Archive for August, 2014

Celia at 3.75 years

Sunday, August 31st, 2014 by Jen

Last month, Celia turned three and three quarters, or three and three turtles she might have told you if you were here. She likes to play with words. They aren’t always perfectly clear, strangers have some trouble understanding her at times but that’s often a case of nerves, but she loves to say silly things. Her idea of fun is definitely to play all day long. She moves constantly and is not a fan of sitting still. She loves her bike and will always find a way to include some digging in her day if possible. Celia’s more of a ‘do it first, and see if Mommy notices’ kind of girl so I’ve got to keep my eye on what she’s up to frequently. She’ll often find new and interesting ways to take things apart or get filthy.

Celia spends most of her days playing with Josie and Ewan. This summer she took a sports class at the YMCA where she got to try out lots of different sports (football, basketball, t-ball, soccer, kickball…) and her favorite she say was t-ball. She loved her class and was super excited every week to try something new. When she’s playing with Josie she likes to play pretend, often time the game is now ‘big sister, little sister’ and Celia likes to pretend to be the big sister. A big change from a few months ago where she was always insisting on being the baby.

Celia’s favorite foods continue to be fruit and fats. She loves tomatoes and cheese and will devour avocado, yogurt, berries and pasta. She eats a lot of fruits and veggies which is always a pleasure, at times the only trouble is getting her to eat food with enough calories to keep her from getting hungry too soon!

Most nights we try to do a math problem together from a website called Bedtime Math which gives multi-level problems and Celia has taken great pride in that she can answer the first two questions now from each set. She can tell greater-than and less-than and also add and subtract small numbers. She uses her fingers and sometimes needs help to set up the problem, and sometimes doesn’t. She knows her letters and is working on her handwriting and consistently can write her own name in order without prompting, although the C can still be a bit sideways! We’ve been trying to work on her concentration and focus by playing games of memory and uno together. Her favorite activity lately to choose with me in one-on-one time is to play with legos, making up vehicles and houses.

She’s a wonderfully brave girl and it’s so much fun to see her stretch and try new things. She doesn’t need encouragement for trying new things in her quest to keep up with Josie. Soon she’ll be starting preschool which she says she’s excited about, but also will miss us. I think it will give her a great opportunity to explore her own desires and approach toward life without Josie being right there all the time. She’ll also get to make some new friends her own age so she won’t have to work so hard to keep up all the time with the 6 year olds. She also enjoys climbing up the rock wall at the YMCA, even though she’s officially too young for it.

As Celia’s turned 3.75 one great development has been her ability to look back on situations and come up with ideas on how to handle them differently. She can stop herself sometimes when she’s upset and change tracks instead of her brain just being flooded and overloaded with unstoppable emotion. So we can brainstorm together on how she might handle things different next time for a new outcome.

  • Size/weight: 4T’s getting small
  • Favorite foods: cheese, tomatoes, blueberries
  • Favorite toy: whatever Ewan is trying to play with
  • Favorite book: Chrysanthemum
  • Favorite activity: digging and getting dirty
  • Sleeping: bedtime ~8; gets up about 6:30
  • New skill: ability to reflect on her prior behavior
  • Teeth: holding steady with all 20
  • Literacy: picking out some sight words in some books, we’ll start up the formal reading training in a few months

Celia at 3.75

We are family – August 2014

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014 by Jen

Two very different styles, two vacations, all this month.


on the beach

at storyland


My ball

Thursday, August 21st, 2014 by Jen

Ewan grabbing the ball

Going to the zoo, zoo, zoo, how about you, you, you?

Wednesday, August 13th, 2014 by Jen

When Ewan was born he ‘brought’ with him a family gift of a zoo membership, so that expired this July as he was born in July! The kids and I made one last trip down to the zoo together to enjoy all it had to offer. We spent the whole day there from opening till almost closing and still didn’t quite see everything! First off we learned that Ewan uses the word ‘woof’ to mean more than just dogs, because they don’t have dogs at the zoo and he said ‘woof’ for a few of them. He was also very impressed with the giraffes.

Celia, Ewan and Josie in front of a giraffe

If I could have interpreted his baby language it would be ‘wow look at THAT THING! hey look dirt down here!’ Josie and Celia love to scamper all over the climbing structures that abound. Ewan was also suitable impressed with a kangaroo that looked like it was just showing off for us, hoping back and forth super fast. Ewan tried to jump like him, not a skill he’s mastered yet.

Then they played in the dirt some more, then we fed the budgee’s. No pictures here because I was trying to keep Celia from freaking out about the birds flying down and trying to land on us. You’d think someone had shown her Hitchcock. We bought some food to feed the birds who then flew right down to my hand and ate it. I was carrying Ewan on the front at the time so he made a few grabs for a bird and a few of the birds considered landed on him to see if he had food too. Celia was too scared but Josie tried a little but didn’t like the feel of the birds nails on her. Ewan and I thought they were pretty cool. I easily had six little birds on my hand and arms at a time, so cute.

We had a picnic lunch. Celia fell (not far) out of the tree and landed on a rock on her bum, ouch. Then we headed over to the Gorillas who were very sleepy at this post-lunch-time. Ewan managed to make the big one smile, and lots of other people watching the gorillas smile as he ran around and hid from me.

And here’s a realistic picture of what really happens when I try to photograph them. Celia hides, Ewan makes faces, and Josie doesn’t stop talking.

photographers child syndrome

In this case, while it was a nice location, the photo just wasn’t worth it as they were not in the mood. Mostly they wanted to play with sticks and dirt.

Next we went to see the flamingos. Celia thought they looked thirsty I guess, and dropped her water bottle into their enclosure. Oops. And the dang thing has our name on it so the zoo people could track us down if they wanted to. Not like there are any more than five people in the world with our last name! Thankfully it didn’t actually fall into the birds, just the space around them.

We saw more birds, and more stuff that people dropped into the enclosures, sunglasses, pencils and such. Then headed back to the gorilla statue that had been monopolized by camps earlier in the day and got another mom to snap one of us.


Celia couldn’t manage to look away from the impending camp group coming toward us, we had been dodging the many groups all day as they were loud and rambunctious. Then she fell down the statue. Poor kid had a rough day.

After a nice recharging snack we went through the barnyard and finally I let them go to the massive giant expansive playground. I had been avoiding it because once they were there no way were they going to do anything else. It was so late the camps had finally cleared out though so it wasn’t super busy and I felt comfortable letting my eyes off of Celia and Josie once they promised to stay together. Ewan thought the place was fantastic and I chased him around for a while till it was time to head home or risk sitting in insane amounts of traffic. Plus Ewan hadn’t napped since the drive over, and he definitely needed to nap again. One more picture by a stroke of luck they were all looking. It was an exhausting but great final trip to the zoo for this years membership!

Chicken Ewan, Goat Celia and Josie Cat

We are family – July 2014

Tuesday, August 12th, 2014 by Jen


Josie’s first lemonade stand

Monday, August 11th, 2014 by Jen

This past weekend we finally accomplished something that Josie has been asking me to do for most of the summer, host a lemonade stand. She probably got the idea out of a book. We went for quality, fresh lemons squeezed the night before, mixed with sugar and water for a homemade sweet tart drink. The whole thing was a great way to bring up so many lessons, about business, math and customer service. We calculated how much her costs were (lemons, sugar and cups – $8.50, we spotted her the ice and non-used up items like the table and coolers), figured out how much lemonade we made and how much money she’d make depending on what she charged (50 cents a glass netted only 50 cents profit, less if there were a spill!). We settled on $1 per 12oz cup which Jordi felt was pricey, but the market seemed plenty hot enough to support that price, as did the ingredients. We made almost two gallons, enough for 18 cups and a predicted profit of $9. It was very good lemonade.

Josie's lemonade

We picked a strategic location on the bike path, thirsty people walking by. I did not want her standing in front of our house for hours making our neighbors feel guilty if they walked by and didn’t buy. It was a beautiful day and my parents came by to lend their support as well. After two mis-starts of forgetting the signs at home (one on the table and one facing each direction of the bike path) we were in business. My parents each bought a glass. At first Josie was very shy about announcing her wears. But the signs were quite effective, and most people can guess what’s going on when there’s a little girl sitting at a table selling something. (plus my awesome sign above, you’d think that a 6 year old drew it, but no, it was me) We had a very steady business of dog walkers, regular walkers and a few cyclists and the lemonade sold out in about an hour. Josie was an excellent server, asking how much ice people wanted, making change, saying thank you and successfully pouring every cup without spilling!

We prepared for the whole thing by play acting, pouring water and making change. Celia and Ewan were a bit frustrated to not be more involved. Ewan often tried to run off with the money container and rip off the sign. Celia wanted to drink the profits because she was thirsty.

In the end, Josie earned $16.25 after paying us back for the supplies, and giving her sister $1 for helping. She spent a good chunk of that money on the soundtrack to Frozen this morning. I have very bad earworms now that won’t go away when I do even insist that we turn the music off. Quite the haul when compared to her $1 a week allowance! Not sure if our math was off somewhere or if the cups just held 12 oz at the rim and that combined with the ice left less than expected in each cup, but she sold a lot more than 18 cups, more like 30. Once the lemonade got low, she decided she had earned enough and she was just going to drink the rest. We even had people show up disappointed because we didn’t get the signs down fast enough.

Overall it was a great experience with Josie learning about tips, pricing, market supply and demand, counting change, planning for errors, spills and sibling induced disasters. I foresee a cookie and lemonade stand in future years as I think Celia is ready to get in on the business soon too, she just needs to learn how to add and subtract so she can make change.

IHOP in Bourne

Sunday, August 3rd, 2014 by Jen

We just came back from the cape, and while I tried to stay in the moment a lot of the time, I also had fun pulling out the camera at other random times, like at IHOP where we stopped for lunch on the way to the house. If you want to see me, you can look in Ewan’s eye, otherwise here’s the rest of us waiting for the food.

Celia Jordi Josie Ewan