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Friday, July 30, 2010

Ellie sings

Ellie sings and she sings a lot. I love to listen to her but the trick is to do it without her knowing because as soon as she realizes you're paying attention, she stops. Recently on the way home from school she made up a song about her bear. Her song went something like this:

I'm a bear. I'm a bear.
I'm a brown bear.
I like to dance.
And I like to dance.
And I like to jump.
Don't say AHHH because he's not a dragon.
I'm a bear. I'm a bear.
I like to dance.
I like to dance.
I like to jump.
I like to jump.
When I grow up I will be Lori-lelle.
Whenever I sing I can jump.
I can dance.
I can sing.
When I grow up I will a mommy,
but not right now.
I'm Lori-lelle first.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Tid-Bits XIV

I love how ever since Michael brought Ellie back a Pikachu from Japan, the game "Peek-a-boo!" has become the game of "Peek-a-Choo!"

I love that one of Ellie's favorite bedtime games is to pretend to go to the "flower bin" to get flowers for Mommy. She leaves the room and comes back and plants flowers for me. "Dig. Plant. Water," she says as she goes around the room planting her flowers. She then tells me that they're ready and they smell really good. I go around and do an exaggerated sniff of all her flowers. She giggles and asks me if I'm happy. I tell her I've never been happier.

Another of Ellie's favorite bedtime games is "Baby Seal" (a byproduct of her seeing a newborn seal at the zoo). She claps and barks for a fish. I tell her what trick she needs to do to get a fish (standing on one leg, somersault, walking backwards, twirling). Then I have her bark and clap again and I feed her a pretend fish.

I love that even at 9 months old, Addie is guaranteed to smile if you say the word "Tooty," and especially so if it comes from Ellie.

I love that Ellie insists that the footrest of an reclining chair is the pillow for the head. You have to lay with your head on the footrest and your feet up in the air.

There are a few areas in the neighborhood where the weeds grow tall around the sidewalk. Ellie calls this the "dungle" (jungle).

Ellie has decided that the amputated Bun Buns are boys and the ones with arms are girls.

I love how when we watch "So You Think You Can Dance," Ellie wants to dance just like the people on TV. I'm the prince and she's the princess and we get up and try to do everything the dancers are doing. Rolling on the ground, hand work, foot work, jumping, spinning, even aerials... those choreographers are demanding!

I love how Ellie gets excited any time she sees the Eiffel Tower. "Dats where you and Daddy got married!" I hope she isn't disappointed when she finds out that's not QUITE the truth. She now even has her own Eiffel Tower in her bedroom and she loves to go over to it and ask details about when Daddy asked Mommy to marry him, including "Were you stuck up dere like Madeleine?"

I love how much Addie loves hats. If you're wearing a hat, you're her favorite person. She is obsessed with playing with people's hats. Too cute. Maybe she'll become a hat person just like her Mommy.

I love that Ellie picked out a flavor of soap from the farmer's market with Nana, and that flavor happened to be lilac (both Mommy and Daddy's favorite). Now our entire upstairs smells like lilac.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Big Sister Quote of the Day XLV

Upon picking Ellie up from school:

Mommy: Hi Ellie!
Ellie: Mommy!
Mommy: (Oh, I love it when she's so excited to see me. Look, here she comes! I'm going to get my great big MOMMY hug! I love this moment!)
Ellie: Add-line! (gives Addie a hug instead) I was missing you today!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Big Sister Quote of the Day XLIV

Ellie: Ouch! Mommy, Add-line just pulled my hair.
Mommy: Oh no, did that hurt?
Ellie: Yeah! She needs to go into time out.
Mommy: Addie needs to go into timeout?
Ellie: Yeah because we don't do dat to our fwiends.
Mommy: Ok. Addie, you're in timeout.
Ellie: You stay in da corner until you are ready to say you are sorry!
Addie: Da da da (crawling away from the corner only milliseconds after leaving her).
Ellie: Are you ready to say you are sorry?
Addie: Da da da.
Mommy: See? She is trying to say that she is sorry.
Ellie: Dat's ok, Add-line. It was an ask-a-nick. Give me a hug and I be happy again.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Ellie's Art

It started about two weeks ago when we had breakfast with some friends. To keep Ellie entertained, she was coloring on her menu. I asked her to draw a picture of herself and she looked down sadly and said "No, you do it! I don't know how." Oh, sweet girl! "Would you like me to show you how?" and her eyes lit up and she said yes.
And here it is. Ellie's first picture of herself. I told her what to draw, such as "ok, now we need a big circle right here..." and she did all the work. I don't think it turned out half bad, do you? Granted she looks much cuter in real life, but you have to start somewhere. She was so proud and even wrote her name (all by herself) on the paper to show everyone.
That got me thinking. Ellie CAN draw pictures... she just doesn't know how to break it down into simple steps. So I went out and bought her her very own box of crayons.
She was so excited when she saw it and was even more excited when I suggested writing her name on her very own box of crayons. Of course, it wasn't until after I wrote her first and last name that she told me she wanted to include her middle name, but she's proud of it all the same.
Now to use the crayons... "What do you want to draw, Ellie?" and her answer is "I don't know." Well... let's draw Merlin! And here is the result. Ellie concludes "Merlin looks funny!" Note that he's complete with legs, feet and even a tail and ears!
Next Ellie wants to draw flowers. I show her how you can turn the letter U into tulips. She drew all the U's and the stems. Then she helped me color them in. She was particularly proud of the upside-down flower at the bottom. Silly flower.
Ellie requested more flowers because that was pretty cool. This time I showed her how to turn a bunch of circles into flowers. She drew the circles and picked the colors. I drew the petals, making a WHOOPING sound with each one, but she did help me color a couple of them in. However Mommy did most of the coloring.
Her next request was a rainbow. Here is the result. She drew the lines and helped me color it in. Then I showed her how no rainbow is complete without the sun and some clouds. She insisted that I draw a Daddy cloud, Mommy cloud, Ellie cloud and Addie cloud. Of course, the clouds required more WHOOPING sounds. Then like the others, she rushed to go show it to Daddy.
The next day she wanted to draw a rainbow all by herself but asked very nicely if I would color it for her. "I draw it all by myself. It's for Daddy!" so I helped her write the words and she signed her name.
Then she wanted to draw another picture of Merlin. She knew that she first needed a body and legs. But then she started to draw lines across Merlin's body. "Silly girl, Merlin doesn't have stripes! Are you drawing a zebra?" Her eyes lit up as she realized that indeed, that's EXACTLY what she was drawing! I told her how to finish the zebra, then I colored the stripes as she drew grass for the zebra to eat (I showed her the trick to drawing grass - she's pretty good at it). She was a little upset that the zebra couldn't reach the grass but I explained how we had to pretend that the zebra could put his head down to eat the grass because it's just a picture. She confirmed by saying "Yeah, it's just a pretend picture, right Mommy?" Then she headed over to show Daddy her pretend zebra.
The next night Ellie was certain what she wanted to draw. Here is her ladybug. She drew the ladybug and I colored it in for her. She was particularly proud of this but was to excited about the butterfly to spend too much time bragging about it.
The butterfly was a tough one for Mommy. It's not easy to show a 3 year old how to draw things, but I showed her how you can make a butterfly out of the letter B and a backwards B. She thinks my little tricks and tips are pretty cool. Again, Ellie drew the entire butterfly and Mommy colored it in.
The next night Ellie really stepped it up a notch and requested that I help her draw Baby Addie on the swing. WHA??? You got it. I have quickly grown to love our drawing sessions but they are a test in patience, for both of us. It's not easy to show a young child how to draw something and it certainly isn't easy for Ellie to do the things I request her to do. Sometimes she does exactly what I ask her to but the result is just not usable. So here you have it... My first attempt at showing Ellie how to draw a baby on a swing. We decided it looked more like a Blue's Clues paw print so that's what we made it into. Whew. Nice save, Mommy.
Here is our second attempt at drawing a baby in a swing. Ellie drew everything except the hands and feet. I think she couldn't see the big picture in the steps I was telling her to do. After adding the hands and feet and then coloring it in, I was able to show her that yes we were actually drawing a baby on a swing.
But the challenge wasn't done yet. She wanted to draw a lion. Bring it on, Ellie! Bring it! She drew everything, including her patented squiggly tail and the upside down face (we decided that the lion was looking up and roaring). She colored in the body while I colored in the head. Then I told her that we needed some grass and asked if she remembered how to draw grass. She didn't even need me to remind her.
Is that all you've got, Ellie? What's next? Give me your best shot! An elephant? Ouch. That one hurt. Ok... here we go... take a deep breath... first we need a circle for a body.... I just love the result. My favorite is the squiggly trunk she drew. Too cute!
Last, but not least, she insisted that we draw a tree before going to bed. She even passed up the opportunity to read three books (we agreed to just one instead) to learn how to draw a tree. I told her that to make a tree we had to make the sound WHOOP while we drew an arch from dot to dot. She WHOOPED all the way around and made a wonderful tree. Then she drew a trunk, though she insisted that trunks are for elephants. She was happy with the idea of a hole for a squirrel to live in until I colored it in. Then she decided it was a door. "So dat he can open it and go in and hide from the animals so dat the animals don't step on his tail! Is dat a good idea, Mommy?" It's perfect, Ellie. It's absolutely perfect.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ellie and Brynn

From the very beginning these two girls seemed to have a special connection. I don't know what it was about each other but for whatever reason they decided that the other babies in their classroom were not nearly as cool as each other. Now that I look back, I can see traditions that they started even before they were crawling... like this one, sharing their breakfast every morning. To this day they look forward to sharing their breakfasts together... bananas, yogurt, cereal... What's Ellie's is Brynn's and what's Brynn's is Ellie's. And to this day, Brynn is often my only hope of leaving Ellie at daycare without her melting down.
At first, as with all babies, they mostly just smiled at each other and parallel played close to each other, but it didn't take long for them to actually start interacting together. Look at how cute they are on their first trick-or-treating at daycare. They weren't too sure what was going on but it didn't take them long to realize people put candy into their bags if they just held them up. Ellie took it one step further... the trick to getting her to participate was that Bun Bun was in her bag. She showed everyone her Bun Bun and they mistook the gesture as "give me candy." Too funny.
video
Soon came the seesaw. The girls invented a new game where they BOTH got on the rocking horse and seesawed together. It was a huge hit. All the other kids would join in. When we arrived at school, Brynn would almost always be happily playing with someone else (sometimes even on the seesaw horse) but would push that kid aside as soon as she saw La-Lo (Ellie). And the first thing Ellie would do when she arrived was head to the horse and say "Brynn! Seesaw!"

video
Bounce Town is a major contributor to their friendship. Around 18 months of age we started hanging out together after school and bouncing on the big balloons. This only solidified their friendship and it was so cute to watch them chase each other around.
Bounce Town night was always an easy night with lots of fun. I wish I could say that taking pictures of the girls was as easy but I don't have any of them together on the air castles, except this one:
And of course, as luck would have it, the settings on my camera were wrong and I had to convert it to black and white. Go figure.
Have you noticed the size difference yet? Brynn is such a sweetie and has always been teeny tiny. Eventually she would catch up to Ellie but she's still quite a bit smaller.
Wherever we are, these girls love to do what the other is doing. Eat what the other is eating. Laugh when the other is laughing, even if they don't know why.
And Ellie is by far more silly whenever Brynn is around. I think Brynn is a naturally silly little girl and Ellie often wants to pretend she is too. Ellie is naturally serious, though, so the only silliness she has usually originates from Brynn.
One of my favorite days spent with Brynn was when we took them to the farm. OMG! They were running everywhere and couldn't stop laughing and giggling. They LOVED it! And they were always right by each other. We've tried to hang out with other friends of Ellie's but for whatever reason they run off in different directions and it's more of a "Hi there, bye now!" sort of experience. With Brynn, they remain by each other's sides no matter what we're doing.

Oh Halloween... Have you ever seen two cuter bugs? To this day Ellie claims she wants to be a bee for Halloween just like Brynn. Sigh. I'm thinking she doesn't quite get the point.
Look how grown up they look!
It took awhile to teach the girls how to go down the slide together, but it was neat to finally see them get it.
And of course, you can't be two little girls without a princess night or two. Brynn's favorite princess is the Blue one. Ellie's is usually Belle or Sleeping Beauty.
Dancing...
Swinging...
And flying kites... I don't think there is anything we've tried to do with Brynn that Ellie didn't truly enjoy.
And boy do they love to hug... though sometimes it's more like a tackle (usually with Brynnie on the bottom).
video
Most recently we went to the carnival. And you don't have to try too hard to see how excited they were about the rides.
I can't believe they're now old enough to ride some of the rides all by themselves, and you can tell they're so proud.
We've also added swimming to the list of things the girls do together and it's always a hit - surprise surprise. Usually they start off nervous but by the end of the swim they're both so proud that they can swim all by themselves (with a swimming jacket).
I saved my favorite for last (though the fact that it's the most recent photo was helpful too). Look at how grown up our girls are, just so happy to be sitting outside and having "tea" together. I am really looking forward to seeing their friendship develop even more. Brynn's Mommy met her best friend when they were both 18 months old... so who knows? These girls might be together for a very long time.

And now I end this crazy long post with hugs... and lots of them.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Correction, Daddy

Daddy: Ellie, please don't pick your nose.
Ellie: But I'm not picking my nose - I'm just digging out the boogers!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Bun Bun Massacre

We interrupt this program with a newsflash. There has been a tragic massacre that has taken place in Ellie's room. The victims appear to be stuffed rabbits. Reports state that a total of five bunnies were victims to this horrific event. Police say there are two survivors, though they are not currently available for comments. Friends and family say that all seven bunnies went by the name Bun Bun. Police are not yet sharing information on the identity of the murderer, or how he gained access to Ellie's room but currently they do not believe that Ellie is a suspect. Ellie was at school with her friends when the attack occurred. None of the family members, including Ellie, wish to speak at this moment. They request that they be left alone to mourn their loss. Tune in to the 10 o'clock (or 11 o'clock for you east-coasters) for the full story.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Big Sister Quote of the Day XLIII

While getting Addie up in the morning, for some reason she was upset. From her room, I hear Ellie talking to me:

Ellie: Hey Mommy? What's wrong with Add-line?
Mommy: I'm not sure. Maybe she wishes she had slept longer?
Ellie: No. Dat's not right. I think she needs her big sister.
Mommy: Oh? Is that it?
Ellie: Yeah!
Mommy: Well then why don't you come in here and make her happy.
Ellie: Ok.

Moments later Ellie comes in, walking the Brynn-patented monkey walk (imagine her bent or slouched over and her arms dangling towards the ground - the girls think it's hilarious). Of course so does Addie. Lots of smiles.

Mommy: I guess you were right.

Doing nothing more than the Monkey Walk, she leaves the room and Addie is happy for a while.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Happy belated 9 months, Addie

Sadly this month marked an end to Addie taking wonderful naps with Mommy. Instead of snuggling down and instantly relaxing, she decided that Mommy is just too much fun. Though I miss my naps with her, I'm happy to see that she sleeps so well on her own. It makes her a happy baby, too, though we never really had to worry about that did we? She now takes 1-2.5 hour naps and typically goes down for bed around 6:45 and wakes around 6:00 (give or take - we prefer the give) without ever waking to be fed.

Addie turned 9 months last Friday and it was like a light switch clicked. She decided that she really can crawl and that swimming across the room is for sissies.
She has also decided that she makes a pretty good conversationalist, even if it's just a conversation with herself. Considering she was a baby who only talked when she was giving us her 10 minute warning for a meltdown (a very generous warning) this has made for a couple very stressful days. We need to accept the fact that our little one is able to talk even if she's happy. And that's ok. We old folks just need more time to adjust than a day or two.
And much to our surprise, she chose the same day to figure out that she can pull herself up - her new favorite position. She LOVES to stand and we even had to put the crib to its lowest setting because she started climbing out of her bed ALREADY!!!

This may not make sense to most, but both Michael and I agree that it felt like she went from being 6 months old to being 9 months in two short days. Bam! Pay attention Niffer!