpeted living room, you tee-tee. All over the place. Sometimes you jump on the couch and tee-tee there. I'm so thankful for a leather couch! With these new developments in mind, I started trying to get you to use the potty when you get out of the bath tub. You love to sit on the potty, and you demand toilet paper to wipe yourself. You have yet to actually tee-tee in the potty and even after sitting on the potty you will tee-tee on the carpet. I feel like you're a little young to be potty-trained, but if you are consistently tee-teeing at the same time every night, then I think it's fine to start the process. Will update next month. 

Nolan, 

Someone asked me the other day if having a boy has been any different from the girls. Not yet! You're still just a baby and your dirty diapers stink just as bad as the girls'. But, you are just the sweetest little thing in the world! Oh my goodness, I just love to hug and kiss and snuggle on you. 

You are super ticklish. Several people have commented about that. Your neck and under your chin seem to be the most sensitive spots. 


Just like the girls, you love your daddy. Sometimes you just gaze at him like a school girl in love. You will lean or fall towards him so he will take you. You are very attached to your daddy! 

You must be growing because you want to eat all day long. You are warming up to desserts now, but your favorite is still vegetables. I sometimes give you Cheerios when you are in the high chair, and you work very hard to get those into your mouth. You're best at picking them up, but not so good about turning them lose in your mouth. This creates a lot of frustration! 


Lots of people we know talk about how much you look like your daddy. I agree! You both look a lot alike. 

Your favorite time is bath-time. I've started laying you on your back in about two inches of water. You kick like you are riding a bronc. Laughing and kicking. You must have a wash rag to chew on the whole time. If you don't have one, you roll over and get a little water up your nose. You dislike that and demand to be removed from the tub. 

You three kids are a lot of work. I can not imagine what I did with all my free time before you. How nice that must have been! The dirty laundry pile grows and grows, and no matter how much laundry we do, there is still more laundry to be done. I doesn't seem like I will ever get to stop changing diapers. We change so many! If Nolan has a dirty diaper, Ella will have a dirty diaper. The dishes! The messes! And on and on I could go. 

You three kids are a lot of joy; without you I wouldn't be a mama. Without you I wouldn't have this burning love in my heart for you. You are my blessings. 

Love, Mama

Riley Claire - 5th birthday party


Dear Riley,

For your 5th birthday party, nothing would do but Monster High decorations. You were obsessed! This was the first party where friends from school attended, and you thought that part was awesome! We had your party at the newly constructed Kids' Park in Bullard. You had never been to the park before your party but had always wanted to go. It was a perfect day for you! 


On the actual day of your party I carried cupcakes to your classroom. I didn't know to do this when you turned 4. 

 










You got nearly all Monster High gifts. This was just fine with you! You were a very special and lucky girl on your 5th birthday! 

Love you, big girl. 

Love, Mama

Ella Rae - 1st birthday party

Dear Ella,

Your first birthday came and went without a party. Your daddy was working in Pennsylvania and I wanted to wait until he got home to have your party. However, you did get to celebrate with a giant cupcake on your birthday.




You thought it tasted pretty good. You're also sitting in the highchair at Grandmom and Grandad's house. Every baby from Stanley to Nolan has sat in that high chair. 

So, the weekend before I had Nolan we celebrated your 1st birthday with a party at our house. There were lots of friends and family there. We had a great time and you loved opening your presents. 



 


It's a good thing Aunt Ma was able to help since I was in such delicate condition! What a hoss! I had a really cute centerpiece on the table and a sweet cake. I can't find those pictures!

Also to commemorate your 1st birthday we had Kim Fisher take your birthday pictures. They were the best!

I love you Ella Rae. You are the sweetest baby.

Love, Mama

Thursday, February 27, 2014

February 2014 - Newsletter

Riley:

You are my best friend. I love when you coming running into my classroom after school. I love to talk to you about your day.

You have a t.v. set up in your room. All you mainly watch is Nick Jr., Disney Jr., etc. Those channels have commercials and you've got several memorized. If you were the one to buy our household items, you would no doubt make purchases based on the commercials you see. You want me to buy OxyClean, and actually told your dad, "OxyClean does remove tough stains." Ha! Tonight at dinner you had a great segue into one of your commercials. It went like this:

you: Mom, what will you do if all of our babysitters are busy?

me: I guess I would have to stay home.

you: No, Mom. Just call care.dom and they will find a good babysitter for us.

Ha! You've got several other commercials up your sleeve. It's always funny when they come out because it sounds EXACTLY like the commercial.

Ella:

Paci thief! We've decided it's not fair for Nolan to have a paci if you can't have one. Never  mind the fact that I took yours away in August. You still go after Nolan's paci. You're getting really smart about this whole paci thing, too. Last night, Daddy was coming after one in your mouth and you tried to hide it under your legs. It was funny! You also hide them throughout the house and will go get one when it's needed. You will also wait on us to turn around and then rip it out of Nolan's mouth.

I've probably mentioned the sign language I taught you. Your main sign is "more." You are constantly using that sign. You put your little fingers together and say, "more." In the beginning, we would give more of whatever you wanted whenever you wanted it. But now, you use your sign when you can't have more. Honestly, three cups of juice are too much. It's really hard to tell you no when you're using that sign. Your little fingers are so cute.

You love to go! We've been walking around the block with the wagon, and you really like that. You also like for Nolan to lay on your stomach and look at you.



Nolan:

Little sweet baby. I just love hugging and kissing you. Knowing you're my last baby is sad. I just love the squishiness!

You have mastered sitting up on your own. It's made things so much easier. Sometimes when I come over to pick you up off the floor, you'll raise your little arms up. Sweet!

You're getting solids at two meals. It won't be long before you need a lunch meal. Feeding you would go so much smoother if every spoonful wasn't followed by a foot or hand. You're really messy. Plus, Ella generally stands next to you and says, "ahhhhhh" on every bite. So, she gets 1/4 of everything you eat at supper. She knows to stay away at breakfast because you get cereal mixed with formula, and that makes her gag.

I asked your Dad for input on this newsletter. "What is Nolan doing that I can add?" "He likes to play and growl," was his response. Your Daddy loves you so much. He's already looking forward to doing guy things. And, you look just like him.



Love you babies.

Love, Mama

Monday, February 10, 2014

January 2014 Newsletter

Riley,

I am loving this five-year-old stage. Our relationship has gone from me dictating your every move, to you doing somethings on your own. You can brush your teeth without being asked, and just this boring you told me you would clean your room when you got home from school. Wow!

We are also connecting on a different level. We had Blizzards from the DQ a few nights ago, and you came running to me to tell me how great the melted ice cream on top was. I agreed with you and we just talked about how good melted ice cream is. Your face was the sweetest. You knew melted ice cream was the best, and you knew I have had melted ice cream before and could understand your feeling. It was just a moment that we had and I hope I never forget the look on your face.

You seem to get into trouble at home more often than in the past. Anytime we correct or get on to you, you immediately go into pout mode and say, "I'm trying my best," or, "I can't help it." This part is tough. Nothing you do really deserves major punishment, but it's just a bunch of little things that build up.

You've been taking tumbling lessons on Monday nights, and you have really improved lately. You love to show off your cart wheels and round offs.



Ella,

Whew. You're never full. As a matter of fact, you require a 24-hour buffet on your high chair tray. You would graze all day if I let you! If there is anything left on your tray after a meal, you will clean it off. You are constantly wanting something to eat. I don't think you're always hungry, but I think you get bored and wander over to your high chair.

You also love the tumbling (only at home). Anytime Riley is working on her moves, you bend over, put your head on the ground and roll to the side. It's your flip!

You love to laugh and giggle. You love to wiggle. If you hear a jingle anywhere, you immediately start a full-body wiggle. On another note, there is another dance you tend to do a lot... the tippy toe dance. This dance is reserved for outbursts of anger and frustration, especially when you don't get your way. The tippy toe dance is usually observed just before a full-on body flail in the floor.

You love to kiss Nolan and are the most loving big sister. When I pick you up from day care, I've already gathered up Nolan and all his stuff. I sit him in the hallway by your door and go in to get you. When we walk back out in the hallway to leave, the first thing you HAVE to do is kiss and love on him. You love him so much!


Just after you turned one, I took your pacifier away. Riley had hers taken away when she turned one, so I thought the same would be good for you. You already had a speech delay, and I thought the pacifier would only make that all the more worse. So, no pacifier for you. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Nolan still has his pacifier, and most of the time you steal it. You have to be watched constantly if his pacifier is in his mouth or lying loose somewhere. You are very adept at not only locating a hidden pacifier, but also finding them when he's spit it out. Your daddy and I have both threatened no more paci for anyone more times than I can count. Nolan and his paci aren't safe anywhere, even in the car. Now, you just pluck it right out of his mouth.


Nolan,

When Ella isn't stealing your paci, you are just the sweetest little guy around. You're happy all the time. You don't cry very often. Your world has grown this month because you've started sitting up. And you think you're a big boy! You rock back and forth and play with toys. You are also babbling up a storm!

My only complaint is that you wake up too early, usually around 5:00. Most of the time I can leave you alone until 5:30, but that's not much of an improvement.

No one makes you laugh quite like Riley. You chuckle so hard at her. She will act so crazy just to make you laugh.



You are the best three kids in the world! I love my little family and can't wait to see where we go from here!

Love, Mama