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Sunday, September 20, 2009


This morning we attempted to go to church for Sunday school, which we had not done in a looong time. So far, it seems that Julia' s morning nap has been right in the middle of when we need to be there, so we've used that as our excuse. Really, it's just hard getting ourselves and two kids dressed appropriately and out the door--so hard sometimes that I wonder if it's even worth it. And, then there's the issue that the kids are in daycare all week, and I often don't feel like putting them back in childcare on the weekends. I want my time with them and our time as a family.

BUT, I also want them to know God and to grow up in the church, so we are going to work on overcoming these excuses and at least make it to Sunday school most weeks. Our church has also started a "Parenting 101" Sunday school class, which I'm really interested in. It's only for parents with young children, and we're going to cover parenting and family topics from a Christian perspective, so I'm excited and hopeful that it will be motivating.

ANYWAY, all of this is to say that we were explaining to Will that we were going to church today and he would go to his Sunday school class. Here's the conversation he and I had on the way home from picking up breakfast. Clearly, I am quite inept when it comes to discussing theology with my three-year-old:

"So Will, when we get home, we're going to have to hurry so that Mama can get dressed for church, and you'll need to get dressed too."

"But Mama, you're already dressed! And I am dressed!"

"Yes, but when we go to church we wear nicer things. Like your fancy shoes (he calls his dress shoes his "fancy shoes")."

"Why Mama, why do we have to wear our fancy clothes?"

"Well, because church is where we celebrate God and we want to be respectful, so we wear our nice clothes."

"So, we don't wear our...(pauses, clearly trying to think of the opposite of "fancy")...not fancy clothes to church?"

"No, we wear our nice clothes to church."

"Mama, where is God? Is he at the church?"

"Um, well, God, in the sky."

"He's in the sky? Does he fly??"

"Well, no, I don't think that God flies. He's not really in the sky...God is everywhere...he's all around us."

"God can fly?!?"

Thankfully, at this point, something else distracted him, and he moved on to a new topic. But, I feel so inadequate to answer all of these questions. It's hard for me as an adult to understand the abstract concept of God, but it's particularly difficult to try to explain that concept within the concrete views of a preschooler. I'm going to have to think on it--I know these things will keep coming up, especially here at Question Central.

It's All Over

This weekend, Julia learned how to use her stroller push toy and walk around the house. Walking unassisted can't be far behind.

She's also learned how to blow kisses.

Clearly, we are screwed.

Friday, September 11, 2009

One Year Old!

Dear Julia,
This week you turned one year old! I can't believe it--I thought time flew by with your brother, but the first year of your life has gone at lightening speed, and I'm not optimistic that things are going to slow down any time soon. Lately, it seems that you are doing new things each day, and I can barely keep up! You haven't learned to walk yet, but you love to pull up on things, and you've even started standing by yourself (without holding on) for several seconds at a time. Part of me can't wait for you to walk, and part of me feels that we should just keep you the way you are! I'm not sure which is easier...

You're such a funny baby, and I definitely haven't totally figured you out yet (and I'm not sure I ever will). In some ways, you're very affectionate, like when you throw your arms around me for a big hug or cuddle before bed, or the way you light up when you see your precious baby doll. But, you also have a "I can take care of myself" side, which I'm guessing comes from being the second child and being around your brother. You stand your ground with him, and as you get bigger, I'm sure you will get even more feisty. The other day at school, another little girl apparently kept bothering you and taking your toys. Well, the teachers said you'd finally had enough, and so you crawled over to her, got up on your knees, and pulled her down to the ground by her skirt. That should take care of that!

You're a pretty good eater, although you're not as into solids as Will was at this age. That's probably more our fault than yours, though, because I just can't believe that you're actually ready for "big girl" food. But, you do have six teeth to use for chomping, so I should probably give you more credit! You mostly eat baby food, but you like some real food like watermelon, strawberries, puffs (debatable as to whether that's real food), crackers, and yogurt. You also LOVE ice cream and cake, as we discovered on your birthday. And, you're still really interested in the bottle, and not very interested in a sippy cup or switching to real milk. I think we've got our work cut out for us on that transition, although you have been voluntarily cutting back on the number of bottles you want to take each day, so maybe it will be easier than I think. Regardless, you're certainly not hurting in the food department. When we went to the doctor the other day, you were 22.5 pounds (75th percentile) and 30.5 inches (90th percentile). Clearly you are healthy and growing well, and we are SO thankful for that.

You are talking a good bit, and it seems to increase each day. You know several words like Mama, Dada, uh-oh (first word), bye-bye (you like to add a wave with this one so we really know what you're saying), ball, and some variation on 'baby'. You also use inflection to indicate 'thank-you,' and you love to play a game where you give us an object, we say thank you and give it back, and then YOU say thank you. HOURS of fun, I tell you. You love to play, and you're usually quite independent. You'll crawl around and get into whatever toys and trouble that you can find, and you often don't mind if anyone else is along for the ride. You like books, too, especially ones that are 'lift the flap.' However, I certainly feel that I need to be better about reading to you more.

You're so busy during the day that I would think you would be an excellent sleeper, but it's not your strong suit. You're actually not bad--just not as good as your brother was, which is what I came to expect as the norm. You are a consistently early riser, but you've gotten to the point where you are sleeping from 7 PM until 5:30 AM on most nights. You seem to be teething again (this time I think it's your molars), so that has been disrupting you lately. With each new milestone, I keep holding out hope that you will sleep longer at night...i.e., "Maybe crawling will really wear her out and she'll sleep past 5:30!" or "I bet once she starts walking she'll sleep longer!" So far, no luck on that front, but I keep hoping. However, you are typically a really good napper, and it's not unusual for you to take two, two-hour naps a day on the weekends. At daycare, you typically only get one nap because there's just TOO much going on and you don't want to miss anything. But, you will usually nap for several hours at a time, which is something Will NEVER did.

I feel a little bit bad always comparing you to your brother, but he's my frame of reference. I thought that the way he did things was the way ALL babies did things (even though I knew that this wasn't really true), but you have shown me that you have your own way, your own preferences, and your own opinions. I have LOVED getting to know you over this past year--even during the frustrating moments--and I can't wait to watch you grow. I love you so much, my little girl.