“When God wants a great work done in the world or a great wrong righted, he goes about it in a very unusual way. He doesn’t stir up his earthquakes or send forth his thunderbolts. Instead, he has a helpless baby born, perhaps in a simple home and of some obscure mother. And then God puts the idea into the mother’s heart, and she puts it into the baby’s mind. And then God waits. The greatest forces in the world are not the earthquakes and the thunderbolts. The greatest forces in the world are babies.” ~ET Sullivan

Friday, March 28, 2008

Favorite Songs

Here's Leah singing the alphabet song, Twinkle Twinkle Litte Star, The Itsy Bitsy Spider, and Jesus wants me for a Sunbeam. Can you believe that a year ago, she wasn't talking at all? Contrary to the representation of Leah in all these videos, I promise she is not always wearing pajamas, although as I write this, we are both wearing pajamas.

Enjoy!

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Easter Celebration

Two cute kids in matching outfits. You can bet that if I had two little girls they would have had matching dresses, but since #2 is a boy, I had to go with a vest instead...

We celebrated Easter by having friends over for dinner after church. It was a delicious and laughter-filled event. We had marionberry pie (now on Leah's dress) and strawberry shortcake, then had an overdose of Easter candy during the Easter egg hunt. Then we finally got to see Enchanted, and it was super cute. We let Leah stay up late with us to watch the movie--she was extremely hyper and was climbing all over Dad when she fell on her face and cut her lip yet again. *sigh* Overall, it was a good day.


Here is Leah trekking down to the basement with the expectation of an Easter egg hunt. She had no idea what we were talking about but sensed our excitement and heard the mention of candy. She didn't really get the concept of "find all the eggs as fast as you can and put them in this bucket" because every time she found an egg she wanted to open it up and eat whatever was inside!

Friday, March 21, 2008

What Leah has been up to

Here are some videos of Leah doing what she does best--playing (imitating!) and helping us.

This week we've played in the sandbox, tried (desperately, but in vain) to fly a kite, discovered a "fort" underneath Samuel's crib, gotten tangled in thread while Mom sews, ran around outside with the neighbor kids, and played all of our board/party games including Scrabble, Rumikub, Clue, Jenga, and others. (When I say we "played" them, I mean we opened the box and Leah spread the peices all over the room for a few minutes). She didn't really get the concept of Twister, but has learned to match letters or pictures from the other games.

Helping out around the house:
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Playing. She's painting Woody's boot with a paintbrush (Sorry it's kind of dark):
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The "fort" or "hiding place" as she calls it. It's high enough for her to sit upright underneath and read a story or play with a secret toy.











Mermaid Leah. This is what her hair does in the tub. She's learned that if she gets messy enough at dinner she takes a bath afterward. Hmmm....How many baths does she expect to take in one day?


What Samuel has been up to

Here is a video of Samuel doing what he does best--being cute!

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This week Samuel accidentally rolled over a few times. And as for the sleep update, we've plateaued at about a 5-6 hour stretch at night. The second stretch is about 4 hours. I guess I can live with that.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Language

Leah is a very perceptive talker. I tried cataloging all her words one day to see how big her vocabulary is and had gotten to 300 words before comprehensively listing foods, vehicles, animals, clothing, or body parts among other things. Since then I know she's learned even more new words. Recent vocabulary acquisitions include "badge," "n.aked," "stack," "hide," "fort," and the verb "match."

We've also observed Leah applying the rules of grammar. For example, I've overhead the following self-talk which shows she can change tenses: "Don't drop it. I dropped it. I'll get it. I got it." She can give posession to things (Mommy's shoes, Daddy's shoes, Leah's shoes), and I've even heard her say "It's mine's." She can differentiate between a singular and a plural: take the cereal Kix (which she sometimes pretends are meatballs). When she finds a single piece by itself she says "Look, a kick!"

She can conjugate verbs. She'll say "I want to color" followed by "Leah's drawing a picture." She has an imagination to go with it and identifies for me the things that she is drawing such as an egg, a tree, a fishy, etc., but that's a story for another day. While its obviously good that she can combine words into a sentance, what does it mean if she talks about herself using the third person?

One thing she hasn't quite gotten a grasp of is pronouns, as I'm sure is the case with most toddlers at this stage. Standing at the top of the stairs she says "Me to carry you," since she's heard me ask her a million times "Do you want me to carry you?" Another thing we've noticed recently is that she always asks for "This." What do you mean "this?" I then pull out a box of cheerios and say "Is it this?" No wonder we're all confused! Everything is "this!"

She can count to ten all by herself without skipping any numbers (for awhile, she always left out four and five for some reason) and then counts 12, 14, 16. And thanks to Mary Poppins, she can even count backwards from 5. She numbers things that are in pairs, such as "two shoes," but she doesn't actually count things above two accurately--instead she just points while reciting the numbers in order.

She can do the alphabet with assistance and pieces of it in the song format, and always identifies letters anywhere and of any kind by saying "Look! ABC's!" When I ask her what color something is, she picks a color and guesses. At least she know that blue, red, purple, green, pink, and yellow are colors!

2 Month Update

Samuel had his 2-month checkup today. Here are his vitals:

Length: 23 inches, 50th percentile
Weight: 11 lbs 11oz, 50th percentile
Head: 39 cm, 25th percentile

So in 9 weeks of life, he has gained over 4 pounds which averages about 1/2 a pound a week! Leah has always been tall and skiny, so Samuel seems relatively chubby even though he is pretty average in comparison to other babies. I'll put up a picture of his fat little thighs as soon as the batteries in the camera are charged! Samuel had three shots today and has been very grumpy as a result. His cry is much more urgent and panicky sounding than usual, and he's just been crying on and off all evening--poor guy!

Other than that, he is usually a very happy baby and has been sleeping for 6 hour stretches at night. I'm happy to report that we've made it 9 weeks before his first all-over blowout in which his clothes required scrubbing and the bouncer cover needed to be removed and laundered--yes, this was today. I'm grateful for the infrequency of such events, but I guess I'm in for it.

More to come--I'll keep you posted!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Oh, the injustice!

Leah is learning that life is not fair.

Case Number 1
The other day she got a pretty big owie--tying to climb onto a bigger kid's bike, she made it topple over on top of herself and cut her lip up. At dinner a few hours later, she realized that it hurt to eat when the food came in contact with her owie in her mouth. She asked me to kiss it better. I did. A few seconds later she tried another bite, only to burst into tears because it still hurt. "Kiss it better!" she demanded again, this time through a veil of tears. I had to feel bad that we've perpetuated the myth that kisses make things better, and that all of the sudden she must learn with brutal honesty that we've been lying to her. Her world is crashing down all around her: she must deal with an owie! Her parents can't make it better! We have been dishonest with her! Oh, the pain and the cruelty! How will this affect our Superhero status?

Case Number 2
Today I offered her graham crackers as an afternoon snack. I presented her crackers in a little pink bowl and handed it to her in her booster seat. All of the sudden, she got up and indecipherably told me something very important and hurried upstairs to her bedroom. She returned with a yellow bowl, which yesterday had popcorn in it. Then she very politely presented me with the empty bowl and said "Some popcorn please." I said, "I'm sorry, we don't have any popcorn" which was the truth, but even if I did have popcorn, I would have said "not right now." She has learned that a "no" is usually followed by the words "maybe later" (even though she probably doesn't understand the concept of either maybe or later) and when I said "no" to the popcorn, she again burst into a tearful and pitiful "maybe later."

Oh, it is so hard to be two years old and 36 inches tall!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Blessing Day

Samuel was given a blessing today by his daddy during Sacrament meeting. Daddy was very proud to be able to bless our little boy. In the circle was Bishop Wilde, our good friend David Coombs, and our home teacher John Pyne.

Samuel was blessed to develop his many talents in this life, for this life is the time for men to prepare to meet our Heavenly Father. He was blessed to listen to others, for there will be many he will be able to learn from. He was blessed that through living faithfully, he would have leadership opportunities. Throughout his life, he will be preparing to serve a mission and receive the covenant of an eternal, celestial marriage. He was blessed to develop physically, socially and spiritually, and thereby be prepared to be a servant of the Lord. He was blessed to lead a balanced life, to be an example, and to be strong.

He was a very happy baby and didn't make a peep during all of Sacrament meeting!

Here is a little video of Samuel being cute and barely vocalizing a little laugh (and in dinosaur camo!). He doesn't really do much else yet. He looks a lot like his daddy did as a baby.

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