Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Weekend Zoo: Random!

Welcome to the Weekend Zoo, where we take a lighter look at life with our wild animals.

This week I thought several times about starting this post in advance and adding to it as the week went on.  But I didn't.  As you may have picked up from my last post, this hasn't been my most favoritest week ever, so it was hard to get motivated to do much of anything.  BUT today we are here to be light and fun and happy, so let's do that.

No special topic today, just a random little story about each of my three kiddos...

Roo's development is, of course, lagging behind "typical" kids his age.  On a sidenote, I still find myself thinking, "It's going so fast!  I can't believe he's already..." fill-in-the-blank.  And it really makes me realize just how fast it truly did go with my other two.  ANYWAY, sometimes one of our early intervention team members will be working and working and working on something with him (actually, they'll be encouraging ME over and over and over to be working with him on something...), and just when I start to get discouraged... it's like someone flips a switch on him and suddenly he's doing 5 new things at once.  That's what this week has been like.  He has started pushing up really tall when he's on his belly, but the funny part is, he actually does push-ups--he goes up and down and up and down, and when you smile at him, he breaks out into laughter.  I really need to try to get a video to share with you.  And he's doing a better job of sitting (using his hands for support).  And his newest trick... Last night I stood up to carry Roo to bed, and I turned to Mr. Fantastic and said, "You know, the last couple of times someone has waved to him, it really seemed like he was moving his hand on purpose, trying to wave back.  His hand didn't come up or anything, but it seemed like he was moving his fingers like he was waving."  (This is one of his current speech/language goals.)  Just then, Mr. Fantastic raised his hand and waved bye-bye to Roo, and Roo's arm instantly shot up and he waved!!!  It was only for a second, and then he put his arm down, but continued to wave with his hand.  It was so cute, and such perfect timing!  I loved it!  Ahhhh... the joy I've learned to take in the simple things.

So the other night, Monkey got to stay up later than my other kiddos.  He had taken a long nap, and I knew if I put him to bed too soon he'd lay there awake until midnight.  So he was spending some quality time with Daddy while I was trying to get the kitchen cleaned and get ready for the next morning.  We were all joking around and being silly.  (I feel the need to put that in as a disclaimer, lest you read the rest of this and think I'm raising a total brat.)  And at one point I teased the two boys about something, and Monkey says (jokingly), "Mommy, you just need to shuuuuuut up."  Immediately, Mr. Fantastic says, "No, Buddy.  We don't say that.  It's not nice."  (Meanwhile, I was glad I was out of his line of sight because I was doubled over, trying to keep from laughing.)  Then Monkey Isays, "Oh........ Mommy, you need to quiet down."  (Pause for effect.) "Which is a nice way of saying, 'shut up.'"  I nearly died from laughter that night.  ;-)

I have really enjoyed this past week with Lamb.  She got her first "real" Bible for Christmas--she has a couple of little kid Bibles that just have Bible stories in them, but this with the actual complete text, NIrV (New International Reader's Version).  And since she's a morning person and I've been getting up early with Roo, we've been getting up before anyone else, snuggling up on the couch, and reading the Bible together.  It has been a really neat experience.  I love watching her pick out what she wants to read (Any good tips on studying the Bible with a 5-year-old?  Anyone?  Anyone?), hearing her insights on the stories, and just spending one-on-one time with her.  It has been an absolute blessing on these last few days that have otherwise been hellish.

But that's actually not what I wanted to tell you about Lamb.  It's actually a completely different topic than what I wanted to talk about.  Anyway... As many of you know, kindergarten has been a slightly different experience for her than I had anticipated it would be.  I thought she would absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE it.  Instead, she likes it, but... I don't know, it's hard to describe.  But let's just say that it's been a bit more of a struggle--not academically, but emotionally--than I had expected.  On Thursday of this week, though, she came home excited.  They had done an exercise in estimating, and she loved it!  She showed me her worksheet--it had four or five objects on it, and the students had estimated how tall they thought it was (They have those plastic interlocking cubes, and they had to guess how many cubes would be as tall as the object.), and then they measured and wrote down how many cubes tall the item actually was.  Lamb immediately got a blank piece of paper and made up a worksheet for me.  She found about 10 things around the house and made me draw a picture of each item, write down my estimate, and then she measured them.  (Thanks to 2 neighbors who are elementary teachers, one of whom has a fabulous garage sale every year, we just happen to have a set of those cubes as well!)  When we were done, she asked me to make up an estimating worksheet for her to do.  It was so much fun to spend time with her and hear about something that had really stuck with her at school.  No drama, no pouting or complaining that someone had done better or said she did it wrong or anything like that.  Just fun.  And that girl is darn good at estimating, too.

So that was a little glimpse into the lives of the animals at our zoo this week.  As a sidenote, I wanted to share with you some books I am reading or planning to read soon.  For some reason, I can't figure out how to update the box on the right side of my blog with some of my favorite books, so I thought I would share them here.  By the way, if you use a link from my blog to buy a book... I do get a little somethin' somethin' from Amazon, so... if you are planning to buy a book and saw it here, could you be so kind...?  :-)

Anyway, here's my current reading list:

Yes, five books.  But I can't really claim to be actively reading them all right now.  Choosing to SEE is definitely on my nightstand--I'm about 3/4 of the way done with it, and highly recommend it.  I can't say it's the best written book ever, but the story is amazing.  It should come with a free box of tissues.  Be warned.

Play to Talk is from the seminar I went to this week, which dealt with encouraging communication in late-talking children.  While I haven't started the book yet, the seminar (which was taught by the author of the book, Dr. James MacDonald) was very worthwhile.  Based on what he shared on Thursday, I would definitely recommend this.

It's Not About Me is actually the NEXT non-fiction book on my list after Choosing to SEE, so I haven't started it yet.  I have read it before, though, and found it very interesting.  Max Lucado has a way of writing books that are very easy to read--almost to the point where they seem like they aren't very deep--but that make an impact on your heart.

I haven't even started The Poisonwood Bible yet, but it's this month's selection for our book club, and I have heard good things about it.  I hope I can get it read in two weeks, especially since book club is at my house this month, so I can't exactly skip it.  (I also hope my Christmas decorations are down by then, but that's another story.)

And yes, the classic Gone with the Wind.  Mr. Fantastic gave me this book for Christmas, as part of a package that is probably the best Christmas present ever--a girls' weekend at Tara, a re-creation of the mansion from Gone with the Wind!  I am so excited!  We're actually going next weekend, and I can't wait to have some girl time, do some shopping, and hang out at Tara.  I was there once for afternoon tea, and it was amazing!  Anyway, I've never actually read the book OR seen the movie, and Mr. Fantastic--being the fantastic guy that he is--bought me both.  As soon as I catch up on my book club reading, I'm going to read the book and then sit down with Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh for an evening.  :-)

And that's it for this week's edition of the Weekend Zoo.  I think I just heard the door to the kids' room open, so it's time for a little girl time of a different sort.  :-)


Tara said...

Little biased here, but have you ever considered homeschooling Lamb? Sounds like you'd be awesome at it, & she would thrive! Just saying'. :-)

Katy said...

Tara, I actually thought that homeschooling was the dumbest thing I'd ever heard of... until I had kids. Now I think about it regularly. But honestly, I appreciate your vote of confidence, but I think I'd be a disaster of a teacher! lol

Elisabeth said...

For reading the Bible with Lamb, I have been reading through Mark with my 4 yr old, just one section at a time. Often that is about 4-8 verses. Then we just talk about what we read and I let him ask questions if he doesn't understand it. That has seemed to fit his attention span and comprehension level, not overwhelming him with too much but keeping him excited and looking forward to reading with me.

Anyway, hope that helps.