Tons to Do

Lauren seems to be so adventurous.  She routinely is spouting off things she’s like to do some day.  This week I decided to jot a few down.  It seems the Olympics have had quite an influence on her current interests.  Check out what is on LP’s mind this week:

  • Snow Board – specifically the Half Pipe
  • Bobsled
  • Ice Skate
  • Be on Wheel of Fortune
  • Visit Africa and Build a House there
  • Swim with Dolphins
  • Ride on a Real Train
  • Go to the Dessert (However, she has stipulations with this one.  We must bring our own water since there’s not much there, wear sun block to protect us from the sun, and be naked since it’s so hot.  She pretty much covered everything, I believe).
  • Be a Chef

We’d better get started if we’re going to get everything done on her list.  This is just the beginning!!


Sack Supper

I find myself alone in the house on a Tuesday evening…such a strange feeling.  Just sent Lauren and Ryan off to Sack Supper with Dad at her school – or as LP calls it, “Daddy and Daughter Dinner”.  She is super excited and for anyone who knows Ryan will not be surprised that he is not as stoked about the event.  He is thrilled to be spending the evening with Lauren but he wishes it was just him and Lauren and not an event.  He made the comment that Daddy and Daughter Dinner might become a monthly event for just the two of them.  I feel a little left out but glad for them to have this special time together.

Take a look at the sack that LP decorated all by herself.  She drew a picture of herself and Ryan throwing a ball back a forth.  An artist in the making!

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The Bad Girl

There is a girl in Lauren’s class that LP always refers to as “the bad girl”.  According to Lauren, she is the girl that always gets in trouble or put in time outs.  She is the girl that tries to boss the other kids around and is mean to everyone else.  And it seems she is the girl that is picking on my baby.  Without real knowledge of what discipline issues “the bad girl” was having at school, we had been encouraging LP to use her name instead of the nickname that Lauren had coined for her.  We’ve been trying to reinforce a hard lesson for anyone to learn – especially a 3 year old – to love your enemy.  Today when I picked up Lauren from school, she was sitting in a chair away from the other kids instead of on the floor.  I really didn’t think anything of it as I was greeted by her beautiful smile and warm embrace.  However, the teacher monitoring the kids stopped to inform me that LP had been separated from the other girl in her class because she had been pulling Lauren’s hair.  Evidence now that “the bad girl” was living up to her name.  On the way home, I tired to get some more information out of Lauren as to what happened, but all she was really willing to offer was that she wished the other girl wasn’t at school anymore.  The beginning of a long road of potential bullies and mean girls that can hamper the beautiful spirit of my wonderful baby girl.  After reminding Lauren that we can’t control how others act, just show them through our actions how to be nice and stating that the other girl was still learning how to be nice, it became apparent to me that Lauren’s optimistic outlook had not been defeated.  She informed me that she thought that the girl in her class was just learning how to be silly – not mean.  Innocence at its finest.  However, never underestimate the loyalty of a mommy bear…I’ve got my eyes on you “bad girl”.


Outdone

I know it was inevitable, however, I’m not sure I’m ready quite yet.  I’ve officially been outdone by my 3 year old.  Here was our conversation after Lauren woke up from her nap today:

LP:  (stretching her arms as far apart as she could) “I love you this much!”
Me:  “I love you this much!” (stretching my arms out as far as I could)
LP:  I love you as big as the house.
Me:  I love you bigger than the house.
LP:  I love you as big as the whole world.

I guess I could have used the universe card, but I just wasn’t prepared to answer the question, “what’s the universe”…so she won!


Leaps and Bounds

Another milestone met!  One of Lauren’s teachers pulled me aside after I dropped LP off. She just wanted me to know that Lauren is really starting to open up at school – playing with the other kids and talking, talking, talking. Finally, they get to see a fraction of her little personality!  LP has informed them that she’s getting a new swing set once we get a new house (something her Daddy mentioned briefly once and apparently it’s happening now). She told them about Hailey riding on the sled with her and that I almost ended up in the pond.  She let them know that she was thinking about having a baby…which I had to add that she already has 100 babies (minus the two that she has lost at the store and the one that died from eating hand sanitizer that I didn’t tell them about.  As I think about that ratio, that’s still pretty good. If I had 100 babies, I’m sure I couldn’t keep up with all of them and probably would have been tempted to wring a few of their necks more than once).  I did not let her in on the fact that LP tells me everything that they do and say, too. Even things they are not saying or doing to her.  It’s all from the perspective of a 3 year old which can make the stories quite interesting – however, don’t be fooled, she’s very perceptive…


41 Months


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41 months! That’s 3 years and 5 months. My baby is almost 3 and a half…unbelievable! This month, my ALMOST 3 and a half year old said phrases like, “Daddy was impressed with me” and “we had a whole conversation. She used descriptive language like “razor sharp” and “squeals like a little baby pig”. She even utilized more complex language principles like similes when describing the way her fish E was sleeping; “hanging like an ornament from a Christmas tree.” I am often stunned by Lauren’s ability to use these grown-up words in the correct context. Here is a conversation we had while eating at a noisy restaurant:

LP: Look Mommy, where’s a do.Me: Where’s a do? What does that mean?LP: No, where’s a do…like what is left over when something dies up. RES-I-DUE. (1/22/10)

Not only did she use it properly (she was referring to some dried up cheese dip on the table) but she also knew how to explain it to me. I have days that I question she’s only 41 months old. However, as much as her vocabulary continues to grow “actually” and “yeah, but…” remain some of her favorite things to say.

She’s still super inquisitive, asking questions non-stop. I do have to remind myself that it is due to her strong desire to learn and not to just irritate me because there are times – around question #50 from the past hour – that can be challenging. However, her questions can be enlightening and amusing too. After reading a book about snakes, LP asked, “Mom, since snakes smell with their tongues, do they taste with their nose?” (1/20/10)  And while I simply can’t believe how fast the past 3 years and 5 months have flown by, I regularly get the impression from Lauren that she doesn’t think she will ever grow up. I overheard her say to one of her baby dolls, “You’ll be an adult some day…when you’re nine or seven.” (1/21/10)

Babies do grow up so fast and I want to preserve those years as much as possible, however, I believe it’s time to find LP some fun and exciting ways to learn how to read. She already knows the sounds the letters make and can sound out some simple words. As we drove down the road the other day, LP said, “Look Mommy! That truck almost says up.” I look over to see a truck passing us that reads SUPERIOR.

Lauren has started sputtering off her dreams in the morning while getting ready. Generally I have the time to enjoy the story in the moment but as we start our busy day, neglect to write it down and often it’s soon forgotten. That’s such a shame because this girl comes up with some doozies. Here is one that I did jot down, paraphrasing but using as many of Lauren’s words as possible. Keep in mind that as she told me her dream, she acted it out.
There was a sea turtle that kept losing his shell. One time he lost it while he was swimming in the ocean (LP is on her belly on the floor. She’s kicking her feet and holding onto something in front of her like you would a floaty). It slipped away and he lost it (Lauren is now laying on her back). A fish picked it up, and put it on (mimicking putting on the shell like you would a shirt, pushing through her head and then each arm). He swam around pretending to be a turtle and hiding from the other fish in his shell (making swimming motions with her arms as she walked around the room, poking her head in and out of the shell). The fish then jumped high out of the water and threw the shell on the beach for the turtle (jumping and throwing). There was a princess with the turtle now keeping him safe. She helped him figure out how to keep his shell on with some straps they found that attached his shell to his back (walking around on her hands and feet with her back arched high in the air). Apparently there was also some talking corn. In LP’s exact words, “corn that grows tall in the back of a farmer’s yard – that is still growing with the paper stuff on them” (husks). The corn told her to stop so she could keep the turtle safe. She was now watching the turtle on a movie…so she pushed the pause button. Since she helped save the turtle and he had his shell on, he took a turtle train home (because, of course, what other kind of train would a turtle take). He lived at the zoo with his mommy & daddy. He was green and couldn’t wait to roll in some mud when he got home (rolling on her back on the floor). The end.

Her imagination simply doesn’t stop – ever. While eating pancakes recently Lauren said, “Mom, I’m going to call these platypuses. They are yummy and sweet!! They taste like… (smacking her lips and pausing thoughtfully for a second) peonies – those pink flowers!! Yummy! Yummy!!! (1/22/10)  I’m amazed that she could come up with a story that included both platypuses and peonies…and honestly a little disturbed that she was eating them.

One thing I’m certain of. No matter how challenging or stressful things can get, Lauren only has to smile at me and say, “I love you soooo much” to make my day. As remarkable as I think she is intellectually, I’m most proud of how compassionate and caring she is. I’m not sure if that is something that is learned or if it’s just inherent in her. Whatever the case, we are so very blessed. Check out some pictures of her from this month’s photo shoot, click here.