Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Singing and telling stories

Elizabeth and Vanessa have been singing, singing, singing. I think preschool helps with the singing -- I often hear Vanessa sing "Wheels on the Bus" because they practice that one at school.

Elizabeth on the other hand has been singing "Happy birthday to you," I think because of Nana's recent birthday. Vanessa meanwhile has been playing the Happy Birthday tune on the piano (she has stickers for the letters of the notes on the piano keys to help her out). Elizabeth's other favorite parts of songs to sing are "Row, row, row your boat," "ashes, ashes, we all fall down," "moon, moon, moon," and "up above the." Incidentally, she calls stars "up above the"s.

Vanessa wrote and illustrated a new story today. Here is what she told me to write: "Stegosaurus dived into the water. He got out of the water and then he jumped! And then he turned around and scratched to make these lines."

Vanessa is here with me and she says she wants to write more. Here is what she wants to type (with only a very little bit of spelling help from me):


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Remembering Jessica

My sister-in-law Jessica passed away a year ago this month. I think about her quite often. One of the most painful things about losing her is the loss of that illusion that I had since I was young, that death is too far away to worry about. The truth is that loved ones can be lost and that grief can be very real.

On the other hand, this reminds me to love life and be happy NOW, because you never know what might happen. And that the parts of my loved ones' lives that I have already shared are true gifts, never to be taken for granted.

I miss my sister, but I am so humbled and grateful to have been a part of her life. What an amazing mommy and truly outstanding friend!

October is breast-cancer awareness month, go out and make a difference!

Friday, October 02, 2009

Elizabeth wows us!

The other day, James said he felt like he's been away for a week and Elizabeth grew up while he wasn't watching. I feel the same way -- it's like I turned my back and all of a sudden she's a toddler! Since I was so good about trying to use this blog as a "baby book" for Vanessa to keep track of her milestones, I will also try to keep up with Elizabeth's. Elizabeth is now 16 months old.

Elizabeth speaks in full sentences now -- not all the time, but a few times a day. Today for example, she said, "I need help" and "I'm running," and other memorable sentences have been "I see bubbles," and "I want to read book." She says ALL kinds of words, including "fountain" and "arabesque." One of her favorite words is "match" when she finds things that do, and she starts counting "one..." when she sees many things that are alike. She knows, says, and signs all her colors and she knows most of her letters. When we read "Where's Spot?" she says "No" when I point to the word "No," and she can identify the word "up" in another book.

She hugs and pretends to feed dolls and LOVES to stack duplos, drive matchbox cars and make toy airplanes fly. She loves playing dress-up, especially with shoes. She can help clean up and especially enjoys sweeping. One of her relatively new skills is blowing her nose -- I just wish she wouldn't blow her nose and then practice one of her other skills, cleaning the table (with the same tissue, argh).

She loves to be just like her big sister, whom she recently learned to call "Sessa" (previously "Yah-yah"). She really loves Vanessa's preschool and I think she would love to go. She also misses tagging along to Vanessa's dance class... I can tell because when she sees a picture of a ballerina, she says, "dance class, go!" and gets up to leave!