Saturday, December 8, 2012

Just some cutie-pies

"The great thing about a desk is that it has a built-in footrest."

Big Girl loves to look at books.

She was studiously ignoring me.

This one wouldn't let me take her picture until I told her I wanted to take a picture of her baby.

Then I got a real smile out of her!

A happy little guy lately!

Okay, my big kids can officially be jealous, because I never did any crafty stuff with them when they were little.  Of course, there was the issue of the one daughter who had to use up every bottle of glue, glitter, and every piece of paper at one sitting...

He really loves to cut.  Not great at it yet, but tablecloths and other pieces of fabric are in danger...
Life with these chipmunks is so entertaining!  They really keep me on my toes.  They are so fun, and have so much personality, but they are still soooooo much work!  No rest for Mama!  Little Girl constantly seeks attention, while Big Girl goes off by herself to dream, and drift off into her own world the minute I turn my back. 

Little Boy is my best kid right now, and I never thought I'd say that.  He's happy most of the time.  He keeps himself very busy and entertained, always seeking out a new activity, and finding things in his environment to learn about.  Daddy noted that Little Girl knows he's coming up on taking her spot as the cutest of the three. 
"Do you think she really knows?"  I asked. 
"Oh yes!" he responded.
 "He is pretty cute these days," I agreed. 
We feel that developmentally he's really turned a corner.  He's still behind the girls, as always, but he just feels so much more present than he used to be.  He's very affectionate, and playful, and giggles a lot.  He still thinks a lot of things don't apply to him, like clearing his own dishes off the table after a meal, but he likes other chores, like taking his dirty clothes to put in the laundry.  He's still nonverbal, as well, but is spontaneously signing now.  He does make lots of sounds, mostly for emphasis, and he likes to yell-- a lot.  He also says, "mamamama-MAMAMAMAMA!!!" when he gets mad.  Read that as pitch and volume going up!  He has a sweet little talking voice, and likes to say, "buh-buh-buh-buh-buh..." in a conversational tone.  So adorable!

Little Girl is still her strong-willed self, and out to make sure she gets her share (especially of attention.)  If I tell anyone to go do something, she hops over there and does it.  I've always had issues with kids taking other people's jobs, and I've still got it!  She automatically assumes that she gets to try or do any new thing first, and usually just assumes that every new toy or item is brought here especially for her.  She is always unpleasantly surprised when it's not.  She has a signature sound, which is something like, "Aaangh!!!!"  Read this as loud, and grating.  Also, add a foot stamp to this.  It wasn't long before the other two picked this up, although by nature, they are less likely to be unpleasantly surprised. 

Little Girl also came up with the raspberry, to be sassy to her teen siblings.  It evolved into a good means of communicating certain things to the other two little ones, though.  They picked this up, as well.  So, the raspberry now means:  "I don't like you!" or "I don't like what you're doing!"  It then became necessary to find a means to respond, and a strong, "meh!" with a dismissive hand wave fit the bill quite nicely.  It means:  "I don't care if you don't like me!" or "I don't care if you don't like what I'm doing!"

So, we have a lot of conversations around here that go like this:
"Aaangh!!!" (foot stamp) "Pbbbth!!!"
"Pbbbth!!!"  "Meh!" (hand wave)
"Meh!" (mutual hand wave, then grabs whatever is at issue)

Little Boy likes to tease us big people by waving his hand at us, and saying, "meh!" while wearing an impish grin that says, "I don't really mean it, you know!"

I think Big Girl is very bored right now.  I am wracking my brain to keep her occupied.  She has always had issues with a little bit of stimming.  Not surprising, considering six years in an orphanage, but for a while she seemed so excited about the big new world, and willing to learn whatever we threw at her.  Lately, she doesn't want to try the games and toys, and just wants to hold them in her hand and flip them back and forth.  She seems to be advancing, as she can do all of our puzzles now, and knows most of her colors most of the time.  I can't get her to write or color, though, and obviously that's needed to perform schoolwork.  She sings the alphabet over and over, and looks at the letters, but doesn't want any corrections, and doesn't want to try to trace them.  She would be happy if I just let her watch educational videos all day long.  She doesn't like any other kind of videos, and would even just watch the same one, and be happy if I never changed it.  Little Girl would never stand for that, though, and won't watch one a second time.  So, my answer to this has been the same as for Little Boy when he wanted only to play with toys that had push button lights and sounds, and he would do nothing else.  I ended up taking them all away.  So now no one is watching educational videos, even though I would like a break now and then, and the other two love them as well.  I'm working with her to increase her skills to do some jobs around the house, since most people feel needed and useful when they work, but it's a long-term solution.  Any ideas for right now?

Lest I end on a depressing note, tonight after I read a book to the girls, I looked over to see that Big Girl was animatedly reading the book to Little Girl, who was then reading it to her baby doll. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Thanksgiving Star

Okay, without meaning to, I heavily weighted the pictures from our Thanksgiving get-together in favor of Baby Boy. Sorry! No, I'm not. He's too adorable to hide under a bushel, right? We must let this star shine, and shine brightly. You're only 5 months old once, right? Of course, 6 months old might have just as many photogenic opportunities...
This was the only picture that I ended up with that included L.  Big Girl finds coloring boring, and these two were trying to inspire her.  Thanks anyway, guys!

Yes, I find him delicious, too.

I love his expression!  You know he thinks he's all that!

His hair doesn't look that red in real life, but in pictures it sure does!

Whatever one mommy did with her baby, another mommy had to do it with her baby.

It looks like he's crabby about being held by Big Girl, and maybe he is, but he was crabby anyway...

There's lots of baby-love around here these days!