Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Waiting for the rain

With summer in full swing, Sara Beth wanted some cooler weather outside. Specifically, she wanted it to rain. So, she put on her rain coat and rain hat and waited for it to rain. She was saddened by the weather's lack of cooperation.

Heather continues to work on school projects with Sara Beth nearly every day. Sara Beth loves it, and quite often, when I walk in the door from work, Sara Beth takes me by the hand and drags me back to the play room to show off the project she had been working on that day.

Sara Beth loves the smarty candies. She found some behind the couch. By the time Heather came to investigate the crinkling wrapper noise, it was too late.

The highlight of last week for me was when Sara Beth and Heather made cookies and brought them up to me at work. Here, Sara Beth is helping to bake the cookies. This Monday, they came up and ate lunch with me. Sara Beth explored my desk and found her little toy raptor-on-a-keychain that I had commandeered for myself to fiddle with while working. She exclaimed "I have one of these too ... but I don't know where mine is." I did feel a little bad, so I explained to her that I took hers and let her take it back home.

Here are some more pictures of Sara Beth cooking, this time in her own kitchen. She is allowed to use this oven. She really mimics Heather's love for cooking. If she picks up on even half the skill of her mother, she will be an awesome cook.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

More Summertime Activities

Summer is in full swing around here. Up until two days ago, the weather has been easily reaching the 100s. These past two days, thunderstorms have rolled on through about 2am. They douse the land with some much needed moisture, but the thunder wakes Sara Beth up, which means I wake up too, loosing some much needed sleep.

The peach tree in the back yard was growing like crazy in some rather undesirable directions, so I decided it was time to trim it. Sara Beth helped, making a fort out of all the branches I hacked off the tree. She requested to have Heather's gardening gloves on her, so that her hands did not get dirty.

Sunday was Father's day. One day, last week, Heather gave some markers to Sara Beth early one morning make a father's day card while Heather quickly showered. When Heather got out of the shower, instead of a nicely decorated card , she found a nicely decorated card with marks all the way down to her belly button. Fortunately, the walls and carpet were unscathed.

Sara Beth loves to give our cats treats. Whenever she gets it in her mind, she will run to the pantry to get out the cat treats, and then feed the treats to the cats, one at a time. Catta will always try to quickly run in and grab one of the other's treat, but Sara Beth will scold her and push her away.

This summer, Heather has involved Sara Beth in several baking projects. After learning about the sights and sounds and smells of a pond, Sara Beth got to help make lily pad shaped cookies. Sara Beth helped with the icing.

Here is yet another picture of Sara Beth holding "her kitty." Honestly, I don't know why Catta puts up with all the torment, as Sara Beth chases her through the house and holds her with grips more often seen in UFC battles. Catta may not be happy about the whole ordeal, but I think, deep down, she enjoys all the attention she receives from Sara Beth. Deep down. Really deep down.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Summer Fun

This summer, Heather has put her teaching skills to full use. She found some activities at the local teacher supply store, and has laminated and prepared a full summer curriculum to keep Sara Beth engaged this summer. Sara Beth loves it and these days, when I come home from work, Sara Beth runs up to me and drags me by the hand back to the play room so she can show me what she worked on that day.

Heather also found someone to give Sara Beth swim lessons along our neighbor's girls. As an intro to swimming, one of the activities is to throw rings into the bottom of the shallow part of the pool and make Sara Beth pick them up, forcing her to go underwater to reach them with her hands. Sara Beth figured out she could pick them up with her feet.

Sara Beth loves the pool, and Heather typically has to drag her out of the pool hours after the lesson. Once they come home, Sara Beth crashes, exhausted, onto whatever float surface she can find.

All those activities require quite a bit of energy. Here, Sara Beth is trying to convince Heather that she should give Sara Beth some of her desert.

Poor Catta. Sara Beth's love for "her cat" grows by the day. We keep instructing her in the proper ways to hold a cat, but when Catta squirms to get away, sometimes things get a little more uncomfortable. But now, only one arm is around the cat's neck.

We got a new storage container for all of Sara Beth's stuffed animals. One day, Sara Beth found out that she could fit into it as well. Now she asks for us to close the lid and then as we or the cats walk by, she will pop up in an ambush.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The end of an era

We have declared Sara Beth to be fully potty trained! There are no more diapers in our house. For the past month or two, we have continued to put them on at night time, but we ran out and didn't feel we needed to get any more. Along with that, she has given up her afternoon nap. We still enforce a mandatory quiet time in her room, but she can now handle herself without a hour rest.

Recently, I applied my handyman skills and successfully cut a hole in our roof and installed a skylight. With all the natural sunlight streaming into our bathroom, the old paint revealed its age. So we repainted it a lighter shade, and, of course, Sara Beth wanted to help. She got her painting skills from her mother's side; she was a natural and actually helped with minimal amounts of mess. This is also the last picture of her in a diaper.

This past week, Sara Beth has repeated some of the same antics I did when I was her age. I decided that it would be funny to put on all the pairs of shorts that I own at the same time. On Saturday, when I got Sara Beth from quiet time, I found she had put on 12 different pairs of socks, along with a set of leg warmers for good measure. She proudly smiled for this picture.

Out of the blue, Sara Beth decided that she wanted to write a letter to "Ms. Cindy," Heather's mom. So, she colors some papers and declared that she is going to mail them and begins to walk out through the garage to put them in the mail box. Heather and I were in the middle of finishing dinner, so we stop her and explain that you cannot just put a letter in the mail; you need a stamp on it. We go back to eating and she goes back to her play room. A couple minutes later, she comes out with 8 stamps and about 12 return address labels on her paper, pilfered off my desk, and redeclares her intent to mail the pictures. Heather reclaimed the stamps, but we did praise her ingenuity. I did something very similar when I was 3 with about 200 return address labels and a moving box.

One thing I didn't do as a kid was put on a dress and 4 skirts.

Heather and I were driving in the car while Sara Beth was in the back seat. We were telling Sara Beth our food preparation for the weekend, how we were going to have hamburgers and hot dogs with chips and have some friends over. We then asked her, "Doesn't that sound good?" From the back seat we hear "Wait! You forgot drinks!" Only once we explained that we did have juice, milk, and water, did she agree that it sounded good.

Sara Beth and I are getting better at our block building skills. We can now construct a semi-durable hour for her doll: Emma Rose.