Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Speedy Summer

It is flying by. It's not over, but with Everett starting kindergarten (!) in mid-August, the summer days are winding down quickly. Balance is a theme in so many of these posts, and this one is no different.

Hiking at Uvas Canyon - July 4, 2021

Everett's Best Tricks

This kid... he is growing up. He can read, he can write, he loves art and science, he mimics Olympic athletes and is (over) confident in his abilities. As he will tell you, he has run races before and is very fast. He even beat Mason Q. one time. (gasp!)

This is 5-and-a-half - July 7, 2021

He "watches" Adelaide when we ask him to, he (sometimes) helps in the kitchen with his very own knife, and he is getting much better at taking a breath when emotions run high. When we remind him that he is an example for his sisters, he almost always shapes up right then and there.

Everett's Challenges

Listening and emotional regulation. These aren't unusual challenges for kids his age. We are trying very hard to be patient with the listening, to give him a chance to respond, and to make sure he can actually hear us through the craziness. It is hard on all of us sometimes. The later in the day it gets, the more manic he is and the harder it is to get him to respond to his name. We've talked with him a few times about how it makes us sad and disappointed when he ignores us, and that does seem to be helping.

Making some patriotic art - July 4, 2021

This boy feels BIG. His frown when he is about to cry is emoji-sized and heart wrenching. What makes him cry? Some big things - like realizing he is almost at his last day with his JrK teacher. Some tiny things - like a country he wasn't cheering for won a gold medal or a paper ripped. It is tricky to balance emotional support with letting things get *too* blown out of proportion. When to hug and say, "I'm here for you," versus when to say, "hey, it's OK - we have another paper we can use." When to do both and sit with him for 20 minutes while he cries his eyes out over a cheap plastic toy he hasn't played with in at least six months breaking.

Imogen's Best Tricks

Her commitment to pretend play is unreal. Everett did pretend to be Bolt for months at about this age, and Imogen is following closely in his footsteps. Currently, being Elsa is the winner. Mommy is Anna, Daddy is Kristoff, and Everett is usually the Water Nokk. Adelaide is a snowgie - one of the tiny snowmen from the story "Frozen Fever." Everyone has a role, every time. She sings, she invents plotlines, she dresses the part, she... refuses to answer to her own name.

Swimming! - July 3, 2021

She is (usually) gentle with Adelaide and can be incredibly sweet... when she wants to be. Which brings us to...

Imogen's Challenges

Threenager is in full swing. We've mostly moved through hitting and biting to scratching and spitting during full-on, drawn-out melt-downs. Luckily, she reserves this physical lashing out for her parents and hasn't attacked her friends or teachers. Fingers crossed that holds up. Time outs and alone time work in the moment, but early intervention when she starts to spiral is the most successful. When we hear her start to whine / scream / cry, one of us tries to get there quickly to understand and deescalate. We have said "use your words" more times than we could ever count. 

The mythical unicorn at play - July 3, 2021

Three is harder emotionally than two, that's for sure. Everett was a strong-willed three-year-old, but he didn't have the manipulative tricks that Imogen pulls out. I don't think Everett ever yelled at us, "you're not nice!" or "I don't like you!" Her apologies are sugary sweet, but she claims to not remember what she's even apologizing for. Often seconds after we'd discussed it. She'll get there, but it's tricky right now.

Adelaide's Best Tricks

Rolling tummy to back, rolling back to tummy, HUGE SMILES, raspberries, cooing (that sometimes sounds something very close to "Everett"), sleeping through the night... so many amazing tricks. She's at such a fun age, and still pretty immobile so it's pretty easy!

All smiles - July 21, 2021

Adelaide's Challenges

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In truth, she spits up, she poops, she cries consistently during her witching our every night during bigger beasties' bedtime, but these are super small things in the grand scheme of things.

July Firsts

First flight since the pandemic started - and first time with five travelers!

Back at the airport - July 10, 2021

First time Adelaide meets Uncle Matt, Auntie Christa, Auntie Megan, Grace, and Natalie!

Fussing over Adelaide - July 10, 2021