Wednesday, November 22, 2017

L&A Years 4&2 Week 21: Leia's First Kite - 11/16/2017

Leia totally surprised me, yet again, with her uncanny insight into her own feelings and behaviors.  I was trying to stop her from washing my breakable ceramic sushi bowls, wanting to just do it myself so they wouldn't get dropped and broken.  We were having a total power struggle when finally she burst out at me with this: "Mom, you never let me do stuff by myself, you always try to do it for me!  You never trust me!"  I stopped dead in my tracks, but this is exactly what the lady teaching my child behavior class said that kids were unable to verbalize!  She said they would behave poorly instead of talking because they didn't know how to verbalize their needs.  Well, not Leia!  Unbelievable.  And of course I had to grit my teeth, let it go, and trust her.  And she did a great job, nothing broken.  It's always been our joke/no joke, but seriously, she's so advanced!  Of course, 3 hours later she's freaking out and sobbing that I won't go back down to the lawn to pick up her toys for her.  I thought you didn't want me to do things for you?!  One day I found Leia cuddled up quietly on the couch, no TV, and just staring at the little Polaroid of me and Josh from the wedding we went to.  "I really miss my Daddy," she said.  It was so adorable.  Apparently we have a lot of work to do with Leia as far as getting her to learn that you can't always win, how to be a graceful loser, and how to enjoy a game even if you aren't the winner.  She was so upset when Echo beat her in a little bike race down the street, crying and screaming that it wasn't fair.  Then she decided that she'd rather race against Arwyn because she knew she'd win.  Not winning that sportsman award with behavior like that!  I'm implementing another new household policy about no second chances.  I'm tired of nagging and repeating myself.  You do what I ask the first time or you lose a privilege, and there's no do-over's when you realize afterwards that you should have done it the first time.  There's no do-over's in many circumstances in real life, and kids need to learn to think fast and think critically the first time and understand that there really are consequences to their behaviors, and mommy can't always fix it.  I, of course, picked a bad time to implement this new policy because it was right before nap, and she was so pissed and upset that she absolutely lost her mind.  I ended up giving her a big long bear hug to calm her down, but I never did give her that treat.  Later she asked me if I would hold her like a baby again if she cried.  I said yes, but I've also been trying to hug her more when she's not upset so she doesn't start thinking that she needs to cry to get hugs!  Leia's hit a new developmental milestone with her artwork.  She's starting to paint and draw specific object that actually look like the objects they are intended to be (ex. cranberry, blueberry, lady bug with spots, rainbows).  She's also really starting to comprehend about mixing colors, but she's also making a real conscious effort to keep her colors separate, and cleaning her paintbrush so she doesn't dirty one color with another.  Pretty cool.  Her imaginative stories and characters are as vibrant as ever, this week she made up a story about a Dr. Sudzo, which was quite hilarious.  Leia asked me one day if we could do the science experiment where you "mix the food color with baking powder and water and watch it explode.  Grandma told me about it."  Of course I had no idea what she was talking about, so I texted Grandma.  Food color, vinegar, and baking soda.  And apparently Grandma only mentioned it off handedly one time at the very beginning of her trip, and Leia actually remembered and had the ingredients almost all right!

Arwyn is also making great progress on her color recognition milestone.  She's especially good at naming the colors in her favorite "Put Me In the Zoo" book, but even random colors she can identify a lot of the time.  She made Vivian's day when she said to her, "Don't go home, MumMum."  She was clearly really sad, but then, like Leia, expressed her emotions in a mean way and a minute later wouldn't hug her or say goodbye.  Like her sister, Arwyn is turning into such a good little actress.  My favorite is watching her be the mommy or teacher when she plays house.  I love how she looks at you so sweetly and concerned, putting her hand out under your chin and asking, "You ok, Honey?"  We went to lunch at a sushi restaurant this week.  Leia and Arwyn saw the bright orange "sprinkles" on top of the sushi rolls (aka roe eggs!) and insisted on eating them.  Leia didn't end up liking it, but Arwyn did, and she kept on eating them non-stop.  Arwyn's art tends to be a brilliant mash up of color and texture, which is actually awesome, but then she decided she wanted to make a new picture, like Leia's, with lots of separate little objects.  She set out with that goal in mind, but had a hard time doing it, her hand just started mixing and swirling, which really pissed her off.  Her little body seemed like it was hard wired to just mix!


Happy MumMum snuggle time!

Another version because I can never get everyone to smile at the same time, and I don't have time to photoshop it!

Giggling and singing the "We miss our Daddy" song.

Password = Leia

Josh was gone to Colorado for a full 2 weeks this year, which was piggy backed on top of our weekend getaway.  Even though we FaceTimed almost every day, the girls really missed him.


Big thanks to our neighbor Russel for this cool Gingerbread Turkey!  He felt so bad that he didn't have any candy for the 2 cutest trick-or-treaters on Halloween, so he brought a few of these over!

Password = Leia

Leia loves the big waterslide at the local pool.  And this day she even did it without her floaties after her swim class!

Big steps!

Scrunch face!

Password = Arwyn

Arwyn likes to jump and climb.  This Lily Pad trail made her nervous at first, but after a few tries holding mom's hand, she was ready to do it alone!



The climber in action!


Password = Arwyn

It doesn't matter if it's up, down, or side to side, Arwyn just loves to climb!  She very skillfully navigates this horizontal climbing bar, even with some fancy feet untangling!

2 years of tongue pictures and she's still going strong!

Leia's first time flying a kite!

It wasn't quite windy enough, so she had to run fast!

Password = Leia

The weather seemed to be getting windy, but when we got to the park, it just wasn't quite windy enough.  But Leia was determined to fly a kite by herself for the first time, so through a lot of persistence and some fast running skills, Leia got that kite to fly anyway!


Chilly fall evening at the park!

Didn't have enough spare gloves in the car for everyone.  If Leia ended up wearing these, guess who's hands went cold?

Nope, not Arwyn's.


A valiant attempt by Arwyn to get the kite up!


She does not like to see Arwyn wearing her old clothes.  No Leia, that suit does not fit you anymore!



A little big for the Googs, but we'll have to make it work.

Time for our very first science experiment!

Acetic Acid (vinegar) + sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) = sodium acetate + carbon dioxide (bubbles!)

Had to try it in every color, of course.

And everyone had to get their own turn.

They were totally enraptured!

New alien goggles!

Dr. Sudzo and her assitent.

They think they are so funny.

They are correct, they are so funny!




Tuesday, November 14, 2017

L&A Years 4&2 Week 20: First Parental Getaway - 11/9/2017

Arwyn both impressed and saddened Josh this week.  Josh was telling Arwyn that it was going to snow this weekend when Grandma gets here, and she quickly gave him a hug with her bottom lip out and said, "Daddy leaving."  He was so surprised that she remembered that, and it made him cry and realize it will be tough to be gone so much more often this season.  Then Grandma and MumMum arrived, and we left for the weekend.  Three whole days alone without our kids for the first time ever since Leia was born!  Talk about a luxury.  We got back, but then I had to work the next three days, so I didn't get to see Arwyn too much (one day not at all).  And then Daddy left for his trip, and it was so sad because Arwyn cried out, "Daddy, don't leave me!"  Well, apparently all this was too much for little Arwyn because every time I left the house after that, when I would get home (even after only a couple hours), Arwyn would cry out, "Mommy, you came back!", as if she wasn't ever expecting to see me again.  Poor little thing must be totally traumatized.  But we've been having some good Mommy time, so besides still missing Dad, I think she's feeling better about the situation with me.  It was good for her to figure out that yes, Mom will always come back even if she's gone for awhile.  We had a fun play day at the pool with Grandma and MumMum, and Arwyn got the courage to go down the big slide again.  She always watches Leia doing it and having fun, but she remembers it being scary.  I think it still was scary because one time was enough again.

Another Josh quote about how Leia impressed him this week.  After her swim lesson this week (Leia graduated from a Guppy Grad to a Seahorse), Josh asked her how she was able to swim so far on her own.  Without any hesitation she said, "It's because of my super strength and might!"  "What?! Might?"  "Yeah Dad, it means strength."  Leia also had a fun time playing at the pool with her Grandma and MumMum.  And she too was so excited when we came back after our weekend away.  She was nonstop talking about her weekend, and all the exciting things they did.

View from our fancy hotel room at Cavallo Point at our first EVER getaway without kids!!


Stunning views every way you look.

Josh thought this was a very cool lighting job on this vase in our room...2 equal shadows!

Fun little excursion with Sarah and Josh #2 to the Ferry Building Farmers Market for some delicious and authentic street food.

So weird to be in civilization again!

More beautiful views.



So amazing to actually be on an adventure with my husband!

And so great to be reunited with my long lost Sarah for a couple days!

Have you ever seen such an amazing hat?  It's a real live snork!

Gorgeous backdrop for the wedding ceremony, and we got so lucky that the rain just barely stayed away all weekend.

The beautiful bride.

Jonathan and Ally, the bride and groom.

Josh dubbed Ben, "The Ring Bear!"  And little Maddy did not want to wear her dress or walk down the aisle.

Check out the handsome husband of mine!  Take away the sweats and we clean up pretty well!

The Golden Gate at Sunset.

The Golden Gate at night.

It wouldn't be a proper wedding without a Hora Chair Dance!


Josh was so fired up that they played a "Key-tar" in this awesome band!  They were called "Pop Rocks," and they sure rocked.

Official photo documentation...we actually got Josh #2 out on the dance floor!

And once he was dancing, he really let it go!

Wedding couple group hug!

Late night in the "Red Room"!

Little Red Riding Hood Beauty.


Grandma trampoline selfie!

Such a cutie.

Password = Arwyn

We are teaching the girls at a young age about the fast women skiers they could aspire to be like.  Arwyn's new barbie looks like Lindsay Vonn, so that's her new idol!


It was thanks to Grandma's never ending bag of new clothes tricks that we finally got Arwyn to wear this cute vest before she grew out of it.


So excited to see her Daddy!

Big telephone bear hug for Daddy!

A Transue trip wouldn't be complete without a meal at our favorite Jax Diner.