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March 22, 2016

Busy Bunnies and Bribes

“Bribe” is probably a strong word.  But it’s no exaggeration that my little bunnies were some kind of busy on Saturday.

Saturday we had not one, but TWO Easter egg hunts!  The girls didn’t attend any official hunts until they were in preschool…but they’ve made up for that with frequency over the past couple of years.

Saturday morning we went to the egg hunt my company hosts.  It’s incredibly sweet for me…so many years before I had kiddos, I remember seeing the advertisements for the company egg hunts, thinking how sweet it would one day be to bring my kiddos there.  It took a few years…but here we are!!!

I knew there would be an Easter bunny at the party.  And to date, I have zero pictures of my girlies with The Bunny.  I’ve asked them a few times if they would be up for a picture with the mall bunny, and they’ve vehemently declined.

On Saturday morning I told them, “Mommy doesn’t have any pictures of you with the Easter bunny, and I would really like one.  Would you be willing to have your picture made?”  I reinforced that it was their decision.  At first they said no (although not quite as vehemently as in years past).  I told them I would stand beside them, and they didn’t have to touch the bunny.  I reiterated that it was their decision.  They looked at each other, and finally acquiesced.  (Cue internal squeal from Mommy!  And I didn’t even resort to a bribe!)

The girls held true to their word and took a picture with the bunny as soon as we got to the party.  They even smiled!!! 



The girls made two rounds through the obstacle course, played a couple of games, and then it was time for the magic show.  This year they again asked me to sit with them.  (They don’t seem to be big fans of clowns, either!)  I sat for a few minutes, and then told them I’d like to stand behind them.  They were OK with that (although they kept turning around to make sure I was still in sight).




Finally it was time to HUNT!  The girls were in the Big Kid group this year (ages 7-12).  Baby A scored 11 eggs, and B found 7.  They were satisfied with their treasures, and we went home soon thereafter.  (It was COLD!!!)



After a light lunch and a short rest time, we loaded up for our Mothers of Multiples Easter party.  There were two adorable crafts (although there was a little disappointment because B didn’t like how she placed her bunny ears, and A didn’t like how her handprint turned out…both were easily remedied the next day in Mommy’s craft room).  



Due to the COLD weather and threat of rain, we held our “hunt” indoors.  The girls scored far more treasures, and it was so cute to listen to them ooh and ahh over each egg they opened.




It was a full day for my little bunnies, for sure!  But fun memories – and a few heirloom pictures – were made!  I call it a great day!!!

March 17, 2016

Making the Most of the Evenings

Since the girls started to school and I started back to work, our evenings have become pretty hectic.  I do my best to get home by 5:30.  I do quick hugs (and someone usually talks to me while I am on the potty).  I change and heat up supper.  We eat, and we try to squeeze in a quick book or a game before we start our bedtime routine at 6:30.

Whew.

These past couple of nights, though, we’ve somehow managed to squeeze in a little more family fun.  And it’s been wonderful.

We’re having a magnificent taste of spring this week…sunshine, and highs in the 70’s and 80’s!!!  I’ve gotten away from work closer to 5:00, and I’ve gotten home to play outside with the girls for a few minutes.  B has chosen to ride her scooter, and A and I have played catch.  How wonderful it is to enjoy some fresh air and sunshine with my baby girls!!!  We enjoyed lots of laughs…high fives…and hugs.

On Tuesday night, in particular, we somehow had time to play outside…eat a quick supper (leftovers!)…AND play a bit before bed.  Daddy and A played a game of UNO, and B read her library book to me.  We were 10 or 15 minutes later than usual heading upstairs, but the girls were focused on accomplishing their bedtime routine, so we were still in bed by 7:00.


What an incredible difference it makes to have this extra playtime with my baby girls.  

Bring it on, Spring!!!

March 12, 2016

Super Stuff on a Saturday!

My sweet Baby A was sick last Friday, and she was nothing short of devastated that she couldn’t go to school.  Her spirits perked up, though, when we went downstairs to spend some time with the furry babies.  She covered up on the couch, and Miki and Alex immediately jumped to her rescue.  I snapped some pictures of them “taking care of her”.  That made her smile for the first time all day…and she was so excited to share the picture with her sissy when she got home from school.



The girls won ribbons in the display board contest!!!  Baby B got 2nd place (for kindergarten and 1st grade), and Baby A got 3rd place.  They were so excited!!!  And I thought it was so sweet that, from Day 1, they talked about how they would share their gift certificates ($10 and $5, respectively) at the book fair.

By Sunday, Baby A was feeling better, and Mother Nature was giving us a beautiful taste of spring.  We had discussed going to the park, but we decided to play at home instead.  The girls rode their bikes and scooters, and Mommy and Daddy broke out the Frisbee.  It was such great fun to all be doing our thing!!!



Spring soccer season kicked off this week!  I surprised the girls with that on Monday morning, and they were stoked.  How great it was to see them running around on the field!



Baby A cracked us up with an extraordinary display of manners one night.  At the table: “I’m sorry to ask this, but could I please have some more guacamole?”  And when she played a wild card in UNO, she said, “I would like some green, if possible.”  HA!!!

The girls went out to supper with Daddy on Thursday night.  It’s sometimes hard to pull details from them, but Baby B came home and proclaimed, “We had the black and blue pizza.  It was so delicious!”  Her enthusiasm cracked me up!

And some previously-shared-on-FB-quotes that I couldn’t resist including here:

One of the kitties was eyeing the table tonight at supper. B said, "He thinks he wants to be human." And then she added, "He must not understand the things an average human has to go through." Ack! I didn't realize her seven years here as a human had been so tough so as to shape her views as such. Hahaha!

Baby B came up to me as I was getting this morning. She was holding two pictures, and she said, "Mommy, can you compare and contrast these?" I did not even know what to make of that, but it sure cracked me up out of the blue. HA!

Sharing a little bit of "awwwww" that my baby girl (A) randomly gave me as I tucked her in. "I'm always proud of you, because you're the best mommy in the world." I needed that today!

So thankful for this Super Stuff!

March 6, 2016

Our First Display Boards!!!

The girls are participating in their first reading fair project.  It was not mandatory, but I encouraged them to take advantage of the opportunity to do a display board. 

For kindergarten and first grade, students had to choose a fiction book to illustrate.  The younger students could do “family projects”, with direct help from parents.  I thought it would be a fun way to show the girls the elements of a project so they would be more prepared for such an assignment one day.

I cannot begin to describe how proud I am of the girls’ hard work and perseverance over the past few weeks!!!

I encouraged the girls to think about books that have concrete elements, ones they could depict in illustrations.  Baby A chose a book from the Anna Hibiscus series she got for Christmas, and Baby B chose from one of her many animal rescue books.

First, the girls each wrote a detailed synopsis of their books.

I hadn’t read either of the books, so I took the opportunity to step back and ask some questions to help me understand the full plot.  The girls wrote answers to the questions.  Between their synopsis and the question-and-answer, we had a great start for our projects.

Next, we brainstormed elements we could illustrate on the boards.  And then we started on our art projects.  (I made good use of Pinterest to inspire some of the elements, and I was very thankful for google images for others!)

The girls worked incredibly hard over the next couple of weeks.  They were so patient with every aspect! 

As their art projects began to wrap up, they each spent time with Mommy’s computer, being very diligent to type out excerpts from their synopses. 

At long last – after a full month of work – it was time to pull everything together.

I was most heavily involved in final layout and the cutting and pasting. 

I’ll admit I didn’t budget quite enough time for this last phase of the project.  While we’d managed to balance both girls working at the same time throughout most of the project, I said it would be best if I could work one-on-one to pull everything together.  Baby A and I had a few hours together on Sunday morning, and we got her project to about 90% completion.

Baby B and I had to work several evenings to finish her project.  I’ll know this next time so we’re not putting the finishing touches on the project the night before it was due.  Whew!

The girls were mesmerized by their boards.  I glimpsed each of them just marveling at their work.  On Friday morning, Baby B just sat in front of her board, taking it all in.


I can’t wait to go to school this week and let the girls show me their boards in the library.  I’m certain they’ll be oozing with pride.


B's project elements:

- A large picture of Zoe, the main character, wearing a dress with a key on her necklace.
- The world, to show where Pip the penguin came from.
- Pip the penguin -- made from B's footprint!
- A flamingo, what Pip puzzles he may be -- made from B's handprint!
- A zebra, another of Pip's puzzlings -- made from B's handprint!
- A 3-D lagoon where Zoe and Pip go swimming.
- The penguin show -- made from B's handprint!

Baby B did ALL the painting herself!!!



Baby A's project elements:

- Pictures of the globe to show where Anna lives in Africa, and where she traveled to, Canada.
- A toy airplane (that my A was very excited about!).
- Snowflakes to illustrate Anna seeing snow for the first time.
- Hibiscus flowers to illustrate Anna's name.
- A dog cut out of a grocery sack, with buttons for his eyes and nose.
- A present and necklace to show what Anna got for Christmas.
- A popsicle stick sled and 3-D snow hills from batting.
- A bowl of (cotton ball) snow that Anna hopes to take home to her brothers in Africa.

I am one proud mama!!!

March 3, 2016

It Adds Up!

Over supper, Hubby pondered that one of his colleagues had never been to Home Café, one of our very favorite restaurants in town.  Baby A piped up, “I’ve been there a million times!”  “Maybe a million and a half,” Hubby told her, and then followed that he was teasing, as she hadn’t really been alive for a million days.

That immediately prompted the challenge from Hubby, asking the girls to calculate how many days old they are.  I was AMAZED that Baby A persevered until she figured it out!

Hubby gave her some prompts, each of which she answered herself.

There are 365 days in a year, but let’s work with a more round number, 350.  What’s 350 x 7?  My A broke it down into 300 x 7 = 2,100, and 50 x 7 = 350.  So 2,100 + 350 = 2,450.

Hubby then prompted her to add the missing 15 days per year.  What’s 15 x 7?  She almost immediately answered 105.

So 2,450 + 105?  She very quickly answered 2,555.

And your birthday was almost exactly two months ago.  How many days ago was that?  The girls both chimed in with 60 days.

So 2,555 + 60?  And my smart baby girl answered 2,615.

Wow.  Seriously, wow.

I was so amazed how she worked through the problem so methodically.  I told her in all sincerity that there are plenty of adults who wouldn’t have even tried to do that math.  They would have grabbed immediately for their calculators.

I love that we make numbers fun at our house.  And I am so grateful that our girls are {almost} always up for a lively challenge.
 
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