Monday, September 28, 2009

Sidewalk Drawing/Writing

The lion pictured above is possibly my favorite drawing of Brady's to date. One evening after dinner we spent some time doing a little shared drawing and writing. Brady worked on writing some letters off and on all summer. Sometimes she was very interested, other times she didn't care about it a lick.
I've found that using less conventional writing materials peaks her interest. She seems to feel much more free to explore both writing and drawing with interesting materials. I'm guessing this is true for most little ones. Sidewalk chalk, bathtub crayons, a stick in the mud are all much more fun and more forgiving than paper and pen. On this night we focused on drawing some animals and items we had recently seen in the Madagascar 2 movie and then labeling them. Brady wrote the letters she knew and even tried a few new ones and I filled in the rest. It was a lot of fun and she was so proud of our creations.

3 and 1/2

Oh, 3 and 1/2 you came (back at the end of July) with a vengeance. There is something about the halves that are always hard on my girl. I've heard others tell of similar woes and I've read about it in a book or two. Anybody out there feel the same?
We are hoping, crossing our fingers, lifting prayers up that this is in fact the case, that this is just a developmental glitch. The first half of 3, she was easier and more fun than ever. I really miss it. Not that there aren't any bright spots. We do have lots of fun. The fun is just peppered with lots of screaming, crying, gnashing of teeth. I painted this 3 1/2 T-shirt for Brady and she is quite proud of it. Sassy and sweet even at 3 and 1/2.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Not So Simple

This picture taken at the bathroom mirror was created shortly before B's 2nd Birthday.

We've been dealing with some major meltdowns for the past few months. It has wreaked havoc on all of us. Today as the calm was making it's way back over me I thought about the words I've spoken to Brady over and over again. "It's very simple, obey and be happy and things go well: you get to have treats... do fun things... But, if you disobey and act the wrong way, you'll be punished, won't get to have good, fun things." And then it hit me; the Lord pricked my heart. How many times has He tried to tell me the same things? How stubborn am I in my disobedience? Oh, Brady, my dear child, I'm working on these simple lessons, too.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

There's Nothing Quite Like Old Friends Part 1

About a month ago Brady and I met up with my college friend Beth (Meeks) Garza , her daughters, and her mom at the NC Museum of Life and Sciences. Beth's parents live about 30 miles north of Durham and she and her girls were staying with them for a bit before moving to a new home. I was glad to get a chance to see them. Beth's oldest, Camilla and Brady are only a few weeks apart in age. Despite not being together in over a year the girls were thrilled to see each other and played quite well together. I was pleased to see my friend, too. It is always a joy to be around Bethers.
We explored the new Dino Trail, the Butterfly House, rode the train, ate at the outdoor cafe (Thanks Cass!) and explored the indoor play area. It was a fun-filled morning.
Unfortunately, I was never able to capture a great picture of the big girls. But, check out this adorable little one. She was so easy. Very different from the older two! As in the previous post, I am so thankful for old friends. We may not see each other often, but when we do it is just like old times with a few extra little blessings added.

Monday, September 14, 2009

There's Nothing Quite Like Old Friends Part 2

The last weekend of August we found ourselves graced by the presence of these two lovely ladies. (Two of my absolute favorite.) Beth was my college roommate, my maid of honor, and my personal childbirth nurse. I think I might start referring to her as St. Beth. Isabella is her

precious 5 year old daughter and, I think it's safe to say Brady's idol.

The two girls had the best time together. As wonderful as it is to be with your best friend, I think it might be even sweeter to see our children get along in the same fashion. Beth and Isabella's flight got in late Friday night, but that didn't stop these girls from living it up. They stayed up chatting and giggling until 1 in the morning. Which meant we big girls were up until 3 or so. (These apples didn't fall far from the tree.) Oh, but perhaps they slept in.... nope, they arose around 7 am.
We took it pretty easy Saturday. The little girls were content to play in B's room and the big girls didn't feel like doing much other than chatting. Because it took us so long to get up and going we ended up grabbing a bite at Chik-fil-a (so exciting) and a little Starbucks boost for the mamas. Then back to the house. That evening we packed up a picnic and headed to the Sarah P. Duke Gardens. It was quite lovely. Isabella and Brady rounded out the night with a dip in the tub and they were out pretty quickly. Of course, Beth and I had to stay up talking for awhile.

Sunday morning we woke a little later, so we went to late church. We then walked across the lot to Jason's Deli. (Can you believe they came all this way to eat in the same, boring restaurants that are readily available in Arkansas? Oh, well, it's really not what the trip was about, I suppose.) After that we headed to the fantastic Marbles Children's Museum in Raleigh for a full afternoon of fun. Here the girls are playing in an outdoor water area.
And here they are showing off their fabulous collaged dogs. You've probably noticed that these two girls are nearly the same size. Your eyes aren't fooling you; Isabella is only a couple of inches taller than Brady despite their nearly two year age difference. They were so fun to watch. That night Beth insisted on giving Adam and I a little time off, a rare treat. While we were out eating the rest of the bunch ate a pizza.
Monday morning the girls tried to cram a few last items of fun into the visit while Beth packed. On the way to the airport the girls made little "friendship cards" for each other to keep and remember their special friendship. We were so sad to see them go home. It was a wonderful girls weekend. I will treasure it always. I'm reminded of the old Brownies song, "Make new friends, but kee-eep the old, One is silver and the other gold." So true.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

1st Day of 3 year old Class

This Wednesday Brady had her 1st day of school for the year. She is back at the preschool she went to last year, but this year she is going on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings 9-12. Several of her "old" friends from the 2 year old class are back in the 3's this year so that has been really nice. She's even in the same room since the 2's and 3's are on opposite days. One of her teachers is new to the program this year and one subbed in B's class quite a bit last year, so she was a familiar face. Here we are about to get into the car to head to school (which is nearly walking distance away.) Can you tell we are excited?
Brady has been ready to go back to school for the last few weeks. The afternoon before school she had a visit from "the back to school fairy" who filled her school bag with new colored pencils, animal cards, and other goodies. (I got that idea on ? some one's blog, but tweaked it to my own liking.) She was wound up all afternoon and night! Thankfully, she did go to sleep promptly; but woke up early and ready to go right away.
We started a little tradition last year of going to Dunkin' Donuts to grab some breakfast on our way to drop daddy off at the hospital. She was thrilled to choose a donut with pink icing and sprinkles. When I took her in to her class she was a little apprehensive as I took pictures of her with her teachers. That was short lived; as soon as a couple of her friends arrived she was glad to start the school day and for me to leave. Brady had a great morning and so did her mom!