Harper finally has enough hair to braid! It only took 5 1/2 years, but she grew it! Yaya braided my hair nearly every day until I was in middle school, so this is a big deal for us
Last weekend we moved Ada onto the bottom bunk and set up the crib in the baby’s room. It was no big deal for her to transition to her “big girl bed” and she has been doing great in it. One reason, I suspect, is that she has finally become attached to a “lovey,” and as long as she has that with her, she’s a happy camper.
Harper and Roman both had “mimi’s” that they became attached to very early on. Roman still sleeps with his two mimi’s every night and I honestly don’t think he could fall asleep without them. Harper has outgrown them to some extent, but still wants them somewhere in the bed with her.
Ada has a room full of beautiful loveys that she was given as a baby – some have her name embroidered on them and are just so darn adorable. So, what has she become attached to? A sheet saver. That’s right, a dirty, stained, glorified drool cloth. She drags it around everywhere like Linus and his blanket. I cannot tell you how many people stop me in the grocery store, at the pool, at the playground to ask “what exactly is that thing?” She has it cuddled up with her at all times, often laying it down on the floor of a restaurant or wherever we have to be and lying her head on it for a cuddle. It just doesn’t look like a normal blankie since it has ties coming off of every corner! But hey, it brings her immense joy and comfort and keeps her happy in her bed, so roll with it.
Frequently heard in our house right now are cries of panic: “uh oh, my night night!” when she drops it or forgets where she put it. Correction, she never forgets where it is, but she will suddenly realize that it isn’t tucked under her arm and cry out “uh oh, my night night!” and rush off to retrieve it from it’s last known location.
I recently ordered a sprinkler ball on Amazon for some added (and cheap – these things are less than $15) backyard fun. I won’t exaggerate and say that it’s the best water toy ever, but it has been fun. My only complaint is that they get bored with it quickly – it’s fun for 15-20 minutes, then they move onto something else.
A few days ago they stripped down to undies to run in it. I made them wear boots because I had just put chemicals on the lawn and was worried about them running around in all that nitrogen! So far their favorite thing to do with the ball is attempt to cover every spout at once, then count to three, release and run away as quickly as possible!
I’m about a month overdue on this! Harper graduated from preschool right before Memorial Day. Her preschool had the sweetest graduation ceremony in the amphitheater at Burke Lake Park, followed by a picnic with all of the “Shining Stars” graduates and their families. The graduates sang songs for us and received their diplomas. I cried, Portman cried, and Yaya made fun of us. Our favorite songs were “God Bless America” and “So Long It’s Been Good to Know You,” which is what brought on the tears! She had such a wonderful 3 years of preschool and it was hard for us to say goodbye. But, we’re not really saying goodbye since Roman and Ada will be there again next year. We’ll have another round of goodbyes when Roman graduates in just one year!
The younger siblings romped on the stage before graduation. There were a dozen or so future graduates up there – so cute!
We’ve had a long, hot week in Northern VA, and I’ve found myself being a lazy mom and just letting the kiddos have too much screen time. Yesterday I made a list of activities that I’ve been wanting to try, and homemade “Gak” was at the top of the list. We whipped it up during Ada’s nap, and it ended up being a ton of fun for all three of them (Ada woke up during the “experimenting” portion of the activity).
We followed a basic recipe I found online using glue and borax. First I had the kids empty roughly 8oz of glue into a big mixing bowl. We had three partially-full 4 oz bottles, so we just emptied all three into the bowl. Then we filled two of them with hot water, shook them up and mixed the water into the glue. We added orange food coloring at their request since they were both “wearing their UVA.”
Next we mixed about a teaspoon of borax in warm water, then slowly added a little of it to the glue mixture. It didn’t take much to make the glue clump together in big strands – it almost instantly became a big gooey ball. The kids used their hands to kneed it together, then we took it out on the deck so that they could “experiment with it” (their idea, not mine!)
Their experiments were: what happens when you put it in the water table, what happens when you put ice on it, and what happens when you put it in the dirt. The answer to all three was pretty much “it gets gross.” They also had fun doing “races” by putting pieces of it on the arms of a chair and seeing which piece stretched to the floor first. It was super hot out, which made it very pliable and it stretched fast! We also made “skin” for Roman and Ada, bounced it, and the big kids set up a “Gak Store” where they sold Gak. All in all, it was a really fun activity for them. They asked about it first thing this morning, and luckily I had saved the remnants in a zip-loc for round 2!
Over the weekend Harper had dress rehearsal for her dance recital. This year her class is performing a “jazzy tap” version of the Hokey Pokey (sung by Little Richard). The dance is fast-paced and adorable, and the kids all have so much fun on stage! I volunteered for the rehearsal this year, so I got to take some photos of her class. Four of the 8 kids were in her class last year, so they have really gotten to know each other well and have a lot of fun together. Harper cannot get enough of the stage and was driving me nuts all day leading up to the rehearsal. She was so excited! I’m just glad she has found something that she loves so much.
Part of the dance appeal for Harper is getting all dolled up for the recitals. She loves the hair, makeup and fancy costumes! I never thought I would say this, but I understand how people can get into pageants – I might not be into “fancy,” but Harper sure is!
We were out running some errands last Friday, and unbeknownst to me, Harper shared a large tin of princess lip gloss with Ada in the back seat! Ada wasted no time in applying it. Turns out cheap petroleum-based lip gloss does not come out easily. It was a few days before her little scalp returned to its normal color!
This week marks the 30-week point in pregnancy number four. It’s so hard to believe that I’m already 3/4 of the way there, but at the same time I can’t believe I still have about 8 weeks to go! This pregnancy has been a lot harder on my body, probably because it is the fourth time around. My legs constantly hurt (not ache, hurt), I’m exhausted and I feel generally run-down. I think if the leg thing were not such an issue I would be okay, but they are in bad shape. My right leg is black and blue with bruising, and unless I’m wearing compression stockings I can hardly stand on it at all. I actually catch myself limping when I get out of bed in the morning! I welcome a screaming, nursing baby if it means I can actually walk to the mailbox without needing to elevate my legs afterwards.
This morning I had my 30-week checkup and I brought the girls with me. Ada has been to every appointment with me, but this was Harper’s first one. Ada told her exactly what would happen every step of the way: “Mama pee-pee, mama soap belly, check mama belly, wipe soap.” I thought it was so funny that she has picked up on our doctor’s office routine! Evidently she thinks that the heartbeat gel is hand sanitizer (“soap”). Harper was excited to hear the baby, and both the girls spent the majority of our time at the office coloring on pee cups. We now have two beautifully decorated “urine specimen” cups that they won’t let me throw away. Classy.
I measured a little over 30 weeks, and again the doctor commented on how active the baby is. It is constantly kicking and moving, and I can only hope that it calms down a little before joining us in the real world. Yeah, right. I’ve gained about 17 pounds so far, and as Portman likes to remind me, “mommy is getting fat.” I do feel fatter than I have with the last 3, and at this rate I might break my weight gain record. As far as food goes, I still crave lemons and tomatoes. An ideal dinner for me is tomato, basil and mozzarella salad with a big glass of lemon water. Of course, if you put a bag of Ghiradelli squares in front of me I’ll eat the whole thing, but I prefer the tomatoes. I can’t fit much in my stomach at this point, so my meals are not huge.
Portman took a belly shot on the beach last week (more on the beach later). I don’t anticipate posting any more belly photos, so enjoy this one!