June 2, 2014

A Visit from Laelia! (and Jessie)

Even though it's been two years since these two last saw each other, they quickly became best friends. Both were wearing beautiful dresses, of course, and shared a passion for dancing, tackling, bubbles, music, and playing outside. Such a fun time. 

May 29, 2014

Erica is 18-months-old

The past 18 months have been a whirlwind. Rob and I thought we had this parenting thing licked for the first two years. Amelia was such a cute and easy (and smart) baby that we knew we would be doing the world a favor by producing another one. Then she turned two. Then Erica was born. Then we never slept again. 

Despite her lack of sleep (and ours), Erica has blossomed into an adorable, chatty, inquisitive, mischievous, and snuggly one and a half year old. She knows what she wants and is starting to be able to ask for things by name. Her vocabulary has increased 100 fold in the past few weeks although her most spoken phrases are still "mine", "me too!", "my turn", and "NOOOO AMELIA!!!". Guess that comes from being a little sister. She also has picked up most of her favorite food names: eggs, toast, cookie, puffs, banana, strawberries, peaches, juice, cheese, 'tube' (for yogurt tube), and 'pack' (for squeezy pack) among other. She repeats almost everything we say and is so proud of herself for talking and being understood. She still confuses "up" and "down". She stands at my feet with her hands raised and says "down, down". I say, "do you mean up?" and she says "ya". She also answers a lot of questions with "ok". I say, "Erica, do you want cereal for breakfast?" She says, "ok". Pretty cute.  Somehow "ok" seems to be lost to children when they turn 2....

Erica is a climber. She loves being on top of things. She's made it up to the window sills, back of couches, tables, and up into the playhouse. The problem: she can't get down. So she screams. And she is loud. Amelia tried to help her down once, resulting in more screaming. Screaming is a pretty common activity in our house. I try not to join in myself, but it just looks so fun!

One of Erica's favorite places (aside from my arms) is on the bay window overlooking the front yard. She sits there and watches the "ka-kas" (birds, because they say "caw caw") and the "choo choos" (cars of course) and "bus, bus, more bus". Pretty much anything that moves outside is entertainment from the window. We have even seen big bumble bees buzzing around the flowers, which led to me singing the "bringing home my baby bumble bee" song, which is now one of Erica's favorites. She especially likes the part where I get stung by the bee....  The song is fun, so Erica now tries to catch real bumble bees when we are outside. If she succeeds, she might not like that song so much anymore. 

As much as she likes to sit on the window, Erica would much prefer to BE outside. She tries to sneak out every time the door opens and screams when it's time to come in. She loves bubbles and tries to blow them herself but isn't too good yet. She enjoys swinging, playing in the sand box, running away down the side walk, and generally going in the opposite direction as her sister. I taught her not to go in the street and she mostly obeys that rule, unless there is something interesting on the other side of the road, or something to throw down the drain. 

Amelia and Erica are starting to play together more. Usually Amelia has some elaborate game in her head that Erica is not playing correctly, resulting in screaming, but sometimes they pull off 10 minutes or so by themselves in the playroom without my intervention. The other day it was pretty quiet and I heard a few "night nights" so I peaked in and found that Amelia had put Erica to sleep on the rug-complete with a binkey, stuffed animal, and blanket. Erica was just laying there waiting to go to sleep! 

Speaking of sleep, after 17 months of being up every 1-2 hours every night and having to rock Erica to sleep and tip-toe out of the room, she is sleeping through the night!!! We would like to thank Dr. Ferber and the company that made Rob's earplugs for this success. (We would NOT like to thank high doses of Melatonin, lavender essential oils, osteopathic voodoo, or the sickness that plauged our family for months on end making it impossible for anyone to sleep.) It is amazing to be sleeping again. Enough said.

Erica still nurses many times a day. She pulls at my shirt and says "eat, eat" and makes it pretty clear that she is not interested in weaning. She also decided that Hypnos (her stuffed cat) needs to nurse on me. She latches him on, says "Nos eat" then chucks him across the room and says "MY TURN!". I have to admit, this is pretty funny, even though it does involve me nursing a stuffed cat. At least he doesn't have teeth. 

Speaking of cats, Soxy is one of Erica's favorite things ever. She is always walking around the house saying, "meeeeoooowwww, Meeeoowwww, MEOWWW!" looking for him. Soxy has always bolted to the basement when kids are around but recently I think he is enjoying the attention from Erica. He lets her pat him and even snuggle him sometimes. She tries to give him food (gold fish) and binkeys and gets a little disappointed when her gifts are rejected. Hopefully she doesn't suggest that Soxy nurse....

Erica is beyond cute, and I think it's sometimes hard for Amelia because we comment on how cute her little words or actions are and Amelia then tries to copy them-which, frankly, isn't as cute when a three-year-old can say, "stomp stomp" while stomping her feet. It's hard to be the youngest, but also hard to be the oldest. I'm learning to spend quality time with each of them separately but this parenting thing is as new to me as the being-a-kid thing is to them. It's getting easier as they get older, and when Erica gives us kisses "muh" or Amelia says "I love you all the way up to heaven", it makes it all worth it. 

May 28, 2014

May 22, 2014

Sister Love

April 1, 2014