Thursday, May 22, 2014

Emily Update: Two and a Half Years Old!

Wow.  How is it even possible that our baby is already two and a half three quarters?  (That's how long I've been writing this post.)  It's hard to believe that the little baby that was just a few weeks old inside of me when we started this blog is now this truly amazing, BIG little girl. A few things about our girl for us to remember:

Faith: We've been talking about Jesus to Emily since before she was born.  She loves to read Bible stories and sing songs about/to Jesus.  This year she has also really begun praying.  She prays most nights at dinner, and it goes like this: "Dear Jesus, thank you for Mommy and Daddy, Mimi and Papa, Grandma and Grandpa, and the rest of the family who loves us, Jesus.  Thank you for Emily and Ashlynn.  Thank you for our food and bless it to our bodies and keep us in your care.  In Jesus name, Amen."  The second half of the prayer is my Dad's standard dinner prayer, which is so sweet that she picked it up from him.  She loves to say little chants and rhymes that she learns at church- "The Bible is true.  God loves me and God loves you."  "I open my bible and I see God's great plan he has for me.  He tells me how he cares for me and how he loves me too." (Or something like that.)

Language:  Emily is so stinkin' smart.  Really ever since she started talking, it was in complete sentences.  She has continued to become more and more verbal, and is truly gifted in that area.  She knows almost all of her letters and the sounds they make without me working with her at all.  She watches Super Why about once a day and just immediately picks up whatever she sees and hears.  Her ability to use proper pronouns has always been surprising and her proper usage of brand new vocabulary is impressing.  She has always spoken very clearly and is very easy to understand.  Most of her words she pronounces perfectly, with a few exceptions.  Skabetti for spaghetti, nap nap for nap mat, hostible for hospital, Chick-a-lay for Chick-fil-a, and a few other cute minor idiosyncrasies like that.

Music: Emily LOVES to sing.  As musicians, it has been a true joy for Lucas and I to watch Emily blossom in this area.  She has always loved music and singing, but it seems like she really began to love it because of the music at her pre-school chapel.  She came home singing all kinds of songs that we couldn't quite make out, so we asked her teachers about the songs and they gave us a CD.  Once we started listening to it regularly, she had memorized all of the songs and loved singing them all the time and for pretty much anyone who would listen.  She especially loves the "Shakaloo" song (Boom Shaka Laka,) the Good Morning song, and My God is So Big.  Once Christmas arrived, she became completely enamored with two songs in particular: Silent Night and Away in a Manger.  Two of the best songs to be obsessed with as far as I'm concerned. She continues to love singing and regularly sings Jesus Loves Me, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Oh Susanna, and many other traditional/folk songs.  She really likes to sing when she's on the potty.  Some of her favorite songs right now are Happy by Pharrell Williams, Oceans by Hillsong United, Ready or Not by Britt Nicole and Lecrae, and anything by TobyMac.  Her love of TobyMac is certainly retribution for me making fun of his music the last several years.  Actually, his new music is pretty decent.  I might even kind of like it. :)  And of course, she loves to sing every song from Frozen.  It's pretty sweet to hear her get about half of the words right and the other half just kind of slur together in a mess of nonsense.  It's not nonsense to her, though!

Potty:  We started potty training Emily on March 10th and she was pretty much potty trained from the minute we started.  She has had very few accidents and even stays dry at naps and nighttime.  So glad we waited awhile to tackle the potty training monster!  I had really prepared myself for the worst due to her strong-willed nature, but she surprised us all with her willingness and cooperation. 

Fun and Games: For fun, Emily loves to swing and slide on her backyard swingset, play with her dr. kit, Play-Doh, Duplo blocks, do puzzles, read books, play with balls, babydolls, dress up, or anything her sister is currently playing with.  She also enjoys going behind her kitchen and looking through the window, taking our order and making us food.  She is VERY good at pretending and we just love to hear the new thoughts, ideas, and games that come from her little mind.

Food:  Emily LOVES LOVES LOVES Chick-fil-a.  It is definitely her favorite place to go.  She likes the chicken nuggets and fruit, but also loves the playground. :)  The Tortilla Factory (Rosa's) is another favorite.  She likes to order the queso nachos and one tortilla with honey.  She also enjoys Papasitos (I think she just likes to say it,) Wendy's (much to my chagrin- thanks, Daddy!,) Taco Casa (nachos again,) and anywhere that she can order grilled cheese and french fries.  Fortunately, we only eat out about once a week, so she rarely gets the more unhealthy options.  She enjoys going to "The Ice Cream Place" (Braum's) for a treat.  Most days, her lunch consists of half a PBJ, string cheese, applesauce, and grape tomatoes with water to drink.  Breakfast is mini pancakes or waffles, blueberries, and strawberries with "white dip" (Redi-whip.)  Dinner is typically whatever we eat, or if it's something I know she doesn't like, I will give her another option.  She really enjoyed helping out in the kitchen for the first half of the year, but these days she's too busy to cook with me. :)

Sleep: Emily moved to her big girl bed right before her second birthday (so not technically this year,) and continues to do well sleeping in it.  She is just now starting to try to drop her nap, but we are still taking one most days.   When she takes one, she often lays in bed for an hour or so before falling asleep that night, but if she doesn't take one, she's grouchy and disobedient.  What to do?  Unfortunately, she still sleeps with her kitty pacifier.  We're hoping to kick that habit by three years. 

School and Friends:  Emily attended two year-old preschool this year and absolutely loved it.  She made so many new friends and really enjoyed spending each Tuesday and Thursday with them and her teachers Mrs. Erin and Mrs. Jenny.  Her favorite friends are Bailee, Cason, Presley, Brighton, and of course Ella, Eden, and David.  Now that Ashlynn is more mobile and able to play, she likes playing with her, too.

Entertainment: Like most kids, Emily LOVES to watch TV.  She would watch it (or at least have it on in the background while she plays) all day long if we would let her.  So obviously, we have to limit it quite a bit.  Her favorite shows are Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood, Super Why, and Veggie Tales, although sometimes she chooses Martha Speaks or Word World.  And of course, her favorite movie is Frozen.  She also likes Winnie the Pooh, The Little Mermaid, and Finding Nemo.  It's been fun to watch her attention span expand as she gets more interested in full-length movies.

I know there is much more to tell, but that's where we're at right now.  I've been terrible about updating on a regular basis.  Ashlynn has rocked our world!  I'm hoping to get a bit better, though, in the near future.  Three years and one year old, here we come!

Helping Mommy cook roasted broccoli

Love those sweet chipped teeth

The funky flamingo
Grimaldi's pizza dough

Peek a boo!
Soaked at the splash pad
First day of school
Zebra girl

School Halloween costume


Pure joy

Sweet kitty girl

Too cool for school

Mowing the yard   
Fire chief
Our little Trick-or-Treating butterfly

Mimi love

Having a ball with Papa

"It's a signed document!"

Gettin' clean

Sweet cousins

Donut date before school

Golf with Papa

Sweet jammie girl

The closest she would get to Santa

Christmas Eve Service

Ride 'em Cowgirl!

Lola the Puppydog

Wrapped around her finger

Infinite Joy!  A snow day!

Christmas tea party with Mommy

Driving along in her automobile

Working out the problems of the world

Reading to Sissy

First trip to the zoo

More bath time fun

BFFs: Bailee and Emily

Strike a pose

Breaking in her new slide

Sweet cousins

She's wearing panties under those pants!

My big, beautiful girl

Silly face

The right way to wear a baseball cap

Mom!  I'm ready for Jazzercise!

Loves her Mimi and Papa

The new casa

Taking Maggie's blood pressure

Rock climbing

Love to swing!

Biker babe

Texas Native

Graduated to her booster seat and gave sissy the high chair/booster

Wearing her "Elsa Dress"

On the balance beam at Evan's birthday party

Grandma and Grandpa's garden

And the livin's easy...

Look, Mom!  I made a scarf out of toilet paper!

Ready for her Easter egg hunt!

Selfies with Mommy

Do I look like Mimi?

Snuggle bunnies

On the coast of Lake Erie

So apparently I like to swing.

Last day of pre-school