The real reason…

So ok, one of the real reasons (besides laziness) that I haven’t updated this blog is because we are expecting our third baby!  I dropped off the planet in a lot of ways for a little while.  We are very excited to welcome another little girl into our family in January.  (Yes, apparently we only do girls in our family!)  Katie and Rachel are so excited–they can’t wait to have a new baby sister.  Rachel tells me almost every day that she wants her new baby sister now.

And in other news, I am now the parent of a kindergarten daughter.  Where has the time gone?

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She started school on her birthday, so it was a big day for us.  She requested gogurts for her “healthy snack” at school.  (Her school doesn’t allow treats for birthdays, but you can bring something healthy.)  So Rachel and I got to see her at school on her first day.  Then, we had a party that night with her grandparents.  And, as soon as the grandparents left, she dissolved into tears.  “It’s my party and I can cry if I want to.”  But who can blame her with a first day of school and a birthday?  Too much fun.  In fact, that’s what she did say, “I had too much fun today!”

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Is this thing on?

Hello world. Seriously, has it really been almost four months since I last posted? Why, yes, yes it has. And to think that there are still people out there checking this thing. Especially since I have not been checking it.

Well, I’ll see what I can do to add more posts in the next little while. But, no promises.

“Katie, I can make you happy!”

Well, people, I’m still here.  I haven’t died or otherwise become incapacitated.  I just get distracted easily.  And the weather was really nice so we started to spend a lot of time outside.  We also had to celebrate a brand new three year old and a brand new however old my mother is.  And I got excited about sewing again.  And then I got excited to read again.  And so here we are, a month and a half later.  We’re all healthy and happy.  So for now, to see if I can’t get back into the swing of blogging (don’t get your hopes up!), here’s a little Rachel story.

Whenever Katie gets sad, Rachel will run up to her and say, “Katie, I can make you happy!” and then make this face at her:

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Three Most Important Tasks Today

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For the last little while, I have been trying something new with Katie.  Each day, I have her tell me the three most important things she wants to do during the day.  I also write down three and if Rachel is there and seems to care, I have her tell me three things she wants to do as well.

This has been working well for both Katie and I.  I tend to focus too much on myself and what I need to get done.  I forget that Katie and Rachel have desires of things that they would like to accomplish as well.  And by limiting the “to-do” list to only three things, makes it feel manageable during one day.  We can usually get through Katie’s and my combined six items.  (If Rachel participates, her three things usually copy Katies.)

Katie’s list today:
1.  color
2.  play Wii
3.  help Mommy with pictures

Rachel’s list today:
1.  color
2.  go to Grandma’s store
3.  color my picture that I printed

M-A-M

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My mother-in-law has been meeting with Katie 2-3 times a week for the past few months.  She volunteered to teach Katie how to read using a program she taught in elementary schools when she was in college.

Part of this particular program involves using letters, on individual index cards, to form nonsense words.  This way, the child doesn’t memorize the words and instead works on sounding out the letters.

At first, Katie struggled trying to blend the sounds together.  Sometimes she got the wrong sounds and sometimes she just had trouble putting them together,  “nnn-aaa-fff, fan.”  So Grandma would correct her and help her with the blending, “nnn-aaa-fff, naf.”

While Grandma and Katie practice reading together, Rachel and I, of course, have to be right at the same table.  Sometimes Rachel reads stories, sometimes she sits on my lap, and sometimes she asks for her set of index cards with letters on them and then quizzes me what each letter is just as Grandma quizzes Katie.

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that while Katie is sounding out letters with Grandma, Rachel is, while seemingly not paying attention, picking up on quite a few new sounds and letters.  The other day, I heard her say,”mmm-aaa-mmm, mam.”  Now both her and Katie wander around the house repeating, “mmm-aaa-mmm, mam.”

I wouldn’t be surprised to see her pick up reading fairly fast seeing the introduction she has already had with Katie.

Where have I been?

Good question.  I get easily distracted sometimes.  I also decided to take a short break which stretched into two weeks.   I will be updating this blog regularly (hopefully!!) starting tomorrow.

Today I have errands to run…grocery store, Lowe’s…and then I am working on some projects.  So until tomorrow amigos…

My love for my Savior grows…

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“It will comfort us when we must wait in distress for the Savior’s promised relief that He knows, from experience, how to heal and help us. The Book of Mormon gives us the certain assurance of His power to comfort. And faith in that power will give us patience as we pray and work and wait for help. He could have known how to succor us simply by revelation, but He chose to learn by His own personal experience.”
President Henry B. Eyring

I love that part…”He chose to learn by His own personal experience.”  My respect and love and praise grows as I think of His love for me–how He chose to suffer through personal experience my daily troubles.  And how much He knows and understands what I am going through.

Parenting Tips: Positive Discipline, Part Six

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Whoo-hoo!  The last of the discipline tools!  See my last post here.

11.  Distract or Change Direction.  This one is fairly obvious and works especially well for little ones.  If your 18-month-old is getting into something that you don’t want him to get into, try distracting him with a different toy, song, or game.  Most likely, they will become engrossed in whatever it is that you are doing with them.  It also works well with older children.  Do you have two boys that wrestle all the time?  You can change their direction by asking one of them to come help you right as the mood swings from having fun to anger.  It is harder to stop the action, tell them to knock it off, and then ask one of them to come help you than it is to just grab one of them (usually the one on top of the wrestling match) and make up a job as you drag him away.  🙂

12.  Ask questions.  This is the one that I am working on the most at the moment.  Ask the child questions about how the feel the situation went (good or bad).  He will learn more as he does most of the talking because he has to do the thinking.  “What happened?”  “How does it make you feel?”  “How does the other child feel?”  He will feel like you have more respect for him than if you lecture.  And if you can question well, you can effectively walk him through your lecture without having to give it!   And everyone feels so much better!

13.  Role playing.  Children do not always know what to say when faced with a given situation.  Young children fighting over a doll may not know how to ask nicely.  So you model it for them.  “Rachel, say, May I please have a turn with the doll?”  Older children might not know how to respond in a situation where a friend wants them to cheat on a test.  Have them role play situations in a safe situation like Family Home Evening.  And using third person makes it “safe.”   “Susie and Jonny sat in desks across the aisle from each other during History.  During a test one day, Jonny, whispering, asked Susie to tell him the answer to question four.”   You could also role play with them right before they go to sleep as you tuck them in.

Rachel’s sweet and sour

img_1087-blogRachel’s sweet and sour tonight was:

“My sweet is that Daddy has to go to a meeting.
My sour is that my Mommy stayed home all day.”

Well, we both made it into Rachel’s sweet and sour today.  I laughed hard…and then the song that came into my mind was:

“I’m so glad that Daddy has to go
Glad as I can be…”

Happy Easter!

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Rachel’s thinking “What kind of a silly hat are you wearing?”

Highlights of our Easter:

  • Easter baskets–the bunny brought candy and scooters for each of the girls
  • Dinner with my parents, grandma, sister, and her kids
  • Finding out some interesting information from my grandma that I did not know before*
  • Church–listening to beautiful songs, lessons, talks, and testimonies of my Savior

*My grandma served a mission in the Western States mission before she married my grandpa.  I asked her how many sisters were in her mission at the time (assuming there probably weren’t many) and she surprised me by saying there were 10-12.  That was more than I had anticipated.  Then she surprised me again by saying there weren’t any elders.  WHAT!?!? I said.  She told me that the Church was not calling elders at the time–World War II was going on.  So the men were tied up with the war or the draft.  However, as she was transferring from Denver to New Mexico, the Church sent the first group of elders to their mission. For a while, all of the missionaries met together for dinners and meetings.  And part of that group was a handsome young man that would later become my grandfather.  They saw each other a few times before Grandpa left for Nebraska and Grandma left for New Mexico, but really met and became acquainted later at a mission reunion in Salt Lake.