Monday, August 29, 2016

Adjusting


Kate is doing really well with school. She loves telling us about her new friends and teaching us what she is learning! And she's already learned so much! But man kindergarten is a BIG adjustment! Not only is Kate adjusting to having to be on task 6-1/2 hours a day now but she has a homework packet, readings, and flashcards so thus we have been getting used to a new routine in the morning and after school. And poor girl is unsure about this going every day week after week! It's a big change and rocks your world!

And then poor Millie and Henry! Millie misses Kate so much! Millie has lost her playmate and she insists that we can't go places without Kate. And since we've now put Henry in his rightful crib Millie thinks she doesn't need a nap (so she does quite time) and thus is often found falling asleep in a random spot or most often in the car on the way to go pick up Kate in the afternoon. Picking Kate up at 3:10pm has proven to be quite the challenge. I've been trying to figure out Henry's afternoon nap so I do not have to keep waking him up to go pick Kate up but then he's so tired by early evening...so bottom line is we are just still figuring things out. I am hoping to start car pooling with a friend for pick up which would really help! And Henry has become less mobile and needs to be home for his naps which is tricky if we want to squeeze in some fun adventure in the morning. Oh man!

We may already be three weeks in but I guess we just need a bit more time before this new normal is comfortable and routine!

Kate was so excited to go squeeze in a playdate with her friend Lola after school one day (It's tricky finding the time to play with friends now that school is in)!
We didn't complete it but we sure had fun!

We spent a lot of time watching the Olympics (and me staying up way too late to watch it all)! But heck it doesn't happen that often, right?! Totally worth it. Kate and Millie especially loved the gymnastics and made this, complete with bars, vault, balance beam, and medals podium.


Millie cheering Kate on during Kate's routine.
Kate made a gold and silver medal aka a colored circle taped onto their shirts...I really should have gone out and bought those cute cheap little medal necklaces...next time I guess!

Gold and silver medalists
Kate working on her homework
Millie waving goodbye to big sis
Kate's school has 5 "Specials" meaning 5 special classes (Art, Media/Computers, Spanish, Music and PE). Kate gets so excited for them and she drew this picture before her first day of art. Unfortunately they did not paint that first day...she was disappointed.
Look at this happy guy!

Saturday fun at a new park.
This park had the coolest zip line. Kate finally got enough courage to enjoy it too. Tim and I loved going on it too!
More evidence of a sleepy Millie
After I called my childhood friend Ashley (who lives in Utah) for her birthday she surprised us by sending pizza to our house for dinner! It was so nice to catch up with her...With Kate going back to school, Millie having lots of potty accidents and just the craziness of life I guess I sounded a bit overwhelmed. Ashley thought I could use a little break. Her thoughtful gesture brought me to tears.
Kate made this letter for Henry at church. Notice her holding Henry :)
Kate wearing her cool school spirit shirt!
Talking to Hen-Hen
Fun at Tot Town...Millie wishes she could go to school too!

Poor girl

We were SO thrilled that our dear friend Dave from our Iowa days had to come to Phoenix for some kind of board review class. The Shaha's were some of our best friends from Iowa. We loved having Dave over but just wished Wendy and the kids could have come too (but darn it they had to stay back in Maryland)!

I watched a friends kids during the day one day for a few hours...Millie was in heaven having a older sister like figure at home to play with!
Friday night we went to the Back to School Bash at Kate's school. Kate and Millie loved the free snowcones!

Cleaning the church on Saturday morning!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Henry- 5 months




This picture sums up Henry so perfectly right now...so happy, on his tummy, drool running down and bright eye! Henry turned 5 months old last week!

Here's the update:
  • We finally moved Henry into his crib in his own room- Monday August 15th! About time huh?! We moved the girls into the crib at 3 months but this time around Millie was still napping in the crib everyday and I wanted her to keep napping. So we kept Henry in his bassinet in our room. But since Kate is now away at school all day I figured Millie could now nap/have quiet time in her (and Kate's) room. It is so fun to have Henry in his room. It's been all set up and ready for him since before he was born but was just missing him! But unfortunately Millie has yet to take a nap (except she's so tired she always falls asleep when I go pick up Kate, ahh!). Hopefully the novelty of quiet time will wear off and she'll fall asleep occasionally. 
  • Henry is starting to go to bed earlier. He was at an 8pm bedtime and up around 7-7:30am for the last several months. But he's inching his way up to an earlier bedtime which will be nice that I won't have to juggle feeding him and trying to get the girls to bed by myself. He's still wakes up at 5am to eat most of the time. He goes through phases of sleeping all the way through the night but is hanging on to this 5am feeding a little longer the last few weeks. Heck I know I shouldn't complain, he is a great sleeper!
  • In the last few weeks he's turned into a total tummy sleeper (just like me)! And insists on it!
  • And has to have his left arm out of his swaddle to sleep.
  • Grabbing everything!
  • Rolling all the time! And has even started scooting a bit on our slippery floors.
  • Drooling all the time! The little tooth still hasn't poked up but probably will any time now...although I've been saying that for several weeks now. 
  • Wearing size 2 diapers and 3-6 months clothes.
  • Favorite book is "Baby Peek-A-Boo."
  • Loves to giggle, loves to be smothered in kisses.
  • Loves his Sophie Giraffe and rattle.
  • Henry's never LOVED his pacifier. He's take it a lot of the time but isn't crazy about it. He loves sucking on his hands but I've recently caught him sucking his thumb a bit. I guess my kids no matter what I do are determined to suck their fingers. Crazy!
  • I love hearing Kate sing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game " to him. Which she does often!
  • Whenever Millie walks in to find Henry on his tummy she yells to me to come see "his trick!"
So blessed to have this sweet boy be apart of our family! We love him so much and are so thankful for the joy he brings to our home!



The girls love hanging out with Hen






Here's his room...









Monday, August 15, 2016

Kindergarten Kate


Somehow my baby Kate is old enough and started kindergarten on Tuesday, August 9, 2016! I've been a mix of emotions all summer long! It's such an exciting milestone but it's also a huge step...one that I haven't been so sure I'm ready to make. 

We spent the summer checking activities off our summer bucket list and soaking up every minute together. I tried to savor our time together! Kindergarten is full-day here in Phoenix. I was so bummed to hear that there was no option for half-day. Most people tell me how great it will be to have her in full-day but I'm just going to miss her (Millie too). She starts at 8:45am and goes till 3:10pm. That is a big change from her preschool schedule 3 times a week for 2-1/2 hours. 

Kate was very excited ("and a little nervous") to start and we were thrilled to learn that she would be in the same class as two boys from her preschool class!  She is in Ms. Storcz (pronounced Stores) class!
We enjoyed going to "Meet the Teacher" night just the three of us! 
Finding her backpack hook
Her new classroom
A little treat from Mrs. Storcz
First Day of School Breakfast per Kate's request...french toast and blueberries!







Kate was really excited for her first day! The kindergarteners have their own playground. The first 2 days they let the parents in to help their kid know where to line up etc. etc. Kate enjoyed a little bit of play time before the bell rang and then happily got in line and followed her teacher into school. I couldn't help but cry a bunch as we parted ways. Why is this so hard?! We really missed her but for the first two days they got out at 1pm to help them ease in. I was so anxious to pick her up and hear all about her day! 

Kate said that everything was different. I assume she meant different from preschool and different than she was expecting. She said it was sort of fun. And she also told me that her bracelet didn't work. Kate had picked out a charm bracelet at the American Girl Doll Store and I told her whenever she missed me to look at it and think about me and how much I love her. It was super sweet to see her look down at it as she waiting in line to go into her classroom in the morning :) But apparently she said it didn't work when I picked her up...although she did insist wearing it every day since. Kate also right away was sad that they wanted her to only capitalize the first letter in her name and do the rest lowercase. Oh man!

This kindergarten starting school thing is tricky. The next few days were ultimately really good. I shred several tears but it wasn't until Thursday that Kate cried at drop off. Trying to maneuver the play ground is hard. Kate walked right through the gates and said good bye but after standing by the swings for a few minutes no one got off and Kate got sad. Fortunately after some tears and hugs she was really brave and followed Mrs. Storcz inside. It's so hard not to worry... Kate shared some exciting things throughout the week but also fears and said she didn't want to go back too. However Kate's teacher assures me she's was doing great! Tim also went and met Kate for lunch on Thursday and said it was reassuring to see how awesome the staff is and how great Kate really does do. 

It's just a big adjustment and all of us will continue to get more and more used to this new normal. We survived our first week!  A few highlights... Kate is so happy to get to sit next to Lincoln (a friend from preschool last year), she got the highest level "principled"on their classroom discipline behavior chart on day 3 (they start at "balanced," if they act inappropriately the get moved down but if they are really good they can move up to "principled," Kate was so proud and she really likes her computer/media Specials teacher Mr. Eckstrom.  I was really encouraged to hear Kate say she was sad she didn't get to go on Saturday! And then today after dreading how drop off would go today I am so pleased that Kate was so brave and after wanting to just wait by us until the bell rang she walked right in! I can't believe how much she's grown in 1 week! 

It's going to be a fabulous year with a lot of growth for all of us! 
On the kindergarten playground waiting for the bell to ring
How is she big enough for this?!

Our next door neighbor Olivia (unfortunately they are not in the same class)
Kate shower Olivia her Wellie Wisher charm bracelet that she wears to remember me while she's away at school.

Holding hands waiting for the teeter totter

Lots and lots of kids...Kate here waiting patiently in her class line
Love that little wave
First Day Complete
Day 2 complete...with buddy Hudson (Notice how Millie always wants in on the pictures?)
Some quality time playing together and acting silly
Thursday Tim went and met Kate for lunch