Thursday, February 23, 2012

Two and a Half

Emmy just celebrated 2 1/2 yrs. on Feb. 8. Hard to believe that she's now closer to 3 than 2 (sob!) Time to reflect and write down a few of her latest and greatest!

Biggest accomplishment? I feel reasonably confident saying that Emily is potty trained! She has been doing great the last few weeks (as you know if you've read recent blog posts.) Today, I finally was brave enough to send her to Parent's Day Out for 4 hrs. without a pull-up. I packed lots of extra clothes, but I was oh so happy when I picked her up at 1pm and she was still wearing the same outfit! Her teachers said that she communicated with them several times about needing to go to potty. She even pooped on the big girl potty!

Pure Sweetness

  • Sings Jesus Loves Me like a little angel
  • When praying at the dinner table, we ask her what she is thankful for, and she always says, "Jesus!"( very happy about this, but it would be nice if she gave us a shout-out every now and then!)
  • When Jeremy and I are both home at the end of the day, she often looks around and smiles at us and says, "Mommy and Daddy! And Emmy!" It is like she is saying, "we're all here and I'm happy!"
  • She knows about 10 or more nursery rhymes by heart and loves to show off and say them for you.
  • Sang "Happy Birthday" to Poppy in front of a crowd of about 16 people! It was darling.
Pure Mischievousness

  • She still likes to run away from us when we call her. Drives me crazy. If we are very firm, she will come to us when she knows we really mean business, but she still runs away sometimes. She LOVES to play "Chase" and I think that is part of the reason she so loves to run from us. That and the fact that she can be a rebel. She's doing much better at waiting for me at the top of the outdoor side stairs while I lock up the door.
  • No matter how many books we read at night, it is almost never enough and she gets upset. Sometimes she will calm down and let me hold her and rock a little to quiet down before bedtime, but other times, she just gets squirmy and whiny. I have found that if I put her in her crib and tell her good-night, she will immediately stop the waterworks about the last book and very humbly ask to be rocked.
  • Doesn't like to try new foods. This makes me sad. She used to try everything. Now she is so hesitant that even a promise of a favorite treat won't get so much as a taste out of her if it is something she doesn't want.
  • She has ants in her pants at meal time. We really learned this one over the weekend when Jen and Ed were in town and cousin EB got the highchair. Our child NEEDS a booster with a seat belt. This is what we use at home to keep her in place long enough to eat meals. Left unrestrained, she climbs in/out of chairs constantly and refuses to sit to eat.
Favorite Toys/Shows

  • Calico Critters
  • Dollhouses (we don't have one yet, but she loves the one at her friend, Kendra's, and at Pottery Barn Kids.)
  • Fairy House (small figures that she carries and plays with)
  • Thomas Trains
  • "Reading" her books
  • Drawing with pens, crayons, or whatever she can get her hands on!
  • Ariel the mermaid
  • Loves stickers!
  • Mickey Mouse Club House, Thomas and Friends, and Sesame Street are still her favorite shows. Recently she watched her first movie with Mommy one day when I was feeling too sick to play--it was Beauty and the Beast. She's been asking for a yellow dress like Belle's.
  • Loves to play dress up in her princess dresses. She wears a tutu pretty much daily.
Other Random Bits

  • Recently she did the "wheelbarrow" all the way down the upstairs hallway while Dad held her legs.
  • Still scared to swing very high, but she will climb up high and go down the tallest slides.
  • Climbs in and out of her crib. No big deal at all. We have thought about changing the crib to a toddler bed, but she honestly gets in/out of the crib so easy, that we're no longer worried that she will hurt herself. Amazingly, she doesn't really get out of the crib once she knows it is nap time or bedtime which is why I haven't changed. Why mess with a good thing, right?
  • Pretend Play is in high gear now. It is really funny to hear what she says. I overheard her potty training her baby doll one day and I promise she said, "Good job, Baby! I so proud of you!" Hmm. Where has she heard that? :)
We are going to have to do better at taking photos. We almost never take any of every day life. I will try to get some photos of her playing dress-up soon.

A friend at work asked me how Emily was doing, and I told her "having a two year old, is not for the faint of heart." It is exhausting in a different way than the newborn stage is. They are so full of energy and love. It is hard to keep up with her some days. But, I wouldn't have it any other way. I can't imagine a lazy two year old. That just makes me laugh!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Valentine's Day

Emily with her new Ariel mermaid and Pinkalicious book

Decorating and eating cupcakes with Cousin Cooper


With Mommy after church

Kisses for Uncle Stephen

Chillin' with Pop and Cooper.

Ok, so lots of photos with Cooper this time. We will have to get some with the other cousins soon!

This year Jeremy and I enjoyed a nice early Valentine's dinner double date with Becca and Stephen at The Brickyard in Bowling Green. Mom and Dad watched Emmy, Cooper, and Madelyn for us so we could have an uninterrupted meal and adult conversation. It was great! Wish Laura and Will could have come, too, but I'm not sure the parents are ready for 5 kids at one time and Laura's little ones had recently been sick so they decided to pass. We had a nice weekend in BG--our first since Christmas. Time files by. I could especially see the growth in the littlest niece and nephew.

This year Emily really liked helping decorate cookies and cupcakes. When I asked her what her favorite thing about Valentine's was, she said, "Making cookies at Miss Katy's." She decorated cupcakes with Mom and Cooper on Sunday, cookies with Katy, Bailey, and Kendra on Monday, had a Valentine's party Tuesday at church school (more "PINK" cupcakes) and also decorated cupcakes at Dinkney's house on Wednesday. I guess I was kind of a slacker because we didn't make cookies this year. I made chocolate covered strawberries and did it while Emmy napped! But, she did enjoy making Valentine's with Daddy on Valentine's night while I cooked our supper. (My Valentine was super cute and I may have to keep it forever except art director Daddy did most of it!)

We got Emmy a Pinkalicious book and a large Ariel the mermaid doll. It is the first doll she has with "real" hair to comb and play with. It sings songs and talks and can swim in the bathtub with her. She enjoyed a few other gifts from her grandmothers who know her well and spoil her, too. Ironically, Nancy got her the smaller version of Ariel the mermaid because she had noticed Emily pointing it out in one of her toy magazines. I am very thankful and blessed to have the love of a wonderful man and precious daughter!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Progress at one month...

I wrote another potty training update a few weeks ago and thought I saved it as a draft, but I couldn't find it the other day. Oops. Now we are almost one month into potty training and things are going really well. We have had 5 days with NO ACCIDENTS at all. Several other days she has only had one pee accident. We have made it through a church service and a birthday dinner (Poppy's) in fancy dresses and tights with no accidents! We've been to Miss Katy's house twice all day with only one accident on each of those days. The only thing I haven't been brave enough to try with her is a half day at "church school" aka Parent's Day Out. Emily doesn't talk much to her teachers there so I'm not sure how well she would communicate her potty needs. Also, the bathroom is down the hallway and she has to sit on a "big girl" toilet (which of course she has had to do when I'm out and about with her, but it still makes it harder for her.) Anyway, she has more accidents in the 4 hrs. at parent's day out class while wearing her pull-ups than she does all week at home. Her teacher encouraged us to give it a try next week without the pull-ups and we will see how it goes. We still use pull-ups for naps and bedtime. Sometimes she wakes up from her naps pretty dry so we may be able to ditch the nap time pull-up in another month or so. I think we will be using a pull-up at night for a long time.

Emily has really gotten so much better at taking herself to the bathroom. I no longer have to set a timer and she pretty much takes herself when she has to go. I still have to insist that she go to the potty before we leave the house which sometimes doesn't go over so well! :) She likes to be alone for her poopoos. She frequently tells me, "I do it MYSELF!" I keep the door cracked and I can listen for her in the other room for when it is time to check on her and wipe her. She is very proud of herself when she makes her big poops in the potty! Our reward system is still in place, but now she doesn't need positive reinforcement every time. Most of the time, she gets a small piece of candy. Occasionally, I also give her a big sticker to add to her potty chart which is getting quite full! When we are all really happy, we do our "PeePee in the Potty" song and dance. Sometimes she initiates it on her own which is hilarious.

The best reward is not having to buy diapers! We only go through two pull-ups a day at most. I love that! However, I don't love packing clean clothes wherever we go. I always keep something in Emily's bag, but I think it would be helpful to also put an extra outfit in the car, too. For anyone seriously thinking about potty training, getting rid of the pull-ups is what works. It is way too much like a diaper for them to notice any difference or change their habits. I knew that this was what was recommended, but it just took awhile to work out several free days in my schedule to initiate the potty training. Also, it was around Christmas time when Emily really started to act like she was ready and of course that was not ideal due to all of our travels, special events, and general holiday busyness.

I'm so proud of our big girl. We still have room for improvement and consistency, but overall it is going very well! Good job, Emmy!

Waking up from nap. A little sleepy-eyed.

Reading material--Calico Critters wish list.

Emily's sticker chart. There is no rhyme or reason to sticker placement as you can see. She puts them wherever she wants!