Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Long time, no post

Yes, I know I was pretty much non-existent in blogger land for 2010. I am hoping (yeah right) that a new baby will inspire me to post more soon. Oh, that's right....I never did mention being pregnant on this blog until now. LOL. I am 33 weeks pregnant with a baby boy due April 5th. The only "real" reasons I am even blogging right now is b/c I felt it was appropriate to document the "poop" follow-up (previous posts)....since it was a full 6 months that it took for Natalie to decide she would actually poop on the potty again. I kinda believe that all the changes in her life with starting pre-school might have affected her "progress" with it. Ok, I digress. The other reason I'm blogging is to procrastinate doing the ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND things that still need to be done to get ready for this baby! OMG!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

"Going Potty" Follow-Up

Well, it just kinda happened! After months and months of trying anything you can image including encouragement, brides, rewards/prizes, etc....Natalie just decided to do it on her own one day and there has been no turning back. "It" being going poop on the potty instead of her asking for a diaper to do it. "It" actually started duirng her second major illness of her life- RSV and double ear infections. She was so sick that she stayed home from preschool all week. Ryan was here with her and after lunch she went into the bathroom and pooped on her training potty. Just like that, no big production at all, completely 100% her own idea. She has continued to do it everyday since. Now a week has passed and we've encouraged her to go on the "big" potty and she is doing very well with that too! We were so surprised that this just came after months and months of her flat out refusing to even try and getting so mad and upset whenever we pushed the issue. We're very pround of her!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Big "First"

Natalie had a big "milestone" today (for some reason, I think it is funny to use the word "milestone" now that she is no longer really a baby. I never think of toddlers reaching milestones, although they do).
Natalie has been using the potty for quite a few months now and wears panties most of the time that she is awake. Just in the past couple of weeks, she has started to go to the potty completely by herself. She may be playing in her kitchen and wander off and the next thing you know she is flushing the toilet. She runs back to the bathroom and pulls down her panties and takes care of business when it comes to "tee-tee".
But "poo-poo" on the potty is a completely different story. I would say she has gone "poo-poo" on the potty less than ten times in the past six months. We had a period of weeks when we really pushed the issue and it seemed to back fire. She became constipated and would hold her poop until she was in a diaper (a swim diaper or at nap or bedtime) and even had a few accidents in her panties. She would scream and cry and fight us whenever we tried coaxing her to poop on the potty (when it was very obvious that she did need to go!). We tried all sorts of rewards and prizes but that didn't seem to faze her. I recently taught her to ask for a diaper when she knew she needed to poop and that has been working well for us.
So, imagine the surprise when she went poo-poo on the potty ALL BY HERSELF today. I was at work and Ryan was home with Natalie. She was watching a cartoon and Ryan noticed that she took her panties off and was holding herself (what all kids do when they need to go, lol) so he asked her and she said "no" due to her fascination with the TV. He told her he would pause the cartoon and she went running off towards the bathroom. Ryan followed her but when she got there she said, "No Dada, I shut door" and closed him out. He decided to give her some space and the next thing he knew she was hollering at him that she went poo-poo.
I know this may not be nearly as exciting for anyone as it is for us today but we're very thrilled and proud of her (especially considering how adamantly she refused to even attmept this as recently as last week). Our little girl is growing up so fast and right before our eyes!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Natural Beauty

I never write a blog post with my own personal opinions mainly b/c this is a "family" blog with the purpose being to give a glimpse into our world (which mostly involves raising Natalie, of course). We have some family and friends far away who don't get to see Natalie very often (if ever) so this is a way to keep them connected. (I believe I've probably mentioned this once before on here.)

But, today, for whatever bizarre reasons, I feel compelled to write an "editorial" if you will. Please don't judge my grammar or punctuation, it is horrible, I know. Maybe I'm inspired by those people who do use their blogs to express thoughts and feelings and by sharing those things, it helps others to learn & grow. Who knows....but here goes.

I really struggle with how I will teach Natalie to value natural beauty (both in herself and others and also in the world). As I was uploading pictures from our recent trip to Mexico, I found myself SOOO tempted to edit all the photos (and I don't just mean cropping out the random strangers in the background). I mean, I wanted to adjust the tint, color saturation, etc. until the photos looked perfect! I wanted the water to be just oh-so blue and then it hit me! Why? Why do I want to change it? I should value the beauty of that water and that sky and that scenery just the way it is (and the way the image was burned in my mind). Sure, it was fairly overcast and cloudy most of the days we were there, but so what? The water and coast and tropical vegetation is beautiful with or without clouds! I want the photos to represent my memories of our trip and if I edit them then it just becomes some illusion.

I feel this same "illusion" is taken to an extreme these days in our culture. Everywhere I turn, the photos I see are edited. From magazines to family blogs and everything in between. Why can't we all be happy with natural beauty? Why can't we accept things for how they are....why do we so desperately want to create a false sense of "beauty" in our society? What does this mean? What does this say about us?Our future? The hardest part for me is the pressures women have on them to be an illusion of beauty....from make-up, to dyed hair, to breast enhancements, botox, lipo, tummy tucks, and perfect skin...the list goes on & on. When is it enough?

I hope and pray that we can find a way to teach Natalie to appreciate natural beauty in all its forms and that she can also realize that most of what is revered in today's culture is truly just an illusion.

p.s.- Unedited pics of the Mexico trip coming soon! :)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Our Little Fish and Swimming Lessons

Natalie absolutely loves the water and seems to be a natural born fish. Of course, Ryan worked with her a good bit last summer at the pool so that may have something to do with it. I can still remember when she first squealed with glee about being dunked under the water. Naturally, we decided to enroll her in her first official swim class this summer. Natalie wants TOTAL independence in the water, this is not an exaggeration. She squirms when you hold her and tries her hardest to kick and move and swim on her own. One of the other Moms that we met in swim lessons told me on the last day that she had nicknamed Natalie "the jellyfish". I am totally serious!

Natalie has been in the "Tiny Tots" swimming class for the past two weeks at Auburn University. I have been taking her some and so has Ryan. It is a parent & toddler type class so we're in the water with her. The skills she learned are "airplane arms" (arms straight out to the sides) and "torpedo arms" (arms out in front with hands clasped together) and floating on her back with assistance. The other skills (that she could already do) are blowing bubbles and kicking. These are the two things she is VERY good at! During the last few classes, her teacher Megan encouraged her to put her head under the water on her own. On the last day, Natalie suddenly started doing it with a little coaxing from me! She would hold onto the edge of the pool and then lower her head under the water and blow bubbles at the same time. I was SO impressed and proud!

Sadly, I have no pictures from our swim lessons since I was always in the water with her but I have something better! Here is video of Natalie's newest skill! She put her head under the water and blew bubbles at least 20 times or more today while at the pool.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Meet the "friends"

Meet Natalie's newest friends....Thomas (Mickey), Percy (Minnie), Gordon (green M&M), and James (Abby Cadabby).

Natalie has recently become very interested in Thomas the Tank Engine & his Friends. It is a tv series as well as books and movies that features many different trains. I knew very little about it until Natalie became so interested in Thomas (which started out with playing with the trains at Books-a-Million). It is actually a very old series of books written from the 1940s to the 1970s that was then made into a tv program in Great Britian that first aired over 25 years ago. (That is your daily dose of Thomas trivia.)

Natalie's fascination with the trains has now extended into her imaginative play (which continues to amaze us) and she has renamed all of her stuffed toys and dolls to be characters from the Thomas series. We are not allowed to call the toys & dolls by their "real" names. These are her new best buds and she becomes very creative with cooking for them and taking them to the train station and all sorts of things!

Reading with her friends.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

"How Bout A Diffent One"

(*Second ever attempt at pig tails*)

For at least the past month or longer, Natalie has been requesting very specific songs at nap time and bed time. Apparently she has tired of the classic lullaby tunes we usually sing for her and now she tells us what she wants us to sing...."the mickey song", "the daddy song", "the skippyjon jones song", etc, etc.
Seriously, if there is any imaginable topic then Natalie wants us to make up a song about it and sing it to her. It is really quite cute but can be difficult at times to make up a song on the spot about a character from a book. Usually as I start to sing "Rock a bye baby" she lays her head on my shoulder and then pops back up saying "How 'bout a diffent one?" in the sweetest voice and then she makes her request.

Some other cute things that I want to remember from this time:

She has recently (this week 6/14) taken to pretending that some of her stuffed toys (mickey, minnie, and a green M&M) are actually characters from Thomas the train. She calls them by name (thomas, gordon, percy, james) and pretends that they are doing things with her like helping to clean or build block towers and then feeds them and puts them down for nap or in timeout. I wrote another post about it with a picture here.

She calls both the Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie, "Bernie" (which is also what Ryan said as a child).

She says "No" and "I can't" all the time and is constantly trying to assert her independence and test limits like a typical two year old. She tells us "I don't want eat my bekfest" and "I can't poopoo on potty".

She pretends that Goldilocks and Figaro and other characters are in our lives...."Goldilocks is in my playhouse! Oh no! Goldilocks is eating my porridge!".....and...."Figaro came in my house. Bad kitty. I spank figaro."

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

"Is everything alright?"

I just have to share this cute story and write it down here so that I can have it as a memory in future years. Ryan's parents, Bebe and Papa as Natalie calls them, were babysitting her this afternoon. Natalie was busily preparing food for them in her play kitchen area and bringing them over cups of coffee and tea, plates with pizza, and utensils and such. After awhile of "preparing" food and "serving" them, she held a play food tray in her hands and stood back, looking at them both, and announced very loudly and dramatically, "Is everything alright?".........oh my, too cute! I can just see and hear my little girl doing exactly that...she seems to have a slight flair for theatrics. LOL. :) Bebe and Papa said they were so amazed and shocked all at the same time. They also thought it was so cute it was funny if you know what I mean. They laughed really hard and then Papa decided Natalie was such a good waitress for checking on her customers that he gave her a dollar bill for a tip. Natalie proudly showed me her "tip" as she calls it when I got home. I don't think she even knows it is money (as she mostly thinks that coins are money) or a dollar bill, she just thinks it is a "tip"...haha. Where does she get this stuff from though? She is taking IT ALL in and hears any waitress/waiter at a restuarant ask us that and she also has seen a few Sesame Street segments that involve Grover working as a waiter.

p.s.- she can open the fridge on her own now, I thought she could awhile back but it was a fluke, now she for sure can open it and will do so if she is wanting something from out of there. Oh no!

(This pic is from one month ago)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

It only takes a second....

to lose a toenail! Our sweet Natalie had a small accident that didn't seem too bad but resulted in bleeding that lasted for over two hours and eventually (less than a day later) the loss of a toenail! **don't look if you're bothered by blood**

Monday, April 19, 2010