Tuesday, August 17, 2010


So, you might wonder what we've been spending the summer doing, apart from hanging out with friends and going to the pool. Well, when we're inside, we:

...rip apart Styrofoam packaging just for the fun and mess of it...

...make goofy faces...

...play Little Red Riding Hood, or Goldilocks and the 3 Bears, or Billy Goats Gruff

...read a lot. This is what my girls do for rest, since I can't seem to convince them to nap (and if they do nap, then they can't go to sleep at a reasonable hour at night). I find them like this most days when I check on them while I'm making dinner, although sometimes they prefer to read by themselves. If you haven't noticed already, I seem to have left my flash off for this last set of pictures (ah well, the next set should look better).

Well, Vanessa DID get to go on a very exciting adventure with her daddy and Nana. Her very first professional sports game -- a Redskins preseason game! They only stayed for the first half and James says that the crowd was very family-oriented that evening.

Here are Vanessa and Daddy in their Redskins jerseys.

I know my husband better than to really believe this, but when I look at this picture, I like to imagine that a really important moment is happening on the field, and Vanessa is watching it unfold on the big TV nearby, while James is busy smiling for the camera.

This is a picture of the field from the seats that James has this year. A good perspective for watching touchdowns, I'd say.

These next few pics are from Joanna and Uncle Brian's birthday party. When Elizabeth wasn't racing around in circles, she paused to get some kisses from her Nana.

The biggest attraction at the party was the hammock. It's like a swing, but BIGGER!

Elizabeth plays hide-and-seek behind a tree.

The girls and me have a little break.

Vanessa and Elizabeth and the birthday boy.

We've had some time to hang out with family lately. Molly and Fred came up to visit us for a couple of days, and we also got to visit Uncle Zak at his home for the first time. I forgot to bring my camera to Uncle Zak's place though, so I have a really good excuse for going back and visiting sometime again soon! As always, the girls just love all the attention they get from family, and I love to see my family too!

Grandma also came by to visit, and brought toys!! Thanks also to Heather, who helped pick out a lot of stuff to keep my girls busy while I bring them along with me two days a week while I tutor. We had a fabulous time with Grandma and the girls already have plans of games to play with her when they see her next.

Lately, Vanessa has been picking up quite a bit from sneaking some peaks over my shoulder when I am tutoring the subject of reading. She's found some of the extra homework sheets I printed out, and has been doing them! This has required her to practice writing smaller, and with lowercase letters. She has learned a lot of the phonograms that I have been working on -- for example, she told me today that sometimes an "a" sounds like the "a" in "cat," and sometimes it sounds like the "ah" in "ball." I'm not sure if listening to my tutoring is the reason, or if having the privelege of using her daddy's old iPhone for writing notes on is the reason, but for whatever reason, Vanessa has REALLY wanted to type lately, and also write on paper. She asks a lot about how to spell words, and figures out or remembers some spellings herself (or in some cases, she is helped out by the iPhone's auto-complete feature). Here is something she wrote today on James's old iPhone:

Vanessa*s birth day is august 31st
And there is IcE cream and so every=
Body can come to my birthday
Be cause it is so beautiful
That I want my friends to come
And it is so exciting and that is that

And I love ice cream

Vanessa has also recently learned how to count to 100, although she still makes mistakes sometimes while doing so. Not to be outdone, Elizabeth has learned how to count to 12, and has been working on writing and typing her first name. Elizabeth has been reading more and more sight words, so that I am beginning to wonder if she has started to acquire a sounding-out capability. She has such a good memory for stories that it's hard to tell when she is reading or just remembering. Elizabeth's favorite activities seem to be singing, dancing, and pretending. If she ends up loving musical theater as much as her daddy and I do, I wouldn't be surprised! Both girls also really love to run. I took them for a short jog with me today and they loved it!

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