As of late… a few videos

Sophia loves to sing in the car.  On a recent trip around Memphis, she was singing the little piggies!  I just happened to have the camera.

Abby recently has started enjoying Sophia’s new walker/table toy.  Only Sophia doesn’t like to let her enjoy it so much.  She likes to play, “Mommy,” pushing Abby around, telling her “no,” and showing her which music is preferable.  I told her once, “Sophia, now be nice and let Abby play the music.”  She said, “I wanna tell Abby no.”  I said nothing and listened.  She proceeded to tell Abby over and over again, pulling her away from the piano keys, “No. Don’t do that. Abby, I said no. No, Abby…”  HA!

In this video, she’s just horsing around.  It provides great entertainment for Abby, though, which I appreciate.  I hope you can understand Sophia.  She’s pretty funny.

Sunday. Beautiful Sunday

I had the most wonderful Sunday.  There is much to celebrate.  My heart felt such joy today with my family and with “Sunday” things.  We went to a new church today, and Sophia went to the big kids room.  She was by far the youngest, and I was so worried about her.  Will she wet her pants, will she cry, will she suck her thumb too much or be too shy? She did so great.  Color sheet and craft bag in hand, she left the Kingdom Kids room confident and happy.  I asked her on the way home what she did at church.  She said, “Pway, song, color, watcha t.v.”

I said, “Watch t.v.! What? What did you watch on t.v.?”

My baby girl said, “Jesus.” Then a bunch of jibberish and pointing.  This much I made out: “Jesus… Church… Watcha t.v… Jesus…”

I don’t have any idea if she really watched t.v. and whether or not Jesus was on it… Her color sheet was a picture of Jesus as a boy with the caption underneath, “Jesus liked going to church.”  She also had a paper with the Luke scripture of Jesus’ trip to the temple when he began to teach.  I think maybe she was trying to tell me about it.  (Sophia is sort of obsessed with t.v. lately.  She can tell me everything about Caillou and Dora and Brobee and Foofa… So, to hear her tell me about Jesus was the warmest feeling in the world.  I can only imagine how God’s ears must melt when He hears His name spoken by a child.  

Tonight, I decided it was time to teach Sophia to pray.  She repeated me so well.

Dear God. (Deh Goh)

I love you. (I loff you)

Thank you for today. (Cank you day)

Thank you for my family. (Cank you famwee)

Amen. (A-meh)

I’m so excited to share my faith with her.  I’m so excited to tell her about the person of Jesus and about the heart of our Father.

I hope you had a blessed Sunday as well.

Her First Shiner and a Potty Training update

Sophia got out of bed this morning, and she was so excited.  Her diaper was dry and she was about to go have her morning potty.  She yelled, “My famwees!” She grabbed all her favorite stuffed animals: Cowboy, the Mole puppet, and Pooh, and took off running for the potty.  She ran right smack into the end of the changing table.  I think 2 is the year for booboos.

Despite the year of booboos, Sophia is getting more and more brave.  I was nursing Abby this morning, and Sophia came into her bedroom.  She pushed an upside-down laundry basket up to Abby’s crib and hollered, “I go back to bed rie now!  I angree!”  Then, she proceeded to climb into Abby’s crib.   She talks ALL the time.  She’s just a chatterbox; it’s insane.  I love to listen to the sentences and words that she strings together.  She was playing a game with Abby’s crib, throwing Cowboy into it and then climbing in to rescue him.  She said, “I throw Cowboy over Abby’s bed. See look. What now? I love my Cowboy. I get him.”  I hear so many things that I say that it’s unnerving.  Yes, I say, “What now?” to her all the time when she does something, says something and then looks to me for what to do.  I didn’t realize I said it all the time, though, until she said it back to me.

We’ve also been discussing feelings a lot lately.  She’s obsessed with how we’re feeling.  She always asks, “Mommy, are you happy?”  Notice she said angry before?  That’s her new favorite feeling.  I guess we talk about how angry Abby is all the time.  (Yeah, she hollers a lot.  When she’s upset, she can scream and cry like I’ve never heard a baby cry before.  Shew, she get’s angry.)  Sophia thinks that when Abby’s angry she needs to go to bed.  We tell her, Abby’s angry because she’s so tired and doesn’t know what to do.  We seem to be doing a lot of discipline/training with her by how we look at her–happy or unhappy.  We didn’t mean to do it.  It just sort of happened.

Potty training is probably how it all started.  It threw all of our emotions (mine and Sophia’s) out of control.  For a while there, she would incessantly ask, “Are you happy?” all the time.  Right after nap, right after she did something wrong, right after I looked at her sternly, right after I looked at her questioningly.  It was driving me mad.  We’ve exited that stage, though, and she’s making some associations.  Like at night time, she has to keep her diaper on.  “Diy-pa on.  Daddy happy.”

A potty training update:  We stopped Sophia’s habit of taking her diaper off at night time by using duct tape for a week.  She loved it.  She thought it was a belt.  Then, she just got used to keeping it on and eventually made the association that Daddy’s happy when it stays on.  We’ve had a week of no accidents and dry diapers at night.  It feels so good.  I’m starting to feel like I can trust her answer of no after I ask.  She’s also beginning to act on her own urges without accidents.  It took a while.  It took longer than I thought it would, but it was easier than I thought it would be.

My advice for anyone getting ready to potty train is one word: patience. Oh, and be positive. I got some advice from this great website I found.  Nearly erything’s there.  Oh, and training panties.  Gerber training pants are great.

Here’s some other great advice I got from friends that was really helpful for us.

1)Completely get rid of diapers/pull-ups, i.e. just use underwear.  That was key with us.  That just means you’ll have some accidents and clean up.  But, you expected that, right?  By the way, if you decide to go cold turkey on the diapers, you’re going to need a LOT of underwear.

2)One way you know if your child is ready to start potty-training is if they wake up with dry diapers either in the morning or after a long nap.  That was only occasionally the case with us.  That could take the pressure off of some parents who don’t think that their child is ready emotionally or physically.

3)Lastly, when you’re first beginning potty-training put them on the potty when you expect that they need to pee and keep them there until they do.  With a book.  Read to them, and every couple of pages ask them to try.  Eventually, they’ll pee and learn how to use those muscles.  Sophia LOVED all the extra reading time and all the cheers when she was successful.

Sophia loves to dance

Mammaw: Sophia, tell Nana what you did at the wedding.

Sophia: I dance.

Mammaw: Can you show Nana how you danced?

Sophia: No, I don’t have a dress.

Too much Sesame Street?

Sophia was drawing this morning. After drawing a few blue scribbles, she put her hand up over her mouth, “Hmm. Something’s missing.  Needs more humongous meatball.”

I said, “What? Humongous meatballs?”

She said, “Draw dinosaur. Something’s missing.  Need more humongous meatball.”

If any of my blog fans ever watch Sesame Street, then you’re probably rolling on the floor laughing.  Either Sophia watches too much Sesame Street, or Sesame Street needs some new material!  (There’s an episode of “Abby’s Flying Fairy School” in which the case is a ‘humongous’ macaroni dinosaur that can only be tamed with a ‘humongous’ meatball…)

Mothers Day

Mother’s Day precipitated it all.

Mother’s Day:  I felt cherished by my lovely husband.  He came in with both girls at 7:30 in the morning, Sophia yelling, “Happy Day! Mommy, happy day!”  This was my lovely gift.

My husband is so wonderful at making me feel honored, appreciated and loved.  Thanks, Husby.

I don’ t think Sophia really understood that it was Mother’s Day, though.  My precious morning was followed by a trip to church and an afternoon lunch at Nana’s.  All was fine until I tried to get an overexcited, self-proclaimed “big girl” to take a nap in a portable crib.  30 minutes later, I got my second Mother’s Day gift: smeared poo all over the crib and chucked poo all over the room.  Thanks, Sophia.  That was the second day in a row that she took off her diaper and pooped during naptime and day number 9 in which she had taken off her diaper and had some sort of accident.

I didn’t want to potty train!

Things are crazy right now.  We moved to Arkansas about a month ago.  We’re living in Will’s parents’ house.  Abby’s colick-like symptoms are still rearing their ugly heads.  I’ve eliminated dairy and soy in my diet.

I’m crazy right now.  I’ve got new thyroid issues and am trying to eat a low-sodium diet.  I’ve also had an extra amount of swelling in my feet and legs which has caused we a lot of pain and trouble sleeping.  This in and of itself is super stressful.

I didn’t want to potty train!

Sophia is crazy right now.  She’s taken quite a while to adjust to the new living arrangements.  Since her language is taking off at the same time, it’s been a super interesting time.  She’s said things like, “I wanna go back to Mommy’s house.”  She’s had a lot of anger lately.  Anger at Mommy, anger at the grandparents, anger at Abby.  Today she said to Mammaw after Mammaw touched her shoulder to try to get her to go potty: “Ow!  Ow!  Stay back!  I’m gonna cry!”  She’s also quite frustrated with all the attention that Abby’s been getting–poor Abby, all the crying and needs that an uncomfortable baby has.  It’s just taken us all a bit of time to get adjusted.

Did I mention that I didn’t want to potty train?!  But, I’m also freaking tired of washing sheets and pillows and stuffed animals EVERY DAY… and, I’d like to never clean up $#^! from all over a guest bedroom floor again…

So, we woke up Tuesday morning, and I thought I’d just sit Sophia on the potty and see what happened.  Well, she peed.  A lot.  I didn’t expect that.  I didn’t know what to do.  My only thought was, “Follow through.” So, she got straight into her new Elmo panties, and we haven’t looked back since.  The approach has been cloth panties all day, even naptime.  Take her to the potty as soon after waking as possible, before bedtimes, and every hour or so since her last pee… and of course, when it looks like she’s about to poop–you can’t miss that.  I have tried to be as oober-positive as possible and give rewards and cheers and dancing upon success.  Well, today is her 4th day to catch her own need to poop and go poo all by herself. And, today she caught herself needing to pee and she did it all by herself.  She’s learning, and a mommy couldn’t be more proud.

Besides learning to breastfeed, this is the hardest thing I’ve ever tried to do.  It isn’t just taking her to the potty every 30 mins that’s hard.  It’s not constantly checking her panties for wetness that’s hard.  It’s dealing with the pressure of her learning how to use the potty.  It takes time.  It’s takes a gentle hand.  I can’t demand obedience.  I can’t expect compliance.  I have to balance my patience with her need to be control.  I have to be peppy and excited, even when it’s 6:30 in the morning and I may have slept a total of 6 hours.  I have to woot and holler and jump up and down even when my feet are killing me.  I have to let Abby cry sometimes.  I have to deal with the pressure of “what if she isn’t ready?” And, does her not being ready equal me failing at potty-training (parenting)?  I have to check my bent towards a performance-based parenting style.  I have to take control and be careful not to let Sophia walk all over me as she tests her new toddlerhood limits.  I have to learn to balance grace with discipline in ways that I’ve never considered.

I wasn’t ready!  I didn’t want to potty train!

But, here we are.  Lo, I did not take a picture of Sophia’s last day in diapers… But, she’s a big girl now.


Remember how Sophia makes me repeat everything she says?  (Irritated)  That’s the only way she’ll stop saying it…. Well, the past few days she’s been saying the most hilarious thing that we finally figured out, yesterday.  We were able to repeat it back to her, only it didn’t make her stop saying it…

A few days ago we were in Sophia’s play kitchen, and she was cooking and babbling: “Cook, whie now.”

On the way home from church, yesterday, she was saying over and over again, “Da-dee, tea-tar, whie now.” (Daddy guitar right now.)

Yesterday, Sophia was playing with Daddy in the play kitchen and I overheard, “Ima cook, whie now! Ima cook, whie now!” Imagine that Sophia is nearly yelling and she’s spacing out the whie now part.  Imagine in a sweet, yet demanding tone,  “WHIE! NOW!”

Have you figured it out?  It hit me. She’s saying, “I’m going to cook right now.” I hollered into Will so that he could repeat it to her to make her stop.  It didn’t.

We were downstairs later and Daddy was sitting on the couch.  “Ima dit. WHIE NOW!” Later, I hear in the kitchen, “Ima ge dah-ee whie now!” (I’m gonna get doggy right now.)  She’s putting it on the end of everything and she’s saying it over and over and over!  “Iwa milk whi now!” (I want milk right now.) “Bah-ee! Whi now!” (Barney, right now.) “Mine! WHI NOW!”

I’m thinking about how she could’ve gotten this “right now” business…  Yes, of course.  When I’m cooking dinner and she’s whining and pulling on my leg, I often say, “Mommy is cooking right now.  You may go play with Daddy.”  Then, I thought about other things I say, “Come here, right now!” when I’ve already asked her and she’s not listening.

I start to get really self-conscious.  Embarrassed, even.  She is yelling “right now” at the ends of everything that she says.  Now, I don’t do that. I don’t sound like that.

Is she saying it for effect?  Is she trying it out to see what it’ll get her?  Does she understand what it means?

Or, is she just repeating what she’s heard Mommy say again and again?

In the middle of the night, I remembered that when she asked about Daddy Sunday morning, I told her, “Daddy is at church playing guitar right now.”  I always put right now at the ends of where Daddy is.  “He is at work right now.” Or, “He is downstairs on the computer right now.”  I tell her, “Barney is not on right now.”

This developing language thing is FUN-NY!  Our plan is to just sort of ignore it and hope that the yelling with fizzle out.  I already heard her this morning putting “All Tow” at the end of everything.  That would be “All through the town” from the beloved children’s song “The Wheels on the Bus.”

In the meantime, I better watch what I say… and how I say it… 😉

Sophia loves Daddy

Sophia and I had the sweetest conversation after Daddy left this morning.

Sophia: Da-da bye-bye. Da-Da (kissy noise, kissy noise) mo–(Daddy’s gone. Kiss Daddy more.)

Me: Dada may not have left yet.  Go downstairs and see.

Sophia after running downstairs: DA-DA! No!

Me after going downstairs: Let’s look outside and see if he’s gone.

Sophia: Bye-Bye Da-Da

Sophia after shutting the door: Da-da go ow-shi. (kissy noise, kissy noise) Da-da mo–Daddy went outside. Kiss Daddy more.

hilarious play with Sophia

Sophia’s language is blowing up.  She’s coming up with new words and stringing more words together all the time.  It’s so fun to see.  Her pronunciation is pretty terrible, but she’s definitely got strings of sounds associated for different things.  The worst is probably “dutch” for chair.  Not really sure why she says it quite like that…

I witnessed a pretty fun pretend playtime today.  Sophia loves to play “diaper change.” Basically she takes any babydoll or stuffed animal she has and says “Baby, poo poo.”  Then she goes and gets a diaper and diaper cream and baby powder and pretends to change the babydoll.  Well, lately she’s been talking about her Bear.  While I was nursing Abby this morning, this is what I heard Sophia saying:

“Beh, nie nie.” (Bear, night night.) She lays him down and covers him up with a burp cloth.

“Beh, why. Shhh, shhh.” (Bear is crying.) She rocks him and makes a sad face and shushes him.

“Pupsh off.” (Please take it off.) She points to the bear’s collar and hands him to me.

“Beh, poo poo.” (Bear went poo poo.) She lays him down and goes and gets one of Abby’s diapers.  She spends minutes trying to get it on him. After it’s wrapped up something silly, she says, “Yay! Beh, nie nie.” She rocks him for a few seconds.

“Beh, poo poo… Fah… Beh fah.” (Bear pooped.  Bear farted.)  I laugh.  “Bear farted?” I say.

“Ya!  Ha ha.  Beh fah! Ha ha!  Mom-ma fah!  Ha ha.  Ab-bey fah!  Ha ha. Momma fah! “ This goes on and on.

Don’t ask me how she learned the word fart! No, I’ll tell you.  She came back from Mammaw and Papa’s knowing a bunch of new words and one of them was fart!  So, we’ll blame the dirty vocabulary on them!  Ha!  The first time she said it, she said it after she farted, “Fah!” After clarifying that she did indeed say fart, we couldn’t stop laughing and she wouldn’t stop saying it.    Well, I guess we encouraged it because now she says it all the time!