Sunday, March 29, 2009

Two Davids.

This weekend we met up with Seth's friend and her 3 kids who were visiting NYC from Australia. We decided to spend some time at MoMA since it was raining off and on an entire day. Her youngest son's name is David, so our son was very excited to meet someone with the same name as his. Austrailan David is only 10 years old, but he is so good with the kids, so patient and friendly with them. We spent about 3 hours with them and our son wouldn't leave David's site for a minute and surprisingly big David didn't mind it a bit. Every time we moved to a different floor, big David would open up a map and show our son where on the map we were . He would look at the paintings and talk to our son about them and ask him questions about a certain piece of art. I didn't have to keep an eye on our son as I knew he was in good hands. I wanted to keep him even though his sisters insisted that he's not always such an angel.

Since both our kids skipped their naps today, their energy level quadrupled once we arrived home. I decided to pre-occupy them with a little bit of sewing project to keep peace in the house. I glued two pages of a greeting card together to make it sturdier and punched some holes around the edges. Then I made a needle out of a pipecleaner and threaded a yarn through it. The kids loved "sewing" and after I showed it to them once, they were able to do a few cards without my help. Unfortunately, I made only 3 cards and David was done with them in 10 minutes. Julia completed only one because David wouldn't let me undo more than one card he had worked on before. We'll be doing it over and over again although David already told me that tomorrow he'll be learning to knit. I doubt it is going to happen anytime soon as I don't have big David's patience.

Monday, March 23, 2009

OCD in Our Family.

I think I might have mentioned before David's obsessiveness likeliness of his clothes. Any task that includes his clothes makes him happy. Folding it? Check. Placing it in his hamper? Check. Thanking me for doing his laundry without me ever prompting him? Check.
This morning, as I was placing his clean pajama back in his dresser drawer, I noticed that all of his pajamas were nicely folded.

Last time I saw him undressing in the morning, he would take his pajama off and just shoved it into the drawer. I asked Seth if he folded all David's pajamas this morning. He didn't, but he told me he had told David to keep his clothes neat and folded. I guess nowadays, after David takes it off, he turns it inside out and then folds it neatly before placing it back into the drawer. Not surprisingly, he takes it after Seth who if timing allowed would organize both pantry and linen closets every weekend.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Catching Up.

So what have we been up to? We've spent a lot more time outside -- at the park, riding our bikes or hiking. As soon as I pick David up from school, he'll insist on going to the park no matter how cold it might be on some days.

Once back home and I am cooking dinner, the kids are either at their craft table coloring (yes, we are still a bit obsessed with coloring -- 3-4 pages at one sitting) or turning the house upside down.

After dinner, Seth takes the kids for a walk, either along the train tracks or for a short walk in the nearby "woods." Sometimes I'll join them, but usually it is just three of them.

Back in November I was obsessed with knitting. I even received some requests from my relatives and friends to knit some things for their kids. Of course, as quickly as my knitting mojo came that's how quickly it went away. I started knitting Julia a pair of socks and never finished them even though it would probably take me another hour to complete them. Then suddenly my knitting mojo came back a few days ago. I came across this shirt and two days later my version of it for Julia was almost completed.

I ran out of yarn, so thus no straps. It is definitely too big for her right now, so I might end up unwinding it. I realized that I don't care much about the finished project, but I enjoy the process of knitting. I also want to try knitting this dress maybe even using the yarn as I knitted the shirt with.
We still do some art projects although not as many since we've been spending so much time outdoors. I plan the projects and then sometimes David comes up with his own project he would rather make. He works on his invention while Julia follows my lead every time and gets excited to see a finished project. Most of these ideas I got from Ramblings of a Crazy Woman.

I've been trying to reteach David how to write his name using lower case letters as he used to write it with all capital letters. He was so frustrated at first, but I think he finally got it.
For the past few months, he also would write down 2 numbers, ask me "what number is it?" and after I would tell him, he would write 2 more and it would go on and on. That's how he taught himself how to count to 100. The problem is he reads all the numbers from right to left and he copies the words the same way. He likes us reading "Chicka, chicka, 1 2 3" book to him and on the back of it there are numbers from 0 to 100 and this is the only way he reads them right.

Julia's been saying "let me be" each time I try helping her put her clothes on or closing the games after we are done playing them. That's her way of saying "I am going to do it by myself". I kept thinking this phrase sounded so familiar and then I realized it was from Dr. Seuss' "Green Eggs & Ham". She loves playing games, but now her favorites are the ones that involve numbers /letters, like Dominos, The cat in the Hat, a "Planet game" that came in with one of David's planet books, and Boggle Jr. Letters.

She always initiates playing the "I spy" game, either at the dinner table or in the car. I really don't sit down as I do with David and teach her, she's just always in the background doing her own thing (usually puzzles or looking through the books) but she quickly picks up what she overhears what I tell David. She loves doing arts and crafts although she doesn't care if it is on the paper or on the bathroom tile. She started coloring really well and it was a rare scene when we were sitting in a restaurant the other day and both kids were quietly coloring for a few minutes. I never thought a day would come when our table would be the quietest in the entire restaurant (even if it only lasted a few minutes.)
So, there will be probably less number of posts in the future, but hopefully, not as long as this one.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Our Big Boy.

Today, David turned 4 years old. This morning, as he carried downstairs a big gift box that I placed in his room last night after he fell asleep, he excitingly exclaimed "Mama, am I 4 years old now?" There's no mistake, he was more excited about the fact that he is a big boy now rather than what the gift box holds inside. And honestly, I am not sure who is happier more that 3's behind us, him or me. Happy Birthday, my big boy!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Julia rides a big bike now.

A picture and a movie are worth thousand words.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Sleeping w/Mommy

Some time in the middle of the night, Julia slips out of her daybed, goes into our bedroom and climbs into our bed. There are nights now that we may not even hear her, and on other nights, we're just too tired to argue. There are times where I've said, "Julia, go back to your bed" and she'll reply in a soft firm voice, "no." At 3AM, that's a damn good rebuttal and I'll fall back asleep.

Then she'll lay down between Nataliya and I, regardless of how close we may be. She'll just lay there until the gap between us increases and she falls into place. Luckily for me, she prefers to be closer to Mommy, but how Nataliya can sleep through this is amazing!

Ummm, that might not be the best place to lay your head, Julia!

At this point, Nataliya is doing a balancing act on the edge of the bed.

Julia finds that it's easier to push Mommy with her feet.

Nataliya will wake up in an hour, wondering why her mouth tastes like feet.

After kicking me out of bed, Julia starts working on Mommy's side!

So how do you discourage a child to sleep with their parents when they're too tired to do much about it. Hopefully when she gets her new bed she'll be encouraged to stay in her own room. (David's never done this, and he even knows that Julia is doing it but for some reason doesn't make an issue over it...)

If any positive has come from this, it's really encouraged us to get her potty trained.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Our Week.

For the past week, the weather's been so nice that most of our time has been spent outside in the park or riding their bikes into town. David's excitement to ride his bike has faded somewhat, whereas Julia's has never been higher. We managed to make a few new crafts projects this week, especially since David, upon walking into the house, has a habit of asking "what are we making today?"
One day, on a way to school, David told me he wanted to make a house and have a soup for dinner. So, while Julia napped, I was busy chopping up ingredients for chicken soup, while I was trying to figure out how to put together a dog house for both kids to decorate later. Here's the result:

We also made some ladybugs - just because I thought they looked pretty cute!

We also made some jellyfish since 'J' was the "letter of the week" at his school last week.

I recently realized that David refers to the future as "tomorrow." Summer is tomorrow, his birthday is tomorrow, he is going to school tomorrow, etc.
Since his birthday party will be next Sunday, I decided to make a birthday countdown project to this day. Every night before he goes to bed, he takes off one of the rings and then counts how many days are left to his party. Unfortunately, I can't take credit for this clever craft, I came across it on here .

Surprisingly, David has been very curious as to how things work and as Seth obliges by taking out an Anatomy book. Tonight, Seth explained to David what happens to his dinner after it's swallowed, while David listened intently and occasionally interrupted with "what's that?"

Today we purchased David a belt since he's been wearing a piece of my yarn around his belly everywhere, calling it his belt. He figured out how to buckle it up, wore it all day long and already attached it to his clean pants for tomorrow.

The thing I am most excited about has to do with my crazy daughter. She's been wearing underwear for the last two weeks without having an accident and without being reminded to use a toilet. She goes on it by herself, takes her clothes off and then puts her underwear on by herself. She still has accidents at night, but at least we are done with diapers during the day. I just can't believe it took me longer to potty train her than David.

And after this long week, it looks like I'll have to come up with some craft ideas for tomorrow as the schools have all closed in preparation of a snow storm. Fun!