Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Most Creative Mom Around

Nope, I'm not talking about my mom.  It's actually one of her friends.
Brooke is a friend of Mommy's.  They taught at the same school for one year and paired their students up as reading buddies.  Mommy used to love taking her class into Brooke's classroom and snooping on her organizational skills.  She (Brooke) was one of those teachers who had all of the pieces to the puzzle: classroom management, top notch instruction, organization, name it, Brooke had it!
And she still does.  But this year she's getting to stay home with her 3 precious boys.  And she's channeling all of her teacher awesomeness into clever and creative activities with those boys.
So if you've got a preschool aged kiddo you may want to hop on over to and check out all of the great ideas she's posting.
Please be forewarned, though.  You will likely be both amazed (at all she is doing with her kids) and embarassed (because you feel proud of yourself for singing a few songs and slapping a sticker chart on the side of the fridge).
If you're like Mommy, though, you'll be super thankful that Brooke makes her creations available to her readers through Teachers Pay Teachers.  She also posts lots of you just may want to follow her blog!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Obey Right Away

It turns out that getting a new baby brother can bring out both the best and the worst in a 3.5 year old. 
A few days after Mommy and Daddy brought Elliot home from the hospital they were scratching their heads and wondering who the obstinate red head running around was and what she had done with their sweet Katie Bug.
After lots of tears, time outs, and tantrums + advice seeking, praying, and reflecting Mommy came to a few conclusions:
1.  What we were doing wasn't working.
2.  She was spending a whole lot of time disciplining me and not a lot of time encouraging me.
3.  She needed to trust God for the patience and grace she would need to parent me through this transitionl time.
And then, seemingly out of the blue, the idea for an "Obey Right Away" chart came to Mommy's mind.  It's similar to the behavior plans she would create for students in her class who were having a particularly hard time following the rules.  Every* time I immediately obey Mommy and Daddy without whining or fussing I get to put a sticker in a box.  When all of the boxes are full I earn a reward that we have previously agreed upon.
The chart was (almost) magic.
I have something positive to work towards.  Mommy and Daddy are focused on encouraging me to make the right choice (although I am certainly still the recipient of discipline when I need it).  Everyone is happier and our house is running smoother.
So far I have earned something from my Treat Basket, a Berenstein Bear book, and Goldilicious (which Mommy thinks is a huge literary waste). 

*Well, I started out getting a sticker every time I obeyed right away.  Now the stickers come more occasionally.  I think it's some sort of sneaky weaning process.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Here's What's Happening

Hey, all!  We've had a busy few weeks over here in Mossland.  Here's what we've been up to:
 Mommy was a little nervous when she pulled this brown chair into Elliot's room to take his first monthday picture. I think she was worried that I'd throw a little fit when I realized it had been taken from it's usual spot in my room.  She was pleasantly suprised, though, when I told her that I thought it was a great idea for E and I to share it!
Elliot decided to grace us with this beautiful smile on his 5 week birthday.  That's a whole week before I started smiling!
Mommy turned the big 3-0 last week!  She celebrated with Zumba (her first time back), Sweet Tomatoes, and Spiral Diner (a vegan restaurant in the Bishop Arts District of Dallas).
My first day of "school" was last Monday.  I'm in the 3 year old class at a childcare center for teachers' kids that is run by the district where Mommy teaches.  The center just so happens to be in the elementary school that Mommy and Auntie attended as little girls!  Elliot will join me in two the infant class, of course.
I also started a new year of dance classes last week.  I'm super excited to learn how to tap this year!
Mommy has been working really hard to get her classroom ready for the first day of school (tomorrow).  She's technically on maternity leave until September 10...but classrooms and sub plans don't take care of themselves, you know!
If there are any teachers reading this, Mommy would highly suggest that you try not to have a baby right before school starts.  This is probably the absolute hardest time to be out of your classroom!
Elliot is one growing boy!  Whenever we are out and about with him, people always think he's about 3 months old.
At 6 weeks, he's already in size 2 diapers.  Mommy and Daddy also moved him up to the large SwaddleMe wraps this week. 
Mommy will take Elliot to the pedi tomorrow for a well baby check, so we'll know just how big he is after that appointment.
Since Mr. E is (clearly) doing a fabulous job of nursing, Mommy has gotten pretty small pretty fast.  She's able to get back into just about all of her pre-E clothes...although they certainly don't fit quite like they did 10 months ago!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

My 1st Monthday

I am 1 month old today!

Here are some things you should know about me at 1 month:

I'm a big boy!  My unofficial weight right now is 12.5 pounds (with clothes and a diaper).  We should find out my official weight tomorrow at my vaccine appointment (2nd round of Hep B).

I'm wearing size 1 diapers and 0-3 month clothes.  These are some of the newborn clothes I've already outgrown. 

That sight makes Mommy a little sad.  But then she just looks at all of the clothes I have yet to wear and she just can't help but feel extremely grateful.

I eat every 2-3 hours during the day and every 3 hours at night.  I'm a breeze to put back to sleep at night (once I've been sufficiently fed).

I love to listen to running water and put my cheek up next to Mommy's cheek when I'm sleepy.

Grampa gave me my first bottle yesterday while the rest of my family was at the circus.  I took it is serious business, you know!

I was just kidding a few weeks ago when I told you that dairy was no problem for me.  It is.  When Mommy eats dairy I am super gassy and extra fussy.  If she doesn't eat it, though, I really don't have much gas at all and am only "normal baby" fussy.  So, guess what?  No dairy for Mommy!

I haven't figured out how to give out "social smiles" yet, but I do sometimes come up with an involuntary right here.

Mommy and Daddy start putting me to bed right after Katie Bug goes to sleep, which is usually a little after 8:00.  Most of the time, though, I'm not really asleep for the night until about 9:30 or 10:00. 

I take lots of naps during the day.  One nap is usually in my crib, one in the swing, one in the carseat, and one in someone's arms.  I think Mommy is looking forward to the day when all of my naps can be in the same place.

I'm just starting to sort of, kind of notice my big sister.  She really likes to talk to me and tries to make me happy when I'm a little sad.  Sometimes she even succeeds!

I have seen a whole lot more of the world than my sissy had at one month!  That's because  (a) it's not winter, (b) it's hard to keep a 3.5 year old entertained inside of a house all day long for days on end, and (c) it's hard to keep a mommy happy inside of a house all day long for days on end if said mommy is also taking care of a newborn and a 3.5 year old.

My family and I have really enjoyed getting to know each other.  In fact, it's just been this last week or so that Mommy feels like she's really starting to learn who I am.  And I think she's loving what she's learning!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Family of Four First: Apple Store

Our little family of four had another first this week when we all loaded up in the car and headed to the Apple store in Uptown Dallas.

Elliot was moderately impressed by their lighting scheme.  I, on the other hand, was amazed at all of the iPad Apps that were available to try out at the kids table.  Mommy was smitten with the "alternative seating" at said tables.

And Daddy was just in heaven.  Apple heaven.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

First Sunday at Church

I'm a little late here, but Sunday was my very first day at church! 

Mimi came over early Sunday morning to help Mommy get Katelyn and I ready for church on time.  (Since Daddy is a pastor, he has to leave really early for church.  Mommy thinks she'll eventually be able to get two of us ready all on her own...but she's not making any promises about being on time.)