Sunday, March 20, 2016

The end of 2015


We've been having a wonderful December. It has been warm, mostly, except when we went to the Santa Train, but we've done that colder, too. The girls loved talking to Santa and the few things they told him they wanted for Christmas he gave them :-) They got reindeer noses that Jake hated at first but eventually loved. Catherine never put hers on. They had cocoa and made bracelets and got their faces painted with snowmen and Elsa snowflakes. It was awesome!






Jake and the girls slept in late for Christmas and we had a wonderful day. The girls cannot decide what their favorite gift was, but I think Sam's is either the Barbie townhouse or the My Little Pony stuff. Cat's is either her Frozen snow boots or the Leapster (to replace the one that Jake threw in the tub one bath night). Jake's favorite is probably what the girls are playing for, but especially the Hungry Hungry Hippos game. He loves to yell "GO!" and push the plunger and do what his big sisters do. He even wins some times, which simply tells you that there is no skill involved in this game whatsoever. 


The beach was amazing and we went in the water up to our knees and looked for shells. Can't believe that the weather was in the 70s for Christmas! The girls think that now that it is January that it will now snow. I hope it is true because they can't wait to wear those boots with their new snow pants. 


Updates on the kids, Jake first:


Jake loves his sisters so much! I think more than he loves eating, which is saying something. Jake loves to give them hugs and kisses, especially at bedtime. When he wakes up and hears them he calls to them and goes running to get started doing whatever they are doing. 


Cat had fun over break but is ready to go back to school, whether she says so or not. Sam says she's ready, she misses her friends. Cat definitely gets along better with Jake than Sam. She always shares with Jake and keeps him happy. Sam does, too. It amazes me that when one girl is off the other manages to be on and Jake is in the middle being encouraged to smile and laugh and play. Cat surprises me a lot. You think she wasn't paying attention and doesn't remember, and then all of a sudden she's got it. 


Sam will still sit with me for an hour and read a chapter book if I have the time. She loves playing pretend, rather than games like Catherine, who will sit and play Uno or Trouble for an hour or two.  Sam is still bubbly and loves to sing all the time. 


But in the end they are sisters and love each other the way that sisters do, despite their differences and because of them.


Thursday, December 31, 2015

Fall!


It has been a while and we've done a lot, so this is going to be a long post. The girls are having so much fun at gymnastics. They get to go on the big beam and do pullovers on the bars. Catherine can climb the rope like a monkey and Sam loves trampoline and her cartwheels are getting great.




We took the girls to the state fair for the first time and they had a blast! We did the big slide (mommy's favorite with her daddy way back when) and the girls rode their first roller coaster. It was a long day, especially for poor Jake, who is too small to ride just about everything except the merry go round. I had to pry his little fingers off the pole, he had so much fun and didn't want to get off. 






We went to Duke Gardens and took pictures under our favorite tree. Samantha is still our ever sunny, ever questioning, ever singing little girl. Dave and I are still in awe of how happy she is when she first wakes up, it can't be normal ;-) She loves school and has learned the "Our Father" already and how to count to 3 in Spanish and the days of the week and months of the year (sung to the tune of "Calendar Girl" of course). I think she will be class president, or mayor, or something because she hugs everyone she meets and makes them smile. She can't walk through the gym in the morning without hugging all my "big kid" students. 


Catherine loves school too, but it is completely different. She has a few close friends, most of which seem to be in Sam's class, and she knows all the things that Sam does, but she is not as quick to show it.  She has the best teacher for her though, they both love Minions! Her favorite classes are art and PE, big surprise, right? They both went to Mass with their buddies this week for the first time and did so well sitting quietly and paying attention. And when we take pictures I will only get a nice one if I take silly ones first.


Jake is starting to sleep without his paci. It is rough going and he needs some rocking with a book before he goes down, but we are making progress. Speaking of progress, he is talking with real words all the time now! Most of them are centered around food, but not all, and he's getting good a please, which makes us happy. He's like Sam in the morning, so she's not the only odd one around here. He's getting great at doing the stairs by himself and he knows way more about the iPad than he should. He loves his sisters very much and giving raspberries is his new favorite thing. As soon as you lie down he pulls up your shirt or finds your arm and it is really slobbery.








Catherine loves to help me cook and clean. We've been working our way through the Disney Princess cookbook, I have the cleanest kitchen stools in town. And there is lots of  sibling love and silliness all the time around here.


For Halloween the girls were Elsa and Minnie Mouse. They wavered back and forth and were settled on other things for weeks and then changed their mind last minute and were really happy. They had a blast at the school carnival and we also trick or treated at a few houses on our street. I need to stop taking pictures with Sam closer to the camera, the effect makes Cat look smaller than she really is.




They loved their Minion pumpkin! The other was a cat. Jake was a monkey and he was so adorable! When he walked his long tail bobbed behind him. Thanks to Uncle Mike and Aunt Alyssa for buying this for him over a year ago and realizing how awesome it would be.


Jake is really strong, strong enough to move a kitchen chair with Catherine on it, but not quite strong enough to push her in the laundry basket. It must be something about the angle, but he keeps trying.


And it finally stopped raining long enough to rake the leaves in the font yard. They are such good helpers!!





Sunday, September 20, 2015

August and September, holy cow!

Well, August flew by and suddenly we were in school, how did that happen? So, how did we finish up the summer? Well, Jake got sick with hand foot and mouth and the girls learned to stay away from him as much as possible and became excellent hand washers. 


We played in the stream until it dried up. Samantha has been really excited about school, especially recess ;-) She is mostly excited because Catherine will play with her now. I think it is because they are not in the same class all day, they get a break from each other so they enjoy each other's company when they are together. This is a main reason why I split them into 2 classrooms and I'm so excited it worked!


Catherine is so much more talkative about school now and that is the other reason why I split them up. She gets in the car and talks about her daily job what she did with her friends. Her favorite classes are art and Spanish because she gets to dance the salsa in Spanish. She now always says "hola, buenos dias" to SeƱora in the hall.


We started to teach Jake new things, like how to dance well, how to do forward rolls, and how to sing. He LOVES to sing and he loves to climb and get into everything he can. He understands almost everything you say to him, it just depends on whether or not he wants to do what you ask. Usually if you are asking him to stop doing something the answer is "uh huh" and then he cries. He cries and walks around without looking where he is going and bumps into stuff and then has a legit reason to cry. Sam used to do the same thing. He is very observational, like Cat, and wants to do everything the girls do and gets mad when he can't. We're working on talking. He is right on the cusp of a breakthrough, but currently he still only has about 10 words or so.


Cat and I, yes she wants to be called "Cat" often, dressed like twins.


We went to Ripley's aquarium in Myrtle Beach. We got to touch jelly fish and go through the shark tunnel, which was awesome because not only did Jake get to see everything as it swam overhead, but we got to see a saw nosed shark!





Then we got to walk with the shark mascot, and he ate Cat's head! OK, he was giving her a hug, but I got a great angle on it.


Our first day of school, all 3 of us in the same building!



We squeezed in a late night trip to Duke Gardens this week as the weather got cooler and we could walk around without getting sweaty. We got to feed the ducks and had them eating out of our hands. Well, not the girls, they were too scared, but Jake thought it was funny.



"We're sisters, you mess with one you mess with both of us!"