February 4, 2018
Wren turned five in November - can you believe it?!
On the morning of her birthday, she woke up to cinnamon rolls, balloons and streamers, and she got to open one present before school. Then she got ready in her birthday shirt and headband and went to school for the day. It just so happened that Rowan was flying in on Wren's birthday because we were all leaving the next day to head to Colorado for Thanksgiving, so Jon picked up Rowan at the airport and we all met up at home for dinner and cake and more presents. It was a super fun day!
Wren is 5 years old now, and I am convinced that she is the silliest, sweetest, smartest, most helpful little five year old in all the world! :)
Her favorite things right now are:
Art + Coloring + Crafts - This is still Wren's #1 favorite thing to do! She loves to color, draw, paint, cut paper and do any kind of crafting. As I type this, she's making homemade valentine cards for family and friends. She has her little table that always has crayons, pencils, scissors, paper and coloring books and when she gets quiet, it's usually because she's sat down to be creative.
Princesses + Ballerinas - She loves all things princesses and ballerinas, and she still loves to dress up as either when we are home. For Christmas, she got some ballerina leotards, tutus and ballerina shoes, so that's now a favorite outfit to dress up in. She still says she wants to be a princess when she grows up, even though we've explained that's not really a job. After we saw Disney on Ice, she said she wanted to be a princess from Disney on Ice, so we told her she'd have to learn how to ice skate. :)
Mom/Date Date Nights - Jon and I started this year taking each girl on a 1x1 date night once a month. The first month, Jon took Wren and I took Elle. Wren LOVED it. She talked about it nonstop before, and on date day, she was too excited to take a nap. Jon took her up the El Paso tramway to the top of the mountain, then out for burgers, then to an arcade. She had a blast and now she's already planning my date night with her.
Painting Nails - It's not often that I paint the girls' nails, but when I do, Wren loves it. The last time I did it, she said she felt like a mommy because her nails were painted. :)
Wearing Dresses - Wren would wear a dress everyday - even in freezing cold weather - if we let her. I have to explain in the winter that we're not going to be wearing dresses all the time. In the summer, I buy her so many dresses so she can wear one everyday.
Singing + Dancing - Wren knows the words to so many songs on the radio, and she loves to sing the songs she knows as loud as she can. She gets really into it - almost like she's acting the song out - it's hilarious to watch. We got her a karaoke machine for Christmas, so now she can sing into a microphone, which is very cute but very LOUD.
Throwing Parties - Wren loves to socialize! She loves when we have parties or when we get invited to parties. Recently, she's started throwing her own parties at home in either Elle's room or her room. She'll put on the radio (on her karaoke machine), get out her play food (hot chocolate for everyone!) and give us invitations to come. Then we go and dance like crazy people, stopping for fake food breaks.
Watching Movies/TV + Snuggling - She loves to snuggle up together on the couch to watch TV shows or movies. We don't do it often, but when we do, she loves it. Recently we watched "A Dog's Purpose" together as a family and it was the first movie that's ever made her cry - so sweet!
We love her so much - everyday more than the last! Always so happy that she is in our life and we get to watch her grow!
January 27, 2018
Elle turns three in two weeks! She's a sassy, sweet, snuggly, feisty little bunny. She simultaneously drives us crazy and cracks us up. We love watching her grow! Here's a little update on what she's loving, what she's doing and all of that...
Her "mimi" - Her mimi is still a very important part of her life. She sleeps with it, holds it in her carseat and sucks on it when she's upset. Her daycare teachers want to phase out her mimi - we just say goooood luck! ;)
Arguing - Elle LOVES to argue right now. Everything is an argument and it's really frustrating. We tell her to stop throwing the toy, she says "I not throwing it." And she'll go back and forth until we say, "Stop arguing!" Oh, those #threenagers.
The Color Pink - If you ask her what her favorite color is, she'll say pink. She always chooses the pink option if there is one, and she always wants to wear a pink bow in her hair everyday.
Music - Elle loves listening to good music in the car and she dances and sings really cute. She knows a lot of lyrics, and even if she doesn't know them, she kind of moans/hums to the songs anyway. Her favorite song is Justin Timberlake's "Can't Stop the Feeling," but she calls it "Sunshine in my Pocket."
Food - She still loves her food and will eat anytime anyone else is eating. Sometimes she eats breakfast at home and then gets to school and eats breakfast again. Every morning, she asks for cereal. She still loves apple sauce and yogurt pouches. She loves grapes, apples, bananas. She still loves scrambled eggs or boiled eggs. She doesn't eat her veggies as easily as Wren does, but she will eat them for a dessert after dinner, even if the dessert is something healthy like fruit. If you ask her where she wants to eat, she'll usually say Five Guys or Chipotle.
Her Elsa Dress - Both of the girls love dressing up, and they are in princess dresses 90% of the time that we are at home. Elle got an Elsa dress for Christmas this year, and it's her favorite. It's pretty much the only thing she dresses up in now. It had a long cape on the back of it, but it ripped off after a few days from her stepping on it. The dress has holes and gems that have fallen off, but it's still her fave! She loves to throw the sides out while she spins around and tell everyone to watch her.
Airplanes - When we first moved to El Paso, we stayed in a hotel right by the airport so we saw so many planes taking off and landing. Elle loves spotting them in the sky! If they are far away, she says it's a small one. If it's landing or taking off and still close to the ground, she says it's a BIG one. So cute!
Pooping In The Potty - We started real potty training with Elle just one week ago. She's been using the potty off and on for about a year, but we hadn't gotten serious about it. Now that her teachers want to move her up a class, they've gotten serious, so she wears undies at school all day and she's getting the hang of it slowly. She has got pooping down (crazy that she got that down before peeing), but now she loves pooping so much that every single time she sees a toilet, she wants to poop in it. Haha!! It drives me crazy! Needless to say, I'm spending a lot of time in bathroom stalls with her these days.
Snuggling - Elle is very snuggly and still loves to be held. She follows us around and says "Pick me uppppp!" She crawls in our bed every morning, climbs over me so that she's between us and snuggles in. We think her love language may be physical touch, because she loves to be held, hold hands, have her hair played with and more. She's a sweety!
Being Funny - Elle is definitely the class clown of our family, and she knows it! She loves being silly, making funny voices and doing anything that makes us laugh. She also has a great laugh and loves laughing at herself. I can't wait to see her sense of humor develop! I know she's going to be a ton of fun!
Elle used to be a very good sleeper, but she's gone through a bit of a sleep regression since we moved to El Paso. When we first moved into our new house, she was waking up 3 to 4 times a night, which was terrible, for both of us! Now she usually wakes up at least once, usually close to the morning, but still not time to get up. I take her back to bed, tuck her in, and she'll usually sleep a few more hours. We bought her an alarm clock that turns green when it's time for her to get out of bed, but she doesn't even pay attention to it - ha!
In addition to the alarm clock, we also got a humidifier for her room and an essential oil diffuser. We are pulling out all the stops for some good solid sleep! She does still take a nap everyday, and she still loves her naps. She has to have one if she's going to be happy come 5pm.
Elle is talking so much these days and knows so many words! Her voice is the cutest and I love to hear her sentences. She calls Wren "when" and she calls me and Jon "mom" and "dad" a lot, which is hilarious. If you say anything about poop or butts or even the word "body," she says "Ewww, gross! That disgusting!" Instead of peek-a-boo, she says "peep-a-boo." She sings eeny-meeny-miny-mo and says "catch you by a tiger toe." It is all the cutest!!
Elle's personality is a very fierce one. She is so silly and funny and sweet and snuggly. She is also cranky and sassy and rude and mean. She never ever listens to direction. She does what she wants when she wants to do it and how she wants to do it. She laughs easily and often. She is fearless and will try anything. Even though she doesn't always play nicely with Wren, she doesn't like time alone - she always likes to be around us. I took her on a date night with just me and her, and she kept saying how much she missed Wren and Daddy. She would sleep fantastic every night if Jon and I let her sleep in our bed, snuggled tight between us. She is determined and likes doing things by herself - she does not like asking for help! She's really fun to be around and already such a cool chick - I'm sure she'll grow up to be the life of every party. :)
I am so curious to see how her personality changes as she grows. Fingers crossed she starts listening at least a little better as she gets older. ;)
February 25, 2017
Elle's second birthday was a fun, low key day. Jon was away at WOC school, so it was just me and the girls celebrating. Wren and I baked Elle a gingerbread cake with cream cheese icing and purple sugar sprinkles the night before, and I decorated the house with purple balloons and pink/green/purple streamers. We also got her a bunch of fun balloons to tie to her chair.
When she woke up on her birthday, we had cinnamon rolls for her birthday breakfast. Then the girls went to school, and after school, we opened presents (a doll house + some peg dolls + doll furniture + some other little things), ate dinner, sang "Happy Birthday," and ate cake. :)
Photos from Elle's 1st birthday are here!
January 28, 2017
Wren turned 4 in November, and we had a super fun day celebrating her. She woke up to balloons and confetti and a birthday donut breakfast, and I made her a special shirt that said "FOUR" on it to wear to school. She even had some new, fun birthday jewelry to wear.
At school, it was Thanksgiving lunch day, so the parents were invited to eat with the kids. Jon and I got to eat with her and Elle in Wren's classroom, which was super fun - kind of like a birthday lunch!
After school, we went to dinner at her favorite restaurant, the BBQ place. Then we came home to open presents and eat her giant sprinkle cake. She wanted a pink cake with sprinkles on it - this one had so many sprinkles you couldn't even tell what color the cake was!
For her presents, she got a new baby doll and lots of baby clothes, a baby stroller, a princess dress and an electric toothbrush that plays music.
We always love celebrating our Wren bird! :)
Elle turned two this month (even though her personality is as big as a 16 year old)! ;) We are having so much fun watching her grow into the spunky, fierce little girl that she is. Here's a little update on what she's loving, what she's doing and all of that...
Toys - Elle doesn't really have too many favorite toys of her own. She basically likes to play with (ahem, steal) anything Wren is playing with. She does like her baby dolls, and she likes to get a wipe and clean them saying they "pah-eee" (potty). She likes to put them in her toy stroller and push them around the house.
Lip Balm - Elle LOVES lip balm. She asks to put it on a million times a day by humming (mmm mmm mmm) and rubbing her fingers over her lips. Then when you let her have it, she will rub it on repeatedly until you stop her (I think she would rub it on all day if you let her). Then she tends to lick it off her lips with her tongue (gross!) even when we tell her not to. (She also likes to suck on baby wipes - so go figure - girl's got some weird taste buds.)
Her "mimi" - She calls the little blanket that she sleeps with her mimi, and she loves her mimi more than anything else. We used to call it her "blankie" or blanket - then one time she went to visit my parents in Texas and came back calling it her "mimi." We were just happy she had a word for it so we knew when she wanted it. She falls asleep with it pressed against her lips, just under her nose and she makes a sucking motion with her lips against it. Wren does this same thing with her baby blanket - it's how they both fall asleep. Elle's mimi is a giant comfort to her if she's upset, so we have one everywhere - at school, in the car, and a million in the house. If she sees one in the laundry basket, she smiles lovingly at it and says "mmmiiiimmmmiiii" and holds it against her lips for a second, then sets it back down. :)
Being Held - Elle really loves to be held when you are standing up (she doesn't like it when you are sitting down). She likes you to pick her up and carry her around so she can see everything you're doing. She will walk up to you and put her arms up and say "uuuuup" to let you know she wants to be picked up, and if you sit down to hold her on your lap instead, she will say "no, uuuuup" and try to push you back to a standing position.
The Fridge - Elle loves the fridge. She loves to open it a million times a day and stare into it. She likes to get her water cup out, take a sip and put it back in. She likes to take all the condiments out that she can reach. She likes to take applesauce pouches out and ask if she can eat them all day long. Sometimes she just likes to sit in the fridge on the bottom ledge. She literally loves the fridge. (And this drives Jon and I insane. So many times we have asked if there is a child lock for refrigerators - but we've never researched it.)
Being Outside - Elle has always loved to be outside, even when she was a tiny baby. She still loves it, and she is such a daredevil. She likes to go down tall slides on her belly, she climbs up things that Wren is still to scared to climb up, and she gives me all the heart attacks. Taking her to the playground is so exhausting for me because I just follow her around waiting for her to break a limb.
Freedom - Elle is happiest when she can roam free, without being in a stroller or being held or being closely watched over. She's very independent and just wants to do her own thing without anyone interfering. For this reason, it's also the least stressful for Jon and I when she can do her own thing. We try to take her to places that are friendly for kids to run around and just let her go.
Babies - Elle really loves babies and pretty much considers anyone in a stroller to be a baby. She yells "baby!" and points at any baby we see - on TV, in books or in person.
Food - Elle has always had a big appetite. When she moved up to the toddler class in daycare, they were amazed at how much more she ate than the other kids. She is always up for eating - even if she just ate - and rarely turns down food. She is much pickier eater than Wren, though. We give them both the same foods, but Elle does not like veggies very much. For a while, the only fruit she liked was bananas, but now she will eat pretty much all fruit. She does like roasted broccoli and sweet potatoes. She doesn't really care for meat, especially ground meat (meatballs, hamburger patties, taco meat, etc), but she LOVES carbs (noodles and bread are her faves). She also really loves eggs - scrambled or boiled. If I had to pick her favorite meal, it would probably be scrampled eggs, bananas and toast. When she eats a lot, her belly gets really, really big and it looks hilarious. Sometimes I feel like it's uncomfortable because she'll walk around patting or rubbing it like a pregnant woman. She has a mild skin allergy to tomatoes or anything with tomatoes in it (pasta sauce, ketchup, chili, etc), and anywhere it touches her skin, she'll get red and blotchy and itchy and start crying. We have to wash it off with soap, put lotion on it and then it fades away. Once we realized what was causing it, we try not to give her anything with tomatoes in it anymore.
Watching in the Kitchen - Elle loves to drag her little chair into the kitchen when someone is preparing food so she can watch (aka make a mess by grabbing at everything). This is super cute, but also super annoying when you are trying to fix a meal. I try to let her do it when it's something out of the norm (like baking a birthday cake), but I don't let her do it for breakfast, lunch and dinner because it's just too much to handle. ;)
Washing her Hands - She loves any excuse to wash her hands, which basically means getting a ton of soap from the automatic soap dispenser and then immediately washing it off, then repeating until there are a lot of bubbles at the bottom of the sink to play in.
Flushing the Toilet - Elle is semi-potty training right now at school. Her school felt she was ready and wanted to start, so they let her use the potty. We are sort of doing it at home, but not whole heartedly (I'm just not ready for that challenge!). Her familiarity with the potty has created an intense love for flushing the toilet. She wants to flush it all the time - when she's used the potty, when she hasn't, when I'm using the potty, when we're at home, when we're in public, etc. In public, she and Wren usually fight over who gets to flush the potty, which leads to their hands all over the toilet and sometimes them falling on the floor of the bathroom. The whole thing gives me the heeby jeebies (GERMS!).
Elle continues to be SUCH a great sleeper. Thankfully, both of our girls have always loved their sleep. She goes to bed on her own, with her mimi, in her crib (Still! I'm not ready to give up the crib yet), and she sleeps between 10 and 12 hours a night. She rarely wakes up during the night unless she's sick. If she does wake up, she will either put herself back to sleep or we'll go in and pat her, calm her down and she falls back asleep.
She still takes 2 naps a day on the weekends - she really loves her sleep! She only gets one nap a day at school, and you can tell she's tired by the time she comes home. She goes to bed in between 7:30pm and 8:00pm everyday.
When she wakes up, she likes to lounge in her crib a bit before she'll start crying or yelling for someone to come get her, and if you go get her before she's ready to get up, it could mean bad news for the rest of the day - she'll be a super grump! It's best just to wait until she's good and ready to get out of bed.
While she is a great sleeper in her crib and her carseat, she has never slept well anywhere else. She won't fall asleep in anyone's arms or in her stroller.
The words that Elle knows right now are: Momma, Dadda, Elle, Eehn (Wren), Ro Ro (Rowan), Didi, Pa (Pops), Gigi, food, more, beh butt (belly button), toot, poop, tee tee, pah-ee (potty), school, bye bye, eat, wawa (water), hi, baby, nigh nigh (night night), seep (sleep), mimi (her blanket), up (when she wants to be held), wah (walk), hah (hot - and she also knows how to blow on her food when it's hot) - and probably more, but those are the ones that come to mind.
"No" is probably her favorite word - it was her first word - and it's the word she says most often. For a while, it was all she said, to everything. She also learned to shake her head no, and only very recently started nodding her head yes to things. She still does not say the word "yes" ever. (I'm scared for what this means for her teenage years.) ;)
As mentioned above, Elle is fiercely independent, moody, can be grumpy quite often, can be extremely sweet and loving when she's feeling it and she doesn't really listen to what Jon and I tell her. She is basically the polar opposite of Wren, which has been challenging for us - figuring out how best to parent her.
As she grows and her understanding and communication increases, things have continued to get better - which we are so happy about. She now understands why we're saying no, and she can communicate with us about what she wants or why she's upset. If I tell her no or correct her for something, she comes back at me with her pointer finger out and says "No, Momma! No!" She's a feisty little thing!
She tends to behave better when she's full and well rested, and when she's in a good mood, she is so loving, gives hugs and kisses, plays games with us, gets along with Wren and plays with her lovingly, shares, and laughs a ton. She has a really great sense of humor and a really great laugh - it's deep and kind of hoarse and bubbles out of her - it's a really great sound. You can tell by what she thinks is funny and how she acts to be funny that she's going to have a great sense of humor when she's older. It's almost a sarcastic sense of humor, if that even exists in 2 year olds.
Mixed in with the good, Elle can also be really bad - just flat out disobedient. She is not scared by threats of discipline, and sometimes completely ignores them (although she is listening more now than she used to). She can also be very mischievous - getting into trouble and giving us the side eye while she does it, then laughing about it. She doesn't like to do anything we ask - even if she's being cute and we ask her to smile for a photo or to do something again, she will not do it. We have to be tough on her a lot, which is not fun as a parent, but we hope that it pays off in the long run.
She is extremely independent - likes to do her own thing and does not want supervision. She is also a daredevil and will attempt things that kids twice her age should be doing. I'm not sure if this is a second child thing or not, but both of these traits make us scared for her teenage years.
All in all, we have always said that Elle gets sweeter every day, and she really does. The more she grows and learns, the more she can communicate and understand, the more she gets to know us and we get to know her, the better things get - which is so awesome. It's one of the reasons we love watching her grow, and we really can't wait to see the person she becomes! :)