Thursday, October 9, 2014

Happy First Birthday Junebug

My baby is 1.  She has the biggest brown eyes, dark hair that is starting to curl, and the best chubby cheeks!  She's full fledged toddler already--my other two children weren't even walking until 14 months and this monkey is 100% walking and into everything since 11 months.  I honestly don't have a lot of memories of the other two kids at the same age, but Johnny and I find ourselves saying all the time "I don't think Hank and Lucy were quite as busy and into everything".  She is so motivated to keep up with her big siblings, and is so proud as she toddles as fast as she can behind them giggling hysterically and stopping to rip things off the wall and shelves as she sees fit.  She has a strut to her walk now, as she charges across the playground towards the biggest slide or climbing structure. She walks up to any and all kids and babbles some nonsense at them, not scared of anything.  Don't tell Junie that she can't do something-in fact saying "no" combined with a head shake is one of her few words.  Her favorite places to hang out are under the kitchen sink, around electrical outlets, medicine cabinets, toilets, on stairs, and generally anywhere hazardous to her health and safety.  

While she's pretty advanced from a motor perspective, I'm pretty sure she's not as chatty as the other two--her few favorite words are "nana (banana)", "shoe", "no", and "MOM".  She rarely says mama, it is always a loud, assertive 'MOM!'  Clearly the girl knows she's the 3rd child and if she wants something she's going to have to be loud about it.  Her more typical communication these days is a whole lot of pointing and grunting (typically at the fridge).  Girl loves to eat-anything and everything.  She cleans her plate, and then hovers around everyone else's looking for handouts-again don't tell her she can't have any.  

Overall, June is such a happy go-lucky little girl.  She's super snuggly and loves to cuddle with mama over anyone else (this I am so thankful for in my last baby).  She's full of love and giggles--and loves to give hugs and kisses to anyone willing to accept them.  Her brother adores her, her sister wants nothing to do with her her--we'll see how that works itself out over time.   There is nonstop fighting in the house-and June is certainly getting pretty scrappy about it all.  I find her pulling Lucy's ponytail and clawing at her face in response to Lucy stealing toys etc. Most days it feels like the Lord of the Flies in the house.  I tend to stay out of it unless there is bloodshed (we like to avoid the ER whenever possible), hopeful that they learn to sort out differences sooner rather than later--may the odds be ever in your favor my dear children.

I adore this little girl, and her spunky,wild personality so unlike anyone else in the family.   I look forward to seeing her personality continue to grow as I think it's going to be a big one.  I also suspect this little one is going to give us a run for our money over the next 20 years or so-but as with all of my children I see great things for their futures!   

We celebrated with a fantastic water/duck themed party and bbq in the backyard with lots of friends, family, and cake (we never pass up opportunities for parties in this house!).  

1 year stats (she's another biggun-already shares clothes with her sister):
Height: 30.75 inches 95th %
Weight: 21 lbs 70th%
Head: 18.9 in 99th%

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Put your car on cruise and lay back because its summertime

We love summertime around here...well the kids and I do, Johnny longs for the short, dark days of winter for some strange reason.  Since we finished our renovation in the weeks before summer, we decided to kick back and not work on the house for the summer.  We had two awesome weeks at the beach-one week in the Outer Banks and one in Tybee Island (awesome once the car rides were over).  We generally spent lots of time at the pool, in the sprinkler,  at the zoo, baseball games, swimming lessons, having hot dog parties in the yard, setting off fireworks, staying up late, playing with friends everyday, berry picking etc, etc, etc....

While fun was had by all, there was plenty of sibling fighting going on daily and the lack of any structure or routine really starts to wear on everyone by the time August rolls around.  So really the best way to highlight our summer is with a little photo montage of the summer...As sad as I am to see it go, I am looking forward to fall, football, and a little less humidity....

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Recap Series Vol. 3-School's Out for Summer and Back in for Fall

Hank had a great year at school-In May he finished up his 4 year old preschool year at Grant Park Cooperative Preschool with Ms. Ellie and Ms. Kellie.  After a difficult start to his school career the year before in a school that just wasn't a fit for our very bright and stimulation seeking boy, this school was the perfect fit for him.  He was allowed to be very creative in small groups and work through project based learning-working on larger projects for longer periods of time.  He has made amazing friendships this year, and we've really seen him blossom socially (aka all he wants to do is play with friends now).  They have a farm to school program at the school where the children make the lunch everyday from the local farms (yes we have farms in the city)-Hank, our notoriously picky eater, has found a love for lentils, quinoa, and all sorts of funky legumes-this is probably the biggest achievement of the year in my eyes.  Hank
had such a great year in fact, that after much deliberation we decided not to send him to the public preK next year and let him stay and complete his prek year at the Co-op.  Hank has an early birthday, and many of his friends are starting kindergarten,  and while he's technically not a "redshirt" because of his birthday we hope that keeping him in the same school will help build his confidence for kindergarten next year.  

So, being real I'm actually writing this post  after his first week back to school, and so far so good!  He's really enjoying being a "second year swan" and the leadership roles he gets in the class-he's also won the award for biggest swan as he is a good 3-4 inches taller than the next tallest kid in the class (still wondering where his size came from).  He has two new teachers this year-Ms. Stephanie and Ms. Christa.  

In other school news, our sweet little Lucy is very interested in going to school, and being in the ladybugs class. We originally held her out because tuition and parent requirements for two kids enrolled were both higher than we'd like, and honestly she just didn't seem ready to go 3 months ago.  However, we're now changing our tune, and if she gets potty trained we plan to enroll her midyear right before she turns 3.  What in the world will I do with myself with two kids in school?  Lucy, who is nothing like her brother and sometimes I wonder how exactly these two children raised in the same house could possibly be so different, is really a preschool teacher's dream.  She dances through the house everyday singing nursery rhymes, organizes crayons according to everyone's favorite colors,  and lines her dolls up in "circle time" to read stories-I'm pretty sure she's going to think the ladybugs class is the greatest place on earth.  

I look at these pictures of Hank, and hardly recognize him.  While most people look at him and see a boy the same size as an average 8 year old, I still see the 10 month old that I spent countless hours rocking back to sleep at night. Only a few months, and he will be 5-which means I've been a parent for 5 years (and while it does "go by so fast" as everyone says-I feel every second of those 5 years and it sure shows on my face in the form of wrinkles, bags under my eyes, and maybe a few grey hairs). 

 This boy is one very bright little boy, and I hope more than anything for him that he has a wonderful year full of friendship, new experiences, and lentils!    

Here's to preK!

Recap Series Vol. 2-Easter

Easter is a funny thing in our house-Hank doesn't understand why the easter bunny is just a man dressed in a bunny suit and not a real rabbit, and Lucy is always brought to tears that the easter bunny is not an actual rabbit that she can feed grass to like the ones in the neighbors yard.  Anyways, we always have an egg hunt in the park that is a huge hit, and I make my kids dress in their "easter finery" for about an hour and take some pictures (they can thank me later that I don't make them wear smocking, bonnets, and knee socks).

Thursday, August 28, 2014

The spring re-cap series vol. 1

In an effort to document my children's lives since I can hardly remember anything anymore I must resort to these re-cap posts that detail months of their lives.  They'll thank me someday, right?  I'll attempt to hit the high points of our past few months over the next few posts....

Over spring break we headed north for our first full family trip to the Smokey Mountains with the grandparents.  We had a nice cabin (complete with hot tub which was likely Hank's favorite feature of the trip) and spent a few days exploring one of our favorite places with the kids.  I mean traveling with kids is a lot of things-mostly totally exhausting and completely opposite of a vacation, often requiring days upon returning home to recover, BUT I do think our kids travel pretty well and honestly it is easier now that there are so many of them.  It could be that after 5 years of parenting we have just mellowed and lowered our expectations to rock bottom or it could be that we're just getting better at it-I'll go with that.  Either way, as long as the crew is all together they seem to adapt pretty well and enjoy the change of scenery.  Hank found his love for historic grist mills, Lucy enjoyed the abundance of streams to throw rocks into, and June, as usual, just enjoys being along for the ride.  Lots of waterfalls (Lucy's favorite), hikes, wildflowers, and even a horsedrawn wagon ride...The kids still ask me all the time when we can go back to the Smoky Mountain.