Sunday, September 25, 2011

Flashback Comparison Pics

I have been meaning to write this post since school started. Here are some comparison pics from the first days of "school". It's so fun to see how much Caroline has grown and changed over the last couple of years. I can't believe how big she looks now...even just compared to last year. What a privilege it is to watch this sweet girl grow up!!


Monday, September 19, 2011

10 Months Old

Matthew is 10 months & 1 week old!!
It has been a big month for our little guy...mainly because he started babbling this month!! It only took 10 months!! ;-) I took him to an audiologist this month because I was so worried about how quiet he was. His ears checked out fine (of course) and about 2 weeks after that appointment Matthew started "talking" a TON and hasn't stopped since. Woohoo! What a relief. We just love hearing his sweet little voice...after waiting so long to hear him talk, it is such a wonderful sound. He is making lots of different consonants and vowels sounds now. We even think he might have a few words: nana (banana), Abby (my in-laws' dog) & nigh nigh (night-night)
He hasn't used these words consistenly, and we have only heard them once or twice, so we'll see. We're just thankful Matthew has found his voice :-) I know I'll be laughing that I was worried about that someday!!
Another big change this month...Matthew is no longer eating baby food (except for those oh-so-convenient baby food "pouches" that come in the squeezable those things!) It's all table food for him and he is feeding himself (which is oh-so-nice). He usually eats cheerios or a breakfast bar with a banana in the morning, some kind of deli meat or chicken with cheese and veggies for lunch and whatever we're eating for supper. In addition, Matthew LOVES mum-mums, puffs, baby goldfish, all different types of bread, yogurt, applesauce, grilled cheese sandwiches, and chicken nuggets. Matthew's favorite foods are any kind of meat and most vegetables. He really doesn't like fruit too much which I think is funny. It's just the opposite of how Caroline used to be. I'm sure his tastes will change soon and he will love fruit and hate veggies.
At 10 months old, Matthew loves to:
"throw" a ball back and forth (I've got to get this on video soon...his "throw" is so funny)
play with his learning table and learning home
play with his sister
wrestle with Matt
cuddle before bedtime
play pat-a-cake
try to mimic the motions for "Twinkle Twinkle"
sign more & all done
reach his arms up for "so big" when we ask "how big is Matthew"
wave (but only in his high chair...weird :-)
be outside
ride in our wagon
smile while crinkling his little nose up
cruise around while holding onto furniture
climb stairs
go on walks in the stroller
take baths

Matthew does NOT love to:
ride in his carseat anymore (bummer)
read more than a couple of books at a time :-(
drink cold milk
miss his morning nap
go to Mother's Day Out (at least not yet)
try to walk while holding our hands
go to bed any later than 7 pm, no matter what
be still to have his diaper changed or get dressed
Happy 10 month birthday, Matthew! We love you so!!! 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Dancing Queen

Caroline had her first day of ballet last week! She was so thrilled:

 We switched studios this year so Caroline could take ballet with some of her sweet friends. We're also close to home which is nice! I was really happy with our switch. Ms Janie is Caroline's teacher and couldn't be nicer. And we love seeing so many friends. Sorry for the quality of pics...they were taken through glass:

The littles, Matthew and Millie, loved watching the girls through the window.

Lucy & Caroline
Yay for ballet!!!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

First Day of Preschool & Mother's Day Out/Back-to-school Traditions

Last week was a BIG week at our Mimi & PopPop's house!! Caroline had her FIRST day of PRESCHOOL and Matthew had his first day of Mother's Day Out. I was so inspired by this post on Kelly's Korner (love her BTW!) and by my newest obsession that I decided to start some back-to-school traditions for Caroline (and eventually Matthew once he starts preschool). The first tradition we began was a mommy/daughter date the day before school started. Caroline picked the date...she wanted to get a slurpee and go to the park. I thought that was a great idea!
Heading out for some fun...just the two of us!
 She is definitely my daughter...she picked wild cherry which is my favorite too

 Park time!

 "Ladies and Gentlemen..."
 The night before school, we gave Caroline and Matthew their baths then read two of our new favorite books: this one and this one. After our reading time, we had a family prayer for Caroline, her new teachers and her classmates. Then it was time for bed and many sweet dreams of preschool.
Backpack, napmat, lunchbox...check! A big bag for Matthew packed with too much stuff...check!
 Caroline requested PopPop's special pancakes for breakfast and he was nice enough to make them for the kiddos. (one of the perks about living with the grandparents)
Matthew inhaled them as he does most food :-)
 SO happy about PopPop's pancakes!!
 The traditional picture in front of the door...can't wait to have our own front door next year! (please excuse that crazy lady's reflection in the glass)

 Bubs' turn!!
 Signing "more" but I don't know what he wanted...
 Clapping for Daddy
 Trying to get away...
 ...not successful
 My best attempt at the two of them. Why do I bother??

 Finding her star:
Matthew with sweet Mrs. Dina:
All smiles+lots of excitement=a successful drop-off with no tears!!
The first drop-off of the year is always kind of sad for me. Not hysterically crying sad or anything (although there is nothing wrong with that :-)...just a pit-in-my-stomach general sadness because my kids are growing up SO fast. Each new "school year" is always a big reminder of that and it's hard. But all I have to do to feel better is ask Matt, after we've just dropped the kids off, "aren't you so sad?" Matt's response? "Nope, we'll see them again in a few hours!" Um, oh yeah.
When we picked the kids up, Caroline's teachers said she did great!! Matthew did okay but had a hard time adjusting to the new nap schedule at Mother's Day Out. The boy likes his schedule and he likes his sleep. He'll get it and, luckily, he's just going one day/week so I can do some private speech therapy for a few hours/week.
We came home from school and had a low-key afternoon while Matthew caught up on his sleep. One last tradition we'll do every for supper! Nothing fancy but it's Caroline's favorite food, and I figured the first day of school will always be too busy to cook a meal. So pizza it is!
And a back-to-school cake. Please don't make fun of me. I'm not a baker and this is what happens when I try. But I'm committed to getting better and next year I might even attempt this (gasp). Kate, I'm gonna need some help!!!
I can't believe I'm about to post this picture on the world wide web but in the interest of keeping it 'tis (I ran out of was supposed to say "Happy 1st Day of Preschool). Good thing Caroline can't read ;-)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Meet the Teacher 2011

Last week was Meet the Teacher day at Caroline's preschool. This is a big year for her because it's her FIRST year of PRESCHOOL (she has been in Mother's Day Out the past two years). Matthew will also be going to MDO one day/week this year. Caroline was so excited the day before meet the teacher and asked if we could go to her class first (before Matthew's). I was so glad she was excited. Well....turns out meet the teacher was a total BUST. The moment we walked into the class, Caroline decided she was not having it. She was shy and wanted nothing to do with her new teachers (who were being so sweet to her BTW). She was even, dare I say it, quite rude. I was so embarrassed and kept apologizing to Ms. Wilson and Ms. Taylor. Needless to say, the morning didn't go as planned, and Caroline and I had a tough conversation when we got into the car.
I really struggle with how to handle Caroline's personality sometimes. God made her wonderfully and perfect just the way she is. That includes her shy, timid in new situations, more introverted personality. However, that can never be an excuse to be rude to other people. I realize that it is hard for introverted people to want to talk to/play with people they don't know. So I walk a fine line between not making Caroline feel bad for being the way she is vs. still being kind/polite to others even when she doesn't feel like it. The issue is also compounded because I couldn't be more different than my daughter. I'm an extreme extrovert so it's hard for me to always understand Caroline, and I'm afraid I push her too hard sometimes. This is something I pray about often, and I trust God will give me wisdom in this area. I need it!
The only pic I got of Caroline with her Preschool 3 teachers, Ms. Wilson and Ms. Taylor...I think she was screaming "NO" in this picture and trying to get to me (next time, I will know better than to even attempt a picture until Caroline feels more comfortable):
Caroline was all smiles once she was out of the unfamiliar classroom and with one of her best buddies, Lucy. They are standing in front of their stars on the wall outside the class (both excited they got purple :-) I am glad the girls are in class together this year!
The picture I took of Matthew with his teachers didn't turn out. Hopefully, I'll get one on the first day of school. His teachers, Ms. Dina and Ms. Gretel, are super sweet, and I know Matthew will have a great year. Here's hoping and praying for a good first day next week for both of my kiddos!!