Monday, September 14, 2009

Crying at School

Some kids dread switching to a new class or school and cry when they are dropped off for the first time. Raina has never done that (for which we're quite grateful) and she's always been happy to try her new teachers and classes. Fortunately / Unfortunately for us, she loves school so much that she cries each day when it's time to go (even though she stays a full hour later than school lets out each day). She always begs to stay just a little longer, and then gets upset when I say no.

I wonder how long her extreme affection towards school will last.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Daily Snapshot

Each Whompton child receives a daily report -- essentially a summary of food consumed, hours slept, and injuries withstood. Raina's MICDS report is much more interesting: it has a picture of her in action and a caption to describe something she did that day. For instance, Raina has
- gone on a circle hunt
- made pancakes
- pretended she was going to college
- looked at her classmates and teachers' hands and talked about how many different shades of brown they are.

The daily pictures are fantastic -- the circle hunt and classmates' hands pictures are especially joyous -- and they provide a wonderful insight into Raina's life at school.

Our Little Gamer

Raina took a pad of paper and some markers last night and happily occupied herself for an hour. She returned to show me a series of portraits she had drawn: two semi-matching sketches each of her family members, including herself. In all, she drew 10 pictures and then she declared it time to play "Memory." Yes, Raina made her very own Whompton Memory Game. It's tremendously cute and we stored it with the other memory games for posterity and frequent play.

Familial Sacrifice

What is sacrificed when adding a child to the family? Free time? Sleep? Showering within three hours of exercising? We figured we'd exchange these things for a little bundle of joy, but it was expected and therefore okay. However, it was all the unintended things we sacrificed that we miss the most.

When I was pregnant with Lola, cheese and ice cream made me exceedingly nauseous -- in fact, it was how we determined I was pregnant in the first place. Now, it's easy for one person to avoid ice cream and everyone else still enjoy it, so that was only a hardship for me. Eliminating cheese from the diet was much harder. Eric, Samantha, and Raina could eat blocks of cheese, but I refused to cook them anything I couldn't eat myself, so an entire repertiore of food was lost for 9 months. No lasagna or pizza or casseroles: essentially, we crossed out Italian, Mexican, and Southern foods for the pregnancy's duration. We all rejoiced when Lola was born and I could eat cheese again. We had missed it tremendously.

I exclusively breastfed Lola for a long time and we determined that she had an extreme aversion to garlic. If I ate the tiniest amount of garlic, she'd cry and have horrible gas pains and an irritated bottom. It took us quite a while to pinpoint garlic as the culprit, so she suffered for a while. Now, unfortunately, the adults are suffering because I cannot make anything with garlic. And ALL good recipes start with "saute some garlic in olive oil." We anxiously await the day that I officially stop nursing Lola and we re-introduce garlic to our lives.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Raina started school!

Raina counted down the days until she started her new school, MICDS. She was nervous about meeting her new teacher and making new friends, and her shyness was evident at New Student Orientation. Raina seemed incredibly grateful to see her summer buddy, and she liked meeting the other girls.

But we were all hesitant on Raina's first day. Raina prepared her first day outfit, certain to fit the dress code, and unhappily agreed to attend school 1.5 hours early because both Samantha and I had teacher meetings.

She received her "Yay for the First Day of School!" gift and headed off for a great day.

Raina reported "Mrs. Moulton is nice -- she's not mean at all!" and "They had chocolate milk! And cheetos for snack!" The food won Raina over, of course, and she has settled into a happy routine ever since. In fact, she is always upset when I pick her up from school (a full hour later than when school ends) because she wants to stay and play with her friends. And she routinely wants to do phonix and letter work, to learn more Spanish vocabulary, to do circle hunts, and tell stories about her day. Wonderful!

Raina coloring and doodling.

I say "Cheese!" and this is what we get.

Playing at the piano and singing her own songs.

And doodling on her hands and arms. Luckily, this activity lasted only one afternoon.

Lola's exploits

Lola, with her four teeth, has discovered the wide world of food: adult people food, the food that no one lets her have. She desperately wanted the bag of chips (everyone else got them, right?) and kept grabbing and removing it from her parents' hands. However, she's been significantly unimpressed when we give her healthy adult food, like applesauce, butternut squash, and last night's mashed potatoes. She literally cried when we put some in her mouth. I wonder how she would have reacted to a french fry instead.
Lola is now a semi-master of sitting, and she is quite happy to be plunked down with an array of toys. We frequently leave her just like that when we get ready in the morning, and she plays for the 1.5 hours it takes.
Check out the cute kimono outfit. She's almost too big for it now, so we have her wear it semi-constantly until its official retirement.
Lola spends a lot of her time chewing on things as well. She prefers a human body part (shoulder, arm, leg, belly, neck, hand) but will settle for toys.
I think she looks possessed in this picture.
Lola's favorite thing to do is bathe. She has learned the word "bath" and she immediately starts kicking frantically and excitedly when she hears it. And she's almost uncontrollable when she hears the tub faucet starts. She splashes continuously in the tub, and four towels are needed to protect the floor from her onslaught.
We keep trying the jumper when Raina takes a bath, but Lola much prefers watching the bath instead. (Like I said, she loves the bathtub.) So we may start her in the jumper, but she always ends up standing next to the tub and laughing hysterically at Raina.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Lola photos and the City Museum

Cute pictures of the kid ...

And photos of Raina and her MICDS JK buddy, as they traverse the City Museum ...