I have such nice kids.

Melody was such a sweet helper last night.

Elisha has begun actually playing with things: Attempting to grasp, hold and gnarl whatever is in reach. During a family movie last night he played with a colorful squishy block quite contentedly—until it fell. Then he became quite distressed.

Melody realized what had happened and (pitching her high young voice even higher) she gave it back to him with comforting words.

This repeated several times. He wasn’t dropping it on purpose (I don’t think he’s old enough yet to know that game), since he was so obviously still learning how to hold. I had a new appreciation for the unflagging attention of toddlers.

Those who complain about short attention-spans in young children are only sharing/aware of half-truths. What they aught to say is that the child does not stay interested long enough in what the adult wants to do.

If allowed to pick their own activity/book/song their attention span for that one activity almost invariably lasts longer than the adult’s. (We have a “sanity rule” that each book can be read a maximum of three-times in a row. We invoke it almost daily.)

At Elisha’s doctor appt Wednesday (he had a skin infection, we got some ointment for it) we waited an *insane* amount of time, and if I’d remembered to count I would have learned the girls’ actual attention-span for a number of songs and rhymes I usually leave behind after 3 or 4 repetitions.

Side note: Elisha weighed in at 15lbs, 0oz, on Wednesday. On Thursday (his scheduled 4-month appt and shots), barely a week before, he was 14lbs, 5 oz. Can we say, Good-Eater! ?

Almost Rolling Over

I don’t know what the “normal” age is for rolling over, but Elisha’s getting closer ad closer every time I change his diaper.

Actually, that’s only true when I’m doing it at the changing table. The fish tank is just above his head, and in his persistent efforts to see the little swimmers he contorts himself quite creatively. I have to work fast to get him out and back in before he pulls onto his side (quicker every time).

I wonder if this means I’ll develop a new diapering technique…

Did you ever consider this a blessing?

Melody knows how to blow her nose now, and she does it with conviction.

I don’t remember when Natasha started, and even now she doesn’t do it with as much… emphasis as her sister, but with the cold weather returning and noses developing drips, I’m thankful they both know what to do when I say “Blow.

Now when she wakes all stuffy (like last night) there’s actually something she/we can do about it. It’s surprisingly comforting.


The kids and I went to North Pole to look at some whippets this afternoon.

If you didn’t know, I’ve been doing my homework on different breed types, looking for a good match for our family. There’s a lot of attractive things about the breed, but a couple drawbacks too…

But I found there was this lady with a half-dozen in her home (along with as many shelties!), so we went out to see what they were like in person. (The short conclusion is that they are just what I thought they’d be like, only softer.)

She also had a litter of 4-week-old puppies, and Natasha was just smitten. I wished I’d brought the camera. That first five minutes of her holding the little white dog was priceless. I’ve never seen that look on her face before. Here was a real, live baby that was the same size to her that Elisha is to me. She could hardly stand for me to hold him. She wriggled almost as much as he did, begging, “Can I have a turn now?” before I’d pet his soft head twice.

Very fun.
It never ceases to amaze me that puppies look like puppies no matter what breed they come from. No matter that the parents are long sharp and lean, these babies were still rounded. Maybe not as pudgy as some puppies I’ve seen, but I’d never have guessed their type looking at them.

Over-all update

Let’s see, Natasha has used the potty un-prompted for 4 or 5 days now. She’s eagerly awaiting the time Grandma Florie will take her shopping for big-girl panties. We still have to figure out how many “perfect” days must precede this event. Melody currently has no interest in starting herself. I’m okay with that. Except when she whines about not getting the (reward) candy. All she’d have to do is sit on the potty, but she *Don’t want to!*

Elisha had his 4-month check-up and shots yesterday. Has been sleeping (and crying) hard since then. Alternately.

He’s a thumb-sucker now; has been for a long time. He’s actually not much of a crier; very content little boy, mostly self-soothing. He loves face-to-face interaction and tries to talk all the time. (Someone told me that 4-months is when deaf families start seeing real signs from their babies, and it totally makes sense.) The girls adore him. Still too rough sometimes (at least a couple times a day), but the vast majority of their interactions are very sweet and enjoyed by all parties.
Jay wants to try again with signing when Elisha’s a bit older (NJ took to it, Melody didn’t). We’re thinking he might do it too, partly because we think the girls will enjoy teaching him with us.

Melody is still has the widest extremes (so many tragedies for such a young life…) but she is getting good at regaining self-control. (Prompted) she takes a few deep breaths and wipe her eyes, settling down (most of the time) enough to be understood. I’m so proud of her. She works very hard to settle herself.
Elisha sleeps like a dream now. 10-12 solid hours each night, and at least two good naps during the day. Definitely sleeps more than he’s awake.

(If you go visit the Who Are We? page you’ll see some fun tickers displaying the *exact* ages of each of the children.)

Kids are so fun

When the kids say something I want to remember, I try to write it down. So here’s a clearing of the white-board:

The girls are playing nicely together and Natasha turns to her sister.
N: You’re a great sister. I *love* you.
M: Yup.


We harvested from our garden Friday evening and Jay let the girls be the curriers. Melody came running in with a respectably-sized “Cuzinni,” eager to make bread.


The girls playing house:

M: Mom! [I’ve learned not to answer this call when they play this way]
N: I’m the baby.
M: Oh. Baby!
N: I can’t talk.

Getting organized

I just wrote a very informative e-mail to my sister (her b-day was on the 5th), and decided to add it here, because I’m so excited about it all…
I’m seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. I think my house might actually be organized (as in, have a home for everything– at least for the girls) by the end of the week. To borrow Gma’s phrase, I can’t hardly stand it. It’s amazing. Every wall in the yellow room is coated with dressers and other furnature and storage units of varying types (If I had a habit of illustrating my blog posts I would include a pix of it.) I seriously could not buy one of those corner toy-keeper nets to help with storage b/c we do not have a single open corner in this house. That was an odd revelation…

We reassembled the crib and I began my digging away at the yellow room to get it against the far wall. It’s a floppy thing I only bought for the looks (I like light wood.) It replaced NJ’s dark crib when it was Melody’s, and has to be a against a wall to keep it from creaking w/ movement. It’s not in danger of collapsing or anything, just loud.

We moved Elisha’s Rubbermade into the crib last night to get him used to the new room, and in a couple more days I’ll make up the crib and we’ll pack away the Rubbermade. Feels *totally* different to have him out of the room.

I bought new fitted sheets today (that I was able to force the girls’ mattresses into), and now that we should be able to keep the beds from falling apart on a daily basis, I’m going to add bed-making (and putting away of pajamas) to the morning routine. My theory is that if we can hold the beds in order that’s half the room right there. Add the books to that and we’re soaring.

Part of the deal was, I think, finally finding a way to categorize their stuff, so I had an orderly way of putting it away. Now that it looks like we’ve got that I think corralling their stuff will be much easier. We’ll be down just to figuring out Jay’s and my stuff.

They’re prolific speakers…

…But their pronunciation could use a little work.

The ones I can think of just now (can you guess all of these?):

Graham crappers (a snack)
Lellow (a color)
Mook bark (to save your place when you stop reading)

“Muddiddee! I’ve got popsilocks!” (Natasha trying to distribute frozen treats to the rest of the family.)

Grandma’s house

Mom and Dad do plan to continue living there.

They moved-in back in October, and spent the next several months moving their stuff over, and finding ways to consolidate two households into one.

In May, Mom and Dad sold their house, and Gma’s place was officially their home. Now they are going through the steps of buying the house and making it theirs. An element of settling Gma’s estate is selling the house and dividing the price among the three children, so an appraiser came over last Monday and looked over the place.

The last time I spoke with Mom (Thursday) she still had no idea when he would get back to them. Then questioned whether he had the information necessary to do it.

Mom hopes the quote will come back low enough for them to buy out-of-pocket (from the sale of their last place) so that they have some money in the budget (i.e., not going toward house payments) to begin making the many improvements Dad says a house that old needs.

Jay said once (years ago when I was feeling nostalgic and not wanting to lose the house in the indeterminate future) that he never wanted to live in the place. There was the boxy shape, the old wiring and so on.

I asked Mom if Dad didn’t feel the same way, and she said they do plan to make some improvements, but the big shop out back makes up for a lot of the inconveniences of the house.