Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Jingle All the Way

This is the first year that the twins really got into the whole spirit of Christmas. And when I say spirit of Christmas, I mean it in the watch-commercials-and-ask-for-everything-how-many-days-until-Santa-gets-here sort of way, not the the-best-gift-is-the-gift-of-giving sort of way. But then I suppose this is more than partly my fault. Back in early September when I start Christmas shopping Eleanor saw a green garbage truck at Costco.

She wanted that silly thing more than anything in the world, but I told her Santa would be coming in just a couple months and she would have to ask him for it. Then Adam started combing through every toy catalog we received in the mail (and those of you with little kids know how crazy an accomplishment that is) and pinpointed the Imaginext castle as the most fabulous thing in the world.

I once again told him that Santa would be coming soon and that if continued to be such a good boy, perhaps he would bring it. Well, that's all I needed to say and it was Christmas carols with jingle bell accompaniment, Christmas cookies, Christmas TV specials, and Christmas lists for the next several weeks.
They sat on Santa's lap, wore Santa hats around the house, the whole nine yards. Adam had a Christmas party at his school in the evening complete with a man playing accordion in the gym, face painting, and Santa giving away books to every kid. Well, Santa must have been watching Adam closely because he gave his the Icky Bug Counting Book. That poor book looks like it's seen 6 or 7 Christmases he loves it so much.

And Eleanor and I took a mommy/daughter trip to Bronner's where she picked out a beautiful disco ball ornament for herself. And of course, we had to dress Ethan up in silly Santa outfits and take pictures he will not be happy with in about 10 years.

Doesn't it sound like I just had a blast this Christmas? I really did--there's nothing like little ones running around the house screaming Jingle Bells busting at the seams in anticipation for Santa to get you in the Christmas spirit. I can't wait to do it all again next year.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Big Personality, Little Body

Anyone who has met Eleanor knows that she has enough personality for a classroom of little girls. Yesterday Eleanor and I went to visit my dad. It was just a short visit since he was having work done in the basement. He took us down there to show us the progress and the 2 painters were sitting taking their lunch break. Eleanor walks right up to them and says, "Hi Guys!! Whacha doin'?" Self-confidence oozes from her.

Last week I took Eleanor to her first movie--The Princess and the Frog. For a week beforehand, she'd say 10 times a day, "Will you take me to Princess and the Frog on Saturday (she's into the days of the weeks right now) oh please, oh please, oh please?" Of course I take her but Eleanor gets a bit impatient waiting for it to start, looks up and calls out, "Lights Please!!!" Being an elementary school teacher, I know to prepare her for this new experience. I told her how the picture would be really big, that it would be dark, and that we'd be watching the movie with a bunch of other people. I was remiss in preparing her for previews. As they begin she leans over, "But I want Princess and the Frog!!" I tell her it's coming. Another preview. "But I want Princess and the FROG!" It's coming next. So it starts, but not immediately with the title--it goes right into the story. "But I want Princess and the FROOOG!" This IS Princess and the Frog. "Well where's the FROG?"
Also this week--a big week for Eleanor-- we discovered she can read. I don't mean she knows a few sight words. I don't mean she's memorized the books we've had around the house for months if not years. I mean I can pick up a brand new Level 1 I Can Read Book and Eleanor can read it to me. Holy moly. I haven't really taught her to read per se. We have loads of books, we read to the kids all the time, we've been going over sounds that letters make for 2 years, but I never intentionally taught her to read. Eleanor did that all on her own. She 4 years 2 months. She's not even 4 until January if you're her dad who still adjusts her age for prematurity. I know I'm a little biased, but that girl is going places. Born at 23 weeks, no problem. Surgery at 10 days, a breeze. You think she might be delayed because of it all? Ha, she'll show you. Ask her how she is and she'll always respond, "Great!!" If she messes up at something she'll tell you, "I'm going to try again." I think that little girl has a whole lot to teach the world. Isn't she fabulous?