Monday, August 28, 2017

Hutch Marshall - 3 1/2

This kid has me constantly laughing. And also sometimes pulling my hair out. He loved his second semester of school, his last at Starbright. His teacher, Ms. Carolyn, will always have a special place in his heart. He learned more about letters and has done so well as we've worked on identifying and writing at home. He can write his name, although his mama may be the only one who can tell what it says. 

Hutch is pretty excited to go to Warm World next week for preschool. He's thrilled to be going to sister's school, though I don't think he quite understands that he's not going to class with her, or with any of her former teachers! I know he's going to do great, but I expect a little uncertainty at first. 

He loved the beach house, his favorite place on earth, and every day since has asked me when we're going back. He also constantly asks when we're going back to Silver Dollar City, where we went for Fall Break last year. We haven't told him yet that we're going to Disney this fall ... and I think we'd better wait till right before we're headed to the airport. He loves going new places, and he also loved our short trip to the Gaylord-Texan last weekend. We were very impressed that he was willing to venture away from us, with sister, and even go down some of the big water slides. He loved sister's birthday and birthday party and is also constantly asking me when his birthday and party will be, even though he can recite the date himself.

Hutch did a great job in swim lessons this summer. He started the summer totally unsure in the water and unwilling to take off his life jacket to swim with me. Now he's swimming all over the pool without a flotation device. He passed four levels this summer, learning to swim-float-swim and several survival skills. He passed his survival test and I saw his confidence in himself in general grow so much. It was a great experience for him.

Though I'm feeling pretty emotional about all my babies starting school, this one, from toddlerhood into preschool, feels like the biggest step. I'm so proud of the big boy Hutch is growing into!

Weight:  34 pounds

New things:
  • This boy can say any and everything correctly, but my two favorite phrases of his currently are "Wash Car" instead of car wash and "for really???" I'm not correcting either.
  • Getting fish, in lieu of a cat
  • No more booster seat at the kitchen table
  • Doing chores like setting the table, opening and closing blinds and feeding the dog
  • Unbuckling his car seat by himself
  • Singing lots of songs that are on the radio 
  • Asking Jesus in to his heart during nighttime prayers. This mama heart about burst with joy
  • Another surgery for ear tubes this spring. Hoping this set will get us through and be the last ones we have to do. We've been considering having tonsils removed because of his snoring, but for now just waiting to see
  • Hutch started soccer in the spring, and although he didn't seem to be crazy about it, he stayed pretty engaged in practices and games. He's not willing to put forth all that much effort, but he'll stick with it for the snacks. He also played t-ball this summer with friends and that seemed to be more his speed. He liked fielding the ball and was a great hitter, when he made contact :) He asked to play soccer again this fall, so we'll see how it goes!

  • Music class and music camp this summer. 
  • Going to restaurants. And the movies - he loved going to see Cars 3 this summer
  • Playing outside, preferably on a riding toy
  • Getting snow cones
  • Going on a date with mommy. We recently went to the bookstore, out to eat and then to get ice cream. He told me he'd keep going on dates with me even when he was grown, as long as I'd keep paying
  • Going to Sprouts, especially if it involves getting a cookie
  • Pineapple, kiwi and watermelon
  • Asking for "special treats"
  • Swimming. 
  • Peeing anywhere, like on the soccer field last week at sister's practice 
  • Watching American Ninja Warrior and AGT. Movies are his second loves
  • Addie is still his No 1 love and he wants to be where she is at all times. They love playing make believe together, especially with random boxes made into all sorts of fun things.
  • He loves being read to and sung to at bedtime still, which melts my heart. Although maybe he's just stalling when he asks for "one more song," I'll take it!
  • Wrestling with Daddy
    • Not getting a special treat
    • Being away from sister

    Addison Mae - 6

    I can't believe this girl just turned 6. It seems like just yesterday I had a brand new baby girl, and here she is reading, getting her ears pierced and acting like a grown up. 

    Addie absolutely loved her year in Kites, with the highlight being her Spring Sing performance in April. She and her friend Wyatt sang I Got You Babe in their 70s attire, and she also had performances in Firework and Any Man of Mine. She was a superstar - so brave and confident even though she was very nervous. She loved doing another musical this summer at church, where she had a small speaking part and again rocked it.

    This girl is SO fun to watch on the soccer field and basketball court. Moving to all-girls for both sports has restored so much of her confidence, and she even scored a couple goals in basketball this summer. She's a star on her team, understanding team work and defense. She also scored a couple goals in soccer in the spring and has just started fall soccer practices. She will also start back to piano lessons again this week - we were so impressed with everything she learned last spring. 

    Five teeth lost in all, including those two front teeth that I hope never grow in. She picked out "big girl" glasses this summer and got her hair cut much shorter in a long stacked bob. She is reading so well and writing "by sound," which impresses me so much. We've done a lot of crafting this summer and also had some fun science related activities and read several biographies about people like MLK, Maria Tallchief and Amelia Earhart. 

    Addie loved the beach - I think she loves it as much or more than I do. She loved our beach house, riding the waves (despite a nurse shark siting) over and over, collecting shells and building sand castles. We went on an awesome boat ride/tour, where we got to see dolphins, including babies, in their native habitats, and she and Grammie even got to jump in the ocean to swim near them. Definitely an experience she will always remember. She also loved our quick trip to Texas last weekend to stay at the Gaylord-Texan. Nevermind the water park, eating at restaurants every meal, amazing hotel, aquarium, etc. - I think her favorite part was getting to lay in bed and watch TV! Another first for her this summer was getting to be a flower girl in Great Uncle Jerry's wedding to our longtime friend Ruth. Although we miss Aunt Jeanne every day, we're so happy for Jerry and Ruth - I was amazed that Addie was able to articulate those exact sentiments to me. She's such an empathetic girl.

    She starts kindergarten next week, her last year at Warm World. She's elated to have lots of friends in her class and she already loves her two teachers. I think she's most excited about the garden her class gets to plant and tend together. We've been watching her music teacher's daughter, Darci, on America's Got Talent, and Addie's been practicing her ventriloquism in the mirror. She's convinced she's going to try out next season. 

    My girl has had a challenging last week as a friend of her passed away after an illness. It's been a painful time for all of us as we remember him and work together as a family to find ways to honor him. She is anticipating feeling sad as she returns to school without him this year. I'm so blessed by her kind spirit, her willingness to talk about all her feelings with me and her faith in the midst of really hard times. 

    Weight: 42 pounds
    Length: 45 inches

     New things:
    • Scoring her first basket in a basketball game
    • Getting fish. Our compromise for the girl, and her brother, who want a cat
    • Learning lots of new strokes at swim lessons this summer. She can do freestyle, back stroke and side stroke
    • Sounding out words more and more in reading and spelling
    • Writing her own thank you notes this year - with almost no help from me
    • Getting her ears pierced. She was pretty scared and said she'd feel better if someone else was getting them pierced too ... so I also got two new holes that day
    • Getting her hair cut short
    • Playing her new piano
    • Her new desk, her only request for her birthday. She loves having all her art supplies in her room and playing at her desk during "rest time"
    • Spending her own money on any and everything. And then being sad she spent it
    • Picking out clothes/shopping for clothes
    • Playing outside. Swimming, which she has totally mastered.
    • Watching caterpillars change into butterflies and then release them
    • Making her own snacks
    • Watching AGT, American Ninja Warrior or anything on the Food Network
    • Crafting
    • Making up games, building forts or doing anything to exercise her imagination
    • Sleepovers with brother
    • Reading to Weston
    • Watching movies, with Trolls and Moana as top choices right now
    • Snowcones and ice cream
    • Eating outside
    • Fireworks - she LOVED the fourth
    • She's a perfectionist. She doesn't like when things don't come easily or she doesn't do things up to her own standards. New and unfamiliar situations often stress her out
    • Having to stay in her room for rest time. She often tells me she doesn't want to nap (which is fine) but then I'll find her asleep
    • Doing her chores

    Weston James - 20 months

    This baby boy is on the move constantly, y'all! He is getting so big and turning into a true toddler before my eyes. His words and sentences are so impressive. He loves to snuggle his mama and daddy best. He loves to watch morning TV with brother and sister, though he can't sit still nearly as long as they can. He's constantly asking me, or Addie, for "book" or "more book." 

    His swim lessons ended much better than they began with much less crying and protesting and some pretty impressive survival, floating and swimming skills. His teacher would say "hummmm" to prompt him to hold his breath, and now he loves to shout it in the pool - he also loves to say "kick kick kick" and "scoop scoop" while swimming and will even "jump" off the steps to us and (sort of) swim to us. 

    Baby boy has officially given up the paci (actually he was forced). He starts school in about a week and mama wanted to be able to send him with no paci. Though he screamed at the beginning of his first few naps/sleeps without it, it's gone relatively well. Of course, it also means his naps and sleeps have been shorter because he can't soothe himself as easily, but he's getting the hang of it. 

    We had a week-long stand off about this boys eating habits, which had begun to consist only of cheese, grapes and carbs. And any and all snack foods. Thankfully he's back to eating all the foods he once loved and then all of a sudden decided he didn't. Toddlerhood can be rough.

    Weight: 25 lbs
    Length: 28.75 inches

    New things:
    • The words are so impressive! Newest words are snow cone, popsicle, ice cream (notice a theme??), tractor, frog, watermelon, raspberry, happy day (for happy birthday), balloons
    • He loves to identify all babies in person or photos
    • He loves to yell NO a whole lot, or no no no no no no
    • This boy LOVES to talk, and he can say pretty much anything, including thank you, please, I love you, squirrel, flower ... and the names of all his immediate family, though Grammie is called "Nana" and GDaddy is DaDaDa. Grammie and Pawpaw's new puppy, Pete, has even graduated from being called "Lola" to his own name.
    • He's been very into colors, and although he pretty much calls everything "blue," he can also say yellow, orange, red and green. We're working on it
    • Second canine on top with the bottom two not far behind
    • Though he likes to be with Addie and Hutch, he's also often content playing by himself, sometimes near them but sometimes totally on his own. This boy is independent, though he definitely misses them when one or both aren't here

    • Reading books. He loves to back up into our laps and ask for "mo book"
    • Getting teeth brushed. He announces "teeth" when it's time
    • Telling us when he poops
    • Tags on his blankets and lovies
    • Blueberries and raspberries
    • Swimming - he'll ask me, mama pool?
    • Snowcones (no-cone)
    • Playing car-car at the library (a wheel that turns)
    • Vacuums 
    • Attempting to eat dog food and treats
    • Saying mmmmmmm while eating anything delicious - usually dessert
    • Watching our butterflies hatch and then release them
    • Going to music camp this summer, although the puppets on farm day were highly questionable
    • Giving "huggies" as he calls them. And kisses. Although he likes to deny them, ask us to cry and then he'll give them. Those sweet hugs, or when I ask him to hold me, involve arms all the way wrapped tight around my neck. It's the very best
    • Playing in sister's room, especially turning the light on her new desk on and off, playing her new piano and playing Barbies. Also pulling all the books off her shelves
    • Shoes

    • Riding in the cart at the store. He prefers to walk and get into everything
    • Time out or having to apologize to brother or sister
    • Eating real food